The Dealer Playbook
The Dealer Playbook

Episode · 10 months ago

Chris Gronkowski: How to Grow Your Business in a Saturated Market

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Former NFL Athlete, Chris Gronkowski, knows a thing or two about competition. Having played for the Dallas Cowboys and Indianapolis Colts, his wisdom about going "all in" has direct application to business. 

After his NFL career, Chris founded a promotional product company that would be well suited for dealerships! ICE Shaker produces kitchen-grade, stainless steel insulated bottles that are fully customized to meet business needs. He pitched the company on Shark Tank and now shares the parallels between professional sports and starting a company from scratch - both in highly competitive arenas.

4:13 - What are the most common misconceptions people have around NFL players?

9:20 - Did NFL training help to set you up to be more successful in business?

12:04 - Do you find there is a difference in how you have to coach in a professional or athletic setting?

15:16 - What led you in developing IceShaker and enter into such a competitive market?

18:01 - What is your process to turn a business idea into reality?

27:16 - Is ego the enemy in business?

30:45 - How did you go about building your website?

For complete show notes and resources visit: https://www.thedealerplaybook.com/chris-gronkowsi 

FlexDealer 

You've tried so many different things with your marketing but the dots never align. 

Your current agency sends you a fancy report but you have no clue what it means...

That's why more dealers are choosing to partner with FlexDealer. They're the creative marketing people behind some of the auto industry's most envied brands. 

"Flex takes an approach unlike others I've ever experienced, and I can honestly say that I trust you guys. It's a strange and wonderful feeling! Being on a team with them and knowing they are in my corner jacks up my confidence and ups the fun factor of the car business. I'm so grateful! - Aaron Lange, Lange and Fetter Motors

Find your best opportunities to grow with FlexDealer's free, immediate website audit. Visit www.flexdealer.com/website-audit  

Hey, before we hop into this episode,let's talk about why your website and digital presence isn't working. Now Iknow what you're thinking, Michael. We talk all about the Web sites all thetime. You talk about the websites, the websites, a hammer yada, yada, yada. Weget it. But for real, though, it's shocking to me how much guesswork stilltakes place and how its having a detrimental effect on whatopportunities you are able to leverage now. Over the last decade, especiallyfor the O. G. D P beers, you know, I've poured my soul into assembling a teamthat cares deeply about the progress of the retail auto industry that believesin my mission to enrich and empower dealers to perpetually grow. Now I'mmaking my amazing marketing team accessible to the dealer playbookcommunity so that you can start to thrive rather than merely survive.Right now, we're providing a just for you free website diagnostic that willshow you exactly what you need to do in a priority sequence so that you canfinally get the answers you need. Claim yours by visiting triple W dot flexdealer dot com forward slash website audit that's triple W dot flex dealerdot com forward slash website Dash audit. Mhm Hey, gang, Welcome to this episodeof the Dealer Playbook, a podcast that explores what it takes to create athriving career right here in the retail auto industry. I'm your host,Michael Cirillo, excited to talk to you about how to stand out and grow in ahighly competitive market? None better to join me than former NFL athleteChris Gronkowski. There's no question that the retail automotive industry isa highly competitive landscape from the dealership next door to increasingdemands of customers. There are many factors working against your dealership,but that doesn't mean standing out is impossible. That doesn't mean thatgrowing your dealership business is a pipe dream. It just means that whileeveryone keeps doing the same old stuff, you have to do what it takes to standup and stand out in order to create your own playing field. There are manygreat examples of that in our industry, from Josh Cummins over at Dan Cummins,Chevrolet Glenn Lunde, Alex Floor is Ali. Read a frank Trinity. I mean, whoelse we got? We got the founders of the women in Colorado. Motive Network carryPatrice, Erica and Amanda. Now our guest today knows a thing or two aboutcompetitive landscapes. Former NFL athlete turned entrepreneur ChrisGronkowski, his brother, by the way, just won the Super Bowl. Chris playedfor the Dallas Cowboys and Indianapolis Colts and now has I hit promotionalproduct company called Ice Shaker, which what they do is they createkitchen grade stainless steel insulated bottles kind of like swell bottles, butway, way better and more of a variety. And they do this for dealerships whowant to offer amazing quality...

...promotional products to their customers.Now we've all seen the cheap stuff sitting in those showcases that justkeep collecting dust. I shaker products. Look, they this is not sponsorednothing. I just think it's a really cool product, and I love mine. And sothat's why I'm just throwing that in there for you to be able to offerbetter promotional products to your customers. So I thought it would bereally cool to pick Chris's brain about the parallels between professionalsports and what, if any, he has found applicable to starting and growing hisbusiness. This was a super fun conversation, and I hope you enjoy it.Okay? I know a lot of people are. They see what they see on TV. They see the dudes out on the field.They see the steam coming out of their mouths behind the helmet. It's cold.It's game day and they go, Man, I wish I could make that guy'smoney. Is my question to you is I mean,especially being one of what, five Gronkowski brothers? Yes, sir. Middleof five. I mean, like you. You grew up in an NFL breeding farm, what it seemslike from the outside. But what are the common? What do you think? The mostcommon misconception people have watching from the outside to a proathlete where they because they fantasize about it. What's themisconception? Where are they not connecting the dots? And there's somany things you definitely hit on one of them. Um, his start off mandefinitely weren't. I guess not a football breeding zone, man. We didn'tplay football until high school and really started. Just because my olderbrother Dan, was a beast man. He was, like, 66 to 40 in high school, and, uh,it was the coolest thing ever to see him play quarterback. So that's why Iplayed. But, man, misconception kind of what you just said. You know, I wish Iwas making his money. Uh, I made a post at tiktok that went super viral becauseI listed how much money I made. My rookie year is just starting fullbackfor the Cowboys. And, you know, I made $305,000 that year. Um, I played inalmost 400 snaps, and, you know, at the end of the day, I kind of broke it downto your agent fees, union fees and taxes that I had to pay. And, you know,at the end of the day, I made, like, 100 50 k. And, uh, the one thing thatreally stood out to people to was like, Why do you pay six figures and tax? I'mlike, What do you mean? While I pay six figures attacks? You think I wanted topay that? I mean, people pay. I don't know what it is, man. People think thatNFL players are like celebrities Just don't pay tax, which is just crazy tome. But we all do I think everyone does the only way anyone that's rich canhide it. Or kind of, I guess push it along is through, you know, losses ordifferent means in their business. But, yeah, we we pay a ton of tax. And theother thing that I think people, um huge misconception is that it's just agame. This one drives me crazy, man, because it was, like, the moststressful three years of my life. I woke up, I wouldn't even say wake up,man. I never really slept. I was probably averaging, like, five hours aweek. Uh, every time I went to the...

...dentist, they're like, What are youdoing? I'm like, What do you mean, what am I doing? They're like, Well, yourteeth are all grinded down, like you need to wear a mouth guard at nightbecause I was just so stressed out because every single day was, you know,you're thinking about the play before the play the next day and for me, Icould get cut at anytime. You know, people think you have these massivesalaries that are guaranteed, uh, as a rookie undrafted rookie, I was neverguaranteed anything. If I wasn't on the roster on Wednesday. I wasn't gettingpaid. It was funny, too. Is even if you are drafted player after you get thatinitial signing bonus, there's nothing else guaranteeing to keep you there.You know, going into my third year, I was actually, uh, came out with mybrother Rob. He was an all pro about Italian his second year. Uh, we'regoing into our third year, We're making the same money, you know, we would havehad the same salary, but he renegotiated, which almost neverhappens. And, um, you know, signed this big deal, which also anothermisconception that whole deal was back ended. So, uh, you know, it might havebeen 60 million, but, you know, really, only 19 was guaranteed. And what theydo is they back in the last couple of years with the big money. And then ifyou're not performing, they just let you go, and they don't know youanything. So, yeah, I was going in my third year guy like Jimmy Graham waswith us as well. Um, you know me and have made the same amount of money ourthird year. So $540,000 my third year in the NFL, and that just keeps goingup every year. So the minimums go up every year, and it just makes it moreand more competitive. So you just have to keep getting better and better oryou're gone. And then we talk about how the car business is a shark tank and what you're explaining to me. I'mlike, Whoa, geez, I don't know if I don't know if I have. I have what ittakes to even think about that. Not to mention I'm like 5 ft 7.5, so I'll berunning through guys legs. There's there's guys that size to have one, uh,on my wall right here. Darren Sproles and I actually have a torn Pec becauseof him. Tackle them out of kickoff coverage, was running full, speed yourclothes on him and ended up having Peck surgery a couple of days a couple ofweeks later because of that. So, um, I guess size size helps, but there aresome guys that are just very talented, but yeah, man, NFL. I mean, it gave meeverything I needed. I can't sit here and say I won't do it over. I'll do itover all day. Every day. I would let my kids play. I hope they get to thatlevel. Uh, so it was definitely a blessing. It set me up for the rest ofmy life. It taught me so many lessons. So I can't sit here and say it was allbad. I'm just saying that it's definitely not as easy as people thinkit is, right? And and the the fluff of, like, man, if I could just be a proathlete and then listening to you talk, I was listening to a podcast. Um, andBlake Griffin was the the guest, and he was given. He was basically outliningwhat every day looked like during the season. And it was like my bowelsquivered. I was like, Now, no, I ain't doing that because it's nonstop. Nosleep, constant stress, have to perform,...

...have to show up, have to work throughit, grinding the teeth like you're talking about eating, you know, eatingtwigs and protein and exercising 74 times a day. And I just thought Whoa,this is the part of it that nobody ever sees. Do you think you know to yourpoint about I would go back and do it every day. Is that did that set you upfor starting your business and doing what you're doing now with ice shaker?Oh, absolutely, man. I pulled so many lessons out of it that, you know, itjust got me ready. To be an entrepreneur is pretty much the samething. But now I was running my own team instead of being a part of a team.But, you know, the long days, the grind. I mean, everything's on you If youperform, if you do the work, you have success. And, man, the number one thingthat you really learn and in that I did a terrible job with was just reallybuilding that culture and team atmosphere. Um, I think I just was socompetitive. And when you start your own business, it's kind of like yourbaby, right? And you don't want to give up any of it. So you try to doeverything from marketing to sourcing product as your emails. Uh, and I didit all, uh, you know, setting out product. I was engraving it, and, uh,you just stopped us from growing at the end of the day, and I just wasn't goodat delegating because I just didn't think anyone else could do it as goodas me. And once my kids came along, um, things slowed down really quick. Icouldn't work 8200 hours anymore a week, and I had to figure things out, andthat's when I really saw the picture. I'm like, man, you know, teams winchampionships because of every player in the team, you know, doing their ownjob and doing it the right way. And when you look at a football team, it'sthe head coach and then you've got your assistance and you have the players andeveryone's got to play and everyone's got to do their job and do their part.And I finally saw that that vision and started doing that with the business,and I was I was ashamed that it took me so long. But that's really what took usto that next level. Yeah, I think in my journey as an entrepreneur, everythingyou're saying resonates. I'm thinking it brought me right back to starting mybusiness. We've been going about 20 years now, just shy of. But I thinkabout those moments where I was the designer, the marketer, the salesperson,the tech support person, the manager this that and how frightening it was tothey get to a point where I had I knew I had to bring people on the team toalleviate some of this and how bad I was. Like I went through this phase ofI'm the boss, the Tran our relationship as you do the job. I sign your paycheck.End of transaction. And I realized how awful like I turned through. I wentthrough People turn over like crazy because and I would sit here I go. LikeI said to my wife, like What is going on? How come these you can't find goodhelp anymore? So I want to ask you this in correspondence to You Obviously madeit to the NFL because you already had proved yourself to a degree. Right. In business, people are comingwith so many different varying levels...

...of experience. Skill set, aptitude. Doyou find there's a difference between how you have to coach in a businesssetting versus, say, a professional athletic situation? Yeah, for sure,because I mean The thing I see with sports is that everyone has the samegoal, the same mission. You know you're there to win a game, right? In business.It's not like that at all. You know, people are there to make a paycheck,and a lot of times it's to do it in the easiest fashion possible, right? So,yeah, I mean, that was That was big. I had to find ways to keep peopleresponsible and also, uh, you'll motivate them. And that was hard. So Ihate being the guy. That's just, you know, the dick that's sitting therelike Hey, man, like you sucked and like doing performance reports and all thatstuff like That's just not what I wanted to do. Uh, so I found ways toput everyone's bonuses and and put everyone together as a team. So at theend of the day, hey, if you want to take off for a week or two, we orwhatever you want to do, if you don't if you don't want to work hard thismonth, whatever it is, that's fine. But you know your bonuses dependent on it,and so is everyone else is on the team as well. So, hey, if you don't want toshow up, I'm not the one that's gonna be yelling at you. It's going to beeveryone else on the team that you're screwing over. So, uh, once I put thatstructure in place, it was like, the greatest day of my life. And it reallybrought entrepreneurship just back in the light that I enjoyed because I justhate being that guy. That's just, you know, constantly yelling at people.Yeah, man, you know what my vain ambition was and asking that questionbecause, um, you know, we've had so many different people business, titans,celebrity, you know, I've never had a professional athlete on my show yet. And everybody in the business world Imean, here's the go to even back when I remember as a teenager working atsomewhere like best buy or or something. What do they do to pump up the team?They show you that last scene in Rudy and everybody? Yeah, And businesseslike sports and you think of sports team would be. And now I've got a proathletes sitting in front of me being like No, no, no, no, it's It's a lotdifferent running a business, it playing on a sports team, completelydifferent culture. I mean, in the locker room, you don't have to tellpeople that you're trying to win a game. I mean, everyone is there for thatreason where it's just so much harder in business to build that same culture.Yeah, and you're playing an infinite game, right? Like you're your gameDoesn't end At the end of the day, you're coming up back and picking upthe same game tomorrow. Yeah, and you always wanted to get better to Yeah,championship. It's always it's always ongoing. It's the never endingchampionship. This would be like, uh, the last dance on Netflix if it neverended. Yeah, that's awesome. Is so a lot of people struggle because theyget into very competitive niches and...

...they go and there's a lot of businessexperts. I go, Oh, man, that that market is already saturated. What? What? What led you to gettinginto developing ice shaker as a business? And, you know, releasing theproducts that you're you're releasing and what we could argue is a verycompetitive saturated market. Yeah, man, um, I was very ignorant I think it's agood thing for entrepreneurs to just not know what you're getting into,because if you knew how hard it would be you once started, you know, youwould just say, Hey, you know, if I know it's gonna take me five years togrow this to a point where I'm finally making money or whatever it is, thenthey're probably not gonna do it. So, um, Man, I was young, uh, I had a lotof pride and I saw it as really just at that time, it really was something noone else was really doing. Um, I wanted it for myself. I created the productfor myself, and I was super passionate about being in the health and fitnessspace. So I was at the gym and my plastic bottle, the same plastic bottlethat have been around for 20 years, which just it was sweating everywhere Itook a sip, it smelled awful. And really, the game plan at that time wasjust go home and get an insulated bottle that I could actually mix stuffwith. And I figured I'd jump on Amazon and find one, and there was justnothing out there. It was like the simplest idea that no one had done yet.And I'm sitting there like No, no way. And there was a ton of like thetechnology was there. There's a ton of insulated bottles out there, but youknow, they all have these little tiny holes. Had to use a funnel to fill it.There's nothing to break up the powders. And it was just something I wanted formyself that I can use all day, every day. Like I didn't want the bottle justfor the gym. I wanted to bring it to work, bring it to the gym, sit on thecouch and use it to bring it on the airplane. Bring it by the pool. I justwanted one bottle, man, because that's how I am just simple. I don't mind fivebottles in the sink. I don't want to have to run the dishwasher all day.Just give me one bottle I could use all day. I'll put everything in it. I don'tcare, you know. And that was the goal, man. It started just as a product. Iwanted for myself. Dang that you see. Now you got me. This is how you sell,by the way you sense the passion dpb gang. It's like, Man, I saw a need.That's not to suggest there weren't problems that he had to solve along theway. But he found a need and he went for it. And so I want to ask youbecause my wife is huge into fitness. I don't know if you've heard of this newcraze. It's high fitness. It's like an aerobic type Dancy. I can't even Idon't even I can't do it justice. My wife was trying to get me to do it, andI'm like It will have to be weekend at Bernie's because I'll be the dead guydancing the movie music before you see me doing any of these moves. But she'shuge into this, and she's always looking for the best thing. So I know Idefinitely got to show her the product, but you have this idea. You identify aneed. A lot of people, I think, struggle withthat next step. I mean, we're hearing it on clubhouse. People are coming tothe stage to ask their questions and it's so I just don't know what my nextstep should be. I don't know how. I...

...don't know. What? I don't know. Who? Idon't know. So you go. Okay? Identify a need. What's the next step? How do youbreak through? How does how does Chris Gronkowski breakthrough to that nextstep in identifying how to get this thing made or patented or developed orprototype? Like, what's your process? Yeah, man, that's the hardest step byfar, because you don't know what to do. And you most people don't have themoney to do it either. Uh, I was super lucky. My wife started a business whenI was still playing in the NFL. And, um, I went into that for my first fiveyears after I left. So, uh, she was sourcing product. It was apersonalization company, and she was already sourcing product. We built itout. The one thing that I didn't really learn from it was really how to build abrand. I mean, this this company exploded on its own. Um, I ended upmaking more money my first year out of the NFL, and I was playing with mywife's company, and it was all because we we found products that had reallyhigh margin, and then we did a really good job of just turning them fast. Soat that time, the personalization market was like, you know, a week ortwo weeks to get anything. So we came in and just said, Hey, let's let'ssource our own product cause everyone's using the same stuff. Let's make itours. Let's put our brand on it And then let's turn it same day. If someoneorders a gift for Father's Day, let's send it to them the same day they orderit. Let's see if we can do that. And we started to and it just organicallyexploded because no one's ever seen anything like that. It's kind of theAmazon effect before Amazon really became the two day shipping master. Youknow, this was 2012 and we were on Etsy, and it just just exploded. So I didhave a decent amount of knowledge of sourcing product and getting productmade because of my wife's business. And then we used our same suppliers, uh, tostart making us prototypes for this bottle. Uh, so at that point, still,you think it's simple. I pretty much took a bottle. Um, that was alreadymade, and I put a second layer on it, and then we vacuum insulated it, andthen we put a sugar top on it, and it sounds pretty easy, but it was like 20prototypes later. The hardest part was the fact that, you know, you're tryingto seal a metal cup, and when you try to steal a metal cup, it leaks a lot.And as I read online, there was other metal bottles out there, but theyweren't insulated. And the biggest issue with them was, you know, theywon't keep your drink cold that actually, like, freeze your hand whenyou put ice in it. But the other biggest issue was, um, you know, thatthey would leak, so I just with the Shaker bottle like this thing cannotleak. There's one thing that I hate about a shaker bottles my leak. So wetried every seal inside out. Seals like everything. You possibly test thehardness of the seal, the type of of rubber we're using. And it's like 20prototypes later, we finally thought we had this amazing product, and, uh, Iordered 10,000 of them. I ended up storing them in my house in this roomthat I mean right now, I had to bring every box up which weighed about £70and carry them up the stairs. And we got him up here, and I tested bottleslike crazy, right? Like I've been shaking bottles for throwing them downthe stairs. Yeah, I swear. Like these massive four ups I've been shakingbottles for, probably like, three...

...months. And if they leak or not andwe're like, yeah, we finally got it. So I bring them up here. I opened up likethe first five bottles, and I test them. They're perfect. And the six bottle Itake out and fill water, I hold it upside down, and the whole thing juststarted dripping on the floor. I'm like, no freaking way. So, uh, ended uptesting like 100 that night, and I realized that every other bottle leaked.Uh, the pop tops were made in in, like, two parts. So, like they made two at atime. And for whatever reason, that the one wasn't ceiling. And, uh, out of allthe prototypes we got, this was never a problem. So to start the business. Um,I had to then reorder or get them to pay for another 10,000 lids the ship tome and I had to go through each and every bottle and replace the lids. Uh,man. And when you talk about passion, you know, if if I didn't have thepassion for the product and the idea, it was as simple as just selling themout and getting out of it, man, because it was a nightmare. And, um, I justloved it, though, you know, I just love the fact that I could go to the gym andpretend I'm working. And it was the greatest thing ever to me. So I justkept pushing through it and just kept trying to find ways to get the productout there and make it better. Yeah. Now, for those watching, you've probablyseen me looking away. Maybe even Chris's wondering. Why is he lookingaway from the screen right now? This is awful Podcast etiquette. It's because Ijust bought 2 26 ounce flex bundles website. You can keep looking away that.Yeah, man, that's my jam right now. 26 ounce. Yes, sir. Holy gee, that is theThat is the cup to end all bottles right there, man. Holy. And you got.Now, here's the real question. What color do you think I bought, man?There's too many. I don't even know at this point anymore. I don't even knowhalf the colors. You know where my brain is going, though, Chris, on this,I want to see a 26 ounce flex. So I am a proud F 1. 50 owner. Me too. Me too.All right. Hey, there you go. Um, I would love to see this, that if Iwalked into my dealership because, you know, they all sell stuff like this. Iwould love to see this 26 ounce flex bottle on the shelf instead of thatcheap, weird looking one that they always have their like. We We got tofigure out something, Chris, where we get we get ice shakers to startreplacing some of these weird Ali Ali Express purchased tumblers that theyI'm with you, man. And, um, you know, it's funny. We do, we do sell to adecent amount of car dealerships, and it's funny because, you know, they goand get like, super cheap stuff right? And everyone kind of shied away. Andwe've had this problem since day one because plastic shaker bottles are free,right? And, um, you know, and it's it's kind of tough to pay for somethingthat's a lot more expensive, but you're paying for quality, and you're alsopaying for brand that people post about They love our story. It's the only cupyou're gonna give away for free, where people are going to go on instagram andtake a picture and tagged the hell out...

...of it and be like, I can't believe mydealership gave me this cup because there's a cool story. I saw it on SharkTank. I love the Wachowski brothers, whatever it is to get excited about it,and that's just free branding. They bring it everywhere they go, they'regonna bring on the airplane, they're gonna use it at the gym, they're gonnause it at work, and people are actually gonna see it instead of using somethinglike I see some of the dealerships uh, give out a pen. I'm like, Come on, man,you're giving me a pen. No one's ever gonna see this pen ever again. I knowIt's a nice pen, but come on, man, it's not helping you with marketing. That'sinsane to So So you You sat down and you consciously made the decision ofthis is part of my marketing budget. I know. Yeah, great. It's an expense. Butwe know that we will have free advertising like lifetime value freeadvertising by the people that we give these things to, because they're goingto be so excited about it. Absolutely. We do this a ton with, like sponsoringevents and stuff to where, when you try almost never to use, uh, we're actuallyto pay for events. We always try to use product instead and were able topersonalize each and every bottle. It's pretty cool, because with my wife'spersonalization business, I did that for five years. So I know how to turnproduct. I know how to turn it fast with custom logo, so we use that to ouradvantage. It's grown the company tremendously because we can hit everysingle industry by offering this this personalization, and it could beanything from a logo to, you know, we'll be used as trophies. Uh, noemployee gifts, really anything you could think of we can do and put it ona bottle. So it's been a pretty cool thing to see that we need to get somedpb, everything. Skinny mini steel tumbler. We gotta get some of thesestem less wine tumblers. How did you I'm seeing, like the, uh, the smilestyle bottles. I don't know that they can really take that. The credit forthat design, But but did you What was the flagship like? Did you start withjust one? Because I feel like sometimes people are like, I got this idea. I'mgoing to go wide as quickly as I possibly can. How did that play out foryou? Yeah, So we had one bottle, one colour when we aired on Shark Tank andit was the 26 South Shaker bottle, and that's really that's the flagshipproduct. That's what separates us. That's what patented. Uh, you know, ithas to twist an agitator that will break up powders who also strain. Um,you know the ice out so you can you know, you could party with the two andfour shots if you want to, but that is that is us. Like that is when you thinkabout ice shake or you think about the Shaker bottle, Um, that was what westarted with. And then just just by listening to our customers and andseeing who our customers were, we then branch out from there. So we realizedreally quickly that it was mostly females buying the product even thoughit was a male product and they were buying for their husbands, kids,grandkids. So we came in right away with the line of the skinny tumblersgeared more towards females, and we noticed right away that our customersjust kept buying them. And then it was a thing where, instead of buying one,they were buying one for the husband, kids or grandkids, but also buying forthemselves as well. So it was all just...

We grew the line of the products bylistening to our customers. Man, I love that it. It's such a foundational thingthat I've noticed as a pattern amongst successful entrepreneurs. We paidattention to our customers. There's, you know, how many people I'm sure yousee it to where they're like, No, but this was meant for the male audience,and they get pissed that you know women are buying this thing. Dude, Shut up.Take the money. Like take the freaking money. We saw this recently to we wererunning an ad campaign for one of our clients. We have an agency, Um, and yougo. I said, Well, who is the ideal client? And he's telling me this thatand the next thing. And we went simply into his Facebook data to see who wasfollowing his page. And 90% of the engagement was from a female audience.Wow. And I said, Bro, you gotta run an ad. We gotta shift the creative. We gotto pump this thing out and she just traffic tons and tons of traffic andsales for pennies on the dollar. It was insane. It was insane just by simplypaying attention. And I think people do you think people's ego gets in the way,like, is ego the enemy here? So I mean, I did the same thing. So when I createdthe product, we went, and when we started running ads were running ittowards a guy that was my age that went to the gym, and it didn't do that welland really, um, that's exactly how I actually found out. My demographics was,you know, we ran a bunch of ads and then back then, uh, Facebook told youeverything so you could take all your sales, your emails. You can put it backinto Facebook, and it would tell you who your audience was. It would breakit down to what car they drove, how much money they made, How many kidswere in their household education levels, all that. So all that's nowbanned, you know, you can't see that anymore. But back then, that was when Ifirst started the business. That was gold, man, because I didn't know. Andit was definitely ego that I thought like, Hey, only males are gonna beusing this that are my age that are Jack. They go to the gym trying to getswole and, uh, you know, find out really quickly that that wasn't thecase. And, uh, you know, we we quickly switched it and, um, you know, open uptargeting to everyone at that point and just said, Hey, let's figure out whoare actual audiences. And even though that data is not as readily availableon Facebook now, you can still find it by really looking at your your staff,Not, I guess it's not. It doesn't pull it all into stats anymore, but you canlook at delivery and see who's being delivered to and how they're reactingto it. So we still use that. It's not as efficient as Facebook used to be,but it's definitely a great source of information. Still, what was the step?Because I love your I love your checkout process. And I mean a lot ofthis is a conversation that car dealers have all the time there, you know? Howdo we improve our website experience? Um, you know, and we're constantlylooking at AECOM. But traditionally we always look at the Amazons and stufflike that of the world, which, if you ask me, I'm going to go to Amazon forthe fact that they have inventory and I can get it tomorrow, You know? Yep. Buttheir website, uh, you know, I don't...

...know, You know, it's but I look at yourwebsite. It's clean. It's simple. You're you're not telling me 87,000things about the product yet you're you're able to build desire around itvery quickly. Uh, and then you go to you Just a quick check out. And Inoticed when I go to add to cart, you've got this very strategic. You mayalso like these. Oh, yeah, but then you've also like, I mean, if we'rebeing honest, you know, 114 bucks is in my cart right now. I'm not going to think twice about it, But you've added in this afterpayconcept, like the ability for people to finance this thing it says or forinterest free installments of 28 74. Did you guys go into building yourwebsite with this concept? Did you? How did you go about this? Did you knowthat these were things you needed to do? Was there somebody you brought in tohelp you understand that? What? What was the philosophy around this? The wayyou're getting people to move essentially through an Upsell processrate at checkout? Yeah, it's, um this website has been built by myself, man.Uh, and it went through a lot of phases and actually was on a call yesterdayfor a couple hours on how we're going to completely redo it, Um and then makeit better, but that's definitely staying. Uh, that part of the site isstaying, and, uh, there's a man. It's it's like a website is It's crazybecause you can do heat map and you can do all kinds of different things to tryto predict the flow and drive customers certain directions. But there's so muchthat you want them to know. But overloading it is hard. So, um, man,it's really for me. We brought in professionals to test it in a B tests,all kind of landing pages. And at the end of the day, sometimes simplicityworks better, uh, so letting them get through, But then also just kind ofbriefly letting them know there's a couple other products has has donereally well for us. So, uh, man, you get a B tests all day and you'll get adifferent result for everything, and it drives you insane. But yeah, man, thisthe site you're looking at is pretty much all built by myself, which isinsane. And, um, it can definitely be better. Um, and we're going throughthat process with an actual developer because I just I feel like it needs tobe super, super clean and throughout the whole process. You just want to youwant to hit as many up sales as you possibly can, so we'll work throughthat. Speed is always a huge issue, and when you build your own site and youhave no clue what you're doing, speed becomes a problem because you just keepadding apps after apps after apps. So I'm excited to redo. It will be about athree month build out, but I have to come back on and show you why I did allthe things that I did because it's a pretty, uh, pretty cool process nowthat I have the information and I know what to do. And it's now just finding adeveloper that can put it all in seamlessly without any glitches, Imight know a developer, uh, that would...

...be cool, man to do a screen share andjust walk through your E com model and just like, see why you chose to makedecisions because you're right, it's It's this balancing act where as abusiness owner, that's pushing inventory. I want to sell everything Ihave, or at least give them the opportunity to see it right whenthey're ready to pull out their wallet. But then there's the other side of itwhere you say, Well, if I did do that, then they might not buy the actualproduct. They added to their cards. So that's super interesting stuff, man. NFL or turned serial entrepreneur slashleader slash culture builder. This was such a fun conversation, man. Idefinitely I would love to have a conversation with you again in thefuture about all of this stuff. And just where the company's going andeverything you've discovered because it's so valuable. I think sometimes youknow when we're when we're in the weeds. It's very easy to kind of put theblinders on and not see what's happening out there and getperspectives from so many different. Um, you know, verticals. But this one isparticularly interesting to me just because of how saturated it is. But howeffectively you've been able to, you know, carve out your slice and buildsomething here is really tremendous. Yeah, man, it's been fun. It's It's agrind, man, for sure, but I think we have a really cool model. Uh, we workwith a lot of really cool partners, and it's all about speed, um, efficiencyand having a great product. You know, that's really what it comes down to.Our biggest separator is the fact that you can hit us up today and say, Hey, Iwant my logo on the bottle and today's Tuesday and I could get it to you byFriday. No problem for an event and people just that kind of service, thatkind of ease where you're just literally sending over your logo withinan hour. I'm sending back proofs. You're just saying, Hey, I want youknow, 25 of these and boom, I'm sending you an email where you can pay withcredit card and then you're getting it three days later. People just react tothat and I appreciate it. And that's really what the business model with mywife's business has been as well and realized that works. Um, and that'ssomething that organically spreads to and people really appreciate. Howscalable is this? Because we talked about dealerships and by the way, dpbgang, you gotta be checking this out if you're seeing what I'm seeing. There'sa huge opportunity here for branding for a product that Hey, you want mymagnet? No, I don't want your fricking magnet. You want a bottle that I'mgonna use literally all day, every day? Yes, I do. Right. But how scalable isthis for the personal brand? The I call him Automotive Preneurs. The car salesprofessional Who's put himself out there? Is he Do they have theopportunity to hit up ice shaker and say I want something with my personalbrand on it? Or is that is this more of an enterprise solution? No, we we do itfor everyone. So, um, I don't know if you ever if you check out my socialevery once in a while when it's kind of a down month, I'll get on there, I'lldo a whole video of like, Hey, this is the whole process. This is me making athree D image like a laser on a bottle. Hit me up. Send me your logo. Uh, no. Mo Q s, let's do it. So, uh, yeah, I did...

...that leading up to, uh you know,November, we had a huge crew in there were just cranking, man, and we'reslammed, but everyone was loving it and, you know, bonus season was coming up.So, like, All right, let's let's keep it going. So, uh, yeah, man, I We haveeveryone from, you know, some people just make their own logos as personaltrainers and, you know, they hit them, they shoot them over. And we love doingjust 11 It's not the greatest for us. We don't make a lot of money, butpeople get super excited about it, and they show everyone so it always leadssome more. And yeah, with I'm always willing to do it. There he is, man.Chris Gronkowski playing the long game. Thanks so much for joining me on thedealer playbook. Podcast. Absolutely. Thanks so much for having me. I'm Michel Cirillo, and you've beenlistening to the dealer playbook podcast. If you haven't yet, pleaseclick the subscribe button wherever you're listening. Right now, leave arating or review and share it with a colleague. If you're ready to make bigchanges in your life and career and want to connect with positive,nurturing automotive professionals, join my exclusive dpb pro community onFacebook. That's where we share information, ideas and content thatisn't shared anywhere else. I can't wait to meet you there. Thanks forlistening. Mhm.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (482)