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Meet Greg Chapman of The Gentleman Gorilla in Pacific Beach

Today we’d like to introduce you to Greg Chapman.

Greg, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I was raised in Colorado and have been starting my own businesses since I was about 20. My first being a house painting franchise in college. It was a terrible and scarring experience but it left me with a passion for being my own boss and living life on my terms, so I set out on a journey to figure out how to do just that. But to actually be good at it.

I proceeded to put college in the rear-view mirror and fumble my way through a handful of businesses over the next few years, funded by random sales jobs and either tending bar or serving anywhere I could. I can’t say I enjoyed those jobs very much but they kept me alive and have taught me an incredible amount about people and how to work with them to achieve positive results.

My business ideas varied a bit including a website design company and an online lifestyle magazine, but they always centered around sales based creative marketing and content creation. We found some small successes but nothing ended up working out. Nothing felt right and things would always end up falling apart.

I reached a point at about 25 years old when I realized the common denominator in all of my business failures. It was me. There was something about the way I was operating in the world and it not meshing with the way I work internally. My motivations were false and my desires were temporary and shallow. I needed a reboot.

During this time my mom moved to Monterrey California with her husband and as her son, it was my duty to go and visit her as soon as I possibly could. We took a drive out to the coast to hike around and it was exactly what my soul needed. Sitting on the edge of the rocks with the ocean spray encompassing me I realized that this was the quietest my mind has been in recent memory.

I was rocked with a sense of calm and peacefulness I can only relate to dropping in and carving fresh pow lines all the way to the bottom of the mountain. On the way home I was sharing my experience with my family and it was suggested to me that I should just move out there. That they would help me get on my feet. I went out that night and talked with some locals about living and working there.

They said it was very seasonal work and didn’t recommend it. So I proceeded to research other options and I had already been to San Diego once for a Rugby tournament and remembered I liked it there. San Diego or Bust! I made up my mind that night. Immediately told my best friend, who immediately said he was going to make the move with me. Sweet.

Flash forward 5 months. We are sitting in front of The Local Pacific Beach interviewing for security jobs right before they are about to open. We worked security for the newest, awesomest, craziest bar at the beach that summer. It was insane. It expanded my mind every day witnessing the crazy, unthinkable acts people would commit in the name of partying.

I learned a lot from this job and through all of the amazing people I was surrounded with. I learned a lot about power and its false perceptions. I learned about people and their base motivations. Most importantly though, I learned about myself and what I really wanted. I really want to help people. I wanted to create a business and a lifestyle based on helping other people to achieve their dreams. The Gentleman Gorilla was born!

My business is focused on consulting start-up and small businesses to grow to the best of their ability. We also offer full content creation services ranging from photo and video to web and graphic design. My favorite task is when someone has a brand new business idea but they just don’t know where to start. Being able to work with someone, show them the steps to starting their own business and building their confidence to do so is the most exciting and rewarding aspect to my company.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
“A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor.” – FDR

The largest obstacles that I have had to overcome are all within me. Matching my motivations with my desires, understanding my tendency to be self-destructive, building a business that works with my personality. A big part of being successful is not only knowing your strengths but also your weaknesses. Only when you truly understand all the good and bad parts of you and how they affect every aspect of your life can you move forward in an effective and confident manner.

I think that to a fault almost, I intentionally look for bumps in the road and struggles to overcome. I have intentionally put myself into positions where I had to start from the bottom and build my way out of my current situation. By doing this I had to learn both my strengths and weaknesses in a variety of situations and have built a solid foundation of belief in myself that I can overcome any issue, no matter the odds.

A fun byproduct of living this way is that I no longer fear failure and I am left to move forward with my life, business, and goals with confidence that even if I fail, even if I lose everything, again, that I will be comfortable with and able start over and build myself back up again.

Please tell us about The Gentleman Gorilla.
The Gentleman Gorilla LLC is a company born out of a necessity to help the little guy. For there to be a place that people with ideas and dreams can feel safe to go to know that they will receive the best help possible and that they won’t get taken advantage of.

There is a great lack of services that new businesses can utilize to help their growth and prosperity.

Sure, there are a lot of apps and services out there that can help with organizing finances, creating sales and marketing materials, or even virtual assistants to hire. But those are all just tools to add to the collection, and tools are useless if you either don’t know how to use them or are using them incorrectly. TGG is here to help to put all the pieces together to form a big picture for our clients.

What is the purpose of their business? What goals do they want to achieve? What steps are they going to take to achieve them? Who is their ideal client and how do they reach them? It’s knowing and understanding how all of the pieces work together that give a new business the best opportunity to succeed.

The Gentleman Gorilla is also a content creation company. I felt that it was necessary for us to offer a tangible service to compliment the consulting side. It is important for people to be able to see, touch, and feel what you are doing for them. A service that gives them something in return for their time and money past words, hope and promises.

By offering photography and video services we are able to build visual marketing tools that our clients can use to further grow and market their own companies. In today’s fast-paced world of online marketing, visual content creation is a necessary practice to stay on top of. Consumers are burning through content at lightning speeds which means that the photos you took and posted last month are most likely outdated and ineffective for your marketing campaign today.

Hiring a photographer/videographer is incredibly expensive and time-consuming as well, but it is absolutely necessary. It’s a brutal truth but it’s the truth no matter how you look at it. This is why I have spent the last year building a system to be able to give our clients consistent, high-quality content at a price that they can actually afford while still using talented, local artists to create their content.

What sets The Gentleman Gorilla apart from all of the other marketing companies out there is that we price our services based on what our clients can afford. We have our set prices, yes, but we will work with companies that we believe in based on the shared belief that they will be successful in the future, regardless of their revenue or available cash flow. Sometimes, if the fit is right, we will even accept equity in the companies we work with because we believe in what they are doing wholeheartedly.

We live by a standard that we always give more than we receive and it has been working out pretty good for us so far. The human spirit is strong, sometimes it just needs someone to believe in it in order for it to grow to its true potential, and that is what The Gentleman Gorilla is all about… growing the people around us.

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
I wouldn’t change a single thing. I have had more failures and headaches than I care to count but every single one of them led me to the position I am in today and I absolutely love where I am and what I am doing.

I find myself in a position where I might even dare to say I am grateful for the mistakes and for the opportunities to learn that life has presented me with.

Pricing:

  • Executive Head Shots – $250
  • 1 Minute Marketing Video – $900
  • Up to 3 Consulting Meetings – Free
  • 10 Lifestyle Marketing Photos – $500
  • Product Photography – $50 per image

Contact Info:

  • Address: 4704 Iroquois Ave.
    San Diego CA 92117
  • Website: www.thegentlemangorilla.com
  • Phone: 3033581817
  • Email: thegentlemangorilla@gmail.com
  • Instagram: @thegentlemangorilla
  • Facebook: /thegentlemangorilla

Getting in touch: SDVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

2 Comments

  1. Nate fredell

    January 19, 2018 at 4:48 pm

    Well that article rings true in every way. Thats the true route for great things overcoming adversity and learning.

  2. Nikki

    January 19, 2018 at 5:03 pm

    Greg is an incredible videographer and photographer. He is thoughtful in his process and does a great job capturing the personality of the business he is shooting for.

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