Investing in a Van? – The future of Trading?

TV Truck
A smaller version of what he had.

About 3 weeks ago I saw possible the best van ever for a trader. This was a great piece of kit with not 1,2,3,4 or 5 TV screens in, but 6. At first glance I thought this was simply someone who loved to play games or wanted to get the girls back to his van for a bit of….Fun. But when I spoke to the guy (ironically in a bar watching sports) he told me it was actually his job/house and he was going to be upgrading soon.

Essentially to cut a long (and drunk) story short he was a professional forex trader (amongst other investing mediums) who loved to travel around Canada and the USA. He loved it so much that he sold his house and purchased this done-out road cabin. Which not only had its own wi-fi (he did explain how it worked but I didn’t really understand a word he was saying.) As well as running water (sink, no shower facility) and gas and electric. Now this was all great until he showed me his office. A 6 TV screened trading room in all rights. Well that was when I said something. What a legend. But he then told me a story of how he lost it all. Theft essentially, but now how high-tech this van was that he secured it with some very cool methods, which I’ll get into below.

3 tips to a more secure invest-a-van

  1. GPS Double Black Box Tracking – This is essentially so he could find his vehicle using a computer if it was stolen, he talked about how the last time his van was stolen he had no idea where it was or even how it got taken in the first place. These devices allow him to locate it, even if someone finds and takes one of the black boxes, there is always a second one, meaning they won’t find it, but he and the police will be able to find his property. – This is important when you consider the van itself cost close to $150,000 to kit out!
  2. Vehicle tagging system¬†– This was so he could see where his vehicle was from his phone, and only he (as in myself bio speaking) could enter the van. That’s some high tech security system.
  3. My favourite of all – A DOG! He had a freckin Dog in his van. Now that’s a cool way to travel the country.

This obviously isn’t going to be for everyone but if like me you are interested in travelling then why not? It’s an easy and (when you think about it) relatively inexpensive way to drive around the country, see the sites and have some fun and make some money along the way! Very cool. Very jealous. Nice to meet you though.

Pre-Import To Do – Give the People What They Want

Give the people what they wantRecently we did a post with an introduction to import export businesses. A friend of mine read this and recommended I outline the pre-import stage. Most people do nothing before going out and looking for a supplier. They won’t have a business name, idea or even a marketing plan, they will simply go out and try to find specific products that best suit their needs. This is the wrong way to do it for a number of reasons, but not least because you don’t know what the market wants!

Market Research Basics

Market ResearchMarket research essentially means finding out what the people want. Then as the business owner you will go out and provide the best product or service for a specific price. But if you don’t do the research in the first place, you might be providing a product that nobody wants! And that’s a quick way to lose a lot of money and waste a lot of time!

To give you an example the friend of mine who spoke to me about the export investing article started a business creating leggings (ghost fitness leggings to be precise), he didn’t know the first thing about them but what he did know about was marketing and how people think. So instead of just trying to dive in he reached out to experts in the niche as well as a number of his friends for some market research. He simply asked these individuals a number of questions about what they wanted from a pair of running leggings, what they would use them for, how much they would pay and a number of other market research questions.

This wasn’t something he had to do, I mean this guy is a very talented marketer and could have shifted any quality product that he chose. But the key was he wanted to create a long term brand, and as you probably already know the easiest way to create a long term brand is to create quality and value for whatever you do. And to do that you have to know what people want to pay for a particular product, and what they want out of it.

Next StepsWhat to do

So let’s say you’ve been reading this article and you agree that providing value at a good price is the way you want to go with your business. So the next logical stage is market research, but like most start-ups you don’t have the investment to go to a data company and ask for what the “people want” so instead you do this yourself. Below are 5¬†tips I would highly recommend when conducting your research

  • Have a large, wide batch of people – 20+ varying age ranges, genders, interests etc. If your product is specific to one gender or target audience, then ensure the majority of your market researchers are in fact in that particular bracket.
  • Create specific questions to ask – People don’t want to have to think, and in fact the data will be better if you give people options on what they have to select. For example colour, sizing, pricing ect. You can also add lines at the bottom of the question that says something like “additional notes” if you want to give someone the opportunity to explain what they mean.
  • Only contact relevant people – Sometimes a smaller quantity is better than 100s of people who don’t actually know what they are talking about and wouldn’t consider buying your product anyway.
  • Be accurate & approachable – When people talk to you don’t seem distant or that you don’t care about their answers. This will simply annoy them as they believe they are doing you a favour, which technically they are.
  • Offer a free sample – This is a great one to improve engagement of individuals. Offer a free product once it goes live with the specification that they will leave a review. This means as soon as your product goes live you have a number of people that will not only leave a review but will also give you feedback on the product too.

The Future of Import Export Investing

Import ExportI’ve been an investor in a number of very simple import, export style businesses over the past 15-20 years. Some of which have failed, but the majority of which have actually been very profitable for both myself and the business owners. The business models for this type of business is very simple, you simply source a product, white label this product, market it to your area (whether this be national, local or even global) and then make money from the increased sales price. Very simple business model, but also very profitable when done correctly.

Today I wanted to do a post about the future of these business models and the way I see this going in the next 10-15 years. This was brought to my attention by a friend of mine named Tom Buckland, he’s a digital marketer based in the UK who has a number of side businesses which are all essentially import/export businesses. He spoke to me about where the future of this is heading and I had to agree and add my points. So below is where I personally think this is going in the next decade, I hope you enjoy.

Micro-Channels

Micro channels are the way people are finding different things nowadays. When it was the 80/90s you had to know someone who knew someone else to get a specific item. And if you wanted that in bulk and at wholesale then you would have to have a huge warehouse to put it in and a member of staff to take care of it all.

logoNowadays the barrier to entry has been removed. People are starting businesses with a few hundred bucks and building them into huge businesses that earn 6/7/8 figures a year, most of which is semi-passive. These micro channels are things like Amazon, Youtube, Google, Facebook & Ebay. They might not seem like solely shopping networks (except maybe Amazon/Ebay) but all of them are. Think about the last time you saw someone who you liked promote something on Youtube or Facebook, did you think of that product more highly than previously? Of course, because the trust is already there.

This is called influencer marketing, which brings me onto my next point.

Advertising is changing, FAST

cropped-Money.jpgPreviously in the last 50 years if you wanted to advertise something you needed to have a lot of money and/or time and promote it in newspapers, Magazines or on TV. Nowadays if you have a website and a few social accounts you can use smart content marketing and a small budget for Google adwords, Facebook ads or even just pay someone to help rank your website in Google (SEO.) This has drastically reduced the cost of advertising and hence has made it easier for people to make their first million!

There are more millionaires in the world today than ever before and the reason is due to the ease of access of a.) Products – Which can be sourced from China in 30 days, and which can b.) be stored in a warehouse that you don’t own (aka Amazon FBA programme) and c.) Making it easier and giving you more money to utilise in new, smart, high return on investment advertising channels.

That’s all.

The 3 Primary Types of Investing

“Investing” itself is not just stocks and shares. It’s also not just forex and its also not just investing in small businesses. There are 100s of types of investing you can use to create a positive ROI for yourself or your business. Take property for example, these are types of investments. Renting them out or doing them up and then selling straight away is a way to generate a positive ROI for your investment. But today we will be talking about the 3 primary types of investing when it comes to research, data driven, market investing strategies. These are 3 strategies and types I use on a daily basis to make the majority of my income I hope you enjoy the article and if you did remember to share and subscribe!

stocks-and-sharesType 1 – Stocks & Shares

Generally the most commonly known “type” of trading. Most people think of wall street, high buildings, shady characters like the wolf of wall street or Gordon Gekko when they think of stocks and shares. And although that could be the case, its very different nowadays. Some of the most successful traders I’ve ever meet are very shy, polite and more importantly patience individuals. It’s strange as you don’t assume stock traders with these characteristics but I think its essential nowadays. Remember you can trade stocks with $100 and an internet connection.

This is the type of trading I would recommend to anyone looking to get started in the broad field of finance and investing. It is very easy to understand and there is more good information online than the below 2 elements, which generally have miscommunication about how easy it is to make “all of the monies!” So if you are brand new, get started on shares and you can come back to the below 2 options when you have the time and capital.

forex-trading-imageType 2 – Forex Trading (Current / Foreign Exchange)

Generally seen as the type of trading that you need a heck of a lot of capital to ever get into. The currency markets are amongst the most volatile in the world, with 5 trillion dollars traded on these markets every day. Yes that’s Trillion! With a T!

But the old misconceptions about currency trading should be forgotten. Now similar to stocks you can trade currencies if you have an internet connection and a few bucks to your name. Although saying this I would in fact recommend waiting until you have a few grand to invest as the margins are a lot slimmer and generally it is considered more difficult than share trading. You can find the basics about forex trading from sites like Babypips or elite forex trading.

venture-capitalist-2Type 3 – Investing in Businesses Directly | Venture Capitalist

Finally we come to the venture capitalist option. This is generally later in your investment journey and when you are looking for the longer term 7/8 figure payday. For example the early investors in companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Uber, Airbnb etc have all received great ROI, even though they have technically not “cashed out” yet. When these companies do get sold off they will receive shares greater than $10,000,000 in most cases, all from a very low initial investment. These are the types of companies you are looking for, but at the end of the day you may also invest in a smaller tech firm that doesn’t go on to become the next Uber or Airbnb. These are the decisions that you have to make.

Being a VC is also generally seen as less time consuming but more time-taking. For example you might only review 3 businesses that you want to invest in and select 1 for a $200,000 investment. Once this is complete you have to essentially sit-back until the company grows and eventually floats on the markets or sells to someone else. It’s a longer process than making a forex trade or investing in the stock market. But the rewards are larger if you get your investment correct!

Hope that made some sense to newbie investors, below is a very good video, I personally really liked when I got started in trading and I hope you will like it too. That’s going to be all from me, thanks for reading and as always remember to subscribe in the sidebar if you haven’t already and share this post to help us attract new visitors and readers! Thanks, Hezbo.

About Hezbo Liberal

aboutHezbo Liberal is a website that tells you how to make money through investing. Straight up no BS! That’s what we do.

My name is Henrik Bollard but everyone just calls me Hezbo so that’s going to be my author name for this site. And if you have any questions contact me.

What to expect

Over the next 6 months I will be outlining the exact strategies I use to trade both currencies (foreign exchange) and stocks and shares to make a good about profit. But more importantly it allows me to have the time to do things I actually enjoy doing. For example I don’t have to spend 5 days in-front of the computer every time I want to make a trade, I can simply set-up notifications to my email and will then make the trade.

This is more important than making millions a year, as if you don’t enjoy what you are doing, is it really worth doing? The answer of course is hell no!

Stay tuned for the next post, it should be in the next few hours!