SFR 37: “The Power Of Perception” – Stephen Larsen

SFR 37: “The Power Of Perception”

Feb 20th, 2017 anchorwave

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One of my videos totally fooled an ad agency a couple years ago, and I wanna show you how I did it on Youtube


What’s going on everyone? This is Steve Larsen, and you’re listening to Sales Funnel Radio.

Welcome to Sales Funnel Radio, where you’ll learn marketing strategies to grow your online business using today’s best internet sales funnels. And now, here’s your host, Steve Larsen.

All right, that was kind of cheesy…

Hey, today I want to tell you guys a little bit … I want to tell you a cool story. I want to tell you about the power of perception. I didn’t have any other name for that except for this, so this is the power of perception, right?

Perception is huge. Perception is amazing. It’s very, very real, right?…

When I was in college … Oh, you know what? I’m totally going to put this video in the show notes too. All right, when I was in college … A lot of these stories I tell, I realize, are about college, but realize that I have not even been out of college for a year, so that’s where a lot of my stories come from, so I’m so sorry.

I tell you a lot of things that I’m doing with Russell right now currently, but obviously there are some cool things that happened while I was in college too, because I was a really active kid and I was not a normal student.

Anyway, there was a class that I was a part of, and part of the class, what we had to do was we had to create a video, and we had to go get as many views on it as possibly could. And whoever had the most views, I can’t remember what the prize was, but it was something crazy.

And the whole show was about social media…

And I will tell you that 90% of what that guy was teachings was totally old. It was not … It was outdated information, it did not help. It was actually very bad information, some of it. But the principles were cool, right? I mean, as far as the tactics. The tactics he was teaching were old. They were outdated. School can’t keep up with it, which is one of the reasons I had such a hard time with the school, right?

School, college in general, does not keep up with what’s going on in business and marketing…

Anyway, as a group, my little group of four people, we had to come up with a video, and then we had to go get as many views on it as possibly could to get, I think, to get an A. It was kind of a cool and interesting assignment.

We had to go figure out different places to post it, we had to learn about some SEO, we had to learn about … It was really, really fascinating to do that, and it was just a whole lot of fun.

We went and we decided the new Star Wars … Let’s see, which one was it? Not the most recent one, obviously, it was A New Hope. I like Star Wars. I like Lord of the Rings, I love Harry Potter. I mean, I just like a good story in general. Anyways, I like all that stuff. I especially like it when there’s good music in the movie.

I’m a huge music buff, so if there’s good music and it’s a good story, done. I don’t really care if it’s … Anyway, whatever.

We went and we decided that we were going to play off of all the hype for the new Star Wars. I said it would be best if we looked around the industry, and we decided that we were going to go and make a video off of what was currently happening and what all the buzz was already about, right? We were going to ride, basically, the hype.

We decided it would be about Star Wars, and a video that was going around that was huge was this lifting video, and it was this bro walking around saying, “Do you even lift, bro?” Have you ever seen that video? Maybe I’ll just put that in the show notes too. It’s like, “Bro, do you even lift? Do you even lift, bro?” And he’s saying it to all these really jacked guys that are huge and they’re getting all ticked at him.

And it was really, really funny. I mean, it’s a funny video…

And so we decided, okay, Star Wars and then the bro video, so we said, “Do you even Jedi, bro?” And so what we did is we had one of the guys in our group dress up like a Jedi, and we got him like a lightsaber and we got him a cloak. It was actually a bed sheet. And he ran around campus asking people if they Jedi. It’s really funny. And he did it all these random places, and … Anyway, it was actually a good video.

I was like, okay, perception is reality, perception is reality, perception is reality…

And people knew in that class that I was really, really into this weird thing called funnel building. This is towards the end of my college experience. And we made this video, and we got it together, and I was like, okay, I guarantee you none of these people or any of the teachers know about some of the gray hat stuff of the internet, right?

White hat, black hat, gray hat, right? White hat is the totally clean stuff, black hat is the … That’s like straight-up hacking, right? And gray hat’s kind of the in-between. I’m all about gray hat, you guys. If there’s something that’s going to my stuff ahead, then why would I not do it, you know what I mean?

If it’s not breaking any laws, then shoot, I’m going to do it…

So I went and I was like, I’m going to prove a point to this teacher that there’s a place for this stuff. A certain place at a certain time. And what I did is I went to Fiverr, and all things scammy come from Fiverr. That’s not totally true. But it certainly was at this time. And I was like, I’m going to buy YouTube views. Right?

I’m going to pay people to watch this video. And I went through and I paid like $5 and I got 50,000 quote-unquote “views.” Straight-up bots, right? I mean, no one’s … They weren’t real. Maybe half of them were real, because they placed it in certain spots, but the other half I’m sure were bots, just so they could deliver on their $5 thing.

And in one day, we were watching the stats. We’d get into class, and we’d watch the stats. Get in the class and watch the stats. Well, I got into class and we watched the stats, and there was like this flat line and then, you know, it was like a hundred views that last day, 200 views the day before that, and then boom, 50,000 views.

And they were like, “Oh my gosh, what happened? This is crazy.” And I think I paid a little more and I got another 50,000 views. I was like, “This is crazy. Look how viral it’s going, oh my gosh.” And everyone’s like, “Oh my gosh, this is so nuts.”

I was just chuckling on the inside…

It was so funny, because the teacher was like, “This is nuts. Oh my gosh, I’ve never had anyone happen, this is crazy.” And I was that kid that was kind of pushing the envelope. I ended up getting an email and a phone call from an ad agency. I don’t think I’ve ever told this story before. I’m sorry if you guys are listening to this so I won’t say the name of it, but I was walking around on stage on … Oh, excuse me.

I was walking around and I was … Anyway. I got this call and this email from this company, from this ad agency, and what they do is they acquire video assets that are going viral so that they can place ads on them. And I was like, oh, that’s interesting.

They said, “What we’d like to do is we’d like to acquire your video to place Star Wars paraphernalia on for people to go buy prior to your video playing.”

And I was like, okay, like a normal … almost like a normal video, you know, YouTube ad. And they were like, “Yes, so all we need you to do …” And they’re like, “And you’ll get a percentage of all the sales that come in from that actual video.” I was like, all right. Like, what happens if no more views come? They were like, “That’s okay, we like your content in general, and I think this is going to go great.”

I was like, all right. I was like, these guys have no idea that I freaking bought, with I think a total of $10, a crap ton of views. A very small percentage of that is actually viral.

And actually people who did see it, they actually really liked in and they thought it was funny. It actually did go quote-unquote “viral” for a little while, whatever you want to define that as, and it was really, really fun.

But they have no idea that it was … Anyway, what ended up happening is the last day of class I stood up and I made this presentation. I was like, hey, check it out. This is how I did it. And they were like, “Why would you do that?” And I was like, because perception is reality. Right?

How many of you watch a video on Facebook as you’re scrolling that has a million views without even looking at the title, just because it has a million views. How many of you watch a video on YouTube, same thing, that has a million and a half views, you’ve never even heard …

…Okay, what about the guys who have the Facebook pages that have like a million likes on it. You’ve never even heard of them before but suddenly they’re popping out of the woodwork. I was like, half the time, this is a very common practice in the industry you guys, is to go and buy likes.

And I have a strategy that makes and fools the Facebook and Google algorithms to make it think that it’s real and stay on there, because after a while they deleted the 50,000 views from my YouTube video. They knew that they were fake, and they went and they deleted it. Which is fine.

But it was to prove a point, and to show that you could game the system a little bit, and you could push marketing material farther than … Anyway, it’s really fascinating, and the teacher was like, “Oh my gosh, this is ridiculous. You’re crazy. I can’t believe this happened. I’ve never had students do this before. That was so cool, that was so nuts.”

And he ended up contacting me just a few weeks later. This was actually my last semester of college, I think, so … No, no, it wasn’t, actually. Never mind.

But he contacted me just a little while ago and he was asking me for marketing advice on his new venture. He left teaching college, I don’t know if it’s … I don’t think it’s because of me, but there might have been some correlation there. And he went out and he … He’s like, “Hey, would you come help me put my actual funnels and marketing together for my new venture?” I was like, oh, interesting.

Anyway, all I’m trying to tell you guys is that perception is reality…

Facebook pages that I want to grow for real, obviously I don’t go do this kind of crap on. Obviously the one, I don’t do that stuff on the Facebook page for that. The Facebook page for, you know, I don’t do that kind of … I have done that kind of stuff for those kinds of pages, but I do not do that stuff, obviously … I’m trying to tell you guys, don’t be sketchy, don’t be weird, don’t be creepy with this stuff.

There’s some really weird things you can do with it. You can totally gamify the system. Be real, be authentic with people. But anyway.

The whole point here is that I wanted to tell you that perception is reality. The funny … The aftermath of this whole story is that company that I signed a contract with, I think I’ve made like $5 with them. Because the hype of that first Star Wars video that they tied the product to died. It ended. They syndicated that content all over the internet. They put it all over the place. I guarantee … Probably some of you guys have even seen the video. I’ll put it in the show notes, you guys can go check it out.

But anyway, the point is, is that perception is reality, and when you go and you start … And like, I’ve talked about it in the past, how funnel building and funnel making, right, if you don’t know how to build funnels and you’re just trying to prove yourself in the market, that’s the exact same thing.

You’re just trying to prove yourself…

You’re trying to go out and you’re trying to make people see that you can do what you say you can. It’s the same thing. How do you actually … You got to show results somehow, and get people excited about what you’re doing. If you can deliver on what you’re saying that you can, then what’s the problem with it, you know what I mean?

That’s the thing I was trying to tell the class too. I was like, perception is reality, you guys. This is how it happens.

Anyway, I don’t really know how else to tie that into funnel building, other than I think it’s a funny story. And when you are building these things, though, and you’re going out … Actually, that’s how. When you’re going out and you’re actually trying to build these things for people, and you’re … If you’ve never proven yourself before, or you’re never built or you’ve never got any kind of result at all from anybody, first of all, just try and do results for yourself.

Second of all, man, just get out there, tell people you can build it, and if you didn’t, no one knows that you’re a funnel builder anyway, and just go to the next person, right? And go to the next person, go to the next person. I mean, I think we’ve all done that. Russell’s told several stories of several guys that have done that. That’s definitely what …

Anyway, I’m not trying to ramble on. But all I wanted you guys to know is, perception is reality. And that you can gamify these algorithms when it comes to social media and traffic driving. There’s a lot more strategies too that I can toss behind that, but there’s enough time for this on this podcast. And I don’t want to continue to ramble on.

So anyway, excited to see you guys at hackathon live, excited for all these future cool things going on. Hoping that I will see some of you guys at the new funnel hackathon event that Russell is putting on.

A three-day event where we build your funnel with you. You leave having done webinars. You leave with a completed webinar funnel. It’s very, very cool. Anyway, he will announce more of that at the actual event this … Is that next week? Crazy.

All right guys, I will see you guys all … Well, hopefully I’ll see you guys all there. And those of you guys who I don’t, I look forward to meeting you all in the future. Bye.

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