Welcome to my $100M Leads book summary and SparkNotes!
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One-Sentence-Summary: All-in-one guide to getting more, better, cheaper, reliable, engaged leads…so that you grow your business enough to consider an investment from Hormozi’s company at Acquisition.com (domain that he bought for $350k).
booboo book rating: ★★★★★ (updated to 5-star book)
Hold up there, entrepreneurial cowboy. You found this summary to do the fast-track version. Before starting, you must understand this book is written for BIG guys. $100M+ guys. THIS IS NOT ME! And the book was still valuable.
But much of the stuff here will not be relevant to you unless you have an active goal of getting very rich. If that’s you, let me challenge that. If you love what you’re doing, if you’re truly passionate about doing what you’re doing…not to be confused with passionate about making money…then by all means spend all your time, your entire life doing good and affect as many people as you can. But, me. Ohh no thanks.
I do like a lot of what I do professionally. But I’d rather spend all my time learning languages, traveling, completing my bucket list, improving my skills like cooking, learning new skills like flying, and meeting people. For me, a $100M net worth is a waste of time (Just ask the late Felix Dennis of How to Get Rich who amassed a fortune of $100M+ only to die at 59 years old). I don’t need it. I couldn’t do anything with that. Right now, I’m wealthy. Of my peer groups, I’m one of the wealthiest. I’d like to get more wealthy, and that’s why I read this book, and that’s why I’m working on my business actively after taking a very passive approach to it for about 5 years (1.33 hours per day, according to Clockify).
“Getting leads has been my get out of jail free card with no expiration date. And at this point, it’s faded and worn with use.” Wait, what? Am I misunderstanding? So you’ve written this book to share your faded and worn secrets? Read on to find out. This is my brutally honest book review of $100M Leads by Alex Hormozi.
Wow! I’ve got to give it to Hormozi here because he beautifully summarizes how to manage and hire: “If you trade forty hours of doing for four hours managing, you work thirty-six hours less. Brilliant. And the best part is, you can make that trade over and over. You can swap 200 hours of work per week for twenty hours of management. Then, you trade the twenty hours of managing for a manager, who costs you four hours per week to lead.” (p. 327)
Brilliant. This was worth the cost of the book. At least, it changed my frame. He followed this up with a really great summary of why employees are so valuable and why you need to separate yourself from your business (ie to create equity), and how (with process documentation).
If you are making a ton of money, but that money is dependent on you, the business isn’t worth that much to anyone else. Once your employees can run the business without you, you now get wealthier in the form of equity, which is what someone else would pay for your business which is typically a multiple of yearly revenues.
A really interesting parallel with another book I’m reading right now, Scott Adam’s Reframe Your Brain, regarding how you frame your employees and manage them.
Original Frame: I don’t like/I’m not good at management.
For the better part of a full year I’ve been reading books about recruiting, hiring, interviewing, managing, leading, etc., and it hasn’t really clicked for me. Along with the last bullet point, Hormozi also breaks down training and transferring work beautifully:
Other important hiring and management notes:
You are reading my $100M Leads book summary by Alex Hormozi. Be sure to check out my digital bookshelf for 100+ book summaries.
“A lead magnet is a complete solution to a narrow problem.” (p. 50)
As I lay out the steps, I will walk you throgh an example of my own business about optimizing Airbnb listings in the short-term rental industry.
Step 1: Figure out the problem you want to solve and who to solve it for.
For who: STR owners
I also realized that I need different lead magnets for people at different stages. For me, that means a lead magnet for brand new hosts, experienced, and interested Airbnb hosts.
Step 2: Figure out how to solve it
Step 3: Figure out how to deliver it
Step 4: Test what to name it
Test headline, image, subheadline (in that order)
In his example about naming his book, he doesn’t go into how to test it. If you’re using random people, your product/book better be for a very broad and random audience. A crucial aspect is absent from the book. Based on screenshots, it looks like he tested on his Instagram. Do you have 2m relevant followers?
Step 5: Make it easy for them to consume.
Step 6: Make it damn good!
99% don’t buy, but they will ruin your reputation based on your fluff free goods.
Step 7: Make it easy for them to tell you they want more.
After your lead magnet, add something to buy on the thank you page.
“A Call To Action (CTA) tells the audience what to do next.” (p. 71) Good CTAs have two things:
On creating free content and personal brands: the content you create isn’t the compounding asset – the audience is. So, even though the content may disappear in time, your audience keeps growing.
I found the section on content creation valuable. I’ve taken notes privately and will unpack them at the end of the book and update here. But one important strategy is switching from “How to” to “How I” and “This is the best way” to “This is my favorite way”
A great reframe: “People don’t have shorter attention spans, they have higher standards.” (p. 160) Check out my book summary of Reframe Your Brain by Scott Adams to discover dozens more valuable reframe that lead to life success.
“If you made a billion dollars per customer, then you could spend nine hundred and ninety-nine million dollars to get a customer and still have a million dollars leftover.” (p. 250)
Bad Advice Alert! Thinking like this increases your risk a lot. What if, in this situation, anything bad happens? You. Are. Quite Literally. Fucked. And, in business, it’s not smooth sailing, bad shit happens.
Let me tell you that I’m very skeptical of paid ads, and Hormozi did nothing to ease that skepticism with his book $100M Leads. In my business, I do no ads. I’ve tried them, sure. They’ve always failed. In that time, my business has consistently grown from other things I do like making videos, write blogs, go on podcasts, and I’m recently trying sponsorships. Some businesses need paid ads, probably. But Telsa doesn’t. Airbnb doesn’t. I sold 50,000 copies of my book without paid ads.
“I’ve lost money more times than I’ve made money running paid ads.” (p. 245) Appreciate his honesty; this is not a strategy for a small business or anyone who doesn’t want to spend a year learning this highly nuanced skill. “I worked at a business that took a year to get paid ads profitable.” (p. 246)
Instead, I suggest you work on making the product better. Implement an affiliate system to give your prior customers a little more incentive to spread the word.
“Start with an acceptable amount of money you are willing to lose each month. Expect to lose it. You won’t be earning. You’ll be learning.” (p. 257)
Sure. You’ll learn. I would not run paids ads, unless everything else was working, and it was the last thing to do to grow. Hormozi agrees with me here.
“I recommend doing paid ads last for two reasons.” (p. 258)
Skills from the first three are transferable to paid ads, and you’ll have money to lose from the things you did with the first three ways. Basically, you should only do paid ads if you’re willing to learn a lot to get good and have a lot of money to spend, and have the perseverance (and again the money) to push through until you master it. Everyone does not master it. Hope that you are not one of the many losers.
“We expect to lose more times that we win.” (p. 258) Fine, but you just got done writing a chapter seemingly with a formula on how to make things work, how to get people interested, engaged, and buying with your free content…why wouldn’t that transfer to paid ads? Not a 100% hit rate, but the example he gives is a 10% hit rate.
Let me give you a personal anecdote that may help you understand why you’ll likely lose money on ads unless everything is right. Recently, I was looking for standardized tests to give potential hires for my business. I found Test Gorilla. I subscribed to Test Gorilla. Then, and for a full year after I was already a paying customer, I got hundreds of ads for Test Gorilla. That seems pretty basic logic. If X purchases, don’t slow the ad. I wonder how much money they lost on that flop.
“So get a consultant, watch tutorials, and get it setup. End of Story.” (p. 245) Ads section, while good, lacks information on learning the individual systems. You can build a nice ad, but that’s half the battle, the other half is optimizing the ad for the particular platform using thier interface and they are SO complicated.
Paid ads are the weakest section in his book. Seemingly the most obvious question when hiring a paid ads agency is: “so if I spend $1 with you, how much will I earn?” is not answerable. You’ll have to do it mostly yourself. And you should be prepared to work much more than you’re working now.
“‘You ignored the ads for two weeks!?’ She had oh no you didn’t written all over her face.” (p. 291) In other words, you need to pay attention to ads every single week you’re running them, lest you lose $950k without making than $1M sale.
Gives a pro tip about how Facebook says the top 0.1% tested 11x more and then says that you should test 11x more. Hah! How conveneincet. If I were Facebook, I’d release that stat too! Everybody should test 11x more!! horray! Let’s see, what else does the top 0.1% have in common? Billion dollar valuations? Teams dedicated to getting it right? Gigantic budgets? All paid ads do is drain out a lot of resources and increase your refunds.
By Hormozi’s own admission, a 3:1 LTGP (lifetime gross profit) to CAC (customer acquisition cost) is the minimum. I know many agencies function in the 2:1 range relying on new customers due to high turnover. This is the norm. That means you’re spending up to 50% of your revenue on a customer. This is the most expensive cost of your business. On top of that, a lot of agenices use ROAS (return-on-ad-spend) to measure success and they, too, measure success at 2:1 minimum, but ideally 3:, 4:, or, if you’re lucky, 5:1. Only thing is ROAS = gross sales/ad spend, ignoring lifetime value.
His affiliate section blows my mind. Having an affiliate pay to be an affiliate? I didn’t think of that. And we’re not talking about little money. The example he gave is $4-$8k (or 10-20% of what they’re expected to make in the first year)!
The golden nugget! And just as I’m revamping my affiliate system. A three-tier system.
You can add a little blurb to your orders letting current customers know they can earn some money for referring.
I thought his story to begin Section #3 Agencies about paying $750 per hour for the owner of an ad agency to teach him how to do things was good advice. Risky, though. Agencies are not worth it for small businesses. Choosing the right agencies in a sea of crap is nearly impossible. I have experience.
Even after I spent a lot of time vetting an agency, I still got royally fucked. They setup some ads, and I was suspicious from the start. I paid for another expert via Clarity.fm to review what they did and he told me they didn’t do some very basic stuff. So it’s not like agency owners even know what they’re doing. I find that I don’t do a good job of predicting the future in these cases and asking things in advance. This is a valuable skill for an entrpreneur to avoid as many problems as possible.
“..my experience with the next ten plus agencies was different because I used them ‘the right way.’
Here is his strategy in his own words: “I hire one ‘good enough’ agency to learn the ropes of a new platform. Then, I hire a more elite agency to learn how to maximize it.” Yes, it’s good. It can work, for sure.
At the very end of this section, he gives a list of what all the (few) good agencies had in common. This is a MUST read, and you’ll have to buy the book to get the full list of ten. The first is that somebody you know got good results working with them. The last is they’re expensive.
I will say though that I’ve interviewed dozens of agencies and none of them follow this list. On the other hand, I find them instead of rely on a word-of-mouth referral which is the first number in his list.
A Decade in a Page is a nice, short summary of everything and you’ll go back and re-read those sections that you can’t recall.
First typo on page 358. As a fellow author, great job, Alex! “I can get my team as good or better than the agency in less than six months or less.”
My own note on him paying $120,000 for four calls with an influencer: PROBABLY DON’T DO THIS (unless you know exactly what you want to get out of it).
Either he is a tremendous writer, or he spent a lot of time organizing his ideas, and further refining them with brain storms, drafts, proofreaders, sample readers, etc. Maybe he’s both.
Be sure to read: “The Many Sided Die” fable at the end of the book.
You are reading my book review and Cliffs Notes summary by Alex Hormozi. Be sure to check out my digital bookshelf for 100+ book summaries.
As always, new words:
Although overall, I loved this book, and it was well timed with me going through trying to grow my business, I will say that something seems off about his story. I’ll stop short of calling bullshit, but to make then lose hundreds of thousands of dollars multiple times and not take someone to court over that, which is more than your life savings, is not a normal course of events.
I’ve already taken steps to improve my business and the value I received from this book is way beyond the time and money invested. Highly recommend you buy $100M Leads by Alex Hormozi.
Thanks for visiting and thanks to Alex Hormozi for writing $100M Leads!