What’s up Believe Nation?
So, we crossed 550,000 YouTube subscribers, thank you for that. I’ve made over 3,600 public videos and over 4,000 videos total if you include the private and unlisted ones. I often get asked by people about the journey, about the climb.
People often think that I’m not truly gifted or talented at this because all they see is where I’m at now as opposed to where I was when I started. So, I thought it’d be fun to go back and look at the very first YouTube video that I uploaded from April of 2009. So, seven years ago, just to show you guys how far I’ve come but also, hopefully, serve as inspiration for you guys.
The points are great, the story is good, but, I’m super nervous, I’m sitting down. I’m in a suit, I’m trying to memorize my lines. Thankfully, I partnered up with one of my friends, Mark Drager, who’s actually in my book, Your One Word around his one word of extraordinary. He helped me with some of the editing and filming on that video so it looks professional but I was just terrible. So, I thought you guys would enjoy the look back. I’m curious to hear what you think.
Hello and welcome to another edition of Modeling the Masters. My name is Evan Carmichael. Today, we’re going to be talking about the famous entrepreneur Walt Disney and how you can model his strategies to achieve success with your business.
Everyone knows Walt Disney for his movies, theme parks, and cast of characters. What most people don’t know is when he first started out he had no money, he had to live in his office because he couldn’t afford rent for an apartment. He survived on a diet of cold beans because he couldn’t afford food. By committing to his business and sticking with it he was now able to build a business that has almost 40 billion dollars in revenue.
Today, we’re going to look at three lessons that you can learn from Walt Disney’s success and apply it into your company. Lesson number one is find something that you love. Walt Disney grew up in the early 1900s on a farm in Missouri and developed a passion for drawing.
So much so that one of his neighbors actually paid him to draw some cartoons of his horses. When Walt Disney got to school he found that he was a good student but he really enjoyed doodling as opposed to paying attention to his teachers.
“Find something that you love” – Evan Carmichael
He connected with one of his high school papers and started drawing patriotic cartoons for the school paper. When he was 16, though, he found that school just wasn’t for him. So, he dropped out, joined the red cross, learned to become an ambulance driver, and actually was shipped to France to become an ambulance driver over there.
He couldn’t lose that passion for drawing and cartooning and he ended up plastering his ambulance full of different cartoon creations that he had made. People knew him on the street because he was the ambulance driver with all the different cartoons plastered on his ambulance.
He decided that cartooning was for him, he was going to be an artist, an he returned to America to start his career as an artist. So, lesson number one really is make sure you have that strong passion for your business. If you don’t really love it it’s going to be hard to succeed as a business owner.
If you look at any famous entrepreneur and why they started their business, it wasn’t for the money. Money comes when you’re really passionate about what you’re doing. So, think about what is it that you do in your spare time? What do you really enjoy doing? What gets you going in the morning? What are your hobbies and how can you turn those into a potential business opportunity? Lesson number two is push the boundaries.
Walt Disney first made his mark in 1934, when he proposed making a feature length animation which had never been done before. It was called Snow White. It took him three years to make, he went a hundred percent over budget, people thought he was crazy for doing it, he ran out of money at the end and had to actually act out the last scenes of the movie for his bankers to get the money he needed to close and finish the movie.
“If you look at any famous entrepreneur and why they started their business, it wasn’t for the money.” – Evan Carmichael
It ended up being a huge success. It was the biggest hit of the year. He won an Academy Award for it and it was a financial gain for him. Walt Disney’s next big project was Disneyland, a 330 acre project out in California. A theme park which had nothing to do with his movies. People thought he was crazy again. “Why would you do this? “What tie does it have to your movie business?” But he had a vision.
He was determined to make it happen. And, again, it was a big success for him. Then he went on to open up the Walt Disney World in Florida and the company was able to open up different theme parks around the world. The message for entrepreneurs here is push the boundaries.
You need to do something different to get your company noticed. As a small entrepreneur, there’s so much competition. It’s so difficult to get on people’s radar screens and make them pay attention to you so you have to do something that’s going to get you noticed. Something that will help you standout from the crowd. What is it that will be your equivalent of a Snow White? Something that’s never been done before that’s really going to get you noticed and get the attention paid to your business.
Lesson number three is stay top of mind. Walt Disney did everything he could to make sure people kept remembering the Walt Disney name. He did a lot of advertising as an example. He did TV campaigns, direct mail campaigns, print ads, he even did grocery store coupon cutouts.
“You need to do something different to get your company noticed.” – Evan Carmichael
So, when you’re at the grocery store you’re thinking about Walt Disney. He was also a pioneer in merchandising. So, whenever a new feature film came out that was a Walt Disney production, you would also be able to buy all the merchandise that went along with it. Today Walt Disney is known not only for its movies but its TV stations, theme parks, dolls, toys, games, and a whole host of other merchandise. So, the lesson for entrepreneurs is stay top of mind.
You need to do whatever you can to make sure your customers are always thinking about you. The easiest way to grow a business is to sell more to your existing customers. The hardest way to grow a business is to go out and try to find new customers. Do whatever you can to make sure your customers are always thinking about you, you’re the first person that comes to mind when they’re thinking about your product or service and it’s the best way to be able to grow your business.
“The easiest way to grow a business is to sell more to your existing customers.” – Evan Carmichael
Walt Disney is an entrepreneurial legend who’s built up one of the most recognized companies in the world. But remember, when he first got started he had no money, nobody believed in him, he had to live out of his office because he couldn’t afford an apartment. He survived on a diet of cold beans because he couldn’t afford other food. By following his lessons, though, you, too, can achieve entrepreneurial success. So, remember, find something you love, push the boundaries, and stay top of mind.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of Modeling the Masters. To learn more about Walt Disney and his entrepreneurial success, you can visit our website at EvanCarmichael.com and you can also check out our blog which is listed below. I also want to take this opportunity to thank Phanta Media for the great work they’ve done in producing this video. I hope you’ll join us for the next episode of Modeling the Masters.
So, thank you guys so much for watching. That is, uh, embarrassing to watch. Every time I look at that video like, oh, it’s so bad, I should take that video down.
But the points are still good and I think that it helps show the climb and the journey. If you follow along on the 3,600 plus videos you’ll see gradual, slow and steady, improvement over the years. So, that’s my very first YouTube video.
Hopefully you guys got some kind of inspiration or at least a good laugh out of it. I’m curious to hear from you guys what is your YouTube story? What do you remember about your first video compared to where you’re at now? Maybe that’s only two videos ago or maybe that’s a hundred videos ago.
But talking about your growth and your climb, I think it could be good to just get it out but also serve as an inspiration to others so that we’re not just looking at us compared to somebody else’s middle or end but going back to realize, “Hey, everybody struggled at the start.”
Everybody, kind of, sucked at the start and got better slowly and slowly, slowly. So, I’d love to hear your story. Please share it in the comments below. I also want to give a quick shoutout to Manjunath Shenoy, thank you so much for picking up a copy of my book Your One Word.
I hope you’re enjoying it and I really, really, really appreciate it. Thank you guys for watching. I believe in you. I hope you continue to believe in yourself and whatever your one word is. Much love, I’ll see you soon.
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