(Disregard the old one: bertbotta.com)
Enjoy the read.
There’s some gems of internet marketing wisdom in here.
As well as gems of how to live out your faith and make serious money!
Read Here or download the free Ebook!
GOD or MONEY?
How this former youth pastor HONORS GOD and MAKES a FORTUNE as an Internet Marketer
About the author
Bert was born and raised in San Francisco, California. He was a pilot and instructor for Trans World Airlines for twenty-six years. During his flying career, he also had a private practice as a licensed professional counselor in St. Louis, Missouri.
In 1981, after his third divorce, he began a worldwide spiritual journey.After his return to TWA, Bert attended the New Warrior Training Adventure. He later took early retirement from his airline to become a certified leader in that organization.
After seven years out of the cockpit he went back to work for Netjets as a captain on Citation and Gulfstream corporate jets.
Bert envisioned, formed, and co-led the first Living From the Heart Christian Men’s training and subsequent community in Marin County, California, in August 2011.
He’s a writer, a copywriter, an author and a consultant to groups and organizations. You can reach him at his website: http://www.bottacopywriting.com or via email at: email@example.com
Copyright© 2012 All rights reserved
Table of Contents
(II) Why this eBook?
(III) What does it take to make money and stay true to your faith?
(IV) Jeff Mills: A powerful example of a thriving Christian internet marketer
(V) The 14 Extraordinarily Simple, but not easy, Principles of Success
This is an interview I did recently with Jeff Mills, former youth pastor and successful Internet marketer.
I’ve been an airline pilot most of my life. I’m also a writer, a copywriter, and a marketing consultant. In 2011 I started a group for men in my area called “Living from the Heart.” It’s a Christian based men’s community in Marin County, California.
I did this interview with Jeff because I needed to see for myself how he has been so successful at building a thriving Internet marketing business while maintaining his values and faith as a Christian businessman.
As a result of this interview I came away encouraged and armed with specific principles that I too could combine and balance my faith with success in business. For those men who struggle with the question of how to combine God and money, this might provide you with some answers and direction.
(II) Why This eBook?
I’m intrigued by success and how men attain it; it’s probably because of my personal situation right now – going from taking a paycheck for most of my life to becoming an entrepreneur and trying to find my niche in doing that. I also need to learn how to change my mindset from being on the dole as a wage slave to making money through my own efforts.
I saw a need for interviewing somebody like Jeff in order to shine a light on the process of success and what that means to entrepreneurs everywhere, but mainly to Christian men whose belief systems often clash over success versus their faith and ministry.
(III) What does it take to make money and stay true to your faith?
I’m curious about what makes Christian men successful, what their humanity is like, and how they walk their talk in every day life. I want to know how they embrace traditional Christian values while being successful in the outer world.
I want to know how successful Christian men blur the line between religion and success and how the principles can be the same for both and not necessarily exclude one another.
(IV) Jeff Mills: Introduction
Jeff has done a ton of Internet marketing webinars, two hundred thousand plus business conference calls, and five million dollars worth of products and services since 2003. Now let’s discover who he is and how he can help other men achieve success by bringing God and Money together in a way that eludes many men of faith.
Bert: Jeff, how does a guy go from being a youth pastor to being one of the best-known, most sought after Internet marketers and speakers in the world?
Jeff: Thanks for having me Bert. I was thinking about why I find marketing fascinating as you were doing your introduction.
From Youth Pastor to Powerful Internet Marketer
As a youth pastor I had to market my youth ministry – without even knowing it – in a way that would get kids to come into the program.That was the goal. It was about how could I make this program fun, exciting, and creative but also instill in the kids the spiritual side of things so they’re learning about God.
The marketing side of running a youth ministry really turned me on to the marketing side of business as well. Once I figured out how to market a youth ministry successfully I started realizing, “Wow I could take those skills into business”.
This was back in the early 2000’s when the Internet was brand new. I started trying some online marketing things and I was successful. I was actually making money, which really surprised me.
(V) The 14 Extraordinarily simple, but not easy, Principles of Success
Bert: What did you discover that allowed you to take it from youth pastor to success in the internet marketing world?
Jeff: It’s not anything earth shattering; I learned from a guy named Alex Mandossian. His definition of marketing was “changing people’s behavior.” That’s what he boiled it down to.
(1) Getting people to think about what you’re doing
It’s getting somebody who woke up in the morning and wasn’t expecting to do something, but through my interaction and marketing, I got them to change their behavior. This might be, “visit my web site,” or I might get their name and e-mail address, or they may buy my product or they may just take one extra step that they normally had never planned to take because my marketing interrupted their normal daily behavior pattern..
I was able to get their attention and hopefully enrich them somehow through their interaction with me. I think marketing comes down to that – getting people to think about what you’re doing more than they think about what someone else is doing; being that squeaky wheel, not in a negative way, but being the squeaky wheel that gets their attention.
(2) Helping others get what they want
Another thing I learned about marketing is it’s all about other people’s needs, wants and desires and not my own. As marketers we get so focused on ourselves and what we like and what we don’t like so we try to market to people who are just like us. By doing that we miss the mark. We soon realize the vast amount of different wants, needs, and desires out there among other people. It means I have to go on a discovery process and find out what those needs, wants and desires are and how am I going to match my product to that.
Dan Kennedy talks about the message market match principle, which is when you have a message that matches the wants, needs, and desires of the target market you’re trying to reach.
If we get the right message to the right people they respond to your message and take action. It’s the same whether you’re talking church ministries or business. That message gets people to change their behavior whether it means buying something, taking a look at something or “come to my program” or “come to my service” or “come to my small group meeting.” We’re always speaking to people with needs and the trick is getting them to respond, based on those needs,wants, and desires.
Bert: Got it. These days everybody talks about the target audience, the target market. How did you discover your target market during that process?
(3) Know your “Target Audience”
Jeff: That’s a great question. Some people get mad at me because I figured out that my target market was Christians; pastors, missionaries,youth pastors. I discovered that people who are like me are going to want to work with me. I didn’t know this was a principle – some people call that the law of attraction, right?
I didn’t know there was such a thing. I had zero business skills when I was in youth ministry. So when I stepped out of youth ministry to start doing Internet marketing I just told my story. What I did was tell my story on my web site. I built the web site and I just said,
“Here’s who I am, here’s what I’ve done, here’s all the successes I’ve had so far and here’s a big list of all the failures I’ve had; I’m looking for people who are just like me and who want to do what I’ve done. I can show you what I’ve done and hopefully this will help you. If this makes sense to you, give me a call and let’s do business together”.
Believe it or not no one had been that bold on the internet before; no one was out there telling their story in the way that I told it and just letting the chips fall where they may. The people who read my story felt like they had an affinity with me. They said, “I like Jeff’s story; I’m just like him.”
They would call me on the phone without me ever having talked to them before and they would give me thousands of dollars to teach and train them. That blew my mind. It was quite remarkable.
Bert: You said people got mad at you; why did they get mad at you?
(4) How to build Trust by knowing yourself and your story (It just might be a version of your testimony)
Jeff: People got mad because they thought I was using faith and using Jesus as a marketing tool. But I wasn’t. It’s like this: If I was a schoolteacher and I got successful doing internet marketing I might say, “Hey I’m a former school teacher;” if I was a garbage man I would say, “Hey I’m a former garbage man,” but the fact was I was a youth pastor and somehow that triggered this response.
So I told my story from that perspective of being a former youth pastor or transitioning from youth ministry to the public sector.
People would say, “You’re monetizing Jesus’ name to make money.”And I’d say, “I’m not really doing that, I’m just telling my story.”
Some people got bent out of shape by that. But I continued to tell my story and people reached out to me because they trusted me. The trust factor is so important in business. People buy from people they know, they like and they trust.
Jeff: I teach my students it’s about casting a big net – you want to tell your story in a way where you’re touching many people who might have similar backgrounds and who can identify with you.
If you’re from the military, talk about your military background; if you’re a father talk about your being a father, if you’re a pastor or a guitar player or you have certain passions and hobbies, that attracts people to you. They want to do business with you because you’ve established trust between you and them.
Bert: I think you really hit on a key element of what I was trying to highlight here Jeff. That sometimes people hide behind their faith and that keeps them from being successful in the outer world.
(5) Integrate the parts of yourself into one coherent person
Jeff: When I made the decision that I was going to go the direction I did,I told myself, “I’m going full bore.” I wasn’t being preachy, I wasn’t out there trying to evangelize the world. I wasn’t saying to people who called me on the phone “Hey by the way have you ever met Jesus Christ? He’s your personal savior.”
I wasn’t out there like that. I’m very subtle and I have information on my web site that tells my story, my faith story that has a Christian message. People read it and care about it or not and that’s fine.
I used to compartmentalize my life – I had one side of my life where I put on my Christian face and I’d go to church and I’d talk about the weather and I talked about God and then I’d go outside the church and it was a totally different world.
I never talked about my faith anywhere else in the world and that’s kind of how most people live their lives. I think most people do the church thing and when they walk away and they’re outside of that environment in the secular world, there’s not a lot of talking about God. So I decided I’m just going to be everything, all of me, all of the time.
(6) WWJD (What would Jesus do?)
Instead of having these two different faces I decided to just have one face. The church is not a central point for most people; life is a central point and I take God with me wherever I go. I was really influenced by people who were doing kingdom market place ministry; they’d bring their faith and their story into the market place; after all, that’s what Jesus did.
He went into the market place and he got in front of people and he taught there. He wasn’t always teaching in the big synagogues. It was in the every day situations that he taught; so I figured that’s what my website should become, the every day occurrence.
“Come to my web site and learn about me, learn about what I’m doing but also see the faith side of my story too.”
Bert: That’s beautiful Jeff. That gives me the courage to do the same thing because I hesitate some time, being one person to all people.
What conflict did you have to face, if any, when you were making the move from the ministry into the business world? Especially into a world that we know can be seen as manipulative, shady and deceptive.
Jeff: I didn’t even know that world existed. Do you get what I’m sayinghere?
Bert: Yeah. Definitely. Just be yourself, walk your talk wherever you go.Market Place Ministry.
(7) What’s possible?
Jeff: When I left my paid ministry people were asking,
“What are you going to do?” And I’m like, “I’ve been making$10,000.00 a month on the internet” while I’m working at the church part time. I’m going to keep doing that and become a stay at home dad.A lot of people didn’t understand internet marketing and couldn’t conceive of making that kind of money.
All I knew was my business was growing and I knew it was important to keep doing it and I knew people needed to know about marketing and understand the tools.
Back then, like 2002, 2003 the Internet didn’t have a lot of places to do marketing. The big thing was Google ad words. It was the only way you could do marketing back then. You could buy banner ads on web sites and do email marketing; those are the three ways that most people marketed on the Internet back then.
And now we’ve got hundreds of ways that you can do marketing. A lot of people are confused by that and they don’t know what to do or whereto start.
The negative stuff that I had to focus on was helping people understand what Internet marketing was and why it was going to be huge.
My mom always tells me, “I never in my life thought that you could do what you’re doing now.” I never know if I should take that as a compliment but she is always inspired by what I do.
She never thought I would be speaking, and traveling, talking to groups all over the world. So I really haven’t seen a negative side. It’s been very positive for me ever since I started doing marketing.
(8) How to attract success
Bert: I think it goes back to “you attract the kind of people who are likeyou.” And the ones that don’t come to you because of your message are not going to be bothered by your message and they’re not going to bother you. So it sounds like you don’t find yourself being lured into the shady side of the Internet.
Jeff: That’s true. It’s the birds of a feather flock together thing. I do surround myself with solid Christian guys who are good Internet marketers. We’re always trying to do the right thing and always trying to promote products and services and messages and training that have good morals and ethical marketing standards.
There is an under belly to Internet marketing where guys are just trying to make a quick buck. It hurts the industry and you have to stay away from those kinds of things.
Bert: Have you ever considered yourself a natural entrepreneur? It sounds like if you did consider yourself a natural entrepreneur you recognized that when you started marketing as a youth pastor.–
Jeff: I didn’t realize it. I look back and put some pieces together. When I was a kid I made cinnamon toothpicks. This is back in middle school,this is back in the ‘80’s and there was a big craze; people were really into cinnamon toothpicks. They would buy these things by the bagful.
I figured out a way to make cinnamon toothpicks in the kitchen with my mom and we’d put them in a sandwich bag and sell them to the kids at school for $1.00 for a bag of 20. So the only inventory I needed were baggies and cinnamon toothpicks!
I was actually making a lot of money — $20.00 a day, sometimes more than that. These toothpicks were in demand. It got to be so popular that I had competition from all these other guys,
“Wow look at Jeff, he’s making money selling toothpicks, we’re going to do the same thing too.”
After the janitor started complaining that they were finding toothpicks all over the classroom floors, I got called into the office and had to stop selling my toothpicks.
I also sold candy to the other kids and made money doing that. I also had dreams of becoming an entrepreneur running a thrift shop. So I guess you could say I had that entrepreneurial spirit about me but I didn’t have a way to let it out.
When I graduated from high school, I went to community college for a couple years. Then the pastors at my church saw some kind of leadership in me and they said,
“You should go to Bible College and consider the ministry.” I was hoping to go to business school and learn how to become an entrepreneur when they said, “No, no seriously use your gifts for the Lord.” I was like, “Why not?” So I just dove into ministry right out of high school and college and never had a chance to really build my skills as an entrepreneur.
(9) Bloom where you’re planted
But soon I realized that running a ministry is very entrepreneurial. It has to be attractive, you have to have good programs, you have to have good branding and all these things that businesses have; this is all partof marketing.
And of course the Holy Spirit has a big impact on what we do. This is all part of the glue that makes it work.
Bert: What can you say about success, what does it mean to you and how can you shine a light for men who think that success is just about making money?
(10) The One Simple Secret to Success (If you forget everything else, remember this one)
Jeff: The result of success is you get to make money. I think success results from doing what you say you’re going to do and following through with it. I think most people fail because they just don’t complete the task. That’s something one of my early mentors taught me, “Success is completing the task”.
If you do what you say you’re going to do and carry it out to completion and be an implementer of the ideas you have, then you’re going to be leaps and bounds ahead of most other people.
And I said to myself, “Really is that it”? “That doesn’t seem too hard!”But evidently it’s hard for most people because that’s why so many people struggle because they just don’t do what they’re supposed to do.
So I went out there and hustled and worked; I often go to bed at night with very little sleep.
I’d work for 20 hours a day sometimes to get things done. It was that ethic of completing the task. Successful people do what they say they’re going to do; they finish the job and that’s what I think a good definition of success is.
Bert: That’s a great definition. Also don’t you think that a lot of people have conflicting thoughts and ideas running through their heads and they’re unable to focus on one thing and see that through to the end?
Jeff: We call that shiny object syndrome right?
Bert: I got that one, yeah.
Jeff: Something pops up and people say “Ooh a new marketing technique,” or “Oh what’s going on over here. That looks interesting.”And, “Oh people are using stuff over here on Twitter” and “Check out what’s happening on Facebook.”
It’s especially tough nowadays with so much good stuff and new technologies popping up every day.
Like I said, 10 years ago we had three things to get our attention; today we’ve got hundreds and who knows what’s going to happen next and how many more distractions are out there.
There will always be something new; just focus on the basics, focus on the small things; get really good at the small things; get really good doing one thing. Then, once you’ve mastered that, branch out to the next. Too many people try to do too much at the same time.
(11) The Importance of Teamwork
That’s one of the things I teach my students. In my business we do a lot of talking about outsourcing – how to get people to do the stuff that you don’t know how to do or don’t want to do yourself. Sometimes peopletry to run too many things at the same time. Once you become good atone thing then go on to the next.
Bert: That makes sense. I was going to ask another question: “What do you see as the steps to wealth and/or success? But it sounds like that’swhat you just answered.
Jeff: It’s also about building a team. You will be successful quicker if you have people accessible to you that have the skills and abilities you don’t have. As you expand and grow as a businessman you realize you can’t do everything on your own.
Too many people try to do everything and wear all the hats. Again, I wasn’t trained in business and no one taught me this. I had to figure it out on my own the hard way, the blood, sweat, and tears way; the“spend a lot of money” way.
But as years went by, I met people and I watched and studied how they became successful; I learned the most successful people in the world have teams and they delegate; they put the people in charge that have strengths in certain areas; the things they’re not good at they just don’t do.
I realized that I could save money by delegating tasks to people overseas and out sourcing. I use the Philippines a lot because I can get people there to work for $2.50 an hour.
These are great people, they’re fabulous to work with and they have great skills. They can do a lot of the marketing tasks and a lot of things that might seem menial that we don’t want to do..
It’s about building a team that can do the things that you don’t want to do or don’t know how to do. That’s cost and labor effective. People might get mad at me because I’m not hiring Americans, but I think it’s a worldwide economy, a global economy nowadays. We have to think bigger now.
(12) How to build a team
Bert: Regarding teams Jeff, I don’t have people in my immediate relationships with the desire nor the kind of skills, that I need. Nor do they have the desire to build something. Where do you find people to join you and put on your team if you don’t have them immediately available?
Jeff: What do you mean you don’t have them immediately available?
Bert: Well I’ve got a men’s group and these guys could care less about Internet marketing and building an Internet business and coaching and consulting.
Jeff: Are these business owners?
Bert: No they’re not business owners, they’re just men with different jobs, in many cases not even careers per se.
Jeff: Then I wouldn’t talk to them because they’re not who you want tobe working with.
Bert: So you’re saying to reach out to people who are professionals who are in business, who think the same way that you do?
Jeff: Yeah, you’re looking for entrepreneurs, you’re looking for speakers and coaches and people who are in business by and for themselves and doing the work themselves. Believe it or not I never heard of outsourcing before. I never heard that I could hire people overseas and I could get them for great wages and they actually knew what they were doing and they could make my business and my life a lot easier.
I’m a business consultant and I strategize with my clients. I teach them and train them what to do and where to go for information – what websites to go to find these people. How to hire the outsource people, how to negotiate salaries and things I never knew. People want that knowledge and we’re giving it to them.
Bert: If people wanted to get ahold of you Jeff, what’s the best way to dothat, just go to your web site?
Jeff: There’s a couple ways they can get ahold of me. I have a home base. It’s www.JeffMills.com. That’s also my blog.
People can learn about my business coaching and outsourcing products if they go to www.outsourcesecretsrevealed.com. I talk a lot about outsourcing there.
(13) In His Grip: The importance of Faith
Bert: Last but not least, I noticed you sign off your e-mails with “In His Grip”? What does that mean? I think I know what it means but what does it means to you?
Jeff: That’s very interesting. I’ve been doing that for a long time and Iget a lot of questions about why I sign my name that way. Some people who are non-Christians don’t understand what that means. Even some Christians speculate on what that means.
What it means to me is that God has got it under control and I am always under his grip; he forgives me, he’s always rooting for me and he’s there with me. When I have that daily affirmation that I’m always in God’s grip or grace, I cannot fail.
Bert: Thanks. Man, this felt like it was one of the best sermons I’ve ever heard and it wasn’t even a sermon!
Jeff: Life is a sermon, right? The way we live and how we do things is really how we reach out to the world and to people. We do it through our actions and the spoken word.
I hope I inspire people to look at the way they do things and inspire them to do things differently or try to anyway. –
Bert: Yeah, thank you very much. Are there any parting shots that you would like to add before we close?
(14) Let go of what’s holding you back from Success
Jeff: I think I’ll add this parting thought: it’s okay for Christians to be wealthy, its okay for Christians to have a business that is successful.There were a lot of people in the Bible who were very blessed and who had great wealth.
There’s no shame in having a lot of money; it’s more about being responsible with what we’ve been given in a way that we can do good for people. Give generously of what you’ve been given. I think a lot of people fear wealth. If you’re a Christian and you read this, make sure you’re pastor is getting paid a lot of money!
Bert: What I found also is that the pastors are often reluctant to build a team, they’re often reluctant to pass off some of the stuff that they have to do and then they get burned out.
Jeff: It’s because they don’t go to business school or have any business training. They have to learn those principles. Make every month pastor appreciation month.
Bert: Yeah. I knew a guy at my last company, Netjets, who has a ministry that consists of a lodge that he built through donations in the Colorado Rockies. He takes reservations for pastors that need R & Rt ime. It’s been booked year round, both in the winter and summertime.That might be something that some of the pastors who are reading this want to take advantage of. I can provide anyone with his name and contact information if you’re interested.
Jeff: Those are awesome ministries; I’ve come across many places like that over the years when I was in ministry; places to rest and relax and get away. They don’t charge any money for pastors. Pastors work too hard too often and don’t know how to ask for help. Or if they feel like they need help, they fear they might lose control in some way if they get it.
Bert: Man, what a blessing Jeff. Thank you so much for agreeing to this.It’s been a pleasure and I’ve learned a lot for myself as well.
Jeff: All right. Thanks Bert.
Bert is an author and a retired instructor pilot for TWA. He also flew corporate jets for Netjets until he retired in 2009 to write, teach, and coach. As a certified leader of the ManKind Project’s New Warrior training adventure, he worked with, helped heal, and mentored over2000 men during his six years of leadership in that organization.
He envisioned, built, and led men’s service and healing communities in St. Louis, MO, Taos, NM, and northern California where he presently leads a weekly Christian men’s Living From the Heart gathering. He’s also a marketing consultant to organizations and groups.
You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 415.320.9811
(1) You can download a copy of his new book, Fast Lane to Faith on Amazon or at Barnes and Noble.
Bert’s autobiography, Fast Lane to Faith, follows his spiritual journey from the hot rods of his youth on the streets of San Francisco, through his exploits and adventures during the best years of commercial aviation the world has ever known, to the Indian Himalayas and the jungles of the Philippines and beyond.
Botta’s journey brought him face to face with lessons that every man needs to know: how to know God, how to love women—and be loved by them—and how to truly know when you’ve achieved success.
Other Interviews for Men on a Quest
(2) Navy Seal Guts for Christian Men: Facing and Conquering the Enemy Within is another eBook that is available on Bert’s website.
This is a powerful look inside the life of a Navy Seal and how Steve Watkins went from being a trained sniper to Meeting God Behind Enemy Lines, which is the title of his book. This eBook is based on an interview with Steve, a former Navy Seal, and member of Seal Team.
Steve is now a Chaplain and a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Reserves.
Steve became a Navy Seal in 1988 and served over 5 years on Seal Team He participated in Operation Desert Storm and went on to become a sniper, sniper instructor and taught on Seal Team 5’s training team forover one year in the area of counter terrorist operations.
In 1996 he attended Master Seminary in Los Angeles and earned aMaster of Divinity Degree with honors in May 2000. He’s currently teaching religious studies part time at Northern Kentucky University,and is now a third year PhD candidate in Humanities at The University of Louisville.
This and other interviews are available in eBook form on Bert’s website, http://www.bottacopywriting.com