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Exit Five Newsletter #87: Rip The Bandaid

Hey, Dave here.

This week I’m in your inbox to talk about Exit Five. Not to promote Exit Five, but to use a story from building this business to share a lesson.


It’s a bit longer than a typical email, but I hope you’ll stick with it and read the whole thing.

Our attention spans have shrunk to 30 second video clips, so think of this as mental training. I am helping you build up your focus.

The topic I’m writing about this week I’ll call Rip The Bandaid. It’s a business lesson but there’s a lot that can be applied to marketing.


Here we go:

Sometimes you need to go backward to go forward.

I lost 1,000 customers and $100,000 in revenue when I moved my community (Exit Five) from Facebook Groups to Circle last year.

I knew this would happen.

And it sucked to lose revenue, to lose active members.

But I did it because I wanted to take a few steps back to go forward and build a better product for the future.


I wanted to move off of Facebook and onto a platform that we can own (custom web and mobile app built with Circle). And I wanted to shift from a "discussion forum" to a "membership site."


Over the past ~10 months we have re-acquired the customers we lost and made up for the difference.


The result today is a much better platform and a product that is well suited for the type of business we're building. Plus, we don't have to log in to Facebook anymore.


This felt like ripping out a piece of legacy software. And it would have been much easier to not do it. To stick with it. To deal with the sunk cost and just keep building.


But I knew it wasn't the right fit for the long term.


So I took the pain. There was churn. There were plenty of members who cancelled because they wanted it on Facebook. 


"Hey, I don't login anymore since you moved it off Facebook and I'm bummed about that."


Members who told me they don't use it anymore since it's not on Facebook.


But also dozens of people told me they never joined *because* it was on Facebook.


To build anything is to be able to make gut decisions and take some chances. Some people will love it, some people will hate it.


But only you can decide if it's the right move based on your vision and where things are going.


There's no paint by numbers approach to entrepreneurship and building a business.


Data is great, but it doesn't give you the perfect playbook of what to do.


Often times you have to endure short term pain to get things in a better position for the long run, and we're there now.


I sacrificed $100k in revenue to get here, and went from a community that cost $0 to run on Facebook to one that costs $20k on Circle.


But today we have a real business, built on the proper platform - and it wouldn't have happened without being able to rip the bandaid last year and make a hard decision to change platforms.


Today we're building a niche media company - we're helping B2B marketers build successful careers, and we're doing that through our membership site (web/mobile app that we moved off Facebook) and our content (podcast, newsletter, webinars, social media, AMAs, members only content).


We've been in the gym for the last 10 months and had to rebuild the foundation for the future. Now we're in great shape and ready to keep building.


I'm writing this as a note to myself to rip the bandaid when needed - and to share with you. Sometimes you have to take a few steps back to go forward. Sometimes you have to hit pause. You have to be able to know which feedback to ignore and what's worth listening to.


We have so much data available to help make decisions today, but ultimately it will come down to a gut decision. Don't forget about the art of business.
And don’t be afraid to rip the bandaid.



- Dave

P.S. If you read all of my story here, reply back and let me know…



#120: Design - How To Drive More Pipeline by Taking Risks with Design and Brand (with Eli Rubel)


In this episode, Dave is joined by Eli Rubel. Eli is the CEO of Matter Made and NoBoring Design and a Marketing Advisor for companies like Dropbox and Loom. 


Eli discusses how companies that take risks with their design and go outside the brand guidelines will stand out in the sea of sameness and drive more pipeline. He also discusses

  • His framework for focusing on 'micro surfaces' that lead to bigger wins
  • The importance of timing in email marketing
  • How to properly analyze the efficiency of your marketing spend

Listen to the Episode Now on Spotify

Or find it everywhere you listen by searching "Exit Five" podcast.



AMA: How To Land Your Dream Job  (Members Only)

Kelly Gordon

Looking for a new job? Need help nailing the interviews or asking for more money?


In this AMA, we'll be joined by Kelly Gordon, Marketing Recruitment Manager at Creative People.


She'll answer all questions related to interview tips, how to work with recruiters, when to start looking for a new job, how to use LinkedIn, how to negotiate comp, and everything else. 


The mission of Exit Five is to help you grow your career in B2B marketing and  jobs are a huge part of career growth.


Without the right job, growth will be slower. That's why we're bringing experts like Kelly into the community multiple times a month now, to help you a) get the best jobs and b) be the best version of yourself in them.

Members can sign up here to join this AMA live



Who's Hiring Right Now

HOT JOB OF THE WEEK: Flowhub is hiring a Demand Generation Manager to join their team. Flowhub is on a mission to make legal cannabis accessible to everyone. Today over 1,000 dispensaries trust Flowhub's point of sale, inventory management, business intelligence, and mobile solutions to process $3B+ cannabis sales annually.

This person will be responsible for owning the demand generation strategy and marketing programs. This role calls for a forward-thinking, hands-on marketing practitioner who thrives on hitting and exceeding their pipeline number.

If you're interested you can apply here

Other open roles on the Exit Five job board this week:

  • Thoropass is hiring a Demand Generation Manager. It's a remote role. $110-$140k salary.

  • Spellbook is hiring a Senior Demand Gen Lead. Remote role. 

  • Meter is hiring a Demand Generation Lead. Based in San Francisco. $98-$198k salary.

Want to advertise your open role here? Click here to post a job to the Exit Five Job Board.


Join us in Exit Five

Because no one goes to school for B2B marketing. 

We have a private community + content site for marketing pros like you and me if you’re looking for a peer group and discussion forum to help you grow your career in B2B marketing.

Get feedback, campaign ideas, browse templates, videos, guides, get recommendations on agencies and vendors, find contractors and freelancers, vent about your boss, find new jobs and more.

We have a 7 day free trial so you can join 100% risk free. 


Thanks to our friends over at Knak for being our 2024 newsletter sponsor.

knak logo-1

Want to sponsor a future newsletter or learn more about other sponsorship opportunities with Exit Five? Email hi@exitfive.com (or just reply to this email).

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