MarketMate interview with Mindy Godwin, Mitch Hamburger, and Rodney Godwin
Mindy Godwin is a native of Atlanta and resides in Sandy Springs with her husband and business partner Rodney and their two sons Jack and Spencer. Mindy is the president of her family operated woman owned company, ARC, that began back in 1978, the year she was born. She earned a degree in hotel restaurant travel management from Gwinnett Tech and GA State and uses her tools in hospitality that she learned 20 years ago in growing her business every day. “My ultimate goal and true desire is to make every single customer feel special and appreciated by me and give them the best service possible no matter how big or small their business is.
This is how we stand apart from our competitors, we truly care, we will always make it right and our clients will always know how important they are to us, to me. Let’s face it, companies can go anywhere to get their printing, toner supplies and promotional items but they’ve chosen to work with me and for this I’m forever grateful. Being in a family business has been a dream come true. I do what I love to do every day which is meet new people and solve their business solutions all while working with the people that matter the most to me. It can’t get any better than this.”
Mitch Hamburger is a native Atlantan and long time employee of ARC and brother of Mindy Godwin. He grew up in the business, working during the Summer or during holidays, helping with production or going on deliveries. He learned a lot about what it means to run a small business and especially about building building professional relationships that are based on trust and last years. There are still people he keeps up with that remember him, his dad and the company even though they haven’t done business with ARC for as many as 20 years.
Today, Mitch primarily oversees the production of the extensive promotional and apparel branding. Duties include identifying which items are best suited to target marketing a company’s customers. Research shows that 3 dimensional marking is the most powerful tool for driving ROI. He hears a lot of people who say, “I could never work with my family.” His response is, “I can’t imagine not working with the people I love.”
Connect with Mitch on LinkedIn.
Rodney Godwin has been in Atlanta since 1996,the year he met his future wife Mindy Godwin. Rodney has been with American Reprographics Corporation for over 2 decades and is heavily involved in the day to day internal operations, customer and vendor relations and oversees print production.
Rodney enjoys forming long lasting personal relationships with his clients with the belief that every interaction should be focused on growing the customer’s business.
Connect with Rodney on LinkedIn
Intro: Broadcasting live from the Business RadioX Studios in Atlanta, Georgia, it's time for Atlanta Business Radio. Spotlighting the city's best businesses and the people who lead them.
Stone Payton: And welcome to this very special edition of Atlanta Business Radio. It's actually time for our Market Mate Atlanta series. Stone Payton and producer, Blake, here with you. But more importantly, our esteemed host for this show, Market Mate Atlanta, Mr. Corey Rieck. How are you, sir?
Corey Rieck: I'm good, Stone. How are you guys doing today?
Stone Payton: I'm doing great. I missed you over the weekend. I had the most pleasant experience. We went up -
Corey Rieck: Because you weren't with me?
Stone Payton: Well, maybe. We had a great time. My wife's best friend's daughter got married at a zoo. And aside from the fact that there were two bars and a marvelous reception dinner, we actually got to feed the giraffes. And that was just a way cool experience. I don't know why you crossed my mind during that time. Maybe I was just so excited about the Monday show. But, yeah, man, it's been too long since you and I have done this. Probably been a whole week or two, hadn't it?
Corey Rieck: Yeah. I, apparently, got to get out more. I'm not really sure why you thought of me while you were at a wedding in a zoo, but we'll come back to that. But it's always great to see you and spend some time with you.
Stone Payton: Do you even know what giraffes eat? Are you in on that?
Corey Rieck: No.
Stone Payton: So, I don't know what they eat normally. We fed them romaine lettuce. So, I don't know -
Corey Rieck: I bet you fed them a lot of it.
Stone Payton: We did. They love it.
Corey Rieck: Unbelievable stuff. Well, today on Market Mate Atlanta, we have the distinct pleasure of having the executive team of American Reprographics Corporation on our show. Their firm is an Atlanta family-owned business that has been in existence since 1978 and success that has spanned over 40 years. I've worked with their organization personally now with my company for several years, and they've helped me immeasurably with my branding, printing, and toner needs. They are, without question, unparalleled and unsurpassed in their space with their knowledge, experience, and service. Mindy Godwin, Mitch Hamburger, and Rodney Godwin have been a true joy to work with. And they have been very, very valuable to my brand. They've been a great help to me with their expertise, with the referral of their friends and family to my business. Guys, welcome.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you.
Mitch Hamburger: Thank you.
Corey Rieck: You guys have all been with the company for over 20 years. Family, you work together, tell me about that. I mean, you guys get along great.
Stone Payton: Mindy started when she was eight.
Corey Rieck: Yes.
Mindy Godwin: Literally. We do. We work so well together. Thanks, Corey, so much for having us today. It is an honor to be a guest. I think, because we put our family first, we keep that front of mind always that we come first. And then, we have to make sure we work together well and we communicate well and we just enjoy being together so much. So, that helps us make it work day to day.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think you've done a great job. I mean, to have three folks together. You guys have all been there over 20 years, right?
Mitch Hamburger: At least. I started at age 13, summer job.
Corey Rieck: Yeah. Thanks for that, Mitch.
Mitch Hamburger: And it was just what I grew up in. And, again, Mindy mentioned it about being family run. It was always that way. Dad would start early in the morning. So, he was home in time when we came home from school, so he was always there. And with mom being in the business as well, there was always a family element to it. And the way that we've built relationships with our customers and clients has been to bring them into the family. And I think the transition from professional to family and back to professional has been a benefit for all of us.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think you guys have handled that seamlessly, too. You know, I've met Mr. Hamburger who started the company, and I want to come back to why he started it. But family is something that I would use to describe the organization. I mean, you guys have been very, very helpful to me. From what I've seen, you've been great at building relationships. But it seems to me you've also been able to achieve something I have not been able to achieve, which is work life balance. It seems like you guys know when to shut it off and when to engage. Have I made anything up there? Or does that seem -.
Mindy Godwin:We are always working on that part. My parents did it beautifully. They literally called it roleplaying. 9:00 to 5:00, so to speak, they would be coworkers. And then, like Mitch mentioned, when the day was over, they were back to mom and dad. So, we'd do the same. We try our best to. We are coworkers during the day, team members during the day, and then brother, sister, uncle, husband, wife, mom, dad, you know, after hours.
Corey Rieck: I think that's fantastic because you see so many family businesses where the folks in the family don't get along. I mean, I see it over and over and over. And I think that's just excellent that you guys are able to do that. Before we go further, I'd like each one of you to introduce yourself to the listenership so they could get to know you further, starting with Mindy.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you. So, Mindy Godwin, and I have been working with the business since 1998. I started out mainly learning everything there is to know about sales. And working alongside my dad, going on as many sales calls as he would possibly allow me to go on. And I'm a native from Atlanta. Two boys, as you know, Rodney is my husband. Mitch is my brother. And it's the best part of my job is all working together.
Corey Rieck: Well, having met your dad, it doesn't surprise me that he probably enjoyed bringing you along on those sales calls and teaching you what he knows.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you.
Corey Rieck: To me, he's a constant source of inspiration for many reasons, not the least of which he started a company that's, you know, spanned four decades of success. How did he get the idea to do that?
Mindy Godwin: So, in 1978, the Xerox Corporation lost an antitrust suit for monopolizing the industry, and he saw an opportunity to go in. They were having to grant licenses to independent companies to be able to sell and service products like Xerox. So, he took that opportunity and, from there, it spanned to, like we've said, promotional items, printing and, still, toner and ink supplies.
Stone Payton: Now, when he took you on a sales call, did you get back in the car and did you debrief the call? Did he ask you about what do you think about what happened?
Mindy Godwin: Always. Always. Yes. And I really did love it. I might have shed a few tears, but I liked the criticism because it really helped me grow at what I do. So, he taught me the gatekeeper is the most important person. Always, always know that gatekeeper, know that office administrator, that person at the front desk because they held the key to the decision maker. And if they don't like you, you're not getting past their desk.
Stone Payton: You're done. Game over. Right?
Mindy Godwin: Right.
Corey Rieck: Is that ever true? And, Mitch, tell us what you do for the company and what your role is.
Mitch Hamburger: Well, I grew up with the company, so I've seen it transform over the years. And it wasn't until a few years ago that we got into the promotional and apparel side of the business. As toner sales have changed and the technology has changed, we were looking for new ways to expand the business. And so, we've always thought about it in ways of printing. Well, all promotional items and apparel is printing on a three dimensional product. And it just made sense. It was actually Mindy's idea. She was talking with someone at the school where her kids were and it took off from there.
Corey Rieck: I mean, that's outstanding. My experience with you, you know, Mitch is really on top of things. He's very responsive. Gets things done. One of the things I appreciate about your organization is we don't have to ask twice. And that's being a person of little patience and little time. I mean, that's huge. In addition to being great at what you do, it's great that we don't have to keep asking for that. Rodney, tell us about what you do for the company.
Rodney Godwin: Well, I'm mainly an operations guy. I kind of have my fingers in a little bit of everything. I make sure everything's running smoothly internally. I keep up with all the current orders that are in progress. I kind of shepherd along from beginning to end certain orders and promotional items, Mitch does that, and everything else as far as paper printing or any kind of project like that. I also do inventory control for a lot of customers, which is, there are certain customers who simply cannot be down. Their printers and copiers must work, because they have someone standing in front of them where that has to be used right then and there at a point of sale, or a purchase, or a log in, or whatever the case may be. So, we control the inventory for those customers. So, I do a lot of running around, checking with those clients, making sure they're going to have what they need when they need it so they don't even have to think about it.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think one of the ways that your firm has really differentiated yourself is the service. I mean, I'm the king of, "Oh, wow." My toner and my printer says I need more toner. And I look in the cupboard and I'm like, "Yeah. I didn't order it." I can call Mindy and she'll have it, like, there the next day or even before. Just the idea that you would give the service that you do, you come to the office, look at what you need, order it. I mean, that, to me, I see is a pretty big advantage. And I certainly appreciate that.
Stone Payton: All right, Rodney, I love my wife. She's a wonderful person. And when I really needed -
Corey Rieck: You outkicked your coverage. You need to just slow your roll here. You should love your wife.
Stone Payton: Well, Corey knows my wife really well because she's the decision-maker and she's the one that helped us decide on the long term planning stuff that we have. As recently as last week, she stepped up to the plate and really helped me with something. But I'm trying to -
Corey Rieck: God knows you needed it.
Stone Payton: I did need it. I did need it. But day in, day out, week in, week out - I don't know - do you guys have, like, some ground rules that you put into place so that you can manage the spousal relationship and the work relationship?
Rodney Godwin: When it comes to work, her name is on the door. Mine is not. So, it kind of goes that way. What she needs me for is things that I am good at and she is not. And she is good at a lot more than I am. So, I take those roles that she assigns me and says, "You know, you're really good at this, this, and this. This Is what I want you to concentrate on." And then, the rest of it, I stay out of the way. And that's basically my philosophy. I might give an opinion if asked. Otherwise, you know, I know what I have to do and what needs to get done and what I'm good at, so I stay on that path.
Corey Rieck: Does that take enormous discipline?
Rodney Godwin: Meditation is usually what it takes.
Stone Payton: Are you serious?
Rodney Godwin: I am serious.
Corey Rieck: That was such a quick response. It seems like you've thought about that.
Stone Payton: You were awfully quick.
Rodney Godwin: I am serious. You know, it goes back to what her dad has taught us all along the way, is know your role and be able to separate your work life from your home life. And I know a lot of people have a tremendous issue with that. But it's been 20 some years this way now, and it may not have been like that on day one. It's that way now because we have a lot of practice. And just over the years, you come to realize you may have done something in business that she's not particularly happy with you about. But that doesn't mean when you get home that's going to translate over and she's still not going to be happy with you. You just have to know that role. You have to know why what is going on is going on and be able to separate it.
Corey Rieck: Well, it seems like you guys have a great team. And to be able to say that and then do it is excellent. I mean, obviously, you do it because you've been together for more than 20 years. You rarely see that.
Mindy Godwin: It also helps that my brother has a psychology background and he was in that field -
Corey Rieck: Who does that help exactly?
Mindy Godwin: It helps us all.
Rodney Godwin: All of us.
Mindy Godwin: So, he brings this calm just low key attitude to the office. And they're both brilliant guys. Luckily, they are the brains behind the business. But Mitch, he really puts us back into our place if we get huffy and puffy about anything. It's like, "Come on, guys. It's not rocket science. Let's calm down." And we do.
Stone Payton: But this business in particular, I would think, has to have its pressures. I'm operating under the impression that at least the promotional products of the business is a very competitive arena, right? A very crowded marketplace. So, you have to find ways to differentiate yourself. And then, once you've done that and won the business, now you've got to keep it, right?
Mitch Hamburger: Right. And, I think, there's pressure in any business that you're in. I know there's got to be hundreds of radio shows and yet you found success here. There's Office Depot and Staples. But, you know, the difference is what Rodney was talking about. We step in the door, we talk to people, we build a relationship. We give an honest assessment of what they have and what they need. They make the choice on what they want. And then, we step back and do what we do best, which is get them what they want, when they want it, how they want it.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think you've certainly done that. One of the things that I think sets you apart is your follow up in your service. I'd add those things in there as well. I have to tell you that when I have an idea, I wouldn't have the first thing about bringing it to fruition. But I can talk to Mindy and say, "Hey, I'm thinking about doing this." And she says, "You should do this." And it's always right. It's always consistent with my brand. And then, like, a couple of days later, I have the actual item. You know what I mean? Because you guys are so good on the back end executing.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you.
Stone Payton: You're obviously a Mindy fan. You're obviously an ARC fan. You're a Mitch and Rodney fan. But it's a whole different level that you take it upon yourself to refer them to other people.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think - I'm sorry I interrupted you.
Stone Payton: No. I just want to learn more about the mechanics behind that, because me, too, like, I find people in my heart I want to help them any way I can. I want to refer them to other people. But I don't think I'm good at it. There's probably better ways to do it than I'm doing it. So, I'm interested in, you know, how do you manage the mechanics of properly referring someone. Because you're putting your reputation on the line. You're asking them to invest their time and energy. And you're asking the person you're referring to. There's a lot of moving parts there that I think sometimes maybe I haven't taught myself or I haven't learned how to manage all that properly.
Corey Rieck: I think Mitch started to say this where, you know, there's pressure in any business. You know, the way that I look at it is, you know, pressure is a privilege. And, really, it's simple for me to send these guys business. You know, the binder that you and Holly have that discusses the whole idea of long term care? Mindy and her team put that together. So, naturally, when I bring that out and I start going over it with people, people are like, "Wow. That is so cool. Did you come up with that?"
Stone Payton: And it's first cabin. But it's reflective of it makes us more willing to make an investment in the service. So, they're little things, but they're not little things.
Corey Rieck: It's a significant difference maker. But Mindy went out and had the leather binder built. She printed the materials in it for less than I was paying. And then, she says, "Hey, you need to have, you know, an area for a pen there, an area for a business card." Stuff that I never would have thought of. So, you know, when I set that on an executive's desk, they're like, "Wow." And suddenly you're in business. Suddenly you have a brand.
And so, Mindy, we've been working together for several years now, and a lot of times that happens automatically because people will go, "Man, where did you get this pen? Who gave you that idea for that magnet?" I'd love to sit here and say, you know, "Look, let's be honest, my knuckles still drag on the ground. None of this is my idea." But they're very easy to refer because they're good at what they've done. My people that know me are going to ask me, what's your experience with them? I'll say, "Well, you know, they printed the binder. They did the pens. They did the magnets. My business cards." They've done all kinds of projects and stuff that I never would have really had the idea to do. But Mindy would say, "Well, I think you should do this." And it's like, "Yeah. Okay. That makes sense."
Stone Payton: So, when he does this, do you guys treat a referral or a Corey referral - I don't know - does it go into this sort of set of rules and protocol?
Mitch Hamburger: It's a priority. Because just like you said, the importance of him referring us puts his reputation on the line. Well, when that comes to us, his reputation is on the line and so is ours. And we don't want to look bad to Corey because he's not going to send something else our way and we could damage the relationship that he has with this person.
Stone Payton: This is a high stakes game here we're talking about. It really is.
Mindy Godwin: I'd like to say it comes easy because we do like to treat all of our customers the same. But exactly what Mitch said, I mean, if your reputation is on the line, we are going to make certain that you always look good.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think, when you build a relationship with somebody, even if it's only, you know, one way - if I've had a good experience with somebody - I'm really not a scorekeeper - you know, if somebody has done a good job with something for me, I'm happy to put that karma out there to help somebody else. You know, when I started my company 18 years ago, I had all these ideas and I'm like, "Well, I need to go to Kinkos." I mean, that was not the right move. The right move is to talk to somebody that has expertise in branding and printing and those things. But I just didn't know enough 18 years ago. And I think having somebody to assist you with your branding, especially a team that's here with this much experience is really, really beneficial. Because when I get to know people, I talk about the importance of the brand and what you're doing to build it and, you know, how you do things that are consistent. And these guys have really helped me. I mean, listen, if they hadn't helped me, they wouldn't be here. I mean, they've been very, very helpful to me.
Stone Payton: So, where is some of the low hanging fruit? Like a company like ours, you know, we -
Corey Rieck: With a lot of money.
Stone Payton: Actually, with not a lot of money. But we do understand the importance of branding. And with so much activity around digital radio now, there's a big podcasting movement. And so, to differentiate what we do from the mainstream kind of podcasting movement, we ought to be doing things that are above and beyond, like you talked about with a binder and that kind of thing. But for those companies, where is some low hanging fruit, some dos and some don'ts to be thinking about when it comes to this kind of thing?
Mindy Godwin: The good thing about what we do is there's so many alternatives. So, if somebody just comes in and they have a project in mind but they can't wrap their mind around it because they saw someone else's project that was so expensive, well, there's options. Literally, options for every product. There's several different options. So, you know, you just have to take a little time to spend with us. And we sit down and we find out exactly what you want, what your goal is, what the result of the product is for you, and we come up with that. And we stay within your budget and we meet your deadline and we make it happen.
Rodney Godwin: I think the low hanging fruit is that everyone needs something that we do. I think it also depends on who you want to reach. Who are you looking to reach with that product? And that's a lot of what goes into deciding on something. Who are you looking at? Who do you really want to speak to?
Stone Payton: It sounds like this requires a conversation. This is not an order form. Right? Otherwise, I'm going to shoot myself in the foot like Corey talked about in order -
Corey Rieck: I don't think I said that.
Stone Payton: That's what I inferred. I'm going to order a gazillion stickers or 22,000 coffee mugs when what I should have ordered was something completely different based on what I'm trying to accomplish. And to talk with someone that's been in the business 20 plus years is going to be a lot. And it sounds like you guys are willing to do that, to have that conversation.
Mindy Godwin: We love that. That's the best part is meeting people like you and finding out what it is that you want and you need. I know the online companies are not going to come over to your office and hangout with you for an hour. And they're great for some emergencies. We all love the World Wide Web. But when you need, you know, a personal assistant, and so many of us do, that's what we're good at.
Corey Rieck: I can't imagine taking a look at something like this and not building a personal relationship with somebody to help your brand. You know, because they get to know your habits. They get to know kind of what you need. They can counsel you, "Hey, have you thought about this? Have you thought about that?" And it never comes off to me as pushing. You know what I mean? So, you know, it's loud and clear to me that you're looking out for me, which makes it simple to refer you. Plus, you're very good at what you do. You've been loyal to me. That obviously makes an impact. You know, you've sent me business and that's kind of neat because nobody wants to talk about long term care, not until it happens.
Mindy Godwin: But it's so important. I want to tell you, if I had not been in the business I'm in, I would have never met Corey. I mean, my family, my friends, we have learned so much from you, Corey. And. I was always told, "Oh, you're way too young." I'm not anymore. But, "You're too young to think about long term care." And, you know, they're so wrong because I took it out while I was young and healthy. So, financially, it's affordable. And Corey took the time to speak with my parents, they've never thought about, you know, revisiting what they were doing. He looked it over. He took time. And, luckily, they have a good plan. But when my dad gives me the approval, "You know what? That guy knows what he's doing. Corey is good." It made me, you know, so confident.
Mitch Hamburger: You know, toner and printing are not necessarily that much of an exciting thing. But what we get excited about is when those people come to us and say, "Well, here's who I want to reach. Here's what I want to do," that's exciting for us, because we get to delve into their business and their world a little bit. It kind of takes us out of what we do and we put ourselves in their place. And that's the way we think about the projects. You know, if I were Corey, who am I looking at reaching? What do I really want to convey with this project? And, for us, that's the excitement of the business. It's not the sales at the end. And so, delving into how to make a project actually interesting and focused and do what we want it to do.
Rodney Godwin: You know, I was actually thinking about you three weeks ago. I'm out with a bunch of guys.
Stone Payton: Were you feeding giraffes too?
Corey Rieck: Were you at the zoo too?
Rodney Godwin: Well, they need some fiber too. But we were out with a bunch of guys and a friend of mine comes to me and he's talking about his mother-in-law has early onset Alzheimer's or dementia. And he's like, "We're going to have to put her into a home." And I'm like, "Oh, that sounds terrible. I'm very sorry. You know, this is so hard." And I was like, "So, she has long term care?" He's like, "I don't know." I'm like, "Well, what's it going to cost to put her into this home?" She's in her early 60s. I know. You can't see his face, but it's the face that this guy made, which is, I'm afraid. I'm scared of what this is going to be like. We can sell all of her things, but is it going to be enough? I never want someone to look at me or look at my family and go, "What are we going to do?"
Corey Rieck: Yeah. I don't think that'll happen.
Rodney Godwin: It won't happen because -
Mindy Godwin: We have you.
Rodney Godwin: ... we have you. And my wife and I are both very happy owners of long term care insurance.
Corey Rieck: We appreciate that. I think in both our businesses, there's an educational component. And I think that your branding, if you print with it, if you print on it, or simply want it printed, that makes sense. And I think, you've really created that awareness where, "Hey, maybe your way in is you get toner." Well, everybody needs toner. And nobody can run out no matter how big or small your business is. And I think, if they interact enough with you guys, you can figure out, Rodney says, "Corey bought toner from us two months ago, it's about time for him to re-up." And, you know, I'm just going to do it. "Yeah. Okay. Yeah. You're right. You need to send some more of that over."
But, I mean, you've made something like that easy. You know, where I would typically say, "Oh, you know, you're out of black toner." And I think, I got to go over here. I got to go over there. Do they have it? And I'm like, I just need to have it here. That's what I need to do.
Rodney Godwin: Well, you know, everything is about making an impression. And if someone comes to your office and you're like, "I'm sorry, I can't print any of your forms."
Corey Rieck: Yeah. That's helpful to my brand.
Mitch Hamburger: Imagine this, two plumbers come to your house. One of them comes, his truck is wrapped. It talks about all the things that he does. He's wearing a uniform that has his name and the company name on it. And the next guy shows up, he's wearing a Black Sabbath t-shirt and he's messy. He's driving a plain white van. Even if it's two guys whose skills are equal and even their price is equal, you're going to feel more comfortable making the referral of the guy that looks good. Well, that's what we do for our customers is, we want them to look good for their customers.
Corey Rieck: Yeah. I think, making sure that the brand speaks for itself. And that you guys, I think, have done a good job of looking out for me and making sure that I do things that are consistent with the brand that's been developed. So, you know, certainly you can't be grateful enough for that. In terms of referrals, I think, I like you guys. You guys have really helped me. So, for me, it's easy. Because any business needs the things that you do. And when I get to the end of doing what I do, I'll say, "Hey, are there any other pain points in your business?" "What do you mean?"
Stone Payton: This is a regular discipline of yours.
Mitch Hamburger: Absolutely.
Corey Rieck: Yeah. They'll say, "You know, I don't like my CPA. He never calls me back." Or, "I don't like my benefits guy." "How about your branding person? How good of a job are they?" "What do you mean?" "Well, you know, are they doing things? Are they helping you promote the brand?" "Oh, geez. I haven't really thought about that." "Well, you know, here's the people, here's what they do for me, and here's kind of the things that -" "Geez. Yeah. Have them give me a call." And it's fun to create an opening where there may not be an opening for an organization like you. It's fun to crack doors for you guys.
Stone Payton: Do you guys find yourself doing the same thing?
Mindy Godwin: Thank you. I try.
Stone Payton: Do you have a discipline of trying to - like, how do you tee up a Corey?
Mindy Godwin: Corey is one of a kind. He's the best there is, I will say.
Corey Rieck: I think my wife would agree with you.
Mindy Godwin: He's the best there is.
Stone Payton: Okay. So, how do you tee up a Stone? Or maybe you don't yet because you don't know Stone well enough. You don't know his work well enough yet. Right?
Mitch Hamburger: That's it. That's it. When you form that relationship with someone and you trust them and you depend on them and you really like them, it's easy to refer business. And I, too, know that what Corey has and offers and sells is something that everyone needs. So, it's simple to talk to friends about what he does. And are we as good as Corey at making that? No.
Rodney Godwin: For us, it's been a matter of timing. Corey hit us right at the right age. So, you know, this has started to creep into our minds.
Mindy Godwin: Not for me. He's a lot older than me.
Corey Rieck: Rodney appreciates that, I can tell.
Rodney Godwin: I do. I do.
Mindy Godwin: That's the truth.
Rodney Godwin: We had started thinking about that kind of thing. And our friends are all at the ages and our business colleagues are at those ages. And so, it's an easy conversation because it does come up a lot. I mean, in just your everyday conversation, when you're hanging out, you know, how many more years are you going to work? You're going to retire. Those conversations start happening. It's really easy to slip in, "Hey, have you thought about long term care? Because we had. And, man, we're glad we did."
Stone Payton: And I'm getting from the gist of this conversation, good business to be the the guy that knows the guy, right? The connector.
Rodney Godwin: Always.
Mindy Godwin: Always.
Stone Payton: Everybody wins in that conversation as long as it's authentic and it's genuine, right?
Corey Rieck: Yeah. Like these guys, if you build the right relationship with someone, they're going to come to you with other things. And, you know, once I plant my flag with my aspect of long term care, they're going to ask me, "Hey, you know, I'm having trouble with my printer." Or, "I'm having trouble with my CPA." Or, "Hey, can you send me anybody?" Or I'll ask them, "Hey, is there any other way I can be of service?" "Well, what do you mean?" "Well, do you have any other pain points?"
And another thing that comes up is, you know, this whole payroll processing thing. I did not realize that that was an issue until several years ago when a client, basically, badgered me into finding a solution for him because their current payroll company was asking him to buy other things, benefits, 401K plans, and stuff. And, finally, he just looked at me and he said, "What's hard about this? I need you to find a solution for me. And I don't want to be sold a bunch of other things." And so, I found the right relationship with a company that is solely focused, kind of like what these guys are, kind of like what I am, and they've also shined in front of the people that I put them in front of. And it occurred to me that I've got all of these contacts and folks and they expect you to have answers for them. Like, my wife and I go out to eat a lot. So, we'll get asked those questions. Or you may get asked, "Hey, you know, I wrecked my car. Where should I go take my car?"
Stone Payton: So, your antenna are always up for this kind of thing.
Corey Rieck: Trying to be. Yeah.
Stone Payton: This is just built-in for you.
Corey Rieck: I think if we can add value beyond what we do, I think, it just helps you with the relationship. And if you can become, you know, the quarterback or something, "I don't know. You know, I'll call Corey, you know, even though he only sells long term, maybe he'll know a financial planner or maybe he'll know somebody." Or even if he doesn't, it sounds like you're the guy that will go on the hunt.
Corey Rieck: Yes.
Stone Payton: And, now, you definitely will have your antenna up.
Corey Rieck: And I think you've raised another point. I think, with these guys, you know, with Mitch, and Mindy, and Rodney, they're always responsive. They always follow up. I mean, you can't refer people, you can't refer business partners or referral partners into somebody and not have them follow up. I mean, you can't have a client say, "Hey, you know, your guy hasn't called me." That's the worst. And, you know, you have the phone, you have texting capability, you have email, you got to follow through. And so, I know that whatever I send them, they always follow through on, so I'm good with it. So, that makes it even easier, aside from the fact that they're very, very good at what they do. They're responsive. They've been together a long time. They follow through. That's more of a key component than most people realize. Because there's people out there that, you know, they'll get a referral, but they won't do anything with it.
Stone Payton: Unbelievable.
Mindy Godwin: I can't imagine.
Stone Payton: But I think I've experienced that before. Okay. I'm going to practice here a little bit because I feel like I have a little bit more of a frame of reference for the Mindy side of the business, the promotional products. And you and I have been talking, so I feel like I have a a little bit of a feel for that. I have zero feel, Rodney, for your side of the business. And, actually, part of my motivation is genuinely so that I can have my antenna up - I really am practicing here - out in the marketplace for people that might need and want that kind of service. Tell me a little bit more about that side of the business and how you serve folks.
Mitch Hamburger: Corey mentioned a little slogan we have about the three different printing. You know, whether you want to print with it, print on it, or simply have it printed. That's how we do business. We look at all aspects of that. If you want to be able to do all of the stuff on your own, we're going to provide you with the products, the printer, the toner, the know how to do that stuff in-house and if that's the way you want it. If you don't want to touch it and you want all your forms to show up and just be there and be ready, we'll do that, too.
We see so many different philosophies these days. I'll give you an example of just in the printing realm, there's a lot of companies have gone to, what's called, hub printing. They want one machine and they want everybody's stuff to flow to it. That's fine. If that's the way we want it, we'll provide a solution just like that. We'll give you your one machine. We'll give you, you know, a way to network it all together and put it all together so that you can print in one area, so that everybody is going at the same place and you know what you're printing where at all times.
And then, there are a lot of companies - I'll take medical offices, for instance, who don't have that philosophy at all. That's not what they want. They want workstations where each person has their printer.
Stone Payton: Where everyone could print.
Mitch Hamburger: Exactly. So, we, also, will provide that solution. And there are some companies that don't want to print it at all. They don't want to look at it. They don't want to touch it. They want it to be ready. They want it to be sitting on the shelf ready to go and don't want to mess with it. Hey, we're a commercial printing company as well. So, we will print all their forms, all their documents, everything they need, business cards, whatever it is, and have it there ready for their use when they need it.
Stone Payton: Now, do you guys print the great big stuff?
Mitch Hamburger: We do. Pretty much these days, if it can be printed on, we can print it. And that's where the promotional items come in, and banners, and signage, and on, and on, and on, and on. We have capability to do all of that.
Corey Rieck: What do you guys like best about what you do?
Mindy Godwin: Shopping. We like meeting people like you guys. Really, we like, of course, like we've said this whole time, working together because we happen to really dig each other. And we travel together and we have dinner together often.
Stone Payton: Is it like Blue Bloods? Do you ever watch that show, Blue Bloods?
Mindy Godwin: We don't have time to watch much T.V.
Stone Payton: Every Sunday they get together, they have dinner. Okay. Go ahead. I interrupted you.
Mindy Godwin: Yeah. No, no, I don't watch T.V. Everybody else in this world is normal but me. But we like making new relationships and meeting people and just hoping to solve their printing problems. That's the best part.
Mitch Hamburger: My favorite day of the week is this, we have a customer at the airport, Enterprise Alamo, and National. Big car firms. Every week I go down and do inventory management. And my favorite thing is I go through and I see everybody from the top of the chain to the guy who's signing off on papers. And I get to know them by name. I know what church some of them attend. I know what some of their hobbies are. And I go, "Hey, Jarvis. Hey, Rob." And it's fantastic. And they never have to worry. I give them my cards. I give them my cell phone information. I give them my email. I say, "If you need something, I'll be here."
Stone Payton: Inventory control, they're one of those customers, Rodney, that wants stuff printed. They don't want to fool with it. They want to have it on hand. And you're making sure they have it.
Corey Rieck: And they want you guys to manage it.
Rodney Godwin: They do.
Mitch Hamburger: And if there's an issue, I go down there and they have a printer that's not working. They'll say, "Mitch, I don't know what I did, but this isn't working." I can either, if possible, address it in that moment. Or, if I can't, I have somebody on speed dial that I can say, "I need you down here. It's jamming all the time." And he says, "Well, I know those machines. You already stock all of the replacement parts there for us. I'll come on down. We'll switch it out and then it we'll be fine." And while I'm there, I'll clean the machine and I'll do all this other value added stuff too.
Corey Rieck: What a huge advantage for them.
Mitch Hamburger: Yes. Staples isn't going to do that.
Corey Rieck: Again, you know, I may be a bit of a dinosaur, but I think personal relationships, they'll never go out of style, you know, a personal relationship. You know, I know I've called Mindy at 3:00 on a Wednesday afternoon for toner and, "I know I shouldn't call you, but, you know, I ran out." And, "Okay. Okay. We'll get it over to you this afternoon or we'll get it over to you first thing tomorrow morning." I mean, you're not going to get that done with Staples or one of those companies. I don't think.
Stone Payton: There goes our Staples sponsorship. Well, that's okay.
Rodney Godwin: We love Staples. We, honestly, love them.
Mindy Godwin: We love Staples.
Stone Payton: No kidding.
Rodney Godwin: And mine would be very similar. I get to go into law practices and medical firms - well, medical practices and law firms. I said that backwards. But they all know me so well that I have the pass codes to all the doors. And I just saunter on in.
Stone Payton: That's trust.
Rodney Godwin: Nine times out of ten, you know, I'm doing the inventory control, as Mitch said. I'm checking out forms. I'm checking out toner. I'm checking out paper. I'm looking at all their machines. I'm making sure everything is running. And as I go, just as he said, I get to talk to from the doctors to the girl who mops the floor. They all know me. They all know my name. They want to sit down. They want to have conversations. And you wouldn't believe some of the things we get asked to do for these companies. For a while, we catered for them because they trusted us so much that they had to have food at this place for their employees at a certain time. And we figured it out. And they came to us with that solution just simply because they didn't trust anybody else to be there on time and actually get it done. And not that we can cook and bring it all, but we figured out a way to get another company -.
Mindy Godwin: That's because of the great partners we have in Atlanta.
Rodney Godwin: Exactly. So, I mean, I can even walk into one of these doctor's offices and he's sitting there. He'll motion me over and we'll sit there and talk for a few minutes, usually not about business because they don't want to talk about that. But, you know, it's just amazing. And he said, "It's my favorite part, too, because I just never know where it's going to lead me that day. I never know what I'm going to hear, who's going to come up with what." And it's actually exciting. You get a little spring in your step when you walk into these places because they're glad to see you. They know what you're there for. They know they can lean on you. And they know, no matter what, the stuff they need is going to be there. And when you can walk into a place and know that and then they know that about you, you know, there's just no trepidation whatsoever.
Corey Rieck: Yeah. I read that as a big vote of confidence. You know, you guys, Mitch handling everything down at the airport for those clients, replacement parts, just taking care of stuff. And, you know, them asking you to do things that, maybe, aren't necessarily in your wheelhouse, but they know that you'll get it done. I see that as a huge vote of confidence.
Mitch Hamburger: So, you know, back to the airport thing, Mindy was talking about that we know everybody. Well, I know the guard gates and they, probably, shouldn't just let me in without checking everything. But after - gosh - almost 20 years of being there, they're like, "Oh. Hey, Mitch." And I'll bring them a Christmas present. We'll talk about their kids. And everybody in every organization is important. Because if they weren't important, they'd be fired.
Corey Rieck: Yeah. I would tend to agree with that. What is the ideal client for your company, do you think? Do you have a certain profile that you strive to get?
Mindy Godwin: We like franchises.
Stone Payton: That makes sense.
Mindy Godwin: The headquarter being, you know, right here in town, get to really know them. And kind of like an octopus, we branch out and reach out to all the other locations. Medium sized companies, 50 and above, has been great because -
Corey Rieck: Fifty employees and above?
Mindy Godwin: Mm-hm. That's a nice size. But, you know, we don't turn people away. A two-man office, a 5,000 person office, I mean, you never know where someone's going to be in ten years. So, treat everybody the same, and we do.
Corey Rieck: Well, I think another thing that's important is sometimes, you know, very, very often little fish become big fish.
Mindy Godwin: Always.
Corey Rieck: And you never really know who's connected to who, so you have to be extremely careful about not helping or deciding not to help because of who they know.
Mindy Godwin: [Absolutely. I mean, so many times I've been told, "Okay. Here's a referral. And let me let you know that this person is extremely difficult." Or, you know, "Don't do this with this person."
Stone Payton: Was that what you said about me?
Mindy Godwin: No. Not at all.
Corey Rieck: And I would never say such a thing publicly.
Mindy Godwin: We tend to work well with people that are so-called difficult. Because a lot of times that just means, you know what, they're either fed up with who they were dealing with before, or they've had bad experiences, or they got a full plate like all of us, but they deal with it a little different. But nobody's really that difficult.
Rodney Godwin: No. And what we really do at the core of our business is solve problems. That's what we do. And we are problem solvers. And sometimes the so-called difficult customers have problems that haven't been solved to their satisfaction, and that's why they're difficult. So, we take those kind of customers along with a smile and we, you know, really look at different ways to getting what they want done than they've had in the past. And sometimes, you know, I'm not saying we're 100 percent successful, but we've been pretty successful at taking those difficult customers and giving them a solution that they're happy with and they're no longer difficult.
Corey Rieck: That's great stuff. How has your business evolved since you guys got involved over 20 years ago? What do you think are the top two or three items?
Mindy Godwin: Well, technology has definitely changed since, of course, we started in '78. But since we came on in '98, technology has been, probably, the biggest change.
Corey Rieck: You mean in terms of printing?
Mindy Godwin: Oh, of course. People aren't printing the same. People aren't using the same amount of supplies that they used to. You can print now to the Cloud, which doesn't make it necessarily easier or right, but, you know, it's something that can be done. So, that's how we've evolved in promotional items in the last ten years or so. Because just another way to put your logo, put your brand out there.
Mitch Hamburger: Yeah. And the commercial printing side has definitely changed, the products that we are able to offer. Because it used to be only the big production houses somewhere who could produce all the different variety of things that we can produce. And that's no longer the case through the technology. And, also, like we said, our little motto there, giving you the choice to whether how you want it done. You can do it yourself, we'll do it for you, or a little bit of both. You know, that's how technology has changed the whole entire industry as you have those options. You know, you used to have to go to Kinkos or somewhere like that for certain things. You don't have to do that anymore. And it's affordable.
Mindy Godwin: We like Kinkos too.
Stone Payton: But you can do smaller runs cost effectively now, right?
Mindy Godwin: Exactly. Digitally versus spot color, yes. We could get all technical.
Rodney Godwin: Yes.
Corey Rieck: And I would imagine that you guys have built up a ton of contacts. So, if you need something printed in a certain fashion, I would imagine you could access your contacts and do it that way.
Mindy Godwin: Of course. That's our partners. Yes. Yes. There's just so many different print methods today. You know, something simple like a business card that you should just look like a piece of paper with some text, now, you can have one as heavy as a brick that is in embossed and engraved and just fancy.
Mitch Hamburger: And luckily for us, the government helps, too. There are certain firms and types of businesses that have to keep a certain amount of paper records on hand. They can't do without it. So, you know, there are people still need printing out there. And for years and years and years, we have heard about the paperless society and how everybody is going paperless. We sell more paper today than we ever have.
Stone Payton: Isn't that interesting.
Corey Rieck: No irony there.
Stone Payton: The financial services business must be one of those, because I get a lot of stuff. And I don't even know what to read, but they have to send it to me. The prospective thing they - yeah.
Mindy Godwin: Right. Everything in small print.
Rodney Godwin: Yes. And medical firms, law firms, CPA firms, you have to have records accessible in a physical form a lot of times right there in your office.
Stone Payton: That's not changing any time soon. I'm sure.
Rodney Godwin: It's not. It's not.
Corey Rieck: What do you guys see as the biggest challenges in your business now?
Rodney Godwin: I think being creative is one of the biggest challenges, because we talked about everybody does kind of what - there are a lot of people that touch on certain areas that we do. But I think if you can provide someone with a creative option, for instance, if you're wanting to market somebody, instead of just sending them a pen and a magnet, what if you sent them a box? And it had an aromatherapy candle, and it had a neck roll, and it had a little card and it says, "We relieve your stress. Talk to ARC."
By providing them with something that stands out from the crowd, we set ourselves apart. And it's constantly having to rethink that. Mindy talked about the importance of technology changes, well, you have social media, you have smartphones, you have emails, you have landline, phone calls, faxes. I remember there was a day when we'd get faxes all the time. The only time I get them now is there's a Nigerian prince and if you could just give him your bank number, he'd be happy to help you out.
Corey Rieck: So, it's not just me that gets those. Okay.
Mitch Hamburger: Challenges always require new clients. That's always going to be a challenge. That's for any business. You know, Corey, you're looking for what the radio stations are looking for. We're all out there looking for new clients. And I think an advantage that we have that a lot of people don't is, when we sit down with people, we ask a lot of questions about their business and what they do. Because if we can't get into the heads, what makes them tick and what makes them successful in their business, we can't help them. If we don't know what it is that makes them successful and how they've gotten where they've gotten and what their goals for the future are and how they want to move on, then we can't really design things for them and around them.
Mitch Hamburger: So, I think, you know, one of the advantages we have is when we get to sit down with them, we tell them, "Listen, if you're not going to be successful going forward, neither are we. So, we've got to really look at this project and look at the materials you're going to use and is it going to forward your business. Because if it's not, it's not going forward ours either." So, that's one of the big challenges, too, is being able to really understand what makes their business tick, and how they get new customers, and what's going to make them grow. Because if we don't know that, you know, we can't really move ahead with a very successful program for them.
Stone Payton: That is so very different than just a typical vendor mentality. Everything you just described, I mean, that is -.
Corey Rieck: That is why they're on the show.
Stone Payton: It is. I got kind of tickled when you asked what was the greatest challenge on their business and Mindy pointed to Rodney and Mitch. But she didn't mean Rodney and Mitch were the greatest challenge. She wanted them to answer the question. But they answered it extremely well. But no, this whole mindset of diving into the person's world and seeing things from their perspective, you guys approached it so differently, I think, than a lot of other folks in the space.
Corey Rieck: Yeah, they do. I think that's one of the reasons they've been around for 40 plus years. I mean, they're willing to do things that others aren't. They follow up. They ask a lot of questions. They don't make errors. And they've differentiated themselves in a way that they can get a start with a client. Maybe they're doing some printing, or maybe they're doing some branding, or maybe they're selling toner. But they've developed a great business model to build relationships with people that they can expand as time goes on. I don't think I've missed anything there have I?
Stone Payton: Yes, you have. We have absolutely missed something. From my extensive preshow research, it says here that we want to know a little bit about Jack and Spencer.
Corey Rieck: We do.
Mindy Godwin: That's so cute.
Stone Payton: Tell us about Jack and Spencer.
Mindy Godwin: Those are my wonderful boys, Rodney and my children.
Stone Payton: So, it's next gen ARC.
Mindy Godwin: Yes.
Corey Rieck: Are you suggesting you have three boys?
Mindy Godwin: Oh, I have a lot of boys. I'm raising my dad, my brother, my husband. And then, I've got my two boys. No. So, Jack and Spencer, they're very much into music, like my brother and Rodney, and into sports. Jack is going to be playing October 5th at Red Light Cafe.
Corey Rieck: Where is that?
Mindy Godwin: It's off Amsterdam Avenue. With my brother Mitch and his band.
Corey Rieck: What kind of music do they play?
Stone Payton: Man, there's a whole other side to this family. The von Trapp's.
Rodney Godwin: My children are not very into modern music. They kind of follow in their uncle and their father's footsteps and more '80s and '90s alternative and rock and even '60s and '70s somewhat. They like the era where people actually played instruments and sang, and I'm going to say I had that on.
Corey Rieck: Give us an example. Like, what kind of music?
Mindy Godwin: Say it, Rodney.
Rodney Godwin: Well, it's a wide range.
Mindy Godwin: Van Halen.
Rodney Godwin:Van Halen is a big deal.
Corey Rieck: Van Halen is still a big deal.
Rodney Godwin: Well, some people might argue with that. But they love Led Zeppelin. They love Van Halen, AC/DC, you know, all of that kind stuff is what they want to hear and what they want to play.
Corey Rieck: So, I got to ask the follow up question. Van Halen with DLR or Van Hagar?
Mindy Godwin: It's tough because they -
Rodney Godwin: You got to take both, because if you really want to get into that debate, you're only talking about one guy difference. The rest of the guys are the same guys. So, you know, they get into that.
Corey Rieck: I love their music.
Rodney Godwin: And I'm just going to say both.
Mindy Godwin: Yes. They do. They like both - eras of both.
Rodney Godwin: They do. Because they weren't there for that whole - you know, they're looking at this way down the road. And, you know, they say, "Oh, that's the greatest song. That's a great song." They don't really care which one is singing it.
Corey Rieck: It's a great way to build confidence in young kids, you know, getting up in front of people, whether you're speaking, or singing, or playing a musical instrument. That's a big deal. And I've seen him play, he's good.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you.
Corey Rieck: And I regret that I won't be at the next gig, but I will come after the October gig.
Mindy Godwin: Yes. December 15th at - what coffee shop?
Mitch Hamburger: At Wallers. We'll be part of a charity event for Toys for Tots. I'll be sending out more information.
Corey Rieck: Where is that, Mitch?
Mitch Hamburger: I believe it's in the Decatur area. I've never been. But I've done this charity event several times over the years. And this year, I wanted Jack and I to be a two-man show. Because he's gotten really good.
Corey Rieck: I see that.
Mitch Hamburger: We're writing our own songs and it's going to be a good time.
Corey Rieck: So, do you know the music that you guys will be playing?
Mitch Hamburger: It will be all original material.
Corey Rieck: Your own stuff.
Mitch Hamburger: Yeah.
Corey Rieck: That is cool. So, you don't just play other people's stuff, you build your own stuff, you know, write your music, lyrics and so on.
Mitch Hamburger: Everything start to finish.
Mindy Godwin: I can't leave out my little redheaded, Spencer. Gosh, they're both going to listen to this later and I'm going to hear Spencer, "Mom, you didn't say anything about me." So, quickly, Spencer, when my dad had hair on his head, it was red. And so, Spencer has taken after my father. He looks very much like him. Poor kid is not happy about it. And he's big into sports and baseball.
Rodney Godwin: He's also a drummer.
Mindy Godwin: He's also a drummer.
Corey Rieck: Nice. So, when is he going to make it into the gig?
Rodney Godwin: I think he's going to be a great athlete. I think that's where his passion is. And I think it's important, like we've done, is to chase our passions.
Corey Rieck: Yeah. Certainly words to live by. Well, you guys have had a lot of success over the years. And, you know, after having met your mom and dad, it isn't a surprise to me that you guys have had all the success you've had. And to be able to evolve and continue on and to respond to the market and, you know, appeal to clients, whether they're individual business in multiple ways, I think is very, very good on your part.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you.
Corey Rieck: You've shined in front of everybody that I put you in front of. You've been a great, great help to me. And I just can't say enough good things about your company.
Mindy Godwin: Well, thank you.
Mitch Hamburger: Right back at you.
Mindy Godwin: Right back at you. Right.
Corey Rieck: If you had to give some advice to other folks or families thinking about getting into a business like yours or getting into business at all, what advice would you give them?
Mindy Godwin: Well, I will say that being woman-owned and going after that certification that I can help other companies with their supplier diversity needs is not something I would have known as a younger Mindy. I wouldn't have listened to that. I would have just, you know, pushed it to the side. So, I think women should definitely go after their dreams. They can do it. And I'm an example of working with family and spouse, and it's just awesome. So, you know, if folks have those opportunities, don't be scared. It really can turn out to be great.
Corey Rieck: Well, you guys have done a tremendous job of building a brand, helping others build their brand. You've been an immense help to me. And I just can't say enough good things about you. So, we appreciate that. If the listenership wanted to get a hold of you for your expertise, how would they do it?
Mindy Godwin: You can call me any time. My cell phone number 404-310-6296. We're, of course, on the web, arcinatlanta.com, that's A-R-C-I-N-atlanta.com. And, you know, really, we put our cell numbers on everything we have because that's easy to get a hold of us. Facebook, we sometimes dive into the social media stuff when we can, LinkedIn, those kind of things.
Corey Rieck: How about an email address? Would there be an email address that you have folks reach out to you on?
Rodney Godwin: Sales@A-R-C-I-N-atlanta.com.
Corey Rieck: Well, Mindy, Rodney, Mitch, you've had great success of family business spanning over 40 years, certainly, continued success. You've been great on the show. Thank you for being such great guests.
Mindy Godwin: Thank you so much.
Rodney Godwin: Thank you for having us.
Mitch Hamburger: Thank you.
Stone Payton: All right. Until next time. This is Stone Payton, for Corey Rieck, producer, Blake, our guest this evening from ARC, and everyone from the Business RadioX family, saying we'll see you next time on Market Mate Atlanta.