In a very short period of time, Joel Kaplan has gone from zero to seven figures with his digital marketing agency Atlas Digital, a story we’ve heard quite a few times on this blog.
He had tried his luck with a couple of ventures that didn’t work out before starting Atlas Digital with Marcos Rosenkjer.
Having abandoned his 9 to 5 to devote himself solely to Atlas Digital, Joel went on to write a course that helps people scale their own businesses.
The course was called 7 Figure Agency.
After watching Joel Kaplan’s obnoxious YouTube ad (you remember the one where he flashes red instructions at you with an orange sucker in hand?)
To find out more about this dude, I had to investigate. Do you think he’s a cokehead? Is he really able to help digital marketers scale their businesses to seven figures and beyond, as he claims?
Joel Kaplan’s 7-Figure Agency: How Did It Come About?
Venezuela was the birthplace of Joel Kaplan. So he went to college because college was important to his parents. Joel K Entertainment, where he DJed weddings, was his first business when he was 18 years old.
He had the benefit of family connections in the wedding venue business, who could get him gigs left and right. His ego got in the way after he made good money for a while. He got into an argument with Bridezilla and her mom about the music he was playing at one wedding reception and ended up quitting.
What does it matter? Joel’s first venture into business was a success. There must be another thing on the horizon, right? That’s wrong. He attempted to create the next Facebook-a social media site called Mazoof-and it completely failed. That made him realize he must only build businesses that are based on a proven model he can copy.
At this point, he is still in college and is studying business, but he feels that he is learning nothing. His major switched to philosophy so he could pursue a deep dive into persuasion, knowing someday he would be a great salesperson. Later, Joel earned a degree at Temple University, Philadelphia.
His dad had advised him to get jobs for at least two years before launching any further businesses (to gain experience). A job in education sales was offered to him.
After wandering around Denver for a while, he finds a billionaire from the Cisco Systems family and joins her as a volunteer. A light bulb went off when he saw a billionaire complete a million-dollar donation to a local school: “If I’m going to make a positive impact on the world, I must be as rich as I can.”.
His business partner Marcos helped him start Atlas Digital, based in Boulder, Colorado when they met. Almost two months later, Joel was making $10k a month and was able to give up his 9-to-5 job for good. Although everything went smoothly, there were some bumps along the way. Within a month, they had fallen to $3,000.
During the next couple of years, Joel was on a roller coaster ride he didn’t want to be on. It’s a good thing though, he didn’t give up.
Fast forward to today: Joel Kaplan reports he has more than 200 clients and earns roughly $250,000 a month from his company.
Joel Kaplan’s StartOrScale funnel takes you into a long-winded pitch for his 7-Figure Agency Flywheel thingamajig, although it is not clear how much (if any) of that revenue is made up of his various courses and coaching offers.
Is Joel Kaplan’s 7-Figure Agency a Scam?
Joel is not a scam. He has studied with a pro in the field, won a Two Comma Award, and appeared on some of the biggest websites and magazines for entrepreneurs.
However, I don’t recommend his 7-Figure Agency.
Despite all the strategies proposed to keep Facebook ad agencies alive during the pandemic and the recession that followed, I doubt they did very well in 2021, save for the rare exception.
Rebranding and brand awareness ads can only be used for so long before the client puts the relationship on hold.
Losing a job, having a business close, and the population being demotivated are all factors that contribute to the failure of Facebook advertising agencies.
In 2021, running a Facebook ads agency would not be the best business model, even if there were no recession.
Is There A Better Alternative To Joel Kaplan’s 7-Figure Agency?
If you don’t want to waste your time or risk your hard-earned money, you might wonder if there is a better business model that doesn’t need paid ads and can do it as a side-hustle.
Yes, I would suggest you get started with affiliate marketing. It is far easier and less time consuming as you don’t even need to handle customer service.
In affiliate marketing, you can run your business almost with zero cost. Most importantly, you don’t need to invest in creating and developing any products.
But How Much Can You Earn in Affiliate Marketing?
A 21-year old student from my #1 recommended training platform of affiliate marketing was able to earn $7,395 in just 1 week, which means he made more than $1k a day…all while using free traffic methods and affiliate marketing.
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To give you more examples, here are some of the other inspiring success stories of Wealthy Affiliate members.
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