Failing costs money. It really does.
You’ve heard the saying, “it takes money to make money,” right? This is what it’s all about. Sal has taught you ways to go after this stuff with sweat equity. Failure is a balance of some of that sweat equity and some of that money.
Let’s rewind. Back when Sal started his senior ambassador program, they sent direct mail. He will never forget, he mentally committed. He said, “We’re either going to do this or we’re not going to do this,” and he committed to three direct mail pieces. At the time, each of those costed him about $1,500 each. Round up and say he spent the last $5,000 he had on those senior mailers. He was sending these direct mail pieces looking for senior reps to start his senior rep program. The last flyer went out in December. In mid-January, he gets his first call. One call. It was from this mom. She says, “I’m so sorry. We’ve been super busy. With the holidays, I think my daughter would make a great ambassador. Do you have any room left for her in your program?”
When they answered that call, behind the scenes, they were doing like a happy dance, right? Like, they were freaking out that this was happening. On the phone, though, Sal was like, “You know what, we’ve had a lot of inquiries about this. We’re going to have to interview your daughter, make sure she’s going to be a fit for the program. I’m not sure when we can get her.” They ended that call with, “All right, I’ll tell you what. We really want to work with people who are interested. Let’s get your daughter in to do this.” Meanwhile, behind the scenes, they actually had zero responses to the mailer.
The daughter’s name was Allison. Allison came in, ends up being Sal’s number one senior ambassador of all time. Personally, she had over 18 referrals that came in in her first year. Seniors were spending money at that time. They had all gotten to IPS. She gave them 18 referrals, but also gave them two additional ambassadors for that same year.
The big break
His first year, he now had three senior ambassadors. His first year, he photographed about 55 senior sessions. Fast forward three years later, from that first flyer, they were doing 150 seniors! 150 seniors, $2,000 average, and they had over 20 ambassadors all linked back to that one break. And so the message Sal is trying to impart upon you is that if I did not have the gumption, the wherewithal, the balls to keep pushing forward on that, he would not be where he is today.
He believed in his heart that this was the right thing to be doing. He risked it. An educated risk. Sal is not saying just go outside and piss money away. He took an educated risk that he knew these were things that would eventually work and he invested in that and it came to fruition. So yes, failing does cost money. It’s a lot of risk. It’s scary risk, but understand that if you’re doing the right things day in and day out, and you keep at it, it will lead to a successful business.