Walter Brooks, President and CEO of Brooksmade Gourmet Foods, found it easier to expand internationally with his specialty BBQ Sauces than to sell more in the competitive domestic US market.
With grants and supports from the US government available for all small and mid-sized businesses, he was able to secure $10 million in business with an investment of about $100k. Calculate the ROI on that!
Listen to this episode to hear how he did it!
Access to supports for exporters - https://www.rapporttranslations.com/blog/exporter-resources-information
Connect with Wendy - https://www.linkedin.com/in/wendypease/
Connect with Walter –
Music: Fiddle-De-Dee by Shane Ivers - https://www.silvermansound.com
ATTENTION: Below is a machine generated transcription of the podcast. Yes, at Rapport International, we talk a lot about how machine translation is not good quality. Here you see an example of what a machine can do in your own your language. This transcription is provided as a gist and to give time indicators to find a topic of interest.
[00:00:34] Wendy: Welcome back to another episode of The Global Marketing Show brought to you by Rapport International, who provides high quality written translation and spoken interpretation services. And their tidbit for this episode is about cooking. And in the United States, we use the idiom too many cooks, spoil the stew, which is used to me in that too many people giving input can ruin the outcomes.
[00:01:03] So you don't just use it about cooking, but you might use it in a business scenario. In Spanish they say Muchas manos en un plato, hacen mucho garabato, which translates to many hands on a plate, draw many doodles. So it's always fun to see how idioms actually translate you can't use machine translation and you can't use somebody who's not fully familiar with both languages.
[00:01:32] So the reason we are talking about cooking today is our guest is Walter Brooks and he's got a fantastic story. I heard about him when I was at the state international development offices annual meeting and somebody from the USDA came up and talked about him and his incredible success in Dubai.
[00:01:58] So Walter, welcome to The Global Marketing Show.
[00:02:02] Walter: Thank you for having.
[00:02:03] Wendy: Why don't you tell us about your sauces and your company, because this is very interesting. Awesome.
[00:02:13] Walter: Thank you so much again for having me on today. Brooks may gourmet foods is a long way from. Oh, the, where I started today, it's a global food company that deliver foods to, you know, just about anywhere in the world.
[00:02:26] We started on in 2004, we've grown from there to establish some exporting and then it's allowed us to really kind of get our foot place in a lot of different countries. We focus on a hundred percent natural clean label products that you know, free of ingredients that we can't spell.
[00:02:44] Things that are real simple. 1, 2, 3, 4 ingredients, I think, in our catch-ups. And then we kind of add vegetables and things like that to make it enhanced for different flavors.
[00:02:53] Wendy: Oh, well wait, wait, wait, you get to tell us about your chocolate sauce. That's the one that catches my eye every time.
[00:02:59] Walter: That's my flagship that's that I've been working on that it's like a recess PCs moment, but I guess you can say so, it's you know, it's like that star, you said, right? So I'm in the kitchen and I'm enjoying my basic platform of sauce. And then I said, you know, I was just going, Hmm. Yeah. Cause I'm always as an artist food artists I'm always trying to push the envelope to see where I can go.
[00:03:25] What new twist I could make and how can I get my products to speak a little bit differently to different people. So once I was sitting down and I looked around and I said, man, you know, I wonder, you know, chocolate such a great spice. And I said, I wonder what kind of a sweetener too? And I said, Hm.
[00:03:45] So I just said, let me, let me go ahead and stir some of this in the
[00:03:48] Wendy: pot. Now wait, wait, wait. And we have to, we have to clarify here that this is. This is barbecue sauce. So we're not talking, I used to cream sauce or any of those other assessments were tuck in good old country. Barbecue sauce. Okay. So go ahead.
[00:04:03] So you're thinking about the chocolate.
[00:04:05] Walter: So you had our Georgia suite, and then I said to myself, I said, you know, it just can go a little bit, you know, further. And so I kept the basic and I enhanced it to chocolate, but add chocolate. And when I did that, I had a couple other kick ups to it with the sweet and a little bit of Tang and some So some good pop on the end with a little bit of heat, because it was just a sweet sauce.
[00:04:28] So I wanted to be bold and spicy, but yet decadent. And so we came up with chocolate, so it's it's it's a chocolate lot barbecue finishing sauce. And so we kept the French spelling of it because it's, it's more than just a chocolate flavored, you know, sauce. It has a little bit more chef appeal to it and and multi-use is in the kitchen.
[00:04:48] So it's great for, you know, just marinading, barbecuing, soups enhanced flavor profiles, vinegarette. So I have so many uses for it. We've, we've served governors and mayors all the way on down here in Atlanta for decades. And it's just, it's been a real favorite on the street here. When I was hustling my little food operation on the corners at the nightclubs at night, trying to get it out there and.
[00:05:15] He's a FedEx executives going, man, we all want to vest. We don't want to do this forever. That's like, okay, well,
[00:05:22] Wendy: that's great. Yeah. And, and if you go to his website, Brooks made gourmet foods.com. You can look it up and it's gluten free, no high fructose corn syrup. So all natural, that's even an added bonus when it's so a good tasting
[00:05:43] Walter: when you're cooking.
[00:05:43] It's just so much easier as a chef, just to just remove the bad, you know, if you're making things from scratch, you have the option not to add these ingredients. You know, you don't need them. No one cooks with preservatives in their kitchen intentionally. It's just something that you out of. Acceptance for different products.
[00:06:02] You didn't add those products to your recipes. And then there is a problem. So people have much more out of this hybrid state of COVID much more aware and savvy to their recipe menus and what they put in their bodies. So, you know, it's the new hybrid Tarion's are coming out and they're they're more conscious of healthier foods and they'll go gravitate to them.
[00:06:24] Not because of it just hereon, but because they've taken enough time off to now educate themselves about the recipes and then using what they put in their bodies.
[00:06:31] Wendy: Okay. So you used a word I hadn't heard before habit. Tarion's hybrid
[00:06:36] Walter: hybrid.
[00:06:36] Wendy: Hyper. Tarion's define that for me. I can make it
[00:06:41] Walter: Cobra. It's locked everyone up for so long that again, people have stepped back and said to themselves, well, what, what am I, what am I doing?
[00:06:50] So I'm going to start working out better. I'm going to start reading the labels more. I'm going to shop better, eat better. And so these particular class are not vegetarians per se or, you know, classified as the type of folks that just won't eat certain things. They just gravitate naturally to healthy.
[00:07:07] And if it tastes good, then they'll, they'll go for it. It's not that they won't have a cheeseburger or indulge in some chicken wings, but in, in part they will just kind of, they've taken the time off to really educate themselves about the finer aspects of eating and quality of foods. And so they're not going to go back.
[00:07:24] So they're, they're always leaning towards a vegetarian or healthier side whenever offered.
[00:07:30] Wendy: I've never heard that term. So thank you for adding that into my, my dictionary. Okay, so you've got this barbecue sauce you're in Atlanta and you want a huge deal in Dubai. And now your sauce is, are international.
[00:07:46] Tell us
[00:07:46] Walter: about that. Well, since we talk, we just want the flavor of Georgia BA we just got a warden AJC, and we just got the winning logo. And so we're gonna, where we're excited about that. So we are the flavor of Georgia now in the category of barbecue.
[00:08:05] Wendy: Wow. So is there any particular sauce that one or
[00:08:09] Walter: is it, it was the habanero and w we presented habanero, Georgia suite.
[00:08:15] And sorry, habanero was the sauce winner of the flavor of Georgia
[00:08:20] Wendy: regulations. That's big news. Okay. So bring us to Dubai. You see your award-winning huge contract out of Dubai. Like what makes a guy from originally California living in Atlanta, selling sauces on the street corner to now being a global expert, you know, a global entrepreneur
[00:08:44] Walter: and I would say peer tenacity and hustle.
[00:08:47] So, you know, I'm a kid from south central Los Angeles where the expected success rate of probably 0.0%. So you know, the, the, the ability to go out here and succeed has always been. My goal regardless of what challenges are around. And so food industry got me when I had a bad appendix and well, I did code on the table.
[00:09:12] I got brought back and I had a few other surgeries, subsequent surgeries after that to save my life from a bad appendix. And it was traumatic. And it set me back. I had the colostomy put in installed, and I was in my twenties. I was like, this is devastating. I had it transferred to the classmate here later.
[00:09:31] It was very humbling. It's always kept me pushing. And so once I couldn't fix cars anymore, I give a serious thought to cooking. And so I transitioned from that to prepare meals and destroy my wife's kitchen all the way down to no ovens. So she, so when I finished doing all that, I decided to tear up a restaurant instead of my own house.
[00:09:52] But that paved the way for some interest, at least. And then I use the restaurant as a catering ground. And
[00:09:58] Wendy: you start your own restaurant or did you go to work? Okay. So you went from working on cars to cooking at home to then starting your own risk.
[00:10:10] Walter: Correct catering, catering arm. And so he handles Nelson Jeter from Georgia power all within the government, the government governor and the Atlanta.
[00:10:20] Oh, wait,
[00:10:20] Wendy: hang on. So were you doing, were you doing catering from the restaurant or were you running
[00:10:25] Walter: from my house, but nothing. Then I got out of my house and I used that facility just to prepare foods for my events.
[00:10:33] Wendy: And so, and so Eric Jeter and who were some of the other people?
[00:10:38] Walter: Nelson, Nelson Jeter, and boy, every mayor in Atlanta probably touch my foot at some point.
[00:10:44] Andy young, you name it I, I just, you know, I played big until I got big, you know, I, I did what I had to do to get where I need to go is present myself where I needed it to be one of my mentors who walked me through this city was Williams, Sonny Walker, rest in peace, but you know, toddler rock nine.
[00:11:02] And I dunno, he had three mentees and I was one of them met me on an elevator that, what are you doing, man? It's like this, guy's very interesting. He's not wearing a Rolex. So we hit it off really well. And he's pretty much walked me through this city and kind of mentored me around the personalities and things like that.
[00:11:26] So it opens some doors to hospitality. And so that's, that's me. I started just really just out of my kitchen and I, and I always love to eat. So I just turned it into a passion because food just didn't have flavor in certain places and no one was being creative and I felt that there was a niche mission missing.
[00:11:45] And so I just started putting my personal spin. So I got a four inch thick food book after I got at a hospital from Barnes and Nobles and started purchase, you know, looking at all the techniques. Whatever I could to get my sleeves up, less tender and more exposed to, to, to enter a world as a novelist and didn't want to be not taken seriously or didn't think I knew what I was doing.
[00:12:08] Wendy: So, okay. So you figured out the cooking. We know you've got that down, pat, but you've got so many people build the mouse trap and then they need to sell it. So this chance encounter in the elevator really helped grow your sales or what were you doing to bring in business?
[00:12:25] Walter: Well, I, my time clock went back and forward a little bit there, so that was the pre Atlanta greeting and with my mentor, but fast forward again to the restaurant where we started I to get my products packaged to your question.
[00:12:38] I, I, once I got into the restroom. And I was catering with these as I was developing new sauces to go on our recipes. I then soon decided that I would open the restaurant and start to use it since I was catering as a tasting ground for more catering opportunities. Because the people came in and liked it.
[00:12:55] I can sell them parties or office parties, and I would be able to increase my catering revenue. So I did that, but in that situation, I had to stick another step back and say, well, Do I really, as an artist, want someone to come in and understand how I make, what I do and copy those things and then become my competitors in my own business.
[00:13:17] Or do I go ahead and manufacture these things? And then I can take my mind off the idea of I'm sharing my recipes with. So I used to make my recipes in the back of the restaurant, or we want to stay in the front, just provide sauce for the day or whatever it was they were doing. And I got tired of that, you know, getting to work to make my sauces in the night or in the morning before people arrive to work.
[00:13:38] Packing up my seasonings and hiding them this, I don't need to, she's trying to do the math is cause, cause that's just me and ended up eventually I contacted the co-packer and had him batch the recipes and make them for me under my restaurant brand white label, a hundred. Well, I'm the label.
[00:13:59] So under my brand, and you use that for additional revenue as a store or sales. And it evolved to many different degrees of what I was doing when I was doing it, being that it had to match my storyline. So it became a barbecue restaurant labeled. Then it became a gourmet label. Then I became this label and eventually on a long ride to the co-packer with my wife, I said, you know, we can't keep running.
[00:14:25] Restaurant food company. We need to separate these things so that I can focus on each of them differently. I don't want to show up to a food restaurant convention going, you know, three brothers barbecues here, or somebody's spot here. If the company, what I do, I create foods. It just happened to unfold later.
[00:14:47] As things start to progress that there were two different horses, it was just like catering and restaurants. There are two different animals in the same house, but you can same attribute the same, the same separate entities with it in the same house. So I separated the two and did a name search and trademark.
[00:15:05] Brooksmare had gourmet foods and moved it into my food company in 2000, in 2004, I started to focus on the food company as a separate company. And then 2016, I incorporated. Titled it and then trademarked it. And then from last year to now, it's one of my success started with my son company literally in June of last year.
[00:15:24] Wendy: So Joan, we're recording this on sync on them IO of 2022. And so it was June of 2021. So we thought we were coming out of the pandemic, but we weren't. So what happened in June that skyrocketed your success?
[00:15:41] Walter: Well that, that beginning situation starting the first of the year, I just listed a company to out of New York to you know, brand the company, you know, to give us our identity, to tell our story.
[00:15:54] And they were concerned for foods. They handled things like mandolins and Tabasco and other match chef. And so we asked them to come on and partner with us to Help our business to, to, to stand on its own legs and try to have some proper market differentiation of what's out there.
[00:16:12] So they did so, and we came up with our colors, concepts, newer labels, and, and really did a great job telling my story once they understood it. And so that helped me not to keep reinventing my story and and focus on sales and not my identity so much. And so that really helped us in June, as we were doing our, our question here on our trade missions.
[00:16:35] We, you know, we partnered some years back while we were trying at the restaurant to develop. Sales. I took on shows at the, at the convention centers here in Atlanta, where I was approached by the Southern United States trade association, known as Sephora.
[00:16:51] Wendy: Okay. So hang on, before we go into how you got into international.
[00:16:55] So you were doing trade shows and how else were you marketing your, your sauces? So
[00:17:01] Walter: domestically farmer's markets trade shows really just word of mouth clients coming in and out of the restaurants. It really was a, a time for me to actually figure it all out. So it wasn't the star pony. We were catering and taking care of guests at the restaurant while presenting our products and getting them.
[00:17:22] More and more feedback, more interests. And eventually at at the food shows we were approached by the economic development international. So
[00:17:31] Wendy: H okay, so hang on. I want to understand a little bit more. Were you doing any sales on Amazon or online or e-commerce so it was all good old fashioned meeting people letting sit sample.
[00:17:44] So there you are in Atlanta, so mostly local, then you weren't doing much outside of Atlanta or out of Georgia?
[00:17:51] Walter: No, we were no, that's it. We were literally just hand-to-hand combat sales in that way. You know, I had too many horses. I was riding at the time to try to focus on the sauce company .
[00:18:06] So I, it really kept me from starting a food company until, you know, after 2016, when I incorporated um, independent make really did something too, because it allowed me to I sold my restaurant, I franchise it and sold to one of my employees who wanted to buy it. And then I S just put all my energy into rebranding my food company at that point in 2021.
[00:18:30] Wendy: Okay. So, thanks. I just wanted to understand what you were doing for marketing then. Cause it will help anybody that has a product. So then you're at you're at this trade show. And you get approached by the Southern go ahead and finish that thought,
[00:18:46] Walter: you know, you're pointing to correct. I mean, so it was a lot of just wherever anyone talked about.
[00:18:52] Having events and barbecues our what down a list of all the local farmer's markets or you know, I work with my local Costco and they have a organization they give to miracle fine or whatever, and they were trying to generate funds. So we cook for free and then they'd let us, you know, let customers try our products.
[00:19:12] And so we'd signed people up petitions to see if they would, you know, say, Hey, we want this in the store. So we just didn't many blitzes that. Just all the local schools, we had banners and the auditoriums for the jams, lacrosse, soccer, football you know, we gave to the local, they call us for lunches.
[00:19:34] They call us for football graduations. And we, you know, be the choice they would be calling for. And we develop a loyal clientele and fan base from the sauces there too, and the local PTA and the national PTA. So we looked at all different aspects of the community to establish relationships and trust and,
[00:19:54] Wendy: and then they'd come to your restaurant or to Costco to buy.
[00:19:59] Walter: So it didn't necessarily matriculate into the actual sales, but I knew I had to be be out there and stimulate. The conversation and also be in a place where you can actually tap back into it later. Right.
[00:20:14] Wendy: And then, okay, so then you're at this trade show, cause you're doing the marketing know, you could get the barbecue sauce out there and let people try it and then they're going to love it.
[00:20:23] And you're and who are you approached by?
[00:20:25] Walter: So, yeah, we're just here. And I think , then there were separate, but it was the department with accurate economic development, the international portion of it in Georgia. And so they asked me what I have and for an agriculture services, what would consider taking my products to other markets outside the United States.
[00:20:45] And I thought that was very interesting because. I thought, well, who's asking me to do anything. So I was like, well, yeah,
[00:20:54] Wendy: true salesperson entrepreneurs. Yeah. Well, if
[00:20:58] Walter: you're asking, you know, I'm sure not running, so I'll go where whoever needs, wants and needs me at that time. And so I'm like, if you're all that interested, we need to talk.
[00:21:08] And so they said, you know, we are a programs that can create market assessment studies for you. And these are your own tax dollars at work. And we can set up meetings with other clients. I was like, sounds good. Yup. Yup. I'll take all of that. I'm doing right here. That's a whole lot better and you ain't even on my payroll.
[00:21:31] So yeah.
[00:21:32] Wendy: My tax dollars have already paid for you to do this work. Help me export.
[00:21:39] Walter: They are, and I got to get, we got together. And so I still was later a conversation the Southern United States trade association because of the export assistance they offer Bernadette wits laying executive director from Louisiana their organization.
[00:21:54] You know, I signed up, they've been around since 1973 and you know, so they're funded primarily by USDA. So to promote foreign agricultural you know, trade or United States trade to foreign to other countries. So FAS for an agricultural service, as part of it and map market assessment programs that have like a lot of different umbrellas underneath this program to help with with the ability.
[00:22:18] And this is from, you know, they have different names for different regions. So this is just the Southern region. And then they have a north region in our Western region that promotes their trade as well, but I'm in the Southern region. So this is where I have to sign up for the services that are available.
[00:22:38] And so then you start to parlay within the other programs within their programs, which helps to, to offset. So they help small to midsize companies like myself then to To help you to get it over the first wave, because there's just so many expenses to exporting and challenges. And so I love the program because it allows you to tap into you know different programs with us department of SBDC, which is another tax dollar with UGA.
[00:23:12] And so they have an extension with professionals who have focused on domestic or international situations. And so through that, there were allowed me to sit down and establish trade programs trade logistics help you with your costing, look at your total analysis of your business plan.
[00:23:32] And to make sure you don't go into something that you're not comfortable with and it not work out for you. So we've had bigger deals that just didn't line up financially. And we were advised not to do it, and we didn't. So there's a lot of support there with tax dollars when you're talking about themselves.
[00:23:49] Fees, adding up and firms, and these, these resources are available to citizens at no cost because are they're tax funded and then they pay into a tax system, of course, or so they say these things are free, but a lot of people don't know about them. So I always recommend people to these programs because they were they're there.
[00:24:09] And at some point you will grow past it or maybe not, but it's a great place to start and at least have your stuff. Financially fit and accountable and aware of your certain, certain situations. So a very good resource is for obtaining.
[00:24:26] Wendy: Okay. So yeah, you mentioned the USDA and the foreign agricultural service that SBDC, which is the small business development center, economic development agencies, and all the states.
[00:24:40] And then you've got the export center. So if you're in any food products, you'd go to FAS the foreign agriculture service, if you have,
[00:24:50] Walter: they all run under these umbrellas, as I mentioned. So it's just, you find your niche and what works on what programs are more advantageous to take advantage of it within these same homes of information.
[00:25:04] So within Cessna, these programs are all kind of umbrellas underneath that are funded through the USDA. So you may take costs and costs are 50% or they are. You apply. And when you travel, they'll cover things like your meals, entertainment, flight, hotels, and things like that. And they have a, an index for you to calculate those things and submit those so that you can get 50% reimbursement.
[00:25:31] So that helps you to take that money and put it back into your marketing or your equipment or travel and things like that.
[00:25:38] Wendy: Okay. And so for anybody listening, we'll put in the show notes links to all the different places where you can start, because I think what you're talking about Walter is just to get started in one place and then they'll point you to the different people that can have.
[00:25:51] So they approach you at the trade show. They say, have you been thinking about exporting you go? Yeah, sure. And then you find out about all these supports. So what are some of the supports that you actually got besides covering the travel, you know, 50% travel costs, which is huge.
[00:26:07] Walter: Yeah. It's very good.
[00:26:09] And it's like two people only, but I, you know, that's that's okay. Cause you can always staff onsite venues and, you know, listed help there, but it helped in. The fact that if you had to do this outside of the program, the money that you would have to put together in order to facilitate even these meetings or these hotel visits or arrangements, I mean, it would be astronomical.
[00:26:32] I mean, there's just, you would have to fly to these countries and develop your own logistical trade connections. And that would, you don't have those connections. You don't, they're not, they're just, you would have to work outside of a already established program. So it would not be in your best interest to try to reinvent a wheel that exists, even if you didn't take part in any subsidies or discounts.
[00:26:56] The program itself just lends itself to more relationships because it's, it's funded to, to promote trade. So. I don't think you can find the contacts, the relationships you can't really navigate the legal jurisdiction, or even have to figure out how to translators for that matter. Or just facilitate professional meetings.
[00:27:18] I mean, and trusted because it's about the relationships and there's, you know, people don't just start doing business with you because you have a product after feel comfortable with trusting you and understand that they won't get burned in the process.
[00:27:33] Wendy: Okay. So you, I mean, that's fantastic to hear. Cause I have heard a lot of companies just say they have a product, but they're too scared to go international.
[00:27:43] So you meet somebody, you meet the people at the trade show and then they tell you about all these supports. What was the next step then? Did you go to.
[00:27:57] Walter: Yeah. I worked with my economic development agency international right here in your local jurisdiction and so they are able to, you know, they know far more than you could just try to ask questions.
[00:28:13] Cause you don't know what you don't know. And so being there, as you say, allows you to parlay, so then once you learn one thing, then someone tells you something else.
[00:28:23] Wendy: So bring me into, so the first meeting, what did you learn? Did they talk about trade show or website or translation or introduction?
[00:28:32] So you tell me your
[00:28:33] Walter: story, but the first conversation then it's like, you know, who are you, right? Because where are you as a company you're standing? You know, what is your, what is your financial situation? Because it doesn't matter. If I tell you, you can do exports, you can't afford to do export, even though it.
[00:28:50] What's the point. You can't do it. So they'll walk you through a series of ideas. Like, okay, well, why don't we stay domestic? Why don't we build up some sales? Why don't we try only taking missions that are in the us when they travel here, they're still foreign, but at least you know, you can only take what you can kind of buy it off and you can only take what you can respond to.
[00:29:13] So they, they want to be very careful, as I said, it's a relationship building business and they can't have you messing up relationships by bringing people to the table that can't deliver. So just what
[00:29:23] Wendy: revenues revenues, or how would you, how would a company know that they're ready to go international? I don't know if they do it by product shipped or revenues or size or
[00:29:36] Walter: it's, it's your capacity really?
[00:29:38] And then you can't really be everything to everyone. I think that's why I stayed there international because you can't. Spread yourself too thin. You
[00:29:48] Wendy: can't try. It's more about production capacity rather than the revenue you already. Yeah.
[00:29:53] Walter: Production. Like I said, you can't run two to two houses, you know, with different horses.
[00:29:58] You can't, you you'll tear yourself apart. So if I'm trying to be domestic and international at the same time, I just doubled my efforts because that's double marketing, double everything, everything you're doing internationally, you have to do it domestically and you don't get the subsidies for doing domestically.
[00:30:13] So that means you have to take your research dollars that you're using, trying to do a national and wipe them out because you're going to spend a dime.
[00:30:20] Wendy: So interesting. So if you've got capacity to grow, you can go after the us market on your own, or you can go international earlier by getting the supports and the subsidies.
[00:30:32] That is such an interesting twist that I never even thought.
[00:30:36] Walter: Yeah. And that's what I did. I said, you know, I'll work with what's available to me and what's being funded. And that cuts my work in half, which makes it make sense to me. And so all I have to do is focus on meeting clients and delivering that's it.
[00:30:52] And so that, that was great. You know, and our domestic market is competitive. It's not as a foreign market, so you're not going to just, just get a, this is not 1950s and forties where you put something in as Ooh. Ah, Ooh. And then, you know, your original, oh no, everyone's original. No one could be original.
[00:31:13] This attitude we have today. So you almost have a, I have a disadvantage to try to be domestic first because I'm going to be met with, we got that. We have that, you know, so what, so, so, so, so in the interest of me trying to be motivated to, I can't have that. I can't have you telling me, so what, and there is an answer to, so what, that's why he asked a question, but I don't want to, I don't want to deal with that.
[00:31:40] I'd rather go somewhere where somebody is interested in my products and then I'll, I'll deal with what later I'm domestic already. I'll see you when I see you,
[00:31:47] you know, I'm just not doing it. So um, let somebody else play a game. I don't have time for that. You know, I put, I put too much energy. I get up too early to be, you know, be given depressing information, you know, I I'll pass.
[00:32:03] Wendy: So it's an easiest way. It's easier to gain market share going international this way because you're naturally
[00:32:09] Walter: different.
[00:32:11] Well, yeah, I mean, you're naturally you will, you, you have to differentiate yourself and you also, but the benefit of it too, is that the market research is the key because they give you that they give you the research. They, they, they go into two week market research analysis, comparing your brand to what's on the marketplace and what the price points are.
[00:32:34] That's huge. I mean, that's, that's absolutely huge because if you're way to price Y high, Y you have to answer that. So what, and, and, and you have to explain your position and defend your position or lower your position, but you're in your, you're in no, you're, you're not, you know, here playing, you know, well, how much will you pay?
[00:32:57] What will you pay for it then if you're not coming well, I can't afford to ask you how much to pay for something. I know what it costs to make. I mean, I need you to, I need my profit margins.
[00:33:07] Wendy: Right? Right. So when you said they do the research
[00:33:11] Walter: yeah. They'll do a market assessment wherever you want to go.
[00:33:18] Well, no, this works out of the economic development. Yes. In our situation are they just brought under the same umbrella. They used to operate separately. And now they're in one house. So you got,
[00:33:29] Wendy: so our taxpayers paid for you to do analysis, to figure out which market would be the best to go into, which is brilliant because it increases the exports in the balance of trade and helps the whole economy rise because you're bringing the money back into the United States, right?
[00:33:46] Yeah. Yeah. Oh, that's brilliant.
[00:33:50] Walter: Okay. It was a no brainer for me. After banging my head against a wall, I'm not finding real solutions to sudden domestically. I was like, yeah. I mean, no, one's jumping up and down here. I
[00:34:03] Wendy: mean, ah, another barbecue sauce until they searched, shook a lot of the habanero. But anyway, that's besides the point.
[00:34:10] Okay. So they do the research. And what markets did they pick for you to go into or recommend? I pick,
[00:34:18] Walter: what did they, the reports I need for the relay for the region I'm seeking to enter. So what regions
[00:34:24] Wendy: did you originally target? Every last
[00:34:26] Walter: one of them
[00:34:27] in Mexico, Brazil, Canada, you name it? I'm like anything. All of it. Give it to me, take it off. And what
[00:34:35] Wendy: did you learn? Because you're not, it's pretty hard to go into all markets at once. So you must have narrowed it down.
[00:34:42] Walter: I did to, to lay lastly to the middle east and Mexico. But you know, it's, it's only as far as your dollars will let you, so you, you focused on the campaigns that start to give you an ROI and then you can take those ROI.
[00:34:59] So other places, so some are easier, some are more or less, you know, available to you based on the, the sensitivity of the market or pricing, depending on how good your product is. So you're not gonna do very well in Mexico, per se. If it's expensive, you're not going to do very well in certain, places when you talk about gourmet.
[00:35:19] Cause it's like we can't buy it. So. There's that? So you learn where, your product will be best fit. And then it requires you to assess, the fact that, you're a mid-level or high-level manufacturer, you can't give retail pricing when you're a novelty or gourmet product, right?
[00:35:38] So you, you don't fit in certain niche markets. You have to know that you're a high end product that only a certain amount of people can afford. You have to make adjustments, you know, side
[00:35:47] Wendy: and decide. So you decide the middle east and Mexico. And then what did you do next once you made that decision?
[00:35:55] Walter: I put my efforts in dollars in those buckets, and then I booked all the trade missions so I can get going into those regions as well as my research and building relationships. So my key was to go into these areas and looking for distributors as a manufacturer, I don't want to play you know, distributor in someone else's country.
[00:36:16] When all I want to do is ship containers and they can just, they can handle it from there. I think is to get it to the ports you know, ensure it and intact, and then they can get it to their supplier retailers or local markets from there.
[00:36:31] Wendy: Okay. So tell me about the trade missions that you went on.
[00:36:34] Cause this is a popular thing for people to do, and if you haven't been on one, there's a lot to learn about them.
[00:36:41] Walter: So yeah, train transmissions are, you know, what the programs that helps providing some checklists and things like that, of that nature. So leading up to your show making sure you have your promotional material, making sure you have you've reached out to your folks on the ground and those areas, your, your key folks that work for you on the ground, through the government and entities that are in place you know, diplomats and so forth.
[00:37:06] So they can, because they're on a U us side, they're gonna make sure things are going smoothly for you with the relationships to export and shipping contacts with governments on that side to make sure that they can remove red tapes and things like that if they incur. So there's a lot of folks on the international waters working for the U S and consulates , and market areas that are there strategically to help you what sales and marketing and contacts and relationships on the ground to.
[00:37:36] Wendy: Okay. And what promotional material did you take on your first show?
[00:37:40] Walter: We created our Salesforce chores talking about our palletization of the products, Dom skew, number of pallets, skew numbers, individual skew numbers everything a distributor needs in order to input their, their products into their systems their global systems so that they can You know, get it to the marketplace there.
[00:37:58] You have to create the labels you use stickers at first because I don't create product labels for regions that I'm not necessarily, I'm sure I'm going to enter that market. So I'll create, I'll just use their app. They're they're equivalent to FDA's requirements for those regions. And then we, we , a fixed stickers that just like Canada or anywhere else that has dual labels that have the ingredients in the nutrition facts and then their current language.
[00:38:27] Wendy: you had to translate the labels then into Arabic when you went into the middle east.
[00:38:32] Walter: Yes, eventually. It was a two year. I mean, it was a two year, four year campaign and I was successful in too. So that, that really helped me cut down my time because I've, you know, taken Jordan Egypt, Saudi Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and, you know, PATAR and made them their clients.
[00:38:52] So that allows me now to focus on just delivery of products and, and, and, and my partnerships and relationships that I've created with newer products, more innovative products in R and D and things like that now to increase our product awareness and more products in a region.
[00:39:09] Wendy: Okay. So there's so much there.
[00:39:11] I want to ask you about, but I'm going to bring you back into, so you prepare for the show by developing the sales brochures. And did you, so you translated your labels. Did you translate your sales brochures?
[00:39:22] Walter: No, because a us American is a standard language now. So no matter where you go, people speak their language, but their second language will be English.
[00:39:33] So most cases, everyone speaks English
[00:39:36] Wendy: and, okay. So going to the trade shows in the middle east, you really felt there's
[00:39:41] Walter: no one, no one really don't. If they don't speak English, they have a translator with them, literally walking around. Okay.
[00:39:48] Wendy: And these are a lot of the distributors are international people that you're meeting at the trade show.
[00:39:54] Walter: Yeah. That was the Gulf foods, which is the largest food show in the world. And so that food show You know, you register prior to going to the convention centers, you set up your feelers in the system, you register your products through their system and you go through their whole checklist.
[00:40:12] They don't let you just show up. You have to really go through their onboarding process prior to arriving at the convention center and your badges and so forth. And you do this for domestic or international for that matter, they're all the same. You have to go through a sequence of checkpoints and things like that.
[00:40:27] But once you've done that, then you know, the buyers to let you know really that you lean on the buyers for their. Credibility and their knowledge of the marketplace to let you know what you really can and can't do. Hence, you know, you don't want to try to go into a region that you don't necessarily live and then tell them what you're going to do.
[00:40:48] So you really want your buyers to navigate you. And they do this every day. So though they, if they like your product, they'll walk you through a series of, Hey, we have to do this and you have to do that. Or you might have to get this, or you might have to get that. And if it's not something you can afford to do, then, you won't be in their marketplace, but you know, so our translation is on our website.
[00:41:10] So you can translate things from different languages too, to your language, so you can read it. So our communication is there on our website. And so Marcus that we go in, we try to make the website convenient to those communities that can buy. So if we open marketplaces on Amazon or walmart.com we also make those available and communications to those regions as well.
[00:41:33] Wendy: Okay. And have you ever measured, like if you did English only on your website versus the translation, what a difference that would make in sales?
[00:41:42] Walter: Not really. Because there's a chair for our services. Person. I always try to think about the user experience because it doesn't matter what I think it matters that if I went to my website, that I can understand it.
[00:41:56] And if you're going to be a consumer for me, that I make it available to you to understand, or if you won't buy it that's kind of, to me, it was like a 1, 2, 3 it's you definitely want. Always look at the lens through the customer's eyes. You can't look at them through your eyes. You have to use your website from a user perspective, but users situation most people try to work with whom their own side of the dashboard, but you have to be a customer and your company to understand what's broken, what's broken or what's what works.
[00:42:27] Wendy: So it's real interesting because you separate out the buyers at the Gulf food show in Dubai, they speak enough English that you can do business with them, and they're going to get your products out. But when you're talking the consumer with the labeling and the website and any communications from the consumer, you're translating, you're speaking their language.
[00:42:49] That's right.
[00:42:50] Walter: Well, cause you know, the buyers are not talking necessarily to the customers. You know, the day there they're there they are when they're getting the products in the region and to grocery stores and things like that. So they'll, they'll touch it from that perspective, but those people are actually touched back on your product.
[00:43:07] At some point, they're going to come back to your story, your website, they're going to do their homework. They're going to say, you know, what does this company stand for? What are their ethics? I mean, what are their values? Do I, do they align with my values? And the customers today are all about the electronics experience.
[00:43:24] And if you don't have your products online information-wise and readily when those compute those, those consumers scan your products and, and, and you don't have a compelling argument for them to buy your products. They won't.
[00:43:36] Wendy: Right. Right. Okay. So you prepared in advance of the trade show and then you went to the trade show and met people.
[00:43:44] And then what did you do after the trade show to make sure it was successful?
[00:43:48] Walter: So I wanted to touch back on one thing about the trade show is that you also have to be ready for infant information. It doesn't matter if you go to a trade show that you're not, you're not capturing information. You have to be able to separate the wheat from the shaft, so to speak. You really have to be able to say your, your S your staff is very familiar with not being rude, but also efficient, and know how to cut off conversations and move to the most efficient one that will buy from you.
[00:44:19] So you really have to take time to grill on your staff on how they're to respond in those regions, to those clients, and so that you can get the most out of it as far as contacts and sales. So, you know, that's really important. And the trade show has tools that you can use and scan badges with your phones.
[00:44:38] I usually pay for those. And as people walk around badges, you're scanning them into your system, into a CRM system to download later. And you also come you to those portals within their system. So people set up meetings with you through those apps. They other agencies communicate with you through those apps.
[00:44:54] So it becomes a phone line for the convention center and for yourself. You're not on your phone, you're on their, their network and their systems.
[00:45:01] Wendy: Okay. Yes. That's a really good point of how trade shows have changed. Since then. I was at inbound a couple of years ago before the pandemic which is a big marketing conference in Boston.
[00:45:14] And I could, I could schedule a lot of meetings. It was cool. Cause you'd say, all right, I want to meet you. 10 30 at table three, and then you'd both show up there,
[00:45:23] Walter: right? A hundred percent, they facilitate it, you know, the meeting, the room, you know, and everything is digital. So I would say on the brochures, I made sure they were digitized and then they were uploaded so that people can download them either on my website or either at the trade shows, because, you know, you can print a lot of material, but everybody has a smartphone.
[00:45:43] And most of the time people would just come by your booth and take a picture of your stuff and keep it a little bit, like, they'll say, you know, you can keep it. I just took a picture of it. And so QR codes really helped us to, you know, minimize the ability to waste paper. So having QR codes direct to, to information it was a whole lot more efficient than spending, you know, tons of money on print that may only use be used for that.
[00:46:08] You know, and then what do you do with it? Yeah. You got discount for it, but it's in the trash. It doesn't mean anything anymore. So, you know, you have to embrace the technology as much as possible because has to follow up to your question is that you actually have these people captured now in a lead capture tool.
[00:46:26] So now you just have to respond to them. Thanks for bringing that to show, you know, about blah. And those people are like, you know, excited because a lot of times people go to shows and they really just don't follow up.
[00:46:37] Wendy: Okay. So follow up is the post show. Yeah. I want to swing through this and then I want to get to the two year success story and we'll end on that because that's a tremendous story.
[00:46:48] Okay. So what, what kind of follow-up did you do after the.
[00:46:51] Walter: The followup was great because I was able to reach back out through, you know, you have WhatsApp and a lot of the folks outside of the us are on WhatsApp. I didn't know what it was until I left the country. I was like, what is WhatsApp?
[00:47:04] So it's a messaging system for free. And a lot of these countries have them, you can place calls and also texts back and forth your profiles there. I have it linked to my CRM systems. So I get all of it streamlined into one place and I'm able to follow up turn them into quotes, into leads, leads into sales.
[00:47:23] And this is all from you know, just imagine if I text you, you know, you kind of like, if you got my number, then it's kinda like, I know you or something. So you, you, you have a leg up and that makes it more personal. So. A lot of folks, you know, my WhatsApp was nothing before I traveled. So I know all of it is in there is this primarily for clients.
[00:47:44] And so they are able to inbox me directly anytime, all day, any night. And you know, and I work on two different, three different times zones. So I have plot, you know, when you're growing, cause you start buying clocks and you putting them on the wall and setting somewhere else. And you're like, I'm gonna talk to him that time him at this time and we'll roll over there.
[00:48:08] So you start really feeling. Wow. Like, this is interesting. And I'm waking up at 3:00 AM to talk to giant 8:00 AM. It's like, oh my God. So you really dislike uh, you know, kind of operative. I mean, you just, you're just hiding from state. You're just traveling, but you never sleep in the same place twice. You you're tired.
[00:48:29] You know everything about it is just like, you know, you don't eat well, you move in. I mean, it's, it's, it's crazy. It's like you're on the run all the time, but you're loving it. Aren't you? I do. I do, but I'm in hospitality. We're crazy. So we can keep coming back for more.
[00:48:45] Wendy: Okay. So tell me, before we run out of time, June, 2021, you said that was your huge success
[00:48:53] so tell me about that.
[00:48:54] Walter: So after the rebranding, we were confident enough to go out. We were still not fully rebranded before I started doing it. I was working in tandem with them because I said, look, I I'm working faster than my parts. And so I'm, I'm doing things, whether you're rebranding or not. So you'll have to meet me where I'm at until you finished branding.
[00:49:15] And they did, they use old labels with newer branding schematics until the labels were actually finished. I started branding before the labels were done, just moving. And so the labels would catch up with the brand elements and then the assets start to line up, but they were always months behind me. But so the success was that I kept pushing regardless of, you know saying, well, I'm not ready yet.
[00:49:42] There's no way I can do this or do that. And I said, no, I'm going to keep pushing. And yeah, it's fickle and sometimes it's frustrated me because, but, but the thing is if, if you do it, when you think is the time is probably not in this past. So your, your S your success is action. And action is, is now.
[00:49:58] So you, you have to continue to push and, and, and, and, and know that now is when you have to do it. Not later, not tomorrow, not
[00:50:08] Wendy: right. You're creating that activity, and you're trying to fill it. So, where you at, where you at the food show in Dubai, when you made a great connection, like, how did you break into those markets?
[00:50:22] Walter: So, my first show was COVID code three, level three, almost four. And how I was like, you know, you got to still go. And I was like, yeah, if the airlines are open, I'm going to fly over there because I thought of it this way. If anyone else went, they were serious. There's no, one's gonna just go. They needed something.
[00:50:45] And the serious players showed up and it wasn't very large, but it was large. As food shows go, it was still the largest in the world, but the traffic wasn't as extreme as let's say this last past year, this year. And, and just imagine half of the U S pavilion three, three quarters of the pavilion. So for me that, that narrowed the field, I'm all for it.
[00:51:09] I mean, it's like, I want to, if I'm the only guy there. Great. Right.
[00:51:14] Wendy: Yeah. So just to clarify pavilions, the U S takes a huge booth that they called the pavilion, and then there's lots of smaller tables in there and they bring the small mid-size businesses over and let them have you know, or support them in having a table and introductions there.
[00:51:30] So you're there at the pavilion. It's mostly empty. And who comes over to you?
[00:51:36] Walter: So a lot there from, I mean, all, so many regions come to our came to our booth, looking for U S products. And like I said, we, we shake hands with a lot of folks and try to cultivate some relationships in Saudi Arabia and and Dubai.
[00:51:52] And so the two that stick out to us were two great relationships. So we went to dinner, we hit it off very well. You know, I'm, I remiss to say that the, the, one of the main reasons why I wanted to buy and I'll jump forward again to ducktail was the success or Sue was with Warner brothers originally. And they met us at a us trade show and they actually took us.
[00:52:13] I took them to dinner and they, they were building that billion dollar theme park in the middle east at the time. And really loved the products and said, we want to get your products into our theme parks and Ferrari world and everywhere. But again, as I said to you earlier, I was still in the process of identifying my labels, what I wasn't, but I kept pushing.
[00:52:34] And so it stalled out, but My cousin works in Dubai and was on an elevator with the head of Warner brothers food and beverage. And I only knew the guy below him. And so he said what are you doing here? And he says, well, I'm here on business. I'm a nuclear plant inspector. Another guy said, well, I'm a Warner brothers.
[00:52:53] He said, well, you know, my cousin, Walter Brooks. Yeah. I know Walter Brooks. Yeah. And next thing you know, he's like, cademy the phone I'm talking with Eric, which, I mean, Alan who's ahead of a food and beverage for Warner brothers restarting that whole process and the top down. So he was in Dubai and it really sparked me to decide to go ahead and, make the missions to Dubai after that.
[00:53:16] But moving forward back to your question, I. I shook hands with many of distributors in Dubai and the, we didn't do anything then, but they were very impressed and we had trade missions. So we knew each other prior to the travel because it was zoom. And so we had a lot of face-to-face time.
[00:53:35] And then I finally met the distributors when I got there. So we had some, some in time to, to, to kind of get to know each other a little bit. And so once I got there, I felt more comfortable and eventually it took a year to now to sign with my distributors. And you know, they handle about 70% of the marketplace in Dubai.
[00:53:57] And actually after being with them the other distributors. If they want it, I want it because they were the largest distributors for that. Put us in touch with many other larger scale distributors that are friends and said that if he's wants your product, I want your product. And so it was just that relationship.
[00:54:16] It's all about those relationships that you cultivate once you establish some clientele down there. And so we, we shook hands and this year I got an email saying, you know, we want, well, when I was there last. February this February, I was taken on a tour from one of my distributors through the entire Dubai.
[00:54:38] I mean, I had, no, I didn't, this guy was older than me. I didn't know how he was standing up. I mean, all day, all night I was tired. Energizer bunny, you know, he's like taking me everywhere. He said, yeah, you got to know Dubai. And
[00:54:53] Wendy: so let me jump back. Cause I think this ties into the four year plan that you accomplished in two years.
[00:55:00] So it sounds like Sustenna said, allow four years of doing trade missions, meeting people, building relationships, and going to conferences before you hit something big. But you did that all in two years and signed some big contracts.
[00:55:15] Walter: Yeah, I did. I I actually did that was really cool. But it took a lot of cultivation, you know, it was building relationships, you know, what they did was they found interest in me and Debbie cakes and they're a billion dollar company, so I wasn't in bad company there.
[00:55:31] and then, so it really drew a lot of attention because of all the vendors that they chose, I was their, top pick and so I I was able to Keep the relationship going what's happening? How you doing, checking in wishing? Well they wished me well and just, you know, earn the relationship.
[00:55:52] And then I was taught, you know, from them as well. So it was about me not looking at this as a sale as, just a transaction. We became kind of like friends at that point. That last trip really kind of solidified that, that process because that's where I was like, wow. We're not just like, , they're there now cultivating the relationship to their investing in there.
[00:56:12] And so next thing you knew. Just turn the trade show. We got our email saying that, you know, we are your distributors, terms MOQ, minimum order quantities, all those good things. And, and that's just one of the three we picked up Saudi Arabia. This is the same thing. And we also picked up another large distributor, you know with a house a year Troy Thrones and then also in Saudi.
[00:56:37] So these are the major players of the food game , in their country. So we're very pleased that that the efforts that were afforded us to travel, take advantage of these opportunities abroad cultivated these relationships that now is multimillion dollar relationships that are allowing our company to grow maybe create factories of our own even in Saudi Arabia.
[00:57:02] Wendy: incredible. So what do you think if you're willing to share this? What I'd like to do is look at the ROI on how much you invested, how much support you got and the size of the contracts that you won. So if anybody's thinking about whether it's worth it, they got the numbers.
[00:57:20] Walter: The good thing about that I'll start with this first is that you are determined.
[00:57:26] You determine you can't determine how you'll grow, but you determine what you can do while you grow. So you don't bite off more than you can chew. You have to take what's. W you have to be transparent and your capacities because people don't mind. If you're small, they just mind. If you try to be small, big, and then you're really small and then you don't deliver.
[00:57:48] So you really have to give people the heads up and be honest about your capacity to deliver because they don't, they don't mind having the conversation with you. The bad thing is that you didn't have the conversation with them. So a lot of it is don't, don't have this complex where, you know, your cards are held so close to your chest, that you think that if they know this, then that, and that's what spoils it for you because your vendors you're used to be very transparent.
[00:58:16] It's a relationship. It's a huge relationship.
[00:58:18] Wendy: So are you avoiding my question? No, no, no, no, no, no. I was like snide Dagon on this floor. No,
[00:58:26] Walter: just to the point of if it's worth it. And, and, but, but as far as the investment, yeah, Everybody's investment is different levels. So, you know, we've probably put a million dollars into this opportunity you know, starting off with these, this entire process with R and D and product development and purchasing ourselves.
[00:58:47] Wendy: Oh yeah, no, I, what I meant is, you know, you got the support from SAASTA, they paid for your travel, they paid for the trade show. They did the, the research. How much do you think it cost you out of pocket to build that relationship and Dubai until you got the contract?
[00:59:06] Walter: I have a thousand dollars,
[00:59:08] Wendy: a hundred thousand, a hundred K.
[00:59:10] And how much do you support, do you think you got well, that's going to be hard to measure. Exactly. Yeah. Because all that research could really add up. Yeah.
[00:59:19] Walter: I mean, there's, if you kept it very simple, then it would be about. Okay. If they offered a trade mission and it was $10,000, you got that for half right.
[00:59:31] Or $16,000. And then you didn't even add your, your room and board travel meals and entertainment, taxis treasure material. So you, so you're saying that one trip is baby $50,000, you know, and you haven't shipped product to, for your trade show. And so you look at it about 50 grand maybe just, just to get to Dubai and back.
[00:59:54] And that's, you know, that's just that one excursion and then you have to come back and do the paperwork to try to, you know, to recover some of the the tradesman, but you know, I'm on,
[01:00:06] Wendy: so you, you probably out of pocket put in about a hundred K and you got at least that much simpler. From the organizations at least that if not more.
[01:00:17] Walter: Yeah. So they'll give you those you know, some of those things, but here's, you know, there's, there's caveats to everything because it's not always, sometimes it's about to, I take advantage of all of the subsidies, you know, because they don't meet my expectation. So in other words, if you have to fly there, they want you to fly on American airline, leaving in the United States.
[01:00:35] It's you know, to us U S thing, right? So originally I wanted to take Emirates, but well, you can't, you have to fly with us over us waters, and then you can change planes and do whatever you want. And then you come back on anything you want. The point is that I'd rather pay for my ticket because I'm not going to get there a day and a half trying to.
[01:00:51] Through customs in two or three different countries on a discount. It's just too exhausting and the best crack the deal. That's what it is. And I it's, it's a, it's a program, but I now just fly Emirates on New York. And I just get there in 12 hours, 13. I can't afford to get there in a day and a quarter.
[01:01:10] Traveling is brutal. So I won't take, I won't take advantage of the airline situation maybe with the meals and entertainment. So you start to boutique, get a little bit to basically, as you grow this five, what you want to suffer and not suffer with, to take the subsidies.
[01:01:24] Wendy: Okay. So, so back to, so that's very interesting information.
[01:01:29] We could go another hour, but we're, we're we're over time, but I want to get to this ROI number. So you probably put in a hundred thousand and with these contracts that you got after developing relationships over two years, what do you think the value of those.
[01:01:43] Walter: We look hire about $10 million,
[01:01:46] Wendy: $10 million.
[01:01:50] That's absolutely fantastic. So you can't talk about a better return of a hundred K in to get $10 million in contracts back with relationships over there with a lot less competition. So if you have a food product from the United States or, you know, somebody who does you definitely have to listen to this episode again, or forwarded along, or check out the show notes to find your local contact, to see how you can get involved in this.
[01:02:18] This has been so valuable, Walter. I cannot express my thanks enough for all this fantastic information that you've shared.
[01:02:26] Walter: Oh, this is my pleasure. My, my final word on this, right. Is that making a sales good, but making a relationship is. So trust the respect and a sustainable and be fair. You know, a lot of it is, is that you, you, without the relationship, there is nothing.
[01:02:44] It's just a transaction. And so you, you, you gotta avoid transactions and look for relationships
[01:02:49] Wendy: and has been so clear on so many of the episodes. It's about building those relationships and it makes business a lot of fun when you're traveling internationally. So where can people find you or buy your sauce?
[01:03:03] Walter: When do you can and I can't thank you enough for you know, us meeting and having this, this, this podcast that you have, and I give you all the kudos that much to your endeavor and success in what you're doing. But you can find our products. We just got accepted to Walmart marketplace this morning too, we just got accepted this morning actually to UNF marketplace.
[01:03:24] So where are you at NFI? We're at Walmart, Amazon, and then our website as well and infinite island, New York.
[01:03:32] Wendy: Okay. And the website for anybody is Brooks, B R O K S may. Gourmet foods.com. You definitely want to check it out. It's a beautiful site and looks like a lot of good flavor. So I'm going to go in and order my, my show a now I was supposed to do that before the show, but I do it now.
[01:03:52] So thank you so much. You can reach out to Walter Brooks on his website. If you want to reach him, or if you have any questions about taking your company international, feel free to call me because I can put you in touch with people that can help, or we can certainly help with your marketing communications.
[01:04:10] Thank you, Walter.
[01:04:12] Walter: And the favorite word in the middle east is not Sharla, which is God willing to send. That's the survival, that word in the middle east high. I used a lot culturally. So
[01:04:23] Wendy: thank you so much. God willing,
[01:04:25] Walter: inshallah. Inshallah. Yeah. It's God willing. And that's after every statement you make to anyone in sales, it's a chest pat and a chill brother.
[01:04:39] If God is willing, we will do business. And you're like,
[01:04:44] cause you want to, you want to be too inshallah,
[01:04:49] Wendy: God willing, and you want to do business.
[01:04:54] Walter: I want to make sure I got asked you too.
[01:04:57] Wendy: We'll lend on that. And Shallah.