Insights On How To Start A Small Business Online

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Video Transcript: Has anyone read ‘The One Minute Millionaire?‘

Did you enjoy it? An awesome book. In there, it tells a story about a guy in the 1980s, early ’90s, in New York, New Jersey who bought all the old timber that was part of the walkway of the Brooklyn Bridge that goes across the Hudson. He made some certificates up for the history of the Brooklyn Bridge and a piece of the timber. He sold them for $20 each and he made about $2,000,000 by selling used bits of timber. My eyes lit up in exactly the same way.

I said, this is a pretty good idea. What can be done here? So I started thinking about what material in Melbourne can I actually rip this idea off and use myself? At that time, the MCG was undergoing redevelopment for the Commonwealth Games we had here seven or eight years ago. I tracked down the wrecking company that was doing the demolition of the G. I came across them, spoke to them and said, have you got any timber left? Because
the Ponsford Stand was being pulled down and was actually made of timber. I had this idea. I could do the same thing.

When speaking to them, they said, not only do we have the timber, we’ve got a lot of the old MCC crested carpet that was in the members’ dining room. For those of you who know, it is really an ugly carpet but it’s rather prestigious. It’s got the MCC crest all over it and things like that. Instantly, I thought, sports memorabilia.

I went down the next day and bought basically everything that was left at the warehouse at the time and made a series of memorabilia pieces up with a photo of the MCG, a piece of the crested carpet, a plaque of limited edition, and then proceeded to write a press release. ‘Twenty-one Year old Sells the MCG For Under $500’. It went absolutely ballistic. Channel 7 News, Herald Sun and a bunch of different things, which I guess was a steppingstone for me from an entrepreneurial aspect. Off the back of that, I got a book deal, wrote it four or five years ago called ‘How to Turn Your Million-Dollar Idea Into A Reality.’ I’ve got a few to give out today if anyone wants to buy one later. From there, I’ve just gone on to build a number of different companies, a lot of them in the telco space.

At Infinity Telecommunications, we install and sell phone systems up and down the east coast of Australia. We have a bunch of other small business units under that. We have a website, Simply Headsets, which does about $200,000 a month of headsets, literally office headsets from an e-commerce perspective. Most of the businesses I have for the four or five different companies are primarily web-lead generation businesses. It’s a multimilliondollar company that does all its business primarily off referrals and internet leads. So that’s where I come from. I thought Dave should give a bit of his story as well so we get some context there and we can get into it.

David: Just to get an idea, has anyone read The ‘One Minute Millionaire?’ Well, I was reading that same book as well and I was 21 at the time. I came across this idea of Paul Hartunian who was selling the Brooklyn Bridge and I thought, how can I replicate that here in Australia? I was driving past the MCG. At that time, they were doing the redevelopment of the Ponsford Stand and I thought, this is a really good idea, I can’t believe no one else has
had this idea.

So I contacted the wrecking company. Firstly, my idea was I thought I’d get pieces of the bricks from the actual thing and mail out bricks to people. I was probably not the smartest tack in the box. I then ended up contacting the wrecking company and they said, look we have pieces of the carpet, we have pieces of the wood. Maybe you should come down and get that. So I went down there and loaded up Mum’s car with all this material and took it
home. I actually had a workshop that was up in Brisbane. It was Brad Sugars’ Billionaire boot camp. So I flew up for that.

I had everything all set up. I had everything ready. I’d written my press release, ‘21-Year- Old Melbourne Man Sells MCG for Under $24.95.’ I was going to sell my little pieces of the wood. I was up on the Gold Coast and I had a few people call me up and say, hey, Dave, have you given this wood to anyone else? I said no. And they said, someone is doing the exact same thing down in Melbourne at the moment. I was planning to launch everything
when I got back. As you can imagine at the time, I was pretty gutted and Pete was my arch-nemesis and rival.

Then we found our circle collided a few times at different conferences and that type of thing, and we built up a little bit of a relationship. We started rock climbing together. We had similar interests in the business and that type of thing as well. We formed a really good relationship. We’ve kept in contact now and I suppose that brings us up to speed with how we met and tried to make the lemons into lemonade.

I ended up still getting a lot of media coverage. When I got back, I did the same thing. The media got a little bit
confused because it was both a 21-year-old launching and selling bits of the MCG. They probably thought I was
Pete as well. That was one of my springboards to, again, getting into the entrepreneurial game.

I have always been a little bit entrepreneurial. When I was back at my school, Melbourne High, there was a guy there who used to trade the stock market. He used to come into class and he’d tell me how much he’d made during science. He’d made $500 here, $300 there. Just like a problem gambler, I suppose he would just tell
me about his winning trades, not necessarily his losing trades.

I thought, maybe this stock market thing is what I need to get into. I left school. Against all the advice of my friends and family, I took out a $5,000 loan and did one of those weekend become-a-super-trader courses where you go and learn the secrets of the stock market, and then you start trading Monday morning. I quickly found out that it probably wasn’t as easy as that and I realized that you needed to develop a trading float so you had a little bit of cash to trade. So that went on and I suppose, to cut a long story short, I ended up creating an info product in the stock market niche. Then I got interested in marketing and internet marketing, and how to market that product online.

What you’re going to learn about today, you can have the best product in the world but unless anybody knows about it, it’s not worth anything. That’s where I got interested in Jay Abrahams, Dan Kennedy, all of the classic greats from direct mail, and then I shifted into the internet space. Running alongside of that, a friend and I set up a rock and roll clothing music store selling everything from AC/DC T-shirts through to Metallica T-shirts. We built it up to three stores, about to franchise, got all the franchise docs done, dominate the website online. You can search just about any band name and add the word merch after it, and we come up number one.

From there, we got a lot of people saying, how is it that you’re doing what you’re doing online? As a team, we sat down and said, there’s such a demand here because a lot of people want to know how it is that we do what we do. So we brought everything that we were doing in the stock market niche to local business.

As you’d imagine, the stock market niche, anything make money is a hypercompetitive niche. So when we were bringing the strategies that we were applying over there, we brought it to local business, working with dentists and working with audit consulting and things like that. There are a few clients here today looking for creative marketing ideas. We just absolutely dominated with it. That was when Melbourne SEO Services was formed at the start of this year, and we haven’t looked back since.

Now that you know how to start a small business online, are you up to the challenge? Talk to us about creating quality videos to promote your online business. Contact our team to know more about it.

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