IAM1705 – CEO Creates a Brand Tech Platform for Amateur Sports Team

Podcast Interview with Dom Einhorn

Why it was selected for “CBNation Architects”: Dom is a serial entrepreneur with a brand technology platform and has been in the digital marketing space very early on. I loved hearing how he talked about the pivots but one commonality is “impact” and how to make that impact within the organization. While the technologies and things in business will evolve and change, I liked that he focused on which is what doesn't change rather than trying to chase trends and predict what does change.

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Previous Episode: https://iamceo.co/2022/02/22/iam1289-ceo-creates-a-brand-tech-platform-for-amateur-sports-team/


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Dom Einhorn Teaser 00:00

So Dennis Rodman clearly stood out. Everyone needs to develop a hook, whether it's a team or an individual. We all have something deeply meaningful inside of us that makes us unique and authentic. That's the voice that we need to express.

Intro 00:17

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales? And grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview?

If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I am CEO podcast.

Gresham Harkless 00:44

Hello, hello, hello. This is Gresh from the I am CEO podcast and I appreciate you listening to this episode. If you've been listening this year, you know that we hit 1600 episodes at the beginning of this year. We're doing something a little bit different where we are repurposing our favorite episodes around certain categories, topics or as I like to call them, business pillars that we think are going to be extremely impactful for CEOs, entrepreneurs, and business owners, and what I like to call the CB nation architects who are looking to level up their organizations.

This month we are focused on technology. We're a technology company that does dot, dot, dot. Technology is no longer an afterthought or something that you might do and is actually a core part of your business. If you are a real estate investor, you're using it. If you're a financial firm, if you're a cleaning company, author, or speaker, you are using. If you are in any business, you are using technology, and if you're not, then you are probably going to be disrupted by an organization that is.

So this month we are going to look into purposing episodes that are around technology, whether that be firms or organizations that are actually using and investing in technology as a core part of their products and services or potentially those individuals that are using and leveraging CEO Hacks and CEO nuggets that center around technology and sharing ways that we can leverage it as well. Remember that you are a technology company that does dot, dot, dot. Sit back and enjoy this special episode of the I am CEO podcast.

Hello, hello, hello. This is Gresh from the I am CEO podcast. I have a very special guest on the show today, I have Dom Einhorn of CXSports. Dom, it's great to have you on the show.

Dom Einhorn 02:13

Thanks for having me on the show. My pleasure.

Gresham Harkless 02:15

Yes, definitely a pleasure to say at the very least. And before we jumped in, I wanted to read a little bit more about all the awesome things that Dom is doing so you could hear about some of those awesome things. Dom is the founder and CEO of CXSports, a technology platform that helps amateur and semi-pro professional sports teams, develop and monetize their brand and media assets. CXSports is wholly owned by Challenger X. A UK-based company that is preparing for public listing.

A serial entrepreneur with multiple startup access under his belt, Dom created the first online art auction back in March of 1996, and the platform was acquired by one of the largest auction sites in the world five months later. Dom then created Powerclick a digital marketing agency with 500 plus advertisers as clients. So Dom, super excited to hear about all the awesome things that you're working on and you've been able to do.

Are you ready to speak to the I am CEO community?

Dom Einhorn 03:02

I was born ready, let's go.

[restrict paid=”true”]

Gresham Harkless 03:04

Let's make it happen then. So to kick everything off, I wanted to rewind the clock, and hear a little bit more on how you got started, what I like to call your CEO story.

Dom Einhorn 03:11

Yeah. I go way back then. So to the very early innings of the digital space and the internet. I was born and raised in France, half-French half-German, moved to the US at the tender age of 23 in 1993 back then when the internet was called the information super highway. For those of you who are old enough to remember those terms. And that's when I got started in the digital marketing space. Initially building websites and selling them to a B2B client base. Again, at a time when people didn't know what a website was.

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So in the sense, it was like selling ice to Eskimos. But we realized very early on that we came up with a rule, the rule of one out of 37 because it took us 37 calls and real pitches to actually sell a website at that point in time. The idea was to get to the number 37 as quickly as painlessly as possible because that would mean another sale. Fast forward 28 years later, and obviously the world has changed quite a bit. And we've gone through a lot of different reinventions of who we are and what we do along the way. But one mainstay has always been impacting and building impactful campaigns and having a common denominator, that common denominator probably being investor acquisition along the way.

Client acquisition on behalf of our clients. And in more recent years, obviously, we've Geared our toolbox to the benefit of the sports industry as a whole, and more specifically, as you mentioned early on in the call, towards the benefit of amateur teams, sports teams, as well as amateur athletes with a heart focus on monetization. In other words, what we do unlike a lot of other companies because in the sports tech field, obviously there are a lot of operators, thousands of operators, we have developed a value proposition that is 100% based on driving incremental revenue to teams and to athletes via the CXsports platform.

You had mentioned that it is wholly owned by Challenger X, which is true, and that we intended to the public list. That actually happened the day before Christmas.

Gresham Harkless 05:16


Dom Einhorn 05:17

We're now, officially a public company in the UK, soon to be dual listed in Germany, as well as in the US. We're working on the process as well, but we are as of December 23rd, a public entity listed in London on the Aquis Exchange. Probably in Frankfurt within the next two weeks sometimes, and then in the US within the next eight to nine weeks. But you know what's been interesting in the journey. What I call the 28-year journey now between 1993 and 2021 now 2022 has been to see that a lot of things obviously have changed. And it's very difficult to be a trend chaser because none of us have a crystal ball that allows us to predict the future.

So what we tend to do is focus on what does not change. That's a lot more predictable then what does change? It's surprising to me that most companies and individuals always try to chase a trend. They don't know where which direction the wind is blowing one. When in fact, it's a lot easier to just figure out what hasn't changed. So let's take an example. Let's take Amazon. Yes. Obviously, they've changed quite a bit since 1995 when they first launched. They're no longer selling books and only books. They're selling everything known to mankind, but they're still selling and they're still selling to a relatively predictable customer who is expecting a certain level of service that's been improving along the way and is expecting a wide range of options and selections when they actually go shop. Obviously is expecting quality ratings when they when they use, for example, prime video today you see IMDB ratings, for example. Personally, if a movie is slower than 6.5 out of 10, I won't even touch it because my peers have told me that they didn't really appreciate that movie, and I don't like wasting my time. So I'm not gonna sit down and initiate a stream that will be disappointing to me. Not that it's foolproof, but it gives me a good indication.

So I think those are some of the things that will never change. People have expectations that need to be met. A customer, or client has a certain level of expectations that need to be met or exceeded. In our scenario, in our business, we've realized very quickly that in the sports business, you have on one side professional teams that are usually professionally managed. And then on the other side, you have a gap between them and the semi-professional and the amateur teams where you and I could sit down right now and look at a hundred logos of a hundred amateur teams and we would instantly know that are amateur just by looking at the logo. That is a major problem.

If we could only solve that problem with CXSports, it's a multi-billion dollar problem. In other words, If you run a small baseball team, basketball team, hockey team, whatever it is you need means to survive and means to develop your little brand. Ideally, get better equipment, get better staff, better players, and all that costs money. But if you're starting with a 10-yard, 20-yard penalty, a bad logo, And you're approaching a decent size sponsor in the hopes that they will actually financially support your team very often for them, it's not about the money, right? It may be if the sum that you're asking from them is extravagant, but if it's a reasonable sum, the first thing they will look for is to see if the relationship makes sense. But if your logo, if your image, if your brand, is pulling them down. They will not take that risk for branding reasons, not for monetary reasons. So usually the first thing we advise to teams, again, we took over our local rugby team a little less than two years ago here. So solar rugby was founded in 1903.

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So it's a 118-year-old team. And the logo had been revisited, I believe, in the late fifties, and early sixties. For the local team, the emblem is a salamander. And when I looked at the logo, I couldn't tell whether it was a freshwater eel or a grass snake. So clearly there was a disconnect there between people and for sponsors. When you explained to them our emblem is a salamander. Why is it really a salamander? It looks more like a snake, right? It's not a snake. And then you are wasting your time. And in fact, it becomes a major obstacle in getting to where you need to be. So everything starts with most things, right? No matter what it is that you're selling, even if you are a solo practitioner, if you're a person and an athlete, a singer-performer, you're a brand at the end of the day, right? And that brand either has a positive or a negative connotation, or it's just plain vanilla. Okay? But in order to break through, you need to be different.

That's the key term. If you're not different, you're not standing out from the crowd. I take a perfect example. Dennis Rodman, who by the way, used to be one of my clients, so Dennis Rodman, clearly stood out, right? When everybody was bald or had black hair, he had blue, pink, white, yellow, any hair you could clearly, people watched the game. Like, oh, this is Dennis Rodman, right? Everyone needs to develop a hook, whether it's a team or an individual. We all have something deeply meaningful inside of us. That makes us unique and authentic. That's the voice that we need to express as marketers, and that's something that is a mainstay. Going back to the original discussion that we had, what hasn't changed, right? None of that has changed. People still react to storytelling. That's the difference between a great movie and an average movie and a bad movie.

Gresham Harkless 10:39

That makes a lot of sense. And do you feel like because I was gonna ask you for your secret sauce, and it might be actually that, which it could be for yourself, the organization, or a combination of both?

Dom Einhorn 10:48

The first thing you need to do is you write your own storyline and really craft what makes you different. Knowing that if you're staying within the mold of everybody else, you're dead. Nobody is interested in something average or below average. So you have to, first and foremost, before you go out and make a splash, before you go out and secure a million followers on social media, you have to know what your message is, what is deeply meaningful to you, to your brand. What makes you stand out from everybody else? What makes you unique? And once you really feel that and you feel it in your gut, and it's a very emotional thing, this is me. Clearly, I can live with that. I don't have to play an act. I don't have to be an actor. It has to be truly representative of who you are and what you stand for. Only at that point can you really go out and start communicating.

So someone from the outside with a fresh perspective needs to come in and say, oh, I get it right. Let me, is this who you really want to be? Is this how you currently positioning yourself? And then by way of coffee, discussion. You find out what that unique value proposition is and you get an aha moment. When you have the aha moment, you realize right away because the team manager, the president on the other side, or the athlete is gonna say, oh my God, never looked at it myself this way. I get it now. This is truly me. I can run with that message, but you first have to get to that gut instinct. Okay. It's an emotional decision. It's not an intellectual decision. You feel it once you actually put it in the right words, and that's part of the process. Only at that time does it make sense to then reverberate that message and get it out to the masses because you really feel good. It's hitting the right court.

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Gresham Harkless 12:23

Yeah, that makes so much sense. And that's so powerful. What would you consider to be, what I like to call a CEO nugget? So this is a little bit more of a word of wisdom or piece of advice. It might be something that you mentioned to us that you would tell your favorite client or if you hopped into a time machine, you might tell your younger business self.

Dom Einhorn 12:38

The biggest nugget probably is just through my personal experience. The ability to say no is one thing. And closely related to that is how you rate people, projects, and ideas. When I was my younger self, when I was half my age, when I was 25, I had a discussion with my dad, who is a very wise old man today.

He's 82 years old, and he told me one day and sat me down. He said, you're doing the right thing and the wrong thing at the same time, and I'm rolling my eyes. Okay, what is it, Dad? He says we're both rating people on a scale of zero to 10, however, you're starting everybody off at 10, right? I start everybody off at zero.

You're setting yourself up for disappointment. I am never disappointed. I only have good news because I'm not expecting anything from anyone and they're just slowly climbing up the ladder if they're actually doing the right thing. I was like, okay, I can take that. It's a nugget that as I grew older year after year, zero to 10, Just start off at zero and you cannot be disappointed.

Gresham Harkless 13:35

Yeah, absolutely. No, I appreciate you so much, and in sharing that. So I wanted to ask you now my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO. We're hoping to have different quote and quote CEOs on the show. So Dom, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Dom Einhorn 13:46

We might sign like a platitude definition of a CEO is someone who never gives up, who persists all the way through to success, no matter how many failures he comes across. In whatever he does, he always keeps his eye on the prize. And when I say the prize doesn't necessarily mean a monetary prize, it's the overall objective. I think money comes by way of fulfilling an obligation to the people who are buying from you.

A CEO is the ultimate problem solver. Again, if I compare how easy it is and how cheap it is today in 2022 to start a business versus 1993, let alone before, come on, you have no excuse not to focus on something that's really important for you. Figure out the first question you should ask yourself is, again, going back through authenticity and writing your own storyline. How do you wanna be remembered by?

So if you wanna be remembered as someone who invented the solution to cancer, any type of cancer, okay, focus on that. If you want to be remembered as someone who brought enjoyment to kids via music or arts, focus on that. That's a huge problem as well, right? Don't invent problems, we have plenty.

Gresham Harkless 14:57

Dom, truly appreciate that definition. Of course. Appreciate all the insight and knowledge and, impact that you're having as well too. What I want us to do now was pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional, that you want to let our readers and listeners know, and of course how best people can get ahold of you and find about all the awesome things you and team are working on.

Dom Einhorn 15:13

You can find me on LinkedIn. Dom Einhorn means unicorn in German, hence the unicorn incubator, which I'm running here in the southwest of France. LinkedIn is the best way to get ahold of me, cxsports.io. If you have a team or if you're an athlete, you're looking for incremental ways to monetize a team or you're influenced as an athlete, feel free to reach out.

We've developed a number of very simple modules. That are free. So we're not charging you anything to get started with us. We're gonna help. We're here to help you make you succeed.

Gresham Harkless 15:40

Awesome, awesome, awesome. Thank you so much again, Dom, for, all the awesome things that you're doing. We're definitely gonna have the links and information in the show notes as well too so everybody can follow up with you and connect with you, hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Outro 15:50

Thank you for listening to the I am CEO podcast, powered by CB Nation and Blue 16 media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co. I am CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Want to level up your business even more? Read blogs, listen to podcasts, and watch videos@cbnation.co. Also, check out our I am CEO Facebook group.

This has been the I am CEO podcast with Gresham Harless, Jr. Thank you for listening.


Dave Bonachita - CBNation Writer

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(CEOBlogNation.com), podcasts, (CEOPodcasts.com) and videos (CBNation.tv). CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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