Ming and I are in KL doing our marketing rounds to tons and tons of advertisers and just yesterday we got a little lucky.
We managed to secure a meeting with the CEO and Founder of a very large multinational company which commands a brand that every Malaysian has heard of.
That afternoon, we walked straight into the grand office with a secretary smiling at us and asking
"May I help you?"
Right that instant a well-dressed older man walked out of a room and straight past the secretary's table.
He saw Ming and I standing there with our briefcases and asked "What are you both doing here?"
I calmly replied
"We are looking for PPP (Not his real name obviously :P). We have an appointment with him for right now".
He let out a short laugh and said
"I am PPP."
I mentally gave myself a pat in the back for looking like an idiot but before I could say anything else, he said
"Come come into my office".
We walked into his posh office, it was beautiful.
Not extravagantly huge but beautifully furnished with expensive furniture.
We all took our seats on the soft sofa couches around a striking wooden coffee table.
He sat down comfortably on his end of the sofa and said
"Okay... now tell me, how can we do business together?"
Ming and I started first by introducing ourselves and how we came about to start Nuffnang.
Then we went on to describe Nuffnang and the ins and outs of how we work and then bring the story round to whether his huge company would be willing to take a small percentage of his advertising budget to advertise with us.
That small percentage would already be HUGE for us.
At the end of our introduction, PPP said
"Your kind of internet business has very low barriers to entry. You have to be careful. You will experience fierce competition, and in my experience, competition can turn nasty."
He paused for a while then asked
"How much money did you put in this business?"
I gave him the 6 digit figure and was quick to tell him that both my partner and I are lucky to have little financial constraint on this end.
He then asked
"Do you need another investor?", smiling at the both of us as the words left his lips.
Thoughts ran through my mind in that split second.
On one hand, there we were in the office of this tycoon hoping to convince him to advertise on Nuffnang blogs but instead we were now having him ask us if we would like him to invest in Nuffnang.
I looked at PPP and realised that rather than trying to pitch to him, I should instead be pitching to his Marketing Department.
I shouldn't be using this meeting to pitch, I should be using this meeting to learn from PPP.
Ming and I are both young and we have a lot to learn but we learn fast. If there is any chance to ever get business advice that money can't ever buy, it was now.
So I asked him for more advice, trying to draw from his business experience and that's how we spent the rest of our meeting.
Before we knew it, 15 minutes was up and the Tycoon had to be some place else.
He showed Ming and I out of the office and said
"If there is any way that you can think of that I could help, please let me know. You have my contact details on the card. Let me know when you're free to meet again and we can talk more".
I thanked him graciously and walked away from his private office.
As Ming and I were walking away I said
"Do you know that we just had a meeting with one of the Richest Men in Malaysia?"