Tag Archives: Holland

Book Review · The Iceberg Effect

The Iceberg Effect
The Iceberg Effect (2020) by Dean Holland

Recommend.  163 pages.  Entrepreneurship, internet marketing, and direct marketing.  Dean Holland began his entrepreneurial journey in the early 2000s.  Today, he collaborates alongside marketing legends such as Russell Brunson, who wrote the foreword.

The book begins with his outward journey of struggling with school and work, wanting more from life, and achieving initial successes and setbacks.  He then delves into the inner journey, citing themes familiar to readers of entrepreneurship and success stories.  He discusses Carol Dweck’s illustration of the growth mindset vs. fixed mindset, Sakichi Toyoda’s “Five Whys,” and Vilfredo Pareto’s “80/20” rule.


My first big takeaway from the book is to put it in writing.  The writing becomes the system of systems.  Two sections in the book leave room for writing.  I think most readers prefer to skip the homework suggested by authors.  However, homework like this takes a life of its own in clarifying goals and their necessary steps.  If one hasn’t already done something similar, it carves a path towards success.


Second, the death of traditional affiliate marketing.  For those new to the model, affiliate marketing means promoting someone else’s product.  The link to Dean’s book here consists of an “affiliate link,” meaning that if you click it and buy the book, I get a small payment as commission.  Dean labels as traditional, the model of promoting one product with nothing further.  This worked well enough in the early 2000s.  Since then, the cost to acquire a one-time customer has increased dramatically.  Therefore, it no longer proves as profitable to promote only one product and nothing further.  This brings us to the Iceberg Effect.


Third, the iceberg. Successful marketers, whether affiliate marketers, or other types of entrepreneurs, offer a front-end product (the tip of the iceberg), and a back-end.  The back-end represents the value ladder that a repeat customer, or raving fan, ascends.  Dean describes how he structures his funnel or value ladder.  In general, the further along the customer journey, the more intimate the interaction.