We all know how powerful stories can be, especially as part of a sales presentation. Aviation professionals share their stories in this episode.
Angela Wood, Paula and John Williams, and David Pearl share stories in this episode.
Transcript of Discussion:
Paula: Okay, I figured we’ll just take maybe five minutes, or if it goes longer than that, that’s perfectly fine, since there’s only three of us so we can go as long as we want. Feel free to interrupt or ask questions or anything you like, and I’ll go first because it’s my show. [laughter]
John: Now, you see how she is, right?
Angela: That’s okay. I love it, I love it.
Paula: Oh, I’m glad. Okay. I thought I would tell a story about how we got into aviation marketing, which a lot of people think, “Why would you restrict yourself to just one industry as opposed to just doing marketing for everybody?”
Paula: But, I don’t know how this started when I started flight training myself in 2005 after meeting John here. And prior to that, I had never even been in a small plane, anything smaller than maybe, a small commuter turboprop. But I got into flying and the owner of the flight school that I was taking lessons from and John and I kind of became really good friends during this time, because we’re spending a lot of time in this flight school. So, that was the thing, and it looks like Dave is joining us. So I’m gonna actually just start over and apologize.
Angela: I’m just going to grab my cup of tea.
Paula: Oh, absolutely. That sounds good.
John: Go ahead.
Paula: Here he comes in!
Paula: Hey there! Good to see you!
John: There he is!
Dave: Yes, nice to see you as well.
Paula: Yeah, Angela just stepped out to get a cup of tea, and I was just telling the story of how I got started in aviation marketing. Everybody’s telling their five-minute story today about how they— the origin of their company or how they save the day or anything you like.
Dave: All right. Well, I don’t know that I’ve saved anyone’s day, [laughter] but I’ve got always got lots of stories, just ask my kids.
Paula: Oh yeah, you’re always good for a story. I was hoping you would come today because this is really up to your alley, so that’s cool. But yeah, we’ll give Angela just a minute to come back, and then we’ll [crosstalk].
Angela: Yeah, I don’t want to hold you up. I can certainly hear you. I’m just going to return to my seat and once [crosstalk].
Paula: No problem, that’s cool, and you heard us anyway, so yeah.
Anyway, the owner of the flight school where John and I became really good friends while I was in flight school, and this was my very first experience with private aviation. I’ve flown hundreds, thousands of miles, probably tens of thousands of miles as a commuter. I used to commute once a week and then once a month from Salt Lake City to San Francisco while I was working at Wells Fargo. But this was my first experience with a small plane. And I was like, in my late 30s and I was not the typical flight school student, and we got to be really good friends with the owners of the flight school. But what they were doing for marketing was what they call “radio remotes.” And you might be familiar with these if you have seen like they’ve come up with a radio station van and they have the big inflatable. In this case, it was a bull because it was K-Bull 93, which is the country’s station that’s all like fitting and they do dance houses, and they sell hot dogs in the parking lot and they do all these things and the radio station is actually broadcasting remotely from the flight school and they’re talking about what’s going on. You know, they usually send one of the DJs on the discovery flight and they live broadcast the whole thing and it’s really big to do, right? So you think it’s kind of State Fair meets advertising age.
Angela: I love it.
Paula: Exactly, so it’s a lot of fun. The problem with these radio remotes is that they were getting hundreds of people coming in the door to their flight school and some of them were interested, some of them were just there because they were fans of the radio station, some of whom wanted $69— I think that’s what they were doing, $69 discovery flight which was just barely breaking even for the flight school and that was the last thing they would ever see of them. Some people were just coming for the free hot dogs, and so, they were getting hundreds of people in the door which was great and some of them became customers. But they only did this about once or twice a year because it was so disruptive to their business. They couldn’t really be doing lessons and other things at that time because it was really disruptive. So they’d end up with, maybe, 30 people signing up at the time. They had nine airplanes and they had five instructors.
So, you have a capacity problem for the first couple of weeks after they do one of these remotes. So, it was sales and it was great sales and it was great marketing, but it was really unsuited to the business model. Which was, what would’ve been ideal for them is to have two or three customers show up every month. New customers that were flight school students and have them go through on a really equality basis, be able to spend the time with them, do all of the things that they wanted to do.
So, we asked the owner, “Why are you doing it this way? Why are you doing these crazy radio remotes? They’re expensive and they’re disruptive and they’re crazy and they don’t really give you what you want.” And they’re like, “Well, that’s because that’s how flight schools are advertised and that’s just the way it’s done.” And anyway, at that time I was working for a large Fortune 50 bank. And my job was marketing— digital marketing actually, buying ads, creating videos, doing things to sell student loans and home loans, and other kinds of things for this bank. And that’s what I did, and it was a great business model. And I’m like, “Well, why don’t you do this?”, and they’re like, “Well, nobody does this for aviation and the people that we’ve talked to about creating content, writing articles, doing videos and things like that, they don’t know anything about aviation. So then, we have to teach them all about our business and everything else. So, that’s kind of how ABCI came to be. Somebody should be doing digital marketing for aviation companies, and at that time nobody was. Now there’s four companies that do it and we are the best. So, that kind of where it came from and the whole intention is to help aviation companies have these tools at their disposal so that they can control their budget, control the timing, control the results and keep their hand on the throttle. So that they’re not just doing these massive ad spends and then backing off and having either feast or famine, which really doesn’t do much for them. So now we have flight schools, MROs, FBOs, charter companies, software companies, brokers, and so on and we’re doing very different kinds of digital marketing for them. So I get to do what I love for an industry that is so much more fun than finance. So that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
Angela: I’m fast friends with you.
Paula: Great. Well, that’s great, we’re really happy that you’re here and I’m glad you can empathize.
Angela: So yeah, do you want me to go or [crosstalk]
John: I can follow her up while you’re thinking.
Angela: Okay, good.
Paula: Whatever you like. Whoever wants to go next, feel free.
Angela: I can start like the last because I didn’t know. Okay, thanks.
Paula: Yeah, no problem.
John: Sis- she just told you how we started. The fact that she just barely got into aviation, one might think and some do, “No, well you don’t have very large raccoon aviation medicine.” And then I jump in and say “Well, yeah.” But by that time, I had about 25 years of flying in the military, and helicopters are my choice and the story I like to tell is, you know so they can understand, that I’m really a pilot. At one point in time, I lived in Ohio and I used to drive used up to Michigan for the weekend to fly in the reserves and so then decided, what— as a member of the Aero Club and one of the Air Force bases, I’ll just rent an airplane and fly up there, no problem. I mean, commercial and charade fixed-wing and rotary-wing current says it’s great. Though I got their pre-flight, brand-new airplane, Aero Club just got it. I think of the Saratoga ESP or something of pretty track. We got it, took off, change the departure control frequency, and it said “Can’t read your transponder.” “Oh, okay.” Cancelled IFR, sent me back down, took it into shop, and said I was the driver. They said “No, we have another one. We’ll stick it in there.” “Okay”. So we put it in there, jump back in the airplane, refile, took off. They found the transponder, and I’m on my way. So I had fly— I don’t know, six or seven thousand people, whatever the proper direction is where I was going. High far, between layers. It’s very nice, comfortable, you got everything set up, and you talk to people here and there and relax. And I noticed that— that the fuel gauges were sort of vibrating a little bit and I thought “Yeah, hydration.” I’d try to tweak the engine a little bit to get the vibration go away and the good and strange thing is, when I was trying to talk somebody, they said radio garbled, sites switch radios and worked just fine and I did this all the way up while those things are happening, which should have been an indication that there was a problem. But, brand new airplane, no problem, right? So, it’s getting dark, and I get up and it’s a non-precision approach into a grand managed mission. So, doctor approach control, clearing for the approach. I turned on file, the probe file into the approach fix, reduced power and everything’s going great.
Paula: When all of the sudden [crosstalk]
John: Drop down to the minimum descent altitude and flying out my time. I hit the VOR fix, grabbed the radio microphone and said, “Approach.” And when I said that word, my quick electrical button, all the electric power went away, “Poof!” Now, I’m without electrical power, I’m in the clouds and you say “Uh-oh.” You know, some rapid flashlight and got it out and there were things cooking on pile I saw in the electrical power, but it already had to gear down because that would have been a bare. But so then, I thought, “Okay.” Then I cross the approach fix by time because there’s no electrical power, so it can’t tell by the VORs and I didn’t break out.
Paula: And you can’t see?
John: And I can’t see, right? I’m in the clouds. Now, typically, right you would go “missed approach,” go to your alternate, which would have been grand later, Lansing Michigan. Well, that’s fine, except that I couldn’t talk to him. I couldn’t turn in to the VORs. I couldn’t do anything. So, what are you going to do? Well, in this case, I’ve flown this approach probably a hundred to two hundred times in a helicopter. I knew what was in front of me. I knew exactly what was going to happen when I cross them and all of this happened in my brain really rapidly. So I said, “Well, let’s go down to the 50 feet.” And I didn’t break out much at that time. I said, “Well, I’m not going anywhere but down, so we’re going down now to 50 feet.” Got in the whole, went down below that, on the head, landed, and what’s interesting too is, I have been told where to park and where our cart was, and it was two miles away from the ops check. So I parked it and it’s snowing, right? And so then I had to hoof it back the ops check, got in there, and this guy says “Were you just flying?”
I said “Yeah.” He said, “The control is just about to come unglued, so you didn’t talk to him?” I said, “Well, it was the reason for that.”
Paula: They’re out looking for you in a big pile of rubble, somewhere.
John: I lost electrical power and so I called him and explained the things, and okay. Well, the end of the story is kind of interesting because the next day, sun is out and I had mechanics go out and take a look at my airplane, and pop the cowling, and their alternator belt had shredded but it was still running around the alternator just enough to keep the charge light from going out, rather than many hours, so he was showing about we’re naught to.” It just wasn’t doing any good so we’re operating on battery power. It’s quite a bit of experience.
Paula: Oh my goodness [crosstalk]. I’m so glad I’m wasn’t with you at that time.
John: Dave is smiling deep down. He’s like that, right? Only a jet.
Dave: I’ve had my share of interesting problems. If you fly an airplane long enough, in any airplane, you’re going to be dealing with things and you hope that your training is going to help you deal with it. But I think, in the years that I was flying and the planes that I flew, you learn to do dead-stick landing, so you learn to do all of that stuff. So it’s nice, and I think when Paula was talking about her civilian training, and I had the luxury or the nightmare of I got enough the civilian training so that I could solo. I was already going to flight school when I finish college, but I wanted to have a little bit of experience. So I had a chance to fly solo in a little airplane, five or six times before I actually went to Navy flight school, but it was such a difference between the style of training and with the civilian who was basically my friend. And I was sitting next sit to him and he could reassure me when something was wrong and the plane was very easy to fly but he was not pressuring me, to get things done in a certain way and in a certain fashion. And so I thought, “Hey, I’m going to like flight school.” [laughter]
I found that when you get to military flight school, you don’t hop in an airplane the first day. There’s a lot of stuff that you have to go through. I don’t know what your experience was with the Air Force, but our intake was, there was a lot of academic stuff, there was physical stuff. There is very little physical stuff that I could ever relate to flying an airplane. It seemed like, “Well, you have to do this and then you go fly the plane.” But there didn’t seem to be any connection between having to climb a 12-foot wall and go for what obstacle course, and all these things. Most of the really good pilots, I knew we’re not particularly adapted to climbing walls or doing these other things, but for whatever reason, they justified it. We had to do this.
Paula: Well, they’re the military. They don’t have to justify anything, right?
Dave: That’s right. So, we got through that. And then I just remembered my first couple flights in the airplane. Well, it was, the instructor would sit behind you, so you never saw him. The plane was bigger, it was louder, and it was in not very good condition. A lot of the stuff didn’t work, but you didn’t need them. It was old things that they’d gotten. They’ve been flying these planes for a good 15, 20 years, and they’ve been using them. Some of them had come from aircraft carriers. They had key 28 so they had flown them in Vietnam. So, we were getting kind of the lousy end of the stick and so there was a lot of stuff that either wasn’t installed, there were holes in the instrument panel, and when you’re a new pilot, one of the biggest things that is a challenge is to ever look outside of the airplane. You’re just transfixed by all the dials going around. And so yeah, I was an instructor for a number of years and that was always my biggest challenge, was` to try to keep the young student from staying inside the airplane. It would be like driving a car and just looking at the speedometer and so forth without looking at the road, but when you’re new, you’re fascinated by it, and so that’s the way I was. I was not looking outside, but my civilian instructor, if I would make a mistake it was always, “Oh, that’s okay, we’ll get it next time,” or “You’re going to work on this.” But when I made a mistake with my military instructor, he was a lot less patient. And I just remember one occasion where he was asking me where I was, and because I had my head inside the plane, most of the time, I didn’t know. So I thought, “Well, we’re probably around,,” it’s like and he said “What’s that field below us?” I looked out really quickly, I couldn’t see it. I was nervous. So, I set out some name of some field I knew which was probably fifty miles from where we actually were, and I just remember, he rolled us upside down and we flew inverted for about 10 seconds. He said, “Can you read the name on the air strip down there?” [laughter]
Paula: Oh, that’s good.
Dave: So that was my introduction to Naval Aviation flight instruction and so forth. But I do think that, learning to fly under that type of environment where it wasn’t your friend in the back, we used to think it was the voice of God coming in our helmets, and it’s something happened to the stick. We were flying with a stick and the stick would move. We weren’t touching it. But the guy behind us who had the stick, we couldn’t see him. It was like God had taken over the plane and was getting us out of trouble.
Paula: Jesus, take the wheel.
Dave: The first trainers that we had, they would always tell us, “Pearl, this plane flies better than you do. So if you can’t handle it, just let go. It will fly my smoother and better than you do. The people who made this plane are a lot smarter than you are.” All this stuff, they didn’t have any heartburn about being politically correct or making us trying to build up our self-esteem. But I do think that having gone through that, when I did encounter emergencies, you’d already suffered a lot worse. [laughter]
John: That’s right.
Dave: So it made it a little bit like you could keep things in control because usually the emergency wasn’t as bad as having the guy screaming at you.
Dave: It’s like, “Hey, I’ve got an engine failure. I’ve got a fire, I’ve got this stuff,” Well, at least I don’t have that jerk behind me, screaming in my ear and trying to get me upset. So I found that most of my emergencies, looking back, they were scary. But during that time, it was just like step 1, step 2, step 3. I had my share of a radio failure. I’ve never had a total electrical failure, so hats off to you John for that one. But you know I had coming into a busy airport, in Los Angeles, and all of a sudden all radios were gone. I’m on short final, waiting for clearance to land and all of a sudden, you have to go around look for the green light, the tower and all that stuff and then you were always worried about flight violations, flying the bigger airplanes, flying in the areas we did. If you had a problem, if they were all different types of air spaces and things.
So but, again, I don’t want to bore everybody. I know that we could spend days talking about “Yo, there I was,” [crosstalk] but just as far as why I’m doing what I do. I think most of my life, I’ve been trying it. If I went through an experience and I didn’t like it, I would try to do something to make it better for the next people. So when I went back to the training command as an instructor, my goal was to try not to be the jerk that had— or the jerks that had instructed me, to try to help them and I felt very good about that, and then when I went into the law, I thought, “Jesus.” I wanted to specialize in Air Aviation law and it never seemed that we could really help the client because by the time we got a case, the horse had been out of the barn for a couple of years. Whatever mistakes they were making, whatever problems they had, we couldn’t fix the problem, we could only deal with the consequences. So, I tried to work with clients as far as how they did their maintenance records, and all of that stuff so that looking forward, they wouldn’t have these problems. Because a lot of times, whether they had done anything wrong or not, they had not followed an FAA procedure, as far as maintaining certain records that kept things way too long. So, when there’ll be a document request, they would give everything, stuff that they didn’t have to give because they didn’t call their records. There was only a requirement. I think at that time, I think they had to keep records back seven years. Well, they may have had a record back 25 years and so, they would be giving the other side all kinds of reasons to investigate things.
You give a plaintiff’s attorney any indication that there’s a problem, even though it was before the time that there was supposed to— the accident occurred. They could paint a real ugly picture of the client. So, I found a lot of help from a lot of my clients. They were appreciative of “how are they supposed to do it.” In the Navy, the admin was not a popular thing, and I think, most pilots are not good at that, or at least aviation business people, they’re not good with those types of skills. They want to fly, they want to use the wrench. They want to do, kind of the active stuff, but they don’t recognize that the FAA is simply going to assume that they can fly. But the FAA, like any lawsuit, is going to be based on how they document things. “Have they followed this procedure?” If I had juries that were composed of all pilots, it would have been a wonderful thing. But the last thing a plaintiff’s attorney wanted was pilots on a jury. They wanted people who are afraid to fly. The mantra was “Hey, if God meant you to fly, he would have given you wings.” And unless it was American Airlines. I think we had Piper Aircraft, we had Beechcraft, I’m just thinking some of my defendants. But who are the defendant, what Pratt & Whitney? So, their thought was, “Unless Mr. Pratt & Whitney can build an engine that will never fail even if you don’t put gas in it, even if you forgot to put oil out there, but they should design an engine that can fly without gas that can fly without…” That’s all the manufacturers’ responsibility.
Paula: That’s not unreasonable.
Dave: Right. That means, it’s like— hey if it flies, it should be safe and if anything happens, if you’ve got an idiot for a pilot and most of the pilots are represented, I don’t know if I’d call them idiots, but I think, John knows [crosstalk], if the plane goes down, it’s usually not the plane’s fault—
Paula: They go down with you.
Dave: Mind that it did everything it could. But if you’re not smart enough to put gas in it. I had a helicopter crash where the guy didn’t put gas in it, and yes, he still should have been able to auto-rotate down to a firm, yet safe landing, but he didn’t, and there was one death and one horrible injury. I’ve had that. I had a guy who he thought he was lowering the flaps but he turned on the auxiliary fuel boost pump with the engine-driven pump operating at the same time, and that puts too much gas in the engine and it’s almost like turning the engine off. And so approached Turner, he lost the engine. He didn’t fix the problem and he crashed killed four people.
Paula: Oh, man.
Dave: Those are all things that, you can’t blame the aircraft structure for it. But usually the guy who dies in a crash doesn’t have the wherewithal, doesn’t have the pocket, and so in aviation cases, it’s all about finding deep pocket clients that connect [crosstalk] the damages.
Paula: Always the manufacturer, right?
Dave: Yeah, and the mentality, at least in California and I think in many places, is that we want the injured party to be made whole, and so there’s the theory of joint and several liabilities, meaning, if we can show that you’re even 1% negligent, then you’re going to and it doesn’t matter what the bill is. But 1% means that if the other people can’t pay their proportionate share, well Piper Aircraft, Beechcraft aircraft, you’re going to have to make up the difference.
Paula: Because you can, right?
Dave: That’s right.
Paula: Oh, that’s unfortunate.
Dave: So, that’s the world that we were fighting and so, we were trying to just try and articulate that to our clients and help them understand that good intention and good business practices and all of that stuff aren’t going to overcome that mentality.
Paula: All right. Angela, I’m curious to hear your story as well.
Angela: Well, my story is interesting, it’s like night and day between all of your stories. So, I sort of fell in this… no pun intended, into aviation and I’m very new to it. I am in from higher education, in the communications and marketing sector for a liberal arts college, and have been there, which happens to be my alma mater and have been there for about 20 years, doing it on the website and have moved up to senior manager digital content or whatever they’ve called me, to do a lot of video. Over-sighted the video production and filming and things like that. So, I know you guys are going to laugh, so I’ve only flown commercial flights, especially as a student from California to Atlanta, all those years. So this is really a faith story, and I found aviation to be fascinating and so I’ll kind of make it, tied in a neat little bow. So my pastor at a church here in Atlanta is a pilot and a commercial radio pilot but he got that pilot’s license years ago and always confuses some of the messages in church with aviation, and he gets, as pilots do, he can tell a great story and he can also relate things about aviation in a faith-based way which [crosstalk]
Paula: All the stories are about aviation.
Angela: There’s about a thousand economists, so it’s kind of interesting, so you’ll get a lot of background. Fast forward, I guess, the best way to say this is that, they were sort of giving a mandate like the Lord really wanted our leaders, our pastor to go to every one of the 50 states and to pray at the capitals of every one of the 50 states, to keep it simple, and they rented a charter aircraft to do this. They did maybe four states in one day. So they rented a charter aircraft. It was a citation smaller— smaller citation, and they did that and he just started thinking, remember that I said he’s an economist by trade? He’s like, “This doesn’t make sense. We can do this ourselves.” We call ourselves a small big church, right? It’s just a soft. It’s really amazing. I wouldn’t bore you guys with all the details but he just asked me to help. I mean, because research is my thing and marketing is my thing. So I began to research all these various aircraft. Again, I don’t know beans. I don’t know anything about anybody.
Paula: Yeah, everybody start somewhere.
Angela: Right. So I got to get into it and I’m researching. I’m having the time of my life, really, looking at different aircrafts and we kind of settled on a Citation 7. It just happened to be that I had a client in my small business, whose son is a top-like aviation mechanic and he literally like in less than an hour, he pretty much explained so much to me, and just from my notes, I was able to, we landed on a plane. There was Citation 7 and he said, “Whatever you do, don’t buy that plane.” That’s what he told us.
Angela: So anyway, we go down to Texas and we find the text as we go. We look at the aircraft and there was also a Citation III. Well, there was another woman who’s an amazing aircraft acquisition person. She kind of steering at us to the III. We loved it, went to negotiations, ended up going to locate a hangar in Peachtree City. It was just kind of connected with this amazing aviation mechanic who runs his own shop, has done great work, like Gulfstream sends their planes to him to figure out how.
I mean, this is amazing. Remember, from just going from a Citation and just meeting here. It was just perfect. There couldn’t be a better story.
So he goes down, he checks out the Citation. He’s like, “You know, for the age, it’s great.” I start going through the records and I laughed because I really think I scared her because I have learned so much from that young mechanic that I was asking if did they have his Doc Aid, do they have this, but I know nothing, except to look through these logbooks like very carefully, and I’m a journalist, so I’m going to ask questions. I don’t know what she thought or who she thought I was.
Paula: Good for you though, but stay cool.
Angela. Right. Because she was kind of like, as a pilot is talking, and she’s talking things. She was kind of, show me like, I mean, to be honest, she was like “let’s go bake cookies.” “Really?” is what she was trying to say. Well, I had luck in finding things. I’m looking at all the logbooks, and I have really stomped her on a couple of things. It’s just really the grace of God. Anyway, so that’s how we started. We had made all the plans to purchase that aircraft and got, as it also turned out, we ended up securing a top aviation attorney, one who works with two big companies— two major companies, based in Atlanta, let’s just say that. And I just got to go through all the contract negotiations. Anyway, that deal fell apart.
Paula: Oh, after all of that?
Angela: After all of that. I mean, we did not know. That’s why I said it’s really a faith-based story, that there was something better for us. I mean because, literally, I mean we had done everything, every hoop you can basically think, we had done. So I think, it probably startles people like, “Who’s this church? They want to do what?” I get it. So, that fell through, only to know that in the hangar that were of the aviation mechanic that we first engaged that there was a Challenger sitting in the hangar all that time. We actually sat in that Challenger and discuss and talked about all these things. Long story short, it was like the ram in the bush. We ended up buying the Challenger 601 extended range. It’s beautiful, it was owned by a big retail company in the States, and they took excellent care of it. It’s an amazing story. So, we purchased it in December. They took their first flight the next two days. They took their first like maiden voyage if you will go to the first four states. Well, this would be the second set of four because, again, we’re trying to 50. And it’s been an amazing ride. So, I guess, I just wanted to say that from looking at a Citation III to our little chubby Challenger, it’s amazing, and in between that too, regarding marketing, it’s a kind of round out. The story is, the ultimate goal is to have a global aircraft because we rebuilt a hospital in Nigeria. We have churches in Kenya and so I mean, while the Challenger can go fly internationally, there will be a total of four planes. So we were looking at a Gulfstream. But now, we get in the Gulfstream after being in our little chubby Challenger.
Paula: I love chubby Challengers. They’re so cool, because the cabin is so big for such a small plane.
Angela: Right, exactly. Our pastor is 6 feet tall and when we were walking the Citation, he’s got to bend down and keep his legs up and we’re like, “Oh, God.” And then of course, I learned a lot about avionics and just looking at the different systems and Garmin this and that. Again, I always think that the exciting part is that, I knew I was just an ignorant who’s on fire. I don’t know anything and I came into this world. We’ve gone to Florida. I bid on, I mentioned a chip Gulfstream because there was a Gulf, G4 that was at an auction and I bid on that. I don’t have money to buy G4, but there is money, because I’m the one just doing all of this and I’m amazed, because never in my lifetime have I thought about going into aviation. So anyway, so we have a Challenger and we’re doing that. And I’m still just easing into this marketing side because I’m passionate about it. I didn’t know that I even could do it, to be honest. I’m learning, talking to pilots, helping the higher pilots, the left seat, right seat. I may not get all the terms right, but I do know marketing. So anyway, I hope that you can see my passion for it. I’m here because I’m literally ignorant’s on fire. I know nothing. He was like, “You might want to get your private pilot’s license.” I don’t know how pilots can. I mean, the level of faith, to even fly that big thing and protect people’s lives is amazing to me, but I think just to understand. Since then, the guy who manages our plane, he’s also called like a witness for the FAA and certain things. So, I’m just kind of learning and all side and I hope and I’m sure that you have some season’s aviation marketers on your call. I’m not that person yet, but I will be. And it’s just exciting to me that I’m at the midlife stage now that I can learn something new like this is exciting. I don’t know why I stumbled upon you on Facebook, but I always see your post come through, and today I just— anyway, we have the BART system, but I was looking at this other system because I think it just has some elements that we like and I was just doing that training and then log in our flights for the next one at the end of May and I saw your post come up. So, anyway, that’s me.
Paula: Well, that’s fantastic. We have a lot in common actually, coming into it later in life, whereas these guys have been flying since they were at least thinking about flying since they were kids. So I just think that’s really cool and I’m really happy that you’re here. It’s neat.
Angela: I’ve worked in Visa like I said, I don’t know. I don’t know where I’ll fit in the marketing world but I’m definitely wanting to learn. I look to you as one of the best so, we’ll see you.
Paula: Thank you. These guys and everybody that’s involved with our company is just so, everybody comes in with a different story and that’s one of the things that I love about this. One of the reasons I wanted to do this podcast is because there are so many great stories on how things happened, and things like that, and it’s so cool that sometimes a deal falls apart for a reason.
Paula: You know, because it’s kind of those the balance between hustle, and then like, this is out of my hands. “You know, whatever’s supposed to happen is going to happen.”
Angela: Right, and we’re like, “You know what,” [crosstalk]
Paula: So, that’s cool.
Angela: Right. Oh, and this one was the part that I… So, literally, we signed that. We’re at the signing. It went beautifully. We ended up getting it from a company here in Atlanta, not having to transport it from Texas. I mean, everything was just great. So, we signed the contract, literally at 3:15 one day. And at 3:18, the broker from the other plane calls us like, “Are you guys still interested?” We’re like, “What in the world?”
Angela: I could see my pastor like put a hand in his, and like, “What did I just do?” And then he said, “Did I make a mistake?”
Paula: Oh, man.
Angela: But I assured him, “No.” Now he’s like, “How did she know? Is there some system that shows that a graph is going to quite?” I’m like, “It just happened that way.”
Paula: It’s just happened that way. Well, these guys can tell you, probably that most deal do fall apart. I mean, it’s very— it’s 60-something percent of aircraft sales disintegrate for one reason or another, and at one stage, the purchaser, or another, I’m sorry a ton[?] or, you think?
John: Yes, that’s typical.
Paula: The 60%, is that right?
Angela: Yeah. It was quite interesting, for the lawyer on the team knew me.
Paula: Well, congratulations, that’s really cool. And I’m really glad you guys joined us. We usually do a pitch out, so that you can tell a little bit about you, about how where to find you, and those kinds of things just so that we end with a nice round. A podcast and then of course I can link to your website your LinkedIn profile, anything you like. Just tell us who you are, what you do, who you help, and how people can find you. So, we’ll do me, John, Dave, and Angela, just in order, if that’s alright, and if that works. Okay, so I’m Paula Williams with ABCI. We help aviation companies sell more of their products and services.
John: Through our company, I work for her. I do all the back-end stuff, and the occasional business consulting, she’s all marketing.
Dave: I’m Dave Pearl. I am at flywriter.com. My job is to make your words take wing.
Angela: Oh, I love that. Well, I’m Angela Wood and my company is Wonderfish Creative Solutions and I am here to provide digital marketing consulting for those in the aviation field.
Paula: Fantastic. Can you say the name of the company one more time?
Angela: Sure. Wonderfish Creative Solutions.
Paula: Wonderfish. Got it. Okay, cool, fantastic, and where can people find you?
Angela: I would say LinkedIn. My profile’s there and I’d be happy to respond to direct messages there, and as I build the company out, specifically targeted to aviation, you’ll be able to find me online specifically.
Paula: Fantastic, and Dave, how would people find you?
Dave: I’m on LinkedIn as well. My website, the Flywriter.com, I pretty much got it done. I just got my logo finished, so I’m just putting a few peaks and tweaks on it. I don’t want to let it go out there until it’s got everything on it that I wanted to have, so it’s still under wraps. So, LinkedIn is probably the best place at the moment.
Paula: Fantastic. Well, I’m looking forward to seeing your logo, so, that will be fun. It’s been a long road.
Dave: Yes, for someone who is not as computer capable and not very artistic, it’s nice to have some people help me do it.
Paula: Oh, that’s why you need a team, right?
Paula: Cool. All right, well, thanks, everyone. This is great, and hopefully, we’ll see you in two weeks. We’re going to be discussing this book, this is Marketing 4.0, and this is Philip Kotler’s book. So if you want to get it, I think it is available in audio, Audible, Kindle, actual physical paper, wherever you can find books are sold.
Angela: Yeah, I would love to, I had to read so much that I was working on my marketing, my Master’s in Marketing from Kotler’s. So, this will be great. I haven’t read that.
Paula: Okay, fantastic. Well, you’re very welcome to join us so it should be a lot of fun. And we’ll see you in two weeks from today, hopefully, and we’ll talk to you guys soon.
All: All right.