I Began Constructing Web sites At 16 And Now Personal A $3M/Yr Company –

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Whats up! Who’re you and what enterprise did you begin?

After I began Design Extensions, which has since been rebranded as Enterprise Builders, I used to be simply 17 years outdated. Actually, I had no concept what I used to be doing. I used to be only a teen attempting to make some facet cash doing one thing I cherished — constructing web sites.

I’d like to inform you that I had some grand plan from the beginning, however I didn’t, I simply stored studying and stored getting higher. Because of this, we’ve grown 12 months over 12 months for over twenty years.

At this time our providers are targeted on three key areas: teaching, advertising and marketing & improvement. Our mission is to assist different individuals develop their enterprise – like we’ve our personal. We’ve gone from simply $5000 within the first 12 months to over $3,000,000 in gross sales this 12 months.

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What’s your backstory and the way did you give you the thought?

I’ve all the time cherished expertise and the web. I bear in mind being logged right into a bulletin board service again earlier than the web was a factor and studying an article about this new factor that was coming referred to as the World Vast Net. Individuals would be capable to kind in internet addresses to get entry to info. That sounded superb.

I began constructing web sites at in regards to the age of 12. At 16 I used to be employed by an area firm as a summer season intern and at 17 (in 1999). Within the early days, I’d construct the web sites from scratch, with fundamental HTML and by cropping graphics out of photoshop. It wasn’t fairly, but it surely received the job achieved on the time.

After I first began the enterprise, being simply 17 years outdated, I wasn’t even sufficiently old to legally signal a contract. Because of this, I usually ended up simply doing work with the outdated promise and a handshake.

This was the beginning of Design Extensions, which are actually referred to as Enterprise Builders. I’ve labored all over the place from my dorm room to my mother’s storage to the studio we’ve right now in St. Augustine, Florida.

Every little thing we do is constructed across the concept of progress over perfection. We’re solely competing with ourselves from final 12 months. We wish to be higher than we had been and if we hold doing that, we imagine we’ll continue to grow. For over 20 years that has remained true.

Take us by way of the method of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing your first product.

After we first began, effectively, we’re a bit royal, it was simply me again then… I simply did fundamental web sites. At this time, our group has about six distinctive service units: teaching/consulting, web sites, hosting, upkeep, advertising and marketing, & improvement.

A typical buyer for us is an organization or group that has made it by way of the early years of enterprise, has a longtime services or products line, and now wants assist taking its model, messaging, and advertising and marketing to the subsequent stage.

Most of those shoppers have exceeded 1,000,000 {dollars} in income, though there are nonetheless some conditions within the consulting & teaching areas the place we might help smaller companies We’re always innovating on our concepts, processes, and procedures.

If something, I’ve to tapper my want for fixed change to make sure the group feels secure and safe within the course of. Within the early days, it was simply me, however right now, we’re an unbelievable native group of full-time group members plus an incredible community of contractors and help groups.

Describe the method of launching the enterprise.

Launching the enterprise simply concerned me with a pc working to create my first paid web site for a shopper. I had been doing it professionally for a enterprise in my space and believed I may do it alone. So I did. I began promoting one factor at a time to construct upon the enterprise.

After I first began the enterprise, being simply 17 years outdated, I wasn’t even sufficiently old to legally signal a contract. Because of this, I usually ended up simply doing work with the outdated promise and a handshake. It wasn’t formal, but it surely labored. As I grew, I found out find out how to deal with extra advanced gross sales and contracts. Progress over perfection.

For over a decade, I remained debt-free as a enterprise. I later took on a mortgage for our workplace, however in any other case, I desire to run the corporate as debt-free as attainable. As Dave Ramsey says: “Debt is dumb and money is king.”

“I’ll ‘try this vital factor’ as soon as this undertaking is completed…” is a cliff I’ve seen many marriages and leaders fall off of. If it issues, you’ll make the time for it.

Through the years, one of many largest classes I’ve discovered is to by no means put an excessive amount of worth in a single shopper. Don’t let the enterprise management your life, let it help your life. I want to have a lifelong marriage with my spouse claire and to be an ideal dad to our 5 children, I can’t try this if I’m always obsessive about the enterprise.

Since launch, what has labored to draw and retain prospects?

We’re within the enterprise of serving to others get consideration and purchase prospects, in consequence, it comes considerably naturally for ourselves. There may be not one single silver bullet and the very best referral sources have modified over time, however we’re always enhancing right here.

At one level, networking teams like BNI had a huge effect on our progress. As our providers, modified, bigger enterprise communities like EntreLeadership and C12 have had a huge impact.

Typical digital advertising and marketing performs a job for us as effectively (see hooked up how natural visitors has steadily elevated over the previous couple of years). We additionally keep energetic on social media and have an e-mail record we market to frequently.

Along with these, my talking engagements are a giant pull for brand new prospects as effectively. This comes within the type of dwell webinars, dwell occasions (like businessbuidlerslive.com), talking at different dwell occasions, and conferences. Constructing relationships with individuals, offering some stage of free or low-cost worth, after which changing that into larger ticket objects has been key for us.

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How are you doing right now and what does the longer term appear like?

We’ve remained worthwhile yearly for over 22 years. At this time, we’re working a bigger group, with extra income, and higher profitability than ever. A giant a part of that has been implementing EOS (see Traction by Gino Wickman) as an working system for the enterprise. Having clear techniques and processes in place have allowed us to develop with out stress and it makes issues extra predictable.

We’ve simplified our gross sales p[rocess over the years to start with what we call a marketing (or development) blueprint. This involves a consulting session with a client to discover their needs and complete some foundational deliverables needed for all clients. Once this is done, we quote the next step in the process. We think of it this way: Plan > Produce > Promote.

Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

There will always be another project, people matter more. It seems simple, it seems obvious, but when you need to hit a goal or make a budget, the money and projects can seem overwhelming. “I’ll ‘do that important thing’ once this project is done…” is a cliff I’ve seen many marriages and leaders fall off of. If it matters, you’ll make the time for it.

Don’t fool yourself into believing that you “just need to get through this project” one more time. Before you know it, you’ll be in a cycle of that and lose what matters.

What platform/tools do you use for your business?

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?

Have the right people in your life first. You need someone to look up to, someone who’s looking up to you, someone who stands beside you, and someone who believes in you when you don’t believe in yourself. If you have the right people in your life, business becomes much easier.

Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?

We’re always on the lookout for stellar marketing team members who want to help others grow their businesses.

Where can we go to learn more?

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!


 

Jay Owen
 
Founder of Business Builders

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