An encounter with the Wolf of Wall Street himself, Jordan Belfort, was the catalyst for a then penniless Perth salesman, Joel Brown, to earn his fortune.
Joel, who was in debt following an ill-advised foray into the music industry, was working a day job at Amcom in 2011 when he met the infamous Belfort as part of the company’s training program.
“I was talking to him about setting a vision and making a goal I was passionate about,” says Joel. “He’s a pretty crazy guy but it was a huge inspiration.” A penchant for reading life-coaching books and a fascination with successful people suggested Joel’s passion lay in sharing inspirational advice, so he started the blog Addicted2Success.com in 2011.
Though Joel was reluctant to refer to himself as a blogger – “It sounds like something an emotional person would do with a cat” – he can’t deny the success that blogging has delivered: a loyal following (more than 30 million yearly views), a tidy salary that allowed him to leave his nine-to-five job within two years; and a $1million offer.
“My first blog posts were really money-driven, but then, as I grew as a person, I realised success isn’t just about money,” he says. “It’s about having an impact in the world. At the end of the day the secret of living is giving back – you want to feel like you’re worth something in this world, you’re valuable to others.”
Still, the blog’s been the platform for rewarding and lucrative activities, such as a contract with MindValley, a leading publishing company in personal growth. He impressed CEO Vikesh Lakhiani – a personal hero – with a keynote speech delivered in Malaysia, and was quickly signed on to coach people around the world on a peer-to-peer model for successful blogging practice.
He’s also published an eBook. “About a year ago when I was in India, a coconut tree fell and landed on our phone and power lines, so the Internet went out for a week,” says Joel. “I was pretty devastated and took that time to write an eBook. It’s my formula for how I created success online. It’s a basic manual but it can get a lot of people started in the right direction.”
Joel hopes to turn his hard-won wisdom − gleaned from personal experience as well as from interviews with the likes of motivational speaker Tony Robbins and US business magnate Donald Trump − into a lengthier, more ambitious book. “Hopefully it will go to the New York Times bestseller list. Let’s cross our fingers!”