Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brian Lofrumento, Author and Host of The Wantrepreneur to Entrepreneur Podcast, located in Tampa, FL, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I'm the host of the Wantrepreneur to Entrepreneur Podcast, which is consistently ranked as one of the top 200 business and marketing podcasts around the world. The show started after the success of my first book, "Wantrepreneur to Entrepreneur: What You Really Need to Know to Start Your First Business," and has since grown into a worldwide ecosystem of wantrepreneurs and entrepreneurs who are committed to launching and growing their businesses. We support their growth journey through our 4x per week podcast in addition to our free and paid resources, such as our "What Type of Entrepreneur Are You?" quiz, our online courses and workshops, in-person retreats, and our accelerator program.
We've got 7-figure business owners who tune in to our podcast and leverage our resources, multiple six-figure agency owners, as well as solopreneurs between the $5K to $10K per month mark, and, of course, a huge number of wantrepreneurs who are going to fall into one of these buckets in the not-too-distant future!
Tell us about yourself
I started my first business at the age of 19, after my freshman year of college. It started out as a small soccer blog that just my college friends would read, but because I knew a lot about SEO thanks to a high school internship, by junior year of college, we had millions of readers coming to our website every month and had days where we were doing $1K per day in ad revenue. We grew into one of the most read soccer websites in the world (even winning awards from the English Football Association for being fans' favorite site!) and a staff of 20 writers... all from my dorm room!
Based on the success of my soccer blog, after graduation, I started a marketing agency so I could help other businesses grow. We grew that agency to six figures in our first year, but after two years of client-based work, my business partner and I were both getting burned out. I took some time to reset by traveling, and while at an entrepreneurial event in Costa Rica, I felt a STRONG urge to sit down and write my first book. That book went on to impact people all over the world, and they were emailing me asking how they could get more, which led to the launch of my podcast in 2016. From there, the rest is, well, history in the making, and I've since owned, grown, sold, and consulted with awesome companies in so many different industries.
So... I'd say that I'm constantly motivated by a never-ending wave of excitement and passion at facing real-life obstacles and challenges and constantly finding solutions to them that lead to growth and positively impact even more people!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I realized a long time ago that there's never really a point at which you think, "I've made it." Instead, it's a lifelong journey of putting in the work, helping others, getting rewarded, and taking those little moments to step back and realize that those rewards only come as a result of positively affecting others.
One thing that always strikes me and makes me proud is when I see how widespread our audience for the Wantrepreneur to Entrepreneur Podcast is. With listeners in over 150 countries, it's so rewarding to hear about how our passion and enthusiasm for entrepreneurship as a vehicle for change is instilling hope, belief, optimism, and drive in people from all walks of life and, in one case, I know of a listener in Egypt who even says that our podcast kept him wanting to live when he was in his deepest darkest moments.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
There are a lot of glamorous sides of entrepreneurship, but most people might not realize the mental resilience that it requires. Staying mentally resilient – and OPTIMISTIC! – even amidst the incredible amount of rejection we face, the amount of uncertainty that can come with the journey, and the amount of personal and professional obstacles and challenges we face is not for everyone, but it's also what determines who is crazy enough to keep going. It's not always easy, but in those moments, it's the reminder we need that BECAUSE it's not easy, most people quit, which means if you're tough enough to keep going, then you'll be one of the ones that get to come out on the other side of success.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Don't make it about YOU! It's easy to look inwards for a business idea, for what the right offer is, for the right copy and messaging, but the reality is that all the best answers come from thinking about the people you want to serve! They hold all the answers you're looking for, from which marketing channels you should be on, what you should offer, what your messaging needs to be, and even for the big stuff like what business you should launch in the first place!
- If you feel like your work could be better, you're right... and that's the feeling you should ALWAYS have! Most people let perfectionism hold them back, but the reality is that every time you do something for the first time, it's going to be your worst time... so you might as well just do it and get it out of the way! Your first sales pitch will be terrible, so do it! Then your second one will be a little less terrible, and your tenth one much less terrible, until one day you'll realize you're pretty good at these things you've been practicing... so start DOING and STOP waiting to be great at everything that's needed. The truth is, you WON'T be great at these things until you've been terrible at them for quite some time, so start now.
- Don't listen to anyone's advice. Yes, even mine. As my good friend and fellow entrepreneur Nat Harward has said on my podcast, "everyone's advice is just biography," so when someone tells you something isn't possible or that you have to do something a certain way, they're just talking to themselves and about themselves. No one has ever written YOUR story before (and no one will ever get to write it other than you), so go do things, test other people's hypotheses, and find out what's true for YOU.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.