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Get The Most From Every Experience

Look inside - the experience grows

Look inside - the experience keeps going

Do you suffer from tunnel vision? If you do, it’s probably costing you money.

Let me tell you a story about how you can turn one simple thing into a half dozen revenue streams.

Cindy Shebley, my partner at The Web Sellers’ Circle, recently went to a live auction in Edmonds, WA.  Among other things, the auction featured box lots of “new-old” camera equipment – stuff that had been sitting unopened in boxes since a camera store had closed its doors sometime in the 70’s.

Cindy sells camera equipment on eBay, as well as teaching others to sell on eBay. So that auction was one part fun (photography buffs love combing through boxes of filters and mysterious paraphernalia) and one part work (product sourcing).

Cindy bought some old cameras and some darkroom equipment, which has a good potential to at least double its value.

That’s where most resellers would stop. And that’s why tunnel vision leaves money on the table.

The auction provided a wealth of side projects well beyond items to sell on eBay:

  • Cindy wrote a detailed description of how she previewed and researched items before the auction.
  • She wrote a guide on how to prepare for an auction, how to determine your upper bid limit, and how to avoid getting swept away by the excitement of the moment.
  • She has incorporated the auction experience into her eBay classes – using real-life examples of attendees’ bidding to illustrate the psychology of both buyers and sellers.
  • She photographed some of the older, collectible equipment and placed the pictures for sale on stock photography sites.
  • She found a few old cameras that will make nice bookshelf decorations in the office as well as interesting props in future videos.
  • She made contact with potential customers (collectors) and potential dealers; this sort of face-to-face networking can’t be duplicated online.

When you begin a new project, don’t focus so intently on the goal that you lose sight of all the extra marketing and sales opportunities.

Experiences that are old hat to you are exciting and new to someone else. Turn every step into an adventure, and every adventure into a story. Document your preparation. Teach others what to expect. Take pictures, shoot a video, write an ebook.

Like a dozen clowns tumbling out of a tiny circus car or a set of Russian Matryoshki dolls, each “thing” you sell contains a dozen more things inside itself. Make use of them all.

Photo by L. Marie Released under Creative Commons License