Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Craigslist We Love You

Looking back on how this year, and then even further back, has developed it's fair to say that without the invention of Craigslist the lives of Scotsman and Some Chilean Woman would have gone on quite different paths.

For us it all started over two years ago. Back then I was looking online for some cheap second hand camera lenses, trying in vain to get something for my Sigma, in desperation I tried looking on Craigslist for the first time. Craigslist you have to understand isn't really big news in the home country but I tried anyway. Unsurprisingly though as the camera I have is in very few hands I looked in vain. However before I logged off that day I looked at the personals out of curiosity, and there little did I know I found Some Chilean Woman who was looking for a guide for a holiday that she was planning. Rather than ignore her I instead gave her crap for the wordage of her advert suggesting to her that she may want to reword it if she wanted to get the right type of response. I didn't expect to hear back from her after that but rather than ignore me she seemed to like the asshole like response. A few months later instead of her going to Scotland, I instead made my way to Utah. Less than six months after that , I returned to Utah permanently. 3 short months after that I found myself getting married and all thanks to a chance encounter on Craigslist.

Before then I was skeptical of anyone finding love on the internet but having been converted first hand I started to wonder what else I could use Craigslist for. I soon found out that it had more than one use. My first job on US soil was found on Craigslist. Sadly it didn't last that long.

Earlier this year I started to place adverts for landscaping services, skeptical of its possible effectiveness.

The last time I started a business was back in 1998 and the internet was not as widely used. Then I mostly got my clients from flyers I delivered locally, people I knew and from word of mouth. In 11 years of working for myself I had never once got any work from the internet. In truth though I had never tried. This time around though we had little spare money for flyers, nor did I know enough people here in Salt Lake City in order to get my first few customers. Desperate times though called for desperate measures, I blindly put out my first adverts on Craigslist more in hope than anything else. In all honesty I was surprised to get my first response. But gradually bit by bit I got more and more customers from the adverts I was placing.

This allowed us slowly to transform our lives. No longer did Some Chilean Woman have to do all the working on her own, I was at last able to make a contribution. Soon after I was able to match her dollar for dollar, and it was all thanks to Craigslist bringing in the work.

Six short months later we were able to move into a new place. We looked on Craigslist, but to no avail, this time it couldn't take the credit. Piece of crap website!

But when we did find our new place we needed some new furniture and so we found a cheap dining table and chairs that might have needed some work but were still pretty much a bargain at the advertised price. As was the $60 exercise bike last week.

Love, work, and cheap exercise I've found it all on Craigslist and its safe to say that for us life would be quite different without it.

3 comments:

Someone Said said...

Pretty impressive track record. You should send this to them as a testimonial of better living through Craigslist.

Sausage Fingers said...

11 years of self employment just like me, congrats, Scots wha hae...

PurestGreen said...

I love this. Craigslist should hire you to be a spokesperson on all the way it has changed your lives.