Building Multiple 7-Figure Businesses + How To Be Resourceful With Dylan Frost


One of the best traits you can have as an entrepreneur is resourcefulness. And Dylan Frost has that in spades.

He’s one of “those” top 10 under 30 type people, and he’s got quite the incredible story. He grew up poor, in one of the poorest states in the U.S. And get this – he’s never read a book(!). His success comes purely from his own determination and ability to become super-resourceful.

And in today’s episode of the “Get Ahead” podcast, you’ll learn how he does it and how YOU can become resourceful and go on to build multiple successful businesses too!

In today’s episode:

  • How Dylan built multiple 7-figure businesses by the age of 29 …
  • The “mindset” you need if you want to succeed as an entrepreneur …
  • Why you don’t have to be an “expert” and the real secret to getting results and making your business succeed FAST …
  • How to get yourself to take action (even when you don’t want to) …
  • The difference between “good” distractions and “bad” distractions and how it can impact how much you achieve …
  • How Dylan got his start … at Walmart!?
  • How Dylan started his first business with a credit card that had only a $600 limit …
  • And much, much more …

Resources Mentioned:


Transcript:

 

James: Hey everybody. Welcome to the Get Ahead podcast. I’m James Mel. On this podcast what I do is I find successful entrepreneurs and I dig deep to uncover the strategies, the mindsets, the techniques and other things they’ve done to get ahead in their life and their business so you can do the same. I know if you’re here, you’re a high achiever. I know you want to get ahead. That’s a topic I’ve been obsessed with my entire life and that’s what I want to help you do, is uncover the different strategies and the techniques you need to be able to do that to get ahead in your own life.
James: So make sure to grab a pen, a paper or something to take notes with because as we uncover these gold nuggets, you’re going to want to write them down. Now, before we jump into today’s episode, I have something really special to give you as a free gift. Like any successful person, I’ve got a mentor and I’ve had one for over 10 years, and it turns out that he’s also my business partner. His name’s Eben Pagan and he’s written a book on opportunity.
James: Now, if you want to get ahead in your life and your business, it’s super important that you not only know how to spot opportunity, but you know how to take advantage of it. And that’s what this entire book is about. And I’d like to give you a free copy. Not only that I’d like to ship it to you absolutely free. So you get a free copy and get it shipped to you absolutely free. The way you can get this as go to www.jamesmel.com/opportunity and it’s all on me. Go there now, grab your copy. You’ll be glad you did.
James: All right, without further ado, let’s jump into today’s episode. Welcome to another episode of the Get Ahead podcast. I’m super excited for my guest here today. His name is Dylan [Frost] and the cool thing about Dylan is he’s 29 years old. He’s one of those top 30 under 30 type people and an incredible story, which he’ll tell you about in just a second. Multiple seven-figure business, okay? So Dylan has really cracked the code on how to be successful with business, but also has a successful relationship, has been married, has a newborn as of a few months ago. All so really exciting.
James: And is able to make all this happen. That’s one of the things I love about Dylan, is it’s one thing to have a business, it’s one thing to have a relationship, but how do you put it all together? And how do you get a head while doing that? That’s some of the stuff we’ll talk about here today. Dylan, welcome to the show. Super excited to have you.
Dylan: Awesome. What an introduction. Thanks. Happy to be here.
James: Not one, but seven-figure business, not two. How did you build multiple seven-figure businesses? And how did you do it by the time you’re 29 years old?
Dylan: Yeah. That’s a good question. Just having the right mindset, I think, having the right mentors played a big part in it and just understanding from pretty early point to be able to create multiple streams of income and multiple successful businesses the concept of outsourcing automation, SOPs, things like that are really important I think a lot of people overlook, that really help you scale, prepare your business to sell or allow you to just operate multiple businesses at once. And we’ve always focused on those kind of things and it’s really, really been important.
James: Yes, you mentioned a couple key things there, right mindset, multiple streams of cash. So let’s talk about a couple of those. What is the right mindset for you and thinking back to like when maybe when you were just getting started and you were probably hacking a few things, some were working some weren’t, but what was your mindset then and what was the mindset that really started helping you get ahead?
Dylan: Yeah. What I’ve always explained is that you don’t really have to know anything at all. You don’t have to be an expert. It’s just about taking action and the way that we’ve always done things is just take action first and look at … Weirdly, we succeed a whole lot of times if we just take action and not if we have this analysis paralysis. We have come up with the concept and we get to a proof-of-concept and implement as quickly as we can and then we’ll just learn from any of the mistakes and then fix it from there and move forward rather than trying to get everything perfect on the first run.
Dylan: We’ve always been highly successful like that. I have a million examples I can give of just how we just did it any way that we knew how. We were resourceful. We were always just resourceful rather than being super educated. I’m not an educator. I didn’t go to college. I didn’t complete college. It’s just about resourcefulness, trying to make the best with what you have available. And that’s how it was very early on. It’s still really how it is today. And part of being resourceful as we’ve grown more is having a great network. We’ve built a great network that helps us and enables us to be successful.
James: Thinking about that, we all hear, “Take action. Take action.” That’s easier said than done. I just think about it because especially if you’re starting something new, if you’re not sure about something, it’s so easy to get paralyzed by it. Do you have any sort of like strategies or tips or techniques that you use that just forces you to do it or what are you thinking or you do to hack yourself to just get yourself to take action?
Dylan: Oh, man. That’s a good question. I don’t know if I have any tips for forcing yourself to take action other than a lot of people … Maybe it’s ask yourself what’s the worst that could happen? Just remember to ask yourself that and to get real … I’m very rational and logical person. So I go through this a lot, of asking myself, “Well, what’s the worst that can happen if I just do it this way or do it that way?” Basically look at it from a mathematical standpoint and you determine, “Well, nothing, I guess.” So just be more rational, I guess, would be my approach.
James: Yeah. And it sounds like, because I mean, I know for myself like when I think back to when I got my first investment property and this was a big deal for me. It was like, oh my gosh, nobody else in my family had ever purchased an investment property. Here I was 24, 25 years old. I was about to make the biggest decision and purchase of my life and I was scared. I had fear. It sounds like you have a little bit of a different mindset where you’re just like, “Hey, you know what, I’m going to do it. I’m going to take action. It’s all good.” You know what I mean? That’s what it feels like.
Dylan: Oh, for me it all just feels like a free roll. That’s a poker term a bit there, just everything feels like there’s just doesn’t matter. I grew up poor and so like now that I’m not it’s just … It really doesn’t matter. Who cares. So I feel no amount of … I don’t get scared. I’m not risk averse. I’m very, very … I don’t know. It’s weird. You would call it gambling or you call it risky investments or taking risks, but so far, up to this point in my entrepreneurial life, nothing has never not worked.
Dylan: So I don’t know. I don’t think that it’s truly risky. It’s just a lot of people are just too scared to do the things that maybe we have accomplished. So you just have to stop being scared really. I think it’s a big thing.
James: Yeah, it’s such a good point because the way I was able to overcome the fear of like say that first investment property is I did my homework. I did my due diligence. I had a mentor. I reviewed all the numbers like several times, 3, 5, 10 times just kept reviewing them and then I realized kind of like you, I’m a very logical, rational, analytical type person. You know, I’m like, “This ain’t cash flows, why wouldn’t I do it?” And then I decided to just throw my hat over the fence and purchase it, it turned out to be the best decision of my life, one of the best decisions in my business career that has allowed me to get multiple investment properties and I realized if I would have let that fear holding back, if I wouldn’t have taken that chance, if I didn’t have that free roll mindset like you just mentioned, wouldn’t have happened.
Dylan: Yeah. Yeah, absolutely.
James: So wow, so speaking about that, real estate and whatnot. You mentioned you’ve got multiple streams of cash flow. I think this is so important. That’s something I’ve, as you know, built up myself between online, between real estate. What’s your mindset when it comes to multiple streams of cash flow?
Dylan: Part of it isn’t necessarily any kind of strategy. Part of it is just I guess lucky that I get bored enough with something that I want to do something else after a little while, and it’s true of my business partner as well. So just by that habit of our nature, we build multiple streams of income, but I also do believe it’s a good thing to do as well, to diversify and to let those things build off of each other and create different paths of success for you. So yeah, that’s really what it’s been about for me.
Dylan: There’s good distractions and bad distractions. And as I mentioned earlier about systematizing things, SOPs so that you can better automate your businesses, luckily I don’t let the distractions spread me too thin. When I do something, I do it all the way. If I start a new business, we will completely automate that to the best of our ability before we move on to the next thing, but that really just is part of it, to be honest, is we do like moving to different new unique opportunities and challenging ourselves and growing and we’re very competitive.
Dylan: Part of business for us that has I think enabled us to be successful is it’s not as much about the money, which is nice, but a lot of it is about the challenge. We like to be able to challenge ourselves. It keeps us going.
James: Yeah, you said something really important although like because now you’ve built up a portfolio of multiple seven-figure businesses and what not, and you’re like trying and doing new things, but you mentioned one thing in particular that when you’re building something out before it’s automated, when you’re figuring out, cracking the code, you love the challenge, you’re just laser focused on one thing.
Dylan: Yeah, for sure, and you have to be because otherwise you will end up sabotaging yourself and sabotaging the business, if you allow the distractions to distract you from the work that’s required to actually make that business successful and that’s a relative term. What’s a successful business is relative to different people. But whatever it is for you, whatever successful is for you.
James: I think this is so important because it’s … I believe I have the same mindset with it. I want to find one thing, get that working and then move on to other stuff. And I think a lot of people, especially when they’re trying to get ahead, they’re trying multiple things simultaneously and then burning themselves out or nothing’s working because they’re stretched too thin it’s hard to get ahead that way. What do you find like sort of … When you’re doing something, you’re in it, you’re cracking the code, what are some of the metrics you look for and how do when something is working or not?
Dylan: Oh, man. I’m the wrong person to ask for that. As logical and rational as I am, I think that a lot of numbers and data and statistics either lie to you or it’s hard to trust them because they’re always so many caveats that you consider. So when I try to analyze data, it’s always just like yeah, but there’s this or that that’s unaccounted for or this human element or whatever. I almost run completely off of intuition typically, my own intuition about how I feel about things. I do take in all the data that I can take in, but I make gut calls a lot. Might not be the best advice, but that’s how I’ve always kind of done it.
James: Yeah, fair. Well, it’s interesting you mention that because I can relate to that myself when getting started. And the thing I think that’s important is that you’ve built up that intuition over years of entrepreneurial experience.
Dylan: Sure, yeah.
James: Right? And it’s just kind of like how I know you invest in real estate now, and I do as well. I have something I call like investing habits, which every day I look at my market for 15 minutes. That’s it. 15 minutes I go through my investing habits. And what I teach people is after you do that for 90 days, you’re going to develop an intuition for that market. You’re going to know what things have sold for, what the asking price is, how long it stays on the market and you’re just going to know what to offer, what not, all these types of things. You can’t underestimate the power of intuition. So really important. That’s cool.
James: Let’s talk a little bit about … I mean, we just talked a little bit about some of the success you’ve had and all that sort of stuff. What it looked like when you were behind in life and you were maybe like struggling to get a few things working. What did that look like?
Dylan: Yeah. So if you can’t tell from the way I talk, I grew up in the South of the United States. I grew up in Eastern, Kentucky, Appalachia in the mountains, in the sixth poorest county in the United States, in Eastern, Kentucky. And didn’t grow up with a whole lot, but no one else did either so I didn’t know any better. Everyone kind of grows up for around here so we were all kind of the same. So I didn’t have a lot of resources and there’s not a whole lot of opportunity. It’s very rural.
Dylan: A closest airport is like two hours away. Closest Target is two hours away. It’s very rural and I still live in this part of the country today, still live in Eastern, Kentucky. I didn’t go to college. I couldn’t have afforded college anyway, but also my grades were so bad that I couldn’t get in to college if I wanted to go anyway. I did spend a little bit of time in community college. But anyway, I remember very specifically …
Dylan: I can tell a million stories, funny stories. One I just remember. I’m 18 years old. I’ve moved out of my parents’ house at 18. I have a part-time job paying … That’s back when minimum wage was 5.15. So I’m getting paid 5.15 an hour, 20 hours a week and I’m living on my own on that. I was stealing toilet paper at the time. I would go into restaurants or gas stations that didn’t have the toilet paper like hooked up on a chain where you couldn’t take it or I would figure out how to get it out. I was so struggling so bad I had to steal my toilet paper. I feel bad about now. I wish I could pay them back.
Dylan: I wish I could go back to all the places and be like, “Hey, 10 years ago I stole toilet paper from you. Here you go.” Maybe I’ll figure out a way to do that. I was doing things like that just to survive, just to get by at the time and I got … After that I was able to … In this time in my life I didn’t really give two shits about anything. I didn’t care. As long as I got by, I was fine with that. I never put any real amount of effort to anything, especially into school. Never put any effort into school because I didn’t care.
Dylan: And then I met a good woman, and meeting a good woman motivated me to want to take care of her. I think this was the pivotal moment in my life, is caring for other people instead of myself. When it came to self-care I didn’t have any and didn’t care about what happened to me or what … As long as I survived, I was okay. When I met a good woman that I wanted to take care of I got motivated to be less of the piece of crap that I was.
Dylan: So I worked real hard to try to get a real job, which I accomplished. I got a real job paying $38,000 a year. So I was rich. I was just like, “Yes, I’ve made it. This is it.” No one in my family has ever come close to something like this before. It was amazing. And then I worked that job for a few years. It was in IT. I spent about three years full-time in that job, three or four years and over time working there … I was real happy at the start because I was making a lot of money, the job was easy. I probably really only worked like four hours or five hours a week and spent the rest of the time like playing World of Warcraft on my computer because there was nothing else to do.
Dylan: So I really liked it at first, but as time would progress I started to feel more and more of a sense that, and I don’t mean to be rude, but I’m going to be a little bit rude, is that like I was surrounded by people and bosses and people at the top of the company or it was actually a college where I was working, from people at the top, from the president, on down, pure incompetence, people that I thought I was much smarter than and I looked at my prospects there to move up and to where I was working at a college, the only way you can move up is if someone retired or died and then you could maybe apply for their job and then there would be politics involved whether you got it or not. Getting pay raises based on merit weren’t really a thing.
Dylan: So it just drove me crazy. It was just like this is what living and working in corporate America, is this insane rat race that you don’t even have control over most of it, even if you do great work, because I wasn’t doing great work, but if I did do great work, it wouldn’t have mattered, I wouldn’t have been rewarded for it anyway. It was in that moment of just being angry at the situation and angry that these other people that I have felt were dumb were making two times more than me. I was just like yeah, I’m just going to figure something else out. And that was the moment. That was the moment that I decided I was going to quit and try to do anything else on my own.
James: Wow. That’s amazing because it sounds like just getting a job where you lived, that was probably huge success in itself.
Dylan: Yeah.
James: And you got in it and you were probably like, “Geez, I made it. I made it.” But then shortly after that a few years later you’re like, “Screw this.” And it sounds like you got so Disturbed that was sort of the catalyst. That was just like enough.
Dylan: Yeah, it makes me sound like a pretentious asshole, but it’s really the way that it was. I really just would look around work and be like, “This person makes more money than me. This person. This person.” It infuriated me.
James: But you know what, I love that Dylan, because how many of us in that situation, we might stick it out for another 2, 5, 10 years, maybe our whole lives and just put up with it. And I think that’s a key thing. That’s one of the commonalities I found, the people that really get ahead is that if they aren’t happy with the situation, they’re like, “Screw this, I’m going to change it.” And sometimes it takes getting super disturbed by whatever situation you’re in to use that as the fuel, the motivation, the catalyst to go do something different. So that’s the case. So you actually quit without having something else lined up?
Dylan: Well, I had made the decision that I was going to quit, but I didn’t probably quit for another three months. I figured it out between then and a three-month period.
James: Then what happened? You quit and then how did you make the transition from employee to entrepreneur, doing your own thing?
Dylan: The first thing that I did was I arbitraged T-shirts. So the very first business that I created … I didn’t have any money really. I mean, I had a job, but it’s not like I had a lot of disposable income. So the very first business that I created was there … A website still exists. It was called teefury.com and there was also one called rippedapparel.com and their business model at the time, I believe it’s evolved a bit now, it was every single day they would sell a new T-shirt that was only sold for that specific day and it was a custom design, user-submitted design, it would never be sold again.
Dylan: So every day was a new shirt and then what you meant, when there were a good shirts, that the resale value of those would be pretty high on markets like eBay, so I would just check it every day to see if I felt like it was a good shirt. If it was, usually like a Star Wars design or something that I felt would have good third-party value and they would sell the shirts for just $10 and then I would resell them on eBay for things like 30 and $40 because they were almost like collectors items or very hard to get or very hard to find. I was just doing that for a while, buying from those websites for $10 shirts, resell on eBay for $40.
Dylan: So that was the very first thing I ever did to start generating my own income and that went pretty well for a little while and then the next iteration was a couple of my friends had started doing arbitrage utilizing Amazon and basically what is retail arbitrage, my two friends were … They would go into … The way that it works is like you go into a Walmart, any Walmart in America is if you go to the clearance aisle of that Walmart, the way the clearance Works in Walmart is that it’s just liquidation. They don’t move their clearance stuff to a different locations or send it back to manufacturers or anything. They just keep lowering and lowering the price of stuff until it comes off the shelf.
Dylan: Well, depending on where you are in the United States, especially in poor parts of the country like where I’m from, there are plenty of things that still have and maintain their regular retail market value, but for whatever reason no one bought them in that that particular store. So it’s a $25 retail value, but it’s on clearance for $5. So they would go through the clearance aisle of Walmart, scan products in the clearance aisle with Amazon app to see what it sells for on Amazon versus what it costs in the store and when you would just find big enough discrepancies, you would buy them and resell them on Amazon. That’s retail arbitrage.
Dylan: That’s a very simple way to think about it, is using clearance aisles of, but there’s many other ways and concepts that that works, just taking advantage of supply and demand or any Market efficiencies from retail stores to selling on Amazon. So they were having success with that and they wanted to bring on someone else to help them out and partner with them in that, so they reached out to me. And they also wanted to start creating content and courses and training courses around how they were selling on Amazon and looked at me as the person to do that with them. So I just joined them and we took off and we had a lot of success really quick.
James: Wow, that’s amazing. And just to really break it down for any listener, arbitrage is basically sort of, what is it? Maximizing the price between the market value and-
Dylan: Yeah, buy low, sell high, really, easiest way that I’ve always tried to explain it. Yeah. We would do things like … We don’t do any arbitrage anymore. Our business has grown and evolved and scaled past that, but we would do things like I remember the company Novartis, right? That’s a good example. Novartis is over-the-counter drug supplier for things like Metamucil. Their factory had shut down for about a year for quality control issues one time. So all of the products that they sell, and it’s a lot of popular brands that everyone’s heard of.
Dylan: Whatever was on the shelf at the time that the factories closed down was all that would be there for like a year or nine months or something like that. After market value of the stuff just skyrocketed. So you could go to Walgreens and buy Metamucil, it’s not like they change their prices based on any … For any reason. You could buy the Metamucil for six dollars and resell it for 60. It was just madness, the crazy stuff like that. So we would take advantage of opportunities like that. We would research them and find them or store exclusive, Walgreens or Target, they will sell Funko Pops that are exclusive that can only be bought in those stores. Those are intrinsically more valuable on the third party markets than they self were in the stores.
Dylan: Or closings, we took advantage of a lot … We would buy closing stores. If you remember once Sears went out of business all throughout America, they were closing stores and we would just make offers on the whole store. They’re closing it. We would just offer, “We’ll buy the whole store for $30,000.” And sometimes they would just say yes.
James: And you built your way up to that, right? I didn’t start out, but as your business grew and you start making more money, you built your way up to that.
Dylan: Yeah, the business started, the Amazon business started with $600 credit card.
James: Wow.
Dylan: Because it was all the money that anybody had and it was all the credit that any of us could get approved for. So it was $600 credit card, which has now done … That business has done about $25 million in sales that $500 credit card.
James: Wow. Congratulations, man. And you know what’s so inspiring about this, Dylan?
Dylan: The $600 credit.
James: What’s so inspiring about this is it would be so easy for somebody in your position or somebody else living in a place like … I mean, you identified so many times with being one of the poorest places in the country and all this different stuff and to just write off and be like, “You know what, that’s going to be my life. There’s nothing I can do here.” But what I love that you did, you talked about resourcefulness and you took maybe one of the disadvantages of where you live, yeah, you know, stuff is a little bit poor. There’s not as much opportunity, but you turned it into your own opportunity by buying, finding a way to buy things that were on clearance that people didn’t by and then leveraging that in other parts of the country or the world.
Dylan: Yep. Yep. Absolutely, that’s 100% what happened.
James: And it just goes to show you that … And I really believe this too because I come from a small town to on the east coast of Canada, literally a fishing village. It goes to show you that no matter where you are, what you’re doing, whatever situation you might be under you think you might be in, there’s always a way. That’s what I firmly believe. There’s always a way. There’s always an opportunity. You just got to be able to keep your eyes open and look for it. And I believe it’s having the mindset of, “You know what, I am going to find the opportunity here.” Rather than closing yourself off and be like, “You know what, there’s nothing here, screw it.”
Dylan: Yeah, there is always open an opportunity and that’s … I’ve built my confidence up now and I feel like I’ve over the years I went from someone with no skills to having developed and I’ve taught myself a lot and I’ve surrounded myself with people that are smart and that I can learn from. Now I feel like I could just do anything. If you took everything away from me and I just started from zero, I could do it again in completely different markets and spaces, with completely … And once you get to that point, it’s really nice. You’re never stressed out about money, you’re never stressed about anything ever again because no matter what you’ll figure it out, right?
James: Right. So say you were starting again, say there was somebody just starting off right now, you had to give them advice, what would the top three things you’d recommend them do be? They were starting all over, brand new.
Dylan: Like business models to pursue or you just mean just like maybe just general thoughts or advice?
James: It could be business or general, like the top three things you’d recommend they do to get ahead.
Dylan: Yeah. Well, I’m biased a little bit, but I do think selling on Amazon is one of the greatest opportunities that has ever existed for people to be able to start and have their own successful business, because it’s, well, number one, it’s what kick-started ours obviously so I speak from a spot of experience and being able to just have started from nothing as well. And the reason it enables people like me that have started from nothing is because they do all the expensive stuff for you, the fulfillment by Amazon.
Dylan: You have access to the third largest company in the world’s network of logistics, of their website that gets millions and millions and millions of eyeballs on it every single day. So you have traffic, you have logistics taken care of, you have everything taken care of and you really only pay them after your stuff is sold. So you have no upfront like direct costs. It’s just like you sell your stuff first and then you pay them to have access to all those resources.
Dylan: So it enables you, for people to start from almost nothing to scale and grow and become successful. So that’s why I absolutely believe Amazon in any capacity that you can leverage it is great opportunity for people that have maybe limited capital or limited funds and be able to develop a healthy business pretty quickly, pretty easily. So that’s one piece of advice.
Dylan: Another is surround yourself with the smartest people that you know and try to work with them if you can … See, I don’t really believe in owning a business by myself or being the single owner of a business. I always have partners because I feel that it’s more valuable and that you can identify people that have strengths where you have weaknesses and I don’t really recommend having partners that are super similar to you. I recommend partners that are different from you.
Dylan: My business partner is very different from me. He’s more of a … We just recently did some personality tests and some of that sort of stuff in the office from the Stratton Institute and had them come in, we did some surveys. He was the polar opposite of me. He was just like on the completely other end, like this big picture dreamer, super positive guy and I’m like the analyzer, more pessimistic person. So it’s just completely different, but it works great for us because we balance each other out. So, yeah, so that’s another one … Those are two more, surround yourself with the smartest people that. And I don’t really believe in owning 100% of a business. I believe having partners, invested partners or an invested team is highly important for success in a business.
James: I really agree with especially surround yourself with the best people you can. I’m curious Dylan, how like living where you’ve lived and grown up, how do you find the best people? How do you find people to look up to and mentors? How do you do that? And what would you recommend for somebody else may be in a similar situation?
Dylan: Yeah, great people to work with still exist no matter where you are. It doesn’t matter. The town I grew up in, population of about 9 or 10,000. Town I live in now, population of about 7, 8,000 or something. That’s on the sign when you come through and there’s just still plenty of good, smart, talented people. You just have to work hard to find them. All of our employees except one are local. We have multiple multi-million dollar businesses. So they’re out there. Don’t limit yourself. Don’t have a limiting belief that just because you come from a small place … It’s hard for you to come from a place smaller than me.
Dylan: Smart people are everywhere. Hard workers are everywhere. You just have to interview a lot of people. That’s what I do. I just hired another day, and this is true for all of my hires. 500 people applied for the position. I interviewed like 11 people. Nine of them, there’s no way I ever would have hired, like no shot. I interview a lot to find the right, perfect fit. And if I don’t find anyone when I do interviews, if I don’t find anyone that I didn’t like, I don’t hire anyone. I start the process over. So never make a bad hire for the sake of making a hire. I’m always looking for the perfect person every time and I’ll be real picky and I’ll search to the ends of the Earth till I find them each time.
James: So great. And again, you see the mindset with even finding mentors is like there’s always a way. It doesn’t matter if you were in a town of 100 people, you’re going to find somebody.
Dylan: And mentors is easy because the internet exists, and even finding labor and employees is easy because of the internet. If the work can be done remote, that’s also fine too. You have the whole world available to you. And we have utilized virtual assistants from the Philippines a lot for our businesses, that help to scale and grow a lot. People that you can hire and it’s living wage for them at 3.5 an hour and stuff like that. So that’s something that we’ve always done and utilized. We’ve found great help that way too.
James: One thing I was just thinking about is that when I think about all the commonalities of the people that I’ve talked to and entrepreneurs and friends have done really well and really gotten ahead, Dylan, I noticed like they don’t just come up with some master plan and it works out exactly how they thought to the T. Most of the times it’s similar situations to you, where they start something, they get a little bit of result and then they sort of fall into what turns out to be sort of their big win, kind of exactly how you did.
James: It’s like you didn’t set out to start an Amazon business or Amazon training company or any of that sort of stuff. You literally were just arbitraging, trying to get by a little bit, get ahead. You did that and then were able to turn into something else. What’s your thoughts on that and sort of like thinking back on your story, how that transpired and any advice you’d give to something that might be listening if they want to do something similar?
Dylan: For better or worse, I don’t really think much farther out than like two or three months ahead at the time. And it’s super true what you’re saying. Basically if you put yourself in enough positions to succeed and you put yourself out there enough, eventually you just will by accident. I always have kind of let the opportunities come to me. And networking is a big part of that. If you put yourself out there enough, eventually good things will happen to you. I mean, you’re a good example of that for me, right?
Dylan: I’m introverted pretty, at least in social settings. I’m fine talking to you over a webcam on the internet and all these people that I can’t see, that’s fine. But in social settings, I’m just weird, I don’t know what to say or do or how to talk to people. So I always thought networking was going to be hard or impossible for me, but I thought like well, screw that, I’m going to try it anyway. What’s the worst that can happen? I started doing some networking, paying to join masterminds to meet other people that are in business, smart people.
Dylan: So I meet you, and you, I talk to you a little bit and you introduce me to someone else that you met that was also in the Amazon space, who then goes on to promote my program, who promotes my program and does, like in the last year we’ve done probably like a quarter million dollars in sales. She’s done like a quarter million dollars … She’s made about half that or whatever. She’s made about $125,000 in commission promoting our course. That’s just one micro example of I decided I was going to do more networking, I met you, you introduced me to someone who promotes my course and that makes me $125,000.
Dylan: And that’s one example. There are many more. And it doesn’t happen, if I don’t make … And I didn’t know that was going to happen. I didn’t know what the outcome was going to be. I just knew I should do more networking, we’ll see what happens. And that’s an example of something that happened.
James: Yeah, it’s so important. I totally believe that. Showing up is like half the … Nobody’s willing to show up. Nobody’s willing to just show up and put themselves in a position. And it just goes to show, I remember that, I’m so glad that that relationship has worked out and that’s what happens when you surround yourself with the right people. And I think it’s also super important to foster relationships. And something I think about that, especially one of the ways I’ve gotten ahead that I’ll share with everybody listening is … And this is counterintuitive, so this is highly counterintuitive, but it’s acquiring the taste of enjoying seeing other people succeed.
James: So it lights my day up the fact that you and her were able to do a JV and both win. That’s amazing. Where some people, they’re like, “Oh, I’m only going to introduce you. If you do something for me or it’s going to cost you this much.” You don’t want to be like that. That’s never going to get you ahead in life. And you know what? That’s just …
Dylan: I don’t think it’s counterintuitive at all. I think people more people need to have that mindset. That’s what limits them. That’s why they don’t succeed. I tell people that in our all the time that I coach or consult with, that, yeah, absolutely, I 100% hundred agree, 100%.
James: I mean, it’s counterintuitive because most people don’t think like that. It’s counterintuitive for that. You know what I mean? They don’t think like that. Whereas it’s intuitive for obviously, we’ve learned that and it’s just … So it’s really, really important for anybody listening. If you want to get ahead, start giving value to others as much as you can. Enjoy seeing them succeed. Ask how you can get other people ahead and in return you’ll get yourself ahead. One of my favorite quotes is up by Zig Ziglar, “Help enough people get what they want and you’ll get what you want.”
Dylan: Yeah. Yeah. I remember it was a similar quote that really opened up my mind and I understood it. It was as simple as like, “How do you make money? How do you make money in this world?” And the answer is very simple. It’s incredibly simple. It’s provide value to someone. And it’s just like oh, shit. That’s all you gotta do, is you just got to be valuable, you got provide people value. I don’t care if I’m … If I provide a ton of value to people for a long time and I get nothing in return, eventually you will get something in return. You can’t worry about yourself so much as you just worry about serving and you just provide and you serve people and you provide them value and good things will happen to you, I promise. I promise. Just have that right mindset.
James: It’s so true. So couple more questions here, Dylan. One topic I want to talk to you business-wise before you move on to one other thing is resourceful honest and you talked about that a little bit and I think it’s so, so important. What’s your take on resourcefulness and what’s may be an example of a way you’ve been resourceful in business or life?
Dylan: Yeah. Sure. I’ll talk about our Consulting Digital Marketing, our course. We sell courses, training programs around selling on Amazon. When we started that business how we launched it, our first … And how I said, I’m resourceful and I don’t always … I’ll just get a proof of concept that I’ll get there by any means necessary from what I already know how to do or what I can quickly research on Google. It doesn’t have to be perfect or ideal.
Dylan: Our first website was made through Wix. So it wasn’t anything fancy, wasn’t a special. Build out wasn’t even WordPress, it was just … Our website was a Wix website. Our payment processor, we couldn’t get approved for one. No one would approve us for the people that we tried to do that. So I borrowed a friend’s that I knew who had one. I convinced him, like when we have sales, will you just run them through yours and I’ll trust you to pay me when it’s all said and done. So I used someone else’s payment processor.
Dylan: The content that I created and the launch videos that I used to advertise it were narrated PowerPoint slides. That was it. Our email platform that we emailed people with was like $100 a month or $50 a month AWeber plan. So just the simplest thing that I could find and get set up quickly. I’m just trying to think if there’s any other just like ridiculous things. Because it was a Wix website, if anyone bought the program, I had to manually create their username, their password and then manually email them because there was no integrations.
Dylan: That’s how it started and we did our first launch where we promoted the program. Cart was open for I think seven days on that promotion. I did $160,000 in sales with just all the random piecemeal crap. And then I just kept scaling it from there. So then from that Walmart version of a promotion, then eventually our next launch was 300,000 and 600,000 and then a million, then 1.2 million, 1.4 million, 1.6 million was our most recent promotion. So we’ve just moved up and up from there. But you got to get started somewhere.
Dylan: And that’s the thing, is if I had tried to make it perfect, I either never get it done or it takes so much time to implement that you would have been better off with a fast implementation that you could have fixed and you can outpace where you would have been taking your time. I always believe that it’s the speed of implementation and speed of anything really or even like people … That’s another, I can go on about profit margin or ROI things like that where people don’t account … When the people are thinking about profit margin, they don’t account for speed of the return on investment, which is equally as important as what the return on investment number is.
Dylan: If I can make 10% ROI and I can do it 10 times faster than you, I can make more money than you’re making on a 50 or 60 or 70% ROI. Anyway, not to rant about that, but yeah, so that was what … That was an example of just having us real what I would call anti-bougie promotion and it worked out really well, doesn’t matter turns out.
James: I love that and it just resource … It’s so inspiring to hear that don’t because again, it would be so easy in your position to just be like, “Oh my gosh, I don’t have a paying processor. Guess this isn’t going to work. Poor me.”
Dylan: Because I got denied. Yeah. I got denied. Some people would give up there. I called PayPal and they were like, “Yeah, we’re not going to do that.” It’s things like that. And yeah, you just don’t give up. You just find a way to make it work.
James: And I really believe that is one of the key, key principles you need in order to get ahead in anything, is that instead of, notice language you just used. It wasn’t like, “Oh my gosh, this isn’t gonna work.” It’s, “I’m gonna find a way.” And I really believe when we have language like that, when we tell ourselves, “There is a way and I’m going to find it.” Or, “What is the solution?” Then we open ourselves up to possibilities like that. And we find a way, whether it’s running the payments through your friends merchant account or whether it’s using Wix because you can’t afford a full out website. Whatever. You’re just going to find a way and there’s always a way. So great. It’s so great.
James: Awesome. Okay. Last thing I want to ask you about, Dylan, is we’ve talked a lot about business obviously. I mean, you’ve done amazing. So thank you so much for sharing as much as you did and the mindsets, the strategies, so much gold here. So thank you for that. And I’m curious, in terms of getting ahead in other parts of your life, yes, you’ve got the business thing, you hustle, you work hard, all that sort of stuff. What does it mean to get ahead in the other parts of your life and how do you do that?
Dylan: Oh, I just be myself. That’s really the all its ever came down to, is no matter what … You can see I don’t really pay attention to … I don’t shave, once every three months or whatever. I just don’t care. I’ve just always, always been myself for the sake of being myself and not trying to contort or change who I am for the benefit of other people and it’s made me a very happy … I’ve always been a very happy person because of that no matter what my situation is life. When I was poor. Now that I’m rich. It doesn’t matter. I’ve always been very happy because I’m just me and I’m not apologetic about just being me. That’s what’s made me happy.
James: It couldn’t be more … I resonate with that a lot and especially as you know I’m building this new brand with me as the personality. This is new for me. It’s outside of my comfort zone. For most of my business career I’ve been behind the scenes because I’m an introvert like you too. I didn’t want to be front facing. When I got started I just took the same mindset that you had and the same philosophy, as I’m like, I’m not going to try and pretend to be somebody else, that is so much work. You know what I mean? Even if I’m doing a branch, just I’m gonna be myself, and I’ve noticed that that, like you mentioned has been by far, a, it’s just real and it’s authentic and that’s what you should be.
James: But it’s just what’s resonated the most and I think that’s so important if you’re listening. If you’re trying to get ahead, you can’t be somebody else. You have to be yourself. And you’re going to resonate with certain people and some people aren’t going to resonate with you and that’s okay. That’s okay. So amazing. And one other thing there, I guess, you’ve recently started your own family. So how’s that working out?
Dylan: Oh, it’s great. I guess I’m super lucky. My baby is already sleeping through the night. Everyone was just like trying to scare you to death about how hard it is, and I’m just like man, this has been easy. This has been great. I’ve loved it. So I don’t know. I don’t know what everyone was talking about it being hard, but maybe I’m jinxing myself. But I’ve loved it.
James: I don’t know yet. I don’t have kids yet. Maybe we’ll have to check back in with you on a year from now or two years.
Dylan: Probably, yeah.
James: Yeah, see how you’re able to be resourceful and make all that work out. Dylan, thanks so much for joining us here on the Get Ahead podcast. Super awesome. Thank you for everything that you shared. Any books that you’d recommend, I’m curious, if you’ve got any books that you’d recommend?
Dylan: I’ve never read a book. So I don’t know. I don’t have any to recommend.
James: I love it. I love it. Just go take action. Figure it out as you go. Nothing wrong with that. Go write your own book. Go write-
Dylan: I’m sure I’ll write one before I ever read one. I’m sure that’s true.
James: There you go. I love it. Dylan, thanks so much.
Dylan: Yeah, I’m not joking. I haven’t read one. All right. We’ll see you.
James: Well, I hope you loved this week’s episode. If you did, tell your friends. That would be a huge favor for me and it can help build this community. We can all get ahead. Something I’d like to do is give you a special gift. It turns out that one of the ways to get ahead is to be able to find spot and then take advantage of opportunity. We all know this. And it turns out that my business partner and mentor, Eben Pagan, has written a book on this very. And I’d like to give you that book and ship it to you absolutely free. So the book is called Opportunity: How to Win in Business and Create a Life You Love.
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James: And thank you so much for being here. Thank you so much for joining here. Thank you so much for investing in yourself to get ahead. By you getting ahead, it’s going to inspire other people and then we’re all going to get ahead. So have an amazing week and I look forward to talking to you on the next episode.