One of the most common sticking points Scott hears from people who are looking into the possibility of placing products on Amazon is the product discovery phase. Many people experience brain-lock when it comes to figuring out what to offer for sale. On this episode, Scott’s got a couple of great stories of how he figured out some product and business ideas that should help you see the kinds of real life things that can help you discover product ideas. You won’t want to miss this one. It covers some of the most practical ways you can discover unique products to serve a particular market.
What are you good at?
There are many people in the world who are also engaged with the exact areas where you have skill and expertise. They need resources to help them become even more accomplished in that niche. What knowledge, skills, or expertise do you have that can be turned into a product that you could sell to those people on Amazon or other online platforms? You have a leg up on the competition because you already know the market and need. That’s just one way that you can create a product that you can be fairly certain is going to be a success. Listen to this episode to hear the whole story of how you can discover product ideas.
What do you want to learn more about?
Every one of us has our interest in a new topic piqued from time to time. When that happens there are many things you have to learn or resources you need to purchase in order to get started in that area. Right there are a handful of product ideas that you could possibly begin selling through private label on Amazon. What are you interested in right now? Are there any new hobbies or areas you’re about to step into? Listen to Scott’s ideas on this episode to help you sort out the many opportunities that exist around you right now.
What are your kids or friends’ kids into right now?
Scott’s daughter has just begun to get involved in two new activities – playing the piano and volleyball. In each of those areas, she’s got to gather the resources she needs in order to be equipped for the activity. For piano lessons and practice she may need a metronome or staff paper. For volleyball, she may need specialized shoes or knee pads. Those pieces of equipment are some of the things that many people need when they are interested in the same activity. On this episode, you’re going to learn how you can observe the things you’re already doing or just getting started with so that you can generate product ideas to sell on Amazon.
Do you have friends or neighbors who have a skill that could help you launch a product?
Scott just moved to a new home in South Carolina. As a result, he’s meeting lots of new people and getting to know his neighbors. In almost every conversation he’s noticing skills, interests, or knowledge that his new friends have that could be leveraged into a product idea to sell on Amazon. On this episode, he’s not only going to tell you a handful of stories about those encounters but also give you some ideas about how you can begin to pay attention to the relationships you have that could be tapped into for the sake of product ideas.
OUTLINE OF THIS EPISODE OF THE AMAZING SELLER
- [0:03] Scott’s introduction to the podcast!
- [1:08] The upcoming LIVE event in Phoenix, AZ in October 2016.
- [3:52] Scott’s story about how he got started online.
- [21:23] 4 questions to ask yourself.
- [30:39] Why you should be a good listener who understands other people’s lives.
- [36:12] Do an internal “audit” of your interests and connections to discover product ideas.
TRANSCRIPT TAS 258
TAS 258 : Product Discovery Story + 4 Questions to Ask Yourself to Help Discover Products
[00:00:03] Scott: Well, hey, hey what’s up everyone! Welcome to another episode of The Amazing Seller Podcast, this is episode number 258. Today I’m going to be sharing a story with you, a product discovery story, plus…[read more=”Read full transcript…” less=”Read less”]
I’m going to give you 4 questions to ask yourself that will help you discover products. I know this is a big thing for a lot of people and you get stuck and you start thinking to yourself like all the products out there have been taken and there is no way that I can find a product.
I want to share with you a little story because I think it will help you understand that even if you don’t have a product that’s 100% a home run or a huge success that you are going to learn and you’re going to grow from these different experiences that you have. All right and that’s what I really want you to take away like I said, I’ve got a couple of stories actually that I want to share with you my personal stories and how you can see, how you can just discover this by things you might already have in front of you that you don’t even know are there or you are not paying attention to.
All right so I want to share that with you. Before we jump into that, I did want to remind you depending on when you are listening to this, we are having a live event coming up in November. That’s 2016, November 5th and 6th we are calling it TAS Breakthrough Live. It’s going to be in Phoenix Arizona. Again that’s the 5th and the 6th of November it’s going to be at a beautiful resort and we’re having 2 days.
The first day, is going to be where we are going to have 30 Amazon sellers, where we are going to come together, we are going to have 10 hot seats. 30 people there but only 10 hot seats.
Everyone in the room though will be able to add to the conversation to help these 10 businesses but then help everyone because some of these situations… A lot of gold comes from these conversations because if someone is having a problem, there is usually a lot of other people having similar problems and it’s really awesome to be able to work through these together and break through these. That’s why we call it TAS Breakthrough Live and the last one we had was a total success.
[00:02:06] Scott: We are going to do it again and that’s day one. Now day 2 is going to be a little bit different, a little bit more advanced, a little bit next level. You can either come to one day or two days. It’s totally up to you. The second day is really going to be about how to build your business outside of Amazon, how to drive traffic, how to build a sales funnel. What is a sales funnel? How to go out and create your own channel.
This way here, if something happens to your Amazon channel it’s not the end of the world. It’s allowing you to build your own platform and that’s what day two is going to be. We are going to be actually taking you through some live examples, we are going to actually allow 20 people in that room, that day. Day one is going to be 30 people, the second day will 20 people. We are keeping it small because we want to really make this as a workshop would be.
Where we’re able to have everyone contribute but then also be able to walk through, step by step and really take your business and map it all out. As we map it out, it ‘really going to connect all the dots and when you leave, you’ll be able to create your own sales funnel. Maybe not even one, it might be two or three because there is multiple ones that we can create. We are going to show you and demo them exactly how that works.
We are going to be answering any questions but we are really going to be showing you exactly what to do, so that’s going to be really, really fun. If you want information about that or if you want to see if there is any tickets still available, head over to theamazingseller.com/live, again that’s the mazingseller.com/live. You can see if there is any tickets available. If not you get on the waitlist and if there is a cancellation, we’ll let you know or we’ll let you know of the next event when we have it.
This is going to be totally limited but it’s going to be totally awesome. If you’re going to make it I think you should and if you want to be around like-minded people and really kick out about this stuff that’s the place to be.
All right so, what are we going to talk about today? Well we are going to talk about, like I said in the beginning, product discovery. A lot of people want to know like even if you are not just starting, let’s say that you’ve already started but you are struggling with product one or two or maybe you just want to add another product, I want to go through some of these things you might not even be aware of. This way here you can really see these opportunities when they are in front of you. So, I can want to start though with a story, okay.
[00:04:17] Scott: That story is really going way back we are talking probably close to 10 years now when I wasn’t really doing much online. This was kind of like my first go -round with selling like, not a digital product, well it was a digital product. It was a digital/physical product. It was actually on CD then we went to DVD and you guys might have heard me talk a little bit about this, was me selling these Garage Band loops. Now if you have never had of Garage Band it’s an app for the Mac and it comes pre-loaded on your computer.
For those of you that don’t know, I am totally into guitars and drums and music in general. I’ve recorded before, I’ve been in bands that type of stuff, had the long hair the whole thing. It was a lot of fun and as I was starting figuring out this whole recording thing, Garage Band was part of it. I was also seeing that there was different things I needed inside of that. You could create plugins for that or you can have different sound effects or you can have these things call loops.
These loops are something like a very short very snippet of a beep or a guitar riff or whatever and then you can just keep extending that over and it will just keep looping but it will actually make music. It’s kind of hard to explain but it’s really a big piece of the recording industry nowadays. Not just Garage Band. Garage Band is more for the novice but there’s like pro tools, there is one called, that’s a really high level one, major recording studios use, but they all use loops.
Like rappers use loops, even regular bands use loops for mixing and for engineering, if they want layer tracks and all that stuff. Not to bore you with all that stuff but I was pretty much geeking out back then about it and I seen that I was wanting more loops. I wanted these music loops so I could create more backing tracks for my guitar. So that’s what I was looking for.
As I was looking for these I’m like I can probably make some of these record them, put them on a DVD, because that’s what I was doing. I was buying other people’s loops that they were making, and I’m like I can do this.
[00:06:22] Scott: So, let me go ahead and give it a try. Long story on that is, I went ahead I locked myself in a room for like three days, maybe longer and I just basically said I’m going to record 1000 loops because that’s usually what people are selling. It was 500 to 1,000 loops.
There were just all various different types of loops, it could have been guitar loop, it could have been a drum loop, it could have been a piano loop, it could have been acoustic guitar, electric guitar. It could have been a synthesizer, it could have been whatever.
So, I went ahead and I just, I hunkered down and I said I’m going to get this thing done and I did. Then I started selling them on eBay and I started selling them on eBay and back then you could sell digital downloads. I was just selling these digitally and I was selling them, I think at the time I started at like $29.97 because that was the going price and then I played around with maybe $19.97 and then $24.97 but I think we ended up selling at a regular clip between $25.97 and $29.97.
Again being introduced to this whole like kind of like digital world, I was like, “Holy crap. This is crazy.” It lasted for about six months and the eBay came out and said, “We are no longer going to offer digital downloads,” and I’m like, “Okay, now what?” “Well you have to ship something physical.” So, like okay I can give them a physical CD or DVD with these on it and then I can go ahead and still send them an email with the digital download, that way they get that but I’m still giving eBay what they want.
So, again I’m conforming, just like we do on Amazon, I’m conforming to eBay’s rules because I wanted to use the platform. I did that and we were selling two sometimes three, maybe even more four or five a day depending on the time of year. Around Christmas time or after Christmas we would do better because people would get the software for Christmas and then they would want loops after the fact. So, it wasn’t necessarily a fourth quarter thing, it was more or less a first quarter thing and it was working really well.
[00:08:13] Scott: I think I haven’t went back and looked in a long time but I think we were probably doing, I would probably say we probably generated over $20,0000 by selling those loops again something I just created through up there, didn’t do a lot of marketing behind it. To be honest with you, the thing just fizzled out a little bit because the software started to change, the loops had to be constructed a different way. So, I just you know I’m kind of done with it, I’m not going to go ahead and do it. I just lost interest in it and started focusing on my photography business and that type of stuff.
Let me now bring you to the next part of the story. I learned the eBay thing just by throwing something up and I just want to really highlight this, is I never would have known about Garage Band if I wasn’t using it. The opportunity of selling these Garage Band loops would have never even presented itself to me if I didn’t pay attention to that and if I didn’t start seeing on eBay that people were selling stuff.
It got my interest and really, kind of back up here, I’m thinking on the fly here, what got me interested in selling something that was digital on there on eBay was I bought stuff I believe it was Photoshop, I think it was templates on eBay and I’m like, “Holy crap!” Someone just basically made these things on Photoshop and then they went ahead and did this. I’m like, “That’s cool.”
That’s where I got the idea for the loops. Again, trying to retrace my steps as far as how it happened but as you see guys, it all happens like just by things that you are doing and things that you are trying it doesn’t necessarily means that it’s always going to work but it definitely has the opportunity if you are looking at what you are currently interested in.
Right now some of you might be interested in all these different things and that’s fine. Pay attention to those things and see if there is an opportunity there for you. Again I just looked and seen what I was doing and I seen that other people were selling similar digital things on eBay so I said, let me give it a shot. Did it and it taught me a lot about eBay by the way as well: titles, description, all of that stuff. I learned a lot and I had to adapt to their system.
[00:10:13] Scott: Now let’s first forward a little bit further. Started my photography business with my wife, we started getting a lot of requests for people asking, “Do you anybody that transfers 8 millimeter film?” I’m not talking about like the VHS or the 8 millimeter that went into the video camera, I’m talking about like the real to reel, like the stuff that our parents had in the 40’s, 50’s 60’s, even the 70’s film transfers.
We had some from my childhood too and I think I had tried to transfer at one time, long time ago and it just came out okay and you could hire companies to do this as well. Well, I started looking at a device that could do this so I could offer it to clients. Okay now brick and mortar business, my wife and I had a pretty successful, local photography business. You guys that have heard my whole story, if you haven’t, go back to episode 125 you’ll hear most of it there.
I’ll try to give you a pretty good high level view of what our journey looked like. I’m giving you a little bit more granular look today and some of the other things. My customers were always saying like, “Hey Scott you know we are trying to get this films transferred,” or even slides. Remember the old slides that you used to put in like a little carousel and then that was from our parents and then they would, one at a time you would sit up on a projector screen and then you’d advance to the next.
They wanted to put in these for weddings or they wanted to do it for maybe a funeral or they wanted to do it for all these different occasions and I’m like, “I don’t have these resources but I think I could probably figure it out.” I did, I figured it out and I’m like, “Okay cool, there’s these machines that you can buy out there and they were like $2,000/$3,000 back then.” All it really was, was some guy that was taking a projector and modifying it so it could transfer the film.
Not going into all the details but it was really just a way for you to capture the image on the film instead of just projecting it on a screen and then filming it. It was more direct off the emotion of the film script. Okay, so it was a really better image, it was more high def, all that stuff. It wasn’t really high def, it was as high def as it could have been back then.
[00:12:18] Scott: I had $2,000, it was the canon, the little mini DV tapes, really the last tapes that they had before they went to really digital stuff. That was the one I was transferring to and it was the best quality of its time at that time. I was like, “Okay cool, now I got to figure out how to convert this projector.” Now remember I was in the construction business for years, I’m petty handy, sometimes I don’t like to be because people know it and they’ll be like, “Hey Scott can you help me fix this sink?”
I’m like, “I kind of don’t do that anymore.” So, I’m kind of retired on that but I’m pretty handy I can reverse engineer, kind of look what’s been done and it wasn’t really rocket science, it was just kind of take this thing out of here, add this thing, add a dimmer switch, doing these different things. I also had to figure out what projectors I could take that were, “Oh these were all projectors,” and then I could refurbish them really and then modify them.
It’s like we really kind of modify them to be able to capture this film. Again not to bore you with it but just kind of give you the details. I did that, I bought one I stripped it down, I figured it out, I did some tests, it worked really good and I said, “Okay cool, what can I sell this for?” Well there is people at eBay now, doing similar, very similar to what I was doing and they were selling between $1,000 and $1,500.
I said I’m going to go ahead and I’ going to do maybe a starting bit of $497, 497 bucks and I went ahead and like the first time I did that I did that I let someone bid and I think I let it run for 7 days and they bid up to like $1,000. So, I’m like okay so, let’s go ahead and do this and I made one and again, to go back a little bit, I think it cost me, maybe $100, maybe 150 bucks to mod it to after I got my parts and after I bought my projector, sometimes a little less.
Then my time was probably about 4 hours to do my job and get it all done. I had about 4 hours in it and 150 bucks, not too bad.
[00:14:11] Scott: Again do the math, 1000 bucks. Let’s just say $150 yes I put 4 hours into it but I made over 800 bucks. Not too bad and a good little supplement to by business. Also what I did and this is kind of just another part of the story I was also then offering the service to my customers.
So, now customers would come in and they’d say, “Do you know anybody who does 8 millimeter film?” I’d say, “Yeah I do and then I would take their film and I would transfer.” Now that was another part of my business. Now you see we started with the photography business, actually we started with the photography business, we then went, we are doing everything under the sun just to get started. We soon found out that we didn’t like doing weddings so we stopped doing those.
We only started doing after that fact after we started figuring what we liked. We were doing newborn photography which my wife loved. We were doing family portraiture, we were doing first communions, we were doing senior pictures like kids senior pictures. We doing engagement shots, like that type of stuff. That’s what we specialized in.
Now all of a sudden we got people coming to us saying, do you transfer these old slides? Yes we do. “Okay well what do you charge?” “We charge 50 cents a slide,” and they’d have sometimes 300, 400 slides to transfer and we’d add additional up sales again, you guys know how up sales work.
We’d add music, we’d add transitions, all these stuff. Again this was part of my business but I had also seen that other people either wanted to do this either for themselves for the video or they wanted to use it as a business onto their existing business.
Do you see where I am going with this? Now all of a sudden I’ve got my own business that I’m transferring films and then I’m also selling the unit that I’m doing this with on eBay and kind of to fast forward a little bit, I started selling this, where I wasn’t doing a bid system. I was doing it now buy now, like buy it now price, there was no bidding and I was selling them between $897 and $997 depending on what I was feeling at the time.
[00:16:12] Scott: I was selling a minimum of one a week, sometimes two/three a week. Now the problem came as that I had to build these things. I had to tell some people it would take sometimes four to five, six weeks before I can make it. The problem that I found out after I started doing this too is then you had operational like manual type stuff that you had to give people on how to operate it. I had to create a little video to show them how to use it.
Then I had to show them like a step by step into a little manual that I created. Again it was all learning stuff but I had to figure that out through that process. Again just showing you that this was an opportunity that came out of the blue because people were asking me for it and I was aware of it and then I started to piggyback on both sides of it. The record of that year that I sold in one year for those projectors was over $40,000.
$40,000 of projectors, that’s 40 projectors that I sold in that one year, that first year that I did that. I was also then starting to find out there was customer service stuff that I needed to deal with. I had people calling me like, “This thing is sticking, this isn’t working.” Then I started saying to myself, “Do I really want to keep doing this?” I got to still keep buying the inventory as far as building these things. Again, as an entrepreneur I started seeing other things and that’s where I said, “Okay I’m still doing this and I’ll do it but it’s going to very much on my terms.”
Now my next thing was I started looking at selling my photography expertise online. Showing people how to get started and that’s how I transitioned into that. Again, there’s so much that goes into just seeing what’s happening internally like almost doing like an internal audit on like what people are asking you, depending if you are in a business right now. If you are in a business right now, there’s probably people asking you about certain things that you might not offer.
Are those things that you can offer? Or are those things that you can create products and then sell them externally? Not even offer maybe but maybe externally you can start offering them. I just wanted to share that story in particular, well the Garage Band loop one that’s pretty good, the projector one $40,000 in 12 months, that’s pretty good.
[00:18:19] Scott: Not bad for doing it on the side and I was already running my photography business and my film transfer business. Now to let you guys know too, on the film transfer stuff I was getting pretty big with that, that I was actually doing it for people that were charging in their own storefronts. We had a place near us that was transferring film for people as a business and I was doing the work for them as a subcontractor so I was not even dealing with the customer, I was just taking the work. I’d go in once a week, I’d pick up the films, I transfer and bring them back in a week, I get paid.
I was doing that as well. Again just to illustrate this guys I’ve worked my butt off in a lot of different areas. Now these are the things that I’ve done that have kind of worked. There’s been other ones that haven’t worked. There’s been businesses that we’ve thought about starting and then started them and then said that’s probably, I’m not really sure I want to do that. The same thing happens with products. You might start a product and be like, “Ahh.” Well I’ll tell you one right now.
I used to flip houses. I did that a few times, “Ahh, not for me.” Just wasn’t for me. I was in the construction business, I had a lot of connections, I just didn’t like the responsibility of it. I made money at it, not a ton but I made some money but I soon found out I don’t want to go down that road, just don’t want to. Does that mean that I won’t ever invest in someone else that’s doing that and maybe just give them some money and then have them just give me a percentage? Yeah I might think about just doing that.
I know how it works, I know what it takes but it doesn’t mean that I’m going to go down that road. Again I just wanted to share that with you because some of you may be sitting on something right now that you aren’t even aware of, you aren’t even aware of it right now and by me, hopefully sharing this with you can start to be a little bit more aware and see that you might be sitting on something right now.
A perfect example of this is my microwave repairmen who I shared that recently on a past episode where…
[00:20:13] Scott: I actually did a periscope on it not too long ago where my microwave repair man came in and I got talking to him and real smart guy. He is in here trading hours for dollars and I asked him, I said, “You know there is a lot of these parts that you’re buying like I’ve seen them come into my house, do you want the part on eBay?” Which is kind of funny.
He takes that out of the package, no special packaging, he tears it open, he throws it in the part, he sees if it works. That’s it, that’s what he does. I asked myself him, “Have you ever thought about selling parts?” He was, “Yeah I actually do, I sell a couple of parks. I make them myself.”
It was like these little cable things, I don’t even know what it is, little transmitter thing. He goes, “Yeah I make, I buy the parks in bulk and I make them and I sell them on eBay for like 13 bucks,” because I’ve been selling them for like 2 or 3 years I think I made like $20,000 on those.
I said, “Well why don’t you sell them on Amazon?” He goes, “I’ve been thinking about it but they want you to have a UPC code and stuff like that.” The light bulb in my head went out and I’m like maybe I should ask this guy if he wants to partner and maybe I can help him in the Amazon side of things and take a cut of the business. You guys have had me say too, I’ve got to start saying no to more things because when I say yes, it means I have to do more and I have more responsibility and it’s hard when you see the opportunities there, there is a ton of opportunity.
I want you to ask yourself these 4 questions. I want to walk you through these right now. Okay, get ready, I want you to ask these questions. You can ask yourself these questions or you can ask yourself now or you can ask yourself later, you can go back to the show notes they’ll be there for you as well. The episode of this one is 258 so the amazingseller.com/258.
All right so, here is the question, number one, what are you good at? Like right now ask yourself what are you good at? You might be saying I’m not good at anything, you are good at something and I’m going to tell how you know if you are good at something. Do people ask you questions about something in particular? There is got to be things that your friends or family or people that you run into they asked you about something, I know there is. So, you ask yourself that question, like what do you good at? Like what do people go to you for?
[00:22:15] Scott: Do you find yourself answering questions to people that ask you these certain questions or they call you up because they know you are the person that knows about this. If you are in the heating and cooling business I’m guarantying you are getting people at a party or maybe they know that you do it and they call you up and they go, “I’m having a little problem here with my thing it’s making this certain noise, do you know what that is?” Then you answer the question.
Well you might want to look into heating and cooling parts, you might want to look into heating and cooling like help guides or eBooks or a way for people to pick a new heating and cooling unit or what happens, what are the 10 most common things that are the reason why your air conditioning fails in the summer? Something like that. Then there’s parts that breakdown that are very small little parts that you could be offering, this is just one example.
Maybe you are the best fisherman in your area, people ask you all the time. I’ll give you an example, again this is coming right off the top of my head guys. I was at a party over the weekend and there was a gentleman there, that I heard say he was the host of a party and he had like 12, 15 different fishing poles, he had tackle boxes, 5 tackle boxes and I’m just getting back into the fish. I got a little pond in my backyard so I’m going to start doing a little bit more fishing.
I said to him, “Hey what’s your best tip on how to get a large mouth bass on your hook? What kind of bait are you using? I hear rubber worm, I’m hearing maybe spitter bait. Like what do you…?” He goes, “I’ll tell you what I like.” He went through the whole thing and he was very excited about it, he was so passionate about it. Guess what I could almost guarantee you, actually I know it, I guarantee you he is not capitalizing on that knowledge. You know what, maybe he doesn’t have the time to capitalize on it.
If you were me that might be someone you can tap into because that person would love to talk about it. They would love to give the information and it comes so effortlessly. If can talk here. Those are the people that you can help because they might not have the time but they have the knowledge and then you can piggyback off that.
[00:24:17] Scott: Or maybe that’s you, maybe you are that person. Maybe you are listening to this and you’re like, “Yeah Scott. I can help you catch that largemouth bass. I know all about that.” Why aren’t you looking into that market? Why aren’t you looking at products there? Hell hack.
I just went to the store the other day I just spend $20 on 4 lures for fishing. I don’t know anything about those things but I know people are buying them, I did. Guess what, I get to hang it up on a tree I lose it, I lost 5 bucks, I got to go back and buy another one and they do it all day long. $5 it’s cheap there is some that are out there like 10-12 bucks okay. Again what are you good at? Ask yourself that question. A way to find that out is what people ask you about? Do you find yourself answering questions often and if you do, you are good at that okay?
Number two, what are you interested in learning more about? Like I said, I’m getting back into fishing. I’m a little interested in that right now. If you know something about fishing you’re going to have my ear. I’m going to be sitting there talking to you about fishing because I want to learn more about fishing. Now I know I’m probably going to get a bunch of emails people telling me if they could help me fish. Right and that’s cool. Help me catch a largemouth bass I’ll take a picture of it and I’ll give you credit.
Fishing in a pond by the way too. I’m going to be getting back into golf. I haven’t started yet, having went down that road. I used to go years ago with my father before I had kids then I lost interest because I had the kids and I was taken on their sports and stuff but I’m getting ready into it. I got a golf course really, really close. Is that something that you are interested in? What are you interested in? What’s really getting you fired up? What do you think about, like you get excited about?
That’s number two. What are you interested in learning more about?
Okay number three, what are your kids or friends kids into right now? I’ll give you an example. My daughter just started piano, we got a new piano, she just started piano lessons.
[00:26:13] Scott: That was a whole thing. We had to look at the different things about pianos. I learned a ton about piano’s by researching what a good piano is? What’s a good starter piano? All of that stuff.
Maybe that’s something that you are passionate about, maybe you’re a music teacher. You got a lot of knowledge there. Volleyball that’s where she starting too we signed her up for volleyball, that’s what she wants to do. Now, we are going to start learning more about volleyball. My other daughter played volleyball but we haven’t done it in a few years we are going to get back into it. We need accessories, we need to learn more about it.
My other daughter, my older daughter she is getting married. Well that’s whole another thing you guys know that so there is a whole market there. When there’s people that are, maybe you’re going to meet people through that process and then you can say this person knows a lot more about setting up the wedding or planning for the wedding, maybe that’s someone that you are going to be able to partner with.
Then my other example here is my son. He’s starting now to really get serious about working out which I’m really excited about because I got a pretty good passion for that. He is getting really into that so I get to talk to him about that stuff and he is actually doing some research himself and he is coming back with some information. He is also really into basketball because that’s what he’s going to want to go into college and play and he wants to obviously expand his career there or make his career a little bit longer by playing college basketball.
Those are two big things that he is into. Again I’m into it right now because I have to be, he’s my kid. I’ve got piano, I’ve got volleyball, I’ve got my daughter is getting married, I’ve got my son is working out more, he is playing basketball that’s just a few, just throwing a few out there. I’ve got a bunch more stuff that’s going on in my life. Again what are your kid or your friend’s kids into right now? Okay. Again it’s a way that we can discover products and markets or markets and products.
Now the fourth one, do you have friends or neighbors, who have a skill that could help you launch a product? Whether it’s just you hearing about and going, “Mmhh I’m looking into that.” Then you go, you do a little bit of research, you fire out jungle scouts, you start digging into this thing.
[00:28:15] Scott: You never would have known it, if you didn’t know that your neighbor was talking about this certain thing. I got an example here in a minute, I’m going to share with you on how this just happened. It’s actually happened multiple times since I moved which is crazy. Ask yourself, do you have friends or neighbors that have a skill that could help you launch a product?
If not right now, you might discover that and when you do you’re going to be prepared now because you’re going to go, “Scott just reminded me that, episode 258 Scott taught me that.” That’s what I want to do here for you guys. I want you to just to be more aware.” So many people say, “Scott I can’t find a product or I can’t find a market.” This is a way to really see that I started with Garage Band loops, I’d sold projectors, I also turned that into a side business in my photography business, I learned that my microwave repair man made $20,000 on a little part that he makes from eBay.
It’s everywhere. The opportunities are there. You just can’t go after the next silicon gloves for the grill or this spatula. You can’t do that. That’s the quickest way to fail not saying you can’t do it and maybe make some sales but it’s going to be a hard, hard road. All right so people say, “Scott is Amazon too saturated, is it too late?” It’s not too late. You just gotta find the market and then the products that serve the market. This is a great way to that.
Understand too that just by you launching products is also going to help you learn through the process. If I had never would have launched the Garage Band loops, I never would have understood that there was a possibility of me selling products online, digitally and physically. I did both of them with the loops and the same thing with the physical product with selling a projector.
A used projector that I modified that I made to transfer 8 millimeter film was able to generate $40,000 in revenue in 12 months and a lot of it was profit because I only paid $150 per unit and a little bit of an eBay fee, 12 months.
[00:30:15] Scott: That’s going back before Amazon was even around. It might have been around but it wasn’t like it is now. Again those things led me to where I am now. It also opened up my eyes to other possibilities. I want to give you guys some other things to think about, just some little bonus tips here. When you meet new people, be very, very aware. Be aware be a good listener. Don’t just sit there and talk about yourself. I know we all like to talk about ourselves but try to listen and really understand what they’re good at.
It’s a possible partnership for you or even just an idea for you. Again I want to give you just a really, really quick story on this. I’ve got a few new neighbors and luckily they’re all great as of right now. Everything is great. One neighbor, really smart woman, my wife just went for a walk with her the other day. She’s like, “Scott she’s so smart.” You would never… Not that she acts like she’s not smart, she just doesn’t make you feel like she’s smarter than you. Have you ever been with someone and you’re like, they’re really smart they’re intelligent. They’re probably more intelligent than me but they don’t make me feel like they’re smarter than me. Have you ever felt like that? She so down to earth because she’s just so normal but yet she doesn’t make you feel that way.
She goes, “She’s got some really good ideas.” She’s got this one idea that she’s actually been wanting to do because she had a problem with this condition. She took something that was already selling and she modified it and it works so much better. But guess what? She has no idea how to launch that product. She has no idea about FBA, private labeling, she has no idea. She thinks she’s going to have to make these things by hand and then sell one at a time. Which she’s already done a few through people that have asked for them.
[00:32:16] Scott: She has no idea that she could then have someone make these and pack them and then she can ship them into Amazon. Like no idea. When my wife was talking to her about this, she was just blown away and so excited. Which who wouldn’t be right? She has something, it’s like a cure, in a sense to a problem. I don’t want to give it away but she has something that totally could work for a lot of people. All of this is a modification to a product and she’s very knowledgeable about it. She could be the spokesperson for it. Again, I was thinking to myself, could be an opportunity but again Scott is it a hell yes or is it a, “Mhh I can’t really right now because I don’t have the time but I could guide her a little bit.” Not sure yet where we’re going to be there, I got some ideas.
Again never would have know this, my wife didn’t go on that walk and start learning more about her and hearing about this stuff. Another example is one of our friends here that actually was one of our friends before we moved here. We met her through the move, another long story. Now we’re really good friends with her. We didn’t realize it either, she’s got a really, really popular blog with an email list and everything but she had no idea about selling on Amazon or her own products. She was just really affiliate marketing, basically having ads displayed on her blog and making a little bit of money there. Then when I started talking to her about what she could do, boom, she’s just like so excited.
Then I start drilling down, like, “What are you really passionate about? What is your wheel house?” Then she started talking about the one thing that she wished that she could do. I said, “You can do it.” She’s in the process right now of launching a product on Amazon. Again, never would have happened if we didn’t have the conversation and we didn’t talk. We got to really figure out where her strength was. I never would have thought about that market because I wasn’t into it. The last one is today is, actually just happened this morning. My wife went on another walk with a neighbor… It’s funny my wife’s got a bunch of walking buddies now which is really cool and I’m so happy for her, it’s awesome.
[00:34:21] Scott: She met this lady the other day at the pool and then they said, “Well, let’s take a walk together.” They took a walk and come to find out her husband’s I guess an entrepreneur, works from home. Similar to me, I think he does a little podcasting, him and I are going to meet up here eventually. That ought to be pretty fun because we’ve got a lot in common. It would be interesting to see where that can go. Pretty exciting but also she’s a dietician, she’s a fitness fanatic and she’s talked about, “I just put stuff up on Instagram, just to hold myself accountable and stuff. I’ve done some product consulting with dietician type stuff. I’ve got kids right now, I’m not really looking to get into that stuff right now because I just don’t have the time.”
But boom, light bulb went off on me. I’m like dietician, a fitness person, who knows, maybe she’d come up with her own supplement. Maybe she’d come up with her own fitness program. Who knows, it’s a resource that’s there that I could either help or I could get inspired by. I wouldn’t know this if my wife didn’t have that conversation with her and listened. Now my wife is a lot like me where we see opportunity because we’ve been through this so many times. Just be aware and be willing and wanting to meet new people. Listen to the people that you’ve already been associated with because you just never you never know. It’s so important.
Here’s what I want you to do. I want you to go through those four questions. Really quickly I’m going to go ahead and read them again to you real quick.
Number one, what are you good at? Two, what are you interested in learning more about? Three, what are your kids or friends’ kids into right now? Four, do you have friends or neighbors who have a skill that can help you launch a product? Ask yourself those four questions. Again these will be on the show notes. The transcripts will be there as well, theamazingseller.com/258. Definitely go check them out. The last thing that I would say is do an internal audit of your own interests and connections and see if there’s a partnership opportunity there.
[00:36:17] Scott: Just do that. Really sit down, pad and paper. Again guys you hear me talk about this a lot, pad and paper is like my ultimate tool. Sit down, no phone and just brain dump. Dump it down on paper. If you put it pad and paper you have a lot less chance of losing it than if you put it in some type of text doc somewhere. Put it on a pad and paper, write it down and you’ll be surprised. Do an internal audit of your own interests and connections and see if there’s any partnership opportunities. Again you can take those four questions that I gave you, write them down as well and just start writing out. You’ll be amazed at what you can do. Just understand that when you find something, whether it’s a homerun, a single, a bunt or even a strike out, you’re going to learn through the process.
If you don’t actually do something you’ll never learn something. Try to remember that. Do that internal audit. Again I’ve done this multiple times and every time I go back, I’m like, “Wow, that’s pretty interesting how that all kind of tied together.” Garage Band loops, who would have thought. I never would have did that if I wasn’t into music. The projectors, I never would have did that if I didn’t get the questions from people asking me to do the job and then me researching the tool or a projector to do the transfer and then seeing, oh my gosh, there’s people buying these for $1,500 or $2,000. Maybe I could make them and sell them because there’s nothing really being done in a factory, these are done by hand.
I took advantage of that opportunity and it added a little bit of revenue to our bottom-line for those years that I did that. Now, I wanted you to just again understand that the information that you learn through this process is knowledge. That knowledge will help you forever. Forever, understand that.
[00:38:11] Scott: Yes, you might not be getting paid today but once you learn that information, like me right now let’s say I take one of my neighbors up on one of their strengths and we create this product brand and I’m like 50% ownership of this thing now. Would I ever have been able to do that if I didn’t already have my experience up till now?
Or maybe I’m just going to coach people. Maybe I’m just going to say, “You know what I’m just going to charge people to advise them and give them a clear path on what they can do with their knowledge.” Each person that I just talked about I could clearly do. I got three people right now that I could lay out a plan for them and say, “There’s the plan now go get it done. If you do that plan you’ve got a really good chance of succeeding.” Because it’s everything that I’ve done in the past. I’ve learned through the experience, I understand what it takes so that’s knowledge. You can have that same knowledge which you kind of have it already right now because you’re listening to the podcast.
A lot of you have been listening to it for a very long time. You have a lot more knowledge than a lot of people out there in this space. Not just Amazon, I’m talking building a brand and a business mindset. Whether it’s digital product, whether it’s physical product. You guys can see how fired up I get about this stuff because people complain there’s not enough opportunity out there. There’s more than enough opportunity. Sometimes there’s more. A lot of times for me there’s too much. There’s so many different things that I can do. It’s where you got to say, time out, what is a hell yes and what is a no. You got to stick with the hell yeses or else you’re going to get sidetracked. That’s another topic.
Just understand everything that I just went through here, if you go through this, you might want to listen to this a couple of times. You definitely want to download the transcripts because there’s’ a lot of, to me, useful information here that you can use that will benefit you for years. Not just launch a product and you’re done. If you guys want to know more about the product research side of things, now if you guys are brand new you might not have already heard those episodes, that’s episode 161 and 56.
[00:40:15] Scott: You can either get them on the show notes or you can go to the direct link of theamazingseller.com/161 or theamazingseller.com/56. The reason why I point that out is because once you hear something of an idea, you might want to then run home, get on your computer, fire up Google Chrome, go to Amazon then type in the product or a product similar to it, then run a Jungle Scout search on it and see if there’s any depth or demand there right now. In those two episodes, that’s what I go through. It’s like finding the depth and demand. First off you got to get the idea, you got to get the inspiration.
Hopefully guys you enjoy this. I know I went a little bit on a tangent there. But I’m really, really passionate about this and I think by you seeing the path that I’ve gone down, and so many others have. If you were to retrace people’s steps of where they started from years ago, to where they are now, there’s no overnight success. It landed them from one place to the other because they did something and they learned something and then they adapted to another market place or another opportunity.
I just wanted again to share this with you. Hopefully it’s been beneficial to you. Hopefully you learnt something. Hopefully you’re inspired, hopefully you’re motivated and hopefully you’re ready to get out there and do something and listen. If you do, let me know about it, I want to hear.
All right guys so that is it. That is going to wrap up this episode. Hopefully you enjoyed it, hopefully you’re going to go out there and do something and just remember, I’m here for you, I believe in you and I’m rooting for you but you have to, you have to… Come on say it with me, say it loud, say it proud. I can’t do it for you, “Take action.” Have an awesome amazing day and I’ll see you right back here on the next episode.
LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
- www.TheAmazingSeller.com/LIVE – find out more about the LIVE event.
- www.TheAmazingSeller.com/125 – Scott’s journey episode
- www.TheAmazingSeller.com/56 OR www.TheAmazingSeller.com/151 – for product research episodes
- www.TheAmazingSeller.com/js – Scott’s affiliate link to Jungle Scout
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