Excuses: I’ve Heard Them All

Where have you been?

  1. Your grandfather died.
  2. You were ill the last few days.
  3. Your laptop broke.
  4. The flood/typhoon knocked out your internet.
  5. A family member needed you to help them with something.

And hundreds more excuses than I am able to remember. I’ve heard them all.

These are all important things you should take care of– for which you have a valid reason to miss work.

But what is not okay is abandoning the team and the clients— only telling them AFTER the fact.

Let team members know BEFORE you need to take a day or two off– so they can cover for your part.

An unfortunate pattern we see with people new to digital marketing is using excuses to cover up reliability and performance issues.

Digital marketing is hard– there is so much to learn and so much to do that it can be overwhelming.

Too Much Freedom

Plus, you have all this freedom, which is easy to abuse.

Not that you are lazy or do not want to work– but because friends think you are “available” all the time, they invite you out to do things.

So you want to be nice to friends and hang out, thinking you will get back to your projects later tonight or tomorrow.

Except that never happens, and you fall further behind– since more distractions come up, all from well-meaning people who think you are not doing anything.

A shift worker does not understand a digital marketer since their view of work is like a factory job when you show up at a certain time for your shift.

If you are at home sitting on the couch, why not text all day, play with the dogs and goof off?

They do not realize you have project deadlines— team members counting on you and clients putting their business in your hands.

Once Things Start Catching Up With You

So when you realize you are behind, feeling “all by yourself” in your home, it is easy to go into excuse mode.

“Let’s see… what is the best excuse I can come up with?” is what you are used to doing. We can usually think of something since if you look for something bad, you will find it.

And that excuse might legitimately cover you for a day or two, but not for the months you have continued to struggle.

So then you get caught in a loop of being so far behind, team members and courts chasing you down, and feeling unmotivated.

I would rather watch Netflix and play video games to avoid the situation that is only getting worse.

Allow this to continue and the clients will fire us. The team will believe you are not reliable and do not care.

Communication and Discipline Instead of Excuses

The root of this is you not having learned team communication skills and not having the discipline to work in an environment that does not have physical supervision. Sure, you would be more reliable if you had to drive to an office and be there by 8 am each morning and have a rigid schedule. There is much good about being a wage slave.

But if you can learn the discipline to work in digital marketing, you can have amazing time freedom and be wherever you want.

You have to decide if you are going to focus on excuses after the fact or whether you are accountable and proactive.

Do you want to be the receptionist or factory-type worker that responds only when someone comes to the counter or calls? Or are you a leader who takes charge instead of moving only when someone tells you to?

It’s Not Too Late for You

If you are reading this, you have fallen into the most common trap of new digital marketers.

The good news is that it is an easy trap to escape from, as thousands have learned on their path from beginner to pro.



Read “How I Manage 1,000 Emails a Day

Read “What to do when you feel overwhelmed

Read “The Importance of Lightweight Touches

My friend, are you wondering why I asked you to visit this post?

If you haven’t figured it out yet, it’s because we didn’t hear from you for a few days. We tried to reach out to you, but you failed to get back to us.

And when you finally responded, you most likely attempted to justify your absence and lack of communication with a “valid” reason.

That’s why you’re here.

I created this post to show you where I’m coming from. I hope that by now, you understand why I am so critical about good communication.

This blog post is my best attempt to explain this most painful problem. I hope that starting today, you will work on your weaknesses so that we can get back on track.

Why Don’t You Start Now?

Do those five things, and you will see your teammates start applauding you instead of chasing you.

And you will be able to experience the awesome freedom of digital marketing instead of working in a dead-end job in some place you have to drive to each day and back, doing the same boring thing in an endless cycle.

If you want to grow, you are in the right place. And you should expect that learning new skills is a challenge you should be up to.

Now let us get going since the team and our clients are counting on you and rooting for you!

The Habit All Billionaires Have in Common


As an entrepreneur and digital marketing expert, I’ve had the privilege of working with some of the most successful business leaders in the world. Through my experiences, I’ve come to realize that there is one habit that all billionaires have in common: they prioritize their time.

Time is the most precious resource we have. We all have the same 24 hours in a day, but how we choose to spend those hours is what sets successful people apart. Al Casey, my mentor and former CEO of American Airlines, once told me, “Time is the only asset we can’t get more of. Make every minute count.” This is a philosophy that has stuck with me throughout my career.

Naveen Jain, a friend and fellow entrepreneur, echoes this sentiment. He has said, “Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.” Jain is the founder of several successful companies, including Moon Express and Viome, and he credits his time management skills for much of his success.

Mark Lack, a renowned speaker and entrepreneur, agrees that time management is key to success. He has said, “The biggest mistake entrepreneurs make is not prioritizing their time. You need to focus on the activities that will have the biggest impact on your business.” Lack has built multiple successful companies, including Shorten the Gap and The Peak Performance Club, and he attributes much of his success to his ability to manage his time effectively.

So, what does it mean to prioritize your time? It means understanding what activities are most important and focusing your efforts on those activities. It means saying no to distractions and time-wasting activities that don’t contribute to your goals. It means being intentional with your time and setting clear priorities.

As an entrepreneur, I understand the importance of prioritizing my time. I focus on the activities that will have the biggest impact on my business and delegate the rest to my team. I use tools like calendar blocking and time tracking to ensure that I am making the most of my time each day.

If you want to be successful, take a cue from the billionaires and prioritize your time. Remember, time is the one asset we can never get more of. Make every minute count.

The Real Purpose of an Organization Structure

Purpose of an Organization Structure

Huge corporations suffer from bureaucracy– well-meaning SOPs that are actually a straitjacket, preventing progress.

Start-ups suffer from a lack of organization— hoping to move quickly but getting in their own way.

While these stereotypes of large and small companies are mostly true, there is a 3rd category that is so dangerous that it kills most agencies and startups.

It’s the debilitating collecting of tools and formation of random spreadsheets– giving the illusion of organization.

But really, it’s to serve the personal preferences of those who have a tool fetish.

The organization structure and tools should always serve the people— not the other way around.

My mentors, who ran two Fortune 100 companies, explained this to me– that organization structure should be flexible to adjust to the company’s needs.

Otherwise, we have blind obedience to something that may have seemed like a good idea or worked back then.

A CEO’s job is to reduce the friction and obstacles in the way of getting results.

Do you have processes and people that are RELENTLESSLY focused on your client’s success?

Or is there nonsense in the way?

Be Client-Oriented and Add True Business Value

Adding Business Value

Just because another month has gone by doesn’t mean you can bill a client.

You have to add true business value.

Which is not the same as mindlessly sending a report (autogenerated, though beautiful).

Or simply checking boxes, like how Aaron Gobidas charged Philippe Coudoux $12,500 for a website he didn’t need or social media posts that got a reach of 3 people.

It’s not that the employees at the agency are bad– most work hard, are skillful, and try to do the right thing.

If you’re an agency owner, you need to care for your client’s money as if it were your own.

Even though it’s way more sexy to be out there selling, selling, and selling. Aaron, we totally get that servicing client isn’t your role and isn’t worth your time.

But if you’re the agency owner, the buck stops with you.

Look at what happened here and be careful not to ruin the livelihood of a small business owner who knows nothing about digital marketing but trusts you.

By the way, we tried many times to help this agency make things right, but they refused. I even flew into San Diego and donated a day of training. But the owner dipped out after 5 minutes.

We filmed the whole thing, which is our condition for providing the free help, including helping turn this around– to make this a great case study in 60 days.

Let this disaster serve as a warning to anyone who would hire a digital agency. And to help digital agencies be more client-oriented instead of just taking their money.

See what happened in Philippe’s own words here:


The No.1 Mistake Entrepreneurs Make

CNN Live,  3.5 million
Dennis Yu live on CNN

I was so thrilled to be asked to be on CNN, live in front of 3.5 million people, to discuss the future of Facebook.

And because I became known as an expert, this got me into the Wall Street Journal, NPR, LA Times, Washington Post, and so forth.

What most entrepreneurs don’t realize is that:

You need only ONE solid piece of media coverage to show you’re credible.

That ONE piece of media will unlock all sorts of other media– since journalists then trust you.

And if you apply my Dollar a Day strategy to make sure your target customers and the media see it across all channels– you get multiplied exposures.

Pros like Gavin Lira know how to get coverage. But I hear he’s totally booked out for the next 6 months, so you can ask him for referrals in the meantime or just wait for the best.

The Content Engine – A Standardized Process

You could blame your people for being incompetent, but 99% of the time, it’s bad management and bad process.

You could swear up and down you have a process, but if it’s not written down, it doesn’t count.

You could say you’re too busy to write things down– which is like saying you can’t do the time management course because you don’t have time.

No process means YOU are having to micro-manage the details of your business instead of the process.

It means you can’t hire up others into your business, no matter how smart or hard-working they are.

Behold…. the result of years of my effort in producing, processing, posting, and promoting content for thousands of professional service businesses…

The CONTENT ENGINE is not a 1,150-page guide because we’re trying to inflate words— like a high school senior trying to stretch an essay to 5 pages.

The Content Engine

Every mistake we’ve made, and every technique that works gets assimilated into this process– like a deposit into a bank account that generates compound interest.

If you have a solid services business but are struggling to get your content out at scale, this might be for you.

Should I release all this training for free?

My mission is to create a million jobs, so I’d sacrifice course revenue in exchange for people using our process to hire up others, whether directly or having us hire for them.