• The Entrepreneur Forum | Startups | Entrepreneurship | Starting a Business | Motivation | Success
  1. Join 40,000+ entrepreneurs
    who are kicking butt and
    winning their dream life.

    Unscripted™ Entrepreneurship:
    A Business That Pays More Than Money, It Pays Time.

    "Fastlane" is an entrepreneur discussion forum based on The Unscripted Entrepreneurial Framework (TUNEF) outlined in the two best-selling books by MJ DeMarco (The Millionaire Fastlane and UNSCRIPTED™). From multimillionaires to digital nomads, the forum features real entrepreneurs creating real businesses.

    Download (Unscripted) Download (Millionaire Fastlane)  Register
    Registering for the forum removes this block!

FORUM SEARCH

Get answers about starting a business from real entrepreneurs. Powered by Google.

NOTABLE! Navigating the changes at Amazon since we started

Discussion in 'Business Models, Niches, Industries' started by Vigilante, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. Vigilante
    Online

    Vigilante Legendary Contributor Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

    Messages:
    9,459
    Likes Received:
    51,799
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2011
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Gulf Coast
    Rep Bank:
    $167,273
    A lot of the eCommerce focus on the forum was a group of several that started around the same time. Dozens of us were doing eCommerce, with several different products but the same basic strategies. Amazon has changed a TON since @biophase, @AllenCrawley, @LightHouse, @JAJT, @Kak and several others got started on the platform and found great success in marketing predominantly through Amazon.

    My next business will use Amazon as a channel, but will not be an Amazon centric business. I have watched the above guys evolve their businesses over the years to adapt to the changes on Amazon.

    At one point, my business had an unhealthy reliance on Amazon, completely violating the commandment of CONTROL.

    Amazon is still THE force to be reckoned with, but in building a business from scratch today realize a lot of things have changed since some of the early advice you could read on the forum regarding how to find success on Amazon.

    • PPC costs have dramatically increased in nearly every category
    • Views have declined radically for non-advertised offerings
    • Feedback rules and methods have changed
    • Amazon algorithms have changed
    • There's been a huge influx of commoditized international competitors
    • There's been changes to policies regarding returns
    • There's been an evolution of ways sellers get scammed and listings get scammed
    • There's been a relaxing of Amazon's pursuit it IP theft
    • There's been a cleansing of many smaller sellers who no longer sell on Amazon
    • Customer expectations have changed to adapt to Amazon's "the customer is always right" philosophy
    • Customer abuse has changed to adapt to Amazon's "the customer is always right" philosophy
    • Retail arbitrage is nearly dead, and the people who paid thousands to learn this "business model" might as well move on to their next MLM investment
    And that's not all. But there have been a ton of changes over the years which have eaten up those that were unable to adapt. A retail darwinism.

    Other venues are starting to take on some traction and prominence, but perhaps @biophase and @AllenCrawley have done the best job of building brands that were significant beyond Amazon. I am sure there are many others here also, but I thought it might be beneficial to introduce a discussion on "the new rules of the road" specifically regarding Amazon for those who are researching business models.

    It's not like it was. It's not coming back to how it was. You can still make a business and a life with Amazon as a channel, but I no longer believe that building an Amazon business is a prudent, futuristic decision for someone who wants to build something bigger.
     
    The-J, msufan, MustImprove and 37 others like this.
  2. biophase
    Offline

    biophase Legendary Contributor I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

    Messages:
    5,581
    Likes Received:
    22,423
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2007
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Rep Bank:
    $148,339
    So you know that I sold one of my Amazon businesses earlier this year. I've also been looking into purchasing another "Amazon" business. In doing my research it is pretty amazing at how many buyers are out there for these businesses.

    I talked to my broker and there are bidding wars on good ones. They literally sell in hours. Then there are many available in the $5M+ range. A strategy that my broker told me was that large companies will buy at 3x and sell at 5-8x. What they do is buy a bunch of businesses in the same niche, say outdoors, which are doing $3-$10M, then package them together as a $100M business and resell for a much higher multiple.

    I'm guessing that as a $3M company, you get no love with Amazon account reps, but once you combine them all and become a $100M company that Amazon will look at you differently, thus easing the control factor.

    Just posting this as an observation. I don't think I'm going to be buying one anymore as in my price range the businesses are very green and lack alot of control.
     
  3. Iammelissamoore
    Offline

    Iammelissamoore Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Trinidad and Tobago
    Rep Bank:
    $4,641
    This is absolutely phenomenal. Often times, even on the forum, a lot of us do spend time trying to figure out the new changes of Amazon, if it will be good/bad for business and the like; Amazon is proof that adaptability is necessary in the business place regardless of which platform we use to get ahead; that being said, Amazon, as the powerhouse it has become, has changed the way we, both as Producers and Consumers conduct business. The beauty of it all, as you have highlighted is that the forum members you mentioned, along with many others, have managed to build ahead of, or even aside of Amazon and still hold high levels of control building successful businesses.

    Two (2) main things I have learnt from the Amazon process though -

    1. The possibility DOES exist to change the game no matter how large or small a company is (after all, Amazon didn't begin as the powerhouse it is today).

    2. If we fail to adapt, we can become obsolete. (The businesses that thrives on Amazon to date, are also mostly those who continued adapting with all the changes that came along, YES, I will also admit that most of the successful companies are those who began, not necessarily from day 1, but absolutely early enough to become huge)

    That being said, it doesn't mean that the smaller companies that might have gotten lost amidst the thick of things are doomed to fail forever, I see the Amazon Story as an unravelling of TMF and Unscripted, where all the commandments are properly applied, the failures serve as valuable lessons of Assessing, Adapting and Applying while building a productocracy in which they brought countless solutions to the e-commerce game; it serves as great inspiration in bringing remarkable solutions to different industries.
     
    Andy Black, The_Saphir and Vigilante like this.
  4. Iammelissamoore
    Offline

    Iammelissamoore Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Trinidad and Tobago
    Rep Bank:
    $4,641
    WOW - In-Ter-Esting! I'm not in the Amazon biz, but have read countless of valuable entries about it on the forum to recognise the power it holds, but WOW, this is an interesting aspect, additional opportunities are even being recognised as you have clearly broken down here.
     
    Andy Black, Vigilante and Mattie like this.
  5. Vigilante
    Online

    Vigilante Legendary Contributor Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

    Messages:
    9,459
    Likes Received:
    51,799
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2011
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Gulf Coast
    Rep Bank:
    $167,273
    That is super interesting.
     
    Andy Black, ZF Lee and Kak like this.
  6. biophase
    Offline

    biophase Legendary Contributor I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

    Messages:
    5,581
    Likes Received:
    22,423
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2007
    Location:
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Rep Bank:
    $148,339
  7. Kak
    Offline

    Kak Capitalist Pig Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

    Messages:
    4,454
    Likes Received:
    13,279
    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2011
    Rep Bank:
    $13,716
    This sounds like undoubtedly the best way to "do" amazon... Wow! Great post!
     
  8. AgainstAllOdds
    Offline

    AgainstAllOdds Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

    Messages:
    1,378
    Likes Received:
    7,427
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2014
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Rep Bank:
    $49,140
    I've always been fascinated by multiples at different scales.

    Have a company that does $10,000 in profit per year? 1.5x multiple.
    Have a company that does $100M a year? IPO at 20x earnings.

    It's incredible how much money exists from just combining companies.
     
  9. rpeck90
    Offline

    rpeck90 Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    247
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2016
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Rep Bank:
    $4,407
    DanPena's course is based on this concept; they're called Rollup companies.

    If anyone is even remotely interested in Pena, his course basically gets people to create a consolidation company against which the owner will raise funds from banks with the intent of purchasing multiple businesses in large markets. Those businesses are then rolled into a single "holding" / "management" company that's then flipped to a larger firm - typically private equity.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  10. rpeck90
    Offline

    rpeck90 Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    247
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2016
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Rep Bank:
    $4,407
    Amazing, thank you.

    --

    To add my .02, whilst most newbie / low level sellers will likely get bled dry over time, I feel Amazon (as with other online outlets) are going to get much better for people who have "real" businesses.

    The big problem you're citing is with people who rely on Amazon for their business to succeed.

    Their entire "value" proposition is centered around accommodating the demand that is coming from Amazon's organic audience. They don't do much in terms of innovation, marketing or support. Their "service" (as a business) is to provide users with the simplest way to buy "x" product from Amazon.

    Whilst you may argue that this is how "business" is meant to be done - the simple reality is that most people are only promoting products, and have very little control over the product or how it's used.

    Any changes in the way the product is manufactured, delivered, or consumed, will cause massive problems for the vendor (as demonstrated with your post). Amazon might be a great way to reach millions of people - but the same dynamics apply with any market.

    I've seen it happen with...
    • SEO
      Pre-"Panda", anyone could get ranked highly for quite competitive keywords by just buying a ton of non-related links. After Panda (2011), Google focused on ensuring the quality of a site's links, content and social profile. 99% of the crappy thin affiliate sites got blown out of the water. In other words, it became much harder to attain higher ranks on the platform.

    • Local Marketing
      Selling marketing services to dentists, chiropractors, lawyers, schools and other "local" service providers was a thing for a while. Some people did well with it, but - as with everything - dried up after about 2 years. The reason was that once the "big" local providers had been accommodated for - it became much harder to persuade smaller ones to sign up.

    • Blogging
      Becoming a "digital nomad" by "blogging" was the sh*t in 2012 but died a death (typically because people didn't have anything exciting to share). I've made the mistake before so it's only natural. People don't want to read about "you" - they want to "live" through you. This means that if you're running a "blog", your job is to give people a taste of their dreams/fantasies. Obviously... only a handful of folks can pull this off, hence the bubble bursting in early 2013.

    • Social Media
      After being a big deal in 2015, focus has now moved into "crypto" and "drop shipping". Back in the day, a new "social media guru" popped up every day. Now, with the "market" mature - hardly anyone cares. Ironic, because "social" is now a HIGHLY lucrative traffic source (if you're authentic and do it properly).

    • Drop Shipping / Amazon FBA / ECommerce (Shopify)
      The current fad is "drop shipping" and "thin retail". Nothing inherently wrong with the model (I used to do it with JandRSports) but the problem is that 99% of these guys are all using the same suppliers & traffic sources (FB ads). Almost none of them are investing into a strong foundation (brand), and even the ones making money are finding the model to be ephemeral. Like the other fads before it, there'll come an inflection point where either the traffic sources (FB/Twitter/YouTube) or the market itself will become much harder to convert. This is when the market matures, the larger "winner" brands come along - and make it much more difficult for smaller outfits to compete.
    The point is that - with all markets - there's a time when buyers are easier to convert because of the novelty of the whole thing. Scentsy is a great example. Competition is lower, and what competition exists can easily be out-maneuvered with lower prices or some other gimmick.

    The Internet is PEOPLE - which is why the adoption of new "platforms" (Google, Amazon, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Alibaba, etc) spark new gold rushes (more eyeballs = more money).

    However, as quality improves and prices lower - barriers-to-entry prevent increasing numbers from being able to turn a profit (channels buyers to 1 of ~4 vendors who have economies of scale). This is where Amazon is today. YouTube recently went through it (adpocalypse). Facebook in the process (Congress hearing).

    That's not to say it's infeasible to make money (it's just harder as competition is more prevalent + you need to bring quality). The main reason why people now find it difficult is because most are leeching off Amazon's organic traffic pool - which can only sustain a finite number of sellers. The same happens in almost all markets; the guy who doesn't "need" the outlet will actually do well with it.

    The best companies - in ANY market - bring traffic to the platform. They do so by the cultivation of "unique" content. This is either by way of how they use a product (Apple) or how the product works (Dyson).

    In the case of Amazon, I only go there if I want a particular product. I don't casually browse their listings and certainly don't "window shop" unless there's something that catches my eye.

    This is almost exactly how the Internet has grown. Everyone has 4 or 5 resources they peruse daily (Email, News, Youtube, Twitter, Forums). It's through those platforms they are introduced to new ideas, resources & people. This expands their networks and is why we have the "walking dead" of today glued to their smartphones.

    If you want to cultivate a company with the "modern" web - the key is utilizing the plethora of massive "channels" (Amazon, Google, Twitter, YouTube etc) to share your SERVICE with a wider audience. As mentioned, it's all people - and you'll generally find those following you on Twitter will also be consuming your YouTube content. Don't get distracted by numbers.

    The secret is to focus on delivering a service. This is metaphoric as it is actual...

    -

    Over the past couple of years I had been working on several client applications in Ruby on Rails.

    To get these online, I used "cloud" VPS servers (DigitalOcean etc). Whilst cheap, they had no software to deploy Rails apps. I created some, and have now been working to package it for sale on Amazon...

    1_cc.jpg

    Ironic, but our little software is the only tool in the world which allows you to provision "cloud" VPS servers across ALL cloud platforms. If you wanted to deploy infrastructure on Rackspace, whilst routing US traffic to Azure servers, you can do it with our software.

    Our "service" (in this instance) is to enable people to deploy software to ALL platforms. That's our USP and what we need to deliver with as much ferocity as possible. We don't "need" Amazon to do that.

    As a company, our "service" is still to provide "immersive digital experiences" - the more potent we deliver that, the more people want to pay us - whether through Amazon or not. This is the type of "real" company which succeeds irrespective of which platform it shares its wares.
     
    Dami-B, LynetteP, Dramolion and 22 others like this.
  11. AgainstAllOdds
    Offline

    AgainstAllOdds Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

    Messages:
    1,378
    Likes Received:
    7,427
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2014
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Rep Bank:
    $49,140
    He just has one course?

    And what'd you think of it?

    I wrote off Dan Pena as a bullshit artist after he claimed to have killed a bear with his bare hands, became a 280lb bodybuilder at age 60, etc.
     
  12. ZCP
    Offline

    ZCP Platinum Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    1,750
    Likes Received:
    4,940
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Woodstock, GA
    Rep Bank:
    $17,385
    Just trying to farm our current 'amazon' businesses at this point while looking to buy and invest in other businesses with the proceeds.

    Creating a fanatic client base and providing them with awesome products and service seems to be the path.
     
    Scot, Laughingman21, Xeon and 5 others like this.
  13. ApparentHorizon
    Offline

    ApparentHorizon Gold Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    1,445
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2016
    Location:
    Greenville, SC
    Rep Bank:
    $4,313
    His book "Your first 100m" is a good read to get you thinking, but there's a lot smoke and mirrors.

    He did a Q&A at a college recently, and broke, when 1 kid called him a fraud.


     
  14. rpeck90
    Offline

    rpeck90 Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    247
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2016
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Rep Bank:
    $4,407
    I haven't taken the course, just watched a bunch of his videos.

    In one video (I've forgotten which), he said he could summarize his entire thing with one sentence - "unencumbered cash flow services the debt" which basically means that if you go through with building a "rollup" company using banks' money, you'll be paying the interest (which is very low presently) with gross profits out of the newly formed business.

    I think he only has one course.

    In terms of his character/persona, I don't think he's a BS artist (he's actually built businesses) - I think he does come across as unnecessarily aggressive, which turns people against him. Unlike the wave of digital idiots who made $2m in two years and somehow think they own the world, he does actually have a career and experience beyond sitting in front of a computer screen. Though he is shady, I trust him more than the others. Put it this way, if you're negotiating the purchase of a business, I'd rather have him next to me than Sam Ovens or a number of others I can think of.

    --

    To just back up the unencumbered thing - 2 MIN MESSAGE FROM DAN PEÑA

    And remember the key to QLA is - unencumbered/non-leveraged free cash flow, must cover debt service!
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
  15. Xeon
    Online

    Xeon Nessuna macchina per me se non una Pagani Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    475
    Likes Received:
    992
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2017
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Singapore
    Rep Bank:
    $4,745
    Damn, rpeck has delivered again! The nuggets above are golden.

    So, you're saying if I'm selling a product, I should build interesting content around it, and use that as an indirect form of marketing?

    E.g: if I sell fountain pens, I should get different artists monthly to draw beautiful art and create stuff using my pens, upload that to social media etc., and make that a big part of my company? That's the unique content you're referring to?

    E.g: if I'm a car blogger, I should build the car blog around me going everywhere to drive expensive cool cars, and documenting my experience, so that my readers can "live their dreams through me"?

    Thanks!
     
  16. rpeck90
    Offline

    rpeck90 Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    247
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2016
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Rep Bank:
    $4,407
    :smile2: EXACTLY :smile2:

    Spot on! The type of art that gets produced is then what buyers associate with your pen. Every product (if it's done properly) has a hidden "expertise" which is showcased by the content that gets produced. The delivery of the expertise (through service) is what drives demand.

    The "dream" thing is specific to blogs only. If it was a car blog, it would depend on what type of content you created (many car guys are highly technical). What you proposed is actually an interesting example - Top Gear (the original not the shitty new one) was basically this on steroids.

    The point I was trying to make was about "travel" bloggers. I wouldn't watch a travel vlog/blog to see someone's trip to Margate. I want to hear about how they "found love" in the "blue caves of Ibiza" or discovered a hidden "Indiana Jones temple" in the ancient Mexican jungle.

    The ultimate "travel" blog would have been Shackleton's doomed "Endurance" expedition, particularly the 800+ mile trip of the James Caird from Elephant Island to South Georgia across the brutal Sourthern Ocean... "one of the greatest small-boat journeys ever completed".

    --

    It's difficult to explain because I don't have a practical working example (of my own), but if you want to create a "real" company (beyond being a click merchant), you need to invest into "how" your products / service can be used. This is especially pertinent online, where someone can (will) rip off your stuff. It's not the only answer to success, but does switch you from being a "me too" salesman, to a service provider (AKA not selling a product, offering a result). The potency of the result is what people are drawn to.

    If you do what you've described effectively, you cultivate what's known as "brand resonance" - which is why some products/services/companies always seem more "whole" than others (and hence attract a more committed audience). A pretty decent antithesis of this is Damian Pros. Interesting guy, but has very weak resonance - not much substance. Counter what he's put out to the likes of JP Dejoria. JP is 100% legit and epitomizes the "rags to riches" story that seems to be the dream of Americans everywhere.

    Several of the best examples are:
    • Red Bull - adrenaline in a can
    • GoPro - similar to Red Bull; allows capture of adrenaline-fuelled experiences
    • Lamborghini - GREAT video - # of cars in vid = 0
    • Ralph Lauren - GREAT video - # of times he tries to sell his clothes = 0 - a comment in this video summed it up... "whenever I put on a ralph lauren dress for a special event, or an outfit for work, play or travel-something Magical happens!" (result RL creates is "magical experiences")
    • Apple - "the crazy ones"
    In my own world (right now), I bought the domain name RailsHosting.com several months back. Due to trademark issues, I cannot use it for the box I showed above... but can make it into an educational resource.

    "Rails Tutorials" exist already and are a legit thing. I wrote a bunch of them some time back and have been getting decent traffic through Google/Medium:

    Untitledvv.png
    If I wanted to make that into a legitimate "brand" (which is obviously the intention), I'd have to do one thing that makes it special. For this, I focused on creating a tutorial "RTS on Rails":

    Untitledfg.png

    I haven't done the tutorial yet - but the key thing is that if I did it properly, bundled it together into a presentation - that presentation can be made to people in many different places. If I give the presentation properly, and showcase how the technology can be used - "RailsHosting" becomes synonymous with that result. The key thing is that I would not "sell" RailsHosting, nor even allude to it. I'd just suggest it as a resource if they wanted a "production" server management solution for $x.99/month (opposed to just using Heroku).

    People watching the presentation - and who are inspired by it - won't want to buy the product right away. If you watch the Free Line video by Eban Pagan, you'll realize that if you want to cultivate a committed audience, you have to do quite a lot of work up front. The point is, though, that if you imbue your "social" profiles with the results of your work that goes into the provision of the tutorial, people will follow you by virtue of the "content" you create.

    The closest I've got to showing how this works is the following:

    blog.jpg

    --

    To explain more fully, here is a snippet from a post I wrote out with intent of putting into a "progress" thread of sorts (for the insider forum). The key is that whenever you get beyond "survival" mode (doing anything to get cash flow), you attract people based on the veracity of your offer. The offer is essentially the result that your service provides (lose weight/attract hotter women/create more compelling sales messages).

    Untitledb.png

    When you get into the wider world, if you're not dealing with people who already think/know they want to buy what you have - you should never sell the product. Offer a result through the provision of service. Sell the sizzle, not the steak.

    In my world, ran out of money to pursue Fusion in 2015. So turned to doing the software side of things myself. The work (service) that I provide is basically to produce software applications. However, the "result" that I want to cultivate is to create game-level experiences for functional software.

    The closer I get to the result through the provision of service, the more people take me seriously (brand resonance). Likewise with the brand's products - if I listed the VPS deployment software on Amazon, the potency of the brand (FL/Frontline Utilities LTD) would determine whether someone would give a sh*t about it or not. This is what I was trying to explain.

    --
    BTW I may talk a big game but I'm really not that big of a deal - you can see my CV here. Went broke in 2015 and have been working on building programming & graphic design/artistry skillset since. The artistry thing is legit (anatomy etc); programming difficult (built my own CMS and other things). Both exceedingly difficult, but not without consequence.

    Everything I've written is due to my 12+ years in the "marketing" game. That long in front of a computer screen, you get exposed to a huge number of sales pitches / gurus etc. That is why I tend to shift through the bullshit. Numbers never lie.

    Untitled.png

    Hope this helps - key thing I've found is to deliver without anticipation of return. AKA give it all away up front - if what you have is legit, people will buy more of it in the back-end.
     
  17. Vigilante
    Online

    Vigilante Legendary Contributor Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

    Messages:
    9,459
    Likes Received:
    51,799
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2011
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Gulf Coast
    Rep Bank:
    $167,273
    @MJ DeMarco featured post

    This post and the post he wrote above this one that led to this one are some of the best content I have read on the Forum in quite a while

    @AllenCrawley this would make an unbelievably Rich insider call. You get him and you on the phone with MJ and I would listen to that discussion as long as you all talked

    @biophase I wanted to make sure you didn't miss these two posts
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018
  18. Xeon
    Online

    Xeon Nessuna macchina per me se non una Pagani Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    475
    Likes Received:
    992
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2017
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Singapore
    Rep Bank:
    $4,745
    Rep $500! This is precious gold to me, I need some weeks to fully digest this after multiple reads. Was reading your treasures posted on the Damien Pros thread again today.

    I read your CV. Never thought you're only 27. What I find extremely impressive is your ability to read deep into things and break mysteries down into very understandable chunks. I never really could quite get the "gist" of why some brands seem to "have it", but others don't, until I came across your posts here.
    I often see things on a superficial level (e.g: Nike shoots their videos in so-and-so style, Lululemon uses lots of fitness models on IG to promote their products....). There's actually so much thought and psychology involved behind the scenes.

    1) I wonder, have you ever thought of doing eCommerce? Selling a niche product or something.

    2) What is the one book which you find most useful in terms of having this sort of thinking? I want to add it to my reading list!
     
    Argin Gerigorian, ZF Lee and rpeck90 like this.
  19. rpeck90
    Offline

    rpeck90 Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    68
    Likes Received:
    247
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2016
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Rep Bank:
    $4,407
    Thanks man, hope it helps.
    --
    I tried ecom back in the day (tried bringing "longboards" into the UK) - didn't do well. Found affinity with the software stuff / visual design, so that's what I've stuck with. I also tried selling natural cosmetics but - again - didn't feel right. With cosmetics, you need a hot woman to be the "muse" - if I get money to do something like that, it may be worth looking at.

    Interesting actually - the £800 skateboard purchase in my CV was for this company - Rayne Longboards - Premium Downhill, Freeride, Cruise and Carving. I bought them because I felt they were a legit brand, and are now widely considered the "leader" of longboards in the world: Rayne Longboards notice their "brand" content has people actually using the boards? These guys live their products and it's paid dividends for them.

    A lot of what they do is pretty much what I tried to describe.

    • This video (long but worth it) + Science of Getting Rich would be the best - some other things too:

    • Steve Jobs (design is how it works -- book not too good but sentiment stands)

    • What could be described as an obsession with many of the greats:

      • Michelangelo -- created such works of beauty despite being a sculptor only (he painted the sistine chapel etc). Rather than being a creative genius, he was more determined to see "his" vision - and thus worked super hard to make some of the most beautiful compositions ever created
      • Miltiades -- guided Athenians to victory at Marathon using unusual tactics
      • Hannibal -- SUCH a big deal as even today the Italian national anthem has an allusion to "Scipio's Helmet" - the only guy to beat him in battle
      • Napoleon -- much of what we consider sacrosanct today is based on changes borne of Napoleon's code civil (and what was embodied by the French revolution). Without Napoleon, we would not have capitalism
      • Gaius Marius -- 7-time consul of Rome who rose from nothing to become "First Man In Rome" - achieved through merit what others would later do with force
      • Bohemond of Taranto -- captured Antioch almost single-handedly during first crusade
      • Pyrrhus of Epirus -- from whence we derive the term "Pyrrhic victory" - rated #2 general after Alexander by Hannibal
      • Sulla -- Dictator of Rome who's often vilified by Historians but was actually someone truly quite remarkable (once you look at what he did etc). Very capable military figure
      • Alexander
      • Charlemagne -- united Christendom and is the reason why we have a "Europe" of unified culture today
      • Caesar -- especially Pharsalus where Caesar's outnumbered Gallic veterans were reduced to eating roots to survive before facing the 40,000 legionaries of Pompey - outnumbered them 2/1
      • Subutai -- general under Genghis Kahn. Him and Jebe two of the most prolific commanders in history, with Subutai often cited as having organized the conquest of more land than anyone who's ever lived. Most famous was his "scouting excursion" into Ukraine and Russia... with only 20,000 troops, subdued a much larger set of armies through skillful tactics


        View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asqgLriGcI8
    • Faith (to one thing - as true in the personal sphere // women as it is business)
    • Commitment
    • Focus on actually doing "the work" - not f*cking around trying to build a following etc. Any self respecting male shouldn't worry about friends/likes etc. Only results. If you get results, people will follow you by virtue of the quality of results you cultivate
    • Realizing that what people/things "look" like is only 5% of the "life experience" (life has to be lived)
    • Death ground (big one) - there comes a point when you have to just surrender to the wider world and pursue a single path, putting all eggs in one basket. I did this with the software stuff - took a hit financially but allowed me to express my creativity more deeply. Many people give up (including me) - the one thing I found with all the guys above was they went on a "hero's journey" and emerged on the other side because they committed themselves (and those under their command) to the cause.
    Thanks for the kind words, but there's nothing really impressive to be honest. Just dug deeper and tried to get to the "truth" about stuff.

    28 now - put together the CV when tried to get a job at either Mood Visuals or Platige Image.

    In terms of the "mysteries" thing - here's the deal.

    When I was 15, we had a family friend (Jacksons Leisure Supplies) who was making good money.

    Perplexed by this, I started looking at what they "did". They import stuff from China and sell it on. That's why I got into the skateboard thing. Didn't do well but the idea still stuck with me - why do some people always seem to "live" better than others.

    Here was my parents saving every penny, scared about every little expense - and this dude had a massive business, villa in Florida and - importantly - used to be a welder.

    This intrigued me. So I started to research more - asking people yada yada. Found the WarriorForum, "marketing", Frank Kern, John Reese etc and started copying anyone that was doing well. This lead me to the software stuff (eventually).

    In terms of why this is important, I quickly found that everyone has one way of doing things. Maybe someone has several... I've not seen them yet. This "one" way is basically their "style" or "profession" or whatever you want to call it. The wealthy ones basically found a way to "multiply" / "leverage" it (which is why I became interested in marketing).

    Nothing happens in a vacuum. Despite what people say, they'll typically have one "market" in which they are considered an "expert" and will have built their products/income streams around it. Choosing this "market" (or maybe it chooses you) is one of the most important things - if you play in the little league, you'll end up jumping from market to market making crappy products with no resonance. Rather than expanding outwards, impel inwards (light your soul aflame with who you really are and imbue that energy into what you're doing - then just do as much "work" as is feasible for as many clients as possible. You'll find opportunities to create products when you either need/want a particular tool to make your results better).

    As I started looking at all these different things - cutting through the bullshit became somewhat easier. You recognize - for example - that "cloud" hosting services literally just allow you to run distributed VPS servers on data-centers worth of systems. So why not make a system to manage them.
    -
    The main reason I ended up going down the "branding" path is because I wanted to build a Microsoft. To build a Microsoft, one needs expertise. This is predominantly why I took on the software role myself, although it's boring and difficult.

    Part of the thought process stuff you're asking about is that rather being a supplicant to the world - you can consider what you *really* want to do (IE determine the result you want to achieve before you do something).

    Doesn't mean you get to do it - but allows you to at least consider why you want certain things. This consideration allows you to take what you need, and leave the rest. This can include everything from "university" to jobs. This is why I looked at Pena's stuff and also tried to decipher the "millionaire" Damian Pros. If they're making money, why not me?

    Most people have no idea about who they "are" or why they do things. This is why they are easily lead, why they over-consume and - ultimately - why they never really achieve anything of note.

    The person who is solidly focused on doing "something" is the one who'll typically succeed in the long run.

    By virtue of having this higher-level "goal", they start doing things which may not be considered "normal". This strangeness gives them insight where others didn't bother looking. The insight can then be turned into money by virtue of the richness of the service they end up creating.

    You'll often find this at the core of most of the "great" brands. Some guy wanted to do something in a particular way.... but didn't have the tools/means to do it. Edison wanted a light bulb;
    Ferruccio Lamborghini hated his Ferrari (made tractors before cars); JD Rockefeller was an accountant before discovering the demand for oil.

    The "brands" which grow around these guys are powered by how their products "work" (differently to others on the market) - deriving particular "results" for people. Over time, the markets for each brand matures and end up doing more esoteric messaging (such as I explained before).

    If you want to do something similar, the best thing I would recommend is to watch the Frank Kern video and determine what your "ideal" life would be. Mine was to have Federica Nargi in some house in Tuscany whilst spending my time making digital art (pretty much exactly what I'm doing now minus Tuscany/Nargi). I'm not going to get Nargi specifically (not a big deal) but the sentiment stands; I love good-looking women (from an art perspective) and can use that to imbue into the products I've been working towards. This is why I was looking for models etc.

    The "brand" stuff comes from how much passion/energy you put into those products. The depth of your offer then determines who shows up with money. This is how Apple is able to command such high prices.

    Not the most straightforward stuff, but it's the difference between being "me too" and billion dollar level.
     
  20. JohnZ123
    Offline

    JohnZ123 Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    73
    Likes Received:
    87
    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2014
    Gender:
    Male
    Rep Bank:
    $582
    You're dropping some crazy gold nuggets here. It's very applicable to my current situation. Thanks for the advice!
     
    Xeon likes this.
  21. amp0193
    Offline

    amp0193 Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

    Messages:
    1,918
    Likes Received:
    8,024
    Joined:
    May 27, 2013
    Location:
    United States
    Rep Bank:
    $48,490
    Just filmed a commercial doing just this. Not a product feature was mentioned. Only showing how the product can be incorporated into the viewers life. We'll see how it plays out, but given that 99% of my potential customers have never heard of a product like mine, I think it was the right move.

    Sell the sizzle... get them in the door.

    Sell them the steak once they're in the restaurant (and into your funnel).
     
    castr131, Scot, MJ DeMarco and 3 others like this.
  22. amp0193
    Offline

    amp0193 Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

    Messages:
    1,918
    Likes Received:
    8,024
    Joined:
    May 27, 2013
    Location:
    United States
    Rep Bank:
    $48,490
    My approach this time around: Sell a product that no one is selling. As in zero relevant results returned on amazon for a search query.

    Then, you're the only one.


    I'll be back on Amazon in a couple of weeks trying this. We'll see how it goes. I could sell one a month and be happy. Amazon is just another sales channel, and it's not the main one.


    The only Amazon "guru" I ever listened to, was Will Tjernlund and his brother Andrew. I have no idea what sort of content he/they are putting out these days, but read interviews and podcasts of his from 3-4 years ago. What he was preaching then, is even more relevant now.

    Have multiple low-volume, high-priced products. Be so under-the-radar that competition will never come.

    Sell stuff like this: https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_...=incinerator+cage&rh=i:aps,k:incinerator+cage
     
    Xeon, MustImprove, castr131 and 3 others like this.
  23. Iammelissamoore
    Offline

    Iammelissamoore Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    354
    Likes Received:
    764
    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2014
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Trinidad and Tobago
    Rep Bank:
    $4,641
    THANK YOU for this entire break down; this adds value beyond imagination to an already valuable product/service. This definitely is what genuine brands are made of.
     
    Argin Gerigorian likes this.
  24. Brad S
    Offline

    Brad S Bronze Contributor Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    189
    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2014
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    New Jersey
    Rep Bank:
    $1,797
    Very interesting.

    That is some original thinking.

    Have you ever read any of Robert Greene's books?

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
     
  25. ChrisR
    Offline

    ChrisR Wolves Don’t Lose Sleep Over The Opinions of Sheep Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    78
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2017
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    PNW
    Rep Bank:
    $498
    Haha!



    Yeah but how long do you expect to be the only one?

    I found a new product that was "the only one" and was killing it. Less than two months later there are over two pages of copied products. Aside from the new competition, that dude also had to drop his price significantly just to stay competitive.
     
    Vigilante likes this.

Share This Page