Chava Mercado has spent over a decade in advertising and has innovated at every stage of the game. When looking at seemingly endless white semi trucks on the highway, he saw an opportunity to connect brands with more eyes than any traditional billboard could. His agency, InMotion boasts a fleet of over 15,000 trucks and an insane 4 million impressions per truck – per month! But the ads are not just static. Hear how Chava and InMotion use real-time data and retargeting to capture ideal clients for personal injury firms.
Today, we discuss how laying it all out on the line can be the best decision a business owner can make, why staying positive is essential to achieving your goals, and how data is revolutionizing the mobile ad space.
- Eight Seconds. That is all the time you have to capture the attention of a potential client passing a billboard. If they don’t understand your messaging, streamline the ad.
- Give it Time. Marketing campaigns can have incredible ROI and send your firm to the next level. But to get there you have to invest time.
- Enter through the side door. Look for alternatives if your firm does not have the capital for traditional media campaigns that rival mega-firms. Wrapping your ads in mobile trucks is an accessible way to get the impressions your firm needs without breaking the bank.
Maria Monroy, LawRank, InMotion, Chava Mercado
Maria Monroy (00:00):
That actually happened to you?
Chava Mercado (00:03):
It did. I thought I’ve actually talked about this.
Maria Monroy (00:06):
We’ve never talked about this.
Chava Mercado (00:08):
So, if you’re not resilient, if you can’t get through all these issues with a positive outlook, you always tell that I’m the most positive person you know. I’m not sure-
Maria Monroy (00:18):
… You are. You are.
Chava Mercado (00:19):
When you marry the real world with the digital world, conversion skyrockets. Our mobile billboards allows these new up-and-coming law firms to penetrate the market where other billboards are not. I hope they assume that law firm is not inside the truck.
Maria Monroy (00:36):
Even if you’re ranking, if you’re not getting phone calls, if you’re not signing up cases, you’re not going to care about the rankings. It’s a holistic approach.
In law school, attorneys are taught to challenge everything, tear things apart, break them down. But the qualities that make lawyers great can be some of the worst for running a business. At every stage of growth, running a business and practicing law can feel overwhelming. And what happens when you try to add life and family to the mix? It can feel nearly impossible. You don’t have to do this alone. I’m Maria Monroy, co-founder and president of LawRank, a leading SEO agency for ambitious law firms. Each week, we hear from the industry leaders on what it really takes to run a law firm, from marketing to manifestation. Because success lies in the balance of life and law, we’re here to help you tip the scales.
Billboards for large personal injury firms are hard to miss. You know the ones I’m talking about. You see them nearly every time you drive the freeway. They’re amazing for brand recognition, and they keep those firms top of mind. The result is a higher volume of calls and, ultimately, cases. But what if your firm doesn’t have the budget to break into these competitive spaces? To compete, you need an innovative and affordable solution. Chava Mercado and his team at InMotion have found the solution. They wrap existing delivery trucks in ads to get access to people in places, even mobile billboards cannot get to. He has over a 15,000 trucks in his nationwide network, and each truck gets over 4 million impressions per month.
InMotion is a data-driven company that has incredible ROI and a low barrier to entry. Today, Chava and I dig into how a positive mindset can change everything, even when you have less than $7 to your name, how he took those $7 and made them into seven figures, as well as the lessons he learned along the way, how to go head-to-head with large firms, and why data and innovative advertising can get you an 80% ROI, but only if you’re willing to invest the time. Chava has been in marketing for over a decade. He started buying billboards and saw a problem that he thought he could solve.
Chava Mercado (03:04):
So, I’ve been doing marketing Experiential was the first thing I did. Then I worked for corporate brands in America. I started buying billboards. I saw there was a problem. I could offer a solution.
Maria Monroy (03:17):
Wait. You were buying billboards, where?
Chava Mercado (03:18):
Predominantly, in Southern California. So, the six busiest freeways of the country, six of the top 10, are in Los Angeles. So those billboards are very expensive. The 405, the 101, the five freeways. And, I was working for different brands and I was always buying billboards. And then, I saw that there’s a lot of big semi trucks, just white unbranded trucks, that I could possibly ad space to that, rent space.
Maria Monroy (03:46):
What do you mean by that?
Chava Mercado (03:46):
I mean, I could put a brand on a logo on a truck. So, what really struck my mind was, I was following a truck for a beer brand. And, I followed them to the store, and then they were unloading cases of beer for a different brand. And I was like, “Oh wow.” I was like, “Why are you guys advertising one brand but really doing for the competitor?”
Maria Monroy (04:06):
Did you ask them that?
Chava Mercado (04:07):
I did. The guys said, they’re like, “Oh no. The brand pays to put their brand on the truck. Doesn’t necessarily mean that’s their product inside.” And that’s really how this whole idea was born, that the consumer naturally assumes that what’s on the outside of the truck is really the product that’s inside. And so, originally, that’s how I started. I was like, “Oh, I bet I can do that.” And I was working for Essentia Water. It’s a new brand, people want to know about it. So I was like, “If I put a lot of trucks with Essentia branding, people are going to think that we’re selling cases and cases all over.”
Maria Monroy (04:37):
So did you pitch the idea?
Chava Mercado (04:40):
I did. I was shut down horribly. So, I had just gotten the job. It was a new job. It was literally in my first week.
Maria Monroy (04:48):
Chava Mercado (04:49):
I wasn’t a know-it-all, but I knew enough of the market that I could save money. And, I was sitting with the VP of marketing at the time and I just said, “Hey, I think we could really save money if, instead of investing on billboards in Santa Monica or Downtown LA, we could do these trucks. It’ll be a lot cheaper and people will actually see it, and it’s not going to look like we’re trying to advertise to them. People are just going to think that the product is inside.” And she said, “Oh, first week on the job and you’re already trying to change things.” So, I just kept my mouth shut.
Maria Monroy (05:23):
She told you to stay in your lane.
Chava Mercado (05:25):
Not like that. I really respect this woman. She held a global marketing role for Microsoft. She knows exactly the marketing world. I really respect her. So when she said this, I was, “Okay. I’m here to learn.” It was my first week on the job, so I was just there to learn. But the idea stayed in my mind, and about two years into the job, I decided to do it as a part-time. So I started doing it on my own, while I was still working for Essentia Water.
Maria Monroy (05:50):
Now, on Instagram, your bio says that you took your business from $7 to seven figures.
Chava Mercado (05:55):
You like that one, huh?
Maria Monroy (05:56):
I like it a lot.
Chava Mercado (05:57):
It’s catchy. It’s good.
Maria Monroy (06:00):
Is it true though?
Chava Mercado (06:00):
Yes, it’s true.
Maria Monroy (06:00):
Tell us the story.
Chava Mercado (06:01):
I started the idea, and I’ve been working, so I probably had a little over six figures in my savings, so I had saved up some money. I started the business, started the company, and, originally, my vision was, if I can make a couple of thousand dollars a month extra, in a year, that’s 20 grand more. That was a big deal.
Maria Monroy (06:22):
That’s how most businesses start. Did you know that? As a side gig.
Chava Mercado (06:23):
Yeah, that was a big deal and I was making a little over six figures in my job. So I was like, if I can make $20,000 more, that’s a big deal. So my goal was to get three trucks in a year, three trucks. And then my friend was like, you got to think big. Let’s go to five trucks. And our first contract was 20 trucks. So it was way over what I expected. So then I’m really working, working, working and when you grow so fast, so quickly, you start really dipping into your expenses. So I haven’t gotten paid for months. So my savings started going from a hundred thousand to 80,000 to 60,000 to 40,000. And then at this point I’m really… Did I make the right choice leaving my job and starting a new business? 10,000 at that point, you’re going down in flames. You already lost all your money. And then the pandemic hit and my mom was sleeping on the couch. My girlfriend was in our room. It was a one-bedroom apartment. It was just chaotic, but I didn’t tell anything. And so…
Maria Monroy (07:22):
Wait, what do you mean?
Chava Mercado (07:23):
I didn’t tell them how bad we were going with the money situation. And then it goes to 800 bucks, $400, $30 in my bank account. So at this point I’m asking all my friends business people.
Maria Monroy (07:36):
You did not ask me. I just want to put that on the record.
Chava Mercado (07:39):
I did not ask you. I also did not know you were rich as f. But no, the reality is that I was just reaching out to people that I thought could help out just for 30 to 60 days until I was able to finish all the payments for the production, the installation and everything that it takes to produce 40 banners that are 53 foot. So I went down to a little over $8, like $7, and something in my bank account. And I remember specifically because right down the street from where we lived, there was a hamburger joint, and this is during the pandemic and they had this bright neon sign that said lunch combo for $8. And I looked to my girlfriend and I was like, “one day I want to be able to afford taking you there.” And it’s sad, but that’s really how it happened. And I had pulled up together an investor group from Newport. They were going to buy into my business. They were going to actually take ownership of the business and they were going to basically start paying for all my expenses until I started becoming profitable.
16 pages of contracts, I signed them, I put them on the table and I went to bed that night and sort of defeated and I was like, I’m just going to send that tomorrow. And then the very next day I got a paycheck, six-figure paycheck. And then from there on we never looked back. And I used that paycheck to take my girl to the $8 burger. And we have pictures of that.
Maria Monroy (09:02):
And she didn’t leave you after that?
Chava Mercado (09:04):
No, she didn’t leave me. I looked like I was homeless. Almost. Pretty close. But yeah, that was a really good memory. I still have the check by the way. It’s framed in my office.
Maria Monroy (09:15):
That’s cute. What were some of the biggest lessons you learned from that journey?
Chava Mercado (09:20):
I talk about resilience a lot on my Instagram. Follow Insta Chava. And people ask the leadership scales, this and that and listen, you can learn a lot of stuff from studying, from coaching, from mentors, but if you can’t hold the heat, you’re going to go down. No business just goes without a hinge, without a flaw. Even the big multi-billion dollar businesses, remember the time where Facebook was… Everybody was canceling it because they were saying their new privacy features change and everybody… So all these businesses that having a scale to the billions, they always go through issues. And I think that leadership counts for a lot. If you are not resilient, if you can’t get through all these issues with a positive outlook, you always tell me I’m the most positive person you know. I’m not sure-
Maria Monroy (10:07):
… You are. You are. I’m never going to forget when I took you to Don Warley party at MTMP, which were at MTMP right now, this was-
Chava Mercado (10:16):
… Last year.
Maria Monroy (10:16):
Maybe a year ago. And his parties are always on a Wednesday at 3:00 PM and Chava, without a drink or any drugs or anything, is walking around Don’s party. Oh my God, Maria, we’re so lucky. This is the best thing ever. Look at this, it’s a Wednesday, look at this, it’s a Wednesday at 3:00 PM and look. How lucky are we?
Chava Mercado (10:36):
And I was riding the bull. And the funny thing is I actually live in Las Vegas, that was normal to me. We’re at the Omnia, which I’ve been there.
Maria Monroy (10:43):
And I was annoyed. I was like, okay, it’s not that great. Get over it. And yeah, you are definitely very… And you’re very friendly. I can’t walk into a store or a restaurant or anywhere without Chava learning the cashier’s name, striking up a conversation with them. And I’m like the least friendly person in those situations.
Chava Mercado (11:02):
I heard you on the phone with a… Let’s not go there, but listen to answer the question is resilience. You have to have that kind of skill and that kind of fortitude. And also humility. I’m always learning. I don’t know it all. That’s for sure. The one thing I do know is that, so.
Maria Monroy (11:21):
Okay, let’s get into the good stuff now. Okay. So on your website you say InMotion is a data company who puts brands on trucks? What does that mean? How are you a data company?
Chava Mercado (11:31):
So we started placing billboards on the trucks. That was the original idea. We also have a beacon that tracks everything for the truck, so that’s how we’re able to see where the trucks are.
Maria Monroy (11:42):
What’s a beacon?
Chava Mercado (11:42):
Beacon technology is like a geo fence, like a GPS that’s attached to the truck.
Maria Monroy (11:47):
And it’s gathering data.
Chava Mercado (11:48):
It’s collecting data all the time.
Maria Monroy (11:49):
What kind of data?
Chava Mercado (11:51):
All kinds, everything. So I’ll explain how it goes. So the trucks are driving around a certain area. There’s people with their trusted devices. Our trucks capture the mobile IDs of the device. The mobile ID is basically a unique ID that’s attached to your cell phone. So we’re able to tell patterns about your life. So education, race, gender, age, group, income level, whether you like coffee, whether you’re a pet owner, whether you’re a mother. And it’s all based on data that you freely provide to the apps on your device and on your phone that if you were to read the fine print and all those apps, it says “hey, we will be selling your data to marketing and advertising.” However, because this is very important, we can’t obtain anything that’s personally identifiable to you.
Maria Monroy (12:36):
So I just have a user ID of a profile. We’re not going to say how old I am. You’re this age, you’re a mother, you like coffee, you hate dogs.
Chava Mercado (12:44):
Maria Monroy (12:44):
Chava Mercado (12:44):
So I’ll give a specific example and I’ll use myself and I don’t mind aging. 27-years-old, it’s not bad.
Maria Monroy (12:51):
And we’ve known each other forever, so that works.
Chava Mercado (12:55):
20 somehow. So anyway, so I grab my phone and if I have the MLB ESPN app, it’ll say okay, this person is a sports enthusiast. Or if I have Priceline, hotels.com, this person is likely to travel or business minded.
Maria Monroy (13:08):
But how does this impact, let’s say, a personal injury firm that’s doing advertising with you?
Chava Mercado (13:13):
So why is it important for personal injury lawyers in particular? Our trucks, since we have the mobile IDs for the devices, we’re also able to tell who is worth a million dollars or more so potential to have a bigger policy. Also, we are able to tell whether they’ve been in a body shop or a physical therapy or in a hospital. So if you’ve been in a body shop or physical therapy, you perhaps were injured. So before they even search for a lawyer, we’re able to match those who have seen your truck, your advertising with those people who have been in a body shop. And when you do that, you can send them a message on their Instagram, LinkedIn, 3000 different applications that we have access to. And so someone is scrolling through their feed and then they see an advertising and they’re like, “Oh yeah, I’ve seen those trucks,” but they don’t know that we know that they were exposed to those. And that’s really when you marry the real world with the digital world, conversion skyrockets. That’s really what separates us.
Maria Monroy (14:11):
Because regular billboards, you can’t do that.
Chava Mercado (14:14):
No. And you can’t tell who actually saw your truck. So the way regular billboards work is based on traffic data. So they would go, these are how many cars drove by in 2021. 5,000 cars per week. But you don’t know that.
Maria Monroy (14:30):
How many seconds does somebody have to be near the truck within eyesight of the truck for you to consider them having seen the truck?
Chava Mercado (14:39):
So we actually have a system that was done by a third party study from a company. Eight seconds is what we want. It really should be seven, but we only capture everybody that’s been for eight seconds. So if in eight seconds you haven’t been able to read the entire advertising ad, you probably did too much. So if anybody is there for only three, four seconds, we don’t count them. So I want to make sure that everybody that we know is 100% verified that they seen the truck. Now, of course, unless they were driving or walking with their eyes closed, there’s certain things that I can’t really… But I know that for a fact they were there when the truck was there that they were within the visibility icon of the truck for about eight seconds.
The second question that we get asked all the time is how far can they see these trucks? That depends on the size of the truck. The 53-foot truck, you can see it from further away. That 26-foot truck we have about 150 foot radius. It depends if you’re looking from the side or the back, but 150-feet, that’s the average of what we do.
Maria Monroy (15:40):
And what are the benefits of going with a mobile billboard? Which is what I would call it and I don’t know if that’s what you call it, but versus an actual billboard.
Chava Mercado (15:54):
Number one, we’re very, very much less expensive than a traditional billboard. So if budget is a concern, that’s one thing, number two-
Maria Monroy (16:03):
… But is that only for major markets or it doesn’t matter where you go in the country, you’re typically going to be cheaper than a billboard because I feel like a billboard in LA compared to a billboard in the middle of nowhere, no offense to anyone, is two completely different things.
Chava Mercado (16:21):
True. So our price is the same. It doesn’t matter if you’re in New York or in Chicago or Des Moines or Iowa. It doesn’t matter where you are. True, the billboards in the different cities are going to be at a different pricing. Also, if you’re trying to really expand and grow, you want to be in the bigger markets. That’s typically where it is. Here in Las Vegas, it’s highly competitive for the personal injury lawyers. They are advertising on regular billboards, a lot more than actual casinos, than the Bellagio, than the win and the big corporate casinos. And so if you’re a new lawyer and you’re coming in, you can’t compete with those guys because they already have those billboards prepaid and then they have the 30-day clause that they can renegotiate their deal and renegotiate their deal for another six months, three months, whatever it is.
And so our billboards, our mobile billboards, allows these new up-and-coming law firms to penetrate the market where other billboards are not. So less expensive, we’re able to penetrate. If it’s a pricing issue. We also don’t fold traditionally as a regular mobile billboard. I know you just mentioned that. A mobile billboard is a billboard that is designed purposely and primarily for advertising. And those have very complete set of restrictions. The drivers can only drive about eight hours a day. They can’t come near, let’s say, schools, hospitals, which is important for personal injury. But for us, the primary purpose of our trucks, it’s delivery. They’re actually delivering goods and products to the consumer. But the consumer who’s seeing that does not know that. So some of our trucks have corn or vegetables or TVs or couches or they deliver bread and popcorn to the hotels or different areas.
Maria Monroy (18:12):
But I don’t think anybody thinks, and maybe I’m wrong here, but I understand if it’s branded as water or Coca-Cola, whatever. But I think if somebody sees a truck, and it’s branded with Coca-Cola, people assume that it’s Coca-Cola inside the truck.
Chava Mercado (18:28):
Maria Monroy (18:28):
But if somebody sees a truck, and it has a lawyer advertising, most people are going to know that’s just an advertisement.
Chava Mercado (18:37):
I hope they assume that law firm not inside the truck. No, but well what I’m saying about the being different from a mobile billboard is that those trucks, if you’re a regular mobile billboard, that means your primary purpose is to advertise. And so you can’t go to areas that are prohibited.
Maria Monroy (18:56):
Like a gated community?
Chava Mercado (18:58):
Like schools, gated communities, hospitals, any other areas that are outside the route for their advertising. So our trucks, because they predominantly are delivering, they can go to different areas. So now imagine you’re in a fufu neighborhood and now you have this truck that has your advertising and you’re competing against nobody. And not only are you competing against nobody, you’re also grabbing the mobile IDs of anybody that walks outside and sees your truck. So we have a lot of pictures from the law firms that we have that they love when their trucks are right in front and center of these gated communities. But like I said, also hospitals, institutions, a lot of our trucks do deliveries to Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and all these areas where people are always there, but you can’t have a traditional billboard there.
Maria Monroy (19:45):
That’s amazing. And now I will say that Chava and I have a mutual client and I know that this works very well. Now I want to ask a few questions.
Chava Mercado (19:55):
Maria Monroy (19:56):
You’re welcome. Let’s talk about measuring performance. How do you measure the campaign’s performance and what kind of ROI can a client expect?
Chava Mercado (20:05):
So even though PI is not our biggest segment, because we do have other segments, we are growing in the PI law firm because we’ve been able to be very successful with the results that we’re given. Now, these guys they don’t really give a shit about impressions. They don’t care about how many people saw it. They don’t care about the race, gender, anything. They just say, how many times is my phone going to ring? All right. How many calls am I going to get as a result of having these trucks? And so in order for us to determine the response to that, we need to know what they are doing for cases every month.
Maria Monroy (20:40):
So this is very similar to what we do when it comes to SCO. And I argue the same thing when the client is like, when we’re talking about rankings, I’m like look, even if you’re ranking, if you’re not getting phone calls, you’re not signing up cases, you’re not going to care about the rankings. It’s a holistic approach. And it sounds like this is also a holistic approach because it’s not as simple as they saw the billboard. It’s like now we’re going to go and we’re going to re-target them.
Chava Mercado (21:01):
Yes. If they want to do the services. Our PI firms, they all do both services. So one part of-
Maria Monroy (21:07):
… And can you also re-target without them having to have met a certain criteria? For example, ER or physical therapy. Can you just say we want to basically have a digital commercial or a digital billboard? So since we know you saw us in the real world, now we’re going to also show you our brand in the digital world. Can you do that? Do you do that?
Chava Mercado (21:30):
Like on your phone?
Maria Monroy (21:31):
Yeah. Just a very broad retargeting. So you saw our billboard three times, now we’re going to re-target you on social media without waiting for you to be in an ER.
Chava Mercado (21:41):
So we collect everybody and we have what it’s called a frequency rate. So we know how many times people have seen it. Anything under three. I honestly don’t even re-target because if they only seen your truck advertising once or twice and I’m spending ad dollars on the advertising, it’s not going to convert. I could do it and make a little bit extra money, but I tell them we just have to wait until they’ve seen it three times, at the very least. Now the more trucks they have, the easier and the faster we’re going to get to that three x market. You know, can’t get to three X with five trucks in the city of Los Angeles.
Maria Monroy (22:15):
So is the goal to get to three x?
Chava Mercado (22:17):
That’s the minimum.
Maria Monroy (22:18):
Chava Mercado (22:19):
And sometimes you can get to five x if you have 20 trucks.
Maria Monroy (22:22):
I would assume that the longer a firm has done this, the better they’re going to convert. I would also assume that the more trucks they’re doing, the higher the return investment. Or one thing that PI firms measure is cost per case. So I assume the cost per case goes down because the conversion goes up. It’s what we always talk about. It’s branding, right? And what you’re doing is it’s a branded play and you have to be very patient when it comes to branding. And I would argue even more so than with SCO because when it comes to SCO that’s direct intent. Someone’s actually searching for them in that moment. But what you’re doing is it’s branded. It’s a branded play. Just like commercials [inaudible 00:23:01].
Chava Mercado (23:01):
We’re branding and we’re putting ourselves in the digital world in front of people before they even search for a lawyer. We know that they’ve been in a situation that most likely requires a lawyer. And from what I’ve learned in this space, a lot of people are afraid to call lawyers. They think it’s going to be too costly. They don’t know them; they don’t know people and they’ve heard negative things, and so-
Maria Monroy (23:20):
… Not the fufu people.
Chava Mercado (23:22):
Yeah, the fufu people know two, three lawyers probably in their family. But I was talking to Call Jacob or Jacob Emrani from Call Jacob in LA and I asked him the simple question. I mean, you’re the godfather of billboards, Mr. Emrani. Why did you start? How did you start being into practice? And he said, “we really want to be there for people who don’t have the means, who don’t have two, three lawyers in their families. That’s why we put billboards out so that people who are not readily available to reach out to a lawyer can find us.” And so I learn from every time I go to a conference with you and I meet more and more lawyers. I ask them, how can we be improved? So going back to the question about measuring, we ask them basically what was your cases last year for that particular month and then what was the average for the last three years?
So we actually see how much they’ve been growing on their own before we came in. And then we start our retargeting campaign, our trucks, and then we see an increase and we try to set a base and to be easy with numbers if they’re closing a hundred cases a month. And I tell them, if we close 110, we’ve already grown your business 10% in just one month. If we close 120, we’ve grown at 20%. What we’ve seen is that sometimes we’ve gone from a hundred to 180 and it’s an incredible… They’re like, we gained 80% cases year over year from the previous year or even as a three-year average. And so that’s what we’re trying to measure. So every law firm is different. Not every law firm closes a hundred cases a month.
Maria Monroy (24:56):
I would argue most don’t.
Chava Mercado (24:58):
So let’s make it simpler. 10 to 15, that’s a 50% increase.
Maria Monroy (25:03):
Chava Mercado (25:05):
So they’re doing 10 and then we’re able to just get you three more cases. That’s 30%.
Maria Monroy (25:08):
That’s amazing. Now what’s the minimum time requirement?
Chava Mercado (25:12):
Now we’re getting to the goodies. So we require at least six months.
Maria Monroy (25:16):
That’s really low dude.
Chava Mercado (25:17):
Maria Monroy (25:18):
… In my opinion, I think that’s really, really low. I would not do anything under a year. It’s just the problem is so many PI lawyers are so impatient. It’s like, and Gary Sarner and I talked about this and he does radio and it’s like you have to be patient because again you’re building a brand. Coca-Cola didn’t become Coca-Cola in a day and they still brand nonstop. I am so sick of seeing Coca-Cola, I’m trying not to drink Coca-Cola. You know what I mean, though? Or like AT&T.
Chava Mercado (25:49):
Yeah, I know what you mean. But if they already have their numbers and let’s say we’re starting a campaign in January of 2023, they already know what they did January 2022, 21, 19. And so if we come in January 2023 and we already show an increase, they already know it’s already working. And so at the very least, I want them to do six months. Now, the first month or two, we’re not doing anything on the retargeting because those first days, first weeks, first two months, we’re collecting all these mobile IDs so that we can get to that three x frequency so that on month three now we start retargeting people.
Maria Monroy (26:23):
That makes sense.
Chava Mercado (26:24):
So anyone that says “Oh we want to do three months,” I was like, you may not even get to three months, I mean, to the three X frequency in the first three months. So six months is the minimum. Most people do 12 months with us. All of our law firms they always re-sign with us.
Maria Monroy (26:40):
But, wait, you haven’t told us the most… What everyone’s wondering right now, what is the cost?
Chava Mercado (26:47):
The cost is very, very inexpensive and very transparent. It’s on our website. So we have three products, three different prices. The semi, the 53-foot billboard, it’s $5,000 per month. The 26-foot truck is $3,500. And the LED truck, which those are predominantly for conferences or three day festivals or anything like that. Those run for-
Maria Monroy (27:08):
… And you’ve done a lot of those right?
Chava Mercado (27:10):
For 2000. Yeah, but honestly those are more power place. If you’re trying to hit 20,000 people outside of the Lakers game or outside a specific conference, you can have those. So if we wanted to have here for MTMP Las Vegas. You could put LawRank outside and you’ll grab all the IDs from everybody.
Maria Monroy (27:31):
I wanted to do that.
Chava Mercado (27:33):
We could do it for the next conference.
Maria Monroy (27:34):
I actually told [inaudible 00:27:35] and he’s like, “Maria, no.”
Chava Mercado (27:39):
I’ll give you guys a good deal.
Maria Monroy (27:40):
Okay. I would hope so.
Chava Mercado (27:42):
But 12 months.
Maria Monroy (27:45):
Okay, so six-month minimum. You said the pricing depends on the size. 5 35 2, is that right? Or 25?
Chava Mercado (27:51):
Yes. But to clarify. It’s 5,000 a month, 3,500 a month and 2000 daily for the LEDs.
Maria Monroy (27:58):
Oh, 2000 daily. Okay, got it.
Chava Mercado (27:59):
Maria Monroy (28:00):
So what’s the minimum amount of trucks that you would recommend?
Chava Mercado (28:04):
The very minimum is 10 trucks. So if you really want to come in here and you want to do a really pushy, really being able to penetrate a market where the big players are in, some of the big players are dropping a hundred, 150,000, $200,000 a month in advertising in billboards and TV. So it’s really hard for you to compete against them. So in order for you to do something disruptive and different, you can have 10 trucks at the $3,500 price and that’s $35,000 a month for 10 trucks in your market. That’s what I would recommend on the starting point. Anything below that, if you do five, which we’ve never done, by the way. We offered it. It’s just going to take too long, it’ll take too long for you to get to that frequency and then you’re going to start being like, hey, it’s four months, we really don’t see the results.
So we don’t want to shoot ourselves in the foot. If you come out with 20, you’ll right away in month one, you’ll see the difference. It will be categorical. You’ll see a big difference in the number of cases you’re closing with 20 trucks in one month, so.
Maria Monroy (29:03):
That’s awesome. Okay, well, now I want to get into something a little bit more personal.
Chava Mercado (29:07):
Maria Monroy (29:08):
I want to go back to the positivity and if you could just quickly maybe tell us a little bit about your childhood or young adult life and how did you get to be so positive? You’ve actually never shared the stuff with me.
Chava Mercado (29:23):
My young adult life.
Maria Monroy (29:24):
I know you’ve had some adversity, right?
Chava Mercado (29:28):
Yeah, I think everybody does. I mean, to a certain point.
Maria Monroy (29:31):
But were you this positive pre adversity or was it that made you this positive? We’re going to end up cutting this.
Chava Mercado (29:37):
No, this is fine. I mean, I don’t know if being born in Mexico is an adversity. I guess, maybe.
Maria Monroy (29:45):
It’s totally a freaking adversity. That’s why I took my kids there.
Chava Mercado (29:47):
I moved to the US when I was 16. I learned English watching Seinfeld, so that was my favorite TV show.
Maria Monroy (29:53):
That explains so much.
Chava Mercado (29:55):
What? That I’m funny.
Maria Monroy (29:59):
I did not say that. Although, I do have to say that.
Chava Mercado (30:00):
Not that there’s anything wrong with that, remember?
Maria Monroy (30:02):
No one has made me laugh more than Chava in the past 10 days.
Chava Mercado (30:04):
In the conferences.
Maria Monroy (30:05):
Chava Mercado (30:06):
So anyway, so moved here 16, I went to college in USD. I think the big thing that happened when things changed; I have had one experience with a personal injury lawyer. I don’t know if I’ve shared this already.
Maria Monroy (30:18):
No, you have not.
Chava Mercado (30:18):
So I’ve actually been involved in a personal injury case. I had a window fall on my head from a 10 story building.
Maria Monroy (30:29):
Chava Mercado (30:29):
Maria Monroy (30:29):
… Are you fucking with you right now?
Chava Mercado (30:29):
No, this is why I moved like this. No, you thought I was just being the robot? No, so-
Maria Monroy (30:31):
… Wait, when did this happen?
Chava Mercado (30:33):
I know exactly. November 20th, 2013. It’s going to be holy shit, it’s going to be nine years. So I was walking down the street by the staple center, a window just fell and I crashed over my head. It happened right in front of a Starbucks. People came out of the Starbucks and they’re like, Holy shit, man, are you okay? A window just fell on you and you’re bleeding and I’m looking and there’s shattered glass. So when I felt the impact, I thought someone just dropped a rock. I didn’t think it was a window. You don’t just walk and say like, “Hey, a window just fell on me.”
Maria Monroy (31:04):
You’re fucking with me right now. That actually happened to you.
Chava Mercado (31:07):
It did. I thought I talked about this.
Maria Monroy (31:08):
We’ve never talked about this.
Chava Mercado (31:12):
So this happened, and it happened a day before I was starting a new job. So I had no benefits, I had nothing. And so I went to physical therapy for three years and I had to leave the job. I had to sell my car because I couldn’t turn to the blind spot. And I still like hold my head when I look up. Point is that later on Cellino and Barnes took the case?
Maria Monroy (31:32):
Chava Mercado (31:33):
So Cellino and Barnes are huge and this is before the separation. So then I went with Cellino and Barnes and I’ve heard the jingle.
Maria Monroy (31:40):
No, And I know Cellino.
Chava Mercado (31:40):
See, advertising works.
Maria Monroy (31:42):
Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. And how much did it settle for? Can you say?
Chava Mercado (31:45):
I can certainly say.
Maria Monroy (31:46):
Did it settle? Did it go to court?
Chava Mercado (31:48):
No, we settled. So we sue the building, the glass window and the people that were doing the repair, I think three different lawsuits. So, on November 20th, 2016, three years later, exactly from the day of the accident, I went to climb Kilimanjaro.
Maria Monroy (32:04):
Yes, I knew that.
Chava Mercado (32:05):
And I did this as gratitude that I didn’t die three years before and it takes seven days to get to the top and back. And so on Thanksgiving day I was literally celebrating being alive as close as I can ever be to God. So I climbed this mountain. And we’re doing the deposition or where I’m with my lawyer. There’s a mediator. There’s the other lawyer for representing the building and they’re asking me all these questions and [inaudible 00:32:34] injured. And obviously, I’ve been injured from the accident. I’ve had issues. And so the guy leaves the room and my lawyer’s like, “dude, get ready man, you’re about to be a millionaire.” And then it comes back and drops a picture of me at the top of Kilimanjaro. It was my university. They gave me a flag and they said we’d be really proud if you do this and you climbed this mountain.
So I took a picture at the top of the mountain holding University of San Diego. And so then it was published and then it was in a magazine and then it was out and I didn’t know. And so the guy comes back and it’s a picture of me at the top of the mountain.
Maria Monroy (33:14):
And you’re like, Yeah, I did that.
Chava Mercado (33:16):
And so my lawyer was like, we’re going to need a minute. And so he [inaudible 00:33:21], he’s like, What the ? And I mean, I’ve never seen… I was like, “what?” He’s like, you climbed the fucking mountain. And I said, “Yeah, but I got help. There were eight people helping me and it’s not like I’m just trudging along. There were people helping me. It takes a long time.” And anyways, so they came back, and he’s like, we’re taking whatever was offered. And so I think I was offered, I don’t know, less than 150 grand.
Maria Monroy (33:48):
Chava Mercado (33:49):
And I took that and then I put it on Bitcoin.
Maria Monroy (33:51):
Did you really?
Chava Mercado (33:52):
Maria Monroy (33:53):
What’s it at now? $5.
Chava Mercado (33:54):
And then I gave rest to my mom. No, that grew like a lot. Hundreds of thousands because it was right at 2017. So right at the peak of the market.
Maria Monroy (34:04):
I can’t believe [inaudible 00:34:05].
Chava Mercado (34:05):
It blew up, but I helped the rest of my mom. It was a good cause.
Maria Monroy (34:13):
Chava’s positive energy is contagious. Keep a positive perspective during life’s ups and downs. When you do solving a problem will begin to feel more like an opportunity to improve than an obstacle to overcome. When it comes to marketing, give it time from SCO to mobile billboards. Investing in marketing will help you grow, but it won’t happen overnight. Be willing to invest the time necessary to see a campaign be successful.
Thank you so much to Chava at InMotion for everything he shared today. If you found the story valuable, please share it with someone you want to see succeed. Subscribe so you never miss an episode and leave a five star review. It goes a long way to help others discover the show. Catch us next week on Tip The Scales with me, Maria Monroy, President of LawRank. Hear how the best in the business broke out of limiting beliefs, overcame adversity and built a thriving, purpose driven business in the process.