My initial business idea wasn’t IT Consultancy, it was modeling. My aim was to create a modeling website, where models can upload their profile and my target was to have a minimum of 100 models on my website before inviting advertising agencies, casting directors, and companies to browse my website for models they might want to work with.
The concept was to help casting directors, advertisers, and companies have access to models from the comfort of their home and office. 15 years ago there was no such website in Africa.
I was so eager to be the first to create such. I had some little money I had saved from my previous job, working with a road construction company, hoping it will be enough for me till I will start making money from my new career.
The first thing I needed was a website, so I talked to a website developer. We don’t have many website developers in Africa then and the few guys in business were always busy, having too much project to work on simultaneously.
I told the website developer my plans and how I want my website to function. My budget for the website was $1000 but surprisingly he charged me a whopping $4,000. That was so much money and I don’t have that kind of money then. I became worried and started looking for an alternative.
His price was the best offer I got, other website developers chared me much more than that. Now, I need an alternative and I need to act fast. Just about that time, a thought came to me and it was ”why don’t I learn how to develop a website and do it myself”. That was the best idea I could have had then.
Luckily for me, my cousin just completed a web design course so I quickly approach him to teach me how to design websites, while he was teaching me, his admission letter came and he had to leave for the university.
During that time, the likes of Joomla, WordPress, and Wix were nowhere, learning web design and development was so strenuous and time-consuming. Before I finished the course, I already lost interest in my modeling project due to personal reasons.
It’s nothing to hide, the reason is that I believe it will be a platform for the young ladies to expose their nudity and I wouldn’t want to do that because I am a little bit more mature than when I was so eager to have the project done.
Now, no more modeling project, I have no fresh Idea, no money, no job. The only thing I had was my newly acquired web design and development skill.
One day, I was sitting alone at home and I was not comfortable not having anything to do. I was living with my parent so I don’t have bills to pay, yet I can’t remain idle. I just needed to get busy. Unfortunately, I don’t have access to any professional book, I’m sure that would have helped.
No youtube videos, no podcasts, no online blog. It was like being in a very dark room not knowing where the door was but I have a little light which is my newly acquired website development skills. I was seated for hours and no idea came to my mind.
Since I couldn’t think of any other business idea, I decided to keep myself busy so I picked the newspaper on the table right in front of me, the newspaper was about 2weeks old. I had no choice but to go through it again.
As I picked the newspaper, I saw an advert on the strip of the cover page with the advertiser’s phone number, email, and business address but something was missing, no website address added. I quickly flip through the entire newspaper and I discovered that most of the advertisers on that newspaper had no website.
I stood up immediately, I noticed something has moved in me. My brain became more active, my eyes where brighter. I stepped out, look around, and everywhere became bright and beautiful. The beauty I saw was actually coming from inside of me because nothing has changed about the environment.
I couldn’t stay outside for long, I quickly moved inside and started looking for old newspapers, I brought out all the newspaper in the house regardless of its date. Wrote down the phone number of all the advertisers.
I was having $5 on me so I bought a calling card, loaded it to my phone, and sent SMS to all the numbers saying ”Dear Sir/Ma, my name is Ajibola Rilwan and I develop great websites please call me on …. I added my number”.
I did that with the intention of gathering more newspaper and keep sending SMS to the advertisers till someone call and request my service, but amazingly just about 3 hours later I got a call from a pastor, he is also an author and he wanted a website where he can display his books so his audience can read online and order for the premium books.
So fast! I never believed it, it was like a dream, I was waiting to see if I will wake up. Guess what? It wasn’t a dream, its the reality. I quickly accept the offer, we agreed that the premium books will be sold by adding his bank details to the website, and after payment, he would send the download link via email.
He told me to meet him in his office the next day. Of cause I had nothing doing, so it was the best thing that could ever happen to me at that moment, it was around 5:30 pm suddenly, it was as if the time was slow, it took almost forever for the night to come.
I got to bed and couldn’t sleep, I woke up every hour just to discover that it’s not morning yet, finally, it was 5:00 am. The appointment was scheduled for 2:00 pm. I quickly rush into my morning routines, which include cleaning the house and washing my parent’s cars.
By 7:00 am I was dressed, fully ready. I manage to wait till 11:00 am before hitting the road, I arrived at my client’s office around 12:00 noon, 2 hours earlier than the scheduled time. My greatest joy was that I got the job and got paid immediately.
The total money was $600 and I got $400 upfront I delivered the project within 3 days and got my balance on the day of delivery. That was how I transformed myself from being broke to become one of the few web developers we had then.
After delivering the project, my duty was to look for newspapers where ever I will get. Most times I go to the vendors, bargain with them, pay them little money to allow me to copy advertisers’ phone numbers from those newspapers and magazines.
This technique work like magic, as I was getting calls from top companies, after a while, I included email marketing. I gathered email addresses from business listing websites and directories, send an introduction email to the companies and I was getting 3-5 projects per week, I couldn’t deliver all the projects myself so I outsource and share the profit.
In less than one year, I was made already.
In the year 2005, there was no Social Media Advertising. So it was email and SMS marketing.
Now, we have different social media platforms to promote businesses or idea, I started using Social Media Advertising in the year 2011 and no Radio or TV Advertisement could beat the outcome. Up till today Social Media Advertising still remains the most rewarding and cost-effective means of advertisement, you spend little $$ to get great profit.
Ever since my first breakthrough in 2005, I have been actively using various digital platforms to help business executives around the world increase sales, I have experimented with different marketing strategy and now I know exactly the kind of marketing structure that works for different industries.
I want to share with you the most effective techniques that I have used to help myself and my clients increase sales. To get the best reward from digital advertising, three things are involved. You need to understand the concept behind an engaging advertisement, and you need to understand how to target your advertisement to the audience who genuinely need your product or services, and your advertisement should be created to help your audience understand that your product is truly what they need.
I have created a Free Online Training where you will learn the basic technique to increase your sales and maximize profit, this course will help you understand how to promote your product or services to the right audience in an appealing way that will make them buy from you.
This course will be available online for a very short period of time. The course is available online at the moment. CLICK HERE to access the Sales & Marketing Course that will help you increase sales and expand your business.