In 2010, my family and I started our first business called Brand Cigars. Learned a lot over the years on business management, dealing with partners, legal & accounting stuff, raising capital and more importantly, how to make money. It is NOT for everyone. Most people I know want to be entrepreneurs and be their own bosses, however, most lack the discipline and determination to build successful enterprises.
in 2013, I left Pitney Bowes to start Central Station Marketing. We build and manage websites for home improvement and service based companies. We built the company in May 2013 and traveled back and forth from CT to TX for 4 months before permanently moving to Texas in September 2013. So, that's the official start date.
Most of my professional career has been web development and lead generation. We build and manage websites for clients. Sometimes, clients go out of business, we do a bad job and clients fire us, client hires a new employee who has a relationship with a different webmaster, we do a good job and clients don't pay the bills on time. All the work we do can be lost if a client decides to leave. We are at the mercy of clients firing us. There are lots of challenges in running a business like Central Station Marketing.
So, during the pandemic, we started In-Home Appointments. Now we do SEO for ourselves. We generate leads through our own properties and sell the leads for a fee. If a client doesn't like that, I don't have to start all over again, I can give the leads to someone else.
iEatery is a product we developed for our restaurant clients. It grew into a company as we have kept evolving and fine tuning the product. We can now build a restaurant online ordering system in minutes.
iEatery has clients in USA and Bangladesh. We are building the product to be global. this has international potential. We will see how far we can take it.
RMR Cloud is a cloud based business management software for the security & audio video industries. Started in 2017, the software has added many features to make it one of the top CRMs for the industry. Biggest challenge was to make a software that is EASY to use and have tons of automations to make the day to day operations easy.
Some of the highlighted features are: automated recurring billing, simple sales process, production management, inventory management, credit checks, third party monitoring station integration and tons of cool reports.
Starting a retail business is tough because you have to make sure you have the resources to be at the store during business hours, deal with inventory that will sell vs extra inventory that won't, order the right qty of perishable items before they go bad and all the overhead and employee issues.
We sold $26 on our first day!!! We have come a long way since then but you have to start at the very bottom when starting a business from scratch. We now have 2 cigar stores that are operating in Monroe and Newtown, Connecticut.