How I got a 🌮 as my email address

As a designer, developer, or just through the entrepreneurial spirit, I bet you’ve had some random ideas for fun little projects. Perhaps it’s an app, a physical product, or a simple blog …

Kyle Van Deusen


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As a designer, developer, or just through the entrepreneurial spirit, I bet you’ve had some random ideas for fun little projects.

Perhaps it’s an app, a physical product, or a simple blog diving deep into an obscure topic you’re into (no judgement).

You may have even gone as far as purchasing a domain.

But other obligations get in the way, self-doubt creeps in, and the project sits on the shelf unfinished (or never started).

If you’ve had one idea like this, then you’ve probably had at least a dozen. While some may be long forgotten, chances are there are 1 or 2 that keep crossing your mind.

If so, I think you’re going to be just as fascinated by Ben Stokes’ story as I am.

Ben is a full stack developer, and like us, he’s constantly coming up with little project ideas.

I found Ben after going down a Twitter rabbit hole and reading his fascinating story about creating a paper website.

And while the idea of publishing a website from a paper notebook seemed silly (and maybe impossible?) he not only validated the concept, he’s now bringing in thousands of dollars in recurring revenue from it!

But it was another one of his 8 “tiny projects” that got me to open my wallet…

Before Paper Websites, Ben bought 300 emoji domain names from Kazakhstan and built an email service with them.

When I read about it, there was just no way I was going to pass up on the opportunity of being the proud owner of [email protected]🌮.fm!

Mailoji has gone viral on social media and is well on its way to becoming a legitimate, profitable business.

But here’s the thing…

The difference between Ben and the rest of us isn’t having unique ideas.. I bet you have a hundred of them.

It’s not about having the capital… he launched his projects on a shoestring budget.

It’s not even about having the technical expertise… he hired a guy on Upwork to build a mail server.

The difference is simply taking action.

It’s the same whether you’re Bill Gates or Ben Stokes.

Your idea probably isn’t the next Microsoft but it could be the next Mailoji — and that’s still pretty awesome!

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Kyle Van Deusen

The Admin Bar

Born in California and raised in Texas, Kyle is a husband and proud father of three. After spending 15 years as a graphic designer and earning a business degree, he launched OGAL Web Design in 2017, The Admin Bar community with Matt Sebert in 2018, and Docket WP with Andre Gagnon in 2020.

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