Cannabis CBD Podcast The Hemp Revolution

How to Use the Marketing Power of Influencers to Build your Brand with Rick Martinez

Rick Martinez has been a registered nurse for almost 25 years. He launched his first company about the end of the year 2000, which grew from 0-600 employees in 19 states and became one of the largest federal contracting firms in the US.

He is also the host of the Weed to Know Basis, a podcast dedicated to CBD business.

In today’s episode, Rick shares his story on how he founded companies, his work both on and offline as an entrepreneur, and sheds a little light on his journey toward success.


Don’t think about how to create something brand new. The wheels are already been done. – Rick Martinez


Download The Episode Companion For This Episode

Some Topics We Discussed Include

2:36 – About Rick Martinez
4:33 – What made him jump in the cannabis business
6:09 – What his company is responsible for in this modern day
19:26 – About Weed to Know Basis
14:03 – Opportunities to generate income for business owners
26:22 – Aha moments that Rick personally witnessed
30:57 – Roadblocks to success
38:31 – Key pieces of advice to entrepreneurs
47:52 – Where to find them

People Mentioned / Resources

Connect with Rick Martinez

Connect with Sonia Gomez

Transcript

Sonia Gomez: Hey guys, Sonia Gomez here coming to you from Denver, Colorado. This is another badass rockstar episode. You know how we do on The Hemp Revolution Podcast. As you know, it is our mission to empower you the truth about cannabis and hemp so that you can make educated decisions about how you want to care for yourself, the people that you love and the conditions that you may be suffering from or if you’re just interested and taking care of that beautiful gift of life that you have, and are preserving and otherwise healthy lifestyle. 

If you’re looking for products that you can trust, it’ll deliver the results you’re looking for, check us out on medicalsecrets.com. If you’re a budding entrepreneur looking for tools, tips, tricks, resources, or relationships, check us out on theemeraldcircle.com, we are happy to help however we can. Today we are diving into yet another story of an incredible entrepreneur who is pioneering the way this industry is unfolding. A registered nurse by vocation, Rick bootstrapped founded what became to be one of the US is the largest DOD or Department of Defense contracting firms and with 600 employees in 19 states. 

He exited around 2015. The stress of entrepreneurship led him to discover CBD, which changed his life completely. Here to share his story about how he has founded companies, worked both on and offline as an entrepreneur, and to shed a little light on the journey towards success, our good friend, Mr. Rick Martinez. How’s it going, Rick? 

Rick Martinez: It’s going great. Sonia. Thank you so much all the way from Texas for having me on the show. 

Sonia Gomez: I’m so excited to have you here and more excited to hear more about your story and your journey and where you guys are heading to. Intros are all good and well, why don’t you share straight from the horse’s mouth a little bit about yourself? What’s your background? And how did you end up in the CBD space? 

About Rick Martinez

Rick Martinez: Very cool. Well, the intro synopsizes that, and it’s true. I’m a registered nurse. I’ve been an RN for almost 25 years. So it’s been a while I know my boyishly good looks don’t [unintelligible 00:02:58]

No, I’m in my 50s now, but I’ve been a registered nurse. We launched like the intro said, we launched the stalking company basically right before 9/11 about the end of the year 2000. And I say we, it was my girlfriend and is now my wife.

We grew that from 1 employee to 600. So I come from a very traditional entrepreneurial background. I say traditional because of the counterculture of cannabis, but we grew it from 0-600 employees, and we became– through the course of brick by brick, this is the overnight success that takes 10 years.

Like you mentioned, we were in 19 states. We became one of the largest DOD contractors and Department of Defense. So our largest client was the United States military, and simply put, we put doctors and nurses into military hospitals across the country, and then after 9/11, the business was rather explosive.

I’m also a former Army nurse. So, in the course of the growth of our company, I was activated and did a tour. So, I saw healthcare from a variety of different perspectives-one as a caregiver, one as a military officer, one as a company that served the United States government and I was exposed to a lot of things that traditional or let’s just say, your private nurse isn’t exposed to and that some our kids are heroes who are being blown up day after day after day. 

What Made Him Jump in the Cannabis Business

Sonia, what really started to change for me was, and then I’ll be quiet in a sec, but I was raised anti-cannabis. I was a very conservative family, very traditional. Again, being a member of the United States military. This was never on my radar cannabis, CBD, anything.

But it was– I could no longer turn a blind eye to we could patch them up from a physical standpoint, but the PTS and the stresses the traumatic brain injury, they’re lifelong. And that’s when my mind started to shift a little bit. And that’s kind of my background briefly. In a nutshell, I was bitten by the entrepreneurial bug. We launched some CrossFit gyms on other companies, and Angel invested and quite a few things. But there you go in a nutshell.

Sonia Gomez: So, you ended up into after– and you know, honestly, this is a lot of people’s story where they were raised with a completely contrasting opinion or methodology than they have adopted in their later more formative years. And these are really, really interesting times where we’re starting to see a lot of folks coming out of the cannabis closet or making that corporate to cannabis jump. Maybe they’re on their second or third career. And it’s just very, very interesting to see all of these things unfolding and the, what I call I’m calling the second and third tier of an entrepreneur coming in.

You’ve had some success building other businesses. And now you’re applying that success here. You have personally launched a couple of CBD brands yourself. Tell me a little bit about what your company is specifically responsible for now in its current modern day. 

What His Company Is Responsible for in This Modern Day

Rick Martinez: Yes. What we are simply put is the word, I’ll just use the word influencer. So we own a media company. And in the course of the growth of our other businesses is where I really gravitated towards isn’t necessarily being a good CEO. It’s really how to create other leaders through leadership. And so what that really means is it when I put it into grassroots is I fell in love with mentoring, advising, and honestly creating accelerator type content and scaling companies from startup to a million in gross revenue. 

And so what we did, what we had done and this parlays into what we do currently, is we’d help actually a global organization create business-building content, and you know Mark sales marketing strategies, and these are non-cannabis. And then I facilitated that training and across the world from Europe to Mexico, Canada, the US. So when we segued into the cannabis industry and CBD, I didn’t per se go to the growers and procure products. I help companies develop strategies on how to execute strategies, hiring, firing tactics, things like that, things that go into the fundamentals of business, not necessarily Cannabusiness. 

But what we found is, what we’ve learned through business 101 applies beautifully to the cannabis industry because it’s just a unique product, but it’s still business. So what we do is we then launched an accelerator program Texas’s first at the time we were the country’s Knights. Now they’re a dime a dozen. They’re everywhere, and simply put through kind of this pinball machine of growth, you know, always hitting the bumpers, but moving forward.

I’ve been asked to speak at a lot of conventions, conferences cannabis, and CBD specific. And as a result of that, people have said, Can you represent our market or basically become an influencer for our business? I’m probably one of the influencers your mom never expected because I’m in my 50s, and I’m no offense to anybody. My kids are in their 20s. I’m not a 25-year-old who smokes. I don’t roll up a blunt or packable and then influence that way I influenced through our experience. So that’s the long way of saying is that we develop content to help companies grow. And now what we do is, I’m a professional speaker in the cannabis circuit. And our media channel Weed To Know Basis provides a platform for cannabis businesses, especially CBD, to authentically and responsibly get their message out. 

Sonia Gomez: I love that so much. We have a lot of synergy in what our business models are. So I’m super excited to sort of lift the skirt on this. Most people that come onto the podcast are talking about their CBD brands and their physical products. And that is generally the approach to getting involved with the industry. And I’m actually just like right in the middle of developing an entire course that explains what the other opportunities are and building celebrity, building a brand – a personal brand, or a media network that allows you to access a global audience and marketplace is a huge piece of this and almost everything that I’m doing. 

We’re one of the larger “influencers” in the space. I don’t like to use that word myself because I don’t really think of myself as an influencer. I’m also a mother of four and consume cannabis for medicinal reasons. I’ve gone toe to toe with both legal and medical systems, helped write legislation that legalized cannabis in Colorado. Owned and operated brick and mortar businesses that really found my specialty and my comfort zone, and the media and education piece. There’s a really significant gap between how fast the product piece of this industry is moving and how quickly or how well the consumer is being educated so that they feel confident in making decisions with what brands they want to align with. 

So tell me, tell me, tell me. Tell me about Weed To Know. What specifically like, how many followers do you have? How does the business work with you, and what kind of results can they expect? 

Weed to Know Basis

Rick Martinez: Great questions. So I’m going to use kind of generalized combined followership because I have my own personal profiles, which we’ve been developing for years. So I would say our combined followership if I talk about Instagram, Weed to Know, and then my personal, which is Planet Boy. We also have a Green Seed nation, and those have all emerged from events that we’ve owned and operated. And then Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, probably about 70,000-75,000 total. 

And then we have an email list, which is the Unsung Hero of Marketing. And that’s the email list we’re tipping that just over 7,000 on that list, and we’ve been building that brick by brick as well, but we’re in the nascent stages that are really– 2020 is going to be our go-to warrior for Weed to Know Basis. So if I break this down like how we actually ideated and then launched and we’re going to begin to grow, Weed to Know Basis. I love the punch. You can’t avoid the punch of this industry. 

Sonia Gomez: No, you really can’t. They’re too good. 

Rick Martinez: That’s awesome. It was over a year ago, that as I was asked to speak more and more at conventions. A friend of mine said, “Rick, you should launch a podcast,” and I’m like, “I don’t know anything about podcasts.” And they said, “but you’re good on stage, and you’re on the spot, and you bring you a unique perspective and your background.” Like I get it, but I don’t know how to launch a podcast. 

So I sat down with the coach, which I believe every entrepreneur should have. I sat down with the coach. He’s a good friend of mine, and he blocked two hours of time. We walked through and from theory to idea to action steps, and I firmly did nothing about it for about 6 months. I’m like, I don’t have time.

Sonia Gomez: Typical.

Rick Martinez: Yes. We’re all the same. We’re all wired the same. We have so many things to do that we fail to focus on the most critical elements of life in business, which are not separable and as an entrepreneur. Sat for about six, seven months and kept on nagging me and then somebody would say, oh, how about you’re going to do a podcast, and there’s a lot of people out there who want Weed to Know Basis, and that’s where this started to kind of tickle me. And I heard it like three or four times that a good friend of mine says, not verbatim but basically that there’s a need to know Basis on business 101 and I think it was a Freudian slip he said there’s a Weed to Know Basis and that was when I thought okay, I think that was my final straw. 

We bought the URL, block time off, hired a producer, brought our first guests on, developed our hit-list of our first 10 topics. And we are now currently I want to say it about our close to our 70th episode, we officially launched it, April 1 of 2019.

Sonia Gomez: Nice. And how many listeners have you gotten on to your podcast?

Rick Martinez: So it streams across multiple platforms from iTunes to Stitcher? Maybe 1000. Yes, maybe about 1000. We’re not one of those miracle things, and it’s all organic. I would love to say we have 10,000 downloads an episode, but the right people I believe are listening to our show. If it’s 1000 correct and right people, then I’m good with it, but it’s growing gradually. 

Sonia Gomez: Yes. Yes, amazing. Amazing. I love that. And so, tell me a little bit about how you leverage these platforms and followings to support the growth of some of your sponsored partners who maybe do have physical products or services. Are you endorsing? Talk to me a little bit about how that works throughout your ecosystem? How can a brand or business owner leverage you as an influencer or your media channels or outlets as an opportunity to generate income for themselves? Or is that even a part of your business model? 

Opportunities to Generate Income for Business Owners

Rick Martinez: It is, and it wasn’t initially, Sonia. Initially, it was like we were going to use the podcast to leverage our courses. And which we have. We have a mastermind group, and I love that element of it. But what happened one day is somebody said, he messaged me, he said, on your next podcast or when you do a Facebook Live, can you put my logo on your whiteboard behind me? And, and I thought, wow, I never thought of myself as a promoter, as an influencer. I was gonna say that I’m a natural promoter. I’m asked to speak often.

 And I’m like, okay, so I know there are influencers, Tommy Chong, and my friend can be from the east coast and all these folks. And I’m like, I never thought of myself as a 52-year-old out of the cannabis closet, father, entrepreneur, former military officer as an influencer. And the point is this; he said, “I will give you some transactional exchange, you put my logo. I will give you this.” And I’m like, Wow, so I’m being offered money to put somebody’s logo on my whiteboard. And I had to double down on what that meant. Again, it wasn’t just yes, let’s do it, bro. I wanted to make sure that I aligned with the brand. I wanted to make sure that somebody who listened to me if they purchased that product, they were doing it because one, I would endorse it or said it worked. And then the operative thing is that it worked. 

So I’m still developing that. But here’s what’s happened is we’ve been approached by some pretty large companies. And we’re in talks with some equity exchange. I’m about the long game, not the short. It’d be great to make $1000 a month. It’d be great. Don’t get me wrong, 10 companies $1000 a month, you can do the math. But I thought, what about the long game? What about the 2, 3, or 4 or 5-year plan, where we identify companies who have a lot of potentials, and they’re going to get traction and hit this trajectory that could be worth potential millions. 

So we’re approaching it from, I would say, and this is one of our secret weapons, if you will because we’re tied to the Angel Investor Community. We built a pretty large business, and we understand, not that other folks don’t, but as the industry matures, 3e’re bringing something which is our secret weapon/our unfair advantage. We understand where businesses can’t be if it’s done right. 

If you recall, I talked about strategic planning execution, which is where we played for years. Not only can we now put somebody’s logo on the backdrop, which we’re going to be doing. We’re actually going to launch that in 2020. But if they need help with the strategic plan, or crafting a vision or those things, that’s something that we can definitely bring to the table. It’s an unfair advantage that by large, a lot of early-stage cannabis startups don’t do. And we’re going to monetize that. 

Honestly, Sonia, I don’t have clarity on how we’re going to do it. I don’t know if it’s going to be as simple go to our website and download our, what do you call it, our packages. I don’t know that yet. 

Sonia Gomez: That’s okay. That’s the whole– that’s the fun of being an entrepreneur developing all of that stuff. If it’s okay, I’ll share with you a little bit about what I have done, because I’m a little further down the line. We actually have very, very comparable business models. So, a little bit on my background. And for those of you guys who are listening, you have not heard this piece of my story in its entirety yet. I haven’t really divulged my business model on here. So here you go. 

So in 2009, after I fought both the legal and medical system in California for my rights to safe access, I was offered a position on the voluntary committee with the Department of Revenue as they were developing the medical marijuana Enforcement Division, as well as the foundational legislation that would legalize cannabis in Colorado. I owned and operated one of the first licensed dispensaries here, and we recognized a pretty significant gap from the brand builders to the brand consumers, and so we decided to sell our brick and mortar business and moving online publication. 

In the last 2.5 years, we’ve organically built a following of over 1 million people. We’ve impacted 100 million, around 75 million, with our content. We’ve published about 1200 articles online on just one of our blogs. In the last 60 days, we’ve recorded over 90 episodes, almost 100 episodes of The Hemp Revolution Podcast. We are in pre-launch right now, for the podcast. And in the last 60 days, we’ve gotten somewhere between 10 maybe 15,000, downloads and listeners, and we’re really talking about two different sides of the business. We’re talking to the consumers because we want to help them understand what and why you would use which products in order to achieve the results that you’re looking for. We’ve created hundreds of videos, acquired hundreds of millions of video views. 

I think I’m second or third, maybe to Cheech and Chong, as far as the size of the audience and reaching capacity as an influencer. Although I do not look at myself as an influencer. As a matter of fact, I rarely, if ever, allow products unless they’ve gone through my entire testing process. I seldom allow a product or brand to be featured inside of my community. I think I’ve promoted like maybe 9 or 10 handfuls of products. 

With our audience, though, we have been able to generate anywhere from 300-500 new customers at the push of a button. We’ve had one of the largest messenger bots on the internet, which is that messenger that’s connected to your Facebook community. At one time, we had it up to 460,000 people, and we clean it every couple of months and just wipe it all the way down to 50,000 or 100,000 people, just the ones who are hyper-engaged. And that way we can offer that really clean and hyper-engaged platform for brands and businesses to advertise because if you know anything about this industry, marketing, and advertising, banking and merchant processing, as well as distribution, and stable supply chain, these are the four major challenges of this space. And we happen to be able to solve for most of them. 

We also run a mastermind called The Emerald Circle, where we’re nurturing brands soil to sale, helping them really get started, or if they’re already established to increase their revenue. And where most companies are really challenged with marketing. We’re thriving in the online space helping to develop a cult-like following for each one of these brands.

So part of our business model is yes, of course, we will take on sponsorships for the podcast. Yes, of course. We will take on people who want brand exposure, but they absolutely have to go through a testing process in order to be approved. There are multiple tiers to that if we have special events or occasions, they’re a little bit higher, they’re a little bit more of an investment. Whereas baseline, we also look for long term strategic partnerships that can be mutually beneficial. 

And at the end of the day, this is all about making sure that as an industry, we are growing and thriving with a professional image, and that we’re able to infiltrate multiple marketplaces. This is no longer the face of recreational cannabis, but really to help bring a mainstream mentality, in which case specific framework has to be set in place so that we as an industry can thrive. 

We have also created the Leaf Academy, which is a platform for learning. We have multiple courses, and education’s inside of there. We have the masterminds, and then we do the marketing and branding services for a lot of the mainstream brands that you see out in the marketplace, strategic partner. They are all different types of strategic partnerships that have been built and leveraged and a part of our model. Now, moving into 2020 will be to develop new brands and release them into our media channels and build up a subscription basis. 

If you look at Dollar Shave Club, for instance, as an example, they were maybe six months into their business and had a list where the average value per subscriber was $33. And that pushes them from a startup into a billion-dollar valuation. So as companies are starting to look at one’s organization if they can show residual income consistent residual income in their business, that kicks the valuation in the cannabis and CBD space. You’re seeing anywhere from 6-12 times markup for sale if you’re looking to exit. 

So, a lot of our business model has been about building our community, and honestly, we built it backward. We had zero ideas about what we were going to sell when we started our community. We had absolutely no idea beyond wanting to share. My husband and I have about 35 years of combined experience in this industry. I’ve been saying that for probably 2 years now because I don’t want to age myself, but we have a lot of fuckin years in this space. Okay, I’m telling you.

I grew up in Northern California. He ran away to the Humboldt Hills as a teenager and built his fortune up there. So this has been a part of our DNA for a long time here and absolutely had zero ideas about what we were going to do when it came to the internet and cannabis. But here we are, educators – really super passionate about pushing this movement forward.

I, too, am a public speaker. I’ve really diversified our revenue streams by leveraging our audience and creating the cult-like following or cult-ture that people from all walks of life and all over the world and want to be a part of. So hopefully, that gives some insight, and I would love to talk with you more offline about what you’re doing and how you’re rolling things out. I’m just, like I said, a couple of curves ahead of you on the road and happy to share anything that I can that will help save you time and money in this process. I welcome more folks like yourself who are the unsuspecting, “influencers.” There are voices of this industry. 

I’m a mother of four. I have thriving teenagers and a two-year-old. So you don’t generally expect somebody like you or me to look, the way that we look and be as heavily involved as we are with this particular movement.

Share with me about some of your most proud moments as being on the front lines, obviously. First of all, thank you for your service. And being on the front lines as a military nurse and like you said, watching our youth being blown apart physically, emotionally, all of the things. What are some of your aha moments or most precious moments that you’ve personally witnessed that have left a profound impression on you when it comes to incorporating cannabis or hemp into one’s care? 

Aha Moments That Rick Personally Witnessed

Rick Martinez: That’s a great question. I think some of the most profound ones are just witnessing firsthand how, when I use the word cannabis, I’m going to say it’s all-encompassing, from CBD to marijuana to medical marijuana. I have a good friend we interviewed on our show. He’s a former Army chaplain. So I think it was Lieutenant Colonel, and he shared his story, and his story was simple, but it was symbolic of a lot of what’s going on, not only with our veteran community but people who are suffering from PTS. And I dropped the D because it’s not a disorder. It’s caused by a traumatic event in one’s life, whether it’s in combat or in day to day life.

He was about to become one of the 22. The 22 are the 22 veterans who take their lives daily. So he was on the verge one day becoming one of the 22, and he was medically discharged from the service. Again, an army chaplain, so not necessarily a grunt on the front lines, and had seen a lot, done a lot. I believed a lieutenant colonel and was medically discharged for significant PTS. And somewhere in his civilian life after the military he shared, he was “Rick. I was done. I was ready to just be done. I couldn’t handle the stresses of everything.” And he goes, what saved me was a joint. It was pretty blunt. No pun intended, but he said it saved me.

His story impacted me not only just listening to it, listening to him, but actually then reflecting back on all the kids, and I say kids because my kids are in their 20s. My eldest is married. So the kids I took care of were literally the ages of my children at the time. This was back in ’05-’07 in the height of the Iraq conflict, but his story impacted me. I could share a lot of things that I saw myself, but it’s I think it was Chaplin’s story, which really synopsizes everything that I had seen into one story. And it was a battle cry for me. It was almost a validation that I needed to be in the space. 

I have my own personal story as to why I finally emerged in the closet, but it was just another nail if you will, or straw or whatever you want to call it. That’s for me, the “Rick, you need to get out of your way out of your head.” And I’m going to use this word because you dropped a bomb earlier. Fuck the people who aren’t going to be friends with me anymore. And that happened, Sonia. My wife and I were upstanding citizens like we all are. But when we became Cannasores or cannabis entrepreneurs, we lost friends, but what we gained was I would never go back ever, so I would say chap story was one of the ones that really was– it’ll stay with me forever. 

Sonia Gomez: I love hearing stories like this, and I appreciate you sharing this. As a part of our community, we get to hear both the entrepreneur story but also get to celebrate what I will call a success story from the consumers and people who are such unsuspecting priests, doctors, lawyers, well lawyers and so unsuspecting.

But praise. That’s definitely a new one. Well, not a new one really but it just you don’t necessarily think about it, but honestly, I think you could not have a more perfect face for this industry, your demographic, or not necessarily yours, but the baby boomer demographic who is looking to a more mature professional for advice and direction on how who, what, when, all of that guidance definitely needs a face like yours or a partnership like yours between you and your wife to represent this incredible movement here. 

Can you share with me a little bit of the challenges and getting started this in this industry? What are some of the things that you are up against right now that perhaps prevent you from growing as quickly as you a) would like or b) know how to grow because you’ve built other successful businesses? Have you experienced any roadblocks that are preventing your growth or success? 

Roadblocks To Success

Rick Martinez: I have, and these are all surmountable. So when we share these roadblocks stories, and the folks who listen should know that there are people who are actively crushing those roadblocks as we go. So, and I’m not going to point to the usual merchant processing or Facebook Ads, those have been touted enough. 

Sonia Gomez: Yes.

Rick Martinez: So, enough. So one of the brands I work very closely with is called TrueMed CBD. TrueMed is a brand that only sells to clinicians. So you have to be a physician, a do a nurse practitioner, have a practice or a clinic. You will not find this at a gas station at CVS. This is a brand developed and formulated by a compound pharmacist, a good friend of mine, and I am closely aligned with the brand. This is one of the brands that I’m on the long haul with.

Sonia Gomez: Yes.

Rick Martinez: So the gap that were the challenge we’re finding now, and we’re getting through this challenge, but it hit us, between the eyes not too long ago was that our target audience is a patient of a physician, no doubt, but who we want to be that intermediary as the advocate is the clinician? 

Sonia Gomez: The physician, yes.

Rick Martinez: And it’s a challenge because there aren’t the types of studies or Jama or things that clinicians are looking for. It’s all anecdotal. So I’ll go back to the unfair advantage, and the things that we bring to the table are the fact that we are formulated by a compound pharmacist with an MBA, who understands the science, the molecular science behind, I’m talking about CBD specifically now.

Now, they’re now partnered with a registered nurse/entrepreneur who built one of the largest DOD contracting companies in the country. So we bring something unique to the table. But all that being said, as we’re talking right now, Sonia, we help hosted a dinner for a group of clinicians here in Texas this past week. And what we learned is– We are going to learn one of two things that they’re very, very basic, they still don’t understand how CBD will work, or they already know that, and they just want to know how to monetize it in their practices. 

Sonia Gomez: Yes.

Rick Martinez: We weren’t sure where we were going to land because it’s so new to the clinician space. We found out at that event. They were in camp one. They wanted to learn more about how it works in the body, how it really impacts [unintelligible 00:33:42], and how it interacts with different maladies or different diagnoses and things like that. And it was an eye-opener and for those of you out there who are thinking of launching occlusion based brand now you know, generally speaking, clinicians they want to know the science behind it before they learn the monetization aspect of it, which are both important. So that was a hurdle for us. But we were prepared to be honest. 

Generally speaking, clinicians want to know the science behind it before they learn the monetization aspect of it, which are both important. - Rick Martinez Click To Tweet

We literally went in there. We tag team, and this is Omar, the farm D. He did the first half, which was all science and clinical and I grasp it, but I’m just like, thank goodness he’s here because the questions that these Doc’s are asking are like, holy Geez, yes. Literally on the cellular level, and I’m like, thank goodness, Omar, you’re here. And we tag team, and I talked about the value it would be for their practices. 

Sonia Gomez: Yes.

Rick Martinez: They would impact their patient. Their patients are already going out and getting it.

Sonia Gomez: Yes. And they’re scared to talk to them about it. 

Rick Martinez: Yes. So I talked about how they can interact with their patients as a clinician, and then really what it means from a financial standpoint, you know, the wholesale the retail, talking about that part of the business and so that’s becoming an emerging hurdle they weren’t quite sure where we’re gonna land, but now we know the clinicians want to know science first and then let’s talk business second. So we’re overcoming back, though. 

Sonia Gomez: Love that now I’ll make a connection with you for a gentleman by the name of Chuck Science, also known. Chuck Stebbins, also known as Chuck science, and he was the formulator and mastermind behind sports medicine and all of the incredible supplements that have come into the fitness realm and, through the late 70s, early 80s 90s he’s kind of like a Doogie Howser where he was already doing neurosurgery, whether it was on the brain or some other part of the spinal cord or whatever, when he was like 17 years old. He started doing that time, so he’s incredibly smart, and he just put together a fully comprehensive of scientific-based education called Seed to Cell, CELL. And it’s a complete science fact-based education that is specifically for the medical space. So I’ll make a connection for you guys there because I think that that would be a really, really significant value add for you. 

And we too have been up against a similar type of challenge we developed something called the natural health coach certification, where we are taking MDs all the way down to massage therapists and aromatherapists. We are certifying them as natural health coaches to be able to go into clinics and as a Certified Professional advise specifically on the use of cannabis and hemp products. They’re taught dosage diagnoses, how to pair the two delivery systems. 

All of these different things, and now the doctor can still increase his revenue by but incorporate professionals into their practice. And it’s been such an incredible partnership to see that ecosystem working together. More product is moving off of the shelf. The doctor doesn’t have to go through a crazy learning curve. He can refer directly to somebody in his office. I’ll share that stuff with you as well and see if it’s a good value add. Because it sounds like what you’re doing is just not only necessary, but it’s mandatory, as the community starts to adapt to this more and more. We need more empowered, educated doctors, and family physicians to support us as our knowledge and interests move towards holistic health care. 

In our podcasts, we generally do something, what I call the words of wisdom, and I love to just give some perspective from folks like ourselves to the budding entrepreneurs or even established business owners, we happen to be doing something pretty unique on behalf of the industry and solving for a pretty significant challenge right now. So I would love to hear you share some of your words of wisdom, maybe 2 or 3 pieces of advice that you could offer somebody who is trying to decide to get into this space or are already is in this space, and needs just a little bit of added support and achieving success. What would be some cheap, knowing what you know now about this space, what would be some key pieces of advice that you could offer somebody who’s just getting started or trying to break through the glass ceiling? 

Key Pieces of Advice to Entrepreneurs

Rick Martinez: I love it. You know, these kinds of go hand in hand these two–its R&D and then recreating the wheel. And what I mean by that is, there’s already somebody who has been to the place where you want to be-that budding entrepreneur, whether it’s creating a million-dollar business or lifestyle of freedom or whatever that is, it’s already been done. It’s already been done and don’t get so wrapped up in that this is cool and it’s cannabis. This is just simply a unique product. That’s it. It’s a unique product. 

Sonia Gomez: Unique ingredient. 

Rick Martinez: Unique ingredient. That’s it, but it’s simply what one is going to be getting into starting or launching, or scaling is a product or a service-based business. So don’t recreate the wheel. It’s already been done somewhere. And I can give you a great example of I was just I just spoke at CBD IO in Vegas, and I met some great companies. And one of them was a veteran-owned, owned by a marine and CBD brand. And we were talking great ideas. And one of their methodologies to get brand exposure was college campuses. And they’re trying to figure out you know, how do we penetrate it? How do we get students? How do we do this? 

So the point of don’t recreate the wheel ask them to have you ever heard of how Red Bull scaled? And Red Bull tastes awful. It’s not good. And it’s just not it doesn’t taste good. But one has to ask, how did it become a billion-dollar brand? He did it by that. They figured out how to penetrate the students the college scene in a very unique way. And I said, Don’t try and figure it out to go read about Red Bull and literally Red Bull became a known brand and came traction through what they wanted to do. When I mean by R&D is not research and development. It’s, don’t try and again, this ties into recreating the wheel. R&D in the entrepreneurial space means Rip off and Duplicate. And I mean that in an authentic and responsible way. I don’t mean literally stealing things. I just mean somebody’s already done this. Don’t think about how to create something brand new. The wheels have already been done. 

R&D for the entrepreneur is not research and development. It is Rip off and duplicate. Figure out who has done the thing you want to do. Get to know them, get to see them. Figure out what your unique skill, your gift, what your unfair advantage is, and then create something. Think about Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and then Snapchat and now TikTok. Those are all simply ideas stacked on the next. Facebook was the first, then came Instagram, the story is there it goes away faster, then came Snapchat. Those are simply R&D–rip it off and duplicate an idea and creating something new. They’re not too far removed from each other. Somebody just idea stacked these concepts by R&D, rip off and duplicate. So that’s it. I would say R&D is not what you think. And to not recreate the wheel. Never. It’s been done before promise you.

Sonia Gomez:  Oh, my god. Are we the same person in different bodies right now. I fucking love this. Okay. I love this. I don’t know if you’ve like listened to my vows episode or something, but I literally always say that. Yo, you ain’t got no new ideas, friend. What do you get to figure out is how to innovate. 

Rick Martinez: That’s true.

Sonia Gomez:  Okay, no, it’s so true. Okay, I absolutely love this. A little bit of a challenge today on my words of wisdom. Usually, I just piggyback right off what you all geniuses have to say, but [inaudible 00:42:30] making me work for it today, I like it. [unintelligible] is something that I would add to the damn words right out of my mouth. Okay, I got it. I got it. I got it. I got it. My words of wisdom for today and for those of you guys who are listening, and there’s really three ways to be a part of this budding industry. 

Number one is starting a brand or business of your own. Awesome, lots of opportunities, tons of fucking challenges. Get somebody to mentor you and support you along the way. And the four things you’re going to have to solve for when you own your own business is marketing, advertising, sourcing, having a really stable supply chain, banking and merchant processing, and then distribution. Those are going to be the four things that you’re really going to have to solve for owning your own business besides being a unique and innovative or innovated brand or business. So that’s the first way. 

The second way is to add CBD or cannabis to an existing business that you already have. We’ve talked about how physicians are starting to incorporate it into their clinics. This is a perfect example of how you can add cannabis or CBD into something that’s already in existence. And you can acquire the new skill sets necessary in order to have that aspect of your business thrive, tons of solutions to be able to do that. You can check us out on Facebook if you want more advice on how.

And then finally you can just get a job. Guess what? We need people who work for a living to come and support this movement. You think us as entrepreneurs are out on the frontlines, we’re fighting a different fight. We need folks just like yourself to have the necessary skill sets so that we can serve our customer base and clientele at the absolute highest level developing those skill sets getting those necessary training so that you can thrive inside of this industry as a playing a supporting role Oscars do get appointed to the supporting actress, By the way, you can play a supporting role and attach yourself to an already existing business and play such an important part in allowing this industry to grow and thrive. So my suggestion would be, really understand exactly what it is that you want to do. Do you want to run the rat race with the rest of us crazy-ass entrepreneurs? Come join us. There’s plenty of room. It’s a little bit more capital, capital time stress intensive. And if you don’t like gray hair, buy yourself a bottle of hair dye because your shit is going to get gray. Okay.

This is a high risk, high reward industry. If you don’t have the stomach for it, don’t play the game. And honestly, the more and more that this market matures, we need people to innovate their already existing businesses by hiring folks with specific skill sets as well as bringing in trustworthy brands into your already existing business. This is just one more way to sweeten the pie and increase revenue. 

This is a high risk, high reward industry. If you don't have the stomach for it don't play the game. - Sonia Gomez Click To Tweet

The second thing that I will say is that if you’re coming in here to make a quick buck, turn your car around. There’s nothing fast about the money that you are going to make here. The only thing that you will do is create a mark that is negative on your reputation. This is a very close, tight-knit industry that is relationship-based. So be willing to ask the question, what value can you bring instead of what value you can take from this industry. 

And then finally, everything, everything that you do is about partnerships. And those partnerships are successful because of the results that you’re able to cultivate. Truly understanding who you are and what role you want to play will allow you to bring the most amount of value with the most amount of leverage into the marketplace. And the marketplace will respond through your partnerships and collaborations with other folks in the industry. 

It is the time to bring alliances into this space. Because guess what, when the wave of big business comes in here, not one of us is going to survive on our own. It’s all about how we can join together and collaborate with our resources and assets in order to make a bigger, more significant impact. And our incomes will be a direct reflection of the impact that we’re making in the marketplace. So those are my words of wisdom. 

I think for the first time I think yours were better. I’m being honest. I’m serious. Like usually, I’m in the coaching mentoring space, and most people are like about their brands and business. But like you know what, I’m really happy to make your acquaintance, and I’m super excited to find out more about your coaching programs because I think you brought a lot of value in today’s episode like you brought a ton of value, things to think about what you’re saying, an unfair advantage in the marketplace is really about understanding these core things about business in general. 

And we forget that while we’re dealing with this, like a diamond of an ingredient that everyone’s so excited about like it’s just one ingredient, there are 138 others and that are in the same plant, they’re going to get the same kind of attention as science starts to pull it apart. So thank you so much for your incredible value. Where can folks find you if they are interested in working with you or following any of the work that you’re doing? 

Where to Find Them

Rick Martinez: The easiest way it’ll stick is weedtoknowbasis.com, that’s our that’s where our podcast resides, and it does link back to our homepage but weedtoknowbasis.com they can follow me on Instagram, it’s planet boy it’s the @ sign then planet boy, and there’s a long story behind that but so weedtoknowbasis.com URL or planet boy on Instagram. 

Sonia Gomez:  Okay, amazing. You guys heard it here first if you want to check out what is happening with Mr. Rick Martinez @planetboy. Check him out, or you can go to weedtoknowbasis.com, and you can get more information on all of the cool things that he’s doing. I’m for sure going to follow the Weeds to Know Basis Podcasts because I want to hear what you got going on in there. It sounds like a lot of fun, and some good stories are being told. 

Any final words before we end today’s interview.

Rick Martinez: I just want to thank you, and I really want to thank you, especially that we’re in the midst of a holiday and it’s good to know that there are people who can enjoy a holiday and still holiday and hustle at the same time. 

Sonia Gomez:  I’m hustling right through, man.

Rick Martinez: I know, right? Success and rest don’t sleep together, that’s for sure.

Sonia Gomez:  Not in my house.

Rick Martinez: I really appreciate it, Sonia.

Sonia Gomez:  Yes, thank you so much for joining us today. And thank you guys, for those of you who are listening in with us. I really appreciate you being a part of this incredible community. Everything we do is to serve you. We want to help empower you with the truth about cannabis and hemp so that you can make educated decisions about how you want to care for yourself, the people that you love, conditions you may be suffering from, or otherwise take care of that already amazing gift of life that you have. 

If you’re a budding entrepreneur looking for tips and tricks on how to grow your business inside of the green rush, check us out at theemeraldcircle.com and if you are a person looking for products you can depend on to deliver the results you’re looking for check us out on medicalsecrets.com, and we will be happy to help. I’m your host with the most Sonia Gomez, and this is The Hemp Revolution. We’ll see you on our next show guys, bye

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