Episode 75: Positioning Yourself as an Expert with Michael DeLon – Transcript

Wealth On Any Income Podcast Episode 75

Rennie Gabriel  00:09

Hi, folks, welcome to episode 75 of the Wealth On Any Income Podcast. This is where we talk about money tips, techniques, attitudes, information and provide inspiration. I'm your host, Rennie Gabriel. In past episodes, we spoke about how to build an Income and Expense Report, how to measure the level of pleasure based on where you spend your money, how to track your money in 5 - 10 seconds, what to look for on a net worth statement to see how close you are to Complete Financial Choice®. And last week, we had Daniel Mangena, who spoke about his foundation and the micro2millions program he created. Today, we have as our guest Dan... I was going to say the same name again -  we have Michael DeLon. 

Michael De Lon  00:58
He was so good he came back! 

Rennie Gabriel  01:00
Yeah. Michael is the foremost authority on credibility marketing. By helping business owners publish a book that positions them as the expert in their field, and has them become a best-selling author, and the podcast host of their own show. Michael is the number one Amazon Best-Selling Author of 'On Marketing', and has worked with business owners across the globe. He is committed to his religion, his children, and his wife. Michael, welcome to the Wealth On Any Income Podcast.

Michael De Lon  01:33
Thank you so much, Rennie. I'm so thrilled to be here.

Rennie Gabriel  01:37
Great. Well, you know, I think it's important that we actually talk about why you do what you do. So tell me more about that.

Michael De Lon  01:45
Yeah, well, you know, why I do, what I do at the end of the day is to really facilitate growth in organizations and individuals. That's my mission statement, Rennie. It's been my mission statement for decades. And I can live that out in so many ways. The reason I do what I do is because my life changed when I escaped prison a number of years ago. Now, I wasn't in a literal prison, okay, it was an emotional prison because I was in a job that I hated. And I was stuck in that job for about two years, finally got out of that. Started a marketing consulting firm, tried to get some clients, they wouldn't hire me, because my former background was in ministry for about a decade - family ministry. So everybody saw me as a family ministry guy, not as a marketing guy. I couldn't get any clients. And so, you know, we were living on savings and things were not going well. And so I was at my church one day praying, and God gave me this idea to take all my marketing strategies, and to put them into a book. So I published a book, I would mail my book to you, Rennie, before we would meet. I'd walk into your office, you had read my book, and in that meeting, you'd say 'Now, Michael, in your book, you said...' - how do you help me do that? And you'd hire me. And then next guy hired me and the next guy hired me. And I thought, this is really cool.

Michael De Lon  03:05
But my question really is, is what changed between those two meetings when I first met with you and you didn't hire me - because you didn't have any belief in me, and the second one? Did my background change in marketing? No. My ministry background change? Nope. What changed was how you thought of me, when you saw my book, you immediately thought of me as an expert. And when I walked into your office, you had pen in hand, ready to take down my answers - my solutions to your challenges. That changed everything for me Rennie, and that changed my business, it changed my life. And I thought, 'Well, why don't more business owners do this?' Well, you've written a book, you know, the challenge it can be? 

Rennie Gabriel  03:43
Yeah, it's a lot of work. 

Michael De Lon  03:45
Yeah. So we just created a process to make it really simple for a business owner, to create their own book without writing a word. And then we make them an Amazon best-seller, we create a podcast for them to establish credibility in the mind of their audience, so that they can deliver more value to more people, gain clients, get referrals grow their revenue. Then we teach them marketing strategies that last a lifetime. And it's so much fun for me when my authors text me - like I got last night for one of my authors going- 'Wow, I didn't realize my book would impact people this way'. They are impacting people because of something... I had a little piece in that puzzle of helping them get there. That's why I do what I do. That's the joy of it all. 

Rennie Gabriel  04:33
So terrific, because I laugh about it from the standpoint of you discovered how it works. And I went through an opposite process because I had a book publishing company for about 10 years, we had 80 titles in the bookstores. But the reason behind my writing my book wasn't to set myself up as an expert. It was to say, people are always asking me the same questions - I'll put everything I know in a book and they'll leave me alone. 

Michael De Lon  05:01
Didn't happen. Yeah. 

Rennie Gabriel  05:04
I had it completely backwards. And that's what created the publishing company, because I found out - my plan doesn't work that way. Now people want to work with me because of that. And so I said, Okay, now and I did this for other business owners for 10 years, like you're doing. So, it'll be great to provide the referrals that I don't want to you to have that happen. But we've got to get to a second question, which is one of my most important.

Michael De Lon  05:38

Rennie Gabriel  05:38
Because as you know, I donate 100% of the profits from my company to a charity called Shelter To Soldier. 

Michael De Lon  05:45

Rennie Gabriel  05:45
So the philanthropy part of what I do is very important, and now, I know you have Project Mañana in the Dominican Republic. Tell me about that.

Michael De Lon  05:55
Yeah, so Project Mañana, in fact, that the person who texted me last night was Brian Berman, the founder of Project Mañana. We just created his book, published it - he's handing it out to everything. They are a Christian ministry in the Dominican Republic - he went there - Brian's a business guy from California, okay, he was climbing the corporate... He was working for Fortune 100 companies and he took a mission trip to the Dominican Republic, and God called him to give up his corporate life to go there to serve the underprivileged people in the Dominican Republic. So, over the last decade, Brian and his team have built a school, actually multiple schools, they do prison ministry to help reform people who are in prison teaching them how to be you know, good citizens. They have a clean water project where they've created this thing, it looks like a pop can, okay - soda can - and it has a little thing coming out of it - a hose. And somehow through the mechanism, you put dirty water in, it goes through the hose, and it comes out clean water, because these people don't have good access to clean water. And for like $35, you can create one of these. And my wife went there on a mission trip to Project Mañana this past June, and was able to go out and deliver these to families. And think about a family who would have to walk to go get water every day. Now they have clean water. And they're putting in - their building a three-storey building for dental, for psychological needs, for medical needs. And it's just a phenomenal ministry that that has captured our hearts. And I in my wife, we're going down in July of this next year as a mission trip, and we're partnering with Brian. So we just published his book, and are just trying to expand the knowledge of what they're doing down there. I mean, there are people like this are all over the world, right? 

Rennie Gabriel  07:48

Michael De Lon  07:49
I can't support everybody. I can support them. Just kind of like you are with your ministry. Right?

Rennie Gabriel  07:53
Yep, exactly. There's dozens of charities that I give money to, but the primary one is Shelter to Soldier.

Michael De Lon  08:01
Absolutely. And that's kind of how we are and where we're moving. And it's interesting, the guy you had on last week, talked about a foundation. We're creating a foundation ourselves to help funnel dollars into the foundation as part of our business so that every book we create a percentage of that revenue is going to go into a foundation to support Project Manana and other ministries like that, to say, it's about so much more than the revenue components and getting clients. Yes, that's important - but that's not our Why.

Rennie Gabriel  08:35
Exactly it's the means to the end. 

Michael De Lon  08:39

Rennie Gabriel  08:39
Which is to improve people's lives. 

Michael De Lon  08:43
I think you you've probably experienced this. People want to be involved with people who are on a mission.

Rennie Gabriel  08:49
Yes, yes. I mean, there are those who don't care, but most of them... Well, it creates a synergy - it creates working with the people you want to work with. As an example, if someone comes to me and says, 'Rennie, I want to make a lot more money, so I can buy two Lamborghinis and a Porsche'. Guess what? They're not the kind of client I want to work with. 

Michael De Lon  09:12
Not a good fit. That's right. 

Rennie Gabriel  09:13
Exactly. It's not a fit. So it works very well for people who want to support people who are on a mission. And for me to want to support people who want to be on a mission. I mean, it's a fit. Let's get to a couple more questions. I got a hint to what your failure was in moving from your ministry to business. But what would you say your biggest failure was in terms of, you know, your marketing?

Michael De Lon  09:41
Yeah, well, honestly, the biggest thing was my inability to communicate my expertise. I've been 30 years in Marketing for Small Business Owners. I was using my marketing principles in the ministry that we were using, right? I understand small business. I understand marketing for small business, because it's different than marketing for big business, right? Because you don't have the money that Apple does.

Rennie Gabriel  10:04

Michael De Lon  10:05
But when when I walked into your office, and you heard my background, in your mind, you said, 'Oh, you're just a ministry guy that didn't make it - you're trying to...' Right? And they put me in the same category of all the media reps and ad agencies that were knocking on their door every day saying, 'Hey, we have this package we have...' That's not who I was, and I couldn't figure out how to communicate that in a way that made sense. Until I had the idea and put it into a book, and this became my best salesperson, Rennie. My book communicates expertise, value, authority. Plus, they get to know who I am, because I tell my story in here, and they read this and they start nodding. So when I have that first appointment with you, after you've read my book, it's actually a second or third appointment, because you already know, like, and trust me. And so that's honestly, that's what changed. I mean, I was trying direct mail and cold calling and referral... And they worked a little bit, but nothing changed my business more than a book. It just..

Rennie Gabriel  11:08
Yeah, well, here's what I'm hearing. That from that the insight that you created was that - whether you or your clients - they need to have a clear and compelling message, and be willing to ask others for help. And it sounds like the last item, they need to stay focused on what they do best, and don't bother with other things.

Michael De Lon  11:34
Absolutely. You know, you just hit on on two of my three words that I live by Rennie. Okay, are you ready? Clarify, Simplify, Multiply. You and I both have people every week coming to us wanting to multiply. And I'm like, great, but we have to go through clarify - have a clear, compelling message first. Simplify your marketing, and when you do that, you're going to get to multiplication, but you can't go to multiplication first. So you're absolutely right. And the cool thing about it, Rennie, and you know this as well as I do, everybody has a story to tell, but they're not telling it.

Rennie Gabriel  12:17
Well, or they're telling it in ways that are not effective.

Michael De Lon  12:21
Yes, very much so - Yeah. And so that's the joy that we have with our team is to ask you questions. We always start with what I call brand strategy, which is really finding that unique message that is you. But we do it through a series of eight questions. And I tell clients all the time, I don't create your brand. I discover it from who you are in your background and your stories. That becomes a very compelling message. And it's one that's very unique. Your competitors can't fight against them because it's your story. 

Rennie Gabriel  12:54
Exactly. Yeah. They can't duplicate you and there's no point you try to duplicate someone else.

Michael De Lon  13:03
Absolutely. Yeah, we tell people and one of my favorite lines is, you know, don't be a coffee bean. Now, I'm a coffee drinker, right? But if you take a bag of coffee beans, you open up you pour it out on the table. What do they look like? They all look the same, if you look and sound like all of your competitors, you're a coffee bean, you're not giving your audience a reason to bond with you or to choose you. Well, don't be a coffee bean - do something different. Do something unique that's you.

Rennie Gabriel  13:31
Oh, yeah - be a lima bean. That's a beautiful analogy, you pour out a bunch of coffee beans - they all look the same. Yeah, don't be a coffee bean. I love that. Well, now, I want to find out what outcome someone who's followed your advice, what they achieved. And I know there was some financial advisor client you had?

Michael De Lon  13:54
Yeah, we've done a lot of work with financial advising and attorneys and things but one of one of our guys, Brad Pistole, I think, is who you're thinking about. He came to us - I've been doing this since 2013 - Brad came to me in like, 2014. So he was one of my early clients - created a book called Safe Money Matters. That's Brad's message. He's a retirement... safe money retirement planner, okay. And he's got a radio show and things but his message is always safe money, safe money. And so we created this book with him. And he offered it on the radio, get a free copy of my book. People call him, he mails them a copy of this book, and lets them read it. And by the time they walk into his office, I mean, it's dog-eared, it's highlighted, they've got stickers everywhere. They are asking him questions. His business- golly - this is his... He met me last December. Yeah, this December, he'll finish his seventh record year in a row. And he will attribute much of that to the fact that he's an author that he mails it out. I mean, his radio presence is strong. He does other things, but he said by and large, the number one thing that has changed my business over time, is the fact that I'm an author and my clients see me as a credible source. And they know who he is because they read his book before they ever meet with him. Which is one of the strategies we teach our clients is how do you precondition prospects to hire you, before you ever meet with them? Well, have a conversation like this, but you do it through a book, because when we read a book, it's one-on-one. It's me and you. You're just reading me, and you're bonding with me going, 'I like this guy. Oh, that makes sense. I got a question there...' So Brad his production is gone I mean, just through the roof. Over the last few years, he's again, finishing another record year, he just came back wrote a second book with me, that one's going to... He told me... Well, he told me he's going to quadruple his revenue over the next four years because of that second book. Because it's dealing with, as he would say, the tax tumor in your IRA, right? Something everybody deals with, and is really funny. It's interesting, because he had a tumor - a brain tumor - a few decades ago. He uses that at the beginning to say, I needed a specialist to remove my brain tumor - you need a specialist to remove the tumor in your IRA, so the government doesn't get all your money. So do you see how he took his story, wove it into his book? That's what everybody can do, and that's what we have the joy of helping anybody do to create the book. But then how do you market yourself to gain clients and get referrals? Which Brad does phenomenally well. You don't have to have a radio show. You use marketing systems that we've already created that we give to our clients and go, Here's how you take your authority, your credibility as an author. And here's how you market that to gain clients and get referrals. But Brad's killed it, but he's not the only one. That's the beautiful thing. We've been doing this for seven years. Our clients get results. And you know, we back everything we do with a two year double your money back guarantee. Because we know it works. If our clients put into practice what we tell them. We know it works. And it's just so cool to do something that you love to do, and that you know, can help other people to further that cause - whatever that cause, maybe.

Michael De Lon  14:09
Oh, thank you, Michael. And now what's the best way to find out more about what you do that could support them?

Michael De Lon  17:31
Yeah, yeah, just go to our website. It's paperbackexpert.com paperbackexpert.com Because I believe every business owner is an expert at what they do. We help them create that credibility by becoming a paperback expert through a book. And on that, I mean, that's our website, you can look at videos you can opt in, there's a - right at the top, there's this thing called the credibility calculator. I talk a lot about credibility. Everybody said, 'Well, what is it? How do you define it?' So we created this online calculator has 20 questions, takes you less than five minutes. And we will deliver to you your credibility score 0 to 100, based on how your audience determined what is credibility. And then we'll teach you how to improve your credibility through a five video series that follows that up. That's all at my website, paperbackexpert.com you can schedule a call with me there, you can get all the information, see how we've helped other people.

Rennie Gabriel  18:31
Oh, fabulous. Okay, so this will be in the show notes. And the last thing, you know, to wrap it up. Is there a question that I should have asked you, that would also give great value to the listening audience?

Michael De Lon  18:44
You know, that's a great question. I think one of the questions or one question is - what should somebody do to differentiate themselves in the mind of their audience? This is something anybody can do. And the answer that I would tell you, Rennie, is to be yourself and to tell your story. I spent a lot of time trying to be somebody I wasn't because - 'Well I've got to be professional, if I'm a publisher, I've got to look the part.' And about two, two and a half years ago, I finally said, 'You know what? Phooey on that. I'm going to be Michael, and you're either going to love me, or you're not, and that's okay.' And you know what happened? We're finishing our third record year in a row through the pandemic, because people have bonded with me because I've become real I tell my story. Here's what we can do for you - are we a good fit? So that would be what I would tell people is, be yourself and tell your story because everybody has a story to tell. You need to tell it compellingly, convincingly and people will flock to you.

Rennie Gabriel  19:59
Beautiful - Michael, thank you so much. Thank you for being on the show. 

Michael De Lon  20:05
This has been fun. 

Rennie Gabriel  20:07
Thank you. And to my listeners, thank you for tuning in. You can listen to the Wealth On Any Income Podcast on your favorite platform, and please rate, review, and subscribe. And if you'd like to know how books, movies and Society programs you to be poor, and what the cure is, then log on to wealthonanyincome.com/TEDx. You'll hear my TEDx talk, and can request a free 27-Page Roadmap to Complete Financial Choice® and receive a weekly email with tips, techniques, or inspiration around your business or money. Again, that's wealthonanyincome.com/TEDx. And next week, we'll have Zach Winner talking about the advantages of using commercial real estate to create a passive income so you can choose to work instead of having to work. Until next week. be prosperous. Bye bye for now.

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