Unleashing the entrepreneurial spirit, Julie Houston illuminates the path to success. She guides us through the triumphs and challenges of building a thriving company, leaving no dream unfulfilled. In this special episode, Julie reveals the driving force behind her decision to start Fuller Wallet Media, a company that has garnered immense success and acclaim. As we dive into the nuances of effectively managing a successful business, Julie shares how she skillfully trains her team in creating engaging funnels and lucrative affiliate programs. She also shares some secrets to maintaining harmony between team management and her own personal entrepreneurial pursuits. Julie also explores the immense value Fuller Wallet Media offers to its clients. Julie shares her compelling vision for the company’s future and the exceptional services they provide. She graciously imparts valuable advice for aspiring entrepreneurs, those embarking on their own entrepreneurial journey, or aspiring authors. Get ready to be mesmerized by Julie Houston as she takes the spotlight, revealing the inner workings of Fuller Wallet Media and imparting invaluable lessons she has learned on her journey to success. Tune in now!
Get a copy of Julie’s book here: Less Than Zero: Start a Business, Change Your Life by Julie Houston
Watch the episode here
Listen to the podcast here
Team Solo Cast Part 4
You’ve probably heard the episodes prior, but I’m excited to be able to introduce you to the one and only, the mastermind behind the whole team, the visionary, Ms. Julie Houston. She’s a bestselling author, number one in four categories on Amazon. If you haven’t gotten a book yet, Less Than Zero: Start a Business, Change Your Life, do it now at FullerWalletMedia.com/hope. Julie, thank you so much for jumping on the other side of the microphone and allowing us to interview you and let your fans know exactly who they hear every week when you decide to show up to the show.
This is going to be interesting. All of my team is asking me questions.
Thank you so much for being on the show. Let’s dive into it.
I’m happy to be here on my own show.
Why did you start Fuller Wallet Media? You worked with some of the biggest names and designed their funnels. Why did you start this great company, Fuller Wallet Media?
Honestly, I’ve worked in the industry behind the scenes for about fifteen years. I’ve worked with some of the biggest names in the real estate space and still work with some very credible people in the real estate space. I’ve been doing this for fifteen years. About two years ago, I still have an entity in that industry, but I opened Fuller Wallet so that I could get out. I was defined as an affiliate manager for so long, but I’m building custom funnels from scratch for 2 to 3 years at this point. That’s not my focus. I still do it with our clients, but I was at a crossroads where I was like, “I’ve got to make a decision. Something has got to change.”
I came up with Fuller Wallet Media. I was like, “We can offer way more services as a company as a whole than anybody else out there.” With the credibility and experience of our team, it was a no-brainer. I don’t share this often. I shared it with somebody I had a call with privately. When I set up Fuller Wallet Media, I own other businesses as well. I’ve updated my will and my trust so that if I die today or I die in my sleep tonight, my business will continue to run. My team will continue to get a paycheck and business will run as usual. That’s how important it was for me to build something that I could leave so that people would know, no matter what, there’s an exit strategy plan if anything happens to me.
That’s unbelievable because a lot of entrepreneurs that are self-starters don’t think the way you think.
They’re out for themselves. Many people are out for themselves. They don’t care about what you do or how much work you do. They’re 100% out for themselves. I’ve come across many people like that in my industry and other niches as well. You’re going to find them everywhere you go. We highly vet everyone. Jeff highly vets our guests. Melanie highly vets any promotion, affiliate offer, or client opportunity. I have a fully trained team that I can trust, rely on, and get things done. It was important to me that my team feels secure in knowing that I want them to have that security.
You mentioned Jeff and Melanie. Shout out to Gracie and Jeffey, but tell us how you’ve assembled this band of misfits and created Fuller Wallet Media.
Do you really want to know?
I think the people want to know, Julie. The people want to know.
I’m going to tell you.
I’m from the Philippines and Melanie is on the other side of the world, as well as the other two members. How are you able to ship us in, Julie, for Fuller Wallet Media?
I would love to. We’re not shipping in. We’re planning a trip out to the Philippines to go visit our team in the Philippines. I’m waiting for my son’s graduation dates and stuff like that so we can arrange the trip around all of his because he’s got family coming to town. We are flying out to spend time with our team in the Philippines because they’ve worked with us for so long. I met Jeff and I interviewed Jeff.
Sorry for cutting you off, but I think you forgot. This is funny, Matt, because we are supposed to schedule the interview on Monday. We have this conversation on Saturday, the weekend.
This was over ten years ago.
I was like, “How about I call you now?” This is the interview?” I called Julie instead and did the interview.
You did. I was like, “Fine. Let’s do it.”
Continue, Julie. Tell them.
He did amazing. One of the things I do, and I won’t disclose some internal proprietary information, is when I hire any VA, there’s a testing process that they have to go through. There’s a dialect process that I test. Jeff knows. They have to read certain things to me to see other languages. I have to have a basic conversation. Right off the bat, Jeff was using American lingo that you’d have to teach most VAs because they need step-by-step instructions like, “What to do next. When this is done, click here, then do this.” My team and my VAs are completely independent and get their jobs done. I met Jeff and we hit it off. Jeff is my right arm because he literally has been.
He does everything.
Everything I’ve learned too, I’ve taught Jeff and I’m still teaching him.
Jeff, you’re amazing.
Learning is a process. Every day, we learn something new.
It’s important to me as a business owner that my team is also learning and growing in the company as well. When Jeff started out with me over ten years ago, did you think ten years later you’d be working with me and have a US-based salary?
Exactly. I was just doing calls at that time. I was not knowledgeable about doing podcasts.
I didn’t have to direct him all day long. Jeff gets things done like my other VAs. They’re qualified to be on the phone and they have the American dialect where he can be like, “That’s cool.” He understands it. Whereas other people, you can tell you’re on the phone with somebody from overseas or inexperienced. Jeff is a very experienced person on my team.
We know you’re very busy, Julie. You’re building funnels and doing affiliate stuff. How are you able to balance teaching your team this and that? What task they’ll be doing today, tomorrow, and for the rest of the week, and doing your funnel stuff and affiliate stuff as well? How are you able to balance that?
Do you want to know the truth?
Nothing but the truth.
I’ll be honest.
People want to know, Julie.
I have worked my butt off in this industry. It’s a male-dominated industry too, by the way. For the fifteen years that I’ve been in this industry, I am going to disclose, I have never in my life been inappropriate with any man or woman on the road. I take a lot of pride in that. My reputation is always a concern. I have a lot of pride in that.
As you should.
Secondly, if my team isn’t learning, growing, and having more opportunities to earn, then I have to look at myself as a business owner and say, “What am I doing wrong?” I’m not here to start a business where people have this job and ask for a raise and all that. We’re collectively as a team. That’s how I want my whole team involved and that’s how I’ve gotten them involved. Melanie is learning new things she’s getting good at. Eventually, she’s going to be cross-training on that. Jeff is learning new things every day. I invest in my team. If my team needs training or wants special training or software, all they have to do is ask me. I’ll get them the training or the software. I want our team to be strong, but be able to provide as much value as possible for our clients.
I’m glad you mentioned that. Bringing value to the clients. We’ve established that we’ve got a great team. Jeff does his thing. Melanie does her thing. I do mine. Let’s talk about the value that Fuller Wallet Media brings to the client. What is your vision of where you want to take this and what we provide to a potential client or an existing client? Elaborate on that a little bit.
Our team is experienced from front-end product development to webinars, all the way to a backend offer, whether that’s a live event, application, and all the things in between. As well as traffic, social media posts, and things of that nature. We’re a full-service marketing and media company. Not everybody is a custom package. I have clients that like their small little business, and that’s okay. We keep it the way they like it and that’s what we build out. I have more complex clients where I may need to do a custom build from scratch every month. It varies. I like having such diversity on my team that we can serve as many different clients in many ways that there’s not one fit for all.
Talk to them a little bit about how charitable you are. You talked about it in the book. All the proceeds go to helping homeless women in the shelter.
Yeah, 100% of the proceeds for this book, Less Than Zero, on which your end is much more clear. I wrote this book and let me tell you why I wrote this book.
Here it is right here. Less Than Zero.
His screams are way better than mine. I wrote the book fully to give back. All purchases for the Less Than Zero book, I’m donating to women’s and men’s facilities nationwide. Also, a percentage is going to a veterans association as well.
That’s awesome, Julie.
100% of the proceeds that are from the book are 100% being donated. This isn’t a money-maker for me. When I came to this point, I’ve been approached several times by people to write a book. I was like, “No, I’m not going to write a book.” I’m not an author. This was the hardest thing I ever did in my life. I wrote this book, and then I had it reviewed. It literally is my story of how I came from absolutely nothing. I had less than zero. I was emotionally, mentally, physically, and financially in every way possible broken. I had less than zero in all of those areas of my life.
You were homeless, right?
I was homeless. I’m in a women’s shelter. I got my food from the food banks. At that point, I saved up enough money to get into this beautiful, glorious, and efficient apartment in Pasadena, Texas. I was so grateful. I was like, “If I have a roof over my head and I can feed my son, that’s all that matters. We’re healthy.” I had one guy who was an influence on me. He believed in me. He had kids my age. We met at a weird time in life. His wife had recently passed away and I’m homeless. He was the first person that opened my eyes. I give that story a little bit of how I come from the shelters and I share the actual marketing tools and resources that I did use to start my businesses and that I still use now.
He’s still a mentor of yours, correct?
He still is. I talk to him frequently. He works for a very high-end developer in Houston. I still stay in touch with him regularly, which I love. He got remarried. His wife is amazing. I’m truly blessed to have that.
We love happy endings. I’m sure he is very proud of you. Look at the success you’ve had. When he met you at that tie when he probably felt his lowest when his wife died, and you go through that.
I’m homeless, and I wrote a book fifteen years later.
He’s got a big piece dedicated to him. I’m sure he’s overwhelmingly proud of you. That’s astonishing. Kudos to you. I know he’s proud of you.
It was a journey.
It was even a process for me. I had to relive a lot of my childhood. I don’t get into graphic and gory details in the book because nobody wants to read that. It’s glazed over, but I do tell you my deepest and darkest moments, what I did to get out of them, and how I started my businesses.
I haven’t finished the book yet. I’m halfway through. I got it on Kindle. I love it. I know you personally. You’ve been there for me and I’ve known you for maybe four months now.
At least five. Maybe five.
You were so welcoming and generous with your information and your knowledge that it was almost surprising because it was like, “What? What does she see in me to where she’s taking the time and investing her knowledge in someone like me?” It was astonishing to me. You deserve all the success.
Thank you. Honestly, I feel like I’m at a point in my career where I still have a lot of growing and learning to do. There’s still a lot I want to do for my future. We’ve also been investing. My husband works on the houses. He retired six years ago. That’s another blessing that came about from doing the right thing and putting one foot in front of another, and getting out of my comfort zone.
Melanie being a guest on the show that she co-hosts is getting out of her comfort zone. She killed it in her episode. Getting out of that comfort zone is key for anybody. You got to be strategic. I’m sure there were tons of planning and research before you bought that first property invested.
I found this beach lot because my husband wanted to build it at the beach. I bought this lot. I had $5,000 in savings. That’s all I had to my name. I negotiated it with this seller. I was like, “This is all I have.” They wanted to get rid of it. They paid for the survey and everything, so I got one little tiny lot at the beach and I thought, “This is all I need.” The guy that owned the two lots next to me, I did the Loral Langemeier from The Secret. I wrote a letter every day and he called me right after I bought the first lot and I had no money left over.
We had enough to run the ground, underline, and all that. I was like, “Okay.” The guy responds right after I close on the lot and I’ve been writing to him for months. He called me and he said, “I got your letter.” It was our dream to retire down at the beach. He goes, “I get letters every day and I got yours. I’d like to sell it to you.” I was like, “I would love to buy it from you, but I can’t afford to pay you all at once.” He was like, “I’ll owner-finance it.” That’s how I got those two lots. The years gradually went on and we ended up purchasing about fourteen lots in the neighborhood.
You keep talking. I’m going to start writing letters so I can start purchasing some land. Just keep talking. Jeff, Melanie, you all take over.
I’m curious, Matt, because we know Julie’s a workaholic. She works seven days a week. Aside from work, Julie, what do you like to do during your free time? On Sundays, do you do something to enjoy?
I’ve recently started doing this and I’m going to share this. This is a personal moment and I haven’t shared this with a lot of people publicly. About two and a half years ago, Melanie, it was one weekend after a race and I was exhausted. I was like, “Why are you not so tired?” I ended up having shingles. How long ago was that?
It was 2 to 3 years, something like that.
About 2 to 3 years ago, I got sick with shingles from stress. It broke my body down. I literally couldn’t stand on my own. I lost my hearing and vision. The air hurts if you walk by me. It was due to stress. I got through it and I thought, “I’m good to go.” I wasn’t balancing my life, work, family, and things like that. I now have a coach that I personally work with that I’ve been opening up that freedom. In my free time, I do enjoy reading now. Not just my book. I enjoy reading a lot of books and supporting other colleagues of mine that wrote books. I love to read their books and try to support them there. I also am learning to drag race, which I am enjoying because when I get on the bike, I don’t have to think about anything else except what I’m doing, and it’s just me.
That’s motorcycle drag racing. She’s not drag racing in a car.
Motorcycle driving and she’s popping wheelies.
I do ride a bike as well, but it’s just 155 cc. How many cc of motorbikes do you have, Julie?
Dale, how much power does my motorcycle have? Let me bring my husband in. This is a great interview. I’m going to bring my husband real quick.
Let’s talk to him.
The bike I race is a ten-second bike. He’s working on houses, so he’s in work clothes? He works on houses we buy. This is my husband.
How are you all doing? How it’s going?
There you go. This is my husband. He set up some food and he just got back from working on one of the houses we were working on right now. They have some motorcycle questions, so I need your perfection here on my bike that I’m racing. You could sit here.
I just climbed out from under the house.
Let’s talk about the bike I’m racing.
We own three race bikes. She’s starting off on the smallest one. We put her on a Kawasaki 250, but the wheelbase is so short, she flipped it the first time out.
I rode bikes my whole life, by the way.
Poor bike, Julie.
I’ve never ridden a Kawasaki. I’ve always ridden a Harley.
Julie, did you show your husband that picture we made you in Photoshop? Did he get to see that?
You’re popping that wheelie.
Yes. He’s in the group. I posted it in the motorcycle group. What about my bike with 120 horsepower?
It’s a ten-second quarter-mile bike. I go to turn it down for her, but it’s stretched with the wheelie bar so it won’t flip on her.
It won’t flip again. It won’t break your arm.
He’s like, “That bike won’t flip.” Everybody said the Kawasaki wouldn’t flip either and that didn’t work out.
Poor bike. Poor Kawasaki.
I got to go. It was nice meeting you.
It’s nice meeting you. That was funny. You had flipped your bike and broken your arm. It happens.
If anybody can do anything extraordinary, it’s Julie. That’s what we’ve learned.
Are you kidding me? It’s our whole team. Let me throw this out there though. Melanie is a hardcore Harley rider too. She does some pretty wicked motorcycle rides.
I’ve heard some of her stories.
She’s a pretty strong bad buck girl on a motorcycle. We’ve done some serious rides.
We’ve got a great team. I think we take a little bit from everybody, but what you give to all of us and to the clients is unbelievable. We thank you for everything that you do and your vision, and we’re prepared to take it and follow you on this journey. I’m thankful to be a part of the team.
I’m grateful for everyone that I have on this team.
To wrap it up, Julie, do you have a piece of advice for people out there who are planning, who want to start their own team, start their own company, or start to write their own book? What piece of advice can you give to them?
If somebody was interested in writing a book, first, before you even write the book, know what you’re writing the book about, what your avatar for the book is, and what you want to focus on with the book. My suggestion is once you figure that out, write the chapters you want and the headlines, and then break down the information you want under those chapters. What was the second question, Jeff?
For people who want to start their own team or if they want to start their own company.
For anybody that wants to start their own team, as Matt mentioned earlier, entrepreneurship is not for the faint heart because it is a daily grind and hustle. Some people love it. I love it. I love the hustle. Putting deals together, connecting people, and helping people. I think that’s where our team has a lot of value for a lot of people.
If you’d like to know more about Julie, you can go to FullerWalletMedia.com/hope and buy the book. You can contact Melanie and schedule a meeting with us and you can learn how to work with us. We’d be happy to do it. Thanks so much, Julie, for lending your time. I know you got to run, but we appreciate you and we look forward to going along this journey with you.
I appreciate all of you. This journey isn’t a Julie journey. This is a Fuller Wallet journey. I want that to be clear.
You heard it here first. We’re on the journey with you. Take care. We’ll see you next week.