Sam: Hey everyone, Sam here. Today I have Alberto Riehl on with us. Alberto has got an awesome story. He started working with me in 2016, about two years ago. He joined Up Level Consulting, and at that point he was making around $12,000 per month in the life insurance niche. When he joined Up Level Consulting, he really learned how to turn a service into a program, and a scalable product that can help life insurance agents. What Alberto does is he helps life insurance agents really get more productive, implement systems, and take their businesses to the next level.
When he first joined in ’16, he was making $12,000 a month, unpredictably. Within two years, now, he’s making $290,000 a month, predictably. That’s quite the jump. In today’s interview, we’re going to discuss how that happened. So thanks for jumping on with me.
Alberto Riehl: Sure, thanks for having me.
Sam: Let’s talk about 2016. What was going on then for you?
Alberto Riehl: I was, as you said, I was doing about 12 grand a month, that’s average. Some months I would have a good month, do 18, another month I would go down and do 6. The biggest thing for me, Sam, is that, I’m a father of three now. A couple years ago I had two kids, we just had our third one about a year ago. We had two kids, one four, the other one three years old, and I was leaving the house before they woke up in the morning, driving an hour, hour and a half to an appointment, spending all day there, and then getting home after they were put to sleep. That was a big thing for me, I got to a point I got desperate enough, I really wanted to quit doing that.
Sam: What were you doing?
Alberto Riehl: I was driving the appointments, helping business owners in the insurance niche. Consulting. I was doing one on one consulting, and that’s another thing. I got to the point where I was doing okay, six figures, comfortably into six figures, but every time I added a new client, I had to work more. If I wanted to work more, I had to add another client, which meant one on one consulting, another hour per week. I saw that, I kind of saw the writing on the wall. I was already working harder than I wanted to, and in order to scale my business, I was going to have to invest more hours into it. I wanted to find a way to be able to scale it without having to put more hours into it.
Sam: How did you end up in that position? Were you a life insurance agent yourself, and then you decided to start consulting them one on one, in person? How did that happen?
Alberto Riehl: Yeah, I was. I’ve been in the insurance business most of my life. Started with health insurance at 20 years old, pretty young. Went up through there. At about 30, I got into life insurance, and did pretty well. Like any sort of industry that’s sales driven, as my numbers started going up, I started getting a little bit of recognition and insurance companies would ask me to do trainings for them. Usually on the phone, conferences with a few hundred agents around the country. They had these trips for their top producers, I qualified for that. They’d have me go on stage and talk about what I was doing, life insurance-wise. That was kind of a natural progression. I really started enjoying helping other agents and seeing their results, a lot more than having my own results. I always had in the back of my mind, man, it would be really cool if I could just focus 100% of my time on what I’d like to do, and that’s helping other agents get to the next level of their business.
Sam: And that’s what you actually started doing. At a certain point, you stopped being an agent and you started being an advisor to agents. Through the one on one and in the flesh model.
Alberto Riehl: Exactly. If you want to get a little bit deeper into that, these insurance companies have dream team of attorneys. When you decide to leave, most of them have a two year non-compete, non-disclosure and you really don’t want to go fight against a 400 billion dollar insurance company. So for the first two years, I did it with business owners. I had a friend who was an attorney, I had another buddy who was a dentist, and I thought, I wonder if I can help them get their business up with what I’ve been helping insurance guys. I kind of just waited the two years out with a couple different types of business owners, and as soon as that ended is when I dove head first into helping life insurance people. Just a little bit after that is when I found you and joined with you, and so it gave me the avenue, strategy, to be able to really scale that.
Sam: I get it. So as soon as you stopped being an agent, you didn’t want to start teaching agents, because a lot of those agents would be from other companies and they might think you were sharing trade secrets with them.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: I get that. That’s interesting. And then, so you started helping the insurance agents, and done for you, one on one. What was their problem? What’s the big problem for these people?
Alberto Riehl: The number one problem for them is getting qualified people in front of them. There’s a huge need for it. 85% of agents are out in the first year because they start out talking to their friends and family. That’s what they all teach, make a list of your friends and family. But once they’re out of that, then they’re in trouble. The number one problem is getting qualified people in front of them that are actually asking for the products that they’re offering.
Sam: Why is that a problem?
Alberto Riehl: Because it’s a little antiquated. I’ve done a lot of videos, I’ve said … dinosaurs. They’re doing things they way they did 100 years ago when these insurance companies started, which is back then, all there was was word of mouth. That’s what they’re still teaching their guys to do is make a list, they call it a Power 200. It’s basically your friends, family members, and then just go out and start bugging them. I’ve had agents even tell me that they’ve lost relationships with cousins or uncles because during Thanksgiving, here comes the agent. Thanksgiving dinner and he’s trying to sell him life insurance, and they’re like, “No, dude. We don’t want to buy life insurance.” That’s a big problem.
It works very well for the insurance companies. For the insurance companies, they have a model where they recruit new agents, new blood, all the time. Now that gives them access to their warm market, and again, 85% are out in the first year. They starve or get fired. But then that warm market keeps paying their insurance premiums. Now they don’t have to pay anybody commission, so the insurance companies do very well doing that. But for the agent, the numbers are stacked against them.
Sam: Got it. So if a struggling agent actually builds up a few insurance contracts, if they get fired or quit, then they no longer are receiving those commissions.
Alberto Riehl: Exactly.
Sam: So that’s kind of advantageous for … yeah. You can see why it still exists, then.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Through being in the industry, I got the opportunity to rub elbows with the presidents of companies, the CEOs of companies, after a few glasses of wine there, they start telling you about how wonderful the model is for the company, and how the commissions that is their biggest expense in the first year, especially, that expense gets knocked out because now the company gets to keep everything. It’s a good model for them, but for the agent it doesn’t work very well.
Sam: Got it. Why did you choose to do life insurance in the first place? You must have some sort of attraction to it if you’ve done it your whole life and love teaching and all of this.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah, it was … I think, like anybody else, I wanted it to be something different, a different niche. Meaning something sexier, something cooler. I don’t think anybody grows up as a kid and says, I want to be a life insurance agent, or I want to help life insurance agents. But I think at the end of the day, it’s something that’s quite personal for me. My dad passed away when I was 9 years old. He didn’t have the proper planning in place. I personally saw first hand how a family can be just devastated without the proper planning in place. Today, it’s … man, my voice trembles a little bit. It’s more than a job, it’s like a mission, where I really want people to be trained properly and offer the protection properly, putting the client’s needs first to make sure that other families, other kids, don’t have to go through what I went through as a kid.
Sam: That makes total sense. You can see why … ’cause you’d have to have some reason why to have that much drive. Otherwise, just helping life insurance agents, it seems like why would you be passionate about that? It’s always something like that, when someone does something well. That’s interesting.
So in 2016, you’re helping agents get calls and get business in the done for you, one on one setting, and your income’s in between 12, 6, 18, it’s kind of going up and down between there. You’re commuting and doing all of this and you don’t like it. How did you come across me?
Alberto Riehl: It had to be a Facebook ad. I don’t remember now, it’s been a couple years. But yeah, I’m sure it was a Facebook ad that talked about having a system in place to get qualified people. I remember there was something I didn’t act on right away. I did see something about a message, it seemed interesting. I hate when a prospect or somebody says, ooh, that’s interesting. But I think that with time, as you have maybe cancellations, or you drive and hour, hour and a half to that appointment, and you find a note on the door saying, “Sorry, Mr. Insurance Man, but had to run and go do something,” you finally just get desperate enough, the pain is big enough that you’re like, okay, there has to be something out there. I’m willing to do something about it. That’s where I was at, I think.
Sam: Got it. I remember, I had a strategy session call with you, didn’t I?
Alberto Riehl: Yes.
Sam: ‘Cause in ’16, I remember, I was still doing strategy session calls. How did that go?
Alberto Riehl: Are you going to edit this stuff out?
Sam: No.
Alberto Riehl: I really thought … I didn’t know who you were. I thought it was some dude on the other phone who was throwing some huge numbers at me that just weren’t achievable. You’re saying that you’re doing … it’s funny, because you were telling me that you were doing numbers that I’m doing today. You were telling me, “Yeah, I did 300,000 last month.” It’s amazing how much my mindset … it’s all mindset. My paradigm has shifted, has grown, because back then, those numbers were so big. I thought, no way. Nobody’s doing that. He’s a scammer. There’s no way. Nobody’s doing that. And today, I’m doing that. So it’s definitely possible. I just wasn’t in a place, ready to hear it. I was looking for reasons, I was looking for inconsistencies, I was looking for reasons why there was no way you were doing 300,000 a month. Your presentation kind of confused me. Coming from sales background, teaching agents how to do things that are differently, definitely didn’t have a lot of silence involved, I just thought, there’s something off here. He’s telling me these numbers, but he’s … is he still on the phone, what’s going on here? I actually said, it was a BS excuse, I said I’m going to think about it or something, we all know that’s a BS excuse. I didn’t get started.
I then got started, I remember it was almost six months later where that desperation, where things were going okay. Okay, I made another 15 grand this month, bills are getting paid, it’s okay. And then you just stayed in front me, you stayed in front of me, you stayed in front of me through retargeting and emails every once in a while. Finally I sent an email back that said, “Okay, I’m ready to get started.” At that point, you weren’t taking phone calls anymore. I remember, I talked to Jessie, and then I ended up getting started with Jessie.
Sam: What changed? You thought I was lying and being weird and silent. So then how did you change your mind on that?
Alberto Riehl: I think it’s just a matter of, when we keep seeing the name, and we keep seeing the same pictures, and you keep seeing it for six months and you figure, okay, this is not a fly by night guy. He’s still around, six months later. He’s still talking about these big numbers. I think that everybody, every time you get in front of somebody, it builds credibility some, and that’s what happened. I think it was a combination of I had to personally get myself there, again, ’cause it’s a mindset thing. Today I would believe it instantly. 300,000 a month, a million a month, whatever it is. I get it, I believe it now. Back then, I wasn’t there yet. It was a combination of seeing you every week, or maybe every day, for six months, and then once again, one of those things happens in the business where, whether you just have a horrible month or a horrible week, or you have two of your appointments stand you up in a row, and when you’re driving an hour, hour and a half to get to an appointment, that just really … it just brings you to a place that you’re like, okay, I’ve got to find something different now.
You’re the guy who stayed in front of me, and by then I had a feeling that it was real. But you know what? When I got involved with Jessie, I was one of those guys, I was like, what’s the least amount I can give you? There’s still some skepticism, there’s still some doubt. But now as I look back, I think it was just me. It was self doubt for myself, maybe it was just a self image issue. I got to take responsibility for it where I remember asking, what’s the least amount I can get involved with, and so that’s what I did.
Sam: It’s funny, ’cause it’s probably so different than your way of doing things. It’s like, there’s no physical presence, there’s no in person anything. It’s all digital. And then the calls, you’re booking instead of us going out and trying to get in. And then you get on the call, and it’s not like a sales call that you’re used to. It’s just a person remaining calm and asking questions and being silent.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. But you know what? That’s helping tremendous today, because now I’m dealing with the same thing. We’re working with insurance guys who are used to, their road warriors, we call them. They’re out there all day long. Some are driving hours a day, some are out all day long meeting with appointments, being stood up. Now here we are, I’ll change places with you, and I’m doing the same thing that somebody was asking me to do. That’s really helped me to have more, I think, empathy with them, knowing that … I just got to bring them a long way. I had to come that long way to be okay with it.
I think that that’s really helped the process that we do today, is the fact that I went through the process, and I considered myself with a higher level of awareness than the average agent, with a higher level of possibility of what’s available, higher mindset and all this, but at the same time, I struggled with it. It’s really helped to help these guys, hold their hand through the process, acknowledging that yeah, it is different. It is different. Yes, it’s scary. We actually tell them what they’re going to feel, before they feel it. When they’re telling us, well, I’m not sure, we can say, “Hey, remember what we talked about, about that resistance, that wall you’re going to hit? This is what’s happening. This is what’s happening right now.” It’s actually helped us to help more agents, I think.
Sam: You had the main objection that you were going to have.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: When you overcome that objection, you now know how to help them overcome it.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: It’s funny, though, how you had the same one that obviously they’re going to have.
Alberto Riehl: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Sam: It’s funny how that works.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: Then you joined Up Level. What happened next?
Alberto Riehl: I keep laughing because … I dove into the program, because I had 30 days before my next payment to know for sure this was real and it wasn’t a scam. That was what I gave myself. My goal was not to go through the program. It was, okay, I’ve got 30 days before my next payment comes out to make sure this is a real thing. I was still scared, I was still skeptical. A couple weeks into it … less than that. A week into it, ’cause I was going through it four hours a day, five hours a day, as much as I could, doing my day job and then at night, putting my kids to bed and staying up til one in the morning, two in the morning, spending four, five hours going through it and learning that okay, yeah, it’s the real thing.
Sam: How did that … I’m interested in how it became the real thing. You thought it was a scam and all that. What had to occur for you to be like, now this is real?
Alberto Riehl: It was the quality of the content. The quality of the content was the main thing, where I got to see, wow, this guy Sam, he really knows what he’s talking about. There’s some good stuff in here and he makes some valid points. I’ve been a student of personal development for most of my adult life. You start talking about mindset and a lot of the stuff that I’ve studied, plus it’s the quality of the content. Going back to that. Knowing that okay, yeah, this guy knows what he’s talking about. Of course I was jumping on every singe call. You were doing two calls a week, I was jumping on every single call. You were there, I was going through the program, I had questions, I was writing them down and asking you the questions. You were there answering the questions, so I thought, okay, this is a real thing. It’s the first program that I’ve done like that. I didn’t know really what to expect, but everything that you talked about came true. That gave me the confidence to just keep going with it.
Sam: Got it. And then, what happened after that?
Alberto Riehl: After that … I started about two years ago. What was it, July or so is when I started. I went live in October. I actually went live at the end of September. I don’t know if you remember this, but at the end of September I went live, and I remember being at the bank. I’ll never forget this. I’m at the bank, sitting down, waiting for the banker lady, and all of a sudden I get a ding on my phone. I looked, and I remember going, holy shit. That was the first appointment I ever booked. I was like … a whole paradigm shift happens instantly. Went from, I hope this works, I believe it works, to holy shit, I know it works now. I remember I got a first appointment there. I just … that completely just mind blasted me. Before I left the bank, in less than two hours, I got a second one. I had just gone live earlier that day, a few hours before, four hours before. That was a Friday. I was super excited. But then I got nothing over the weekend. I go like this, emotion wise, and then I go like this over the weekend. There was a red thing on the optimization in my, on the ad. It wasn’t optimizing for anything, it was red-
Sam: Yeah, vision pixel wasn’t set correctly.
Alberto Riehl: Yes, wasn’t corrected. Man, I was going nuts. I was trying to get it fixed, I went through your course again, through every little step. I literally had my iPad, I was going through it with an iPad. I bought this used, is still have it over here, MacBook Air. I had my used MacBook Air. Again, I just want full in yet. I spent 300 bucks … you told me, you’re like, “Dude, you can’t do it on a iPad.” I was like, okay, fine. I’ll buy myself a used MacBook Air. I spent like 350 on it, I think.
Sam: Do you realize now that you probably can’t have done all of this on an iPad?
Alberto Riehl: Oh yeah, sure. Now I’m talking to you on a brand new MacBook Pro, like the mac daddy.
Sam: I still have this argument with iPad people. I’m like, dude, it’s not going to work.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Again, that’s where I was. I loved that iPad. But yeah, just recently, about three months ago, I got a nice MacBook Pro and I’m real happy with it, and now I wish that I would have done it years ago. So I just went through it step by step, and I just couldn’t find the mistake. But one of the things that was awesome is I got on a call with you, one of the calls, and you offered to take control of the screen, or I can’t remember exactly how it was. I couldn’t even find the … I always say I’m the non-techy guy out of the group. I couldn’t even find it. Like, okay, here, take the screen, take control of the screen. I’m like, I don’t know, took me like 60 seconds to not find it, and you’re like, give me your log in and so you logged in, and literally in 10 seconds you went straight to it. Here it is, little red thing turned green in 30 seconds, and then that was it. Then everything started going up from there.
That was at the end of September. October, I ended up with 12 sales, which was my first full month. Twelve sales at 5800.
Sam: I guess that’s a perfect example of the right advice. When something is just puzzling you and you give it days, and then someone just goes and solves it like, bam. I remember that Q and A call, you ended up giving me, you added me as a user, and I logged in as a user in your account. I remember doing that.
Then you said you went live. But just for people who are listening and they’re like, what was live mean? You mean you created your value video, which is the video that explains what you do and who you help and the problem you solve and all of that, and the basic funnel and the landing page, and you turned on the ads to drive the traffic to that, and then the result you got from that process was scheduled appointments in your calendar. So you went from a model of you having to go out and talk to people and work that … what was it called? The Dream 200.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah, Power 200.
Sam: Power 200. You went from having to work the Power 200 to clicking some buttons and having it come to you, which … I guess that changes everything, ’cause it’s from things going this way to things going that way. Then you started getting sales. What were you selling at this point? Is this still selling the done for you and the one on one, or had you switched to the training model?
Alberto Riehl: I switched to the training model, the course. I had an outline of the course, and I had talked to you, one of the times in the Q and A, same thing. I had seen somewhere else before with people that, they’re like, you don’t have to have the course done, you just got to be a week ahead of your first client. So that’s what I did, and I was a week ahead. I had week one done, and that’s all I had. As soon as I got my first client, I’m like, okay, holy crap, now I’ve got to do week two. That kept me motivated. The clients kept coming in. Okay, I’ve got to do week two. I just stayed one week ahead of my first client.
Sam: Got it. How did you know what to put into the training?
Alberto Riehl: I had originally done 12 weeks and you had said, well, you don’t need 12 weeks. Just do 8 weeks. You explained the psychological factor behind that which is very well. I had 12 weeks of content that I put into 8 weeks. That was probably thing is coming up with the 8 weeks. Again, I’ve been in the business so long that I knew what agents needed. I also followed what you had there. I took your model, and then took what I knew agents needed, and then just kind of said, okay, he teaches the script in I think it was week two or three, so I’m going to teach my script in week two or three also. He teaches how to scale in week four, I’m going to teach how to do that in week four. I basically just copied everything from you.
Sam: Got it. So you already, for people listening, understanding how this would have worked, you had been an agent, and you knew how to be good at that. And then you started teaching agents how to be good, because you knew how to do that because you did it. Then you got good at doing that, but in the done for you and one on one setting, and then you maxed that model out because it has physical constraints. And then you joined this, and then you not only … you really machined two things. Not only the client acquisition thing, like having them come to you instead of you chasing them and making that all automated and systemized, but also the service delivery side as well. This is both sides of the thing.
So then, instead of having to go out and do manual labor on that side once you’ve done manual labor on this side, you then … ’cause in the past, you would have had to go to these offices and train them in person and what not, instead you create a program, an online course, with videos and stuff, and then the training happens online, too. You’re really systemizing two sides of it. Basically the whole entire thing, really.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. It was life changing, too. That month, that October, because I had a goal of 25,000. I said, if I hit 25,000, as soon as I hit 25,000, I’m going to stop meeting with people face to face. In October, I blew past that pretty quickly. As soon as I did, man, I stopped meeting with people. All of a sudden I find myself, I have a bunch of free time. Now of course that gave me the time to work on the program, and that’s what I did, but that was a huge … that was a game changer, life changer. I remember October and then November. I was just poking myself because … for a long time, I always thought, for years and years and years I always thought, if I could find a way to run my business and do it mobile, do it virtual, it would be a game changer.
My family and I love to travel. We love to be at the beach, as you can see, and now this is my office. This is where I get to do my business. I’m barefooted most of the day, which was actually a goal. I had a goal when I was wearing suits, as an insurance guy wearing a suit in 100 degree weather, sweating, my goal was I want to do business barefooted. So I get to do that now. That started in October, November, where all of a sudden it just shifted. I was like, wow, it’s happening. It’s happening. I’ve been thinking about it, I’ve been visualizing it, I’ve been writing about it for years, and now it’s finally here.
Sam: When you were doing the in person stuff, were you in America during that?
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: So you moved, didn’t you?
Alberto Riehl: Yeah, I did.
Sam: When did that happen?
Alberto Riehl: That happened … that happened quickly, man. That happened in the winter … actually, what happened in January of 2017, so just that winter right after, a few months later. Sarah and I have always been asked by her dad to come down to a little town that’s just north of Tulum called Puerto Venturas. He’s retired and he’s been coming here for nine years, 10 years, every winter. It’s just a great place, great weather during the winter. I never could. He’s been asking us for years, for five, six, seven years to come, and we never could ’cause I had to work. If I’m not out there in the field, working my butt off, I’m not creating income. So we could never come.
Finally, in January 2017 was the first year that we could come. Again, we just did 12, and I did another, I think I did 12 in October, 11 in November, and so I was going for 25 grand, and at that point we were close to 70 grand a month, and I’m doing it all virtual. Said okay, yeah, we can come in January. We had a place booked, an Air BnB booked here on the water for five weeks. We’re going to be here for five weeks with the whole family. Two weeks into it, Sarah looks at me and says, “I could live here.” I’ve always wanted to live international outside, I wanted my kids to learn another language, that’s very important to me. A couple weeks into it, she’s like, I could live here. Right away, I started looking for a place for us, and we ended up staying. We ended up staying.
Sam: And Sarah’s your wife.
Alberto Riehl: Yes, yeah.
Sam: So you went here thinking you were going to be on a vacation for five weeks, but then you realized, screw it. Let’s just stay.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. I’d always wanted to, but she’s … from the U.S. Grew up there all her life, and it’s a lot. It’s a big change to move to another country. I think that just her getting to experience it down here and seeing that it was safe for her, it was safe for the kids, everybody spoke English. We’re in an area, there’s a lot of what they call expats, a lot of Europeans, a lot of Swiss, a lot of people from the cold come down here, a lot of Canadians. People from New York come here for the winter. She saw that wow, it’s kind of like America but with a little bit more of a melting pot. Everybody speaks English, they had a good school for the kids. It was fun, everybody’s just driving around in golf carts. So she thought, okay, yeah, I can do it. I was ready to go, as soon as she said “I could live here,” I literally had somebody looking at houses for us the next day. I didn’t want her to come out of the ether. I was like, okay, we’re going to sign a contract here before she comes out of this. That’s what we did. Right away we found a house right on the beach that was perfect, and we ended up signing a lease right then and there.
Sam: Nice. And then you continued to run your business from there.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Continue to run it. I was going to say without a hiccup, but being in a third world country, the internet was … some of the things we take for granted in the U.S., we had some internet problems, inconsistently, the service going up and down.
Sam: I remember you asking that on the Q and A. You’re like, what do I do about my internet? I’m like, get a satellite.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: And you got a satellite now.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah, we have a satellite now, and I’m happy to report last Wednesday I got fiber installed. Fiber just got here. So now I have three internet services. My satellite’s now number two in line. The fiber is way faster, so I’m using fiber. Fiber, satellite, and then the normal stuff that everybody uses down here.
Sam: You’ve got three back ups.
Alberto Riehl: I got three back ups, yeah.
Sam: Nice. What really allowed you … I understand that you were able to start selling this program to these people with this new system, you scale up to 18, 20, 50K a month, whatever. How do you go to 290? That’s quite a lot more. And you said it’s well beyond what you thought was possible? You thought the people that said that were lying. How did that actually happen?
Alberto Riehl: You know, for me, after … 2017 was last year … I actually joined the Mastermind pretty quickly. I ended up joining the Mastermind January 1, I’m on a calendar type, from January 1 to December. That, again, it comes back to belief, perception, mindset. Instead of hanging out with people that think 90,000 is a lot, one of the things that the Mastermind did is, I remember going to the first Mastermind, it was in 2017, February I think, at the end of February, something like that, I had just joined. I remember being there, still doing about 12, 13, I was about right there. Which is about 60, 70 a month. I remember thinking I was pretty hot shit ’cause that’s the most I’d ever done. And being the smallest guy in the room. Being the guy with the least amount of results.
It was just awesome. I had one guy next to me doing 350,000, another guy next to me doing 600,000. Andrew over doing, he was at 800 or whatever it was. In that right there, my belief to what’s possible changed. All of a sudden I was humbled, which I needed, and learned very quickly that that 70 grand a month was really nothing. I was playing small, and I remember as you started the Mastermind and you’re saying, okay, what’s everybody’s goal? My goal was 100 grand, and I thought that was big. As I hear everybody’s goals and people’s goals are like a million a month and 800 a month, wow. I’m like, I can’t [inaudible 00:35:36] 100 grand a month. That’s embarrassing. Instantly there I changed my goal to 200 a month, which was still one of the lowest ones, but I didn’t believe it.
Just being around those people that were doing it and getting to hang out with them, going to dinner with them … we have dinners, we have lunches together and you get to talk to them, everybody’s super cool, super nice, everybody’s very giving. There was nobody that was like, wow, this guy’s a genius, no wonder he’s doing 500K a month. It just lets you know that these guys are just like you. All it takes is discipline. They’re working harder than I am, they’re putting in more hours that I am, they’re more committed than I am, they have more self-discipline than I am. That’s what it is. Am I willing to do that? And if I am, then I can have that. That’s where it really changed for me.
Sam: Yeah, that’s interesting. You always think that those people must be really special and they’re probably not even human. And then you meet them, and then you realize that they’re fully human, but just hard working.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Exactly. That’s what it was. Definitely.
Sam: How did you go to 290? It can’t just be meeting some people and thinking it’s possible. ‘Cause now you know it’s possible and you’re aiming for it, which is a great start, but how do you get it?
Alberto Riehl: Just start going after it. I remember I had a conversation with Andrew Argue right before I went to a thousand a day. I couldn’t go to a thousand a day, mentally, I just couldn’t do it. I was too scared.
Sam: This is ads spend, right?
Alberto Riehl: Yeah, Facebook ads. A thousand a day. Just having a conversation with him, he said, “Dude, I was scared the same way.” And then Amanda saying, he was scared a thousand … she was yelling in the background of the phone. “He was scared at two thousand, he was scared at three thousand.” I was like, okay, yeah, it’s just going to keep going. It reminded me that this is what I teach my people is that they’re going to hit that … Bob Proctor calls it a terror barrier, terror barrier, that wall. That’s where I was, and I went for it. That was the big thing. Now, I just went past 3,000 a day last week. Guess what? I had a conversation with Andrew again last week, and it was kind of very similar. I just needed that reassurance, dude, you’re on the right path.
I added two sales guys at the end of last year, so last year I did it pretty much all by myself, and then at the end of the year I added two sales guys. They’re still with me today. They’re doing very well.
Sam: What was the net you could get to just by yourself?
Alberto Riehl: By myself, what did I get to? I got to right around … I think I was right around 20, 22, 23. That’s where I was hovering for a while.
Sam: Twenty-two, 23 units.
Alberto Riehl: Units, yeah.
Sam: At that price it’s like 128 to 140K. Riehl: I was about 120, 130, around there. I found myself stuck there for a little while.
Sam: How come?
Alberto Riehl: I want to say six months, maybe, I was stuck there. Did you say how come?
Sam: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Alberto Riehl: Getting reminders, all these appointment sets are coming through.
I don’t know, I think that’s where … looking back, I thought I needed more appointments and more sales people. I was doing a max of five appointments per day. I know when you were grinding it out, you were doing 10 a day or 12 a day or something like that.
Sam: Yeah but I didn’t have kids.
Alberto Riehl: Right? Well, exactly. That’s the thing. At five, that’s what I was willing to do. So I was doing 25 a week, and that’s what I was able to get to. I thought, okay, I either have to take on more appointments myself, and kiss my family goodbye, or say, sorry, we’re going to see you less, which I did not want to do, or I start adding some sales people. So I started adding some sales people. I added two right away.
Sam: Got it. And there was a lot of friction to having to bring on other people.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: That’s always there, man. You should see how long it took me to do that. It’s one of the biggest barriers. So as soon as you started to bring on some reps, and then you started increasing the spend, it’s really these two variables that started growing things up.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Of course, bringing the people on was a big thing, because another mindset thing I had to go through was, I had told myself that I was going to be a one man show. I think people are calling it now a solopreneur or whatever it is, because I had agents before. I had had hundreds of agents before, working with me. Sometimes they needed stuff at 9:00 at night or 10:00 at night. If they needed something, I was going to be on the phone and helping them out. I didn’t want to do that again. I wanted to focus on being able to spend time with my family. I don’t know if you can hear my 12 month old, my year old just woke up from a nap there in the background.
That got in my way for a while. Well, but you said you weren’t going to start bringing more people on, you’re not going to babysit more, right? That’s what I called it. You’re not going to babysit more, it’s going to take time away. But I thought, okay, what do I want more? I finally got to the point where I can’t have it all. So what do I want more? I either take on more appointments, I bring on more people, or I just stay stagnant, stay where I’m at, and be happy with it. I knew I couldn’t be happy with that. I knew I couldn’t stay fulfilled by staying in the same spot. I knew that wasn’t the answer. I thought, okay, I’m going to bring on some people. I’m here to help people, I’m helping agents. Guess what? I can also help other consultants.
Today, it’s been great, ’cause both of the guys that are with me were actually friends of mine from before. Known them before the business and their life has now turned around. They’re earning more money than they ever have before. The training, they’re very grateful about. Mindset training and stuff that we go over that we’ve never had. So now we have a nice little team going and we just added a third guy last month.
Sam: Nice.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: How is it going for the agents? Coming, being sold through with an automated, online system with this new sales model, and also going through a virtual training program with videos and things. How’s that going for them?
Alberto Riehl: It’s going awesome, man. It’s … again, there was doubt, but it was all in my mind. I thought, okay, could it work this way? Insurance is a very traditional industry, where they teach you it has to be face to face. Just get in the door, just kind of old school sales. Just get in the door. Don’t do anything on the phone, you just want to get in the door. All the trainings are done face to face, they have conventions all the time where a thousand agents gather up and all that. I had my doubts, personally, because of it, but at the end of the day, it’s working awesome.
We’re getting … right now, it kind of has gained momentum and it has a life of its own. We’re getting results published from our clients every single day. Every day. It’s just awesome. Guys that … just in the last three days, we’ve had one guy that said he tripled his return on investment in our program in 24 hours. That was on Friday. Another guy did $20,000 in one day. Another guy ended up with $60,000 last month. This is just what’s coming to mind in just the last few days. They’re pouring in, pouring in. They kind of have a life of its own. It’s pretty cool to see people … I’ve done some video interviews kind of like this that I got as an idea from you. I’ve had guys break down at the end, crying, because their life has completely changed with our program. That’s super cool to see.
Sam: Nice. What is it about what you teach these people? How are you able to do that?
Alberto Riehl: I think the main thing is that I’ve done it before, for me. That’s one of the things that people ask me all the time, what makes you different than the other program out there teaching life insurance agents? I say, well, at my highlight, my high point in insurance, I was with an insurance company that had 12,000 sales people, and I was number one. Number one out of 12,000. I’d say, okay, think about having the top guy in the company, the guy that’s doing the training, that people are asking him to do the training, and having him hold your hand through his process and teaching you exactly how he does it. It goes back to, they say there’s no shortcut to success, but if there was a shortcut, find somebody that has done what you want to be doing and then just copy them. That’s the way that I designed it, exactly what I used to do to hit those numbers, and I teach them exactly how to do it.
Sam: That’s exactly what I recommend, ’cause that’s what I do, too. ‘Cause you know it will work. It has worked. You know what I mean? That’s how I know. Some people, including myself, used to be anxious about making trainings. You’re like, oh, but if I teach these people this, will they understand it? Will they implement it? And then if they do implement it, will it work? There’s a lot of doubt there, right? But then the only thing that made me think yes it will was because it did, for me. If it worked for me, and I know it absolutely worked, then it should work for them. But, as a good rule, it’s like, if it didn’t work for me and I haven’t done it, don’t put it in, because you know what’s going to happen. It won’t work.
Alberto Riehl: Exactly.
Sam: What is it about the things you teach them? What made you number one out of 12,000 reps?
Alberto Riehl: I think it’s a combination of a lot of things. When I had my insurance agency and I’d teach my reps, I always put mindset first. I told my guys that we’re not an insurance company, we are a personal development company whose compensation plan is funded by insurance. So we were a mindset company, a personal development company, first, and a lot of insurance guys don’t want to hear that. A lot of insurance guys are like, yeah, yeah, yeah, but just give me your magical script. Or yeah, yeah, yeah, but just give me the magical leads. The guys that didn’t resonate with that, we just get rid of them or they didn’t come. So we had guys that every day were focused and did their exercise, we’re talking visualizing exercises, writing down goals, and that’s what we focused on.
At the same time, then we did have a way to generate the clients, and I have a literal step by step, word for word, script that I’ve used, which I share with my clients, to close business in one meeting, which is one thing that I always did. That’s what’s great about the results we have on our page, snapshots, screen shots from people posting in our group. People closing $25,000 a year premiums … that probably doesn’t mean much to you, but that’s considered a pretty large case in the insurance business. 25,000 a year in one appointment, where most agents think they gotta meet with people four times. They do a fact finder, and then after that they propose a few different illustrations, and then they get back and talk about it, and then they finally close business. Four meetings. We do it in one meeting.
Sam: You can do all of those in one meeting.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. We do it all in one meeting. And just keeping it very simple. Again, the script is very simple. Most insurance agents, financial advisors, have a little bit of an ego. They want to tell the prospect, they don’t want to show the prospect how much they know. They’re talking about all these financial terms and dividends and pay out and tax deferred and all this. The client, all they care about, hey, is this going to take care of my family if something happens? Is this going to take care of the problem? That’s all they care about. That’s all we focus on. We make it very simple, and so people are able to move forward ’cause they have the confidence. They understand what we’re talking about, and they have the confidence to make a decision. You need a certain level of confidence, right, psychology wise, to make a decision. If there’s any doubt, especially with something this important, no decision is made.
That’s how we teach our guys. It’s very simple. We do surveys after every appointment and they say, man, this guy’s insurance is very easy to understand. It’s the first time that we understand insurance. Now, it’s the same insurance. They’re delivering the policy, it’s a 60 page policy made up of legal jargons that nobody knows, including myself, but just the way the agent explains it, the people like it, ’cause they understand it. They feel smart, the agent makes them feel smart. They like the agent, they trust the agent, they have a certain level of confidence to make a decision, and it all comes together, and it all comes together and they make a decision in 45 minutes.
Sam: Insurance for humans.
Alberto Riehl: That’s what it is. That’s what it is. I actually had a training at my last Q and A on Thursday, and that’s exactly the guy’s giving me his … we have a part of it called a Ben Duffy which is where we humanize ourselves. That’s what we do, we humanize ourselves, because people are ready to meet a sales agent, but they’re not ready to meet that person. We humanize ourselves, and he starts talking about … what’s the word he used? It was arbitrage. That’s what it was. Arbitrage. I’m like, dude. Do not … now, take that word out and say it for humans.
Sam: It’s all Wall Street to him.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: Not a household to him.
Alberto Riehl: That’s the thing. Insurance guys try to say they’re financial advisors. Maybe they are or whatever, but that’s … and they try to act like one and talk like one, but all that does, it confuses people. They get the old, I want to think about it, and then they never hear back from them again.
Sam: I find labels really distort things and confuse people. That’s why I personally don’t like them. You think, oh, that’s what I am. And so then you try to pretend and act like you are this, but you’re not a label. You’re helping solve this problem for this person, which is worrying about their future.
Alberto Riehl: Yep. Exactly. Exactly.
Sam: You’re selling a safe future.
Alberto Riehl: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. It’s a solution, and that’s a big thing we teach. Most agents focus on features. Like, oh, it’s got this much cash value at age 65, and here’s an accelerated death benefit, you can get 90% out if you get diagnosed with a disease like heart attack, cancer, stroke. They start going into stuff like that and the prospect is just like, oh my goodness. Is this just going to take care of my family in case x, y, z? That’s all I care about. So that’s what we teach them to do, just to keep it simple, keep it in a language that the client can understand and find out what the problem is, and then provide something that solves it. That’s it. You don’t need four meetings for that, you know?
Sam: That’s awesome. So what’s next for you? What do you want to do with this business? Five years from now, 10 years from now, what’s the vision?
Alberto Riehl: Man. I’ve been thinking a lot about that lately, ’cause I just got the idea that I know how to make it a million dollar a month business. I know how to make it an eight figure business. I’m laying the tracks, I guess, the infrastructure now to make that happen. That’s not even a five year plan. Five, 10 year plan would be more of a hundred million dollar goal. That is more of a … we go back to willingness. I know it’s out there, I know it’s very possible. The opportunities that we have are huge with what’s happening in the world. We have a very old industry. The average advisor or insurance agent is 58 years old. The experts, whoever the experts are, are saying that in the next eight years, there’s going to be 250,000 less agents and less advisors than there are today.
The millennials have been slow to get into it because they’re going after the hot stuff, digital marketing and social media. They want to be You Tube stars and stuff like that, and selling life insurance just isn’t that cool. But what’s great about it is that all the benefits that the young guys want, I think the millennials have gotten a little bit of a hard time. People talk about, oh, they want to make six figures right out of school, and they want to dictate their own shots, and they want three months vacation, and they don’t want to be managed, and they want to be their own boss, and they want to work when they want. Guess what? That’s insurance. If you do it right, all those benefits of insurance, that’s what it is. There’s a huge opportunity for it. So I see us really changing the industry as how somebody gets involved in it.
I see these big companies which today, we’re very blessed. Every major company, we have every major company as a client, whether it’s New York Life or Prudential or State Farm or Farmers. You can just list them all. They’re all clients today.
Sam: When you were nine and you had this issue with insurance and stuff, what was the issue? What made that so visceral and important to you, to try and fix? What was the problem there?
Alberto Riehl: My dad actually had millions of dollars of insurance, of life insurance. He had millions of dollars. When I was growing up, my mom said that they used to laugh about, my mom’s going to have him off or something ’cause he was worth more dead than alive to her. But it wasn’t done properly. There’s a lot of responsibility on the agent, on the advisor. Filling out the application properly, making sure everything is done properly, because we have to know that insurance companies are a business. Unfortunately, when there’s a big claim, or any claim, insurance companies aren’t with their checkbooks saying, “Hey, here you go. How much was it? Here you go.” The very first thing they do is they look for a reason top not have to pay. That’s something everybody should know. Let’s make sure everything was done, Ts were crossed, everything was good.
In this case, they found several things that were not done properly, and so the insurance agents washed their hands of any responsibility. My mom was a homemaker. She hadn’t worked. Went from taking care of the kids to all of a sudden she has to raise three kids. I was the oldest of three. I was nine, my sister was five, my brother had just turned one years old. All of a sudden she’s single, trying to raise three kids.
We were in South America, we had to move to Texas, which is where my grandfather, my mom’s parents were. Went from living a decent life, a good life, to now we’re living in my grandparents’ little two bedroom town home and getting state help and free lunch at school and hand me down clothing. All I heard growing up, and maybe one of the reasons why I didn’t believe you were making 300,000 a month, all I heard growing up was, “No, we don’t have money. No, we can’t afford it. No, we can’t afford it.” Of course, as a kid, it builds your paradigm, right? So I had that scarcity mentality, poverty mentality.
Sam: What is it called when an insurance company refuses to pay out an insurance thing like that?
Alberto Riehl: They just decline of a policy. They’re just declining the policy. Declining the claim. They give you the reasons why. There’s a contestability period. Things have changed, but here in the U.S. it’s a two year contestability period. If you have a policy in the first two years, they can contest it. If something happens, if there’s a death claim in the first two years, there’s a contestability period and the insurance company is going to look for anything they can find to not have to pay that claim. If you have a suicide or stuff like that, they don’t pay in the first two years. It was still within that two year period, and so the insurance company didn’t pay. They declined all the claims.
Sam: I’ve got a good vision and mission for you, then. What you’re really trying to do is no … it’s like a statement. No honest life insurance claim left unpaid. Or better terms than that. But you know what I mean? Make sure that if it’s honest and it’s about life insurance, and there’s a claim, zero often are not paid out.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Yeah.
Sam: That’s really what you care about, obviously.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. That happens all the time. With agents going through their applications, and they’re like, “Oh, Sam, you were kind of dizzy and you had a blackout six months ago? Did you go to the doctor?” “No, I didn’t go to the doctor.” “Okay, well it’s not in the medical records anywhere. We’re just not going to talk about that on the application, okay? Got it, okay.”
Something as simple as that, that happens every day. If the insurance companies find it, of course they’re going to decline it.
Sam: Yeah, so there’s two sides to it. It’s kind of cool, because on one side of it you’re making sure that the people who are buying this insurance are not going to get screwed. And you’re helping them. On the other side of it, you’re making sure that in order to do that, you’ve got to make sure the agents are really good. And then by being really good, not only are they helping the people, but they also get to make a lot of money.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah.
Sam: It’s a cool, it’s a good business. I can see why it’s done what it’s done. There’s a lot of meaning behind it and there’s a lot of experience behind it, and it’s a win-win for both sides of the party. You know what I mean? You’re not just trying to make money for yourself by helping agents just sell more stuff. It’s got more meaning to it than that.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely.
Sam: What would you say has been the most transformational part of going through the program?
Alberto Riehl: Transformational part. Well, I think it’s two things, really. Number one is the Facebook. Having everything virtual. Again, when I was in that bank, I remember it perfectly, man. I remember where I was sitting, the lady had just gotten up to go … I didn’t want to be rude ’cause I got this little ding, I didn’t know what it was. I was kind of … you know when you first go live and you’re like, oh my gosh. Kind of nervous. I remember checking my phone. That was one transformation that happened in an instant. Holy crap, this works. It’s actually working. I’m taking everything and now, this is where the rubber hits the road. This is where everything … everything we’ve done is for this right here. That was one. That really got me to the place where I could leave the old school way of doing business, or the dinosaur way of doing business.
The second one was, okay, now that I’m doing pretty decent, and I start feeling good about myself, to be part of the Mastermind and be in a room where … again, it changed my perception. My whole perspective, what’s possible, it just gave me something to shoot for. Gave me belief that I really needed to go for something bigger, because at 12, 13 units, 12, 13 sales or clients a month, I was pretty happy. I was pretty happy, I was pretty fulfilled. Who knows how long I would have stayed there. I did kind of start inching up from there on my own, but that started, again, with the Mastermind. That really wanted me to … it pushed me to get to that next level. Now it’s like, okay, we’re getting together again in four months, in June. Guess what? We’re going over our numbers. I don’t want to say my numbers and they’re exactly the same. I want to show that I can do-
Sam: That made a big difference for you. I remember, I still do that every time. Go around at the start, every single person says where they’re at, where they want to go to. That made a difference for you at the first Mastermind, hearing all of that from the other people.
Alberto Riehl: Yeah. It was not only hearing it from them, so that let me know that a lot more was possible, it was also accountability. Because I’m in a group of people that I now respect. Like, holy crap. This guy over here’s going to make seven million this year. This guy over here’s going to make four million this year. In the world out there, that’s not something that’s very common. You don’t find … even insurance business, financial advisors. I was listening to this training where they had the top one percent of Morgan Stanley guys and they were averaging 900,000 a year. That’s the top Morgan Stanley bankers, that’s where the money is. They were averaging 900,000 a year, and to have a guy in the room doing that in a month, it just blows away any sort of ceiling that I had made myself.
Sam: Cool. So how can people learn more about what you do? We’re going to put this on You Tube and Facebook and things. I’m sure a lot of people listening will be like, hey, I know someone who’s an insurance agent. Or something like that. How can they learn more about what you do?
Alberto Riehl: You can go to That’s the name of my program, That’ll give them all the information that they want.
Sam: Awesome. Well thanks a lot for jumping on. It’s awesome to hear the story. I knew what the results were, but I didn’t really hear the deeper story behind it, so it’s actually quite fun to hear it.
Alberto Riehl: Awesome, man. Thank you for doing this. It was pretty fun, and thank you for everything you do. It’s completely transformed the way we run our business and our lives. Thank you.
Sam: No problem. We’ll speak again, sir.
Alberto Riehl: All right, buddy.
Sam: See you.
Alberto Riehl: Bye.