October 7, 2020

Episode – 02

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Kevin Harrington – The Deal Flow Show - October 8, 2020 Reply

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Shark Tank’s Kevin Harrington On Taking a $5 Million Company to a $1.3 Billion Company


Description
Kevin Harrington is an Original Shark from ABC’s Shark Tank. He is a lifetime entrepreneur and known as the father of the infomercial. He’s successfully launched many products that you see and use today.


Kevin Harrington appeared on the show to give our audience tips, strategies, and secrets on Deal Making. He also spoke about his new book, Mentor to Millions. Don’t miss this high energy episode!

What you’ll learn from this episode:
Success strategies
– How to deal with failure
– How to successfully brand yourself and your products or services
– How to be a mentor, how to find a mentor, and how to be a good mentee

Connect with Kevin:
LinkedIn

Full Transcript:

JP Maroney:

Hello and welcome to another edition of the deal flow show on JP Maroney, your host, along with my cohost, Paul Nicoline here, regional director from Harbor city capital. And, uh, we have a great guest here coming in remote because this guy is a busy, busy and on a book tour. And so we’re going to be talking about that as well, but Kevin Harrington, the original shark on shark tank. We’re going to talk about that. We’re going to talk about the deal flow process. We’re going to talk about your book, talk about deals that you’ve got working and, uh, look forward to diving into your storehouse of knowledge on what you’ve done over the years in terms of deal making process and how you approach that process as well as how do you recover from things that don’t work out, et cetera. So Kevin Harrington, welcome to the show.

Kevin Harrington:

Hey, great to be here, JP. Thanks man. I’m looking forward to having a deep dive into the world of deal flow. Let’s do it. 

Paul Nicolini:

All right. So, um, let me get started. Okay. Go fire away. How did you get started?

Kevin Harrington:

Oh, so I’m gonna go all the way back. Um, I was born in a family, uh, six one to six kids. My, my dad started out as a bartender and then he saved up enough money to own his own bar. Harrington’s Irish pub. At 11 years old, I started working inside his places and he had several then after that, um, from bars and restaurants make clubs, et cetera, but he coached me. And I say, he, I say I had an, a meant a mentor when I was 11 years old was my father. He would show me how they cleared the books at the end of the day and hiring and firing and suppliers and relationships and all that kind of stuff. So when I was 15, he said, now it’s time for you to own your own business. Kevin and I started when I was in high school, the driveway sealing business.

And then when I got to college, I started the freshman year, a heating and air conditioning company. And believe it or not, while I was going to school, I had 25 employees, six trucks going out every single day, but I was still going to college every single morning work till about 10, 11 o’clock at night back at school in the morning. By the time I got to my junior year, um, I had enough, I just couldn’t do both. And I, I quit school, my college dropout, but I continued to build my business, which grew to, we were a $5 million business selling heating and air conditioning. Well, you know, when I was 40, some years ago. So, um, anyway, make a long story short. Um, I continued my, uh, my entrepreneurial career. I sold my heating and air conditioning business, but one of my employees, and one day I was watching cable TV and the channel I was watching discovery went dark for six hours. 

I called the cable company and I said, I don’t know what’s going on here. But I thought I was buying a rent, you know, paying for, you know, 30 channels, 24 hours a day. And they said, Oh, channel 30 is discovery channel. It’s, it’s a brand new channel. It’s only 18 hours a day. And that’s when the light bulb went off. And that’s when I got into the, the, the, the putting products on TV business. This is the early eighties now, and we didn’t call them infomercials, but I was the guy that said, let’s, you know, I got six hours to fill. I was putting Tony little fitness and Jacquelyn lane and the juicer, George Foreman, Billy Mays, Arnold Morrison, Ginsu knives, all of a sudden, boom, boom, boom. I was filling airwaves all around the world. Not only in the U S we went to Europe, we went to Latin America, look the company public on the New York stock exchange. And we grew the company from, uh, the stock was a dollar a share. We grew at $20, a share grew to $550 million in sales. And we were over a $500 million market cap. So that, that was my, the early days of me as an entrepreneur. Okay.

JP Maroney:

Whenever you’re doing deals like that, and there was a time I’ve been like you I’ve been building companies a long time, not quite as long as you, uh, for the last 30 years. But there was a point in my life when I realized that the difference between one bill or another was how many zeros were after it. It was still a similar process. But for you, can you remember back of when you did what you at the time thought was the big deal of your life

Kevin Harrington:

Here? I was, um, putting some of these products and things on discovery channel. And when we started shooting these 30 minute infomercials, um, I’ll never forget one of the, you know, in the early days I would, I would go to the station and, and, you know, and I would give them, I would say, they would say, okay, we want a thousand dollars for the airtime. And I give them a thousand and I run it and I get $3,000 in sales and they would come back. Would you like to run it again? I’m like, yeah, but we just ran it. Is it going to work? They ran it over and over and over. I mean, literally every single day, the same show ran over and over. That’s when I realized I was in a massive, successful new industry, because there was 1200 TV stations over a hundred cable networks. 

And I was going to be able to run the same show. Thousands of times, tens of thousands of times, that’s just in the U S in English. Once I figured out I could run them in German and, and Spanish and Italian and French and Spanish and Japanese and Malaysian and dozens and dozens of languages all around the world. That’s when I said, shoot, once Eric tens of thousands of times around the world, you have a major, major oil gusher, okay. This is what we were creating. It’s like digging for oil, we’d shoot the infomercial. Boom. It would gush gush for years. The go income, you know, for years and years, if you look at the show, the total gym with Chuck Norris and Christie Brinkley, it’s been gushing for 20 years, it’s over a billion dollars in sales, in amazing situation. So I’m the guy that pioneered all this, um, you know, 10 years before Amazon years before QVC, I said, I want to go direct to the consumer with great products. And that’s what we did. And we built an industry. That’s, that’s your, um, it’s changed a little bit over the last number of years. Cause TV viewership is dropping now, but we’re following the eyeballs. And now we’re doing Facebook and Instagram and YouTube and all the other amazing places to sell products. 

JP Maroney:

I want to talk about how you’ve adapted to that in just a few minutes, but if you’re watching or listening to this episode of the deal flow show, you can get access to our archives as well as subscribe and follow us for future episodes@thedealflowshow.com. So Kevin, in those early days, you were a dealmaker, cause you’re on one side dealing with a product creator, right. And trying to put together the right deal. That’s going to feed the horse, give them what they need to build their business or their product line at the same time, how you can make money. And then you’re going on the other side and negotiating with the media and putting all of this together. What are some of the early lessons that you learned in the dealmaking process that have served you well as over this past decades of building your company?

Kevin Harrington:

Well, I mean, I think first of all is important. I believe if you’re going to have longevity in business, when you want to have a good reputation, cut fair deals. Yeah. I mean, you could cut a deal and, and literally take advantage of some of these people. And, and, and then, um, you know, they’re never going to bring anything else there. You know, maybe they’re going to tell you they didn’t understand the deal. So I always wanted the people we did business with, if I’m licensing the deal or I’m cutting a talent deal, cut a fair deal. Right. And, and, um, and then we learned quite a bit along the way. Like for example, at one point I had a dozen products on the air and they were, all of them were selling some more than others, but they all went through one merchant account.

And so I got a phone call. One day, the bank was grabbing millions of dollars out of our account because one of our products was having a quality issue and we didn’t know it, but people would get the product, they call the bank and say, please cancel my credit card order. This is a fat product. So we were dealing with, you know, I’m not a manufacturer, I’m a salesman. I’m finding the products, putting them up on TV, ordering goods from the factory and they’re shipping the product that’s defective. But now my merchant account is I’m losing it because they’re there, they’re sending me crap product. So, but I’m losing my merchant account across every part of my business, not just the one that was selling this bad product, because it was one merchant accounts. What we learned is every single product needs to be its own business.

It needs to have its own merchant account so that if you have an issue with that product, for whatever reason, you don’t lose your whole business, you just have an issue with that particular account and that particular product. So we’ve learned quite a bit over the years, cut fair deals, deal with the banks properly and the end of the day, it’s it. You know, we we’ve, we created an industry that is now long to stay. I mean, I owned as semen TV, inc, as semen, td.com. We had thousands of products all over the world in literally hundreds of thousands of locations all around the world, shelling our goods.

Paul Nicolini:

That’s great. That’s great. Uh, Kevin, can you tell us, how did you get involved with shark tank?

Kevin Harrington:

So, so all the things I just told you about or things I was doing as an entrepreneur and one day, um, I decided, you know, I’ve had some pretty good success. I should start creating some content, right. You know, I’m going to start writing some books. So I wrote a book and then I was promoting the book. I was out in just like we’re doing right now, kind of a podcast interview. I was doing radio interviews and podcasts. And all of a sudden I’m promoting my book who was hearing about this man, Mark Burnett and his team. Uh, they, this is now 10 years ago. They said, Hey, they called me, reached out to me, Kevin, we see you’re an entrepreneur. You deal with a lot of product people. We’ve got a new show called shark tank. Can you come out and meet with us? We’d like to tell you all about it. 

And I’ll tell you a funny story. Initially. I was like, well, let me Marcus said, I know you do some crazy things to those people on that survivor show. What is shark tank? Okay. So I remember thinking in the very beginning, it doesn’t sound like a business show. Does it? Shark tank sounds like a fishing show. Right? So, um, anyway, we, I sat with Mark and, um, we hit it off. I actually auditioned that day and he, they called me up shortly thereafter and said, you’re you’re you’re. We want to go with, with you as our first shark. So that’s why they call me the original shark. 

JP Maroney:

And dealmaking when you went into that, obviously you, you weren’t told if I remember correctly, you weren’t told a whole lot until you were on the, on the ground and they gave you a little bit more background on the show, but then you get into the deal-making process. Take that one deal. If you could, what is your process for due diligence and analyzing an opportunity to see if it makes sense for your business, for your mission, for your overall growth strategy, how it all fits together, 

Kevin Harrington:

Three questions. So, I mean, it’s, there’s a whole process that we use. I have, you know, checklist and checkpoints and things. I mean, if I’m look, let’s just focus on a product, for example, cause that’s, that’s been 90 plus percent of my, my business success has been in the area of products. So the first thing is, is it manufactured? Is it, um, uh, it, what are the cost of goods? What are the numbers? Do you have any proof of concept with this product? Um, the first thing that I really wanted to also start on it, cause I’m again a marketing guy. So I want to know, is there a great pitch we can create for this product? So, you know, what problem does it solve the product? Um, does it solve that problem in a unique fashion? Right? And so if you’ve got something that solves a problem, solves it uniquely has a magical transformation in the process. 

So let’s talk about a product that does that. Proactive skin care got the ranker, they did it, it solved the problem, got rid of your acne. It did it uniquely at this particular time with the ingredients that it had. And there was magical transformation. They had customer acquisition costs that were very affordable. And so as you look into the numbers, you know that at one point, those guys were raising money for that project because they had to acquire customers. But the, the revenue streams came in over the next eight months. So they were at a shortfall on the front end, so they needed investors. So I want to know, is there a customer acquisition cost? What’s the lifetime value of that customer also, that’s important. And, and now do we know these things and, and, and, you know, is, is the product a good product, et cetera, et cetera, is there any clinical test on it? 

That type of thing. So, um, I can also give you another example and just real quick, I’ll try to make this quick. Here’s a product I got involved with cold Chelsea’s about five years ago. I don’t know if either one of you ever heard of this product, but it’s an energy drink, but it’s no red bull and monster they’re in this business, but there’s the unique proposition to Celsius. And that is that there’s a, there’s seven clinical studies that prove that you drink one can of Celsius and it will burn 140 calories in your body. If you just sit, you don’t have to move, you don’t have to do anything. Right. So fitness people started jumping on the bandwagon here. I got involved. This was a little pub co stock was 10 cents a share. This is now five years ago. Um, I finally, by the time I, uh, I accepted the board seat and got involved in an equity position in the company upfront, it had gone to 22 cents.

So I said, okay, I’m in the market cap was $5 million. And as we had about, we had, we had, um, I forget the number of shares, but doing the math. It was, you know, uh, 50 some million. And it had gone up at, um, at more shares as the dilution was happening. So make a long story short. This product in the last five years has now grown. This company is not a $5 million company. It’s a $1.3 billion company now. Okay. So this has unique positioning and, and an amazing track record of success. So I got involved in this company in the, on the ground floor, and these are the kinds of products that I really love.

JP Maroney:

How have you seen things transfer translate? Cause you did say obviously viewership with television’s gone down over the years. The internet is the new frontier there and constantly growing and expanding more and more money shifting away from television doesn’t mean that people aren’t watching it, but how have y’all adapted your process and are there basic principles that still apply and you’re just using new technique or medium, or have you had to shift your, your principles and the process as well? 

Kevin Harrington:

A little of both, but this is the bottom line. And I think this is a phrase that I use when the viewership had dropped by 50% in the television world. There’s over 60 million cord cutters from cable TV. Right. So, um, the question is where did those eyeballs go? Okay. And so they’re on Facebook, they’re on Instagram, they’re on YouTube, they’re on Netflix. So what we’ve done is we’ve just shifted our selling messaging from GV over to Facebook and Instagram and YouTube. And so we, we’re now more of a digital company. And for example is finished the story out on Celsius. We never spent one dime on television promoting this product because it’s very expensive. What we did is we utilized fitness influencers, very powerful and celebrity influencers. So we were utilizing the likes of, of, um, uh, Flo rider, Chloe Kardashians and thousands of fitness influencers, people that wake up every morning and they tell their friends and their followers. 

 

This is what I wake up to. I drink myself. She is, gives me that chart. So marketing has changed. And if, you know, for example, I don’t know if you’ve ever, if you have a dog or if you ever heard of a company called bark box bark box, they send you a box every month and it’s stuffed for your dog. You open it up. And what BarkBox instituted was a program where they incentivized their, their people to not just open the box, but videotaped themselves, opening the box with their dogs. So now they’re opening the box, the dogs are jumping around, loving everything, and now they send that video to their followers, into their, their, their social media and boom, how many more people are getting BarkBox. This is a new form of media, sending videos of opening. The boxes bark box created a quarter of a billion dollar company because they get 600,000 customers sending videos of themselves opening the boxes. So the world of getting customers has, has changed. It’s follow the eyeballs, find influencers yes. And put together marketing programs for Facebook and Instagram and Pinterest and YouTube and all the new ways where the eyeballs have shifted. 

Paul Nicolini:

Sounds like you had a lot of success with a lot of products. Um, we’re interested in how, how do you deal with the failures, the ones that don’t work out and how do you manage that?

Kevin Harrington:

Yeah, it’s a good question. I mean, early on in the early days, I didn’t like failure and I was, you know what, always get very upset. Oh, we lost money. We wasted all this time until I finally figured out my business was, um, was, was a business that not everything was going to work. I had to understand that. And, and I, you know, I, I actually did some soul searching and I, and I, I, I went out on and found some, some great references in, in, in the world of failure. And one of the guys that I’ve been following for years, Winston, Churchill’s one of the smartest people that ever lived. And so Winston Churchill said it best is that success is being able to go from failure to failure without the loss of enthusiasm. Okay. So we were failing, but we would, if we would try to tweak it and test it, but we would try to find out what did we learn from this failure? 

And now let’s apply that to the next round. So, um, yeah, at the end of the day, I realized not everything’s going to be a success, but we were hitting on kind of one out of three of our successes. So we, if we had on one out of three successes, we had two out of three that didn’t work. That’s okay. That’s life. You get up, dust yourself off, go back and, and try a new one. So, um, so failure was something we learned how to deal with. And we, we would take the best things and lessons that we learned from those failures to apply towards our next launch or our next product startup launches, because we had great, uh, you know, with a one out of three success, let’s just get past two failures and we’re gonna, you know, eventually we’re going to get that success is going to come in.

JP Maroney:

You have a new book coming out. I don’t want to talk about that in just a minute. Um, if you’re watching or listening to this episode of the deal flow show, you can get access to our archives as well as subscribe and follow us for future episodes@thedealflowshow.com. We have Kevin Harrington on this episode of the show, delighted to have you coming in and remote. You’re on a book tour right now. I learned many years ago, the power of mentors and one of my mentors had a great quote. He said, if you want to be a master at anything, study what the masters have done before you learn to do what they have done, have the guts to do it, and you can be a master just like them. And it’s all about finding people. Who’ve done what you want to accomplish. Who’ve already, you know, bruised their knees and skin, their shins and paved the way. And mentors is so important. Your book, your new book is coming out and it’s talking about mentors. Give us the title of the book and talk about that just a little bit. In fact, give us a look at the cover. 

Kevin Harrington:

Here’s, here’s my book. It’s called mentor to millions. And, um, I I’m, I, um, as I mentioned, my father and I had, you know, he was my first mentor when I was 11 years old and he mentored me to start my own businesses and how to get things started. But I had amazing mentors, Zig Ziglar mentored me, Richard Branson mentored me. So I actually sought out some high level mentors. And I spent three days with Richard Branson at his Island down in Necker Island. And so, I mean, I’ll give you one example of an amazing mentor in my life. Um, I was, uh, in the CCTV business, grow my business to 50 million in sales. And then I flat line because I had financed our business out of profits. We took our profits and bought inventory, but now I was sitting with 40,000 orders that I couldn’t fulfill because they didn’t have the inventory.

So I went to banks and I said, Hey, look, here’s 40,000 orders. I just need the money to get the inventory. And they’re like, well, yeah, but you don’t have, you need assets. You need security against the loan and this and that. So I got turned down by five banks and I ran in, I searched the marketplace. I said, I need a finance mentor. Someone that can help me raise capital. One of my connections said, Hey, there’s a guy that just retired as a bank president. Maybe he’s a good man. You should talk to met with him. And he looked at my business. You said, wow, you’ve got an amazing business. I know why you got turned down and I know how to get you the money. He said, I’m going to make you a deal. You’re raising 3 million. I’ll get you the 3 million within 90 days, probably going to get it from one of the banks that turns you down already. 

Okay? And he said, there’s not going to be any cost, no strings attached. I’m going to mentor you. Now, at the end of that time, you’re going to have 3 million sitting in the bank. You’re going to say, Hey, let’s sit down and talk about our next things that we could be doing together. And if it makes sense, we’ll both do something. And if not, if I don’t like you and you don’t like me, maybe we just move in our own separate ways. So make a long story short. We shook hands, did the deal. Three months later, money’s in the bank from one of the banks turned me down. We cut a deal for him to stay with me long term. So that took us. Now we use that capital to go from 50 million to 150 million to 300 million to 500 million. And then we got another $10 million line of credit.

So, I mean, yes, without me running into that finance guy, I may never have gone beyond that point. And I just have to say that mentorship is amazing. And then the book mentor to millions, we teach you how to get a mentor, how to be the mentors, best student, where the mentors are, how they, how to structure relationships with them. And then there’s a journey that I take with one of my mentees. And he’s the coauthor of the book, Mark, Jim and I myself, have written this book published by hay house. And we take a journey together. And I’m the mentor. Mark is the mentee. And the book is about the magical transformation that Mark has in the process of this mentoring program that we go through 

JP Maroney:

At different points in your life and business, you’re ready for different mentors, right? So it relates to whatever level you’re at and the higher you go, somebody is not going to go from maybe a really small business to going and getting Richard Branson as a mentor. How do you know who you should be mentoring? What do you say about it in the book? Or what can you share with our audience about how do you know who you should approach to mentor you at this point in your business and how do you broker that deal? Cause it’s, at the end of the day, it’s really a deal because you’re asking for someone to give of their time and their knowledge in exchange for helping you get where want to go. 

Kevin Harrington:

Some mentors want to just give back and they there’s. No, they don’t charge. I mean, I have a lot of people I mentor, I don’t there’s no fees or charges or anything in the process. I just, I help them. Um, there’s other people that come to me like, Hey, you know, I was on shark tank. I didn’t do the deal, but they come and they say, look, um, I, I don’t need the cash as much as I just need you to help me. And I’ll give you a percentage of the company if you just help me. So, you know, I look at some of those opportunities, but one of the key things that’s important when you’re looking for a mentor is having somebody that has knowledge in your space. So, um, gentleman came to me, looking for helping. He was needing money. He was in the business of selling goods to the military and he was having a hard time with the chain of command.

 

He’d get to a certain level and he couldn’t get beyond that to get the approvals for these orders he was trying to get. So I took him over to MacDill air force base. I’m in st. Pete Tampa, Florida MacDill is central command here. And I said, Hey, let’s get a retired general that maybe is interested in helping you out because that’s their business model. They, after they retired from the U S military, they want to help businesses get compensated. So we hired a retired general, joined the team and he opened up every door possible. Um, and it was amazing. So get people that are in the space that you’re in that have relevant experience. Um, when I went in to get a digital marketing person, I went to Russell Brunson who started click funnels and asked him for some help. He’s a, one of the most impressive digital guys out there. Now I, you know, I’m not afraid to go to the biggest and the best, but sometimes people that are sitting there, if you’re ready, go for those, go for the big kahuna, go for the, you know, the shark to get them on your, your team. You just never know. And if they say no, that’s okay, you get up and go back at it again, because you will get a yes. Eventually to get to the right people 

JP Maronery:

You say for mentors on the other side, people that are, that have built up a lot of knowledge, are you suggesting that they, um, give her that time? You’re suggesting that they find ways to monetize that knowledge and becoming a mentor?

Kevin Harrington:

I think it’s both. Um, so I know that, um, I, I got approached by a gentleman in Peoria, Illinois. He runs a children’s home there. It’s called children’s home, 1800 kids, homeless kids come through there on a monthly basis. And he has been in the nonprofit business for 20 years. And he, and he was looking to do some new things in his life. And he approached me and I, and I said, here’s a man that every single is putting his life on the line with, with dangerous situations, kids that are homeless. And, um, and there’s COVID issues and all kinds of major problems, but make a long story short. I mentor this gentleman, his name is Matt George, and there’s no charge. I’m helping him market things. He’s writing books, he’s doing TV shows and we’re doing amazing things for him. So I love helping people like this.

Now, other people that come to me, they may, may be more just hardcore business. And maybe I’ll say, look it, you know, I can help you out a little bit, but then we’re going to have to talk about some, you know, some kind of a fee situation or some something that will incentivize me for an upside, because if some people are looking for just clear monetary success, um, yeah, I can help them, but I also may be interested in having a little piece of the action also. So I think there’s, there’s two types of mentors and it, you know, at the end of the day, it all depends on how you approach them and where they are in their life on, on, on how they might plan to work with, with you in the process.

JP Maroney:

Book is going to be you’re right now in the midst of your big promotion. This podcast episode will come out in the fourth quarter. When we release season one of the deal flow show, what would be the best way for people at that point to get access to information about the book?

Kevin Harrington:

So, um, this website will be up, it’s called Kevin mentor.com and, um, and that’s, uh, is certainly it, one of the beauties of what we do when you buy the book, you also receive 30 days of free mentoring, and it’s, it’s an online mentoring program, but I come in live also and do chats and followups. And then, um, we have, uh, you know, virtual mentoring also as part of it, absolutely three. So, um, so you, you know, you buy the book for $18 and you get 30 days of mentoring and over a thousand dollars of three bonuses. So do you need to go to either Kevin mentor.com or Kevin harrington.tv, and one of those places will have the info on the book. And, and also it’s always available in Amazon. Just if you go directly to Amazon, they don’t talk about these extra bonuses. So you have to come through us to get those bonuses. 

JP Maroney:

One of my most impactful mentors that I ever had, one of the things that he told me the very first time we were going to meet in person, he said, I want you to write down all your own answered, all your questions that you have. I want you to bring a tape recorder that was back in the day when we had those things that went around and around tape recorders. And he said, I want you to be prepared when we sit down and I’m going to answer your questions. I don’t want you to waste my time. What do you tell mentees in order to maximize the opportunity, the relationship and the time that they have with a mentor?

Kevin Harrington:

I think that’s a great story. You just told about that, your mentor, that that’s sometimes important because what happened, maybe that mentor was burned by another mentee. And I mean, that’s happened to me, I’ll sit with a mentee, I’ll spend two hours and we go through point after point idea after idea, and then we shake hands. Hey, hope you had a good, you know, you got some good ideas, mr. Mentee, and I’ll see you in a month. And then a month later we get together and, Oh, you know, jeez, I’m still working on those things you gave me to do last time. Sorry, I didn’t get a chance to do them all, um, or any. And, um, uh, but let’s have our two hour meeting and I’m like, Hey, I don’t think so. This is, if you’re not going to do what we discussed, you, you know, you need to be a good student of mine.

Okay. I’m not going to waste two more hours on somebody that didn’t put any faith or value in the first two hours that we spent. So it’s important that you become a good student, that you let that entrepreneur and that mentor know that you appreciate what they’re doing, that you’re taking action. And that’s the key thing is, and you know, I say act now, now is the time, especially if a mentor is giving you good advice. Excellent. That’s great. Kevin, what kind of people would you like to connect with from our audience or our past guests? Well, I like, uh, I like entrepreneurs that are in the product business, for sure. So I marketed over 700 different products, housewares, hardware, fitness, beauty, golf, fishing, you name it, every category out there. So if you’ve got a product I can help. Um, I invest money. I raised money.

Paul Nicolini:

Excellent. That’s great. Kevin, what kind of people would you like to connect with from our audience or our past guests?

Kevin Harrington:

Well, I like, uh, I like entrepreneurs that are in the product business, for sure. So I marketed over 700 different products, housewares, hardware, fitness, beauty, golf, fishing, you name it, every category out there. So if you’ve got a product I can help. Um, I invest money. I raised money.

I can do digital marketing campaigns and testing, things like that. But beyond that, I get involved in, in other enterprises. Um, if you have a public company, uh, I’ve been getting involved with some pub coasts. And, um, like I just mentioned Celsius. I mean, it’s not a bad track record, 22 cents to $20. That’s that’s the stock. Okay. I mean, there’s not very many companies in the history of the world that have had that kind of success, $5 million market cap, the 1.4, $1.5 billion market cap. Um, this is what I like to do. I like to work with public companies. I sit on boards and, and give lots of mentoring and great advice. And, um, um, you know, it’s, I think it’s, it’s it. What I love about companies being public is that there’s a monetization ability there. If you end up getting some stock in the company, that’s, that can be very powerful for somebody to be able to get in on the ground floor of an opportunity. So, um, I think I’m okay with startups, but I like to see things that are at least at a point where they know what their customer acquisition costs are and things like that, because sometimes people are too early of a stage where I can help them. I like for them to be a little further along customer acquisition costs, identified lifetime value of the customer identified, et cetera, et cetera  

JP Maroney:

Is the best way you mentioned the book, but is there a best way for people to get in touch with you if they’d like to present an opportunity or talk about how you might work with them?

Kevin Harrington:

Yeah. Uh, kevin@kevinharrington.tv, that’s my website and there’s downloads and ways to leave messages there for me. And, um, um, and get in touch with me to get back to you. So yeah, absolutely. That’s Kevin K I’m sorry. Kevin harrington.tv. Excellent.

JP Maroney:

So I’m going to give you a moment to leave one little piece of advice that maybe we haven’t given out yet. We have people at all stages of the deal process that are watching and listening to this show. People who are also, um, getting started in the process, people at the top of the game, what’s something that you could share from your storehouse of knowledge, for deal-makers that they could have as a takeaway from today. One really good piece of advice.

Kevin Harrington:

So the, the piece of advice is this. Um, I was sitting in, in, you know, 10 years ago with a nice track record of success, but nobody really knew who I was. And I decided to build my brand and I decided to start creating content. I started writing books and when I wrote my first book and I was promoting that book, that’s got the attention of Mark Burnett who called me to become a shark on shark tank. So if you’re an entrepreneur, you’re at the beginning or you’re up the top, you need to be creating massive amounts of content, creating content. This is podcast, we’re on a podcast right now. I do five, seven, sometimes as many as eight or nine of these in one day, it just it’s, it’s part of the process. So I do podcasts. I write books, I do videos. This is the wave of the future, creating content.

I mean, LinkedIn, LinkedIn has something called LinkedIn live right now. It’s like Facebook live what? On LinkedIn, people should be checking out the new ways to get out there and become, um, socially engaged out in the marketplace. So when I did it, got me on shark tank, can’t be such a bad way to go, right? So that’s my, my tip of the day. Write a book, read some contests, do a podcast, get out there, get your hand up, get your head out of the sand. Okay. It may not be in the sand would get it up there high and go do it. Okay.

JP Maroney:

I love it because those things you just described can get you to the table for the deal process. When many times other things aren’t heard a great quote the other day. I don’t know if you’ve heard this one, but I love this quote is that if you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.

Kevin Harrington:

I like that. That’s a good sharp quote, by the way, I might use that one. Jason, thank you.

JP Maroney:

I just heard it the other day and I love that quote, Kevin Harrington, uh, really appreciate you coming on the deal flow show, new book, mentor to millions, right? Look it up, go and find it and make sure you go to their website so you can get the additional bonuses as well. If you’re watching or listening to this episode of the deal flow show, you can get access to our archives as well as future episodes@thedealflowshow.com on behalf of my partner here in crime, mr. Paul Nicoline from Harbor city, capital and myself and all of our team at the deal flow show. We want to thank you once again, Kevin, for coming on the show and best of success to your bestseller. Take care. Thanks Kevin. Bye bye everybody

October 7, 2020

Shark Tank’s Kevin Harrington On Taking a $5 Million Company to a $1.3 Billion Company


Description
Kevin Harrington is an Original Shark from ABC’s Shark Tank. He is a lifetime entrepreneur and known as the father of the infomercial. He’s successfully launched many products that you see and use today.


Kevin Harrington appeared on the show to give our audience tips, strategies, and secrets on Deal Making. He also spoke about his new book, Mentor to Millions. Don’t miss this high energy episode!

What you’ll learn from this episode:
Success strategies
– How to deal with failure
– How to successfully brand yourself and your products or services
– How to be a mentor, how to find a mentor, and how to be a good mentee

Connect with Kevin:
LinkedIn

Full Transcript:

JP Maroney:

Hello and welcome to another edition of the deal flow show on JP Maroney, your host, along with my cohost, Paul Nicoline here, regional director from Harbor city capital. And, uh, we have a great guest here coming in remote because this guy is a busy, busy and on a book tour. And so we’re going to be talking about that as well, but Kevin Harrington, the original shark on shark tank. We’re going to talk about that. We’re going to talk about the deal flow process. We’re going to talk about your book, talk about deals that you’ve got working and, uh, look forward to diving into your storehouse of knowledge on what you’ve done over the years in terms of deal making process and how you approach that process as well as how do you recover from things that don’t work out, et cetera. So Kevin Harrington, welcome to the show.

Kevin Harrington:

Hey, great to be here, JP. Thanks man. I’m looking forward to having a deep dive into the world of deal flow. Let’s do it. 

Paul Nicolini:

All right. So, um, let me get started. Okay. Go fire away. How did you get started?

Kevin Harrington:

Oh, so I’m gonna go all the way back. Um, I was born in a family, uh, six one to six kids. My, my dad started out as a bartender and then he saved up enough money to own his own bar. Harrington’s Irish pub. At 11 years old, I started working inside his places and he had several then after that, um, from bars and restaurants make clubs, et cetera, but he coached me. And I say, he, I say I had an, a meant a mentor when I was 11 years old was my father. He would show me how they cleared the books at the end of the day and hiring and firing and suppliers and relationships and all that kind of stuff. So when I was 15, he said, now it’s time for you to own your own business. Kevin and I started when I was in high school, the driveway sealing business.

And then when I got to college, I started the freshman year, a heating and air conditioning company. And believe it or not, while I was going to school, I had 25 employees, six trucks going out every single day, but I was still going to college every single morning work till about 10, 11 o’clock at night back at school in the morning. By the time I got to my junior year, um, I had enough, I just couldn’t do both. And I, I quit school, my college dropout, but I continued to build my business, which grew to, we were a $5 million business selling heating and air conditioning. Well, you know, when I was 40, some years ago. So, um, anyway, make a long story short. Um, I continued my, uh, my entrepreneurial career. I sold my heating and air conditioning business, but one of my employees, and one day I was watching cable TV and the channel I was watching discovery went dark for six hours. 

I called the cable company and I said, I don’t know what’s going on here. But I thought I was buying a rent, you know, paying for, you know, 30 channels, 24 hours a day. And they said, Oh, channel 30 is discovery channel. It’s, it’s a brand new channel. It’s only 18 hours a day. And that’s when the light bulb went off. And that’s when I got into the, the, the, the putting products on TV business. This is the early eighties now, and we didn’t call them infomercials, but I was the guy that said, let’s, you know, I got six hours to fill. I was putting Tony little fitness and Jacquelyn lane and the juicer, George Foreman, Billy Mays, Arnold Morrison, Ginsu knives, all of a sudden, boom, boom, boom. I was filling airwaves all around the world. Not only in the U S we went to Europe, we went to Latin America, look the company public on the New York stock exchange. And we grew the company from, uh, the stock was a dollar a share. We grew at $20, a share grew to $550 million in sales. And we were over a $500 million market cap. So that, that was my, the early days of me as an entrepreneur. Okay.

JP Maroney:

Whenever you’re doing deals like that, and there was a time I’ve been like you I’ve been building companies a long time, not quite as long as you, uh, for the last 30 years. But there was a point in my life when I realized that the difference between one bill or another was how many zeros were after it. It was still a similar process. But for you, can you remember back of when you did what you at the time thought was the big deal of your life

Kevin Harrington:

Here? I was, um, putting some of these products and things on discovery channel. And when we started shooting these 30 minute infomercials, um, I’ll never forget one of the, you know, in the early days I would, I would go to the station and, and, you know, and I would give them, I would say, they would say, okay, we want a thousand dollars for the airtime. And I give them a thousand and I run it and I get $3,000 in sales and they would come back. Would you like to run it again? I’m like, yeah, but we just ran it. Is it going to work? They ran it over and over and over. I mean, literally every single day, the same show ran over and over. That’s when I realized I was in a massive, successful new industry, because there was 1200 TV stations over a hundred cable networks. 

And I was going to be able to run the same show. Thousands of times, tens of thousands of times, that’s just in the U S in English. Once I figured out I could run them in German and, and Spanish and Italian and French and Spanish and Japanese and Malaysian and dozens and dozens of languages all around the world. That’s when I said, shoot, once Eric tens of thousands of times around the world, you have a major, major oil gusher, okay. This is what we were creating. It’s like digging for oil, we’d shoot the infomercial. Boom. It would gush gush for years. The go income, you know, for years and years, if you look at the show, the total gym with Chuck Norris and Christie Brinkley, it’s been gushing for 20 years, it’s over a billion dollars in sales, in amazing situation. So I’m the guy that pioneered all this, um, you know, 10 years before Amazon years before QVC, I said, I want to go direct to the consumer with great products. And that’s what we did. And we built an industry. That’s, that’s your, um, it’s changed a little bit over the last number of years. Cause TV viewership is dropping now, but we’re following the eyeballs. And now we’re doing Facebook and Instagram and YouTube and all the other amazing places to sell products. 

JP Maroney:

I want to talk about how you’ve adapted to that in just a few minutes, but if you’re watching or listening to this episode of the deal flow show, you can get access to our archives as well as subscribe and follow us for future episodes@thedealflowshow.com. So Kevin, in those early days, you were a dealmaker, cause you’re on one side dealing with a product creator, right. And trying to put together the right deal. That’s going to feed the horse, give them what they need to build their business or their product line at the same time, how you can make money. And then you’re going on the other side and negotiating with the media and putting all of this together. What are some of the early lessons that you learned in the dealmaking process that have served you well as over this past decades of building your company?

Kevin Harrington:

Well, I mean, I think first of all is important. I believe if you’re going to have longevity in business, when you want to have a good reputation, cut fair deals. Yeah. I mean, you could cut a deal and, and literally take advantage of some of these people. And, and, and then, um, you know, they’re never going to bring anything else there. You know, maybe they’re going to tell you they didn’t understand the deal. So I always wanted the people we did business with, if I’m licensing the deal or I’m cutting a talent deal, cut a fair deal. Right. And, and, um, and then we learned quite a bit along the way. Like for example, at one point I had a dozen products on the air and they were, all of them were selling some more than others, but they all went through one merchant account.

And so I got a phone call. One day, the bank was grabbing millions of dollars out of our account because one of our products was having a quality issue and we didn’t know it, but people would get the product, they call the bank and say, please cancel my credit card order. This is a fat product. So we were dealing with, you know, I’m not a manufacturer, I’m a salesman. I’m finding the products, putting them up on TV, ordering goods from the factory and they’re shipping the product that’s defective. But now my merchant account is I’m losing it because they’re there, they’re sending me crap product. So, but I’m losing my merchant account across every part of my business, not just the one that was selling this bad product, because it was one merchant accounts. What we learned is every single product needs to be its own business.

It needs to have its own merchant account so that if you have an issue with that product, for whatever reason, you don’t lose your whole business, you just have an issue with that particular account and that particular product. So we’ve learned quite a bit over the years, cut fair deals, deal with the banks properly and the end of the day, it’s it. You know, we we’ve, we created an industry that is now long to stay. I mean, I owned as semen TV, inc, as semen, td.com. We had thousands of products all over the world in literally hundreds of thousands of locations all around the world, shelling our goods.

Paul Nicolini:

That’s great. That’s great. Uh, Kevin, can you tell us, how did you get involved with shark tank?

Kevin Harrington:

So, so all the things I just told you about or things I was doing as an entrepreneur and one day, um, I decided, you know, I’ve had some pretty good success. I should start creating some content, right. You know, I’m going to start writing some books. So I wrote a book and then I was promoting the book. I was out in just like we’re doing right now, kind of a podcast interview. I was doing radio interviews and podcasts. And all of a sudden I’m promoting my book who was hearing about this man, Mark Burnett and his team. Uh, they, this is now 10 years ago. They said, Hey, they called me, reached out to me, Kevin, we see you’re an entrepreneur. You deal with a lot of product people. We’ve got a new show called shark tank. Can you come out and meet with us? We’d like to tell you all about it. 

And I’ll tell you a funny story. Initially. I was like, well, let me Marcus said, I know you do some crazy things to those people on that survivor show. What is shark tank? Okay. So I remember thinking in the very beginning, it doesn’t sound like a business show. Does it? Shark tank sounds like a fishing show. Right? So, um, anyway, we, I sat with Mark and, um, we hit it off. I actually auditioned that day and he, they called me up shortly thereafter and said, you’re you’re you’re. We want to go with, with you as our first shark. So that’s why they call me the original shark. 

JP Maroney:

And dealmaking when you went into that, obviously you, you weren’t told if I remember correctly, you weren’t told a whole lot until you were on the, on the ground and they gave you a little bit more background on the show, but then you get into the deal-making process. Take that one deal. If you could, what is your process for due diligence and analyzing an opportunity to see if it makes sense for your business, for your mission, for your overall growth strategy, how it all fits together, 

Kevin Harrington:

Three questions. So, I mean, it’s, there’s a whole process that we use. I have, you know, checklist and checkpoints and things. I mean, if I’m look, let’s just focus on a product, for example, cause that’s, that’s been 90 plus percent of my, my business success has been in the area of products. So the first thing is, is it manufactured? Is it, um, uh, it, what are the cost of goods? What are the numbers? Do you have any proof of concept with this product? Um, the first thing that I really wanted to also start on it, cause I’m again a marketing guy. So I want to know, is there a great pitch we can create for this product? So, you know, what problem does it solve the product? Um, does it solve that problem in a unique fashion? Right? And so if you’ve got something that solves a problem, solves it uniquely has a magical transformation in the process. 

So let’s talk about a product that does that. Proactive skin care got the ranker, they did it, it solved the problem, got rid of your acne. It did it uniquely at this particular time with the ingredients that it had. And there was magical transformation. They had customer acquisition costs that were very affordable. And so as you look into the numbers, you know that at one point, those guys were raising money for that project because they had to acquire customers. But the, the revenue streams came in over the next eight months. So they were at a shortfall on the front end, so they needed investors. So I want to know, is there a customer acquisition cost? What’s the lifetime value of that customer also, that’s important. And, and now do we know these things and, and, and, you know, is, is the product a good product, et cetera, et cetera, is there any clinical test on it? 

That type of thing. So, um, I can also give you another example and just real quick, I’ll try to make this quick. Here’s a product I got involved with cold Chelsea’s about five years ago. I don’t know if either one of you ever heard of this product, but it’s an energy drink, but it’s no red bull and monster they’re in this business, but there’s the unique proposition to Celsius. And that is that there’s a, there’s seven clinical studies that prove that you drink one can of Celsius and it will burn 140 calories in your body. If you just sit, you don’t have to move, you don’t have to do anything. Right. So fitness people started jumping on the bandwagon here. I got involved. This was a little pub co stock was 10 cents a share. This is now five years ago. Um, I finally, by the time I, uh, I accepted the board seat and got involved in an equity position in the company upfront, it had gone to 22 cents.

So I said, okay, I’m in the market cap was $5 million. And as we had about, we had, we had, um, I forget the number of shares, but doing the math. It was, you know, uh, 50 some million. And it had gone up at, um, at more shares as the dilution was happening. So make a long story short. This product in the last five years has now grown. This company is not a $5 million company. It’s a $1.3 billion company now. Okay. So this has unique positioning and, and an amazing track record of success. So I got involved in this company in the, on the ground floor, and these are the kinds of products that I really love.

JP Maroney:

How have you seen things transfer translate? Cause you did say obviously viewership with television’s gone down over the years. The internet is the new frontier there and constantly growing and expanding more and more money shifting away from television doesn’t mean that people aren’t watching it, but how have y’all adapted your process and are there basic principles that still apply and you’re just using new technique or medium, or have you had to shift your, your principles and the process as well? 

Kevin Harrington:

A little of both, but this is the bottom line. And I think this is a phrase that I use when the viewership had dropped by 50% in the television world. There’s over 60 million cord cutters from cable TV. Right. So, um, the question is where did those eyeballs go? Okay. And so they’re on Facebook, they’re on Instagram, they’re on YouTube, they’re on Netflix. So what we’ve done is we’ve just shifted our selling messaging from GV over to Facebook and Instagram and YouTube. And so we, we’re now more of a digital company. And for example is finished the story out on Celsius. We never spent one dime on television promoting this product because it’s very expensive. What we did is we utilized fitness influencers, very powerful and celebrity influencers. So we were utilizing the likes of, of, um, uh, Flo rider, Chloe Kardashians and thousands of fitness influencers, people that wake up every morning and they tell their friends and their followers. 

 

This is what I wake up to. I drink myself. She is, gives me that chart. So marketing has changed. And if, you know, for example, I don’t know if you’ve ever, if you have a dog or if you ever heard of a company called bark box bark box, they send you a box every month and it’s stuffed for your dog. You open it up. And what BarkBox instituted was a program where they incentivized their, their people to not just open the box, but videotaped themselves, opening the box with their dogs. So now they’re opening the box, the dogs are jumping around, loving everything, and now they send that video to their followers, into their, their, their social media and boom, how many more people are getting BarkBox. This is a new form of media, sending videos of opening. The boxes bark box created a quarter of a billion dollar company because they get 600,000 customers sending videos of themselves opening the boxes. So the world of getting customers has, has changed. It’s follow the eyeballs, find influencers yes. And put together marketing programs for Facebook and Instagram and Pinterest and YouTube and all the new ways where the eyeballs have shifted. 

Paul Nicolini:

Sounds like you had a lot of success with a lot of products. Um, we’re interested in how, how do you deal with the failures, the ones that don’t work out and how do you manage that?

Kevin Harrington:

Yeah, it’s a good question. I mean, early on in the early days, I didn’t like failure and I was, you know what, always get very upset. Oh, we lost money. We wasted all this time until I finally figured out my business was, um, was, was a business that not everything was going to work. I had to understand that. And, and I, you know, I, I actually did some soul searching and I, and I, I, I went out on and found some, some great references in, in, in the world of failure. And one of the guys that I’ve been following for years, Winston, Churchill’s one of the smartest people that ever lived. And so Winston Churchill said it best is that success is being able to go from failure to failure without the loss of enthusiasm. Okay. So we were failing, but we would, if we would try to tweak it and test it, but we would try to find out what did we learn from this failure? 

And now let’s apply that to the next round. So, um, yeah, at the end of the day, I realized not everything’s going to be a success, but we were hitting on kind of one out of three of our successes. So we, if we had on one out of three successes, we had two out of three that didn’t work. That’s okay. That’s life. You get up, dust yourself off, go back and, and try a new one. So, um, so failure was something we learned how to deal with. And we, we would take the best things and lessons that we learned from those failures to apply towards our next launch or our next product startup launches, because we had great, uh, you know, with a one out of three success, let’s just get past two failures and we’re gonna, you know, eventually we’re going to get that success is going to come in.

JP Maroney:

You have a new book coming out. I don’t want to talk about that in just a minute. Um, if you’re watching or listening to this episode of the deal flow show, you can get access to our archives as well as subscribe and follow us for future episodes@thedealflowshow.com. We have Kevin Harrington on this episode of the show, delighted to have you coming in and remote. You’re on a book tour right now. I learned many years ago, the power of mentors and one of my mentors had a great quote. He said, if you want to be a master at anything, study what the masters have done before you learn to do what they have done, have the guts to do it, and you can be a master just like them. And it’s all about finding people. Who’ve done what you want to accomplish. Who’ve already, you know, bruised their knees and skin, their shins and paved the way. And mentors is so important. Your book, your new book is coming out and it’s talking about mentors. Give us the title of the book and talk about that just a little bit. In fact, give us a look at the cover. 

Kevin Harrington:

Here’s, here’s my book. It’s called mentor to millions. And, um, I I’m, I, um, as I mentioned, my father and I had, you know, he was my first mentor when I was 11 years old and he mentored me to start my own businesses and how to get things started. But I had amazing mentors, Zig Ziglar mentored me, Richard Branson mentored me. So I actually sought out some high level mentors. And I spent three days with Richard Branson at his Island down in Necker Island. And so, I mean, I’ll give you one example of an amazing mentor in my life. Um, I was, uh, in the CCTV business, grow my business to 50 million in sales. And then I flat line because I had financed our business out of profits. We took our profits and bought inventory, but now I was sitting with 40,000 orders that I couldn’t fulfill because they didn’t have the inventory.

So I went to banks and I said, Hey, look, here’s 40,000 orders. I just need the money to get the inventory. And they’re like, well, yeah, but you don’t have, you need assets. You need security against the loan and this and that. So I got turned down by five banks and I ran in, I searched the marketplace. I said, I need a finance mentor. Someone that can help me raise capital. One of my connections said, Hey, there’s a guy that just retired as a bank president. Maybe he’s a good man. You should talk to met with him. And he looked at my business. You said, wow, you’ve got an amazing business. I know why you got turned down and I know how to get you the money. He said, I’m going to make you a deal. You’re raising 3 million. I’ll get you the 3 million within 90 days, probably going to get it from one of the banks that turns you down already. 

Okay? And he said, there’s not going to be any cost, no strings attached. I’m going to mentor you. Now, at the end of that time, you’re going to have 3 million sitting in the bank. You’re going to say, Hey, let’s sit down and talk about our next things that we could be doing together. And if it makes sense, we’ll both do something. And if not, if I don’t like you and you don’t like me, maybe we just move in our own separate ways. So make a long story short. We shook hands, did the deal. Three months later, money’s in the bank from one of the banks turned me down. We cut a deal for him to stay with me long term. So that took us. Now we use that capital to go from 50 million to 150 million to 300 million to 500 million. And then we got another $10 million line of credit.

So, I mean, yes, without me running into that finance guy, I may never have gone beyond that point. And I just have to say that mentorship is amazing. And then the book mentor to millions, we teach you how to get a mentor, how to be the mentors, best student, where the mentors are, how they, how to structure relationships with them. And then there’s a journey that I take with one of my mentees. And he’s the coauthor of the book, Mark, Jim and I myself, have written this book published by hay house. And we take a journey together. And I’m the mentor. Mark is the mentee. And the book is about the magical transformation that Mark has in the process of this mentoring program that we go through 

JP Maroney:

At different points in your life and business, you’re ready for different mentors, right? So it relates to whatever level you’re at and the higher you go, somebody is not going to go from maybe a really small business to going and getting Richard Branson as a mentor. How do you know who you should be mentoring? What do you say about it in the book? Or what can you share with our audience about how do you know who you should approach to mentor you at this point in your business and how do you broker that deal? Cause it’s, at the end of the day, it’s really a deal because you’re asking for someone to give of their time and their knowledge in exchange for helping you get where want to go. 

Kevin Harrington:

Some mentors want to just give back and they there’s. No, they don’t charge. I mean, I have a lot of people I mentor, I don’t there’s no fees or charges or anything in the process. I just, I help them. Um, there’s other people that come to me like, Hey, you know, I was on shark tank. I didn’t do the deal, but they come and they say, look, um, I, I don’t need the cash as much as I just need you to help me. And I’ll give you a percentage of the company if you just help me. So, you know, I look at some of those opportunities, but one of the key things that’s important when you’re looking for a mentor is having somebody that has knowledge in your space. So, um, gentleman came to me, looking for helping. He was needing money. He was in the business of selling goods to the military and he was having a hard time with the chain of command.

 

He’d get to a certain level and he couldn’t get beyond that to get the approvals for these orders he was trying to get. So I took him over to MacDill air force base. I’m in st. Pete Tampa, Florida MacDill is central command here. And I said, Hey, let’s get a retired general that maybe is interested in helping you out because that’s their business model. They, after they retired from the U S military, they want to help businesses get compensated. So we hired a retired general, joined the team and he opened up every door possible. Um, and it was amazing. So get people that are in the space that you’re in that have relevant experience. Um, when I went in to get a digital marketing person, I went to Russell Brunson who started click funnels and asked him for some help. He’s a, one of the most impressive digital guys out there. Now I, you know, I’m not afraid to go to the biggest and the best, but sometimes people that are sitting there, if you’re ready, go for those, go for the big kahuna, go for the, you know, the shark to get them on your, your team. You just never know. And if they say no, that’s okay, you get up and go back at it again, because you will get a yes. Eventually to get to the right people 

JP Maronery:

You say for mentors on the other side, people that are, that have built up a lot of knowledge, are you suggesting that they, um, give her that time? You’re suggesting that they find ways to monetize that knowledge and becoming a mentor?

Kevin Harrington:

I think it’s both. Um, so I know that, um, I, I got approached by a gentleman in Peoria, Illinois. He runs a children’s home there. It’s called children’s home, 1800 kids, homeless kids come through there on a monthly basis. And he has been in the nonprofit business for 20 years. And he, and he was looking to do some new things in his life. And he approached me and I, and I said, here’s a man that every single is putting his life on the line with, with dangerous situations, kids that are homeless. And, um, and there’s COVID issues and all kinds of major problems, but make a long story short. I mentor this gentleman, his name is Matt George, and there’s no charge. I’m helping him market things. He’s writing books, he’s doing TV shows and we’re doing amazing things for him. So I love helping people like this.

Now, other people that come to me, they may, may be more just hardcore business. And maybe I’ll say, look it, you know, I can help you out a little bit, but then we’re going to have to talk about some, you know, some kind of a fee situation or some something that will incentivize me for an upside, because if some people are looking for just clear monetary success, um, yeah, I can help them, but I also may be interested in having a little piece of the action also. So I think there’s, there’s two types of mentors and it, you know, at the end of the day, it all depends on how you approach them and where they are in their life on, on, on how they might plan to work with, with you in the process.

JP Maroney:

Book is going to be you’re right now in the midst of your big promotion. This podcast episode will come out in the fourth quarter. When we release season one of the deal flow show, what would be the best way for people at that point to get access to information about the book?

Kevin Harrington:

So, um, this website will be up, it’s called Kevin mentor.com and, um, and that’s, uh, is certainly it, one of the beauties of what we do when you buy the book, you also receive 30 days of free mentoring, and it’s, it’s an online mentoring program, but I come in live also and do chats and followups. And then, um, we have, uh, you know, virtual mentoring also as part of it, absolutely three. So, um, so you, you know, you buy the book for $18 and you get 30 days of mentoring and over a thousand dollars of three bonuses. So do you need to go to either Kevin mentor.com or Kevin harrington.tv, and one of those places will have the info on the book. And, and also it’s always available in Amazon. Just if you go directly to Amazon, they don’t talk about these extra bonuses. So you have to come through us to get those bonuses. 

JP Maroney:

One of my most impactful mentors that I ever had, one of the things that he told me the very first time we were going to meet in person, he said, I want you to write down all your own answered, all your questions that you have. I want you to bring a tape recorder that was back in the day when we had those things that went around and around tape recorders. And he said, I want you to be prepared when we sit down and I’m going to answer your questions. I don’t want you to waste my time. What do you tell mentees in order to maximize the opportunity, the relationship and the time that they have with a mentor?

Kevin Harrington:

I think that’s a great story. You just told about that, your mentor, that that’s sometimes important because what happened, maybe that mentor was burned by another mentee. And I mean, that’s happened to me, I’ll sit with a mentee, I’ll spend two hours and we go through point after point idea after idea, and then we shake hands. Hey, hope you had a good, you know, you got some good ideas, mr. Mentee, and I’ll see you in a month. And then a month later we get together and, Oh, you know, jeez, I’m still working on those things you gave me to do last time. Sorry, I didn’t get a chance to do them all, um, or any. And, um, uh, but let’s have our two hour meeting and I’m like, Hey, I don’t think so. This is, if you’re not going to do what we discussed, you, you know, you need to be a good student of mine.

Okay. I’m not going to waste two more hours on somebody that didn’t put any faith or value in the first two hours that we spent. So it’s important that you become a good student, that you let that entrepreneur and that mentor know that you appreciate what they’re doing, that you’re taking action. And that’s the key thing is, and you know, I say act now, now is the time, especially if a mentor is giving you good advice. Excellent. That’s great. Kevin, what kind of people would you like to connect with from our audience or our past guests? Well, I like, uh, I like entrepreneurs that are in the product business, for sure. So I marketed over 700 different products, housewares, hardware, fitness, beauty, golf, fishing, you name it, every category out there. So if you’ve got a product I can help. Um, I invest money. I raised money.

Paul Nicolini:

Excellent. That’s great. Kevin, what kind of people would you like to connect with from our audience or our past guests?

Kevin Harrington:

Well, I like, uh, I like entrepreneurs that are in the product business, for sure. So I marketed over 700 different products, housewares, hardware, fitness, beauty, golf, fishing, you name it, every category out there. So if you’ve got a product I can help. Um, I invest money. I raised money.

I can do digital marketing campaigns and testing, things like that. But beyond that, I get involved in, in other enterprises. Um, if you have a public company, uh, I’ve been getting involved with some pub coasts. And, um, like I just mentioned Celsius. I mean, it’s not a bad track record, 22 cents to $20. That’s that’s the stock. Okay. I mean, there’s not very many companies in the history of the world that have had that kind of success, $5 million market cap, the 1.4, $1.5 billion market cap. Um, this is what I like to do. I like to work with public companies. I sit on boards and, and give lots of mentoring and great advice. And, um, um, you know, it’s, I think it’s, it’s it. What I love about companies being public is that there’s a monetization ability there. If you end up getting some stock in the company, that’s, that can be very powerful for somebody to be able to get in on the ground floor of an opportunity. So, um, I think I’m okay with startups, but I like to see things that are at least at a point where they know what their customer acquisition costs are and things like that, because sometimes people are too early of a stage where I can help them. I like for them to be a little further along customer acquisition costs, identified lifetime value of the customer identified, et cetera, et cetera  

JP Maroney:

Is the best way you mentioned the book, but is there a best way for people to get in touch with you if they’d like to present an opportunity or talk about how you might work with them?

Kevin Harrington:

Yeah. Uh, kevin@kevinharrington.tv, that’s my website and there’s downloads and ways to leave messages there for me. And, um, um, and get in touch with me to get back to you. So yeah, absolutely. That’s Kevin K I’m sorry. Kevin harrington.tv. Excellent.

JP Maroney:

So I’m going to give you a moment to leave one little piece of advice that maybe we haven’t given out yet. We have people at all stages of the deal process that are watching and listening to this show. People who are also, um, getting started in the process, people at the top of the game, what’s something that you could share from your storehouse of knowledge, for deal-makers that they could have as a takeaway from today. One really good piece of advice.

Kevin Harrington:

So the, the piece of advice is this. Um, I was sitting in, in, you know, 10 years ago with a nice track record of success, but nobody really knew who I was. And I decided to build my brand and I decided to start creating content. I started writing books and when I wrote my first book and I was promoting that book, that’s got the attention of Mark Burnett who called me to become a shark on shark tank. So if you’re an entrepreneur, you’re at the beginning or you’re up the top, you need to be creating massive amounts of content, creating content. This is podcast, we’re on a podcast right now. I do five, seven, sometimes as many as eight or nine of these in one day, it just it’s, it’s part of the process. So I do podcasts. I write books, I do videos. This is the wave of the future, creating content.

I mean, LinkedIn, LinkedIn has something called LinkedIn live right now. It’s like Facebook live what? On LinkedIn, people should be checking out the new ways to get out there and become, um, socially engaged out in the marketplace. So when I did it, got me on shark tank, can’t be such a bad way to go, right? So that’s my, my tip of the day. Write a book, read some contests, do a podcast, get out there, get your hand up, get your head out of the sand. Okay. It may not be in the sand would get it up there high and go do it. Okay.

JP Maroney:

I love it because those things you just described can get you to the table for the deal process. When many times other things aren’t heard a great quote the other day. I don’t know if you’ve heard this one, but I love this quote is that if you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu.

Kevin Harrington:

I like that. That’s a good sharp quote, by the way, I might use that one. Jason, thank you.

JP Maroney:

I just heard it the other day and I love that quote, Kevin Harrington, uh, really appreciate you coming on the deal flow show, new book, mentor to millions, right? Look it up, go and find it and make sure you go to their website so you can get the additional bonuses as well. If you’re watching or listening to this episode of the deal flow show, you can get access to our archives as well as future episodes@thedealflowshow.com on behalf of my partner here in crime, mr. Paul Nicoline from Harbor city, capital and myself and all of our team at the deal flow show. We want to thank you once again, Kevin, for coming on the show and best of success to your bestseller. Take care. Thanks Kevin. Bye bye everybody

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