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HOT TOPIC Are you ignoring the gold right in front of you?

NMdad

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Are you:
  • Starting your entrepreneurial journey?
  • Feeling like you haven't YET figured out a way to make money?
Does either of these describe you?
  • "I hate my job & want to quit--but I don't know what business to start."
  • "I've worked a bunch of jobs, but want to start my own business."
Are you strugging with:
  • Where should I start?
  • What should I do?
  • I don't know what business idea to choose.
Well, there's a high probability that you're ignoring the gold right in front of you.

I see this all the time from folks who post on the forum.

But: One of the best ways to find & identify opportunities is to look at industries/niches where you ALREADY have experience & expertise.

But: Most new entrepreneurs ignore that, since they want to ditch their day job and its industry.

I get it. The last real job I had was terrible--bad boss who made work super stressful, company turning into a call center, etc. I hated going to work and wished that some magic fairy would hand me a golden ticket to something better.

It took some time to realize that a few of my colleagues had left & were making good money consulting--and that I could do the same. So I left that job, dipped my toe in the consulting water, had no idea how to get clients, but eventually started getting work. For longer than I care to admit, I've been self-employed at it, making 3x-4x more than I'd been making as an employee, with WAY more time freedom. The consulting is a bridge to building a CENTS-based business.

But back when I had that day-job, if I'd ignored my current industry, I'd likely have jumped from job to job, with little to show for it.

So:
  • Your niche-specific experience can be a gold mine, since you ALREADY have some depth of knowledge about it & can likely identify problems that people are willing to pay to have solved. Problems that industry outsiders won't be able to spot.
  • Your path is shorter if you've already worked in the niche.
  • Look at the industries & niches where you ALREADY have work experience & expertise--there are plenty of opportunities there, and you'll have an easier time entering those niches since you've got experience & can talk the talk.
Don't believe me? Post your most random, opportunity-barren niche/industry you've worked in. The tribe here will help you uncover potential opportunities.
 

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broswoodwork

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Devampre

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While I am doing an execution thread doing something new. I am curious if there is something I have overlooked in my current position.

Painter;
  • I've thought about trying to nudge my mom into expanding her painting business
  • I've considered starting my own business (even if it was a related service like wallpaper, although I don't know too many people in the area that request it.)
  • I've thought of a few product ideas pertaining to painting (nothing groundbreaking, but I believe could get some sales.)
Is there anything else I may be overlooking? Should I sell a $997 course on how to start a profitable painting business? ;)
 

Timmy C

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I'm a Chef.

Food deliveries and communications between suppliers and restaurants could be improved, wack delivery times, wrong food being delivered.

Not enough chefs are staffed on and put under alot of pressure as restaurants have such low margins, and they just cut costs while bleeding cash.

Morale of people in the kitchen is generally low due to poor pay and long hours.split shifts etc.

What quick low cost ways could other fastlaners see me leverage these problems.
 
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lunga ngcobo

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Are you:
  • Starting your entrepreneurial journey?
  • Feeling like you haven't YET figured out a way to make money?
Does either of these describe you?
  • "I hate my job & want to quit--but I don't know what business to start."
  • "I've worked a bunch of jobs, but want to start my own business."
Are you strugging with:
  • Where should I start?
  • What should I do?
  • I don't know what business idea to choose.
Well, there's a high probability that you're ignoring the gold right in front of you.

I see this all the time from folks who post on the forum.

But: One of the best ways to find & identify opportunities is to look at industries/niches where you ALREADY have experience & expertise.

But: Most new entrepreneurs ignore that, since they want to ditch their day job and its industry.

I get it. The last real job I had was terrible--bad boss who made work super stressful, company turning into a call center, etc. I hated going to work and wished that some magic fairy would hand me a golden ticket to something better.

It took some time to realize that a few of my colleagues had left & were making good money consulting--and that I could do the same. So I left that job, dipped my toe in the consulting water, had no idea how to get clients, but eventually started getting work. For longer than I care to admit, I've been self-employed at it, making 3x-4x more than I'd been making as an employee, with WAY more time freedom. The consulting is a bridge to building a CENTS-based business.

But back when I had that day-job, if I'd ignored my current industry, I'd likely have jumped from job to job, with little to show for it.

So:
  • Your niche-specific experience can be a gold mine, since you ALREADY have some depth of knowledge about it & can likely identify problems that people are willing to pay to have solved. Problems that industry outsiders won't be able to spot.
  • Your path is shorter if you've already worked in the niche.
  • Look at the industries & niches where you ALREADY have work experience & expertise--there are plenty of opportunities there, and you'll have an easier time entering those niches since you've got experience & can talk the talk.
Don't believe me? Post your most random, opportunity-barren niche/industry you've worked in. The tribe here will help you uncover potential opportunities.
I made that same mistake when i was switching from business to business but not realising that i was already sitting on a gold mine. i had 2 rental properties and never thought to expand it.
I then went to start a detergent business and then a website which both failed.

my turn around was when i posted my thoughts on starting a website, A guy from this forum suggested that i focused on what ever that was aready bringing me income and guess what... it was the bestadvice anyone could have given and now im back on track, making progress on my rental real estate faster than ever. thanks to the forum!!!
 

Davejemmolly

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I'm a Chef.

Food deliveries and communications between suppliers and restaurants could be improved, wack delivery times, wrong food being delivered.

Not enough chefs are staffed on and put under alot of pressure as restaurants have such low margins, and they just cut costs while bleeding cash.

Morale of people in the kitchen is generally low due to poor pay and long hours.split shifts etc.

What quick low cost ways could other fastlaners see me leverage these problems.
Do chefs actually get up at the arse crack of dawn to source fish etc from the markets? Or is that just a thing on celebrity cooking shows?

If chefs actually do that, that seems a no brainer service to offer, particularly if you are a fellow chef with a good eye for quality etc.

Shouldn’t be too hard to source multiple restaurants who would pay for that service.

Of course, it means you getting up stupidly early, but you’re also not finishing service at 11pm!
 

djcoax

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Oh man,

I feel you're describing my exact situation. I'm in cybersecurity and specifically in incident response/forensics meaning I investigate hacked servers/computers to find out what happened and respond to ongoing hacks or things like ransomware outbreaks. I just ended up there , I'm a history major and all I wanted to do while working in cybersecurity was to get out of cybersecurity. So i tried becoming a journalist (no room in the old boys club) , I tried selling wine (extremely low margins and cutthroat competition), tried to set up an online business or three, ... ironically eyeing the greener looking grass around me while ignoring the gold mine I'm sitting on.

I was a regular employee until i turned 40, when I decided to become a contractor. Now I'm earning 15K a month before taxes but still trading time for money. And ironically still trying to look elsewhere.

The reason for that is rooted in a lack of self-esteem. People always said to me I'm a great writer and I should pursue writing. I also convinced myself that cybersec is not for me because I can't really code like a true cybersec consultant should. I'm a generalist, not a specialist.

I'm slowly waking up to the potential mountain of gold I'm sitting on. And like you said, a contractor situation is indeed a bridge to a CENTS-based business.

I always compare my situation with being on a surfboard in the ocean. I desperately want to catch a wave that i see rolling in far on the horizon. So I expend tremendous amounts of energy to go against the currents and try to catch that wave. Everybody who has ever been on a surfboard in the ocean will recognize the overwhelming power of nature in the ocean and its currents. You lose tremendous amounts of energy trying to shoot for goals that are out of reach. Instead of trying to go against the current , you should go with the flow, watch for opportunities close around you and not point to something on the far horizon. That's why I don't like setting long-time goals. Oh , and before I forget, you should learn to enjoy yourself on that surfboard instead of giving in to a pattern of endless frustration.
 

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Fastlane Liam

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1st line Helpdesk here.

My company created this cool portal where you can request software, once approved by the manager it adds to your account and deploys to your machine without any human intervention. Same with new starter accounts etc, sets them up on its own.

Software is assigned to Active Directory groups -> SCCM Deploys the software, so the portal literally just adds an account to a group. Seemless. Always thought it would be a good idea to make myself, but not sure how you would go about getting clients. How do you market something like that
 

Timmy C

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Do chefs actually get up at the arse crack of dawn to source fish etc from the markets? Or is that just a thing on celebrity cooking shows?

If chefs actually do that, that seems a no brainer service to offer, particularly if you are a fellow chef with a good eye for quality etc.

Shouldn’t be too hard to source multiple restaurants who would pay for that service.

Of course, it means you getting up stupidly early, but you’re also not finishing service at 11pm!

That is 100 percent BS tv show glamorised hogwash.

Not a no brainer as companies do this for all restaurants and hotels. hotels and restaurants have a list of suppliers they order from and phone in the order to them direct and gets delivered.

Restaurants have no need to pay for that service what so ever, as food already gets delivered to them.
 
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MTBnamja

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Definitely true for me. I'm a mechanical engineer and worked as a designer for automation equipment and as a manufacturing engineer at a big aerospace company. I'm freelancing now, but there's definitely a lot of potential to make a more scalable business in these, which is the long term goal. One area I've been looking at is ergonomics for manufacturing facilities. It's often tempting for me to try something in a more "fun" space that's been a hobby for me but I don't have as much experience in. Probably best to pick an area where I'm strongest.
 

rollerskates

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Hmmm, I've done government accounting, fast food management, and run a handmade business. If I had been a CPA, MAYBE I could be a contract employee (and I used to pay the freelancers bills, and holy heck, they made a lot). I'm sure there's an untapped gold mine somewhere in my past.

*puts on thinking cap*
 

EnviroAaron

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About to post and intro, and will cover this all in detail there, but try this one...

... I am a consultant environmental scientist specialising in aquatic ecology and water quality.
 

ambrosinibello

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I do sales for an IoT company that's in the smart home security space. Been in home automation for most of my career...So probably would be wise to stay in this lane and turn it into a fastlane...
 

chimichangatime

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Business Systems Analyst in IT / supply chains.

Worked at a Fortune 100 semiconductor company and took a voluntary sep package. Went to a small company that imports millwork from China. Essentially the same job (overseas manufacturing and supply chain management).

I wear 100 hats... mostly, my job is to design software to streamline/automate processes in the supply chain. I sometimes design small-ish apps in Excel/VBA, I am very proficient at SQL, I have a background in usability/human factors design, I've worked in inside sales, factory planning, samples, rebates, fulfillment, and some logistics... basically the entire supply chain except materials/sourcing.

I KNOW I'm sitting on a gold mine with my skills and knowledge, but I'm shit at selling myself, and I'm shit at seeing the gold in front of my face.

After I left the Fortune 100 company, I tried to find clients on Upwork and Guru, and I found a couple small clients, but not enough to pay the bills, so I found my current job.
I was helping small businesses do ETL (extract/transform/load) from one data source to another. For example, Company A has a web store and prints out orders and then manually enters the order info into their accounting software - I bridged the gap using an Excel app to take their XML export and scrub the data then prep a CSV file in the format required by the accounting app. They were drowning in about 80 orders/day and my app turned hours of work into literally three clicks.
I can do that stuff in my sleep. I love helping companies like that! And I could train junior developers and/or hire it out to my standards and get it CENTS-compatible.

I just... have *no idea* how to find clients... and I have no idea what gold may be beating me over the head. Someone once told me, "Chimichangatime, for such a smart guy, you're pretty stupid." :frown:
 

WJK

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Oh man,

I feel you're describing my exact situation. I'm in cybersecurity and specifically in incident response/forensics meaning I investigate hacked servers/computers to find out what happened and respond to ongoing hacks or things like ransomware outbreaks. I just ended up there , I'm a history major and all I wanted to do while working in cybersecurity was to get out of cybersecurity. So i tried becoming a journalist (no room in the old boys club) , I tried selling wine (extremely low margins and cutthroat competition), tried to set up an online business or three, ... ironically eyeing the greener looking grass around me while ignoring the gold mine I'm sitting on.

I was a regular employee until i turned 40, when I decided to become a contractor. Now I'm earning 15K a month before taxes but still trading time for money. And ironically still trying to look elsewhere.

The reason for that is rooted in a lack of self-esteem. People always said to me I'm a great writer and I should pursue writing. I also convinced myself that cybersec is not for me because I can't really code like a true cybersec consultant should. I'm a generalist, not a specialist.

I'm slowly waking up to the potential mountain of gold I'm sitting on. And like you said, a contractor situation is indeed a bridge to a CENTS-based business.

I always compare my situation with being on a surfboard in the ocean. I desperately want to catch a wave that i see rolling in far on the horizon. So I expend tremendous amounts of energy to go against the currents and try to catch that wave. Everybody who has ever been on a surfboard in the ocean will recognize the overwhelming power of nature in the ocean and its currents. You lose tremendous amounts of energy trying to shoot for goals that are out of reach. Instead of trying to go against the current , you should go with the flow, watch for opportunities close around you and not point to something on the far horizon. That's why I don't like setting long-time goals. Oh , and before I forget, you should learn to enjoy yourself on that surfboard instead of giving in to a pattern of endless frustration.
I agree with you. Ride the waves that really take you somewhere rather than chasing long shots. My forte is finding side businesses. I call it my "dribble income". I don't try to make my money from one big business. My main income is from real estate rentals and trust deeds. But, I cobble together a bunch of small gigs that are related to my core business. They are add-ons. First, it's a business model that's a lot less risky. If one fails, I just say "Next". And I try again. Sometimes a business will work for a while and then that rainbow fades out. "Next." Second, I can do the work for these side businesses as I go through my day. Since they are related in nature, it's just activities that are all in a day's work.

Here's an example. I have my mobile home park that houses my rentals. I also have a self-service Laundromat on the property that services my tenants and my community 365 days a year. I have a few full hook-up RV spaces that we keep open for renting out during the summer season. Off-season, people store their summer equipment there. We built a commercial building on the highway. I have an espresso bar in that building in the area where I hold my office hours. And then there are two "sleeping rooms" in the back of the building that I rent out.
And I haven't maxed out the property's potential.

Be aware that this was not an instant success story. We built this up over the last 20 years of working day after day. We invested a lot of cash flow back into the property dollar after dollar. And we have a lot of sweat equity that we have invested to make all this happen. I know that's not the story many of you want to hear, but it is the truth.
 

SamRussell

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Business Systems Analyst in IT / supply chains.

Worked at a Fortune 100 semiconductor company and took a voluntary sep package. Went to a small company that imports millwork from China. Essentially the same job (overseas manufacturing and supply chain management).

I wear 100 hats... mostly, my job is to design software to streamline/automate processes in the supply chain. I sometimes design small-ish apps in Excel/VBA, I am very proficient at SQL, I have a background in usability/human factors design, I've worked in inside sales, factory planning, samples, rebates, fulfillment, and some logistics... basically the entire supply chain except materials/sourcing.

I KNOW I'm sitting on a gold mine with my skills and knowledge, but I'm shit at selling myself, and I'm shit at seeing the gold in front of my face.

After I left the Fortune 100 company, I tried to find clients on Upwork and Guru, and I found a couple small clients, but not enough to pay the bills, so I found my current job.


I can do that stuff in my sleep. I love helping companies like that! And I could train junior developers and/or hire it out to my standards and get it CENTS-compatible.

I just... have *no idea* how to find clients... and I have no idea what gold may be beating me over the head. Someone once told me, "Chimichangatime, for such a smart guy, you're pretty stupid." :frown:
Don't beat yourself up over it.

Finding clients is a skill... it's just something that you have to work on and figure out.

Figure out exactly the type of company / person you would help
Then find 20 companies that match the description
Figure out who it is you need to talk to in those companies
Approach them
 

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Walter Hay

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I am a Realtor specializing in rentals and sales in my geographical area. All ideas are welcome.
There is a crying need for someone to convince (teach?) junior property managers how to list a rental property in an attractive way. Maybe you could write a mini book, maybe visit agencies for a quick tutorial.

Most have no idea, and even if they did, they won't make the effort to list a rental in the same way they would a property for sale. If they did so, that could generate more viewings, with less time wasted on people wondering what the property was really like.

Walter
 

Walter Hay

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Definitely true for me. I'm a mechanical engineer and worked as a designer for automation equipment and as a manufacturing engineer at a big aerospace company. I'm freelancing now, but there's definitely a lot of potential to make a more scalable business in these, which is the long term goal. One area I've been looking at is ergonomics for manufacturing facilities. It's often tempting for me to try something in a more "fun" space that's been a hobby for me but I don't have as much experience in. Probably best to pick an area where I'm strongest.
With your qualifications and experience you could become an industrial troubleshooter. I spent 20 years visiting factories offering to solve manufacturing problems. My goal was to solve the problem by producing my own custom formulated chemical product.

That worked well because I targeted manufacturers in industries where I knew there were problems that I could solve. An interesting side issue was that I often saw a solution that required an engineering fix, not chemical. Even without training in engineering, my fresh eyes could see solutions to problems that those close up couldn't see.

I didn't charge to provide engineering solutions but it did wonders for my reputation, and I was constantly getting calls for help from all over the country and even internationally.

Walter
 

Walter Hay

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Hmmm, I've done government accounting, fast food management, and run a handmade business. If I had been a CPA, MAYBE I could be a contract employee (and I used to pay the freelancers bills, and holy heck, they made a lot). I'm sure there's an untapped gold mine somewhere in my past.

*puts on thinking cap*
Try offering your services to CPAs to handle overflow jobs with short deadlines. That should be very well paid.

Walter
 

Andy Black

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Are you:
  • Starting your entrepreneurial journey?
  • Feeling like you haven't YET figured out a way to make money?
Does either of these describe you?
  • "I hate my job & want to quit--but I don't know what business to start."
  • "I've worked a bunch of jobs, but want to start my own business."
Are you strugging with:
  • Where should I start?
  • What should I do?
  • I don't know what business idea to choose.
Well, there's a high probability that you're ignoring the gold right in front of you.

I see this all the time from folks who post on the forum.

But: One of the best ways to find & identify opportunities is to look at industries/niches where you ALREADY have experience & expertise.

But: Most new entrepreneurs ignore that, since they want to ditch their day job and its industry.

I get it. The last real job I had was terrible--bad boss who made work super stressful, company turning into a call center, etc. I hated going to work and wished that some magic fairy would hand me a golden ticket to something better.

It took some time to realize that a few of my colleagues had left & were making good money consulting--and that I could do the same. So I left that job, dipped my toe in the consulting water, had no idea how to get clients, but eventually started getting work. For longer than I care to admit, I've been self-employed at it, making 3x-4x more than I'd been making as an employee, with WAY more time freedom. The consulting is a bridge to building a CENTS-based business.

But back when I had that day-job, if I'd ignored my current industry, I'd likely have jumped from job to job, with little to show for it.

So:
  • Your niche-specific experience can be a gold mine, since you ALREADY have some depth of knowledge about it & can likely identify problems that people are willing to pay to have solved. Problems that industry outsiders won't be able to spot.
  • Your path is shorter if you've already worked in the niche.
  • Look at the industries & niches where you ALREADY have work experience & expertise--there are plenty of opportunities there, and you'll have an easier time entering those niches since you've got experience & can talk the talk.
Don't believe me? Post your most random, opportunity-barren niche/industry you've worked in. The tribe here will help you uncover potential opportunities.
100% agree.

“Grow what you know.”

My play has been to move from employee (IT) to contractor (IT) to employee (Google Ads) to contractor (Google Ads) to small agency to productised services to ways of divorcing my earnings from my time (a course and an email newsletter).


This may help:
 

LittleWolfie

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OK, I will play

1)Large numbers of unemployed people on welfare who want to be able to obtain a living wage in a way that avoids benefits being sanctioned in the meantime.

Go.

2) manual labour work of a sporadic nature
 

MTBnamja

New Contributor
Jul 4, 2019
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With your qualifications and experience you could become an industrial troubleshooter. I spent 20 years visiting factories offering to solve manufacturing problems. My goal was to solve the problem by producing my own custom formulated chemical product.

That worked well because I targeted manufacturers in industries where I knew there were problems that I could solve. An interesting side issue was that I often saw a solution that required an engineering fix, not chemical. Even without training in engineering, my fresh eyes could see solutions to problems that those close up couldn't see.

I didn't charge to provide engineering solutions but it did wonders for my reputation, and I was constantly getting calls for help from all over the country and even internationally.

Walter
This would be a great next step for me. I'm currently doing the remote work thing overseas, but once I move home I think there would be plenty of opportunity to expand into this area.

I actually did a decent amount of this at my first job... travelling to different manufacturing facilities and improving or fixing their machines. I actually enjoyed it a lot and there was a lot of variety.

Thanks for the great advice!
 

Rawseed

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I am a Realtor specializing in rentals and sales in my geographical area.
Consider helping people convert their unused space into short-term rentals.

There's a show about this called Cash Pad.


Your clients can increase their cash flow and increase their property value by doing this.

You can connect your clients with local approved contractors, interior decorators, cleaning services, photographers, bookkeepers, accountants, and marketing services for their short-term rentals.

You would be the local expert at helping people add short-term rentals to their homes. Or buy/sell properties where you can easily add on a short-term rental.

Interested in short-term rental income? Call @Dianne Cohen
 

Jaden Jones

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While I am doing an execution thread doing something new. I am curious if there is something I have overlooked in my current position.

Painter;
  • I've thought about trying to nudge my mom into expanding her painting business
  • I've considered starting my own business (even if it was a related service like wallpaper, although I don't know too many people in the area that request it.)
  • I've thought of a few product ideas pertaining to painting (nothing groundbreaking, but I believe could get some sales.)
Is there anything else I may be overlooking? Should I sell a $997 course on how to start a profitable painting business? ;)
Youtube videos showing how to paint
Run homepainting courses (in a home that you have been contracted to paint)
Join a local real estate investing group and sell tenant turn over packages to landlords
Find others painters you can subcontract and run a "paint a whole house in one day" campaign
 

broswoodwork

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Read about that in Unscripted. Personally, we use garbage bags to cover our paint supplies. My product ideas are focused in a different area than cover, however it is inspirational.
Here's one I meant to post in your other thread a few days ago: white washing outdated builder's cabinets.


The guys I see offering this service by itself on Facebook can't increase their prices fast enough, or book out far enough, to keep up with demand.
 

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