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IAM1793 – Who’s Interviewing Who? Eric X Frank X Gresh

Podcast Interview with Eric Koch and Frank Goodman

Why it was selected for “CBNation Architects”:

In this episode of CEO Podcasts, titled “Who's Interviewing Who? Eric X Frank X Gresh,” host Gresham Harkless Jr. sits down with Eric Koch of Creative Marketing Zone, Frank Goodman of Bleeding Bulb, and Ana Davalos of Alejo Media to discuss their experiences in digital marketing, future trends in the industry, and common mistakes that businesses make.

The conversation is more of a casual discussion among peers than a traditional interview, with the group sharing insights and observations based on their own experiences and perspectives.

The episode provides valuable insights and advice for entrepreneurs and business owners looking to improve their digital marketing efforts and stay ahead of emerging trends.

The episode also includes links to previous CEO Chat and I AM CEO podcast episodes featuring the guests, providing even more resources for listeners to explore.

Check out one of our favorite CEO Hack’s CEO Web Shop. Get your free audiobook and check out more of our favorite CEO Hacks HERE.

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Eric Koch Teaser 00:00

I truly believe the real power of social media is building relationships with folks and networking and just going that route versus trying to focus your energy on ads. Yeah, yeah, yeah. No, definitely, and play the long game.

Frank Goodman 00:12

Yeah, for sure. And even as far as the ads go, it's like you don't really wanna just do ads without a strategy either, right?

Intro 00:19

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 00:45

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 over 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, the business pillars that we think are gonna be extremely impactful for CEOs, entrepreneurs, business owners, and what I like to call CB Nation architects who are looking to level up their organizations.

This month we are focused on the visibility game, a.k.a. marketing, advertising, PR, and sales. I often say the name of the game is being found, and these tools will help you to do that. We have heard the philosophical question, if the tree falls in the forest and no one is around, does it make a sound? If there's a really, really great product or service and no one knows about it, how great is it really? What impact does it ultimately make? This is where we will go into this month looking at visibility, branding, marketing, public relations, sales being the lifeblood of businesses. Building many companies and so much more.

This is probably one of the most exciting and probably the most excruciating topics, but we hope this month to demystify or maybe even vanquish the fear and hope and arm you with the tools to be able to increase your visibility. So buckle up and sit back and enjoy this special episode of the I AM CEO podcast.

This was who's interviewing who that we put together where it was just three of us sitting around just talking about certain things related to digital marketing. Everything from like how we got started in business, future trends that we see in digital marketing, even mistakes that we see people make. But it's literally us just sitting around just asking questions of each other. It wasn't like a interview of this person or a solo podcast where one person spoke the entire time. It was just an opportunity for myself, Eric Koch of Creative Marketing Zone and Frank Goodman and Bleeding Bulb to really just, touch on some of the things that were happening in business, some of the things that we see in our specific world and just perspective and things that we feel and having a conversation would also be a benefit to hearing as an entrepreneur and business owner.

I thought this was really powerful, just again because it wasn't scripted, it wasn't, say this here or you get the questions. Before it was literally us just sitting around talking about all these things related to digital marketing trends and all these phenomenal things. How podcasting has impacted some of our businesses and things like that. If you want to, make sure of course to check out all the different interviews. I've been blessed enough to have had Eric Frank on the CEO Chat podcast number 75 and Frank, check out the I AM CEO podcast number 48. Really what you can do is envision like ushers all sitting around at a coffee shop and just literally talking about business. But the only difference was we actually had microphones, so you can hear what we were talking about at that point. But, again, we weren't at a coffee shop or anything.

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We were actually at the headquarters for Alejo Media where Anna Davalos from Alejo actually allowed us to get the opportunity to record there and that was pretty awesome. Of course checkout I AM CEO number 47 where I had the opportunity to interview her as well. Again, this is really powerful, this general opportunity, us just just talking  about all these things that are going on in business and how it can impact and benefit you as an entrepreneur and business owner. So definitely, sit back and enjoy this, Who's interviewing who featuring myself, Eric Koch and Frank Goodman.

So I wanted to kick everything off because I had both you guys like on my podcast. So I had opportunity to hear your stories, hear what got you started, but it's funny, when I was talking with you Eric, I feel like I had the most connection because like when I was on your podcast actually, we talked about I used to work at Circus City and you worked at Comp USA.

So we had a check. There you go. There you go. We talked about like just working retail and getting started and all that stuff. So I wanted to hear I guess, a little bit more about what got you guys started.

[restrict paid=”true”]

Eric Koch 04:27

Oh wow. Radio Shack got me started. I'm kidding. Is way back. Yeah, it's way back. No, that was actually my first early sales experience. The funny thing is, my background is actually in sales, so it's cold calling, knocking on doors, pounding the pavement, smiling and dialing, dialing for dollars. I don't even know if they use those terms anymore or if companies still use those practices. But yeah, that was my background for years. I actually graduated with a marketing degree, but I didn't actually get into marketing until about 2010, 2011. And I wanna say I faked it till I made it. So, yeah, I actually started searching for jobs for social media at about 2011. That actually landed me 13 job interviews in two weeks at that time with all these different companies.

And so when I'm on the interview, one company, they decided to hire me. I remember coming home and I was like, shit, what do I do now? I need to actually learn this shit, social media. I was like talking it up during the interview and they had all the buzz words. That was my first experience working in an agency. Then I worked there for about a year or so, and then I went off and worked for another company. But my company started off as a side business, side hustle for a couple years and then it got to a point where it couldn't be a side hustle anymore. I had four clients and I just couldn't work full time doing this. I was already burning the midnight oil, every day of the week and on the weekends. I have a family, so I was just gosh, there's just not enough time in the day, so I had to really just go off on my own.

I actually took my last employer as one of my clients. I've been with them for a few years and I was doing great work for them. So I went up to them and said, hey guys, I've been doing great work for you guys, we love each other, so not like that, but yeah, I was like, here's my recommended pricing, they already knew eventually I was gonna go off of my own, but I said, here's my recommended pricing scope of work and let's do this thing. That helped ease it when I went off of my own. So that's how it all got started for me.

Gresham Harkless 06:23

Yeah, that makes sense.

Eric Koch 06:24

Not sure about the why. I'm still trying to figure that out. Sometimes it's maybe because I wanted to sleep all day and not do anything, not work for the man, yeah. Surprise. That wasn't the case. But I love honestly, being here with you guys, this is fun. I can't do this if I'm in a regular nine to five, and honestly I'm too creative for a nine to five, so, yeah.

Gresham Harkless 06:49

Same thing for you, Frank.

Frank Goodman 06:50

Yeah. I was actually Radio Shack as well.

Eric Koch 06:53

Were you? Ok?

Gresham Harkless 06:54

I didn't know that. See didn't, oh, ok. Not about Circus City though.

Frank Goodman 07:01

Went spot though. That's spot definitely was needed at the time. The way that they even teach you how to go about sales and just even the way that you ask questions, the way that you go about conducting the whole conversation and guiding that conversation. Impactful. And that kind of opened me up to say man, they made me feel like you can really sell anything.

Eric Koch 07:20

Yeah. You absolutely.

Frank Goodman 07:22

You can really sell anything. So that was really helpful. Even when I was doing Best Buy, I was actually on the side, already doing like Martin and Booze Island and all that type of stuff. But I just decided to build on the side just because I had time as weird as that sounds. But it was good connecting with different people and still continuing to polish up those skills, like interacting with people, getting into working on upsells and finding out, tapping into emotion, and things like that.

It was like experiments, running different experiments, its playing around and understanding a little bit more about psychology and things like that. So I actually piqued my interest at that, but, we started as a tech shop, so, my background is, Engineering. I did like undergrad, computer engineering, and grad system engineering. So everything was really about technology and at some point I realized that all these products that we were creating for different customers, they didn't really know what to do with it after that. So I felt like we really weren't serving them in the best way possible. Leaving them out there with this new website, thinking that if I make it, they will come.

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Gresham Harkless 08:22


Frank Goodman 08:24

With the app, put on an app and sits there. So I was like, you know what, like as far as building a business, we had to build our own. Why wouldn't we share our experiences? Why wouldn't we continue to experiment more and just give that to the people? So that's when we took it on and started going more in the marketing on the space. Yeah. Yeah.

Eric Koch 08:43

Oh man, Radio Shack days. It's so funny, man, no customers walk in there. I never thought that we were probably working around the same time at Radio Shack, but I just thought it was like a place where people go to get batteries or wires for stuff. Next thing you know, I was like, we're popping cell phones. We're selling TVs. We're signing up for the Radio Shack card. We're maxing out that card.

Gresham Harkless 09:03

Really? They didn't have all that stuff in the Radio Shack near me. I know. I had tried. I applied for Best Buy. They didn't hire me. That was the first job applied to, but I got hired at Circuit City because they had all the commission people. I guess they were hired right before me and then they fired all of them. So then they hired all of us out of high school. So I was making like 8.75 out of high school and I was like a king.

I thought I was gonna make it. Yeah, that was like, just from that I need to go to school or nothing. 8.75, I'll be good. Yeah.

Frank Goodman 09:30

Yeah. That's funny.

Gresham Harkless 09:33

That's exactly how it was, but you know man. Yeah. But it's so funny because I learned so many like people's skills. Like you what you were talking about, I started thinking about like the upsells and all that stuff. Do you want to get the maintenance package with that? Like all that stuff you still start using now, but that was really like the foundation of everything. I felt so.

Eric Koch 09:50

Yeah, they had some program, it was like always, it was always be accessorizing or something like, so it's like they buy the cell phone, then you got to sell them the case and the charger.

Gresham Harkless 09:59


Frank Goodman 10:02

That's where the money comes from anyway. Yeah, exactly. The main device is not the profit. Yeah. Their own Radio Shack stuff. Yeah. Yeah.

Eric Koch 10:09

But true. I truly believe that. And I don't know, I've run into marketers a lot. I don't know if you guys do as well, but they don't have the sales background. They don't have any type of emotional connection or they feel like they're good at maybe behind the scenes or working stuff, digital stuff or social media. But when it comes to like actually having conversations that actually build relationships, or even sales process-type stuff, it's totally awkward for them, and they don't feel comfortable with it.

So, yeah, I think it's important for anybody, no matter what business or background you're in, to have some sales experience. At least figure it out. Get, find out, get uncomfortable, because I don't mind if somebody says no to me now. Yeah no means next. It's closer to it. Yes, exactly.

Gresham Harkless 10:52

Closer to it. Yes.

Frank Goodman 10:53

Got to be like one of the most important pieces to growing a business. No question. If you can't sell exactly. It's not an option. Like this is something that is required.

Eric Koch 11:01

Yeah. I mean at some point you have to learn.

Frank Goodman 11:03

Yeah. I met a former IT consultant, he works for a company now and I was like, why did you decide to stop your consultancy? And he's like because I hated sales.

Gresham Harkless 11:12

That's crazy. What's funny is that they say sales is the lifeline of the business. I think Mark Yu says like the reason that businesses go out of business is not because of anything other than of sales. Yeah. So if you're not making enough sales and stuff like that, I feel like most people that start businesses, they're really good at something.

But usually, that's not sales. So they just start a business around like whatever it is they're good at, and then they forget that you have to actually sell stuff to be in business.

Eric Koch 11:36

Yeah. And I think maybe some people it's the word sales that maybe gets people all like a bad taste in their mouth, so, I'm more of it's like you're a consultant in a sense. We could just be talking shop and just like having a good time, having a good conversation and maybe something comes out of it and it's, Hey, that turns into a sale.

It's not like used car sales man, and, you know slimy-type stuff insurance guys. Exactly. As long as you're always giving value. That's what the most important thing is, especially in digital marketing these days. It's like always be giving value, so.

Frank Goodman 12:08

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Exactly, and that's the thing I always say don't go for the sale, just build the relationship.

Gresham Harkless 12:12

Yeah, exactly.

Frank Goodman 12:13

You know what I mean? Just make sure that you're giving that value and building that relationship. Because the relationship is core of everything, right? You can build that trust. If you can build that credibility, the seller is naturally gonna follow. Yeah so it's just let it flow.

Gresham Harkless 12:27


Eric Koch 12:27

It's like on LinkedIn when people reach out to you and the next thing you know, they're like trying to shove their product down.

Gresham Harkless 12:32

Yeah. I got a workshop coming up next week. I don't even know your name.

Eric Koch 12:41

I meet you for the first time and I'm trying to pitch a marriage proposal. Can we get the first base of these first, work hard first.

Gresham Harkless 12:48

No, that's funny. Yeah, it's crazy. A lot of people don't get that, like how big the relationship part is and it's like the long game and people just they wanna push and they do it on social media.

I know you probably know too, like I say it all the time, it's like Gary V says, no, jab, jab, right hook. You give, give, give everything then you ask. But you don't just say, Hey, I got this, I got that, and buy this, buy that. Yeah. You turn people off from that, so.

Eric Koch 13:08

Exactly. Yeah. I see that all the time, like clients. A lot of clients don't, especially mine, don't understand that. When it comes to social media, they think that it's just an advertising platform which you can run ads and you can target audiences, as you guys know. You can, but those are cold. That's a cold audience. It's not like going to Google and actually searching and finding the answer to your question. People don't go on social media to look at ads. People actually go on there to avoid ads, you know what I'm saying? Yeah. So you're working with a cold audience, that's why it's hard, you have to like have that good call to action.

You have to get them to stop in their tracks and have that good call to action, a good image, the good video, and then from there you got to retarget them. So it's not like as easy as some people think it is, when it comes to social media. That's why I truly believe the real power of social media is building relationships with folks and networking and just going that route versus trying to focus your energy on ads, yeah.

Frank Goodman 14:03

Yeah. No, I definitely agree on that.

Eric Koch 14:05

And play the long game.

Frank Goodman 14:06

Yeah, for sure. And even as far as the ads goes, like you don't really want to just do ads without a strategy either. You really should be thinking more, from a holistic view, you should really just be focusing on, okay, this and then what? Yeah. I believe you shouldn't really run your business off of ads. So there should be other streams like that can't be your primary way of making money. Then have prices go up and then what? Yeah. One leaves then what? It's just too much weight on that one source.

So it's important like that you actually come up with a strategy because marketing is not ads. That's a component. That's just a little piece. You know that's a piece of the puzzle. So it's important for your marketing strategy that you're thinking across more than just social media, more than just running ads and things like that.

Gresham Harkless 14:52

What's funny because when I do some presentations, sometimes I'll say they talk about the average millionaire has seven or streams of revenue, right? It's like you should have that same mentality when you're running your business. Shouldn't just be ads, it should be face-to-face networking, referrals.

Oh yeah. Facebook ads, maybe then Google ads. You're getting business from everywhere. But like most people are like, I get all my business from word of mouth. I don't need to do anything else. I don't need to have a website. I don't need to do SEO. I don't need an app. I don't need any of that stuff. Everything comes to me by word of mouth. But what happens if that drives up?

Eric Koch 15:18

Yeah, exactly.

Gresham Harkless 15:19

What are you gonna do?

Frank Goodman 15:20

Yeah, that's true.

Gresham Harkless 15:21

I appreciate you guys like taking some time out. I guess I wanted to give you the opportunity to just say how people can get ahold of you a little bit more about your business than anything else.

Eric Koch 15:28

Yeah, I guess I'll go for the That's where I'm at. You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, so I got a lot of freebie stuff you can take advantage of.

Frank Goodman 15:40

As far as me, you can find me on

Gresham Harkless 15:44

Awesome. Again, I appreciate you guys and yeah, that's it.

Eric Koch 15:47

Yeah, thanks. This is fun. Yes.

Outro 15:51

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 I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community.

Check out the latest and greatest apps, books, and habits to level up your business at This has been the I AM CEO podcast with Gresham Harkless, Jr.

Thank you for listening.

[/restrict] – End

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(, podcasts, ( and videos ( CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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