The Entrepreneur Forum | Financial Freedom | Starting a Business | Motivation | Money | Success

Describe your first sale as an entrepreneur!

Learn how to build wealth and win financial freedom the Fastlane way!

Say "NO" to mediocre living rife with jobs, ascetic frugality, and suffocating savings rituals— learn how to build a Fastlane business that pays both freedom and lifestyle affluence. Join more than 70,000 entrepreneurs who are making it happen.
Join for FREE Today
Get the books
Remove ads? Join Fastlane INSIDERS
(Registration removes this block)
A detailed account of a Fastlane process...

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
What’s the story of your first sale?
- I was actually not looking to sell anything at all! I found a product only which was essentially small piece of aluminum with some engraving on it. And it cost $39! I figured I could design it myself and 3D print it for much cheaper. And so I did.

I then posted a picture of it on a Facebook group and people LOVED it and they all wanted one! That's when I started making and selling them to people in the Facebook group. The profit margin was massive! It cost my less than a dollar of material to print it and I was selling it for $20 a pop. It was still half the price of the aluminum one that I found online. The customers were happy and I was happy.

How did you feel in that moment?
- This can actually happen! I can actually think of something in my head, bring it to life, present it to people, and get them to buy it!

What changed from that moment onwards?
- I knew I couldn't sell that product forever. It was pretty lucrative while it lasted however it was meant for an extremely niche audience and it wasn't a consumable. Eventually, everyone that wanted one, got one.

What has it lead to?
- I have designed and manufactured several other products since then and I'm currently in the testing phase. These are targeted towards a much larger audience and will hopefully be a huge hit!

In hindsight:

What would you have done LESS of?
- Procrastination

What would you have done MORE of?
- Advertisement

What one piece of advice would you give someone about making that first sale?
- Learn how to talk to people without sounding like a desperate car salesman.
Great story, thanks for sharing.

I’ve never really considered how people can make something with 3D printers and sell them.

Wondering how you could create a monthly subscription out of it... Can you create and sell small figures as collectibles for example?


I’m curious. What did procrastination look like for you? Was it doing nothing, or was it doing busy work?

Rep+
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

theOfficialRJ

Contributor
Dec 31, 2017
28
49
26
Canada
Great story, thanks for sharing.

I’ve never really considered how people can make something with 3D printers and sell them.

Wondering how you could create a monthly subscription out of it... Can you create and sell small figures as collectibles for example?


I’m curious. What did procrastination look like for you? Was it doing nothing, or was it doing busy work?

Rep+

The traditional way of selling 3D prints is to print collectibles, cosplay items, video game/movie props; and put them for sale and if your prints are higher quality than the competition and/or lower priced, then you will get the sale. Most of the time, people buy the designs off of other people and simply print them and put them up for sale.I actually taught myself how to design. The market is so saturated at this point that it is a race to the bottom and definitely not beginner friendly.

There are still ways to make money from 3D printing but you have to get creative. The way I do it (and I may be giving away too much here) is I look for items that are NOT 3D printed but can be. Most of the time it's metal or wood items that would be way easier to manufacture through 3D printing. The product I described earlier was a car part mant for a very specific car. The products I'm currently working on are motorcycle parts. In order to not repeat my previous mistake, I'm designing them to fit most if not all motorcycles. That way I can market to a much larger audience.

Monthly subscriptions - I've never thought of that before! It's an interesting idea and I will start brainstorming ways to make it work.

Procrastination for me was when I hit a plateau and didn't know what to do. I was no longer getting any orders and I didn't have ideas for a new product. So I just sat in front of my computer Googling.

In fact, I'm at that point right now with my current projects. There are some technical problems that I've been contemplating for weeks and I'm having a hard time coming up with solutions. In my particular case when this happens I tend to put off solving the problem. I open up Netflix or YouTube and end up wasting lots of time.
 
Last edited:

sparechange

Platinum Contributor
Speedway Pass
Nov 11, 2016
2,805
4,342
Canada (Vancouver)
constantly played with paper sheets at work writing down how many closes i need to equal my salary

shortly fired after ironically lol, after being a freeman i thought **** it, lets go knock on some doors.

first door rejection, second door rejection on and on, eventually got a close for 2 hours wage on a handshake (grass cutting)

i didnt even have a lawnmower, so bought one the next day finished the job.

it was liberating that i could randomly knock on doors and make money, oops the first one technically was shoveling snow in the winter, but the same concept applies. i remember being at work shovelling snow and thinking to myself, bet i could make more money on my own than getting paid to shovel for an hourly wage...wtf am i doing?

ive learned that you *can* create something from nothing, which is preached around here, sure having big million dollar investors is nice but its not really necessary

what would i have done less of? less procrastination surely, and do more advertising.

the advice id share with a total noob is simple.

get started RIGHT AWAY

the first business you start up will suck, you will be horrible at it and most likely fail because you have no experience, EMBRACE being horrible in your first business and LEARN how to get better.

the reason why there is a gap of the 99% & 1% is because 1% of people are better at building income streams & businesses. i strongly believe that we are all equal as people and no one has advantages as long as you are living in the modern world with average intelligence.

whats the difference between the poor & rich? 2 different completely opposite mindsets.

go go go and fail away, like MJ said, if you step up to the plate and swing eventually you can hit a homerun
 

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
Monthly subscriptions - I've never thought of subscriptions before! It’s an interesting idea and I will start brainstorming ways to make it work.
“The Automatic Customer” is a great book.

It wasn’t till I read it that I realised I’d created a subscription business myself.


Just wondering out loud. A couple of decades ago I used to work for a company that made collectible ornaments and mementos. Lilliput Lane I think they were called, or maybe that was one of the brands.

They had loads of people employed hand-painting the items.

Cherished Teddies were super popular. Kids and adults used to collect them.
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
constantly played with paper sheets at work writing down how many closes i need to equal my salary

shortly fired after ironically lol, after being a freeman i thought **** it, lets go knock on some doors.

first door rejection, second door rejection on and on, eventually got a close for 2 hours wage on a handshake (grass cutting)

i didnt even have a lawnmower, so bought one the next day finished the job.

it was liberating that i could randomly knock on doors and make money, oops the first one technically was shoveling snow in the winter, but the same concept applies. i remember being at work shovelling snow and thinking to myself, bet i could make more money on my own than getting paid to shovel for an hourly wage...wtf am i doing?

ive learned that you *can* create something from nothing, which is preached around here, sure having big million dollar investors is nice but its not really necessary

what would i have done less of? less procrastination surely, and do more advertising.

the advice id share with a total noob is simple.

get started RIGHT AWAY

the first business you start up will suck, you will be horrible at it and most likely fail because you have no experience, EMBRACE being horrible in your first business and LEARN how to get better.

the reason why there is a gap of the 99% & 1% is because 1% of people are better at building income streams & businesses. i strongly believe that we are all equal as people and no one has advantages as long as you are living in the modern world with average intelligence.

whats the difference between the poor & rich? 2 different completely opposite mindsets.

go go go and fail away, like MJ said, if you step up to the plate and swing eventually you can hit a homerun
Love this. Just start ffs.

No lawnmower? No problem. Not until we’ve made a sale and have to mow a lawn. Perfect.

Agreed. It’s super liberating to know you can go out there and *earn* money off your own back.

Thanks for sharing a great story.

Rep+
 

rpeck90

Gold Contributor
Speedway Pass
Nov 26, 2016
263
1,179
31
United Kingdom
This isn't a "sale" but it might inspire some people.

When I was ~15, I had a website selling "extreme sports" equipment. Since I was at an age where one starts to get interested in girls, I had started looking at porn etc... but this was a time even before YouTube was a thing and "porn" galleries were the way you'd find "new material".

One day, I found a gallery of "Nextdoor Nikki" and started looking at her website. At the bottom of the page, I saw an "affiliate" link, which I clicked. It took me to this site CCBill which had about 10 different "non nude" girls on there. Intrigued, I thought... "damn I can get all these galleries for free" - maybe I can make money as an affiliate.

So I made a simple script to put them on my site:
Untitled.png
All I had to do was put the images in a directory, add some keywords and the script would do the rest.

Thinking nothing of it, I left it whilst I did my exams. Unbeknownst to me, I was rudely awoken by my mother about 2 weeks after setting up the site. She had a letter in her hand from CCBill - a cheque for $31.

Some guy had paid for membership through my link :)
 

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
This isn't a "sale" but it might inspire some people.

When I was ~15, I had a website selling "extreme sports" equipment. Since I was at an age where one starts to get interested in girls, I had started looking at porn etc... but this was a time even before YouTube was a thing and "porn" galleries were the way you'd find "new material".

One day, I found a gallery of "Nextdoor Nikki" and started looking at her website. At the bottom of the page, I saw an "affiliate" link, which I clicked. It took me to this site CCBill which had about 10 different "non nude" girls on there. Intrigued, I thought... "damn I can get all these galleries for free" - maybe I can make money as an affiliate.

So I made a simple script to put them on my site:
View attachment 20083
All I had to do was put the images in a directory, add some keywords and the script would do the rest.

Thinking nothing of it, I left it whilst I did my exams. Unbeknownst to me, I was rudely awoken by my mother about 2 weeks after setting up the site. She had a letter in her hand from CCBill - a cheque for $31.

Some guy had paid for membership through my link :)
Haha. How did you explain that one?
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

sparechange

Platinum Contributor
Speedway Pass
Nov 11, 2016
2,805
4,342
Canada (Vancouver)
I nominate
@Andy Black
@MJ DeMarco to share, im aware of when MJ told the story when he was living in a small apartment building limos.com although was that the very first thing? ill need to get TMF again for a refresher

wouldnt mind hearing, (or reading) it again! =)
 

Ikke

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Jul 20, 2012
226
220
Netherlands
Cool topic :smile:

My story goes like this:
One of the first things I remembered selling was spindles of empty dvd´s on which you could burn files. I wanted a set, but it was cheaper to buy in bulk. I went around on school asking fellow scholars if they also wanted to buy a spindle because it would be cheaper if we all made a single bulk buy. I priced the spindles with a small discount so that when the group would be large enough, I would be able to get my spindle for free. I found enough people who committed to buying before I purchased the spindels. Without knowing it or risking anything I created value out of thin air.

My second first sale which has led to many more sales was a bit different. I posted on a forum about something I made for myself. Someone also wanted to have this item.
And one sale led to many more.
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Jfinley

About Time You Showed Up!
Read Unscripted!
Mar 16, 2016
45
77
39
Austin, Texas
My first sale came from MLM with a company called Janglefish in 2002. We sold music subscriptions to offset Napster deregulations. I remember building a website using HTML the long way and creating a link to a free music download. It took 3 months to create the site and a other 2 months to get my first sale.

Needless to say, people weren't buying music when they could get it for free.

That was my first taste at making money online. It was only $3.25 but it was monthly. Sadly I only got one check and the company closed but it sparked a love for making websites and creating software systems to manage online businesses.

Today, that's my skillset. Although I haven't made much since then (long sigh) I have gained skills people will pay for: web design, email campaign design and so much more.

Man, I'm a old geezer in IM years...lol
 

theOfficialRJ

Contributor
Dec 31, 2017
28
49
26
Canada
“The Automatic Customer” is a great book.

It wasn’t till I read it that I realised I’d created a subscription business myself.


Just wondering out loud. A couple of decades ago I used to work for a company that made collectible ornaments and mementos. Lilliput Lane I think they were called, or maybe that was one of the brands.

They had loads of people employed hand-painting the items.

Cherished Teddies were super popular. Kids and adults used to collect them.

Thanks! I'll be sure to check out the book!
 

eliquid

( Jason Brown )
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
May 29, 2013
1,733
8,780
Louisville - Kentucky
1. I was in middle school, so around 6th grade when I was like 10 or 11. Maybe 12.

I had a collection of baseball cards and learned I could sell or trade off the ones I didn't want and get money for the ones I did want. Sometimes trading 3 or 4 for the one card I wanted. As I grew a collection of doubles and triples of the more valuable cards, I would sell them off and make more money.

Once the other kids in school seen what I was doing, I had competition. So I moved into hockey, basketball, football and other cards. Then I had to move into comics just to stay ahead and be the first mover.

At some point, I let the sheep that wanted to copy me fight over the comics and cards and I moved into selling candy and coke.

I wasn't mature enough to really have a feeling over it. I was just glad to be buying more cards and buying myself some Rally's burgers and fries after school. But it was a good feeling to have.


2. After that, my first sale as an adult was in the adult space as well like @rpeck90. I was on dial up internet and looking to make a mens health website back in the mid-90's.

I ended learning about adult websites and how they were on the cutting edge of online marketing and web tech. So I went in building sites for others, building my own and becoming an affiliate. I made my first money there with like $100 on some AVG/TGP/MGP/Linklist type sites.

This was around mid 1996. I was pretty damn pumped about it and realized I could make a living online working for others, but also for myself. It was really liberating knowing I could work from home.

I didn't have a lot of success in adult, but it got me excited and pushing forward with learning more.

I quickly taught myself how to program ( I was just building sites back then ) and how to do marketing online and moved into mainstream non-adult afterwards.


3. I used the skills I learned from above to land a job working for an affiliate network ( non-adult ) and pushing them from a few hundred thousand in revenue, to over $40MM the year after I joined as their internal affiliate. This was in 2007 when I was 29..

I was promptly laid off due to some VC money that made internal changes to the company and found myself without income. I decided to put my skills back to good use and ended up turning a $1300 investment from a credit card into 7-figures NET in less than 6 months time.

It was the highest high I ever had in my life at that time. I was on top of the world and free. A sense of deep calm swept over me. The knowing I had time and freedom really hit me. The security and peace of mind it brought is something that is like no other.

It took about 6-7 years from 1st offline sale to 1st online sale, then another 11 years from 1st online sale to 1st million.

Everyone else saw it as an overnight success.

I saw it as decades in the making.

No matter what, its been the best feeling ever.

I don't have my first dollar or first affiliate check hanging on the wall, but I do have my 1st Google Adsense check I ever got. I look at it sometimes and remember the struggle I had just to get that. It still brings a warm fuzzy feeling to me.

.
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.
Last edited:

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
1. I was in middle school, so around 6th grade when I was like 10 or 11. Maybe 12.

I had a collection of baseball cards and learned I could sell or trade off the ones I didn't want and get money for the ones I did want. Sometimes trading 3 or 4 for the one card I wanted. As I grew a collection of doubles and triples of the more valuable cards, I would sell them off and make more money.

Once the other kids in school seen what I was doing, I had competition. So I moved into hockey, basketball, football and other cards. Then I had to move into comics just to stay ahead and be the first mover.

At some point, I let the sheep that wanted to copy me fight over the comics and cards and I moved into selling candy and coke.

I wasn't mature enough to really have a feeling over it. I was just glad to be buying more cards and buying myself some Rally's burgers and fries after school. But it was a good feeling to have.


2. After that, my first sale as an adult was in the adult space as well like @rpeck90. I was on dial up internet and looking to make a mens health website back in the mid-90's.

I ended learning about adult websites and how they were on the cutting edge of online marketing and web tech. So I went in building sites for others, building my own and becoming an affiliate. I made my first money there with like $100 on some AVG/TGP/MGP/Linklist type sites.

This was around mid 1996. I was pretty damn pumped about it and realized I could make a living online working for others, but also for myself. It was really liberating knowing I could work from home.

I didn't have a lot of success in adult, but it got me excited and pushing forward with learning more.

I quickly taught myself how to program ( I was just building sites back then ) and how to do marketing online and moved into mainstream non-adult afterwards.


3. I used the skills I learned from above to land a job working for an affiliate network ( non-adult ) and pushing them from a few hundred thousand in revenue, to over $40MM the year after I joined as their internal affiliate. This was in 2007 when I was 29..

I was promptly laid off due to some VC money that made internal changes to the company and found myself without income. I decided to put my skills back to good use and ended up turning a $1300 investment from a credit card into 7-figures NET in less than 6 months time.

It was the highest high I ever had in my life at that time. I was on top of the world and free. A sense of deep calm swept over me. The knowing I had time and freedom really hit me. The security and peace of mind it brought is something that is like no other.

It took about 6-7 years from 1st offline sale to 1st online sale, then another 11 years from 1st online sale to 1st million.

Everyone else saw it as an overnight success.

I saw it as decades in the making.

No matter what, its been the best feeling ever.

I don't have my first dollar or first affiliate check hanging on the wall, but I do have my 1st Google Adsense check I ever got. I look at it sometimes and remember the struggle I had just to get that. It still brings a warm fuzzy feeling to me.

.
Great story Jason! Thanks for sharing. Rep+

Loved this bit especially:

“A sense of deep calm swept over me. The knowing I had time and freedom really hit me. The security and peace of mind it brought is something that is like no other.“
 

malphax5

New Contributor
Feb 16, 2018
12
14
32
USA
I have 2 first 'milestone sales, one offline and one online.

Offline:
When I was 6 years old I was selling music cassettes at the door of my house. We really had a lot of music cassettes at our house, but I wanted to get rid of them. One day my parents were out working and my grandmother came to keep an eye on me. I installed my little shop: one little table, a little chair and a cassette player. Played the music cassettes out loud and waited for people to pass by.
I wasn't sold out, but I sold a handful of cassettes. These sales were more a results of me being a little kid than anything else, but hey I sold something :)

Online:
2017 was my real milestone year. [/Began my first online store (shopify) and within the first days, when I even didn't expected it, I heard the famous 'sold alert' on my phone. From that moment I'm so addicted to that noice haha. One day I will have to put it out, but then I know I'm doing something right :p.]
What do you sell?
 

Thomas Baptiste

Guide Yourself!
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Jun 8, 2018
163
262
Commonwealth of Dominica
Unrelated to what I'm trying to achieve/do right now, my first sale was actually in 2016. I got employed as a graphic designer for the government of my country for two months.

I no longer work with them, but two months ago I got approached by them to produce some flyers for an event. It was my first pair job as a freelance designer. Quickly found out that graphic designing is fun but not fastlane at all.
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Bhanu

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Oct 23, 2017
156
278
35
What’s the story of your first sale?

How did you feel in that moment?

What changed from that moment onwards?


It was Sept 2016 .

I read TMF around Jan 2016 . That book just changed my world view up side down . I was able to think more clearly on what I want to do in my life . Though I was already working in a company (and by all standard will be considered living decently) .But something inside me was not happy ,I wanted more from my life .Thanks to my reading habit I found a blog called Bold and Determined and from there I came to know about TMF .

After reading the book I decided that I will also start a CENTS business.

Around March 2016 I planned and decided to start a business in Education field .I worked all 7-8 months and created exam preparation material.
Exam was to be conducted on 20 Sept 2016. I launched my product on 7 Sept 2016 .(It gave me just 13 Days for marketing and putting out my content )
At that time I was in two mind if I should go ahead and launch my product (as 13 days were remaining) .Still I decided to launch the material .
I did not earn much from my first attempt (2500 Rupees I think) .But I will never forget the feeling I had when my mobile beeped with a message of first purchase .I am going to remember this all my life .I felt ecstatic and proud . I was happy that something I created is being used by someone in my country and impacting his his/her life .
From then on it has been my constant endeavor to make changes, upgrades on my product as per customer need. I am not financially free as yet but I firmly believe that it is not a matter of 'if' but a matter of 'when'.

What has it lead to?

I am still working on my product and updating it as per the customer needs. Though sell is still low I think with proper marketing I can increase it a lot.

I am doing my business along with my job (Side Hustle).I aim to leave my Job when I feel I can earn enough to sustain my family.
It has also given me confidence that I can succeed and live life on my own terms.


In hindsight:


What would you have done LESS of?

Procrastination, Self-doubt, looking at competition rather than focusing on my product,


What would you have done MORE of?

More marketing, more focused work. Proper sleep.
 

heysander

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Apr 1, 2018
27
28
36
The Netherlands
The first sale for our latest brand was in Januari 2017, via an email bomb to all kinds of art stores. After reading the millionair fastlane, we quit our branding agency and decided to launch our own brand.

We created a brand that produces stencils and it's a niche thing for the paint/artist market. We knew this market from our own experience and knew the product we wanted to make was something that would sell (gut feeling).

Our first sale was to a big e-commerce store, that also did b2b distribution. We made the deal after my first email all via emailing back and forth. They wanted a better price, so they could offer our product also in their distribution section.
It was kind of scary and we did a lot of calculations, to see if we still earned enough profit per unit sold.

Fortunately my uncle trades in packaging materials and knows a lot about making deals and I got a lot of basic knowledge from him, that prevented us making beginner mistakes. We got a good deal and they order thousands of Euro's a quarter. Also we see our products popping up in a lot of different stores around the worlds from this distributors customer base.

From this experience I learned that the first emails to sell a product in which you put your heart and soul to develop are scary. Especially, because you're afraid for the negative feedback which you could get. After a positive feedback, knowing the product is solid, we got bolder and more aggressive with selling. I really developed my sales skilles since :)
 

Gepi

In it to win it
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Jul 3, 2018
154
206
Germany
Hi there,
Great thread and thanks to all for sharing! I love reading those motivationals, complete with bumps in the road and backfires and what not.

"What’s the story of your first sale?"
My first sale was when I was still working at the goldsmithys where I learned that particular trade, a few years ago.
We needed certain 3D models for printing and casting, and our guy who did this was super slow and had probably a bunch of other things on the table. So I called him one day and asked what program he used, and how he would go about it. He was totally open and answered my questions. In hindsight, this was maybe not the best move from him. Because I took his advice and teached all of this myself. So after some time I walked to my boss and said: "I will do this. Give the work to me." And so he did. At first, there were little things for like 30€. But after some time I created stuff for 200€. That was so great. And now I also learned that the 3D guy before me had been very clever, because he helped me with something he probably did not have so much time for and now I am frequently ordering the finished castings from him.

"How did you feel in that moment?"
Just great. Knowing that I myself had the power to just sit down, learn and do valuable service for a person paying me was priceless. That this person was then my boss made it extra-cool, because I sold it to him outside of our regular contract.

"What changed from that moment onwards?"
I became hooked. Always someone who did not really know what to do with her life I suddenly realized that I could change my circumstances if I only put the effort into it.
My partner helped me immensely, though. He supported me in the first months when I barely made a profit, and still helps a great deal.

"What has it lead to?"
Me training like crazy, and setting up a freelancer design studio for 3D-printing and modeling specialized on jewelry one year ago.

And then, my first sale totally on my own: I just walked into a store, said 'hi' and explained what I offered. It also helped that I printed out some business cards and had my portfolio ready on my phone. The owner needed something done, and I did. That money felt even better.

"In hindsight:

What would you have done LESS of?"
I shouldn't have worried so much. Talk about overthinking. I also shouldn't have tried to sell so much to many others and instead should have focused more on finding out what those others needed exactly. Sometimes I was too aggressive, sometimes too shy. But...yeah, getting there. Also I didn't know so much about all this, and I only read TFM two weeks ago.

"What would you have done MORE of?"
Investing in my own personal growth,
marketing, setting clearer goals and reviewing them more often, focusing on the important points instead of trying to do everything at once.

"What one piece of advice would you give someone about making that first sale?"
Go for it. If you don't try, you'll never know. Plan-do-check-act.

Oh, and if you want to have a look at what I do, this is my portfolio: Phialo Design

Greetings and thanks for the great questions :)
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.
Last edited:

LittleWolfie

Silver Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Jun 28, 2018
961
519
Holbeach Hurn
When I get one I will.

As promised. I sold a story about an intelligent dinosaur.I'm no J.K.Rowling, just a $2 dollars given to charity in my name as not worth the hassle of doing Non Resident Alien tax form on it.

The nice thing about fiction, is that it lets me write with whatever tone, I like. In fiction there is never a can't, because you can just sprout wings and fly over the lake blocking your path, if you don't feel like growing gills.
 

Fotis

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Feb 26, 2014
134
277
33
Digital products count, right?

I had created a facebook group and shared insights on hypertrophy and strength training. The members liked them (we didn't have "love" and "haha" reactions back then...)

Then, I remember reading "Rework" and saying myself "Hey, you've already written a lot in this Facebook group. Why not package it into a nice pdf, give away 3 training programs and sell it?"

I wrote it in a day or two.

I decided to keep the price super cheap (I jokingly wrote in the copy "you can get it for the price of one souvlaki - 2 euros)...

...uploaded it on my website...

...and in a few hours, I had my first, second, third, fourth and fifth sale.
 

Big_Benny

Contributor
Feb 25, 2018
14
28
Australia
My first sale was about 20 years ago at the age of 11.

I used to wash my Dad's car for 50c (because that's all he could afford) and I remember saying to myself "this is going to take forever to become a millionaire" So I knocked on my neighbour's front door and said "Hello there, could I please wash your car?" and they said "no!" I remember feeling kicked in the guts, but i jumped back on my horse and knocked on the next door and warmly welcomed by a "yes of course young man"

I started charging $4 (which was an 800% increase) as a bit of reverse psychology because $4 was only coins and not a $5 bill. My technique worked well, because people usually paid me $5 because they felt guilty giving me coins. I soon realised the market would only pay $6 for a wash (on occasion $10) but it was flawed as it was difficult to scale as a sole trading 12 year old.

One customer was selling their car and asked if I could vacuum the inside and polish it. Obviously this was an excellent opportunity and much easy to scale. I changed my business model and primarily focused on complete details which I charged $35 and only took twice as long (in effect a 3500% increased income on my time). Within 12 months I had a little black book full of 50+ clients scheduled with repeat business (some weekly, some fortnightly, others monthly or as required).

In the beginning, customers would just pay for a car wash, but I used to clean their windows and put tyre shine on their wheels too. This ultimately skewed value and added more value to my customer's lives. From my experience, this was the biggest driver in the success of my business (giving customers more than they pay for and more than they expect). It built loyalty, trust and paid dividends.

Then a few years on, when we were too young to purchase liquor, I started to manufacture and distribute home brew beer and cider but that's a whole other story.

I can honestly say that there's no feeling quite like solving people's problems, thrilled customers, referrals and repeat customers because they love what you offer.

Cheers
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.
Last edited:

Andrew J.

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Jan 21, 2017
35
62
34
GREECE
My first real sale happened just one month before.

For 19 months I am building a blog that offers dating advice and additionally have written a book whit all my knowledge on the topic.

At first, only a few friends bought my book so it felt like cheating. These sales don't count really.

Surprisingly, I saw the reports one month before and observed 4 new books sold! The first 4 books that strangers bought, real customers!

I jumped from excitement from my desk, ran to the other room, where my wife was sleeping and woke her up!

This step may be small, but for the first time in my life I created a product and sold it online. And the most amazing part of the story is that I made the sales out of the blue. Someone visited my website, liked my content and bought my book while I was doing something different.
 

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
My first sale was about 20 years ago at the age of 11.

I used to wash my Dad's car for 50c (because that's all he could afford) and I remember saying to myself "this is going to take forever to become a millionaire" So I knocked on my neighbour's front door and said "Hello there, could I please wash your car?" and they said "no!" I remember feeling kicked in the guts, but i jumped back on my horse and knocked on the next door and warmly welcomed by a "yes of course young man"

I started charging $4 (which was an 800% increase) as a bit of reverse psychology because $4 was only coins and not a $5 bill. My technique worked well, because people usually paid me $5 because they felt guilty giving me coins. I soon realised the market would only pay $6 for a wash (on occasion $10) but it was flawed as it was difficult to scale as a sole trading 12 year old.

One customer was selling their car and asked if I could vacuum the inside and polish it. Obviously this was an excellent opportunity and much easy to scale. I changed my business model and primarily focused on complete details which I charged $35 and only took twice as long (in effect a 3500% increased income on my time). Within 12 months I had a little black book full of 50+ clients scheduled with repeat business (some weekly, some fortnightly, others monthly or as required).

In the beginning, customers would just pay for a car wash, but I used to clean their windows and put tyre shine on their wheels too. This ultimately skewed value and added more value to my customer's lives. From my experience, this was the biggest driver in the success of my business (giving customers more than they pay for and more than they expect). It built loyalty, trust and paid dividends.

Then a few years on, when we were too young to purchase liquor, I started to manufacture and distribute home brew beer and cider but that's a whole other story.

I can honestly say that there's no feeling quite like solving people's problems, thrilled customers, referrals and repeat customers because they love what you offer.

Cheers
LOVE this story.

So at 11 years of age you started with someone you knew (your dad) and slapped a price on it (50c).

You then started charging $4 and found people paid $5 because they felt guilty about paying in coins.

Then you added more value and found you could charge more?


I'm curious... what books did you read, and what courses did you take to figure that out?

... or did you just start?
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland
My first real sale happened just one month before.

For 19 months I am building a blog that offers dating advice and additionally have written a book whit all my knowledge on the topic.

At first, only a few friends bought my book so it felt like cheating. These sales don't count really.

Surprisingly, I saw the reports one month before and observed 4 new books sold! The first 4 books that strangers bought, real customers!

I jumped from excitement from my desk, ran to the other room, where my wife was sleeping and woke her up!

This step may be small, but for the first time in my life I created a product and sold it online. And the most amazing part of the story is that I made the sales out of the blue. Someone visited my website, liked my content and bought my book while I was doing something different.
I love this too. Those small initial sales truly are exciting enough to wake someone up!
 

Big_Benny

Contributor
Feb 25, 2018
14
28
Australia
LOVE this story.

So at 11 years of age you started with someone you knew (your dad) and slapped a price on it (50c).

You then started charging $4 and found people paid $5 because they felt guilty about paying in coins.

Then you added more value and found you could charge more?


I'm curious... what books did you read, and what courses did you take to figure that out?

... or did you just start?

Hi there Andy Black - thanks for your comments and questions.

Essentially it all started with a book which was given to my dad by a friend of his. This friend (Rex) used to be the janitor in a mental institution in the 1950s and 60s. In his mid 30s he bought a book called 'The Magic of Thinking Big'. Long story short, Rex is now 88 years old. He's had an incredible life and worth more than $100 million.

Up until the age of 27 I'd only ever read 1 book because of my dyslexia. It's the exact book Rex purchased all those years ago and it's been in my bedside table since I was 11 years old (I've attached a photo).

After reading the book, It made me believe in myself. At the age of 11 I had a dream one night, which has never left me and it's still what pushes me forward today. In the dream I was driving down my driveway in a red Ferrari with black leather. The driveway was long with pine trees lining each side and the house was a 2 story double bay window 1900 Victorian style mansion. Waiting out the front was a woman with long dark curly brown hair, a little boy and a little girl all dressed in pure white. But I could never see their faces.

That was all the motivation I needed and and the next day I just started because that belonged to me and I had to go and get it.

By the time I was 19, I had amassed a 6 figure fortune and I was earning more than $15k in passive income and had started a finance company in 2007. Just when everything was going perfect I was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer (osteosarcoma) which took 36 rounds of chemo, a prosthetic implant and every last cent I owned.

Now I'm 32, cured of cancer, have more than 100 books in my bookshelf and read more than 200 books. I've done an MBA, certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and worked my way up to a Senior Management role.

The dream has never left me and it got me through the last 9 years. Life is too comfortable now, but I'm not on the right trajectory for my dream to become reality - so that's why I'm here, to get my dream and make it a reality.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_20180823_211936.jpg
    IMG_20180823_211936.jpg
    274.5 KB · Views: 5

Fpm9

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Jul 27, 2017
137
198
29
Paris
First sale ever happened a few months ago. I launched my first product both on Amazon and my website, and I paid my friend so he could buy my product on Amazon and leave a review.

Then a few days later I saw that I got my first sale from Amazon. Ok, my friend bought my product, that's cool. But when I saw that the shipping adress was another city on the other side of the country, I realized I made my first real sale. About $3 in profits, enough to buy me a beer to celebrate.
 
Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Andy Black

Pick a direction. Get started. Keep going.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
13,233
51,171
Ireland

johnp

Platinum Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
Aug 29, 2011
1,660
2,515
Philly

My first sale was actually when I was like 16. I got some crazy idea in my head to start a popcorn company. I spent the summer learning how to make gourmet popcorn. Eventually took it to a farmer's market to sell.

It was a 100 degree day. All of my popcorn was sitting on the table melting. One person told me that it looked like dog food. Towards the end of the day someone bought some for their kids. Probably out of pity. Despite being embarrassed at the time and feeling like a failure (especially in front of my new girlfriend who helped) that first sale changed everything for me.

I eventually went on to have many first sale events. Maybe about 7? Just had another one this morning with a new venture. The feeling never gets old.
 

Post New Topic

Please SEARCH before posting.
Please select the BEST category.

Post new topic

Latest Posts

New Topics

Fastlane Insiders

View the forum AD FREE.
Private, unindexed content
Detailed process/execution threads
Ideas needing execution, more!

Join Fastlane Insiders.

Must Read Books...

Explore books recommended by MJ DeMarco and other members of the Fastlane entrepreneurial community.
Fastlane Bookstore
Top