Johnson Nguyen was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, in the western most part of Canada. His family believed in hard work, pursuing their dreams, and developing the skill to take them wherever they chose to go. As a family, they often traveled, and through these travels, Johnson fell in love with London. When it was time to enter university, he attended King’s College in London, England, getting a Bachelors degree in Digital Culture.
He took this degree back home to Vancouver, where he has been able to develop a small company that specializes in online marketing for a niche group of talent. Johnson Nguyen has been able to maximize social media outlets, marketing strategies, and website development to increase traffic and therefore sales for each of his clients. It started modestly and grew to employ 15 people across the globe.
When he’s not leading his team, working with clients, or developing the next marketing strategy, Johnson Nguyen loves to travel, hike, and run. Keeping his family in the forefront, this newlywed enjoys showing his wife the country and the world.
How did you get started in this business? What inspired you to start this business?
Well, I became fascinated by the world around us. The interconnectivity of the internet makes everything possible. Learning how to leverage that is a challenge when you’re running a business that’s not focused thereon. With all of the changes and markets that open up daily, it’s hard to keep up with it. I find the challenge exhilarating and enjoyable. Delivering steady traffic for my client’s projects is something I take great pride in.
How do you make money?
This is a fee for service process. That means we contract for a given project with a set goal. The client pays our fees and we produce the results.
How long did it take for you to become profitable?
Really, it didn’t take long. I had to start hiring help within a few months of taking on clients. I officially moved from freelancer to small business inside of a year. That left me with a lot of opportunities I wouldn’t have had otherwise.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
This may sound arrogant, but I never really doubted it. We learned some strategies for keeping up with the changing social landscape at King’s College. This was and has been incredibly helpful. Seeing the way the market changes and thus marketing fluctuates made it easy for me to see a path through this company to creating something viable for the long term.
How did you get your first customer?
It was a buddy from college. We partnered on a project together as he was launching his first course. It was a clear path that led to a very successful launch. This of course spurred me to continue doing something I had so much fun with. He referred others to me and it just grew from there. Not to mention setting up my own planning and marketing programs that produced results was a huge boon to business as well.
What is one marketing strategy (other than referrals) that you’re using that works really well to generate new business?
I have been finding good results with Instagram ads. It takes a little bit of tweaking for each and every campaign we run, but it is effective when you know what you’re doing to target your audience.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
My wife and I had to choose a goal for our home. We were either going to get a home with space for a family or something small for just the two of us and our business. The choice was kind of made for us when she came back from the doctor the other day. We’re getting a bigger house.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
Every client becomes a friend and I hate to let my friends down. This has been my guide for everything and every project I work on because they are each developing their own special thing. We get to be a part of that special thing and together we are able to build their creation. You always push yourself to do more for your friends, thus all of my clients become my friends. By making my friends successful I am successful.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
This is going to sound corny, but one of the most satisfying moments was when I hired my wife. She was, well is, a graphic designer with knowledge of the social landscape. She was my first real employee. That was an incredible moment because it was when my little freelance plan became a business.
What does the future hold for your business? What are you most excited about?
The future has no bounds for my company. There will always be social media and there will always be a need for marketing. As my clients grow from all walks of life and across the globe, so does my team. Right now, my wife and I are creating a plan to have a sector of the company awake at all hours of the day. We are hiring from numerous countries which allows our clients to always have access to a person in their time zone.
What business books have inspired you?
I should read more business books. I read more fiction and social behaviors research than I do business related books. My wife has a better handle on that sort of thing. I know how to get into the mind of our target audiences and reach for the results we are looking for. She pays the taxes.
What is a recent purchase you have made that’s helped with your business?
It’s not really a purchase, but a tool. We use it with our bank and have been able to pay most of our employees and freelancers through a program called Zelle. It functions in a way like PayPal, but without the fees or the time to transfer between currencies. For our people outside of the Zelle sphere of influence we use Google Pay for the same reason, and as a last resort, Paypal.