EP29: Ash Ali - Lessons in Entrepreneurship from JUST EAT's first Marketing Director


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What is the right reason to quit your job and start your own business?

On this week's episode of Escape The Rat Race Radio I am very pleased to welcome entrepreneur, TEDx speaker and author; Ash Ali. If the name Ash Ali isn’t instantly familiar….I'm sure that you WILL be familiar with the brand JUST EAT. Their distinctive red stickers can be seen in restaurant windows, delivery bikes and delivery bags all over the UK. Ash was the marketing genius behind the rapid growth of this brand which led to JUST EAT achieving the largest tech IPO in London stock exchange history, at a whopping £1.5 billion, back in 2014.

During this interview Ash shares how his entrepreneurial career began when he was just 15 years old and quickly led to him selling his first award winning web business at the age of 19.

Since then Ash has acted as a mentor for numerous startups, earning the nickname ‘the growth hacker’, and he’s always on the lookout for exciting and innovative companies to invest his time and money into.

I particularly wanted to invite ash on to escape the rat race radio because I know that he can share with you some of the absolute fundamentals around starting a business, and if you listen carefully throughout the interview you’re going to learn proven steps which have been tried and tested by Ash when he sets about working on any new business ideas himself.

Get your notebooks ready because this is one interview you are not going to want to miss if you're serious about starting or accelerating your own business in 2018.

In this episode you’ll learn…

  • Why there is always a battle between your heart and your mind when you want to start something new
  • Why you shouldn’t start a business just because you hate your boss, you should start a business because you want to solve a problem / provide a solution for other people
  • Why being in a job can actually be a great position because you have the opportunity to learn different skills which you will need to draw upon when you take the jump to start your own business
  • Why you should always start by doing your market research before investing time and money into your business
  • Why it’s important not to hide behind your computer and to get out and meet your potential customers face to face to get feedback on your ideas
  • That if you want to be an entrepreneur you need to get used to being able to deal with rejection, and the test that Ash puts his own mentees to through
  • Why all successful people are aware of their unfair advantage, and the MILES framework which can help you to discover yours
  • The story behind Ash being appointed as the first Marketing Director of JUST EAT back in 2007, when the iPhone had only just been released
  • How in the early days over 50% of people who found out about JUST EAT were via the stickers that they saw in the restaurant windows
  • Why you must know thyself, get to know what you’re good at and what you’re not good at, but also understand that things can change


‘You don’t want to leave your job because you hate your boss, you want to leave your job because there’s customers out there for your service or product’

‘Salesmanship is a very important skill set and a trait for an Entrepreneur to have’

‘People go to University now and buy degrees effectively as a commodity to put on their CV’s in order to get a job. As an Entrepreneur you don’t need this. You need expertise’

‘I never had any money, and that made me really, really hungry to prove something’

‘As marketing director of JUST EAT, what I found is that when I had the least amount of budget, that’s when I became more creative’

‘The first thing is to make sure your product is right, and people are satisfied with it and that it works, before you go out and start promoting it everywhere’

‘You’re not going to want to go back into work after you’ve become an entrepreneur’

Links & Resources mentioned in this episode:

Ash Ali - The Unfair Advantage [Book Preview] - Sign Up Here

Guest Details:

Ash Ali Official Website

Ash Ali LinkedIn

Ash Ali Twitter

Ash Ali Instagram

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