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I recently started a business in a lesser known market!

Discussion in 'General Business and Entrepreneurship' started by Matthew Swanson, Aug 20, 2015.

  1. Matthew Swanson

    Matthew Swanson Entrepreneur

    I was asked to share my story here after posting it on reddit. Below i have posted both the original post and the update post.

    I recently started my own business in a lesser disscussed market! I have a business in Minecraft!

    Before you stop reading and downvote all my content, let me explain!

    Last march i started a Minecraft multiplayer server. In this server, players would come and play to their hearts content. If they liked they server enough, they supported it by purchasing ranks, perks, and items in the servers webstore. Throughout the year i only made about $550 (only about $200 being profit.) Recently that server retired. I now consider it my first successful business! This started my love for business and most aspects of it.

    Last week i created yet another Minecraft building team. If you are not familiar with Minecraft, I'll explain what a build team does. Essentially a build team gets in contact with Minecraft server owners, map makers, youtubers, whatever. They work out details of what the customer would like built (Ranges from fighting arenas and shops, to full network lobbies). Shortly after creating my build team, i posted some of my better builds to "Planet Minecraft" (a popular minecraft forum). My builds became popular very quickly and soon enough i had several people contacting me about getting builds done! I already have a "contract" with one person to get several builds done for his server along with a few other one time deals!

    So here i am, just finished my first commission build (a 70x70 block server lobby) for $40 up front! It only took about 2 - 3 hours to make but i learned something extraordinary. When your job is doing something you absolutely love to do, it doesnt feel like work! I think i have heard a few people say this before but i never understood. Now i do! I love my work so much, it feels like im playing! The money just comes extra! (Techinically i am "just playing" although most would argue building in minecraft is a tedius and difficult effort, especially if it is a large build and you arent good at building.)

    I know this forum is probably mostly made up of adults who dont care about games. However, i figured some of you might find my job interesting so why not post my story? Im sorry if you do not appreciate this post, my family and friends seem to be very impressed by my efforts and i thought this forum might be interested as well.

    [Update] I started my own business in a lesser discussed market!

    tl;dr from that post: I started a business building things for servers and players in Minecraft. My first build, i got paid $40 for 3 hours of work. Now i am expanding and having fun!

    Anyways, here i will be explaining what has happened in the last month since my last post:

    Since that post, i have finished around 4 building commissions. All generating around the same amount as my first one for the same or less work. I am still in the process of hiring team members, however i have 1 new employee (builder) who i pay for whatever he helps me with when building. Several others to look through in a rather large google forms i created. Overall, it actually feels really good to be able to pay people for their work in my company while still making tons of profit.

    My only expense right now is my website domain and any employees i pay. Payroll (Can i use that word?) works out to about 10% of the money received from my builds, while my domain is under 1%($15/year). This means that if i work on a project by myself (I build solo most of the time anyways), almost 100% of the money is profit! This is very exciting for me! If you have seen in the last post, i used to run a Minecraft server before this which took most of the funds from our webstore back into the server bills. 100% profit feels pretty damn good now compared to 5-15%.

    Thanks to that previous post, a kind redditor (founder of a large Minecraft website with over 30k visits/month) contacted me wanting to get into a partnership with my team! Soon they will be featuring my website under a special "Services" tab on their website while taking a small commission for any business i get from their doings. I will also help build for their newly created server which will really help my team get even more publicity. I have also been contacted by several single party players wanting to get builds done. In addition to a few "Contracts" i have with servers, i have several one time commissions lined up for this month alone and i am very excited to see what comes of my team these next few months.

    One negative thing that happened this month really helped me understand how important it is to stick to your policy! No matter how desperate you are for customers! I was contacted by a European fellow wanting to get a build done for his new server. He said he would only pay *after* he got the build. I thought i was being smart getting a statement from him saying "I will pay full price for this build after it has been completed" however i was wrong. After finishing the build to his demands, i put the map download link in a paypal receipt (or so i thought). When i sent him the invoice, turns out i put the download link in the invoice comments. He was able to download the map without paying, leaving me unpaid (I still had a copy of the map). I told him i planned on enforcing the statement he said, he responded with "Go ahead". When looking through paypal seller protection policies, i overlooked the part about how they can't do anything in regards to virtual goods protection. I was originally suppost to sell it to him for $45 but i was only able to get $20 through an auction for it (not too bad considering it didn't cost anything to make and it was a smaller build). I learned a valuable lesson in enforcing my policies! My policy is that i must have 30% up front, then the rest after i finish the map. Everyone else is okay with it but i was desperate for business and i made a big mistake. Most of you won't have this problem, however if you get in a similar situation, keep with your policy.

    In addition to people reaching out to me for builds, i have done my own advertising which has seemed to pay off so far. I hired someone to create a sort of "advertisement art banner" for a Minecraft commerce forum. I cant garuntee that more business has come from that, but i can certainly say it gives us a much more professional look in addition to my newly remodeled website found [HERE]

    I know this forum is probably full of mostly adults who probably might not know what Minecraft is or what my job might be in it. If you have any questions regarding what exactly it is that i do, don't hesitate to ask!

    I want to thank the amazing community here (reddit) for giving me the best advice out of everyone i have talked to. You guys really made a difference in my business and i am glad to be apart of the community!

    I recently started my own business in a lesser disscussed market! : Entrepreneur

  2. EF-Roger

    EF-Roger Entrepreneur

    Ah you made it. Welcome.
    Matthew Swanson likes this.
  3. rjebiz

    rjebiz Entrepreneur

    Good job. I'm also into another hobby. Boardgames. you make me pursue another path because I really like playing boardgames. not chess or monopoly. something more interesting like catan or ticket to ride.
  4. Game Changer

    Game Changer Entrepreneur

    Congrats for your progress. Mincraft is viral game all over the internet. So profit is must.

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