Until five years ago, I was living the life someone made for me — now I’m living the life I designed with intent.
Ryan’s culinary journey began as a teenager. As a kid, Ryan would rush home after school to watch the Food Network, make his parents drive him across town in L.A. traffic to buy an ingredient he needed for a recipe, and read cook books cover to cover. One book stood out from the rest — Dornenburg and Page’s Becoming A Chef, which gave him the advice that jump started his career: “Go get an internship, and decide if this industry is for you.”
He listened. While walking home from culinary school one day, Ryan Gromfin noticed a man in a chef’s coat standing in the back of the Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills. So naturally — at least, naturally for Ryan — he went up to the chef and asked if there were any entry-level jobs available in the kitchen.
“He said they weren’t hiring interns. I said, ‘I’ll wash dishes for free; I’ll do anything,’” Ryan said.
That willingness — and courage — to do anything got Ryan that job, which extended over two summers. He went on to work in two more five-star hotel kitchens and then decided it was time to gain experience in more “every day” restaurants, with the goal of ultimately opening his own.
Ryan and a business partner ended up opening four restaurants and, in 2012, Ryan decided to part ways and go in a new direction. He realized it was time to share his knowledge to teach other restaurants how to succeed as he had.
“That’s when it hit me. I went from places with all these systems and procedures and everyone knowing what was going on to a place that was chaotic, with an owner who knew nothing about running a business — and it was no wonder restaurants were struggling."
Ryan created his first online product, “Restaurant Owners Roadmap,” a training program for restaurant owners, and he delivered it behind a member-protected website. In time, he added more content and used Ontraport’s functionality to cross-sell and upsell more products. Today, he’s built one of the largest restaurant-specific online businesses which generates thousands of visits per month and has a social reach into the millions globally.
Ryan has now served clients on every continent except Antarctica — but only “because there are no restaurants in Antarctica,” he says. Ryan says he’s already achieved all the entrepreneurial freedom he could have dreamed of and is grateful that he’s able to affect people's lives through his work.
That’s when it hit me. I went from places with all these systems and procedures and everyone knowing what was going on to a place that was chaotic, with an owner who knew nothing about running a business — and it was no wonder restaurants were struggling.
Provided his restaurant operations expertise to clients in every continent except Antarctica
Brought numerous educational products about restaurant management to market
Significantly multiplied his income thanks to transforming from a one-to-one consultant to a worldwide online coach
Launched a membership site with sophisticated access tiers and ample upsell opportunities
Segmented Lead Capture and Nurture
Ryan offers free content on different topics as an initial step to segmenting leads.
First, Ryan sends leads to a few specific “most popular” blog posts, each of which have a free value offer within requiring opt-in with an email address. Some free offers are geared toward current restaurant owners while others target future restaurant owners, so leads are automatically segmented based on which free offer they opt in to. The information captured in forms is instantly synced to his contact database and placed on an automatic nurture campaign depending on which content they opted in to.
Each free value offer then encourages leads to purchase a low-cost, high-value product that leads to conversion into Ryan’s larger offerings.
Membership Site Functionality
After years running a restaurant, Ryan knows that owners need more resources to succeed in such a competitive industry — but he would spread himself thin if he tried to help more than a handful of them.
With a membership site, Ryan can help hundreds and provide the same quality of service for them all. Using the PilotPress plugin with Ontraport, Ryan puts content behind a password-protected site that members pay a monthly fee to access.
Ryan extensively uses Ontraport’s capability to automatically manage which content each member sees based on his or her membership level. He also uses features to control redirects based on levels or tags so, for example, members who attempt to access a part of the site that they haven’t purchased membership for are redirected to a page encouraging them to purchase.
As an Ontraport Certified Consultant, Ryan believes Ontraport is the “most powerful and easy-to-use membership tool [he’s] ever seen.” He believes there’s no need for additional code, API connections, or other issues that arise with third-party memberships.
Since launching my online business, my wife and I have been able to build our dream home, and I play more golf than I ever have before. This summer is going to be a lot of time on the boat and with the family.
Automatic Payment Collection
Ontraport provides powerful ecommerce options such as trial periods, payment plans, subscription plans, and two-tier partner (affiliate) commission calculations without requiring any manual intervention.
Ryan is able to offer a variety of products with varying payment types without hassle, thanks to these capabilities. For example, he offers some one-time payment products in addition to his subscription membership products.
“A large portion of my income is on autopilot. Sure I still work directly with my one-on-one clients, but other than tweaking sales pages and Facebook ads, Ontraport magically handles all the day to day struggles commonly associated with online business,” Ryan said. “My credit card updating, expiration reminders, forgotten passwords, drip content, upsells and access to new levels is automatically handled.”