In 1999, with the help of a friend, I created a magnificent website to promote my first book and my passion of teaching. The Black Man With A Gun™ site was created at a time of AOL. 1.0 and fax modems. Nobody outside of business and politics really saw my site, and that kept me out of trouble. I worked hard at getting into trouble and had the URL emblazoned on the back of my Ford pickup in reflective white letters. Smart people gave me a nod, a thumbs up or a smile as they drove by me. The fearful or uninitiated, looked and then sped away. I embraced the phrase that became my moniker. I trademarked it and have tried and failed at many things concerning it. I have sold hats, CD’s, targets, Tee shirts, books, and almost anything I could think of to stay relevant and solvent until the world was ready for what I was trying to give it.
Failure has made me a better speaker. Failure has made me a better writer. Failure has made me a better negotiator, singer, entrepreneur, father, husband and friend. I know 999 things that don’t work. I have been shunned, exploited, maligned, rebuked, scorned, misinterpreted, and feared by people I didn’t expect it from.
Through it all, real lights have shone through. There has been a steady stream of people that have helped me, forgave me, picked me up, cheered me and listened to my woes since 1999. Their examples have taught me that I am pretty good at cheerleading. I am an encourager. I help others on a daily basis. Without two nickels to rub together I can make you feel like a million bucks. The result has been a supporting community unlike anything I have ever seen.
I use that gift on a podcast called the Black Man With A Gun™ Show that is in its 9th year this month and just celebrated its 500th episode. The podcast averages 2500 downloads a week and has had over 1.6 million downloads to a solid community. The podcast is about things of concern in the gun community in addition to guns and gear. I talk about personal matters like family, faith, and work for the American besieged by negatives for choosing to protect themselves and family. It’s run like a ministry that is family friendly, inspiring and lighthearted. The show is available on the website, itunes, iheartradio and most podcast aggregators.
BlackManWithAGun.com is now positioned to be a leading blog with three other great writers and reviewers that make up my team. I have just joined with a marketing agency in the gun industry that believes in me and is helping us move to the next level.
In 2017, Black Man With A Gun™ hopes to move to television and continue to grow in the new media realm. With the help of Thundershot Studios in Fairfax, Va, this goal is starting to take shape. There are several markets that this show would help. We are now looking for sponsorship to take this from concept to the portable screen(used to be silver screen) with a weekly show that would be launched on the foundation of the fan base we currently enjoy.
I still get the stank eye from some “religious” folk but I will keep on keeping on. It doesn’t fit the mold of a Baptist preacher. I understand your confusion. I am not confused. I have never felt closer to success than I do today. I have never felt more proud of my struggles than now. The smiles you see in the pictures are genuine. This is what a win looks like.
If you are persistent you will get it, if you are consistent you will keep it.
Rev. Kenn Blanchard is a professional speaker, writer, podcaster, and digital influencer. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook He is the founder of Blanchard.Media and the GunPodcastNetwork.com