Guru Popcorn: Kajabi

October 5, 2010 , 42 Comments

In today’s episode of Guru Popcorn, I take a close look at the first pre-launch video for Kajabi, a tricked-out media/product/membership platform. There’s a lot of interesting stuff going on in the video and with the marketing of Kajabi in general. To everyone’s great relief, this might just turn out to be “not your average product launch” (because, let’s be honest: we’re getting tired of those…).

Check out the video below to see my take on the clever marketing tactics used in this launch.


If you haven’t seen the pre-launch video for Kajabi yet, click here to watch that first.

Kajabi Guru Popcorn Video

What I failed to mention in the video, even though I meant to, was how incredibly good Andy Jenkins is with narration. He's a guy who can practically speak on two tracks at the same time: He can say one thing with his words and use tone and rythm to say something else. Reminds me that I want to work on my own speech skills. Also: Sorry for saying "clever" about 200 times in my video... Leave a comment below and let me know what your thoughts about this launch are! Do you agree with my views of Kajabi? Or do you think I was too much "under the influence" of the marketing message, because I'm actually interested in this product? Cheers,  

About ​Shane Melaugh

I'm the founder of ActiveGrowth and Thrive Themes and over the last years, I've created and marketed a dozen different software, information and SaaS products. Apart from running my business, I spend most of my time reading, learning, developing skills and helping other people develop theirs. On ActiveGrowth, I want to help you become a better entrepreneur and product creator. Read more about my story here.

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  • As always, I would say, extremely good video when it is done by Andy Jenkins. Unfortunately, I am also afraid that it will show in the price of the product.

    I am also looking for a solution for a membership site/product delivery and it will be interesting to see the next videos.

    Actually I didn’t notice anything about email in the video but I assume they have that part covered.



    • Hi Erik,

      Yep, Andy knows how to make a video, that’s for sure. :)

      Good catch! E-mail will almost certainly be done by integration (with aweber, getresponse etc.). And that’s a good thing. All-in-one is nice to a certain point, but e-mail delivery is a ver fickle thing and I’d rather leave that up to a company that doesn nothing other than e-mail. Specialists, in other words.

      I’ll be sharing my experiences and thoughts about membership and product delivery in a post sometime soon, as I’ve been fiddling with different solutions for a while now and I think I’ve found the best options. :)



      • Hey Shane,

        I would certainly be interested in your reco for a membership site. I have an idea for a new type of social site but it’s never gotten off the ground due to the expense of hiring programmers. I am therefore anxious to see what you’ve found.


      • Hi Doug,

        Currently working on a huge post where I share everything I have learnt about membership platforms, so far.
        Don’t know if that stuff works for social sites, though. Maybe this here is something that might suit your purposes: Social Sam. This is not a recommendation, by the way. I have not tried the service, it just came to mind, since it seems to be geared toward social stuff. :)

    • The price is going to be $97 every month… As far as I know.

      Kajabi is directed at people that are actually taking action and probably already making some money online.


      • That would be a very attractive price for Kajabi. Wanna bet that there’s gonna be a bunch of limitations on the $97/month package and you have to pay double or triple to get the whole shebang? :D

  • Hi Shane, You can say ‘clever’ as many times as you want. I just love hearing your accent. lol ;)

    I really just wanted to say that this was the first guru popcorn video that I’ve seen of yours. Very good job of trying to stay neutral on the topic. I wish more people would do these kinds of reviews.


    P.S. Ya, Kajabi is not where I’m at yet. lol


    • Thanks, Kelly!

      Good on you for realizing when something isn’t for you and not getting caught up in the hype. I reckon that this product is not suitable for “most” people who will see the promotions. I reckon that if people decide to start with product creation, hoping that Kajabi will solve their problems, they’ll just be disappointed.
      But for people who already do this kind of thing, it might be a good solution. We’ll have to see it in action first, though.


  • Hi Shane.

    Like yourself I have been starting to look at such a solution, it looks slick, clearly it’s going to be top dollar but they have a point

    Am I alone in this, I stopped the video because it goes on for so long, I stop a lot of these because I don’t care about the 14 hour pre amble in many that goes nowhere, just give me the facts and let me make my mind up, am I missing the point? maybe the US market goes for that

    That said the point that your products says so much about you particularly those stuttering videos, I’m talking generally here and at least it’s not making wild claims

    It’s interesting to read Rich Schefren’s e mail that came through earlier today about the state of the market,it goes to the heart of what he describes as the circus that marketing has become recently

    Very in tune with your recent posts on where the clickbank crew are going, as he puts it building a real business in a sea of Carnival Barkers Thanks Tony


  • The video is so slick it actually starts to put me off. I could not watch it to the end.

    I am also starting to think who actually owns this. Is it just Andy Jenkins or perhaps it is the whole team including the Kern’s.

    Price will be an interesting point – but my guess is high! But what do I know :-)



  • Ken Morgan says:

    Your analysis is excellent as always Shane. I agree Andy’s video is very slick but I find his continual changing images distracting rather than holding your attention. Maybe that’s just me but I prefer just a straight talking head or a straightforward bullet points slide.

    The video stopped playing three quarters way through for me. I don’t know why this happens but I’ve noticed it with the very professional looking videos like this. So, their delivery isn’t so perfect after all! I’ve never had this problem with YouTube or Daily Motion videos.


  • Hi Shane,

    Thank you for your excellent review!

    I watched most of the video out of the curiosity because you recommended we watch it … there had been several emails about it including John Reese … it sounds like a fantastic product for the marketer who needs all that Andy talked about but it’s not for me.



  • Shane, good job!

    I caught all the marketing angles you mentioned in both the video and then your review of the marketing of these big launches.

    They are a teriffic way for novices and intermediate marketers to get a free lesson in how internet marketing is marketed from the big boys (and girls)..

    I always enjoy good ol’ cousin Andy Jenkins type big launch videos, I am not quite ready for this type of product yet, but will definitely consider it when the time is right!

    As a side note, Andy was giving the beta version of Kajabi as his bonus for buying Frank’s List Control through his (Andy’s) affiliate link and mentioned that Kajabi would be a launch…



  • Hi Shane,

    I do agree with you that in general this is a great launch. From the slow building up of buzz since the beginning of the year. I am also sure that it is a great product for the right people. A product that works.
    The one thing I do not like in Andy’s message is positioning the product to newbies as well and making it look like when you have Kajabi all you have to do is click here and there for you to be successful and have a big payday.
    The reason for this is quite obvious. The market of actual product producers is far smaller than the get rich quick crowd that is looking for the quick fix. So, in order to make it a big payday again and/or get a lot of subscribers (I read that it is supposed to be a monthly subscription) Andy and everyone promoting Kajabi will have to target all their regular subscribers which mainly fall into the make money now crowd.
    And the sad part that this is happening is that nothing is changing, especially after the industry is talking a lot about ethics of marketers and how they market. Part of that discussion was/is happening right here on your Blog a couple of days ago.

    But putting the above aside, it is masterful marketing and I am sure a great product as well.




  • Hi Shane..

    great video, yes I did see in my mails a bunch of marketers are promoting the Kajabi. Like you said we just have to wait and see.



  • G’day Shane ,

    I suppose my comments will be somewhat similar to Max.

    The presentation is so “slick” I actually did not watch it to the end. I had the “Jenkins/Kern” feeling about the whole deal.

    Anyone wanting to take advantage of the product will need to have very deep pockets and a credit card that is in good shape.

    The “put-off” for me is that they are still willing to try and convince the “average” person irrespective of his or her experience level that it is some sort of “formula” which will allow anyone to profit from the program.

    Having been around for longer than I want to remember this will never be the case but the promoters don’t really care about anyone who has spent the money and feels some reluctance to request a refund because of some form of unwarranted embarrassment that they have made a mistake.

    It is certainly not something I am interested in but I have no doubt the product will be as “slick” as the promotion.

    Cheers ,

    Norman Holden


  • Thanks for all the comments! Since there are some very common threads here, allow me to post a “global” reply:

    It’s very interesting to me that there are several reports of the video being “too slick”. This confirms something I’ve seen to be true about video as well. Professionalism is great, but at a certain point, it removes you too far away from us “average joes and janes” watching the video.

    And I agree that the fact everyone’s promoting this to everyone (including newbies and non-product-creators who’ll never make full use of this) leaves a bit of a bad taste… guess that’s marketing for ya. As Max stated, the biggest part of the IM pie consists of folks looking for that quick fix, so those get targeted again and again.

    As far as I know, tomorrow is the next part of the launch, so we’ll see how things develop.


  • Hi Shane

    I seem to remember Frank Kern spouting about Kajabi some time back. He also mentioned the price then too and I remembered thinking “Ouch”.

    They may now go for a lower price point as they mass distribute it. At the time though I though it was priced only for the top earners to be able to afford it in ROI terms.

    Yes the video is slick, as always from Andy. If a guy can do post edit on a Star Wars film you don’t expect poor video’s from him do you?

    Far too much waffle for a first taster. Had he not left the slider at the bottom I would have switched off shortly after the start of Andy talking. As it was I just kept clicking it forward to read the slides and get the info I wanted. Which, as you say Shane, was not product info. I was after style of marketing info.

    Like you, I listen for what do they do as a put down of the competition and what do they leave out of their presentation.

    As I have not got a real interest in the product I’ll be using global delete on nearly all future references I think.

    Thanks for your neutral stance on this. I do like your presentations and the fact that your voice sounds a lot more honest than “Good ‘ole couzin Andy’s” despite what you think of it.

    Hope you eventually make the right choice for you when getting your product delivery problem sorted.




    • Very very slick video. And very smart done.
      However, at this moment I do send buyers of my ebook only a link to a download page. And I want to change that. Into a sort of ‘free’ membership area where there is a download-area and free content. where they can buy my other products for a ‘special’ members-only price. And where they can see the info for a paid-membership. And upgrade the free membership into a paid version.
      Not sure is Cajabi can do that.
      Or what other options, easy to use and not too expensive, I can use.



      • Hey Jan,

        Interesting ideas, there (I’m setting up something like that, right now).
        Maybe Kajabi would be a good solution for this and maybe not. I suspect that it’s not very flexible, to be honest, because all the memberships I’ve seen on Kajabi look exactly the same.

        On the other hand, I’m not very technical and if Kajabi makes everything easy then I wouldn’t mind sacrificing some flexibility.
        We’ll have to wait and see, for now.

  • Shane, I could only force myself to watch it for 45 seconds and that was because you sent me, other wise I’d have been outa there in 5 seconds flat.

    Andy does slick so well it made me feel sick!!


    But if I just see someone talking to me – as you do in your videos that gets to me right away.

    You don’t use music either. Thank you Shane!!

    Funny thing is I’ve done the whole Frankenstein engineering bit. My hair and nails have grown back now, so you’d hardly notice!!!

    So I could be a candidate for this, but for the whole rock music and bullshit at the beginning.

    Just do a John Carlton on me – it works…Tell me what the product is going to do for me, tell me the friggin’ price and with a smidgen of urgency ask for the sale.

    Better stop…this is feeling like a rant.




    • Hi Alex,

      Always love to read your comments, mate.
      The glittery super-slick video seems to be turning more people off that I expected. Interesting to see.

      Love the comment about your hair and nails, by the way.
      I’ve kind of done the Frankenstein thing, except that I’m really crappy at anything that requires coding. So for me, even the most minor tweak that needs to be made is a big obstacle. Even the really “easy” systems are almost too complicated for me. So, I’d probably be the perfect candidate for Kajabi. Probably not going to go for it, though.

      Tell me what the product is going to do for me, tell me the friggin’ price and with a smidgen of urgency ask for the sale.

      Man, that would be something, eh?


    • Alex,

      I like your style. I also appreciate solid marketing (Carlton-Style) without all the hype and BS mixed in the pot.

      It’s good to inject personality into a marketing message, but it’s a real art to not OVER do it or UNDER do it.

      It’s OK to rant man. That’s how quality control works.


  • Shane,
    All you missed by missing the Traffic Voodoo launch was Jeff Johnson doing a ton of talking about himself. He should have called the product “Toot My Own Horn Traffic Thingy”.

    I woke up this morning to 6 emails with everyone from Ed Dale to Mike Filsaime already beginning to promote this product. I can tell that by the time the launch is over I’m going to be pretty sick of hearing about it.

    No doubt the it seems to be what a product developer needs. As far as the video goes, to me it looks like they took 4 thousand video clips and just mashed them all together. It’s very annoying how it constantly switches clip after clip after clip.

    I would have preferred that they hired YOU to do a presentation in the style of your Backlink Battleplan videos, a real person explaining the value and benefits of the product with a little Powerpoint thrown in. But that’s just my opinion and what appeals to me. Everyone has their own triggers.

    And I know you spoke highly of the narration, but Jeez that guy’s voice is annoying. After 10 minutes I couldn’t take anymore and started skipping ahead just to get through it.

    I’m sure every marketer in the world is going to be promoting it, so by the time the launch is over and done, hearing about Kajabi is going to be a real pain in Dabooti!


    • “Toot My Own Horn Traffic Thingy”

      Priceless. :D

      I did watch a bit of two Traffic Voodoo videos. Uber-yawn.

      I agree that we’ll all be tired of hearing about Kajabi pretty soon. Still, you gotta admit that this one is at least different from the standard “learn my secrets” affair.


  • Rather intrigued by the word “kajabi” and wondered if it was something I could order with a curry or maybe a “kajabi and chips” so I went to Google and it looks like it’s possibly the name of the coder – there’s a couple of kajabis on Facebook.

    If anyone wants 2 more friends they know where to go.


    Just being helpful.


  • How would you compare Kajabi to the nanacast/premiumcast/mixiv platform? from the video, it looks like Kajabi might be easier to navigate and use. How would you integrate the sales funnel from kajabi into your website–or do you even need an extra website? Any news about their shopping cart? some reviews suggest it has its own, others mention integrating with 1shoppingcart. would be nice not to have the extra expense of an added shopping cart.


    • Hi Rik,

      From what I’ve seen, Nanacast and Kajabi are like polar opposites: Kajabi is all bells and whistles on the outside, but apparently lacks affiliate management and a shopping cart and it basically makes one type of website, period. But it’s easy to use.

      On the other hand, Nanacast is kind of ugly, unless you customize the heck out of it, but it comes with every feature you could possibly imagine. It has the bells and whistels under the hood.
      I think Kajabi could be a serious competitor in a year or two, if they keep working on it.


      • Hey Shane–
        thanks so much for your thoughtful reply! If two of kajabi’s current lacks are that it doesn’t yet offer integrated affiliates or a shopping cart, could one get around this by simply using the Clickbank affiliate program plus paypal? Seems like that could be an easy solution–any drawbacks?

        I don’t mind the “sameness” look that Michel mentions, since my niche wouldn’t be internet marketing, anyway.

        I noticed that one of nanacast’s claims to fame is that they can deliver in any format–including physical products through kunaki–but if that isn’t a priority, I wonder if their clunky look and annoying interface is worth the extra trouble?

        btw, it’s refreshing to see such a candid review, not just the usual affiliate “buy through me to get my bonus” copy.

        look forward to hearing what you think about their next walk-through video, just before the launch–
        thanks a bunch for your perspective!

      • Hi Rik,

        Yes, of course it can be integrated.
        The problem is that… well, clickbank is a lot like Kajabi, I guess. It’s easy to set up, but once you want to go into a bit more depth with an affiliate program, you realize that it sucks at everything but it’s “one trick”. The other thing is that you then end up with a frankenstein solution again. Kajabi + Aweber + Clickbank, for example. I can tell you: It’s not going to be pretty. And then something like Nanacast + Aweber is actually less of a frankenstein than the Kajabi option.

        I’ve got to be honest: It’s not impossible that Kajabi might convince me in the end (just unlikely). If it can save a lot of time, that might make up for other weaknesses (i.e. have two less-than perfect products done in the same time a different system would take to have one perfect product ready). But a good, usable affiliate management is the bare minimum for a system like this, IMO.

        Also consider that no matter how push-button it is, there’s always going to be a learning curve. Nanacast looks ugly, but I don’t think it’s that much more difficult to get into.

        Just as a general update: I’m testing four different product delivery platforms right now and I’ll put up a post with all my findings about them.

      • Hey Shane–
        thanks for your insights–yes, I can see if you wanted to launch a campaign using affiliates, it would be helpful to have your own list, not just hidden in clickbank. And I’ve heard that paypal will simply shut down a recurring account without notice to you or the subscriber if their credit card is out of date. I’ve heard of nanacast, kajabi, wp with various plugins; so I’m looking forward to hearing what you think of the four systems you’ve been looking into!

  • A very nice video and view on Kajabi. I used it as a user in Jeff Walkers PLF 3.0, but I am not so much of a fan of such ready made systems and prefer to develop membership sites by myself directly in wordpress.
    But what I need is a better payment proscessing solution for marketers outside US… for example 1shoppingcart is quite good, but its hard to get a credit card merchant account. Do you have a solution for that, Shane?

    Greetings from Switzerland,

    P.S: Very nice blog! Just discovered your site via youtube.


    • Hi Michel,

      Thanks for the comment!
      Yes, I also dislike the idea of my marketing funnel and products looking the same as everyone else’s.
      I like to use PayPal for payment processing, since it accepts credit cards, but what’s more: practically everyone seems to have a PayPal account, these days. I’ve been told there are better solutions out there, but so far, I’ve been quite happy with them.


      • Yeah, I thought about paypal too.. but.. I’ve heard some stories, that they can easily close an account if it suddenly gets plenty of money in.. and for my next product lunch I expect quite some orders in a few days, thats why I decided to go on with clickbank for now.

        But I have to look a bit more into that paypal thing..

      • Yes, with PayPal, you need to get on the phone… a lot. At least until they get it into their thick skulls that you’re selling digital products and aren’t a fraudster.

  • Hey Shane–
    so Kajabi released the final video, giving the run-down of all the features–looks like an integrated mail/autoresponder, affiliate manager, and shopping cart will be added (for an extra price) later (many businesses already have their own through aweber or 1shoppingcart, but this all-in-one-place sounds like a great advantage to me–similar to nanacast, except even with nanacast you need your own mail server like aweber)–with split testing and kajabi blogging added soon (for no extra charge if you buy now, of course ;-)
    So I’m curious what you think of it now, especially compared with the other platforms you’ve been considering? Are you going to do the free trial?
    I suppose customer support is one other function a business would need–
    here’s the newest video link for anyone wanting to check it out (not an affiliate link):


    • Hi Rik,

      For me personally, the pricing just doesn’t make sense. Particularly since even the highest priced package still has limits. You can bet that I’ll exceed those limits before next year is over, so it would really be pointless for me to join. I will take a look at the trial, though, just to see the inside. :)

      I think for certain people, Kajabi is a great solution and there are some damn good features in there. For me personally, I know it’s not the right choice.


      • so what’s your fave solution at this point? can’t wait to hear your comparisons ;-)

  • Hi Shane

    I like your style. I like honesty, no-hype (having seen a fair bit of hype from the inside) and helping people. I love IM and enjoy teaching it, and will develop my site into a membership site to do just this. I hope we can talk more when I have developed my site a bit more. Your perspective on SERPAssist was useful by the way – thanks.

    All the best to you



  • Hey Shane

    Well, just curious where in Switzerland you are from. Almost never find other internet marketers from Switzerland. I’m also Swiss, so that’s why I’m asking.
    Keep on going


    • Hi,

      I’m currently in Winterthur. :)
      Not that many IM’ers in Switzerland, I agree, but I have encountered a handful already.


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