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…one of our recent TAS power hours which I never know how these are going to turn out because we just jump on. I say we, it’s myself, Dom Sugar and Chris Shaffer and we meet once a week on Friday’s and we just happen to do it on a Facebook Live. And a lot of times, it’s us just discussing things randomly that were either in the news or that we’re working on or that have questions that have came in and then we just start to deep dive into these topics.
This week we’re going to talk about, the most recent email follow up disruption in the Amazon space which a lot of people are a little confused with honestly but we’re going to dig into that. We’re going to also talk about split testing and it actually turned into a little bit of a debate between Chris and Dom, kind of funny actually and then we talk about some sponsored product ads stuff, some pay-per-click as far as just how to use it properly, but then also when is the right time to use it? What to look for? What data to collect? And all of that stuff. We also talk about patents and trademark infringements and a bunch of other random discussions that were also inspired by a lot of the Facebook Live listeners and viewers because we ask questions there.
Now you are going to get most of what we talked about here. I really did just try to give you the meat of it, but if you want to see the entire broadcast, I’m going to embed it into this blogpost for this episode and you can find that by heading over to theamazingseller.com/351 and you can get the show notes there, the transcripts and you can also see the video embedded inside of that blog post if you want to see us on camera with all of the shenanigans that are happening and the heated debate by Chris and Dom. Can’t wait for you to see that one. Really kind of funny.
[00:02:02] Scott: So, really excited to share this with you. Like I say I never know where these are going to go and this one here I think is packed with a lot of really great discussion and things that you can take away and decide to either use or not to use and really custom tailor it to your business and where you are in this journey. I did want to remind you, if you want to attend one of our Facebook Lives that we do on Friday’s, generally we’ve been doing them on Fridays at 2pm Eastern time. So definitely make sure that you’re around the page or on the page at that time or in the group. We do post it on the fan page and in the TAS group.
So if you want to get alerted of these, you are definitely going to want to be on Facebook at that time on Fridays and that’s at 2pm Eastern time. If you have any questions, that’s the time to get them answered right on the fly. Like we answer them live and you can actually listen to some of the questions that we answered on this one that I’m going to share with you today. So with all that being said, let’s get to it. Let me turn it over to the TAS power hour that we did. I did want to say also that the audio a lot of times isn’t the best because we’re coming off of a Facebook Live. I still think it’s pretty decent but it’s not this quality here.
But I think that you guys have gotten value in the past and that’s why I continue to add these when I think that they’re a good episode that is relevant and then also is going to benefit you the most. And a lot of times you can kind of hand pick what you want to use or listen to and that’s why I want to you know give you guys access to this on the podcast. Because sometimes you just might not be on Facebook and you’ll miss it and I don’t want you to miss it. So let’s go ahead and jump into this power hour, this TAS power hour with my good friends Dom Sugar and Chris Shaffer.
[00:03:54] Scott: Yeah actually, I did want to kind of address the, and I want to address it but I also want to put it to rest, is the whole update that supposedly Amazon has said as far as the emails being delivered to our customers and what that actually means? If you guys missed last week’s Facebook Live, we talk all about that and really what it means and in a nutshell, it doesn’t really change all that much. What it does do, is it allows our customers to say that they don’t want to receive any more communications from us. So they can opt out. So it’s no different than it is if you sign up for my emails. There’s going to be an unsubscribe thing on the bottom. Like that’s like a canned spam kind of thing that you know they have to enforce.
Amazon has never had that really there. Now they’re allowing you to opt out of emails. The problem is and it’s not really a huge problem, but one thing that we have used in the past and we still use it and I’m still using it is, more or less like an auto responder for Amazon messaging. So let’s just say for example, I send something out to a customer after they purchase, I could automate that. I use a tool called Sales Backer, there’s another one out there called feedback genius and there’s a few others. But the thing is, is right now their API and API for those of you guys that don’t know what that means, it basically just means that, that’s the connection that they’re using to be able to communicate.
So what they’re doing is, they’re allowing us to basically do something on the outside of Amazon and then connect it through an API to actually work inside of our sellers account. That’s what they call an API. Their API has not been updated yet to allow us to put people on a certain blacklist or a list of not being able to communicate with. So Amazon has said in their communications with you know people like Sales Backer or Feedback Genius or just their terms of services.
[00:06:03] Scott: They’re still going to allow you to send those emails. They’re not going to make it where you can’t send emails. They’re aware that the API is not communicating, so in the meantime, it’s going to be okay. But Sales Backer and Feedback Genius I believe, they have like a work around that you can start building your own little black list or your own list that you’re not going to be sending to. Chris, do you know exactly how that’s working right now?
[00:06:27] Chris: Yeah. So both of them just have a black list feature and it existed previous to this where if somebody asked to be unsubscribed manually, you could just blacklist them. So that’s all that you are going to have to do right now and Amazon is aware. And one of the greatest things I saw was a screenshot of somebody’s communication with seller central about this. And that was basically like, “Yeah we know that, that thing doesn’t exist and so I wouldn’t worry too much about it.” Because it’s just like, we know that it’s not there and it’s going to be so in the meantime, just keep calm and carry on. So that’s kind of been like the reaction that we’ve had as well.
[00:07:00] Scott: Yeah, so that’s really in a nutshell. I just wanted to address that and I wanted to let people know like, it’s not a huge deal. Now if they had said and came out with, “We’re no longer going to allow you to connect with you know, your customer”, that would have been bigger news. That’s not what we’re saying or that’s not what they’re saying. They’re saying that, they’re going to allow your customers to raise their hand and say, “Don’t send me any more messages.”
And really the way that I would look at this is like, if you’re hitting your customers over the head with emails, shame on you. You shouldn’t be doing that. You should be sending them useful, helpful information or at least making sure that they’re, that they’re getting what they signed up to get. Meaning, did they get you know the product on time? Did they have any issues with the product? Do they have any questions?
Give them a way to for them to show how they’re using your product or show them other people that have used your product. Like just get them more connected with your brand if you have a product that lends itself to that. So a few questions are coming in I see. Why don’t you go ahead and continue to throw a couple of those out there Chris and we can address them.
[00:08:13] Chris: Absolutely. Brett says, “do we have to blacklist them if we don’t want them to get the second message?” Yes, you have to completely unsubscribe or use the blacklist feature. Eventually like Scott was saying, Amazon is going to be rolling out a field inside of their API that posts to Sales Backer and Feedback Genius and some of the other solutions that do emails like Cash Cow Pro use, so that you won’t even be sending that first email. But I would be blacklisting them, unless you’re getting you know hundreds a day at this point. I would at least you know put in a good paid effort to blacklist those people.
[00:08:44] Scott: Yep, really quickly. On Periscope, I got to address my periscope page. Someone was just asking how you can connect over to Facebook Live. Just go to theamazingseller.com/fb and that will take you to the TAS page, the main Facebook page and it should be pinned at the top. Chris is it pinned currently?
[00:09:03] Chris: It is pinned to the top of the group. Yes.
[00:09:05] Scott: Okay, so the top of the group. If you’re on your mobile, you have to expose the pin. It’s weird why they do that. You have to say show pin, if you’re on desktop it should automatically be there. Ok, he says “thanks Scott I’ll be back. I’ll be over there.” Cool. Is there any other questions that we had, that came in around that?
[00:09:25] Chris: No, but we do have a whole bunch of people GC and Gino both said, “Dom you’re looking great man. You look like another person, huge props. It looks like you’re losing weight.” GC says, “Totally agreed, Dom looks fantastic. And by the way Chris and Scott, you guys look great too but I want to give props to Dom. You look like you’re killing it.” Gino, we know we know where you’re at. So he says, “What’s up Dom is looking good, Scott’s putting everybody on a strict diet.”
[00:09:59] Scott: There’s some truth to that actually but anyways, let’s move on. That’s awesome though Dom. That’s good stuff. People are seeing that you’re starting to reshape which is pretty awesome. How does that feel Dom?
[00:10:14] Dom: It feels a lot lighter, that’s for sure. Now physically I’m feeling good. It’s good, I mean I’m fighting a cold again I don’t know if it’s these winters here that never stop. It snowed today again. I mean it’s April and it’s snowing. Doesn’t make any sense but yeah. Just a change of lifestyle, that’s all it is. It makes a difference.
[00:10:36] Scott: We’ll definitely be reporting on that soon but we’ve got some goals set aside, don’t we?
[00:10:41] Chris: Gino has an idea. He said you should call it The Amazing Body Podcast. Bret says, “What if we don’t blacklist them? Is there any threats of suspension from Amazon?” No they’re not like directly threatening you with suspension right now but do the good thing. Do the smart thing. Don’t put yourself in that situation. Take the 15 minutes today that it’s going to take you to blacklist those 10, 15 people that you get that email from and that’s if you’re selling 100 units a day. If you’re only selling 10 or 20 you might get one back.
And a couple of the brands that we work in Scott, I’ve only seen a handful and we’re selling you know dozens to hundreds a day in these brands. So it just depends on your audience but yeah take the time to do it. Put in the good faith effort. It takes five minutes to do the whole batch of them. So yeah, just go ahead and do it and that way you don’t have to worry about it if I ever decide to come back and go you don’t play by the rules, when we rolled that thing out. Even though we told you it wasn’t ideal.
[00:11:35] Scott: Yeah, Sales Backer just emailed too. I was going to pull up that email but I’m not going to now. You’re just going to read it but basically, they tell you exactly what to do. I’ll probably do an update of some kind whether it’s video or even just a blog post sharing what they’re saying to do with their system and their software. But basically it’s just what Chris said. It’s just putting them on that blacklist so this way here you can start to separate them. One thing I did want to bring up Chris, it just kind of came to mind as we were talking about that as far as like just not just like the changes but it’s like when we’re trying to see, and this is off topic of reviews and stuff like that.
But it’s more about like if you’re trying to get reviews then you’re trying to obviously up your conversions for the most part. I mean that’s what people would say, like if I’m getting more reviews I’m trying to get better conversions. I want to ask you a question, both of you guys because this question was asked to me and I answered it on an Ask Scott session which should air next week I think. And the question was, currently I have 50 sessions a day and I want to start testing maybe price or maybe images. How many sessions do I need before I think that I’ve got enough data? What would you say to that Chris? What would your thoughts on that be?
[00:13:06] Chris: And that’s why I would rely on a tool like Splitly to give me that information and it comes down to two things from a statistical nerdy standpoint. How confident do you want to be in that change and what margin of error are you willing to have? And so to me it’s going to depend on those two factors. I would like to see hundreds to thousands of sessions before I make that call because here’s the thing you have to keep in mind, it may be statistically relevant at 50 session but it might not be statistically relevant when you get to 100 or 200 sessions.
That being said, I would let the data take me where the data takes me. If I am hooking up to something like Splitly and Splitly is saying you know, you change the images and the images made a huge difference and you see that your conversion rate jumped five times. You went from 5% to 25%. I’d roll with it and then test it again in two months or three months and see if that makes a difference. Does that make sense?
[00:14:06] Scott: Yeah, yeah, it totally does. Here was my answer in a nutshell, not to go into the entire detail of it but 50 sessions it’s okay. You know it’s 50 sessions but I would say at least the 1,000 sessions you want and you want those sessions spread out over at least 14 days. So you don’t want to just go for like three days and then say, “Oh I wonder what it is,” because Monday might be different than Friday. You know you have different times of the week that you have more sales or you have more traffic or different quality of traffic or different times. I know Dom you play around with pay-per-click depending on if it’s morning you know or night.
There’s different traffic, there’s all of that stuff. So if you’re getting 50 sessions a day, that’s a good number. I mean I’d like to see 100 but if you’re getting 50 then you just gotta wait. So wait 14 days at least and then at least you’ve to let it run for two weeks. But you want to be alternating back and forth on those, so this way here you’re not just doing it for one week a and then switching over and then the other week because now all of a sudden the statistics would say, well it’s not exactly the same because one week is different from the next week. So we have to kind of do it every other day for a while and we have to have enough people seeing it and it’s the same thing like we talk about.
Like conversions, like if you can just increase your conversions by 1%, if you get 100 sessions, that’s an extra sale. Like just from doing something simple. If you get it to 2% extra on top of and I think he said he was already converting at like 12%. So if we can get him to 14% now every 100 sessions he’s getting two extra sales, so definitely do that. If you want to do it yourself, Greg Mercer actually had talked about exactly how you would do this and it’s still not going to be as accurate as if you use the tool but you want to do it at the exact same time and you want to do it for a full 24 hours.
[00:16:03] Scott: Now he did create some nice resources at, if you just go to theamazingseller.com/splitly there’s actually three downloads. He actually created a Google calculator that will give you some of that data that you can input and then it’ll tell you that over time. If you don’t want to use the tool and then he’s got like two guides that actually break down A/B testing. So definitely check that out, it’s free resource and again I think running Splitly even if you did it for 30 days be well worth it. I would give that a shot but I just wanted to touch on that because I thought that was an interesting question as far as sessions go. And Chris, what does a session mean? Maybe we can kind of address that really quickly for anyone that’s brand spanking new.
[00:16:43] Chris: And that was a question that Brett asked. He said, “Can we describe sessions.” Sessions are a unique person on your listing in whatever the time period it is that you’re looking at.
[00:16:51] Scott: It’s eyeballs?
[00:16:52] Chris: If you’re looking at today, it’s 30 people or in this case 50 people saw the listing and Scott just for reference. I ran a really quick A/B significance test. Now again it’s going to depend on what the difference between those two things is but at 50 sessions a day, over 30 days you could get to 99% certainty. Now again it’s going to depend on what the differences are there but 50 sessions a day you know just from a calculator standpoint, I would want to see that run at least three or four weeks then.
Just based on that quick math and I’m sure my college stats professor is having a heart attack because I’m describing statistical significance right now. But it’s just one of those things where we need at least three to four weeks of data at that level yeah versus something where we could say okay you know we get 20,000 sessions per day. That becomes statistically relevant or faster. Does that make sense?
[00:17:47] Scott: Right, but I think that’s a good point. So if you had 20,000 you could say well I could get my results in a day.
[00:17:53] Chris: No. But the longer you let that run, just like with anything else, the longer you let it run the more valid it’s going to be. So there’s always a minimum threshold for whether it’s valid or not.
[00:18:02] Scott: Yeah because even if you’ve got 20,000 sessions a day, you’d still want to see what it did over 7 days or 14 days because you got different types of traffic, you have different types of days and maybe more people go and put stuff in their cart on Monday but they check out on Wednesday. Who knows? You know, there’s a whole bunch of different factors that come into that mix.
[00:18:25] Chris: And the other thing to keep in mind is, when you cut it off too early and this happens all the time. I see this on the non-Amazon side of the stuff that we work and people will run a split test on their website Scott. And they’ll change like the colour of the button from red to blue or something, which is ridiculous splits. But anyway, you know they’ll see that in the first week that it’s outperforming by 15% the other one and they’ll go, I’m going to change that. No, it’s because people that have been to your site before saw a blue button where it used to be green and they clicked on it because they’re interested. You let it run for the full 30 days, it turns out it actually performs worse. So you gotta let it run for that amount of time to make sure that you’re getting accurate data.
[00:19:00] Scott: Chris do you have any quick questions that came up through the chat that we can maybe address right now?
[00:19:05] Chris: Yes, Sayed says, “I have a question about a software that’s using BSR and the 999 trick to determine the listings daily sales. Aren’t these data insufficient anymore because some categories limit sales per transaction?” So let me start with that, the answer is no. The 999 trick even if you could only get it on 70 percent of listings to work, it’s still going to give you a big enough data set to start to make those differences. The other thing is something like Jungle Scout utilizes BSR for that. Now in the web app they also do some real time inventory tracking I believe. Where they’re using the 999 trick to calculate all of that. But if you’re just looking at BSR and you have a large enough data set like Jungle Scout has years’ worth of BSR data now, they don’t need the 999 trick to understand where that falls on the curve of sales. Does that make sense guys?
[00:19:54] Scott: Yeah, totally.
[00:19:55] Chris: And that’s one of the reasons that I am a Jungle Scout fan. Because they’re using their algorithm based on the data they’ve gathered not just over what is it right now but what has this BSR meant over the last year, two years, three years consistently and that data it just gets more and more accurate over time. Dave says, “How long would you leave a listing without sales before using ads to drive traffic or would you launch ads immediately?” Dom what are your thoughts on that?
[00:20:24] Dom: Well I think you don’t do any ads at all. You let it run forever. I mean that’s what you’re here for.
[00:20:30] Chris: No of course. What? I was like no.
[00:20:36] Scott: That’s not the Dom that I know. He’s got pay-per-click running before the listing’s even live if he could.
[00:20:42] Dom: I’m doing pay-per-click right now on retail arb. No, I’m not even doing that but you know, this is the only way you can survive pretty much with, especially if you’re in a competitive market now if you don’t want to do giveaways throughout…
[00:20:55] Scott: Yeah, but forget about the competitive market right now Dom. I mean we’ve got a product that just recently launched, you know it very well and you just did pay-per-click and you didn’t do any really giveaways. We had no reviews when you started running it and it’s selling out every time.
[00:21:10] Dom: We have not given out a product in a year now since the change. In eight months. Not even friends and family, nothing. It’s all been PPC and low entry point. And it’s working. I’ve worked with lots of people. If it was just our stuff working then I’d say, okay maybe we fluked out because we know how to pick products. But there’s a lot of people that I’ve helped with you know same thing. Like the low entry point. Again it doesn’t work if you’re in a competitive market because you’re going to have to spend lots of money on PPC. You’re going to be clicked a million times at a dollar. So yeah, you have to put PPC on right away.
That’s just the way. Like how are you going to get to the first page? That’s the only way you can get to the first page. It’s by having your PPC. So yeah for sure. It’s integral, the days of waiting, I don’t think you have to wait anymore. If you got to get a product and you did your research and that’s the same thing when you run out of stock, it’s exactly the same thing. If you run out of stock, you’re going to have to fight your way back. Obviously your ranking is going to move up a lot quicker but you’ll need to do PPC and then figure out where you’re comfortable with that. How much you want to wait until you get to break even or just a little bit of loss and then every day, trigger it down.
For me that’s more essential than, I know you guys just talked about sessions and nobody asked my opinion, which is fine because I really don’t have an opinion because I don’t have time to worry about those. But if you have one product, you can worry about sessions. For those guys out there that have 20, 30, 40 products, you don’t have time to look at everyone and see their sessions so you can get 1% more sales. Just keep releasing new products. That’s an idea. You’ll get lots of sales that way.
[00:22:34] Chris: I’m going to violently disagree with you on that.
[00:22:36] Dom: Of course you are. Of course you are.
[00:22:38] Chris: And it comes from the data nerd side of me. Because here’s the thing. If you take five minutes to talk to your graphics guy and say, make me a different image for this or you have whoever writes the copy for your listings, write an alternate title. That 1% change over 100 sessions, is an additional sale a day on that unit. Yeah that doesn’t seem like a lot until you remember that you have 50 SKU’s where you can take that lesson that you learned and test it on those and see if your sales go up. So now you’re talking 50 extra sales a day. Is 50 extra sales a day worth the five minutes it takes to set up that test and let it run?
[00:23:18] Dom: If I had somebody doing it for me, yes. For me to do it manually or my team right now, no. We should concentrate on releasing, working on PPC, getting that algorithm going.
[00:23:28] Chris: So when you release a new product, you’re shooting to get 50. Let’s say you have 50 SKU’s right now, you know that when you release that new product, you’re going to get 50 additional sales a day. Whereas if you improved your conversion rate, you could do that and it runs in the background while you’re doing the other stuff. Do you understand what I’m saying?
[00:23:44] Dom: Well, I’m going to tell you, it’s going to be in the first few months anyways because you’re not going to unless you’ve got a really awesome product. You’re going to start selling 30, 40 a day. So you kind of you go for one to three to five to seven. So it’s going to take you months before you can get your stuff moving and then if you want to play with it between that time, I could just… Again everyone does it differently. I understand guys want to look at that. I just never been a proponent. Maybe because I have lots of things going on and we’re working on so many brands together and so many items and you know my goal is to launch two to three products a month. So…
[00:24:13] Scott: And that’s where I think that the collaboration amongst us is a really a good mix because we don’t that and Chris loves that.
[00:24:24] Dom: Yeah, sure. If he wants it spend all day doing the sessions, go ahead.
[00:24:30] Chris: It doesn’t take all day.
[00:24:30] Scott: But then he points around and says, “Dom we just got an extra 25 sales because of that.” You’re like, awesome man.
[00:24:39] Dom: I’ve never had one person say to me, no matter what change you do and all the years I’ve been doing to say, “Hey we were doing 12 a day, now we’re doing 25 a day because we changed the picture.” Not one person said that to me.
[00:24:50] Chris: But you’re not looking for that increase.
[00:24:52] Dom: I get that.
[00:24:53] Chris: What you’re looking for here is the lesson. So you’re saying, okay here’s what we changed, now let’s apply that change to maybe one other listing. It takes you 10 minutes to make the change. One time you let something like Splitly run it automated for you and then 30 days from now, you take another 10 minutes and you go, it worked, it didn’t work. You can then roll that out across your other 30 products so those two sales a day turn into 60.
[00:25:15] Dom: So then I got to take those, all the products, take my graphic designer off what he’s doing. Pictures the five, six images times four products, hey, can you stop and do these new pictures for these other 100 products. Do you know what I’m saying? Like I get all…
[00:25:25] Chris: No, you get another graphic designer.
[00:25:27] Dom: Yeah, sure. I’m not trying to be the bad advocate for watching. If you’ve got time to do that, you’re not launching enough products, is what I’m telling you. Like who cares. I’d rather have 10 products selling 25 a day rather than trying to raise the other 25 to one extra day.
[00:25:47] Chris: That’s the other thing Dom. That data that you’re collecting, helps you more intelligently launch the new products. So I get that it’s an extra step and it’s not something that’s in your workflow and I’m not saying you have to implement it. I’m just playing devil’s advocate because if you’re launching three products a month, what are you shooting for on those three products? Like what’s your sales flow on that? Is it 10 by 10 by one?
[00:26:09] Dom: Yeah, that’s standard.
[00:26:14] Chris: If you launch three products in a month, you’re shooting for 30 additional sales per day. Every month. That’s what you’re trying to add your bottom line. If you took 10 minutes on the first day of the month, you could potentially make that improvement.
[00:26:37] Dom: And go back and look for new keywords, go back to do funnels so you can get people to sign up to the list, go back and get…
[00:26:43] Chris: But all that stuff…
[00:26:44] Dom: You know what I’m saying like it’s endless. You can just do…
[00:26:45] Chris: All of that other stuff is a ton more work and yet that will add exponentially. The small tests and tweaks that you make are going to add on in on average a few percentage points but a few percentage points across 30 products in 60 sales.
[00:27:00] Scott: But the thing is, the thing is though too is like Dom like not everyone can launch three products a month.
[00:27:05] Dom: I get that obviously for everybody. I’m just talking to you guys…
[00:27:08] Scott: And honestly and honestly I mean, I know what you got going on and you’ve got way more than just a few products. So the thing is you’re trying to do all of that and we’re going to be able to come in and help with that. And it’s funny, Megan said she feels like three of her uncles are in there fighting around the campfire or something. This is good. This is good stuff.
[00:27:30] Dom: That’s what the show’s about.
[00:27:33] Scott: This is how we would be if you weren’t even listening right now. This is the beauty of it. Dom’s is going to be Dom, he’s going to be aggressive. We’re going to try to hone him in. Chris and I are usually pretty much on the same page. Not always, but yeah we’re going to have to team up on Dom and hold him down and say, listen, how about this? We’ll get the extra sales and then we’ll let you know what we did and you don’t have to worry about it.
[00:27:56] Dom: That’s the type of deal we have.
[00:27:59] Scott: That’s a good deal, that’s a good deal.
[00:28:02] Dom: That’s why I’m working with you guys. Exactly, you want to take a stock, you want to do all the funnels for our brand? Go ahead. I don’t have time to do it. I don’t even know how to connect them yet, you know. I don’t know how many TAS meetups I go to. I’ve known the basics but I haven’t, you guys do it. That’s your thing. You want me to find products and find catchy names and look for niche markets and…
[00:28:22] Scott: He loves doing names. Dom loves names. I mean Dom we should just do it. We should do that like maybe like for like ten minutes on one of these. We should have people send in like a brand name and have you just go crazy with like all of these different taglines. I think that would be interesting.
[00:28:38] Dom: No, I mean Chris, I’m not dead. I’m not, I don’t want to take away from anything, you’re right. It’s definitely an implement. I just think with one product, to two, I know what you’re saying, great. When you have 60 products, 100 products, that’s even better. But there’s so many things you got to learn and get the process. I would say PPC would be your number one thing. Once you’ve got that down pat, then you start moving to other stuff.
[00:28:59] Chris: That I think is the thing. I’m just going to keep yelling over you I guess because I don’t possess the ability to shut up. That’s the thing, I think that you’re missing. Like PPC, like split testing is more of a set and forget thing. And I hate to say that because you do have to like look at the data. Like PPC you’re going to be tuning a little more unless you’re getting hundreds of sessions a day. You’re going to be tuning that a little more and it takes more work because we’re not just saying it works or it didn’t, you’re doing that a thousand times over a thousand different search terms. With a split test, you’re saying yes or no and it’s one listing, one test at a time. So you’re just like, it worked, awesome. Now I’m going to do this on the other 30 and we’ll add 30 sales a day to the bottom line.
[00:29:45] Dom: So my take to you, Chris isn’t sure, when we launch a product should we already have two pictures ready and two titles ready, so we can just intertwine them? Is that a good strategy or…?
[00:29:53] Scott: Technically that would be a great strategy because while the graphic designers Chris? I think that’s a great idea.
[00:29:58] Scott: And that that’s what I was going to say. I was going to say you don’t necessarily need to set the split test up from the beginning, but you can get when you have your person create the listing have them write two different sets of bullet points. Have them write two different titles. Get two different versions of the images and then you’re not adding Dom then you aren’t adding time you know as you’re doing those tests. It’s just here’s the other version that we want to try. So once you’ve set up you get that baseline, which with what you think is going to be the best then you can test against it.
[00:30:28] Scott: But honestly, the really the main things that you’re going to be testing is image and title. That’s really all you’re going to really be, bullets… I would say the only thing I would test with bullets is the main thing on the first two versus having two other different things on the top of the of there because that’s really as far as people are going to read. Your enhanced content, that’s another thing. Maybe you change out two different templates but your main driver is going to be price, higher/lower and I’m experiencing that still since the last Facebook live that we’ve had. I still have increased sales with raising my price $2 per unit. Sayeed says he got his by-box finally.
[00:31:10] Chris: Ignite baby.
[00:31:11] Scott: Yeah and he says next is ignite. Guys if you are at all interested in pay-per-click, you should definitely check out that training that we did. That’s all set up and ready to go so if you guys are at that point, I know someone had posted that they’re new and they’re thinking about doing pay-per-click, that’s a great resource for you. Yeah Chris just put it up there, theamazingseller.com/ppc, definitely check that out. There’s a special sponsored product ads Facebook group too. So you can go check that out once you’re using that software, that tool. They have a 30-day free trial on that as well. But yeah, so that was fun though. That was a good argument. I like that.
[00:31:48] Chris: I got to get Dom’s heart rate up.
[00:31:51] Scott: How many calories extra did you just burn Dom? What are you for your heart rate?
[00:31:56] Dom: 86.
[00:31:57] Scott: I’m at 85.
[00:31:59] Dom: I’m resting that’s 71 it says. I was at probably about 93 by then.
[00:32:05] Chris: This is a big spike because I’m yelling at you.
[00:32:07] Scott: We don’t just focus on the comic.
[00:32:14] Dom: If we agreed for everything, then we’d be like okay, we’re not, these guys don’t, like they’re all the same. They’re all thinking the same and that’s why we all have different opinions. We’ve always been in a different…
[00:32:23] Scott: And you grow that way.
[00:32:26] Chris: I call this yelling. I mean you’ve met my business partner Joel. Right?
[00:32:31] Dom: My wife’s Portuguese. Everything is yelling, that’s why we have a bumper sticker on our car, “I’m Portuguese, I’m not yelling, I’m Portuguese.” That’s what the bumper on our car says.
[00:32:39] Scott: Nice.
[00:32:45] Chris: I bring up Joel because that’s the level of like intensity with which we have every conversation and it gives people heart attacks. Like people walking by. It’s just like, this is just how we talk. You know, and we’re trying to get our point across. Ben Fair, changing gears mid stream here. He says, “Facebook ads. Do you use it to drive traffic to your Amazon listings?” No, I don’t drive traffic straight to my Amazon listings from ads and there’s two reasons for that. One you cannot track it accurately. You can try to give them a promo code in the ad but if they don’t use it then you can’t attribute that sale, it’s just a mess.
The way that you would use Facebook ads and we go through the entire thing at theamazingseller.com/buildlist is you drive them to a landing page and you capture their email address. That way you can actually track how well the Facebook ad is converting because you know how many emails you got versus how many people clicked and then you can start to market to that customer. If you drive them to your Amazon account or your Amazon listing from email, then you’re not paying to drive them there. If they don’t convert right away, no big deal because you have their email and you can communicate with them and try over and over and over and over again. Does that make sense at a high level guys?
[00:33:54] Scott: Yeah, yeah.
[00:33:55] Dom: You’re just going to kill your conversion. That’s the biggest thing, you’re going to get 100 people click on you and not buy one thing.
[00:34:00] Scott: This way here you’re intercepting it with qualified, yeah sure. You’re getting them more qualified by having them say, “I really do want this and I’m willing to give you a name and email to send me the code.”
[00:34:14] Dom: But even if you don’t get any one sale out of that which is impossible, you’d still get their emails. Which is better than going straight through to get 100 emails like you said, people would pay a dollar to three dollars to four. This system it’s cheap.
[00:34:27] Scott: And the other thing that to not get too geeky here because I’m not that technical when it comes to this stuff but I do know a lot about this is and then on that page that you’d be collecting the email address you’ll put a Facebook pixel and then you’ll start building an audience inside of Facebook as a custom audience and then we can retarget that and do all that fun stuff. So again not to get too geeky but you can definitely do it better than just driving them straight to Amazon.
You do not want to do that. What you do want to do is get them on an email list and then send everyone when you’re ready to that listing and say here’s your code or here’s the discount, we’re doing a flash sale today and then you instantly get you know 25 sales maybe or 30 sales or 50 sales or whatever you want. At that point you can pretty much regulate, by your list. You kind of know how many people are going to do it and all that stuff.
[00:35:16] Dom: And then like you said to Scott and Chris earlier, like before when we talked, you could also send them to your own stuff and you could also do some associated stuff, some higher end stuff and you might not be carrying golf clubs but you’re selling the golf club covers but you can send them for ping balls or…
[00:35:34] Scott: Or hiring golf club, like I said, I bought a cheap set about 300 bucks for Callaways but you know I still bought a set. But if I want, if I was just looking at golf balls and I’d seen the Callaways, I might have bought through your listing or maybe you sent me an offer, I don’t know.
[00:35:48] Dom: The affiliation is endless basically.
[00:35:51] Scott: Chris what else do we got? We got some more questions? I’d seen a bunch popping in.
[00:35:54] Chris: A whole bunch to get to.
[00:35:56] Scott: Lauren…
[00:35:58] Chris: She says, “Can you guys discuss a little bit about patent infringement when picking a product. Scott talked and hinted about an upcoming podcast on the topic, but I’d like to have some understanding of how this works in PL terms and also when you’re creating your private label product listing, do you make slight changes to do so.” So the first thing is, if it’s patented, you either need to just avoid that product or you need to talk with a patent attorney and see what changes you could make to it or what that patent actually covers.
[00:36:29] Dom: You could ask somebody who’s had to talk to a patent lawyer lately that would be cool.
[00:36:34] Scott: I sat down and I had one of these. I had a starbucks coffee with the guy. The guy’s name is Nate and I am going to have him on the podcast. So it’ll probably come on our PLC classroom through to do an expert interview for us. Real nice guy, but here’s the deal, there’s two different things that we have to think about with patents. Number one is the main thing that a lot of people want to know it’s kind of kind of what Lauren said, is like, is it something that’s already patented so I don’t violate it. Like I don’t want to get $30,000 worth of inventory and then find out that I’m violating a patent. Like I do not want to do that. So that’s the first thing. The very, the simplest way to do this, is do a Google search. Just do a Google search for patent on that product and then from there you can see.
We just recently did this Chris in the space that we were doing our case study in and honestly we haven’t really talked about it and Dom I haven’t talked to you recently about it, but I’m probably going to stay away from that product now. I mean they’ve got a pretty good patent on that one product that we were looking into and I looked, I showed it to my guy and he was like, “Yeah we could probably find some things.” And I go but here’s the deal though, those guys are probably going to come after me regardless if I make changes. I can make all the changes I want. They’re probably still going to file a cease and desist and then they’re probably going to have file at infringement and then I’m going to have to take my money and fight it.
[00:37:57] Chris: That’s exactly where I sit on patents and Scott I think you’ve heard me tell this story in the past. I used to work in a small business incubator and we had patent attorneys that would come in all the time and I was having lunch one week with the patent attorneys and there was a guy talking about a multimillion dollar lawsuit. Multi-millions in just legal fees to his firm and other firms about the definition of inside in a patent. One company made it and they put widget B inside and the other one put it inside the other way but the language in the patent said inside and so anything either of those two pieces inside technically are covered by the patent.
Not according to the drawings but according to… Millions of dollars spent litigating the definition of the word inside. There’s no reason to, unless there’s a really easy way around it. If they have a decent patent and it’s a product you really want to go after then you can do it but there’s so many other products out there that aren’t patented that it’s just honestly, it’s not worth your time in 90%.
[00:39:00] Scott: Well here’s what I thought and I actually, I was talking to my son about this because that was something that possibly for those of you guys that have watched that case study that we go through. We basically expose the market and then from there we talk about like we eventually want to launch products in there. We’re actually in the process of that right now, slow process but we’re in the process and this was one of those first products but now what I thought about Chris and Dom, I said you know what, well maybe what we’ll do is we just, we won’t try to make that product. What we might do is maybe reach out to them and see if we can wholesale the product.
[00:39:31] Chris: Or private label from them
[00:39:33] Scott: Or private label from them. I think that they would wholesale us because I think that they’re already trying to get into retail. So this way here, at least I can still offer it but then on the back end of that, if I can wholesale it then I can throw something of my own on the back end of that, so I can sell them something else additionally. The other product that we’re looking into, we are going to probably move forward with, and I actually got samples coming. Actually I ordered some samples this morning and they’re going to be definitely easier. It’s not patentable, it’s just kind of like a substance like that applies to the thing. So it really can’t be patented easily at all and it’s just too, it’s too broad.
But again if you just go to Google and search for the patent and if you find it like real easy, that might be something that’s going to tell you no, I probably want to stay away from this thing. But he did say the patent attorney that I met with, said if you want to see exactly what the language means in our you know language, just scroll to the very bottom and it’ll say the description of the patent and it will tell you the different elements and there’s usually three different elements, he said. It’s usually A plus B plus C. But he said if you want to still go for that product, as long as you don’t have all three, if you only have two and you don’t have all three, technically it’s not the patent then. You’re not going to be violating the patent.
[00:40:51] Chris: So just to clarify that into English because I’m dumb. Basically what you’re saying is, there’s a patent on a garlic press, it needs to have round handles, a square screen and a removable grate. And if it has two but not three of those then it usually won’t violate the patent.
[00:41:09] Scott: Exactly, because the patent is A plus B plus C.
[00:41:13] Chris: So if it didn’t have the removable grate, it wouldn’t violate?
[00:41:17] Scott: Exactly, exactly. But it could just have the one element in it and that’s what makes that thing so… Like it could just have the handle that’s shaped better for your hand and it’s special. Well you’re just going to not make one with that kind of handle that would be an easy one. But again anytime that you’re getting, like he also said too, if you have a product that is not going to sell like more than like $50,000 a year or something probably not worth going after that because you’re going to be spending a lot of money on legal fees. Like just don’t marry a product. That’s what I would say. Do not marry into a product, because if you do you could later down the road if you’re not really selling a ton of that, you could be sorry.
So you want to do your research up front and I think the biggest thing like I told him, I think the biggest thing that we need and that anyone that’s listening needs is really before we launch we want to know, is this thing patented? And even if you don’t find it on Google does that mean that it’s not patented? No, it just means that it might not be there yet or maybe it’s patent pending. So then you would pay an attorney, usually a couple hundred bucks two, three hundred bucks and then they’ll do an extensive search and then from there they can come back and say, these are some things that could be potentially like it, but it’s not a 100% so I think you’re okay.
That’s how that would go. So I think that’s where a lot of people are going. It’s the people that think, can I patent this or should I patent this? That’s a little bit more involved. Because now like he said, 99% of the patents that you submit will get declined. They will not get accepted and it’s then, it’s going back and forth with your attorney to the patent office and figuring out okay well what’s going to make ours unique. And then you keep going back and forth and that’s where the money starts to add up. Because he told me he’s like 400 bucks an hour. Like literally, so imagine what that can be a couple phone calls is going to add up quick.
[00:43:02] Chris: Especially because he charges in 15 minute increments like most attorneys.
[00:43:06] Scott: Exactly.
[00:43:07] Chris: One phone call could cost you 100 bucks.
[00:43:10] Dom: I was going to say Scott, I’m assuming we’re talking about one of the products that you were working on before. So remember when I talked to you about that, I said you know here’s kind of an idea. I said maybe we combine two different competitors into one then to make it a new element which you could do because now you’re taking two. So that’s definitely an option because I thought that was a big struggling point when I started working with you on that. I was like okay, we already know there’s going to be patent on this but what if we take two, we take the best from the one best for the two but I see a lot of people do that all the time. The luggage. They take one good part for one luggage, that’s how they came up with four wheels instead of just two wheels. One company said hey let’s make all four into the two and whatever.
My other thing was that, I mean the quick giveaway on Amazon is if there’s a bunch of people selling that product, there’s usually no patents on it. That’s the thing. I would never trust your China supplier, they’ll tell you anything to be honest. Unless you know their spot, “Oh no, no patent, no patent at all.” Sure, okay. And again, if you’re the only one that’s selling it, the only one or two, then there’s a chance. And again we kind of run into that because a lot of stuff we do there’s only a couple of us doing it, so we’re like okay it’s a patent or maybe they just don’t know how to take one part and put it together to make it one item. So those are just little tidbits to watch out.
But most of the stuff on Amazon, you gotta be careful. Obviously if you want to… And it’s a brand that you’re going to be copying too, guys. Like you know I here sort of you, I got suspended, I got yeah. I mean your product looks like the Nike Swoosh. Or it looks like your product looks like Shrek’s face or it looks like a Mickey Mouse’s face. You just can’t open a McDowell’s and have a golden arch.
[00:44:57] Scott: What was that movie? Coming to America or…?
[00:44:58] Dom: McDowell’s. Instead of two M’s it had one. You know you can’t do that. So a lot of people didn’t find out all you know, you have to use common sense, don’t…
[00:45:10] Scott: If you’re trying to deliberately confuse, then that’s where you can definitely get in trouble.
[00:45:14] Chris: And it’s called the, the legal term is called Intentional Confusion.
[00:45:22] Dom: So anyways, if you’re doing the correct thing or you’re doing a Reebok thing like that you any enemies any of these type of big companies, don’t make it exactly the same.
[00:45:32] Chris: Don’t call your washing machine, My Tag.
[00:45:34] Dom: Yeah, even your company name guys… I mean one of our best selling products our main competitor got washed out because all they changed was one or two letters in their name so it sounds exactly like the real product and that’s it they just got shut down. I mean that’s just like what’s his name, said in, I can’t remember now. Oh, the Wedding Singer. Where we get all the benefits.
[00:46:05] Scott: Actually there’s a good example of that. I’m not going to say the name but if you do a little bit of research, you’ll find it. But Dr. Oz, has always said that he’s never put his name on a supplement, ever and he never will. Now he’s recommended some different ingredients or this and the other thing but he never and there’s people out there using Oz in their name and they’re killing it but man, oh man. I mean there’s going to come a time that…
[00:46:34] Dom: You got to watch all that. One of our good friends that we met, we talk about he had a company with the word Intel in his company name. They were after him every day cease and desist. Just Intel, root and own. But that’s called a federal trademark. They own the word Intel, just like the word, I’m going to say it, “cozy.” You know those things that you’d put on beer bottles, you know all these companies they own… ‘Three peats’ which is owned by Phil Jackson.
We’ve talked about before, you know back to back. You know Johnny football, all this type of stuff they’re a federal trademarks, not just a trademark. So you can’t use them on anything though. You have to search your name and don’t try to be picky exactly what a state tag or you’re selling something for a bay tag or your rig your selling stuff for Keurig, you’re going to get cease and desist right away.
[00:47:27] Chris: The K is silent.
[00:47:28] Scott: Hey Dom. I got a question for you. It came in for an ask Scott session. I didn’t even answer it, I just gave my opinion. What’s your thoughts on this? Someone was trying to get ungated, they did everything properly except they might not have split the invoices into three invoices upfront and then they requested it. So then they did it later and then it kind of brought a red flag to their trying to get ungated. So his thought was, if I just go and try to do a different product now and start over but with a different product and then I get ungated, can I now launch that product I was trying to get ungated before?
[00:48:11] Dom: Yeah, well I mean this is what it works. Chris has already said. Yeah you’re getting ungated for the category not your product necessary. But I will let you know they really cracked out on, I’d like to answer in Italian style here. If you get ungated for a product, you better make sure that you list that product. Even if you don’t plan on selling it, just put one or two. I mean this is really big in the DVD market. A lot of guys are getting manifests and they might be real or not but they’re not even you know listing that stuff and Amazon is going, “You just told us you bought 30 of this, 30 that but I don’t see it listed.” Maybe they borrowed somebody else’s list. That’s what’s happening. So if you do that yeah. So once you ungated a category, you could list whatever you want.
[00:48:54] Scott: That was the main question and he wasn’t saying that he was going to do it to try to manipulate it so we can get ungated. I see what you’re saying and that’s kind of what I said. I said I think it’s a great strategy, if you plan on selling that other product, but if you’re just doing it as a way to get ungated, you better make sure that you’re doing that and then you’re going to sell that product but then also the product that you’re trying to get in is legitimately supposed to be in that category.
[00:49:16] Dom: Because they know, they have all your cases there. It’s not like it’s hidden. It’s not like a seven year record or you know comes off your driver’s license seven years or you got bad credit, it’s going to be there forever. They’ll just go back and see that you opened it. Yeah, if you’re going to release that product, you better launch that item.
[00:49:30] Scott: What he was thinking was, there was a product that he was going to launch like later and he could get a test order done in the States. He was going to do that and then do the split of the invoices and all that stuff and he thought that that would be an easier way to get ungated rather than keep trying to battle with this one and once he gets ungated then he can launch different product.
[00:49:48] Dom: No, I’ve heard lots of people even that work, that got you know won’t get accepted because they had sent one receipt and they just have to put the next three. Another option would be to just go re-buy that stuff again and do 2, 3 more receipts. Buy one on one day 30 units, go back a week later buy another 30 units and then do that.
[00:50:06] Scott: I think the problem too though Dom, I think that’s the problem too because I haven’t heard of this before. He said that they were having a tough time validating the address of the factory, even though he’s seen that the factory was legit. It’s been there for like 15 years.
[00:50:20] Dom: They have a list that they go by. And that’s it. If it’s not on that list they say no. So if you buy your toys from a liquidation store they don’t care. They need to know that you got it from Mattel, Hasbro or a distributor of their stuff and they have a list. Nobody knows what the list is. The only thing is I’ve been told even by a couple guys is, go by the ASD, by the gift show list. Like go to ASD and they’ll list you all the vendors and that’s a lot of those vendors on there. But again it’s hit or miss.
There might be 25 people that sell health and beauty and you might pick the one that they don’t. So, but at least you get a chance and there’s a lot of chat rooms that kind of talk about that stuff but that’s how you would do it. At least if it’s ASD, nobody looks it up, it’s basically it’s a sales show that has all the vendors including apparel, health and service, sporting goods and then you’re pretty well. Because I think that’s probably what they do. They just go okay, G&M supply supplements, yeah, no problem we’ll take the thing. But again if they get abused they get blacklisted.
[00:51:22] Scott: Okay, Chris we got any other questions?
Okay, so I’m going to cut it right there and that was pretty much a wrap up. We did answer some more questions to the live audience. But I just wanted to give you really the meat of the TAS Power Hour and let you guys experience a little bit of what we do there. Like I said, it’s totally random, like we don’t plan like a ton when we hop on here, we just kind of have a few things that are on our minds or things that we’re working on and then we kind of dig in and then we also ask live questions and that’s kind of how it all kind of takes place. But hopefully you got some value here.
I did want to remind you about the show notes for this episode and the transcripts can be found at theamazingseller.com/351. Also want to remind you about upcoming TAS power hours. Those are on Fridays at 2pm Eastern time. So definitely make sure that you’re part of our Facebook community over at theamazingseller.com/fb and enjoy that resource over there in that community because it’s awesome. I mean the people inside of that TAS community are always helping each other and constantly learning and sharing and all of that good stuff. So definitely get yourself connected there, not to mention you’ll be notified of our updates as far as our Facebook lives or any live events that we do, unofficial meetups, all of that stuff can be found there as well.
And I did want to remind you guys, if you’re brand new to the podcast and you haven’t subscribed yet, so you don’t miss any of these, any updates that we do here, which we publish Monday, Wednesday and Friday, so this way here you can make sure that everything is delivered right to your phone. Well definitely make sure you subscribe to the Amazing Seller Podcast and then also share it with anyone that you think that would get value from it. That would mean a lot and that would be really, really awesome.
[00:53:11] Scott: All right guys, so that’s going to wrap it up. I did want to remind you though, if you wanted to check out the video of us goofballs on our Facebook live of this particular one, just go to the show notes and you’ll find that, it’s embedded inside of that blog post and there is some other questions that we answered at the end. If you wanted to listen to those, those are there as well.
All right guys, so remember as always, I’m here for you, I believe in you and I’m rooting for you. But you have to, you have to… Come on, say it with me, say it loud, say it proud, “Take action.” Have an awesome amazing day and I’ll see you right back here on the next episode.
Now let’s go ahead and listen to that funky beat one more time. I don’t know, I really like this beat. You guys like this beat? This is pretty cool. All right, see you guys.
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