Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Big Idea - Penagain

Aloha, I am still in Hawaii but thought I would post this great video about the inventor of Penagain. His product is sold in 25,000 stores worldwide. Like me, he thought about this product for years and years till he had enough guts to start it. It is a great 6 minute video that gives you tons of ideas of how to get your first sale.

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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Big Idea

As you know, I like to post videos of small business start ups and owners. I found this one recently, for the "Big Idea with Donnie Deutsch". Listen to what the entrepeneur says. I did it on my own. I learned from the ground up. Everyone told me I couldn't do it. And bye the way, she is only 25 (at the filming of this video). I gotta be candid, I am curious to try this product as I am a prodigeous snoozer. Aloha!

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Saturday, July 18, 2009

Out of pocket - three weeks

I am at the airport right now waiting to board my flight. As you have noticed I have been a little sporadic with my postings lately as I help out friends and family. I needed a little break and a change of scenery, so my flight boards shortly to Hawaii.

As you work on your dream, there will be times when you are feeling not so confident about where you are going. Keep your mind clear and realize that with perseverence you will succeed. I have been feeling that way and just need a break right now.

Why did I decide to go to Hawaii now? Several reasons. First, like I said, I need a break and change of scenery. Second, I am doing it on the cheap. How you may ask? While I bought a coach ticket, my friend gave me a systemwide upgrade to first class. Not bad for a 10 hour flight.

Second, my girl has her apartment in downtown Honolulu, but also, because she is consulting on the Big Island, she has a condo by Kona that is paid for through the end of August. Needless to say, I am only paying for a hotel and car for the three days I am staying in Maui (and my girl has already paid for those).

What money I have left will pay for meals, since she has picked up the cost of most of our activities. I imagine this whole trip will cost me less then $2,500 and that is pushing it. The plans so far include:

Typical Oahu tour including Pearl Harbor
Spa and massage day - couples massage
Jet Skiing
Hot Springs
Coffee tasting - Kona
Horse back riding
Helicopter Tour
Swimming with Manta Rays

This is just a smattering what we are doing. I am trying to figure out if I can write off part of this trip. I met my girl since my last company had a subsidiary in Hawaii, and I used to work with her on the administration. I am also going to meet with some of the Insurance brokers there and do some networking. Finally, my girl is a power user of Quickbooks and will set me up with it on my laptop I am bringing.

Either way, I will try and post if and when I can but don't expect much for the next three weeks. Aloha!

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Friday, July 17, 2009

More research on merchant services

I am researching a few more merchant service providers before I make a decision. The downtime on is really pushing me towards the Yahoo hosted ecommerce solution. They have their own gateway for you to use. I have checked out Bank of America and will check out Chase Paymentech and will need to look further into First Data. I am also considering PayPal as it is really inexpensive to sign up.

As I look more at the Yahoo solution I think I may need to go with First Data as that is who their main partner is. Nice thing about First Data, I can use just about any bank I want. Luckily I have time to look at it since I have not reached out to contract manufacturers (life has slowed me down on some things). In addition, they can interface with outsourcers too.

I will update my costing study as I look further at the various options and give you an update.

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Cigarettes and self employment

I was reading a blog entry on a guy having trouble quitting smoking. I understand his difficulty as I used to have that nasty habit as well. But is also made me think about one of the difficulties of starting your own business. I am trying to start this entity with less then $2,500.

I figured $5 dollars for a pack of smokes. One pack a day for 365 days is $1,800, or almost 75% of your cost of starting your business. Add on that lower health insurance costs you will need to buy and not smelling for your prospective buyers, it makes sense to quit now.

Take a look at his blog if you want, interesting what we do to our bodies and how are bodies and minds work.

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Wednesday, July 8, 2009 down

Why am I commenting about and why do you care? If you are going to sell products online, you have to have a way of interfacing with your merchant account. is the big player, and is who several banks use for internet transactions. A fire in a data center, brought down their servers, which did not allow transactions go through. This is disheartening to say the least. Redundancy is at the core of internet transactions, and the fact that they were not able to fail over, have enough back up or none at all concerns me.

Because of this I will be checking out PayPal closer, as well as First Data and Chase Paymenttech for my merchant solutions. I think the silver lining is if you use a Yahoo ecommerce account you do not need the payment gateway, just not sure. Anyone else have experience with Chase or First Data?

Office Depot, Inc

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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Happy Mistakes

A great video on perseverance. This gentleman, from the UK (I admit I don't know who is he) talks about a mistake/misunderstanding turned out in his favor. Don't let the fear of a mistake stop you. It worked out great for Gerald Ratner.

Print Runner Inc.

Office Depot, Inc

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