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Unlock the Power of Local Marketing: Creating Heroes with Drew Griffin
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Liana Ling: Hey, Drew, it's still great for you to stop by today. How are you doing?
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Drew Griffin: I'm so excited, privileged, and happy. Any time that I can connect with you, Leona. It's been way too long, but I understand why you are super busy. You're launching all kinds of stuff, you're involved in so many different things. As soon as I heard that you had this podcast, I was so excited to connect with you and I'm happy to be here today.
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Liana Ling: Awesome. Well, I just love everything that you and David are up to. I know you have some really interesting things to share with everybody about how you're disrupting the industry and just keeping your agency and your companies relevant. So let's just dive right in. I hear and I've been seeing a couple of really interesting things you're doing in the local market. Like, can you just dive in and start sharing about what the scene is like and then where you saw the gaps where you can break some of the rules and breaking through here?
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Drew Griffin: Sure. Well, not too long ago, I was kind of new on the scene. Brief background. I spent 26 years in healthcare as a hyperbaric wound care nurse, which has nothing to do with marketing whatsoever other than I like to help people. Around the advent of the iPhone, I developed one of the first apps to help diabetics track their blood glucoses and blood sugars. I promise there's a backstory to this and why we got to this point now made the transition out of healthcare after seeing some initial success with this new technology. Right around the advent of the iPhone. When the SDK came out, I was able to create a very basic type of application that initially received a lot of downloads very quickly, about 50,000 downloads in the first couple of weeks. And that was remarkable. It was just crazy to see that. I just realized that there was a different way touch people's lives.
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Drew Griffin: With the initial success of that, I realized that my time in the clinical setting was over and just kind of a fun, dream type of thing. Everybody wants to quit their job spectacularly. I ended up walking into the office and I didn't have a very nice boss at the time. I walked in and they said, look, I've got some good news and some bad news. They knew right away that I was resigning. They brought me into the office, and in the office were a bunch of my colleagues, bunch of nurses and physicians and techs and all that kind of stuff. They said, oh, I'm sorry to hear that you're leaving. So what's the good news? I said, Well, I just saved $500 on my car insurance by switching to Geico. Everybody's face got really red and it was just a mic drop moment and I literally just walked out.
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Drew Griffin: It was probably should not have done that but in hindsight but it was just a fun epic story to kind of share. I got my starting to like what am I going to do next? I needed to learn to market this application. I needed to do this kind of stuff and I got pretty good at it. Fast forward a number of years, facebook ads came around and media buying and stuff and I dabbled in that. I know that you are an expert in this, I just didn't know how to fulfill. I took a bunch of lumps and I kind of dove into a bunch of courses and learned how to do that kind of stuff. If what is available now was available back then, I probably would have done a lot better, more quickly. Which kind of goes into the tragedy, right? The tragedy of this story was my agency started to struggle if I'm honest, because I just didn't know how to fulfill on a scale.
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Drew Griffin: I didn't know how to scale. Suddenly everybody was starting their own little agencies and some of the businesses that I was working with started to convert and I started to lose business and so on and so forth. I needed to pivot and I realized that things were not going to be the way that I wanted them to go. I needed to kind of do things differently. A good friend of ours, we teamed together and became business partners, david California and myself, we started a company called Delicious Marketing. We started off with the intent of doing the things that were doing every day, meeting with customers and clients, trying to offer social media type of services, media buying and things of that nature. And we just weren't there. We knew that we had to do things differently. We needed to pivot and trying to support two families and not many sales coming through, we realized that the time to change was there.
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Drew Griffin: We started doing this strategy which we'll dive into now that we call the local media hero strategy. Instead of us trying to go out there and procure new customers and clients, we started to build our own agents. We built our own platform where we would command all the attention in the local area and for all intents and purposes rent that out if you will. So it really came down to this. Basically the strategy is to build a Facebook page and a community around a local area. I live in Douglasville, Pennsylvania, just outside of Philadelphia. It was rather easy to build out a local page that had thousands and thousands of people that were following this local page. What we served up on that page that was of great interest to local people was things that mattered to them. Meaning people work, live, play and pray, invest and spend money in their local area.
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Drew Griffin: We started serving up local news, local events, things that were happening with crime, what's happening with the police department and the fire department, and what's happening with traffic and what's happening with weather, what's happening with the local schools. Meaning literally down to the grade school, the middle school, the high school, and even the local colleges, right? Because a lot of people are just genuinely selfish. Meaning in a good way, they're interested in what's going to impact them, what's happening with their local churches, what's happening with the local community, what's happening with local sports clubs. All those types of things seem to be of great interest to local people. So we built a list. We literally built a list of local people that lived, worked, played, prayed, spent money in this local area, wanted to do business with local businesses, the local farms, the local restaurants, you name it, right?
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Drew Griffin: This is where people seem to do their commerce. We built rather large local list in a town of, say, 17,000 people can. Handing a list of 10,000 people in that area is remarkable.
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Liana Ling: That's incredible.
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Drew Griffin: So that's what we did. The people that actually work in this area are also business owners. We started to approach them and walked in, we wanted to do features about these local businesses. We wanted to feature them on our podcast and on our Facebook lives. We wanted to learn more about why people love their businesses so much. So we approach them, right? It's what they call the oprah effect. If I basically walked into a local business and said, hey, Liada, my name is Drew from such and such local. We love your business and we know a lot of people love your business as well. We would love to feature you and your business in our magazine, our podcast, our Facebook Lives and that thing on our Facebook page where we've got a following of 10,000 people. 100% of the time I think we may have been pushed back on maybe two or three times saying, not yet, I'm not sure what this is all about, we're just getting started, or something like that.
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Drew Griffin: The conversion rate was incredible. So much like your podcast, right? What would it be like if you could have an uninterrupted 45 minutes to 60 minutes conversation with a local business owner, the ones that you're trying to be interested in connecting with? Well, it was remarkable. Like, were having great conversations, were becoming friends, we're becoming trusted advisors to these businesses, learning what worked, what didn't work, what their problems and challenges were. That way, once we publish the podcast or their Facebook Live to our audience of 1012 15,000 people, whatever we have on the page where pages, because we have many of these pages now, we syndicated those facebook lives to a multitude of the pages that we build out. They got instant access into the community, and we would follow up and say, hey, we'd like to come back next week and share the results with you.
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Drew Griffin: We'd be cool with that. And they're like, yeah, absolutely. We tag them in the interviews, when we tag them in these interviews, if you will, these Facebook lives and these podcasts, if you will, they would see comments and the engagement and the number of views that were happening on this page. So we led with value in advance. What do you think happened the next time we called upon them? Right? We say, hey, we've got some ideas that we'd love to share with you, love to get your opinion on them. Yeah, of course they're going to take our call. The paradigm shift that we had was instead of calling and trying to make the sale the first time was incredible, right? We found this magical power that were able to connect with more local businesses while building our asset at the same time, something that we controlled and something that people actually wanted, which was attention from their local community.
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Drew Griffin: They wanted more customers. They wanted more local customers to come in to buy more stuff, to buy more often and come back more often to buy more of their stuff again and again, much like a subscription service. So, yeah, that was a remarkable strategy that completely transformed the trajectory of our business. And we still use this today. We've got well over 26 of these pages out there in various communities. Little hubs and whatnot. Some are larger than others, but they're still growing and still gives us that validation to actually be able to get into the community and connect with the businesses with a lot of less friction.
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Liana Ling: This is genius. I love this idea. I was curious, once you're in there because you show them the results from the Facebook live or whatever that you did for them, how do you flip it to an agency service? Because they don't know you have an agency, right? You're coming in as this Douglasville local page or something like that. So how do you bridge that over? Or are you monetizing the actual local property that you've created?
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Drew Griffin: A little bit of both. My natural pivot at this point is I typically identify and say, hey, we run an agency behind this, and they're well aware of that. As we're doing this, we're not going in as a local news station per se, but many of our pages are actually named at news and events, and that seems to really open up the opportunity for us to actually have the conversation in the first place. Well, when we go back, we typically say, hey, I've got some ideas that might help you with the problems that you shared with me off camera. Can I drop back in next Thursday. I'd love to share them with you. Typically what happens is, oh, you've got some ideas that might help us. Well, what are they? They want to get into the conversation right away. We learned this strategy fairly recently and it works 99% of the time.
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Drew Griffin: It starts to get them to think is that, hey, these guys are good, decent people. They led with value, they got me some immediate attention and that thing by way of views and a bunch of comments are coming in and that thing. Sometimes we come up with an idea like, hey, what would it look like if were able to take all those views that happened on this and turn them into a list of customers or leads for you? They're like, some of the videos might have 117, some of them might have 2000 views, some of them might have 50, 00, 10,000 views, et cetera. Well, now they start to do the mental math, right? Think of a local pizza shop, they make a lot of cash and 117 new pizzas or two pizzas per week. At 117, people will pop, depending on what it costs.
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Drew Griffin: Ten to $20 per pizza. Well, that starts to add up in their brains. And, like, wait, if I can create a list of 117 local people that buy from me every single week, and depending on who the business is, it might be another type of restaurant, it might be an attorney, it might be a physician, it might be an insurance agent, it might be a whole bunch of different things. Right? They're starting to do the mental math and that translates into how do we build a list from them from a Facebook video or a contest or a messenger bot campaign or something along those lines? Those are the types of things that you and I know and many of your listeners will be well aware of. How do you get into that type of conversation? Well, hey, what would it look like if were able to bring in a bunch of new customers and clients for you to turn them into new leads from these videos or from some of these other things?
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Drew Griffin: Have you considered this? That typically opens up the conversation about something like that. We typically ask them for their opinion and they open up with that. Wait, you want my opinion on this? Yeah. Well, that just leads into the next part of the conversation. What does that look like? What is the cost? And that kind of stuff. You have the ability to actually make the offer where so many people lead with the offer. And it's typically a push back. Well, when you lead with value by doing something like this and bringing them onto a podcast or to a live video, or even just doing a featured what they call local Spotlight video or you do of production with the video itself, you don't necessarily have to do that. When you show those type of videos in the form that we're talking about on a Facebook page that has a baked in audience, then all of a sudden it opens up some doors where you can actually get to some of those sales conversations.
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Liana Ling: Yeah, you've mentioned a couple of different things. Pages, podcast, features, posts. Maybe can you paint the picture of what the possibilities are? Because it sounds like you have more than just a Facebook page happening, right, and just making say, one post a day or something like that. It sounds like you could actually blow it up to be kind of a bigger empire inside of this little town.
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Drew Griffin: Yeah, you totally can. I mean, there's all kinds of ways to create a podcast. A podcast is simply an audio and or a video recording. The platform that we're talking about right now is Facebook. Obviously you and I know, and your audience knows that there's a bunch of audio platforms that are out there that you can repurpose that content. You can strip the audio out and repurpose that to, say, Stitcher or itunes or Anchor FM. You can take the video and repurpose it over on LinkedIn. You can purpose it on YouTube. You can cut it down into shorts on YouTube. You can even take some of those. Even though I haven't really aspired not aspired, but taken advantage of TikTok as much, I'm getting there, right? Reels and TikTok and all these other different platforms, you can start to fish, if you will, and kind of stake your claim in some of these other platforms to do that.
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Drew Griffin: You can even do a private podcast network if you wanted to. As you are building out here, you can do a lot of different things with this. Building out an email list right from messenger bots when people opt in to say, a contest. One example that we do often, at least at the time of this recording, we're right in the middle of the NFL season here in the United States, 1718, 1920 weeks worth of football. People inherently love to watch this game, particularly if they have a local team or they follow a certain team. There's an opportunity for them to participate in contest like that's. The final score type of contest. It's rabbit. It's so much fun. You can partner with a local business and offer a gift card. You don't even have to partner, you just go in and buy a gift card from them and say, hey, we're giving away a $50 or $100 gift card to such and such wing place or such and such pizza place.
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Drew Griffin: Gas cards work extremely well, certainly because the price of gas goes way up and down and you dangle that out in front of them. Hey, guess the final score of the Philadelphia Eagles versus the New York Giants this weekend. The person that guesses the winner and the closest to the final score first will be deemed the winner. What happens when you've got a large audience of people that are following the page? 50 00 10,000 people. Imagine building a rabid list of people that are just guessing the final score of the game. Eagles 27, the Giants 13, right? And other people 52 to zero.
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Liana Ling: It's all in the comments, right, of the post. Comments that's going to blow up on Facebook.
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Drew Griffin: Absolutely, totally blows up. Behind the scenes, we're asking for their email. We're adding them to a local newsletter instead. Maybe they don't see every post that goes out on the Facebook page, but we do a weekly roundup on this newsletter and we keep them notified about local businesses and things that are happening in the local area by way of the newsletter. Well, now you've got a massive email list of people that live in your local area that participate in this contest. Every business out there is going to want to take a part of that weekly contest. Like, oh, well, yeah, I'll give away a $50 gift card or two, dinner for two, or whatever it might be, a membership, a six month membership to a local gym or something like that in order to get in front of 5000, 15,000 people. Speaking to many different ways to initiate your platform from a Facebook page, a simple Facebook page, leverage Facebook ads to kind of get your word out there and do something pretty amazing.
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Drew Griffin: Like one thing that we do often is we do the best of hey, who has the best pizza in Potsdown, Pennsylvania? Leona, people have an opinion. People have an opinion about their pizza. Well, what would it be like if I referred 50 new businesses to you? Well, like all of a sudden all these people are suggesting different local pizzas. They're talking about Charlie's, they're talking about Papinos, they're talking about Aloe Veros, they're talking about Little Italy. Little Italy, too. Literally introducing us to 50, 60 new pizza restaurants simply by asking this. We go and validate it in the comments, say, oh, you mean this page? Because if they didn't tag them, it's so smart. Tag their Facebook page. All of a sudden that page and that restaurant comes in. They start telling their restaurant, telling all their patrons, hey, go vote over on Pottstown Local News and Events.
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Drew Griffin: They've got this contest going on. Make sure you go out and vote for us. And then another 500 come in. Another 500 come in. It's just crazy. Many people that are voting for it. Well then what's our next step? We go in and say, hey guys, go into Charlie's Pizza. Hey, my name is Drew from Pottstown Local News and Events. They know immediately who I am and what page we are. I say to them, hey, there's so many people that love your pizza. Why do people love your pizza? We would love to interview you and do a taste test of your pizza and feature you guys on our literally 50 interviews later. I have to be careful of how much pizza I'm meeting. It's so much more fun. Easy, palatable, way frictionless, way to connect with local businesses. Have fun in the process. Sometimes they become clients, sometimes they don't.
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Drew Griffin: At least we've got 50 new friends, right, that we could eventually do business together.
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Liana Ling: Yeah. Why do you think that these pages that you're creating are creating such a big splash? Because there's a lot of giants out there covering the news, and they do have local stations as well. Why do you think that is just really popping with these small ones that you're creating?
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Drew Griffin: Yeah, I don't know why, but if you go down the bread aisle or the soda aisle, inside of whatever your grocery store is, there's options. There's all kinds of different breads. There are all kinds of different sodas, all kinds of different tissue paper, you name it. Right. There's a lot of competition out there. The thing that we have to our advantage is we can be nimble. We can borrow. We can share some of the news that's already there. You can curate a lot of this content. We're not really trying to become a news agency. We're just trying to curate content that's happening locally. If we have the opportunity to be nimble, it's not like the news station is knocking down local businesses every day, but when they do, these local businesses want the attention. Every local business wants the attention, favorable attention on their business.
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Drew Griffin: When somebody compliments you, when somebody acknowledges the hard work that you've put into it, I mean, you've got multiple businesses, liana. You work literally. I don't know if I don't know of anybody that works harder than you do. Time is precious, and the business is your baby. It's your family. If it's paying you and your generating revenue, certainly you want people to recognize your worth, your hard work, particularly in a local community. And I think that's the ability. If we can recognize and give the attention to people that are doing great work in the local community, then it's a win for everybody. It's a win for the local community. It's a win for that local business, and it's a win for our Facebook page. Obviously, the agency behind us. It's a win for Facebook because we continue to do business with them, give them attention.
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Drew Griffin: People stay on Facebook. We pay them through our ads sometimes, and it seems to be a great strategy that perpetuates a thriving business for us. It's been remarkable. Gives us a lot of opportunity to connect with local chambers of commerces, lots of local organizations, they recognize this and instead of making it painful to connect with local businesses, it's become much easier.
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Liana Ling: Yeah, I think you hit the nail on the head there about it not being painful, because that's what it is. You come in, you're offering to feature them for free. Right. Who's really going to turn that down? Then, like you said, I really love how you said, well, now I've gained 50 new friends. I think anybody has worked in the local market. The big people, the media companies, they don't really pay that much attention to a local business at all. You're somebody here who's showing a genuine interest in them and really wants to find out what they actually do. Right. I think that's actually rare. So, yeah, I think it's a win for everybody. It's genius.
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Drew Griffin: Thank you. After we connect with them, there's an opportunity for them to learn more about what it is that we do outside of marketing. We've got a software company that's called Lead Bubble. A lot of fun playing with that tool. There's an agency side to that. My business partner, David California, we are having a blast with that. It's something else that gets on their radar as we start to connect with them. They want to do of due diligence. What else is it that typically when you're working with a business and you're getting the results, they're going to take a genuine interest in you and say, well, what else is it that you guys do? We share that kind of stuff with them as well. That's a great way to generate monthly recurring revenue from offering a SaaS product above and beyond the consultative type of marketing that we do as well.
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Liana Ling: Yeah. Both you and David cannot possibly cover the entire United States. I know that you also help others to create these too. How does that work in terms of, like, how would somebody get started if that's what they wanted to do?
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Drew Griffin: Yeah. We have a course called Local Media Hero. You can probably check it out localmediahero.com, or you can join our Facebook group for free and learn about that. We openly teach this strategy step by step. Okay, this is what you need to do with the Facebook page. This is how you fill it out. This is how you want to focus on it. We don't want this to become a full time job for anyone, but it often turns into a full time living meaning. Once you see that this engine works for you, this attention engine, then all the other things that our local marketers and people that are getting into this space are interested in doing, whether it's SEO or Facebook ads or social posting, or they've got a software, they've got content writing, all kinds of different stuff. That's where this helps Pivot and gets our clients, our students, gets them on the radar within their local community.
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Drew Griffin: That's the paradigm shift. If people are interested, they can join our Facebook group, delicious Local Marketing Hacks on Facebook. It's filled with very smart people. I know, Leona, you're in this group, although you're super busy, there's lots of people that are doing this strategy and more. I know that you're a big fan of short form videos. There's people talking about that. They're talking about Google my business, google Business Profiles, they call it now. Many different pathways that you can go if you want to specialize and even outsource and that thing. So, yeah, we've got that. Course. Local media hero. We've got other things like Local Podcast Hero and other things that are associated with that. Understanding that core structure will help you splinter off and do some amazing things and just disrupt your local marketing community.
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Liana Ling: Yes, I love that. I could see it as something that an agency could also bolt on to put in. Even if you want to support a charity, like if you want to have some type of social capitalism aspect to your agency or your business, you can start one here as a service back to the community. By the way, it also feeds into your agency as well. I love that you call it Local Media a Hero because that's really what you're becoming, right to the community, lifting the community up, using your power for good instead of evil. So I love that.
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Drew Griffin: It's been a blast for us.
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Liana Ling: Yeah. I can see it how it also helps not just agencies, like if you're a Realtor, actually, I learned this through you guys, so I created one for my mom has a private school, a local private school. Again, people will more readily talk to that media company first, then, oh, you're trying to sell me your school. Right. So I definitely saw that, for sure. I guess even like, if you're a church or something, you could sponsor with that as well. There's so much possibilities.
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Drew Griffin: There are lots of possibilities. Realtors. In fact, we recommend that for insurance agencies and mortgage lenders and all kinds of different ways. If you're looking to connect with local people that will eventually become a customer client or a member of your church and your community, your school, that thing, it's probably a good idea to serve up information that's happening locally. They become aware of you, they become trustworthy and eventually develop those relationships with those people in a good way. Often people as we know love to do business with who they know, like and trust, that get results and provide transparent information about what's happening locally. I think that's why it works, ultimately. Is it work? Yeah, it can be of work, but it can really deliver a lot of dividends for you as well.
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Liana Ling: Well, thanks so much for sharing all of this today, Drew. Again, I just think. It's a genius idea and I love how you're disrupting marketing in this way. We're definitely going to have to get you and David back to talk about Lead Bubble, because, again, I'm also a user of Lead Bubble and I love how you basically disrupted how we present information on a website and have disrupted and increased the conversion rates on page on our funnels. We definitely have to get you back to kind of talk about that too.
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Drew Griffin: I'd love to do that. I'm very grateful for the opportunity to come in and talk with you here on the podcast. I'm going to tell everybody here about your podcast. We're going to blow it up. We're going to recommend it on all of our local media hero pages for people to listen to and that thing. Leona, congratulations on everything that you're doing. Super proud of you both on your health journey as well as your business journey. You're just a lovely person and I'm just very proud and elated to be your friend.
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Liana Ling: Awesome. Love you to Andrew and David. I know he's not here, but you guys are going to meet him next time and look forward to seeing you again. Talk soon.
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Drew Griffin: See you.