Rock Angel by Joakim Karud

Adrian Tobey  –

Adrian Tobey is the CEO and Founder of Groundhogg Inc, and his mission is to democratize digital marketing for small businesses.

Adrian loves the WordPress community and frequents both Meetups and WordCamps. He speaks on how to monetize your plugins, UI and UX design, and email marketing as well as creating better user experiences with marketing on WordPress.

When he’s not advocating for a better user experience on WordPress, you can find Adrian training digital marketing concepts, appearing on podcasts, and, of course, building epic plugins.

Say hi to Adrian at @groundhoggwp and check out the company site at

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Features and Functionality from “Adrian Tobey” at Groundhogg!


1) Simplify

2) Consolidate

3) Automate

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00:05:00 The owner or whatever the team is, are people who wear many hats
Um, so after doing kind of the infusion soft certified partner thing for five years, and I love Infusionsoft By the way, I now have a competitor product, but I love Infusionsoft. And it’s a great product. Um, it’s just not a product for everybody. And over the course of the five years, I had literally worked with hundreds of different businesses, financial advisors, gyms, accountants, speakers, dog walk, like any any business you can name like we probably did something, if not exactly that remotely similar. And I literally built thousands of Infusionsoft campaigns for these various businesses. Now, the thing about businesses or small businesses is that the the owner or whatever the team is, are people who wear many hats. They are the accountant, the CEO, the sales person, if they have an employee, then that employee does like 20 different things while the CEO does another person. Different things right. And that’s kind of just like how small businesses operate. You just you just wear multiple hats and with a product like Infusionsoft and wrapping together with like WordPress and woo commerce or e commerce or Shopify, whatever they plan on using, right, if you already are in a small business position where you’re wearing so many hats, that’s another hat that you have to add on top of it, which makes it extremely difficult to learn and actually get your money back. So get your ROI that you’re paying for all of these different services out. So if you’re shelling out and at the the when I was doing it, Infusionsoft was like they had you know, there’s it’s a little bit cheaper now with keeping the new product, but at the time was like 300 us for a Canadian company, which is the ones we worked for, that adds up really, really quickly, especially if you’re not seeing that ROI almost instantly. Right? Right. So we would get with some really, really big wins for the clients that we did work for in the agency. And we charged was not it’s not like a brag shot blocker operation here. It’s like $30,000, a client to $80,000 a client build out the whole thing, right? You know, whatever they wanted automation sales, the website and commerce, like you name it, we did it and tied it all together. And then at the end of the project, we’d be like, here you go. And then they kind of give us this look. Yeah, you know, just like a blank stares, like what is all of this? How does it work? What does it jog during the headlights deer in the headlights? Exactly. And they just didn’t know how to make it work for them. We give them some training, right? we’d run them through like the videos and everything. And they do that. But I don’t think that I mean only I can only name like few occasions where it’s like, click got it. I’m good. Thanks. I appreciate you sitting up for me and I can take it from here. Usually it was the case of deer in the headlights and then we have to continue to nurture them and provide them with services essentially to essentially keep them growing. But when you are taking on multiple clients that gets really, really taxing really, really quickly. Yep. So after five years of going through this kind of like painful struggle of implementation And then training and then continuing to have to do it anyway. Without being able to hit it off and essentially take on more business, I might ask the has to be a better way. And that’s and that’s where the groundhog story starts.

00:08:50 Overcome 50% of the learning curve immediately
So groundhogg a WordPress plugin, if you have a client who already has a WordPress site, then the chances are they already Know how to use WordPress, which is like that basically checks out like 50% of the learning curve immediately if they already know how to use WordPress because as a WordPress plugin, it looks acts and operates almost identically to the way that you can expect WordPress to operate. So the actual like, you know, navigating the UI and the stuff and where is everything and where do I go to do this? A lot of that is one of that learning curve essentially just disappears into thin air simply because of where it’s located right with products like Infusionsoft HubSpot Active Campaign. You know, if they have an infusion soft website, well, how do I connect it to my WordPress website? I don’t know how to do that. Where do I make that connection? Is it a forum is the thing since it’s already in WordPress, that also is removed. So it’s like not having it in the same place? I’ll just a lot of the pain points of where do I go? Where do I login? Where do I find this? How do I integrate all of that stuff just disappears. And that’s kind of like the beauty of it is just we tried to remove as many pain points that I personally experienced. doing a lot of implementation for a lot of different CRM. And just by bundling and WordPress, it just decreases that learning curve especially for new clients or people who are new digital marketing and they don’t they don’t get it you know, the their only experience with email is using Gmail or like outlook 365 on the desktop like that’s how they say no right now. Right?

00:14:39 The most efficient series of steps from point A to point B is often the most effective
And that and you’d be you’d be surprised that like how often the simplest and most efficient you know series of steps from point A to point B is often the most effective. Like I’ve seen like some seriously like great results from the the people that have been using our stuff in order to get again it’s all about point A to point B point eight they had their like a cold lead Be there a hot lead with a credit card ready? Play. And that’s that’s basically what we enable small businesses to do.

00:20:15 Completely open source
again, so you click on contacts and left hand bar, you find the contact that you want to edit the list, and it’ll show you all the different tabs, you know, you can load check on their activity, or their custom fields, or you can check on like their general info. You can check on their notes, you can check on any files that they’ve uploaded. You can look at depending on the various add ons and extensions that we saw, we are a freemium company. So everything that I’ve talked up until this point is pretty much free and available in the depository, but we do have several premium plans that are available. And if you get those on, depending on the level, we have stuff like the sales pipeline, which is kind of like pipe drive, you take your cards and you move them through the series of stages, and you can check on those deals in the contact record as well. We have we just released really Simple payments, which is our own personal payment solution for stripe. And you can check all the payments and active subscriptions that people have in the contact record. And it’s very quite robust what you can do. And everything that I’ve said so far is also completely open source. So we have developers currently, who are not employed by us creating their own extensions and super cool add ons for groundhog and you can literally like integrate it with everything because it’s open source. So if you are a developer, and you’re a developer minded, or you know, a developer, and you want to hire them to modify the views, or modify the contact record, or adds like special sections and stuff that’s totally plausible and totally available to you to do.

00:23:26 We have our own e-commerce like payment solution
So I mentioned sales pipeline. Yeah, we have a we have our own e-commerce like payment solution, which allows you to set up one time order forms as well as subscription order forms, way easier than going through like woo commerce and or easy digital downloads and that whole checkout process. It’s literally just set the price the product, is it a subscription, configure some tax rules if you needed to collect taxes where you are, and then slap a short code on a page and you have a full payment form. We have integrations with a whole bunch of different plugins like woo commerce add lifter LMS learn dash 11 commerce, we got A couple membership ones that escaped me their names escaping me right now. WP fusion is on board the groundhog train as well. So jack or tomorrow has been awesome and making groundhog super compatible with anything that we don’t offer an integration in our store for. And then we have signed contracts. So get rid of whatever the contracts one that you have to DocuSign and get rid of DocuSign you don’t need that you can get rid of. Again, you can get rid of pipe drive. I’m actually you know, we got so much stuff. I have to pull it up on my screen here. Yeah.

00:25:16 We support stripe
Well for our payments out on we currently only support stripe because it’s like brand new we like came out with a like last month stripe and so you do stripe if you want to do PayPal and stripe you then you can just set up woo commerce get our e commerce integration and then you can do abandoned cart funnels based on like Add To Cart download purchase product refunded and all that cool stuff. Um, we also got a booking calendar out on we have a lead scoring out on we have social proof we have a integrations for elementor a Divi, we have content restriction, birthday automation.

00:25:55 You can integrate it with your Google Calendar
Yeah, so you can integrate it with your Google Calendar. It’s literally a It’s like calland Lee, except just on your site. So you got your booking calendar, they can select a time, they can select a date, select a time slot put in their information that will both add an appointment to your website. So if you do want to do your appointment bookings from your website, you can do it there. Or you can do it from your Google Calendar.

00:29:44 We don’t fire hose people down with technology
I like our philosophy is that you know, our our tools are great, like they’ll get you from where you currently are to a point where you can start investing serious time, effort and money into building out your marketing automation systems. And once you get there, you can really effectively still use our systems if you need to, you can use them, maybe you have to move to Salesforce if you get big enough. But like, our plan is like we don’t fire hose people down with technology and information that they just don’t need to get started, right, we’re going to give them the essential tools, the tools that they need, not the ones that they maybe think they needed, the ones, the ones, but the ones that they need, in order to start and get off the ground, get going start running, and then they can start adding in the various different bits and pieces that they’re going to need in order to grow their business.

00:34:32 A big portion of our market is a group of people called websites as a service
Well, what we a big portion of our market actually at the moment is a group of people called websites as a service in that group or agencies as well. And essentially what they do is they load up a multi site with all of the plugins that they need, including groundhog and then their clients basically just get on board of this site. They pay a monthly fee for the site. They pay for the emails that they send and all that stuff. So it’s kind of like your own little software’s of service. As an agency so that they just load all their clients on it the clients not only pay for whatever the work that is you do for them to set everything up and get off the ground. They also continue to pay that recurring bill for their site because you know, that can basically pay your hosting Bill send them in by other people’s hosting, if you can host them and then collect that potential revenue.

00:41:46 Join the Facebook group and ask questions
Well, we’ve talked a lot we talked a lot about you know what, what what groundhog is capable of and and all of that stuff and all I can really say at this point is like, join you can join the Facebook group and ask questions for yourselves right Like, the possibilities are endless, but at the end of the day, I like our company is here to ensure that you are successful in digital marketing as a business, you know, like, no questions asked, like, we are going to get you to a point where people are like registering on your site, you’re going to be able to send those people an email, and you’re going to be able to direct them to wherever they need to spend money, like that’s like my goal and damn be, you know, whatever flowchart or whatever that you came up with that you think is a really good idea. It’s like, All right, we’re not there yet. We’re going to start here.

00:53:42 Get in front of your audience as painless and effortless as possible.
We’ve been we’ve been really really busy. It’s been it’s been pretty like non stop here. And we’re just we’re just super like laser focused on making the process of getting your message in front of your in front of your audience as painless As effortless as possible. Yeah. And once you’re able to do that, even if like things don’t work in your website breaks and you know, the wrong email goes out like as long as you are consistently getting or being at least in front of mind in front of attention. That is a win for you as a business and when that’s a win for you, it’s a win for us. Yeah,

00:55:07 I built a significant number of relationships with some very high profile people
That is it. And it’s amazing how many people I’ve talked to who’ve, like started new businesses and have done the same thing as me. And I’m like, well, where were you? You know, to tell me that when I started but whatever. What we have done really, really well is stuff like this coming on podcasts and and being able, or me doing my best to be able to provide some value and contribute to somebody else’s audience. I built a significant number of relationships with some very high profile people in the WordPress community. notably the people at lifter LMSYS Pro WP fusion, Jonathan den would Spencer there’s just so many different people that I’ve met and fostered relationships with that I’m able to help them accomplish what they need and help their customers accomplish what they need. And in turn, there’s a little bit of reciprocity that comes eventually my way. And that’s essentially just the building of relationships has been we’ve been marketing so far. It’s mostly been word of mouth. But I mean, the person And that I have loves coming on and sharing the knowledge that I do have and have learned so far, and continuing to learn. because trust me, you know, the learning never stops when you’re in digital marketing and things change, like literally every day. It’s hard to keep up. So that’s really what we’ve been doing. It’s just, you know, I just love I just love sharing.

01:04:03 So every business is responsible for knowing their numbers really, really, really well. Okay.
One thing that we are currently working on is we help other businesses know their numbers really, really well. We have lots of reports that they can look at, and all that stuff. And we can see those same reports of days because we use our own software, we use groundhog to do all of our marketing automation, and it’s working really, really great for us. But some of the other stats, you know, some of the other numbers like, you know, active installations in which people are using which plugins and stuff that can really help us focus a lot of our efforts and what we’re doing because right now we have a lot of things going on a lot of moving parts, a lot of different items, a lot of extent, essentially a lot of different initiatives. I love to be able to better pull in all of the numbers. But the thing is, in order to be able to pull those numbers, we actually have to build the software that does that, right because we built the software in the first place. So we have to build on top of that software to get those numbers. Because no but knowing your numbers as a business is basically like the be all and end all of it will you succeed because of you endpoint to revenue point to expenses and say these do these things are not like, you know, revenue is not bigger than expenses. If you can’t do that, like off the top of your head, then you got a problem.

01:08:06 As a Canadian, I have to be as polite as possible
I am even more grateful. You know, as as a Canadian, I have to be as polite as possible. But thank you so much for like having me on. And you know, if you ever want to do a follow up, right, if you want to, like next year, you know, 12 months later, whatever. Absolutely. And I am totally game and I had such a great time. And I love you know, being able to, to provide value to your audience. And I thank you for the opportunity that you provided me.

01:08:32 Join us in our Facebook group, it’s groundhog official user group on Facebook
So you can go to the WordPress repository and search for groundhog with two G’s at the end. And you can download our free our free plugin, you can drop it on your WordPress site, take it for a spin test out, see if it’s for you. If you find that you’re having a great time, join our Facebook group any questions that you have, you know, we’re in there constantly, you know, I’m like one of those CEOs that’s like I want to know what’s happening at all times. And I love being part of our own community. So I’m like constantly in there you know, talking to people getting feedback, answering questions and being a resource of knowledge for them. So if you want to if you want to like join us in our Facebook group, it’s groundhog official user group on Facebook, I’d love to meet you and talk to you personally and and give you and show you around. You can also go to groundhog again with two G’s lots of instructions on how to get started there. And it’s pretty evident on you know, where you need to go in order to like drop this website and get going.


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