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Build Your Platform, Amplify Your Message, and Build an Empire – EP. #207

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Build Your Platform, Amplify Your Message, And Build An Empire

You can listen to the full episode here.

Do you feel like you are building a business that is consuming your life?

You started the business to gain freedom, to make more money, to create better opportunities for you and your loved ones…

…but instead you feel stuck, burnout. You could have all the money in the world but you don’t have the freedom.

That’s what happened to Mike. After -in what in many people’s eyes would be- a successful business career, he decided to liquidate everything and start over.

Build a business that could allow him to be truly free.

Thanks, Mike, for sharing your story and lessons with the Content Is Profit family!

Here are some of the #GoldenBoulders!

🔥 The Most Important “Category-Building” Skill Mike Learned!

🔥 Difference Between Negative & Positive Leverage.

🔥 Turning Down $750,000

🔥 And Much More…

👉 Make sure to subscribe to the Content Is Profit Podcast!

Tune in and enjoy!

Episode Transcript

  • Build Your Platform, Amplify Your Message, And Build An Empire: []

    special episode alert today. We have a business royalty in that house. One of the most impressive entrepreneurs we've had on content is profit to date. You better get a pen and paper as today's guest will help you build your own empire.
    That is right. Today's guest is a serial entrepreneur angel. I. 13 time bestselling author at judge UN entrepreneur dot com's elevator pitch TV show a total media master. Yes, but most importantly, he's here to help you take the right steps when he comes to growing your business and sharing your message.
    He has been educating entertaining and inspiring business owners, entrepreneurs, and executives for nearly three decades. Yes, he is the real deal. He has consulted and advised people like Tony Robbins, Paula AUL, and Jordan Belfor, AKA the waffle, what street? I'm just gonna throw this out there. Three decades.
    That's that's my, that's my that's my age. Yeah. So the amount of experience we're getting to in the show, absolutely amazing. Let's go without further a. Please welcome the media master himself. And soon to be content is prophet hall of Famer. Mike.
    Hey boys. How you doing? Oh, we're doing so good. Mike. We're so excited to have you here today. Thank you so much. It's my pleasure. It's nice to be here. I love working with young entrepreneurs like you guys who are just great hustlers and uh, and so let's get the show on the road. What can we do to make, uh, everyone's dreams come true?
    Absolutely so, well, I think my, like a great place to start right. Is a little bit of, of you. Like who are you? Uh, you know, you came from a small town into a big city at some point, right? Like, like, can you, can you walk us through like the why of what you're doing today, right? Because you've been in this industry for quite a while now, you've, you've seen many things, you've seen the evolution, right.
    But that first like little bug that, you know, Got you. What, what was it? Well, um, you know, the real honest answer is I grew up in a very small town in Minnesota Eagle lake, Minnesota, which is about two hours south of Minneapolis. And I'm the oldest of four kids. My dad was a barber and I didn't know what leverage was at the time, but I instinctively knew my dad didn't have it because he got up every day, like a clock, he cut hair, he came home, he was tired and getting my dad's attention and being able to do something.
    You know, our idea of a vacation was go up north in the back of a riding in the back of a pickup truck, um, going fishing for a week. And that's what happened once a year. You know, that was, and so growing up in Minnesota where the winters are extraordinarily cold, I never like the winter. I didn't like being lower middle class and poor.
    I didn't like, uh, living in a small town. I didn't get it. Yeah. And so I wanted, if someone said, what do you want to be when you grow up? I'd be, I want to be warm. First and rich. And so, um, I was never good at school, horrible student. I, you know, like this minute I sit down in a classroom I'm asleep and it's always been that way.
    So, um, I'm either making trouble or I gotta be the one entertaining the audience. So I, um, I taught myself out a program when I was 14 years old. I was really interested in movies and video games and audio. So I taught myself how to produce music and audio. Um, ended up connecting with a filmmaker when I was young, but I was writing video games at an early age.
    And that led to starting a digital marketing agency. We started one of the first in the world. It was called digital cafe. We started in 1989, sold it 99 to a publicly traded company. But along the way. The my first I married my high school sweetheart. We went through a divorce because I was just busy all the time.
    I was focused on my business and not her. So as I like to say, my first business cost me my first, uh, marriage and my second and third business is nearly cost me my life and my, my second marriage in my relationship with my son, my only son. So as time went on, I learned direct response marketing. Um, I started marketing on the internet back in when there wasn't practically no internet.
    We were doing stuff on America, online and prodigy and apple link. And Delphy, I mean, channels. Some people have never even heard of. But we started picking up clients like 20th century, Fox and Sony, um, doing early movie promotions and some of the first, uh, websites for movies and film. And after we sold that business, uh, my partner and I made a feature film and got it distributed by Warner brothers.
    But every step of the way, I struggled with the same thing, everyone else struggles, which is scaling, managing, uh, clients, managing a team, paying our bills, getting paid, filling our calendar with qualified customers, just like struggle, struggle. Yeah. And, um, when I got introduced to direct response marketing and online marketing, I ended up meeting some of the original OGs and they became friends of mine like Jeff Walker and, uh, Frank Kern and Mike Phil, same at the time Andy Jenkins.
    And some of the second and third generation guys like Brendan ARD and, and Russell Brunson, who we used to promote each other's stuff, get on each other's, um, you know, get involved in each other's launches and all that kind of thing. Yeah. There's a lot of other steps in between, but at least that'll get you a little bit that moving forward until we talk about cancer and managing life in general.
    Yeah. Yeah, no, absolutely. Thank you so much for the timeline. Yeah. For sharing. Yeah. I think it is important for people to understand right. Where you're coming from, especially so, so they can relate. Right. I mean, a lot of people, they might be like, man, I'm stuck in that place right now where I'm managing clients or I'm managing my team.
    And I might be just working in the business instead of working on the business that I think is so, so important to share these stories. Right. So people can relate to them. And I love the fact that you talk about their response marketing that was or entry point into the online world as well. And I remember, uh, when we had our previous conversation where you were like, oh, I saw you had rich on your podcast.
    Right. And, you know, rich Shafer, he's somebody that we look up to very excited. Uh, also Todd brown, incredible people. So for those that, there. Direct response marketing is a skill that you need to learn for sure. Right? You need to start educating yourself. Yeah. Um, let's go a little bit that way. I'm curious on for you, what was it that called your attention about direct response marketing, right.
    And why is it so important in this world of media? Right. Multimedia when we're creating so much content and getting in front of other peoples? Well, I think the, the first thing is if you learn how to write a great sales letter and these days the sales letter doesn't mean like sales copy, but it can mean a great video.
    It can mean an email, but if you put that in front of the right person, you can make any dream. You have come true. You can enroll someone like if, if a thousand dollars is a lot of money to you while getting a thousand dollars is easy. If $10,000 is a lot to you getting $10,000 is easy, a hundred thousand, $250,000, even a million dollars or more.
    And. What I was intrigued with, this goes back, uh, a while, but like in 1985 or 84 Congress made it possible to do something called long format video on television, which is basically an infomercial. Yeah. Before then you could do a 32nd or up to, I think maybe a 92nd commercial, but it became possible that you could run a 30 minute infomercial.
    And one of the first people who did that, um, was a guy named Joe Sugarman later on Tony Robbins started doing it. Um, and Joe Sugarman sold something called blue blocker sunglasses, which basically are glasses that kept out the blue light from the sun. But the way he did it is he, he took a film crew on Venice beach and he walked along and handed people, glasses.
    and caught their reaction shot. So they'd put on the glasses and they'd go like, oh wow, everything's so clear. And the thing that really got that infomercial going is, uh, it was during the early days of rap and a guy on the boardwalk picked up the glasses, put 'em on and sang a rap in real time about how blue blockers were so easy to see through, et cetera, et cetera.
    Yeah. And the, and the video went viral, but this is back in the television days and you'd have to wait for it to be on to watch it. But Joe S Sugarman sold a billion dollars worth of sunglasses, um, with blue blockers. And if you fast forward a few years, I was speaking at an event because the first product I ever created was called the internet infomercial toolkit.
    And I released it in 2003. Now. YouTube came out in 2005. So this literally came out before there was a YouTube and I was showing people how to use video to sell stuff online. And I completely adapted the television infomercial. Yeah. And I modeled a lot of what I learned from Joe Sugarman, but I met Joe and I was about to create the second version of the infomercial toolkit.
    And I told Joe who I was, and I said, Joe, I'd love to do a partnership. If there's anything I can do for you, if I can interview. And he goes, stop the answer's. Yes. He said, why don't you fly to Vegas and meet me? I'll pick you up at the airport, take you to my studio. You can interview me and you can do whatever you want.
    And I go, well, what do you want? He goes, I don't want anything. He says, I made plenty of money. I don't want money. I just love helping out young entrepreneurs. Wow. And my brain was like, tried to explode because I'm so used to like, exactly what do I need to do for you? What do I need to do for you? What do I, and it's like, you, you asking me to help you?
    The answer's always. Yes. Yeah. And I wasn't used to getting that kind of mentorship, but that's really how that product came to be. Is I just reached out to some of the old OGs of infomercials and asked for their help. And every time they'd always say yes, yes. And yes. And they gave me license rights to use their, their infomercials.
    They gave me scripts, they talked to me and I, you know, I created a thousand dollars information product that made millions of dollars. Um, and I just sold it online. Sold it with tall seminars. There were no webinars then. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Um, I, I. I find this fascinating, right? Because we're, we're looking at, you know, obviously we haven't been as close to like this experience as you have been right on time and, and, uh, you know, in contact with those or GS that today, people like us, for example, it is really challenging to maybe get in contact with one of those guys, because you know, the, the years experience the filters that, that go through.
    Right. And mm-hmm uh, so, so this is incredible to, to go look back and, uh, just know, like, for example, for us, the, the, a big thing has been asking for the show, right? Like everybody just like with you or with Todd or with rich, right. It has been just like, Hey, let's go ask. Right. You never know what's gonna happen.
    What's the worst can happen. They say no. And then we're still in the same place. And we ask again, so they come to the show, right. until we show up to their house, it's not, but guess what the answer, like, more than likely is gonna be like, yes. Right. Because people wanna help, especially people that are at that level.
    There's a lot of people that are learning mm-hmm and, and I think people take. That for granted, or they assume that normally the worst scenario possible, and then they freeze to do that. Right. So something that has helped us produce, um, and, and evolve with, with content's profit has been, you know, we call it table face, right?
    We're like, just go and ask for, for what you want. Right. And then from there, we're gonna get an answer either, either a yes or a no, right. Either way we win, because if it's a, no, we know what direction to take after that. So it's, um, I, I love the fact that this shows up also in your story and I'm sure not, not, not only in this case, but so many and let this be a lesson, right.
    For those that are listening, be like, Hey, go and ask, knock on the doors. Right. Like be out there, be pressing for those opportunities. And you know, like fancy say the extrovert theory. Right. Be out there, put yourself out there so you can attract those opportunities. Yeah. I mean, what I see here, uh, you asking them for this me.
    I related so much to the podcasting industry nowadays in, in certain platforms for certain people. Right. For example, for us, it has been that way. Right. It has been a great way for us, not just to build an audience, but make the, the right connections. Right. I mean, who wouldn't know we would, we were gonna be here with you, Mike talking, right.
    That is an incredible opportunity for not only us to learn, but at the same time, share your message with many other people that can learn as well for you. So I think the concept, the principle has stayed the same, but now the platform and the technology allows for it to distribute it in or, or to happen in a very different way.
    And I'm extremely curious, right? I mean, you mentioned that this was, uh, 85 when Joe Sugarman released this, and then the upcoming years you started, you know, asking for their mentor. How has it changed? Right. Because I do see a little bit of, and this is just my own perspective, kind of like the marketplace, getting a little bit clogged with, you know, uh, sales talking about copywriting and people talking about this topics, but how has it changed throughout these years?
    Well, um, I wanna just, I'm gonna tell you that nothing's changed, except I think the world's gotten lazy complacent and Samie, and so I'm gonna sound like an old boomer for a second, even though I'm not a boomer, I'm not a gen X. I, I fit solidly in the nothing. Okay. I don't have a generation to speak of . Um, but like I listen to most music these days and it all got simple and Samy there aren't in my experience.
    Great. A lot of great songwriters mm-hmm um, and great performers. It's like Och, UCH, you know, um, music. Okay. And if you look at social media, social media is a bunch of Och. Ouch. It's fake boobs, fake lips, fake butts, and fake, fake, fake. And, uh, we always hear authenticity matters, but the people who are professing authenticity are fake as hell telling you what they think you need to hear or what you want to hear.
    Not what's real. Yeah. And, and so, um, you know, if what great direct response is is it's crafting a message that males your audience and speaks to them. It's a movie starring the viewer or the listener with them as the hero. And they're trying to convince you, or you're trying to convince them that you should be their guide, their Gandolph, their, their, uh, they're Yoda.
    They're Jesus. They're Mohamed they're whomever to lead them to the promised land. Yeah. And either meet the prince or rescue the princess, slave the dragon and live happily ever after that. That is the eternal Joseph Campbell story. Yeah. Now in the case of like, if you think about it, how did you guys get attention of whether it's rich Sheron or Todd Herman or whoever you interview, whether it's me, it it's, you have the guts to reach out and you gave me a story that I said yes to participating in and, and nowadays.
    Everyone is reachable. And the, the illusion that people are less reachable just means it's less reachable for those who are uncreative, who anyone who's an Och Och, ouch. In a fake butt, fake boob, fake ti fake, uh, lip world. You are going to be ignored because you're same, same, same, and boring, boring, boring.
    Yeah. And you know, if you want to get someone's attention, when everything's ouch, then play some country music, you know, and you know, like little, little NAS, X did something that shocked the world in a way. He was a crossover. Now he's at the point, frankly, he went way off the edge and now he lost most of his followers.
    In my opinion, you know, I'd be like, whoa, you know? Yeah. Depends how far you skid off the tracks. But, um, he did everything right. And he got a player behind him, you know, he went out and he partnered, he created a collaboration with some of the most popular artists in the world with something truly unique.
    And they're like, I wanna be part of this. I get it. Right. And so, um, you just gotta be resilient and innovative and, and switch things up. Yeah. And, and you have to really learn to ignore what's Samie and I just read a couple, uh, like an hour ago that TikTok is officially over, uh, taken over, listening time, over YouTube.
    Wow. Okay. Yeah. Well, on one hand, that's great. And I'll tell you what, if you wanna be unique and different, don't watch TikTok. okay. Now it's. Wherever the lemmings are going to me. That's where death is next. and I avoid crowds at all costs because if you want to get, you know, someone's gonna come along and, and drop a bomb or light everyone on fire.
    And I don't wanna be in a giant group unable to escape. So I go where no one is, if a crowd's moving in one direction, you can be rest assured I'm running in the exact opposite direction. Yeah. And I started running the moment I saw the, the masses move in one direction. So, um, that would be my answer is if you are limiting, then you're probably gonna fail at direct response marketing.
    You need to be an outcast. Yeah. You need to feel like an alien. You need to feel like it's us versus them and be part of the rebellion, not the. Um, oh, I love, I love, I love all these movie references by the way. I think they're absolutely amazing. Um, I, I, I think, uh, right now with what you're saying, right, because I feel so identified.
    Right. Like I remember, I, I remember, I remember a moment at school and even like, I mean, most of our life, I think we've, we've been outcast in, in a, in a different sense. Right. We always wanted to be professional soccer players. Right. So we were the, on the guys that we stay in to go play the next day.
    Right. Like, it was very different. Like when we were, we were the only Venezuelans in, in, in Europe, in our group when we were there. Right. So then we come to the states and we're on soccer's scholarship. We're the international guys, like mindset wise, too. It was like, we're not where everybody wants to be.
    And, and, and as we go there, right. I remember think. Why, why do I feel this way? Like, why do I, why am I feeling like confused? Right. I think confused is the right word. Right. And then nobody like came to me and be like, dude, you're on the right path. Like, chill, relax. Like you are okay. You will figure this out.
    Right. And, uh, and as we start developing like the business, like we've shared many, many times that this has been an incredible growth experience. Right. Personally, and, and in the business side of thing, like, we never knew how big of a rollercoaster this thing is. Right. And we're like excited to be here.
    My wife is like, she doesn't understand. She was like, dude, you're insane. Go get a job. Like, stop, stop this rollercoaster. Right. But at the same time is what makes us feel alive when we started publishing, right? Like, we're like, oh, we're, we're finding all these outliers as well. That are crushing. That are having an incredible life.
    They went through all their stuff, all their shit. But at the same time, they are so happy. They're fulfilling, they're helping their serving. Right. So thank you for saying that because you know, over its one episodes, I don't think anybody has been that clear. And as you're telling that story, I'm like, I I, I feel okay.
    Right. Not that I wasn't, but I feel okay. More. Okay. Now, and I wanna acknowledge that for the listener, because there might be some people in there that really feel like an outcast. Yeah. And just know that you're on the right path. Yeah. Mike showing us here. So thank you, uh, for that. Yeah. There's one word I wanna relate this to, I know that you have a question, but do you gimme permission?
    Sure. Go ahead. Go ahead. I mean, I'm all inspired, man. All right. So at the beginning of the, of, of your story, you mentioned leverage, right. And you mentioned, uh, your dad, like I identified that my dad didn't have enough leverage and that has been a word that means a lot for us, which we've used many times to get people on the show to, to start relationships.
    Right. Um, and personally, for me, when I first started, I, I felt a little dirty using leverage. Right. I'm like, uh, and, and we talked about a few people about this. , but in your words, what is leverage and what has done for you for us has been nothing but positive. Right. And it completely changed my perception around, around that word.
    Right. So, um, what does it mean to, to do that? Because some of this that you've shared has an element of leverage. Yes. Well, let's explain first of all, what, what it, what leverage isn't and, and, uh, how to remove the dirty word or the feeling that leverage is bad from your vocabulary and your brain forever.
    So in the case of, um, my dad growing up, so he is got a family of four, he grew up very, very poor and a little farm in Iowa. And for all practical purposes, he, he was the youngest boy. So he was expected to stay home and take care of the farm. And he wound up becoming an indentured servant to his uncle who was abusive.
    and mean, and basically made him a slave. And my dad joined the military to escape the farm. And, um, and he was really short. He was like five foot tall. Um, and he didn't, he didn't grow to five. Six is which is the tallest he ever was on his best day ever, um, until he is in his twenties. So just imagine this poor, um, kid from Iowa, five foot tall, um, as more or less, a little slave on, uh, on this little farm and hard worker.
    Great. Just a really good person, but a man of the earth, you know, you wouldn't, he, you wouldn't meet him and go what a genius or something. Um, he was, uh, he could dance, he could sing, he was entertaining and funny, you know, that's how he made up for being a little kid. But, um, he ended up going into the mil military, and while he was there, he started playing guitar.
    He became a very good entertainer. He also, um, let a boy scout troop. He was an Eagle scout back when it being a boy scout didn't mean either being an abused or being an abuser. But, uh, when it really gave, uh, young men, uh, yeah, possibility and potential, and it also, uh, he started cutting hair. So, uh, here he is in the military and he found a way to make some extra money, which in a way is a little bit of leverage.
    Yeah. But he came home, got his, um, Barbara's license and got a job and eventually took over the shop and ran it. Yeah. But you know, a haircut was worth about five bucks and on your best day, you could maybe squeeze in three haircuts an hour. Okay. If you're gonna have a relationship with the person in the chair, and if you worked eight hours, you know, when you had a booked calendar, that's 24 times five bucks, you know, you're making 75 bucks a day, which, you know, maybe a hundred bucks a day was good at at that point.
    Yeah. But it's not a lot of money to feed a family of four and have a house. And, and Dan, you know, my mom was a housewife. So, um, now what he started doing though, to gain a little leverage is he found out how to create hair pieces. So it's basically men's wigs before they had implants or, um, and everything else he'd do today.
    So then you could custom cut these things and fit 'em and make a couple hundred bucks. So if he'd do a hairpiece or three a week, you know, he'd double his income and he could make as much in an hour doing a hairpiece as he would all day. Cutting 24 heads, right? Yeah. Wow. And, um, like this guy got up every day that I can remember at 6:00 AM made a cup of pot of coffee, got in his pickup, drove to work, came home, had a drink and fell asleep in the chair.
    You know, that was the vision I had of my dad. Mm-hmm now I give you that extended long story to create a frame. Okay. So leverage to me is on one hand. Yeah. If you can leverage your time to earn more in less time, like he did, he got it. Now. He also was the, the building inspector for our town, the city clerk.
    He also sharpens scissors. He did handyman work. Like this guy was always busy, but at the expense of the relationship with his kids and my mom. All right. That ain't leverage that's negative leverage. Okay. There's so, so this is more than making money. Now true leverage historically has been buy some rental properties and upgrade the place.
    So maybe you buy it for 200 grand, um, upgrade it. So the bank says, it's now worth 350, pull out the 150,000 because the things increased in value and use that money to buy another property all while you generate, um, enough rental income to pay the bills and maybe a little extra, you know, you get 10 of those things going.
    Yeah. Where, um, now you're that, in that case you can be leveraged. Meaning if the market takes a dump, you're screwed. Okay. That's bad leverage but a but a good leverage is when the market keeps on going up or if let's say. The three of us decided, Hey, we've got an idea to create a little software company and we're gonna leverage our listeners, our viewers, and our followers.
    Maybe there's a hundred, maybe there's a thousand. Who'd each pay a hundred or a thousand dollars a month. Well, you know, the, the way you make money is a thousand times a thousand is a million. So if you had a thousand customers paying you a thousand dollars a month, that's a million bucks a month, baby, do you know?
    that's dope. And there's no such thing as passive income. When it comes to software, you gotta have a team. You gotta have developers. You gotta, there's gonna be a risk. What happens if your credit card company blows up one day, but at least on the surface, you know, the passive income, passive income is a form of leverage, but there's always a price for it, right?
    It's either lifestyle. Risk. So I think leverage is, to me, a better phrase is balanced leverage. That's when it's risk acceptable risk enough upside without harming your lifestyle, your quality of life or your relationships. Yeah. And so, um, again, that was a long winded explanation, but I think balanced leverage in a form of passive income with an upside where you can sell the asset someday.
    In the case of if you built a software company, one of the things that I had going for me is I had two software companies after I sold digital cafe. And, um, I got multiples on that. Meaning I got, if you're in, if you've got a really good software company and let's say it's generating $5 million a year, and half of that's profit.
    So two and a half million of its profit. Well, if that's recurring revenue yeah. To a private equity firm, they might give you 10 or 25 times your, your EBITDA. Yeah. Okay. Which for all practical purposes, we'll call it your, your profit. Yeah. So imagine getting 10 times two and a half million dollars or 20 times two and a half million dollars.
    Yeah. That's what I call a good day in the office. Honey might have been 10 years to get there, but yeah, absolutely. So that is, that is a place of leverage. If you can be building something, earning money, doing it without too much risk and getting huge multiples when you exit that's great leverage. Yeah. I love that.
    I love that definition, you know, um, of balance leverage, which is enough risk, uh, good upside, and that doesn't hinder your personal life. Right. And I think that's where. Most people fail when they go into entrepreneurship is they, they expect they need to sacrifice right. Certain aspects of their life to make it up in other sites, particularly in the business.
    Right. And I, I felt that way myself, honestly, you know, I felt, um, I have a, a girlfriend and I feel sometimes that I'm like, oh, well I need to sacrifice my part of my relationship to dedicate to the business. Right. Maybe I need to rethink rethink certain things. I'm like, okay, are the activities that I'm doing?
    Uh, you know, do they have the right upside? And that is something we've actually seen. That is like, huh, maybe we just need to eliminate a few of these things from the table so we can focus on the right things, right. That are gonna move us forward. And when we're talking about balance, leverage, the one thing that, that comes to mind, Mike is what you told me when we first talk behind the scenes, right.
    Or first conversation that is. You were like, I decided to leave everything so I could help people. So I could help people, you know, build their own empires, be the best that, that they can be. Right. And when you're talking about balanced leverage, I'm like, huh, this is probably what he's trying to teach.
    'em right. He's trying to teach them how to be able to live their life while building a successful business with good upside. Right. So then we can have a, a good day at the, at the job, right. yeah. A good day at the office Uhhuh at the office, good day at the office. Right. So I, I, I wanna go there, right.
    Because I know you have some incredible case store case studies. You've helped incredible amounts of people, but I'm also particularly interested and fascinated, honestly, how you manage to get these people so much attention from the market, whatever they are. Right. And again, now attention is one of the most important currencies in the it, you know, that we, that we.
    Aim for right. We want attention. So then we can turn that into, into the business. So how do we do this? What, what is obviously, we're not, we don't have the time to go fully detail, but I'm curious about this process that, that you left everything for. Sure. Well, let me, um, I'm gonna answer a different question, but I think I'm gonna get us to the, the answer, because what I I want to do is say, I will give you a case study on how I helped build very rapidly, build an entire platform for someone who no one knew who they were.
    He literally, he had no social media platform, no website. Um, no one had ever heard of him before. And then we created a brand, made him a bestselling author, created an entire platform, generat. Over a million dollars in less than eight months. And it's turned into a multimillion dollar business to this day.
    Okay. Wow. I will promise to go down that rabbit hole in a moment. And this story is the lifestyle investor, Justin Donald, I use him as an example. Let's go, but before I get there and also tell you another one where we worked with a financial advisor and created a one man comedy show that now is gonna be going national and it will most likely be a television show and a series as well.
    Okay. So it'll be like, so taking something that historically super boring and making it really interesting. Yeah. But before I will just say, here's what I find the typical entrepreneur's journey is. Like, I think a lot of entrepreneurs, not all but many come from, uh, a tough life. They're kind of poor, lower middle class, not great at school.
    You feel like the outcast, like I say, um, you know, the movies to refer to in the eighties were like revenge of the nerds, Ferris BU's day off Luke Skywalker and star wars, um, war games that if you've ever heard of that or seen it. Yep. But they're all like the outcast, the nerd. And I remember the moment I heard my nephew talking about how, if you talk to girls his age, and this is a couple years ago, they didn't go, they weren't rooting for the football star, uh, homecoming king of yesterday year.
    Now they're looking for bill gates. They were going for the nerds. And I thought, hell yeah, you know, The world finally changed, you know, and, and I know growing up, it'd be like, if you were the smart guy, if you're hanging out with the computers came over, no chick wanted you, you know, , you might as well just cover yourself in B O spray
    Yeah. But you know, the world's changed in that regard, but the, the pathway that, that we take as entrepreneurs, a lot of the time is this, I don't wanna be poor anymore. And I want my freedom. I'm never gonna flip another burger, rake, another lawn, mow another. I don't wanna be like everyone else trying to get away from that factory job or whatever factory means.
    Yeah. And I'll do anything to get out of that oftentimes at the expense of your health, your relationships, um, and whatever else, right. It's just like you put your head down and it's very easy to wake up one day, 20 years later, and your kids don't know who you are, your wife hates you, or as long left you, your fat.
    You've got an alcohol problem. And, uh, yeah, you won the prize. You finally got the money and you realize along the way, your values changed. All the things that you thought were so important when you get 'em you realize the stuff that mattered was the stuff that you destroyed along the way. And that's so typical that what I've found is oftentimes, um, after you hit your big win and then you grind and grind, because it's like, well, what if that was luck?
    You start doubting yourself and think that maybe you can't do it again. So now you'll you push yourself again. Okay. And some people risk it all and they lose it all because the first time was kinda lucky, right. Place, right time. Right. Partners write everything and maybe they got unlucky the second time and lose it all.
    And then you got another monkey on your back, but, um, What I've found. And what happened to me is I had built and sold five businesses along the way I had cancer. I almost died. And that was like, and my marriage, wasn't going great at the time I wanted out. Um, I've got a 14 year old boy, um, even younger in that at the time.
    Let's see. He's 19 right now. Eight he's 11. Okay. Wow. So, and like, I missed a lot of games cuz I was busy being busy and traveling and pitching and selling and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Right. So, um, about three years ago, after all this, I couldn't get out of bed. I was hardcore depressed. I was anxious and I lost my courage.
    I lost my drive and I was like, I hate my business. I felt like a bitch, you know, it's like, I got a lot of overhead. I got a lot of people work for me. I got a really complicated funnels. I'm advertising on Facebook and, and Instagram and everything else. And all my ads quit working. My funnels, quit working.
    I'm losing a quarter million a month and I hate everything. And I'm like hard to press. Like I, I literally wanted to be dead and I, and at the same time I felt like I have no right to feel this way. I'm successful. I've lived the American dream. I got a place on the beach. I drive a fancy sports car. I'm married to a beautiful person.
    I got this kid I have, I have, I have. And at the same time, I'm feeling empty. Wow. And, um, make a long story short. I shut everything down. I wound it down and I did it elegantly. I fulfilled every promise I had to make. I fulfilled all the contracts that I had signed, but I got through it and it took about eight months to wind down.
    And I happened to find someone who bought my business and my products, like things turned out, even though at first it looked like it was just gonna be a $2 million disaster. And, um, so I was really transparent though about what I was going through. And I told a lot of business owners, here's what's happening.
    I have to quit doing what I'm doing and I wanna do something that's narrow and deep and meaningful instead of wide and shallow to thousands of people. Yeah. And, um, and I had a bunch of people say, I feel exactly like you do, will you help me as you go through it too? So suddenly I created a whole series of products and events around reinventing yourself and just by changing my story and evolving, I became a different kind of leader.
    And then, um, I started getting even more mentors. You know, I invested over a quarter million in myself, in my training, my education and masterminds and, and therapy. Okay. You know, I got the four deal and I designed a whole new business. And now it's about working with business owners. Who've reached that, um, that brass ring either they've hit all their goals and they realize it doesn't mean anything.
    Yeah, the things I was striving for, I outgrew a long time ago and I've been TA chasing a ghost. Yeah. Or, um, or I'm ready to sell my business, but what am I gonna do next? Okay. So, so I'll kind of put a book note there. See if you have any questions and then I'll tell you about the story about building celebrity.
    Yeah. But doing it from an authentic way that that feeds your soul, you know, it's like, it's what I think is the, usually the last major evolution, every business owner, founder and entrepreneur goes through after they've hit that brass ring, they've accomplished what they've accomplished. Yeah. Yeah. Uh, by, by the way, I'm just gonna put that there.
    Second time part two doors are always open. So like, so we can continue with these stories, but like, we, we can go straight into it. Right. Because, I mean, as you were telling these stories, I feel like everybody listening right now, they're going through something similar. Right? Like you're going through this.
    And I, I was able to identify certain moments, right. Maybe not like you or as aggressive at you, but like we can learn from people like you be like, I don't wanna get to that point. Right. I don't need to get to that point. Right. We gotta be smart and, and learn from those stories of people that came before us.
    So, um, I really appreciate you sharing your journey and, and, and we can, we can continue unless fun as another question, right. I just wanna add, uh, you know, last guest we had here on the show, he was sharing about the ability of learning from the collective story, right. Learning from other people's story.
    And I really want you to listener right now to go back maybe three, four minutes and listen to this again, because there's so many lessons we don't have to experience the same pain to then take action. Right. We can learn from somebody like Mike, right. That already live that, and he's willing to share his story, his message, and honestly kind of like put your life on the line.
    To teach people what to do and how to do it correctly. Yeah. So thank you. And yeah, I'm, I'm ready to dive in directly into the, the next part okay. So here's what I believe. Most people, either they evolve to and realize this is what they really want and need, or they, um, often say
    what I really wanna do is, and I'm doing this so that I can. Okay. Mm. And, and when you have those conversations, um, what typically happens
    is, you know, someone will say, well, I really wanna travel the world and I wanna support a nonprofit and build a hospital or go back, like they're motivated by some sort of philanthropic. Now my wife has run a philanthropic organization called the, just like my child foundation for 16 years. And, uh, the very brief backstory is she, her parents are Holocaust survivors, so she has almost no living relatives.
    Everyone got cooked in the ovens. Okay. Wow. They literally ran out of Yugoslavia when the Nazis were marching in and managed to get over here. And she was raised very poor. She was very abused growing up. And when she, she just woke up in the middle of the night once and said, I gotta go to Africa. I can hear the babies dying.
    I can hear them screaming. And, and there's a Holocaust happening and I'm not gonna let it happen on my watch. Now, the story's longer than that, but that's essentially the framework and started going. Came back started raising money and going back and building schools and hospitals. And he eventually created something called the girl power project.
    Hmm. But the point of my, my story here is what oftentimes happens once you've tasted a certain amount, amount of success. And when you can afford a vacation, you find something that really speaks to your heart and your soul. And you'd be like, man, if I didn't have this business, I'd serve this thing instead.
    You know, mm-hmm, , it's like, I just need to reach my F U number. I need to have enough money in the bank, so I never have to work again. And I can focus all my energy on this. Yeah. And. And the real thing to ask yourself is why not now? And what's the illusion that prevents you from living, what your heart tells you, what your whole soul is telling you.
    And, and that, that is something that, again, our traumas, our old fear traumas of not being enough, not having enough, getting our way. Yeah. And I'm not saying I've solved these. I've learned how to observe and put a container around and say, I recognize you little Demonn . Um, okay. It still bothers me. Yeah.
    But at least I know it when it's nagging me. Exactly. And I know how to put it in a box. Okay. Yeah. Yeah. So here's, here's how the story unfolds. So once I went through my own dark night of the soul and realized I had to literally liquidate everything like I sold or gave away everything I had like. 30 years of unbelievable books.
    I had this huge book, bookshelf. I just gave it all away. I didn't wanna have anything. I wanted to just get rid of everything. I had this huge studio. Oh yeah. Shut it down, gave everything away or sold it. And I wanted to just move towards minimalism. And it was because I was a bitch to all the things that I own cuz they own me.
    Right. Mm-hmm mm-hmm and, and again, this is something that's a very common evolution. But when I started talking like I am right now and being really open about the failures I had made and where, where I think I had spent years not understanding what really matters. I, uh, right after I sold the last business, I took a trip with a small group of business owners to Fiji and I met a guy on that trip.
    We ended up meeting each other, having great rapport. Yeah. And. His name's Justin. And my first impression is, wow, what a nice CPA this guy is. . And then the more I asked of questions, I, I found out that he, um, I said, what do you do? And he goes, well, I'm a cash flow investor. I'm like, well, what the hell does that mean?
    He goes, well, I don't have a regular job anymore. Um, I have enough investments that I produce enough passive income. I don't need to work. And my wife doesn't need to work. And I'm like, tell me more, you know, and, and, and he goes, well, I used to work at Cutco eyes. My, my wife was a school teacher. My busiest time of the year was summer.
    And her off time was summer. So we didn't see each other. We got the seven year old girl. And, um, so I decided to start investing and my goal was to generate enough passive income so she could quit and spend all her time with her daughter and then be with me when I had time off. And as soon as I accomplished that, I decided to do it for me.
    So I had to replace $65,000 for. Income at first about 150 for his wow. And then from there, the momentum happened. Yeah. And I said, have you ever written a book? And he goes, no, I go, do you speak? No, but I'd like to, uh, do you have a website? No, but I want one. Do, would you like to create a product? Yes, I'd love to, but I don't know where to begin.
    I go, well, you just met the right guy at the right so I gave him an offer. He couldn't refuse. And, uh, we did basically what I do now, which is we created a platform. So we created a whole brand. We call it the lifestyle investor. We wrote the book, ended up bringing in specialists to do all the finishing, but we created effectively like the outline, the framework, the branding.
    Yeah. Um, and then we got a great web person. He started a podcast, but we created a $250,000 offer to work with him. One on one where he teaches you what he does. Yeah, a $50,000 a year mastermind, and he did have a really good network. And, um, I, I introduced him to his first $250,000 client, which is a guy I knew who is wealthy, wa was looking for someone to mentor him so he could generate passive income yeah.
    And help him with all this planning and strategies. And, um, and then he just started reaching out to people and saying, Hey, I'm starting this mastermind. Would you like to learn? And then basically the offer we created it got a whole bunch of people to say yes, right away. Incredible. So. From zero, no visibility, no list, no anything to over a million dollars in revenue and a wall street journal, number one, bestseller, and a USA today, bestseller and a Amazon best seller.
    That's in less than eight months. It was, it was extraordinary. And now his brand is just crushing it. Okay. Yeah. And he, he told me the other day, I, I don't think you'll mind me saying this, but he's got three people who have $250,000 each. So $750,000. Want him to mentor them one on one. And he said, if I take 'em on, I won't be holding true to a lifestyle investor lifestyle.
    Okay. He goes, I'd love to have the 350 or the $750,000, but I don't need it. And I'd rather have my quality of life, my connection with my wife and my daughter. Wow. Now that my friends is success. Yes, absolutely. When you have the willingness and ability to say no to the money, no, it's there anytime you want it, but you've hit that point where the things that matter most are the things that matter most and you know, you can have impact and you've got a platform and now he's got the ability to, because of his podcast, he can pretty much interview any billionaire he wants to reach out to.
    Yeah. And you know, not long ago, he would've. I'm nobody. I don't have anything. I, I don't, I'm not worthy of even asking, how am I going to, he's asking all these how questions, and I just said, you will live into your brand. And all that is, is a story away. And you've already got the stories. It has to be assembled in a way that resonates.
    And we have to give it a package. We have to give it a name, something that's unique. What I call a category of one let's go. So that's that illusion we live under is I'm not worthy. And who am I? And I'm a, you know, it's the, what do they call the, uh, imposter syndrome, right? Imposter mm-hmm yep. Famous.
    We're all imposters until we're. Yep. Yeah. Yeah. Wow. Yeah. I'm I'm where is speechless right now, Mike? That, um, so an incredible, I mean, not just case studies, you know, just the story itself, you know? Yeah. The way I've noticed throughout this whole conversation, every time you start with the stories, right.
    Create this frame. And I think that makes it so no, no, so much more impactful than what it is, because it is by itself, extremely impactful. You just help people comprehend it even better. Right. And I, I love everything that you talked about, that category of one, which by the way, you have a video about that, I think it's on YouTube.
    That is absolutely amazing with the example of the songwriter. Uh, I love that video. So go check it out, guys. We're gonna leave it in the links below. But also, we're gonna have to send this clip to Justin, if you Don, if you don't mind those, we're like, Hey dude, look at like this, you know, Mike shared your amazing story.
    Um, but yeah. Thank you so much, Mike, uh, to wrap up, I think like this, this has been incredible. Thank you so much for, for your time. We have two quick questions, uh, to, you know, the audience. So first of all, is what is something that somebody that's in the middle of the transition to the entrepreneurial award, right?
    Or they're starting out as an entrepreneur. They're, they're publishing, they're getting through, you know, the, the, the motions is a little hard for them to like put their voice out there. What is something that they can do today to get that momentum and continue to evolve? Well, I, I happen to believe that, um, the most important thing.
    Is remember you're in the transformation business, not the transaction business. So, um, the first transformation's usually gonna be your own, or it needs to be the story of someone you've helped the impact you've created. And you craft a story about social proof. So I just told you a story of transformation, which is the, um, Justin Donald lifestyle investor transformation.
    You know, we didn't have time for this, but I have another one it's by a guy named Charlie Epstein, who is this boring? Like, he'd say I'm a boring white, old Jewish guy. he goes, and I'm a financial advisor. You don't get any more boring than that. and we created a play called yield of dreams. Yes. Um, so he is the only.
    Financial advisor in the world with a one man show now, all right. We made it up. And the way we made it up is I hired three professional standup comedians, working comedians, at least up until, um, 18 months ago, who are on stage telling jokes and making a living doing it because I wanted someone who's hungry in the trenches.
    Yeah. And we took his stories and turned it into a play. And now it's an app. It's a play it's educational training videos. Wow. It's um, uh, an entire platform and he just sold his business. So he's gonna go on the road and, and introduce people to, and help heal their pain about money, which in turn will get them to raise their hands and say, who do I want to manage my money?
    Except this guy? Cuz he's a freaking genius. Okay. Him and his team. Yeah. What a way to be unique. And I tell you that story because that's another one of my transformations. Yeah. Now it takes a while when you're just getting started to figure out what resonates with an audience, what resonates with your perfect clientele.
    But my advice is learn how to story, tell, pay attention to stories and learn how to tell stories either about yourself in a way that an audience resonates with meaning it's not about you, it's about them. Um, tell a story about someone you've helped and talk about what their before, during and afterlife is like.
    Mm-hmm , that is the core of what great marketing direct response marketing is. It's what are the fewest words? Someone needs to hear to raise their hand and say, I've been looking for someone like you. My whole life. I. The answer to the question is story. Tell, secondly, go narrow and deep with expensive offers, not cheap and narrow or cheap and wide, um, selling to a lot of people is a hell of a lot harder than selling to the right one.
    Hmm. That was what, what, what minute do people need to go back to so they can put this part on repeat 53, 53 guys go again, right. Go again, because that was a, a golden Boulder moment. You got your helmet fun. Okay, good. Uh, mate, thank you again. Incredible, incredible value. Mm-hmm uh, last question, right? Like we know that you've been in media, that you, you build your own studios.
    We talk a little bit behind the scenes, right? You've been in this role, like where will you be if you did not publish? Hmm, well, um, I think, um, where would I be if I wasn't publishing? Yes. Um, God, you know, I love media so much. So in the past for many years, I was the guy behind the camera. Okay. Hmm. I didn't think I was worthy.
    I was running the cameras. I was running the mix boards, doing the audio and the production. And I think there was a moment when I started to speak and it was during like the infomercial toolkit days when I realized I could teach more effectively, I could present and perform more effectively. And I had watched so many people and studied them that I was better than the people I was working with and working for, and I could articulate faster.
    So, um, I think what I've been told by a couple friends of mine who are multi billionaires, who followed my career over the years and they've said, They think I should be doing or should have done, which in a way I'm kind of doing now is find some people who've got the chops, have the charisma and develop them as talent.
    And, um, I, I started thinking about doing that for a while, but the, I realized I didn't want to take like a newbie with no platform and build it from scratch because it'd take too long and there'd be risk and it'd be my risk. And that's why I changed my business model up to work with successful business people who had all of the chops, but could also write a check.
    Yeah. Because like, I think at this point, um, you know, I, I'm not at my absolute financial goal, but I'm not that far from it. And if I wasn't. When I work, I go all in and I work hard, but if I'm not working, I'd rather be on my e-bike riding around the, the bay in San Diego. And, uh, you know, having adult beverages or spending my time on a beach in Mexico, like I'm, I'm not, I don't need more stuff to do.
    Yeah. And if I'm gonna work, I'm gonna make money. And, and I either have to be the talent or I gotta be working with someone and they're gonna write out a check. Yeah. And it's not about the money, but it's also the energetic value exchange. So it's not about the money, but if there isn't a payoff and it's not ongoing, I'd, I'd rather just dream.
    And I'm a good dreamer, you know, I like inventing and manifesting, but, um, I'd rather just not wor think about the money at all and just manifest and dream, if that makes sense. So it's a long winded, complicated answer to your question, but I think there's a lot of nuance to it too. Yeah. And thank you, Mike, for the honesty.
    Right. And you know, I was the reason we ask these questions, right. A lot of people. Our life changed when we started publishing, like from a Facebook live that we did at 11:30 PM. Right? Like that's what changed everything. And we're like, this is it. And then the show started and then we connected with people like you.
    And then we developed relationships and the business group, we were able to hire people. We were like, what? So we've seen, we've lived that. Right. And, and, and we want the people that are here listening to content's profit to be like, it's not just us guys. It's literally every single person that comes in here, we gotta put our voices out there.
    We gotta, you know, share our stories. Like you said, you know, is about our audience and this needs to happen. Right. Because we were those guys, we were the oness feeling like as, uh, as impostors, right? Even now there's some moments where we do this. Right. And, and it's not gonna stop. But the fact that we.
    Being out there every single day publishing and, and having these conversations, this was keeping us accountable to continue to move forward. Right. Yeah. So thank you so much for, for sharing the story, Mike, where, where can people connect with you? Where can people find you if they wanna work with you, if they wanna chat?
    Like what's the best way? Sure. Well, you mentioned a couple videos, so I'll give you a couple to check out. Um, one of 'em is if you just go to my primary website, it's, it's my name, Mike kig.com or a shortcut that's easier to remember and spell is paid for life.com. Um, there's two things you can grab. One of 'em is subscribe to my podcast.
    That's a great way to kind of follow me. I do a podcast with one of my mentors, Dan Sullivan, from strategic. But if you go to paid for life.com/funnel, that's where you'll see. Um, one of my videos, it's, it's my sales funnel and in it is a step by step video where I story tell. And I really follow my own advice.
    Cuz marketing storytelling, building trust is a formula. The human brain loves formulas and um, I spent a lot of time working on it. Now I'll be the first one to say, ah, if I changed something I changed, you know, I'm never happy with whatever I create, but it's good enough for now. But there's some really good transformations embedded.
    And I just say model that for yourself. Yes. Um, and then of course, if you've got the, the means, you know, there's place, you can register. Otherwise, if you follow, follow my podcast, I've got lots of free videos, lots of free content on, uh, YouTube. Yeah. So, you know, I'm kind of like in a place where, um, I'm really expensive or there's tons of free stuff.
    Yeah. But I purposely don't do anything in between, um, Maybe once in a while, I, I will, but uh, you know, get on my mailing list and, and stay in touch or reach out to me and you'll find that. Yeah. I love that. I love that. I mean, that, that represents what you were talking about before, right? The balance leverage, right?
    You want something that is gonna have that, that offsite, right? The, the risk that you can manage and give you the life that you are enjoying living, which is, you know, riding the, e-bike having some, some drinks once in a while. So thank you for sharing that. I love how everything connects is full circle, and I am sure that person listening right now took so much value from you, Mike.
    So, yeah. Thank you. Thank, thank you. My young brothers, I'm really proud of you. Congratulations on doing what you're doing. Um, uh, and I don't, I think we did talk about this. Um, you know, my wife and I are buying a place in Mexico. We're building a home down there and one of our visions is I'm gonna build a studio down there and also.
    One of the ideas I have is to give a bunch of, uh, young, Mexican kids, some creatives, an opportunity to work and create a business and, and mentor them. Um, I, uh, I love, I love the culture. I love the people. I love the fire and the spirit and. Yeah, and I happen to just love, love everything about being down in the Baja too.
    So, uh, , let's go. Yeah. And thank you. Be in a warm place, right? oh yeah. Yeah. Let us know. We'll come down, uh, be a translators and, uh, you know, party with you guys. Uh, thank you, Mike. I really appreciate it, man. That's such a powerful vision, such a powerful story. There's so many more like years to come and can't wait to see, you know, where you and, and the people that you help go.
    Uh, if I see anything else you wanna add, no, again, just once more. Thank you, Mike. Yeah. And yeah, I think we are ready for part two eventually. yeah. Maybe Mexico. Let's go Amigos. Yes. Let's go with that. Say guys, thank you so much for tuning to contest profit podcast. Go ahead and follow the show on your favorite platform and on social media at BI bros, co that is right.
    And if Mike here today help you move one step closer to your goal, please. Don't forget to share this episode and, and leave a five star review. Thank you. Bye guys.

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