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Joining us this time is a former fighter pilot who has since become a high flyer in helping everyday people to make more money, become more persuasive, and to enjoy what they do. It’s my pleasure this time to welcome five-time number one bestselling author, and internationally recognised speaker, Ed Rush. Ed, welcome to the show.
Yeah, it’s great to be here, thank you for your time. I just, am just absolutely enjoying the opportunity to talk about how people can grow their brand, have more fun, conquer the world, change the world, share their message, and still make it home for dinner.
That’s great. Well Ed, we’re going to touch on many of those things as we head through the next few minutes or so. You were a fighter pilot, that’s got to be a stressful job.
Well, being a fighter pilot was both stressful and as you can imagine, insanely fun. I was a fighter pilot for 13 years in the Marine Corps. I flew F-18s on and off aircraft carriers on an into a combat. I’d say the most interesting part about that as I’m a person that failed to kindergarten, so I wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed, I really learned early on that to be successful at anything I needed to be able to follow successful people and that led me not only to graduating from kindergarten, but I ended up graduating from college and made my way into the Marine Corps. At one point in my time there I was the number one instructor in the Marine Corps for one against one dog fighting and all this from the kid that failed the kindergarten.
Wow. So I suppose my burning question is, is it just like it is in Top Gun?
It’s literally exactly like that down to the presence of Tom Cruise in everyone’s ready room at any moment’s notice. Top Gun, I think, did an interesting job capturing the spirit of a fighter pilot. The actual dog fighting scenes, I don’t think were all that accurate to be honest. I think the actual real life fighter pilots might not be as cool as Maverick and Iceman, they tend to be more electric, engineer types actually in real life.
But fundamentally to fly an aeroplane is a very simple thing. I teach people how to fly and fight the fat. And in three simple sentences and the three sentences go like this. If you push the stick forward, the houses get bigger. If you pull the stick back, the houses get smaller. And when you push the red button on the stick, all the houses go away. That’s really all you need to know.
That’s great. I suppose as well, if you can teach someone how to fly a fighter plane, that you can certainly teach people how to work online as it were. Out of the two things, they’re not connected. So how did you go from being a fighter pilot into the online space?
Yeah. So it was back 2005, 2006 and I was looking, I was in the Marine Corps, I was looking at the possibility of being deployed overseas for about a year. It was at the same time that I had started to have a family.
I had a little five month old baby at home. And it was almost in that exact instant that I decided that I didn’t want my home life dominated by an empty chair at the dinner table. And so I decided, I’m trying to find a way to make some money and support my family, so I looked in the normal places, a pilot looks, at the airlines, maybe flying for one of the big carriers. And I decided to go down that road and I’d started putting applications in with some of those companies, when in the middle of a movie one night, my wife literally stopped the movie and looks at me and goes, “Is that really what you want to do?”
And I think she knew me better than I knew myself at the time. Frankly, I would have gone crazy with that job. And so, what I did was I started learning, and I started learning a little bit about marketing, especially online marketing and I decided I was going to try it out. And so, I created a little book, it was just this tiny little ebook.
It was about how to become a fighter pilot. And truth be told, my goal for that book was I wanted to make enough money to buy a computer. At the time, a computer was going to be a two to $2,500 and so I put this little book online and low and behold, I woke up the next morning and I had a sale.
At the time, that book was $14.50, it was discounted down from a whopping $24, and I had a sale for this kid who had gotten my book the night before, read it through page to page, and sent me an email the next day and said, “Dude, thank you so much for putting this together. It literally changed my life.”
Now, the rest of that story is that kid ended up going on into the air force and actually becoming a pilot, which is, which is truly an amazing part of that very first purchase that I ever had. And sure enough that little tiny business, teaching people how to become fighter pilots turned into about a $15,000 a month business at one point, back in the late 2000s, 2008, 2009. So needless to say I got my computer and I got a lot more after that. And so I simply replicated that process.
I started another little business this time with my dad. My dad is a famous basketball referee and he refereed with Michael Jordan, and Larry Bird, and Magic Johnson, and we created a course for basketball referees. That was my second online course and I used all the same principles that I’d learned before getting leads, converting leads, following up, good email sequences.
And sure enough that little business turned into about a quarter million dollar a year business, which is still in existence today. I sold that first fighter pilot business, but that second business, the referee business is still rocking and rolling today. We still have over 700 members on a $30 a month membership club. And really that was my first foray into marketing both of those products.
Wow. So I mean almost success straight out of the gate, which is impressive in itself. And also I’m still wondering what kind of computer did you buy? You wanted two and a half thousand dollars and instead you’ve got $15,000 a month. I mean that’s… You must have the biggest computer in the world.
Actually, I ended up buying… So, the computer is still sitting here is, I don’t know why it’s sitting in my office, but it’s this gigantic Dell tower that’s never… Hasn’t been used in the last eight years.
It’s interesting, so you said success right out of the box and really that first business, I’m so thankful that it was successful the way that it was. I definitely had help. I have to tell you, I bought every single information marketing training product I could get my hands on.
I learned from Dan Kennedy and I learned from Perry Marshall, who was really one of my key mentors back in 2007, 2008 to teach me how to use Google AdWords and landing pages. And I learned from everyone that I could. I spent, I bought the computer, but I probably spent that first year’s worth of $15,000 a month on training courses, and Masterminds, and products. And I truly accelerated my learning curve, I think I probably crammed about 10 years of learning and development into about 10 months.
And I definitely had some failures along the way. You know what I mean? A lot of the times when we tell the stories, we remember the high points, but boy, there were probably another five businesses that I tried and failed along the way, which brings me to one of my favourite success tips. In fact, I learned this from Perry Marshall back in the day, the success tip is fail fast next. And I was a fail fast next kind of guy. And so I really zigzagged to success. But yeah, did it fairly quickly and, and it was a blast just learning all that stuff. And sure enough, literally within years I’m standing up on stages teaching people the things that I’m doing online, that’s how quickly it all happen.
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