“It was just this past June when I saw on Facebook this post that Crazy Pasta had this great deal going on – it was an all-you-can-eat pasta event – and no one was there!” Pease began when I asked him to tell me a bit about what he does. “So, I sent them a note asking if they’d like me to come down and do a live video for them on Facebook, maybe get some bums in some seats. We decided to give it a try, and even from just the second video on, business improved.” There’s nothing we love more here at The Newsy Neighbour than reporting on a local entrepreneur’s regular and ongoing success, but that’s the thing: this wasn’t the latest in a series of running entrepreneurial accomplishments that Pease was chatting with me about, but rather, his very first stab at an online, live video promotion!
“That got me excited,” Pease continued, “and I thought that hey, maybe I can build something from this, maybe there’s something to work with here. And from there, it kind of took on a life of its own. All of this has been growing only since this June, starting on Father’s Day. In fact, The Choice Voice itself became a business just a few weeks ago – it’s been a bit of a whirlwind!” Having a great success story like this after only a few weeks of operational business would be more than enough for most folks, but not for Pease. Since June, he’s been burning the midnight oil, working hard to rapidly build out his skillset, his service offerings, and his portfolio of clients and projects. But he can speak to that better than I can: “Currently, there are a few services I’m offering our local businesses,” Pease began telling me. “One part of things starts with live video advertising. It enables local small business owners to respond to the moment. So, if it’s a quiet Wednesday night, they can call me up, and I can run down and do a video on a wings special, or something like that. I can help them respond moment to moment. It gives small businesses flexibility; it gives them a face and a voice.” “The other thing I do is live MC work,” Pease continued. “I just recently hosted the Chestermere Water Festival, and I’ll be at the Strathmore Stampede in just a short while here – it’ll actually be my eleventh year on stage there this August! Finally, I do voiceover work. I’ve got some commercials running right now for a couple of car dealerships in Calgary, and I’m doing my very first audiobook for a local author in Chestermere here called The Bees of Rainbow Falls, by Dr. Preston Pouteaux.”
If you’re having trouble sorting out how somebody could build up so much business so quickly, you’re not alone.
I had to ask Pease several times throughout the course of our conversation to confirm when, exactly, each endeavour had taken place, and each time, he confirmed: “All of this started just a few weeks ago, in June.” Wow – consider my mind blown! Of course, Pease isn’t oblivious to the near-overnight success of his business, but being the cool, collected personality he is, he takes it all in stride. “It’s been a very interesting evolution,” he told me as we chatted, “because it seems like things keep coming my way that I hadn’t ever really thought about before, but that I’m more than happy to look at and explore and make happen. I’m a community guy, first and foremost. I lived in Strathmore for 23 years, and now I’m in Chestermere. I’m currently working with three different businesses in Chestermere, the Firehouse Bar and Grill in Langdon, and I’m hopefully looking to spread out and do some more work in Strathmore as well. In addition to the work I’ve done here, I’ve also gotten to do some MC work in Niagara Falls, which was a great experience, and really helped to get my name out there. There’s plenty of room to grow still, and I can’t wait.” As handily as Pease’s business model has taken off, we’re sure that the success he’s seen so far will continue to push him to new heights, because there’s no two bones about it: his approach works. “I want to be a real voice for small business – whatever shape that takes, I want to be that person,” he shared with me. “The goal with the videos I do is all about keeping it loose and keeping it fresh while also getting that message out there that the client’s looking to communicate – and people are getting on board. After I started doing work with Crazy Pasta, I walked into the Firehouse to do a video there, and a guy immediately shouted out ‘Hey, it’s the Crazy Pasta guy!’ So, people are watching, which is great.”
The thing that really stuck with me about Graydon Pease, though, isn’t his wild success story, but rather, the soil from which it all initially grew. “I was selling turf maintenance equipment for the past eleven years,” he related to me, “but I started to develop back issues, and it got to the point where I just couldn’t do it anymore. I had to make a change. My whole life, people have been telling me to do something with my voice, so I figured well, maybe now’s the time. Facebook and the internet means I’m able to do this in a way that works for most businesses, because production costs are so low compared to TV and even radio. Some of those things that you couldn’t do before, you can now do in an online setting, which is great.”
This is compelling to me on so many levels. Not only has Pease been able to find success doing something he loves, but he did so by taking a leap of faith and following a dream he’d held onto for years. I expressed as much to him, and asked him what sort of message he’d want to pass on to people who are kicking around similar dreams and ambitions in the backs of their heads. He had some poignant advice to share: “On the other side of fear lies your greatest reward. Fear holds most people back. I thought about doing this years ago, and now I’ve found myself in a position where I could spend some time building on it. Honestly, go after your dreams, because when you’re doing what you want to do, you’re not working.” If that isn’t a motivating sentiment, we’re not sure what is!
Local entrepreneurs: discover everything that Graydon Pease can do for you. Take a moment to look him up on Facebook and reach out to him to chat all about how The Choice Voice can partner with you to draw attention to your business, bring a crowd to your next event, or just help build your company’s voice here in both the local community and within the wider scope of southern Alberta. Be sure to act soon, though, because we have a feeling that it won’t be long until The Choice Voice is booked up solid – get in touch with Graydon Pease today!.