Productized or Software as a Service? A hot topic often discussed on TMBA. Of course, there’s no right or wrong answer but on today’s show Brian Casel talks to Dan about the factors that contributed to him changing from one to the other by selling Audience Ops and starting ZipMessage and also the different challenges of the two:
Dan and Ian
In late 2007, we (Dan Andrews and Ian Schoen, that’s us above) started a product design and ecommerce company that grew to multi-seven figures in annual revenues. We exited that business in 2015 (wohoo!).
For our first episode of the New Year Dan talks to one of our favorite writers in the investment space, Sam Dogen, author of Financial Samurai. Started in 2009, just as he was trying to dig his way out of losing 35% of his net worth due to the global financial crisis, Sam has been discussing investment strategies on his blog ever since. But ‘Financial Samurai’ is about so much more than that. In this episode Dan and Sam cover the importance of ‘parlay’ in your career, the downsides of ‘Financial Independence, Retire Early’, how he chooses topics to write about, and much more.
In today’s show Dan talks to Jake Ryan, CIO of the crypto hedge fund TradeCraft Capital and author of ‘Crypto Asset Investing in the Age of Autonomy’, about why he believes the convergence of cryptocurrency and new technologies is creating a transformational environment as significant as the ‘Information Age’.
2021 has been a landmark year for this show, and for entrepreneurs all around the globe. Though the Covid pandemic has lingered on, we have seen borders slowly start to open up and digital nomads finally start to become nomadic once more. We even closed out the year by connecting with listeners of this show at our Dynamite Circle Holiday Party in Austin last week, the first event of its kind in the United States in more than two years. Through it all, we have been fortunate to talk to some incredibly captivating entrepreneurs on this podcast in 2021 and to hear their stories of resilience, innovation, turmoil, and triumph.
This week's guest has done something that so many entrepreneurs aspire to do: they have turned a bespoke creative shop into a truly successful internet business. Lisa Norman is the co-founder of Authentic Leather Patch Co. Together with her partner Ian, they have been manufacturing custom leather patches for clients around the US, which they stitch onto a variety of products. We personally love their hats, which are consistently the most sought-after swag at our Dynamite Circle events. Their story is not your typical "4-Hour Workweek" startup tale. What started in a small shop in California, has turned into a business that generated over 2 million in revenue last year.
We know agencies don't usually get a lot of love on the show but they can be a great way to get started, and an incredible stepping stone in your career. Jodie Cook describes herself as an "athlete, writer, and entrepreneur", and when she says athlete, she means it. She has represented the UK internationally, and she built her agency as a lifestyle business with the intention of complimenting her career as a professional powerlifter.
We've been receiving a lot of requests from our listeners lately for an old-school "talking shop" type of episode. This week, we're doing just that, and in typical Tropical MBA fashion, we are focusing on three specific topics that are top of mind as the year comes to a close. We start the episode off with a discussion about whether we believe we are on the correct path to achieve our goal of building an 8-figure business in the near future.
There is nothing we love more than an entrepreneur who operates outside of convention, and this week's guest is no exception. Tynan is a bestselling author and the creator of CruiseSheet, a website that helps travelers find great deals on cruises. He is also a former Pickup Artist or "PUA", and at one point was a professional gambler. We've been following his terrific blog at Tynan.com for many years, and we're fascinated by his ability to remain ahead of the curve when it comes to social trends on the internet.
Today's episode is all about an emotional journey that was born out of this very podcast, and the unique mental health challenges that entrepreneurs face. Bunty SomRoy took a huge risk back in 2015 when he decided to volunteer at one of our Dynamite Circle events in Bangkok. Since then, he has gone through many stages of the entrepreneurial journey; hustling as a freelancer, taking a job at a startup, and finally running a successful business of his own. It wasn't all wine and roses, though. Bunty encountered some harrowing mental health struggles along the way, and he joins us on the podcast this week to share his very personal story.
When today's guest spoke at our recent event in Mexico City, we were taken by his story because it presented a captivating alternative to the traditional bootstrap business partnerships that we've encountered over the years. Tommy Griffith is the founder of ClickMinded, an online SEO training course, and he has joined us many times over the years to share the story of that business. His story took an unexpected turn when he decided to take on a co-founder after he had already been operating his business for five years.
We are once again reaching into the mailbag this week to answer questions from the Tropical MBA audience. We'll be answering questions that our listeners have submitted on a broad range of topics, including how to stay motivated after your business has met your goals, and how you can better your chances of being selected as a speaker at a conference or a podcast guest. You'll also hear some news updates about our own businesses, our crypto portfolio, and a whole lot more.
It was such a breath of fresh air to see so many entrepreneurs in Mexico City last week at DC MEX, our first in-person event since 2019. We had so much fun catching up with old friends, meeting new ones, exchanging stories, and working together to move forward with our businesses. One of our favorite parts about these events is that we get an up-close-and-personal look as all kinds of exciting trends start to emerge in the community.
Today's podcast is all about a business model that sometimes gets a bad rap on this show: "the agency". We recently bumped into our friend Johnathan Solorzano at MicroConf in Austin, and he had quite a bit to say about the subject. Johnathan is the founder of Solo Media Group, a remote agency of web developers that focuses primarily on Shopify and WooCommerce projects.
In last week's podcast, Carrie McKeegan shared how she has been using author Gino Wickman's EOS (Entrepreneurial Operating System) to help her grow and manage her team. This week, we're diving deeper into the topic by speaking with an entrepreneur who has developed their own customized version of the very same system with impressive results. Neel Parekh is the founder of MaidThis, a business that offers cleaning services for residential homes and AirBNB rentals.
We've spoken at great length on this podcast about how the Covid pandemic has forced us to make changes in the way that we run our businesses. This week, we're going to speak to an entrepreneur who used the landscape of Covid as an opportunity to provide an entirely different educational experience for her children. Carrie McKeegan is the CEO and co-founder of Greenback Expat Tax Services, which helps Americans abroad prepare and file their taxes.
It has been nearly two years since we've hosted an event for the members of our private membership forum The Dynamite Circle. DCMEX, our first official event since 2019, is just a few short weeks away, and we couldn't be more excited to see so many listeners of this podcast in Mexico City this October. In-person events are so important to those of us in the entrepreneurial community. From the relationships that we develop to the things that we learn together, there are so many reasons why entrepreneurs can benefit from being together in the same place.
Today's episode is all about mental health, depression, anxiety, and the effect that these things can have on the way that we run our businesses. Benny Lewis is the founder of Fluent in 3 months, and he recently opened up about his own struggles at our unofficial DCx event in London a few weeks ago. While his business was "successful" by many traditional metrics, his personal life was far from it.
This week's episode is full of actionable advice for anyone who is looking to improve their revenue and optimize their sales. We were taking notes throughout the entire conversation with today's guest, and by the time it had ended, it felt like we had taken part in an incredible workshop. John Ainsworth is the founder of Data Driven Marketing, and he has recently started a group that coaches course creators who are looking to increase the revenue of their business.
This week's podcast is inspired by a blog post that we published back in 2014. That post was titled "What is the Real Cost of the Permanent Travel Lifestyle?" and many of the points we touched on in that article are still being discussed by people in our community today. One of those people is Jesse Schoberg. Jesse is the founder of DropInBlog, and he is all too familiar with the challenges of bootstrapping his way up the "Lifestyle Ladder".
We've seen a lot of great conversations take place in our private community The Dynamite Circle as of late. One of our favorites came in the form of a thread titled "Is Digital Nomadism Possible to Combine With Having a Family?" While there were many insightful responses in that thread, one member, in particular, caught our attention.
We are once again reaching into the mailbag this week to answer some pressing questions from the Tropical MBA audience. This is a somewhat unorthodox episode, as we are "shooting from the hip" on a variety of items that have come across our desk in the past few months. We'll be discussing how to structure your teams (specifically in an agency), tips for staying focused on what's important in your business, and how to avoid the dreaded "D-word" in your business: drama.
Today's guest has been on an incredible journey that touches on so many of our favorite entrepreneurial milestones. Derek Pankaew is the co-founder of Mythia, a financial startup that has partnered with banks to create a debit card aimed exclusively at gamers. He has experienced just about every entrepreneurial path, from running a "4-Hour Workweek" business built on passive income, to seeking out more ambitious projects in the San Francisco startup community, and eventually raising roughly 2.2 million dollars in venture capital funding.
Today's episode is particularly insightful for entrepreneurs who are looking to improve their social media or content marketing game, and for those of us who are interested in the property investment space. Moses Kagan is the co-founder of Adaptive Realty, a boutique real estate private equity firm based in Los Angeles, which has about $200 Million in assets under management.
This week, we are once again diving into the world of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. Gerbz is a regular contributor to this podcast and our go-to guy for all things crypto. He is the founder of BitLift.com, and the host of the brand new BitLift podcast, which aims to guide people down the crypto rabbit hole.
The term "Digital Nomad" has been beaten to death over the years, but it still means a lot to those of us who have identified with that label. James Clark is certainly one of those people. He's been a full-time nomad since the early 2000s, and we've shared many great memories with him around the world.
Longtime listeners know that Dan and Ian have been business partners for many years, and sometimes it's hard for us to imagine what it would be like to run a business on our own. So many entrepreneurs do choose this path, though, and the quest of a "Solopreneur" can be a long and arduous one.
We aren't usually the type for navel-gazing, but this summer marks an important milestone for us. 10 years ago, our desire to "find our tribe" led us to form the Dynamite Circle, a private membership community of location-independent entrepreneurs. Since then, there have been dozens of DC events all over the globe, and it has truly become a life-changing adventure for so many of the people involved in the community over the last decade.
This week's episode was inspired by a question from a listener. Katie recently graduated with her master's degree, and while she appreciated the insight that we've shared in the past about how to get a remote job, she wanted to know more about what it takes to succeed at a remote position once you get it. This got our wheels spinning, and we put together a list of five important factors that can help employees become "A Players" in their remote positions.
Nick Huber has been on a wild ride since we last spoke to him in 2019. Nick is the host of a podcast called The Sweaty Startup, and at the time he was running a business called Storage Squad, a storage company that helped students store their belongings at universities all across America.
Summer is here, and it's starting to feel like things are returning to "normal." For many of us in the community, that means that we're finally going to have the opportunity to pick up our backpacks and return to nomadic life. Jesse Schoberg is the co-founder and CEO of DropInBlog.com, a Software as a Service platform that helps users add blogs to their websites.