Shared Knowledge Helps Entrepreneur Dan Brady Launch Second Successful Business

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Sharing knowledge can be a powerful way to build your business as one Michigan entrepreneur learned when he began sharing his painting knowledge and skills in an HGTV-style video.

Professional painter Dan Brady shares 20 years of painting knowledge in his Tricks of the Trade video.

“I get asked why I would teach people to do a service I sell all the time,” says Brady. “I tell people this video is targeted to the one million people who will never hire me"

Sharing knowledge can be a powerful force for growing a business. That’s what Traverse City, Michigan painting contractor Dan Brady discovered when he developed a second business: creating HGTV-style videos that teach the tricks of the painting trade to do-it-yourselfers wanting a professional looking job.

As the owner of Dan Brady Painting and Wood Restoration he created a second business just over a year ago. Now he’s selling DVDs from Dan Brady Painting Tricks of the Trade at He’s had national and international sales to do-it-yourselfers who want to learn the tricks professional interior painting contractors use. He also discovered another market for the DVD – other painting contractors who find it a useful tool to train their employees.

A Great Idea is Born
Brady’s goal was to expand his business. The economic downturn had him looking for another way to earn money and Brady, a finance major in college, wanted a business that would complement – not compete with his work as a painting contractor.

Collaborating with local videographer Corbin Shaw of Peterson Productions, soon Brady was starring in his own video. The result was Dan Brady Painting Tricks of the Trade, which is available for sale over the Internet on his own site as well as on

So why teach people to do the service you and your company provide? “I get asked that question all the time,” says Brady. “I tell people this video is targeted to the one million people who will never hire me, like the dedicated do-it-yourselfer who is never going to hire any interior painting contractor.”
Developing the video had payoffs for Brady’s main business as well. He researched paints and painting techniques in detail and says the experience has made him a better teacher for his crew. Plus, he uses his own DVD as a training tool for new employees.

Best of all, the new business hasn’t hurt Dan Brady Painting and Wood Restoration at all – if anything it’s helped it. Brady keeps eight permanent employees busy as well as a large pool of workers whom he calls in when a big project bid is accepted. And he’s getting painting jobs from some of the people who have purchased his DVD.

He credits having products for both the committed do-it-yourselfer and the person who prefers to pay to have their painting done for enhancing his overall business. “Since developing the DVD, I now have a painting tool that appeals to a group I could never reach before,” says Brady.

Brady’s 17-chapter HGTV-style DVD costs $24.95 and has been purchased by do-it-yourselfers internationally.

About Dan Brady
Dan Brady, a Traverse City, Michigan native, learned to paint working his way through Central Michigan University, where he graduated with a finance degree. He worked as a computer consultant for several years before founding Dan Brady Painting and Wood Restoration about 10 years ago to handle both residential and commercial painting projects. He was featured on The Learning Channel’s Trading Spaces program when he worked on the show with his friend Carter Oosterhouse, another Traverse City native who now stars in the HGTV show Carter Can. Dan also appeared in an October, 2009 segment of Carter Can. He is a member of the Home Builders Association of the Grand Traverse Area, Contractors You Can Trust and the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce. He’s also president of a Business Networking International chapter, president of Painting and Decorating Contractors of America and is a board member of the local Habitat for Humanity.

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