Right. Reviewing the Recurring Revenue Retreat (or R3) righteously or even responsibly would be realistically remissive of me. I promise I won’t alliterate the entire review.
R3 was conceived in 2017 when Kristina Romero had the idea to bring awesome speakers, with incredible businesses and focus on the concept of recurring revenue, rather than a particular brand, broad business network or product. I say conceived because the event was pushed back a year, when Kristina selfishly decided to have a forth child (unbelievable).
R3 would bring experts and businesses to a event that focused on the most important (arguably) aspect of running a business – generating recurring revenue.
Rather than focusing on WordPress or marketing funnels, it’d allow attendees to build a recurring revenue income stream into their business. It would also act as a true retreat. Offering attendees the chance to attend the event with their family. As opposed to other event that are so business focused, that some families choose to do either a family holiday or a business event.
That’s why the event was hosted at Walt Disney World. Specifically, the Coronado Springs Resort. Business owners and entrepreneurs were encouraged to bring their families and enjoy the time away together, rather than just blast 2 business days and go home.
Below is my review and thoughts of the event, both as a speaker and an attendee.
*Spoiler alert: It was awesome
Let’s start with the big guns. Mike Michalowicz was the keynote. And he was fucking amazing.
I’m a huge Michalowicz fan. He’s the author of Clockwork, Pumpkin Plan, Profit First and Surge. His podcast is awesome and he’s a very handsome man.
Plus, you’ve got to have serious balls and knowledge to present for an HOUR with just a whiteboard. Which by the way was all he needed. Mike talked through his 4D framework and the Clockwork process.
I’ve interviewed Mike on my podcast and his talks in person are just as good. What was particularly interesting was hearing him talk “without” a script. As a speaker he was both compelling to listen to (entertaining) and his content was lit.
If it wasn’t obvious enough how much of a fan I am of Mike, the signed version of Clockwork that I got from him is now my 5th version of the book (3 printed, 1 audio, 1 digital).
Plus, I got to show him my Maori ta moko (back tattoo) at Epcot. Sounds like a weird dream. Anywho, if you’re reading this Mike, it was awesome to meet you and hope our paths cross again in the future.
I’ll be honest, speaking at R3 was a nerve-wracking experience. I was having doubts before the talk PLUS I was the first talk after Mike. It’s like being asked to play a set after The Beatles.
Having said that, Matthew, Robert and Kristina did an awesome job looking after me. Shout out to Amy Keys too for helping with my microphone!
The attendees we SO respondent it was a pleasure to speak to them. I’ve been in rooms where talks have fallen flat, and I believe it’s a two way street. Good speakers get good audiences and vice versa.
My talk was on scaling your business while staying small. I learned that I might have to cut the slides back a bit. But overall, I really enjoyed the talk (: I’ve also got the slides below.
This is where it get’s kicked up another notch! The speaker line up was insane. So many valuable insights and perspectives. From Cory Miller’s therapy style questions to Kim Doyal’s entertaining and (at times) heartbreaking journey through a business with content.
Every speaker over-delivered on the value they brought to their talk. No one had the same style and each talk had their own valuable takeaways. I honestly couldn’t pick out a favourite.
What was REALLY interesting was the focus on recurring revenue. There are dozens of traffic, leads, sales, social media, content marketing, marketing, video and SEO conferences. But ZERO recurring revenue retreats. Despite rec rev being the #1 income stream that all businesses must create.
In the afternoon various workshops were held for attendees. Longer 2 hour sessions that allowed for smaller groups to work with an expert.
The workshops worked really well. Both as someone who ran one and attended one. I personally couldn’t talk for 2 hours so I led a series of exercises on creating a scalable funnel for your business, that sold on repeat.
Not like…internet website hosting. The event hosting. Looking after attendees, speakers etc.
First of all, it was AMAZING to see so many friends and colleagues again. I met customers face to face for the first time, and got to hang out with my favourite people in the world.
I especially loved how the event was designed to get people to talk to each other, mix and network. People brought families, partners and children to the event and it gave the whole thing a more wholesome, bigger picture feeling.
Star Wars hyper virtual reality. Insane evening fireworks. Epic pudding and dessert buffets. Drinks, laughing and more.
In the evening, there were a ton of events planned which blew me away. Disney knows their shit and gave Liv and I some amazing memories. Adding this to a business event was inspired.
A BRILLIANT idea was to host an escape room for prizes, after each lunch. We got into teams of 4 and had to solve a series of puzzles to unlock a chest with prizes in it.
I love puzzles and it was another brilliant way to talk and work with people that I usually wouldn’t get the chance to hang out with.
The sponsors at the event were and are some of my favourite people. Meeting up with Brad and Alex in person was fucking awesome. And meeting Lee for the first time was an absolute joy.
Hans and Donata from Termageddon were there too and it was brilliant to catch up with them after Lee Jackson’s event earlier in the year.
James, Cliff and all the others were brilliant to talk to. Plus, their products are genuinely good AND they helped bring the event together.
Lastly – the food. Holy cow. Lunch was some of the best food I’ve ever eaten. Even for “business event buffet” style food, it was killer. Overall, as I’ve mentioned, Disney know their shit.
R3 was more than just a business event. The attendee’s Facebook group is buzzing with activity, partnerships and action. I can honestly say it was one of the best events I’ve ever been to, both as a speaker and attendee.