How This 21-Year-Old Open Heart Patient Started A Booming Business While Still In College

While most of us are worried about how many Twitter followers we have, or whether or not we should get the new tesla, or swipe right on Bumble, one millennial I spoke with has had a few other things on his mind.

Meet Daniel Wallock, a 21-year-old college student at Sarah Lawrence College who was born with a rare heart condition called dextrocardia, which means his heart is on the right side of his body. Dextrocardia affects just 1% of the population.

Throughout his life, Wallock has undergone several open-heart surgeries and lived with the reality that any given day could be his last.

“I really didn’t think I’d live past high school,” he says. “I was really convinced that there was no possibility I’d have life beyond that. For me it’s always been every single day, I feel sort of intense urgency.”

Wallock’s unique perspective has driven him to start his career early—and fearlessly. He taught himself marketing in his early teens, and since has consulted high-profile clients like BMW Ventures, Amazon Studios, and the American Heart Association. Not to mention, he’s also a published author and an honoree of Inc.’s Top 8 Marketers to Follow in 2017.

This week on the Unconventional Life Podcast, Wallock shares his story and gives millennial listeners a few of his top-performing strategies for creating create rapid results in their business, which you can read in the section below.

If you’re looking to kick your career into gear, the horsepower this young cardiac patient brings will help you.

Master The Art Of Cold Outreach.

As a mere 21-year-old, Wallock has a spiffy rolodex of contacts including figureheads like Neil Patel and Arianna Huffington. How’d he do it?

You wouldn’t believe it, but Wallock says it was a product of cold outreach. If your cold emails aren’t converting, consider the following strategies.

#1 Use Multi-Channel Engagement. Touch base with your target on every platform they use. A quick tweet here, an in-depth comment there, and frequent likes and shares will do the trick. “In my experience, eventually they’ll intro themselves to you because you are always in front of them,” Wallock says.

The key is to add value for the other person without having been asked. Study their recent posts and see what’s relevant to them. In one case, Wallock marketed a Forbes editor’s recent article and it blew up on several popular sites as a case study, benefiting Wallock with both marketing exposure and a new relationship.

#2 Don’t Expect Instant Gratification. According to Wallock, a little investment goes a long way. “I think people underestimate the power of the nurturing process. People want the relationship right now. Nobody knows who you are and they don’t just wanna give something to you.” Commit to dedicating time and energy to properly nurture the relationship in its early stages and it will pay off down the road.

#3 Quality Over Quantity. If your cold emails don’t typically yield results, consider this quick fix. ”Don’t send 50-100 with the same template. Send 25 custom emails and it will outperform,” says Wallock. Plus, don’t be over-the-top when you first initiate contact. The last thing you want to do is ask the other person for a favor or try to sell them something straight off the bat. Instead, gauge their interest by offering value or suggesting to get on a 15-20 minute call.