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smart af

What is SMART AF?

What is SMART AF? What started as wanting to work smarter in business transformed into a proven process for growing any business. Torie Mathis and her cohost Sean go over the SMART AF process and breakdown how the steps can easily double (Sean says 10x) your business. 

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What is SMART AF?


Sean: [00:00:00] So smart AF is an acronym?

Torie: [00:00:01] Smart AF is an acronym Sean Mathis.

Hey, welcome to smart AAF on your host Tory Mathis. We have got a great show for you today. So let’s get started.

I was in the army, like I was good at being in the army. I get the game. I liked it there. It like, it was cool. I really did enjoy it. But one thing that like was just not cool. is that they did things, the slowest, the oldest, like there was no work smarter.

There was no like, change things up. Like it’s been this way. It’s gonna keep happening this way. We’re not changing

Sean: [00:00:47] The way it’s always been done.

Torie: [00:00:48] The way it’s been done this way.

Sean: [00:00:49] Don’t ask questions.

Torie: [00:00:50] Shut your mouth. that was the one thing that I was like…

Sean: [00:00:54] then it turns into the next military phrase. Everybody knows. Hurry up and wait.

Torie: [00:00:59] Or you have to wait forever, right? Like when I came in, so I went into the army in 1999, right? the internet was there but we, I was the first class, like for my MOS, for my job in the army that we didn’t actually have a piece of paper, like a piece of, those film things and paper copies that we took for like promotions and stuff.

Like nothing was done digitally. Your records were updated by like some dude. Carrying the paper and like, crazy that they did that for so long. So that whole, like working smarter did not exist.

Sean: [00:01:34] About three years later in the gigantic folders …folder just gets larger and larger as you go through all the steps.

Torie: [00:01:44] So I think that was something like when I started working for myself, like I’m not going to get stuck in that rut, like I want to work smarter. I don’t want to do stuff the old way. I don’t want to do it because it’s always been doing that way.

Though I can understand with a large corporation or running a damn army, that sometimes, maybe it is a little bit necessary and harder to change stuff. So like that whole smart has always appealed to me. However, Smart AF is not just about working smarter. though it does seem like it. I did this kick ass performance.

I did this kick ass presentation a couple of years ago and it was all about, coaches and how they could market themselves online. And I thought. Yeah, this, it came from what we were already doing. And so I was like, how can I make this? So it’s something that people could remember because the steps of it’s like it was totally repeatable and it didn’t just work for coaches.

It worked for any business and it was what was, we were already doing what we had been doing, what we’ve been building on with our own clients and our own business. And once I started trying to organize it, I was like, Holy shit, this spells smart. And I was like, this is amazing. And it’s an acronym and I was in the army and acronyms are the best 11 now.

Sean: [00:03:11] So smart is an acronym,

Torie: [00:03:13] Smart AF is an acronym Sean Mathis. So if you get the smart AF magazine, which you can get at, it really goes into it. And I explained how it goes on. It’s on my website and stuff like that too. But I wanted to talk about it because it’s not just like a cute name.

There’s so much more to it. There really is. Let’s get it to, yes.

S is sales, it is, you’re not just cause I’m not a salesperson. Like I am not a salesman. Sales is not my forte. I am a marketer, I’m a designer, marketing strategy. that’s what I went to school for. That’s what I do.

That’s what I’ve done for clients. However, there is a disconnect between marketing and sales. And I think in big corporations and things, marketing and sales are two totally different, animals, right? and a lot of times they don’t even talk to each other, which to me that’s like fricking crazy. I’ve always been in a smaller corporate or a smaller business.

and sales and marketing usually go hand in hand. So when I talk about sales and I talk about sales process, that is making sure that whatever you do for marketing is opening the door to sales. They always call that, it is called direct response marketing. Like you don’t just market to not have somebody actually respond to it, to not to do something.

So you always want somebody do something and that’s the direct response. You want somebody to do the response. And so to me, that’s always opening the door for sales. We’ve done other videos that we talked about this, for example, getting a client, getting a customer’s email so that later you can invite them back, or you can tell them about what’s new.

You do this with, the museum. We always talk about what’s the next step? Somebody comes in here one time. How do we get them to come again? How do we get them? what do we want them to do next? And this doesn’t just happen. Like when you go to Walmart and someone’s hi, welcome to Walmart.

Like they didn’t just decide to do that. somebody told them to do that. That is their sales process. I love the clothing stores that I go into and it’s clockwork. Somebody will come. Can I help you find anything? Nope. I’m just looking. They say, okay, but once you get something over your arm, then they want to get you a room.

Why? Because if you try on the clothes and you get more things, you’re more likely to buy than they want to help you pick things out. this is the sales process that they have.

Sean: [00:05:32] Do you want fries with that?

Torie: [00:05:34] Do you want fries with that? The, this is the sales process. And this has to be thought of ahead of time so that you can put this stuff into play.

And a lot of this stuff could be systemized and all of your employees need to know about it. that, do you want fries with that? Every single employee knows, like they have to ask that because that is part of the sales process.

Sean: [00:05:52] So going back on that, that last one of those last videos with the, the dog, getting the nails cut, right?

Torie: [00:05:58] Yeah, Sales process.

Sean: [00:06:01] Collect the email, if you did nothing else collect the email.

Torie: [00:06:05] When thinking about sales process, you say, okay, the first time I see a customer. What do they need to do? What do they need to know then? What then? What, how do I get them to the sale after they buy from me? What do we do then?

How do we follow up? And all of these different things are really important for you to think about some people just like there, I’m gonna go out there and sell my stuff, buy my stuff. that’s not how business works. Like it is a process. There’s a customer journey. A lot of times, people don’t buy from you the first time they see you.

It takes time to build that relationship. There are so many touches that they usually need for them to buy, especially if you’re selling something higher priced. We talked about the landscape. People like putting their name. On the truck, putting the little signs out, handing out a flyer, asking for referrals, like all of these things can be mapped out in the sales process.

So it works with your marketing so that you get that twofer. You go out to somebody’s house, you have your branding on there. You ask for the referral, you ask the, you schedule the next call to come out. Like all these things are part of the sales process and it has to be thought about, and then you have to make sure that your employees know about it,

Sean: [00:07:11] Which creates consistency.

Torie: [00:07:12] Yes. And it creates process. We should be doing the exact same thing. And so this sales processing is definitely with your employees. It’s definitely when somebody walks into your store, what happens, but it’s also what happens when someone goes to your website. What do you want them to know?

Like you have to talk to them in a certain way. you have to get them into your sales process. and with your website, you have to do it quickly. When someone comes to your social media, what do you want them to do? What do you want them to know? There needs to be this process that happens, and you need to think about that ahead of time.

So that is what S is like, it’s a big part of it. And you have to have this nailed down because so many people go straight to T and wonder why they’re not getting sales. We’ll get to T later the next one is M and M is your message. Message is your branding. It is your call to action. It is getting people to the next step.

It is what you post on social media. It is your signage and all of these things work together to build this know like and trust because once a customer knows you, likes you and trust you, they will buy from you again and again. But the, groomer, if I don’t know the name of your business, I can’t come back.

I liked you, but I don’t know, like these things have to be thought of ahead of time. And so knowing …

Sean: [00:08:34] Do you even know what the groomer’s other services were.

Torie: [00:08:38] I don’t know. They had really cute big dogs. They’re like, apparently you can drop your animals off there. Because there were these amazing golden retrievers that like kept popping their head up and saying us and stuff.

So you can drop your dogs off there. But now I have no idea. No message. No message, like the messaging really. Wasn’t great. And the big thing about messaging is being consistent with your message. You need to be the same person, on your website and on social media so that you can really develop that know and trust.

You also have to ask for the sale. You have to tell people what you want them to do. Enter your email here. Make this purchase. Do you want fries with that? There’s so many things that if you don’t tell the customer what to do, what you want them to do, like they’ll just walk out like a lot of times, like it really does happen, especially on your website.

So all of that goes into your message and there’s so much more, but then at least gives you an idea of M and which is message.

Sean: [00:09:34] So sales process, message.

Torie: [00:09:38] what’s next?

A is authority and authority is one of my favorite things because it’s creating stuff and I’m a creator. I like making shit.

So authority goes into, how professional you are. That is something like, if you know you can’t like we talked about, you can’t show up in a dirty uniform. No, one’s going to trust you. If you look like crap, no, one’s going to trust you. If you don’t  have a, a website that is actually working.

 What things look like is part of it, but it’s so much more. It’s how you present yourself online, how you present yourself on social media. It’s your blog post can show your authority case studies, testimonials, videos, just like this, or podcasts, audios, all of these things help build your authority, presentations that you’ve done.

So you can take any business and you can say like, where do we inject in authority? Because that authority it’s, what’s going to get people just like your messaging to know, and trust you and actually feel comfortable working with you. And this is super important, especially if you’re doing any type of service business or you’re working directly with somebody.

You may not need it if you’re buying a donut or if you’re, that’s not really necessary, but if you’re buying something like that’s not a commodity type item, you’re probably gonna have to build this type of authority

Sean: [00:10:59] Unless that’s like the place to go get donuts.

Torie: [00:11:02] It was probably not the greatest example, but yes, a donut shop could make it, could have authority L iterally every single business needs to say, like, where can we put forth authority, donut shop? What awards have you won? What you could, show your, testimonials and reviews that you’ve had.

Sean: [00:11:28] Somethings’s got to make them unique. Bacon on it or whatever the case may be.

Torie: [00:11:32] Maybe you can showcase videos of events that you’ve done or different types of doughnuts that you have or how pretty, your, whatever it is, whatever your company is you have this authority that you need to let people know that.

Do you know what you’re doing? And a lot of times it’s, you’re like the best, like why would they choose you? That’s where authority comes in. You have to let them know, this is what distinguishes me from these other guys. And that’s why you shouldn’t choose them. And you should choose me. Because everybody, all of these people that are out there are shopping, they’re looking they’re researching.

They might be price shoppers, or they might just be trying to find the best person for the job. So whether they’re going to a doctor or a dentist, or they’re going to get their hair done, or they want to drop their dog off so that you wash, so that they eat their nails cut. Like they don’t want to take them to somebody that they can’t trust.

Sean: [00:12:20] I think that’s key is you’re not the only business. You’ve got competition. Whether you know it or not, there’s somebody else that does exactly what you do. So who has the better authority? That’s how I’m going to choose. I’m going to go and go like this dude here. It looks more legit. It looks like they know what they’re talking about.

Oh, look, I got all these fantastic reviews and Oh, they want me to put my email in. They’re going to give me 10% off. Oh, this is what their packages are. You don’t have that your not getting my business,

Torie: [00:12:51] You can’t just be like, here’s my thing, buy it. That sounds good. But that’s not how it works. No, it doesn’t like if you do, maybe you’re lucky, but luck runs out.

Like it’s I don’t want to have my business success be on luck. I want to know that, like I have covered my bases and I am set up for success. So A is authority.

The next one is R so we’re doing smart, right? So R is relationships and everything really comes back to this know and trust. So when you’re building a relationship, and I think that this, again goes with any business, you have to build that relationship with your client.

That means that maybe, like I said, they’re shopping, they’re doing their research. So how can you get their attention? And then keep developing that relationship with them, even if they’re not ready to make a decision right now. A lot of relationship these days is on social media, but it’s really easy to get drowned out on social media.

So the best place for relationship building is through email. And we talk about this with the dog groomer. Right now I could know her name and love her and have referred her to five different people because she’s emailed me, once a week or once every other week. And told me about all this cool stuff that she does.

And she won this award and Hey look Bruno, the super cute golden retriever came in and look at is like these things, build that relationship and make me like, Oh my gosh, I can’t wait to come in there and do business with her and give her all my money because I live.

Sean: [00:14:14] So that, that first captured the email that very first email she sent it could have been review us here and follow us here.

Torie: [00:14:21] Instead if you saw our other video, I don’t even know the name of the dog groomer.

So this relationship building is super important and there’s some brands that just, they do it so well, like some do it shitty, I always talk about like the trampoline company. I always think about this. So we went to the Atlanta car show. Do you remember that? And so the kids, there was a, what was it?

The springless trampoline people were there and the kids were like, I want to jump on it. Like we’ve been looking at cars all day. I just want to jump on the trampoline. So they were super smart, not the kids, the trampoline place, they were like, you have to fill out this waiver and give us your phone number and give us your email.

And then they, obviously they’re going to email me stuff. And so I filled out all the stuff, So they had all that stuff and then the kids could jump on the trampoline. So they jumped on the trampoline and then I waited and I was really curious, like they didn’t email me and then a week went by and they didn’t email me.

And then two weeks went by. They never emailed me. I don’t know what the damn company’s name was.

Sean: [00:15:21] I do know where it was located. Shit’s gone.

Torie: [00:15:24] Oh, there was one over there. Huh? So this shopping center that we go, there was a trampoline place. And they’re not there. Maybe if they would have got emails, they would have been like bored during COVID.

Cause your kids can’t leave the house, get a damn trampoline. This is the greatest time ever to get one.

Sean: [00:15:42] There’s that perception too. There’s you know, those weren’t cheap trampolines or one of those emails could have been like, Because you gave us the email and you went to that Atlanta car show, here’s a hundred bucks off.

Torie: [00:15:55] they could have told me like how dangerous other trampolines are, but they’re very safe. And they could’ve gave me videos of all these, things about the trampoline, built that relationship with me so that I liked them. Even if I didn’t want to buy one, if somebody was talking about that, I can be like, Oh my gosh, you need a trampoline.

I know this company they’re super great, but they didn’t do anything. let’s talk about like companies that do that. can you think of somebody that.

Sean: [00:16:20] No,

Torie: [00:16:21] No Sean Mathis, thanks for giving us that great example.

Sean: [00:16:28] Miles Through Time does it.

Torie: [00:16:28] You do a really great job of that. Sean mails, his list, he emails them a lot. Very nice, shares pictures, just talks about it. Likable tells the story of what’s going on and what’s new

Sean: [00:16:40] Like you’re going to see a pop-up and multiple opportunities to give me your email and then you go, and you’re going to get a few emails that everybody gets, and then you’re going to get emails that I sent, at least by biweekly. I’ll just let you know what’s going on. because of the style that the museum is, I think it’s important for everybody to have kind of a stake and ownership in it.

Torie: [00:17:08] Okay. So this is a really good example because you didn’t realize that you should have a sequence, to start off. So there’s like an onboarding sequence that you can do, and all this can be automated. It’s not like something that you send out to everybody every time. So I kinda gave you like an outline kind of to go Hey, this is what I’m about.

And this is where I came from, and this is why I opened it, that way. Right away. People know who Sean Mathis is, so that when they get an email, two weeks later, they’re not like, who the hell is this, spam? No, you took the time to build that relationship, so that people know who Sean Mathis is

and so when they get the Sean Mathis email later, they don’t forget who you are. you’ve built that relationship. So they don’t spend, they’re looking forward to your email. Now, once you did that, did your spam complaints go down?

Sean: [00:17:53] yeah, for sure. Yeah. I still get them every once in a while.

It’s absolutely drives me nuts because they’re the ones that put their email in there. but it’s not very much.

Torie: [00:18:03] So you have build that relationship. I was thinking of this company, so when I was. we were walking. We had we built this trail in our backyard so that we could walk and I was trying to get our son to like, do the rucksack stuff.

So if you go to GoRuck, I think is the name of the company. It’s goruck.Com. Like I got one of their emails today. Like I, I’m not even rucking right now. We’re just walking and, going to the gym. I never bought anything, but I still love their email.

Sean: [00:18:25] You’re not rucking.

Torie: [00:18:26] I’m not rucking right now.

I was putting like crap in my backpack and I can walk and have weight behind me, but they do a whole bunch of stuff, their onboarding sequence.

if you want an example of somebody that does a great onboarding sequence, other than Sean at miles, your time. Go sign up for Go Ruck. it’s really great.

they introduce you to the company. They talk about their products, but it’s not buy my shit. It’s just, they’re building the relationship. They’re telling a story. You really like them. And they have a dog that is like the CEO or the CFO or whatever he is. And he’s at the end of every single email and it’s so cute and they just do a really good job.

Like I like them and I’ve never even bought anything from them, but I want to. And if I you’ll want to ruck, like that’s where I’ll go. I probably wouldn’t go anywhere else for that kind of stuff. Or if I wanted to, refer them to somebody else, like I would totally do that because I like them.

They’ve spent the time to build a relationship. Again, it takes a little bit of intention and forethought. Like when you did the email sequence, like how long did that really take you to do.

Sean: [00:19:32] Less than a day.

Torie: [00:19:33] And so they were scheduled out. So every single person that comes and signs up at Miles Through Time, they get like four, three, four emails

Sean: [00:19:40] No there are 6-8.

Torie: [00:19:43] Because we  introduce, so Sean works with, has a partner truant that he does stuff with. And so we even introduced Truet. Sean’s been on the news. And so he was on Good Day Atlanta. So we made sure that we had that video, where let’s show him that, because that builds authority And shows Hey, we know what we’re doing,

Sean: [00:19:58] There is a separate email for every aspect of the museum.

So storage, donations and founding members and Truitt, and, the mill that the whole place is in. And each one of those is a separate email.

Torie: [00:20:12] So that people know exactly what they’re getting. So then once they have vested interest. So many are like I don’t want an email.

Cause then they’ll unsubscribe. Why would you want somebody that’s going to unsubscribe and be like, don’t be afraid to email these people. Like you have to build the relationship with them because then people care about you and your business, and then they want to do business with you. And that’s what, it’s all it’s about building these relationships.

Long-term relationships. If you’re lucky, like if you do it right, they will be.

Sean: [00:20:39] Search your competition.

If they have anything, sign up for it, see what they’re doing. Any other business that you’re into, sign up, see what they’re doing. Just, make you way more comfortable to see what they’re doing, whether it’s exactly like what you do or not.

Just gives you an idea.

Torie: [00:20:53] It gives you an idea and then you see once this you’re like, Oh shit, they did do this. Like this company did it and this company did it. And then some of them make you feel uncomfortable. And you’re like, Ooh, that was gross. that made me feel icky because they’re like buy my stuff.

Sean: [00:21:05] Yeah. It was like immediately you get the email. That’s good. Yeah. But then I get one the next day I got 10 emails in seven days. That’s too many.

Torie: [00:21:16] I think if they’re telling a story and Hey, I’m going to email you again next week, no tomorrow and tell you this.

And I think that’s okay, but it’s just this is for sale and 20% off, we bought Halloween costumes for the kids. And so I was like, do you have a coupon? Do you have a coupon, only online? Dammit. And so then use the coupon at the Halloween store, but Six hours later, they mailed me a dang coupon.

They send me two emails a day and I know that it’s like Halloween. And so it’s get them while they’re hot. But it’s it’s too much. I don’t like you, you make me feel a little yucky and unsubscribe, And then unsubscribe, you’re going to happen. So that’s just part of it.

So if you sign up for other people and like Sean said, other companies and see what they do, see how you’re indoctrinated, see how they welcome you into their company, because there are some companies that do a really great job of it.  Through with R. Our next one is T. And this is the one that everybody does.

People are like, Hey Torie, do this fancy Facebook campaign and send all this traffic so I can sell all my stuff. And so I’m like, what about your sales process? And what about your messaging? And they’re like, no, just send traffic.

Sean: [00:22:23] Like you have any authority?

Torie: [00:22:26] You guys like traffic is awesome, but you have to have some processes and some things set up in order for your money not to just be…when people are like Facebook ads don’t work, they do. You just don’t have your shit set up yet. once you think about these things and get all these ducks in a row and it takes a little bit of time and it’s not like you have to do it all right this second, it definitely takes a little bit of time to get this part in this part.

But you keep working at it and you work at it little by little, you end up having this amazing machine that makes you money, like your business will start to run itself, which is really awesome. Like then you can start to put traffic in and then they go through all these different things and then they buy from you and then they refer you and then they give you reviews and then they take all their friends there.

And it’s this process that keeps on going. So T is traffic and traffic might be phone calls. It might be, visitors to your website and it might be using Facebook ads or Google ads. It might be people walking into your store. And so there’s ways to drive traffic, but we want to make sure we have all these other things set at first.

Like when they walk into your store, what happens? What does everybody say? Then what? Then what? When they leave, how do you make sure you can contact, remember all this other stuff that we talked about? Like you have to have all of that stuff and then you get the traffic. Anything to add Sean Mathis for traffic

Sean: [00:23:51] totally makes sense.

Torie: [00:23:52] Like traffic is the one that everybody wants to go to. Like it’s the fancy one. It’s the, I look like I’m really doing business, but you got to have all this stuff first. Like before you start spending money and money on traffic, and then saying Facebook ads don’t work.

They do. But you got to work on this. So then we have so it was smart and I did smart marketing, like for quite a while and talked about it and did all these things, but there’s always a little bit more and I wasn’t really sure how to explain it. And so I love the idea of being smart, AF, because that’s even better than being smart.

It’s being 11. Why? You don’t want to just be 10, Why?

Sean: [00:24:28] It’s more than 10

Torie: [00:24:29] Because 11 is more than 10. So Smart AF. So the A is for automation because all of this stuff, like you don’t have to literally do all of these things. So many of this can be automated and automated in a way that is easy for you, easy for your customer.

It doesn’t make them feel icky. Doesn’t take out like the personality or the, the personal part of your business, but just makes it a little bit easier. Like sending emails, like literally don’t send email one by one, you automate these things so that they come out at the right time. Automating emails like we talk about the dog groomer. Like she could have put it in her little system and said, okay, Torie went on Wednesday. So let’s see two months, her dog is probably going to need her nails trimmed again. So send an email to Torie in two months. And give her, $5 off for coming in or whatever, like to remind her.

And so that can all be set up ahead of time. A lot of Facebook stuff could be automated. We talked about the, invoices, scheduling, invoices was huge. Scheduling to invoicing was huge for my business. Once I stopped invoicing by hand, and once I got reoccurring invoices and I was able to set them up and then automatically go out and I was able to have clients do credit card payments and it was automated for them too, like business game changer. Like it changed the face of my business and freed up my time and let me have all this extra time to do other stuff that was really important. And it, just made me look even better to clients and made things easy for them, easier for them to give me money – automated.

So A is for automation. We have F and F is for frequency. Talk about this all the time. And I usually call it consistency, but Smart AC doesn’t make sense. So it has to be F and that is frequency. Like you can’t do one of these things like one time and expect it all to work. You have to be consistent.

You have to do these things every time. Like the Walmart greeter, like they don’t say Hey to every hundredth person. They say, Hey, to every single person that’s true. they don’t say, Hey, do you want fries with that? Every once in awhile, it is every single time. You get the email every single time from all of your customers.

And some of them will say no, but who cares? Like you still ask for the email so that you can build the relationship with them.

Sean: [00:26:51] Ask for the referral,

Torie: [00:26:52] Ask for the review every time, like you set up this consistent process, like you don’t use your logo sometimes and use this other logo sometimes you do it every time. So you set up these things that you do, Consistently. Frequently. And then it’s a snowball. Like it’s not going to happen the first time. Sometimes it’s not going to happen. You get the snowball going. And that’s a really big things start happening. It doesn’t have to be everything at once, but it does have to be a little bit all the time.

And so that’s smart AF and it is a proven way that you can, I say, double your business. JSean says 10 X. Whichever one you want, who doesn’t want to double their business?

Sean: [00:27:35] Let’s 11 X it

Torie: [00:27:37] Because 11 is more than 10.

So even if you just want to double your business, like start to get these things into your business and it would make the biggest difference.

And it just, it makes business a little more predictable. It makes it a little bit funner because it makes things easier. These things make it easier for your customers. You end up getting better customers, you get customers for longer. Like all of these things are a benefit. It just takes a little bit of time, a little bit of intention, a little bit of planning and forethought.

It’s not hard. And it definitely is working smarter, like a shit ton, smarter, smart AF.

Sean: [00:28:20] Why not?

Torie: [00:28:22] Why not???  (laughs)

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Torie Mathis helps entrepreneurs get from where they are to where they want to be by working smart.  She is a best-selling author, Army veteran, speaker + trainer, and your mentor to creating the business+ life you love. She has cracked the code for creating a lucrative, independent business + an amazing lifestyle. She can help you with your marketing and business growth, your clarity and purpose and help you reach your vision of success. 🙂

Torie hosts SMART AF, a show for non-techy, non-marketers looking to grow their business, with her husband Sean and is the creator of SMART AF Magazine.

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Best Small Business Marketing PodcastWhere underdog entrepreneurs go to get SMART AF about growing their business without wasting time, money, or sanity hosted by Torie Mathis.