Why you shouldn’t feel guilty about getting into the PPE space

I have to be honest, even me, someone who loves entrepreneurs, had mixed feelings when I saw founders capitalizing on COVID in the early days.

For example, I saw someone pivot to start selling hand sanitizer. I thought it was a slimey move until I NEEDED hand sanitizer. It made me realize that these people who were filling in the gaps where the big companies fell short were really doing us a service.

Well that’s what today’s guest did as early as February. Robby Berthume is the founder of Berthume & Co, which sells hard-to-find items to deal with the COVID-19 crisis including face masks, hand sanitizer, PPE, and social distancing decals.

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Robby Berthume

Robby Berthume

Berthume & Co

Robby Berthume is the founder of Berthume & Co, which sells hard-to-find items to deal with the COVID-19 crisis including face masks, hand sanitizer, PPE, and social distancing decals.

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Full Interview Transcript

Andrew Warner 0:04
Hey there, freedom fighters. My name is Andrew Warner and I’m a little ashamed. I’m the founder of mixergy, where I interview entrepreneurs about how they built their businesses. I keep introducing this as the place where it’s where entrepreneurs, where ambitious upstart can feel that they’ve got a home and still, I remember going on Facebook soon after COVID-19 hit and seeing one of my past guests was making hand sanitizer at some brewery I guess, and selling it and I thought, this is just a little too slimy. He’s trying to like profit off of this then what does he know about sanitizer? What’s he doing? And then I couldn’t find sanitizer. And, and it made me very uncomfortable when we’d go out. I remember on one of my runs, I touched something and I must have been listening to some podcasts about COVID-19 just touching something on my run made me think I can’t do I can’t let this hand touch my face. I can’t listen. His hand touched my shirt. I just was so paranoid, because I couldn’t find a hand sanitizer to clean it off to reassure me and frankly, because I was a little paranoid. And I started to realize you know what these people who are filling in the gaps were the pure ills of the world couldn’t provide hand sanitizers for us. They’re nonprofit tears. They’re doing the right thing. They’re entrepreneurs who are really helping. And one of my other guests who created face masks and was on Twitter saying I could get your company face mask. I thought the same thing about him. I said, He’s now profited. He went from creating t shirts and hoodies to now face masks. What’s he doing? And then I saw that my wife was going into work and talking to other people who are also going into work in San Francisco talking about how they’re going to get face masks for their people and how tough it is. And what do they do to get a face mask that looks good and it’s functional, and it’s the type of thing that people will wear. And I realized, these entrepreneurs are helping businesses get back to not normal but get back to business helping people feel reassured and keeping people safe, and I was wrong to criticize them. If only in my head. I didn’t go on Twitter. Go on. And I didn’t message him, but I wasn’t picking up on it. And I also recognized that when there is change, there is huge opportunity. And we can’t be paralyzed by it. We have to as entrepreneurs do our job, which is to say what what’s the pain in the world, and that is what we need to go in and fill. Now one of the reasons why I understand this is because years ago, I interviewed an entrepreneur named Robbie perfume, who at 14 years old, started a business who soon after that started a few businesses, including one business to help people who are just getting married. One of the lessons that stuck with me from my interview with him back in 2009, was he said, Andrew, at pivotal changes in people’s lives, they get married, they graduate, they buy their first home. These are the points where they’re willing to consider alternatives where they’re willing to deal with a new business, instead of going back to their old habits. And we’ve got a world that’s changing and we have to recognize that people are in need of us and They’re willing to consider us instead of going into their old habits. And so that’s why I’m so glad that Robbie has stayed in touch with me and has told me what he’s been up to and has said to me, you know, Andrew, I’m also creating hand sanitizer and face masks and peepee and testing and medical kids, which now I’m noticing in my entrepreneurial groups, a lot. One of the things I love about San Francisco is even when you don’t get to meet people in person, you get to stay in touch with them remotely. I’m seeing the entrepreneurial group that I’m in there talking about how do we test our people? How do we test ourselves? How do we test our family? Anyway, he’s got testing kits, and he’s providing them to medical and essential businesses. And I invited him here to talk about how he figured out that he should be jumping in on this did he feel the guilt that people like me might have made him feel and what’s he doing to grow his business right now? And we’re going to talk about it thanks for two phenomenal sponsors. Oh, I should say the name of his company. It’s called birth human company, after his last name, and the two sponsors for making this interview happen. The first is the next podcast. You should be listening to once my podcast is over. It’s called Traffic Secrets. It’s with Russell Brunson, the creator of clickfunnels giving you secrets. He calls them secrets. He’s giving you the techniques that have worked for him and his customers for years. He’s giving it to you in his podcast. And oh, by the way, he’s super fun to listen to, because he’s such a good storyteller, you should listen to Traffic Secrets. And the second sponsor is top towel, the company you go to when you’re hiring developers, and I’ll talk about those later. Robbie, good to have you here.

Unknown Speaker 4:24
Great to be here. Thanks for having me.

Andrew Warner 4:26
Did you feel any of the the guilt that I was feeling in my a bit that people like me might have made you feel when you got into the space?

Robby Berthume 4:33
Yeah, I thought about it. I mean, I felt guilt frankly, you know, I was watching COVID since since January and paying attention to the news and felt like it was going to be a big thing and prepared myself my family and you know, had masks and gloves and I remember you know, fairly early on wearing masks to the grocery store. And, you know, having somebody from from Trader Joe’s give me a hard time for wearing the mask because I shouldn’t be saying I should have donated it to a hospital that I needed it. Why am I Why am I wearing this mask? You know, and I said, Actually, I gave you know what I had my grandparents you know, and I’m trying to protect my family and but there’s a lot of judgment out there and a lot of different ways wearing masks, not wearing masks, social distancing, getting involved in stuff. How what,

Andrew Warner 5:17
how early Did you say the world is changing? As a thing?

Robby Berthume 5:21
Yeah, I mean, really, you know, mid February was when I really took it seriously. And then, you know, definitely mid March is when things obviously, you know, started to shut down. And that’s right at that time as when, you know, have my first introduction to a hand sanitizer factory. It was the easter egg factory now creating hand sanitizer, and we

Andrew Warner 5:42
made it Friday make electronic cigarettes and they said we’re getting into making hand sanitizers and they Yeah,

Robby Berthume 5:47
they make the liquids and then they went through the FDA got certified for hand sanitizer and had all the right documentation and packaging and inventory and that kind of thing. And so I looked at it and tried to sell Reach out to some contacts and then started to you know get the wheels turning.

Andrew Warner 6:04
I know you as the guy who does marketing I know you’re the guy who builds business

Robby Berthume 6:08
today because he he converted his factory from basic factory and he doesn’t know what what he’s doing and you know he’s trying

Andrew Warner 6:16
sanitizer he came to us saying can you help me figure out who’s gonna buy this

Robby Berthume 6:19
Can you help me sell it Can you help me find buyers exactly

Andrew Warner 6:22
what did you do with or what do you still do add bull and beard

Robby Berthume 6:27
is connects agencies and brands on a commission basis. So you lead those searches so connecting buyer and seller as a broker just like I’m doing with the medical supplies, business systems now its products and you know, it’s products that I have to learn quite a bit about and I’ve had to get to know you know, different things about you know, the industry and how things work but a lot of it has been you know, really relationships with a variety of suppliers and a relationships with a variety of connectors gatekeepers matchmakers a good a lot of

Andrew Warner 6:56
years. This is your agency that you’ve run for what seven years now? Yeah, yeah sample of the kind of, of the kind of connection that bolon beard you made.

Robby Berthume 7:06
So bolon beard a good example might be Fujitsu. We’ve connected Fujitsu with three or four agencies. So for example, a PR agency to do what a PR agency for, you know, a 20 to 25 k a month retainer, a creative agency for banner ads and creative work an SEO digital marketing agency for that side of the house. So specialize in a variety of different different areas.

Andrew Warner 7:32
Why do they need you? Why can’t they just go on Google ask their friends find what they’re looking for? Why do they need to give you a commission every time they make a check to an agency that you introduce them to?

Robby Berthume 7:40
Yeah, really, because we have a collective of vetted and vouched for agencies where we’ve done a one hour interview, we’ve done reference checks, we’ve done a worker review, we’ve set up a matchmaking agreement so we reduce risk and risk is the biggest, you know, b2b purchasing decision making factor. And it’s the same thing with birth, Amoco and medical supplies risk is the biggest factor and especially when you see all this negative crass about, you know, mask, people selling mass for four or $5 and, you know, ripping off people and it gives you a bad taste in your mouth and and that’s definitely what kind of pushed me away from perfume and CO in the beginning that perception of people looking at me like this is opportunists, right? But I felt like there was a way to do it without the greed. And and frankly, you know, I think with the way that I sell things and the margins that I sell them at, I can sleep at night, I know that I’m not ripping people off, I know that my margins are thin and, and then I know that I’m helping other people because there’s inevitably commissions to people that connected me with the buyer, the suppliers, and then I’m donating 15% back to PP for frontline health care workers. So I’ve already been able to make donations and you know, get the joy of doing that out of this effort.

Andrew Warner 8:49
Alright, so electronic cigarette maker starts to make hand sanitizer comes to you and says, I need to I know how to make it now I making it, I need help selling it and you look at it and you do If you didn’t work with them, why not?

Robby Berthume 9:02
Yeah, I didn’t work with them because their product was just the way that their their packaging was set up a few different reasons. It just wasn’t a it wasn’t a good fit. So what’s wrong with the packaging? It’s because it’s the, the e cig liquid, it’s, it’s I got some samples essentially and it’s hard for me to open it and use it myself. And if I can’t use it myself, I mean, I’m not going to sell it if I don’t believe in it. I mean, I’ve got a I’ve got to believe in it. And that’s really

Andrew Warner 9:29
the liquid not a gel.

Robby Berthume 9:32
It’s not because it’s liquid it’s because of the packaging itself. It’s like really hard to get the lid off and then it’s the awkward looking kind of squirt it just it doesn’t it doesn’t work. It’s not the right packaging and, and so I’ve actually stayed away from smaller increments and hand sanitizer, I sell more by the gallon and by the case and by the pallet, and I’ve had, you know, large companies and gas stations and, you know, all kinds of people you know, have interest in that and done quite a bit of sales on the the hand sanitizer But I’m working now primarily with a chemical company that started creating hand sanitizer as a result of COVID so it’s interesting how many there’s a lot of company on my suppliers that are you know, Chinese products that are shipped into the US and available in warehouses and I use that because they’re you know, the lead time is going to be short and then I work with as many us suppliers as I can so for social distancing decals or face shields or stuff like that if I can get it in America I will the problem is so much is made in China that you know, you really if you if you need product to protect your employees or your your, you know, frontline health care workers, you’ve got to make concessions, you know, sometimes as far as what you’re buying and and where it comes from and how much you’re paying.

Andrew Warner 10:44
Okay, so they didn’t it didn’t work out with them. What was then the next step that you took if it wasn’t the electronic cigarette company, what what’s the next step you took to say? I got it. Yeah,

Robby Berthume 10:55
the next step I took was, was I found an owner of a promotional product. company that had also pivoted or was in the process of pivoting to really focus on COVID and had a lot of relationships but a lot of experience not necessarily in the medical supplies space, but in the promotional product space. It’s the same type of type of business. And, and so I linked up with him and he’s been a great resource and friend, and our friendships just kicked off with this and he had a lot of supplier relationships lined up and so I was ordering products and master him. And eventually I developed my own suppliers and now he buys from some of mine.

Andrew Warner 11:32
He became an asset was the first thing that he had.

Robby Berthume 11:35
Yeah, he was getting mass and, and hand sanitizer and, and then, you know, basically I got better hand sanitizer. So now he gets hand in hand sanitizer through me.

Andrew Warner 11:45
I know. So first it was he found a couple of places where you can get masks and hand sanitizers, it was on you now to do the second part of this, which is to find customers, how did you find customers?

Robby Berthume 11:55
Yeah, so really two things. I mean, number one is, you know, simple post two Facebook and LinkedIn pretty pretty strong social followings a lot of entrepreneurs and well connected people and

Andrew Warner 12:08
social media to your LinkedIn and Facebook and said I’ve got hand sanitizer and face masks. Do you know anyone who needs to buy them?

Unknown Speaker 12:15
Oh yeah, I put it out there

Robby Berthume 12:19
and I’ve gotten a lot of a lot of customers relationships from that and, and frankly,

Andrew Warner 12:23
did you get any negativity from that?

Robby Berthume 12:25
Honestly, no, no, I didn’t get any hate any DMS I mean, I expected I expected hates but nothing I mean, I think somebody No, there was a comment that I think I’ve pictured I was wearing a mask somebody was calling me out for that I wasn’t wearing correctly or something but that was that was before the the birthday Miko so now I haven’t really gotten any any hate from it. And

Andrew Warner 12:47
so then where did you What’s the first customer that you got?

Robby Berthume 12:51
Yeah, first customer I think was

cure ology, calm and then liquid web.

I should know this but off the top of my head I calm cure ology calm

Andrew Warner 13:05
okay this is a sulfate free hair product styling haircare that’s what they do. And they said we want to sell this also.

Robby Berthume 13:14
Yeah, they will they wanted they wanted mass and okay not to sell for their people for their employees not to sell I’m not really selling into I am talking to some medical distributors, some of the bigger ones multibillion dollar medical distributors that are looking at product but most of it is for their employees for their people that

Andrew Warner 13:35
example resale Yeah, liquid wide liquid web. I used to host my website. Tell me about that.

Robby Berthume 13:42
Yeah, I’ve done a couple orders with them and they’ve, you know, gotten three pi mass and provided a testimonial. They’ve got a pretty robust policy as far as mass and social distancing. And I’m sure you’ve been testing kits, so they’ve been coming back and ordering more and been a good customer for us. So really,

Andrew Warner 13:58
is it employees sites are counting on them to host. If they’re not up, these businesses are down if they need to have people maintain the hardware, right, don’t think they have actual hardware. Yeah, that’s nice. And so with actual hardware, you need people to go and touch the hardware to be in there. And if they’re going to have their people go in there, they wanted to keep them safe. And so they came to you and they said, Can you get masks for our people? Can you get white decals so that they know what’s expected of them and what the rules are for safety hand sanitizer, and so you got all that to them?

Robby Berthume 14:31
Yeah, yeah. Okay. And I get requests for different you know, Hanson, automated hand sanitizers, which stands and, you know, nitrile, gloves, thermometers, infrared thermometers, you know, all different types of products. But now, again, based on the network of suppliers, I’m able to send a few text messages and get pricing and mo Q, minimum order, quantity and all the details. I need documentation where it’s easy to find the solutions and really the best Biggest thing is being as clear as possible. You know, people are oftentimes in a rush with, you know, wanting information and give me this give me this fast. But you have to make sure that you give them the full documentation, that picture of the packaging, all that kind of stuff. Otherwise, there could be surprises as you’re working on a 50,000 or 150,000, or, you know, 100 $50 million order, I’m working on five multimillion dollar orders for three Ms. And, you know, there’s a lot of risk involved. So you got to be really careful with with what you say and what you represent and, and making sure that they’ve got the full picture and expectations that you can manage by

Andrew Warner 15:34
Why can’t you just set up a an e commerce site? Whenever you have a product listed on the product, say to liquid web here, go to my site, you can see all the details, screenshots, whatever. If you have any questions ask, why not do it all online?

Robby Berthume 15:47
Yeah, we’re working on an e commerce site. Now. I’ve got a partner involved, that’s gonna gonna help there. And you know, we’ll charge retail pricing on the e commerce site. So it’s going to be higher pricing and a little bit more, you know, probably do drop shipping, and I’ll probably Have inventory of some items as well as is definitely coming up here soon The reason I like the the broker brokering and personal selling in bulk orders is you know if you do an order that’s six figures seven figures you know the commission can be can be pretty lucrative in one deal versus the hassle of you know 30,000 orders the e commerce to make the same amount of money so that’s really where you know the the we just kind of I just got to make sure that we’re you know I’m investing in the broker inside right now the most because it’s where you know, I think the most profit is and then e commerce is kind of phase two

Andrew Warner 16:37
so you meet a lot of

Robby Berthume 16:38
others I think is the opposite I think a lot others doing what I’m doing are selling mass you know, via e commerce or Shopify or e commerce are doing that right off the bat, you know, but they’re only making a few dollars per mask on five mask orders and you know, I’m selling 30,000 masks, I’m selling 50,000 masks. I’m making a lot more money at once

Andrew Warner 16:57
the hand sanitizer I see you’ve got one out containers most people don’t sell one ounce containers online. Those are the little tiny little things that fit in your in the palm of your hand right you in a fist, you can hide it but you’re not selling them individually you’re selling them in bulk.

Robby Berthume 17:14
Yeah, so everything has a minimum order quantity some some things are 100 300 500,000 just depends on you know what the product is testing kits or not, you don’t have to buy a ton of testing kits. It just depends on the supplier and their rules.

Andrew Warner 17:30
Well, can I just buy one testing kit from you and or five test my family?

Robby Berthume 17:34
Yeah, we can make that happen. Yeah.

Andrew Warner 17:37
favor to a friend.

Robby Berthume 17:39
No, we do if somebody wants to test it. You know, I had somebody reach out and say, Hey, I’d love to get a test in both the testing kits, test them out and and then basically get them from my employees will definitely make that happen there. They’re 26 and $29 for the testing kits for RNA and antibody and they can actually I can get the price cheaper if it’s a bulk order, if we’re talking 100 500,000 testing kits we can get that closer to $20.

Andrew Warner 18:05
What’s the RNA? What’s the other way? The This is for the testing kits, then I mailed them in somewhere and they tell me whether I’m negative or positive for it.

Robby Berthume 18:15
Yeah, I believe that RNA needs to be operated in a lab setting. So that’s less of the the state. I don’t know that home kit and then the antibiotic kit is the one that you can use at home and it’s going to be a little bit of a I think it’s like a finger prick collects the blood to run the sample within five

Andrew Warner 18:31
minutes had

Robby Berthume 18:32
COVID-19 if you have antibodies. Exactly. Wow,

Andrew Warner 18:35
how accurate How do you know if it’s accurate? I’ve been seeing a lot of Article

Robby Berthume 18:39
Yeah, so we have all the documentation. Basically, with the RNA test, it’s FDA approved and you approved and then with the new antibody test, it’s approved and then FDA pending approval, but available for sale. So it’s legal to sell it and then all the tests and documentation. It’s there. The success rates All of that. I think it’s don’t quote me on this. But I mean, it’s definitely it’s it’s supposed to be 95% or above. And it’s definitely above that and exceeding other tests in the marketplace a good price point. So we felt it was the right test, and kids are getting

Andrew Warner 19:14
the information about that on your site. When I go to your site, and I see it’s the dye carted testing kit. all I get is a photo of it. I don’t see much more info, right.

Robby Berthume 19:23
Yeah, that’s where I mean basically started this thing seven, eight weeks ago and have scrambled together a website and and fresh books and business bank account and an LLC, and you know, everything needed reseller certificates and relationships. And so I’m trying as quickly as I can to

Andrew Warner 19:42
get you think I’m up and running as fast as possible. Yeah. And that’s where we are right now in the world. Yep. Okay. All right. I’m with you on that. Let me take a moment talk about my first sponsor, and then we’ll get back in here and continue this interview. My first sponsor is the podcast. You listen to podcasts a lot these days.

Robby Berthume 20:00
Me Now I don’t I’m not a auditory learner kind of guy so I just I don’t know I like shows and stuff like that where there’s video component but with podcasts it’s hard for me to retain the information I’m so into. I feel

Unknown Speaker 20:13
like there’s sorry to be a buzzkill

Robby Berthume 20:14
as I love being on podcast but now it’s hard to listen because I just don’t I can’t seem to focus unless we go for a long

Andrew Warner 20:23
drive. What do you listen to

Unknown Speaker 20:26
music?

Andrew Warner 20:27
Music I can’t do that. I can do it for a little bit but not unless I’m I need audio I mean I need two words. Any people talking to me I will go to sleep listening towards I camped out in my backyard the night before last. I couldn’t fall asleep. Well, I just put on in that case it wasn’t a podcast. It was the Howard Stern Show. I was testing Sirius XM to see if I’m into it. I just turned it on. I listened to him do a show and boom I was out in like five minutes. If I’m walking around my house, the speaker the echo speaker will be blasting some kind of podcast I need I feel like there’s some people who just need that from calm I need to have talking around me. And I also just pick up on stuff well that way. Without there’s some topics that I don’t have the patience to sit and read a long form article on. I like there’s very little COVID stuff that I read that I retained. It’s more like listening to podcasts. And then I just quoted I said, I think I got enough. I don’t need to listen to it all day long. Anyway, up reload. The reason I bring this up is because anyone who’s out there who’s a podcast fan was a podcast listener should try a new podcast by my friend Russell Brunson. He’s a longtime mixer mixer. The listener has been on mixergy several times. And he’s the guy who created Click Funnels. It’s a great way to create landing pages. He’s done this now for years. He’s done over 100 million dollars a year in business creating software that enables people to convert traffic into customers. And he said you know what, I picked up quite a few things about how to get traffic over the years. I think I know how to do it for free. How to do For paid, I think I know ways that work for my business and work for our customers business. I’m going to create a podcast where I teach this. In fact, the first step was I’m gonna create a book and he wrote a great book called Traffic Secrets on he said, you know, some people are not going to sit and read the book, unless they have a little bit more insight into this. And some people may never read a book, they just are more auditory listeners. So he decided he was going to create a podcast where he gave the secrets where you tell the stories where he shared some of the insights that he has learned over the years about how to get traffic if you’re listening to me and you’re looking for a new podcast, I urge you to check out Traffic Secrets. It’s a podcast available on whatever podcast app you’re listening to me on if you got an echo speaker, Google speaker, an apple speaker. Does anyone have apples because whatever you’ve got Sonos, your phones iPhone, Android, go listen to that. Subscribe right now and have it download. You will love the storytelling that he that he uses, you’ll love the specific tactics that he teaches. And frankly, if you don’t love it, you got nothing to lose. If you do love it. This could be the new thing that helps you get more traffic to your business. Go to go get Traffic Secrets podcast right now. Traffic Secrets. How did you get the next batch of customers? Or was it all social media for for a few weeks? Yeah, I mean, so I

Robby Berthume 23:10
basically run outbound campaigns drip campaigns to procurement at, you know, hospitals and you know, relevant target audience. That’s their email

Andrew Warner 23:22
addresses and then you send out messages to them.

Robby Berthume 23:26
Yeah, email then Sales Navigator, the email tools. Yep, exactly. building out the campaign the messaging and then reaching out to to the right people at procurement. So that’s resulted in conversations with Rite Aid and CVS and Walgreens and Ace Hardware and

Andrew Warner 23:41
will not for reselling,

Robby Berthume 23:43
for their people exactly relate to Sales Navigator

Andrew Warner 23:45
Sales Navigator is the LinkedIn tool. They give you email addresses of customers, they let you search for people based on title and

Robby Berthume 23:54
company you can search and source and then you can get the emails with tools like snow vo And there’s a couple others that we use for actually finding email addresses. It’s no prospect that I owe stuff like those

Andrew Warner 24:08
snow dot.io. It’s what they do is they automate outreach, do they also collect email addresses for you?

Robby Berthume 24:17
I’m pretty sure they’re the one that collects email addresses as some help on the outbound side.

Andrew Warner 24:22
And then who sends out the email messages for you. So that’s

Robby Berthume 24:26
just automated through software, trying to think we switched from woodpecker to a new platform here recently, but essentially, yeah, that’s been effective but but honestly, the the social media, you know, friendships, relationships, you know, getting connected with gatekeepers that’s been far and away more active than then you know, the outbound just the snowball effect of these relationships. And then

Andrew Warner 24:52
the outbound works is, you do search for job titles that you think will be helpful at companies that you think would be a good customer and then Put you get their email addresses, then you put it into something like woodpecker, which is woodpecker CO, you write your first message and then if you don’t get it and then you send that out to all of them if you don’t get a response, it automatically will send a follow up message something like just making sure you saw this bubbling this up to the top of your inbox, that type of thing. If they don’t respond, maybe you just kill it off right there. If they do respond to human being answers back and then starts a conversation exactly how superior

Robby Berthume 25:24
we might be four to five emails to nine emails, you know, they say the more emails the better as far as

Andrew Warner 25:30
JSON. Did you get nine emails without getting a response? You do nine emails

Robby Berthume 25:34
in this climates is hard. I think I think it’s over selling in this economy. People are really averse to being sold to right now. So for me, it’s more four or five emails with across the board with my different companies that four to six that I’m trying to kind of stay within because beyond that, it’s just too much. And I mean, and then it’s all really runs like a machine goes on automatically. And usually I get one or two responses per day that you know are usually legitimates and and lead to me being able to follow up and let them know about new products, new inventory, that type of thing. And then I’ve got the matchmakers gatekeepers you know connected through social through friends of friends and and with them I’ll pay a commission you know typically 15% if they bring a buyer and you know if they bring a dental practice one round a dental practice that you know has 29 offices while they’ve placed an order for you know, six figures and you know that Commission’s a really nice commission for somebody dollars

Andrew Warner 26:33
for every hundred thousand dollars in sales

Robby Berthume 26:37
$50,000 right 15% of hundred thousand will be their commission, if it’s 100,000 profit. So, center the product 50% of profit Exactly. It’s just oftentimes, I mean, to be realistic, you know, most of the time on the commission side. When it comes to the profit. I’m usually paying out about half to commissions and my donation to To frontline health care workers because I’m paying, you know, maybe 15%, to a supplier commission, maybe 15 to 25% to the sales commission, and then 15%, to donation to frontline health care workers. So I’m getting usually about half the profit. But, you know, that puts me in a position where, you know, I sleep better at night knowing that not only our margins and other people are being rewarded by bringing these opportunities and they’re bringing more they’re incentivized to actively find more to find more suppliers to give me that attention, because they know that a lot of other companies are paying 5% Commission, that’s the max, they’ll go and I’ll be, hey, if you bring me a million dollar order, I’ll give you 25% I’ll give you 30

Andrew Warner 27:39
I reached out to all of my past guests, say, look, if you need any help getting masks or tests or whatever you need for your people, I got a guy who I interviewed, I’d be happy to make an introduction. I get 50% of the profits.

Robby Berthume 27:50
Yes, yes. And if you get a bigger deal and you reach out and say, hey, I’ve got an order for 500,000 mass or you know, whatever it is, then um Want to come back to you and say okay, what about you know, maybe 25% about 35% aggressive on it Yeah, yeah to make

Andrew Warner 28:05
it worth your while. So do you think that there’s an opportunity for somebody who’s listening to us right now to say you know what I’m connected to a bunch of people I’d be happy to just make some personal phone calls maybe I get one customer but that could meet be meaningful right now that could be a side hustle for someone who’s listening

Robby Berthume 28:20
I mean one one you know commission check on a reasonable you know sized order can be easily five grand and so yeah, if you’re looking for an extra 510 $15,000 maybe even more if you’re talking to government or hospitals or stuff like that, it’s a it’s an easy side hustle connecting dots and and let me do the work as far as the sales side, just you know, make the introduction. So I think it’s definitely anybody that has relationships on the supply side, or the sell side. You know, I’d love to hear from because we’re always looking at you know, where’s inventory and you know, what, what different products can we offer that type of thing and then always looking at investing our prices and improving on that front and then And then obviously we need, you know, the more prospects the better.

Andrew Warner 29:03
You know what? I’ve I’ve already pointed out some of the flaws in the site. It’s obviously a quick website they put together on Wednesdays

Unknown Speaker 29:09
way, right?

Andrew Warner 29:10
Yeah, I’m not, I’m not down. I’ve just pointed out that so you can put it down. Here’s the thing that then that it stands out for me. Where you did spend a lot of energy is telling people, you’re not making much money. Like for all the things that you didn’t do to the site, the one thing that you seem to have gone out of your way to do is to say, Look, my margins are really small. I’m donating a big part of this money. I’m wondering if maybe you were feeling a little more guilt than I realized, maybe you felt there’s an opportunity here to help but I don’t want to be judged. I’m going to head this off at the past by saying, I’m not making much money, and I’m donating a bunch of it.

Robby Berthume 29:45
Yeah, I mean, I think for me, the 15% donation, for example of profits. I don’t think it affects buyers and their propensity to work with me at all. I don’t think it’s affected a single deal that I’ve done. But for For me, it’s it’s a personal thing. It’s where I know that Okay, my, my mission in this is not only to connect buyers and sellers, but it’s it’s deeper, it’s providing a solution, it’s helping people stay safe, stay healthy. And and I want to be able to, you know, contribute the donations and then give mass to frontline health care workers to, you know, be able to have that component of it that feels like the nonprofit component because I love these nonprofits that are given away mass or free and are doing those types of activities. So if I could bring that into what I’m doing, I just felt like it would be a stronger business overall, and I would feel you know better about it, and I don’t think it was coming from necessarily guilt more just, you know, ethics, what is what is the right margin, what is the right, you know, markup on a product, what is, you know, the best way to handle that and what’s not and, and I think in the marketplace, you know, again, there’s a lot of negative press, and then price gouging and all that stuff that’s happening and I don’t want to be guilty of any of that I want and I’m transparent As well in the sense that a lot of my customers I mean they even might know my you know my buy price what I’m getting it for and what I’m selling it to them for I mean I don’t hide it if they asked we’ll have a conversation about it because I’m not afraid of, you know I’m making I’m trying to you know, triple your your price or whatever it is. make a quick buck.

Andrew Warner 31:19
If you look at me this was not at all planted or intentional. I’m wearing um, it’s a buff. This is my favorite facemask even though it’s too thin, but I’m not coming into contact with people. So it’s more it’s minor, but it’s okay. I love it. This is the thing that I wore when I was running and chilly in the super windy weather doing a marathon there on Antarctica, I wore this thing around my neck because then I could turn it into earmuffs. I could put it in turn into hat and I’ve been using it over COVID as my face mask. You’re selling something like that. I just love the look of those. Are they actually good protection?

Robby Berthume 31:53
Yeah, I mean, they all vary and I try to stay away from from you know, medical advice. Be careful with that, but I mean they really vary as far as kind of the the cloth and bandana up to the the three ply you know where you get more of the thing it’s you know 40 to 80% and then k 95 80% plus then 95 you know you have all these different layers of protection and most of my you know customers they want the three M and 90 fives and we have a relationship with a three m distributor and not a lot of people do and that’s been a big asset but but the thing is with three m to get that mass because it’s in so much demand there’s no guaranteed lead time or ship date if you place an order it could be months it could be years before you actually get your your mass and then you charge though

Unknown Speaker 32:38
are you charged now or are you charged whenever he’s

Robby Berthume 32:40
charged now or there could be flexibility on the the payment depending on order size with a smaller order you have to pay up front and they three m prioritizes the order and ships it out, you know if you’re they’re going to prioritize frontline health care workers that type of thing, but that’s what’s driving the demand for you. Okay, and 90 fives you know really are the go to For a lot of places, if they if three pliers and enough gain 90 fives are really where it is and that got a little more complicated and that’s why I got to kind of always you know, keep abreast of what’s happening in the industry because k 95 you know with FDA they they pulled the FDA approval from a bunch of factories in China with KTLA five

Andrew Warner 33:19
I thought and 95 is the one that everyone is looking for but what are they looking

Robby Berthume 33:24
for? Okay And 95 is a little less protection than the 95 and and most of gay 95 are made in China. And 95 here

Andrew Warner 33:34
made in China and right now you’re saying goes also have long lead times.

Robby Berthume 33:38
Those we can get, we can get the ones that are Appendix A you know FDA and the ones that are non medical but still sufficient for you know, most people for what they need and those usually run you know, depending on quantity around $3 a pop and then you have three ply which are more you know, dollar $10 25 a pop for that purchase. To the jet that’s usually the three types of masses is going to be a three M and 95. Okay and 95 or the three ply

Andrew Warner 34:10
This is a I get it this is this is some kind of business for you to get into now you enjoying going in and understanding all this I love it.

Robby Berthume 34:18
Yeah, I love it. I mean, first of all the sales component of this, I mean, I used to gamble I was never a big gambler but you said you know playing poker tournaments and you know 130 grand playing Baccarat and you know, once a month playing cards and just love the thrill of it and just you know, you’re focused and, and I feel kind of the same way oftentimes with this business where I’m just I’m doing all these deals and talking to these people via text and it’s it’s a lot of fun and a lot of numbers. I have to be careful because I move really quickly and do things really quickly. And, you know, I had one order where the customer ordered. It was for hand sanitizer and they literally wired like $87,000 and I messed up the numbers. It should have been like $120,000 87,000 was, you know, basically my, my cost on the order shipping and everything. So, so I went to them and I offered, you know, to go and have to pay to, you know, to get the right amount for the truckload of hand sanitizer and some solutions. But ultimately, I didn’t want to do it, and it was just too much and lost the loss of sale, you know, and I could have could have not been in that situation if, you know, I just basically added correctly and taken a little more time during that process. So that’s an area where, you know, what I’d like to do soon is hire somebody to help me with just managing orders. And that is, you know, books and you know, some of these areas where, you know, I’m moving so quick doing calls and everything. I think I just need to stay focused on the sales side and stay away from some of the operations.

Andrew Warner 35:47
All right, let me talk about my second sponsor. And then I’ve got to tell you that I considered here as we’re talking about, maybe I should be contacting my past guests. They run companies they need to get back in business, but there’s something keeps coming to my mind. First, I’ll tell you about top towel. Do you know about top Tell the company to go and hire developers from? I do. Yes, you do. Have you used them at all? Do you know?

Robby Berthume 36:06
I don’t have a personal experience. I’ve heard good things about him.

Andrew Warner 36:09
He’s the thing that they’re, if I gotta go back and find in my old interview transcripts, I would talk about them with guests, they would say I have a lot of positive. I’ve had friends tell me about how good they are. I have a positive impression of how good top towel is. But I could never hire somebody who doesn’t work in the office. That was the big, that was a big challenge. Why would you hire someone from top towel if they’re not going to come in the office? Now companies are realizing you know, you don’t have to have someone coming.

Robby Berthume 36:37
Yeah. So much of your

Andrew Warner 36:38
work. Right. Yeah, it’s an advantage. If you have somebody who’s built to work from home better than to work from, from the office, then that’s what’s happening. We topped out they Yes, still have the best of the best developers, we’re talking about top 3% they test them so hard that people who fail are sometimes proud of how far they’ve come in the development tests. The top towel puts them through and they’ll go and do both. on medium, they’ll talk about it. But in addition to that, now you’ve got people who are not just that good, but also that good at working remotely. And there’s an extra benefit. I remember talking to Noah Kagan, when this thing first started happening, this whole COVID recession. And I thought, this is a guy who all he’s doing in this interview is telling me about how he’s cutting costs. And you know me uncomfortable, if you tell me as a as a guest of mine, Robbie, that you’re not crazy for a podcast. Even though my sponsor is a podcast, I’m not looking to censor you, I want you to be yourself. And so I went into the ad for top towel with Noah Kagan expecting him to say you should cut everything, don’t pay for Netflix, don’t pay for your SaaS software to cut expenses of your company. And then me talking about top dollar expect them to say and don’t hire from top towel, you should hire people who are less good for less money. But he said you know what, Andrew? This is like using Amazon Web Services where you need a server, you need more bandwidth, you need more something, you just go to them and they give you the capability said the same thing with top down. You need to grow your developers go to top value higher from them, and then when you need to scale down just cancel a takedown it makes it much easier than if, as he pointed out, if you have a full time employee who’s on your books, who you have to then pay for on the way in and pay for on the way out with top towel, you can hire quickly, you can hire the best. And then they make it easy for you both to scale up and scale down. All you have to do is go to your hiring developers go to top and top of your head. Talent talent.com slash mixergy. When you go there, they will give you 80 hours of top towel developer credit for free, really 80 hours for free when you pay for your first 80 hours. That’s amazing, isn’t it? Robbie?

Robby Berthume 38:34
That’s amazing. Yeah, no, I like the model. We have a directory and another company agency match that’s bedded in vouch for agencies that we take through an agency review process, not as robust as top towels testing and what they do, but I love that model of you know, top 123 percent 5% whatever it is of, of talent and and providing access to it because again, you know, people if they’re looking to hire their Ultimately, they’re not just looking for the best developer, they’re looking for the least amount of risk and working with that developer. And that’s what these platforms do is they

Andrew Warner 39:08
minimize that risk. And they minimize it, we topped out by doing the testing. And by the way, when you put tests together, they’re really hard. People want to just see if they could pass the test. They want to talk about their experience with it. So that’s kind of marketing to, but they minimize it that way. But in addition to the 80 hours for free is that I mentioned a moment ago, they will also give anyone who’s listening to me and using my URL, two weeks to try out their developers. If you’re not happy, you do not have to pay get details by going to top Tao comm slash mixergy. Let me spell it out for you. It’s TLP ta l.com. Slash mia ZRGY top towel comm slash mixergy. And I always tell my guests I’m not looking to. I’m not looking to censor you if you don’t like my sponsor, if you’ve had bad experiences, talk about it. God knows I’ve talked about some of the negatives with my sponsors, which means that when you’re listening Yeah, sometimes you’ll get some bad information. I mean, some some people telling you don’t use the sponsor. I don’t like them for whatever reason, that’s totally fine with me. I’m not looking to pretend that everything is great. But you’ll also see that when guests are talking about my sponsors in a positive light, it’s also coming from the same position of honesty and openness. Alright, here’s the thing that I’m feeling I am really in my in my head going well, this is your opportunity. Andrew, you can undo the problem that you’ve had you running five miles through San Francisco streets regretting not moving faster when COVID happened not actually recognizing that your audience has an issue with this and doing interviews about it. You should just reach out to past guests say hey, if you’re opening up and you need any mass any gel any anything, even a conversation about what you should get one of the best one of the guests that I’ve interviewed for years is about the best guess what I guess I was gonna say like one of the best people to talk to is a past guest. But you are you are really damn good. I’ll tell you what your dad said in a moment after. But I’m still feeling a sense of guilt and something else. We like talk my way up and get out of my sense of shame and hesitation here.

Unknown Speaker 41:02
I mean, for me, I mean,

Robby Berthume 41:06
essentially, liquid web, for example, you know, we talked about them in the beginning, you know, they have a need to protect their employees. And, and this is a space where they don’t have relationships, you know, is set up and when it comes to medical supplies, so they don’t necessarily know where to go, who to turn to, and they’re looking at a lot of different options. You know, they’re just trying to see who’s available, what’s available. They’re scared, they’re skeptical. They see negative press, you know, whatever it is, it’s the Wild, Wild West. I mean, it really is. And I think in that atmosphere, you know, that’s why there’s a need for you know, the, the person that can really hold your hand through the process and be candid with you and be frank with you about, you know, what your options are and navigates through the process to get a successful outcome. And I think that that’s where, you know, that’s not there are people that are jumping on to make a A bunch of money off of a big mass quarter, but they’re not investing themselves when it comes to, you know, really learning the product, believing in the product, believing in you know, why we’re selling the product, I mean, all of those things and that all makes a difference because, you know, with any kind of sales and a passion really matters, but you know this, especially when I’m talking about the medical practice or a hospital, that’s, you know, looking at a big order and talking to me about, you know, the products that I have to offer, you know, they’re coming from a place of skepticism, they’re coming from a place of, you know, fear and, and it’s my job to, you know, alleviate that through information and through facts and through, you know, being transparent during the process.

Andrew Warner 42:41
What you’re saying is, Andrew Bevin need, they don’t know anyone quit focusing on everything and everything that’s true.

Robby Berthume 42:50
If I can, if I can solve their need, if I can make them a happy camper by solving their need, giving them a great price, giving them great service getting that they get the product within a few days. I mean, that type of that level of service that you’re not seeing in the industry right now, then it’s helping them and it’s helping them more quickly protect their employees. And it’s helping because it results in a donation to frontline health care workers. It helps my family I can funnel that into my other businesses, which helps those businesses and both customers. I mean, it has all around it’s it’s a win win situation for everybody. The only time it’s not a win win is you know, if I get into a deal where you know, I’m over my head and I’m saying, Oh, yeah, I’ve got 700,000 mass and maybe I don’t and and then I stay away from that because there’s there’s too much risk. You know, these orders are too big to screw up on.

Unknown Speaker 43:45
Because I remember the first interview that we did.

Andrew Warner 43:48
Like I said, 2009 this was back on Skype, so your dad

Robby Berthume 43:52
sound back when I was how old was I in 2009? That was, wherever 20 2011 was, yeah,

I was like 23, I think.

Andrew Warner 44:02
And by then you already had, as I mentioned earlier, a lot of experience. Thank you. You were started nine years. At 14, weren’t you?

Unknown Speaker 44:09
Yeah, yeah.

Andrew Warner 44:12
And what were you doing you were doing the where to get engaged blog you were doing? Did Los Angeles digital directory, what was the Los Angeles digital directory? It’s gone now.

Robby Berthume 44:23
Yeah, that was my kind of first attempt at the directory model. Now we have agency match that we launched last July, my partners and I but that was my first attempt at a directory editor moderated tech directory for Los Angeles, that I spent about 30 40,000 on and built up some lessons and traction and French I license it out to a couple other places but ended up going through some stuff and

Andrew Warner 44:47
I was looking at people’s those those moments with the were big changes happen in their lives or in their businesses. They’re willing to look at new options and they’ll go hunt them down. And that’s where you want to be So at a moment where someone wanted to get engaged, they didn’t have established experiences buying engagement rings, they look online, they’d be open and if they found your directory, they might they might go to your directory that was the model right?

Robby Berthume 45:14
Yeah. And that specifically was targeting the the male the the guy in the relationship instead of the female with you know, there’s the knots and a lot of bridal side right. But we went after the the ring and the proposal first and then built out the rest of the process as far as planning on why it worked. It worked. What happened was, it worked for a couple years. There’s a partner with it that was offered a good chunk of money from a large jewelry manufacturer and then he had a lot of difficulties from the recession and ended up going under basically and the business was shut down. Within a couple years. It just was turned off.

Andrew Warner 46:00
Was moon birth boom. Now you knew

Robby Berthume 46:04
that was me and my buddy doing SEO.

Andrew Warner 46:06
Yeah. A bunch of businesses but the one that’s lasted the longest is bull and beard. And the idea there was you were the bowl, the young guy who had all this energy and you partnered up with someone who was like the beer the older, more experienced person, right?

Robby Berthume 46:22
Yeah, so I want epsilon concepts. eclectics changed the name and I think you’re eight that was 10 years and then worked for a few agencies did some consulting and then have had bulan beer since 2013. And then agency matches last year and yeah, my partner is Jason on Boland beard, an agency match with Sasha agency match as well. And Sasha is the definitely the beer or sorry, Jason is definitely the beard, literally and metaphorically, but, you know, kind of the older wiser and more than a beer in the china shop, but now I’m getting old and yeah, 309 and all that good stuff too. So

Andrew Warner 47:00
I get the sense that you’re looking for that longer term or established business that Bullen beard almost is there but it’s it’s still more like, huge. It’s still more of a consulting company that doesn’t yeah by view, right? You’re looking for that business. Yeah.

Robby Berthume 47:17
My plan is, is really more focused on on agency match, very focused on agency match directory of 1000 agencies, you know, they pay 100 a month so it’s about a million dollar annual revenue stream plus setup fees of 550 for the review and editorialize profile and we can scale that up to so that’s that’s a really solid model that I really believe in and we’ve had a lot of success with we have over 250 agencies on boards

Andrew Warner 47:44
on our old epsilon days where you were creating directories

Robby Berthume 47:48
Yeah, creating limits more that platform that product and it’s driven you know, it’s driven hundred and 60 k in the last nine months since starting it so I’m pretty pretty happy with his performance you know, so far

Andrew Warner 47:59
at you Or 160 k in business overall

Unknown Speaker 48:02
in business and business overall

Andrew Warner 48:04
challenge with that is they’re going to make their connection and they’re going to cut you out move on right

Robby Berthume 48:09
yeah that’s that’s where it’s the membership model so that’s the combination the hybrid you know bowling beard matchmaking with commission or use the directory abetted agencies and identify your own agencies and then I think you know have a longer term vision with procurement as well you know, where we kind of label ourselves as purveyors of hard to find items so I’d love to you know continue to meet the the medical supply demand that’s going to be present for many months if not years. I’d like to meet that but also diversify into some other areas such as you know, corporate gifting and personalized gifts. Other areas and in the same space, not medical supplies, but in the same you know, brokering of products. Right and expand into that and figure out what that is, what are the harder harder to find areas when it comes to merchandise.

Andrew Warner 48:59
Which your dad did. He found On on Skype, and then he told me how proud he was of you like you are 14 year old kid building your businesses. And I feel like at that moment, he listened to your interview, and I think we did it live. Or maybe he heard it afterwards. But might have done it live back then. But I feel like it was his moment to just say, Ah, you know what, this is just kind of slowly developed. My kid was always like this. And I don’t remember a day where I took a moment to just stand back and say, This is far that is come. Because he always like that, was he grown up the kind of person who, who take that time out? Or was that a unique moment for you?

Robby Berthume 49:34
Yeah, I mean, I think that’s a unique moment for me. I mean, I think it was, it was interesting growing up, because I started epsilon concepts, my agency, you know, in 14, about the same time that he started with him software. He’s a software developer. And and so, you know, I don’t I think he would agree that, you know, there was some competition between us as far as our releases. And and yeah, and I felt a lot of that and I felt like It was kind of wrong because you know, you’re my dad and you’re supposed to be proud of me and I just want you to be proud of me and I don’t want to compete. But I did you know, my dad’s also a younger dad, he had me when he was 20 and so when I was 14, he was only 34 You know, he still wasn’t really that old of us a dad dad about it. So I think you know, we and we had that kind of relationship that like best friend relationship, and my company took off and did a lot did a lot better frankly, than than his company did. And and you know, I think that created some feelings of you know, maybe you’re not helping us enough or you don’t care about us anymore. You’re just doing your thing and whatever just mean

Andrew Warner 50:38
thinking you don’t have about the family.

Robby Berthume 50:39
Yeah, exactly. And and then me feeling like you know, well, I don’t you know, I haven’t I’m not getting that validation and I used to get really kind of hurt upset about it. I’m sure he was absurd hurt upset about you know, how cocky and egotistical I was and you know, independent everything and, and then something happened where I don’t know He matured and I matured and you know he he sent me cards on multiple occasions and he was proud of me and just you know my family and especially after I had my kids you know that’s when he really started to be just vocal about you know, I’m just proud of what you’re doing and that means a lot I mean I’m a words of affirmation love language, you know, kind of guy so I need to hear it and I’ve always heard it from my mom, but never quite so much from my dad. And, and even with this Oberth him and co You know, I think my family’s certainly, you know, a mother probably will listen to this but you know, I think there were there was definitely some judgments you know, on their part that they didn’t release to me but I know there was judgment there as far as like, Oh, he’s just trying to make more money or you know, opportunists kind of thing. Like without them saying it, like my relative posted an article that was kind of a smack in the face to what I’m doing, you know, for example, and it’s just kind of like a subtle like, why did you post that? But I didn’t that I didn’t take it personally because you know, I’m not I don’t need them to be Convinced that my motives I mean, I know what my motives are, I know what I’m doing in the marketplace. And, you know, frankly, if I if I succeed and make a lot of money from the effort, then you know, I’m only going to help my family anyways. So it’s been less of an issue and the ones that hated, you know, on the mass and stuff, have asked me to send them mass now. I mean, I ask please, you know, when it’s gonna be an update, but so it’s good. I definitely feel like you know, again, getting that validation if you’re an entrepreneur, you know, definitely, you know, you don’t get a lot of validation because, you know, you’re the one out front charging, and it’s not easy for people to be radical,

Andrew Warner 52:35
and it’s easy to be critical. It’s a lot harder to do something. I remember interviewing the founder of 99 designs. I’ve known Matt Miscavige, at by then for for a while. And he said, everyone’s criticizing this model of you come on, and you say it the model of businesses saying I want to hire designers, designers, creating something as a way of pitching their their work and then getting paid only if they get selected. And I said, here’s one person Andrew Hyde really very critical of YouTube, actually. Yeah. He said Andrew Hyde is critical. I said to him, he said, I actually respect Android. I said, Really? Why? Because everyone just so critical. Andrew Hyde built something that was an alternative to mine. It’s really hard to create something, the fact that he didn’t just pound away criticism, but that there’s a problem here and I’m gonna create something that’s an alternative. I, I show a lot of respect there. And I think that’s a really good way to think about the world. I think about that a lot. It’s much easier to be critical. It’s a lot easier. It’s a lot harder to say, you know, what, if that’s not the right way, let me come up with a better way. Right. We’ll end it with this. I now walk around with my little hand sanitizer. Remember, I told you I started out being critical in my head not publicly in my head thinking law. This guy’s not whatever is creating this hand sanitizer. I couldn’t find PRL. I felt anxious about it. My kids felt anxious about it. Got this thing. I don’t know who this company is, but I’m so grateful to them for having said I’m gonna get into hand sanitizer business early. I bought this and I keep it in my pocket now all the time. And so we’re all

Robby Berthume 54:08
dealing with, particularly with hand sanitizers, oftentimes, you know you are helping with your purchase hand sanitizer, you’re helping a company that’s pivoted from something else, and you’re keeping them alive with that hand sanitizer purchase, whether it’s a brewery whether it’s an e cig, you know, vape manufacturer.

Andrew Warner 54:28
I’m not doing this out of the kindness of my heart for them. I’m doing this for myself, I care about myself, right? This is like self interest. This is me saying I am so glad that somebody else would, for whatever reason, whether it was self interest or altruism, whatever it was, I’m so glad somebody else had the presence of mind out there to say I’m going to create hand sanitizer at a time when the rest of the world either said we can’t create it, or I can’t believe Purell can keep up with demand. Or someone else said, I can’t believe that these people are going to profit here. Whoever created this hand sanitizer, they got my hand right here. I don’t know who they are. Or they could tell us that they were injured. Chicago, Illinois, I will say this, they didn’t think like that. Instead, they thought, let’s create this. There’s a need out there, we’re going to satisfy it. If you’re listening to me, we are entrepreneurs, we have to keep thinking, what is the big pain? What is the big need, we have to charge ahead and create something for it.

Robby Berthume 55:15
And on that note, I agree and I think, you know, that’s the biggest thing that I’ve observed is you know, how ridiculous it is. How much we rely on China for anything medical, for anything in this space and and entrepreneurs. You know, it’s up to us to step up to the plate and start making mass start making gowns, start making facials start making infrared thermometers start, get creative and create solutions will do this. One of my past guests said, Look, I have a printing company, nobody’s needs anything printed right now. We were just basically shut down. And he said, Look at what we did. Instead, he takes the plastic that I guess they use in some of their signs and he’s making face shields. Yep. For businesses and first responders and it’s just amazing and I had to say to him, I’m Sorry I can’t have you on as a guest because it’s just I’m actually getting pitched now because I’m asking for by a lot of entrepreneurs who are doing well right now. And his story was not directly related to what I’m trying to do. But I have to say he’s gotten creative he’s now manufacturing face masks in the US or maybe it’s Canada both countries have really fallen behind when it comes to manufacturing and what I’ve noticed now with COVID-19 is people in the US people in Canada people in other countries are realizing Hey, you know what, we actually can create this and they are out there creating them my friend and supplier Rob from social distancing decals, he makes those and then manufactures them and he came up with all these great designs and is doing these different you know, themes and he’s been in a lot of the local news lately getting press and he started you know, probably a few weeks after I did but really recent entrant and you know, out with the shiny side and I mean amazing the success that is he’s having and it’s great to see because it’s like okay, great. It’s it’s also us base because I will say that buyers, you know, will pay a premium if it’s in the US and if it’s made, you know, in America, they will definitely pay a premium for for that product. So I think there’s definitely a lot of manufacturing companies that could could really step up. And, you know, I think COVID is not going away, you know, the end of this year, I mean, it’s probably going to be the end of next year if that until it’s really, you know, not the problem that it is, I mean, it’s going to be winding down a bit, but it’s going to be around for a long time. So the the issue of medical supplies and demand is not going anywhere. So that’s where, you know, I think there’s time if you jump on it right now still to take advantage of the opportunities and, you know, provide a valuable product or service in the marketplace.

Andrew Warner 57:43
So trying to think how do I tell people to go to your website, I feel like birth you might be intimidating to type out that or to spell but it’s not that hard. You know why? Because anyone who’s listening to us will see in the show notes, how to spell your last name. The website is birth you and forward perfume and co.com And I want to thank two sponsors who made this interview happen. The first if you’re hiring developers really Now is the time to go to top towel. COMM slash mixer ghire, right? And give yourself the flexibility you need to build your business. Top towel comm slash mixergy and number two, now this interview is over, go check out Traffic Secrets in whatever podcast app, you’re listening to me, it will be there. Look at the ratings. It’s not just me because they’re paying me for the sponsorship saying it’s me because I’m a fan. I’ve read the books. And it’s everyone else who’s in the podcast app rating them highly because it’s such a good podcast. It is called Traffic Secrets. And I’m grateful to them for sponsoring and Robbie, thanks so much for being in here. And I really appreciate the communication we’ve had over the years. I just I’ve liked following along and seeing how you’re doing.

Robby Berthume 58:44
Yeah, it’s been a blast. I look forward to talking when I’m 40. And then,

Andrew Warner 58:49
yeah, do this till I die. Yeah.

Unknown Speaker 58:53
Thanks,

Andrew Warner 58:54
Robbie. All right. Thanks.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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