Categories
Podcast

Pancham Prashar: One of the Nicest People I know talks about Running Agency, Finding and keeping Premium Clients, Living a Better Life and more

My guest for today’s episode is Pancham Prashar @Pancham_Prashar  Pancham is one of the co-founders at Cueblocks, a one of its kind technology and marketing agency based in Chandigarh. If you’re an agency owner and looking for ideas to grow your digital marketing or technology agency, I highly recommend you listen to this conversation and also check out Cueblocks.com to get a sense of how this agency is different from all the stereotypical agencies and IT companies you might have seen.

I had the opportunity to work with Pancham closely for close to 2 years and it was a life-changing experience. When I thought of starting a podcast, Pancham was right up there on the list of the people I would like to interview. 

The biggest lesson I learned from him is that one doesn’t have to be an asshole to do well in life and neither I have to outsmart people to make a good living. I can be honest, ethical, and kind, and still do well for myself. 

If I rewind the clock – Meeting Pancham was just what the doctor would have advised me to help me fix many broken areas of my life. He is genuinely one of the nicest, and kindest people I know. It’s very hard to meet him and not be charmed by his simplicity and intellect.

Pancham is a vegan and total health nerd. I have run many half marathons with him – something I hope to cover in my future conversations. 

In this part 1 of our discussion, we speak about many wide-ranging topics including how he positioned Cueblocks with his two business partners to charge a high hourly rate of $60 per hour (which btw is at least twice as compared to companies in India), how to build a lasting relationship with clients, what his framework for good decision making, how one can deal with an insult, how he built such a strong company culture, and many other ideas that can help you grow your business and live a happier life.

Without further ado, please dive into my conversation with none other than Pancham Prashar. I hope you enjoy it.


The visually inclined can watch our exchange on YouTube.

Categories
Digital Marketing

Dragon and the Troubled Digital Marketer

I receive several emails from people who want to make a living (and often, more than just living) with Digital Marketing. Many of these people are smart, but I feel sorry for them. They are set for failure, and I feel there is little I can do to help them. They enter into their digital marketing career with the wrong mindset and unrealistic expectations of getting rich quickly, making money while sleeping, and showing off their riches.

If you are a kid who has played the video games of the 90’s (I definitely have), such as Prince, Mario, Contra, Spartan – you know that there is a dragon waiting for you at the end. If you are in the digital marketing game, the dragon doesn’t come in the end. The dragon opens the door and eats you. Game over.

It’s unfair because you don’t even get to know the rules of the game.

I am talking about self-proclaimed digital marketing gurus who sell you systems and processes in the form of dropshipping courses, marketing funnels, SMMA courses, affiliate marketing, etc, offering you the ultimate opportunity to become rich in a couple of months, if not overnight. The likes of Tai Lopez, Dan Loc, Frank Curn, Grant Cardone, Sam Ovens… I can go on and on.

I have seen people spending close to $8,000 on such digital marketing courses and being more miserable than they were when they started.

The problem with these people and their expensive courses is not that their content is useless (I downloaded some courses from Torrent – yes Torrent), but that they are sold on the promise to give you a system to make you rich in a short time. The worst thing their money-making systems do is that they give you a false belief of having all figured out, making you short-sighted, impatient, and deluded. Quite the opposite of the mind frame you need to succeed.

If you just watch one of their videos on youtube, they clog the arteries of your brain. They are there when you are watching the news, reading your favorite blog, on your Instagram, playing games on your phone. These people are true masters of their game. The game of getting you to open their wallets to them. For someone who has just started, has no context, such digital marketing courses can be paralyzing.

It’s the same reason why parents don’t want their kids to watch an adult movie until they are grown enough to have the context. Likewise, watching such money-making courses when you’re just getting started, isn’t good for you. When you’re starting, your focus has to be on developing a skill, not buying a sports car with your thought bubbles.

I am not denying that there are over-night rich stories in digital marketing. But these stories are of people getting rich overnight by selling an overnight rich shortcut. Why people buy them? Because we humans love short cuts. Our brains are designed to take the easy way out – and for a good reason.

My advice? If anyone promises you easy money, shortcuts to success in the form of an SMMA course, affiliate marketing course, dropping shipping course, know that it’s a mousetrap – run away from it, and not towards it.

To make money, you need skills; and building skills good enough that someone will pay for it takes time. There are no shortcuts.

I believe that you don’t have to be a mean, ass-hole to become rich. You can make your riches while being a good, honest, and reasonable person.

And if you want to make money while you’re sleeping, go and start a SAAS business. Want more ideas? Start a real ecommerce business, create music, create a popular youtube channel, or a podcast. All these streams can make you money when you’re sleeping.

But you will need to make your own share of mistakes. You will learn from them, do the course correction. You will need to put together a ‘long term’ team with a shared mission. All of this will take time. You will have to wait, and keep working on your skills and enjoy the journey. That’s what I do every day.

Hard choices, easy life. Easy choices, hard life – Jerzy Gregorek

Image source

Categories
Podcast

Chhavi Firani – Running an Agency, Finding Clients, Building Meaning Relationships, Time Management and more

I chose Chhavi Firani to be my guest on my first ever podcast. So who is Chhavi? Chhavi runs a Software Development company by the name of Dikonia which she started not long ago. Her company builds software, apps, and custom web applications for businesses around the world, and was profitable since day one. She is a top seller on Upwork. Long story short – she has done many things that many people I know, including myself struggle with.

So, I wanted to ask her – how does she runs her agency business, how she finds clients, how she is managing her business, her emails and the daily routines that help her become the person she is. 

Despite being so efficient, Chhavi is one of the most relaxed and chilled people I have met in the agency business. Whenever I ask her – “Chhavi, do you have time for this?” She always replies with the same smile on her face – “Yes Pulkit, I always have time”. As a person who is nearly not as relaxed as her and someone who is dealing with at least a dozen monkeys dancing in my brain, it was therapeutic for me to talk to her. And it’s my sincere hope that listening to my conversation with Chhavi helps you put your own monkey mind in check so that you can think more clearly, as you advance towards your own life goals.

Just so that you know – Chhavi used to be my supervisor when I started my career. I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time with her, and I couldn’t be more excited to talk to her and relive the good old days of my younger self. 

If you’re in the agency business and make money by finding and servicing clients, you have to and have to listen to this conversation. You will find gems that you may not find anywhere else.

So, get ready to take notes. I am sure that listening to this will help you become a better person, a better manager of things around you, be more present and yes – also grow your own agency business on the way. It was an honor talking to Chhavi. I sincerely hope you dig it.

 

Categories
AgencySchool

Agency School

 

Welcome to the Agency School – a resource for freelancers and agency owners to learn how to find and work with high-value clients both locally and internationally. With this training, I have shared the things I’ve learned while running my agency – I Love Fashion Retail, that you can use to find and work with high-value clients both locally and internationally.

Have questions?
If you have any questions, please feel free to post them in the comments under each video. You can also ask your question on Instagram or Twitter using hashtag #askpulkit.

Cheers,
Pulkit


Introduction
How to use this training (8:37 mins)


Positioning
Chapter 1 – Positioning (25:20 + 28:26 mins)
Chapter 2 – Research Target Audience (34:27 mins)
Chapter 3 – Package your Services (16:58 mins)


Sales Masterclass
Chapter 4 – Sales Warm-up (48:53 mins)
Chapter 5 – How to Conduct a Sales call? (110:24 mins)
Chapter 6 – How to close the deal? (26:12 mins)


Build your website
Chapter 7 – Build Your Website (78:35 mins)
Chapter 8 – Start Building your email list (64:37 mins)


Start outreaching Clients
Chapter 9 – Start Cold Outreach emails (32:13 mins)


Blogging Masterclass
Chapter 10 – Start blogging to generate business leads (145:12 mins)


Project Communication
Chapter 11 – Project Communication – Part 1 & 2 (9:46 & 54:53 mins)


Cold Calling
Chapter 12: Start Cold Calling Clients (40:05 & 32:11 mins)


Bonus Chapters
Chapter 13 – How to pitch your services when you don’t have a portfolio – Part 1 & 2 (41:37 & 32:37 mins)
Chapter 14 – How to Pick Skills and Convert them into Services (25:08 mins)
Chapter 15 – How to price your services (36:16 mins)


I built my Agency I Love Fashion Retail using the principles in these videos. It combines all the tools teams need to get work done in a single, streamlined package. With these videos, you should know what to do, where things stand, and where to find things you need.

Categories
AgencySchool

Chapter 15 – How to price your services

When you’re new to freelancing, it’s confusing for you to price your services. With this video, I share my pricing strategy as an agency and also how I used to price my services when I started.

Categories
AgencySchool

Chapter 14: Pick Skills and Convert them into High-paying Services

I get contacted by so many students who are starting new, and have many skills but don’t know which of these skills they can convert into service and charge for it. I get it, it can be confusing when you’re starting new.

So, the objective of this video is to help you pick the freelance services you can provide to clients, and also develop the necessary mindset to deliver the services.

Categories
AgencySchool

Chapter 13 – Create Portfolio

With this video, I want to tackle one of the biggest roadblocks in front of agencies and freelancers stopping them from getting started – “what if they ask for my portfolio; I don’t have any sample work to show them”.

Well, it’s true that clients do often ask you to show your sample work (note that I said often and not always), and you should be prepared to overcome the objection.

So, in this video, I show you how you can actually invent your portfolio by using one or all the below strategies:
– you can borrow portfolio from other freelancers
– you can invent a portfolio
– you can cover-up


Part 1:


 

Part 2:

Categories
AgencySchool

Chapter 12: Start Cold Calling Clients

First of all, I am not a cold calling expert, but I have enough experience to tell you a few things about picking up the phone and calling potential clients to pitch them my services or partnerships. More than cold calling, I will teach you how to move out of your shell especially if you’re an introvert to pitch yourself with confidence without being apologetic.

Cold calling is especially an important channel when you’re starting new without any network or website to generate leads.

Part 1

Part 2

Categories
AgencySchool

Chapter 11: Get on top of your Client Communication

Your clients judge you from your communication and management. Poor communication means you lose your clients quickly doesn’t matter how good your skills are. So, with this video, I want to help you get on top of your email communication and use a project management tool like basecamp (FREE now) to stay on top of project management and communication so that nothing slips through the crack.

In this training, you will learn:
– Principles of good communication
– How to write business emails like a professional?
– How to manage your project on basecamp

Part 1

Part 2

Categories
AgencySchool

Chapter 10: Start blogging to generate business leads

Think you can’t write? Well, I am about to change that. With this masterclass, I will teach you how to not only write but also use your writing skills to generate leads.

Things covered in this particular video:
– How to become a blogger, grow your business and earn money? (even if you’re a beginner)
– How to improve your English writing skills?
– How to become a creative writer?
– How to come-up with topics & ideas for writing?
– How to have your own writing process? (I will share mine)
– The essential rules of writing that I wish I knew when I started
– How to write titles that make people read?
– How to publish your articles in top media publications?
– How to stop making grammar mistakes starting from today?
and a lot more…
– How to become a blogger and earn money
– How is Blogging as a career in India