A few weeks ago I got a very cool, and quite unexpected email from my friend in Canada linking to this article: Montrealer Sells $12k in Six Weeks After Creating Shopify Page.
So I read the lead paragraph and it made my day:
"Montrealer Anna Van Tuinen had always designed and created paper jewelry figures since she was in high school, but any thought of making a business of it would have to come after retirement from her job as a speech pathologist.
After a bit of encouragement from a business mentor as well as reading the book “Lifestyle Entrepreneur” by Jesse Krieger, the 25-year-old “took the plunge”. In one day she created a simple online shop on Canadian ecommerce software platform Shopify. Six weeks later she had sold over $12,000 worth of her “Paper Anniversary” paper jewelry."
Considering that Lifestyle Entrepreneur hasn't come out in Canada yet, I was immediately intrigued as to how Anna found my book, and very interested to hear her story of how it inspired her to start a custom paper jewelry business in a weekend. So I invited her onto a Google Hangout to share her story and showcase some of her jewelry!
How Anna Built Paper Anniversary In a Weekend
Check out this video where I interview Anna Van Tuinen, founder of www.Paper-Anniversary.com (*Anna is on camera starting at [6:40], slight tech glitch with Google Hangout)
What Anna Learned From Launching Quickly
The BIG Idea of Paper Anniversary: It is customary for husbands to give their wives 1st anniversary gifts made of paper. People are searching online for them every day of the year. Anna realized she could serve this active niche market with her paper jewelry.
On Whether and When to Quit Your Job: "I talked to a lot of local jewelry makers in Montreal, and across the board their advice was 'just don't quit your day job', but after launching and making the first couple sales that's exactly what I did...and it's paid off to have all that extra time to grow the business"
On the Value of Moving Fast: "Don't wait until everything is perfectly in place before starting to get your business going. If you keep waiting for everything to fall into place, it's never going to happen." - Just get started and tweak things as you go.
On Lifestyle and Business: "You've got to build your business around the way you want to live, I decided to change things in my life to support running the business full-time as soon as I could. It's easier than expected, but you've got to take action"
On Being Passionate and Proactive: "I really think that everybody has the potential to build a business based on the skills they have and what they're passionate about. It's too common that we don't use our full potential. Take the time to get clear on how you would prefer to be living and doing business and go for it!" - Anna completed the Identity exercise in Lifestyle Entrepreneur, you can do it too here: Discover and Design Your True Identity
On Becoming a Lifestyle Entrepreneur: "After reading your book I was inspired to travel more, and I'm excited to say I just booked a ticket to Thailand! I'm going to meet with some of the paper makers who I've ordered from to make jewelry and also sell my jewelry around the country"
Next Steps for Anna and Paper Anniversary: Given the fast growth of the business, Anna is now bringing on more people to help with marketing and reaching out to new, unique paper suppliers (some of whom she'll be paying a personal visit in SE Asia).
The Inspiration and Impact of Lifestyle Entrepreneur
Stories like these inspire and uplift me. As an author, it is perhaps one of the most rewarding aspects of writing and publishing a book. Seeing first-hand results from people like Anna who were inspired to turn their passions into products and build a business they love - THAT is so rewarding and fun!
So consider this an open casting call: If you've read Lifestyle Entrepreneur, been inspired and taken action to build a business that reflects your interests and passions, please get in touch with me so I can learn from you and share your story just like we're doing here with Anna (just reach out on the Let's Talk page)
Ready to Build Your Business In a Weekend?
If you're as inspired as I am by Anna's story, isn't it time you took action to build a business of your own? A business you love and look forward to working on that supports a lifestyle of travel, freedom and opportunity.
Click here to learn more about my signature training program Business In a Weekend and grab the first 3 chapters of the new and improved Lifestyle Entrepreneur here.
Learn More About Anna's Story and Paper Anniversary
Show some love to Anna and check out all her beautiful jewelry pieces here: www.Paper-Anniversary.com
Read the article from BetaKit on Paper Anniversary
Follow her on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/PaperAnniversary
Congratulations Anna and keep us informed as you do bigger and better things with your business. Excited to hear about what's next for you and Paper Anniversary.
To your success,