If you told Andrew Nguyen in 2008 that in 10 years he would be the owner of 2 six-figure companies, he would probably have said you were lying. Back in 2008, Nguyen was homeless and sleeping in his car. Fast forward to 10 years later and he’s now the owner of two successful businesses
The O Agency: a personal branding agency targeting pro-athletes, executive entrepreneurs and CEOs. Most of his clients are worth over $10 million and are highly featured in Forbes, the NY Times, Black Enterprise and
BYOBlive (Build Your Own Brand Inc.): a company that hosts workshops and conferences to provide a place for various professionals in different industries to meet, learn from each other and network.
Andrew built his businesses from scratch and is now recognized as one of the top under 30 years old CEOs. He has been featured in Forbes as well as in the latest book by Gary Vee, a prominent figure in business, crushing it.
Young and Relentless
Andrew Nguyen’s journey to owning his businesses was far from an easy one. In 2008, Andrew was left on his own in the US to figure out his life and dreams. Being the son of immigrants, his parents always wanted him to pursue a career in medicine but deep down he knew he didn’t want that. He was 18, broke and only wanted to pursue dreams that no one else believed in. He decided to quit medicine and try something he felt was a better fit.
Life got hard to the point that he had to beg cafeteria workers for leftovers and snuck into dorm rooms just to shower. He had no home, so he slept anywhere; on floors, couches and even in his car. Eventually, Andrew decided to join the US Marine Corps and sent himself down to Paris Island in order to make money for school and other needs.
Disciplined and Focused
Upon returning to school, Nguyen was always looking for creative ways to make money. His first business was a mobile barbershop where he would go round the dorms giving haircuts to college students for $5 per head. He quickly established himself as the go-to barber for all the men in his dorm and soon he was making enough to keep him afloat. After some time, Andrew identified the next business opportunity when he learned that the current DJ was leaving. He quickly bought speakers and DJ turntables using the money he had saved from his hair cutting business.
Andrew decided to start off by offering his DJ services for free in an effort to build brand awareness and demand. His strategy worked like a charm and soon, he was charging $20 an hour for his services. A few years later, Andrew was dj’ing for $200 an hour, enjoying his job while making some good money.
After graduating from college, Andrew joined the corporate world like the rest of his peers but soon realized he had a different dream he had to chase. In 2013, Andrew saw the next opportunity in marketing and branding, particularly on the internet. At that time, people were still discovering the power of the internet for businesses and he knew there was something there. He started his marketing and branding agency and used the same strategy he had used for his dj’ing business to attract clients.
He started by making logos for as low as $50 and websites for $500. Fast forward to two years later and his company was charging $5,000 for the same logos and $15,000 for websites.
One of the main things that helped Andrew Nguyen turn his ideas into successful businesses is his understanding that growth happens within supply and demand, and pricing adjusts within expertise. He had to start at the bottom but as his skills, expertise, and business grew, he could charge as much as he needed.
The Hard Work Paid Off
Andrew currently owns and runs a full-service content marketing and branding agency known as The O Agency. Some of his notable clients include Tyrod Taylor, Victor Oladipo, Dennis Smith Junior, Josh York, Kam
Chancellor, Nike, among many other people and organizations. His other business, BYOBlive, is a creative platform that helps millennials advance their career and pursue their dreams. The company holds the annual BYOBretreat, which is a conference that brings together more than 1000 diverse entrepreneurs and creators.
Andrew has been able to leverage more than $1 million in revenue and growth from both of his businesses. Andrew’s story is an inspirational example of how far you can go in 10 years if you put your mind and heart into doing something you love.
Secrets to Generating $3Mill Helping Companies Run FB Ads With Richard Jordan Louie
Richard Jordan Louie has some pretty big accomplishments! From generating $500k within two months, to generating $3 million helping companies run Facebook ads. He grew up in a small Chinatown like city with his parents and started his journey when he was just 16. He hated school and knew that he had to achieve financial freedom to be able to do what he wanted whenever he wanted. He now has 2 companies, one is a digital marketing agency and the other is his e-commerce company. I had the pleasure of interviewing him. Here’s what he had to say:
What would you say to someone who came to you for advice about taking ‘the leap of faith’ into entrepreneurship?
Richard: I would tell them that you only live one life and if you don’t do it now, wouldn’t you regret it in 5 or 10 years?
What are your best 3 pieces of advice when it comes to FB ads?
- Being disciplined with your strategy
- Have an exit plan
- After spending over 4-5 figures into specific campaigns, you have a lot of data to study and observe; leverage that!
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? What lesson did you learn from them?
Richard: I have learned from many programs and YouTubers. However, Alex Becker taught me the most. He taught me how to focus, sacrifice and balance my life
Who are 3 people that inspire you?
- Elon Musk
- Alex Becker
- Sam Ovens
We often hear stories that make it seem like someone was an overnight success, when really there were setbacks and stumbles along the way. Why do you think it’s valuable to be candid about both failure and success?
Richard: First comes many failures then success. You got to experience it to learn.
What’s the best advice you have ever received?
Richard: The more value you give towards your industry, the more successful it will become.
What has been the biggest challenge and, on the flip side, the biggest reward for you?
Richard: Holding onto a strict and disciplined routine. I personally workout, meditate, and intermittent fast every morning.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your journey?
Richard: During my journey, I sacrificed a lot of things. Time with my family, ditched all friends, and broke up with my girlfriend. These sacrifices allowed no distractions and I was so much more streamline.
What are two things you wish someone told you when you first started?
- Sacrifice now for later
- It is okay to fail
Thanks for the interview! What is the best way for someone to reach you if they are interested in working with you?
Instagram Direct Message or Email is the best way to send over a proposal!
Take Advantage Of Running Your Own Business – 5 Tips To Start
The advantage of running your own business doesn’t just lie on the financial side, but it’s also a powerful way to take control of your life. It doesn’t have to be anything big from the start – you can start on the side and start making extra money month after month. Just a few hours a week will get you there, even if you already have a job. You’ll be able to pick projects that truly excite you, meet a lot of interesting people along the way, and choose your own hours. Since you won’t be needing employees, some fancy storefront, not even LLC, getting started is quite easy – all you need is the right system, and I’ve prepared some tips to help you establish it.
1. Search For Your Business Idea
The world is full of ʽgreat business ideasʼ and that’s why this first step may sound so daunting – you’ve seen too many of them fail, even if they were big. But maybe that was precisely the problem – they were too big for the beginning. You can easily get past this mental barrier by looking into your own strengths. Every one of us has gathered some skills and knowledge through life, so that’s the place to start. We pay for expert knowledge all the time in the form of instrument lessons, college courses, language classes, etc. So there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to cash in on yours. If you can’t think of anything you’re good at, maybe your friends can, so simply ask them. Besides the fact you’ll get some ideas, their answers will also provide you with a nice little ego boost. Do you have some interesting hobbies? Why not turn them into businesses? Perhaps you are good at carpentry, or enjoy repairing cars or general repair work around the house – these could all be turned into businesses. Answering all these questions you’ll certainly end up with more than ten business ideas and all that’s left to do is to pick the one that excites you the most.
2. Start Investing in Yourself
Don’t worry, we’re not gonna talk about how much money you’ve saved up. Your investments can start in the form of time and dedication. But at some point, you’ll probably want to supplement your income. As your new business gets off the ground you’ll want to work full-time on it and leave your job, meaning you’ll probably want to scale. That’s when some bigger financial investments are needed. Since you’ve found something you’re passionate about and you ready to make it happen, deciding to take a loan won’t be a problem. But what if you don’t have an ability to get one? Maybe you weren’t paying your current loans or credit cards on time, and now you have difficulty getting another one or refinancing. Getting back on the right approvement track can be a long process, but it can be brought up to speed with comprehensive credit reporting, which will also help you with the interest rate you’re charged for your next loan. Finances don’t need to come in the beginning, but the need will come eventually, so you need to be ready and smart about it.
3. Finding Your Clients
Sending numerous emails – or, not to mention, making calls – in search for clients can be a real nightmare. But before you quit, just remember that the majority of your competition thinks the same. That means that just by putting in a little bit more effort into your initial reach out you’ll be able to immediately separate yourself from the crowd. So hold on to those emails and phones, but there’s no need to stop at that. Utilize your friends and neighbours and the power of word of mouth. Start building the presence on social networks. And don’t forget job boards such as Craigslist – believe it or not, it’s one of the best places for a freelancer to generate leads. The reason is quite simple – potential clients and customers looking for freelancers there often don’t get the best applicants, so there’s plenty of room to jump in. And that’s not the case just with Craigslist – depending on your niche you can do this on any job site. You need to be just slightly better than the average, which leads us to our next tip.
4. Crafting Your Pitch
Now, the reason why so many of your competitors suck on these sites lies in the fact that they’re just shooting off a bunch of boilerplate emails hoping to nail a gig. And the reason why you’re gonna be better than them lies in the fact that you’re gonna take time to craft your pitch. If you wish to reach out to your potential customers and clients you need to speak directly to their needs and concerns – this is basic human psychology. And all you need is five email lines in order to achieve that (if your pitch needs to be in speech make it an elevator one). In the first line, you’re gonna introduce yourself and mention how you know the client, building rapport. In the second you’re gonna talk about them in the terms of what you want to do for them, mentioning why you’re the best man for that role. This, of course, requires some research on their organisation. The third line has to be all about how your work will benefit their company – by maximising their profits or freeing up their time? In the fourth line, it’s time to get your foot in the door – get them to agree to a small agreement, making room for a larger one that will come later. And the fifth line needs to be an actionable one – it is also the most critical one so you need to be crystal clear in asking them if they’d like to proceed. Although this is a sort of a template, there’s still the need to change the email from a client to client, but benefits always remain the most important part.
5. Mastering Pricing
This last part is usually the most confusing one – beginners are in constant fear if they’re charging too much or too little. It’s true that there aren’t any firm rules for rates, but there are three handy ways to get rid of this confusion. If you’re charging per hour, just take your ideal (but realistic!) salary and drop three zeros from it – that’s your hourly rate. Or if you’ve come up with the lowest rate that’s on the edge of leaving you resentful – double it. The last solution is to simply charge the same as the next guy does – all you need to do is to find on Google the average rate for the service you’re providing. Whatever method you choose, it will be your initial price. After you start charging you’ll get a sense of where you’re at and you can start ʽtuningʼ your rates until you find the ones you’re satisfied with.
Starting your business on the side is the best way to go since the process is easily scalable, meaning you can generate as much money as you want, investing mainly time and effort in the beginning. After you get enough experience and generate enough money you’ll be ready to turn your side hustle into a full-time gig.
How Matt Hamilton Cultivated High Performance Skills That Put Him In The Position To Capitalize In This Billion Dollar Industry
- Matt Hamilton went from college dropout with a 1.8 GPA, to being the Founder & CEO of Revenue Forge – A full service marketing and branding agency built for the modern day. I had the pleasure of interviewing Matt. Here’s what he had to say!
Hey Matt! I’m interested more in your background story and how you got to where you are today. Could you give us a look into your background story?
Matt Hamilton: Growing up, school wasn’t a choice for me. It was mandatory. I was always reminded by my friends, peers, coaches, parents of the cliche “Go to school, get good grades, play sports, train for the scholarships, and then get your degree so you can get a well paying job.” This never sat well with me. I never really knew what I wanted to do, but that was just about the last thing I was interested in. Interestingly enough though, that’s exactly what I did.
I quickly found out that the education system was not the platform that would teach me the proper principles of high success. I looked around and compared the habits of college students and teachers against the habits of those who had already attained high performance and success, and (not) to my surprise, I found massive differences. College is sort of like pre-school for adults. No matter how similar to the real world it may be, it’s just not the real world.
What did you decided to do after realizing that?
Matt Hamilton: As you may be able to tell already, I think very differently than a lot of people. Instead of going out every night, I stayed in my dorm room to work on business projects and network with celebrity influencers online. The work I was doing pushed me to cultivate high performance skills, and put me in a position to build key relationships. In a few months time, I realized if I didn’t go after my passions, I’ll be stuck at a desk job paying bills for the rest of my life. So I left.
After leaving what was your vision for the future?
Matt Hamilton: My vision consisted of working full time on my business, and massively changing the lives of my clients. There was one problem. When I got home, I had no clients. Zero. I went from making money and progress in my dorm room, to living back at my parents house with zero clients. I fell into bad habits, bad routines, and left room for complacency in my work. I was shocked by the raw reality of the real marketplace. This is not what I wanted, but it is what I expected. I took the safety net out from under myself. I gave myself no other option. I wanted the real, raw, non simulated experience of being punched in the mouth, and having no choice but to work my ass off to get the results I wanted. I was jolted awake by the stark reality that if I continue to allow my surroundings to dictate my actions, I would never achieve any of the goals I set for myself.
What did you decide to do once you realized this?
Matt Hamilton: I did everything to get new clients. I went to local business alliances, Networking groups, I did walk-ins, cold emails, cold calls, free work, work through referrals, and just about any other way you can think of. I just worked. That’s it. Sure enough, I started noticing that something was happening. Suddenly I had people reaching out to ME. I started gaining momentum.
I didn’t get complacent this time. No. This pushed me to go harder. And then harder still. Quite possibly the best feeling about being in this business is seeing the look of sheer joy on any of my clients faces when we’re able to really deliver for them. That’s why I do it. The impact it has on their business is worth way more to me than any sort of monetary value I can receive.
I will continue to grow and scale my agency to a National powerhouse, and hopefully impact others on the way. I want other people to understand that we only have one life. Only one. If you don’t ever take the risk to chase your dreams, the probability of you living out that dream goes down to basically 0. So don’t be afraid. What’s the worst that can happen?
You have an amazing story. What were the biggest entrepreneurship lessons you’ve learned?
- Persistence. Even when things get real dark, or there doesn’t seem to be any opportunities for you to capitalize on, its extremely important to stay persistent in those times of
- Uncertainty. The persistence and faith that you show in times of uncertainty are similar to the correct answer on a multiple choice test. When you’re tested, the answer is to keep going. No matter what.
What would you say to someone who came to you for advice about taking the “leap of faith’ into entrepreneurship?
Matt Hamilton: If it’s something you want to do, take the jump. Don’t think about it, because the “what if’s” will paralyze you. Realize that the only voice you need to listen to is the one in your own head. And when you do, don’t quit on yourself – ever.
What is the best way for someone to reach you if they are interested in working with you?
Connect with me on instagram @officialmatthamilton
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