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…our birthday. I say ‘our birthday', yes. You and me, everyone that is a TASer, everyone that has been listening to the podcast whether it's for the past three years or whether it's for the past month. We just celebrated our third year birthday or our third year anniversary, we'll call it because it's been exactly three years from the time that this is airing so I am super excited and it's funny when I was going through my calendar I had it marked and I forgot about it and I was like, “Oh my gosh. We're coming up on three years. I can believe it's been that long.”
So what I want to do here today is number one I want to celebrate a little bit. I think we can all do a happy dance, we can all high five if we're all in the room together we'd be doing high fives, probably do good groove music going on and we'd be having a good time. That's what I want to do but I also want to make this something where you can have some takeaways and some lessons learned, some failures, talk a little bit about fears, some of fears which I've had which I haven't talked about. These certain ones that I'm going to share with you here today. And also the future of ecommerce. I want to talk all about that in today's episode because I think it's all important.
Again, I just want to go back in time and see where we've come. Like how far we've come from where we started and also talk a little bit about how this podcast almost didn't start. But today is our three year anniversary, our three year birthday. We're three years now. That's pretty cool. But the other cool thing is we've reached thousands of people all over the globe. You can hear that when you listen to some of the Ask Scott sessions where you hear people calling in from like Israel or Australia or California or wherever.
[00:02:06] Scott: It's like all over. It's either United States or just all over the globe which is really, really awesome. We've just crossed the 9.5 million downloads to date as the time that I'm recording this. It'll be probably more by the time this thing airs. I'm thinking probably we'll probably be around the 10 million mark in the next month, maybe a month and a half depending on how we do there. The other cool thing is we've grown a really active and supportive community inside of Facebook. We have a TAS Facebook group over there with about 54,000 members in there right now, which is pretty awesome.
We've built a private community inside of our private label classroom. We've got just over 1700 in there right now. That's pretty cool. We have weekly or monthly hang outs twice a month so that's every other week. Yes, just a lot of cool things have happened and I can't just believe it to be honest with you. To look back and go holy cow, like millions of downloads, thousands of people that we've reached all over the globe and I almost never turned on the mic. I'm going to share that with you here in a second. I just want to take this time right now and just say, T”hank you, thank you, thank you. I love all of you guys because you guys really feed me by you guys commenting or whether you're emailing me or maybe you're posting something on Facebook.
You feeding me helps me keep going.”
Yes, the podcast started not making any money and now the podcast does generate revenue. I'm going to talk about how that all happened and everything. So if anybody is curious, you want know I want to get into some of that stuff too. Stuff that I haven't really shared but I just really wanted to just say thank you because you guys sending me letters in the mail which by the way if you have not sent a letter and you want to, you can go to theamazingseller.com/letter and I will get your mail.
[00:04:11] Scott: That will get forwarded to the guy that takes care of my mail and then from there I'll get it in my hands and then I'll post it right up on my thank you wall which I have here right in my office and any of you that have seen my office tour, you've seen where that is and what my goal is to really cover the entire wall. That stuff really does feed me when I come in my office, when I come in this room it just energizes me and reminds me of what I'm doing. Whether it's one person I'm helping or 1,000 people I'm helping I just want to help people. Meeting people at live events has been awesome.
Any of you that have been to our TAS breakthrough events where you can actually come there and we sit in a room for a day or two, you guys know who we are but and those are just amazing. Like to be able to have those one on one conversations, learn a little bit about your business but also about your personal life and how we share some personal things and maybe… It's really cool that when you start something like this your goal is really to surround, it should be anyway to surround yourself with likeminded people that also are a little bit like you. It's funny now that I've put myself out there. I'm transparent, everyone that meets me, does listen to the podcast says, “Wow, you're pretty much are the same guy. There's nothing really different. I feel like I'm just sitting in the same room.”
That's the way that I wanted it to be. I did not want to pretend. I did not want to be someone I wasn't. I didn't want to show boat so you could get the shiny object syndrome and then go, “Oh wow. Look at that he must successful because he drives that…” I'm not that guy. And I'll never be that guy. Those people they are going to portray this image or this persona and then it's not really that person. I never wanted that. That's why I just put myself out there. The cool thing is like I was saying, it's like I'm attracting those people. So when I meet people it's like wow, we could actually hang out. Like we're kind of alike. That's the cool thing. It's being able to really attract almost magnetically the people that you wouldn't normally hang out with anyway. And just cool people.
[00:06:08] Scott: I've got people have emailed me and they didn't like a certain thing maybe on a podcast or this or that and they are just rude or whatever and it's like, “Well, I don't really want you in my group anyway.” Those people, it's like I'm not trying to get everyone. I'm just trying to get the people that want to jump on this train if you will of going out there and building a lifestyle business that can support us and our family and what we want to do in life. Not just building a business to make cash. Like year that's what's going to help us do what we want to do but that's not the ultimate goal. Yes, that's the vehicle that's going to allow us to get to where we want to go.
But that's not the ultimate thing we're going after. We're going after freedom really. That's what we're doing here and the flexibility and all of that stuff. So just anyone that I've met live in person, be able to shake hands, take pictures together whatever I just want to say thank you guys and if you have not been to a live event, definitely come out whether it's a free event that we do a TAS meetup, we do a lot of them. Wherever I'm traveling I'll usually announce it on the Facebook page or an email will go out and we'll just hang out for a couple of hours, have a coffee or have a beer depending on what time of day it is.
Then we just shoot to breeze. The live events, I'll give you the link to that. All this stuff I'll link up in the show notes to theamazingseller.com/live and then you can be put on that. That's a separate email list that will just notify people of when we are doing live stuff. That's all there really is. If you want to get on that go over to theamazingseller.com/live. So what I want to do here though is want to talk about what I've really learned in the past three years because the other day I did an interview and it reminded me of how much I've really learned. And also honestly how much I learned from you, from the listener, from you guys asking the questions and me having to figure it out.
[00:08:05] Scott: Or even go through the process because sometimes you don't realize what you know until you have to teach it I guess is another way of putting it but also by you sharing with me well I did this, and this worked and I was running this campaign and that worked and that didn't work so much so it's a way for me to really learn from you and also learn mindset stuff. I can see a trend here that people are listening that are taking action that are doing stuff, they have a different mindset than someone that's always living in fear. That's like what if it doesn't work? “Scott I've been doing this now for year and a half and I haven't launched a product yet. I haven't done it.” For you I've got a resource that I've already put together and I actually published it this past week.
So definitely do that. It's a 24 hour product discovery challenge and I believe that episode is 473 theamazingseller.com/473. That's 24 hour product discovery challenge. Do that. It's there. Again, I'm doing this stuff because I know that there's obstacles in the way. There's fear in your way. I'm trying to knock down those barriers for you because I know that there's fear out there. Heck, I've got fear. Fear in not just launching new products but other things and I'll share a few of them here today with you. But Like I said, interviewing other people and then hearing from other people really allows me to learn and grow.
Like I said, I was just on that interview and he was like, “Scott I really like it when you talk about the mindset stuff because I've been in business for ten years, in other various business. Service businesses and stuff.” I get it, I know that business isn't just going out there and finding the next fidget spinner, selling it and making a bunch of money and leaving like I know that. I started going down that road but until I went back to,” he said, “I listened to your podcast and you mentioned something about brand building,” and he's like, “And then it made me switch my mindset again.”
[00:10:01] Scott: Like I said, “Let's stop chasing that. Let's put the energy in over here and let's build something that's a little bit long term and something that we can sell later,” and all of that stuff. It's a mindset that sometimes needs to be addressed. It really is and he was like, “I love it when you do those episodes,” and I personally was like, “Does anybody really care? They just want the next hack.” I don't like hacks but they want the next tactic, the next strategy. They want hear what we did that worked or what didn't work. I get it and I'm going to share all that stuff but people want, I guess this is what you guys were telling me that you do want to hear about this. How did you overcome that fear? What do you do every day that allows you to consistently take action?
What do you do every day to get you in the right mindset? So this way here you don't have those fears. You just run at the wall and just say I'm going to burst through it. What is it? Those are the things I love learning about. So I probably will be starting to interview some people that is more about even just that not even about building the business because that is a huge, huge component to our success. Someone on our team, Joel Bauerle, you guys may or may not have met him or heard from him. He's been on the podcast a couple of times but he's huge on that. Huge. He's someone that I learned from every single day when I talk to him. I love getting his ear because it's a way for me to learn and really a little bit deeper into myself and sometimes that's what we need.
But yeah, mindset. Big one. So let's talk about how the podcast almost never happened. Now, I'm going to give some more credit here to my wife. I've done this in the past, you're going to hear m e do it again. My wife and I have been married for 23 years now and she's been a huge supporter and all of the things that we've done or vice versa. We started a photography business which I knew nothing about and she really didn't either.
We were learning by reading books and stuff. They didn't really have YouTube back then. I was a supporter of her there but then we worked together to build that thing. But we doubted ourselves a lot in that process but we pushed through and we believed ourselves and we had each others back and we did it. We had some ups and downs and had some tough times and we were living paycheck to paycheck. Then we finally had some success.
[00:12:10] Scott: But there was always that fear there. When I was getting ready to do this podcast I started asking myself this… I started getting that imposter syndrome. It's like where they are like wait a minute here. Before you do that, you're going to start this podcast like who's going to listen to this thing? I started asking myself that's a good question, I don't know who's going to listen to me. I'm just a regular guy that's just happening to do this Amazon thing and I just want to share it, want to help people but who's going to listen to me. Well, let's go back a little bit further and here's something I've never shared before. I don't think publicly.
Is that I have started other things that didn't work. One of them was a fitness and health podcast. I was like this is going to be cool. I was really into fitness when I got into about, I was even growing up and stuff. When I was 39, I'm 45 now. 38 or 39, I started getting into that age and I'm like oh my gosh, life is going to be over. I never thought I'd feel that way either by the way. I started to feel that and I'm like, “I need myself in shape,” and my son was like, “Why don't you do that Insanity thing,” and I was like, “No, I'm not going to do that thing. That looks too hard and then after about four infomercials, late night TV I committed and I did it and I was in great shape. I felt awesome. The whole model was you'd get success on yourself and then you can become a beach body coach and then from there you can help more people.
It's like multi level marketing. It's what it is. So I wasn't even really going at it for that reason. I was doing it more because I just wanted to help other people because I knew that obesity is an issue in our country and frankly all over the world. I've got a sister that is overweight and I've got family members that are overweight.
[00:14:13] Scott: My wife has had family members overweight. I see it. It's an unhealthy way of living and there's nothing you can do about it other than exercise, get the right mindset. So in my head I'm like, if I can help people in this that would feel really good. So I'm like, I'll get into this thing, I'll just immerse myself in this market and I did and actually helped a buddy of mine because I wanted to go through it and see if I could help someone. I helped him.
He was 290 pounds and got him on the bandwagon and just had him eat 1,800 calories. I'll never forget. I gave him 1,800 calories. I said, “This is what you're going to eat. These are your options and then from there I need you to work at least five days a week,” and he was using, not P90X. It was one that was under that. It was a lighter version. I forget what it was now. But anyway, so he did that and he did it consistently for like two months in a row. Never stopped and he continued to exercise after that but long story short, he lost over 85 or 90 pounds. He was under 200 pounds. It was just transformational. It was just incredible. The feeling was awesome.
He was feeling awesome and he wanted to help people now and he had his people in his office that were on this kind of like biggest loser challenge type thing and he was leading it. So that was really cool. So back to my podcast thing, I'm like, “I want to start a podcast. I want to help people. I want to get my message out there.” I did about ten episodes and I was doing it with a buddy of mine. Went ahead and did a few episodes like I said, about ten and it was really no, there's no traction. There was nothing. Again, I had no way that I was going to monetize this. Again, didn't care at that point.
[00:16:01] Scott: I just wanted to help people and get people to listen but if people weren't going to listen, I don't want to do all that work. It's like why do I want to all the work and no one is going to listen. It's like building a blog. I'm not going to write all that content on a blog and no one is going to read it. It seems like a waste of time. But that is part of business by the way but I learned a ton. I learned that number one that I needed to maybe niche down a little bit further and maybe I needed to create one which I didn't do but I could have, maybe a podcast for guys that are over 40. I might have needed to narrow that down. But I got frustrated a little bit and I just drew my hands a little bit and said ahh screw it, I'm just going to go ahead and scrap that idea and I bailed on it after about ten episodes.
Again I did it once, it didn't work like I wanted it to, I bailed on it. Didn't really lose much but time but who knows, it could have been a few hundred people that listened and maybe one of those they never emailed me but maybe one of those it helped change their life or get them on the right track. Who knows but I gave up on it. But that failure in my mind was a failure that kept coming back when I was thinking about starting this podcast. So because of that it almost crippled me. It me almost made me not and what did my wife say? She was, “Scott listen. You've got such a great way of breaking things down and what you're doing right now is something that you never thought you could do. Because let's be honest and for those of you that don't know, I never graduated college.
I never went to college, never spent one day in a college class. I used to feel less of a person back in the day. But now I don't, now I'm like entrepreneurship is like now it's a proud thing but I've created a nice lifestyle for myself over the past 15 years. My wife and I have built a brick and mortar business, built that into a six figure business from scratch and we've done that in the photography space online teaching people Photoshop and digital templates and stuff like that. We've done that. I've been public about that stuff.
[00:18:04] Scott: And build that into a six figure brand so we've done that but we've also built these little mini niche sites that we were going create as little traffic generators. They didn't work so well. But I've done all these things that led up to where I am now but I had all the tools in a sense. You could say well I had the mic. I didn't really have the same mic but I had the mic and I had the knowhow to set up a feed and how to use Libsyn which is our hosting for the podcast. I knew all this stuff. Now I just needed to believe myself and actually get my message out there. So my wife was like, “You've created a lifestyle for yourself through hard knocks. You've learned how to do it through this process.
This Amazon thing now is really exciting to you and you just help people along the way of what you've done. You're not saying you're this major expert. You're just saying I want to share this time or these experiences.” That's all I wanted to do. So that's what I did. I was always a big follower of Pat Flynn so Pat Flynn little shout out to you. Good friend of mine now by the way. I almost played basketball with him in, I think it was San Diego but I ended up declining because I didn't want to be made to look silly. But maybe next time. Not a basketball player. I can shoot follow shots but that's about it.
So anyway, he taught me through just put your message out there and just keep at it and help people and that's really the model that I followed and I did it and I started. I wasn't going to though. I want you guys to understand that. I was not going to hit record. I wasn't going to do it. Long story short I did and here we are, three years later and I've got over 9.5 million downloads to date. 54,000 active members in our Facebook community. Just a great thing that we've done here.
[00:20:05] Scott: I say we because it's us. We're in this together. You and me. I'm not saying that I am the expert. I'm a little bit further along than a lot of you maybe but I am not going to sit here and say I don't think anybody can really say that because you're always learning. Some people will say, “No Scott you're the guru.” No. I'm not the guru but yes I do know a little bit more because I've done it. I've been there. I've got history. I've got experience. I'm a little bit further along but that does not mean that I'm not going to ever want to keep learning and I will keep learning.
But this podcast has always been about me documenting my story but then also documenting other people stories and also how to do it the right way without going out there and doing these hacks or doing these black hat tactics or any of that stuff or trying to get attention by flashing Lamborghinis on my thumbnails. Any of that stuff. You guys get what I'm saying. But my whole goal here was to really just put myself out there, be transparent and know that I'm going to get haters and when you get haters that just means from what I'm told that you've made it. But yep, I've got some haters and that's fine. But those aren't the people that are going to be invited to the party, the barbecue in the backyard.
Those aren't the ones. I want to be around those people that I want to have at the barbecue. Then we can sit back and play some horseshoes or maybe play can jam or like a backyard game. That's what I want it to be. But anyway, going back to my fear there I almost didn't start. I literally almost didn't start because I won't going to. My wife just nudged me and said, “Listen, why don't you just commit to like 20 maybe 25 episodes and see what happens?” And I think the first episodes I posted it might have got like 500 downloads in the first day or two.
[00:22:05] Scott: That's more than I'd had through the ten episodes I did on the podcast about fitness. The fitness thing was just me talking about what I've done to get myself back in shape. And then also talking about my friend then I've got him into shape and a little fun fact here for you too. Some of you guys that know Dom Sugar. You guys hear me have him on every now and then and also we do our TAS power hour. He was overweight and he admits it and you can see it in a lot of pictures and stuff that he's had when we were in YouTubes, doing YouTube videos and stuff like that. We had a conversation at one point, I think it was just a year ago now.
I wanted to get him on actually and do an update because I'm proud to say he got on that same routine and same mindset as my buddy did and Dom lost over 90 pounds, we're pushing 100 pounds in a year. It's life changing stuff and when I'm able to have a little small piece of that a part of that, that fuels me. Yes, fast-forward, the podcast has generated money through like affiliate partners that I have and stuff, yes but nothing can top someone saying, “Scott you helped change my life. I don't know how I can repay you for that.” I'm like, “Listen, you don't have to repay me anything.
Just be alive, be in the present with the family, be able to enjoy what you've been able to do now. Now, you can actually do things because you feel as though you can.” Before he didn't feel like he can go to the mall and walk that distance because it's a chore. I know that he doesn't care that I share this stuff with you guys. Like I said, I wanted to have him on but again like that stuff is just game changing stuff.
[00:24:03] Scott: Let's get back on track, I'm getting a little off track but that was my fear. That's why I didn't want to start the podcast but I did. So let's fast forward a little bit and like when I wanted to really do the podcast like I said I wanted to talk about my Amazon findings, I wanted to document along the way, these are the things in order of how I looked at it. Number one, would it help people? So if I could reach people, I felt it could. Number two, could I attract the right people, the people that I would want to be at that barbecue? Again, these are questions that I asked myself.
Now, the other reason for the podcast was it was a way for me to find new opportunities either from people that I had on or from people that I have now on private conversations because once you have a podcast you start to get invitations. You start to have people reach out to your more than I want to even look at now. There's a lot of people pitching tools which I'm not a big tool pusher. There's a few that I like and you guys know then and are on my resources page but I'm not a tool pusher.
Now, I could make a ton of money just pushing a whole bunch of tools. “Guys, here's the next tool. Here's the next new tool.” I'm not going to be that guy. But I have gotten great opportunities now because of the podcast that open up doors that I can have either a network, partner or I can go out there and network a little bit or just a strategic partner or a partner like I have in the new brand.
Now, I will share with you how I was going to do a partnership deal that went bad and that taught me again about partnerships and really what you need to look for. I'll share that here in a second but and then moving down along the line I knew eventually if I could attract the right people, if I could reach the right people I knew that eventually money would follow. Some way, somehow, I did not start this podcast thinking of any way that we could monetize the podcast. None. Zero.
[00:26:06] Scott: Like didn't' even cross my mind. Now, did I know that eventually something could happen whether it's affiliate deals, whether it is a training, whether it is a tool that I created. I don't know. I didn't think of that. But I knew that eventually something would happen. It's like that Zig Ziglar. The more people you help get what they want, the more that you will receive. It's the same idea. So that's like my mindset. Like help as many people as possible and from there good things will happen and eventually things did happen. At first I was funding everything as far as the hosting which isn't crazy expensive but it's something.
Then the show notes. I was reading them myself and for those of you guys that know I hate writing so I didn't want to do the show notes but I did them because I knew they were important. So then I had to hire someone for that and then people were saying, “Well Scott can I get transcripts? I like to read them versus listen because I'm at work. Then I'll listen later.” So transcripts. All of this stuff. And I'm doing three episodes. That was another crazy thing. Everyone used to say Scott, you're crazy, you're never going to keep up with three episodes. Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Well I'm here to say, in the past three years I've not missed one. Not one episode.
You can go back and look and I've not missed an episode which is pretty awesome. I didn't even know if I was going to be able to do that. I thought maybe start three and then maybe scale back to two and the maybe if I had to I could go to one. One's easy. I hear people complaining about doing one episode a week. I'm like Damn, that'd be a vacation. But I've got so much to share. I've got so much to share, so many people that I want to share and I just want to stay connected. So three days a week but again that also adds more to the work that's got to be done. Like it's got to be edited, you got to have your show notes, you got to have your transcripts, everything has got to be uploaded to the feed. Everything has got to be posted on the podcast.
[00:28:01] Scott: Now, we're starting to do some YouTube stuff. There's a lot to it. I'm just a small team. I don't have this massive team, 30/40 people. But I've been able to build a small team that's really behind the same driving force and mission that I have, that I want to help people and I want to reach more people. And that's it. So anyway, on the monetizing yes. Eventually I knew it would happen and it did. But the thing is guys I faced my fear and it worked this time. Now, I faced my fear before in the past, didn't work. But, it's okay. Dusted myself off and moved on.
I just interviewed, actually Aman, if you go on one episode it's going to be 474. The episode before this one, I just interviewed him and he talks about how he had two, maybe it was even three failed products and then he finally changed his mindset a little bit, went back to the drawing board and it's funny because he went back to the drawing board, he went back to his first exercise which I talk about the touch list a lot which again is in that 24 hour product discovery boot camp thing. Go check that out. I went ahead and I talked about touch list and he went ahead and went back to that list and the product that he ended up launching that worked was like second or third on his touch list.
So that's pretty awesome. Anyway, listen to that episode too. I'll put that in the show notes or you can just go back to that episode. So let's move on here and I didn't want us to go too long but it seems like I'm long winded here. But I've got a lot to talk about I guess. But here's the deal. If I never pushed through the doubts, I wouldn't be here recording this today. Have you ever had something that you look back on and you're like man, if I never went there or if I never did that this major thing in my life never would have happened, I've got one for you. I met my wife out on the town one night which she wasn't going to go out, I wasn't going to go out.
[00:30:04] Scott: I was a young 20 year old kid and I'm like I wasn't going to go out and at the time I couldn't even get into a bar and everything but I had buddies that wanted to get me to go out and stuff and I'm like, “I'm not going out.” So they pushed me. They said, “You're going out.” I went out and they ended up getting me into a bar and that's where I met her. She wasn't going to go out, she's a very similar story. I wasn't going to go out, what if we never went out that night? I'd say I'd probably never have met her. And if I never met her I wouldn't have the family that I have. I wouldn't have the career that I have because a lot of it has been shaped from what her and I have done collectively together.
You see what I'm saying? Think about that for a minute. Even in your own personal life. Like is there something right now that you can think of that if you never did that one thing you wouldn't be where you are today? Like it's huge. Sometimes it could be the opposite. You go if I never took that left turn, I never would have, this bad thing never would have happened. That can work that way too. Got to eat the good with the bad. But just think about that. But again, if I never pushed through these doubts I wouldn't be here recording this for you and we wouldn't have reached thousands of people and helped tons and tons of people. Because I pushed through that fear.
So, why did I choose Amazon to sell products three years ago? It's a question I get asked and I'm not going to go into too much details because I've already talked a lot about it here but I'll give you the summary. But I was selling, we had a photography business, you guys know that. Then from there we were also selling digital products alongside our photography business because we were creating a lot of templates for our clients and then we would sell those on eBay. So we got our start on eBay. We were doing a little bit of retail arb, I talk about this in a video and actually I'll link that up in the show notes to this to where I show the wooden bridge that I was selling on eBay that my wife found at the Christmas Tree shop.
[00:32:05] Scott: Was buying them for like 25 or 30 bucks. We were selling them for 135 to 150 bucks at one point. We were basically selling them to put our kids through private school. That's what we were doing. We would load a minivan with about 20/25 bridges, bring them home and we would sell them. Crazy thing is I had to repackage some of them because they were too big. they were oversized and FedEx wouldn't take them unless they were like two inches or smaller in a box size. So I had to cut the boxes and reposition the wood on every single one. And we had to drive them into a FedEx plant which wasn't near us. It was about 25 minutes so talk about work. We did the work. We put in the work. But anyway, that's my story about like selling physical products. Started on eBay.
I started dabbling on eBay and seen oh my gosh, there's a little revenue stream here for us. This is kind of crazy. Maybe we should do a little bit more of this. And we were. I was selling these film transfer projectors. I was selling those because I was in the film transfer business alongside our photography business. And from there I started to… Actually I built a projector that would help me transfer all the 8 millimeter film and reverse engineered how they were being built and I would make them and I would sell them on eBay from, I think it was between like $650 all the way up to about $900 and they would cost me about $150 to build and it was taking me about one full day to build it.
I say one full day, about four to five hours that I was allocating for that time. But made some good money there. But I had to do all the work and then had to box it up and I had to ship it over to UPS and all the peanuts that we had to put around us so didn't get broken and all that stuff. A lot of work. Then I started hearing about this Amazon FBA thing. And I'm like, “What is this thing? What does it mean? FBA. Fulfilled by Amazon. So wait a minute here. I can ship product to Amazon and then they will fulfill it once I get an order so I don't have to pack anything?
[00:34:01] Scott: Wow, that's pretty cool.” I'm like all right. Let me look into this. So I start looking into it then I started hearing about retail arbitrage and online arbitrage and it was kind of a cool idea but I was busy enough. I didn't want another job in a sense and I found that that was like work of what I was doing with the projects and with the bridges and all that stuff. It was trading of what I was going to do with the retail arb thing. But then I started thinking like how could I make my own product or how could I come up with something that was like a CD or a DVD that I could just keep printing copies like I was with my digital templates?
That's where I started hearing about private labeling. Then once I heard about private labeling I'm like I got to get into the game here. I got to check this thing out and that's where the aha was. I was like, “Wow, wait a minute here”. So I started doing like and back then there wasn't a ton on there. That's even another reason why I did the podcast. It wasn't content really published much on how to do this. It was little bits and pieces that I was putting together and then from there I went ahead and I did a lot of things wrong but I ended up launching my first product. When I launched that first product I did it the same day, even like finding the products. I did it the same way that everyone was doing it back then like three years ago it was different.
It was worldwide west where you could go out there and launch something pretty quickly and follow a certain formula and pretty much start getting ranked and getting sales. That's what I did. But there's some things that I did wrong that I want to share here and that worked then but definitely would not work now. My goal really back then was to get four or five products that could do what I was doing here. I was doing over 50 to 75 units of one product, almost right out of the gate. I was picking products or trying to find products that were doing 50 to 75 units per day. I was like, “Those are the ones that I want. I want to get those products. If I could get five of those, man that'd be great.” Perfect. I was so like focused on that.
[00:36:01] Scott: Then I'd go on AliBaba and for my first product I found it like immediately. It was right there. It was like I had to barely do anything. Then I was like okay, I got to get this thing launched. How do you launch it? You got to go ahead and you got to give like 100 of these away or 200 of these away. I think I did 140 was my first giveaway. So I did it. I went ahead and I went, I won't name the service that I used but you guys all know it. I used the service and I basically sold 140 units. Didn't even sell them. I pretty much gave them away. 140 units right out of the game. My rank went up and everything started working and I was like holy crap, this is starting to work. It was right around the holidays too. It was fourth quarter but fourth quarter was just going to be over.
Sales were like starting 10 a day, and then 12 and then 18 and then 20 and then all of a sudden I was at 40, 50 and then that carried on for a pretty good while. To fast forward a little bit my first year did $300,000 in revenue on one product. It was insane. Now, that same product doesn't do $300,000 in a year. Here's what's happened. Couple of things happened with that brand. I don't even really call it a brand. It was kind of an open brand. Let's call it that. It's like your garlic press of today. That's what it was. Anybody can find it, anybody can sell it. All you have to do is repacked.
At the time there was only three or four guys selling it and it's whoever is quickest to market and getting some momentum. But here's the thing. That product is still selling today and I have done zero. I have not optimized pay-per-click. I haven't done any giveaways. I haven't done anything. The second year I think we still did $150,000/$170,000 somewhere in there. Margins on this at first were right around 40%. They've since went to about 20%. Actually it's funny. There's two SKUs in that product.
[00:38:01] Scott: One of them gets less. It's like 15%. The other one gets about 30%. So combined about 20%. Then the third year I did $100,000. Again, extra 30 grand. Not bad. Right now I'd say we're consistently doing between I'd say profit wise $1,000 or $1,500 a month for something I'm not even touching. Now, I let that all go and the reason is because number one I knew there wasn't going to be a brand built around that. I could have, kind of but it was competitive and that's why because those units were selling 50/75 a day. The other thing was Scott's become a public figure now. Guess what, everyone's going to be digging.
I didn't know that I was going to have a podcast when I first started this. I didn't know. So I was exposed in a sense. People that wanted to find out could and had their ways or whatever and few people even emailed me. Scott I just want to let you know. So right there I said Scott is not doing any more on that product or those brands. Nothing. If Scott is going to do anything, it's going to start from Scratch over here or better yet, I'm going to partner. Now, that's what I've done moving forward. And that's what I've really learned and that's what I'd like to do because I like to partner because I don't have to do all the work number one.
Number two, I'm able to put my expertise in there and really drive the vehicle in a sense but also finding a partner that has a different skill set than I have but we're similar. We have the same drive and all that stuff but they have a different strength than I do. That's what we've done. And that is the new brand that you guys here us talking about which isn't even at full year yet and we've already done six figures in sale. Actually we did over six figures in December alone which was crazy and we just ran out of inventory in January and on most of our SKUs and we're still going to do over $75,000.
[00:40:01] Scott: So that one there is working really, really well. But that's what I enjoy doing now or advising. There's a couple of my students in that event, our class or even at a live event. We were able to get them dialed in and going from one guy Jared who didn't even have his product or anything going yet and fast forward to today and the last I checked he was well over $75,000 a month. I've been able to help in that and really guide. That's really, rewarding. I like doing that, I like having my hands in the partnership stuff because I still get paid. I'm still going to make money on that brand.
If that brand does well I do well. So that's really what I'm focusing on but it's crazy because that one failure if you would look at it now that's kind of like fizzled. I haven't done anything. I haven't touched it. All I do is reorder. It's like your digital product like I talked about. Who wouldn't want a product that could do $1,000 a month in profit? Anyone would. I wouldn't do it the same way again at all because now things are a lot different. But I did it and it's still rewarding me. It's just I've learned a ton through that process. I've learned also what not to do. I've learned also that if you're going to be a podcaster and if you're going to be in this Amazon space where people are going to try to find out what you're selling so they can sell it, you probably want to partner.
And not even be tied to that brand, in a sense publicly. So that's the story. Again, I haven't shared a lot of that so I'm sharing here because it's our third birthday. It's our anniversary today. I just, again I wanted to share that with you but the bottom line is there with that type of product is… The minute that you can go… I should probably highlight this. When you can go to Alibaba and find your product that you're looking at on page one and it's the exact same thing and you're going to create the same exact product, you're not going to modify it, that's a no no. Do not do that because if you found it that easy, someone else is going to find it that easy.
[00:42:05] Scott: Funny thing is now my partner will contact me go, “I'm having a tough time finding it.” I'm like, “That's good. That is good.” But now we have an agent that works over there for us and they can do all the leg work. They don't look on Alibaba, they go look through their sourcing. Again, that's another tip that I talk a lot about. It's like we found that agent by dealing with them through a manufacturer built a relationship and now that person kind of works for us on the side. So it's again, you have to build those relationships. It's about creating those relationships over time. Whether that's in business, whether that's in life. It's like you have to figure that stuff out as you go.
I didn't have that agent a year ago but I have her now which is pretty cool. So another little tip there for you. Anyway, here's another failure that I'm going to talk about really quickly.
I talked a little bit about it but I didn't go into much detail. I'd say probably about two years ago now when I was thinking to myself, “Okay, I want to add more products. I want to go through this thing and I'd always been interested in supplements but I didn't have the expertise and I didn't want to just put out supplements. I didn't want to be the person just slap a label on it and do it. I wanted to find something that helped people or something that was going to help me. Something that I would take on a daily basis.
So there was somebody that lived near us in New York time at the time. I'm not in New York any more. I got to know them pretty good. They owned their own facility, they owned their own training facility and all that stuff. I was just talking to them about like their own products like why don't you have your own products? You're just doing client work. They were just a trainer and they were like, “I just didn't know how to do it. I'm like, “I do know how to do it. I've wanted to get into the supplement world, have you thought about it?” And they are like totally into nutrition and they are like almost like a licensed nutritionist. They know their stuff. And I'm like, man, if I could partner with you and you be the Face that you educate and you do all that stuff, it will be easy because then we're going to have more than just a supplement.
[00:44:11] Scott: They are like, “Yeah, that'd be awesome. I've always wanted to have my own supplement line.” So we ended up, I think it was two. We started with two different ones. He went through and created this blend and everything and we were working with a supplement company and everything. Long story short is we went ahead, we ordered some and it fizzled. He didn't really stay connected, didn't really show me that he wanted to drive the business because he wasn't seeing cash, I feel.
In the beginning when you're doing this, you can't think to yourself for the first six to eight months you're going to see cash but you got to put the work in. I needed videos created to educate people, I needed YouTube stuff created, I needed all that stuff and I should have did a little bit more back checking on that but I thought in my gut that I trusted it and I made a bad decision there. Now we did sell through, we liquidated all that stuff. So the end of the story was I didn't really lose any money but I did lose time and I lost some confidence in being able to trust people. Trust is a big thing with me. It just didn't work out and then most recent partner I really had a good feeling too and it's really kind of worked out.
If I didn't trust partnerships, I wouldn't have started this new brand and if I didn't start this new brand, I wouldn't have the success we are having with this new brand. Makes sense? You're going to have things that might not work, it's cool. You know what happens but I learned through it. I also learned that I wouldn't want to be in the supplement business. Because it is crazy, crazy, crazy competitive. It's dirty meaning there's dirty players. They are going to do some dirty things.
[00:46:06] Scott: You're going to be in black hat market where people are going to be doing black hat tricks on Amazon. They try to game the system and all that stuff. And just wasn't for me. If I don't have the knowhow and the expertise, I don't want to sell that stuff. Just didn't feel right but yeah, I learned a ton through that. That's the moral of the story. It's I had to learn something there and I did.
So, the key takeaways here. I want to give you some key takeaways because I want you to walk away and have something that you can say you know what, thanks Scott for sharing that with me. But here's some key takeaways.
Don't go after products that are doing 50 sales per day. Just don't do it. If you do, you're going to start going into that world of black hat, grey hat,because there's more competition there. Everyone wants to sell 50 units per day. I like doing the ten by ten by one strategy that I talk about which is ten units a day at $10 profit for one product. Something I talk about on our workshop.
If you have not attended one of our workshops, we have a new one for 2018 here that we're doing and it's really the five step process that we've used to build our six figure business with low competition products and that's the ten by ten by one. Ten sales a day to a lot of people isn't a lot but if you add that across five products and here's the other thing, you're going to stumble on some products that are going to do 20 or 30 sales per day. So ten by ten by one. That's a great strategy.
If the product is all over Alibaba when you're searching for it, don't do it. Don't please because it's going to give you a lot of competition because everyone else is going to do the same thing. Unless you can differentiate or you find that open product that leads you to your product that's not ever the product that's on Alibaba. Hopefully that makes sense. Because it's hard for you to find it, then it's going to be hard for others and this also will give you a head start because yes eventually they could find it but that's okay as long as you have a head start. We have products that yes people could rip them off but we're already so far ahead, you're going to really sell your butt off to even compete.
[00:48:05] Scott: That's the key. Getting there quick.
Number two is nowadays, in today's world and we're recording this in 2018, but I even think in the future you're going to need more SKUs. And you can do that just by adding variations. If you have variations on one listing like let's say you have a listing that has three variations, you got three products technically. The cool thing about that is if you run out of inventory on SKU number one or variation number one, the other two are still in stock. You're not going to lose as much momentum. So having more SKUs will also drive additional sales, all that stuff. Back in the day, three years ago I don't think it mattered as much. But now it definitely matters.
Three, Amazon will favor brands in the future and that's going to be now and in the future. I can almost guarantee that. They are already starting to do that. They've updated their brand registry 2.0 now where they want you to be a brand, they want you to be trademarked all that stuff. So they are going to favor that for sure.
Number four is don't just rely on the tools to find the products. So many people are like, “I want the tool that's going to show me the products and I want to then go sell that product.” Everyone else is doing that. Everyone else is doing that. Don't do that. What I like to do is find markets that can be tapped into and I talk a lot about that on the workshop as far as like how to drill down into these different markets and how to establish a market and then how to find products that they are buying and all that stuff. Actually I've done a YouTube video on it. I'll actually embed that here in the blog post to this episode theamazingseller.com/475. So definitely check that out if you're interested in seeing what I mean by that. Then five, is reminding yourself that Amazon is a sales channel. It's rented land.
[00:50:00] Scott: You do not want to build your entire business on a piece of rented land. If they want to sell the land they can. You don't want to do that. You want to use platforms to get attention yes, and sell your products but you need to diversify. We talk a lot about building a brand because now we can take our email list, asset, we can take our Facebook page or group or YouTube channel or Instagram, whatever we have that we've built an asset we can build that so this way here we can drive traffic to wherever we want and that would be whatever platform we're using. If it's our own website platform that we're going to start getting sales we can drive it there.
If Amazon decides to get little cranky, we can pause them for a little while. We can come back to them. I don't think that that's going to happen. If you're building a brand I think you're going to be able to use Amazon for a long time but again, we don't want to put all of our eggs in one basket. Definitely check out the brand building video that I did. Again, I'll link that up in the show notes because that really does illustrate it pretty well as far as like how we're actually using social media. Social media is a platform too by the way. Don't forget that. You social media like I use Facebook as an example.
We're using Facebook to drive a lot of awareness and build our email list and even run Facebook ads and all that stuff but if that goes away that's okay because we're still building our email list and we talk about like how we can plug it in to any platform that's there now or one in the future. Same thing would go for YouTube. If you have a YouTube channel I can plug all that stuff into building my email list. My email list will always be there. That's the asset that I own. As well as my blog or my website. But definitely go check out that video too and I'll link that up in the show notes or you can just go to my YouTube channel and you can find it there.
It's all about brand building. It's about 12 minutes long. It's not that long but I'll show you on the whiteboard and demonstrate what that looks like. So to wrap up here, so what's next for TAS really?
[00:52:02] Scott: Well, right now it's to help you, anyone that wants to come along for the ride really and build the business like that's what is the future. The other thing that's the future is we're not doing to be building business with doing these black hat strategies or hacks, any of this BS stuff. We're not doing that stuff. My mission, my goal is to help as many people that want to build a business and they want to do it the right way but also the long term way. Those are the people that I want to help. If that's you, then come along like definitely come. We'll have a barbecue. We'll talk about it, we'll shoot some horseshoes or whatever in the backyard and we'll go out we'll build out some businesses.
That's the people I want to attract but I also want to work with and help. This podcast is totally free. I'm not saying you guys have to pay even for that. Now, a lot of you know that I have paid training. We have the private label classroom which you can head over to privatelabelclassroom.com. You can check that out. The other thing that we've recently added, which is in beta at the time this is going to be airing is going to be our product discovery boot camp. That's something new that we're doing here in 2018 and hopefully more in the future but this is really to get people through that first phase which is finding their products but also finding their market.
Then starting to get their vision of building the brand. That's what our product discovery boot camp is and when we get done with that four week training, you will have everything figured out, everything vetted. Because we're going to go through it live with you. We're going to go through and show you our examples of real products, real markets, how we're doing it step by step. So it's a four week training. So definitely check out that productdiscoverybootcamp.com. Again, it's new. We're going to be in beta so depending on when you go there it may be closed.
[00:54:01] Scott: If it's open then it's open but the first round we're going to do it with a closed group so we can teach it, get some feedback, tweak it, make it even better and then from there we'll go ahead and release it to the public and hopefully this is going to be a tool and a resource that you guys can use to get you through that phase because I think it's really, really important. Because I can't do anything for you if we don't get past that phase as far as helping you build your email list. Help you brand build, help you use Facebook. I can't help you with any of that stuff because you don't even need it. I got to get you through finding the product but also getting the vision of the market.
Then once we do that, it's like game over. Like we can just go to work. That's what we're going to be doing. But we're in this for the long haul. What is next for TAS? It's we're here for the long haul. Focus on brand building using Amazon to launch our products and then building assets in the business. An example of that would be building our email list. That's the focus. That's what we're doing next. Anyone that wants to come along for the ride, that's what we're going to be doing. If you want to jump in, let's do it. Let's do this together. Let's build these businesses that we can be proud of but then also that can provide the lifestyle that we want.
Just to finally wrap up here, I did want to just say that all of our past guests are students. Everyone that I have ever had conversations with I start to see patterns. The patterns that people are successful usually have the same or similar mindset. The ones that succeed, generally I've come up with like five. The first one is the right mindset like I said. There will be failures but they keep going. They know that. They don't go into this thing thinking that everything is going to be perfect. So that's number one. Number two, they have extreme focus and they take action every single day.
[00:56:01] Scott: What I mean by that extreme focus is if I'm going to figure out like you don't even know what market or what brand you're going to start or what products you're going to sell, that's like the focus. We got to figure that part out fist. Then you move on. That's what I mean about extreme focus. Three, they are willing to take risks but they are smart about it too. They sometimes have a safety net. I always had a safety net if this doesn't work, I'm not using the money I pay my mortgage with but if this doesn't work so what? I dust myself off, I go over here or if this doesn't work I can always go and get a part time job to help pay for whatever. There's always a backup plan.
There's always a safety net. That's how I deal with that but that's how a lot of other people do it as well. Successful people. Willing to take risks but smart about it too.
Then four, always working on grown activities. This is huge. They are not just in the maintenance mode all the time and they are not just about consuming information and doing anything. They are actually looking at growth activities. What am I going to do today that's going to move the needle tomorrow? I think that's another mindset but it's also an action step because if you plan this stuff out, you have the roadmap then you just have to execute it.
That's why I'm big about planning and writing it out on paper and all that stuff. It's like figure out those, the next pieces, block them out and then just go work on those and those are your growth activities. Those activities can mean how do I get more growth? I have to add more products. Well, what's my first step? Well, I already have a product, I could do a variations. That would probably be the next easiest step. Let's do it. That's it. We got to figure it out, you got to ask ourselves questions. But that's it. Always working on growth activities.
The five, is they work on themselves too in personal development. I think that's big. It's so big. I do it every single day, every single month I'm always working on myself and anyone that thinks they got it all made and it's all perfect you got to think again about that because we all can grow. If you are not growing, as Tony Robbins says, then you're dying.
[00:58:01] Scott: We have to keep growing. We got to keep expanding and just climbing. It's funny, I think it was Gary Vaynerchuk that says, the most fun that he has is during the climb. It's the struggles, it's the grind. He loves that. I like the climb, I don't like having to stress all the time. So there's got to be a balance there but I agree with that. You're always needing something to strive for. So once you get your business to where it's doing 100 units a day, the next thing is how do we get it to 200? There's your climb. So just, you have to figure that out and you have to enjoy that but it's just like personal development, you have to always be saying to yourself what can I do to get myself more focused?
What can I do to be a better person? What can I do to be a better husband? Whatever it is, doesn't have to be just business but if you work on yourself, it will go into your business. It will make you a better person where you can also perform better. Anyway, that's my pitch on that. The one book that I always recommend and a lot of people say, “Scott so glad you recommended that. It's awesome.”It's The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy. That's one, and the other one and I forget the author's name which I want to try and get him on and this is a good one. This is just about being a good person, positive and it's goes through a guys life of most Americans really or just people in general and they go through this daily grind and they are just miserable.
There's a book called The Energy Burst. Definitely read that. It's a short read. If you read it, I'm telling you'll think about things differently. I've got a buddy of mine that read it. He's like, “Scott, that book was great. It made me think and the other day I was having one of those days and I thought about the Energy Burst.” Definitely get on the energy burst guys. Check it out. We're going to get on the TAS Burst which is like the Energy Burst but we'll have our own little Energy Burst. I love it, check it out The Energy Burst. That is going to officially wrap this up.
[01:00:02] Scott: The show notes can be found at theamazingseller.com/475. I want to again say thank you so much for being listeners of the podcast. I couldn't have done it without you guys and I want to continue to grow our businesses, our lifestyles together and I want to learn together and I want you guys to share all of your experiences with me but also with the community. Definitely head over to theamazingseller.com/fb and you'll get linked up over there and the TAS community. Send me a note over to theamazingseller.com/letter. I'll post it on my Thank You wall which will be amazing. And yeah guys, happy birthday.
Happy birthday, happy anniversary to TAS. All right guys, that's going to wrap it up, remember as always, I'm here for you, I believe in you and I am rooting for you but you have to, you have to… Come on say it with me, say it loud, say it proud, we got to say it with tons of energy today guys, “Take action.” Have an awesome, amazing day and I’ll see you right back here on the next episode.
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