Despite owning a number of exclusive London nightspots, an advertising agency, and running a membership-only events society, joined proudly by the rich and famous, there is little information to be found about Antoin Commane online. Notoriously private about his personal life, he maintains an air of mystery and exclusivity around the way he lives and works – perhaps that’s part of the appeal for his combined 250k followers across his Twitter and Instagram accounts, many of whom are aspiring entrepreneurs and regularly look to Antoin for advice.
Commane is, by all accounts, used to the life of luxury, but not without putting in the work to get there. He appears to show an admirable amount of determination to succeed in his many business ventures – despite how different each venture may be – and has clearly put a world of time, effort, money and research into getting himself to where he is today.
However, in the wake of the global Coronavirus pandemic, the world around us has changed a great deal, and each of us must change with it – even those within the smallest circles of high society. With all this in mind, we caught up with Antoin Commane for a rare interview, to discuss his mentors, influences and sources of inspiration, his relationship with spirituality, and to find out what’s next for him and his business ventures within this ever-changing global landscape.
Hello, Antoin. What was it that first attracted you to the idea of becoming an entrepreneur?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs so I guess that I’ve always had that influence. I always – from a young age – wanted to either be a businessman or a secret agent. I remember having quite the admiration for Richard Branson, in particular.
You’ve been called the Don Draper of Social Media Ads – where does your understanding of social media and how it works come from?
A journalist picked that headline to describe me haha. I’ve always been interested in the marketing side of business. Without marketing and sales, you don’t have a business. It’s the lifeblood of a successful business, hence I made this my core competency. I’m more a marketing strategist – I’ve become specialised in understanding the sales process of what it takes to turn someone that has never heard of your brand or product into a buyer. We use social media and funnels – along with proven scientific psychology – to bring predictable sales in every day for my businesses and my clients. The beauty of online advertising is that you can track clicks and conversions. You can target specific demographics with offers, while, with traditional advertising, you have no idea of what’s converting.
Who do you feel influences your work more than anyone else?
I believe in mentors, and I particularly look up to David Ogilvy, the advertising agency supremo, and the direct response marketing greats for inspiration. I read books and I’m always studying. It’s as Warren Buffet says, “the more you learn, the more you earn”.
Your Twitter and Instagram accounts feature a lot of philosophical quotes and imagery. What part does spirituality play in your life and career?
I was brought up Catholic, but I’ve never been religious. It’s never appealed to me. I have, however, in recent years adopted a different world view and paradigm to most people. I have a number of principles that guide my life, but I don’t follow any particular religion. I set my intention to serve others. Although, I do find Buddhism very interesting. From my research all paths lead up the mountain.
You owned a number of exclusive nightclubs in London’s Kensington borough. Is this, in part, what inspired you to found Don’t Die Wondering?
Haha. Well, I was receiving invites to all these cool parties, so, I set up a group for some friends who wanted to know what was coming up… this evolved into a membership society, and today we’re also a magazine content platform for fashion, music and art.
If you weren’t working in business, what path do you think your life might have taken instead?
I have a fascination with metaphysics, healing and meditation. I’d probably be doing something along those lines – serving others and helping people.
What do you think has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
Charity and giving to others – we donate to various causes. We do it privately and discreetly. I’m rather discreet as to how I give back, but a good proportion of our revenue goes into such causes. It’s another metaphysical law that I believe in, giving to charity when you don’t look for anything in return, not even public acknowledgement. It’s funny, but I can attest to it – good fortune always comes back to you.
With all that’s going on in the world at the moment, what do you think is next for you and your business ventures?
With DDW, we’re now expanding our locations, and we look forward to the end of the pandemic, so that we can focus once again on physical events. With Coveria, we’re a boutique agency that scales our clients businesses online, with Facebook ads and funnels – our clients pay us $12k per month to do everything for them, producing them $100k – or even up to $1m per month – in revenue on autopilot. Our retainer is a fraction of the cost when we do all the work in regards to their marketing, but I’d also like to move the agency into self-help courses and trainings, that empower people that don’t have a budget to contract our agency.
If you could give a piece of advice to any aspiring entrepreneurs out there, what would it be?
Learn from mentors and people that have been there before, and just go for it. It’s always better to be nimble and moving, than to be stagnant.