Harlan Kilstein is an author, entrepreneur, and lifestyle coach born in Brooklyn, New York. He is currently residing in Boca Raton, Florida where he spends his time with his family and handling the management of his businesses.
He studied at Yeshiva University from 1976 to 1990 for his doctorate in Education and pursued a post-doctorate degree at the Harvard University Graduate of Education.
He’s a self-made businessman with the ownership of several multi-million enterprises.
Harlan’s career as an author began after leaving the field of Education.
Despite spending the first decade or so of his adult life as an educator/principal, Harlan decided to venture out of his comfort zone by getting into self-employment.
He started by setting up a hypnosis practice in Miami, Florida during the late 1990s.
Even back then, he had been unwavering when it came to learning the ropes of marketing by targeting potential business through paid newspaper ads. At the time, these were the type of ads to buy in order to get the most awareness of one’s business. Unfortunately, Harlan discovered that the paid ads began to burn out and become less and less successful as the years passed.
And so, he decided to give self-marketing a try.
He started off by training with some of the most respected business entrepreneurs at the time, and after, he armed himself with his newfound knowledge to market his practice through the Miami Herald. The self-published ads quickly began to flood his business — to the point that other franchises had taken notice and began to approach him for his work.
This success continued for years. Until, unfortunately, the ads were cut off from circulation to promote uniformity throughout all the hypnosis practices.
Harlan, knowing when to cut off his losses, decided to, once again, venture into other forms of business. His background in hypnosis and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), as well as his passion for marketing, became the backbone of his career as an author — which saw its start almost immediately after the success of his self-authored ads, which is what persuaded him to become a full-fledged, and self-employed, copywriter.
Harlan spent years working on his craft and learning how to get into online marketing and copywriting from the leading-experts at the time.
Including Dan Kennedy, Gary Halbert, John Carlton, Jay Abraham, Carl Galletti, David Garfinkel, and Dave Dobson.
He talks about all of them kindly, and in an interview with the Entrepreneur, after being asked about what he had learned from his favorite mentor, he said this… “I’m actually writing a book about my favorite mentor tentatively called ‘The Wizard of San Juan Island.’ He was a therapist named Dave Dobson. I spent years traveling out to his home on San Juan Island off the coast of Washington state to study with him. One of the things he taught me was how to help people make changes they would otherwise think are impossible.”
Harlan took Dobson’s teachings to heart by stepping into copywriting in full-force at the start of 2002. In the years that followed, Harlan became known as the NLP Copywriting Expert and quickly procured the respect and trust of those in his field.
For a while, he focused on teaching aspiring digital entrepreneurs the advantages of NLP Copywriting. Which involved speaking directly to the consumer and encouraging them to buy without feeling like they were being sold to. It’s an unusual, but highly effective, method of selling a product (much like he had done with his ads) that many still utilize today.
Harlan’s deep-dive in copywriting lasted for several years.
Even now, his website NLPCopywriting.com, still hosts the online coaching programs he had made for teaching NLP Copywriting. He was one of the first to popularize this way of ‘teaching’ online, and his classes were very highly regarded.
A couple of years since and he’s moved on to explore other ventures, but the respect of his students and others in the industry still remain, and he is, and possibly always will be, the reigning expert on NLP copywriting.
It was in 2011 that Harlan was introduced to a new and exciting niche that he believed he could breakthrough. This was after he had added a new furry friend into his family. His new pet is what made Harlan inspired to penetrate the ever-crowded pet-niche by creating an online news source for all things dog-related!
He launched the Dogington Post in 2012 after being told that going into such a big niche would be impossible.
Armed with the teachings of his favorite mentor and an ever-burning passion for his craft, Harlan went into the venture after asking the people who doubted him one single question…
“Why can’t I?”
Not so long after it got its start…
The Dogington Post quickly became the internet’s favorite destination for daily news on dogs. It is lauded for exceptionally engaging writing, cutting-edge reporting, and adorable pet photography that everyone can get behind.
At the beginning (as Harlan himself admitted to doing in a Podcast), he had made it a goal to attend dog shows and visit well-known influencers in the field in hopes of getting exciting and engaging content for his website, but now… Well, now people are coming up to him directly to be interviewed. If only so that they would be able to spread their message to the Dogington Post’s impressive and active community.
Even now, in 2019, the website is still constantly getting over 2.5 million visitors each week (a number that rises consistently as Harlan locks down on his marketing tactics on social media.)
In the same podcast, he describes the tenacity of the Dogington Post community by saying the following…
“There was a case in the United States two years back…
We broke the news, and the story went viral… And if you’ve never seen one of your stories go viral, I can tell you, it’s not pretty. We have our site on what is called a storm server. It is supposed to be able to handle everything. It could not handle what was going on. The site went down.”
He goes on to describe that the reason for the site-wide shutdown had been caused by the passion of his audience.
The company that was hosting the Dogington Post reported that the site had been getting over 57,000 hits per minute, and despite having allocated more resources for the influx of new visitors, the website repeatedly shut down as the day continued.
Harlan has been asked to speak about the Dogington Post quite often over the last couple of years. The steady but enormous rise of the website’s popularity caught the attention of many, and as an educator at heart, Harlan has never hesitated to speak up on how he happened upon this growth.
On one such occasion, Harlan had spoken about how the website had been inspired by the Washington Post. He talked about how he admired their integrity when reporting on sensitive news, and how that admiration metamorphosed into the Dogington Post (where he and his team always strive to provide the most popular news stories on man’s fluffiest best friend.)
The journey had not been easy. Harlan and his team at the Dogington Post had faced issues with monetization, understanding his viewer demographic, keeping up-to-date with social media marketing, and of course, the responsibility of having to curate the most viral and prevalent news stories on dogs all over the world.
At some point, Harlan revealed his secrets as to where he sources the inspiration for his posts.
In a podcast with James Schramko from Superfast Business, he says this…
“Where do I get the stories? So actually, I have a little secret. And the secret that I have is, we put in so many stories, we curate so much, I actually built an app called Viral Curation.”
Viral Curation is an app that was built in order to find the most viral stories based on topic (be it dogs, fitness, etc.) This app became the baseline for his success when it comes to reporting on the most viral news stories — stories that people already care about and stories that big platforms like Facebook are not afraid to spread organically.
From the very start, Harlan had deep-dived into Facebook advertising.
What he’s learned from his research and training is what allows him to center his businesses on the platform today — despite the big shift in Facebook’s advertising system (which had affected many smaller and bigger marketers alike.)
“The ability to focus on something until a problem is solved,” this is the ability that Harlan believes has allowed him to master tricky changes in markets and make them his own.
Case in point, his Facebook groups have never failed to catch the attention of consumers and neither have they failed to rack up the activity required to keep a big multi-million website like the Dogington Post alive and well.
All the challenges Harlan faced as he began his career as an online entrepreneur has allowed him to grow, and he carries all that he’s learned over to all his future business ventures.
The next chapter in Harlan’s journey involves a lot of experimentation.
After seeing the success of the Dogington Post, he began to engage in other niches.
This began with the Dogington Post’s ‘cousin’ website, the Catington Post, and progressed so extensively that he stumbled into the fitness and health niche.
Harlan had taken it upon himself to enter this other impossible niche after having been diagnosed with a condition called Syndrome X in the early days of January 2017.
The condition had stemmed from poorly established eating habits as a child and had been the most definitive reasoning for his inability to lose weight as an adult.
Harlan had also found out that he was allergic to gluten and was prediabetic — which forced him to go to several doctors and visit multiple clinics to figure out what he could do to stop the progression of his condition.
Keto had been the one thing that worked for him.
After having spent years being overweight and being in generally poor health, Harlan finally found something that worked. He cut out sugars and began to focus on eating healthy fats, and saw the weight beginning to fall right off.
A month later, Harlan launched Completely Keto.
In an interview with the Community, he said this “…as a former educator, I knew I could teach people how to be on a ketogenic diet more effectively than most, so I decided I was going to help others on their keto journey.” And that is exactly what he did.
Completely Keto started as Harlan’s ground zero.
He created a Facebook group where he could both teach and learn.
Immediately upon launching the Completely Keto Facebook group, the group page had accrued up to 20,000 members. The interest and demand for answers had overwhelmed Harlan and his team at the time. So much so that they were forced to split up the community into smaller groups that focused on specific aspects of the Keto diet — be it the recipes, how-to for beginners, and so on.
His diligence set into fruition another colossal enterprise that is now 1,000,000 followers strong on Facebook with hundreds of thousands of people consuming his Completely Keto recipes each week.
He also launched the Completely Keto website, which later developed and encouraged Harlan to launch Speed Keto.
Speed Keto was a culmination of all that he had learned based on his experience and the experiences of those around him. He found the energy around the chaos of his Facebook group to be both enriching and enlightening. As mentioned, his time spent being active on the Facebook community is what allows him to learn what his consumers needed and how he could go about giving it to them.
Much like the Facebook group, Speed Keto evolved in order to tackle all questions and concerns that people may have regarding the Keto diet.
In another interview with Thrive Global, he said, “Customers have told me that my teachings have helped them not only lose weight, but get rid of anxiety, sleep better, and become healthier and happier.” This is something he has been openly proud of. His one claim to fame has always been the fact that he had a talent for “…making things simple for others.”
That’s what he was hoping to achieve with both Completely Keto and Speed Keto.
Keto is notorious for being an incredibly strict diet and not many have the time to spend on calculating macros and thinking up recipes that are rich in healthy fats and low in carbohydrates. It’s an incredibly daunting task for anyone, and that’s what he hopes to eliminate with the Speed Keto Complete Guidebook (which he himself had authored.)
One of his earliest Keto releases was ‘The Completely Keto Cookbook.’
This release includes 175 expertly crafted Keto-friendly recipes that were converted from common family favorites that everyone was bound to enjoy. Amongst the most popular recipes include the widely-renowned cheesecake and the Memphis Style Ribs.
This cookbook was quickly followed by the Speed Keto Guide, which comprised of an entire set of helpful and instructional releases.
Starting with the Speed Keto QuickStart guide, which is a release focused on helping beginners ‘get up to speed’ on the Keto diet. This is where Harlan breaks down the demands of Keto as simply as possible so that the reader is able to take advantage of all the releases that followed.
Like the Speed Keto Calendar, a simple but very convenient 30-day Keto Meal plan calendar that is great for those who want a stress-free start to their Keto journey.
The Speed Keto Shopping list is another personal favorite of those in his community as it eases the stress of having to pick out items in the grocery and cuts back on research and planning.
Along with those three, which were designed to create a foundation for beginners to stand-upon, Harlan has authored two different 2-Week Meal prep plans and a 2-Week Shopping list as well.
This comprises the complete Speed Keto package. With the guide, the easy-to-follow Keto calendar, the convenient shopping lists, etc. he has created a Keto meal and diet plan that anyone can follow to achieve their weight loss goals.
Harlan had started up with a fairly small team for the Dogington Post.
At the time, he had been working with around three to four people. Now, with the demand for Completely Keto and Speed Keto, that number has risen to around 10 people and it continues to grow and grow.
He’s working with his team not only to stay up-to-date on the recent developments and research involving Keto, but also to research and test out prospective products that are respective of what their Completely Keto audience is looking for (be it delicious and nutritious Keto-specific snack bars or healthy protein shakes and treats that honor the strict requirements of the Keto diet.)
In his interview with Thrive Global in May 2019, Harlan said the following…
“We are about to release a line of Completely Keto foods, starting with bars. Unfortunately, most of the bars out there that say they’re keto really aren’t. Ours will both fit into the diet plan and taste great. Think chocolate chip cookie dough, double espresso, and peanut butter chocolate chip flavors!”
The introduction of these products is just another way that Harlan hopes to make things as simple as possible when it comes to the diet.
After all, not many are able to regularly follow the recipes that he has available with Speed Keto, and even less are able to do it regularly so that Keto-friendly meals are always prepped and available should they need it. The Keto snacks and treats that he’s putting out as a part of the Completely Keto product line will become their solution when it comes to filling up on the energy required whilst staying true to the Keto diet.
Outside of his entry to the health and fitness niche through Keto, there are many other niches that we can expect Harlan to penetrate in the future. Whether it’s the much alluded to, meditation niche (which is another big player in Harlan’s own life, and something he has not been ashamed to speak about his passion of) or something else altogether, we do not know.
However, we can definitely expect more from Harlan Kilstein in the future.
Harlan was not one of the few that saw success immediately. Over the years of his life, challenges have come up to attempt to shake his will and passion at the core. However, that did not stop him from striving to achieve his goals.
This, he believes, is the key to his success.
In a discussion about his favorite book, which is the ‘Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment’ by George Leonard, he says this…
“There are some people who expect overnight success, so they work and work but only end up burning themselves out… Then, there are the people who start something, reach a plateau, and stay there their entire life, either by choice or because they give up.
The moral of Leonards’s book can be applied to literally anything:
Go slow, push and push if you have to, but be patient. Success comes at different rates, and if you work hard for long enough without burning yourself out, you’ll get there.”