Troy Dean is an online marketing guru, coach and podcaster. His past clients include QuickBooks, IBM, F1 Grand Prix, The Ashes,Westpac and Jessica Watson. He is also co-founder of WP Elevation which sells software and education products to thousands of web designers all over the world and hosts a podcast which consistently ranks in the top 3 in iTunes for his category. Troy will be sharing his digital marketing and community building expertise at the upcoming Entrepreneurs’ Unconvention. Book your free seat now.

1. You specialise in helping businesses and entrepreneurs use the Internet to attract new customers and build their communities. What do you think are the three key elements of building a successful online community?Actively listening to the community to understand their goals and challenges, including the community in your content and product strategy and rewarding your community for their participation.

2. Generating leads online is one thing but converting these leads into paying customers is something that many startups struggle to do. What would be your advice to people trying to monetise their audience?
It sounds simple (and it is – although it’s difficult to execute well): ask them what they need and build a solution for them – or identify what they are already paying for and provide a more elegant or unique solution.

3. What are the main mistakes you see brands making online? How can these be avoided?
Producing too much poor quality content that doesn’t make any impact. More is not better. Useful is the new cool.

4. How important is social media to you? How can startups truly harness the potential of social media?
The keyword in social media is “social”. Social media is crucial in building communities. Don’t try to own the conversation, just facilitate the conversation that’s already happening.

5. You have mentioned before that many marketers become too fixated on certain numbers and metrics, rather than focusing on reach and impact. How do you measure the success of your digital marketing?
By the number of emails I receive thanking me for our podcast, blog and products. Not everything can be measured – and nor should it.

6. Many people strive to establish forms of passive income. In a recent blog post, you suggest that passive income is actually a myth. Why do you think it is?
Income is exchanged for value and there is nothing “passive” about creating  and continuing to deliver value. I think what people actually mean when they say they want passive income is they want recurring revenue. That means providing recurring value. Royalties might be the only exception to this where a songwriter gets paid royalties for their song being played, for example.

7. A lot of our audience at the Unconvention will be in the early stages, say in their first 1-2 years in business and trying to gain some traction – what would be your advice to them?
Sales and revenue are important, but adding value to your community is more important in the long run. The more helpful you are, the more chance you have of long-term traction.

8. What do the next 6-12 months look like for you?
Continuing to help our community of WordPress freelancers build sustainable and profitable businesses through our software and education products and working with small business owners and entrepreneurs to create recurring revenue business models where they currently don’t exist.

9. Can you give us some insight into what you’ll be sharing at the Unconvention?
My talk is called Rinse and Repeat: Building Recurring Revenue through Community. I’ll be sharing key strategies (and some sexy tactics), for building communities and identifying the recurring value you can add to create recurring revenue.

Troy Dean will be speaking about his journey at the upcoming Entrepreneurs’ Unconvention on the following dates:

– Sydney: September 5th
– Melbourne: September 19th
– Auckland: September 27th

Book a FREE ticket now.