I was passed this interview of Marc Andreessen by Charlie Rose and it is a must see for any entrepreneur, investor or businessperson involved in technology or the future of the Internet. Marc Andreessen has an impressive resume as an entrepreneur, investor, and software engineer that founded Netscape, co-authored Mosiac, co-founded Ning and also sits on both ebay and facebook’s board of directors. In this interview, Marc has offers thoughtful insight on the past, present and future of technology, the web and the major players involved.
The video is almost an hour, but well worth the time invested. Also I’ve noticed that there are a lot of folks on YouTube have seen clips but are looking for the full version (56 Minutes) which can be found here on either Google Video or Charlie Rose’s website. Enjoy…
Turning $50 into over a $1 Million seems like an impossible task right? A venture that would undoubtedly be extremely complex and take a very, very long time to accomplish wouldn’t it?
Not for 21-year-old Alex Tew, who had a little idea, with big potential, and accomplished just that. Alex invested about $50 (actually £50) for a domain name www.MillionDollarHomepage.com and simple hosting service. Then, Tew sold every pixel, of the 1,000,000 pixels that composed his homepage, for 1 dollar per pixel. MillionDollarHomepage.com was launched August 25th 2005 and sold the last 1,000 pixels on eBay, January 11th 2006 for $38,100, which brought the total gross income for Alex to $1,037,100.
So what lesson does teach the rest of us? Perhaps, it is that every one of us has a potential million-dollar idea brewing somewhere in our domes, or more appropriately that oftentimes success can be found in simplest of ideas.
In the end, what will continue to have folks like you and I shaking our heads in disbelief, has put over $1 Million in a 21-year-old’s pocket. Hats off to you Alex Tew.
UPDATE (2/19): I was forwarded a great article by a friend, Scott Silvi, from the Wall Street Journal that tells the MillionDollarHomepage.com story very well. Intriguing stuff, thanks Scott.
The article asks some important questions for someone thinking about building a new site or online business and how analysis of your potential competition can provide you with insights and advantages. However, section 5 “What Related Markets Exist?” is what really struck me.
Looking for your next online business opportunity? Try this out:
Pick a keyword that describes your target market: In this case “fitness”
Look for patterns in the search results for closely related markets you can enter.
This is best described using the example from post: “You might notice there are numerous searches for fitness locations i.e. a gym, a center, a club. So, instead of targeting fitness in terms of health, which would see you up against established health organizations and generalist publications, you might want to target the fitness center section of the market e.g. a comparison of gyms and centers.”
As an entrepreneur I have noticed one thing about myself when weighing the viability of a new business opportunity. I begin to think about all the competition that is out there and get paralyzed answering the question of how it’s going to be better. For every business idea I have wholeheartedly pursued, there are a hundred that I haven’t taken action on because I couldn’t justify why my product or service was better than those that already existed.
What finally hit me was that there are so many successful businesses out there, that aren’t the best, some honestly aren’t even that good, yet somehow they manage to be successful in there own right. Likewise there are many entrepreneurs that are not as bright as you, with an idea that isn’t quite as good as yours, but they have done one thing better than you and that is to take action. They didn’t let the thought that their business might not be the best stop them from starting.
If this sounds like you then recognize it for what it is and take action towards pursuing your ideas. If you don’t, then you will continue to do nothing, because now they have the successful business, while you…well you have your 9 to 5 and an idea once ambitious, now a memory of what could have been.
Lesson Learned #2: If you are held back by the feeling that you, or your business idea, isn’t the “perfect” solution or doesn’t have the potential to be the biggest and best in its industry, remember you don’t have to be the best, only better than some.