Started in 2007 and official established in 2008, by Chris Eggleston.
When I started my business, Eggleston Business Development (eggbizdev), I focused on an idea that would change the way businesses were advertised and marketing. I initially branded the d.b.a Blogging For Business 101 (blog4biz101). The mission of that company was to educate small businesses on how to effectively use blogs to build relationships and market their businesses. Today, in 2012, this seems like a pretty common thing, it seems like every business has a blog these days! But in 2008, this was a new concept that companies were not willing to embrace. I was about 1.5 years ahead of the curve on this idea. It wasn’t until mid to late 2009 when the effects of our latest economic downturn really started to take its toll that small businesses started applying this technique as they struggled to cling onto their livelihood. Unfortunately for me, I had bills to pay and was forced to reposition my company in mid 2008 to stay afloat. Still operating under the brand Blogging For Business 101, I was slowly becoming a web developer.
I invested 50% of my savings the first year in business, $3200, and through some bad business deals, clients not paying me, I was upside down $8000. The other 50% of my savings was used to support my living since I wasn’t making any money that first year. If you do the math you’ll see that I was in the hole by the end of my first year and with no prospects or potential for the year to come! Looking back, I probably should have given up!
However, at the start of 2009 I was determined to get myself out of this mess and make some money! By the end of the first quarter (that’s 3 months, so end of March) I had established so great business relationships and was slowly starting to climb out of my hole. By the end of the second quarter I was finally in profit mode, not very much profit, but it was better than being in the hole! My core business was website development. The crazy thing, when I started creating websites, I knew nothing about it! I did not know what PHP, HTML or CSS was. I did not know anything about WordPress. So I spent a lot of time learning these skills and developing myself and my abilities to be more successful. I think if you look at some of my early work you’ll see that I pretty much sucked! But the nice thing about improving, you get to raise your prices too! So what I use to charge $350 for, I know charge $1500, and client is happy to pay it because the results are much better then they would have been in 2009!
It wasn’t until mid 2010 that I stopped using the Blogging For Business 101 brand and started using my company brand Eggleston Business Development (eggbizdev). It was a lesson learned, the hard way, but it was learned, I should have made the name change when I made the service change. I started using eggbizdev because my real passion, the thing I desired to do more than anything was help develop businesses. I figured web development was a good start, but I wanted to be more useful and more beneficial to my clients then just being the “web guy”. Along with the name change I started offering as much advice and input they would allow me to. Pretty soon, my clients were asking me about all sorts of things unrelated to web development. It was fun and challenging, I loved it!
At the beginning of 2011 I was hooked on information marketing. I spent four months doing nothing but studying everything I could on the topic. I tried to even create my on info product, “The $1500 Website: How I would do it if you hired me!”, it wasn’t a hit! In fact I don’t thing anyone even looked at it…LOL! Yeah I can laugh at it now, but then I was depressed about it. It was another great learning lesson. By the time this four months ended I had a new database of knowledge and yet I had let my business fall by the way side and I had no income. This is a tough spot to be in when you have a family to feed! So I hustled, and got busy. I reached out started sharing my new-found knowledge and I got back into my routine of loving what I do, the consulting the interacting. What I discovered I didn’t like so much was the doing, I wasn’t passionate about the website development and the client continually changing their minds. It was like they did not value my expertise and advice, they thought they knew what was best and that is what they wanted. And then, when it didn’t work, they want to follow my advice. Talk about frustrating!
At the end of 2011 I considered closing shop! I thought about quitting after 5 years and taking some time to reinvent myself. Figure out what I really want to do and then start over! I started working with a company called GoSmallBiz. I started meeting business owners and consulting with them and helping them improve their businesses with the resources available from GoSmallBiz. My fire had started to be rekindled. I started to understand that what I loved was helping small business be more successful! I loved the interaction and the ability I had to add value to their lives and businesses. Sparks started to fly again! This time however, I had a new vision for eggbizdev!
Now that it is 2012, I’ve slowly started making plans for a change at eggbizdev. One that I think will put me in touch with my passion and enable me to better serve the small business community! My new focus will be “Business Failure Prevention”! The goal is to take the service beyond the web, and to do more to empower business owners with the information, recourses, and support they need to be more successful!