Tuesday, April 23, 2024
HomeHealthIs Freelancing with Family a Good Plan? — Millo.co

Is Freelancing with Family a Good Plan? — Millo.co

Preston:
Hello and welcome back to another episode of Freelance to Founder. My name is Preston Lee with millo.co and joining me on the air today is my good friend Clay Mosley from getdripify.com. Hey, Clay.

Clay:
What’s going on man ready to record you know, just hustling and then chasing a kid around. It’s what I’m doing.

Preston:
Which is more tiring? That’s what I want to know: running a business or being a parent to an eighteen-month-old?

Clay:
The kid. Ah oh that by far a hundred x.

Preston:
Ah, but which is more rewarding am I right? Yeah, it’s totally worth it. So and well good. We’re joined also by our new friend Dave calling from Washington the state hey Dave doing well thanks for calling in today. We really appreciate it. Dave why don’t you tell us some.

Clay:
Yes.

Dave:
Hey how you doing.

Preston:
A little bit about your business walk us through what kind of work you’re doing what your clients look like and kind of paint us a picture.

Dave:
Yeah, so our business it’s a family business. It’s myself and my 3 sons um, my oldest son is a product manager with with a big game company and.

Dave:
My middle son is a senior Android developer and the youngest just graduated from college with his computer science degree. So between all of us we’re a bunch of techies and when we have our when we ham our family dinners which we try to do. But once a month um my wife always teases us about our nerd talk.

Clay:
Sounds like it.

Preston:
I I think I missed I think I missed what you do? what? like what? what’s your background.

Dave:
And and that’s usually I am a embedded systems engineer. So when um, you know so I do a lot of electronics components firmware development type work mom my day job and outside of that I.

Clay:
Now What is your? yeah ah.

Preston:
Okay.

Clay:
Now What does your wife do.

Dave:
My wife is a bookkeeper and a office manager for her brother actually who is part of the reason why I am where I am today because of helping him run his website and Google eye campaigns and stuff got me to where I am today. But. Yeah, she works for her brother as an office manager and and in the automotive industry. So yeah.

Clay:
Thanks.

Preston:
Okay, very nice. So so lots of geeking out happening at at family dinners and family events. Ah a lot of lot of tech talk and so it sounds like you guys are doing running your business on the side then.

Dave:
Yes, yep, Yes, right now. Everybody just does I started I restructured the way the company works so that all the kids can. Do their own projects through the business so because before they were doing their little site projects and they would just have their clients venmo. Um or they were struggling to get paid and I’m like you’re you’re struggling because you’re not invoicing. You know so I restructured the way I was doing my business to bring the kids in so that we all had um.

Preston:
Boom.

Clay:
A.

Dave:
The ability to you know manage the business. So and now we have set a goal for some of what we want to do as a company now that we’re all kind of under one umbrella.

Preston:
Awesome! So so like when someone asks you about your company or asks 1 of them about your company. What do you guys say you do like? do you do you offer web web design web development app development like what? what do you guys? do.

Dave:
Um, app and web development. So I like doing the web development work. So that’s what I usually focus on for us whenever a web client comes along the kids like to do app development. So we actually own a couple of apps. We have made some acquisitions this year where we.

Preston:
Um, yeah.

Dave:
A great website called acquire.com where we’ve purchased a couple of apps through that site and those are bringing in some decent recurring revenue for us still not making much of a profit but we’re starting to break even with that.

Preston:
Interesting.

Dave:
And so that’s been real nice and we have a goal to have we have 2 apps right now that are subscription based and doing well we have a couple web clients one web client is on the subscription model that you guys have touted on some of your past pot. Um podcasts I I learned from you guys to do that and.

Preston:
Ah.

Dave:
And so we’re um, we have a few things going there So we have some good recurring revenue and we’re just looking to grow to that next level.

Preston:
I Love it and so what? So what? Um what I guess piece of the focus of your business. Do those apps represent versus like your service business.

Dave:
So one of them’s an app. That’s a shopify app. So. It’s an add-on plug-in for the shopify platform and so that helps us you know with some of our web clients so that we can attract more you know Shopify. Um. Clients because we have good development skills and in that area and then the other one is trying to tap into the whole um ai growth and it’s an app that’s um, an ai a social ai planner. Where an influencer can just upload a photo put in a few keywords for what they want to be about and it will generate the content for you and then it will post it to your Instagram or Facebook page or Linkedin so we have um, those 3 platforms are supported right now.

Preston:
Ah.

Dave:
We’re trying to get the final authorizations through through Facebook Meta through their developers to finish up so that we can get the full release done and then we’re going to slowly add in Tiktok and a few other platforms as well.

Preston:
Yeah, so I guess that’s that’s super interesting stuff I Wonder I guess I’m wondering like what in terms of focus in your business. Are you guys like devoting half your time to growing those apps and half to the services you offer are you really wanting to to bring up. The service piece and those are just kind of fun side projects like how does it all fit together. You know what? I mean.

Dave:
Well so what we’ve been able to do is we focus on our web development and we use these apps as add-ons. So like our shopify client. So we include our app that we own on the shopify platform for free for them.

Preston:
I see.

Dave:
And then we give them um like three months of credit to our new social app so that they can work on their own social media platform as well and and advertise their products through their social media accounts using our app and so by doing that we were able to like bundle extra services that. And some senses doesn’t cost us a lot. Um.

Preston:
Cool. Yeah, so you basically you basically use these as as um, like Premium add-ons that you get that you wouldn’t get with another developer. Um.

Dave:
Right.

Preston:
Like if you sign up with us. We’ll do your website and also we’ll give you 3 or 6 or whatever months of this cool product that comes along with it or whatever, very cool, okay, cool and and um and did you say how long you’ve been doing this on the side when did you and your kids start start this business.

Dave:
Um, yep, yeah.

Dave:
So I started in 2017 um I separated from a job I was at had a good severance package and I was burnt out. Um I was really into photography so I started a photography business. Um.

Preston:
Okay.

Dave:
Called a gallaso photography all of my kids played soccer so gallazo is a you know a spanish term for an incredibly awesome goal for a while that was always my tagline of score an incredibly awesome goal in your business. And so so all of our stuff has been centric around sports for a long time. Um, but during that photography business. My brother-in-law started his business and he’s like hey I need a website can you make a website for me so I did. Um, hey I see that your advertising is going really? well well, you run my ad campaigns too. So I ran as Facebook and I ran as Google ads and then he kept referring people to me and so that became more of my business than the photography was and.

Preston:
Yeah.

Preston:
And so what piece of your business is the the advertising piece so you do web development but you also do you also run ad campaigns for clients.

Dave:
Not very much anymore I I help people find the right people now to do the ad campaigns because it’s a lot of it’s a lot of time to run those and and so now I help people to find the right person to run their campaigns because I know enough to know.

Preston:
And.

Dave:
My limitations are and I know enough to know that they’re finding the right person that’s going to take them to that next level. Um I don’t try to be everything One of the things I learned is that the more I spread myself out the less successful I am.

Preston:
Yeah, yeah, there’s definitely a lot there for sure and in specializing in something and being the best you can be in in at least sort of 1 area before you branch out into other areas. Okay, that’s really interesting. So um. So as the business is now like where you mostly do with your sons this web development piece. Um, how long has that particular piece been how long have you been in business and how many clients do you have.

Dave:
It’s been about a year and a half since we started this part of it came from during the whole pandemic time the kids developed this app called hype gamer that was a.

Preston:
Okay, yeah.

Dave:
Esports tournament hosting platform and they built it from the ground up and it was really cool for call of duty and um, it allowed the regular person like let’s say you wanted to get together with your buddies over the weekend and host a tournament for call of duty. Everybody puts $20 into the pot by paying through our the platform that they developed it pulls all that money together and then the site real time is tracking the stats of the call duty game and then at the end of the tournament it said. Okay, here’s your 1 2 3 winners and then paid everybody out of the. Ah, the pool that was collected. It was really good and they were doing about $70000 a month gross and um and then you know Activision had some bad press called duty took a bit of a noseiveve and users and um and so.

Clay:
That sounds really cool.

Preston:
Got it.

Preston:
Wow.

Dave:
Everything kind of dwindled out and so that platform is still there but they don’t really, it’s not really being used anymore. But the goal is to is to try and and get into some of the big names and that’s part of where some of our areas have been in struggling is.

Preston:
Wow.

Dave:
We were doing well with the recurring revenue for four or five months at sixty Seventy thousand dollars gross if you know it would have been nice to leverage that in just some sort of funding and and you know, bringing in some angel investors and maybe we could have gone to some other platforms at the time you know, but it takes something like that.

Preston:
Ah.

Preston:
Yeah.

Dave:
To learn from to know that. Okay, you’re missing something we didn’t there’s something we should have learned there that we didn’t learn and so and so that’s kind of what I’m hoping to learn today is how do you get to that next step how do you take that recurrent revenue. Yeah.

Preston:
Yeah, right.

Preston:
Yeah let’s let’s talk about that a little bit. Um, so when you came to chat with us Dave as as everyone who comes on the show as a guest. We’re so grateful for those of you who choose to come on the show. We couldn’t do this podcast without you with people like Dave. So. Thank you Thank you? Um, when when you come on the show we have you fill out this really short questionnaire. And on the questionnare. 1 of the questions is on a scale of 1 to 10 one being a freelancer 10 being a founder where would you currently put yourself ah and and Dave you put that you and and I I suppose your um your business with together with your sons. You’re sort of at a 3 you said, but you’d like to be more. Like at a 6 could you paint a picture for us in a perfect world. What does your business look like maybe a year from now what would be the ideal.

Dave:
A year a year from now would see one of our apps having a significant amount of subscribers beyond what we’ve been able to do just by packaging it with our web services but just in general getting more subscribers to some of our apps. And having enough recurring revenue that they’re actually turning a profit and that way we can afford to because you know all of us have full-time jobs and so we’re still all freelancers. Even though we’re a group of us. Um, and the idea is that okay, so can we farm out some of this work. You know.

Preston:
Um, yep.

Preston:
Right.

Dave:
1 of the issues we’re having right now is I need to do some walkthrough videos of how our app works so that we can finish the approval process for some of our access to the Facebook and Instagram Apis I haven’t had the time to do that. It being nice to hire someone to do that. But. We also have limited funds. We’re on a shoestring still you know and so that’s kind of like the balancing act that we’re trying to get past.

Preston:
Yeah, yeah.

Preston:
Okay, interesting. so okay so um this is really this is really kind of ah, interesting for me because I’m hearing sort of 2 things which is on the 1 hand you’re you’re trying to grow a ah ah web design web development business. But then I say what would be the ideal for your business a year from now and you say I’d like more subscribers to our app which would generate more recurring revenue. Um, so I guess I guess I’m just trying to I don’t know maybe I’m misunderstanding I’m trying to sort of parse those 2 different they seem like do different businesses.

Dave:
No. They are and you’re right? And that’s part of our discussion that we’ve had as kid you know with the kids and stuff and myself is where are we going and I keep telling web develop web clients are going to fund everything else because web clients are going to bring in more money.

Clay:
Ah.

Preston:
Um, yeah, yeah.

Clay:
And.

Dave:
And extra money for us to be able to pay to finish developing these other apps and so and they want to develop the apps. So we’re kind of we are going in 2 directions and we probably will end up actually splitting the company into 2 if that’s the direction we end up going in but that’s the.

Preston:
I Guess I I guess I guess I’m I’m missing something because and I don’t mean this sort of I’m I’m not trying to call you out necessarily. But but if the if the boys are doing the development. What funding do you need from.

Clay:
Handless.

Preston:
If they’re doing the app development. What funding Do you need from these web design claims that you don’t have yet in order to fund the development well but hold on you but but.

Dave:
Marketing and then there’s some work marketing is a big one. But yeah.

Clay:
I Think he’s asking about money right? or am I taking that or is that pressing out and.

Preston:
Well yeah money but money for marketing for a thing that’s not done yet is that I guess I’m just trying to paint a picture sorry Dave.

Dave:
Yeah, no, that’s that’s good because that helps me too because now I know probably a part of why we’re struggling is if I can’t explain it then that probably explains why we can’t get there too. Um.

Preston:
Yeah I mean in in fairness right? if if I if I was an angel investor you came to me and said we have this business where we’re hoping to grow subscribers to some apps in order to build some recurring revenue but in order to build subscribers. We have to get web design clients first. It’s a very confusing pitch right.

Dave:
It is.

Clay:
Um, and.

Preston:
And it’s sort of like so if I’m going to give you my money are you are you going to invest that in marketing to get subscribers for the apps or are you going to invest it in marketing to get web design clients and if you invest it to get web design clients. How does that actually help the apps grow which actually produce the revenue right? It’s it’s kind of this.

Dave:
Yeah, yes, there is and so um, the web clients and that’s my favorite part. That’s probably why I keep pushing it um and um and so and that’s why you know I think in the end.

Preston:
There’s just a lot happening.

Dave:
Part of what we’re trying to do is grow enough so that we can kind of split it into 2 directions and have 1 team handling web and 1 team handling and probably have it under a different name handling all the web apps. But right now what we’re trying to do is figure out how. How we can get there and um, we know that advertising and marketing has been one area that we’ve been really working hard to try and and and take on. Um you know I know from running Google campaigns and Facebook Campaigns it’s a good. $1502000 a month to run a decent size campaign and that can bleed you drive pretty quickly your bank accounts pretty quickly and so we’re trying to figure out how to do that. So um.

Clay:
And.

Dave:
Ideally, it’s the apps in the long run. We want the apps to be the moneymaker and that’s that’s the end goal. Um, ah, but that’s what they enjoy and that’s what’s gonna keep them engaged and.

Preston:
Yeah.

Clay:
Is that just because that’s what you’ll enjoy doing as a whole how much right now if you could break it down what percentage of your revenue come from websites and what percentage of your revenue come from the apps.

Preston:
Yeah, yeah.

Dave:
It’s almost fifty fifty right now with the how we’re doing for apps and web design because we’ve only got a cut. We got a couple clients that are web clients that are on the hourly basis and then we have the one that’s on subscription basis. That’s pretty.

Clay:
Um, okay, and ah.

Clay:
Um.

Dave:
Good sized client and then we have the 2 apps that are running with subscription bases that are bringing in enough revenue that they’re almost matching the um the website of it.

Clay:
No, and and the the apps are are dependent right now on the web development correct. Okay, and then how much well he’s saying because you have to like he said earlier they cross sell the apps.

Dave:
Yes.

Preston:
Wait in in what way and what way.

Dave:
Yes, we.

Clay:
From Web site clients.

Preston:
Got it. That’s the only way you’re getting app customers right? now is is as upsells on your or add-ons to your web design clients. Okay.

Dave:
Yes, that’s that’s one way we’re getting a handful of them organically but the most of them have come through web clients and referrals from the web clients. So.

Preston:
Got it.

Clay:
Um, how much are your um how much of your revenue is monthly recurring percentage choice.

Dave:
Ah, probably by 80% of our money 80% of our revenues monthly recurring right now. Yeah, so we we’re no, we’re still a little bit in the red.

Clay:
Monthly recurring. Are you operating in the block.

Preston:
Can I ask do? yeah you profitable? Um, and what and what percentage of the total needed revenue. Would you say you’re currently making. So for example, if you need.

Clay:
Okay.

Preston:
You know $10000 a month each for each all 4 of you that’s 40 grand how much are what percentage you’re making maybe thirty forty percent of what you need for you all to go full time or what does that number look like right.

Dave:
Um, we are not paying ourselves yet. So the goal my hope is that by the within it 12 to 18 months we can start actually paying out.

Preston:
Okay.

Dave:
Some sort of ah disbursements to everybody but I want to see the marketing that we’re doing has been eating into our expenses.

Preston:
So you’re not paying yourself but you’re also not profitable where what are the expenses.

Clay:
And.

Preston:
I See you’re running you’re running negative ah Roi marketing campaigns. Yeah, okay.

Dave:
Right now we are yes and worst’re dead right now we’re just paying for the pay the Ppc ads on the shopify platform for our shopify app. Um, our non shopify app we are.

Clay:
What have you been doing.

Dave:
Organically advertising right now using our own social media tool to to grow our social media presence for that app and but we want to start paying for some advertising and start paying for some Facebook and Instagram and Tiktok ads for that.

Preston:
But I think but I think part of the issue Dave is like if you go if you go to someone asking for funding right? and and they say great I’ll give you you know a quarter of $1000000 or whatever and you say great. We have a bunch of ad campaigns that are running that are not profitable like that’s it’s not going to work.

Dave:
And we’re hoping if we were at.

Clay:
Had.

Preston:
That’s not a pitch that someone can accept like it’s 1 thing it’s 1 thing to it’s 1 thing to not operate at a profit because you’re paying. You’re paying a team and and you’re paying for resources and whatever it’s it’s ah it’s another thing to have the resources and the team and not be able to generate a.

Dave:
Bright.

Preston:
Positive ah roi on your marketing dollar right? or at least break even on your marketing campaigns and so I think for me, that’s step 1 is like you look at your marketing campaign and you say we have to get these breakeven or ah roi positive before we could even try to figure out what kind of funding we could.

Clay:
For that.

Preston:
Look look for or who we could approach. Um.

Clay:
How are you getting clients now.

Dave:
There’s ah word of mouth for the most part or um, you know like the shopify client was a referral from a friend and and so that’s. You know and the other clients that I have were referrals for my brother-in-law when I was doing a lot of the work for him So a lot of everything we’re doing has been referral based um and then I will go out and do a few cold calls. You know a few times a month. Um, on people that I know vaguely. Um, you know, just kind of hey hey I saw that you need a new website. You know you’re looking to to make any changes yet and they’re like hey well to keep you in mind when we’re ready. Um, but you know I’m not a sales person by Trade. So That’s the other side of the whole thing is is. You know we I’ll keep pointing at a change So who’s going to be our salesperson and so um.

Preston:
Well there. Yeah, there’s an issue.

Clay:
Who’s who what kind of ah tell me a little bit more about your projects. What kind of websites are you developing? is it all ecommerce and what kind of apps are you developing.

Dave:
So the the websites are wordpress and shopify based 1 of those 2 platforms. Those are the 2 we we try and and work in no most of ah we only have one ecommerce one as far as the shopify one goes, we’re working on a second 1 right now.

Clay:
Is it all ecommerce.

Clay:
Okay, and then the rest the rest of the websites are like what like your brochure type websites. Okay, what’s your price point can I ask.

Dave:
Um, and yeah, exactly yeah, um, we are starting out at one ninety nine a month for that and we’re paying for the hosting we pay for.

Clay:
Okay.

Dave:
We’ll add in any kind of plugins if you got it because you know nothing’s free. You got to pay for subscriptions for everything for wordpress or shopify and so we’ll add tapmon. Whatever yes, um, only we usually try to include at least 1 plugin. The pricing is you know so we can.

Clay:
Yeah. You put that on you put that on tack that on to the client. Okay.

Dave:
If there’s only needs for 1 plugin. The subscription based usually we can absorb that. But if it’s more than one then we start to tack it on to the customer I I don’t like to nickel and dime people. So I always try to make sure I price everything so that I can maximize the value to them before I have to go back and. And ask for additional money. The one app we have for shopify is a actually it’s a survey kind of app. Um, the idea there is since it’s so hard to track anything anymore.

Clay:
Okay, and then what kind of apps are you developing.

Dave:
With ios and people being able to turn off tracking you don’t know where your customers are coming from So the idea is that it’s this post-purchase survey app that after they finish their checkout it then says hey how did you hear about us. How was your experience all that kind of stuff so you can get some feedback postpurchase.

Clay:
We cry, but that’s just one that’s just 1 app though right? like what about the rest. So.

Dave:
Ah, and that’s one app The other app is um, the other app is our social media planner which is the ai based one that generates content for social media people so that that way they can advertise their products through social media. They can just.

Clay:
Okay, what say you only have two apps.

Dave:
Be a general influencer. Whatever they’re doing. We have the two we have a third one in development that we’re working on trying to get finished with shopify and that’s another one that’s going to use Ai and it’s called shop brief and the idea for that app is that it will analyze your ecommerce store.

Clay:
Okay.

Dave:
And give you some basic analytics in text rather than because you know not everybody who runs an ecommerce store can read graphs.

Clay:
So so why wait so you have 3 app projects. You must be charging a pretty hefty fee for apps.

Dave:
Um, what they’re twenty Nine Ninety Nine a month for one at the basic level. The other one is no $29 and ninety nine cents a month.

Clay:
You talking about you talking about two Thousand Nine hundred Ninety five okay I’m trying I’m trying to figure out. Um your math here because you said 50% of your revenue comes from maps and 50% comes from web development.

Dave:
Um, yep, yes yes, 1 ne’s 30 1 ne’s $50 a month and the other one I think is when it gets finished and released is going to be $79 a month.

Clay:
But you only have 3 apps at $30 a month.

Dave:
So they’re not all that low price. It’s just they’re not.

Clay:
So so you’re I just want to make sure the math is if I’m hearing this right? So from all 3 at projects you’re getting you. You’ll be getting paid one hundred and fifty nine dollars a month total.

Preston:
Per per customer. Yeah, how many app clients at customers. So so the thing is clay. They’re not developing these apps for the client. The yeah, the apps exist as add-ons.

Dave:
Per customer.

Clay:
Oh that’s what I want to know how many how many app projects. Do you have going on. Um.

Dave:
Yeah, app customers. Okay, so the apps. Yeah, the apps exist so that anybody can subscribe but we we we use them as selling points for.

Clay:
Um, oh okay, got it. Okay I was just like what the I was like this math is not adding up all right.

Preston:
Right? So they make them they make them once? Yes, yeah yeah, so let’s let’s do you mind talking real numbers Dave how do you feel about talking real numbers that are you comfortable with that. So so why don’t you tell us.

Dave:
Yeah, yeah I don’t have problem with that. Nope.

Preston:
Top line revenue for for your business right now. What? What kind of revenue is it doing on average in a month

Dave:
Our business on average in a month is around $1300 a month.

Preston:
Okay, and so half of that so six hundred and fifty bucks is web design clients and six hundred and fifty bucks is ah app subscriptions. Yeah.

Dave:
Between yeah, we have 2 apps that are released fully released and we’re getting subscribers for yes, that are those and the third one that we’re just waiting for some approvals. So yep.

Preston:
Yeah, so so I have to I have to be Frank here. We’re you know, 27 minutes into an episode um or into a conversation and and I’m just not I’m not even sure where we’re headed I’m not sure how we can be of service to you like like what are. Maybe what are some of the big questions you’re facing that you were hoping we could help you dive into today I’m I’m worried we’re gonna um, we’re we’re kind of going in circles a little bit if I’m being honest and that’s partly my fall partly on me but I just I just want to make sure we give you some helpful advice today. So I guess what are the big questions that. But you really came to the show wanting to ask today.

Dave:
Was that it was about funding in and actually you guys have helped more than you than you know, even though we’ve talked in circles you’ve helped because you’ve made me realize that one we haven’t done a good enough job in defining ourselves. Um.

Preston:
Okay, well, that’s good.

Dave:
Because you’ve asked the questions that would have been asked of us from ah you know any kind of Angel investor or investors who we would have gone to you? yeah.

Clay:
Um, yeah.

Preston:
Yup, or even ah, even a bank loan manager they’re going to ask you these clarifying questions right? And if if they feel like we’re going in circles for 20 minutes or if I feel like that then they’re going to feel like that and so that is something good to keep in mind.

Dave:
Yeah, okay.

Clay:
Can I can I ask you a question So how many people work in your company like it’s all family for okay if all right? So if I were to ask each person.

Preston:
It. It’s just the it’s just the 4 of them. It’s just him and the 3 kids and none of them are full time.

Dave:
It just the 4 of us. Yeah, and none of us are full time.

Clay:
Including yourself separately in an individual room individual times what your company does will I get 4 different answers. Okay, that’s a problem that’s a problem.

Dave:
Um, I think you’d get 3 different answers. There’s 2 of us on the same page and yes it is but it yes and.

Preston:
Thats that’s yeah, 3 That’s that’s not better than four. That’s the same.

Clay:
If it’s if it’s not if it’s not for of the same answer. It’s a problem so this is to me this is where you need to start because you need to go back to fundamentals and figure out all 4 of you.

Dave:
Here.

Clay:
Need to figure out and get on the same page about what this company does who you are what are your core values and what your destination needs to be right? Who is your what is your company identity. All 4 of you need to have the exact same answer because if you’re not all 4

Preston:
You yep.

Dave:
Um, yes.

Clay:
Considering this is a family business. You’re all vested right? If you’re not all 4 on the same page about all this stuff. You’re you’rere, you’re all going to go in different directions.

Dave:
Yeah, and that’s because of the way we started. The business was I organized it So the kids could each have their own kind of projects and run it through the business so that they had a way of invoicing collecting paying taxes all that kind of stuff.

Preston:
Yeah, you know what? what? Ah what? you basically did was you you consolidated 4 businesses into and and to help consolidate some processes between 4 different businesses. You didn’t start. You didn’t start one business and and I think that’s showing now on the backend because now it’s like.

Dave:
And now we’ve gotten to a point where it’s time to yeah.

Clay:
A.

Dave:
Yeah, right.

Clay:
Um, so yeah.

Preston:
I can tell the way you’re talking you want to do web design and development the boys want to do apps and maybe they each have their own pet app that they prefer right? Maybe 1 of them really wants to do a gaming app again and try to get that off the ground. Maybe 1 of them wants to do this ai social app like there’s just so many fragments here.

Dave:
Yep.

Dave:
Yep.

Clay:
The.

Dave:
Um, so that’s been one of yeah as.

Preston:
Funding is going to be impossible but but even before funding like just just being able to talk about your business with clients is going to be really hard right.

Clay:
Um, you’re yeah you.

Clay:
You need to you need to treat. So what you what? you’ve been. You guys have been doing. You’ve been treating this as Hobbies under a legal entity. Yeah, you need to treat it like an actual business.

Dave:
Yeah.

Preston:
And yeah, yeah. Which is hard with family right? because it’s like you don’t want to hurt. People’s Feelings. You want to spend time together. But at the end of the day it has to be a business. Not just a fun Thing. You’re doing together as a family and so someone needs to say this is the direction of the company.

Dave:
Yes.

Dave:
Um, and and I do.

Clay:
Yeah.

Preston:
You can be a part of it or not be a part of it. We’ll still be family. We’ll still love each other if you don’t want to do web design that’s fine or if you don’t want to work on apps that’s fine, right? but but like to just include everyone so in a family you include everyone in all their likes and dislikes and you take that all into consideration in business.

Dave:
Um, yeah.

Preston:
You pay attention to the revenue you pay attention to the marketing the messaging the identity the brand all that stuff and and you can’t you just can’t include everyone and and what they want. So.

Clay:
Yeah.

Dave:
And so yeah, and so the hard part that we’re having right now is that we recognize that the apps could potentially actually be the future. Um, and we just but that’s a longer term look than the short term. And so that’s what we’re just trying to figure out where our identity is and.

Clay:
How much time are you guys spending on apps between the all 4 of you how much percentage wise how much is being in development on apps.

Dave:
Ah, right now. Obviously right now it’s about 70% apps because we’re trying to release the third one um and the rest is on website and trying to land more customers.

Clay:
Which app which app produces the least amount.

Dave:
So. The shopify one produces the least amount still probably about 15% compared.

Clay:
What percentage of revenue does that account for.

Clay:
And how much time is spent on that particular app.

Dave:
That particular one is actually kind of coasting along. But that’s where we’re also spending our advertising money and so that’s one of the things I’ve been talking about with the kids is how much longer are we going to keep spending on this one and and.

Clay:
Are all are all your um, advertising is all your advertising being advertised for the apps I think it’s a mistake and it’s a mistake.

Dave:
Yes.

Preston:
Well, it depends I mean that’s not fair to say we don’t know like because because we’re still not sure if if the goal is to grow the app business or the goal is to grow the web development business.

Dave:
Yeah, and.

Clay:
Well the the way I view it now is is you know? Yeah sure if the goal is to grow the app business I’m I’m the way I’m looking it right now is your website side of things is funding this whole thing. It’s fee. It’s feeding.

Dave:
Yes.

Clay:
Revenue into the apps and you’re trying to figure out how do you make this grow I would tell you right now. It’s a lot easier to sell web websites than it is apps in my opinion. Um, you’re going to have way less churn ah with websites versus apps. And you’re going to get more money per project on websites versus apps. So in my opinion. That’s where you put some effort and resources into it for now for now and and the reason I’m saying this and I agree with Preston like. Sure if the goal is to increase your app side of things in the in the future then things can evolve but the way I’m looking at right now is you are operating in the red and none of you all getting paid so you need to be in revenue.

Dave:
Yeah, exactly.

Clay:
Profit growing mode and you need to put some resources towards the thing that is actually making money and feeding this thing.

Dave:
Yeah, and and that’s been yep and I joke a lot that when you’re in business with your kids and and I’m the 1 acting as like the business manager. It’s like hurting cats sometimes but.

Preston:
Yes, well it’s hard you I mean there are things you can say to an employee that you can’t say to a kid right? Um, and and things you can say to a team member that you can’t say to a kid so that’s it’s a challenge That’s exactly right.

Dave:
Yes, yeah.

Clay:
Are.

Dave:
And there’s things you can say to a family member that you can’t say to an employee but.

Clay:
Do can I can I ask you like so again, same question about like all 4 of you guys if I were to ask each 1 of you guys what you are responsible for in the company can every single person like spit it out instantly.

Dave:
Yes, actually they do kind of. We all have our specialties. We all know what we’re good at you know my oldest being the product manager he does help us. You know do roadmaps. He’s a good ideal person and. Some of the stuff we’re doing today is because he’s always got some new idea every week. That’s also an issue. Yes I know right now it’s me but I don’t want it to be me.

Clay:
That could be that could be a killer yeah who handles who handles marketing. Okay, who handles who handles ah sales.

Preston:
Yeah.

Preston:
No one? yeah.

Dave:
No one I do I handle finances.

Clay:
Okay, who handles operations who handles finances so you handle so those those are the 4 major areas of every single business now you handle.

Dave:
Yes.

Clay:
By yourself 3 of them when there’s 4 of you guys on the team. So to me yeah like to me that’s a problem. There’s the allocation. There does not.

Dave:
Um, yes.

Preston:
4 people that need paid.

Preston:
Yeah, Dave can I ask a really hard question. It’s gonna be a really hard question. Um, we’ll see do do your do your boys want to be in business with each other and with you.

Dave:
Sure.

Clay:
I Feel like I know what this question is.

Dave:
Um.

Preston:
Like genuinely is this what they want to do for their careers or is this is this a hobby business that you’re all doing together as something fun that you do because it kind of feels more like that it feels like maybe something again. This is going to this sounds harsh part of the value of this show is.

Dave:
Um, it’s actually a good question that I yep.

Preston:
Is us speaking as much truth as we can what it feels like a little bit to me is like the dad who wants to like you know, um like like make a band with his kids or be like be like the be like the band manager or like the agent for his rockstar kids. You know what I mean.

Clay:
Ah.

Clay:
Ah, her.

Dave:
Exactly yeah.

Preston:
And and and I don’t mean that as an insult or anything I’m just trying as an outsider that’s kind of what it feels like just from what you’ve told me the vibe with the kids are and how ah how the business is set up. It feels like you’re doing 90% of it and and maybe you and the kids disagree on the direction of the company and. And you’re you’re kind of trying to cobble this thing together. Meanwhile it feels like they want to take things in a different direction or do something totally different or they don’t agree with your philosophy or or it’s just I don’t know it just kind of feels.

Dave:
It’s It’s not so much that as much as we are at a cross paths that we all know crossroads that we all know um and we’re all looking each other what direction we want to go In. We All have our own ideas of what direction that should be and. We haven’t sat down for I think it’s been over a month since our last family dinner. So um, so we haven’t had that conversation and that’s actually a really good question for me to ask my kids um I do know yep.

Preston:
Yeah, so you guys run a business right? business meetings do not happen at family dinners. So if you’re running a business and they happen more than monthly so you need to get together and the Ceo typically determines the direction of the business I think that’s you so.

Clay:
And they and they happen more than monthly.

Dave:
Yeah.

Dave:
Um, yes, and so.

Clay:
Yep.

Preston:
So so I think I think maybe the biggest piece of advice coming out of this whole conversation Today is you’re treating this more like a family than a business which is fine I don’t I’m not saying like I don’t want to cause family problems right? That would be the last thing your family is more important than your business. But where this is a business show and we give business advice. You are treating your business like a family ah meaning you know there are things it sounds like maybe you’re not saying you’re having your business meetings at dinner with your wife. Ah. You’re kind of trying to just like make a place for everybody. These are all great things to do in a family in a business. It’s about generating projects and revenue and and growing a business right? Not not like inclusion for everybody at all costs and. Sort of those some of those things that that we build families on and so I I think you know before you can even touch the question of funding I’m just not sure you have enough of a business on your hands yet. You have a great side project or hobby so far with your kids that sounds like it’s been fun so far. But.

Clay:
And.

Preston:
Not sure you have a business yet like I I don’t know is that is that the wrong thing to say am I am I being too harsh is that unfounded I don’t know.

Dave:
I Don’t think so I think that you’re identifying the issue that we need to address and I part of it comes back From. You know my wife’s family has always had a family business that was very successful and they had their own family issues because trying to ah apply business decisions to family and I was trying to go in the opposite direction of that. So.

Preston:
Um.

Dave:
Probably have to find that middle ground in there and so I want to. But yeah, we need to have that discussion and and that’s actually that’s a good point as who really wants to be here and who um.

Clay:
You know what? a really.

Dave:
And and what direction are we going to decide. We’re going to go in. Yeah yeah, and I yeah and all I want to do is have something that’s behind left behind for the kids and the grandkids I’m hoping that we can.

Preston:
And like as a dad. Maybe you say look It’s okay if you don’t want to be a part of this business. It’s fine.

Clay:
And.

Dave:
This could be the kind of thing that brings in extra revenue so that they can enjoy some extra stuff for the kids but you know maybe that’s just the wrong way to approach it.

Clay:
Ah I’ll tell you a very very very good book that all 4 of you need to read and it’s explained it. It goes over this entire dynamic that we talked about in this entire episode is called get a grip by. Gino Wickman I if I were you that would be the very first thing that I do after this podcast is all 4 of you read that book.

Dave:
Write that down.

Dave:
You will like.

Preston:
And then call an actual business meeting where your wife is not there and there’s no food. Ah, and.

Clay:
Yeah I mean you know that book that book goes into that because it goes into like okay who is responsible for what and then like how to run meetings and get on the same page. It. It’s it is a game changing Book. I Promise you.

Dave:
Okay, yeah, that sounds good I like that and for all of us to read through that and stuff that would be great I Will definitely be pulling that up and checking that out. So It’s funny because in the pre talk here I mentioned that. Family business was part of what I wanted to talk about and you guys thought that was pretty funny and we ended up talking about the whole time.

Preston:
Ah, not so much funny. But we just you know we don’t our kids are quite young Still so you know take everything we’re saying with a grain of salt. But.

Dave:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Clay:
Well, it’s the same issues I will tell you it’s the same issues whether it’s family or not. You know you all have to be on the same page you all have to know what what your responsibilities are and also every single person on the team.

Dave:
Right.

Preston:
Um, yeah, that’s true.

Clay:
Needs to um and you know basically aka need to be for they need to be in the right roles you know and and.

Dave:
E.

Preston:
Yeah, and and the stuff about like the direction of the company right? I mean we’ve had solo freelancers come on not in a family business not in any kind of group just them and they still lack some clarity on like here’s where we are here’s where we’re going here’s what it’s going to take to get there. That’s those are really the 3 questions. Um. And and it sounds like there’s some work to do there. But but when you’re in a family Business. You got to work together to figure that out.

Dave:
Yeah, exactly So okay.

Clay:
Yeah, it’s not a marketing problem I know that that was one of the things that the thing the thing that you brought up at the but you’re not having a marketing problem I don’t think may I mean well well let me yeah, it’s not let me rephrase. It could be a marketing problem but like.

Preston:
Yeah, or a funding problem.

Clay:
You need to get some. You need to you need to tackle these other issues First before you get into marketing because you know that’s your marketing is just not going to be right? if you don’t know if you’re not on the same page if you don’t know the right direction like yeah and funding only comes when.

Preston:
Yeah, it’s going to continue to be ah Roi negative. Ah at.

Clay:
You’re actually a positive cash flow business.

Dave:
Yes, yeah.

Preston:
Yeah I mean shark tank and and Silicon Valley culture have led us all to believe that like you don’t actually have to make money to run a business I I subscribe more to sort of the Tim Ferriss model which is like. You bootstrap something Intel it makes some money and then and yeah, it might take a little bit longer then if you decide you want to go get a business loan at least you have something to show but like I just think um, we we put up on a pedestal these angel investors and this like um. Pre-profit pre-revenue businesses who make million dollar deals with Mark Cuban or whatever and it’s just like well in the real world. You know in the in the other 99%. That’s not on Tv um, you know bank. Loan managers want to see some sign of positive ah roi on your marketing efforts. They want to see a business plan. They want some clarity around what your business is where it’s going how they’re going to get their money back. Um, you know there’s there’s just some very real questions that that have to be answered there before you can even approach funding. So.

Clay:
Here.

Preston:
I think so I think it’s really like a ah clarity and direction and messaging and and and strategy all of those kinds of questions that have to be answered first.

Dave:
Yes, and and you know coming into this I thought we answered them and as you asked me all the questions. It’s like no I don’t know the answer to that one yet and so yeah, definitely we’ll be definitely have a business meeting soon.

Preston:
Awesome! Yep yep.

Clay:
You’re going to have to have some really tough conversations. Just fair warning.

Dave:
Yeah.

Preston:
Yeah, you’re almost going to have to say we need to talk now as business partners and when we’re all done with this. We close out the business meeting and then we can all be father and sons Again, you know like you almost have to separate it out.

Clay:
Yeah I think I think the biggest I think the biggest pride conversation you’re going to have the toughest conversation you’re going to have to have is the fact that you guys need to assign a Ceo whether that’s you or somebody else.

Dave:
Yeah.

Clay:
And that person is in charge. Yep and you will probably have at least 1 person not liking that because they they might they might all want to be Ceo you know I don’t know.

Preston:
And everyone else gets behind him. Yeah.

Dave:
Yep.

Dave:
Yeah, they like yeah I think that’s part of it too. Is they all want the some sort of see title and yeah.

Preston:
Yeah I think I think you you you can have that but you got to care more about you got to care more about getting the business off the the business is. It’s just not doing a lot right now like get the business off the ground and then worry about your C title is my personal opinion.

Clay:
They can. They can’t have it the sea title. But.

Clay:
Ah, her.

Dave:
Yep I’m a little old school that way as well in that hit it.

Clay:
And ah, you know if they care about c titles. Okay, that’s fine. Just make you the Ceo make one the Cto make one a see something oh or whatever Ceo they all have different responsibilities but the fact is as a Ceo is the one that actually makes the vision.

Preston:
Yeah, it’s fine.

Dave:
Yep.

Clay:
The final like decisions you know like that’s what a Ceo is if if somebody is more technical make that person a Cto like who cares like titles are titles but like a title on ah on a company that’s running in the red is just not. It’s not.

Dave:
Yep.

Preston:
Yeah, yeah, all right Dave unfortunately we are out of time today. But um, hopefully somewhere in there. There was something helpful. Um.

Clay:
But cares.

Dave:
Yeah, okay.

Dave:
It was like I said you really helped me identify why we’re struggling and what we need to do next.

Clay:
Cool.

Preston:
Well good I’d love I personally would love to check back in with you in in six months or so and see if you’ve been able to sort through some of these and then frankly we could do this again and talk some of these other questions that we thought we were ready for today. But maybe we weren’t quite ready. Um.

Clay:
Are.

Preston:
But in any regard. Thank you so much for joining us on the show today. Dave why don’t you ah tell people where they can connect with you where they can find you online if they want to connect.

Dave:
Yes, you can find me at gallasoservices.com that’s G O L A Z O Services Dot Com

Preston:
Fantastic Dave thank you for joining us I’ve been Preston with millo.co and of course clay with gettripified.com thanks Clay appreciate your input as well Today all right to see you guys.

Dave:
Thank you for having me.

Clay:
Appreciate being here always see you guys.

Dave:
Thanks.

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