RJ Schultz on Disrupting the Billboard Industry and the Intrapreneurial Spirit – A Scroll Sessions Recap

In the eighth episode of the Scroll Sessions podcast, hosts Dan Page and Shane Hickenlooper welcome a remarkable guest, RJ Schultz. RJ, known for his role in disrupting the traditional billboard industry with his company Blip, shares insights on his journey from government service to being a pivotal figure in the business world.

The Unexpected Path to Entrepreneurship

RJ begins by discussing his unexpected journey into the business world. With a background in aeronautical science and a stint in government intelligence, RJ’s path was far from the typical entrepreneurial route. A turning point came when he realized the need for a change after seeing the impact of his career on his family life. This realization led him to business school, where he discovered his passion for business and entrepreneurship.

Lessons in Execution and Efficiency

Throughout his career, RJ emphasizes the importance of execution over strategy. He cites experiences at Amazon and Lucid, where he learned the value of efficient execution and the power of a well-coordinated team. His experience in these companies shaped his approach to business, focusing on creating effective systems and fostering a culture of efficiency.

Blip: A Revolution in Billboard Advertising

RJ’s current venture, Blip, stands as a testament to his innovative spirit. Blip, akin to Uber in its business model, serves as a scheduling algorithm that connects digital billboard owners with advertisers. This model has democratized billboard advertising, allowing businesses of all sizes to participate in a space once dominated by large corporations with significant advertising budgets.

The Future of Marketing: Personal Connection and Leverage

Looking ahead, RJ predicts a shift in marketing towards personal connections and leveraged audiences. In an era where consumers are bombarded with digital ads, RJ believes that marketing strategies will increasingly focus on building emotional connections and utilizing influential voices to create demand.

Embracing the Intrapreneurial Spirit

RJ’s journey is a compelling example of intrapreneurship – driving innovation and new business ideas within existing organizations. His story is a powerful reminder of the impact one can make by combining the security of a traditional career with the creative freedom of entrepreneurship.



Podcast Transcript

For the full story and insights from RJ Schultz, listen to Episode #8 of Scroll Sessions.

[Music] baby [Music]


welcome RJ thank you good to be here we’re excited to have you on the podcast I’m Dan I’m Shane and uh this is scroll


sessions fantastic well RJ uh can you just tell us a little bit about your


background sure um and who you are here I am RJ Schultz I am a business transplant like I did


not grow up thinking I would be here today to not grow up with aspirations to like start companies or even work at a


company right I spent the first few years of my professional life in the


government like the military went to school studied aeronautical science concurrently got a pilot’s license and


then joined a like an intelligence program affiliated with the Army right out of school and so


that sent me into three years of training okay so here I am like 26 27 28 or whatever never


having really worked in the real world yet um but I went operational after that training and


had fun man I had a lot of fun got to see some of the world that I probably wouldn’t have seen otherwise yeah got to


see some places I have seen again but like through different glasses which has been been pretty cool


um but I realized very quickly that I did not want a life in the government in fact I I decided to transition to


business through business school and the impetus was I was home I was gone a lot with the government when I came home once I had a three-year-old son he’s


like two and a half three at this time and we were playing with these trucks he’s like obsessed with cars and trucks


at this time and he’s just like Dad fun I’m like yeah buddy I think so too


and he’s like next time I want to do it at your house I’m like oh man like my


son doesn’t even think I live here you know what I mean yeah yeah and so that


year I quit and I or I went inactive still Affiliated


um but I went to business school and at that point like I’m up all night Googling like what is next if not


government like what’s out there for me I had no idea um I Googled you know


best ways to further your education like what are my options and I settled on an MBA program and I went and took the test


I’m like what do you got to take this test what is this thing it’s a monster and so I I went in and took a cold I was


like putting my application together and I’m starting to realize people like identify the desire to go to business


school like in high school sometimes and they select their college based on that yeah and they’re like taking GMAT prep


courses on the side and paying thousands of dollars for um tutoring and like help on all this


and this is like their goal I’m like oh my goodness dude I am I am behind yeah


and when I got to business school like I applied to one School uh luckily I really really enjoyed it because when I


got there I realized oh my gosh this is like a world where people are like plugging into options and all this and I


get there and I am a fish out of water dude you know like going from the government yeah nothing I can talk about or I’ve done is


applicable to any of these conversations with you people you know like one one guy’s you know his he’s the son of the


CEO of a global Hotel chain that you’ve stayed at and his dad’s like go back to school and get an MBA and prove yourself


and so you can take over the family business everyone else is like yeah I just sold a business for a cool little


million but I want to learn how to do it you know on bigger scale and you know one guy was an early investor in Pixar


and cashed out and he just was going to school because his wife’s parents are from that town he didn’t even recruit for a job afterwards you know what I


mean like all these folks and here I am just like I don’t even know how to spell entrepreneurship literally don’t know if


the e or the U come comes first you know what I mean yeah don’t ask me good thing for spell check that’s what gram release


for yeah I went to Duke University oh wow okay


and it was it was fun man it was a lot of fun um I took this class so I uh through the


government I’d applied to this McKinsey and Company thing this McKinsey emerging scholar thing and I became a


semi-finalist I thought oh this is what I want to do for sure and then I got to school and started meeting these people


and I’m like that is not I want to do like I don’t want to work for anybody let alone like yeah anyway I don’t


disparage that publicly but um because it’s a fantastic route but I I started taking classes that


really changed like helped me find that thing that I was like okay I need to put my claws into something yeah and what


were the classes that you took that shift your mindset on that yeah good question there were a few one one was uh


consumer behavior in nature I’m not sure exactly what it’s called but you know on day one we had the CEO of either


starkist or Bumblebee tuna come in and he’s like hey I’m so-and-so I’m the CEO whichever one of those I can’t remember


but we’re chasing down the other one so if it was bumblebees like we’re chasing down starkists they’re crushing Us in this part of the world for these reasons


and I I just want to know why right like we’ve put these what I think are very Innovative things into place and they’re


just not taking um I’ll be back in 12 weeks or whatever the semester length was and I’ll hear


your pitches and I’ll give five grand of the the idea we Implement right so right there it’s like we don’t even have class


we had access to some of the starkist or Bumblebee team and we were talking with them and like


getting to work on their problems and that was the first time that I was ever like this is fun like yeah strategy and


execution and like making changes you could go to a grocery store and see implemented the next week type thing I’m


like this stuff is really really fun yeah and um so stuff like that um it was a blast there’s another uh


class I think it was called like entrepreneurial execution I should remember that because I stay in touch with the professor but he uh


he is someone who I am like patterning my life after because he went and he got


an MBA and then a PhD but then jumped into entrepreneurship and he stayed in the Research Triangle so in North


Carolina you have like you have Duke and UNC you have NC State in your Wake Forest and lots of research comes out of


those institutions right and a lot of the research is ripe for commercialization and so you’ll see a


handful of professors adjunct and otherwise that stay there and just kind of like shoot fish in a barrel with


student-led research of like this commercialize that and so he had done it


three times and he’s on his fourth uh and that the previous three they had exited for a total of 1.5 billion and so


this like these things are happening right they’re not just like apps in people’s basements and so


he like opened my eyes man just opened my eyes to how simple and let me qualify that simple entrepreneurship


entrepreneurship is entrepreneurship is very complex and very difficult yeah um but we make it increasingly so right


like it is as simple as build something for someone in particular right like that’s as simple


as it needs to be and and so he really drove that home that class was


Monumental for my mind shift that’s cool like my mindset shift and then there is


another one you know with all that that research going on like like Duke in particular has has a huge law school and


a huge Medical School a big PHD programs in in the biomedical and Engineering spaces and so a lot of research is


coming out of there and the schools will get together once a year and hold this like this Shark Tank like event instead


of pitching your idea for investment and this one in particular you’re pitching your idea uh trying to get like


a business component to your team right like I’ve been you know heads down for five years researching and I’m ready to


start thinking about commercialization and so I went to one of those joined up with a team and


that became like a semester or two of my classes like the the University was giving credits for that I didn’t have to


go to class but like literally building a business with these professors who were independently wealthy themselves


from their Enterprise and now they’re here you know volunteering their time to help us do the same and so that type of


experiential learning was just like oh my gosh I love this wow yeah what a cool program it was awesome to me I feel like


I actually didn’t finish school so and I owe it not always but a lot of times


I’ll talk so much crap on yeah undergrads but then I hear about certain programs


that just blow my mind the fact that uh Duke has such a cool program where you were able to be immersed in actual


business and work with companies like that’s what school should be so that’s just such an awesome absolutely such an


awesome experience and to backtrack on that you applied to one school which was Duke and you got it yeah because and you


took a test to get in blind like what the GMAT like just the regular I mean


everyone takes it NBA wow yeah but I was lucky because like a business school and


I I served on the admissions committee in my second year just to kind of give back and I learned a lot I’m like dude I was lucky because a business school has


to think about okay um you know like there are rankings right


um a business class to think like I’m going to bring in 400 or 800 people and I need to make them happy on the back end or


else our name is dragged through this price so if they bring anything up yeah if they bring in uh if they bring in a


class full of people from Wall Street who want to go right back to Wall Street like 90 of those people are not getting


their dream jobs and they’re going to be disgruntled right so they have to piece together a class that allows them to


deliver on this transformative experience right and so I was like literally the only guy coming from the Pentagon yeah and so


um I didn’t have to be like the the best at the test and you know and stuff like


that I think I was unique enough they’re like oh this guy can come in oh and he wants to do entrepreneurial things so we


don’t have to worry about him like we’ll focus on everyone else so I just kind of slid in my luck


100 got into Duke off of a blind GMAT test yeah just amazing goes to show I


think uh who you are and what your uh education is I appreciate the kind words you brought up you brought up execution


and simplifying entrepreneurship I think like following you on LinkedIn and


seeing a lot about what you talk about a lot of it has to do with like execution and executing you know even if you don’t


exactly have a plan right um talk to us a little bit about that seems like that’s kind of maybe become


your your mission lately and it kind of maybe came from probably military but


yeah I I think execution is extremely important in business and it’s it’s like


the least sexy part of it right strategies wherever it wants to be I want to be an analyst I want to be a


strategy guy yeah it’s like cool how much money is that paper strategy bringing into your company like it’s


nothing until it’s executed upon yeah and so I think the most important thing that we’ve done


um you know I’ve worked at three companies Amazon Lucid are now blip since business school and each of those


places had a really particular focus on execution that taught me how important


it was right like it it it all comes down to how you execute you know I was even


last night as I was doing a little bit of like strategy and planning personally right like I love LinkedIn and I see so


much gold on there like so much and I’m like man that person just just said it the right way and I’m like I gotta save


that because I need to reference it later I wish LinkedIn LinkedIn if you’re listening I wish there was some type of uh


um organizational component to the saving because it only goes yeah just one little yeah it’s kind of annoying


yeah on that so I have a spreadsheet and it gives me a second pass I’m like why did I say this uh and I’ll delete it or


something but if if the second pass I’m still like man that’s amazing I’ll put into the spreadsheet you know based on


topic and as I’m building this I do refer to it quite often when we need but


I’m thinking how worthless are you know these 30 or 40 posts I have saved here


until I like it’d be better I’d be better served to just pick one of these


highlight it yellow and refer to it every day until I Implement what it’s teaching me right yeah and it all comes


back to activity versus accomplishment we get so lost you know this false sense


of accomplishment when we’re just doing activities when we’re just like spinning the wheels busy um busy yeah I


help I advise companies on the side and and was talking to someone who’s like yeah dude my bread and butter is I work


hard I’m like the last person to leave the office I’m always working I’m like what what have you accomplished like what are your top three needle movers


just like well I mean I I and it was just like I work hard I work hard I work hard I’m like well


man I think I’d rather have someone that works less hard but does things that are meaningful to the company which ties


back to the the root of your executionary path your executional path that has to start with like vision and


the way you communicate it and the way you hold people accountable in yourself and things like that but yeah execution


is an art that because it’s not sexy is not it’s just not a focus yeah and and I’m


sure all conversations will lead into this since we’re since we’re in the text space but the way that Tech is


conditioned like the rock stars so to speak to emerge where companies can


exist based on the ability to grow Top Line only and like that doesn’t


highlight the need for really fine-tuned execution right like forever it’s just like I can grow and grow and grow it


costs me a ton of money I’m not profitable yeah people like me you know what I mean like and you’ll do that for


10 years 10 15 years yeah and then it’ll just die off it’ll just go away I’ll cash out before then it’ll be someone


else’s friends I think we’re seeing a shift where you know business owners we are forced


to start treating our business finances like we do our personal finances you know what I mean words


unit economics should Rule and execution is the Crux of whether or not you can


play the unit economics game right yeah one thing that I’ve noticed in our agency is uh it’s hard to reward


execution on the Fulfillment side where it’s easy to reward it on the sales side but as far as compensation goes yeah


yeah it’s really easy to say hey if you sell something you make X percentage of commission that’s how sales is always


gone yep but on the Fulfillment side I’d love to hear your thoughts like how do you reward execution from like a comp


plan uh where fulfillment gets a new task and they have to do it and you want


to be able to reward them for hitting a certain level of execution so let me


Define fulfillment real quick to make sure I understand correctly is that just the the execution of the service you’re providing right right yeah okay yeah


yeah yeah I think that you know um and this this gives some insight into


my my style of leadership here it’s like I don’t need to be the guy to answer that at blip I need to have have leaders


in our company that can do that in a tailored manner for their Department we do that together and so I will answer


that question because I do have some great thoughts on that um great in terms of size maybe not


quality we’ve thought a lot about this year but like um where you can’t Quantified dollars in


tomorrow from what you’re doing today what can you use to measure whether or


not you are implementing or executing effectively and so I think that you need to find some of those maybe more


qualitative dipstick measure marks you can do this in conjunction with with


customers like level of Happiness level of ideation I think that anything that


we’re doing in delivering in terms of delivering our service need to start with a baseline like where we’re at that


forces our executioners to really be intentional about what they’re doing because if they


can’t say I’m trying to do this for this purpose then it’s not going to be optimal it’s not going to be optimally


done and it’s not going to make a difference if no one recognizes the change that has been made from it right so even if you’re not bringing in


dollars it’s like if we’re setting out with a campaign to try and affect you


know your organic traffic or your this or you’re that let’s let’s start with a baseline measurement so that we can


track how well our execution has moved the needle yeah I love that I like that


because sales people always get rewarded for the sale of what will be executed


but yeah execution is all the work and a lot of times fulfillment doesn’t necessarily get rewarded for that so


we’ve been playing with that idea like how do we uh how do we reward our fulfillment team for extremely quality


execution and what is that like quantitative uh yeah we have a it is hard


um we have a team internal team at blip that we call a


data and automation team right and um four individuals who are


just I’m not even going to tell you their names because anyone listening might try and steal them they are


fantastic um we’ve got HubSpot experts on that team people who are neck deep in the


gpt4 movement and the stuff that that can do right and so what they’re doing is going around to every unit every


business unit in the company and just saying can I sit next to you for a week what do you do like what are your daily


tasks and how are you executing against us and they’re making observations and then putting plans together with those


stakeholders to like automate their job and so we will um have regular touch points where we


talk about okay what do we learn about what the customer success team or the marketing the sales team are doing in their day-to-day and how much time are


they spending and so with the automations we can track how much more efficient those teams are


becoming yeah how are spent or whatever and and that helps us start to quantify


the the effect of execution as it moves further and further away from like Revenue one and that I mean that’s my


favorite that’s my favorite initiative favorite meeting that we have yeah just to watch that our saved column grow it’s


it’s I mean I’ve done the same thing at our company we’ve been going around and


literally uh I mean with our Riders especially with our copywriters and


people that are writing SEO content people that are writing blogs like we’ve taken one of our Riders and basically


10xed the amount of output that she can do so there’s automation tools yeah and


just pretty much completely eliminated all of our writing contractors yeah yeah so I mean it’s it’s pretty it’s pretty


amazing we’ve done the same thing with our with our Facebook and Google teams I’ve built tools that will allow them to


be able to execute it’s awesome in a faster Pace it’s super fun right now like AI is going to quite literally


change the landscape yeah I mean it already has and it’s you know just moving at an incredible speed I mean it


used to take like a year or two you know for people to roll out products and you see


Microsoft acquire this and literally inject it immediately into all of their products in a matter of weeks I wonder


if Microsoft asked chat GPT how could we incorporate yeah


but yeah no yesterday we have two people that are out uh because one got married


and one just had a baby and they’re both ad buyers so I had to kind of step in


over the last few days and take on all these be tactical yeah and I literally yesterday was building a brand


new Google campaign for a customer that had never ran one before and the customer does like noise surveys I had


no didn’t know anything but yeah I knew nothing about the industry they work on


construction sites a lot and I didn’t have a ton of time to dive in on this but I literally put the website into


chat GPT and said act like a Google ads expert help me dissect this come up with


keyword suggestions it helped me just wow it’s formatted everything for me so


it’s like hey here’s some keyword ideas I’m not gonna just use them word for word but man it saved me an hour and a


half of research by just formatting the research for it wow wow wow crazy what


it’s able to do in our industry and Dan’s been building out a lot of products that when somebody submits an onboarding form all those prompts are


already done so our team gets a filled out form that’s like hey we did a ton of research it’s dissected here you go go


build the campaign within about 30 seconds after our client


fills out the off-boarding I mean onboarding form please not the yeah


automated the onboarding form within about 30 seconds our entire team gets a document that four-page document that is


all dissected information based on what they filled out and gives them everything they need to go execute so


this is like requirements for the campaign yeah exactly here’s keyword suggestions here’s


headline suggestions here’s descriptions here’s an audience breakdown based on


their target audience here’s like all this stuff you know so that’s pretty cool it’s not perfect no yeah but it’s a


really good start and that’s at least for now how you should use AI like yeah


hopefully people are using it to enhance like you’re and especially like what


it’s doing is taking average people and making them like excellent for the most


part yeah that’s me yeah it’s like wow you know a lot about noise


surveys yeah well and the problem is you you want you want and need and should


become excellent you know yeah use AI to do that but absolutely but um so as far


as blip goes you started at Amazon after school what did you do for Amazon so I was part I was in their Emerging Markets


department and essentially this is 2016. so what we were doing was um extending


we’re taking the the marketplace as you know it to other countries right and that became a game of like we want to


set up fulfillment centers and you know contract agreements with suppliers and stuff in these countries uh no we do not


we just want to make like a extend the internal eBay part of it right so we go to like the UK or Mexico or Canada and


uh or rather we’d go to the the sellers in the U.S who are doing really well and just say hey can we cross list your


stuff in the US and Canada and the UK and Canada and so we’re just extending the marketplace to other countries and


it was just fun that was another another like um I mean there’s a high job yeah it was a


good little travel job but it was another another like first for me really getting a taste of what it’s like to be


an entrepreneur um because we’re meeting with all these manufacturers and I realize that these manufacturers have Engineers on their


team who are just building stuff like coming up with ideas ideating and just creating things and they’re all you know


ready for white label no one’s touching them yeah half the world doesn’t even know they exist and I’m just thinking like what is that oh yeah I just just


made this who’s buying it nobody can I like yeah so we we and Amazon


encouraged us to do this because it made us better at our jobs we all had e-commerce stores running on the side


and I was like man I put my first product and this is probably gonna get in trouble for this but


um I put my first product on the store I didn’t know what I was doing and I


checked my account like a month later I’m like 10 grand in profit I haven’t even touched this thing yeah so this


thing’s like bringing in 10 grand a month yeah and that was the power of Amazon back in those days that has since


changed um I ran an Amazon store Amazon yeah that’s what led to this I sold it and it


helped me oh really about this but yeah fantastic same thing oh so you know the you know the fun you know the highs and


the lows like yeah I I still do Amazon on the side I’ve got teams that run it so I don’t I don’t I don’t do it but


when I get into it I’m like I don’t even recognize what’s going on here anymore it is so complex yeah like I couldn’t do


it by myself so did you work with sellers or did you work with like as Amazon you worked with independent


seller accounts right and yeah I’m listed yeah we work with both um suppliers and sellers we tried to


create sellers you know I mentioned we try to convert sellers to other countries yeah yeah we’re just we looked


at a country and we’re just trying to improve price and selection you know for for consumers there so you are an


entrepreneur on the side still there because you’re running this Amazon business yeah same one that you started in 2016 yeah yeah and you have va’s


around it for you now yeah that’s awesome Epic that was like my goal back in the day yeah that’s really cool so


you went from Amazon to lucid yep and talk about you talked earlier about kind


of execution and how each of these companies like I guess the culture of execution was a little bit different how


going from Amazon to Lucid here were you back in Utah at this point I came to


Utah before Lucid yeah where were you with Amazon Seattle Seattle yeah did Amazon by the way have a good culture of


for example everything I would assume of Amazon is that they care 100 about


consumer yeah right so like as a seller on Amazon I always felt like oh Amazon


does not give a crap about me they just yeah okay they’ll shut me down if they want you know but yeah what was the


culture at Amazon when it came to Sellers and consumers did they want you to focus on the consumer more or the


seller yeah I can only speak to the culture of like my department right because Amazon is an ecosystem but my


hiring uh my getting hired there coincided with I think it might have been the same summer or or right after


if you remember though was it New York Times or Wall Street Journal article that talked about how people are crying at their desks yeah yeah and so I


brought that up in every interview and like explain this you know like what do you have to say yeah and I thought my


interviewers handed it real excuse me handled it really well um one piece of information that we


didn’t get I think that the article took some journalistic Liberties like most of all of them do


um yeah one of my interviewers just like look that person the source for that article the main source was on my team


um she had been gone for a year by the time the article was written she left on her own accord and in that year I have been


invited to her wedding and I attended we’re still friends to this day when I read that I’m like I don’t remember you


know what I mean um but that’s not to say that like harsh conditions didn’t exist Amazon is a very customer-centric


company a customer obsession is like Chief among their their principals for leadership right


in my experience though I my managers were fantastic my team was great I had


all the time off that I wanted as long as things were getting done right they really valued work-life balance I loved


it in fact when I went to Luca I’m like dang I made the wrong choice I miss Amazon I I’d love to Lucid though Lucid


is fantastic but um I loved Amazon I really did and Lucid seemed like it has


a I had had some friends that worked there it’s pretty amazing work culture


for the most part and they like they have their hackathon and they’ve got some other really interesting work


culture things talk a little bit more about lucid or for people who don’t know what Lucid is I’ll start by talking


about Amazon because Amazon there are a lot of fantastic people but it’s hard to it’s hard to really


hone in on where support plus luck stops and like raw


talent and just perseverance starts because even though we each operated as like independent little entrepreneurial


units like we’re part of Amazon you know I mean like you had funding anything you wanted to do had money behind it


um so I get to lucid and it’s small at that time and there was none of that backing them and so I got to see like


the silhouette of how fantastic these people were and the the early leaders of that company are among the best I’ve


ever worked with in my career they are fantastic people fantastic entrepreneurs


like so good I mean look what they’ve done with a flow chart yeah you know what I mean with the simple yeah the


simple idea of what they started with into what it is today is pretty darn cool yeah so I felt like the big aha


like wow this is fun Talent blah blah blah at Amazon that I experienced or was first exposed to because that is not


what you find in the government um I feel like that big aha was just


diluted to its truest most foundational component in everyone I met at lucid and


I was just like this place is awesome yeah because you went from a very customer-centric company right Amazon


was we want to focus on the consumer and the consumers really build the product it’s like the consumers asked for


something Amazon goes and tries to build it where at Lucid was it a shift of uh


we’re just a product focused company we want to build this really amazing flow chart like where was it at when you were


there yeah it was starting to turn that corner because of all the traction that just building that flowchart product had


brought yeah all the organic growth you know caused everyone’s eyeballs to be turned


toward who was finding this on their own and like what can we do to start building for them and so in the first


couple of years of my tenure there um what did you do what did you do for them by the way Business Development


okay strategy and operations in a partner ecosystem a couple of things than the last year I started the


government vertical which is now thriving with not because of me just


because of the opportunity there but they’ve got a really good leader in place of that unit and it’s just


crushing like he’s taking them into fedramp certification which allows them to serve the federal government I mean


like it’s rocking because of who’s leading it federal government has has a nice budget yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah I I


mean yeah yeah well that’s cool well and so with with Lucid so you came in you


were helping develop the product with like your team and trying to go after


new verticals or what what exactly were you doing a good question yes so my first team in this business development


Focus we had was really taking the product as it had already been built excuse me in finding better ways to


distribute it through Partners so for example we recognized we have a ton of users who are also G Suite users or are


also 365 users right so let’s go knock on Google and Microsoft store and say


we’re serving the same person and in the case of Microsoft like they’re choosing us over your crappy Vizio right yeah so


let’s work together in something in PowerPoint yeah it would be a huge win


if we could take this product and even if we needed to you know Lop off the top tenth and and rebuild that you know last


10 percent for your customers purposes or your ecosystem purposes like let’s do that let’s build an integration and then


just have you push it down and so you’ll notice in in Excel for example you can have a lucidchart button add in like in


your Ribbon like bam natively oh that’s cool through integration so stuff like that or we partnered with Salesforce


yeah um Google and those guys so it was a partnership play for distribution so


um and go you kind of had an entrepreneurial route then right where you worked for Amazon but you had a very


entrepreneurial role at Amazon and then same with Lucid you had an entrepreneurial role it seems like


you’ve done a lot of Entrepreneurship can you talk about why you feel like entrepreneurship has maybe some more


benefits than entrepreneurship yeah um that’s a really good question I think


I have to open up my heart to like pour out the answer because you know with uh


the e-commerce thing on the side and I like I have a brand I’m about to launch so I’m very excited about a very Niche


brand happy to talk about but um as I’m doing those things and then simultaneously doing the intra type


stuff you notice the stark contrast between like doing something for someone who has a ton of money and it’s funded


in their support and there’s like help and over here it’s just like dude I don’t know if this is going to be a thing tomorrow you know what I mean


um so you really I really have felt the difference between um I choose my words carefully here but the


difference between the level of ease with which you can like find progress


when you have support and you don’t have support and you have funding you don’t have funding when this is somebody else’s half-baked idea where 10 other


people smarter than you are helping you bring it to life and this is something that’s happening in your closet you know what I mean yeah um and so I don’t have


a full picture of the straight up entrepreneurial route because if the interest stuff wasn’t


there and I was focused on this brand full time I would have a semblance of that team like helping me out right we


would have more eyes and more power behind it but for now in The Limited


capacity that that’s been the stark contrast and the difference yeah tell us about the brand oh I’m curious to know


yeah so um or yeah launching a crowdfunding


campaign can’t say Kickstarter or or Indiegogo or anything because they won’t allow the product on the platform


because it’s related to Firearms okay but it becomes it comes from a problem that I experienced time and time again


with the weapon of choice in the US government so we use the M4 or the air 15 yeah style weapon right has a star


chamber in it to extract and load each bullet okay and that Star Chamber gets gunked up with the residue from the


explosion that sends the bullet out the barrel right and so a few hundred rounds in like you’re jamming and there’s even


a butt and a Fortis it’s called a Ford assist there’s like a jam Rod button thing that I like trying to shove the


bullet in there in case it’s gunked up and it’s just like you’re building this into your product because you know it sucks you know I mean that’s uh


Star Chamber is just so finicky it needs to be clean right and so we would spend hours after using the weapons to like


make sure they’re maintained and cleaned and when you’re in the field that’s really hard yeah and even when you’re


not in the field it’s very very time consuming like if you’re in a regular line unit in the Army and you have like range day for example where everyone’s


going out to qualify with their rifles like your training officer will schedule four hour block after that for everyone


to clean their weapons and so we built this machine it’s about a foot long


maybe six inches high and worthy to note that the AR-15 or the M4


they are two pieces joined together right there’s a lower and an upper and so the machine


is designed to replicate the shape the reception excuse me this liquid death is crushing me yeah sorry it’s so good uh


replicate the reception of the lower so you take your weapon apart and you put the upper on top of the machine the


upper is what has the Star Chamber and the dirty place and then we’ve just really borrowed technology from like a


dental water pick um yeah transducer powered um jewelry


cleaner and like a a regular old yard sprinkler and so it’ll this boom will insert into the Star Chamber and just


rotate with pressure that you can control and just clean it in 30 seconds and so we built a prototype I call my


buddies in the Army and I’m like when are you at the range next so we showed up at the Armory when they had that four


hour block to clean their weapons and I’m just like line them up put it on the table 30 seconds 30 seconds and


everyone’s just like sign me up and so um


good and bad a lot of demand because it solves the problem that everyone I mean if you when we did our little bit of


customer research it’s like what what is the worst part about owning an A and they’re just like cleaning that thing


man Star Chamber you know yeah and so that’s good but the bad part is those people don’t have any money you know


what I mean like the Army does not make you rich yeah so um yeah and since it’s gun related like


it it can’t it’s time yeah it’s a lot harder to Market them for sure but it’s


that’s a super cool product and obviously you’re solving a a big need and big problem that’s the first place to look when you’re creating products


yeah the military like this is an issue that happens even in the military that you can go and Pitch to the government


and get yeah exactly so that’s yeah so we’re hopeful that if we can crowdfund


enough to like manufacture this thing like right now the the biggest cost of


his hurdle will be the injection mold required to like make this thing and 77 000 ticket item right there geez


um but if we can crowdfund enough to produce this um that that is the path we’ll pursue


yeah you know like contracts with the government for sure wow that’s really cool yeah that’s super cool and so you


you’ve gone from Lucid now to blip how did that transition happen it


transitioned with a website forgot to mention while we’re still plugging


starchamberspaw.com go check it out and if you’re interested in that kind of stuff it’s crowdfunded


so you can get it yeah so yeah so right now the starchamber spa.com will take you to a page that lets you know a


campaign is forthcoming like uh give us your email to let you know you’re you’re interested in learning when it’s


launched so cool taking taking interest now but yeah yeah so you asked to


transition from Lucid to blip yeah um so Lucid Lucid is not a small company


anymore it’s a very very large company and as it made that transition um many of the


people at that time myself included were just like hey it’s not for me anymore I like the smaller stuff for sure I like


the yeah it’s the earlier stages are a lot more fun and once that gets in your


blood like anything else just feels like it’s inefficient or just like yeah


um but lucid’s done a great job of carrying their momentum and even even building on top of their early momentum


it’s still a fantastic company to work for um but I just started looking and got a


couple of offers which just once you yeah once you just make that switch in


your mind it’s like it’s hard to turn off so I was like yeah it’s time for me to leave um accepted an offer from Facebook but I


never made it there I got a call from a business school classmate who’s like hey I didn’t know you’re leaving Lucid like I’m offended you didn’t even look at our


startup man like even ask a question I’m like I didn’t know you’re doing anything so and this was blip he talked to me a


little bit about it and I flew out to Utah I had one dinner with James who’s a co-founder I’m someone I respect a ton


and love working with and after that one dinner like I renewed on Facebook and


came to blip four years ago have not looked back well three and a half years ago I have now look back man it has been


fantastic and some of those things I saw in James and then later Brent who’s the


other co-founder and and in the product and in the opportunity was like this is truly Innovation like first movers has not


been done before and maybe it’s worth taking 30 seconds and just outlining what blip is yeah


um it’s best explained or best understood when using Uber as a proxy right so like uber is a piece of


technology it’s a scheduling algorithm that sits between in the middle of a two-sided Marketplace between car owners


and car riders right Uber does not own cars they do not ride blip is exactly the same we’re a


scheduling algorithm but on one side of our Market it’s people who own signs and billboards are the most popular but


we’re talking like car Toppers or wall Scapes or whatever digital signs and then the other side of the market is people who want to advertise and so the


value prop split up is to the board owners it’s like you don’t have to


employ another sales effort to go fill this slot on your board and sell it you know


on a contract basis you can just give us access through software integration to your player give


us access to your open slots and we’ll just rifle all this demand from the other side of our market and fill them


up for you and then we’ll split the revenue on the other side of the market it’s like man I’m starting out start chamber Spa right like I don’t have a


million dollars to go spend on and who even owns the board in Times Square is there one owner is there 50 like how do


you who do you call to get up there you know what I mean and so for them they just come to a Google Maps like


interface on the website it’s like Circle in the I-15 you’ll see little dots represent boards in our ecosystem


and and you know associated with their location and hover over them for some metadata to show you like you know 400


000 people past the point of the mountain every day your best you know shot is between four and six pm or


whatever and they’ll just say like yeah this sign that sign this sign this sign in my campaign I don’t want to spend any more than you know a thousand bucks a


day or whatever it is and we’ll take those inputs and kick them out of campaign and then run it for them so


it’s like access to signs that they couldn’t have before yeah yeah your interface is real


quick do you guys do uh creative work at blip or we do yeah because that’s a that’s a big hurdle and and for us it’s


something we want to solve before it becomes a problem because people throw the craziest stuff up on a billboard and


they think like I’m gonna drive it’s gonna work yeah I’m gonna drive signups and traffic I’m like no one’s remembering your phone number no one’s


taking them like there is no call to action that should live on a billboard really yeah and it’s all in cursive and


it’s just like the weirdest contrast colors it’s just like you’re gonna cause an accident and you’re not going to get


the return you want so we do have in-house designers that help them simplify um their messaging and help them achieve


what they’re trying to accomplish and what that comes a lot of well a need for a lot of customer education on the part


of sales and marketing because Billboards do not work by themselves they’re not a single Channel


yeah expect this to happen exactly you know the the thing we like to talk about


is we like to just go to like where the rubber meets the road man there is a website out there called o


aaaoa.org and it’s the Outdoor Advertising Association of


America if I got that correct um unaffiliated totally independent but


they have a section right on their home page it’s like it used to be called proof that ooh out of home works


um it may now be called case studies or vice versa but you can drop down that menu and buy


excuse me industry have case studies and we direct people to that quite a bit one


of my favorites is is What’s Done by McDonald’s McDonald’s had a menu item they were relaunching in five cities and


these are like Dallas Oklahoma City type dmas five cities and for all five cities they did a six-week Facebook campaign


leading up to the launch and then four of the five cities they coupled billboards with that Facebook campaign and the four cities outperformed the


control City by 729 in sales 729 and that’s the message


it’s like use Billboards to make everything else you’re doing more effective and I am interested this is


going back to that consumer Behavior class I’m interested in why why does that


happen why 729 like what what is the scientific reason that’s happening and


it it touches on a little of of well you know I mentioned the three years of training six months of that was an


interrogation school and then a follow-on learning how to like work with people in in particular situations and


so I’m really interested in Psychology like yeah and the stuff that we try and


tap into wittingly or unwittingly when we when we do business right and so I think the best that I can describe it is


like when you are sitting on the toilet or whatever you’re doing with your phone and an ad is served like you’re just


you’re swiping that away as quickly as you can you’re not in shop mode but when you’re driving on the road and you’re


confronted by a billboard for eight seconds


it’s all like you are forced to psychologically ingest colors logos


maybe a couple words so the next time and you’re not going to do anything with that but the next time it surfaces on


your phone like it becomes a psychology of survival it’s the fight or flight Instinct we have fight flight or freeze


and it’s like yo Dan we’ve seen this logo colors in these words before do we need to dwell an extra second to


determine whether or not it’s a threat or a benefit and like the answer is automatically yes that is just like


human nature and that’s why Billboards plus bottom of funnel stuff is so effective you know that reminds me I


don’t know if you’ve seen Mad Men Parts because of these things with the


advertising industry like that that it’s such a good show like if you ever want


to be inspired by like old school advertising it’s such a good show but in


there they he this takes place in uh I think six it’s like the latest 50s all


the way through about the 80s is where the show ends it’s like a 30 20 year timeline


um but Prime cigarette marketing yes and they talk about one of one of the ad


agency’s main clients as a cigarette company but they talk about kind of that time when the government was like


cracking down on cigarette advertising and the psychology that went into how


they were gonna still advertise even though now this is causing cancer yeah yeah so it’s just really fascinating


horrible stuff but same with McDonald’s and the same with I mean that one of my favorite episodes is when the main


character breaks down one of their other uh clients is Kodak


yeah the film camera but they also they were releasing the film Carousel I don’t


know if you remember this it was a carousel with slide film and you could have it into a projector yeah the


projector at home right and they got I mean it’s like the only episode of probably make me emotional because I’m


also a photographer oh okay that’s my background but it was they couldn’t sell


this basically they couldn’t sell this Carousel um they released it to the market they were having a hard time selling it and


it literally came down to the emotionality of it came to the Ad Agency they took that


Carousel and made an incredibly emotional campaign surrounding like family memories at home you know all


this kind of stuff and just the psychology behind advertising is so fascinating but obviously turned around


the campaign and made Kodak into at that point well I think it’s all


about awareness too right like I might be sitting at home on my couch and see an ad that Chick-fil-A launched a new


sauce and then I think nothing of it and I forget about it but then I’m driving


on the freeway and again I see Chick-fil-A talking about how they launched a new sauce and all of a sudden


I start to create this sense of fomo where I’m like okay everyone okay all the paid social


awareness everywhere are telling me that like there’s this new I gotta go try this yeah so I think that that awareness


is huge and the funny thing about our Industries is in a way um


we fight against each other and work together so for us we tell people who


don’t have a lot of budget we’re always like oh don’t do Billboards because if you don’t have a lot of budget like


that’s not going to go anywhere I’m sure you guys would say the same thing probably yeah but then people with big


budgets we’ve totally uh played with that same concept of


Billboards are there for a reason and they provide a ton of value so I think that it’s no Triple A is that


motionplate.org yeah I think that that is going to be a super cool place for us to use to talk to people about


potentially using blit because I think I honestly think we partner yeah we are


we’ve had yeah we’ve had some quantities but because I think it would be a really uh unique approach to test uh that


system especially here locally how where do your Billboards go how many uh


areas do you work is it just Utah or you’re all over the country now all over the country okay I’ve got your partners


now right yep yeah so it’s like Times Square yep Times Square wow how cool is that yeah it’s cool how much take like


you know Chase Field and Phoenix baseball field for the Diamondbacks how


much money or even Staple Center for whatever it is now crypto Arena yeah in Los Angeles how much money are people


paying for eight seconds of their ad to appear on a screen like that like


what were your thoughts on that it probably I would ballpark like maybe a hundred grand around something around


there probably yeah for eight seconds same range eight seconds in one of those Arenas when it’s full yeah uh just for


one event yep just eight seconds one blip I would say I I’d go way lower actually I’d probably


go with like are you saying through blip or not through blip I was thinking not through yeah not through Bluetooth


well sorry let’s let’s say yeah through blue yeah because I mean if the benefit to blip is if you don’t go through blip


you have to probably sign some sort of agreement where you show up every game exactly right so I would say hey if I


want to show up for eight seconds in one of those Arenas on the main screen is that what you’re saying I don’t know


five grand five yeah it’d be a totally different service through blip but


that’s right yeah it’s average of like four to six cents so so much or six


cents wait what pennies four to six pennies for eight seconds yeah you know


Times Square 15 seconds um 20 bucks but that’s because the board owner is like I won’t do it for any


anything cheaper right um that’s crazy like this this has revolutionized going back to the


conversation with James like revolutionized the 90 eight percent of businesses that you’re talking to that


do not have and we wouldn’t tell them to spend on billboards with you because we don’t want them to come back three months later and be like it’s not


working yeah you know like the 98 of people who do not have a budget for out of home or for anything type of funnel


you know yeah like they now have access to this when they want where they want for as much as they want to pay now


granted like you’re gonna get absolutely nothing but a story from spending five cents on eight seconds right we we


recommend that a client we start working with a client when they are prepared to spend five grand a month a month


three months in conjunction with some pretty strong bottom of funnel stuff because again that’s what we’re trying to Benchmark like your return your


conversion your traffic growth stuff like that and it’s usually


five grand a month ish based on our current prices it’s a bit auction right so you pay what other people are willing


to pay yeah if I rent them on for three months and you’ll start to see things uptick like that McDonald’s yeah so how


do you uh sense I mean even in digital advertising the reason I got into digital advertising was because I’m an


analytical free yeah yeah and I love this song man and I love to track uh


everything well uh ended up not being the case because iOS 14 and cookies and


everything that’s happening so now I try and track for example I tried to track a campaign the other day integrated


shopify’s API with Facebook which should be the direct yeah yeah


correlation close as we can get these days and it’s like okay yeah you spent 1500 you made sixteen thousand I thought


wow that’s crazy good I I can’t believe that their roas is so good I hop into


their Shopify and I’m not seeing this crazy lift in their Shopify so I I get very curious about the numbers I


spend two hours diving in don’t find an answer so with blit what’s uh


attribution do you guys dive into attribution a lot what what do you do with customers so we


are trying to dive an attribution because it’s it’s it’s very hard it’s it’s a whole right and I’ll say two


things on this the first is and this is where the need for more customer education comes it’s like you have to


divorce yourself from the digital marketing way of thinking where it’s transactional one for one like I pay I


get I can check that every day it’s just not going to happen with out of home yeah um and it shouldn’t like that’s not


what you’re advertising for on a billboard right yeah it’s top funnel awareness it’s awareness and so the


second thing I’ll say is like what you should be shooting for is really understand those metrics for your


business like really understand to the degree to which it sounds like you guys do and then understand that when you


layer the Billboards on top what is changing there and so our White Glove service like our customer success team


is really forthcoming with data and dashboards and communication like regular communication we treat our


clients as like business partners to help them fine-tune the lift they are seeing and that requires starting out


with like identifying or defining the the base yeah Baseline right so it’s


hard because especially in an economic downturn like the one that we may be feeling or


whatever else to say yeah the first thing people want to do is like I got to cut my costs and then they cut off an


entire channel it’s like that’s stupid yeah I agree that you need to cut your costs your advertising spend but you


need to do so proportionately or you’re going to miss on like these exponential effects of efficiency that out of home


bring to your digital marketing stuff so yeah it’s hard man yeah or invest when other people start cutting there you go


it comes cheaper it becomes cheaper more Market yeah that’s that’s really the best time to advertise is in a downturn


when all when all of the big Brands start exceeding budgets because then everything just it just speaks well it’s


easier and to be honest this year Dan and I said we’re focusing 25 of our time on content which is why we’re doing this


podcast yeah we probably said that in every episode now um the the thing that I’ve noticed is we


have had an amazing year and we’ve grown way faster than we anticipated we’re not spending more and honestly my engagement


is way down on LinkedIn but for some reason I’m getting a lot more meaningful


business relationships just because of the consistency so and it can’t be dirt


it’s like this dark funnel thing that yeah we’ll keep talking about our dark dark social it’s we can’t directly


attribute our content to it I mean some things sometimes we can but not a lot of


the time but we can see as we’re starting something yes that something is changing yeah so I think like my whole


thought process as an entrepreneur who owns a company is I want to be seen on LinkedIn in the morning by someone I


want them to see our ad that day I want them to get on ksl.com and see an article of ours on the home page I want


them to drive into work and see a billboard of us I want them to come home and see us post from me I’m my social


platform yeah and then you know two months might go by and they’re like man I see this kid a lot like what are they


doing again I need to reach out and where do you attribute it you know you don’t it’s that top funnel awareness


you’ve got it you’re you’re pre-loading like the answer to a question they’re going to have in the future and if you


are top of mind like it will eventually will load yeah yeah I I also think I


think there’s some psychological benefit there to ramping up the awareness type


stuff in a downturn because the downturn is a signal a clear signal that the consumers you know upon whom we’re


focusing here are scared there’s fear there’s conservatism and like I don’t know but they assume we assume humans


assume that everyone else is feeling that same thing and we drive down the road and we’re like oh not those guys they are okay that’s something I want to


follow like that that person what did they know that I do not yeah like can they lead me to safety type thing and so


um not something to put all your your money into but something to be aware of like we are playing a psychological game


in business all the time okay so an idea I have is we do a partnership with blip where done we just go uh we travel to


all these unique places and time it and just go and take pictures I’m totally down totally down scroll


around the country yeah I like it I like it that’s the new tagline but that way


it gives them Insight it gives insights to people about how these are the places that you could


advertise although I’m sure that that’s like the worst customer for you guys right a


person that’s like I just want just when really you’re like know what you


want is four hours on I-15 every day or something like that


yeah I mean worst customers to build a business around but best customers for a


virality and just yeah like we are not in this only to make money right like we


feel somewhat like Robin Hood and little John because because of blip and and


this let me just think for a second to make sure this is absolutely true because I say this a lot


it feels good like yeah because of blip and only because of lip kizzic for example can


advertise in front of or right behind Nike in the same spot for a fraction of


what Nike is paying right and so totally that is like a feel-good thing for SMR you can’t build a business around people


who are spending a thousand bucks a month or 100 bucks a month or whatever it is like that is what we’re building for to give opportunities to people who


can’t and yeah I’m all about it yeah well you completely shifted my my view


on on billboards like when you said sense and I was like man all right well


we’re gonna need to change some strategies Dan always thinks big though I do think in a good way yeah


and I’m not wrong like there are some ad spaces that will cost that well definitely and I feel like you’re


thinking like oh man this is an arena Super Bowl boom you’re running before commercial yeah a couple million bucks


for yeah you think then 10 seconds you know you look at behemoths like Amazon


they spend 60 of their ad budget out of home yeah they know something that we


don’t right like and for anyone you guys included anyone listening to this podcast like hit us up directly on


LinkedIn or RJ billboards.com um and we’re happy to get people started


we’ll match call it a five thousand dollar spin will match one to one so we’ll give you ten thousand dollars of


advertising space cool in that first month um we we want to become a standard part


like a part of the standard candidate of advertising right like this is so


the opportunity to make your current efforts effective is so great like we we


just need to do what we can to get people started right like this is I mean for the times that we did go to school


took a marketing class willing to bet you never talked about Billboards like yeah that was never part of the


curriculum we’ve grown up in a generation where that’s just like a thing of the past it’s unsexy yeah well it’s not anymore like it’s it’s back


it’s back and history repeats itself we’re seeing a big Resurgence like especially because we work with a lot of


Home Service guys we’re a big Resurgence and mailers and uh you know yeah direct


direct to Consumer stuff even door hangers and door hangers like people just pulling because everybody’s pulled


back so if you do something that is stand out yeah like yeah 100 it’s super


good awareness and works right and same with billboard so but also consumers are so sick of getting blown up on their


phones at home oh yeah yeah they’re so sick of it so they’re used to seeing Billboards outside of the house and


honestly it’s a game for a lot of people like for example homie is probably the


greatest example of billboard usage in Utah they drove a narrative down


everyone’s throats yeah everyone knew who homie was I never saw an ad for them that’s true on my phone in my life yeah


they’re super unique about I mean spent a good from what I understand from rumors like almost like 80 of their


budget on billboards that was it like the rest was to other other marketing


agents but it’s like 100 Billboards in the markets that they were in but it’s crazy to see that how you can control a


narrative locally homie was focused on the Utah Market originally they controlled that narrative everyone knew


who they were and they’re a massive business that does a lot of Revenue now whether or not you like their model


um but they kill it so uh or killed it but uh there is a huge advantage to


Billboards that people leave out right it try marketing approaches that other


people aren’t trying yeah everyone’s bidding on Facebook now how do I know because cpms have gone up so much yeah


uh same with Tick Tock cpms are already starting to get expensive on Tick Tock so


Billboards are freaking awesome if you have the right marketing approach and that’s what’s cool about you saying your


customers are kind of like business partners you have that white glove service you have graphic support people can actually come in and get a billboard


that’s going to make an impact compared to like Sue’s flowers yeah yeah yeah


yeah yeah no dogging on whoever owns Sue’s flowers I’m sure it’s good yeah I mean


yeah Sue the sues of the world are actually doing something great as well like they are consistently on boards


within two miles of the brick and mortar store right and that drives a ton of awareness and conversion yeah so I guess


going back to your career path and in blip what was your career path in blip


to get to your CEO roll that you are in now uh and then come about for almost


four years maybe three and a half um and I’ve been serving as a CEO for nine


months eight or nine months so I started in strategy and operations on the supply side of our market and I knew less than


nothing about what I was doing and to this day like I am the biggest imposter out there I wake up every day I’m like I


shouldn’t be here you know what I mean but that that’s a good thing for a couple reasons because it means you’re


being stretched it means you’re developing it means you’re growing and like it means we are truly if we are


facing problems we’ve never solved before that means we’re making progress and like there is innovation taking place underneath our feet now you know


that’s really good mindset yeah so I started there in the supply side of the business and luckily


um Chad Smith had had that side of the business on lockdown and so he he was


like my chat GPT before GPT was a thing he literally knew everyone in the


industry knows everything about the business and so we worked together to like fine-tune our approach to making


money for the sign owners and making sure we had the inventory that the


advertisers actually wanted to spend on yeah right because Time Square is way different than rural Iowa and yeah for


sure you know one board is not one board not all boards are created equally so I started there moved to more business


operations uh General operations for the business so I started to Encompass that started to encompassing some of the go


to market side yeah the marketplace um and in 2021 with the same number of


employees we uh three and a half x’d our revenue and I’m talking like um on the


order of double-digit millions yeah same number of employees at 56. wow at the


time and what that means is the team got hyper efficient like yeah super focused


super efficient and that speaks to the execution thing right execution can’t be what it should be if everyone’s not


executing on the same thing right so that yeah that creates the need for a driver in the business to say like what


are we trying to accomplish for whom and why and how and as you move away down


that waterfall to the how you’re relying increasingly so on people that you know


are outside of your own brain like this is where it becomes critically important to hire the smartest people you can find


you know what I mean yeah like I salivate in the interviewer seat when I


find someone that I just can’t even hang with intellectually I’m like you’ve got to come work here you know what I mean because five of you are going to be the


reason I can step away you know what I mean yeah and so super cool yeah and that was that


was huge for us in 2021 to just maintain the same number in place because this this gets into a pet peeve I have of


it’s not a pet peeve about scale it’s a pet peeve of like like misusing words words have meaning you know what I’m


saying like words they mean stuff and you hear people say yeah we scaled from like 50 to 100 people like that’s not


scale just we just talked about yeah adding people it’s not actually like


scaling is literally what you just talked about it is growing more with the same number yes that is scaling yeah


growth is not scaling growth is growth you know what I mean scaling is a disproportionately increased output


compared to your increased input right if you can increase your input 1X and


then grow your output by 5x you have scaled I mean so it’s it’s a it’s a ratio it’s a relationship between inputs


and outputs and we’ve we’ve just lost sight of that you know as a on the whole but um Tech side well and you see that


you get Twitter and lays off 80 of their staff and they’re still working just


fine like the whole Tech sector yeah social media it’s all bloated


yeah another Trend I think that plays into that or plays into what we’re going to see unfold is this solopreneur trend


yes I think there are going to be a lot of one-person businesses out there who serve contractually like the Enterprises


we all interact with every day you know what I mean and I love that I love that a lot yeah it’s going to be the power


back to the people of like I don’t want a W-2 I’m gonna go 1099 and you’re gonna pay me 15 more or 15 less and I’m gonna


have three of these you know yeah and I control my time I control how much I do for you that’s something oh my goodness


like I’m pushing 40 now about to turn 40 and I feel like I’ve learned way too late


I look back at my career choices and I’m like man if I’m honest how many of those decisions were made with people’s voices


in my head like thinking this is what is expected of me this is what success looks like like man if I could I can’t


go back and do it all over again so I will make sure that my children don’t fall victim to this but like


like the currency of success is level of control of your own time you know what I


mean like all that matters is not the conversation not the Sip Circle conversation about like what do you do


and how’s it been going the Kennedy’s been all that matters is like what my


four kids will say in the Relief Society room right before the funeral begins and


the viewing is ending and like my casket is going to be closed are they going to be like you know what


he did love us like despite whatever like he was it was good he was good or


are they going to be like uncontrollably sobbing like there he goes you know it’s like my spiritual Rock that’s my leader


like duh that yeah that mindsets mind shift


happened for me that mind happened for me and it is kind of yeah it is like


that mind shift happened for me way too late um sitting on a hill in Syria I’m just


like this is the literally the only thing that matters there is nothing else matters that’s amazing man and now


you’re taking your family to Ecuador


and the ability to do this because now we wouldn’t even be able to give it


all of the credit it serves I would love to do a second episode yeah man absolutely absolutely virtually I will


sing the the blip Praises as loudly and often as I can Brandon James have created something that is special that


is like it is so fun to be a part of blip and it starts with those two guys right there I’ll talk about that all day


that’s awesome yeah well we’d love to do it when you’re back in Utah because absolutely Ecuador or virtually


um because I think that that’s a topic we haven’t touched a lot on in this podcast and the fact that you have uh


just a really cool situation going on right now would be awesome to talk about okay um the the last thing that we really


like to ask everyone though is where do you feel like marketing is going in the future and we know that this answer is


uh I have no clue because marketing is always changing yeah but there are some predictable uh things so we’d love to


ask you like where do you see marketing since you’re in a marketing company uh where do you see it going in


the next five ten years one Trend so I’m not a marketer I need to make that clear so take this for what it’s worth but


anytime I step into like an arena where I’m not the expert the best thing I have


the best tool I have is to look backwards and just make sense of what’s been happening and see if I can take


maybe two or three data points to project a line in front of me right and so that was the most operational


marketing is going to operations so I I you know you think about our


parents and their parents and I Define marketing very simply as creating demand


like it’s just creating demand for whatever so it should be at least yeah yeah it’s what it should be right and so


back in the you know 80s and 90s demand was created from a catalog that JC Penney’s like put on your dinner table


right it’s like I’m gonna buy the best thing washer dryer money can buy for this family you know and because of that


stamp of validation like demand was being created and that’s where everyone knew to go and we’ve seen a shift in


that as devices have made information so accessible like people don’t want to


hear JCPenney tell you that JCPenney has the best washers and dryers people want to buy from people they want to buy from


their friends they want to see it socially validated and I think that we’re seeing that trend on LinkedIn right if I were to talk about blip all


day on LinkedIn we’d have zero dollars in the pipe coming from LinkedIn we have a lot of dollars in the pipe coming from


LinkedIn and I’ve never said a word about blip on LinkedIn right yes and neither does anyone in link then it’s


because I think the trend is going to even grow in the future where people


want to buy from people with whom they have an emotional connection like I know that guy I love what he stands for like


you know I’ve seen her operate under stress she is just fantastic like personal is going to win the day in


terms of creating demand and I think that is one of the places it’s going based on what we’ve seen in the past like the shift that’s been taking place


I love that I think yeah we’ve seen this shift the last I don’t know the Creator economy right the last 10 years I think


with the rise of influencer marketing yeah and like the d2c space and now the


last couple of years we’ve really and I think it’ll explode in the next couple years this this influencer Marketing in


B2B and I mean it’s always been a thing here’s the thing it’s always been a thing we’ve always bought emotionally


from people that we like but yeah it’s never like come to the Forefront it’s


always there’s no reason to really talked about it but we’ve always bought from people that we like of course but that’s a great Point uh it’s now just


becoming more apparent yeah we want to buy something like yeah we want to buy from people and I think a second thing


that we’ll see or or maybe not see but a second thing that will benefit those who


adopt fit earlier is leveraged audiences will do so much in the future for


creating demand for your product right so whether it be influencers or Affiliates or or otherwise like yeah


leveraged audiences are going to be huge for demand creation opportunity I love


that it’s awesome well RJ I really appreciate the conversation today super cool story we’re gonna talk more I have


no doubt about it it’s really cool just to hear your career path and your story of kind of coming going from the


government into entrepreneurship and Entrepreneurship and kind of where you are today it’s really really appreciate


the conversation today oh thank you thank you for having me and also blip is just such a cool


product the fact that it’s changing the way people can do Billboards I mean just


talking to you you’ve got a customer in US I’ve already been thinking about how do we create our new local strategy to


get Billboards online let’s do it man yeah so for us and for a lot of our local clients like we’re trying to build


a bigger presence here in Utah locally like 80 almost 80 90 of our clients are


outside of Utah yeah really yeah that’s an awesome client basis how do you guys what are your acquisition channels that


have been the most successful for the social social paid social LinkedIn organic yeah that’s cool man 90 Partners


we work with we work with a couple large white liberal partners and partners have been or probably our second biggest


acquisition Channel we we have plans to become a white label partner to agencies in fact I only walked in 10 minutes


early because I was in the parking lot answering an email from an agency owner that’s like yeah it’s time let’s do it


you know they handle all the advertising for a franchise a big franchise and it’s like man if we could partner with them


and make it easier for you guys to have all of your thousands of franchisees like marketing effectively I mean it’s


good for you and it’s good for us oh we’re gonna talk then yeah yeah I’m definitely gonna talk


um well this has been awesome thank you thank you again RJ thank you guys where did people find you


www do they say that anymore blip billboards.com it would be blip.com but


Disney owns flip.com domain I know they they bought it for a video


company 10 years ago shut it down and it’s just on a shelf so if anyone can


there’s a bounty out for blip.com yeah we’re join scroll but Twitter


um what about uh you personally starchamberspaw.com and also RJ on


LinkedIn if you just type in RJ and blip there will be no other there won’t be another one yeah


you’ll know which one switch I love it thanks again RJ appreciate it thank you


guys very much [Music]

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