What were you doing when you were eleven years old?
If you’re like most people, you were probably going to school. Maybe watching TV after getting home from school. Maybe you were industrious and worked doing some side jobs, or learning an instrument, or working on art.
Chances are you weren’t making money on the Internet. But Peter Szabo was.
At the age of eleven, the young Slovakian boy’s family fell on hard times. He resolved to do what he could to change that. And change it he did.
Szabo is now owner and founder of one of the biggest if not the biggest Facebook ad agency in Europe. He’s a millionaire at the age of twenty. His organization, LeadEvo, is recognized as one of the most effective ad agencies in its class.
And it all started with four cents.
The Small Beginning
Szabo grew up in a normal Slovakian household, and for a time the family finances were just fine. “Nothing to complain about…it was a pretty average household, till I was eleven,” he said in a brief chat.
At that point, the family made some very ill-advised investments. Szabo watched as loans began to pile up, and the over-leveraged investments his family had engaged in sank their finances. The standard of living dropped, and he started to worry.
He got inspired one day by watching a movie called The Secret, which made him believe that anyone could be anything they set their mind to. So he began with a Google search: “how to make money online”.
It didn’t take long before Peter’s business started to bear fruit. Unfortunately, it was only making pennies a day. “I didn’t really know what I was doing yet”, notes Peter now. “I was learning on the fly.”
He bore some ridicule from his classmates for a little while, but then the pennies began to add up to dollars, then to tens of dollars, then hundreds of dollars, then thousands of dollars in a single day—all the way up to $20,000 in a single day.
Peter was mostly selling online courses at this point, but he slowly began to realize something: Facebook advertising was the engine that was driving the business.
“It made sense to focus on the advertising, as that was what I seemed to really be good at,” Szabo says now. “I was good at managing ad spend and using social media marketing, so sticking to selling other people’s courses wasn’t the right course of action any more.”
With the change in focus, Peter’s business was growing and expanding by leaps and bounds now, and at the age of 17, he was generating a hundred times the average salary in Slovakia, managing roughly $2 million a year. It was a pretty far cry from where he’d been 6 years before.
It was a momentous step, but he decided to devote himself to his business.
He dropped out of high school. From there, Szabo began to travel. He’s been to dozens of countries at this point, crossing and crisscrossing the globe, touching base with luminaries in many different fields and digging into the possibilities of entrepreneurship.
At the age of 20, Peter has had a chance to do things most people three times his age never have. He’s spoken on stage alongside everyone from Neil Patel to Halle Berry. He’s made millions and helped his clients make tens of millions.
He’s traveled the world as a high school dropout, got recognized many places in public, met the love of his life, and appeared on major media channels. He’s even written a #1 Amazon bestseller. If there’s someone you could say “has it all”, Peter Szabo is it, by just about every societal measure.
But there was still something missing—a sense of contribution and fulfillment. And he couldn’t figure out how to get it.
Until one fateful day in Australia, that is.
Peter showed up at a Tony Robbins event called “Date with Destiny.” And there he realized that he’d been chasing something he’d never reach. “It hit me hard,” he says.
“All this time I’d been devoting myself to the question of how I could be good enough. And it was the wrong question. I was so focused on me, me, me that I ended up achieving everything I ever wanted, but at the cost of always comparing myself to others and feeling inadequate, insecure and not enough. I achieved everything that I wanted out of constantly asking myself how I could be good enough.”
From that point, Peter’s priorities shifted from making money and pursuing material success to something a little harder, a little bigger, and a bit more altruistic.
“At that event, I realized there was an easier way,” he said.
“And that’s to realize that life loves you—the fact that you’re alive proves it. If you can create from a place of knowing that you’re loved instead of fearing that you won’t be, you can achieve your dreams and be fulfilled in the process. Bottom line, I feel like I was given so much that I want to pay it forward and give back. The key is this: just spreading the message that you were, you are, and you will be loved unconditionally always, no matter what. It’s your divine birthright.”
Szabo’s latest venture, LeadEvo, isn’t just a social media marketing company. He envisions it as a vehicle to change the world, slowly but surely, like the ripples from a rock thrown into a pond.
“Once you have the realization I had,” Szabo says, “you start focusing on the bigger picture—humanity, legacy, all of us—instead of focusing on making a quick buck out of fear that if you don’t, you’re a nobody.”
That’s the main takeaway of his experience, the thing that took him almost 10 years to discover—the importance of making sure that your business is not just a machine designed to make money, but a tool that can be used to create a better life for others.
It hasn’t hindered business. Peter’s staying quite busy, even if he’s careful with choosing his clientele. There’s a market out there for businesses that put a premium on doing the right thing, and despite his young age Peter’s at the vanguard.
Social consciousness is important for today’s businesses, no matter what field they’re in, and showing your customers you really care about making the world better isn’t just good business. It’s the right thing to do.
Creating a business is hard for anyone, let alone an eleven-year-old.
But Peter Szabo’s story shows that it’s possible for anyone to make a mark on the world, no matter how old or young. And the end of his story isn’t written yet. It’s hard to say just yet where it goes from here, but if he has his way, Peter Szabo’s name isn’t just going to mean “millionaire”.
It will mean making a brighter future for everyone—and he has plenty of years ahead to find as many ways as possible to do it.