I AM CEO PODCAST

IAM496- Industrial Designer and Artist Builds Great Business Culture and Products

Podcast Interview with Matt Barnett

Originally a British industrial designer & artist, Matt turned everything upside down to launch a tech company in Sydney Australia. After a couple of false starts, Bonjoro was born from a sales hack for his first business, where Matt would send every new lead a personal video instead of a plain-text email. Matt’s love of building great products is only surpassed by his total commitment to building a great business culture, and Matt asserts that Bonjoro’s “customers as friends” culture has been the main driver of the business's success. His goal is to be the next Zappos, to be the most loved brand in the world.

  • CEO Hack: Doing things early in the morning
  • CEO Nugget: Automation to focus on relationships
  • CEO Defined: Doing the jobs no one else wants to do in the company

Website: https://www.bonjoro.com/

Twitter: @bonjoroapp
Instagram: @bonjoroapp


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Transcription:

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Intro 0:02

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:29

Hello, this is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast. I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Matt Barnett of Bonjoro. Matt, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Matt Barnett 0:37

Gresh, awesome to be here.

Gresham Harkless 0:39

Definitely awesome for me as well. What I want to do is read a little bit more about Matt, so you hear about all the awesome things that he's doing. Originally a British industrial designer & artist, Matt turned everything upside down to launch a tech company in Sydney Australia. After a couple of false starts, Bonjoro was born from a sales hack for his first business, where Matt would send every new lead a personal video instead of a plain-text email.

Matt’s love of building great products is only surpassed by his total commitment to building a great business culture, and Matt asserts that Bonjoro’s “customers as friends” culture has been the main driver of the business's success. His goal is to be the next Zappos, to be the most loved brand in the world. Matt, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

[restrict paid=”true”]

Matt Barnett 1:18

I am good to go.

Gresham Harkless 1:19

Awesome. Let's do it. So I want to kick everything off. I want to hear a little bit more about your CEO story. What led you to get started with your business?

Matt Barnett 1:26

Yeah. So originally, I said artist designer trying to find my way. I'll be honest, I wasn't really cut out, I think worked for someone. I had a job after uni. It was great. But I always wanted to do my own thing and take my own role. So I said I didn't last very long at that. Starting a carb-like consultancy and working as an artist, was great. But it wasn't really that scalable. I love the idea of having a team and being able to grow somebody like you grow a machine. In London, try and do that I thought that the best way to start to kind of kickstart is an office just to move country, leave everyone behind me a whole bunch of new people, and kind of reset.

I moved to Sydney, at about 25, and went on a date with a UX designer. We didn't hit it off. But we did start a company. That's how it all kind of started that that first company didn't work out. We had investment, we raised funds, we kind of built it went on, and it crashed and burned, as a lot of first startups do. Rather than closing down, we kind of I guess kind of pulled together, pulled it into a company launch that out that company did okay. Then Bonjoro is actually the third iteration that kind of launched off that second company. So by no means an overnight success, but I think it's been a struggle. But the main thing is just you just keep going. We got to eventually,

Gresham Harkless 2:44

Yeah, it makes so much sense. I love kind of like the story of how Bonjoro got started, because a lot of times, whenever you start a company, you hear this. But it's great to kind of hear stories like your own that speak to this where a lot of times, there are different opportunities you might get, whether it be learning opportunities, or even in your case, whereas part of the process that you did to say, Hey, this is actually something that might be scalable, might hit all those pillars that you wanted to hit with your business, and at the same time provide really phenomenal product for end users as well.

Matt Barnett 3:13

I think if you think about what happens, you don't realize what happens if you're in the industry when we were doing video apps. So we're doing video apps, maybe eight years ago on phones, when video just kind of came out. It's hard to believe it was it's not such a short time. We were playing around and it was just too early for at all. However, a bunch of years later, we're still trying to stop a video and it turns out that suddenly video becomes a thing. Data networks catch up so we can get uploads done. Without knowing it, we're kind of experts in the field. When we ended up doing the old Bonjoro thing, as a hack for this other business where we were trying to sell things where we would send messages.

Pretty much just to clients who are in New York and London, and we're based in Australia, in the middle of nowhere, that we were sending the message through people love them, people pick it up, and people say, can we use this? So we kind of ran with that. But again, it's not. In hindsight, it's not that surprising. If you spend long enough in the industry. You look like you are an expert, you just don't realize it. Then it becomes almost a case of if you were there long enough if you hang in your car, you kind of gonna make it anyway. That's what I kind of think so yeah, and you see it time and time again, people who just stay in there long enough, and that make it because you can't help but learn and become good at what you do.

Gresham Harkless 4:19

Yeah, absolutely, you probably start to see because I've always heard and definitely let me know if you agree with this where a lot of the best things that are created are from like, something that you wish was there. By being in the industry, and having done it for so long, you start to see not only being an expert at your craft but also those gaps and opportunities that aren't either being done or maybe not being done to the level that you see as well. Then that provides that opportunity.

Matt Barnett 4:41

Yeah, like and it's not obvious at first. I mean, I love B2B software. So like the foot like b2c second business to consumers, not really my space. A lot of you kind of have the first business go won't necessarily business or consumer. It's actually a lot harder. People understand it more but everyone's looking at some ideas now when you get into kind of a business to business. I think that the ideas are more nuanced. They're kind of in niches or niches. So it's hard to find them. But if we do find them, they're probably a lot more profitable. I think it's, again, like I prefer competing and b2b, I find it easier. But you did do to get domain knowledge to work out what it is, that's gonna work and it's not necessarily something that you're gonna come up, within your bathroom having a coffee on a Sunday.

Gresham Harkless 5:24

Yeah, that makes so much sense. Yeah, I live in the b2b world. So I can definitely speak to that. I know how important it is that entrepreneurs, business owners, and organizations always need something to kind of help run their businesses even better. So I appreciate that. I know I touched on it a little bit or no, of course, you did as well. I want to hear a little bit more about Bonjoro to help take us through exactly how it works and how we can use it as business owners.

Matt Barnett 5:46

Yeah, sure. So essentially, it was the initial idea where we were with a sales team with good pitching. We used to do the whole lead funnels, emails, and everything else. It was kind of a bit frustrating because we weren't great a bit. But so much of our selling is on personality, and like our brand and my team, everyone's a bit quirky. We just started, and we built a hack where we put videos, we especially host videos in line, hook it up to an email, and send that email out, the first piece of communication someone would get will be a video from me. It'd be one-to-one personal. So I'd be like, hey, John, from Ogilvy so you signed up, from Brooklyn, we already work with Budweiser and Huggies and x y z, I'm not in the city, as you see I'm in Australia, there's like the Opera House, but I'll be in town. In six weeks, well, that's kind of the kind of pitch you guys, let's reset these videos out.

We built it so that basically it took us a minute to do it. We would record the video, the video gets bundled up, it gets branded, it gets printed email sent. So all we're doing is a video side. That was essentially what Bonjoro is. Now over time, it's evolved, but more so it kind of works as a layer on top of a CRM mailing list Patreon, or any kind of customer resource that you have. When a customer performs a certain action, so they donate or they enter your lead, or they become a paying customer, or they do x y z, it's all very kind of custom or they're all they purchase online or on an e-commerce Store, we then send that user into the Wonderware system, we notify a specific team member. They click on the person to do the video, we show the information there.

The idea of doing these personal videos is that you have to be able to scale them. Yet, you've got to hit the personal aspects. So it's the personal stuff that works. It's nice to the video, it's a fact you've taken a minute of your day and you're like, hey Gresh See you on the podcast there IMC checks out love this episode, blog posts inside. We show the information so you can do that the minute you press enter to get back to work. That's their day, it's used particularly for converting leads or activating customers. It's those industries where a little human touch point really stands out and no one else is doing it yet. People like that we're social creatures, they warm to it, they warm to you, and they go, hang on, I'm gonna take a second look at this.

Gresham Harkless 7:53

Yeah, that makes so much sense, especially in this day and age where like, the personal brand is becoming so big. I think more people, the saying was always, people do business with people they know, like, and trust, of course, video and actually having that interaction is a way to do that. But I think it's becoming even more important where there's so much accessibility to people, not just brands, but the people that within the CEOs, the CMO, all the people that within the company, that you really can have a really strong relationship in touch, and especially if you're doing sales to kind of breakthrough that noise.

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Matt Barnett 8:21

Yeah, exactly. So the finding is that you look at the way we are now, people used to do this, people back in the day, you go to a grocery a butcher, they, they know what you want, and they have it ready for you, you have a relationship. It's very enjoyable. Now, that obviously changed as we went online and went to scale, which was fine and it's the way we had to go. I think what's happened though, is over mean, like how long we'll have been on the line that purchasing like the kind of 10 years, I think people have gone to the extreme where they've gone and put all bots in automation and step back fully, and everyone goes, well, I just want to have minimum touch points.

I can scale faster now what you find is businesses that make it often are the ones that also somehow try and get an at a human element and great customer service is one of the best ways to grow business. So all we're saying is look at certain points on a customer journey. It is worth a minute of your time investing in that customer on one, not doing the whole scale thing. Because that will pay back and that's much more likely to convert that user so get what we say is basically it's almost like how much time you need to invest to get accustomed to choosing you over a competitor, will stay with you for longer. But companies don't have that if you do then you're kind of well I had them on the car customer support and service and excellence kind of point of view.

Gresham Harkless 9:31

Yeah, that makes so much sense. Just those little small things go so much farther and you start to realize that when you have more and more interactions. I wanted to ask you for what I call your secret sauce and it could be for you personally or your organization but what do you feel kind of sets you apart and makes you unique?

Matt Barnett 9:45

I do think we are an ethos-led company. I'm a massive fan of the brand. It's pleasing to my kind of like creative background. I think every brand is not just a logo. That feels like brands like that. It's not logos like the last thing you do. The brand is kind of like how you hire, like why you're doing things decisions, you do make decisions that you definitely don't make. So which is a great line? Do you want to exist? So with us, we like physically how people come in they go, but surely with the whole kind of like, VR side of things, you guys could just start to fake these videos, or maybe you've recorded a video for aggression and aggression signs up, even though it's not very common name.

Like you said, I'm a single person. I'm like, it's two things here. Number one, it's not me that person because it's just the name. Secondly, if you can't spend a minute or spend your time with the customer, probably observe them. Thirdly, if you get caught, like there will be backlash, like, stop. So if there is a very clear no to that kind of thing and sort of decisions, we say no, so, but that comes because of brand ethos color values. So it's extremely easy for us to make decisions, we just go Okay. Does it fit with the business vision? Yes or No? Does it fit with the brand values? Yes, or No? Do the team want to do it for our customers want it.

It allows us to make decisions a lot quicker, I think we don't kind of mess around. I think having a strong brand has a strong value from day one, a lot of companies don't do that, they can leave the brand to last and culture to like, today, five people, 10 people. If you start at the beginning, you start to kind of build momentum. I think with Bonjoro, I've always said, I think our brand is more valuable than our product. When you become a startup, the first product you build is going to be not great. Nicely, It's gonna be a piece of a piece of whatever because you don't have to invest a lot of time, but you'll have customers who will be like it's missing all these things, but we're gonna back you anyway. Because we want to see you succeed. Now, if all you are is a product, that ain't gonna happen.

Gresham Harkless 11:41

I definitely appreciate that. I wanted to switch gears a little bit and I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an app or book or habit that you have, or something that makes you more effective and efficient.

Matt Barnett 11:52

Okay, so this is my common one. But I love the doors are things so I didn't have a car at 5:30 in the morning. Now we are based here in Australia. So right now it's seven in the morning here. So doing things like podcasts, early in the morning, I know, I'm only doing them at 6 am. Obviously, time zones have driven that. But honestly, since doing it last few years, it makes such a difference. I find if I get up early, all my work gets done before nine. That's because it can get late if you end up running a team that's growing, and you end up with one job, which is to do all the jobs. No analyst wants to do this job as CEO.

Gresham Harkless 12:28

I appreciate that hack. Now I want to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. So this could be a word of wisdom or a piece of advice. Or if you can happen to a time machine. What would you tell your younger business self?

Matt Barnett 12:38

So that good piece of advice, I'd say I mean, this is a bit of a company thing. I'm gonna slip in here. We say automate processes, but never relationships. Now, I think it's really important. It's about everything you do. I think the whole point of automation, which is awesome, is to remove all the processes that you do not have to do. So automating your accounting, automating your kind of HR, and automating your email is great transactional stuff.

The whole point is, that it should free you up with your time to spend on partners, customers, investors team members, or manage helping to grow those team members. The automation, you're not supposed to automate yourself, he's basically automating the process, and then focusing on relationships, and never letting that go. Because that's the key to growing a business, the bigger your team gets. The ability to do that is more and more important.

Gresham Harkless 13:27

Definitely appreciate that. Now I want to ask you my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO, and we're hoping to have different, quote-unquote, CEOs on this show. So Matt, what does mean CEO mean to you?

Matt Barnett 13:39

It's doing all the jobs that no one else wants to do in the company. So it's not doing all the fun, it's finding fun in the console with shitty ones that you go enjoy all the shiny jobs, you got to go see, as long as you need to learn, you can't ever say no. You have to, and that puts you in place as a leader because all your team sees that you'll do that. It gets the job done and wanting to do it gets you up every single day. But those tough jobs, you're the guy, you're the buck stops with you. So don't shy away.

Gresham Harkless 14:15

Absolutely. I think a lot of times, obviously, if you can't find somebody that will do those jobs, that's absolutely great. But more than likely, there may not be somebody that wants to do them. A lot of times because you are the CEO, you're the one and leader, and so on, you have to roll up your sleeves and kind of do that work of what other people don't want to do, put out a lot of the fires and let's talk about two.

Matt Barnett 14:32

Yeah, you're the guy. You can work on Saturday and Sunday and midnight. You're the guy or the girl that could do that depending on what happens yeah often you'll have to figure something out before you can even press size it because you want to understand it. Yeah, as I say you kind of want to understand all parts of your business you're not just in marketing or just in product. You have your finger on a lot more touchpoints. So you understand business probably better than anyone else.

When someone comes in, you understand what they're doing. And you want to hire people who are about haven't you, but you don't want to hire people where you don't understand what they're doing, because it's very hard to vet what they're doing and whether it's successful. Early days to kind of like building a large business, hopefully, that will change over time. But in the beginning, you're doing everything.

Gresham Harkless 15:16

Get your hands on all of the pots.

Matt Barnett 15:18

You're, so enjoy it.

Gresham Harkless 15:20

Exactly. Enjoy the ride. Well, awesome. Well, thank you so much, man, I appreciate that definition, and appreciate your time, even more. What I wanted to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional, you want to let our readers and listeners know. Then of course, how best they can get a hold of you find out everything you're doing at Bonjoro and just connect with the overall.

Matt Barnett 15:37

So again, if you remember one thing from this conversation, I think it's the whole automated process, not relationships. I think if more companies can do that, then it's a good thing for the world as well. It's good for consumers, I think we'll build better businesses. We won't hit such challenges that many of the corporates kind of now we're heading. So build good businesses and do the right thing. If you'll get in touch with me. You can hop in bonjoro If you ever sign up, you'll get a video. Likely from me or one of the other team, you'll end up talking to me at some point. You can reach me on LinkedIn as well. Just look for Matt Barnett, look for the guy in the best suits and that's it. Reach out anytime, for any advice. I'm here to help.

Gresham Harkless 16:13

Awesome. Well, thank you so much again, man. We will have the links and information in the show notes as well too, so that everybody can follow up with you. I appreciate you and I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Outro 16:22

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Intro 0:02

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Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:29

Hello, this is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast. I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Matt Barnett of Bonjoro. Matt, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Matt Barnett 0:37

Gresh, awesome to be here.

Gresham Harkless 0:39

Definitely awesome for me as well. What I want to do is read a little bit more about Matt, so you hear about all the awesome things that he's doing. Originally a British industrial designer & artist, Matt turned everything upside down to launch a tech company in Sydney Australia. After a couple of false-starts, Bonjoro was born from a sales hack for his first business, where Matt would send every new lead a personal video instead of a plain-text email. Matt’s love of building great products is only surpassed by his total commitment to building great business culture, and Matt asserts that Bonjoro’s “customers as friends” culture has been the main driver of the businesses success. His goal is to be the next Zappos, to be the most loved brand in the world. Matt, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community.

Matt Barnett 1:18

I am good to go.

Gresham Harkless 1:19

Awesome. Let's do it. So I want to kick everything off. I want to hear a little bit more about your CEO story. What led you to get started with your business?

Matt Barnett 1:26

Yeah. So originally, I said artist designer trying to find my way. I'll be honest, I wasn't really cut out, I think worked for someone. I had a job after uni. It was great. But I always wanted to do my own thing and take my own role. So I said I didn't last very long at that. Starting carb like consultancy and work as an artist, it was great. But it wasn't really that scalable. I love the idea of having a team and be able to grow somebody kind of like like you grow machine basically. In London, try and do that I thought what the best way to start to kind of kickstart is office just to move country, leave everyone behind me a whole bunch of new people and kind of reset. I moved to Sydney, about 25, went on a date with a UX designer. We didn't hit it off. But we did start a company. That's that's how it all kind of started that that first company didn't work out. We had investment, we raised funds, we kind of built it went on, it crashed and burned, as a lot of first startups do. Rather than closing down, we kind of I guess kind of pulled together, pulled it into a company launch that out that company did okay. Then Bonjo was, is actually the third iteration that kind of launched off that second company. So by no means an overnight success, but I think it's been a struggle. But main thing is just you just keep going. We got to eventually,

Gresham Harkless 2:44

Yeah, it makes so much sense. I love kind of like the story of how Bonjoro got started, because a lot of times, whenever you start a company, you hear this. But it's great to kind of hear stories like your own that actually speak to this where a lot of times, there's different opportunities you might get, whether it be learning opportunities, or even in your case, whereas actually part of the process that you actually did to say, Hey, this is actually something that might be scalable, might hit all those pillars that you wanted to hit with your business, and at the same time provide really phenomenal product for end users as well.

Matt Barnett 3:13

I think if you think what happens, you didn't realise what happens if you're in the industry when we were doing video apps. So we're doing video apps, maybe eight years ago on phones, when video just kind of came out. It's hard to believe it was it's not such a short time. We were playing around and it was just too early for at all. However, like a bunch of years later, we're still trying to stop a video and it turns out suddenly video becomes a thing. Data networks catch up so we can get uploads done. Without knowing it, we're kind of experts in the field. When we ended up doing the old bonjoro thing, as a hack for this other business where we were trying to sales thing where we would send messages, pretty much just to clients who are in New York and London, and we're based in Australia, in the middle of nowhere, that we were sending the message through people love them, people picks it up, and people say, can we use this? So we kind of ran with that. But again, it's not. In hindsight, it's not that surprising. If you spend long enough in the industry. You look like you are an expert, you just don't realise it. Then it becomes almost a case of if you were there long enough, if you hang in your car, you kind of gonna make it anyway. That's what I kind of think so yeah, and you see it time and time again, people who just stay in there long enough and that make it because you can't help but learn and become good at what you do.

Gresham Harkless 4:19

Yeah, absolutely, you probably start to see because I've always heard and definitely let me know if you agree with this where a lot of the best things that are created are from like, something that you wish was there. By being in the industry, having done it for so long, you start to see not only obviously be an expert at your craft, but also those gaps and opportunities that aren't either being done or maybe not being done to the level that you see as well too. Then that provides that opportunity.

Matt Barnett 4:41

Yeah, like and it's not obvious at first. I mean, I love b2b software. So like the foot like b2c second business to consumers, not really my space. A lot of you kind of have the first business go won't necessarily business or consumer. It's actually a lot harder. People understand it more but everyone's looking at some ideas now when you get into kind of a business to business. I think that the ideas are more nuanced. They're kind of in in niches or niches. So it's hard to find them. But we do find them, they're probably a lot more profitable. I think it's actually, again, like I actually prefer competing and b2b, I find it easier. But you did do to get domain knowledge to work out what it is, that's gonna work and it's not necessarily something that you're gonna come up, with in your bathroom having a coffee on a Sunday.

Gresham Harkless 5:24

Yeah, that makes so much sense. Yeah, I definitely live in the b2b world. So I can definitely speak to that. I know how important it is that entrepreneurs, business owners and organisations always need something to kind of help run their businesses even better. So I appreciate that. I know I touched on it a little bit or no, of course you did as well. I want to hear a little bit more about Bonjoro to help take us through exactly how it works and how we can use it as business owners.

Matt Barnett 5:46

Yeah, sure. So essentially, it was the initial idea where we were with a sales team with a good pitching. We used to do the whole lead funnels, emails, everything else. It was kind of a bit frustrating, because we weren't great a bit. But so much of our selling is on personality, and like our brand and my team, everyone's a bit quirky. We just start, we built a hack where we put videos, we specially host videos in line, hook it up to an email, send that email out, the first piece of communication someone would get will be a video from me. It'd be one to one personal. So I'd be like, hey, John, from Ogilvy so you signed up, from Brooklyn, we already work with Budweiser and and Huggies and x y z. I'm not in the city, as you see I'm in Australia, there's like the Opera House, but I'll be in town. In six weeks time, well, that's kind of the kind of pitch you guys, let's reset these videos out. We built it so that basically it took us a minute to do it. We would record the video, the video gets bundled up, it gets branded, it gets printed email sent. So all we're doing is a video side. That was essentially what Bonjoro is. Now over time it's evolved, but more so he kind of work as a layer on top of a CRM or mailing list or Patreon, or any kind of customer resource that you have. When a customer performs a certain action, so they donate or they enter your lead, or they become a paying customer, or they do x y z, it's all very kind of custom or they're all they purchase online or on an e commerce Store, we then send that user into the Wonderware system, we notify a specific team member. They literally click on the person do the video, we show the information there. So the idea with doing these personal videos is that you have to be able to scale them. Yet, you've got to hit the personal aspects. So it's the personal stuff that works. It's nice to the video, it's a fact you've taken a minute of your day and you're like, hey Gresh See you on the podcast there IMC checks out love this episode, blog posts inside. We show the information so you can do that in the minute you press enter to get back to work. That's their day, it's used particularly for converting leads of activating customers. It's those industries where a little human touch point really stands out and no one else is doing yet. People like that we're social creatures, they warm to it, they warm to you, and they go, hang on, I'm gonna take a second look at this.

Gresham Harkless 7:53

Yeah, that makes so much sense and especially in this day and age where like, the personal brand is becoming so big. I think more people, the saying was always, people do business with people they know, like and trust, of course, video and actually having that interaction is a way to do that. But I think it's becoming even more important where there's so much accessibility to people, not just brands, but the people that within the CEOs, the CMO, all the people that within the company, that you really can have a really strong relationship in touch, and especially if you're doing sales to kind of break through that noise.

Matt Barnett 8:21

Yeah, exactly. So the finding is that you look at the way we are now, people used to do this, people back in the day, you go to a grocery a butcher, they, they know what you want, and they have it ready for you, you have a relationship. It's very enjoyable. Now, that obviously changed as we went online and went to scale, which was fine and it's the way we had to go. I think what's happened though, is over mean, like how long we'll have been on the line that purchasing like the kind of 10 years, I think people have gone to the extreme where they've gone and put all bots in automation and step back fully, and everyone goes, well, I just want to have minimum touch points. So I can scale faster now what you find is businesses that make it often are the ones that also somehow try and get an at a human element and great customer service is one of the best ways to grow business. So all we're saying is look at certain points on a customer journey. It is worth your a minute of your time investing in that customer like one on one, not doing the whole scale thing. Because that will pay back and that's much more likely to convert that that user so get what we say is basically they it's almost like how much time you need to invest to to get accustomed to choose you over a competitor, will stay with you for longer. But companies don't have that if you do then you're kind of well I had them on the car customer support and service and excellence kind of point of view.

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Gresham Harkless 9:31

Yeah, that makes so much sense. Just those little small things go so much farther and you start to realise that when you have more and more interactions. I wanted to ask you for what I call your secret sauce and it could be for you personally or your organisation but what do you feel kind of sets you apart and makes you unique?

Matt Barnett 9:45

I do think we are an ethos led company. I'm a massive fan of brand. It's pleasing my kind of like creative background. I think every brand is not just a logo. That's feel like brands like that. It's not logos like the last thing you do. Brand is kind of like how you hire, like why you're doing things decisions, you do make decisions that you definitely don't make. So which is a great line? Do you want to exist on? So with us, we like physically how people come in they go, but surely with the whole kind of like, VR side of things, you guys could just start to fake these videos, or maybe you've recorded a video for aggression and aggression signs up, even though it's not very common name. Like you said, I'm a single person. I'm like, it's two things here. Number one, it's not me that person because it's just the name. Secondly, if you can't spend a minute or type your time in the customer, probably observe them. Thirdly, if you get caught, like there will be backlash, like, stop. So if us is a very clear no to that kind of thing and sort of decisions, we say no, so, but that comes because of brand ethos colour values. So it's extremely easy for us to make decisions, we just go Okay. Does it fit with business vision? Yes or No? Does it fit with the brand values? Yes, or No? Do the team want to do it for our customers want it. It allows us to make decisions a lot quicker, I think we don't kind of mess around. I think having a strong brand having a strong values from day one, a lot of companies don't do that, they can leave brand to last and culture to like, today, five people, 10 people. If you start at the beginning, you start to kind of build momentum. I think with Bonjoro, I've always said, I think our brand is more valuable than our product. When you become a startup, the first product you build is going to be not great. Nicely, It's gonna be a piece of a piece of whatever because you don't have to invest a lot of time, but you'll have customers who will be like it's missing all these things, but we're gonna back you anyway. Because we want you to see you succeed. Now, if all you are is a product, that ain't gonna happen.

Gresham Harkless 11:41

I definitely appreciate that. I wanted to switch gears a little bit and I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an app or book or habit that you have, or something that makes you more effective and efficient.

Matt Barnett 11:52

Okay, so this is my common one. But I love the doors are things so I didn't have a car at 5:30 in the morning. Now we are based here in Australia. So right now it's what seven in the morning here. So doing things like podcasts, early in the morning, I know, I'm only doing them at 6am. Obviously, time zones have driven that. But honestly, since doing it last few years, it makes such a difference. I find if you get up early, all my work gets done before nine. That's before because it can get like late, like if you end up running a team that's growing, you end up with one job, which is to do all the jobs. No analyst wants to do this job as CEO.

Gresham Harkless 12:28

I appreciate that hack. Now I want to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. So this could be a word of wisdom or a piece of advice. Or if you can happen to a time machine. What would you tell your younger business self?

Matt Barnett 12:38

So that well piece of advice, I'd say I mean, this is a bit of a company thing. I'm gonna slip in here. We say automate processes, but never relationships. Now, I think it's really important. It's about everything you do. I think the whole point of automation, which is awesome, is to remove all the processes that you do not have to do. So automate your accounting, automate your kind of HR, automate your email is a great transactional stuff. The whole point is, it should free you up with your time to spend on partners, and customers, on investors on the on team members or managing you helping to grow those team members. The automation, you're not supposed to automating yourself, he's basically automating the process, and then focus on relationships, and never let that go. Because that's the key to growing a business, the bigger your team gets. The ability to do that is more and more important.

Gresham Harkless 13:27

Definitely appreciate that. Now I want to ask you my absolute favourite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO, and we're hoping to have different, quote-unquote, CEOs on this show. So Matt, what does mean CEO mean to you?

Matt Barnett 13:39

It's doing all the jobs that no one else wants to do in the company. So it's not doing all the fun, it's finding fun in the console with shitty ones that you go enjoy all the shiny jobs, you got to go see, as long as you need to learn, you can't ever say no. You have to, and that puts you in place as a leader because all your team see that you'll do that. It gets the job's done and wants to do it gets you up every single day. But those tough jobs, you're the guy, you're the buck stops with you. So don't shy away.

Gresham Harkless 14:15

Absolutely. I think a lot of times, obviously, if you can't find somebody that will do those jobs, that's absolutely great. But more than likely, there may not be somebody that wants to do them. A lot of times because you are the CEO, you're the one and leader, so on and so forth, you have to roll up your sleeves and kind of do that work of what other people don't want to do, put out a lot of the fires and let's talk about two.

Matt Barnett 14:32

Yeah, you're the guy. You can work Saturday and Sunday and midnight. You're the guy the girl that could do that depending what happens yeah often you'll have to figure something out before you can even press size it because because you want to understand it. Yeah, as I say you kind of want to understand all parts your business you you're not just in marketing or just in product. You have your finger on a lot more touch points. So you understand business probably better than anyone else. Then when someone comes in, you understand what they're doing. And you want to hire people who are about haven't you, but you don't want to hire people where you don't understand what they're doing, because it's very hard to vet what they're doing and whether it's successful. Early days to kind of like build a large business, hopefully that will change over time. But the beginning, you're doing everything.

Gresham Harkless 15:16

Get your hands on all of the pots.

Matt Barnett 15:18

You're, so enjoy it.

Gresham Harkless 15:20

Exactly. Enjoy the ride. Well, awesome. Well, thank you so much, man, I appreciate that definition, appreciate your time, even more. What I wanted to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional, you want to let our readers and listeners know. Then of course, how best they can get a hold of you find out everything you're doing at Bonjoro and just connect with the overall.

Matt Barnett 15:37

So again, if you remember one thing from this conversation, I think it's the whole automated process, not relationships. I think if more companies can do that, then it's a good thing for the world as well. It's good for consumers, I think we'll build better businesses. We won't hit such challenges that many of the corporates kind of now we're heading. So build good businesses do the right thing. If you'll get in touch with me. You can hop in bonjoro If you ever sign up, you'll get a video. Likely from me or one of the other team, you'll end up talking to me at some point. You can reach me on LinkedIn as well. Just look for Matt Barnett, look for the guy in the best suits and that's it. Reach out anytime, for any advice. I'm here to help.

Gresham Harkless 16:13

Awesome. Well, thank you so much again, man. We will have the links and information in the show notes as well too, so that everybody can follow up with you. I appreciate you and I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Outro 16:22

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

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Mercy - CBNation Team

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(CEOBlogNation.com), podcasts, (CEOPodcasts.com) and videos (CBNation.tv). CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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