It’s Valentines week, and it’s been a rough year in this industry, as well as every other!
So, we thought we’d spend this episode talking with aviation industry professionals about what they LOVE about this industry.
(You’d be crazy to do this if you didn’t love it, right?)
Included in this episode – (Besides John and myself) are Mickey Gamonal from Gamonal Tutors, Annamarie Buonocore from InFlightUSA Magazine, aviation industry copywriter David Pearl, and Trish Machiri from Charterly.
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Mickey Gamonal: Alright sweet. So yeah, most of us have been here before. So, the way this we’re going to go from here is just opening pitches and then we’ll go from there. So, I’ll go first. My name is Mickey Gamonal, I am with Gamonal Tutors. If anybody who’s going through any branch of the military and needs help on their ASVAB you can look me up online on Facebook, Tik Tok, or Instagram that is Gamonal Tutors.
Paula Williams: Fantastic. Paula Williams of ABCI. We’re the best of the aviation marketing companies that I know of. We help Aviation companies sell more of their products and services through aviation marketing services or sales training.
John Williams: And John Williams, I do the back end stuff for her. She’s the rock star. We occasionally get some management requests and I do love those.
Annamarie Buonocore: I am Annamarie Buonocore with In-Flight USA Magazine and BizAvJets USA Magazine, we are a nationwide general aviation publication. We’ve been in business for 37 years and we are here to improve our online presence or social media presence network with new rural writers and advertisers first exempt. Annamarie Buonocore, In-Flight USA.
Dave Pearl: Hi, I am Dave Pearl with the Fly Writer you can reach me at TheFlyWriter.com. I write words that give wings to your business. If it can be written, I can write it. I’ll help you discuss your product. I will help you reach out the customers whatever you want to do, come take a look.
Trish Machiri: My name is Trish Machiri and I am with Charterly we are a private jet charter service and we connect you to your next jet charter for passenger or cargo flights.
Mickey: So, what I love about what I do is I have a degree in education by all rights I should have been a math teacher here in Clark County, Nevada. But I have done some other stuff with my life. I have got I went and joined the Peace Corps and then I joined the army and I have done a lot of other things kind of running away from teaching as a profession to be honest because teaching is a profession is rough. But I am in a position now where I get to teach people who want to learn and I get to make noticeable progress on their goals. So, I know that I’m like helping people get closer to where they want to be. I’m not like a recruiter. So, I don’t – I’m not begging people to join the military. I’m not pushing for people to show up to class. I don’t have to do any of that. Because one, they pay me and so they’re going to show up.
Mickey: Just the other day, I was on the phone with a parent who wanted to pay for his kids’ lessons and I was like the – I often recommend that you have the student pay and the reason is because, if they pay, I know they’re going to show up. But if they know if you pay for them you never know and so that’s something that I could never do as a regular teacher. But as running my own show, that is something that I really really love and, the parents’ eyes lit up. He’s like, “Oh, of course”, that makes so much more sense. So that is – that’s probably the main thing that I love about what I do.
Paula: You get to make the rules, right?
Mickey: Yes, autonomies. Yeah, there’s someone who’s like in the military. I don’t necessarily have a problem with authority, but I’ve never been a big fan of it. I mean, you guys can probably speak to that.
John: But you joined the military right where the authority is king.
Paula: That is the big surprise of my life, okay. Yes, I am glad that worked out and I’m glad that you found a way to do what you wanted to do on your own terms as opposed to fitting into the mold of what existed already and I think a lot of us who have small businesses have done that. We’ve -, adapting to what the market needs and to what we personally are good at and what we want so, I think that’s really cool.
Trish: Yes, I think because you teach math, a lot of people don’t like it and so at least you get to work with people who want to learn it and I think that’s already an advantage for you as opposed to mom and dad’s sending them to your classes. Because if someone else tells you to go learn math you can be there but it could be really painful for the students every–
Mickey: True that.
John: math is actually very easy [crosstalk] that’s major because it’s like I told him when he was growing up, he learned the very basic stuff. One plus one and all that stuff and as you go in the more, they just do that in a different means different fashion then if you ever get behind you stop whoever’s teaching you and you say, “Wait a minute I don’t understand.” because if you don’t stop then he will forever be behind.
Mickey: That is what I cultivate in my class that I would not be able to cultivate in a regular class. If I had thirty students, I could never tell them, “Hey just interrupt me guys like if there’s any problem just go ahead and interrupt” like that wouldn’t happen if I’m burning [crosstalk] so yes, it’s really great for me.
Trish: I was reading – I was listening to a YouTube video on Outliers the other day and they were discussing how Asian kids are so much better at math than everywhere else in the world. And what was interesting is that it’s not that they are more intelligent or have a mathematical brain or as for something but it’s just the way that they’ve been raised, to just follow through and solve a problem and not be afraid of solving the problem. So, I found it pretty interesting. I always thought they were better math brain.
Mickey: For sure, is Outliers – that’s Malcolm Gladwell, yes?
Trish: I think so.
Mickey: I remember that doctor because I’m a math teacher. So, when I read that it like right now, I tell all my students. I’m like, the reason Asians are so good at math is because they do [foreign] like they are every single syllable counting to ten, and then they use that to do like one in five, one ten, and five which is fifteen. Whereas we say like twelve, like what is at twelve, like why do we why? So yeah, it was made to make sense like to John’s point like math is created to make sense. If it doesn’t it’s not necessarily the student’s fault. It’s just there’s a miss it – there’s a misunderstanding somewhere along the line and I live for that. I love that kind of stuff.
Paula: That’s cool. What I love is that I don’t have to do math. I have people to do that for me. what I love about my business is not the math. It is actually what I love is getting a phone call from somebody saying I followed your worksheet and now I got a new client or I did an email campaign that was profitable.Or when they say “I’ve got so much business that I don’t need to do marketing, but I’m coming anyway.” I’m doing this workshop anyway, because I know that’s not going to last forever. But when it works, that’s what I love is just hearing from somebody saying, you can’t tell anybody this but I just landed this thing, I like that’s perfect, but it’s so cool. So, I mean every single office hour is what I love about it. Usually, the first five minutes when a business aviation client they tell me what they’ve been doing since the last time we talked that is my very favorite part because that’s when it all comes together and that’s when I find out something that I did that worked. I love running an aviation marketing company. So that’s cool.
Mickey: Success stories, for sure. [inaudible] you always lean back towards like that’s why you get into what you do–
Paula: And that’s what keeps me going, right. because sometimes things don’t work out but most of the time they do. So, it’s all, I like to tell people that marketing is gambling but it’s playing the odds, moving the odds around in your favor. So, it works.
John: It just math.
Paula: Yes, it just math, but I don’t do the math. I have people to do that. That’s why I have you.
Mickey: Great, cool. How about you John?
John: Well, because we are not selling business consulting then somebody’s got to prove to me that they need what I have to say and they want what I have to say and they will listen. If they do those things and we can get along fabulously and they win because of it. I’ve been working with a client now for several years and we’re getting ready to do a really big deal. We’re going to add an aviation section to a 60-year-old company and he first asked me, if you want to do this. Is it know you can’t do that and I said and he said why not it’s because you can’t afford it? And it took him aback and it took him years, few years to figure out how I could because I mean, I told him I said the hangar loans what you want to do is at least 50-60 million. Said the airplanes you want run between thirty and a hundred plus million each. Then you’ve got pilots and you could have just one, can have two you got to have backups. And when you fly overseas, you got to have a pull extra set of crews and I went on and on and on and on.
Paula: And his eyes rolled back inside his head and that didn’t work out for a really long time.
John: But he’s got things worked around to where I don’t know, next thirty to sixty days, we just might actually do this.
John: It is fun. That’s the part, once you go through all that and they listen you find somebody listens and goes who knows what you say and then you make it work and see.
Paula: What but when a plan comes together, even if it takes 10 years.
John: Right, exactly.
Mickey: It almost sounds more like a front end, right? Like you enjoy the clients’ selection. Almost more from what I was getting. Is that right?
John: Yes, I don’t work with anybody. I don’t like–
Paula: Just too much time.
Trish: That’s a good idea.
John: I mean I have that luxury because that’s not our thrust or business here.
Paula: Yes, that’s true. We actually fired a client once, because they weren’t going well and he wasn’t treating our people well, and we ended up driving through the night across the desert to get to his place to pick up our equipment and drop off his money and, that’s only happened once, in however long we’ve been in business.
John: Fifteen years. Yeah, that was funny about that. We drove over there because he said he wasn’t releasing its equipment to our– one of our people and I said, that’s nuts. So, we got the car and went over there and the guy said, “Well, you’ll have to refund what we paid you” and I said, “Nope” that didn’t happen because he and I made an agreement. I show in a piece of paper and I said, “No– if you want me to do that, I will refund this much money.” He said, “Okay. So, write me a check. So, the better than that and I got the computer out” and I said, “Would you agree, this is the amount of money?” He said, “Yes”, and I did an ACH transfer and he had the next day.
Paula: Just like a drug deal in a hanger. That was the weirdest thing.
John: Yeah, but it worked.
Paula: Yeah, it did.
Trish: It’s nice when you can afford to write.
Paula: Yeah. Well and we’ve learned a good lesson from that and that is to always keep money from a new client in escrow. Until we know that things are going well enough to spend it. Right? Yes, and then another thing that we went from that is if someone isn’t treating our people well, our photographers are writers or other folks. This is not a good deal, because they’re not going to treat their customers well either and, we get associated with somebody like that in the industry and things just go badly really quickly because it’s such a small world.
John: But doesn’t mean that if I didn’t – if I needed his services, I was still used them. Just not fit for client for us.
Annamarie: Yeah, so I said what I like most about it is reading the stories that people submit to the magazine I come from a writing and editing background but since moving into the sales process and the ad sales department, I would say that advertising and sales process just hearing people’s feedback and where they stand and what they want to get out of Marketing with us, is my favorite part of the process.
Mickey: Very cool. So, you do the sales for the marketing. And you said you used to write or–
Annamarie: No, I still write. I mean, I was just the editor. My first job in the company was editor and then I transitioned into the sales department later on. I have experience on all front’s distribution editorial all of it.
Mickey: So, what’s your favorite part? Which one of those?
Annamarie: Like well as I said, the sales process has been my favorite part. Because I just like getting out there and talking to people hearing what people have to say finding out, even if they don’t buy something, I just like hearing where they’re at and hearing what they’re passionate about.
Mickey: Yeah, that’s awesome. I feel like sales scares the crap out of me and I think a lot of people but you must be really familiar with what you do. To be – to enjoy the sales process. Like you must be pretty good at it. I would bet.
Annamarie: Well, I don’t know. I mean I’ve tried my best but I’ve kind of gotten my rhythm. It’s all about rhythm and I found the rhythm and, I got a lot of leads. Just going through LinkedIn, I found so many leads. So, I’m excited. The more leads the better.
Paula: I like to think about it. Like, I used to be afraid of short field landings because they’re kind of scary and kind of hard but now they’re like my favorite thing in the world. I want to do a short field landing every single time, because it was scary to me at one time and now it’s not so, if this feeling of power you get on the other side of fear, right, is that do you think that might be part of it?
Anna: Well, definitely. Yes, you get over the fear, and then you wanted to keep doing it.
Mickey: Yeah. Yeah, that’s good. I mean it was a very succinct answer. It’s good stuff.
Paula: Yeah. Absolutely.
Mickey: Great. Okay, cool. We’ll jump over to David for now. Go ahead, David.
David: Okay. Well, I mean listening to everybody. I mean I hear elements of the things that I like. You, Mickey, talking about being able to choose the people you work with and I think that’s very important., I have something of an education background I’ve taught in a lot of different areas and if there’s nothing better in my mind than working with people that are excited and motivated to do something and I certainly share your belief that if they’ve got buy-in, meaning it’s not something that somebody bought for them. But they’ve invested their money then they’re going to work hard to make it happen. And as a teacher, I don’t think you can ask for anything more than to work with a student who really wants to learn, it’s wonderful to run into the super-intelligent people I used to do, SAT prep and so forth and I’d have a couple of students that were just, you know, thinking it that could get perfect scores.
David: Well, there wasn’t much I could do to help them. They really didn’t need me. Maybe I could give them a little bit of insight but it was those kids that were struggling and that, something I did for them actually help them, and to see that moment when they got it, I don’t think there’s anything better in light – in life than to see the light come on in somebody’s eyes when they graph something or they all of a sudden, they believe that they can do it. At my stage of the game, that’s what I’m looking for, with the clients I work for. I mean, I seldom go in and talk with anybody that is much older than my kids. And so, I can try to bring my experience. Certainly, not my technological capabilities because they’re better at that stuff than I am. But, a lot of times with experience comes a sense of perspective on things and that’s what I like to share with my clients to police point about, those moments when you see something that you’ve done come to a different vision that something you did helped somebody else achieve something they wanted. That’s what I’m in here for, it’s nice to get some money but at the later stage in life. I think you’re looking more for impact, maybe some sense of a legacy that you had.
David: Something that you did helped and then in the aviation field, nothing I’ve done in my life has brought me in front of as many people that are motivated to do things that are problem solvers that are – that don’t quail and the face of a difficult challenge. They’ll find some way to make it work. I think John’s Air Force. Well, I’m Navy and, we always looked at the Air Force guys as being if they had more stuff, we would go get the– the Air Force would give us their leftovers a lot of times and so we were always working with not enough parts and, not very good locations and having to make do with the basically half an airplane when we wanted a whole airplane. So those types of challenges you’re dealing with a difficult situation and sticking with it until you got the job done. So that’s kind of what I think Aviation is all about and, that’s what kind of gives me a sense of purpose a reason to get up in the morning.
Paula: Fantastic. Well, that’s the best thing in the world seeing the lights come on and seeing something come together for somebody. I think that’s a common element that we all have.
Mickey: Yeah, I agree. I think it’s great that your experience has led you to become more purpose-driven. I think that like anybody who’s starting in business should be really happy about that because that means that like, as time goes on it’s not going to be so much about the technicality side, right it sounds like it becomes a lot more like you said the impact and legacy and I mean those are great words. This is a great thing to have so it’s great.
Trish: Yeah, yeah for me. I think it’s the – as like a summation of what everyone’s been saying and I think really at the end of the day, we all want to bring value and impact and to get that satisfaction that you’ve changed someone’s world or someone’s life or someone’s business, the flexibility of working the way you want with whoever you want, being able to choose how you work, who you work with and what I enjoy the most I think it’s sort of like I think my whole career sort of coming together now when I worked in maintenance, I always felt like I had, I enjoyed sales, I enjoyed marketing, but I never got to sell anyone because I was just around aircraft and mechanics.
Trish: And I like being around people building relationships and I only built relationships with the mechanics and the people on the floor that I worked with and the pilots that I worked with. But I’m excited to see where this all goes because I kind of see private Aviation as sort of like how – maybe 30-40 years ago it was like, only some people had a Gucci bag or a designer bag. Now, anybody can have a designer bag and can want to have a designer bag and can own several designer bags so luxury on say like on the clothing side or even cars, people. I think even the normal person was to drive a Ferrari but people have always thought oh but I can’t fly on a private jet.
Trish: I don’t know what’s been lacking there. I think we’ve made it so elite and so out of the reach of people, so I’m really hoping to get to that place where everybody can dream of flying on a private jet even if it was once, just the same way that people will say I want to save for the next three years to buy, the latest Gucci bag. So yeah, I want to see where it’s all going, with the air tool and all these technologies coming up. I feel like the industry is changing so much and we’re going to be living in a Star Trek world.
Paula: Right, now that I think of it, what I think has been changing is, how luxury used to be like Paris Hilton than her silly little dog.
Paula: And now, it’s almost like families and things like that, are using private Aviation and it’s not Paris Hilton and her silly little dog. It is a family that you know going on vacation, try to keep their family safe, and it’s like a logical decision. Not a…
Paula: Not a celebrity in a magazine, sort of a deal.
Paula: But anyway, I don’t mean to pick on Paris Hilton and her silly little dog and putting who has – the way a little dog, I apologize but, I think dogs were fabulous and Paris Hilton is probably fabulous too but, you know. Anyway, that idea is not accurate anymore.
Trish: Exactly and some people still have that idea.
Trish: That is for Paris Hilton. And so, it’s nice when I talk to people and tell them that, you can find something that’s affordable for you and the surprise that people like they’ve never – it’s never occurred to them that they could and then when they realized that their holiday budget, they could maybe tweak a few things and still afford to travel privately. So, it’s really interesting too, that light bulb moments – to see the lightbulb moment.
Paula: Right? Exactly. And then also, if they take off all of the extra stuff because they get, they might be able to spend one fewer day and then that money they can devote to travel so, they’re not spending all that time zigzagging airports.
Mickey: Yeah, that’s cool. So, it sounds like you – your kind of on the cutting edge of the innovation right like as it becomes more common like you get to be either be right their kind of leading that charge so that’s pretty cool. Is that being that what you were saying, is it is that kind of similar?
Trish: I don’t know whether I’m leading the charge but I’m participating and you’re doing my bit, to I believe that it should be accessible to everybody., everybody knows that, if you want by Rolls-Royce you go here if you want to go if you want to buy a Gucci bag you go to Macy’s or wherever people should know because knowledge is power. And yeah, I’m excited to see what the industry will do. I also see a resemblance like when the low-budget carriers came in, I think they also kind of may travel accessible to a lot more people because for instance in Europe you can travel for one pound. Yes. So now all of a sudden anyone could travel and it wasn’t deemed expensive so that low budget airlines kind of – did gave industry the accessibility where everybody now realize that we can do it and yes, it’s not about being expensive or cheap, but just that you can do it and yes.
Paula: Right and then that lowers the bar – the next bar. Yeah, makes that much easier for other people.
Trish: Right. Yeah.
Mickey: Awesome. But cool good stuff. It really is. It’s really encouraging to hear what you guys love about what you do is, I hope it encourages everybody else to love what they do and makes those things you don’t love that much more worth it. So, it’s great. So, my name is Mickey Gamonal, I’m with Gamonal Tutors and I do ASVAB Tutor you can find me on Facebook, Tik-Tok, and Instagram.
Paula: Paula Williams with ABCI, we do Aviation marketing and also Aviation sales training and you can find us at aviationbusinessconsultants.com.
John: Herself what she said.
Mickey: Sweet! Go ahead, David and Trish.
Dave: I’m Dave Pearl. The Fly Writer. You can reach me at TheFlyWriter.com. I write especially for Aviation businesses if it can be written. I can write it. I’ll give wings to your words.
Mickey: I get like the slogan, great. Go ahead, Trish.
Trish: Trish Machiri, Charterly. We connect you to your passenger or cargo jet charter. We can be found at charterly.ca and social handles are at Chartely on Facebook and Instagram chocolate chips on Twitter.
Mickey: Excellent. Cool.
Paula: Good job everybody. I’m glad you got the Twitter are your social handles very well organized that’s something I’m going to suggest that everybody the next time they get their social handles in order so that they can just, they just roll off the tongue like that. Yeah. All right. Cool. Awesome. Cool.
Mickey: Thanks, guys. This is great. I hope everybody has a great Monday and I’ll see you. All right, everybody. Awesome week. [crosstalk]
Paula: See you next time.