I woke up this morning with energy running through my veins, still so excited about what we accomplished last night.
$50k. With less than 10 hours or so hours worth of work. 100% for charity.
Here’s the back story:
Back at the last Practical Profits event, another speaker, Wil Mattos, and I were sitting on a couch and talking about how much we like to do for charity. I was telling Wil of my dreams to build a school, then he mentioned how he wants to go help underprivileged children in Brazil (where he’s from).
We were feeding off each other more and more, getting more and more passionate about things that could be done to help the world. We decided we wanted to do something ASAP.
Our first idea was to get backpacks filled with school supplies to severely underprivileged children in Brazil. Wil sent me a video of the situation for some of those kids there and it was absolutely heart wrenching.
We asked the rest of the Practical Profits team if they would be interested in helping and they immediately said yes.
At first we were going to start a nonprofit. We did apply for it, but the paperwork takes a long time and we didn’t want to wait years to do something (though the paperwork is still in progress).
Wil mentioned that he knew of a charity, Spirit Of A Giving Heart, and that we could help them for our first project.
Spirit Of A Giving Heart helps children in an Indian reservation in Arizona. There are 618 kids in this school and they’re extremely poor.
- 90% of them don’t have electricity…
- They’re bussed up to 40 miles (one way) to get to school
- 90% of them are eligible for the free lunch program
- A substantial % of their families are below the poverty line
- Many children are so poor that they have to live at the school, going home only for weekends and holidays
- 50% of the children who start kindergarden are not ready for it
- The children get a package of “Tribal” clothes once a year. The packages are becoming smaller and smaller, and last year because of funding they didn’t get their coats until February – way after they needed it….
- Every year they’re allowed to ask for 2 or 3 things for their Christmas wishes. They ask for things most children take for granted – like pens, pencils, and notebooks.
Wil and I decided we would get backpacks for every single child in that school, filled with school supplies appropriate for their age level.
I had my assistant research some prices and we thought we’d have to pay $30k or so, shipped, for everything. We knew we could raise that and were happy with it. But one day Wil randomly mentioned to someone what we were doing and they mentioned told him of a nonprofit that specifically creates and fills backpacks for nonprofit charities. He followed up with that company, and they gave us a HUGE discount.
$14k for all 600+ backpacks, filled and shipped right to the school.
Our plan to create the money was this:
- Ask our marketing friends if they’d donate products at a discount
- Create mini sales pages where each product would be displayed
- Sell limited quantities of the products, discounted, on a live webinar (with the money going right to the charity’s PayPal)
It was absolutely beautiful how many people were open to donating.
Here’s everyone who ended up donating, in alphabetical order of first name:
- Brian Johnson
- Brian Koz
- Brittany Lynch
- Dan Hollings
- Dennis Becker
- Jaime Mintun
- James Jones
- Jason Fladlien
- John Rhodes
- Keith Dougherty
- Maria Gudelis
- Matt Rhodes
- Rachel Rofe
- Shane Melaugh
- Tim Castleman
- Wil Mattos
Everything came together so seamlessly and easily.
We kept getting pleasantly surprised. Marketers were donating products that were worth $1,000, $2,000… even $4,000.
I ended up creating mini descriptions of each product and then Wil plugged them into his shopping cart. He had it set up so that there was one main sales page, and people would just have to refresh it every time a product ran out to get to see the next product.
It was SO easy! He really did a knock-out job.
When we started the webinar, James Jones, Maria Gudelis, Keith Dougherty, and John Rhodes came on to support everything.
James immediately said he was going to eat all the PayPal fees for every single product bought so the charity would get 100% of the donations. (He is one of the most generous people I have ever met.)
We started selling products, and WOW. It was unbelievable. People were so excited to be there, to support the cause, and to get such great discounts.
Wil MC’ed everything (he was GREAT at it!!) while I announced the products.
At the end of the webinar sales were showing up slowly. There was so much activity on the PayPal account! The webinar ended up going 3.5 hours!
At the end of the webinar, Wil finally announced we were at $36k in sales. Keith Dougherty spoke up and said, “I don’t like $36… I like $37. I’m going to donate another $1,000.”At that point I guess a few more sales came in, and we got to $38k. James said, “We should push for $40k!”
Wil said he would put in $1k, then James said he would match him. I said I’d put in another $1k, and then so did Maria and John, which got us $5k even more.
Then, with all the cash donations from other marketers we got even before the webinar… we were able to round up to $50k with donations.
It was UNBELIEVABLE.
This whole experience has forever changed me. I told Wil and Otto… I’ve had a lot of achievements in life. I’ve been a cover story in a magazine, wrote a book, lost 100 lbs, and a slew of so many other things… but this is what I am the most proud of, by FAR.
It’s just amazing. I am so grateful for everyone who supported this.
It’s incredible. This went from Wil and I sitting on a couch to asking Practical Profits to help to a few hours worth of calling people, doing some tech stuff, writing a little copy, etc… to the webinar.
We worked a grand total (including the 3.5 hour webinar) of less than 10 hours.
And it didn’t feel like work.
Most people didn’t even get to mail their lists for us. At the peak of our call we had about 250 people. If we would have pushed more, who knows what would have happened?
All I know right now is that education is huge. Knowledge is power. And everyone who helped took part in possibly rewriting a child’s destiny.
I feel so inspired and amazed at what humans are capable of. This has forever changed me.