Non-Fungible Tokens: Jonathan Bodnar of HUSL NFT On The 5 Things You Need To Know To Create a Highly Successful Career In The NFT Industry

Authority Magazine
Authority Magazine
Published in
10 min readAug 1, 2022

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Get involved in the community first. The NFT community is full of amazing people, trustworthy people, and people that are just like you. Get to know them, network, and add value to their lives by being trustworthy. When I built Husl NFTs the first thing I did was focus on the community, how can I add value to their lives BEFORE asking for an investment.

Many have observed that we are at the cusp of an NFT boom. The thing is, it’s so cutting edge, that many people don’t know what it is. What exactly is an NFT and how can one create a lucrative career out of selling them? To address this, as a part of our interview series called “5 Things You Need To Know To Create a Highly Successful Career In The NFT Industry”, we had the pleasure of interviewing Jonathan Bodnar.

Eleven years ago, Jonathan was a senior in high school, homeless, and unable to afford college. But this didn’t stop him. Instead of a pricey IRL degree, he searched online for the best business to start and saw web design was a much-needed skill. After mastering web design, he started his first business. This led him to build his agency, Apollo Eleven, where he built and marketed SAAS products in 15 industries — taking most projects to 10x growth within 90 days! Now, he wants to empower others to start their entrepreneurial journey with his latest project– HUSL NFT! Jonathan is bringing his knowledge and business success to the NFT world. Driven by a passion to have a positive impact on the world, Jonathan wants to make financial freedom a reality!

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit. Can you tell us a bit about your backstory and how you grew up?

Thanks for having me! I’m one of 10 siblings and growing up, we didn’t really have a lot. In fact, my senior year of high school my family moved, and as a result lived with a family friend to finish out school. But my friend soon needed the room back, and I ended up homeless for some time. During that period of my life, I really saw the value of giving when you yourself didn’t have much. I made a promise to myself in that season that my future family would never go hungry.

After learning web design to pay my way through college, I’ve built and sold multiple multi-million dollar companies in the past 10 years. My passion is impact, and how I can make a lasting difference in the lives around me. To this end, all my companies give away 10% gross revenue to charity.

Is there a particular book, film, or podcast that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

Always love a good book or movie haha! I’m a huge fan of biographies. My favorite is Elon Musk by Ashlee Vance. It’s a deep dive into Elon’s background and his upbringing that I think if people knew they’d understand why he is the way he is. He’s a visionary not because he was born with ideas, but because he had to solve massive problems to survive as a child. Just resonates with me and my life.

Is there a particular story that inspired you to pursue a career in this new industry? We’d love to hear it.

Yes! I recently sold a company, and the process of selling said company made it almost not worth selling at all. It took 4 months and multiple hours a day negotiating, working through due diligence, and going back and forth with the buyers until we were all on the same page, only to do it again the next month. I wanted to solve this problem so badly, which is why I looked toward blockchain and NFTs. Blockchain allows for data to be stored and publicly verifiable for the first time in history. Essentially, the blockchain doesn’t lie. So, it eliminates the need to do egregious due diligence processes. Furthermore, utilizing blockchain technology and NFTs allows for the ownership of a business to be transferred instantly.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

When I first started in NFTs I was so excited to buy them that the first 2 NFTs I bought were other people screenshotting the real ones haha! The lesson here is be smart about where you put your money!

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I am grateful for so many people. I would say I’m a bit of a community child and have been taken care of and loved by so many parents. But the person that comes to mind that helped me achieve my success is my wife, Sierra. She’s supported and believed in me when I had nothing; married me broke haha

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

I am working on Husl NFTs right now. It’s such a passion of mine. The project bridges the two industries I love the most, business and NFTs. We’re building 5,000 businesses sold as NFTs and allowing outside businesses to wrap their assets into an NFT to sell a company instantly for the first time in history.

Ok super. Thank you for all that. Let’s now shift to the main focus of our interview. I’m sure you get this question all the time. But for the benefit of our readers, can you explain in your own words what an NFT is, and why people are spending so much money on them?

Of course! An NFT is by definition a token on the blockchain that can’t be changed. This has a lot of value for multiple reasons but the art world really took hold of the NFT and we owe art-based NFTs for bringing such notoriety to them. But NFTs are so much more than art, it’s the ability to prove ownership of just about anything for the first time in history on a global scale.

So, why they’re so valuable is more about their utility and what CAN be done, not what has been done. That’s why Husl exists, is to bridge the value of the NFT with the process of business buying and selling. It’s proof of ownership, verifiable global proof of assets.

The NFT industry seems so exciting right now. What are the 3 things in particular that most excite you about the industry? If you can, please share a story or example for each.

I am so excited about NFTs with real utility, such as MetaMansions, which is pushing the boundaries and tying ownership of real estate to NFTs. Then you have amazing projects like Something Token and the marketplace they’re building to tie ownership of physical items, like shoes and cars to NFTs. These are real utilities for NFTs and not just artwork. I’m also pretty ecstatic about the idea of NFTs being a sort of “exclusive” access into events and ongoing services, kind of like VeeFriends is doing.

What are the 3 things that concern you about the industry? Can you explain? What can be done to address those concerns?

There is a lot of fraud, get-rich-quick scams, and such but the most concerning thing is people’s mentality about NFTs. I don’t think the NFT community as a whole does their research or has the right expectations from the projects they invest in. Traditional investors have become incredibly careful and ask a lot of questions, whereas the NFT world trusts people way too easily and, in turn, gets scammed a lot. I believe this is because people are so eager for the promise of wealth overnight, but the reality is what is built overnight will fall overnight.

I believe to address this, regulation is not the answer. Instead, the community needs to be more prudent about where they put their money. You teach people how to treat you and I feel as a community we can change this merely by learning the right expectations of founders and projects.

What are the “myths” that you would like to dispel about NFTs? Can you explain what you mean?

The #1 thing I hear about NFTs is that they’re a scam. They just aren’t. Every industry has its fair share of scams, which is why I’ll echo my last answer and express the importance of doing research and not just dumping money into a project you don’t understand. NFTs are an incredible evolution of cryptocurrency and brought a lot of wealth and innovation to hundreds of thousands of people. The value of the invention is there, don’t throw away the baby with the bath water.

What are the most common mistakes you have seen people make when they enter the NFT industry. What can be done to avoid that?

Good question! I think the most common mistake has to be getting in too fast and leaving after getting burnt. A Lot of people just jump head first hoping to strike gold and when they hit a scam or a “rug” they say “I’m never doing that again.” When there are so many amazing projects out there making a lot of people a lot of money. Don’t quit! Stick with it and focus on the good coming from this industry, get to know people, build relationships, and then find the projects you want to invest in that trusted voices are also investing in.

How do you think NFTs have the potential to help society in the future?

I believe NFTs will evolve even further, into something with more utility and expression, just like the blockchain evolved into NFTs. So there’s no knowing where they could go and what problems they could solve, we just need to stop demonizing the industry and scaring away tomorrow’s innovators so we can actually get to that potential future.

Ok, fantastic. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “5 Things You Need To Know To Create a Highly Successful Career In The NFT Industry?” (Please share a story or example for each.)

Get involved in the community first. The NFT community is full of amazing people, trustworthy people, and people that are just like you. Get to know them, network, and add value to their lives by being trustworthy. When I built Husl NFTs the first thing I did was focus on the community, how can I add value to their lives BEFORE asking for an investment.

Do something good. Sounds simple but the reality is people want to know they matter in this world and they’re making a difference. It gives them purpose. So don’t make or invest in projects that are just cool art, invest in the projects actually changing lives whether through their proceeds or through their NFT itself. One of the biggest things we do in our discord community is complete little fun missions together and earn “husl shares,” for every share we raise we give $0.50 to charity. This has built such an incredible network of people that love the project and care about it, because they’re doing something big with their time and involvement.

Focus on what you love. Invest in or build what you’re passionate about. It’s so important to have a greater tie to an investment than just money because in hard times, when the project doesn’t go as planned or if money is all you’re leaning on, there’s little to keep you around and focused on the future.

Network by giving. I started in the NFT world by giving away NFTs from and in the communities I wanted to network in and get to know people. Quickly people started to trust me as a valuable part of their community and as a resource they could come to in times of need. That built the foundation of my project and my network. Maybe you don’t have the resources to give, but I bet there’s insight, lessons, or help of some sort you can give a community to spark your network.

Solve a problem. If you’re building an NFT project, focus on a problem you can solve not how you can make money. Pick something personal and real, something YOU’VE experienced and run with it. Ideas fueled by personal experience are the bloodline of innovation.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

I’ve battled with this for a while! Trying to find the truest form of significance in this world. What does success REALLY look like? Money can be taken from you, friends leave, jobs end, and influence can die out. But what measure of success can be cemented? I realized Impact is the only thing that cannot be taken, thus the only true measurement of success. So, I would inspire every business, project, and person to give 10% of their income away. I know it sounds insane. But when we challenged ourselves to give away 10% gross revenue, we went from giving $20,000 a year to over $500,000 a year. Giving does more than help other people though, it attaches what you do to a purpose, it humbles us , and teaches us money is just a tender and not all that matters in life.

We are very blessed that very prominent leaders read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would like to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them :-)

Elon Musk. I’d like to know what his long mission is! He’s got so many innovative ideas and projects, clearly, there is a bigger picture that I would love to know more about, such as what the future looks like in his mind and how he intends to see that future come to fruition.

Thank you so much for these excellent stories and insights. We wish you continued success on your great work!

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Authority Magazine
Authority Magazine

In-depth interviews with authorities in Business, Pop Culture, Wellness, Social Impact, and Tech