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Business.com Case Study: Ignore The Laughter Of Other People

Every entrepreneur has had some person laugh at their idea, but few have had thousands or hundreds of thousands laugh at their idea. I personally know someone who had the chance to invest in MTV at the inception but laughed at the entrepreneur and asked him why would anyone watch music on television. Never let the naysayers dent your resolve, just make sure you can answer their question satisfactorily for yourself, your potential staff and your potential investors, even if you are the only one in all the above.

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Every entrepreneur has had some person laugh at their idea, but few have had thousands or hundreds of thousands laugh at their idea.

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I personally know someone who had the chance to invest in MTV at the inception but laughed at the entrepreneur and asked him why would anyone watch music on television.

Never let the naysayers dent your resolve, just make sure you can answer their question satisfactorily for yourself, your potential staff and your potential investors, even if you are the only one in all the above.

Business.com is now the leading business search directory in the USA but it had humble beginnings. In 1999, Jake Winebaum and Sky Dayton bought just the domain name for US$7.5 million, a record at the time.

They instantly became the laughing stock of the tech world.

In 1997, the domain name had sold for US$150,000, then a record as well.

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They set out to build a business directory and in 2007, sold Business.com for US$345 million. Dow Jones, The New York Times, IAC/Interactive Corp. and News Corp. all attempted to buy it but the winner was R.H. Donnelley Corp., one of the largest telephone directory publishers in the US.

Jake and Sky had the last laugh.

The most important asset for an entrepreneur is not having public support, it is believing in your vision.

As Henry Ford said (and Mike Michalowicz promotes as the greatest entrepreneurship lesson in his book The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur):

If you think you can, or you think you can’t, then you’re right

Don’t get caught up with what other people think about your idea.

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Focus on executing your vision.

About the author

I am a young entrepreneur who started my first company at 20 during my MBA program at the University of Miami. Our first project was the creation of RealVibes.net, later renamed Realvibez.tv, a leading online destination for Reggae, Dancehall and Soca videos, first launched in February 2002. I am the co-founder of Random Media, an integrated media and entertainment firm focused on Caribbean entertainment and culture, as well as co-founder of Kaizen Interactive, a digital marketing agency. Experience and Achievements - Secured deal for my venture (through the Realvibeztv channel) to become YouTube’s first Caribbean media partner - venture now part of YouTube’s new rental program - Random Media has signed distribution deals for e-book versions of a number of Caribbean books in the Amazon Kindle and Apple iBooks stores - Interviewed numerous times about using social networks for business, previously built up a Facebook fan page for Jamaica to over 55,000 fans in less than 2 years that is now being used by the Jamaica Tourist Board - Asked to endorse a book on entrepreneurship The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur alongside Donny Deutsch, Host of CNBC’s The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch - Contributed a chapter to a McGraw-Hill Publishing book, How To Make Money With YouTube - A judge for Business.com’s What Works For Business contest in 2009 I was born in Kingston, Jamaica, completed his B.Sc

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