Time & Space

Time & Space

If you like team sports, this is a great time of year. The NHL and NBA playoffs are rolling; baseball has begun; and soccer is heating up.


That makes it a great time of year for sports analogies in business. You’ve heard these old cliches, right?

“It’s in my wheelhouse” – baseball
“It’s a slam dunk” – basketball
“It’s a hail-mary” – football


While the Harvard Business Review and I agree that most sports analogies for business are bad, I do think that entrepreneurs are a lot like athletes–on the playing field, and off. Both perform best when they’re in the “flow state” of optimal focus. Both need to improve their skills to play at higher levels. And, when at work, both athletes and entrepreneurs are most effective when given time and space to operate.


If you’re a hockey fan like I am, you’ve seen Alex Ovechkin sit “in his office” — on the left wing, just off the face-off dot — and wait for a pass. He scored 50 times this year when the opposition gave him enough time and space to get a shot away. And I’ve heard basketball coaches bark over and over at their players: “Take away her time and space!”


We even teach it to eight-year-olds playing man-to-man defense: “Get in close! Make him throw it away! Take away his time and space!”


The best way to make an athlete ineffectual is to take away their time and space: to force them to make a move NOW. To make them react instead of calling the play. To force them out of their zone, out of their office, and off their game.


Give Stephen Curry a full second to shoot, and he’s going to sink it. Get in really close, block his view, and threaten to steal the ball? He’ll probably pass. Or sometimes he’ll shoot and miss. And he’s the best in the world.


When you take away an entrepreneur’s time and space, their game will suffer. They’ll defer a decision (pass) or miss a deadline under pressure. More often, though, they shoot and miss. What entrepreneurs really need is time and space.


That means getting away from everyone else to think.

It means stepping outside your business to plan.


It means removing distractions to make connections.


It means working through a new idea alone before you pass it on to your team.


Now, alone time for an entrepreneur can be tough. Here are the strategies I use:


  1. Close your door. It’s not your job to be the welcoming committee at work. It’s your job to get the important work done. If you own a business and don’t have an office, get one. A closing door is an effect multiplier.
  2. Take up a solo sport. Get into flow state. Give yourself time to think while you’re reaping the benefits of increased focus and stress reduction. Cycling is my choice; many entrepreneurs run or play golf alone.
  3. Pick a project requiring manual labor. Build a deck, chop some wood, or mow the lawn. No one tries to make small talk while the lawn mower is running.
  4. Get away. Book a hotel room by yourself. Attend our Summit, and plan for some alone time to reflect, make connections, and act on new ideas. I use the “one and done” strategy: when I’m attending a seminar, I stay until I’ve learned one new thing. Then I go back to my hotel room and act on it. I give myself time and space to get things done instead of sitting still and getting overwhelmed.


Mike Michalowicz’ book Clockwork highlights the need for entrepreneurs to go off alone and think. It’s not laziness; it’s really the most important thing you can do. You’ll score more often when you’re in the zone.


(yeah, that was probably a bad one.)


Episode 164: Chris Cooper’s New Book, “Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief”

Episode 164: Chris Cooper’s New Book, “Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief”

Episode 164– Chris Cooper’s New Book: Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief

On this episode, we sit down with Chris Cooper, to talk about his new book: Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief. This will be Chris’s fourth book behind Two Brain Business, Two Brain Business 2.0, and Help Firstand it dives into the heart of entrepreneurship by discussing its four distinct phases. As a business grows, the entrepreneur must also grow and the passion that spurs a founder to quit his job and risk it all will eventually fade and other mechanisms will need to be in place to carry the business forward. Today we talk about this new book and how it came about, how to determine which phase of business and entrepreneurship you are in, and also how to take your business to the next level!


Don’t Forget about the 2019 Two Brain Summit, June 8-9 in Chicago! This year we have some amazing topics and guests for both yourself and your coaches. Click hereto register and sign up now!


The Four Phases of Entrepreneurship:


Founder: The entrepreneur has bought themselves a job. They work 60 – 70 hours per week delivering their service. Eventually, they will want to either make more money or just take the weekend off. 


Farmer Phase: The entrepreneur takes steps from “self-employed” to “business owner”. They build systems and processes, target ideal clients, start marketing to larger audiences, and make careers for others. 


Tinker Phase: The entrepreneur’s primary business largely runs itself, and his focus turns inward to reach the next level. He develops leadership skills; makes high level hires; and plans his next project. 


Thief Phase: The entrepreneur builds a legacy, plans for retirement, develop cash flow assets, takes passion to new markets, or develops new partnerships to grow their portfolio. 

Find out what stage of entrepreneurship you are in by taking the exclusive Two Brain test here: https://twobrainbusiness.com/test/or schedule your free mentoring call by clicking here!








1:35 – Introduction to Founder, Farmer, Tinker Thief

3:16 – How to determine which phase of entrepreneurship you are in?

10:05 – How many people are truly in the Thief phase of entrepreneurship?

11:06 – Robin Hood and the relation to the Thief Phase

12:56 – Is it okay to stay in the Farmer Phase?

20:12 – Growing your gym while away from your gym

22:56 – How to determine the next step for your business or gym

23:48 – Taking the Two Brain Business Entrepreneurship Test

27:02 – The Archie Brown Story, Moving to Farmer Phase

29:54 – Falling backward to previous phases

Greg:                                          00:02                       Welcome everyone to Two-Brain Radio. It is our mission at Two-Brain to provide 1 million entrepreneurs the freedom to live the life that they choose. Join us every week as we discover the very best practices to achieve perfect day and move you closer to wealth.

Announcer:                            00:26                       This episode is brought to you by Incite Tax. Incite tax is founded by John Briggs, a crossfitter, great big tall guy with a fantastic sense of humor and John is like a coach for your books. These guys are not just pencil pushing number crunchers. These guys will actually help you get towards your perfect day if you’re a member of our gross stage part of the mentoring program, you’re familiar with John’s videos on 10 99 versus w two contractors. See John used to work for the IRS. He’s seeing the other side of labor law and he knows exactly where the line is drawn. Don’t believe everything you read, but on the tax side, John can actually help you plan to take home more money every year and save more money on taxes because John is a certified profit first accountant. If you’ve listened to this podcast before, you know that I’m a big fan of Mike Michaoliwz’ profit first system and John at InciteTax and his staff can help you plan backward from profit to get to where you need to go. It’s helped members of the Two-Brain family buy houses in the first year that they’ve implemented profit first. It’s helped people save more money, take home more money and make the business do what it’s supposed to do, which is pay you.

Greg:                                          01:35                       All right. Hey, everybody listening to Two-Brain radio. I want to welcome back a used to be host, still hosting Chris Cooper. We’re going to talk about the book that will be open for preorders on Amazon as of right now. So welcome back Chris.

Chris:                                         01:49                       Yeah, thanks man. It’s the Chris and Greg show.

Greg:                                          01:52                       Exactly. Exactly. So, uh, I want to get into this. The book title is Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief. It is something that I know I’ve been hearing a lot about. What I kind of want to give a little bit of backstory to everybody so that they understand the amount of content that you can produce on a daily, weekly, even monthly basis. So when I, when I came up there in March, this wasn’t even a concept. This wasn’t an an idea. This was, this was never even, I don’t even think it was on any of the whiteboards that you had in your office. It was, it was nothing. And all of a sudden now we have a book, not even 10 months later that is out for preorder. Talk to me about what, what was the need? Why did you see that? That we had to have a system like this built and kind of, let’s get into it right now.

Chris:                                         02:43                       How like there, there’s no shortage of information, right? Entrepreneurship is cool, thanks to guys like Gary Vaynerchuk. People want to do entrepreneurship because they have this romantic vision of what the entrepreneurial life is like. And there’s a lot of good knowledge out there that supports the entrepreneur and it’s very, very easy to start a company now. Like you don’t even have to quit your job. You can start a side Gig, you can drive Uber’s, whatever you want. The problem is that not all of this information is good. There’s just as much bad as good frankly, and some of it is only good at the right time. So what happened, the problem now is paralysis by analysis. You know, we’ll talk to a lot of gym owners and other entrepreneurs who have a pretty good idea of what they need to do, but they’re not sure what they need to do first.

Chris:                                         03:28                       And they’re not sure, like which steps to take that precede other steps or, well, if I do this thing right now, am I going to have to undo it three months from now when I fix this other thing? You know? And so over the years and after having spoken to over 2000 entrepreneurs on phone calls, I started to realize that you can, you can break the entrepreneurial life cycle down into about four distinct phases and those phases I call the Founder Phase, Farmer Phase, Tinker phase and Thief Phase. Most entrepreneurs get stuck in farmer phase forever. Most media romances founder phase and then conveniently doesn’t talk about the hard part, but what most of us are trying to actually get to is that third phase, the tinker phase and some remarkable entrepreneurs, you know, the Kobe Bryants of business ownership, will actually make it to the fourth phase: Thief phase.

Greg:                                          04:16                       Going into each one of these phases. What is necessary for a business owner to know, hey, I’m in farmer phase or I’m in founder phase. What exactly is the metrics that we’re measuring to kind of know where we’re at or how the next phase, if if we transfer over, what’s, what’s that next phase look like?

Chris:                                         04:36                       Well there are about 30 different categories, but there are some, you know, some big kind of rocks that really determine where you’re at. So, you know, the first phase is Founder phase and you have a big idea and you make some kind of commitment to that idea. You know, maybe you quit your job and that’s it. You go all in and you open up a gym in a garage and this is all you’re doing. Or maybe you know, you start selling your macrame owls at the craft shop, you know, whatever. You’ve got this secondary stream of revenue. It’s, it’s working for other people. Like there is like an actual model for success in your industry or you’ve got this great idea and you’re hoping that one day it’s salable. You’ve uh, you know, created a new Nano Bot that fights cancer. So you know, you leap off and you start charging money for it.

Chris:                                         05:19                       And at that point, the second you receive a dollar in trade for your service or good. You are an entrepreneur and you’re in the founder phase. Now how do we determine like the hallmarks, the characteristics of the founder? Well, these are the romantic things that you see on like Instagram. It’s the hustle and Grind and Oh yeah, I’m up at 3:00 AM and I don’t take a paycheck. And you know, it’s people with their head down, they’re grinding, they’re doing it just for the love of the freedom of entrepreneurship. And that’s awesome. But that’s usually what kills most businesses is people, they can stay in that phase for a couple of years and they’re just so burnt out and exhausted and broke that they can’t afford to do it any longer. To get to the farmer phase, you need to start paying yourself a little something. You need to have a clear understanding of what every role is in your business.

Chris:                                         06:08                       You need to systemize every single thing, make yourself replaceable. In other words, in every single thing that happens in your business and you need to hire one person, and as soon as you’ve reached that phase, then your business is solid enough that you can start growing and start making careers for other people. You’re really kind of cultivating your idea. So you know, you’ve, you’ve got this seed and you know, it’s proven that it can make you some money but maybe not enough money. Maybe we need to replicate what you’ve already done it over and over and over again. Or maybe we need to do it times a thousand or we need to do it a slightly different way or we need to do it two ways at once maybe. And the farmer has a lot of options, but the farmer really can’t do it alone. So in the farmer phase, usually the entrepreneur is trying to add staff and they’re really trying to focus their time on high value roles.

Chris:                                         06:58                       This is also where most entrepreneurs get stuck–sometimes for 30 years. I was in the farmer phase for at least 10 maybe 12 where, you know, I’d have some staff doing some things, but it was never done exactly the way that I would do it. And I would micromanage them. And we had some diverse revenue streams, but they weren’t consistent. You know, I was always fighting fires. I was always checking my phone to get out of the farmer phase. What we want you to do is to be able to take like at least a month off from your business. We want you to hit 33% profitability. We want you to have a managerial layer. So somebody at the business other than you who will accept responsibility for operations. So if you decided to go to Hawaii for two weeks and there’s a flood at the gym, this person will answer the phone in the middle of the night and show up to meet the plumber, whoever.

Greg:                                          07:47                       And, and just to go on that note, I and people will hear this on the food for thought Friday, I had, this actually happened. I was up in Colorado. I was ready to go to the mountains for some snowboarding to learn how to snowboard. And instead at five, it was about four 50 I get a call from my GM that somebody broke into our facility and stole our computers and our iPads and decided to help themselves to some of our supplements. So I definitely had a GM that was there. She handled everything I needed her to do a, it’ll let us know that there is some steps in our procedure that we didn’t have in place that needed to be in place, but she did a phenomenal job at covering all of that. So that’s a perfect scenario for having somebody in that material, a state that that could handle and take accountability for everything.

Chris:                                         08:33                       Yeah. Well I’m sorry that happened, right? But I’m glad you had somebody there. We deal all the time, you and me with entrepreneurs who might kid themselves about how well their business is doing, and one of the ways that they do that is they’ll say, well, I can take a weekend off. I could get somebody to cover for me. But the reality is that that takes an extraordinary amount of work and people are doing you favors that they’re going to call in later and you’re really kind of digging deep into you owing them something. The real entrepreneur has choice. And really that’s what we’re trying to get to in the tinker phase is now you have this choice of how you spend your day. I guess a better way to say that is actually invest your time so you can choose to go work ion your business.

Chris:                                         09:13                       You can choose to go bake the donuts, coach the crossfit classes, aligned the spines, whiten the teeth if you want to. That’s the point is you have the choice. You could also duplicate your business. You could, you know, turn your gym into a franchise. You could also start a brand new business. You know, I think you and I agree that like every entrepreneur has at least two other good ideas. You could retire, you could do nothing, you could go buy your building. And really we want every entrepreneur to get to the Tinker phase because that means that their business is sustainable enough that they can’t really mess it up. So at this point, what you’re doing is you’re hiring a couple of other people in managerial roles. We call it like the meta roles. So in the farmer phase, to get out of the farmer phase, you hired a director of operations or like a GM that oversaw the daily delivery of your service.

Chris:                                         10:01                       And that meant that you weren’t tied to the delivery of that service anymore. On the Tinker phase, we want to have somebody that’s in charge of sales and marketing because that’s usually the founder of the company. And we also want a CFO because we don’t just want bookkeeping anymore. We want projection and we want like detailed analysis of what is actually making you money. So you can picture this hierarchy. Now you know in the founder phase it’s you doing everything. You are selling the muffins and making the muffins and you know, cleaning up afterward in the farmer phase you’re, you have staff who bakes them, often staff who does the cleaning and maybe you’re running the till until you can hire a manager to run the till. And then you’re working on marketing. And in the tinker phase there’s a manager running the till. You’re looking at opening up your second shop.

Chris:                                         10:47                       Your CFO is telling you what you can afford to do. And then in the tinker phase or the thief phase, where you’re actually doing is trying to build your legacy. So you’re, you’re leveraging your wealth, which is your time. And your money to affect the people in your local community best or your niche the best.

Greg:                                          11:03                       Excellent. How many people do you know that are in that? The thief phase?

Chris:                                         11:09                       I mean, so when you see famous entrepreneurs on social media really like these are, these are the guys who try to project that they’re in the thief phase and some of them are, you know, they’re, they’re really not part of the day to day operations of their company anymore. They’re worried about legacy. They are giving to charities, they’re creating funds or theyre mentoring other people within their niche.

Greg:                                          11:32                       Gotcha. Who would be, who would you say that you know of, not that you know them personally, but who would you say would actually be in the thief phase globally if you had a, if you had to choose?

Chris:                                         11:42                       BIll Gates for sure. I mean, he’s his own personal brand.

Greg:                                          11:45                       Okay, perfect. I just want to get that clarified because I think too many people, especially when you think of the, if you think of a negative connotation, and I want people to understand that that’s not what this is for. But more of thinking of Robin Hood I believe is the term you’ve used in the past. Have more of giving back and not taking.

Chris:                                         12:04                       Yeah, so you know Robin Hood is a great example of the thief that we talk about at Two-Brain because Robin Hood is, is moving resources from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration. You know Robin Hood in the, in the stories he stole from Evil King John and he gave to the poor and we’re not necessarily talking about that. I mean we’re not talking about literally stealing anything we are talking about is like leveraging high concentration of resources to low concentration of resources. This could mean a couple of things and I do actually know some thieves in real life. My first mentor was a thief. Denis had led three big corporations out of bankruptcy. You know, he’d led an employee buyout in one and another one, you know, he came to our city, there’s a huge corporation that employed about 2,700 people and their stocks were trading at like 70 cents.

Chris:                                         12:54                       He pulled the Lee Iaccoca and said, I’ll just take shares of stock instead of like a wage, pay me $1 my first year plus all these shares of stock. And in three years the shares of stock were selling an over $50 up from 70 cents. So he cashed out and he said that his legacy was going to be to mentor five local entrepreneurs. So when you’re in that, theif phase, um, there’s a couple of things that you can do. You can move horizontally. You can, you can take your service or your product into a different niche and just duplicate it that way. Like create a mirror image of your product but in a different niche. Or you can move vertically. And that is to mentor other people in your niche who are coming up behind you. And that’s what Denis did. He went vertical and he picked five of us. I don’t know who the other four are. I’d love to find them. And he helped us build like these, these great businesses locally.

Greg:                                          13:44                       Awesome. Awesome to hear. And I’m glad, uh, that was a possible luck of the draw. It sounds like that out of five, five businesses that he would mentor, you were one.

Chris:                                         13:53                       Yeah.

Greg:                                          13:54                       So my next question would be, okay, if, I mean I’m in the founder phase, I hire my first employee, I get to the farmer phase, and even if it was the founder phase that I was comfortable with, or the farmer, is it okay to stay there?

Chris:                                         14:09                       Should you stay in the farmer phase?

Greg:                                          14:11                       Correct. If, if I’m a business owner, um, I hired my first employee. I really love what I do. I want to continue doing it. Let’s say automotive. I love being a mechanic. I love working on cars. It’s just something that I would do for free and I did for free or something in this scenario would, would you say if I don’t, if I don’t want to get out of my business, I don’t want to hire a GM. I want to continue keeping it small. And the perfect example I say automotive is, is my stepfather. And then even my father who owns a garage door business, they are each a one man team and they love doing that. They love doing each, each, each business that they own and they don’t want to get out of it. They want to grow old. They eventually want to just stop doing what they’re doing and maybe sell off their client lists if they can or whatever. But the business won’t be around anymore. And they’re both okay with that. Uh, so my question really is, is, is it okay to be okay with that or should we always be looking for that next step?

Chris:                                         15:03                       Well, I mean, we are going to have a great conversation about this because I don’t think it is. Okay. And I’ll give you a couple of examples in my neighborhood and I’ll try to use like the automotive industry. So, you know, two doors down from a couple of buildings that I own. There’s this very niche satellite radio company and you know, we’re in northern Ontario. People who are working up in the forest, they need to have satellite radios. And for 25, 30 years, this technology was crazy expensive. It required like some, some real expertise. And so this guy had ran a business for 25 30 years, pretty successfully. Uh, he went up and he serviced the towers himself. And if somebody’s cell phone broke down in the middle of the bush, he would go find them and he would fix it. And he was happy having that job.

Chris:                                         15:49                       And then one day he decided he was going to retire. He was already 70 years old. He had one staff guy who was also like 70 years old and that guy was retiring. So this guy, whose name is really Bob, says I’m going to hang it up too. And then he realizes, what do I have to sell here? You know, there’s kind of a business, but there’s nothing written down. I don’t really have a client list. I have a list of people who have purchased from me in the past and I have all these guys that I kind of remember and I called him up and I don’t really have like an invoicing process. I, I don’t, I can’t forecast anything, you know, I make what I make. And his daughter said, Daddy, I want to take your business over. She left her job, started running his business, and within a year it had impoverished her, she was out of money and he was trying to start again from scratch.

Chris:                                         16:37                       Now your grandfather and your dad are smarter than that. What they should be concerned with is what kind of legacy am I leaving? And I think that the parachute for the entrepreneur is a company that’s a cash flow asset, meaning it can run itself no matter what. So this guy, Bob is, he’s back in business. I Dunno, I think he’s probably making some money, but what would have happened 20 years ago, if he would have fallen from a tower, his family would have been impoverished. Nobody would’ve been able to step up and take over this business because there’s what is there to take over. And so like your security, your parachute, your stability, the foundation that you’re going to build a meaningful life with, it should be stable enough that you can walk away from it, that you can get hit by a bus and your family is still gonna be okay.

Chris:                                         17:19                       You know, one of my first unofficial mentors when I started a business was named Nick. Nick was a mechanic. He worked on cars and he bought his garage from a guy who had owned it for about 25 years. And the other guy was named Harold. And Harold had run this garage called Harold’s garage in a little town near where I grew up. And when Nick bought it from him, he bought it pretty cheap. And it wasn’t enough for Harold to retire on, but Harold couldn’t work anymore, you know, years of working in an automotive shop. You know what that does to you. Right. Especially then, his health was in decline. He never really made enough money to do more than support his family. You know, I don’t think he had much in savings, but I can’t speak to that. And when Nick bought it for $80,000, he was paying about four times what it was actually worth.

Chris:                                         18:03                       Cause he liked Harold. And what he found was that Harold had a ton of friends and all these friends said, I’ll come back and pay you on Friday. Or, Hey, can I give you 100 bucks this week and come back? Or Hey, thanks for ordering those tires for me. I don’t really need them. You know, he wasn’t running it like a business. And what that did was it almost drug Nick down and Nick’s family, his wife Linda, you know his daughters, and Nick had to fix it. Nick had to take the business, become a farmer himself right away and reach tinker phase before that business would be worth anything. And eventually Nick, who was a close friend, did have a sudden heart attack. That’s a crazy story in itself. And he passed away. And if he hadn’t systemized that business, his daughters would have been left with nothing.

Greg:                                          18:47                       Okay. And that’s a, that’s a great counter to my, my stories there. That was a, I wasn’t ready for that. I’m glad. I’m glad that we were able to share that because I did get asked that question recently. If, if somebody is comfortable in, in the founder phaser farmer face, do, do they have to go to tinker? And my always, I mean from previous experiences with my stepfather and my father having their own businesses that I said, no, they’re happy in their founder phase. They don’t, they don’t want to go to farmer phase. But if, if somebody is looking to leave a legacy and be able to support their family when something happens, they kind of need to push themselves to get to that tinker phase. And if they, from my understanding, and correct me if I’m wrong, but in this instance, if they want to still work on cars or work on radios, they can still do it. But, uh, they need to have a business that runs itself.

Chris:                                         19:34                       And that’s it, man, is they’ve got to have that choice. You know, your dad and your grandfather are very lucky that they still enjoy their work. 30 years in, you really don’t see that much. But I know a lot of listeners to this podcast own gyms, they jumped into entrepreneurship through owning a gym. They’re young, they’re passionate. They just want to be a coach. They’ve kind of bought themselves a job. And I get that because I was there for a decade. But the bottom line is that if you don’t start putting those systems in place first and start like right now and think about, I’m going to get to tinker phase someday, then by the time you hit that 10 year mark and you’re tired and you’re not making any more money than you were 10 years ago, where your kids are getting bigger and they’re eating more and they got to go to prom, you know, it’s, it’s almost too late.

Chris:                                         20:20                       Like you have to start with the end in mind and the end is choice. So in the tinker phase, what we want to do is have you virtually retire from running the business. If you want to go to work every day and show up and mop the floors, that’s fine, but you’re retired. They don’t need you there, right? You’re think of yourself as like a ghost in your own business. If you want to go coach people, that’s cool. I don’t. I go to crossfit. You know, I experience my business as a consumer now and that’s it. Um, I recently ran a test to see could I stay out of my gym for six months. Like literally not set a foot in it and, three months in it’s happening. I’m still doing crossfit. I’m still following my gym’s programming and riding my bike. Still love Crossfit, still love my gym, still have lunch with the members, but I want to see if I can go six months without being there.

Greg:                                          21:08                       Excellent. Excellent. And I’m in a, I’m in the same instance. I mean, I’m, I’m completely in a different state. Uh, I’m in Colorado right now and my gym’s down in New Mexico and I have not stepped foot in there in a, at least a month and a half because I’ve been up here. I plan on going back here in a week, but it’s one of those same scenarios, so I can definitely see where you’re coming from to see, just to keep pushing the envelope. Let’s, let’s not, not do I get hit by a bus test today for a week, but once a week, what’s two weeks? What’s five weeks? What?

Chris:                                         21:38                       Yeah. I’ll tell you something else that I’ve just learned from you and from Josh Price in the last couple of weeks. And Jay Williams even brought this up too. So I went out to San Fran to visit with Jay and all of you, and Jay said, you know what, I’ve been out of my gym for a week. And it’s better when I’m not here. People make decisions on their own, they take action and they want my gym to grow. So they do the right things. When I am here, they don’t take action. They wait to talk to Jay. They ask Jay’s permission, they wait for Jay to tell them what to do. And you know, Josh price told me the exact same thing. He, he moved from Virginia down to Mississippi. And guess what? His gym is better than it was. It’s more profitable, you know, their retention is better, all these things.

Chris:                                         22:18                       So my point is that like, a lot of the times when we get to the tinker phase, we start to get in our own way. Like, we stick our fingers in the machine because we feel like, oh, we’re not needed anymore. You know, nobody can make the donuts like I can. And that’s just not the truth. And sometimes for the, for the better of our clients and our staff and our spouse, we need to get the hell out of there, get out of their way, you know, start working on the next big project. And that’s really what the tinker phase is all about.

Greg:                                          22:45                       And I, uh, I can attest to that 100% that my business has better retention, we have better profit margins and my staff takes better action. I mean, I, they’ve, well they’ve created over the past two months, two new programs in, within the business. Uh, and I’ve had zero effect on that except for jumping on to Fiverr, get a logo made.

Chris:                                         23:06                       That is so the funny part here, Greg, is you know, people who aren’t in the tinker phase who are maybe still in the founder phase, they’ll hear that and they’ll be like, ah, man, why can’t my staff be motivated like that? Right. And that’s not it. The problem is that they haven’t brought their business up to the point of farmer phase and then taking themselves into tinker phase. Okay, I’m the leader that my staff deserve.

Greg:                                          23:28                       All right. I couldn’t, I couldn’t agree more on that. And I think anybody out there that is listening, that is in that farmer phase and they’re trying to achieve getting into that tinker phase. The biggest tactical cue I could give to somebody is get out of your own way. Let your staff make decisions and empower them knowing that the decisions they’re going to make will influence the business. Of course positive and negative, but you are going to stand behind them and back that decision that they do make. Yeah.

Chris:                                         23:54                       And so we say that in the founder phase and the farmer phase, like we’re mentoring you on the business. In the tinker phase, we’re mentoring you as an entrepreneur, if that makes sense. You know what we get from a lot of people who take the test and they immediately say, oh that’s me, is they’ll also say, oh, here are the steps that I need to take to get there. So having this framework of like four different levels, it’s stickier than I thought, number one, but number two, it tells you here’s what the next step in my business is and as a mentor it made my job a lot easier because you know, if I’m looking at my client, I’m like, okay, he’s got 33% profit margin. He’s working less than 40 hours a week, but every client only wants to come to his class. All he has to do to get free of that gym and reach wealth and get to tinker phase is to establish his staff as experts that I know what we’re going to do this month. You know it, it really clarifies the picture.

Greg:                                          24:46                       Agreed. Now I want to hit on a point you just made you, you said you created a test to basically tell where somebody is in this, in this spectrum of founder, farmer, tinker, thief, what took to actually create that test and where can people go if they want?

Chris:                                         25:02                       If you’re a gym owner, go to www.twobrainbusiness.com/test . If you’re not a gym owner, but you’re listening to this podcast and you own another company, go to www.twobrain.com/test . Two different websites. One is specifically tailored for the fitness industry, which is, you know, our passion. One is tailored for the service industry. So if you don’t own a gym, go to www.twobrain.com/test .

Greg:                                          25:26                       So what did it take to build the test?

Chris:                                         25:28                       Well, when I was starting to think about categorizing the, the entrepreneurial life cycle, I started to ask myself like, what are the hallmarks of, you know, when somebody transitions? So for example, going from farmer to tinker means that you, you’re done kind of working on the business. It’s self sustaining. You’ve got an ops manager, but you’re not done working on yourself yet. You still have to become a better entrepreneur and a better leader.

Chris:                                         25:55                       And I spent the last two years traveling with entrepreneurs who are just reaching this tinker phase and they’re struggling with a lot of things, like they’re going through what my CFO would call the valley of death. You know Greg Crabtree, he wrote Simple Numbers. He’s my CFO and he writes about this valley where your company is grossing between two and 5 million a year. And like you’re hiring people who are specialists now and they’re better at one particular thing that you are. Maybe they’re getting paid more than you were ever paid in the past. So you’re dealing with big sums of money and you’ve kind of like got this imposter syndrome. And at that point you’re not talking about fixing your business anymore. You’re, you’re talking about growing as a leader. And that’s really what the tinker phase is about. It’s about growing as a leader. It’s using the tools that you have to enter your most creative and focused state.

Chris:                                         26:47                       It’s about focusing on like one project maybe at a time, et cetera. So when you’ve got all these criteria, then I can work backwards from that and say like, okay, well what has to be in place for the business to be self sufficient enough for me to move into tinker and develop myself as a leader? Well I have to be at a 33% profit margin. Somebody else has to bear the burden of responsibility for success. I have to have all my roles done. I have to have, you know, like a retention strategy. I have to have good sales training for my team, et Cetera. And then moving backward even further, like before somebody can have a roles and tasks and advanced roles and a manager, well the first step is they have to pay themselves and they have to hire one person, you know, and so founder phase, it all kind of trickled backward from tinker.

Greg:                                          27:32                       Okay. And I want to, I want to go on this specific story cause I definitely want to share this because you shared it with me right when it happened and I thought it was, it was hilarious to hear, but so happy that somebody, somebody got this result. I want to get, get to the Archie story and the results that that Archie had.

Chris:                                         27:51                       So when I started thinking about founder farmer, tinker thief, like they didn’t, nothing had a name yet. You know I was thinking about farmer because I grew up a farmer and I was thinking about founder because like a lot of entrepreneurial media is like Hashtag founder Hashtag Grind Hashtag Hustle. And so I was kinda thinking like, okay well you know the founder is planting the seeds and the farmers cultivating the crop and all this stuff. And I came up with the test right before our summit in June. I had no idea how sticky these terms would be. No idea. And so I thought like okay, I’m going to talk about this at the summit for about 35 minutes and then I’m going to leave it alone. And what happened was Archie Brown, you know, the V-Fit takes the test the night before the summit, comes in the next day and says, Oh man, I’m stuck in founder phase, but I know what I gotta do to get to farmer. And for me that was the tipping point. That’s when I said, this is important and, uh, we’re going to pursue it because not only is it helpful to the mentor to know, like, what to focus on, but it’s also inspirational to the client because they know what they have to do.

Greg:                                          28:55                       And I love that story. I love that. I remember when you told me that he came in and he kind of threw his arms up in the air and was like, I thought I was in farmer. I’m only in founder. He was, but he had the steps already built out to know exactly what he needed to do, which I thought was just so amazing. And I was so happy to hear that. Uh, he was able to do that, to have those steps in and kind of go forward.

Chris:                                         29:19                       Like our goal as mentor is to take incredibly bright people and help them get to action. Right. And at that moment, the founder farmer tinker thief framework proved itself as a valuable tool to do that. Uh, Archie is extremely smart. He’s extremely hardworking. What he and every entrepreneur needs to know is like, this is the next step to do right now to the exclusion of all others. Taking the test showed him the next three steps and he started hammering, you know, and now every week now people are retaking the test and like they’re screen shotting it and they’re putting it up in our Facebook group. Man, I hit tinker, boom. You know, a guy sent me a picture of the, the tinker logo on his fridge last night because he made it, he did it, you know, and now he’s starting to feel like, damn, I’m a real entrepreneur.

Chris:                                         30:08                       But the funniest story really to date is when I, I still do free calls with entrepreneurs. You know, I’m just just past 2000 I still do probably seven or eight a week. The funniest story is when I get on a call and somebody will say, I’m in farmer phase. You ever heard of that? You know, I’ll say, yeah, I’ve heard of that. He’s like, well, like can your, can your firm get me out of the farmer phase? And I’m like, we invented the farmer phase. Yes. You know? Um, absolutely we can. And so I think it’s, it’s just amazing like how sticky this whole concept has become and, and thereby helpful to our clients. It’s not just sticky because it’s helping us sell mentorship. It’s sticky because it’s a tool that’s actually helping people make like huge positive steps as entrepreneurs,

Greg:                                          30:53                       Let’s say I make it to, to, to tinker phase, but what I notice is I keep falling back into farmer stage in that transition. What, what is the reasoning for that? Why, why would I keep falling back in?

Chris:                                         31:05                       That could be a couple of things. And, and we do see this like, you know, in the fitness industry, the perfect analogy is the guy that opens up four gyms before his first one is self sufficient. You know, like completely automated, hands off. And so what happens is he just grinds himself into the dirt. The reason that people fall back into farmer is one of two things. Number one, the harder one is ego. We need to feel like we’re important in our business. We started it. Nobody can do it as good as me. I make the best donuts. We keep sticking our fingers in the machine and breaking things so that we feel needed. And that’s what it comes down to. You know, hey, business is going great. Never made this much money in my life. Let’s switch to wodify and, and we create this drama because our brains are like trained to react to drama.

Chris:                                         31:56                       We’re attracted to it. You know, we create it. We stepped back in and we saved the day. We’re the hero in the business again, we’ve proved to ourselves that like the business really needs us and uh, we stay in farmer forever. The other one is that you haven’t completely resolved the farmer problems. So you know, you get to tinker phase, you’re starting to look around like, damn the world is great. I get to buy a building, I’m going to start thinking about my retirement. Now I’ve got this other idea for a tee shirt company. I’m going to start, can’t wait. And then one of your coaches doesn’t show up or you get a call from a client saying, hey, since you stopped coming to the gym, it’s a pigsty or the food doesn’t taste as good when you don’t cook it. And so you’re drug back down into farmer until you completely resolve those issues. And I learned that from John Maxwell’s five levels of leadership. Like do you want to get to level three leader in the Maxwell hierarchy? You have to completely replace yourself at level two with somebody else. And, and we use an analogy to explain that in founder, farmer, tinker thief. And that is you have to leave a farmer behind. So when you graduate into the tinker phase, you have to have a staff person who will act as a farmer and run your business and probably be happy like that even if you never will. Be

Greg:                                          33:08                       Awesome to hear. Awesome to hear. Cause I know a lot of people out there that are listening have that tendency to jump in, think they’re, they’re moved into the next next phase, but they kind of fall back each time. So this book is now on and we’re going to link the, the test in the show notes. We’re also going to link the preorder, uh, on this book so that everyone can get their hands on it asap. I know I can’t wait for it to come out. I will definitely have a copy. Hopefully there’s an audible copy eventually because I am very big into that compared to reading. This is just something that is not a skill of mine that I know and I’m aware of, but I definitely can’t wait to get my hands on.

Chris:                                         33:49                       Oh Man. Lots of, uh, thieves get to that level without reading. They don’t like reading. It’s fine. Yeah. So it’s on Amazon on May 7. It’s will be on Barnesandnoble.com. The audio book will be out on Audible.com on the same day. This book took, I mean I, I wrote it with a fervor, I felt compelled to write it and you know, I produce about 6,000 words a day because I just can’t not do it. I wake up in the morning, at literally 2:00 AM today facing a big problem that one of our mentoring clients was trying to solve. I work through It through writing and out of that came the book, while I didn’t want this thing to be a textbook. So there’s, you know, a lot of stories in there and examples and you know, scenarios. I think it’s a lot of fun to read. But if you take the test first and you find out, okay, I’m in the farmer phase and you read the first half of the book, I mean you can, you can fold it up and go to work. You know, you can call your mentor and say, here’s my next step. Or you can let them tell you their next step. You might not have to read the whole thing, but I hope you do.

Greg:                                          34:47                       Excellent. And again, thank you Chris for jumping on and being able to explain the book, founder farmer, tinker thief, which again is available for preorder on Amazon, so please go jump on the show notes, click that link and get that book ordered on May 7. Thank you for jumping on and we greatly appreciate it. It’s always a pleasure and we wish you the best. Thank you Chris.

Chris:                                         35:06                       Hey everyone. Chris Cooper here on really thrilled to see you this year in June in Chicago at the 2019 Two-Brain summit. Every year we have two separate speaking tracks is one for you, the business owner, and there’s one for coaches that will help them make better, longer, more meaningful careers under the umbrella of your business. This year we’ve got some pretty amazing topics like the client success manager, how to change your life, organizational culture or the business owner’s life cycle, how to have breaks, how to have vacations, how to help your marriage survive, owning a business motivation and leadership, how to convert more clients, how to create a GM position that runs your gym for you and leaves you free to grow your business. How to start a business owner’s group in your community and more. The point here is to do the right thing that will help gym owners create better businesses that will last them for the long term, get them to tinker phase, help them be more successful, create meaningful careers that their coaches and give their clients a meaningful path to longterm health. We only do one big seminar every year and that’s the Two-Brain summit and the reason that we do that is because a big part of the benefit is getting the Two-Brain community together and and welcoming strangers into our midst and showing them how amazing gym ownership really can be. We’ll have a link to the Two-Brain summit including a full list of all speakers and topics on both the owners and the coaches side in the show notes. I really hope to see you there.

Announcer:                            36:35                       As always, thank you so much for listening to this podcast. We greatly appreciate you and everyone that has subscribed to us. If you haven’t done that, please make sure you do drop a light to that episode. Share with a friend and if you haven’t already, please write us a review and rate us on how what you think. If you hated it, let us know if you loved it, even better. See you guys later.


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How To Get Lucky

How To Get Lucky

In late 2016, I travelled to Toronto to see Seth Godin speak at Archangel. Godin was part of an all-star lineup including Gary Vaynerchuk, and the day was so packed that there was no scheduled lunch break. So my wife and I looked for an unfamiliar name on the schedule and planned to run out for a sandwich when they came onstage.


The name we chose was Dan Martell. When Martell was introduced, we began heading for the exit. But his story was so compelling–a car chase, a drawn gun, fireworks exploding in a living room–that we stayed. When we went for lunch later with local friend and box owner Alex Cibiri, I remember telling him that I couldn’t take any pictures of Vaynerchuk because my phone was dead. We enjoyed the afternoon and headed for the airport.


But when I plugged my phone in to charge, there was a voice mail from Dan Martell on it. He had just purchased shares in a CrossFit gym, heard I was in the audience, and wanted me to come backstage to meet everyone. The voice mail was three hours old. I called Dan back right away and we spoke for an hour. That was the start of a two-year mentorship during which Two-Brain Business grew 8x.


I’ve always had, in the words of Jim Collins, great “Who luck”. The right people sometimes seem to drop into my life at precisely the right moment. Dani Brown started as a client, and then happened to sell her gym just as Two-Brain needed more mentors. Jay Williams did the same, and then brought his new coach to the Summit–Mike Lee, who quickly became the COO at Two-Brain. Eden Watson became CSM after her husband–who was my first hire at Catalyst back in 2005–mentioned she didn’t like her job. I met my wife when we were drafted to the same Intramural House in high school. And there are dozens of other examples.


How did I get so lucky? Well, like every lucky person, I’ve learned how to maximize my opportunities for good luck; to be ready for it when it comes; and to maximize my return on luck. Here’s how to do it:


  1. Expose yourself to more. I mean more people, more ideas, and more experiences. Come to the Summit and meet people. Talk about opposing viewpoints. Seek experiences instead of money.
  2. Go first. Very few people will invite you to coffee, or out on a date, or to be a guest on their podcast. But we’re all thrilled to be invited. If you want to serve someone, go first: invite them. Tell them, “I’m really excited to meet you at the Summit!” or “I can’t wait to see what you think of my gym!” Do it to help them get out of their shell. It will pull you out of yours.
    I frequently walk past people in the mall who try to politely avoid eye contact. They’re not comfortable going first. I am. And that makes them feel good.
  3. Cull people from your life. You are driving a bus with 150 seats. When you pull up to a stop and Dan Martell is on the sidewalk, will you say “Sorry, we’re packed – wait for the next one”?
    Emerson wrote, “Heartily know, when demigods go, the gods arrive.” I’ve repeated that line to many gym owners who were upset about losing a client or two. But in every case, better clients took their spot! And those new clients had friends who also became great clients. For us, getting rid of the “serious competitors” made my gym more open to receiving amazing clients back in 2013.
  4. Open yourself to mentorship. Your ego is like a closed baseball glove. You might be missing some easy pop flies just because you want to catch the ball “your way”. Instead of trying to reinvent the game of baseball, or trying to cover more of the outfield by running faster, walk slowly with an open glove.

I met my current mentor, Marcy Swenson, when I was with Dan Martell in San Francisco. Marcy was introduced as Dan’s mentor, and seated across from me at dinner. When I began to focus on growing as a leader, I called Marcy for help. But Dan and Marcy weren’t my first mentors; I’ve often referred to finding Denis Turcotte as “winning the lottery”. Turcotte saved my gym by teaching me how to build systems. I was part of his legacy project to mentor five local entrepreneurs before he retired; but that story’s been told over and over in my books.

The key to great “who luck” isn’t in beating the odds, or having some kind of divine spotlight. The key is meeting more people, removing the people holding you back, and being ready to receive. Because the next amazing person in your life is probably already here.

TwoBrain Marketing Episode 5: Mary Weider

TwoBrain Marketing Episode 5: Mary Weider


Two Brain Marketing Episode 5: Mary Weider


Today we are joined by Mary Weider of CrossFit Oshkosh. Mary has helped her gym’s growth explode by launching and running many successful marketing campaigns. Join us today as we learn about how Mary has setup and run these successful campaigns to grow the business! 


Mary grew up spending most of her time in the gym as a competitive cheerleader. After stumbling upon CrossFit in 2013, she found her passion and motivation for fitness again and now coaches at CrossFit Oshkosh! Mary loves to help clients build relationships with fitness and push themselves to reach their goals. 


Don’t Forget about the 2019 Two Brain Summit, June 8-9 in Chicago! This year we have some amazing topics and guests for both yourself and your coaches. Click hereto register and sign up now!


Contact Mary:





3:00 – Introduction to Mary Weider

6:20 – Mary’s experience before and after gaining help from Two Brain at her gym

9:05 – What is it that CrossFit Oshkosh Sells other than just CrossFit

10:50 – The importance of spending a lot of time on the No Sweat Intro

15:15 – How often should a marketing campaign be tweaked and re built

18:03 – How to handle lurking clients who have not signed up yet

20:05 – The key to a successful marketing campaign is consistency

23:16 – How to contact Mary

Announcer:                            00:02                       Welcome everyone to Two-Brain radio. It is our mission at Two-Brain to provide 1 million entrepreneurs the freedom to live the life that they choose. Join us every week as we discover the very best practices to achieve perfect day and move you closer to wealth.

Chris:                                         00:26                       Debt is a tricky subject in our world. We’ve been taught by HQ to avoid debt, to accumulate cash and when we’ve got enough money to spend it. But in the business world, the reality is that there’s good debt and there’s bad debt, good debt creates an asset and there’s also something called opportunity costs. Meaning if you wait until you can afford something, you probably never will be able to afford it and you’ll be missing a ton of opportunity. In the meantime, let’s say for example that you were bursting at the seams and your clients couldn’t attend a 6:00 PM class anymore because there was a waiting list. So they started canceling their memberships. You’re missing an opportunity cost here, the opportunity to keep your current clients because if they’re paying for a membership and they can’t attend that are not going to keep that membership for long.

Chris:                                         01:14                       So you’re looking to expand and so you’re going to have to take on some debt or you’re going to wait until you have the $10,000 or whatever that amount is to buy the new equipment. You can keep turning new clients away while you wait and try and accumulate this money or you can leverage the capital through guys like RigQuipment. Rigquipment is a partner that we chose at Two-Brain Business because their commitment to crossfit and their commitment to helping first has been proven over several years. I got to admit, I shy away a lot from money people. It’s intimidating to work with people who understand money and finance better than I do. I’m sure you feel the same way, but these guys have shown up time and time again. They’ve offered free help. They’ve turned down business a lot of times because they aren’t sure if the person has a good working business model and to be honest, they’ve sent people to us and let us turn them down for them because they wanted to know if this person’s plan was going to work before you expand, before you start out.

Chris:                                         02:16                       It’s super important that you know what you’re getting into, that you have a plan to pay back the debt, that you have a plan to increase cashflow that you’re going to do based on new purchase equipment has a great tool. If you go to their site RiqQuipment.com you can figure out if you can’t afford that expansion, should you be buying that new rig or should you be investing in something else like mentorship? These guys will even finance Two-Brain business incubator phase if you purchase it with your equipment because they understand that the incubator makes your business more viable, it’s less of a risk for them. I love working with clay and Joe from RigQuipment because these guys understand what our service in life is and that matches their service to.

Mateo:                                      02:59                       Hello and welcome to the TwoBrain marketing podcast. I’m your host Mateo Lopez. I’m one of the digital marketing mentors at TwoBrain business and thanks again for tuning in. This is your weekly dose of Digital Marketing Magic. Every week we’re going to go over marketing campaign strategies, useful tips and updates to keep you in the loop on the ever changing landscape of advertising on the Internet for Your Business. And in today’s episode, we have a very special guest. We have Mary Weider, and you’re going to learn how her team and her gym has spent over the last year around $10,000 in ad spend and generated close to $25,000 in front end sales. So we’re gonna learn how exactly she was able to double their, their money over there at the gym. So, uh, Mary. Hi. Good. So Mary, tell us a little bit about who you are, where you are, where your gym is in, a little bit about, you know, how long have you been in business?

Mary:                                         03:52                       Sure. So our gym is located in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, which is about an hour north of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Just for some reference. A lot of people don’t know where Oshkosh is, well I guess we could compare it to the games were like an hour and a half away from Madison.

Mateo:                                      04:07                       Okay. There you go.

Mary:                                         04:11                       So I started crossfit when I was a junior in college cause I Oshkosh is a college town.

Mateo:                                      04:17                       Oh that’s kind of like I started when I was a freshman.

Mary:                                         04:20                       Yeah. Like working two jobs just to be able to afford the kind of thing. But yeah, so I started when I was in college and my degree is actually in journalism and public relations. So I had a little bit of background in communications and marketing and social media. I started coaching in November of 2016 1716 or 17 and then a few months later after we got started withTwoBrain, Austin sat down with me and we came up with a plan for me to create ads and handle all of our leads and stuff like that. All the TwoBrain marketing stuff. So we’ve been doing that I think since April. And yeah, it’s been going really well and it’s definitely been the most steady stream of new members. We’ve gotten since. Crossfit Oshkosh has been open in 2013 so yeah.

Mateo:                                      05:11                       And for those who don’t know who are listening, Austin’s awesome. The owner over a crossfit oshkosh. Great. So that’s so funny. I also found crossfit when I was in college and then it was this weird thing, whereas it came back from freshman year back to my parents’ house in Los Angeles and they were like, you should try this crossfit gym that opened up by our house. You would like it. And I was like, okay. And then I was hooked. I just, I looked at Bryce who was the owner at the time and I was just like, I want to have your life, I want to be you. When I grow up. And from that point on, like every, I would go back to school and in New York there wasn’t any crossfit. There was super new still, there weren’t any gyms really. There were like three in Manhattan and I just was like trying to find, I could just mop their floors and get a membership.

Mary:                                         06:00                       That’s what I did. I cleaned for my membership to very similar. Yeah.

Mateo:                                      06:06                       And it wasn’t that I was like, I want to be your intern there like that. That’s not a real thing. Yeah. I just felt like you can’t intern and then get a crossfit job, but I didn’t know. But that was, yeah, that’s very funny that it was similar path. Okay. So talk a little bit about your experience working with Austin at the gym prior to TwoBrain in general and then how you saw the business change after going through some of the mentorship and implementing some of the, the best, uh, the best practices in the standard operating procedure work that we do and in some of that stuff.

Mary:                                         06:41                       Sure. I would say about like six to nine months before we started TwoBrain, I started taking over like their social media. So just creating posts organically and content and sharing blogs and stuff like that. But that was all we were doing. We weren’t putting money behind anything. I don’t want to say there was no rhyme or reason to their marketing, but they definitely didn’t have like an ad system in place. It was kind of just, you know, the basic, let’s go to this health fair or let’s put an ad in this flyer every once in awhile. But there wasn’t like a steady, you know, putting money into something to get revenue out. It was just kind of taking opportunities as they presented themselves and that was about it. So yeah, once we found TwoBrain, we sat down and created the ads and created our six week challenge. And I don’t want to say like our first month was beginner’s luck, but I think since we were out there on social media for the first time, like reaching an audience who was around us and had an interest in fitness, like are like that first month was just insane. Like we were getting new members, like probably like two new members a week. We could hardly keep up but in a really good way. So yeah, it was, it definitely put us out there in a way that we had never reached before.

Mateo:                                      08:01                       Did you see any differences in the way the business was operating, being a staff member before TwoBrain and then after going through the mentorship process?

Mary:                                         08:09                       Definitely. So our back end went through a little bit of a change. There were two owners at one point and then Austin took over. I knew he always wanted to get into TwoBrain and that’s when he really made things happen at that point. So since then when we joined TwoBrain a lot of more, a lot more processes were put in place just every day to day stuff, task lists, you know, stuff like stuff like that. That is a lot of behind the scenes work for the staff and the coaches.

Mateo:                                      08:38                       Awesome. Great. So did you find that it was just easier to understand what the goals were for the business for that day? For that week? For that month. Okay.

Mary:                                         08:49                       Yeah. Goals were much more apparent and much not even like the end goal is, but like how to get there and how to achieve those goals. And when we had to do the goals were actually written out for us. So that made, that made us make a plan and take some action.

Mateo:                                      09:04                       That’s great. So awesome. So in your word, in your own words, now that you have this marketing machine running, what is it that you sell and how do you sell it?

Mary:                                         09:16                       So we sell our six week challenge like a lot of other TwoBrain are. We have a couple of different levels of our six week challenge. We have just a nutrition power hour and crossfit classes. We have custom nutrition and crossfit classes and then custom nutrition and PTs. So how we sell it, we have ads on Facebook of course talking about the six week challenge. We have those that are targeting female and those that are targeting males with either a video of Austin, or I and then some stock images as well. And then that

Mary:                                         09:49                       it’s the attention. But we really do all of our selling during No Sweat Intros and by contacting leads. So it’s funny because when we first started this, I was like, someone’s going to see an ad once and you know that’s it. They’re either gonna come or not. But what we’ve found over this past almost year is that a lot of people who come are people that have seen the ads like four or five times and are like, okay, this is a sign and finally going to give it a chance. So that’s been really cool. But our lead process is pretty consistent. We use Uplaunch, so we have, once someone becomes a lead they start getting emails and texts and phone calls from us right away. Sometimes we send out like what are your goals? Asking them that sometimes it’s like content we’re giving them so you know, five tips for Blah Blah Blah. And then once we get them in for a no sweat intro, Austin loves doing no sweat intros cause he literally talks to these people for like an hour. I’m not even kidding you, but we, that’s when we just learn like their story, what they’re looking for and like truly like personally connect with them and let them know how we can help them. So that’s how, that’s what we sell and how we sell it.

Mateo:                                      10:54                       Tell us a little bit more about that No sweat intro process because it sounds like he takes a lot of time. What you just said is the discovery phase in the sales process. Really just learning more about them, figuring out what their challenges have been, what they’ve tried in the past, and how your program may be able to help them overcome that. So you know what, what goes on in those meetings.

Mary:                                         11:16                       Yeah. So I feel like just finding a way to like connect with them outside of the gym. So Austin is a vet, so when there’s that set come in, they instill, you have that connection, you know, or I used to be a cheerleading coach, so if there’s a mom that comes in and has daughter a daughter and cheerleading or something, just connecting on that level so that they can realize like we’re human too and we’re here to help them and we know the struggles of everyday life and this can fit into their personal life.

Mateo:                                      11:45                       Yeah, I think, I think what you’re hitting on is super critical. It’s building rapport. Yeah. A huge part of sales is just getting people to know and trust you and establishing that rapport and establishing that trust I think is, it sounds like something you both of you take a lot of time and effort to make sure you have that in place. You follow up with them whether it’s your automated sequence or you follow up with a phone call and book an appointment. What happens in between the point where the appointment is booked and then you ask for the sale? What happens in between that?

Mary:                                         12:22                       everyone who is scheduled to gets a call, why not right when they sign up and one the day before their appointment or pretty much anywhere between 24 hours to 12 hours before their appointment? Whenever we have time.

Mateo:                                      12:41                       You mean like you’re sending a via message via text or your access?

Mary:                                         12:44                       Yep. Sorry.

Mary:                                         12:45                       Yeah, a video message generally via text so they can just see like who they’re going to be meeting, what their personality is like and just kind of giving them like a hey, heads up. We’re real people and we have a schedule too. So please show up and let’s have a conversation.

Mateo:                                      13:02                       Awesome. So you send that the day, uh, you know, prior to and on the day of and then they walked to the front door. What happens when they walk through the front door?

Mary:                                         13:11                       A coach will be there to greet them and it’s really cool cause we just got a new building and we actually got a little no sweat intro room built in there. So yeah, so it has like our Inbody scan and some comfy chairs and it’s a little tucked away. So even if there’s like classes or something going on, they’ll be able to see that class but it won’t be distracting. So that’s where we hold all of our no sweat intros, which is great. And then usually the first thing we always ask them is why are they here and what are their goals? I’m just getting kind of directly to the point in that creates a conversation that we can have with them based on, you know, what made them like what made them click the sign up. Now, that’s what we want to know cause that’s really going to take focus of what we’re going to talk about next.

Mateo:                                      13:56                       Okay, cool. And so they come in, you’re doing a lot of discovery or trying to figure out what motivated them to come in, basically what solution they’re looking for. Right. How do you prescribe solutions?

Mary:                                         14:09                       So we’ll always like go over, we always start going over. So we have a nice sales binder and we have in our binder list. Yeah. So our first option listed is our gold option. You know, the most expensive, the personal training option with nutrition. So that’s the only the option they can see when we first opened the binder. So you know, sometimes people come in and you know they’re not going to want to do nutrition or you know, they’re not going to want to do personal training. So no matter what, we always just throw it out as an option because you, you never do know. So we throw that out as at an option and if you can, if we can tell they’re like, this is not for me. I cannot afford this, then we go down to our silver and then keep going down to eventually when we get to our bronze, which is just classes and power hour nutrition. So we use that binder as a base. But obviously when we’re doing the no sweat intro, we can kind of feel out what we think would be best for them. You know, if they have a tight schedule. Sometimes personal training sessions are best because we can fit them in whenever and they don’t have to stick to class times and just kind of recommending those options to them and always including how it would benefit them.

Mateo:                                      15:15                       Awesome. And let’s take a, let’s take a step back in the process. You manage all of the social media and the paid advertising. So what is your process when you’re, when you’re refreshing a campaign or building a campaign, how often do you go in and, and try a new piece of creative, you know, how often are you going in tweaking things and, and you know, walk us through how you build those campaigns.

Mary:                                         15:40                       Um, so I feel like when we first started this, I was kind of in the mindset of like things need to be changed every two to three months. But since then I’ve learned like if it’s working, just leave it. Like right now we’re not doing like skyrocketing No Sweat Intros like five a day, but we’re, we have a consistent outcome from our ads and we are seeing a pretty good front end revenue. So I haven’t made any changes to our ads in probably like three or four months because they’ve been doing well and just want to keep, keep them going until we see like the cost per lead go up a little bit, then I might go in and make some changes. But one thing that’s really helped is like being a part of TwoBrain marketing group and seeing what has worked for other people. If we do get in a Rut, I can easily go in and find a stock image that has worked for for somebody else. And usually sometimes it’s just as easy as that changing one word in the copy or changing the stock image. In getting examples from other gyms and all of a sudden we’re right back up where we need to be.

Mateo:                                      16:45                       I think that’s such a good point that you know people if CRMs go up a little bit or their cost per click creeps up or you know, if, if they see the amount of bookings just you know, slow down. A lot of times I’ll see people try a whole new thing. They’ll rip the whole thing apart and try something brand new. But really I think you make a good point. Sometimes it’s just taking one variable at a time and looking, okay let’s just try a different image, leave everything the same and start there or a different video and start there and then you know the next thing, okay now we have an image that we think is working well. Let’s try two different pieces of written creative and see how that, how that works. And it’s just one small variable at a time. Cause if he changed the whole thing, it’s hard to know what was the, the x factor for sure.

Mary:                                         17:34                       For sure. And I think like, like I mentioned before how there’s those people that it takes like five to 10 times to see the ad. You want to keep something semi consistent so they know that this is the same place and the same six week challenge.

Mateo:                                      17:47                       That’s a great point. Do you anything to reengage people who opt in,, I imagine your, since you’ve been running ads for a year, can you tell us a little about that? Got growing list of people who inquire maybe the optin but don’t book an intro. Maybe they don’t buy. Do you guys do anything with that list of people who have inquired and are still kind of lurking?

Mary:                                         18:10                       Yeah, so recently probably not that recent anymore. Like a few months ago we implemented uplaunch into our No Sweat Intro process. So it’s been like a huge lifesaver because I was like manually texting these, all of these leads we are getting through clickfunnels and it was just taking up so much time. But what their phone number and or email will be go from click funnels to our uplaunch campaign and they will, we have like a whole six week campaign and they’ll receive emails and texts. And then also we have all of their contact information stored. So every time we have like a special event, like a wine and WOD or a community workout, we can like reach out to those people from a year ago and be like, Hey, we noticed you are interested. Come try a free workout. Rare opportunity. Like this is your chance. So those are the couple of ways we are reconnecting with older leads.

Mateo:                                      19:02                       And have you found like you’ve been able to even, I mean I’ve found even selling one is worth it, like an email blast for sure. Getting one sale is definitely worth it.

Mary:                                         19:12                       Yep. And sometimes that will like an email blast takes what like honestly, 20 to 30 minutes and then getting that one client out of it is definitely worth it.

Mateo:                                      19:23                       Amazing. So you know, it sounds like you said you went to you, you had moved to a new space.

Mary:                                         19:29                       Yeah. So we were kind of on the outskirts of Oshkosh, you know, I’m like a industrial building and we bought our own free standing building and we’re downtown Oshkosh, which is really awesome because a lot more foot traffic. We’re like a block away from the farmer’s market, which is going to be super awesome during summers. So we’re hoping that will help boost some interest.

Mateo:                                      19:52                       Amazing. It sounds like you guys have been doing really great, you’re growing like crazy. You’ve moved to an upgraded to a new space and you know, you’ve, you’ve been able to essentially double your money using paid advertising. What do you think has been the key to your success so far and Austin success and the gym success in the business access? What do think has been the key?

Mary:                                         20:11                       Yeah, so I really think it’s just been like staying consistent. Like you could easily start these ads and if you’re not keeping up of leads, like you’re just going to in the long run kind of be wasting your money. Um, so it’s not just the Facebook advertising, it’s the click funnel and the Uplaunch. It’s kind of the whole process of how you’re getting these leads and how you’re staying connected with them and treating them when they show interest in your business. So I think it’s just been staying consistent with the whole process and finding ways to continue to improve it as well and just really staying in touch with those and showing interest in them. So hopefully they’ll show be more interested in US someday.

Mateo:                                      20:52                       Well, and probably the service too, right? Nothing works unless your service is good. So yeah, you keep the quality of your, that you have a front end offer, right? Your front end offer is a six week introductory program. How do you monitor quality control and make sure people are loving the service there? They’re seeing results. How do you guys do that?

Mary:                                         21:12                       We as coaches, we really try and stay connected to the people going through their six week challenge. You know, they have their five OnRamp personal training sessions. So that right there is a really good jumpstart into one on one time with the coach where the coach can start really pounding them with accountability. Ah, well it’s coming to the gym and nutrition from there they go into group classes and it’s just kind of keeping an eye on them and you know, just creating that conversation like how were you feeling, what are you eating, how are you sleeping? And just showing them like wow, this is not like a normal Globo gym. Like someone is here. Like actually caring about my lifestyle and that’s awesome. And then again, we have campaigns through uplaunch for every person going through our six week challenge. So not only in the gym are they seeing coaches, but they’re getting emails, asking them how they’re feeling, if they have any questions, you know, anything along those lines.

Mateo:                                      22:02                       When you asked those questions, checking in with them. Is there a formal setting? Do you guys have formal goal setting sessions during that process or after?

Mary:                                         22:11                       We do not have goal setting sessions implemented into the six weeks. Right now. We do offer goal setting sessions for any of our members to schedule, but we actually don’t have anything and boom, I did right now. I mean we do have like, they schedule a time to come in and take their last Inbody scan and I feel like that always just kind of naturally turns into like a goal-setting session.

Mateo:                                      22:35                       Yeah.

Mary:                                         22:36                       Yeah. So that that happens and you know, that’s always good too because we can kind of tell them like, well, here’s why you saw awesome results. Here’s maybe why you didn’t see the results we’re looking for. Usually, you know, because of nutrition or outside stress. But yeah, so that just having awesome coaches who can keep up with the six-week people and like, of course I have to say our community is so great too and always welcoming to newer people and helping them so that, that helps us.

Mateo:                                      23:05                       Awesome. Well thanks so much for hopping on and walking us through your, your system, how you check up on your ads and how you follow up with your leads and how you sell. If people want to talk with you more or just hang out or drop in when they’re going to the games. Yeah. How do they

Mary:                                         23:24                       Um, I am on Instagram. I think my handle is just Mary Weeder, M. A. R. Y. W. E. I. D. E. R. Otherwise you can check out crossfit Oshkosh. That Instagram or Facebook or Instagram is crossfit underscore oshkosh so you can find us there.

Mateo:                                      23:41                       Awesome. Thanks Mary. Thank you.

Chris:                                         23:44                       Hey everyone. Chris Cooper here and really thrilled to see you this year in June in Chicago at the 2019 TwoBrain summit. Every year we have two separate speaking tracks: one for you, the business owner, and there’s one for coaches that will help them make better, longer, more meaningful careers under the umbrella of your business. This year we’ve got some pretty amazing topics like the client success manager, how to change your life, organizational culture or the business owner’s life cycle, how to have breaks, how to have vacations, how to help your marriage survive, owning a business and motivation and leadership. How to convert more clients, how to create a GM position that runs your gym for you and leaves you free to grow your business. How to start a business owner’s group in your community and more. The Point here is to do the right thing that will help gym owners create better businesses that will last them for the long term, get them to tinker phase, help them be more successful, create meaningful careers with their coaches and give their clients a meaningful path to longterm health. We only do one big seminar every year and that’s the TwoBrain summit and the reason that we do that is because a big part of the benefit is getting the TwoBrain community together and and welcoming strangers into our midst and showing them how amazing gym ownership really can be. We’ll have a link to theTwoBrain summit including a full list of all speakers and topics on both the owners and the coaches side in the show notes. I really hope to see you there.

Mary:                                         25:12                       As always, thank you so much for listening to this podcast. We greatly appreciate you and everyone that has subscribed to us. If you haven’t done that, please make sure you do drop a like to that episode. Share with a friend and if you haven’t already, please write us a review and rate us on how what you think. If you hated it, let us know if you loved it, even better. See you guys later.


This is our NEW podcast, Two-Brain Marketing, where we’ll focus on sales and digital marketing. Your host is Mateo Lopez!

Greg Strauch will be back on Thursday with the Two-Brain Radio Podcast.

Thanks for Listening!

To share your thoughts:


To help out the show:

  • Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.
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Pulling Weeds

Pulling Weeds

By Josh Martin, Two-Brain Mentor

Note: Our Two-Brain Coaching Group on Facebook is public! Add your coaches!


My favorite check that I write each month is to the lawn company that takes care of our yard. And while the size of that check grew when we moved to our new house, it still puts a big smile on my face.


Growing up, I did lots of yard work. I hated every single second of it.


But when it came time to earn some money one summer, I literally went door to door with my lawnmower and asked everyone if I could mow their grass for twenty bucks. I heard plenty of no’s, but some took pity and appreciated my hustle, and at the end of that summer I bought my first pair of skates. That was the beginning of my speed skating career, but that is a post for another time.


Mowing lawns was actually not that bad if I’m being honest. The worst part was pulling weeds in the garden. It seemed never ending. And when we got done with one flower bed, it just looked all tussled about, bare, and a bit pitiful.


As a gym owner, losing members is the same way. Making tough choices for the betterment of the business can even be a catalyst for some to leave on their own or to start questioning if they still fit.


It never feels good when it happens. Even if it’s someone that is choking the life out of you or your staff, it’s never fun (or easy) telling someone that you think they’d be better served elsewhere.


Like the garden, when the weeds are gone, things can appear quite bare. You start to wonder if the choices you’ve made are the right ones.


But just as pulling weeds in a garden are necessary for growth of the beautiful roses, its necessary as a gym owner too. Your roses, your seed clients, deserve the very best of you and your staff. If you are constantly worried about the weeds, you’ll never have time to develop those who really matter.


I get it – we all want to help everyone. Owning a gym is a noble endeavor. But we can’t help everyone all the time. Our time is best spent on those that want our help and appreciate us for why we do what we do.


After I’d finished pulling weeds, it wasn’t until a lot of rain and sunshine came that we saw the fruits of our labor. It took time. But if I hadn’t pulled the weeds, they’d have soaked up all the water–and all of my sunshine.


Be patient. Tend your garden.


Episode 163: Two-Brain Media

Episode 163: Two-Brain Media

On this episode, we are joined by Mike Warkentin. Mike is the owner of CrossFit 204 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and the new co-owner of Two-Brain Media. Mike has been involved in sports for his entire life. After eight years in the media industry, he was able to make his hobby into a career by becoming the managing editor of the CrossFit Journal. When he left the Journal, Mike founded Two-Brain Media with Chris Cooper. 

Be on the lookout for Chris’ new book coming out on May 7: Founder, Farmer, Tinker, Thief!


Don’t Forget about the 2019 Two-Brain Summit, June 8-9 in Chicago! This year we have some amazing topics and guests for both yourself and your coaches. Click here to register and sign up now!




If You Can Smile, You Can Do CrossFit – Video



4:06 – Introduction to Two-Brain Media and Mike Warkentin

7:49 – Mike’s experience working at the CrossFit Journal

11:15 – Opening a gym while still working for the CrossFit Journal

18:20 – The launch of Two-Brain Media

27:18 – The ways that Two-Brain Media will be helping gym owners in the future

32:20 – The different types of content and avenues that Two-Brain Media can offer

36:11 – Creating relatable content for your target audience

40:06 – Contacting Mike to book a consultation call

Announcer:                            00:02                       Welcome everyone to Two-Brain radio. It is our mission at Two-Brain to provide 1 million entrepreneurs the freedom to live the life that they choose. Join us every week as we discovered the very best practices to achieve perfect day and move you closer to wealth.

Chris:                                         00:26                       Everybody hates their insurance company until they need their insurance company. My insurance recommendation is Vaughn Vernon of Affiliate Guard. Before I get into this story, I want to make it clear here that I don’t get any kickback for recommending Vaughn, but I’ve done it so many times. Whenever anybody online asks a question about insurance companies, I always say affiliate guard. Here’s why. Years ago when we affiliated with crossfit, my insurance company dumped me, citing, quote unquote tractor pulls that we were going to be doing, whatever the hell that is. I’ve never pulled a tractor in my life. Um, I’ve driven lots of tractors and I can tell you, I don’t think I could pull one if I wanted to. But that’s besides the point. At that time, the person who swooped in and saved crossfit gyms in Canada was Joanne Legal. And if you’re in Canada, I recommend talking to her period.

Chris:                                         01:15                       You don’t have to talk to her first. You don’t have to talk to her last. Just talk to her period. If you’re in the states though, I recommend affiliate guard because the program that I get through Joanne and Canada is really, really awesome and all inclusive. Joanne’s personality though is what keeps me with their company in the states. Affiliate guard is run by Vaughn Vernon, a massive personality, a crossfitter, a Jujitsu guy. He drives dirt bikes, he has good looking kids, all that stuff and his policy is the best. It’s really, really tough to tell when you’re reading your policy if the benefits are the same as someone else’s because they obscure stuff on purpose. It’s just like taxes. However, when I’m looking at my policy, I ask myself, well, that guy get up in the middle of the night and helped me out and this weekend was a great example of Vaughn’s personality.

Chris:                                         02:07                       One of my friends and clients down in Florida had their garage door smashed open, by a Mustang that was doing donuts in the parking lot and they texted me at 6:00 AM on a Sunday and I wanted to help so I texted Vaughn, he’s two hours behind me and he responded right away. Your insurance company is not going to do that. As I said at the start of this, everybody hates their insurance company until they need insurance and when you do need insurance, you want them to answer the damn phone on a Sunday morning and you want to talk to the head man and you just want to know everything’s going to be okay with affiliate guard.

Mike:                                          02:43                       Hey everyone, Chris Cooper here, I’m really thrilled to see you this year in June in Chicago at the 2019 Two-Brain Summit. Every year we have two separate speaking tracks is one for you, the business owner and there’s one for coaches that will help them make better, longer, more meaningful under your umbrella of your business. This year we’ve got some pretty amazing topics like the client success manager, how to change your life organizational culture or the business owner’s life cycle, how to have breaks, how to have vacations, how to help your marriage survive. Owning a business, motivation and leadership. How to convert more clients, how to create a GM position that runs your gym for you and leaves you free to grow your business. How to start a business owner’s group in your community. And more. The point here is to do the right thing that will help gym owners create better businesses that will last them for the long term. Get them to tinker phase, help them be more successful, create meaningful careers for their coaches and give their clients a meaningful path to longterm health. We only do one big seminar every year and that’s the Two-Brain Summit and the reason that we do that is because a big part of the benefit is getting the Two-Brain community together and and welcoming strangers into our midst and showing them how amazing gym ownership really can be. We’ll have a link to the Two-Brain summit, including a full list of all speakers and topics on both the owners and the coaches side in the show notes. I really hope to see you there.

Greg:                                          04:06                       All right. I’m here with another fantastic guest. Mike Warkentin. He has come on board with us for Two-Brain Media. So welcome.

Mike:                                          04:15                       Thanks for having me Greg. I appreciate it.

Greg:                                          04:17                       Happy to. So let’s kind of, people don’t know you too well. Let’s kind of give them a little bit of synopsis about you and where you came from and what you’ve been up to and then we’ll kind of go into the whole Two-Brain media side and what were, what are in the plans for the future?

Mike:                                          04:33                       Sure thing. I guess a, I’ve been in media for about 20 years and I was that guy who saw the, the local paper and always wanted to be in it. And now when I got into university, I was playing volleyball there and I just submitted an article to the sports section and all of a sudden I became the sports editor and that kind of was a slippery slope that sucked me into a street magazines where I started just doing bar listings for, you know, club gigs for bands, delivering papers, scraping stickers off newspaper boxes and things like that. And then I ended up being the assistant editor of a street mag that led into a brief career in radio. And then at the end of that, I wasn’t very good at writing radio commercials and I needed to get out. So I decided to be a fitness writer.

Mike:                                          05:15                       I went to San Diego to take the crossfit level one certificate course. Uh, I met some of the people involved with the crossfit journal and I got sucked into the crossfit journal for the next 10 years after that. And along the way, I opened crossfit 204. We started that, we started doing a boot camp in 2009. And then, uh, in 2010, we became an official affiliate. And then in 2011, we got our actual, our own building that we are still run out of now. So it’s been about 20 years media and about, 10 years in fitness as well now. I’m sorry. Pardon me, 20 years in media and 10 years in, in crossfit.

Greg:                                          05:49                       Gotcha. Now with you said that you wanted to write fitness articles. Was it due to your, your fitness background and volleyball and playing for university or was there some kind of shift, uh, in your life? I know a lot of people, especially, I mean, you know, the crossfit stories better, better than I do. I bet. Uh, at this point of somebody comes in there are type II diabetic, they lose all this weight and now they want to be a crossfit coach and they go on to opening their own gym or something else along the fitness industry. So what was kind of that change or what was something that happened that, uh, that made you want to start writing fitness articles?

Mike:                                          06:23                       Well, I was good enough to make the university volleyball team, but I wasn’t good enough to start. So I didn’t get on the court very often. So I realized that, well my friends were, you know, getting the tar kicked out of them during the games. I was just standing there most of the time. So I got into a, I started working out and so I would work out pretty hard before games cause I knew I wasn’t ever going to play. Uh, and I really got into fitness and one of the years there was a guy on the team that really loved working out. So I would meet him in the weight room every day at like 10 o’clock and every once in a while we’d skip a class or two and we would just work out. And I got really addicted to that and it became a passion of mine.

Mike:                                          06:57                       After I stopped playing volleyball, I left university and it just became almost the focus of my day. And so when I got further along, I started thinking about what would be a better career than writing radio commercials. And I thought, man, I don’t know if there’s anyone out there who can really, really write about fitness. And there were certainly were, you know, Muscle & Fitness and things like that. But I wanted to really become the guy who knew, who could write about fitness and my first step, and that was I started doing the NSCA CSCS course. I never finished that, but I did all the studying for it and I instead went to crossfit level one. I went to San Diego, I took the course and I was just so infatuated with that. And you know the story, you get to start your new trend and all of a sudden the rest is history. And so that happened for me and I got the chance. Then I wrote an article about that and I submitted it to the crossfit journal. And then, uh, there was an opportunity to work for the crossfit journal. So I ended up being the fitness writer that I wanted it to be, but I didn’t know it’d be about crossfit when I made that choice.

Greg:                                          07:48                       Gotcha. Now you’ve worked, I mean, you worked for Crossfit, crossfit journal for a very long time. And what, I mean, what was, what was it like being able, did you have your own kind of choice of what you wanted to write about or, I’ve never, I’ve never been able to interview anyone that has worked for the journal. Of course. Uh, Chris has, but I’ve never asked him that question. And so I was, I was always curious, are you able to do, do you write the articles the way you want to or is there like, Hey, uh, let’s, let’s write on this person. We just found out on social media, they lost 200 pounds or something like that.

Mike:                                          08:20                       Yeah, it’s a really collaborative process and it evolved over the years. When I started, it was a very small publication and we, you know, I would sit there waiting for the submissions account for someone to send something in, you know, and it was like, wow, somebody sent something in and you check. And there would be a great story from wherever, a gym, anywhere, you know, there’s so many amazing crossfit stories. And as we slowly started to get going, I would write more articles and then we developed some writers, regular writers who we could assign things to. Uh, and then we eventually, we went from almost 90% submissions to almost 90% assigned articles. And those assigned articles could be anything from, you know, there was a collaborative process between a lot of different people. It’s like, oh, I heard about this person.

Mike:                                          09:01                       This would be a great story. Or an affiliate owner would contact us about a great story. Or, you know, I remember being in one of the crossfit tour events in Texas and bumping into a guy behind me in the brisket line, uh, named Rob Davis told me an incredible story about how his crossfit journey started. And I was like, wow, we need to write about that. So it was, you know, a lot of serendipity and then also a careful plan, uh, togenerate things that would support, the topics that we wanted to cover at the time, which could be anything from, you know, obviously training and affiliation issues to a specific initiatives by the company. And so many good ones like, you know, like Hope in Africa for example. It was a good one that I really enjoyed.

Greg:                                          09:37                       Oh yeah. Yeah, I remember, I mean, I remember hearing many, many stories from not only Chris,, but then one of our mentors on the team Oskar, and, and kind of how he found his daughter, uh, adopting his daughter and kind of a meeting everyone long time ago and then kind of coming back, which was an amazing story and I can’t wait to, for it to be shared on the podcast here.

Mike:                                          09:59                       Awesome. What was it, was, he contacted me about that and it, the coolest thing about this, this whole media thing was that he, he contacted me a little while ago and sent the message of saying like when I went to Africa, I downloaded the crossfit journal and started reading this stuff and he said it was life changing. And he ended up getting on Level one seminar staff and opening a gym and finding a daughter. And it was just this fascinating story that really kind of showed me the power of media. And that’s why I’m so passionate about it is that kind of connection is just such a cool thing that you never saw coming. But it happens.

Greg:                                          10:27                       Yeah, no, completely. I think when I first found the, the crossfit journal was actually on my first deployment to Afghanistan. Uh, we had, we had our own camp within, within one of the bases and there somebody had pre printed off . I’m guessing they, I mean we had Internet access of course, but they, they printed off probably every article in the crossfit journal that was around during those times. So it was about 2010, which was still a ton and ton of articles. But that’s how I originally found the crossfit journal and started looking at it and reading about it and seeing the different things that were getting posted. So it’s kind of kind of that same journey, just, uh, not, not the same way Oskar did with, uh, the way he went, which was again, I can’t wait to have his, uh, his episode on here cause it’s, it’s, it really is amazing and awesome. Awesome journey and a story of his, yeah, he’s a neat guy. Now you said that, I mean, you were, you were, were, you were working for the crossfit journal and you opened your own gym. What made you think of wanting to do that? I mean, of course you’re in the fitness industry, you’re writing about it all the time. But what was kind of the catalyst to say, Hey, you know what? We need to open up our own gym as well as still writing about this stuff.

Mike:                                          11:33                       Yeah. I’ve always been like a sports coach. So growing up, I was always coaching volleyball and running summer camps and things like that. So coaching was really, really natural. And then once you take the level one certificate, of course it’s all you can do to stop yourself from annoying every person, you know, with a broomstick and teaching them how to dead lift, right? Like you just, it just happens like that. So it, you know, at the time, quit that radio job in, uh, I was working actually literally handing out towels for minimum wage at a, at a global gym. And the manager there was kind enough to allow me to use the space twice a week to, uh, to run a boot camp. So we just blew out all the benches, moved them aside, and then, you know, we kind of hustled the bodybuilders over to the side and we started doing crossfit stuff and I would drive up there twice a week through the park with kettle bells rolling around, like, you know, cannon balls in the trunk of My car, you know, the sound.

Mike:                                          12:19                       Right. And we, so we did that and I still remember that we, I think I charged people 7.50 a class or something like that and we’d do it twice a week. And I slowly realized that this wasn’t quite crossfit because I only had a couple of barbells. We couldn’t drop things, we couldn’t go heavy, didn’t have a dedicated space and people were starting to be really into it. So we had a growing number of people bursting at the seams and I said, I think it’s time, it’s time to take a jump. And we, I was honored, I was actually talking to crossFit founder Greg Glassman one time and I told him about this and he’s like, well, are you an affiliate? And I said, well, no. He says, well, just do that. It was such an obvious thing to do that I needed that the CrossFit founder to tell me. So we did it, we became an affiliate and then we started looking for a space and that was a big jump, but I kind of did the math in a city of, I think it’s 750,000 we have here in Winnipeg. There was one other gym or two at the time. One was shutting down. So basically one, there was a huge opportunity because I knew that people in a city like this needed more than one crossfit gym. So we opened it and the rest is history, as they say.

Greg:                                          13:18                       Yeah, exactly. I mean that’s, I, that’s definitely a, it’s funny that you, uh, had to have that conversation with, with the founder to then realize that, yeah, you know what? That is a good idea. I should do that.

Mike:                                          13:31                       Oh, it’s funny. He said it and I was like, I was ashamed. I’m like, I don’t know why I haven’t affiliated this sooner.

Greg:                                          13:37                       Exactly. But it’s only obvious once it, once it gets presented to you. So you had that, I mean, you were, you started off in university, started writing, then you went to the, to the radio. Then from there started writing for the crossfit journal and throughout this process, opening a gym. Did they ever, did you ever have any kind of time restraints or time restrictions with, with running a gym? I mean, opening a gym is not easy. I mean there’s, there’s a lots of lots of, of gym owner that will tell you it is not easy. And my favorite phrase now, and I forget who I got it from and I’d love to give credit, so if anybody out there is listening to this, but the easiest way to get unfit is to open a crossfit gym because the processes and the structures and everything you need to put in place is definitely something that is not easy or for the feint of heart. So what was that like with still writing and I can only imagine, I mean your workload is probably getting more and more with the Journal and opening a gym and trying to figure out these systems. Uh, how did, how were you able to make it through that at that time?

Mike:                                          14:36                       No, it was, it was, it was a tough one. I’m like, we, when we started, of course your business plan is we’ll just coach every class so we’ll have no wages. Right? You probably, you probably know that one. And so we did that and it works like for a while you’re so you’re so fired up and passionate that you can do it. And I remember days where I would work, you know, nine or 10 hours on the journal and then we would coach all evening then wake up the next morning and coach the 6:00 AM class. And you know, we did that for a while, but man, it started to, it started to wear pretty quickly. Uh, so we, you know, my wife luckily was, she was doing hairstyling at the time, but she was an excellent coach and a really good athlete. So we got her up to speed and she became the gym manager.

Mike:                                          15:13                       And so that allowed me to step back a little bit and just recover. And you know, the crossfit journal job was my main focus. The gym was a secondary thing. You’ll undersatnd this as a Two-Brain business mentor. I wanted it to be a hobby. And My, my catch line was, it’s a hobby. I don’t need it to make money. I more than 100% accomplished that goal. And then I got to 2015 and I looked, I’m like, wow, this is not, this is not the most sound business venture I’ve ever seen on paper. And Luckily I had a, I had worked with Chris Cooper at the crossfit journal for probably 10 years. I think I edited the first article of his in 2009, if I’m not mistaken. And then Chris, he worked, uh, worked with us for a year and you’re even more than a year, but we’d been in contact throughout the whole time, just, you know, learning and talking and just being friends basically.

Mike:                                          16:01                       Uh, and he had started the Two-Brain business. And so we started doing the incubator. And I remember I’d get up at 5:00 AM every day and I would do two hours in the incubator and realized that I had not set this gym up for success. I had, I had not priced things properly. I hadn’t done staff development properly. I hadn’t created roles, responsibilities, and I certainly hadn’t created a plan to replace myself. I got very lucky that my wife was intelligent and she learned fast enough to pick up all the stuff that I just pushed out her. But I didn’t help her a whole lot. And so we went through the incubator. We fixed things, we change things, we got the gym on solid footing. Uh, and you know, I can’t say enough to, to Chris and the two brain mentors who helped us do that because they really, they saved the gym and then now the gym is in a good spot and is growing and has much better. But it wasn’t on that path until I started working with, with Two-Brain business. I just didn’t know what I was doing.

Greg:                                          16:51                       And I think that’s the story now that I jump on the free help calls and, and do plenty of those, which I love. I love doing those because I love hearing the stories of where gyms are at and what they’ve accomplished or what they need help with. But I hear that story way too often of of, and that’s why I laughed earlier, is they set up the gym and they don’t need it to make money is what they say. And they will teach all the classes so they don’t have to do payroll. And they realized that becomes a slippery slope and now they can’t grow the way they want it to. So it changes.

Mike:                                          17:19                       You can’t afford to replace equipment and you, you know, you’re so exhausted and your service is starting to slip and you know all, you’ve seen it all. It’s very, that’s why I’m so thrilled that there is, you know, a mentorship program like this out there that can help people. And you know, Chris has said he’s made more mistakes than anybody else. And I don’t know if that’s true or not, but you know, the combined, the combined mistakes in our group are so powerful because it now helps everyone else figure out how to stop doing those things. And it’s really cool to see gym owners now coming to Two-Brain first and taking the incubator and figured out to set up a gym properly and avoiding all the mistakes that you know you and I made.

Greg:                                          17:53                       Exactly, exactly. And, and getting people on the right track is, is always our main focus. So if anyone is out there, this is a, this is a time call for action, make sure that you guys are jumping on and book in that free call if you guys have questions or have issues within your gym and what you guys are trying to do or be any business, uh, in that matter because we have started to kind of branch out and help a more service based businesses, not just, uh, not just gyms. So let’s kind of jump into now that you guys, we’ve created this new thing, uh, which is Two-Brain Media and let’s kind of talk about what your role is within Two-Brain media and kind of what you see as, as, as things that we can start accomplishing and opportunities that we can start providing to gym owners, to business owners, to anybody out there that a is looking for them.

Mike:                                          18:40                       Yeah, like I said, I’ve been in media for 20 years and it’s always been a passion of why. Like I’ve always felt the need to, to just write and create things, whether it was just, you know, writing quotes on a white board in the back of a shipping and receiving warehouse when I was, you know, 19, like it’s just, I’ve always wanted to create stuff. And I know Chris has a number of, I mean he’s got so many balls in the air and so many things that he’s doing, but he’s always been a creator as well. So He’s been very passionate about, you know, writing. And that’s how we met was he wrote an article for the crossfit journal. So just two guys who were really passionate about media, and I love the idea of, you know, gyms first but entrepreneurs second, every business has a story and we talked about that on the two brain business or Two-Brain media website.

Mike:                                          19:22                       Every business, especially a small business has a story. And we want to help people tell that story so that they can connect with their clients. And I’m inspired when I look around at some of the amazing media that our, our gyms are creating and the two brain business family is creating. It’s, it’s really cool. We have this unbelievable pile of people in our facilities that have all these amazing stories and there are just no end of great stories. How people accomplish the goals, found fitness, changed their lives, weight loss, confidence, all this stuff. And that applies not just to gyms but other businesses as well. There’s amazing stories in there and our people are becoming more and more media savvy. So we’ve got, you know, back in the day, TV studios and print presses and all this stuff. Now with your cell phone, you have a media empire literally in your pocket and you can do amazing stuff just with a cell phone. And we’ve got all these other options from podcasts, blogs to videos to Instagram to, you know, live broadcasts. It’s just incredible. So we, we really wanted to start Two-Brain media to help our community figure out how they can leverage the stories they have either with professional media has done for them or media that they do well themselves. And so we’re trying to educate and connect people to providers when they need it.

Greg:                                          20:33                       In your line of work, I mean you’ve, you’ve written articles, you’ve, you’ve been on the radio, you’ve created videos. What have you seen as something that is your, I mean, let’s, let’s say biggest bang for your buck. What do you think the biggest thing that a gym owner can do or a business owner can do right now to leverage the media that they currently have? Like you said, you have a phone in your pocket. This technology wasn’t around to a 10, 15, 20 years ago now and you’d have to pay so much more for production studio if you want to do video or even getting your blogs like a blog post, uh, that a lot of people would actually start reading. Um, it was a lot harder back then. It took a lot more money. So what do you feel like the biggest advantage people could take today to start leveraging their media within their gym or within the business?

Mike:                                          21:18                       This came up actually a lot of, and a lot of the calls that I did over the last 10 days with, with business owners, uh, it’s, it’s, it just a distribution plan for whatever piece of content you create. You’ve invested your time in that content, whether it’s a blog, a podcast, a video, whatever, even a photo for Instagram. I find that a lot of people post things in one spot or do one thing and then kind of forget about it. But really a lot of these pieces of content can be used in like seven or eight different ways. And I’ll give you a very good example would be uh, my wife runs a company called 204 Lifestyle, which is our nutrition and lifestyle business that is a separate from the crossfit side. So she’ll, she’ll, she loves to cook. So we’re doing lots of cooking videos and lots of things.

Mike:                                          21:57                       So at the end of her, whenever we get a meal, we take a plate and we take a picture from the top and we take a picture from the side and we take a picture of, that’s a closeup that’s really three posts and I wouldn’t put them up in the same day obviously, but four weeks apart, the protein muffin from the top four weeks apart, protein muffin from the side close up of the protein muffin that can then be paired with a video or a short clip of the preparation or someone eating the muffin that can go on Instagram, that can go on Facebook. The recipe can go on the blog, it can be sent out to a mailing list and you see all these different ways that for one investment in time and content, we can use it a ton of different ways. And so one of the things that I’ve talked to people about as a distribution plan so they can maximize the reach of these things and we’re going to put something together where people can can get that from Two-Brain media so they can figure out how to maximize their content.

Mike:                                          22:44                       But the piece of advice I give you now is if you get things up on social media, know that social media is a great place to funnel things to your website. And you should have that content and a lot of cases back on your website as well. Because Google doesn’t really index Instagram posts, for example. So if you put up this amazing Instagram post or write all this stuff and it’s a great video, no one’s scrolls down 15 times to find it, eventually that post should be recreated somewhere, whether it’s on YouTube or on your website so that Google can find it. And then you can still get the benefits of having that great piece of content. So I’d say get more content, get content out in more places to be as creative as you can.

Greg:                                          23:20                       Excellent. No, I full fully agree with that cause I feel like, I mean, and I’ve, I’ve made the same mistake. I mean I always have no problem being transparent, whether I’m on a call with somebody or even on here, uh, with the mistakes that I’ve made. But I think that’s something that we, uh, we lack in our, our gym is not, not producing enough content, but also not spreading that content out to multiple media sources and constantly trying to provide a more expertise but really more knowledge to, to our members and to anyone that’s listening, that’s, uh, outside of that gym Community. But that is definitely something in Two-Brain and with Chris writing and being as creative as he has beenand stills continues to be, is a, producing as much content as possible to really help help anybody, help business owners, gym owners or anyone even thinking about starting a business or gym.

Mike:                                          24:08                       Yeah, I constantly nag my wife about this because she writes these amazing Instagram posts, but they only are seen for a day and then they vanish down in the feed and they’re never to be heard from again. So I’ve told her like literally write these posts in an email and just send it to me. Then do your Instagram posts like cut, cut and paste. And I’ll take that cut and paste it into a blog, put up a better picture for a website and you’ve got, you’ve just doubled your content. And then you can do that in a number of different ways by pumping pieces of it out on Facebook and other places. Then you’ve got all the other options, like you know, Twitter, Pinterest, linkedin, all of these other sites so you can really maximize content. A lot of people I think aren’t quite doing that yet. And the idea that I keep telling people is the only person that sees all of your content is you. No one else does because of whether it’s the reach that’s limited by Facebook or people are busy. No one sees all your content. So you should be pumping out in a number of different places. That’s why advertisers advertise so much because you, you don’t see how the commercial the first time,

Greg:                                          25:03                       which is that’s, it’s so funny that you say it in that way because I think I’ve had that same discussion with my coach that heads up our media side that she, she talks about, all the work to producing all this content and in my eyes I’m like, yeah, we are, but how much is actually being seen? So it’s funny you say that because I think there’s too many of us out there that, that assume, oh, we’re producing all this content. Like, yeah, but you’re right. They’re not seeing everything we’re producing no matter how much we are producing. So it’s always let’s, let’s constantly get in front of them over and over and over again in different media sources in streams to, to really get that idea across or that post across or whatever it is.

Mike:                                          25:38                       Well, let’s think about this too. When you know, how often are you watching a football game or whatever and you’re the TV commercials come up and you’re just annoyed with them, right? Like they don’t mean anything and you wish they weren’t there. You want to get back to football game. But then let’s say you’re having a toothache and a dentist commercial comes up, like all of a sudden you’re enraptured by this commercial that might take away your pain, right? That’s the way we’re kind of looking at it from media side is that, you know, you could create a squat video. I’ll pull up video and nutrition video, a transformation video, like all these different things and they not, they’re not going to connect with everyone, but they’re going to connect with someone. And so if you just put out one type of video, you’re missing a piece of the market. If you just put out this kind of blog, you’re missing a piece of the market. Some people like photography, some people like videos, some people like reading. You need to get all these different mediums flowing, and then you need to get different content in them. So that people can find them. Because as soon as you get the toothache, you want to find out about a dentist.

Greg:                                          26:31                       Very, very true. I think. I mean that’s why do people, why are people searching for our gyms in their local area? Because they probably, they had the problem and uh, they’ve realized it so now they’re ready to go and uh, trying to find you and, and locate you. But maybe six months ago they saw one of your posts on Facebook and they didn’t have that same problem. In their mind. They may have had it, but they didn’t, they didn’t think about it at that time. So that makes complete sense.

Mike:                                          26:54                       Yeah. I was so irritated for years about car commercials mostly cause I wrote them and I hated doing it. But all of a sudden when I was looking for a truck three years ago, I started paying attention to truck commercials and it all made sense to me all of a sudden.

Greg:                                          27:06                       Exactly. And that’s, that makes complete sense. So Two-Brain media, we are, I mean, like you said, getting that content out there that we’re doing a done for you and then also a, a teaching version of that kind of, could you kind of explain, uh, what, what opportunities you feel like we are our avenues that Two-Brain media is going to go down to help business owners and gym owners.

Mike:                                          27:26                       Yeah, right off the bat, the easiest, easiest aspect is, is the done for you stuff. Meaning I have a pretty good network of people who are quite talented. It can do exactly what someone needs. So as a, for instance, I talked to a gym owner this morning who said, you know, I’d really, I like writing but it’s not, I would like to get some, some of what Chris had wrote in his content email about lighthouses. I’d like to get some lighthouse content, meaning those great big standout pieces that, you know, like our beacon across the Internet that pull people in and tougher to write. And I have people that can crank that out. So that’s a service that we’re looking at rolling out very soon. Uh, just so people can get that content and done for them. Some people have the skill to do it. Like for example, you know, a guy like Chris Cooper can write that stuff.

Mike:                                          28:09                       Other people can’t and we can get that done for them. We have the same aspects on the video end. Another common theme that we found with people is that people know that video is important and now Facebook is prioritizing video over just about everything else right now, but how many of us can, can do video, video editing? Some of us can, but some gym owners would be much better served hiring a video editor or hiring a videographer so they can go back to doing the stuff that they’re good at. And that’s, you know, that’s a pretty clear Two-Brain business principle. It’s like, what are you good at and what’s a good investment of your time? For me, blogging is a good investment of my time. Fixing a door at the gym, which I’ve tried to do is not a good investment of my time. I should hire someone for that, you know, and I’ve wasted. I remember talking to Chris on one of the last mentor calls I did with Chris. I said, man, I just wasted eight hours and $200 buying tools to try and pull a key out of a door. He’s like, just call a locksmith. Just call a locksmith dude, you know? And I did it and it costs me $30.

Greg:                                          29:06                       Exactly. So that’s the, I think I do the same thing though too. I mean like video really interests me. So I started building, I’m using final cut pro and using premiere and, and trying to use these different software cause I just really loved creating videos. I mean ever since I was a kid, I think my fiance has told me numerous times that I’ve probably watched every movie every created. And it’s because I just love, I love video, I love how they do the different lightings and they do the different scenarios and how different lenses can change, how a story gets played out in the music. I mean if you take music out of a movie, completely changes that. So I think I’ve personally dived into that, that side of it to create content for the gym. But in the opposite or the other side of this is, is, is like what, what you said, Chris is really good at writing.

Greg:                                          29:49                       That is probably my worst subject. English has always been my worst subject in school and it would, would not benefit me to try to write blog posts because I just would not be good at them. But having a service like Two-Brain media where I could hire somebody to write a blog post for me and create that for me and for my clients, it would, it would make it so much easier on me and I’d much rather pay for that, uh, then waste the time and basically waste money because my time is worth something, uh, on creating that. And that’s really the test. Like if you, if you say, if I said to you, okay, like Greg, I need, I need a photo of this, and you’re like, man, I’d like to learn how to take that photo, then you should learn how to take that photo.

Greg:                                          30:26                       But if it’s like, God, I just, then you should pay someone to take the photo for you and go on to stuff that you like. And that’s kind of the options that we’re, we’re helping people with is finding, finding people who can do stuff for them. And these are people that are deeply ingrained in the fitness community and entrepreneur community so that they’re going to be very in touch with, with gyms first of all, but also just business owners and small businesses because the principles as you know, transfer over really well. And then the other side of it, we have people who are very passionate about media and want, want to learn how to do lots of that stuff. And so we’re trying to put together those ideas of, like you said, I want to get better at video editing. Okay. How do we teach someone how to do that?

Greg:                                          31:04                       So there might be a situation, uh, I would hope to develop almost a media incubator where we can set up a plan that takes someone who’s interested, take them from say a D level to a solid B just with some basic technical knowledge and a little bit of instruction, much like you do in the incubator where it’s like we’re taking you from wherever you’re at to a greatly increased place. And then when you get to that growth phase, that’s where you start looking at like really wrapping things up and bringing in professionals for certain things. You know in that growth phase, you’re not doing everything yourself, you’re delegating and hiring a lot. I think now, now that I, I picture a, I’m putting a picture of course in my head of this and that makes complete sense. Especially if someone is interested in writing, writing more blog posts or if they have it, we could have another stream for creating podcast or another stream for creating videos and giving them the ability, like you said, going, going from, hey, I don’t really know a whole lot to at least knowing almost to where, where the professionals are at without having to go and buy a $25,000 camera or even a $1,200 camera because I’ve made that mistake before.

Greg:                                          32:09                       And, and being able to realize, hey, you don’t really need all of that, but hey, this is how you do it. Here’s some templates, here’s all this information and let’s walk you step by step to keep you accountable to creating this content with, with all of this, what, what is the different types of content, or better yet, what are the different types of, of avenues that we’re going to have for these gym owners or business owners that are wanting to get this content and, and learn. And like you said, having kind of like an incubation on how to teach them how to do these things. What do you see the future of Two-Brain to brain media doing for these gym owners or providing the content for these gym owners?

Mike:                                          32:46                       Well, I’d like to, the first thing I’d like to be able to do is, is, and we’re, we’re very close to that already, is just being able to connect gym owners to highly skilled professionals who can get stuff done for them really quickly and properly. And you know, that’s, that’s actually kind of the easy one because that network does exist and we’re just slowly making those connections now as we start. The longer term thing is that education component and that’s where we start looking at, uh, like a broad kind of media education where it’s just like the simple stuff from, you know, how do I, how do I focus a camera properly? No, just little stuff like that, that makes a huge difference. And how do we take, you know, how do we take a picture and make it three times better without doing anything different with equipment?

Mike:                                          33:24                       And that’s one of the things that I look at. Uh, when I look through gyms Instagram accounts, you could improve a lot of the photography pretty quickly with just some really basic stuff. And I’d like to be able to share that with people. We do some of that on our free, it’s called learn to connect on the Two-Brain media site . So there’s one article in there that says, you know, the one thing that will help your pictures be better immediately. And we’re talking about food pictures in that case, but that sort of, that component could be part of a media incubator. And then after that it becomes more of a tailored, you know, maybe even a mentorship education component where it’s like, Greg, I want to know how to do a podcast properly. How would I do that? And that’s where you step in and start saying, okay, look, here’s how we’re going to set up your podcast. You need this software, you need this hardware and here’s how you script the thing out so that you know you don’t have dead air and you don’t have Mike’s landline ringing in the background as might have happened earlier,

Greg:                                          34:15                       which nobody on here will hear, but we will definitely make sure we edit that out. But yes, the technical, yeah, exactly. Exactly. No, that makes complete sense though. It’s I think a, that’s how I’ve always learned. I mean I, I have a camera that has, that is decently expensive. I’d say $1200- $1,500 camera with lenses, but I don’t know how to take photos on it. I’ve always done video and if you listen to, if you talk to people that have done just, uh, the photography side of it, they don’t know how to shoot video with their cameras and vice versa. So you always assume, and I still get the question of, hey, why don’t you take pictures with the camera? And I said, I don’t know how I can do with my phone, but I don’t know how to do with the camera. So being able to learn that kind of stuff. But I like something that you hit on earlier was the ability, uh, we actually have some of that content kind of built out for you of of different things that you can find. Where is the best place for people to find that content?

Mike:                                          35:03                       So right now we’ve, uh, we launched the Two-Brain media website and so if you go to that and it’s a twobrainmedia.com if you head there, uh, on the upper right, you will see, learn to connect as our blog section and what’s in there right now. There’s nine articles and they’re just various different media tips and it covers everything from basic photography to linking your social media to your website to love letters, to how to create a quick video in 60 seconds that’s going to be bulked up. Chris and I have committed to pumping that up as much as we can. So there’s a constant stream of content for people. Uh, so that’s the first place to look. And uh, he’ll related to that. One of the other things that we want to do is we do want to create some things for uh, you know, for the Two-Brain family specifically where we can create, you know, really good lead magnets now, right? We’re trying to think of these things that we can give away to get people onto our mailing lists and so forth. So we’re working on creating more of that stuff that we can give to the, Two-Brain family. Uh, we have one that’s close, uh, that people can then use for free to put on their sites to generate leads. So we’re trying to create some, some things that are really a free resource for people if they’re struggling right now just to get started.

Greg:                                          36:06                       Excellent. So we will make sure that we link that in the show notes too so that people can jump right now. Now Mike, I want to say I saw which if people out there haven’t seen it yet will blink this in there as well. The video you created with your clientele, you created a video that basically was showing them with their, their work attire or, or, or their normal non gym attire. Uh, and then with their gym attire on and showing them, working out, showing them that, hey these are, these are the people that work out here that they’re just like anyone else creating those avatars. I thought it was amazing. What, what kind of sparked that catalyst tot actually building something like that out.

Mike:                                          36:41                       Yeah, there was a, a one of our Open theme nights, so we called it formal nights. So people obviously got points for dressing up and coming, you know, in we had five guys in Tuxedos for example. It was amazing and I really, I saw someone, I can’t remember the gym, so, uh, you know, full credit to whatever gym it was that I saw this, I saw them do a photo shoot in their gym and they just did like people in formal gowns. I think they had some fitness equipment in the background or the foreground or something like that. And I thought it was such a cool idea. And I was like, man, I love photography. Like that’s, I think if I wasn’t a writer I think I would try and be a photographer. So I wanted to try and recreate a photo shoot and at the very least I wanted my clients to come in and get a few of them dressed up to the nines with makeup and hair and nails and the whole thing and their best attire and leave with like a portrait.

Mike:                                          37:28                       And part of that is I want to get better at portrait photography. So it was a multipronged effort, but I wanted to see what else would happen after that. And my basic idea was before and after pictures. So they come in looking amazing and then they leave just, and it was great. It was the handstand pushup workout where everyone spent like five minutes upside down and then they staggered over. You got a picture with me with bloodshot eyes and red faces and sweat dripping. And I thought the effect is really cool. And even if it was related to a campaign I did on Instagram, if I think about a year ago where I took a tour of a number of people in the gym and then I just put their profession on the picture and I put it up on Instagram. And the idea was saying like, this guy is a bus driver, this guy’s an account, this guy’s a lawyer.

Mike:                                          38:07                       And the hope was was that bus drivers, accountants and lawyers out there would identify with it and say, wow, I’m that person. You know, it’s that whole relate-ability factor because as you know, so many times people see crossfit and they’re just like, I can’t do it. You know? And we know that’s wrong. Everyone can do crossfit. It’s not for everyone, but everyone can do it. I wanted people to, to see people, real people, smiling, happy people outside of that like gym, fitness, environment. And so we put up a sheet and I lit it up and we did portraits before and after. And then in the video that I put together, I did put in some workout stuff, but I prefaced it with a voiceover saying, you know, I don’t want you to look at these guys and immediately say, I can’t do this. I want you to just see smiling people, happy people, and know that they work out too, and if you’re, you know, if you’re like this guy, which you probably are, you can come to our gym. And that was the most important thing for me because I really, I don’t know how many times I’ve heard, I’m sure you’ve heard the same thing. I can’t do crossfit. That’s too hard for me and my, you know, we have 80 year old clients who do crossfit at their level.

Greg:                                          39:07                       Exactly, exactly. And I think that’s why I love that video so much is the ability to build out those avatars to look, hey, that’s me. Or Hey, I know somebody that’s looking for a gym that it relates to. That’s it. They are, they’re a lawyer. There are a doctor. And I thought it was an amazing, so we’ll make sure we link that in there too to that youtube video because I think it should spark some interest or, or even spark somebody to actually create their own for their gyms because I think it’s spot on. It’s exactly what gyms, uh, should be doing.

Mike:                                          39:33                       Give them some options like that where we have ideas. Like some of those people are struggling for ideas or concepts, you know, if I can just write up that concept and say, here’s what you need to do. You don’t, and maybe maybe you hire a photographer, maybe you don’t, but you just line up. So people take some pictures of them smiling, put it together in a video, here’s how you present it. And if we can do that for, you know, and gyms can copy those ideas, they can connect in their own markets and that would be fantastic if we could use, and that’s where we harness is kind of the creativity of the Two-Brain family to help everyone in the family generate some leads, find some clients that they can help.

Greg:                                          40:04                       No, I, I completely agree. Now, if, if gym owners, who listened to his podcast and they’re like, hey, I want to get, I want to get on the phone with Mike or I want to contact Mike cause I have an interest. Hey I would like to see them do this or, or any of that info. What’s the best way for them to reach out or to kind of be heard with a, their requests for us to build within this model of Two-Brain media because we, we really can go any routes. It doesn’t seem like there’s anything that would limit us, which ways we can go since, I mean you have so many connections and all the amazing people within the Two-Brain family, whether they’re doing photos or video or podcasts or blog posts or whatever medium it is, what’s the best way for them to reach out and kind of, uh, talk to you about that kind of stuff?

Mike:                                          40:44                       Yeah. The first place is twobrainmedia.com so on there you’ll see content, and buttons all over the place. Those all lead to my calendar and you can book an appointment to talk to me at any time. And I’ve talked to 20 of the people from the family already and it’s been amazing because I’ve, I’ve learned probably more from them than they’ve learned from me. But it’s really cool to see where some people are at. Some gym owners are very advanced with their media, some are not, but have amazing ideas. And so that’s a really cool thing. So I love talking to people about that. The other thing is in the, uh, in the Facebook group and it’s really cool there. Uh, I love it when people post media projects that they’re proud of or media projects that they want feedback on or just questions.

Mike:                                          41:20                       And one of the things I posted the other day, and like I’m trying to post as often as I can, instructional stuff in there, I posted something about imovie and how to use it to createhighlight reel videos. Someone immediately said, it might even have been you about, you know, what do I do with an android? And immediately five or 10 people jumped in and said, here’s a program I like, here’s a program I like, here’s a tip, here’s a tip. That sort of collective education is super powerful. And if there is a question that you have, you know, tag me, Tag Chris, tag a mentor. If it’s amedia related question, tag people in that group and we’ll respond. And then also you’ll have the community response. So I think those two places are really great thing and I would certainly love to see more of, the media that people are doing. I think they could post it. Like if someone creates a great video or concept or blog, throw it in the discussion group on Facebook and let’s, let’s take a look at it so other people can learn and then borrow ideas.

Greg:                                          42:10                       Excellent. Awesome. Mike, I want to say thank you so much, not only for starting this, this new avenue for, for gym owners and business owners to start creating the media that they want a or learn how to create the media that they wanted, that they need. So thank you so much. And then also thank you for your time for being able to jump on here and a kind of talk with me about uh, all the different things that we’re going to be doing within Two-Brain media and uh, the amazing story that you had and what you’ve done so far and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for us.

Mike:                                          42:40                       Yeah, it’s my pleasure. I’ve been so inspired a as a member of that group and the Two-Brain business group for so long to see all the cool stuff is in there and now I’m even more thrilled to be able to interact with people more in this role. So it’s, we’re really excited and we’ll have more information for everyone soon about what Two-Brain media will do.

Mike:                                          42:55                       Awesome. Thank you Mike.

Mike:                                          42:56                       Thanks Greg. All the best to you.

Speaker 6:                               43:00                       As always, thank you so much for listening to this podcast. We greatly appreciate you and everyone that has subscribed to us. If you haven’t done that, please make sure you do drop a light to that episode. Share with a friend and if you haven’t already, please write us a review and rate us on how what you think. If you hated it, let us know if you loved it even better.

Speaker 7:                               43:25                       You guys later.


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