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November 14, 2023 45 mins

Mentorship is the gift that keeps on giving, and I feel so incredibly blessed to call Jay Abraham my mentor. Not only has Jay increased the bottom line for over 10,000 clients, he’s given them (and me!) the tools to recognize how to continue to do that when he steps back. With features in The New York Times, Entrepreneur Magazine, Inc Magazine and more, and recognition from Forbes as “The Real Thing” and one of the Top 5 Executive Coaches in the Country, he’s clearly someone that every struggling business owner or employee would be lucky to have on board. 


Some of his clients include at&t, Microsoft, Charles Schwab & Co., Weight Watchers, and General Electric, and he took that same hands-on approach that he had with each of them to this discussion.


Check out this all new episode to get Jay’s master playbook on:

  • Truthfully assessing what does and doesn’t work for you

  • Testing out different strategies for achieving sales (with as little risk as possible)

  • Identifying problems with a unique perspective that makes you the leading authority on finding solutions

  • Building massive marketing databases and taking advantage of all forms of marketing

  • Securing the lowest customer acquisition cost for your business

  • Tapping into mentorship opportunities - both as a mentor and a mentee


Host: Daymond John


Producers: Beau Dozier & Shanelle Collins; Ted Kingsbery, Chauncey Bell, & Taryn Loftus


For more info on how to take your life and business to the next level, check out 

See for privacy information.

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:00):
Most people think that when they acquire wealth, success, getting
the biggest house, the fastest growing company, you know, the
prettiest wife, whatever, you know, the distinction in Forbes, that's
going to transform them. The heavens are going to open,
the angels are going to sing you four is going
to happen. All their warriors are going to get anti climactic.

Ain't gonna change anything. The meaning of life is the
process this conversation. If we're talking to the weight person
or the janitor or somebody important, that's as good as
it gets. So you better enjoy the moment.

Speaker 2 (00:35):
What if I told you there was more to the
story behind game changing events? Get ready for my new podcast,
That Moment with Damon John will jump into the personal
stories of some of the most influential people on the planet,
from business mobiles and celebrities to athletes and artisans. Mister

j Abraham, who's actually my mentor, a legendary marketer. Jay
has He's attributed to what they say, creating nine billion
dollars worth of revenue in regards to advising companies. He's
worked with everybody from Tony Robbinson the Nasdaq to Icy
Hot to probably about three hundred different industries and it's

my pleasure to interview him today. Thank you for coming, Jacob,
Thank you as always. How did you really initially get
started in the concept of marketing which today everybody believes
they're marketing their brand, But you sawt off a little
what a little time behind you when it wasn't as easy.

Speaker 1 (01:36):
Yeah, no, no, it's very simple. I got married the
first time at eighteen, I had two kids at twenty,
I had the needs of twenty of somebody forty at
twenty in the world didn't care. The only people who
would give me a job didn't give me a job.
They said, I'll give you a desk and you can
help either sell more people, set up deals and I'll
give you a piece, or I'll give you a commission.

And when you only eat if you're and you figure
out very quickly what works and what doesn't, and what
works better and what doesn't. And that was the origins
of my marketing education.

Speaker 2 (02:08):
But but did you have a formal education. Did you
come from a middle class family, a wealthy family, a
lower income family.

Speaker 1 (02:17):
My background was I was born in Indianapolis. My parents
were not poverty struck, but I would call them lower income.
We lived in a decent, little three bedroom house that
had a gravel driveway in no garage, and I had
to walk twenty blocks to school. And my education is

high school, okay.

Speaker 2 (02:40):
And so now you get to this point where, like
you said, you have two kids, you have the response
you're twenty, but the responsibility of a forty year old,
and you get a job and a desk and I
don't even know it's called a job. You get a desk.
I got a desk, and you basically get it.

Speaker 1 (02:53):
No, they didn't get a desk. I got a chair.

Speaker 2 (02:54):
You gotta eat what you kill situation exactly. Now, what
happened at that point point? How did you start to
monetize it? Or maybe you didn't, maybe you got fired.

Speaker 1 (03:04):
You know, well I got both of those. I got
monetizing and I also got fired, So different experiences. But
what happens is I learned, and I didn't realize at
the time, but I learned the art science of testing,
testing different approaches, testing different propositions, testing different ways of
not just selling direct but getting access to people. And

what I faulted towards very quickly was the sixth degree
of separation. The turning point in my career was I
worked for a product called Icyocht, which today is a
mainstay arthritis product, but back then it was a mail
order Icy Hot.

Speaker 2 (03:41):

Speaker 1 (03:42):
Yeah. When we started, it was a little tiny twenty
thousand dollars a year company. We bought out of bankruptcy
and I had to go We had no money. I
had to go to radio stations, television stations, magazines, newspapers
and persuade them to run ads for us on the
where we didn't pay for them. We gave them all

of the revenue on the first sale, and even that
was a very hard challenge.

Speaker 2 (04:09):
So, okay, so this is you're basically saying, you know,
and we always say that you're never going to create
anything new. This is basically affiliate marketing.

Speaker 1 (04:17):
Oh yeah, but if the highest magnitude in a direct
way way way way pre internet.

Speaker 2 (04:22):
Right. So, now, all of a sudden, there is something
that it's a cream. It's called icy Hot. Nobody's heard
of it. For the most part, you have to go
out there. You don't have any money, so you have
to go out there now and look for outlets for
advertising publications. There's no Twitter, Instagram, Internet, cell phones, there's
nothing like that, right alutely, And so they start to

advertise this, and you start to see them monetize the
advertisement of this. Correct.

Speaker 1 (04:49):
Well, there's a little bit more, and it goes to
it goes to understanding motivation. I didn't realize it until afterwards.
But I had to establish credibility. I had to establish
prioritization because they had nine million people wanting access to
you to unsold time. I had to cover all the

negatives that they were worried about before I could even
get him to say yes, I'll try it. So I
had to learn all those things at the same time.

Speaker 2 (05:20):
So you basically had to punch holes in every one
of your pitches because you knew that.

Speaker 1 (05:26):
I got a better deal. I'll give you more money,
mine's cleaner.

Speaker 2 (05:30):
So how do you convince them?

Speaker 1 (05:31):
I'll tell you exactly three things. Number One, I try
to start with what's what's the problem. I always want
to know what the negatives are before I start, Well,
the negatives are. Number One, they didn't know they would
do mail order products, but they were always worried they
wouldn't get fulfilled by the mail order company or the
product wouldn't deliver. The promise or they wouldn't get paid.

So I started with those three things, and I said,
here's the deal. We wouldn't even let you sell this
until we say, and you a dozen jars to have
on hand. You're welcome to give it to anybody with
arthritis and try it first on it. Also, you have
a backup if anybody has a problem. Second, we'll let
you keep one hundred percent of the sale. You can
put it in your bank account. We don't want it.

We'll even send you forty five cents more, which was
fifteen percent more was a three dollars sale, and we said,
think about it. Why would we not make a dime,
give you an extra forty five cents and incur the
costs unless the product at least deliver the promise and
we're going to get a reorder. Third, we said that
we would back them up with anything. I mean, we

let them keep them. We had a bunch of things
like that, and I was able to out position, out
overcome out, not out sell, but just outthink all the
issues and fast forward. We got a thousand radio stations,
thousand television stations, magazines, and what happened was very interesting.

None of them were terribly great, but the economies are
the or the just the law of numbers. We were
getting as many as fifty to one hundred orders a day,
and then we got doubled, and then it doubled and
we got five hundred thousand orders, but we got twenty
five million dollars worth of free advertiser we didn't pay for.

We forced retail distribution.

Speaker 2 (07:19):

Speaker 1 (07:19):
The product got purchased for about sixty million dollars from
gd Serle and I was on.

Speaker 2 (07:27):
Off and running to really break that down for those
who may have missed some of those points. And you know,
we're gonna find obviously common denominated between every story. It was.
You know, you wanted to go to individuals and you
wanted to downsize their risk because they didn't believe in you,
just like they didn't believe in discreators of people right risk.
So by doing that, you basically said, hey, I can

distribute the product. Because often entrepreneurs, they get themselves in
a buying, they get themselves in the advertising marketing, and
then all of a sudden, now how do I make
it all? And then you know, the retailers or even
the customer lose faith in those individuals. So to avoid that,
you gave them the product. Here you go. Proof evidence
is here, right all right. Number two is people always

want to get paid, and they want to get paid
because you know, the time they're allocating on their station
or their in their magazine. They call that their inventory exactly.
And if they don't get paid, somebody's out of a job.

Speaker 1 (08:26):
Their opportunity.

Speaker 2 (08:27):
So what do you say, You say, you know what,
I'm going to let you take all the profits off
of this product here, so basically and put it in
your bank, and you handed them a check. At the
most part, when you gave them the product, I was handing.

Speaker 1 (08:38):
Them a check and I don't put the money in
the bank.

Speaker 2 (08:40):
Now all of a sudden, you got the needle in
the vein a little bit. They know, Hey, this is
somebody who's going to deliver, and this is somebody who
we're going to be able to monetize. And now they
start to sell. So proof of concept happens at this point.
Number one, we can distribute. Number two, we can pay.
Now we get to the part of can they sell
will somebody like it? Because with both of those aspects,

it doesn't mean that you priced it right. It doesn't
mean that the product works. It doesn't mean that the
person wants it again. How does this start to sell?
Does it sell mediocre to the cell grade?

Speaker 1 (09:15):
Well, I should probably give you a real quickly the backstory. Okay,
so we bought this product, and we bought it for
another reason. It was old. And when we stopped making
it originally, we started getting letters from little old men
and women. I shouldn't say that because I'm becoming a
little old man and woman too. They would say, please
start making it again. It's the only thing I can

use so I can walk to church on Sunday, the
only thing I can use to sit up and watch TV.
And we thought, wow, and then we made a realization
in our world is still today until somebody comes up
with a cure for arthritis, preseidis, rheumatism, eggs and pains.
It's a recurring it's reconsumptive reconsumption. So a lot of
lessons I learned that I was too young to know

I was learning back then. And then what happened was
we saw that the here's what happened. I learned lifetime value,
marginal networth. So the product costs US back then forty
five cents to make and ship bulk great chemicals, Glaba
goop and menthol menthols less late, it's basically chemicals. We

sold it for three dollars. We let the station keep
the full fee dollars, and we actually sent them an
extra forty five cents to blow their mind. So now
we're negative forty five cents plus the forty five cents
it costs. Got it okay, So we're negative basically tinty cents.
We found that out of very ten people that bought,
eight repurchased within the first month, and most of those

eight repurchased every month or in aggregate, over and over
and over again, almost infinitely. But it got better. Of
the eight that repurchased, we found that about four bought
at least two other products from us. And make a
long story short, every time we lost ninety cents, we
were accruing about forty dollars a year in profit net net.

Speaker 2 (11:07):
Now that's amazing because what happens so it looks like
you had proof of concept because you had a customer
base that you knew already, you studied, and they needed it,
and they needed it more than from an emotional standpoint
or brand standpoint. They needed for a cure or medicals.

Speaker 1 (11:22):
Like life for sustaining their lifestyle comfort.

Speaker 2 (11:25):
Right, So now all of a sudden it goes out,
it starts to sell. Now take me from where that
proof of concept was with ten stations, and then obviously
you replicated that to one hundred and two hundred and
five hundred, whatever the case may be. Now, what did
you do with those customers? Were they did those customers
belong to the station or did they come in and

insightfulm how sure their names and then they belonged to you?

Speaker 1 (11:50):
Okay, so very cool. And there's another there's a parallel
universe that you aren't asking because you don't know what.
I'm going to tell you that answer as well, So
let me address yours first. So the deal was station
gets to keep the check, the money. They've got backup inventory.
We fulfill the order, but if anybody complained, they had
plenty of to give them another bottle. So that was

what the backup was. They gave us. Our only deal
was you keep the money, but you have to transship
to us, send to us immediately the order so we
can get it out. It was our name, We owned it,
We owned the residual. They had no piece of anything
but the front end. We had the names for not
only our product, but because of the profile, which happened
to be that they were fifty five and older and

had a lot of aches, pains, arthritis, presidise, we were
able to monetize them for a multitude of other products
and services. The way I rolled it out after the
beginning and we got validation was I used letter. I

found people that had I always believe in this will
be integral to any question you asked me. I always
want to know who when we're trying. When I have
a problem in marketing for myself or a client, what
bigger problem is our problem going to solve if it
gets uh that's so if I can say it right,

if it gets embraced by somebody else. Our problem was,
how in the world do we get a thousand radio stations?
How in the world do we get a thousand publications?
Me calling one on one. But there were a lot
of people that had relationships with all those radio stations, syndicators,
jingle people, independent ad reps, and they had one trick

pony and sometimes they'd already sold everything they had. So
I got a hold of all of them and we
gave them. Because we only gave away three dollars, and
that forty five cents. We're making forty five dollars a
year every year forever on really a ninety cent investment.
So if you look at that, we had enough cash

flow to do it. I could have gone to any
investor to get money. But we gave more money again
to people that had networks. If you were a syndicator
and you had fifty stations, you get me the fifty
stations and you get an override. If you're a rep
for Blair and you've got a bunch of radio or me.
And so I was able to leverage the leverage to

get all that because we could have paid I mean,
if we went to the bank, we could have literally
paid one hundred percent of the forty dollars in year
one and made out like a bandit because we had
year two and three and four and forever. But when
we sold the business, if I said this, we accidentally
forced retail. It became on the shelves, but we got

to keep the five hundred thousand repeat buyers in the transaction.
A consumer broughtut company back then. Today they've wanted for
social media they didn't have it. It was not even
a balance sheet item.

Speaker 2 (15:06):
It was nothing right, And I get it because you
know basically to you know, to bring to narrow down.
Here's what you were doing. You have your amazons of
the world. Today, if you happen to sell on Amazon,
they are not going to tell you who purchased that
product because they don't want to give you that information.
So what you were doing was basically utilizing the papers

and they were sending out the information to people. People
were now ordering from you. You were capturing that name
and you were creating that database. Number one. Number two
was once you created that database, you then went and
got other products. Because there's always it's twenty times easier
to upsell a current customer than it is to acquire
a new one. So if you like this Authortis cream

and you're at that age, you may want this multi
vitamin or whatever the case is. So now you were
gaining more profits from the same individuals, and simultaneously you
were going out and doing what today everybody would call
a collaboration. But you were going out to people who
were also selling maybe multivitamins and something else, saying, hey,

give them this arthritis cream, and you were then capturing
their cust We did it both the same We.

Speaker 1 (16:16):
Did it both ways. We did it external, but we
had five hundred thousand buyers, so we could get other
people's products and do the same thing. We could say, Okay,
we're going to sell your product to ours. We're going
to keep one hundred percent of the first sale. But
instead of we were smart enough to say, we're not
going to give you all the back end. We want
fifty percent of all the repeat forever, so you would
create all these other annuities out of it. It was

a very cool deal that we were able to cascading
leverage the thing, and even even when we pilled, when
we peel, it's gonna be peeled off the main business,
we still had the ask.

Speaker 2 (16:48):
And that's what I think that people don't understand the value.
You know, there's people out there with ten twenty or
you know, even a million people that follow them on
social media and they just want to talk, but they
don't understand the inherent value if you get those people's
emails and mailing address. Because everybody thinks right now that
social media is new and it's a new form of delivery. Yes,

but if you really look at social media and brands online.
If they sell something, they're fortunate to get maybe one
or a half of one percent to convert into buying. Yes,
that model is not new, because there was something called
direct mail, or some people called the junk mail or
whatever the case, the publishers clearinghouse or it was you know,

you know the one where you get the records Columbia Records.
Now tell me about the direct mail model, because people
all of a sudden think this Twitter and Instagram and
whatever it is is new.

Speaker 1 (17:45):
I'll tell you three derivatives, and I could tell you
a million because I had a lot of experience. So
so the next thing was I did enormous amounts of
direct mail generated not not space, we did space, but
direct mail because there were a list you could slice.
You can dice by macro categories, by today's big data, and.

Speaker 2 (18:06):
So the list meaning okay, well, somebody has a list
of a bunch of things I want to I want
to sell car parts.

Speaker 1 (18:11):
Okay, great. So I can find people by any kind
of car. I can find people who are who were
do it yourself, as I can find people who buy
magazines and subscribe by that looks on that if I.

Speaker 2 (18:23):
Had a magazine that was for auto parts and I
had a list of a million people, how much would
you pay for my list?

Speaker 1 (18:30):
Back then, I'm going to give you an easy concept,
all all total, because I go through all the details,
but nobody would really grasp them. The total end the
mail costs was about sixty five cents, including a mailing,
including the printing, including the rental of the list, and
you were targeting it. Now, most people would just do that.
Every time we did it, I would pay a premium

to get you if that was your list to endorse me,
because that would triple or quadruple the yield, but most
people didn't think.

Speaker 2 (18:59):
To do it. In today's today's term, that list means
your Twitter followers. Yes, my Twitter followers. And when you
basically said sixty five cents, when people see shark Tank,
they see mister wonderful, always go what is your customer
acquisition costs?

Speaker 1 (19:14):

Speaker 2 (19:15):
And basically the sixty five cents was a customer acquisition
costs or your customer acquisition costs was more than that
because obviously less would reply to the ones.

Speaker 1 (19:23):
So it depends on what you were doing. In the
newsletter business. We did a lot. We had different models.
It was expensive ones, there were trials. So I'm gonna
give you I'm not going to try to confuse you,
but you would your goal would try to be to
break even on acquisition, including and I when you use
you'll be my interpreter for the un including imputing the

marketing and fulfillment costs. So if you spent sixty five cents,
I'm gonna tell you a fabulous story in a minute.
If you want to hear it, you would hope to
get back sixty five cents plus whatever the twenty cents
or whatever it would cost to fulfill it. Right, you'd
want to break even, including your fulfillment costs because you
make all your money on Ancillaris.

Speaker 2 (20:06):
On the duels.

Speaker 1 (20:07):
Yeah, and all that. That was the goal, and that's
what our target was and what people didn't realize. In
direct response, everybody was really screwed. It still is today.
They have allocated budgets. In direct response, you have an
infinite budget. You have an allowable acquisition cost, and that
has to do with leads, conversions, sales. The more you
know about the additional revenue that flows from the first sale,

the more allowable cost you've got and so most people say, oh,
I got a five thousand dollar budget or I got
you know whatever, either spending too much or too little.
You've got so much a sale if I can buy
a sale for break even, I've got an infinite budget
as long as I as long as my overhead's being
covered by something else. But most people didn't see.

Speaker 2 (20:51):
I saw that, you know, and I get it because
you were using the power broke you know. You know,
initially you were trying to find a way to go
out there and market with nothing and make sure everybody
else is happy, and you would take care of yourself later.
But you are very confident on the product and the
way you can deliver. Now, all of a sudden, icy
hot has a hit, moves on, and you move on
in your career. Now I know that you've advised everybody

from the NASDAC to brands that every one of us
use every single day. How did you get to that level?

Speaker 1 (21:19):
It's a great story. It's a great story. So and
it's a sad story, but it's a funny one. So
I spent ten years helping financial advisors direct response and
I made a lot of money. Then I met my
current wife, who you know, because I was going through
divorce and the divorce costs me thirty five million dollars.

And I went from making a lot of money to
owing a lot of money. And when I met my wife,
she's model material.

Speaker 2 (21:48):
But you understand that this was when what year eighty six?
So let's go to eighty six. Right now you have
unfortunately going through life is happening, and you know, a
change of your family, and this thing costs you thirty
five million dollars, but thirty five million dollars then it
would probably be about two hundred and fifty million. Now,

how did great pain? How did you get to that
point though? To go from puttson around with some icy
hot at the beginning stages to having thirty five million
dollars worth?

Speaker 1 (22:19):
Great story, Great story. So from Icy Hot I went
to Entrepreneur magazine and it was a wonderful time. Nobody
knew an entrepreneur was as guy had a vision. We
had to send out marketing pieces that actually had the
Webster's definition of marketing excuse me, an entrepreneur on it,
because nobody even knew what the word meant. But I
was gifted with the opportunity and we grew that business

about nine hundred percent in one year. And I was
this fair haired, brown haired little Jewish boy, but everybody
was really taking interest in me. And I met all
these financial newsletter publishers who were brilliant thinkers in investment,
in gold, investment, stocks, economy, but they couldn't market their
way out of a paper. But they didn't have a
lot of money. So I saw I always inherently could

see underperforming opportunities, under utilized assets, underperforming activities, under value
distribution or relationships. So I would go to them and say, hey,
what I'll take the responsibility of making whatever you're doing
perform better and whatever you're not doing get done. And
all I want is twenty five percent of the increase.

And I made millions and millions of dollars and it
was really wonderful because I had to work my ass
off to start, but my deal was residual. So once
I got it going, I would get checks from you know,
I'd be talking to you and twenty other newsletters are
sending me eighty thousand dollars a month and ninety But
it was always playing off of their assets. I understood
they had assets, like if you said here's here's land.

It doesn't been mined for diamonds or gold or water
or oil. And I said, okay, I'll mine it. And
if I didn't have the money, I'd say, hey, you
want to put your drillier. I already got the rights,
and I would end up getting a big piece of it.

Speaker 2 (23:58):
So you basically look amusing. Absolutely. So you're looking at
a company and you're going E Harmony. You're going over
to e Harmony that creates the biggest dating site or
whatever the cases. You're saying, hey, e Harmony, what else
are you doing? They go, well, you know, we like
to put couples together and do this, and said and
you say, well can I can? I make greeting cards
and work with you and I anything I make, I'll

split fifty percent. And they go, yeah, who cares when
I'm making greeting cards.

Speaker 1 (24:21):
But I knew how to do that.

Speaker 2 (24:22):
Yes, So all of a sudden, now you're making greeting
cards with e Harmony and you're you're making it turned
into a fifty million dollar business. And they didn't realize
they just gave you twenty five million dollars for free
because you use their customer base. But you put something
else in.

Speaker 1 (24:34):
I'll give you the most beautiful example, but I'm going
to I want to amend it. I did it two ways.
I would say okay, because I let me give you
an Internet example. People came to me when the Internet
SERTA and said, Jay, I'm getting twenty thousand visitors a
month and I'm getting a one percent conversion. How can
I get forty thousand? I'd say, you're crazy. Why do
you turn the one into three? The one percent into three.

It's a lot easier, isn't it.

Speaker 2 (24:56):
I'll sell it customers easier than so acquiring.

Speaker 1 (24:59):
What I would do be two things parallel universe. I'd say, okay,
if I can make your existing marketing or selling or
market or offer better, I want half of the delta.

Speaker 2 (25:10):

Speaker 1 (25:11):
Plus if I can introduce either new products services, ways
to monetize it, ways to monetize people that didn't buy
or stop buying, or ways to penetrate new markets, I
want a third to half of that. And they didn't
care because they didn't have a clue what it was.
But I did, and so I own their asset for
no investment. That's one thing, the biggest coolest thing I
ever did, and it's very interesting. So in the newsletter business,

and this is a great exercise in critical thinking. When
the newsletter business direct mail was at its peak, there
were hundreds of newsletters and they made their money by
renting one another's list, and it was sort of incestuous.
So I'd rent Daemon's investment list and hopefully I would
break even, and Damon would rent Jay's list and he
would break even. And you're bringing even at sixty.

Speaker 2 (25:55):
Whenever you say newsletter and direct mail, everybody else today's
generation should just think of it as tweets, Instagram pun
like that, right, So thank you.

Speaker 1 (26:05):
Okay, So everyone's spending about sixty five summer worth seventy
five cents a piece to break even to get back
eighty or ninety cents because they're including the fulfillment. And
back then the newsletters never had anything in them. They
would just send you a newsletter, and they had very
preferential mail rates. It cost almost nothing because the mail

system was set up to nourish and support information type dissemination.
So I started thinking about and thinking, okay, if I
rent your list and it's sixty five cents a piece
in the mail, and it breaks even what if I
take the same mailing piece I would mail to the
outside market and I print it not And this was
the time when the extra letter was twelve pages. I

print eight pages smaller and I stick it in your
newsletter because it only costs five cents. It would seem
if it breaks even it's sixty five and I can
get it for five, I'm going to make sixty cents
every time I put it in. But whether you endorse
it or not, the fact that it comes in your
newsletter is implied to it.

Speaker 2 (27:09):
It's a cod brand need, it's a recommendation.

Speaker 1 (27:11):
Yes, even if you don't verbalize it, it's implied. It's implicit.
So I thought, well, that's going to double it. I thought,
what's wrong with this math? And nothing? So I went
out and I bought the rights to do that everywhere,
and the first week we made five hundred thousand dollars.
But it was even better because I didn't have any money,
and I guaranteed everybody you know, half million dollars a year,
because I figured if it didn't work, I had no assets.

If it did work, it wouldn't matter. But this is
what got really great. Because I had no money and
no credit. Back then, I would say, like, damon, let's
say you were a successful newsletter publisher. I'd say, okay,
I'm going to do this right, Okay, you don't mind
if I use your your your relationship with your publisher
or with your printer. Do you no, Well, these guys
had ninety one hundred and twenty days worth of credit.

So I'm getting five hundred thousand dollars a week and
not having to pay it for four months later. It
was hilarious.

Speaker 2 (28:00):
So you were one of the ones that really kind
of spearhead the circular business. So now when I opened
up my nobody did that newspaper well, and it is
a bunch of those that make cards.

Speaker 1 (28:11):
All that nobody was doing.

Speaker 2 (28:12):
You helped kill a lot of trees, right.

Speaker 1 (28:15):
Yeah, well I'll tell you something that I'll mean we
did well. I can go into market, which is different,
but they're different marketing stories as opposed to what you're
trying to do, which is bootstrapping and and power broke.
But yeah, I always was able to see something that
no one else saw, or to see value that they
didn't see. Value it. If they didn't see it and
I saw it, it excited them. If they saw no value,

they didn't mind giving it giving it in mind giving
if they saw no value, they didn't mind giving it

to me. I'll tell you another one that's really so.
I was also in the eight track, which is it's
dating me with the eight track cassette tape business, and
I had no money. This is before so I've always
been taught by my by mentors, your problem is the
solution to somebody's bigger problem. So I lived in Indianapolis

and I found a chain of convenience stores like seven
to eleven, but was local, so they had fifty stores.
They weren't selling eight tapes in their store. So I
went and I said, if I can get eight track
tapes and cases on your counters and you don't pay
a cent, will you take a third of that and
give me two thirds? And I showed them that we

could test it and they could take it out, and
I got contracts verst all on hand paper and hand
sign Then I found a very large manufactured distributor of
eight track tapes in the Midwest who didn't have Indiana penstration.
I took my agreements and no money, and I got
them to send me two hundred thousand dollars worth of

cases and tapes that I put in my garage. Then
I got my brother and I bought him a five
hundred dollars Chevy Biscayne sixty seven beat up. It was
a station wagon.

Speaker 2 (30:17):
So you bought a car for five hundred dollars.

Speaker 1 (30:19):
Yeah, okay, that one day we drove around the corner
and the wheel fell off. But before that happened, it
was our delivery.

Speaker 2 (30:24):
That is, the power broke.

Speaker 1 (30:25):
And his job for five hundred dollars a week was
to take inventory, replace defective ones, and get an invoice
that he could send a corporate I was making four
thousand dollars a week from no capital, no.

Speaker 2 (30:42):
A new leveraging. Yeah, and you know, and I say
that to people all the time. Everybody goes, you know
what I need a loan? I need I need or
I don't need a loan, I need an investment. And
you were the one who taught me that what is OPM?
Does OPM always have to be other people's money? No?
What is OPM? You have?

Speaker 1 (30:58):
I got a list of one hundred OPM we'll give me, Okay,
other people's salesforce, other people's distribution, other people's non non
sold buyers, other people's buyers that have nothing else to buy.

Speaker 2 (31:08):
You don't always need to investment.

Speaker 1 (31:10):
Yeah I got I got three stories right away.

Speaker 2 (31:12):
That well, you got other people's marketing, other people's manpower right,
other people's mind.

Speaker 1 (31:16):
Power, research, other people's distribution shippings.

Speaker 2 (31:20):
So you don't always have to give up a piece
of company because I tell people that the same thing
I did the exact same thing in my way. You know,
when I didn't have any money, I would go to
the stores and say do you want to buy these
T shirts? And they would say yeah, yes. I would
go to a screen printer. The screenprint would charge me
a dollar twenty five to print each T shirt. But
what I said is charge me two dollars to print
each T shirt, and when the store orders, you will

ship it directly to the store, and the store will
pay you directly, and then I will get my cut.
I didn't have to give up any of my company.
And the store now knew that it can get its
shirt from a reputable maker, and the maker knew that
it can can get its money from a reputable store.
And I didn't have to give up any of my profits.

So any of my company. So that was me leveraging.
Now I think we obviously have these things in common. Now,
all of a sudden, you move to the point in
your life where you've worked with everybody from Tony Robbins
as I said, to the Nasdak things of that nature,
and all those things happened, and you thought and work
with the power broke. But tell me, because I've made
this mistake when you did start having wealth, did that

Have you ever seen wealth solve or launch something? Because
I lost about three or four million dollars thinking that
now that I had money, I can just buy my
way into something. And sometimes that gives you a bigger ego.

Speaker 1 (32:42):
I'll give you a very heartfelt true story. So I've
had three midlife crises, and I've had three of them
because I started much earlier than everybody. And I've been
married three times. It's hadn't been wiped.

Speaker 2 (32:52):
Out, so well, that will give you the power broke
one way or another. Being married three times?

Speaker 1 (32:58):
It does, say it does. But I did one thing
that was really cool after a couple of times, and
I'd go to therapists to try to figure out what's
the meaning of life, Alphie, And they'd say Okay, time's up.
I thought, screw that stuff, so I'd buy them for
a whole week. I'd buy somebody for a whole week,
and it was hilarious. If I couldn't go, i'd get
somebody who was screwed up in my office and send
them and surprise the therapist. But I would go and

just talk to them. And I found one that gave
me an answer to your question which was more profound
than ever, and it's redefined my life. It's very useful.
And I'll tell you what it is. Most people think
that when they acquire wealth, success, getting the biggest house,
the fastest growing company, you know, the prettiest wife, whatever,

you know, the distinction in Forbes, that's going to transform them.
The heavens are going to open, the angels are going
to sing you four is going to happen. All their
worries are going to anti climactic inc and change anything.
The meaning of life is the process this conversation. If
we're talking to the weight person or the chanitor or
somebody important, that's as good as it gets. So you

better enjoy the moment because everything else is a losory intentative.
And that transformed me. Also, your goal is to add
value anytime you interact with anybody. If you can get
that in alignment, everything else flows. But you can learn
to think about I mean, being without capital is one
of the greatest gifts you can be you can have

if you're an entrepreneur, because it forces you to think what.
It forces you to realize that capital. Oh, let me
give you a great story. It's fabulous story and it's
a true story. It's incredible. I can give you the
whole concept of using other people's resources in a beautiful story,
and it applies to everybody. This is I always want
to know who else has more to gain by what

you're trying to accomplish. So a guy came to one
of my seminars in China. He was heartfelt. He came
to the mic and said, Jay, what do you do
if the bank? If you're too small a bank, Wi'll
lend you money. And I said, well, what would you
do if you have the money? Because that's the big question,
what would you do if you have the MIC?

Speaker 2 (34:59):
A lot of people don't know, they don't get it.

Speaker 1 (35:00):
And they can't answer it. Even on chart take I'm marketing, well,
how you can do it? But I said, what are
you going to do? He said, well, I'm a small
motorcycle manufacturer in China and I would love to go
to Asia, set up a factory, get salespeople, distribution, retailers,
and get into all kinds of countries. And I said, okay, well,
why do you need all this money? Why don't you
just go find somebody who's got a bigger problem than you.

They sell something complimentary, not competitive. They have a factory,
they only have first shift, they're not using second they
already have distribution. They're only getting one product's turnout of it.
Why don't you do that? I came back a year later.
This guy is beaming from ear to ear. He said,
I did what he said. I went to Malaysia, went
to Kwalum, where I found a lawnmower manufacturer. You had

a big, big facility. One shift, he opened a second shift.
All I had to do was bring the tool and dies,
which are just the basic equipment for making the stuff.
He already had all the equipment. He had the salesman,
he had the distribution, He had lawnmower dealers in eight countries.
We split the deal. We both made ten million dollars this.

Speaker 2 (35:59):
Year so he was basically leveraging the factory and the
resources and the distribution, the indangibles, and every single story
like that that you're going to say, I'm sure every
successful entrepreneur can relate to. You know, when I went
to my guys, they just made bubble coats for the winter,
and I brought in my denim and T shirts and said,

what are you doing with your factories during the summer?
They said nothing. I said, well, can I put these
you know, can you start making this denim and these
T shirts? And they said absolutely. But not only that,
because they only made bubble coats. They knew Macy's and Burlington,
they had the factory, they had the people, but all
they had to say to the coat buyer was, hey,

who's the T shirt and denim buyer? Because we have
this stuff. They were doing about forty million a year
in bubble coats and things of that nature. My business
ended up growing to three hundred and fifty four hundred million,
and they forgot all about the bubble coats at that time.
So so now all of a sudden, you know, we're
realizing all the things that really are in line with

the power broke and really making it's not about money. Now,
you and I both know that probably one of the
most one of the things that people attribute the most
to success is having a mentor. I sought you out
many years ago, right because I was fortunate enough to
know that you've worked with everybody in the world. Why

did you decide to mentor me? What was in it
for you? Because I didn't pay you. We've never exchanged
the dime in regards to our mentorship slash And it's
a loose relationship. It wasn't no formal Hey you're mentoring.
We just became friends.

Speaker 1 (37:35):
Truthfully, from the moment I met you, you evoked profound authenticity,
and you were real, and you had enormous humility and respect,
and you had outrageous drive to accomplish something meaningful. And
you had the willingness to listen, open mindedly and seriously,

uh examine and reflect on ideas and advice that someone
offered you. And I was very impressed. I've helped a
lot of people who were arrogant. I've helped a lot
of people who sadly seek advice, but all they really
want is to be confirmed in whatever they want it.
They don't want to really hear what and you were impressive,

way before the show was massively successfully. You were impressive.
I appreciate it, and I enjoyed you, and I thought,
this is someone I really am am taken with that.
I was hoping that I could add value to you
that would be useful.

Speaker 2 (38:38):
But but and I appreciate obviously those words are sniffle,
But there was nothing in it for you. No, you
see everything.

Speaker 1 (38:46):
That's not true.

Speaker 2 (38:47):
It was in it for me.

Speaker 1 (38:48):
No, but that's not true. People don't understand, even people
that are altruistic, there's no such thing as that we
get back. I mean, if you see somebody, I'm obsessed
with two things. People who have value to offer society
in different forms. It's a tragedy for them to under
reach the potential to not make that value available to

everybody who deserves it. And I'm obsessed with helping people.
And very honestly, we don't do anything in our lives
we don't get back something.

Speaker 2 (39:20):
From And I believe in that as much as you do.
But what about the people out there listening that you
know their theory of business from whether the media anything else,
is you know this cutthroat life. Everybody's like Kevin O'Leary,
Just what's in it for me? You know, there's no
emotion in business, it's cold. And why give to people? Hey,
I gave it the office. I wrote something to the

you know, Salvation Army. Why should people believe that they
should mentor others? That's one question, and the part two
to that is for those who do not have mentors,
where do you find them? And how do you find them?

Speaker 1 (39:54):
I'll tell you what I did. So let me try
to answer your question in a couple of ways. First
of all, why you do it? Well, I'm going to
give you an emotional answer. I'm going to give you
a clinical answer. I'll go to the clinical first. There's
a very fascinating study they did in Silicon Valley of
fifteen or eighteen hundred startups that were mentored or not mentored,
and they found that the ones that are mentored by

somebody who'd been there, done that and was willing to
be not a hard nosed but not patronized, take them
to task and be and not allow them to underperform
their potential outproduced on the success. It was like AE
is a three or three hundred percent more success, three
hundred percent more profit three hundred percent more inclined to

go public everything. So there's very well docuos.

Speaker 2 (40:40):
Were the ones that were mentored?

Speaker 1 (40:41):
Yeah, the ones that weren't underperformed. That's the first thing.
The second one is is I did a dissertation on this.
Most people's concept of challenge or frustration or restriction or
constraint is a function of their worldview. They've only experienced

a certain finite number of things. They've read books maybe,
and they've watched TV and in what shark tank. But
they only know what they've read, what they've seen, what
they've done, what they've experienced in their world. Well, as
I'm talking to you and you're talking to me, there
are a million worlds going on concurrently. The reason I'm
so powerful is I can take perspectives from four hundred

and sixty five different industries and how they think and
their strategies and their business models and their competitive approaches.
But most people know a few things. And if you
get a mentor who's been there and done that and
been there, done that means he or she has this
broad spectrum of context, they can accelerate. They can catapult

you to a rarefied place of learning. Curve without all
the suffering and pain. Why wouldn't you?

Speaker 2 (41:52):
So I agree? So now where do I find them?

Speaker 1 (41:55):
Okay, So there's many ways to do.

Speaker 2 (41:56):
Because you know everybody wants you, and damon John and
Mark Cuban.

Speaker 1 (42:00):
I'll tell you what I did in the beginning, and
it was painful, but you do what you have to do.
In the beginning, I worked a bunch I's going to
be vulgar of shitty jobs all night so that all
day I could go around and call upon prominent entrepreneurs
in Indianapolis. And I had a funny thing. I'll tell
you the story I had to sign. This is an

era when in the seventies most people were very formal,
and they had reception rooms with a glass counter, and
the glass counter it had a little hole to speak
with or put your business card. I had a business
card meant that was that big, and it said something
like j Abraham, poor young, struggling up and coming, aspiring

successful entrepreneur who suffers a cute sinus inflection infection. And
I would go to the go to the front desk
where there's a little hole, and I'd say, I do
who the owner was? Can I see damon John, and
they would say who are you with. I go, no,
what and they'd go and then they look a little bit,

well do you have a cart? And I go yes,
and I take this card up and it wouldn't fit
in the window and they would look at me and
they'd come out and take it to you. And if
you had a meeting going on, you wouldn't. But eighty
percent of the people would call me into the office
and I'd say, look, I'm trying to learn I.

Speaker 2 (43:20):
So they would call you in because they would say
what all this big ass color.

Speaker 1 (43:24):
Yeah, I'd say, look, I want to learn your business.

Speaker 2 (43:26):
I would learn.

Speaker 1 (43:27):
And many of them I was broke. They would this
was the most hilarious thing. I had five of them
to let me sit for two hours a day in
the corner and watch them do business. And at the
end of every transact and people would look and they
wouldn't eve introduce me. I'd just be in a corner
like this quiet and people would think, I'm like, they're
conciergra soth. Except I was a little young twenty two
year old. But at the end of every transaction they

cared enough about me they took it. Let me tell
you this happened. Let me tell you what I just did.
Let me tell you, and I soaked it up and
I worked all night. My wife, my first wife, thought
I was crazy and she laughed, but it paid off.

Speaker 2 (44:02):
That's two forms of power are broke, though. So that
is I'm not gonna go and send them a Tiffany
pen and say, hey, all I want to do is
get one meeting with you. You just had a big
stupid card right to get in the door. And the
second form of it is for those who said they
can't get formal education they don't have the money they
normally would pay thirty forty thousand dollars a year to right,

yeah exactly, but you guys get it a lote free
and you got a lone, you got a ham sandwich,
then we'll not a ham sandwich. Tune is ound right? Well,
I appreciate it, Jay, Thank you for mentoring me, and
thank you for sharing this information with everybody else, and
hopefully they'll be able to apply all that information into
today's current technology. And because everything you're saying there is
about progressing with purely your mind, being creative, and it's

not money that will take you there.

Speaker 1 (44:49):
I agree and thank you very much. I'm so impressed
with all you've done, all your door, thank you, thank you.

Speaker 2 (44:54):
Sure That Moment with Damon John is a production of
the Black Effect Podcast Network. For more podcasts from the
Black Effect Podcast Network, visit the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts,
or wherever you listen to your favorite show and don't

forget to subscribe to and rate the show. And of
course you can all connect with me on any of
my social media platforms. At the Shark, Damon spelled like Raymond,
but what a d
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