How To Build An Empire
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CFD 441- How To Build An Empire

Sean Dowdell is the Founder of Club Tattoo and author of, “Tattooed Millionaire: Building the Club Tattoo Empire”.

With the help of his wife/partner; Thora and partner (Chester Bennington), they created one of the most successful tattoo and piercing brands in the world and became multi-millionaires that give back to their communities and help other young entrepreneurs.

Podcast Highlights

  • Who is Sean Dowdell?

Sean is an entrepreneur that got his start in 1995, born to a low middle-class family. He was never very interested in school until he discovered Philosophy after which he became a very good student. While in college, he developed his musical talent and began playing in the band Gray Daze. Through the music industry, Sean grew his skills as an entrepreneur and learned how to leverage his growing fame into a business.

Prior to opening up their tattoo business, Sean’s band was basically operating as a startup with no cash flow. The tattoo shop was a natural fit with the band and grew out of an impromptu tattoo night they began to hold while they were on the road.

  • What was it like making it happen at the start?

The business started off on shaky ground, with Sean’s business partner crippling them on many fronts. After buying him out, Sean eventually had to drop out of college due to time constraints so that he could focus on growing his business.

  • Why did you write a book?

Sean has been a disruptor in his industry. Club Tattoo is a global tattoo and piercing brand which has basically never been seen before. The book details the path his startup took and the rise of a globally recognized brand.

  • How did you manage the process of growing the business?

The systems that Sean has integrated into the business model happened in large part by accident. The second Club Tattoo location happened out of planning for failure. The obstacles the business ran into were the exact things they needed to experience so they could develop robust systems that can be applied to every location.

It was a painful process for Sean to trust his partner with his vision, but after 23 years in business, he realized that it was their vision, not just his. Working with your spouse is not something Sean would recommend, they made it through many tough times but it wasn’t always a smooth ride.

  • How did you disrupt the tattoo industry and build an empire?

Sean has a couple of patents including a piece of software that he had developed for Club Tattoo. Since the model is more high end than other tattoo shops, the software he developed set them apart in a way that other shops couldn’t really replicate. Especially since the software is proprietary to Club Tattoo.

Reference: Tattooed Millionaire: Building the Club Tattoo Empire, Sean Dowdell

  • Sean’s Takeaway

80% of any success in the business world is just putting something into motion, even if it’s in the wrong direction. A success story in the making begins with “I’m doing…”, not “I’m thinking about doing…” Do what you need to do to take the first action step and commit to it.

Links:

Tattooed Millionaire: Building the Club Tattoo Empire

clubtattoo.com

seandowdell.com

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