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My little story of 27 years hopeful Inc 500 bound

DMGuy

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(Please excuse grammar or technical errors. I have been meaning to contribute to this blog for almost a year and finally just doing it. For lack of a better term.)

Hello, everyone, I want to share my story and introduce myself and hopefully inspire some others and gain some knowledge myself along the way!

When I was young I always knew I wanted to be a business owner because that is who I always saw with all the money. I just had no idea what business I wanted to start and I thought it would be much easier than what it was. I graduated high school with a business designation and started to move on to college but I knew I wasn't the best at school. It always seemed to slow for me and I couldn't focus enough. I eventually finished college but didn't do very well because I started a couple businesses along the way.

When I was 17-18 I traveled around playing video games at major tournaments and came up with an idea for a social networking site for video gamers. You could type in your zip code and the games you played and find others to play along with. I had no idea how to program at the time and thought well I could hire someone to do this. I got a job at Dunkin Donuts to start making money and then built out a plan of user growth and how I would make money on advertising and borrowed $5,000 from my dad after a lot of convincing. (Yes he gets paid back eventually.)

I hired a programmer and built the site. After launch I had maybe a couple hundred users join then nothing... I thought if I built it they would come!!!!! Not the case... I then started to teach myself SEO by watching videos and reading as much as I could across the web. I started blogging on the site and ranking for major game titles. I started driving in thousands of users every month. The real issue now is that my ads weren't making me much money... I just kept learning digital marketing forms to drive more users to the site. (Looking back with my knowledge of sponsors and affiliate marketing today I could have made a lot more.)

One day as I worked on the site my dad introduced me to his friend, a limo company owner locally. My father said tell him about all the things you are doing with that site and you might be able to help him with his business doing the same types of things. I started out with SEO for the guy for $350 a month, which was about the same I was making off my site at the time. Over the course of 8 months, I helped that limo company grow from about 3 limos to about 8 limos in service!

I realized I really had something there after a couple months of working with them. I started to try and find other businesses to help with their online marketing (mostly SEO at the time). I went to networking events, made business cards, joined the chamber of commerce, built a website, did local SEO on it, did giveaways on social media. At this time I slowly grew as I pounded the pavement to get clients on monthly retainers for digital marketing services. I slowly expanded my minimum to $500 a month! I was on roll really and working a good 12-16 hours a day.

The next big leap is ahead...

I was about 21-22 making almost 15k a month from my local consulting business when I did a talk on "where the web is going" at my local chamber of commerce. Here I met my future business partner who was a sales manager at a local TV station. We met there and kept in touch for about 2 years before we realized we could make a great partnership. I loved being the tech nerd behind the computer pushing the buttons and he loved going out meeting clients and being the people person.

We partnered up 3 years ago. After a ton of hard work, more than we thought it would be, here we are today...

In that time span, we have taken our digital marketing agency from us 2, with no outside financing yet, to 23 full-time employees in our local office. This year we have won the business of the year in our local city, SBA business excellence award, economic champions, and best places to work. When we end out this year we should be in the top 500 of INC magazine. One of the fastest-growing private companies.

Let me be clear I am not in the fast lane yet, sadly I read that book after I started my digital marketing agency. I still work a good 12 hours a day. I am also not a millionaire yet but making my way there. For my age, yes, I am in the top 1% of earners at 27. We continue to invest a lot into the company for growth so we can one day soon step into the fast lane. We are currently at a run rate of about 6 million dollars.

I am currently 27 and continue every day to learn to be a better leader. Goals and plans for next year are to almost double the business again, start getting speaking engagements and build out a personal brand for myself.

Any and all feedback is welcome! Thanks for reading! Any questions let me know!

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To share here is part of the team at a Dave and busters outing!!! It also Feels great to be able to contribute jobs back to my community.

As we grow I have seen the shift to me being able to take time off and slip farther into the fast lane.
 
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Last edited:

DMGuy

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May 25, 2017
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Im hidden in the back right with a beard and glasses! And bright blue shirt.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

MJ DeMarco

I followed the science; all I found was money.
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Impressive introduction, thank you for posting it. Maybe not "Fastlane" by the book as you say, but Fastlane in you're driving value and building something incredible. Your experience is 100% Fastlane.

Congrats and so nice to have you here.
 
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AdamMaxum

a worthy successor indeed
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Great intro, thanks for sharing. Looking forward to hearing and seeing more from you.
 

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