115: Scaling from Zero to 100,000+ Active Customers with Tom Kulzer


When Tom Kulzer took on a side job during college selling wireless modems, he realized he needed an efficient way to follow up with potential customers. So he developed an email script that eventually led to AWeber – the world’s first email automation tool. As demand steadily grew, Tom began assembling a team. Together, they built a business infrastructure to sustainably support fast growth. Now, 20 years later, over 1 million small businesses have used AWeber, and 100,000 of them are active customers. In this episode, Tom provides the processes that laid the foundation for this scaling success story.

Special Guest: Tom Kulzer, Founder & CEOAWeber

Location:  Chalfont, PA  USA

Air Date: September 20, 2020


  • AWeber’s Blog: AWeber’s online source for all things email marketing for small businesses. It includes how-to articles, video tutorials, case studies. It also features example emails that demonstrate how to convert visitors to customers and existing customers to repeat customers.
  • AWeber’s Newsletter: sign up for AWeber’s free digest of best-practice email marketing strategies and tips.
  • OmniFocus: a task management phone and web-based app designed to help busy professionals quickly capture and prioritize tasks. Available for Mac and iOS.
  • Confluence: Atlassian’s cloud-based app that encourages team collaboration through “…an open, connected structure allows information to flow freely among everyone at the organization.” A great place to store processes, checklists, templates and other job aids to facilitate daily operations and ensure consistent results.
  • Jira: a suite of work management software products covering requirements and test case management to agile software development.
  • Slack: a communication app ideal for remote teams that offers the ability to organize work updates by topic, private groups, and direct messaging.
  • 1Password: a password manager app offering a secure way to store and share passwords for your self or with an entire team.
  • G-Suite: an “…integrated suite of secure, cloud-native collaboration and productivity apps powered by Google AI. Includes Gmail, Docs, Drive, Calendar, Meet and more.”
  • Zoom: software that offers audio and video recording of webinars, conference calls, presentations, meetings, and more. Also includes screen sharing for enhanced collaboration.

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  • Producer & Host: Alicia Butler Pierre
  • Editor: Olanrewaju Ade
  • Sponsor: rVidi


More About Guest, Tom Kulzer:
Tom Kulzer is the founder and CEO at AWeber, the leading email marketing and automation platform for small businesses, where he is actively involved in the company’s strategic direction, growth, and evolution. Over the company’s 20-year history, Tom has nurtured AWeber from a small start-up to a robust organization, that has enabled over 1 million customers to grow their businesses, all without public or venture funding.

Tom laid the foundation for AWeber while working at a computer hardware firm in the mid-1990s, where he realized sales prospects were falling through the cracks due to lack of proper follow-up. By automating the delivery of personalized follow-up emails to prospects, companywide sales skyrocketed, and sales associates had additional time to spend pursuing new prospects.


More About Host, Alicia Butler Pierre:
Alicia Butler Pierre is the Founder & CEO of Equilibria, Inc. – a 15-year-old operations management consulting firm. Her career in operations began over 20 years ago while working in various chemical plants and oil refineries. She invented the Kasennu™ framework for business infrastructure and authored, Behind the Façade: How to Structure Company Operations for Sustainable Success.  It is the world’s first published book on business infrastructure for small businesses. Alicia hosts the weekly Business Infrastructure podcast with a global audience across 35+ countries.


More About Sponsor, rVidi:
rVidi is the easy app that lets you communicate via video soundbites in your own time in a public or private group setting. Learn more and download for free at rVidi.com.  Currently available for iOS; Android development coming soon!

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