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What It Takes to Build a Business from $20 to $40 Million; The Case of Snow with Josh Elizetxe

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There is nothing quite like an entrepreneur’s determination when starting a business. That’s my original quote by the way (pun intended). Just the other day, I was scanning through some of my favorite Forbes articles and came across this particular one by Neil Patel. In his presentation, Patel observes that of all startups, only 10 percent survive. The article was published three years ago just when Josh was investing his first $20 into what is now a business worth more than $40 Million.

Looking back at Elizetxe’s journey, all I can say is that it takes more than just determination to build a business up from its infant days to sustaining it when it grows into a giant. In their article, The Top 20 Reasons Startups Fail, CB Insights found the top three reasons to be; not the right team (23%), ran out of cash (29%), and no market need (42%). While these reasons are valid, you’ve got to ask yourself some questions. What if you don’t have a team? What if you only have $20 to begin with or nothing at all? What if the market you are venturing into is totally concentrated by oligopolistic giants? 

These are just some of the questions Elizetxe asked himself when he was laying down the initial plans for what is now Snow Teeth Whitening. At the time, there was as much free and paid advice on how to grow a business as there is now. What Elizetxe didn’t know, which is what I am telling you now, is that very few people will let you in on what exactly they had to do to get to where they are. The difference between Elizetxe and them, however, is that Elizetxe will tell you exactly what he has done and how he built Snow from just $20 to $40 Million. 

Take Advantage of the Fourth Industrial Revolution

When Professor Klaus Schwab first coined the term Fourth Industrial Revolution, this is what he said of the opportunity presented to entrepreneurs by Industry 4.0 “The changes are so profound that, from the perspective of human history, there has never been a time of greater promise or potential peril. My concern, however, is that decision-makers are too often caught in traditional, linear (and non-disruptive) thinking or too absorbed by immediate concerns to think strategically about the forces of disruption and innovation shaping our future.” 

I couldn’t agree more with Mr. Schwab. That is why at Snow, Elizetxe knew that leveraging on the opportunity created by the technology of the connected devices would give Snow the leap needed not only to stay in business but also to compete with giants like Colgate. By launching their new teeth whitening system that has Bluetooth technology, a wireless mouthpiece, auto-shade detection, red light gum therapy, and much more, they were able to create a product that is in line with the technology that people want to be part of. 

Writing about lining up businesses with the Fourth Industrial Revolution on Forbes, Sean Hinton says, “One of the most immediate and impactful outcomes of technological evolution is the vast advancement in automation. Every day, more manual processes become automated, and as technology continues to accelerate, so will automation.” 

In whatever business you are in, there sure is an opportunity to slip in some form of automation. The best way to beat monopolistic and oligopolistic giants is not by grinding hard to outdo the competition. The trick, however, is in doing what they do differently and in a much better way. 

Disrupt the Common Market

No matter how much you consider your niche overcrowded, there has got to be somewhere for you in there. That is exactly what they did with Snow. Instead of concentrating on the general assumption that your industry is overcrowded, you must decide to create your own blue ocean within a vast and almost unsurvivable red ocean.

First, have a unique twist to your product or service. Second, employ a different and effective marketing strategy. To give you a practical example, Snow introduced a teeth whitening system with Bluetooth technology, a wireless mouthpiece, auto-shade detection, red light gum therapy, and much more. Snow then embarked on a journey to first serve celebrities with their ingenious product lineup. They knew that most people, including you, will listen to what important people say and take action. By getting a few popular people satisfied with our product, all we had to do is sit back and have them endorse Snow. 

Know the Right People and Get the Right People to Know You

If you didn’t know that who you know is as important as what you know, now you know. The fact that Elizetxe is an entrepreneur doesn’t mean that he had to come all the way by himself. From the very start, Elizetxe had mentors, peers, contacts, confidants, family, and friends. Borrowing from the fact that Elizetxe started out with just $20 clearly communicates that these people were not there to fund my initiative. Instead, they offered insights when Josh had to make tough decisions and support when everything seemed not to work out. However, before you can know the right people, you have to meet them, which brings us to the next point. Knowing the right people begins with meeting them the right way. Do not expect to meet the most instrumental business advisor on a late-night chat in your favorite social media platform. Take Elizetxe for instance. He has had to get on a plane just to have a 30-minute meeting with the right person to give his product an endorsement. That kind of sacrifice is actually backed by science. Here is proof that it works. In a study conducted by Great Business Schools, 95 percent of the people said that face-to-face meetings are essential for long term business relationships. Another important observation from the study was a general conclusion was that “people who got most results from their networking efforts participate more in ‘face-to-face’ casual contact networks.”  

Building a business from scratch is indeed an uphill task. However, the success that comes in the end is worth every bit of the struggle involved. Even if you do not have enough money to pull through, you can employ the insights I have shared in this article to reach unimaginable heights. Remember, to live the reality of your dreams, you have to wake up first.

 

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Protected: The Young Tailor Traveling The World : Aristide Tofani

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How Vito Glazers plans to help 1000 people become influencers in 2020

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Vito Glazers, a real estate investor, media entrepreneur, former Huffington Post contributing author, and actor, is the CEO of One World Publishing. His PR company has helped over 100 people share their stories through the media. Glazers is most known for WE TV’s Mystery Millionaire and the Mancow Show. He is also the Executive Producer of the film Too Big For TV, and Chop Chop TV Show, a comedy sketch series filmed in Chicago in which he plays himself.  In addition to being a television and media personality and media contributor, Glazers was also featured in a national media campaign for DadsRights.com. He sponsored a giveaway on Kim Kardashian’s Instagram and ended up with over 100,000 Instagram followers from that. His Facebook Livestreams about Donald Trump during his then candidacy gained him a significant social media audience and regular television news appearances. 

He had a diverse upbringing by immigrant parents and traveled through Central America where he learned to speak Spanish fluently from his Guatemalan mother. Glazers graduated with honors from Prospect High School in his hometown of Mount Prospect when he was 16 years old. After high school, Glazers worked in financial services and eventually attended universities studying business and economics, but he never graduated. An advocate of ‘self-education,’ Vito has also expressed his support for The Piven Theater Group in Chicago, Eric Morris Actor’s workshop in Los Angeles, and other public speaking and acting courses.

Glazers is a renowned public speaker who has spoken at Judson University, WIN University, Platinum Speaker Camp, Small Business Expo, the Tim Burd Masterminds, AdLeaks Retreats, Goal Digging Academy in Las Vegas, Baby Bath Water Institute, Webinars, and Podcasts.

He Loves helping people and brands tell their story through news, media, and film. He pioneered a successful four part system for Internet marketing to promote and grow his own advertising networks and personal brand for over ten years. He has also used the same system to help grow a real estate brokerage, exotic car dealerships, E-commerce products, clothing lines, television & film releases, musicians, authors, actors, entrepreneurs, universities, and charitable organizations. Here is how Vito Glazers can make you an influencer.

Follow The Money

Glazers advises that the first step to becoming an influencer in your field is not posting bikini photos on the beach trying to grow your Instagram to a million followers, but rather figuring out what audience your content appeals to, and developing a plan to use your content as a path to make money as you grow the audience. Some ways that he advises monetizing audiences are developing an offer or service, selling products, tickets to live events, or even coaching, training programs and masterclasses.

Establish Your Claim To Fame

What is it that makes your influence unique?  Vito Glazers specializes in helping people craft their claim to fame. This is what makes you appealing to the media.  It is why your brand is special.  What do you want to be known for?  According to Glazers, claims to fame can range from winning an award or accolade in your industry, to doing something controversial or that garnered a lot of attention on social media.  Your claim to fame should be supported with coverage from major media outlets.    

Sell Your Story

Once you have your monetization strategy in place, and have developed and established your claim to fame, the next step is to begin selling your story.  In an ideal situation, your claim to fame is so strong and your story is so appealing that either a book publisher or even a film company want to own the rights to your story to produce into content.  If you are not able to sell the rights to your story up front, there are many other ways to sell and monetize your story.  One way that Glazers helps clients sell their story, is from the stage.  By booking stages and speaking at live events, you can sell your story to an engaged audience.  Another way is through social media.  Glazers uses the same formula for selling from the stage, to sell on livestreams and webinars as if those platforms were stages. Anywhere you can get an engaged audience that your story will resonate with, is an opportunity to lead them to your offer or service that you created in step one, and continue generating income from your story.

Keep Scaling

Once you have gotten the hang of selling your story to audiences, the sky’s the limit. Every platform becomes an opportunity to generate income from your story.  Your mission as an influencer should then be to create content on all relevant platforms that continues to draw in your ideal audience and turn them into clients.  Again, social media, webinars, masterclasses, live events, podcats, television apperances and even film give anybody with a story to tell a platform to share that story.

Without following the money first, influencers find themselves creating and promoting content with no plan on how to ever generate an income to sustain their craft.  By following the money first, it gives influencers a guide of how to create content and what opportunities to pursue, and how to monetize those opportunities, which allows them to continue creating, inspiring and influencing.

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TEDx Speaker Juan David Campolargo Sheds Light On His Book, "Generation Optimism"

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Juan David Campolargo could easily be described as a Renaissance man. He was born and raised in Venezuela and later relocated to Chicago when he was fourteen-years-old.

When Juan David first arrived in the United States, he knew no English. But in the space of less than six months, he mastered it. A year after learning the language, Juan David took on college-level and honors classes.

Today, Juan David is the founder of Optimum Smart, a digital marketing agency. Apart from this, he manages a small hedge fund under the name Campolargo Holdings, serves on Naperville’s Downtown Advisory Committee, and contributes to the nonprofit Panas en Chicago, which provides assistance to Venezuelan immigrants. He is also the author of Generation Optimism, a book that’s aimed at transforming the  pessimistic Generation Z.

Juan David was compelled to write this book after reading an article about how his generation (Gen Z) and millennials are the most pessimistic in the history of mankind. He knew he had to take action and researched the best way to make an impact. Juan David began writing this book to inspire the next generation to embrace a worldview of optimism.

In this interview, Juan David explains more about his book and shares how he’s achieved his goal of making an impact on the Gen Z

What is your book about and how will it help the Gen Z generation transform the world we live in?

Gen Z is one of the most pessimistic in the history of humankind, yet every aspect of life — education, entertainment, healthcare, information, medicine, science, sports, technology — has never been better. Why then do we think the world is getting worse?

Generation Optimism is about how to create the next generation of doers and dreamers. Optimism is a skill and like any other skill, as with happiness, coding, or public speaking, it can be learned. In reading this book, you will:

* Gain a deep understanding of our human psychology and why we are wired to be negative

* Read inspiring stories of people like Mark Cuban and others as they took the journey of optimism

* Learn to alter your perspective if optimism is not your strong suit

* Learn the advantages of living an optimistic life and dare to be an optimist! 

Generation Optimism isn’t just a book optimism or how to become optimistic. Who cares about #Optimism? Optimism will be the only way to solve the problems and challenges in the future. I see optimism as the only mindset that makes sense in the 21st century. 

Intelligence isn’t just good grades or a high #IQ but rather the ability to adapt quickly. And that is what we all need to do. 

Sure, things in the world suck and will always suck but I’ll tell you this: OPTIMISTS ARE THE ONES WHO ARE BRAVE ENOUGH TO EVEN TRY.

2. What’s the source of inspiration for your book?

Find a pair of glasses and put them on. if they are sunglasses, you’ll likely see a darker image, but if they are reading glasses, you’ll see everything closer than it is. I like to use this analogy: we see with our lenses and we see through the lenses, but we don’t see the lenses themselves.

What most people don’t know is that we have agency over them. We can build, create, and change our lenses for the ones we desire. How we perceive things (our lenses of reality) determines the kind of experience we are going to have.

Solution: Get a new pair of glasses.

By reading this book, I will give you for FREE the new pair of lenses you need. 

Over the past year, writing a book about optimism has been quite challenging, but as you continue to read this book, you will realize how much I love challenges and adversity. I knew I wanted to write about my story; a lot of people have expressed interest in who I am and what I do. 

At first, I thought about writing an autobiography, but I think it’s just too early and would be a project I’d want to pursue later in my life.

Then I realized how optimistic I’ve been throughout my life, even as my generation is so pessimistic. and that’s when the book journey began. I researched many topics related to optimism, generational theory, positive thinking, and other interesting research. 

In  addition to the research, I had the opportunity to interview fascinating individuals such as Mark Cuban. if I was optimistic before this process, I can now say I’m a thousand percent more optimistic after writing this book. 

The number of hours, rejections, effort, calls, and energy I’ve put into this book has made me more resilient and, of course, optimistic.

Only an elite few are selected to speak on the TEDx Stage, how did you attain this level of success? 

For this question, I’ll share an excerpt from my book, Generation Optimism. It’d be a lot better if you have the opportunity to read the book as you’ll have a lot more context of who I am and where I come from.

“I had moved to a different country, learned English unbelievable quickly (6 months), started a profitable business with eleven clients. I was waking up at 4 a.m. to invest in stocks, playing sports, and had just been selected to attend one of the most prestigious summer programs for high school students: LaunchX at the University of Pennsylvania.

I was living the DREAM.

Not only was I living the dream, but I was happy and doing pretty well in everything. You might be thinking, Yeah sure, you’re probably a genius. I want to make one thing super clear: I’m definitely not a genius, nor was I lucky. The stoic Seneca explained it best when he said, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

Many people go through life as if everything is a coincidence or their lives were already written. imagine if that were true. Life would be Boring! Thankfully, the world doesn’t work that way, at least for most people. Being goal-driven and aware of your goals gives you the focus to find opportunities. I’ll give you an example.

I say that luck doesn’t really exist and you have to be prepared for the opportunity. Everything that has happened and continues to happen in my life is because I either created or wanted it. That may sound cliché, but these are some of my methods—and don’t forget, I was fourteen or fifteen at the time.

Goals: I wrote down my goals. Every single one of them, without exception. What goals? Academic goals, life goals, fulfillment goals, dreams, etc. You can be creative, and best of all, you can be crazy. You won’t believe the type of goals that I wrote down and continue to write down.

I set a reminder every month to check my progress on these goals. You can also learn more about the twenty-year plan. I haven’t personally done that one, but it’s great for perspective.

•Reading: I read one or two books every week. That’s about sixty a year. Reading is basically legal theft (no, just kidding, you don’t really steal anything). Reading is a way to get ahead and accelerate your learning curve for anything you’re trying to achieve. I can’t believe reading has this stigma of being boring or nerdy.

•Daily Affirmations: Twice a day, I tell myself things I aspire to be. An example could be “I’m a speed-reader. I’m smart. I’m happy. I’m focused.” It has gotten to a point where it feels natural every morning and every night to go through these daily affirmations. Once the messages sink into your subconscious, you really start acting differently.

•Morning Routine: I call mine BEE. It stands for Bed (yes, I make my bed every morning), Exercise (I do twenty push-ups or more), and Exercises (Daily Affirmations explained above). I sometimes add the M for Meditation. Starting off your day in the right way is the secret to having a great day.

I can go on and on my own techniques, which I think are super interesting. The goal of the S (Success) is how having goals and desires can be a powerful way to be optimistic, positive, and happy.”

Share words of advice to Millenials who see finding it hard to stand out in the saturated world we live in today.

Viktor Frankl said it best:

“Don’t aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it.”

That’s a quote that is a little bit long but it so fundamental and key to understanding life. My advice would be this write down your goals and know where you want to go but don’t focus all of your energy on achieving those goals. Write down your goals as ambitious and crazy as possible. (If you’re not embarrassed or scared, by them your goals are not ambitious enough). After they’re written down, revisit them every month without exception. 

This isn’t a magic trick or anything like that but what this will do is give you focus. I’ll give you an example: let’s say you want to get a Tesla, all of sudden you will start seeing Teslas everywhere. Knowing what you want is the first step and now opportunities will arise.

Opportunities will show up and now it’s all up to you. You’re the one who decides how far you want to go and how ambitious you want to be. All the things I’m achieving now were written down 3 or 4 years ago.

In the end, you have to want it but not really. Success is a consequence, not a cause. If you think I’m contradicting myself, remember life isn’t a math equation. 

For more information, you can connect with Juan David on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter at @jdcampolargo.

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