It’s no surprise to anyone that ADV1 is a very fast growing wheel company and that it had its shares of struggle based on Jordan’s past history with 360 Forged. The rumors and negativity focused heavily on Jordan’s involvement in ADV1 as a negative rather than a re-attempt at something great. Despite its very hard first year and crazy come back in the wheel industry, many websites and private groups decided to boycott Jordan and ADV1 out of their agenda in full, but its wasn’t until a competitor came up with a cheap attempt at destroying ADV1’s reputation that things got interesting…
Secret Entourage recently had a chance to catch up at Formula D, a popular drifting event that took place in West Palm Beach, FL.
The ADV1 booth was a huge success and displayed some of the best of the best the event had to offer. From Active Autowerk’s Reventon colored M3 to the ADV1 Ferrari California; the event was a huge success for ADV1 and all of its partners. It wasnt until later when the crowds calmed down that I noticed the license plate on the California said JSMM.
What caught me off guard was the fact that I remember visiting ADV1’s facility a month earlier and hearing Jordan arguing as to what his license plate should say. He was actually confused as to why several of his first choices with “ADV1” in them were taken but I never got to hear what he actually picked until I saw his license plate at Formula D and felt puzzled. Before we go into what JSMM really is we felt like the ADV1 booth at Formula Drift was worthy enough to show you some of the amazing cars (and women) on display.
The world famous BMW M3 painted matte gray while equipped with all exclusive Active Autowerks parts and of course the ultimate set of ADV 5.1 Wheels color matched with a contrasting lime green brakes.
We brought you an article a while back about how successful entrepreneurs use and leverage negativity to help fuel their growth and the JSMM madness is a perfect example of that. In the first 6 months of a business which most call the most critical months where a business defines itself, ADV1 ran into somewhat of what seemed a large roadblock with people trying to bash their new company reputation and business ethic using a very cheap method via JSMM!
We ask Jordan himself what is JSMM and how he has been able to use negativity to fuel his growth.
Jordan stole my money was a cheap attempt from jealous competitors, how did you deal with the headaches and the idea that someone had such a desire to go against your new venture?
Well, honestly I can’t blame them for trying. I don’t agree with the way they went about it though but at the same time I understand why they would do something like that. If you think about the wheel industry before 360 was started, things were pretty stagnant for years. The forged 3 piece market wasn’t saturated and only a few brands really existed, each basically making the same thing in different variations of styles for the face of the wheel. All the styles for the most part are copies and variations of the same thing. Everyone used the same forging profile, same rim halves and same template based engineering, no one really doing anything to stand out from the rest. To me it just seemed like since there was no one doing anything different they all really had no reason to change anything and that was just the way it was. I saw this for years and I knew that more could be done but I wasn’t in the wheel business and didn’t have time to think about it much.
In mid 2006 I was 26 years old and was 3 years into my little advertising business, the real estate market was going nuts, everyone was making money including myself. Some time around December 2006 I stopped at the Mercedes dealer in Orlando when visiting my pops, the car had a check engine light so it was a good excuse to go check out some AMG’s… Long story short I left with a brand new CLS63, one of the first on the street at the time. Now here’s how I got into the wheel business… Got back down to Miami and went straight to Wheels Boutique to buy my first set of wheels, I didn’t care what anyone offered, I only wanted HRE’s because I wanted the best wheel and no issues with vibration or anything like that on my brand new 63. 6 weeks and $8k later they came in, I was pretty happy with them but from that day on everything changed for me, I was obsessed with finding out how I could make wheels like these, I knew there was a way to machine such a simple part and put it all together. That was that, I accepted a $50k deposit on my store with the rest paid off monthly and I was off to the wheel industry.
A few months later 360 was launched and it was like I was the smartest kid on the short bus. I didn’t know a thing about the business, didn’t take it seriously and had no idea how things worked but I didn’t care. I designed a brand, my own versions of the same template garbage wheels that everyone had, wrapped them in carbon fiber and took some pretty pics. That was all it took to shake up the wheel industry, a 26 yr old kid with nothing else to do.
Obviously at that point I had created some unhappy competitors who were unaware that this was even possible it seemed, who now had to change their ways in order to adapt to a changing market all of a sudden. A year later 360 was becoming the hottest brand on the market at the same time on the verge of going under. The market was now filled with “private labels” as the service was being made readily available to anyone with a drivers license by wheel brands struggling to stay afloat otherwise. Brands were popping up daily and all of them, new or old wanted 360 Jordan out of the picture so they could get back to the way things were. When 360 finally went under and I was out of the picture the last thing they wanted was for me to come back and they did everything possible and took every opportunity to make sure I wouldn’t. It felt like they had a board meeting together, all the wheel companies and their customers to discuss the “keep Jordan out of the wheel industry” plan.
They did a great job at making things harder for me and some of the rumors that were going around were really creative, I could appreciate the effort and the team work from these guys : ) Anyways, all the negativity every single day only made me more determined not only to build ADV.1 but to rebuild my name. I can say that without a doubt, 100% I could not have done it without the negativity. It was the negativity that made me so passionate about this and so obsessed with perfection. The more they would dump on me the harder I would push and they watched it happen, little by little ADV.1 was infiltrating the industry, slowly people gave us a chance and the more we moved forward the more they’d try to stop it from happening. Like I said earlier, I don’t blame them for it at all – I only wish they chose another way to compete like design new styles, market themselves better, etc. Instead, they made JordanStoleMyMoney.com (JSMM), a website used to bash ADV1 and my name.
These guys went all out, they dedicated themselves to stopping me 100%. A website based on me, with it’s own full time moderator posting anything he could think of that would hurt me and filtering out any comments from anyone supporting me. They sent out email blasts with new updates to the site, spread it around on forums, optimized it for strong SEO with great tag words and track backs, everything you could do to promote a website they did with this thing – it was impressive and really well done. They hosted the site on a private anonymous server made for this type of privacy as they knew if I found out who it was and was able to show proof that I would have a field day with it and they’d be done with. They did an amazing job at keeping themselves anonymous and I think the more it spread and the more I made a joke out of it, the more important it was for them to remain anonymous as it was becoming a giant failure for them. The site was everywhere, even people who weren’t involved in anything to do with the business saw it. The more they pushed the more I pushed, and the more motivation I had to make ADV.1 succeed. I made a mockery of the whole thing and after a month or so it almost started to look like I was doing it myself as some sort of marketing campaign or something since it was working so well in my favor. At the end of the day everyone now knew ADV.1 and Jordan Swerdloff. Had their been any legitimate claims or any problems with the company it may have been a bad thing but there weren’t any. Not one person could claim that I owe them anything and I made that publicly known. No one could claim anything against ADV.1 because it was literally spotless and I knew this which is why I was so confident to say loud and clear that if I owed anything to anyone, call me, here’s my cell phone – let’s get your money. No one ever called, no one had anything to say, the truth is the truth and that’s all their was to it. This was one more motivating factor to ensure a perfectly ran company and a quality product that no one could find fault in.
2 or so months later, everyone now knew who ADV.1 was and knew it was the real thing and what JSMM set out to do only helped bring more awareness to the ADV1 brand instead of hurting it. It was still up but they gave up on pursuing it and I was aggressively searching for the proof I needed to expose the people behind the site and they knew that. The site finally turned off and by that time no one cared anyways, not even me…It’s been almost a year since then and here we are, ironically exactly what they tried to prevent yet unknowingly helping to create it while doing so.
Do you know who created JSMM and who else was behind it?
We all know who it was and who was involved. Unfortunately they did such a great job ensuring their anonymity that there’s no real proof, only speculation, although we know I won’t make any claims against anyone without solid proof. Regardless no one would know who they were anyways so it’s pointless and to be honest even if I had the evidence needed to expose them I wouldn’t. I’m sure that the success of ADV.1 is enough for them. As much as their efforts were malicious, at the end of the day it was beneficial to us from a marketing / branding perspective so how can I be mad?
Before we all put this behind us for good, is there anything you’d like to say to the JSMM team?
Sure, all I can say is thanks! You showed the industry that we’re a legitimate company with no legitimate problems and you made me push harder than I’ve ever pushed before to make this happen and to prove you and everyone else who doubted me wrong.
Now JSMM is the license plate to the hottest modified Ferrari California in the world reminding me everyday that nothing can stop a determined person from succeeding other than themselves.