Reserve Your Spot in Heaven

One of the things I try to do with this site, and when talking to clients, is to show people that sometimes even the most outrageous ideas can make money.

Reserve a Spot in Heaven is mainly a gag gift. For the low price of just under $15 you too can reserve your spot in Heaven. It even comes with a money back guarantee. (But it’s only guaranteed if you don’t get in.) Hmmmmm, I wonder how that works out?

This crazy idea has been featured in places like The Washington Post, Fox News, CNN and MSN.

Depending on what religion you practice, for the most part getting into the heaven of choice is free! How can anyone possibly make money on it?

Well this site proves you can. Of course most religious people won’t find the idea very funny. But there are enough people in the world that aren’t religious that it doesn’t really matter. People reserve their spots everyday.

Even though they say it’s just a gag, the point of the whole of me writing about this ridiculousness is that your idea isn’t as dumb as you think it is. And the next time you think it is, remember the guy who’s making money to get into somewhere where you can get into for free.

How to Start Your Own T-Shirt Business in One Day

Over the years when I’ve heard someone say something funny, someone else inevitably says, “That should be on a T-shirt.”

It doesn’t take long for the person to stop and think about how much work goes into buying T-shirt equipment that costs about $10,000, then printing the shirts with all that messy ink, then marketing and distributing them. By the time they’ve visualized all that, the idea that seemed clever a few minutes ago usually leaves that person as fast as it came to them.

Can you imagine if the yellow smiley-face guy wouldn’t have followed through on his T-shirt idea? He wouldn’t have made millions, we wouldn’t have that reference in our pop-culture and millions of people wouldn’t be expressing themselves through emojis 25 years after the fad.

I’m going to give you a couple of ways that you can start your t-shirt business today. The second one of these ways literally costs no money. All you have to do is get the word out.

The first reference is this article HERE . This was written by a guy who used to work at Shopify. There is a learning curve when dealing with Shopify and setting up a domain name and server. If you’re wanting to have your own store, this article will get you started. However, if you’re not tech-savvy, you’ll want to go on to the next paragraph before clicking over to read the article.

The next site is perfect for the beginner. Teespring.com is a site where you can upload your own designs, or just type right on a template and start selling your shirts in about 15 minutes.

Teespring sets a price that you’ll pay them if your shirt sells. Usually it’s around $10 to $15 depending if you have printing on the front and back. You can price your shirt anywhere you want to above that. Teespring recommends that you set the price at $25.00. (I’d say $24.99) And if you sell any shirts, you get all of the profit over the base price of what they are charging you. They collect the money for you AND they ship it out to your customers. The shirt’s shopping cart is housed on their website and you can share the link to it on all your Socials and be selling in minutes.

There is a “3 Day Printing Period,” and Teespring has a countdown clock when someone sees the shirt for the first time. This creates a sense of urgency and makes people want to buy. What they don’t tell consumers is the “3 Day Printing Period” starts over after 3 days. And you don’t have to go in and reset it, they do it automatically.

What’s really good about Teespring is it allows you to create a product with no equipment, inventory, employees, shopping carts, websites and anything else you can think of that you need to start a business.

The best part to me is you can test out ideas and see if they sell without investing a dollar. My daughter and I both tested out a T-shirt design. Neither one of them sold, but it was a fun project to teach her about entrepreneurship, design and marketing. The lesson was, “Sometimes ideas work, sometimes they don’t. But it’s better to be able to try them out when they are free than when you have to pay a lot of money.”

One last thing about Teespring, if you want to design a custom shirt just for yourself, you can do that too. You don’t have to sell any, which is cool if you’re into custom t-shirts.

Obviously the t-shirt market is a tough business. You really need to think about who your audience is and what message you want to get across to them. Often times the smaller niche you can make, the more you’ll sell.

Here’s an example: “Aussie Mum’s are #1!” could be a better idea than, “Mom’s are #1.”

Why might this be a better idea? The word Aussie narrows the target down to Australian moms. In Australia they say Mum, not Mom…so there’s two things that make this shirt more specific to mom’s in Australia. Now you just have to make sure you’re marketing it to Australian moms–Facebook can easily help you with that.

If you ever thought about trying to get into the T-shirt business, I hope this helps get you started. As always, do some research before investing any of your own money. Watch a few videos on Youtube about t-shirt design and marketing. It’s really easy to get started and writing this just gave me a new idea for my daughter’s initial project.

Now go design something.

(P.S. Don’t forget to do a grammar check. Nothing like writing an article or printing 100 T-shirts and then having the Grammar Police hit you up to say, “It should be Moms not Mom’s…”)

Motivation – Don’t Dream Your Life, Live It!

There are many times that I lose sight of what I’m trying to do while I chase this dream of mine. The dream being that one day I will wake up and have helped millions of people pursue their dream career. Whether that’s them starting their own business or getting into their ideal career on their terms, that is my vision. That’s what I think about on-and-off almost every single day.

The only problem is, “Vision without action is just a dream, action without vision just passes the time.” -Nelson Mandela

How many times have you been at your job, or in your car driving to your job and dreamed about doing something different? How many times have you envisioned yourself doing something that excites you? Something that makes you feel so good that you can physically feel it? Then a horn honks or someone drops by and says something to you and you come crashing back to reality.

Well, it’s feeling that vision physically and then working through reality that will get you there. That’s what I’m doing right now as I write this.

I often go two or three months without writing a word. I have also went through several-year periods where I wrote almost every single day and only missed a day or two of writing in that year. I’ve done the work in the past, but that doesn’t make it any easier to get back into it when you’ve had some time off.

It’s kind of like exercising, it feels good when it’s part of your daily routine, but it’s pure torture to keep going if you’ve had a long break. The reason we keep going (if we actually do) is because we’ve decided in our head’s that we want to look and feel a certain way about ourselves. That vision is what keeps us going.

Here’s a little secret for you. That Nelson Mandela quote up there at the top shouldn’t have a period at the of that sentence, because the real quote says, “Vision without action is just a dream, action without vision just passes the time, and vision with action can change the world.

I encourage you to take some sort of action today (and preferably every day) to get you closer to your goal. If you don’t, your vision will just stay a dream.

Here’s some motivation for you.

Murder and Suicide Cleanup Business – WWPMM #5

Are you a fan of the show CSI? Do you like horror or zombie movies where you feel like, “The gorier the better?” If so, you might want to start a Murder Scene Clean-up business. (It’s not just for murders, they also do suicides.)

I’m not one for guts and gore. In fact, doing the research for this business made me realize I really didn’t want to write about it. However, I will leave you with a couple of links so that you can do your own research if you chose to.

As I’ve been doing research for the Weird Ways People Make Money (WWPMM) series, I’ve come to realize that each business idea has its own set of challenges. Some businesses have ethical issues. Others have the, “What will people think?” issue.

Some of the takeaways that I’ve had with all of these businesses are: is there a need to fill? Will people pay for it? Is it ethical? If it’s not ethical, is it illegal? And if it’s illegal, who says so and why? Can the laws be changed?

While doing research for murder scene clean-ups businesses, I ran across a place in Switzerland where you can go and commit suicide and they’ll clean everything up for you so your family doesn’t walk into the aftermath. There are some hoops you have to jump through and I don’t really want to write too much on the topic. But here’s the link if you want to look it up and I promise that the next episode of WWPMM will end on a happier note.

The Something Store –Weird Ways People Make Money #4

Sami Bayrakci was looking for a gift online for a friend when he came up empty. He thought, wouldn’t it be great if someone picked a fun, interesting gift for someone and for the added surprise they wouldn’t be told what it was. It would be a total surprise. This is how he came up with The Something Store idea.

Nine years later they have delivered thousands of “somethings” all over the world. The great thing is they do it for $10 which includes shipping. Who would have thought that a mystery grab-bag type business would work out?
Bayrakci says, “You should take a chance on your wacky idea! What do you have to lose?”

We’ve all heard that, “Most businesses fail within the first five years.” But you know what? You’ll never know if you don’t try. All of the businesses I’m profiling at the moment are a bit wacky, but they all work and they all make more money than I do sitting in a cubicle for 40 hours a week. Most of these business have one thing in common, they started small, then they grew and now others see the coolness that they saw all those years ago.

Start now moving toward your goal now and eventually you be where you want to be. Or you can stand around and do nothing and most likely still be where you are right now.

Weird Ways People Make Money #3 Potato Parcel

We’ve all had that, “Why didn’t I think of that,” moment. Well this next weird business idea is so far-fetched that I don’t think anyone would have thought that this was a good business to start – but we all would have been wrong.

The Potato Parcel is a company that ships potatoes to your doorsteps. And these aren’t just any potatoes. These potatoes have messages written on the with Sharpie markers. Some of them have pictures attached to them as well. Those are called Potato Pals.

Need a Mother’s Day gift? How about a potato that says, “Love you mom! From your little Spud.”

Or how about, “Happy Birthday Babe! Now cook this up for me.” I’m pretty sure this wouldn’t go over in my house and the website specifically says not to eat the potatoes.

Do you think this business is crazy? Well they sold over $200,000 worth of potatoes their first year and you can watch this video of two Sharks from Shark Tank fight over the idea.

The point of these posts are to show you that no idea is too crazy if you know how to sell and market something. Now get out there and figure out what your Potato Parcel is.

Weird Ways to Make Money #2 The Wedding Wagon

Continuing with my series on, “Weird Ways People Make Money,” today’s weird business is The Wedding Wagon in Las Vegas. The idea behind the Wedding Wagon is that anyone should be able to get married anywhere they want for an affordable price. How affordable? How about $129.00? (Flowers usually cost more than that.)

The Wedding Wagon is a fully decorated wedding on wheels. An Officiant and photographer will meet you at your location. The back of the van opens up for an elegant backdrop and that’s where the couple takes their vows.

Now granted, this business is in Las Vegas which is often called, “The wedding capital of the world.” (Side note, one of my brothers was married at Red Rock Canyon just outside of Las Vegas. The marriage didn’t last long though because unfortunately she went back to doing drugs.) Moving on…

Vegas weddings can be fun and whimsical. There are drive-in weddings, “Little Chapel” weddings and even weddings with an Elvis impersonator as the Officiant. This type of business model is great for Las Vegas, but what about other geographical locations around the U.S.? Would this idea work?

I happen to know a lady named Samantha who does, “pop-up weddings,” in St. Louis, MO. A pop-up wedding is usually a small wedding at a restaurant, park or scenic viewpoint where the bride and groom can invite their close friends and family, have a quick ceremony, have a little food and then get the heck out of there.

My friend who does these types of weddings usually charges about $2500 and has a 20 person max. All food is included and you also get a person to officiate the wedding. This is about 12 times cheaper than the average cost of a wedding these days, which is roughly $32,600.

The point is there are all kinds of ways you can make money. One of the many ways is through weddings. Whether it’s through pop-ups, DJing, Officiating, being the photographer, or the cater, weddings are usually once (or twice) in a lifetime events that people don’t mind paying for.

An interesting point here, the original guys who started The Wedding Wagon sold out. They thought they would franchise the idea. Unfortunately they didn’t plan the exit very well and then went to Shark Tank to try to sell the idea. If you’re interested, you can click here to see the rest of the story.

Weird Business #1 Boxcycle.com

This is the first article in a series that I’m going to write on weird business ideas that are making people money. If you think you have a good business idea, chances are you do. One thing for sure is your idea can’t be any crazier than some of the ones that I’ve been reading about.

For instance, www.boxcycle.com is a nationwide site that encourages people to recycle and buy used moving boxes. The site’s mission is to educate people that recycling boxes only helps landfills a little, whereas if we reuse them we have a more beneficial environmental impact. The site makes money when you order the boxes online and go pick them up at 100’s of participating locations.

Boxcycle started in San Francisco, but is available in most states. Just go to the site and enter your zip code. I did notice they are not available in Honolulu, HI yet, but they were available in the other six or seven states I entered into the box-finder filter.

My point of this short series is to show people that, maybe your business idea isn’t so crazy. Have some faith in yourself, do your homework to get yourself prepared and most importantly of all—START! Like now.