When it comes to success, everybody wants to know that secret formula that will make them rich overnight. But, in fact, to make a successful business story, takes a lot of time and effort. And maybe a little bit of luck. So, in addition, we have the five best American success stories and how they became what they are today – A GREAT WORLDKNOWN NAME.
1. Mars – the flavor empire
The beginning of this story is back in 1911 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, when Franc K. Mars begins to sell cakes in his yard. This idea in fact, wasn’t the happiest one and it turned out to be a mistake. But the year 1923, brings happiness and joy in the Mars family, with the idea of the Franc’s son, Forest Mars. This idea got the name of Milky Way – slices of milk chocolate, and became very popular among people. As the interest became bigger, the company was making more money, so the next move was Chicago in 1928. Here’s where the Sneakers and Mars chocolates were born and made a worldwide brand. Even while the Great world crisis, the company sales didn’t decrease, but the numbers increased from year to year. The M&M’s were born in 1940, just like the Uncle Ben’s rice, after a research that was made by the company about the needs of the market.
Then, Mars decided to expand their working to Germany, Australia, Belgium, Holland and Great Britain. This wasn’t enough and the desire for success was getting bigger and bigger and the Mars Company introduces Skittles, Twix and Bounty. Today the most known and best sell product of the Mars family is Sneakers. The biggest accent is put on the marketing strategy that in fact got them where they are now.
What started as a small family business, turned out as a successful business story.
2. Levi Strauss – powerful story
The world of fashion today can’t be imagined without the jeans. This powerful piece of cloth made a revolution in fashion industry and put a standard in clothing.
As a young, ambitious man, with only 24 years, Levi Strauss decides to move from his home in Bavaria, Germany to San Francisco, California, to make money. Here he starts a business with selling textile. In 1872, Levi gets a letter from a customer named Jacob Davis, a tailor from Nevada. In the letter he describes the unique way that he made pants for his customers, mainly from the working class, all with the material that he bought from Levi Strauss. When reading this, Levi got an idea and in May 1873, both Levi and Davis get the patent and they made the Levi and Jacob Davis Company. With the release of the first jeans, they experience a great success over night. In these times, the jeans were worn just by famous and wealthy people. But later, the Levi’s jeans became a brand and almost everyone could wear these jeans. The one thing that makes the jeans very special is the metal buttons and the studs on them. Besides the jeans, the company sells shorts, shirts, coats, shoes, dresses, skirts and more.
After his death in 1902, the business stays in the family and it is run successfully till today.
3. Converse – sneakers for every occasion
Today’s best known Converse sneakers can be find in any color and any material. They can satisfy every taste. But this successful story begins in 1908, when Marcus Mills Converse, from Massachusetts made the first boots that can make you go through the winter. This Converse Company secured its place on the market first by targeting popular sports like tennis and basketball. The first Converse All Star sneakers were made for the basketball players. The Converse Company makes its success by adjusting to the new technologies and making smart deals with the basketball stars in that time. Another thing that made this company what it is today are the affordable prices. The company has made very good effort to stay on the market and be interesting for the customers. This is why Converse is still on the market and one of the best companies in the World.
4. Starbucks – coffee worth a million dollars
The story of Howard Shultz starts with small steps and a great will for success. Shultz grew up in a modest home in Brooklyn, New York. At his 12th year, he sells newspaper and soon after he starts working in a coffee shop. Somehow he manages to graduate on the University of Michigan and get a job as a manager. After a while he starts working in a company that sells household appliances, and among them coffee grinding machine. That’s how he gets in touch with Starbucks. He saw that this company makes small purchases of the machines and he goes to meet with the owners. After many tries, Shultz gets the job in Starbucks as a marketing director. He visits Milan and he is thrilled with the fact that the Italians look at the drinking coffee as a social ritual. So, it didn’t take much time until he becomes the owner of the Starbucks and with the help of Bill Gates he stands on his own feet. In the new Starbucks cafes, the customer can choose the flavor and shape of the coffee. All this, got Shultz on the top of the business world and made him an example for every ambitious soul.
5. Colgate – tradition longer than 2000 years
“Colgate – for shiny smile and teeth without caries.” This popular toothpaste has passed a long time and still stays the best on the market. William Colgate starts producing soaps and candles in Holland Street in New York in 1806. Fourteen years after, he opens a company for soaps in New Jersey. After a very long time and very good success of the company, at last in 1873, the first toothpaste is released. In 1920 the Colgate Company finds its way to the Asian, European, South American and African market. In the years that come, Colgate Company will make many other products that will make it stronger and take the company to the top businesses in the World and not only in USA. Besides the products, the three business principles that lead the company are the team work, customer care and constant improvement.
So, let’s hope that these stories will inspire you to take the first step in making your successful business. Who knows, maybe your story will be the next best American success story to tell.
written by: bradleyyoung