Home » About Marco

About Marco

Marco Longley – What Makes Him Tick?

Marco Longley has always enjoyed solving difficult puzzles and problems. For Marco, inventing is simply an extension of solving a puzzle – where creative thinking, imagination, research, perseverance and dreaming all coalesce and ‘come together’ to crack a problem. Whether it’s a practical application to save time or money, an improvement that adds value, or something that literally changes or saves lives, Marco enjoys nothing more than coming across the Ah-ha moment where the puzzle pieces form a complete picture.

Marco Longley, The Sales & Ideas Coach

1960’s: An Inventor from an Early Age

Born in 1962, Marco was an air force brat, moving with his family from Ontario and Saskatchewan to Germany as a young boy. Marco and his three brothers were encouraged by their parents to think outside the box and explore their imagination and creativity; Marco remembers a time when he and his brothers tied a rope to a self-propelled mower, attached the mower to a stake in the center of the yard, and let it go to cut the lawn automatically while it spun in ever decreasing circles – an automated household device way ahead of the ‘Roomba’ robot vacuum!

At 17 Marco invented The ‘Aqua Flick’. This was Marco’s first money-making invention, and it truly confirmed that he had a strong entrepreneurial and inventive side. The Aqua Flick was a cigarette lighter repurposed to be a squirt gun; while it looked like a regular lighter, the Aqua Flick launched a stream of water over 20 feet, completely surprising anyone in its path. The Aqua Flick went on to sell thousands of units until a big lighter company (“Flick Your…”) came forward with a ‘cease and desist’ letter requesting that Marco stop re-purposing their product.

1970’s & 1980’s – Medical Technologist

After finishing high school at the age of 16, Marco moved to the small town of Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, to study Radiation Technology. This intensive one-year course focused on the rapidly growing sector of Uranium mining and exploration. However, it didn’t take Marco long to realize this wasn’t for him, and after working for a few years he went back to school at the University of Regina to study Laboratory Technology and Biochemistry, with the goal of entering professional medical sales. With a 99.8% score at graduation, Marco was recruited by one of the world’s largest surgical companies in New York. Marco soon found himself scrubbing in with surgeons to teach them how to use the latest surgical instruments, demonstrating the latest stapling techniques for gastroplasties, jejunostomies and total abdominal hysterectomies with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomies… the job was an interesting mix of sales and medicine that challenged Marco’s intellect and curiosity.

1990’s: Health Challenges & Marco’s First “Real” Company

After relocating to Vancouver in 1988, Marco was faced with serious health challenges after being hit by a car while riding his bicycle in the summer of 1990. Multiple surgeries, extended hospital stays, and years of recovery ensued – seriously derailing Marco’s sales career progression and challenging his life priorities.

In his early 30’s Marco discovered the fascinating world of SCUBA diving and found what has proven to be a lifelong passion. While studying for his SCUBA diving instructors’ certification, Marco founded ‘Mako Gear’, a company that created unique SCUBA diving products and offered diving instruction and underwater videography. This was Marco’s first real experience in starting a company from the ground up. One of his unique SCUBA inventions went on to win ‘Innovative New Product Award’ at the 1999 DEMA (Diving Equipment & Marketing Association) tradeshow, and a second SCUBA product went on to international distribution and sales.

Early 2000’s: Hotel Sales in Mexico & the Caribbean

In 1999, Marco moved to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico to work as a sales representative / sales manager for a number of large holiday resorts, where he won numerous awards for both his sales numbers and also for his unique sales training seminars. After several successful years in Mexico, Marco was presented with the opportunity to move to the Island of Grand Cayman in the Caribbean, where he progressed into a senior sales trainer / manager position for a prominent hotel.

2004: Back to Vancouver & New Opportunities

Canadian Pool, Spa Expo 2009

In 2004 Marco gave up his beach life to move back to Vancouver to be closer to his aging parents. Shortly after returning home to Canada, he helped launch ‘DVDS-to-Your-Door’, an early Netflix-like service. In 2005 Marco also began working in the hot tub and pool sales industry, where he quickly established himself as a sales leader, progressing into senior management positions. After the economic crash of 2008, the company Marco was with was forced to close its doors and Marco was laid off. Never being one to just sit around the house, Marco then wrote what is perhaps the definitive book on hot tub and pool sales, “The Ultimate Hot Tub and Pool $ales Book“, which has been sold in 12 countries. Marco launched a sales training and consulting business, ‘Top 10 Sales and Consulting’, where he developed sales training material specific to the pool and spa industry. Many of his sales training articles have been published in industry trade magazines from Canada to the UK to Australia.  Marco still offers sales consulting and services specific to the Pool and Hot Tub Industry and is considered as an expert in the industry.

In 2005 Marco married his soul mate Anne, after being introduced to her by mutual     friends on a 2004 New Year’s Eve blind date. They were married in a beautiful beach ceremony in Cabo San Lucas, and they currently reside in Richmond, BC with their ‘fur kids’, Roxy, Felix and Fabio.

Marco and Anne

2012: Into the Dragons’ Den

Now in his 50’s, Marco is spending his spare time on his true passions: creating, inventing, and entrepreneurship. Marco’s desire to invent products that make life easier for others has resulted in the award-winning invention of the HEFT, a secondary handle for long shaft tools such as shovels and rakes. In 2012, Marco was invited to pitch his invention to some of Canada’s biggest venture capitalists on the CBC’s Dragons’ Den TV show.

Today Marco offers his experience and expertise to others who are looking for assistance in taking a great idea from concept to fruition. Contact Marco today for information on how he can assist you to make your idea a reality.

2013: Back to his roots

After a brief hiatus, author and hot tub marketing expert Marco Longley  returned to the industry with SilkBalance  –  a Vancouver, B.C. based supplier of water conditioners for the spa industry. He served as the marketing and communications manager until an injury required that he discontinue full time work.

Pool & Spa News article

2014 – Inventing and Beyond!

Marco now concentrates his time on inventing and works closely with his 3D design partner, David B, to come up with innovative and new ideas – watch for them on Season 10 of CBC Dragons’ Den with the Two Can Cane!

MedTrade Spring 2015 Winners

TwoCan Cane website – coming soon

TwoCan Cane on Facebook