Don Nasca helps “professionals increase their income, improve their livelihood, and expand their network” at the Service Store USA.
What the business does: marketing for service providers.
A career in technology eventually led to a venture in creating a platform that offers marketing for service providers. When he was 50, Don Nasca first got the idea for an online platform where individuals could offer their services. Don was particularly interested in keeping the market in Oregon and Washington. There are other platforms like The Service Store USA, such as UpWork and Freelancer. Don, however, keeps it local and does not have providers bid against providers outside the Northwest.
Don’s own career in the technology field began in New Jersey. He was the son of a single mom who had developed an interest in HAM radio. When he was thirteen, a family friend who was also into HAM radios took Don under his wing and encouraged Don to continue his interest in technology. Don later became a engineer in the 70’s, and later got into technical sales. He also earned a Master’s in Business Administration from Portland State University in 1995, and launched the university’s radio station, KPSU. He continues to have a day job in technology.
Don first got the idea for what is now The Service Store USA in 2008. He wanted to create a platform for professionals to offer their talents at the local level. The difference would be leaving out the lowest bid aspect. Don really wants to see people who are underutilized with their experience, talents and skills succeed. Requirements include having a tax ID, a bank account, and pay a deposit. Participants get a rating upon completed work. There is no charge until a transaction is made.
What is working now: The goal of The Service Store USA is to help people help themselves, but has to make money to prove it. Having a team with the right people is optimal, and it took awhile to get to this point. “It doesn’t matter how good the idea is, you need a group of good people willing to do the initial work at a reduced rate.” The Service Store USA is also the first of its kind using Amazon Payments. Don’s business is the first of its kind to do this on Amazon Payments for services.
BSR Wisdom: Upon reflecting on the path that led to The Service Store USA, Don says he would have spent more time developing a minimal viable product. But now his business is “selling a connection between two parties,” which is what Don wanted to see happen. Don also wanted to give back, and has the means to do it.
For those interested in looking into doing similar work, Don said he used these sites for assistance: Assembla for project management, and Slack for communication.
Sign up on Don’s site, ServiceStoreUSA, and register to become a service provider. Don also organizes a networking group for those who want to give back, with either a for-profit or non-profit venture. Visit Social Entrepreneurs to learn more.
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