On this episode of Hair Biz Radio, Host Zakiyrah interviews AJ Joiner, a growth hacker, marketer, digital strategist, and author.

– How did AJ become who he is today?
– He’s just a country kid from small-town Louisiana.
– Went to Southern University.
– Visited Atlanta in 1994 and decided he needed to move there one day.
– He applied for jobs in several cities but knew he’d move to Atlanta.
– His original degree was in computer information systems, but he went back to school for broadcast.
– How did you get into digital marketing?
– He knew what was going on in digital really early.
– He had an e-newsletter back in 1996.
– He had a restaurant owner who asked him to host and event after reading his emails.
– How important is an email list now?
– Having an email list is owning the race course.
– Social media is interaction, email is transaction.
– What is one easy thing you can do to get started in the digital world?
– Innovation is just a way of life.
– Choose the platform where your people are and double down on that platform.
– It’s important to have empathy on social media.
– Find people in the groups that you want to be and engage with them.
– If you want a shortcut, do some paid advertising.
– There’s less than 1% conversion on cold traffic.
– If you have an email list, you can upload that into Facebook and put yourself in front of them.
– Then build a lookalike audience based on your email list.
– What are some of the industries you’ve worked with?
– He hasn’t niched down so it’s been everything.
– The strategy is pretty vanilla, but the application is different based on industry.
– You need to know the different facets of your product.
– Take a piece of paper pointing out problems and how your product solves those problems.
– Who are some people you looked to when you got into the marketing industry?
– Russell Brunson
– Tony Robbins
– Learning to listen and add value.
– How do you feel about spending 3% of your annual income on professional growth and development?
– He listens to three books a month.
– One on personal development, one is industry specific, one is aspirational or fiction.
– He’s always listening for things that might help his clients.
– This is also relationship building.
– What are some trends you’ve noticed from 2017-2018?
– Gary Vee has become a pop-culture icon, but live video is still relevant.
– Voice control on home devices like Google Home or Alexa is becoming important.
– You want to dive in at the beginning, you don’t want to pivot after everyone already has.
– People want to know how to set themselves apart in the hair industry because it seems saturated.
– It’s not always about differentiation, it’s about owning a segment.
– You have to have other product or service offerings to go along with it.
– You need to create things that are specific to your niche.
– You have to understand what people’s problems are.
– What are your thoughts on influencer marketing?
– It’s smart and it can be better than paying for ads.
– You want to build relationships with people who have built trust.
– How do you build that “know, like, and trust?”
– It’s about being authentic and real.
– One of the fastest ways is to create drama or conflict.
– You can create faux or faceless content.
– The more controversial you can be on a regular basis without being fake, the more people will be attracted to you.
– What’s one of the biggest mistakes you think entrepreneurs, or business owners make when it comes to their digital strategies.
– People want instant gratification.
– You have to understand that it takes time and that failure is part of the process.
– Entrepreneurship seems to glamorous, but it takes a lot of work and patience.
– It’s hard financially, emotionally, and psychologically.
– Social media has a lot to do with the comparison game and messes with you.
– What’s a pet peeve with new clients?
– People who tell him they already know how to do things when they’re not doing it.
– Trying to circumvent the process.
– Taking yourself out of your comfort zone is where the real growth is.
– Lack of wanting to grow on your own.
– How do you make it so you don’t have any “fluff” in what you do?
– Ignore other people’s fluff.
– Unfollow people who post negative things.
– Try to educate your clients.
– Talk about the Joiner Method you created.
– It’s about becoming an expert in everything you do.
– It’s about taking the knowledge that you have and turning it into different revenue streams.
– How important do you think blogging is right now?
– It’s just another layer of content.
– People still read blogs to learn, it’s on the free part of it, the bottom tier of the growth circle.
– Podcasts are also in the free category.
– On the next level you have paid content, meetups and events.
– The next tier is paying to go to weekend retreats and deep dive workshops.
– At the top is high end coaching and high-end programs.
– What are the first two things you should do when you get started with your hair business?


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