Founder(s): Ramon Ray
Industry: Small business growth
Employees: 10 (+ Keap)
Ramon Ray was working a United Nations desk job he didn’t enjoy when the opportunity to speak at an industry event presented itself. He was immediately hooked—even calling it “nirvana.”
“I realized that my gift—my gift is to connect with people,” Ramon said. “That’s one thing I can do. And so that’s one thing I want people to know. That and being a storyteller.”
After leaving that job, he looked long and hard to find a role that would help him develop the skills he was so passionate about. That’s when he found Keap, working for the company as a brand evangelist. In those early days, he modeled a lot of his material from founders Clate Mask and Scott Martineau, thanks to the many hours of video material captured at their various speaking engagements.
“Here's this guy, Scott Martineau, who is one of our leaders who does it. He's done it for years. See what you can pull out. I learned from him,” Ramon shared. “The authenticity, the loving people—that also got me.”
Ramon was ready to share his message with the entrepreneurs of the world. He had the training and know-how from his time with Keap. So it was a matter of making the most of Keap’s Sales & Marketing Automations, including broadcast emails, so he could capture leads and reinforce his branding.
SmartHustle.com and his public speaking career were off to a great start.
“What would I like to say to small business owners? Knowing your numbers, knowing your marketing, how to get and keep customers, understanding your finances, being able to lead a team. That's very important, plus leveraging the technology to help power your business. And that's why I'm a Keaper.”
“I have a short-term… what did you ask me again?” laughed Ramon. “I have a short-term memory. You can’t just memorize everything and follow up, which is something every business needs.”
From the beginning, it was clear to Ramon that day-to-day details were going to be a challenge. Like Ramon, it’s easy for many entrepreneurs to get caught up in the task in front of them, whether that’s an emergency or an administrative issue or making sure there’s enough paper in the printer. He needed help with keeping things moving forward in the pipeline at all times, which made Keap’s dashboard a lifesaver.
“I love the dashboard. You see that little red light. It doesn't mean you have a target on you like from a sniper rifle. No, that little red light means you’ve got to do something in Keap. So you see the red light and say: ‘Oh, that's right. I got to call Mary again, ka-ching, and get a contract.’”
It’s one thing to follow up. It’s another to create follow-up material that engages your audiences, making them want to work with you.
“And so here's my secret. Don't tell anybody, “ asked Ramon (sorry to disappoint, Ramon). “When people sign up, I like to personalize it. I say to send me a picture, tell me about yourself. People love that. They think I'm emailing them. They think at two in the morning Ramon's like, ‘Hey Mary, thanks for signing up.’ Heck no, it's Keap, but that's okay. Nobody knows. But they think it's me.”
That’s the power of Keap’s automations, especially when you put some thought into your customer’s entire journey.
The thing about Keap that stands out the most for Ramon is the support, honesty, and transparency behind the company, including the ever-expanding and always-improving software. This translates into a genuine care for the customer that comes across in everything Keap does.
“The authenticity, the loving people—that’s what got me,” he shares. “I remember going to one IKON. It was, like, three in the morning. I exaggerate a bit—maybe six in the morning. [I run into a friendly Keaper,] and she says, ‘Hi, how are you? My name is…’ And I was like: If these are Keap people, I want some of that.”
IKON is Keap’s annual conference for entrepreneurs and Keap customers, dedicated to elevating their success. It’s no surprise that Ramon has become a regular and much-anticipated fixture at this event, putting his passion on display for the entire Keap community to see.
For a taste of Ramon’s appearance at IKON 2021, take a look at this video. In this interview and just about every appearance Ramon makes, he’s not shy about the influence Keap’s product and culture has had on his business.
“So the point is [always] lead, client, or fan. I think that's what Keap means to me. I think it's the dashboard, it's the reminder, the broadcast, it's simple and easy to use, and the connectivity of the things [make a huge difference]. So for me at SmartHustle.com, we built our whole business on Keap.”
Don’t just take Ramon’s word for it. See for yourself and try it for free.