An Interview with “Detroit Joey” (the man behind the story)

A few days ago I brought you the “Detroit Joey” formula. It is a super cool way to show personalized attention to new customers or leads.

The response was so overwhelming that I tracked down Joey himself!

Listen for the details on HOW he got his job at I’ll also tell you his actual name (hint: it isn’t ‘Detroit’ Joey).



Bryan Harris: So in this interview, Joey Babi is going to tell us an awesome technique he uses to get new customers, to engage further with current customers ,just really ran across at and signed up for a free subscription to the podcast interview show and within a day or two, I get this awesome email from them and I will kind of let Joey explain the technique he kind of pioneered at.  So, Joey, tell us about this, about what you do, and just talk about yourself and this technique for a minute

Joey Babi: Yeah, so uh, I kind of came up with the technique because I do not come across the best when I am writing.  So, I got an email and I got sick of doing support emails from my app Game Up Alarm Clock, which is in the iOS store, and someone asked me a question, So I thought, you know what, it would be really fun if I just answered it with a video.

So what I did was, I have an app called Reflector that you mirror your phone unto your computer, and I just screen recorded, and I answered her question and kind of showed it to her and showed a little bit of personality with it and uh, she loved it.  She actually really opened up to me and she told me what song she was waking up to or what time she was waking up and why she is waking up, and I loved it.  It was awesome, so then I was like maybe I am onto something here

Joey Babi: So I just kind of started doing that and then it got bigger. I did it with Bronson at Growth Hacker because I gave him my app and gave him a promo code and I wanted to make sure he knew how to use it. So I made one of my videos for some of his videos and he loved it and asked me to be an intern

Bryan Harris: Very cool, so you made Reflector?  I actually used that quite a bit

Joey Babi: Oh yeah, I love it

Bryan Harris: Yeah, yeah, so is that yours or do you use it or is that

Joey Babi: Oh no, I just use it.  It was just a handy tool to get it on my laptop.

Bryan Harris: Yeah, yeah cool.  So talk about the getting the intern part, I thought that was really cool you gave away your service for free, I guess to him and the in return, or you showed him how to use your app and then he wanted to hire you and he offered that. Let us kind of talk about your arrangement just a little bit.

I think that is a really cool way to, that is something I have done a lot with video fruit is kind of give away my service to key people, to get traffic, and to get recurring consulting gigs and that type of thing so kind of talk about that a little bit.

Joey Babi: Yeah, so uhm, you know, with the app, half about or not even half, quarter of the battle is making the app.   The biggest majority of the battle is actually marketing that.  So what I was doing is just, you know, kind of identified a bunch of influencers and Bronson happened to be one of them, and I threw them a promo of my apps so that way maybe he would talk about it at some point.

So, what ended up happening was I sent them the email and he did not open it for a few days and lo and behold a few days later, I get this email where he was just, he thinks, this is the funniest thing when he goes I did not know you made that video just for me and I was like, yeah, no, that is how I handle my customer support now and he goes really, can you tell me more about it and so I told him that, you know, people are starting to open up to me because I am doing it and they see the effort I put forward.  It spikes the downloads a little bit but what I like the most is I am getting some really, really die-hard fans.

Bryan Harris: Yeah, so it might be less about, you know, as an entrepreneur one of our biggest assets is your time.  I mean, there are just so many things to do and trying to stay focused on your core thing without getting distracted, it could be very card so valuing your time is a pretty big priority.

Obviously, these videos, I think the video you made for me was 15 seconds long but I saw some of your other ones you did for your app and they are a minute or two minutes longs, so by the time you record that, put the unique title in, type an email, send it back to them, you know you are probably five to ten times longer than just writing an email.  What is the payoff for you?  What have you seen as being the biggest thing?  You mentioned higher engagement and bigger fans.  Is there anything else that you have seen kind of as a result to that?

Joey Babi: Well, every time I do it, if you look at the videos, they have more than just one view, which is interesting because all these videos are unlisted.  I do not want to just kind of put it out there in the open, try to make it like I am bragging like ___04:30want to help but those extra views means that whoever is getting them are sharing them and I think that speaks more about the actual gesture than anything else does.

Bryan Harris: Absolutely.  So, talk about how you are doing this at Growth Hackers.  Is there something like ongoing plan you all are doing?  Are you doing x number per day or is there anybody that sums up, somebody that gets a video? Kind of, what is the strategy there?

Joey Babi: Uh, right now, my strategy is everyone that signs up because it is something that is going to need about two or three people to do it so I am able to do it by myself so really the only strategy right now is to not put your name when I do not know how to pronounce it.

Bryan Harris: Yeah, do you have a script you go off of when you are responding?  Do you kind of have something you say every time or you just kind of wing it?

Joey Babi: Uh, at first I started winging it and then I noticed to get into the groove and then I kind of made up a, it is not even really a script, it is more of a, kind of a bullet point, you know.  Like, hi, their name, and you know kind of mention who I am because they are probably going to wonder why has this guy called me by my name, first name only, and then kind of like showing them that is the value of Growth Hacker.  I think when I first joined Growth Hacker, I only thought the value was the videos and then I did not even know there was a community section until I started interning

Bryan Harris: Right. have you tracked your click I noticed at the bottom of the video, you have a link that goes to the community.  Have you done any tracking on that to see, you know, the number of people that get the video and watch it and then one that is in the community because I guess that is the main aim of the video, is to stay hey, there is this community out there, I want you to jump in and start talking because hopefully you will stay in that and want to make you a member of our site for a longer period of time.  I guess that is kind of the overarching strategy.  Has there been any tracking done to see, you know, if people, somebody that watches the video is more likely types 06:31 that go into the community.

Joey Babi: I am going to be honest with you, had Branson recommend putting a link in the comments, it probably would have been tracked but I am one of those few that get so passionate and get so excited that I want to do it now

Bryan Harris: Yeah, just get it done

Joey Babi: Let us just get it done, let us just do it.  We will, you know, we will see how it goes and I get some emails back.  I get emails back and tweets back which is really awesome to see so they must be doing something

Bryan Harris: So, google your or you need to go there, grab your TM parameter on it and just track that and see what happens.  Like, at least, and you will have a link, it will shorten it up where it is not ugly but then you can see how many people actually click and you can do a different link and it takes another four seconds and you can do a different link for each video and know, you know.  Especially if one gets shared, like if you see one where the views get to forty or fifty views on one that is private, that is abnormal and you could see how that is actually happening

Joey Babi: Yeah, like I said, I thought about it and I was just so excited to just do it.  Typically, I use Bitly to track my links.

Bryan Harris: Yeah, yeah, yeah cool

Joey Babi: So, yeah, no I just, that is what I did.  I get so excited when I do things.  I am a very passionate guy once you get to know me

Bryan Harris: So, have you had any one you have done either for your app or for Bronson in Growth Hacker kind of go semi-viral.  Have you had one that is private out there but gets shared a lot.  What would be your highest view rate on one of those

Joey Babi: You know what, I have not really checked.  I had a couple of people that actually shared the videos a couple of times on twitter that I noticed and there was one kid where he was having a tough morning and I was like hey, you know, cheer up and he was like oh cool, you have got Game Alarm Clock, that was a good play on words.

I thought it was hilarious and he asked if I had it for android which I do not yet and I said well you know what, I am just going to go above and beyond and what I did was is I made a video for him, I sent him a five-dollar Amazon gift card to buy whatever Android app he wants to buy from the Android market and I noticed that he liked philosophy so I found him like a free philosophy ePub on the internet and I sent it over to him and he was astonished and like, he shared it like three or four times and he actually, sometimes he will just kind of tweet me and say what is up, what is going on.  I think the biggest response was though when I did that, his first tweet was oh my god, you are human.

Bryan Harris: There you go.  Ding, ding, ding and that is the biggest thing for me.  That was my biggest take away from doing this whole case study and chatting with you, seeing the strategy is that in the world of merge tags and InfusionSoft and HubSpot all these automated things, like it catches your attention that somebody would take an extra five minutes to respond to you and it makes we want to do business with you.

You know, If I would download your app and you would send me a personalized video or if I signed up for Growth Hacker TV and I get a personalized video back that says hey man, thanks for signing up, you are awesome.  Like, I mean, I would much rather do business with a human, I would much rather do business with a mom and pop versus Wal-Mart.  Like, I cannot stand Wal-Mart.  I still have to go there sometimes because it is physically the only store that has it and it gives me a headache for it but that is what I loved about this is that it has a human touch and it is something that, you know, my audience or people that are still stuck in a cubicle that are trying to get out of their day job and they are trying to figure out ways to grow their business and when you are in that stage of things, high touch is good like doing things that do not scale is what you need to be doing because you need to get from zero people to follow you to three people to follow you and from three to ten and from ten to a hundred and doing this type of stuff will do that.

You know, if you become a Lifehacker and you are sending out five million emails, you know, every week.  You obviously cannot make five million videos but I mean 99% of us do not have that proper email list of a hundred people or a thousand people and this can easily be done for our five new signups or twenty new signups a day.  You know, I did, like I said I did, I do not know, ten or fifteen of these this morning and they took max one minute each and yours are a little more in depth, you are doing you background and reflecting your iPhone app out there for just a basic thank you video using YouTube Capture, I mean it takes seconds to do so, I highly recommend it.  Thanks for stopping in and chatting, man.  I appreciate it.