Watch the episode here:
Listen to the podcast here:
Joint Venturing And Saving The Ocean with Rich German
I want to invite you to go over to the Promote, Profit, Publish Quiz. You can find it at www.PromoteProfitPublishQuiz.com. Find out how your skill set is setting up to what success looks like in the author-speaker platform-building world. That’s a great place to evaluate, find out and compare to success where you’re at and where you need to improve.
I’m excited for our guest because I used to work for this guy. I coached with him a very long time ago when I was in real estate. He was the head coach over everything. His name is Rich German. He is a best-selling author, a speaker and a business and lifestyle coach. We’re going to get into the lifestyle coach piece with him, as well as joint ventures. Since 1999, he has conducted over 18,000 individual coaching sessions. He’s the Creator and CEO of the JV Insider Circle, a powerful community that supports coaches and experts in building their business via joint venture partnerships. He’s also the creator of an amazing book called Blue Laguna. It’s a photo book of dolphin and whale images taken from his stand-up paddleboard. You’ve got to see this book. He goes out in the middle of the ocean with a GoPro on his head in pods of orcas and blue whales. It looks like it’s pretty scary stuff. He’s also the Founder of Project O, a nonprofit whose goal is to protect the ocean and the sacred life living in it. Rich lives in Laguna Beach, California. When he’s not working, he can be found on his ocean paddleboard with the dolphins and the whales. Welcome, Rich.
I don’t even remember that I used to coach you in real estate. Until you said that, I have zero recollection of that. I have tuned that part of my life completely out.
I have a very funny story. First of all, I coached with Mike Ferry and you were in the calls. I had my day job. I was going in at 2:00 in the morning and was done by 10:00. I would go home, take a nap, get out there and start prospecting. We were on a group call and I fell asleep. I was snoring. You called me afterwards and gently scolded me about why don’t I know how to mute myself. Later on in life, when I met you, I slinked around for a long time like, “What if he remembers that I’m that snoring flake?”
I used to lead meditation calls a few years ago. I had people who would fall asleep during those, but never on a training call. First of all, having a 2:00 AM to 10:00 AM job is not a day job. It’s a graveyard shift job.Connect with other people in your niche who have an audience that you want to be talking to. Click To Tweet
When I got into real estate, I changed my schedule so that I had the day to go out and prospect. When you were over at Tom Ferry, I got incredible results with Tom Ferry. I was the number one listing agent out of 400 in my office. That’s what made me call you for the Joint Venture Insider Circle. I already knew you. I think I liked you. I was still a little resentful that you scolded me for snoring.
If you would have stayed awake during my calls, maybe you would have known if you like me or not for sure.
I got involved a long time ago with the Joint Venture Insider Circle. One thing I noticed over and over when I was a coach for you was that people came to the event, they saw the shiny objects, the big names you have onstage for Shark Tank, the Lisa Saseviches of the world and thought, “I’m going to come in and get those people to promote me,” with absolutely no idea what it takes. Can you talk a little bit about what it takes and what this is all about?
First of all, thank you for having me. I rarely turn down interviews because they’re always fun, especially because it was you. I forgot about this past life that we had together. You’ve been not only a member of JV Insider Circle, a client of ours, but I’ve been a client of yours. It’s always fun to talk and work with people that I’ve known for years and have this conversation that we normally don’t get to have. I’m excited to be here.
People come into the Joint Venture Insider Circle with the idea that, “I’m going to connect with all these people on a big level and they’ll say, “I love you. I love what you have.”” That’s not the way it works.
They do that probably because they don’t listen to my training. In my mind, joint ventures are a superior mechanism for growing your business. If you’re reading this, most likely you are some type of an expert, maybe a coach or an author. The last big work Juliet and I did together was creating my photo book. You’re a speaker or someone with a message, a mission and you want to get it out into the world in a big way. In my mind, joint venturing is the best way to do that, especially if you don’t have an unlimited marketing budget because they don’t cost anything to do. The idea is that you’re going to connect with other people in your niche most likely who have an audience of people that you want to be talking to. The idea is that you’re going to hopefully convince them that they should promote you to their audience. This leads into your first question. When I get asked what’s the biggest mistake that people make when they do joint ventures, it’s approaching someone that’s at a much bigger level than you are and asking them to promote you without offering them anything under the gate. That’s number one.
Number two, you’re probably not ready to have someone like Lisa Sasevich or Christian Michelsen promote you. It’s a powerful thing. If you can get a big player like that who has a huge reach to promote you, that’s going to drive a lot of eyeballs to whatever you’re promoting. You’ve got to be ready for that. The way we train people is to start small. We recommend that people, in the beginning, especially within our JV Insider Circle community, to partner with people within the community that are at the same level as you. Get your feet wet and dip your toes in the shallow end of the pool before you dive in with the sharks. Get experience with promoting other people and with people promoting you. Start adding some people to your email list from that. Get confident in doing a promotion.
What I’ve been recommending to people is instead of doing big, fancy and intimidating launches with all kinds of pre-launch videos and all this different content, which most people are not ready for, just create a simple webinar. Find a JV partner and have them promote you doing either a live or pre-recorded webinar. I prefer live. You have the experience of getting on a webinar. You’re talking to a live audience, presenting your material and at the end, making an offer for people to buy whatever it is that you’re selling. There’s a skill to that.
For most people, even if Lisa Sasevich said, “You have something that’s amazing that my audience needs. I want to promote you,” in the rare case that would happen, I’d be like, “No. Let’s build up to the point where you’re ready for that.” When you do get a yes from someone at a high level, which is the ultimate goal, you want to make sure you’re ready. You have something that’s going to sell so that you make money, you get clients, your partners are happy because they’re getting commissions from it and then you can truly create a win-win. The goal of a joint venture is that it’s a win for everyone involved. It’s a win for your partner, for your email list, for your potential customers and you and your business.
I love that you’re recommending the live webinars because it’s important when you’re first starting out to get feedback from those people, like what was good and what didn’t work for them. If you’ve ever put a funnel together, it never works the first time. It’s a disaster. You’ve got to practice and find those disconnects and get them out. When I was in JVIC, you taught so much about relationships. I love those little circles at the event where we got to share and refine our messages.The real business you are in is the business of relationships. Click To Tweet
I’ve been saying this for years. Whatever business you think you are in, whatever niche you put out to the world that you are in, the real business you are in is the business of relationships. Especially using the joint venture model, if you can’t build a relationship with people, you’re not going to succeed at this model. I like to keep things very simple. There are steps involved in getting ready to do joint ventures and whatnot, but I can boil it down to two things. One is you having a great program, a product or a service that gets a specific result for your end user or for your client. If you can come up with a product or a program that gets a specific result that people need, that’s number one. Number two is you can cultivate a community of joint venture partners who will promote whatever it is that you want to promote. You’re going to win this game. You and I could probably list out people that we know that are highly successful as a coach, an author, a speaker or any expert or leader. I would guarantee every single time that we could say, “They’ve got a great program and they’ve got people to promote it.” That’s pretty much all you need.
Someone that was in your program made incredible strides in one year. I remember being at the first event that Jennifer Diepstraten was at and being at her table. She wasn’t sure. Look at her now. That year was the most incredible growth year for her. As part of this, you have been able to build that lifestyle that people dream about and build a staff around it, build your joint venture income, that residual income and turned that into a lifestyle that you’re passionate about. Can you talk about that?
It’s funny that this conversation started by talking about your real estate background because before I started my own company, I was working for another coaching company. I was working for Tom Ferry. I had to get out of the environment that I was working in with him. It was not an environment that matched the lifestyle that I wanted on many different levels.
Can I say it was soul-sucking?
You can. I’m glad you said that and not me. This was many years ago. Tom and I have kissed and made up since then. I left Tom and started my own company. Normally, people sit down and create a business plan and business goals on the first day. I did that on day two. On day one, I said, “This is the lifestyle I want. These are the days that I want to work. These are the hours that I want to work. I’m going to create a business based around my lifestyle first.” For me, my health is more important than my business. Everyone’s going to be different, but my lifestyle is living on the beach in board shorts and barefoot all day long. It’s working from home in a set amount of hours, the shorter the better and making the biggest impact that I can make in that time, empowering other people around me so that I can build a large company without having to be a workaholic and work 40 to 80 hours a week because that’s not what I want to do. On day one, I sat down and wrote it out.
Years ago, I made the decision that I don’t want to work on Mondays. I remember reading a statistic years ago that said more suicides occur on Monday morning at 9:00 than any other time of the week. I call it the suicide hour. I remember thinking, “If killing yourself feels like a better alternative than going to work, there’s a problem here.” I said, “I don’t want to work on Mondays.” Most people dread Sunday night because they’re already thinking about Monday. They get up and commute to a job that they hate. I’m like, “I don’t want to do that.” To this day, I rarely ever schedule anything on Mondays. I like to get up, go on the ocean, sit on the beach, do my thing, maybe write and create. I don’t want to have a schedule of set calls. That was an example of one decision that I made. Day one was all about lifestyle. Day two was creating a business plan and a business model that would coincide with that lifestyle.
As part of that lifestyle, you’re out on the ocean every day. You’re super passionate about pollution. Can you talk a little bit about what got you into that? I know that the No Take Zone in Laguna got you excited about that.
I have a buddy who came to town who lives on Kauai in Hawaii. We took a long walk through town. I was telling him the same story of how it all came to be. It was one of those things where the universe or God, whatever name you want to use, guided it. I moved into my house back in 2010. When I moved into this house, I had never been on a stand-up paddleboard in my life. It was a brand new sport at that time. I had no idea that the beach that I live on is the perfect beach to paddleboard out from. The way the beach is set on a little angle, there are no waves that hit the beach. Even if there are waves everywhere else, I can still paddle out. I also had no idea that there are more species of dolphins and whales here off the coast of Southern California potentially than anywhere else on the entire planet. I picked up this hobby of paddleboarding. I started paddling every single day. I started seeing dolphins every day. I’d be paddling and I’d be in the middle of a pod of dolphins. I’m like, “This is pretty amazing.” The creative part of me wanted to capture these moments. I bought a cheap waterproof camera. I stuck it in my pocket. I’d be paddling, pull up my camera and take some photos. That was fun. I got a little fancier and got a GoPro. I put it on my hat so I can shoot a video of what I’m seeing.
In the beginning, I was posting stuff on Facebook. I would take these pictures and videos of all different species of dolphins and whales. We have gray whales, humpback whales, blue whales, which are a hundred feet long and orcas. Paddling with a pod of orcas was what catapulted this whole thing to the next level. In the beginning, I started posting this stuff on Facebook and people seem to like the photos and videos. Over the years, I remember people kept saying, “You should make a book.” I always said, “I don’t want to make a book.” I didn’t want to make a book because I didn’t want to commingle my experiences out there with business. I always say the ocean is my church. It’s my sanctuary, my meditation and my everything. If I made a book and I was selling it, it felt like it might change the whole vibe.
On January 7th, 2015, I paddled two miles straight out in the afternoon. There was a pod of four orcas, the killer whales. It was a pristine day, the light and everything. The ocean was like a lake. These orcas came right under my board and I shot this video. I put the video out and it went crazy viral all around the world. If you Google, “Orcas Laguna Beach,” you’ll see hundreds of articles and whatnot about that encounter. That was my sign that there’s something more to this. It became clear to me that, “This is my calling. I’m supposed to do more with this.” That’s what led me to contact you to make the book, Blue Laguna.It is strategic to create a business based around your lifestyle. Click To Tweet
At the same time, I started a nonprofit. It’s been a few years in the making. We’ve got a couple of major projects that we are working on behind the scenes that we’re getting ready to launch that are all about protecting the ocean. We’re focused on things like plastic pollution, climate change, clean water and a lot of the main areas that are affecting the ocean. We want to empower people. We’re hitting that tipping point where people realize, “If we don’t do something to make some drastic changes, we are potentially in a lot of trouble as a planet and a species.” That’s my soul’s calling work. It’s an honor to do that work. I’m lucky that I was able to create JV Insider Circle over here. I have other people that do a lot of the day-to-day running of that company to free up my time so that I can focus on the ocean work over here. I love JV Insider Circle. That makes a real difference for people. The ocean work is my soul’s calling work. I feel lucky that I get to do any of those.
I read that you are spearheading something in Laguna Beach to ban Mylar balloons as well. People don’t realize the impact that they’re having on the ocean community.
It was a crazy story of how that came to be. I was paddling one day with my buddy and I was like, “What can I do locally to make a difference?” My brain goes, “Save the world,” and then it’s like, “If you want to clean up the neighborhood, start by sweeping your front porch first.” I’m like, “What can I do locally?” It was my buddy’s idea. He’s like, “Pretty much every day we’re out there and paddling and we pick up balloons.” People don’t realize that when they let their balloons go, they become trash and a lot of them wind up in the ocean.
I saw that a million marine animals would die per year from things like balloons and plastic bags that people discard in the ocean. We made the decision at that moment, “Let’s go after balloons.” It hasn’t gone anywhere. I went to the mayor and said, “How about banning plastic balloons in Laguna Beach?” The mayor is a total tree hugger so she liked the idea. I said, “What do you need me to do?” She said, “Go get a petition signed by a bunch of people to show that there’s interest.” I went out and got 1,600 signatures from people wanting to ban balloons. I took it back to the mayor. Laguna has banned a lot of things. She said the city was too busy to take it on. I’m like, “You told me if I did it, you would get it through.” Welcome to the world of politics. It’s still something that hopefully will happen.
By the beginning of 2020, I will be preaching from the mountaintops, we’ll include things like this. We’re getting cities to ban anything single-use like plastic bags, straws, Styrofoams, etc. At the end of the day, can I make a difference in the world? I don’t know but I feel like it’s something I have to do. Hopefully, a lot of other people feel the same way. Let’s do what we can. We’re not going to be here that much longer but hopefully, we can leave the planet in better shape for generations to come.
It’s one person at a time. That’s all it takes. There’s a new grocery store in Salt Lake City where they have reusable containers. You take the food products home and then you bring the containers back and they use them over and over. It’s a cool concept versus the bag. It’s not just the bags. If you went and got a meal, instead of the blueberries being in plastic, they’re in this reusable container. You put them in and weigh them.
I have to check it out. I go to Trader Joe’s and they wrap everything in plastic.
Project O is the name of your foundation. People can find you over on Facebook. You have over a million followers over there. Is that right or are you up over two million yet?
It’s a little less than a million. You can look at Project O on Facebook or go to my personal Facebook page. It’s where I post most things. I haven’t posted much on the Project O page because we’re building what’s hopefully going to be a global program. It’s all been behind the scenes. We have a lot of great nonprofit partners. It’s a little premature to be putting it out there to the world.
Go over there and like it. When they do put it out in the world, you’ll see it. First of all, where can we find your book?The goal of a joint venture is for everyone involved to win. Click To Tweet
My book is at RichGerman.com. There’s a link right at the very top for the book. You can watch a little trailer about the book. You can order your copy, either a signed or unsigned copy. I donate all the proceeds of that book right to the nonprofits.
He was on Fox News where they butchered his name. He is the rich German.
I was in LA. I try not to go there very often because of the traffic. I was in there for a very important meeting. All of a sudden, my phone started blowing up. People were calling and texting me all at the same time. I’m like, “What’s going on?” The messages were like, “You’re on Fox News.” To back that up, I had paddleboard with an 80-foot blue whale. My buddy who’s a good drone pilot, by total coincidence, happened to be out on the water at the same time. He shot a drone footage of me on this little board next to this massive whale. It was a crazy, cool footage. I didn’t do anything. He sent it to a lot of different news outlets. We were on Fox News in LA the day before. I’m getting all these messages like, “You’re on Fox News.” I was like, “No big deal.” They’re like, “You’re on national news on this show they called The Five, which I’d never seen before. As everyone was texting me, I was like, “Now I know who my Republican friends are.”
I was one of them. I love Dana Perino. She called you German and Greg Gutfeld was like, “Is he a rich German? What’s going on there?” It’s very funny. You have a Joint Venture Insider Circle webinar where people can find out more about that. Was it 25 to 30 minutes?
It’s a short little webinar that I created. If you’re interested in the topic of joint venturing to build your business, it’s the short version of what a JV is, how to get ready to do joint ventures and how to find partners to promote you. First, you’ve got to get ready to do a JV. That includes creating a hot-selling program that not only a JV partner would want to promote but also the public would want to buy. We talk about how to get a JV ready and where are the best places to find your perfect JV partners. It’s free. It’s our gift to you for checking out our conversation.
Also, you are going to have your event this 2019. What month is it going to be in?
It’s yet to be set. We’re going to be scheduling a lot of things coming up very soon but I don’t have any dates yet.
Go follow him over on Facebook. It’s a great event. Rich, thank you so much. It was nice to connect with you again.
Thank you for having me. Thank you for reading. I hope you learned a little bit. It was a pleasure.
- JV Insider Circle
- Blue Laguna
- Project O
- Jennifer Diepstraten
- Tom Ferry
- Project O on Facebook
- Rich German’s Personal Facebook page.
- https://JVInsiderCircle.com/juliet – free webinar gift
About Rich German
Rich German is a best-selling author, a speaker and a business and lifestyle coach. Since 1999, he has conducted over 18,000 individual coaching sessions. He is the creator and CEO of the JV Insider Circle, a powerful community that supports coaches and experts in building their business via joint venture partnerships. Also, Rich is the creator of BLUE LAGUNA, a photo book of dolphin and whale images all taken from his stand up paddleboard.
He is also the founder of PROJECT O, a non-profit whose goal is to protect the ocean and the sacred life living in it. Rich lives in Laguna Beach, California. When not working he can be found on the ocean paddle boarding with dolphins and whales.
His main website is www.RichGerman.com