In this exclusive behind the scenes interview from the Miami Crypto Experience, Richard and Steve sit down with the one and only Blockchain Wayne to look back on what it took to pull together the first ever Miami Crypto Experience… in under 90 Days!
Wayne Marcel, also known as The Crypto Coach, Blockchain Wayne, has been an educator and building high performing teams for over 20 years. Several years ago, he carried that passion over to the Cryptocurrency and blockchain space, which also highlights his passion for emerging technologies. He is a Co-Founder of the Miami Crypto Experience. He hosts a cryptocurrency educational event titled “From No Crypto to Know Crypto.” His passion for teaching and coaching others is coupled with the growing need for education in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space for those who want to position themselves in front of this giant technological and wealth shift.
Miami Crypto Experience – https://www.expcrypto.io/
Website – https://www.blockchainwayne.com/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/blockchaynwayne
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/blockchainwayne/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/wayne.marcel/
The following transcript was created using artificial intelligence. There will be some grammatical errors below.
00:00:00:02 – 00:00:30:12
Richard Carthon: Hey, everyone, this is your boy, Richard Carthon, your host of the Crypto Current podcast, and of course, we have our COO here, Steven Miller and the man, the myth, the legend, Mr. Blockchain. Wayne. We are at the Miami Crypto Experience, the first of many more to come. Wayne is a magician. Him and his crew were able to put this together in under 90 days, and that has been a sensational time. Wayne, I know you have been working hard at this, putting all of this together. First of all, great job.
00:00:30:25 – 00:00:31:10
Blockchain Wayne: Thank you.
00:00:31:12 – 00:00:34:24
Richard Carthon: And second of all, tell us how you’re feeling man. Like, how do you feel about everything?
00:00:34:26 – 00:01:16:25
Blockchain Wayne: Oh, I’m feeling relieved right now. It’s been a lot of pressure, a lot of stress just to make this happen. So many factors that were going into this, we were looking at, you know, just was this event even going to be able to happen? Can we make it happen? Are people willing to come out? There hasn’t been a Cryptocurrency event like, big in-person event in over 14 months, so it was one of those things where we just wanted to create something. And when our team assembled and we formed this company 90 days ago or less, we, like my input was I’ve been to a lot of Crypto conferences and conferences in general. And a lot of times when there’s someone on stage speaking that you’re not interested in, people just tend to get up and leave, so, we wanted to curate an experience to where they can choose what they want to listen to.
00:01:17:06 – 00:02:01:02
Blockchain Wayne: We had keynote speakers like the normal thing, but then we also had breakout workshops where people can choose what topic they want to go hear about at any given time. Right now, there’s six different workshops going on. We’re in the last day of the event, but at this moment, there are six different workshops going on. People can choose what they want to see. And then we incorporated Crypto culture community because it’s more than just, Hey, come learn about Crypto, it’s about meeting the community, infusing the culture, because there’s a lot of talented people in the Cryptocurrency space, people that are developing within the Cryptocurrency space and people that have other talents. So, you know, we had an art night, an NFT art gallery where people can showcase digital art and physical art, in some cases paired together that are going for auction, including the 2021 Porsche 9/11 that rumor is it’s going to go for over two million dollars.
00:02:01:04 – 00:02:01:22
Richard Carthon: Insane.
00:02:01:24 – 00:02:39:27
Blockchain Wayne: Crazy. Custom painted by world famous car artist Rich B. Caliente and personally signed on the back of the car by Rick Ross. So, I mean you may say, what does that have to do with Crypto? Well, it’s tied to a non-fungible token, which is a digital identity that allows you to, you know, to really give ownership of art and make it digital to where it’s unique. Only one person can own it, so, it gives it that value. The car itself being painted adds value. It’s so unique, tied to the non-fungible token gives it value. Funny thing was my first interview with Richard, we talked about non-fungible tokens, NFTs.
00:02:39:29 – 00:02:40:14
Richard Carthon: We did.
00:02:40:16 – 00:03:35:08
Blockchain Wayne: That was in 2018. Nobody gave a crap about it then, but now it’s hot. So, artists have showcased their work, musicians are able to operate within the Crypto space. So, we’ve had, you know, just incorporating all of that and fun into the event to where now there’s a buzz and people are talking about it. People that missed it are wishing they would have been here, so, we just decided we have to do this again. But really it was just around an idea and a vision that not only can we do something well, let’s not just be another conference. When people leave here that it’s going to be hard to call it a conference because it’s more, which is why when we were talking, I came up with the name experience. We need to make it a Crypto, Miami Crypto experience. We’re in Miami, Bitcoin City, Crypto City, whatever you want to call it. Miami is very Crypto friendly, including the mayor and his whole staff. They’re looking to accept Bitcoin, pay people in Bitcoin and just really embrace Crypto technology. And a lot of companies are moving here, so, it was just a perfect opportunity to make this thing happen.
00:03:35:22 – 00:04:08:19
Steven Miller: So, when you may have just answered it for us, but you took us through MCX present. I want to go back to when you guys were starting this and give them a little bit behind the scenes look at the planning of this event. I mean, granted, yes, it was a fricking whirlwind, as I’ve heard, but I want to understand, I mean, because, again, you’re from Louisiana. Why Miami? What brought everybody out here? Was it just the culture? Was it the fact that it’s vibrant with Bitcoin? It’s vibrant with all these different, you know, ecosystems that are all coming up through here? Or was there something else to it?
00:04:08:29 – 00:05:08:18
Blockchain Wayne: Yeah. It was a perfect storm, actually. I mean, it’s that and more. So, Miami is very Crypto friendly, checkmark. The state of Florida is very lax on the COVID restrictions right now. Not saying they don’t have them because we had restrictions we had to follow for this event from a headcount standpoint, but you can still make events happen. And so, that was another checkmark because we can make this thing happen, we can do it safely. And, you know, the world’s been closed down for 14 months, it’s time to open back up. So, that was another thing. And then also the connection. So, a few of our business partners live in Miami, one of them being Sergio. Sergio has a company called Game Time Management, they do UFC fights in the same venue, so, we had a relationship with the venue. And so, Sergio, everybody, brought something different to the table in our six person partnership. Sergio has the fight event management company, Bruno and myself are Crypto people, he’s a miner, has a huge mining warehouse up in the Northeast. We met four years ago on a podcast as well.
00:05:09:17 – 00:05:10:02
Richard Carthon: The power of podcast.
00:05:10:04 – 00:05:57:20
Blockchain Wayne: I know. Hey, that’s where it’s at. So, we’re the Crypto people. And then we’ve got Erica who was interviewed also by Crypto Current. Erica’s connections and knowledge around Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency are huge. So, you know, we brought her in as a partner. And then Demi, whose background is in the music industry, has worked with Pitbull and works with a lot of Pitbull’s artists now just on that music side to help infuse some of that culture. And then we’ve got Bean, who is our other partner, who is just, Bean’s like the jack of all trades, who knows everybody in the city, really a connection to make things happen. If one piece of that puzzle would have been missing, I don’t know this event would have happened. That’s how crazy it is. I want to tear up just thinking about it, because it’s so special, the chemistry that we had, everybody brought something different to the table, but we literally could not have done it if one person was missing from that recipe.
00:05:58:04 – 00:06:33:09
Richard Carthon: And that’s important, man. The value of a team, the value of timing, and then also finding the resources to combine that perfect storm of opportunity, but then having the people that see the vision and go for it. And it’s a beautiful thing that you were also able to go and find all of these amazing speakers, all these sponsors, all these people that came and showed up. You know, for a moment there, when you first put it out there and putting out the tickets, you know, at first it wasn’t necessarily warmly received, but then after time, things started snowballing, if you will, and then getting it to a point now it’s where you sold it out like, a first premiere event sold out. That’s something, man.
00:06:33:18 – 00:07:00:07
Blockchain Wayne: Yeah, thanks. I mean, you’re right. I mean, at the beginning we’ve all heard or maybe you haven’t heard, but if you look at the whole Fire Fest fiasco back in, you know, several years ago, how long? It was several years ago, right? Several years ago when and that was a music industry event, but they were doing it on this island and I mean, it ended up being a big scam. But in the beginning, it’s all an idea. People are buying an idea. They’re paying into the idea of what it’s going to be because you don’t have speakers lined up, you don’t have sponsors lined up.
00:07:00:09 – 00:07:45:09
Blockchain Wayne: Let me just say this, like without our sponsors, we could not have made this happen. Some of our top sponsors are events powered by Fomo Lab, which is facilitating the NFT auctions. We’ve got Mandala, we’ve got Gilded and Emrit, were all companies that believed in us early on. There’s other sponsors that came in towards the end, and they’re just as important as well. So, I don’t want to leave anybody out, too many to say, so, check out our website. But I name those specifically because they believed in us early on when we were just a concept. We were an idea and they were like, Yes, I want to sponsor your event. And Mandala alone, Mandala Exchange has been a huge help because not only did they offer sponsorship, they provided the lanyard, they provided the swag bags. And on top of that, they brought about 30 people with them, you know?
00:07:45:11 – 00:08:18:24
Blockchain Wayne: So, I said we couldn’t have done it without our team, but we couldn’t have done it without everybody, without you guys talking about it, promoting leading up to the event. The sponsors just really giving us the funding we need to better get through this, because that’s been, you know, that’s been a lot of hurdles as well. Not just getting the funds, but being able to access the funds, because let’s face it, PayPal and banks are not very friendly when you’re trying to pay large amounts. So it’s like, you know, a reason why we need Crypto. So, that’s why I talk to people while they’re here, why we need Crypto. Alright, delete PayPal and install this wallet.
00:08:20:03 – 00:08:37:18
Steven Miller: And see Wayne, so we’ve now gone through the present, we’ve gone through the past. There are two big pressing questions we have to answer before we go and the first of them I want to pose to you is this, what have you learned through this experience of planning this big conference that you think is going to be the biggest lesson that you take into the next one?
00:08:38:04 – 00:09:31:28
Blockchain Wayne: Well, in the beginning, we didn’t have the resources, so, a lot of us were wearing many different hats. Not only did I help bring in a lot of the sponsors, I also booked all the hotel rooms, booked all the flights, handled all the logistics on the back end. Not all, like, the tech logistics, right? And we couldn’t have done it without our team. And someone I forgot to mention earlier who’s not officially a partner, we’ve hired them to help us, but you know, we’re going to be talking to him some more, but it’s Oscar Ortega, who is in event planning. He came in towards the end, but he really helped to structure it. If we wouldn’t have had him, he really, you know, being in the event space, he knew what we were missing. Game day, you know, game day management as far as making sure we’re ready to go, logistics, being able to manage the hotel staff like, but telling them what we need, the sound staff. So, he’s been a phenomenal piece as well. But I’m so tired, I’m losing track of my thought here, so.
00:09:32:00 – 00:09:34:03
Steven Miller: I was going to say it was just the biggest lesson learned, man.
00:09:34:05 – 00:10:02:29
Blockchain Wayne: Oh, yeah. So, it’s really just is, you know, on the next event we’re going to have staff, we’re going to be more structure, people are going to clearly define roles. But it’s really just if you have everybody and that belief is solidified across everybody that you’re working with, you can do it. We had a call a month ago to say to crunch some numbers and say can we make this happen or do we need to push it back? Do we need to call every sponsor and everybody’s who bought a ticket and tell them we’re going to push it back? We can’t do this right now, just not going to happen.
00:10:03:12 – 00:10:29:16
Blockchain Wayne: And we realize pushing them back a month or two isn’t going to help. And we probably would have had a little leeway and we may have even done it if it wasn’t for the fact that there’s a Bitcoin conference that’s normally in California every year called Bitcoin 2021. And we know what’s happening in California, you can’t really have events right there, so they moved to Miami in June. So, the first week of June, they’re doing their event, so if we push back close to theirs, we’re trying to piggyback. You know, it could have impacted it.
00:10:29:18 – 00:11:08:06
Blockchain Wayne: So, I just learned, like, we’ve got to push forward, like, we’ve got to all work together, move towards that vision, and also just have clearly defined roles of what we’re going to do. And honestly, I’ve been taking notes throughout this whole event, like when I get a chance to stop for a second, Okay, I’m going to do this differently, I’m going to do that differently. I’m going to have a person like, I was also the person responding to all the social media accounts and email requests, like when someone comments or sends a message and I literally haven’t been able to do that during the event hardly you know. Some people have gotten responses, some people haven’t. So, just having a team dedicated for that, for just the little things that we had speed bumps along the way, but other than that, it’s still turned out great.
00:11:08:11 – 00:11:37:04
Richard Carthon: Man, that’s what being an entrepreneur is all about and that’s what it’s like. You throw yourself in the fire, you learn and you just keep improving. And, you know, one of the things I’ve always admired about you, Wayne, is that, like you, you put something in motion and then you find ways to make it happen instead of saying all the ways why it can’t. And you put the team together that can go and execute and do all of those things. And that’s always been an exceptional characteristic of you, man. But, you know, you teased it up earlier in one of our conversations, and I’m going to let you tease it up right now. So, I hear there might be a part two this year.
00:11:37:09 – 00:12:08:24
Blockchain Wayne: Yeah, V Two. Miami Crypto experience V Two. It’s currently on, it’s not on our website yet, but it’s on EventChain.io. And not sure when this is going to come out, but if you watch it through the weekend, you can pay in Crypto for our next event, October 27, 28, 29. It’s going to be just a V Two, another experience. We’ve got a lot more people that we’ve talked to at this event that want to be involved in the next one that were just attendees here and now they want their companies to be involved. So, it’s just something we’ve got to make happen.
00:12:08:26 – 00:12:24:25
Blockchain Wayne: So, it’s definitely going to be in Miami again. We’re looking at other venues, other events in other cities, locations, but for right now, that one’s set in stone. We’ve got the framework for it, we got the people lined up, you know, the people in place to do it. And we learned a lot of lessons, so, we’re going to, you know, we’re looking to make that happen.
00:12:24:27 – 00:13:04:00
Blockchain Wayne: So, if you’re watching this, go to EventChain.io, got some super early bird specials. After Sunday of this week, or Sunday of next week, after Sunday, we’re going to put it on the website. The super early bird special ends, but we’ll have an early bird special. And we’re just going to start, you know, start collecting to make that next event happen. And so, a lot of people missed it. A lot of people couldn’t travel, restrictions. Some people did a lot of crazy stuff just to get here, you know? People that did come from different countries in Asia or Europe that some of them have to go quarantine when they leave here for 14 days. So, a lot of people risk a lot to come here, so, we want to make sure that we can provide that experience again when more people are able to come.
00:13:05:03 – 00:13:09:26
Richard Carthon: Yeah, man. Well, I’m definitely looking forward to it. And of course, for everyone listening, make sure you Stay Crypto Current.
Crypto Current will be guiding all of you who are new to the cryptocurrency world to becoming a cryptocurrency and blockchain expert. Crypto Current was founded to give access to information to everyone on current events occurring in cryptocurrency and blockchain in a digestible way. Since its creation, we have created content that impacted thousands of people through its podcast, blog, and social media.