Being An Entrepreneur Is Hard

by jim on December 30th, 2009

In talking with folks at both Elite Retreat and Thinktank, the one thing I discovered was that most of them stumbled into the internet marketing world completely by accident. I chatted briefly with Merrick Lozano, who started press release distribution service PR Leap with his brother Mario, and learned that his foray involved photos he had taken of Anna Kournikova at the US Open (many many years ago). He put them online, emailed some friends, and a couple days later his host shut down his account because it had spread so quickly that he ran out of bandwidth (remember when hosts used to charge for that?).

The key turning point for many of these successful entrepreneurs was turning the accidental success into long term sustainable success.

I first met Justin Goff about a year ago at Shoemoney’s Elite Retreat conference in San Francisco. I only talked with him a couple times over the few days of the conference but I got the sense that he was a pretty sharp guy. I never had a chance to learn Justin’s start until he wrote about what it takes to be an entrepreneur.

Everything he says is spot on and well worth reading. You need to take your lumps and persevere in order to succeed because finding success isn’t neither easy or painless. People will doubt you and try to cut you down because when you’re following your dream, they are constantly reminded about how they may not be following theirs.

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4 Responses to “Being An Entrepreneur Is Hard”

  1. Merrick Says:

    Hi Jim,

    Thanks for sharing a bit of our story. I agree, being an entrepreneur is hard.

    To elaborate a bit on the story, I learned about SEO because of I posted those pictures online. Webtrends showed that AltaVista sent thousands of people to my site in a short amount of time and naturally I explored the world of search engine optimization, which led me to Search Engine Watch’s newsletter.

    Later I saw a job I was interested in at a company who did Internet Marketing and thought I could learn more about that there. I saw how this company was making millions off of funneling search engine visitors from display advertising (not adwords) to doctors and lawyers sites and I thought we could succeed with SEO. That set Mario and I off to start our company, Condesa.

    This is where I learned just how hard it is to be an Entrepreneur. In 2003, one year after starting our company realized selling SEO services was hard and we were not good at it, and so we started a blog (Legal News Watch), and a service (PR Leap). It took us over 3 years before we were making a steady and comfortable living from our company. We put in a ton of sweat and effort because the dream of running our own company was much more inspiring than working for someone else the rest of our lives.

  2. jim Says:

    Merrick – Thanks for expanding on my two sentences. 🙂

    It’s always amazing to hear how the story always starts with something small and almost accidental, in your case it was photos. But you mix in some brains, a bit of hard work, and something great comes out the other side.

    It was a pleasure meeting you at ThinkTank and hopefully we’ll run into each other again in the near future!

  3. Merrick Says:

    I also love hearing other entrepreneurs stories, and it’s why Mixergy is one of my favorite resources.

    I’ll be at Chirp and Pubcon, hope to catch up to you soon as well.

  4. jim Says:

    Mixergy is excellent, Andrew asks some great questions and people are really open when they talk to him. I don’t have any conference plans as of yet but I’m sure we’ll run into each other.

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