Grow your brand and become a successful real estate investor! Learn how in today’s episode with Olumide Gbenro, an entrepreneur, a multilingual executive, and an owner of a marketing agency. Discover what inspired Olumide to step into entrepreneurship, the 2 types of persons that Olumide connects, and the crucial things that real estate investors should do.
What You Will Learn About Olumide Gbenro – Globopreneur:
- Olumide’s background
- What inspired him to step into entrepreneurship
- The 2 types of persons that Olumide connects
- How he finds them and how he helps them
- Olumide’s take on the future of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency
- How to prepare yourself for the upcoming blockchain revolution in order to be on a top when a boom occurs
- What are Olumide’s marketing focuses
- The most important things that real estate investors should do
- The value of being authentic
- Olumide’s example of a marketing strategy for one of his clients
- What is in Olumide’s future that he is the most excited about right now
- Olumide’s first course, “Monetize”, that he will realize soon
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Speaker 1: This is Theriault Media.
Olumide Gbenro: I would say for a real estate investor it’s about storytelling and telling your story personally. Like sort of showing your life and what you’re doing, whether it’s going to a local restaurant. If you have kids and you feel comfortable showing your children as a part of your life is sort the way to go.
Telling a story and being authentic with your personal brand I think is the most important things that people can do.
Matt Theriault: Hello, this is Matt Theriault at Epic Real Estate and today is another episode of Thought Leader Thursday. All right, so today I’m joined by a multi-lingual executive who leads investor and startup relations for TEAMZ Inc., a platform based in Tokyo, Japan that connects investors with entrepreneurs from around the world.
His primary role is to facilitate the relationships between major stakeholders from the United States, China, and Japan. And facilitate the growth of our growing international communities.
In addition, he runs a marketing agency where his focus is on public relations and brand monetization. So please help me welcome to the show Olumide Gbenro. Olumide, welcome to the show.
Olumide: Thank you so much, Matt It’s a pleasure, man. Really, really happy you reached out to me. Thank you so much.
Matt: Oh, you bet. I’m happy to have you here. And I want to talk about your business and what you’re up to today. But before we do, what were you doing just prior to your TEAMZ Inc. endeavor?
Olumide: So before TEAMZ I was actually a graduate student here in San Diego …
Matt: Oh, okay.
Olumide: … at San Diego State University. So you know, like a lot of people I took the traditional route. I went to undergraduate, took me five years. And then I did my master’s at San Diego State University in public health. Totally unrelated to entrepreneurship or anything like that.
Matt: Got it. So what was it about going into entrepreneurship? What inspired that? And this thing with the investor and the startup relation. How’d that happen?
Olumide: Yeah, so I could tell a little bit about that story. So for me, being someone that’s global … I was actually born in Nigeria, I was raised in London, England. I moved to the United States when I was 13. So I’ve had this global perspective. Always had friends from all over the world … Brazil, South Africa.
And while I was in college, I was a social sort of guy. I started to throw little events here and there. Parties, to be honest, and things that helped me pay my college bills. And at the end of the day as I got older I also realized that, although I have a talent for attracting people, getting people together, where is this going? This can’t just be a party all day sort to thing. How can you turn this into something that will be beneficial for yourself and everybody else around you?
So I started to throw networking events for entrepreneurs. And it was more of an international spin. Come network and meet people from around the world, exchange ideas. But what ended up happening was as I developed elements of luxury, was that it attracted some of the wealthiest, some of the most established people in Southern California.
So everything I do I try to class it up and present it in the best way possible. So it’d be something in an estate. Something very formal, you’d have to wear a suit. It’d be a very nice gala sort of effect.
And from doing that, I inadvertently invited a wealthy audience to come and network. And I started to … at 25, 26 … meet some of the most successful people in Southern California and in some cases the world. So that was the root of how I began to rub shoulders and sort of create this network.
Matt: Got it. So one of those connections. Is TEAMZ Inc. your company or is it a company that you work for?
Olumide: It’s a company I work for. Technically the company is two years old. I partnered with them with my company, Tribe Network, when I first started throwing these luxury events. And when I got over there I saw the reality of sort of venture capital funding that was available. And the opportunity to join the team and become on of their founding members was there so I sort of shifted my role to full-time on TEAMZ.
I still throw these events once in a while. They have to be geared in charity or working with some of the celebrities or NFL people that I partner with. But my main role right now is TEAMZ Inc. based in Tokyo.
Matt: Sweet. So who is the ideal person that you’re looking for in your business in that business and how do you help them?
Olumide: So for us, it’s two-sided. One side is the investor. Someone who is either an angel investor or someone who comes from a sort of a group of investors who are looking to put money into, funny enough, real estate into tech.
But on the other side is also upcoming entrepreneurs, startups, people who would need funding. So those are the people I try to address this two-sided street.
I’m not really an activist on the startup side because I’ve had a couple of startups, a lot of big learnings and I understand how challenging it is to start a business. So I advocate and try to find talented people, talented startups, people in different genre’s and connect them with some of these people who are looking to invest.
Matt: So kind of like a business matchmaker, so to speak?
Olumide: Yeah, I’d say so. It’s sort of like there’s value for both sides and I try to find the best value for people and match them and make sure that everybody benefits.
Matt: Sure. Super. So you go out and look for great ideas and great entrepreneurs that need the capital and make that introduction and that’s how you do it.
Olumide: Yeah. And just to mention with TEAMZ is that we do have two large summits that we hold in Tokyo, Japan every year. It’s called the TEAMZ Business Summit. The one that’s coming this September … September 28th and 29th … is actually geared towards blockchain because we follow the trends and understand sort of the innovations that are happening. But those are the two main other ways that we aggregate a large number of people who are similar minded and who are looking to get deals done. And those are the times when we really have the big hitters come from China, Japan and who are ready to invest and put their money to something that’s really going to blow up.
So just had to make sure I mentioned that.
Matt: Got it. Cool. So the investor’s side of it. Is there a trend or something specific that they’re looking for? Is there some sort of common denominator amongst the ideas and entrepreneurs that you’re matching them up with?
Olumide: Yeah. Right now everybody loves blockchain. I know there’s a lot of issues with sort of these ICO’s that are raising a billion dollars. But the main focus right now, because we understand the trends and the change that’s coming, is that a lot of investors are looking into blockchain technology-based projects. Especially ones that are US based, things that are related to trying to invest in the US market. They’re really interested … because I deal with all the people in Asia … it’s like they’re really interested in doing things abroad.
It seems like it’s … I wouldn’t say saturated … but they’re really interested in getting money out, which has it’s own issues as well we could talk about. But interested in putting money into projects … blockchain especially … in America and abroad.
Matt: Got it. So the layman like myself that just knows Crypto just because everyone talks about it, but I don’t know much about it. And it seems like there’s all was this hype around the bitcoin thing and then it kind of died down because it kind of settled. But from what you’re saying is there’s a lot of power, a lot of money, and a lot of ideas and energy going forth pushing that forward, right?
Olumide: There’s I can’t tell you how exciting it is. And there’s a company I work for also called Appics and it’s a social media based blockchain app that basically rewards you for every time you get a like or every time you get a comment, you actually get rewarded in cryptocurrency. And that’s incredible. It’s a new way of thinking, it’s a new way of bringing value to this ecosystem.
So to tell you I’m excited is an understatement because there’s certain things that are going to start to happen, these transitions are going to start to happen that’s going to hit people upside the head.
One thing I can mention since we’re on that trend and we’re being open here is attention, just like we know with the Gary V. school of thought, attention is so valuable in that in the future … I don’t know when … companies will start paying people for their time, for watching videos or watching commercials. Instead of sort of the company paying an influencer and we’re watching influencer’s video they’re just going to pay us directly through the blockchain for watching their content. So there’s a lot of stuff going on.
But on the other side to be honest too is that just like when the internet came around, not all these are going to be successful, right. There’s only a cream of the crop top executors that are going to be successful. And I believe, as I referenced Appics, that’s going to be one of the ones that really do a great job in this transition. In the shortness of time between now you or a lot of people watching right now or listening, not knowing a dang thing about blockchain or cryptocurrency, but you will know because this is going to be merged into things in the next, I don’t know, two, three, five, 15 years. We don’t know.
Matt: Got it. So I hadn’t planned on going down this path but now I’m intrigued based off this …
Olumide: Yeah, now we open up the Pandora’s box. We had [crosstalk 00:09:43]
Matt: Totally. Now I’m really going to pick your brain. No, but let’s kind of get practical with regard to the total layman that just knows cryptocurrency and knows really nothing about it or how it works. It sounds like you’re really confident that some big wave is about to happen, whether it’s next year or 10 years from now, it’s coming because there’s so much energy and capital being pushed towards the blockchain.
What would be, say, the top three things someone could do … the total layman … the top three things they could to kind of prepare themselves maybe inform themselves a little bit more?
Olumide: That’s good. Okay, you’re putting me on my toes here a little bit. I like this.
Matt: That’s right.
Olumide: And again, so, guys, this is not an investment of bias. I’m not a cryptocurrency expert. I’m just someone who enjoys learning about it and I can tell you my experiences that I’ve had. So if I were to say the top three things … First of all, you got to do your research. You can’t other people to sort of tell you where to invest, what to put your money in.
Matt: Well, that’s one thing I’m trying to talk about. Like, hey, you got to do your research. What’s a good source of information that’s reliable, dependable information?
Olumide: I would say, right now, everything is so young I can’t tell you there’s a cryptocurrency website that has all the ideas and everything …
Olumide: … to go sort of check it out. My advice and the answer to that is, go and find people who are leaders and are trusted in the field of cryptocurrency. I’m not going to name names. I’m not responsible for that. You can go out there and Google people, you can go look on YouTube, check who’s trending when it comes to blockchain technology, top blockchain companies, to cryptocurrency companies. There’s so ideas to throw out there.
Then go look at their LinkedIn and look at who they’re associated with. Look at the sort of deals they’ve done. How much have they raised for their ICO? Is this someone that’s reputable and respected by other people in the field? Then you could start to say, “Okay, maybe some of the things that they’re saying and they’re claiming are something that I can trust in.”
So for me, it’s been a personal journey knowing people in the blockchain. I know influencers in the cryptocurrency world. And it’s more about I want to get to know you as a person. Do you have the moral aptitude and character that I can trust? Because then it doesn’t matter what you’re talking about, I know that what you’re going to say is going to be true.
So that’s the best answer I have for that. I’m not going to say a website you’ve got to check out.
Matt: So really it’s investor beware but understand it’s coming so keep your eyes and ears open?
Olumide: Yes. And I say keep your eyes open right now because the ones that are going to be successful five, 10 years from now are already working and developing right now. So get your foot in the door and start to build relationships with these companies. Or start to invest in the ones that you do trust and you have a personal connection or background checked so that when the boom does come in whatever field that is because there’s so many different types of block chains then you’re partnered with.
Matt: Okay. Got it. All right. Let’s not go down that anymore.
Olumide: Yeah, let’s leave the [crosstalk 00:12:52].
Matt: Let’s shift gears. But that was good. Thank you for sharing that and I think that’s actually really good advice. It’s investor beware. But it’s something you should probably take some time and … What’s the word I’m talking about? … give some of your attention to it and stay as up to date as you can, right?
Matt: Okay. Cool. So let’s talk about your marketing agency where you focus on public relations and brand monetization.
Matt: What’s that all about?
Olumide: Sure. So it’s funny that a lot of the events and the luxury-themed things I did earlier in my career are sort of where these relationships and connections came for. So for me at my PR and branding agency, I focus on creating content for entrepreneurs, real estate agents like yourself, financial advisors, people in the luxury niche to create content that’s valuable to other people and from there basically bring them in on a funnel. Bring them in into your mailing list, grow your Instagram to over 100,000 people. Get yourself social approved to the point where people know that you are the authority in that particular niche or in that particular area.
So that’s primarily where I focus. And I have a few clients who are real estate agents. That’ why I was happy. When you reached out to me it wasn’t so far off me not being primarily in real estate and the luxury and sort of the wealth demographic was a match for us. So basically, yeah, that’s sort of what I do.
I help professionals create content and put it in front of the right audience to collect a mailing list or a following online that they can monetize early, but also after a few months up to a year monetize to their products and services.
So that’s sort of how we do it.
Matt: Got it. So I’m a real estate investor. I’m not an agent …
Olumide: Right. Excuse me.
Matt: … and there’s a difference between them. No big deal. This is turning into a really big deal for a lot of entrepreneurs, the personal brand. That’s become an expression in our world now that everyone’s pretty familiar with and they understand that it’s important.
What would you see or what advice would you give for a real estate investor on how they could leverage that?
Olumide: Yeah, I think … I love Gary Vaynerchuk, I’ll always reference him in different things and techniques and the things that I’ve learned through his books, through his teachings … but I would say for a real estate investor it’s about storytelling and telling your story personally. Like sort of showing your life and what you’re doing, whether it’s going to a local restaurant. If you have kids and you feel comfortable showing your children as a part of your life is sort of the way to go.
Telling a story and being authentic with your personal brand, I think, is the most important things that people can do. If you love flashy cars and you love driving it and showing off, that’s fine as well. You know you just have to be authentic and to be real with yourself. And I’ve seen a lot of people be successful doing both. “Hey, I’m a family man. I love showing pictures of myself and my wife. We’re on vacation. I love showing you myself in the office and talking you through a deal I just did.” A vlogging type of relationship with your followers.
But I’ve also seen people who are making a lot of money flashing, going down to Bali and showing their luxury lifestyle. I have friends that are literally living that life and it’s something that’s authentic to you so people who relate to that and who want a wife and a child and a secure lifestyle or who want a Maserati they can relate. And it’s a way of drawing people and sort of using that technique to draw people into who you are.
Because, yeah, the real estate thing is great but people really more connect with you and the authentic part of you. And if you’re able to show that it will really attract people to your main core business.
Matt: Got it. All right. So who is the typical client for your agency that you can make the biggest impact for the fastest?
Olumide: Fastest. Anybody actually. I would say the typical person is someone that offers a product … No, someone that offers a service. So I’ll give you an example and the way to answer this question is: One of my clients is a celebrity chef. And for him, let me tell you we’ve gotten results. And this is just a great empirical way of showing how I do what I do.
He was a guy who was friends and connected to NBA players, NFL guys, he grew up with them. He’s from the South. These guys got drafted and he was really the guy that literally followed them around and cooked for them. Meal planning all this stuff. And it turns out, I looked on this Instagram and he wasn’t showing any of this. He was a chef privately just sort of handling multi-million dollar NBA players and people who you would be like, “Wow. He works with them?” Yes. But it wasn’t being shown on his Instagram. And it wasn’t being communicated effectively through his personal brand.
So what we did is we literally swiped out his old Instagram. Not all the pictures but mainly the stuff unrelated to his career as a professional chef. And we started to take beautiful pictures of food, him at these private properties at the events he was catering. When he did Valentine’s dinner for one of his clients.
And after we put the pictures up for three, four days, I delivered a website as well to him with pictures of the clients he’s worked with. Some of the San Diego Chargers when they were here. And, again, when you talk about directing traffic or directing leads, we created a link for people to go book his services. And three days after we dropped his website from the social proof, the personal brand that was not being pushed, the description in his bio that said, “Professional chef to NBA and NFL players,” great emojis, three days later he booked three clients for private chef kind of services.
So that’s the fastest I’ve ever done it, three days. You know? Taking the right photos, presenting yourself in the right way, having a place to send people and that social proof. “Hey, I’m here with the running back of so-and-so team.” That’s sort of like people can’t deny who you are. They know who you are. They trust and he booked easily in three days over $1,500 worth of work. You know? Boom, done. And he was having a little bit of trouble getting consistent hits. And with the personal brand being directed in front of the right audience, that was all it took.
So I’m really proud of that sort of turnaround. And I’ve sort of done that same model with real estate agents, with people in the financial planning area and it works great. Seriously.
Matt: Got it. So, let’s break that down into three action steps you could create for any client. So one would be you’re going to go ahead and assess their profile, right?
Olumide: Yep. Social profile.
Matt: What does it look like? And where do we actually want to go? And then what changes we have to make? Obviously, Instagram is very picture oriented, right? It’s picture-centric. So we want to get the right pictures and then we want to add social proof. Is that kind of the …
Matt: Did I hear everything?
Olumide: If you claim to have a high net worth group of people, you better have some pictures with these people. You know what I mean? You better have an interview with a key person. Just like you’re doing. You’re giving me the opportunity to talk to you as a big hitter in real estate investing. I appreciate it. That’s social proof to show that really you are associated and getting the trust of somebody in that area.
Matt: Right. Super. All righty. So, Olumide, what’s in your future that you’re most excited about right now?
Olumide: Man, there’s a lot of different things happening. I’m most excited about scaling this PR branding agency. I’ve had great clients but I want to scale to this to where I can offer this to some of the top people in the world. You know? I want to be a world-renowned brand expert. I don’t want to just be the guy that’s, “Yeah, you’re great at branding. You’ve worked with these key clients. You’ve helped people.” I want to be the guy when it comes to branding for any company in the world, to be honest, globally.
And along with that the two main companies that I will be spending a very long time within the upcoming future is Appics, a blockchain based social media app. And also when it comes to the investment side, TEAMZ Inc. in Japan.
Yeah, I can announce this. So at TEAMZ Inc., we’ll be raising our first fund. Something between three to five million dollars. So just something to start off within Japan. And I’m excited to be able to travel to places like Tokyo, Japan, places like Germany. So for me, the future, it’s a lot of traveling to stakeholders and people who are important that I can provide value to through sort of my personal brand. But also providing value to people in the investment niche and people who have money to invest and people who need it. Just sort of being the person who’s able to connect people, just like I said since I’ve been a child in Nigeria to a student doing international events at San Diego State.
I see myself traveling and providing value to people. Simply put.
Matt: Sweet. I love it. So, if someone wanted to get in touch with you and discuss everything that we’ve discussed today because we’ve discussed a lot, what would be the best way for them to do that?
Olumide: Honestly, the best way is to send me a message on Instagram, I think. I could give you my email and that but I could just tell you go to Instagram and look me up, the globopreneur. G-L-O-B-O-P-R-E-N-E-U-R. The globopreneur.
Matt: Got it.
Olumide: Along with that, my website olumidegbenro.com. Maybe it’s hard to spell my name but if type in Olumide G-B-E-N-R-O dot com, that’s my personal brand, my PR and branding website. So those are the two things I’d say.
And along with that when it comes to the luxury marketing site, I did want to make sure I mention that I’m dropping my course soon, my first course. It’s called Monetize Influence. And basically it’s a way of showing in the last two, three years how I built my circle of influence with some of the wealthiest people in the world from here and Beverly Hills to Tokyo, Japan, and China, how to build a luxury network through luxury event marketing. And for anyone who wants to jump in on my first prerelease, there’s a huge discount. And it’s a great way of really providing value to people coming on early.
And really, if I can do it … the quiet kid, how I grew up and somehow turning into someone that could connect with people all over the world in just a few years and benefit, provide the value and also be valued as well … anyone can do it.
So I really appreciate the platform you’ve given me, Matt And I are looking forward to learning. I’m going to have to jump into some of the stuff that you’re doing. I’m going to listen to your podcast because I see myself as well in the future as I referenced earlier learning and investing in real estate. And I know you’re one of the best in the country. And I’m coming for your content, man, I’m telling you.
Matt: All right. Sweet. Hey, if someone wanted to go to and check out your new course, Monetize Influence, where do they get that? Is that through your regular website?
Olumide: It’s not on my website yet. Go to my Instagram. It’s actually a link on my Instagram.
Olumide: And certainly DM me. Please DM me and chat with me and let me know you’re interested in the course. And it’s a great way of starting that relationship as well with people.
Matt: Perfect. Thank you so much. Let’s stay in touch. Deal?
Olumide: Stay in touch, man. Thank you so much. Take care.
Matt: All right. You bet. So thanks for tuning into Epic Real Estate Investing. God bless to your success. I’m Matt Theriault. I’ll see you next week on another episode of Thought Leader Thursday. Take care.