Eric Stopper 4:50
yeah. Tell them to shut that down because we need some word of mouth fire and to get it going. Now, let’s let’s dig into the weeds a little bit. I want to talk about the company because I feel like you guys are running a really good shop that does a lot of good. But you mentioned the critical importance of screening and tracking your customers behavior through technology to initiate triggers to positively impact conversion, engagement and retention and of course cash flow and lifetime value. I mean, there’s a lot of folks that talk about tagging customers using facebook pixel tracking through storefronts and just like getting to know who it is that’s actually buying your products. And I honestly I’ve played with all these tools and I haven’t found one that’s like that really nails it tells me Look, Jon, in California is shopping on my Amazon page right now. What is Jon doing? What is Jon care about? How old is Jon right? Like I haven’t really found something that does all those things. And I’m wondering how granular Can I get with this on ZonGuru tools, how much information Can I know about my customers and their behavior?
Jon Tilley 6:04
Yeah, that’s that’s a massive thing to unpack. And I think it is in a market as well. That’s the Mecca. Right. So, I’m glad you kind of gravitated towards that. I think that the short answer is, is at a high level where, you know, as an Amazon seller per se, we’re not there yet where we can track our customers behavior to the degree that we want to but there’s a whole bunch of stuff that can really be done right. And I think that there’s even more data than we possibly could access right now. And it’s about making sure that you’ve accessing the right things and interpreted and using it for actual your business so well, how I can relate to that and I guess, you know, that there’s there’s the Amazon seller and what data they can get from the customers right through Facebook and democrat Ethics and you know, third party demographics and really understanding the customer. And then on the other side is me as a CEO of a software company, and how we track our users, specifically in a subscription model, which is how can we look at the engagement metrics, the retention metrics, and of course, the cancellation metrics and how we can track our user behavior and understand Hey, when they are doing X, Y, or Z or not doing x y&z What does that mean for our customer? Are we actually ever got a brand ambassador and someone who’s really engaged or do we have someone who is about to cancel, right? So you know, our software per se doesn’t fall for our end customer and Amazon seller doesn’t necessarily give them more access to data around the behavior of their customer. But certainly I can speak to from our customers and how we track them and what we do with them.
Eric Stopper 7:57
So you mentioned engagement metric tricks. You know, I’m an Amazon seller, you’re an Amazon seller, what can I look at? I mean, is there a special report that I can run that? That gives me customer engagement metrics? I don’t I don’t know what that looks like, and I want it bad. Right. I want to know how well people are engaging with my, with my listings, is that just click through rate? Is it impressions? How do you track customer engagement on Amazon?
Jon Tilley 8:26
Yeah, I think I think the unfortunately the only the only access we really have is the is the PPC search term report. I think I think that’s one of the the from an Amazon perspective, that gives you the most access to your you know, what keywords are our customers searching? What conversion metrics are there, what what engagement is happening around your listing? So I think that’s, you know, probably from Amazon’s perspective, the the report that will give us most insight into that now you know, I would venture further is if you truly wanting to understand your customer, you need to be doing some some off of Amazon marketing to get an insight into who your customer actually is. So obviously Facebook is a great one for that understanding the demographics of your your your Facebook customer now Now we do we do add to that and the way that we connect a lot of Amazon sellers to you know to Facebook demographics is through a facebook pixel. So through emails that customers receive, there’s ways that you can add your facebook pixel so you can build that look alike audience and understand a little bit more of your customer. But I think I think the advice I would give for for any amazon seller is reporting on night understand who your advertisers understand, truly understand who your customer is, and and that avatar, and the more you can understand them the more you can connect with them on an emotional level which will help with your conversion. So your brand and everything else. So Yeah, I’m you know, there’s different metrics but uh, but I think that a lot of the work upfront needs to be done around the emotional understanding of your customer. And once you understand that you can you can bet your product to suit them.
Eric Stopper 10:14
Yeah, I’m wondering, for for somebody like me and there’s a lot of folks that listen to our podcasts that are just like one is a one man, one woman shop just selling products on Amazon crushing it kinda. And for those situations, it has to come from me, right, I have to do the demographic information, I have to like, make my assumptions and go through a list of what I think my, my, my core customer looks like. whose responsibility should that be in like a larger organization is it should that come from the very top right, the CEO and cmo sit down and talk about all the different customers and what they look like is that just from the marketing team, is it just from the sales team, I want to help our listeners really like Be cohesive and the way they’re approaching this issue because I agree 100%, the more you know about your customer, before you do anything, the better that you’re going to do, and you’re targeting in the way that you set up your listings. And so, where should that come from? What’s kind of like the best advice that you would give to these organizations as they start this journey of customer self discovery?
Jon Tilley 11:22
I think from a larger organization perspective, the answer is it should it should, to degree be influenced by everyone in the organization. Right. I think the responsibility is the marketing department but from from my history or experience of being in marketing, because you know, I have a long advertising background. So this was this was a lot that we did. The brands that was most successful, were very clear on the avatar, so much so that they would have a board in their office with a picture of exactly who that avatar is with a name. With you know, just characteristics with a deep description of exactly who that person is or, you know, the three or four different avatars that they have, and exposing it at that level allows, you know anybody to have the ability to influence or comment on what that is. But I think that you know, I see that so much now with with anybody who’s launching an Amazon business. This if you don’t do the work upfront, to understand who your avatar is, and and truly know through Google surveys, even through tools that we have, which really look at customer we have a tool called love hate, which which looks at all the customer reviews for, you know, for a product, and then we’ll, you know, visualize that in positive and negative reviews and what is the sentiment? What are people like, what do they hate, you know, all of these kind of tools. If you don’t do that up front, your journey down the road is much More difficult because you’re brand new could be off your coffee could be off. The way that you can help with your conversion rate up front can be off, and then you’re just an uphill battle. So it goes all the way back right back to the beginning is if you if you get, you know, garbage in, you get garbage out, you need to make sure you’ve got the right information up front.
Eric Stopper 13:17
That that love. Hey, I heard you talk about that on another podcast. The the point of the tool is to aid the conversion side of things, right? Is that the idea? Or is it to find keywords that people are searching for? Like, what’s the main objective of using the love hate tool?
Jon Tilley 13:36
That’s exactly the point of that is to understand your customer, who is your customer? You know, what, what emotionally Do they like or hate about a specific product category? And number two, what are they What are they, you know, components wise, product wise, product attributes wise? What are their level headed by the category and, and obviously, one of the places to start is, is what do people write about that in the space. It’s like a social listening tools to degree
Eric Stopper 14:01
Yeah, a social listening tool. So I, I have, I have some students that I that I teach, and I let them manage some smaller Amazon accounts too. And several of them use ZonGuru and they and they really like it and one of them try it out the tool and use the love hate sentiment tool. And what they found was that Amazon sellers, when they’re creating their listings are are pretty awful at identifying the feature benefit kind of phraseology because their customers in the reviews, it’s just across the board, right? Easy to use or fits as expected, right kind of really simple gauges of of success and product quality, and they’re nowhere to be found. So I’m thinking if I’m to use the love hate tool, I would want to sit down and I would want to look at what my title is. My first few pictures is telling the customer about the product based on those those love hate sentiment. Is it just a it’s a list of, of words that come out? How is it viewed? Is it a word
Jon Tilley 15:13
cloud? Or does it work out? Yeah, it’s working. Yeah. So it takes all the reviews and puts them together. Yeah. So so you know, I think a lot you know, in this may be going back back a few months, but, you know, typically what a seller would do is, is literally reverse look up someone else’s listing or copy someone else’s listing in the spouse use that lazy, they all look the same and act the same. And, and I think if you fundamentally understand that Amazon’s algorithm is based on you know, they will go where they can make the most money which is really tied to conversion rate. Your answer is there you know, you need to look at things differently and be able to put together an Amazon page, put your products on there, your listing, with all the other products on there, and say Hey, Mr. Jones, you know, which product would you actually go for? Right right here. And if they don’t pick yours 90% of the time you’ve got work to do. Right. So, yeah, that’s absolutely one of the, one of the key things.
Eric Stopper 16:14
Now you’ve, you’ve talked a lot about finding a niche within a niche. And I and I love that and i and i completely 100% agree, and your tool gages level of competition and like levels of revenue within the category. I and I want to get to more of the details of how that works, but I’m really curious how how ZonGuru has applied that same, that same logic to your business is is there a niche within a niche that ZonGuru specifically is is addressing in terms of servicing Amazon sellers? Because I feel like it’s you know, when I hear about people talking Thinking around software like, Oh, I don’t know if I should use this or this. They all seem like they kind of fall in the same bucket. And I haven’t been able to clearly, like, categorize these different brand owners, except on things like level of revenue that they have and the amount of skews that they have. Is there a specific niche that you guys are targeting in terms of Amazon brands?
Jon Tilley 17:24
Are you talking about our actual type of customer that we want to target? Or are you talking about you know, our positioning?
Eric Stopper 17:31
Oh, I’m, I’m I’d like to ask about both definitely. Yeah. Because the I think the position depends a lot on the customer that that we’re Yeah, that that we target. So I guess the first one would be, you know, who is the customer and then what do you what do you tell to them? What’s the message that you’re delivering to them? Yeah.
Jon Tilley 17:54
Our niche within a niche in terms of our customer and I guess our golden customer Is that seller who is creating always wanting to create a sustainable long term private label business that is ultimately a brand you know, you get different types of Amazon sellers arbitrage people who are what we call more of the monkeys which are just wanting to, you know, compete against people in a very high demand category with not much differentiation and trying to bring in some, you know, offside traffic and just going all crazy and just trying to, you know, hustle. And and ultimately, you know, our end customers who we truly believe in and who we passionate about, which is that person who has thought about creating that purple cow and if you’ve read Seth Godin book but you know the purple cow that the brand that stands out from the from the rest, that has true differentiation, that is that is really thought smart smartly about how I can bring more value to a customer through my differentiation But really thought about it’s, you know, from an entrepreneurs perspective of, you know, pricing, you know, might not be the cheapest, it might be more expensive, but truly differentiating their product and building a moat around their product in their brand. And then scaling that with adding brands to that over time that is our ultimate customer. And ultimately, who we want to support because we’re passionate about it, I think that’s, that’s truly one of the best gifts that we have, in today’s age have been able to create a brand in quite easy and scaling to wealth. So I think I think that’s you are unleashes and who we support and, you know, when they look at our data, they nod their head and they’re like, Okay, this makes sense, like the way that they’ve defined or validate this product idea is based on that so you know, that’s truly who our customers those people who want to hustle and arbitrage or you know, bringing, you know, Black Hat tactics or great tactics or whatever that’s not I’m not interested in it. Yeah.
Unknown Speaker 20:00
Yeah, that makes sense. So it sounds like
Eric Stopper 20:05
people who who want to diversify and build something long term reduce their risk and something that can that can scale as quickly as possible. That’s kind of the bread and butter of ZonGuru. Absolutely
Jon Tilley 20:17
Yeah. And and you know we get to add this but added benefits of just seeing and hearing the stories of how people have freed themselves from you know financial freedom you know, and and Bolton amazing business and that’s just amazing to see. Yeah.
Eric Stopper 20:34
Right on, can you can you give me an example of someone that’s really crushed? It was longer?
Jon Tilley 20:40
Yeah, there’s this hundreds I think, you know, we we have personal relationships with a lot of our customers and their stories from Yo, woman, a woman who was married who, you know, you know, got divorced. Didn’t know where to look how to turn, who to rely on, had kids and, you know, jumped into the Amazon space and through connections with us and building a product year or two later is absolutely, you know, a seven figure a year seller supporting her best life and her family and you know, just just grown so i think you know, clearly a lot of that is circumstance but you know, when you really focus on it, you can have any background, any life situation, any education, any, any anything. But as long as you know that this at the end of the day is a relatively simple business, right? And if you focus and you apply the principles that we teach, and you just are consistent with it every single day and really put your your hundred percent effort into it, you will absolutely have an amazing business in a few years. And you can do it for sure. So we see a lot of those, every single everything
Eric Stopper 22:00
Do you? Do you happen to remember what her brand was called? Let’s give her a shout out.
Jon Tilley 22:05
Yes, but it’s probably not worth disclosing. I know. I know people. People get a little. Okay
Eric Stopper 22:10
about that. So it’s all good. Yeah, no worries. If we, if she’s down for let us know, we’ll put we’ll put her in the opener in the notes to the show. So I saw I saw a video you guys are doing? Like this 20 $20 million. Next product challenge. Yeah, yeah, can you can you tell me a little bit about that? I watched the video and I, I’m ready to register. But I’m trying to figure out it’s like a five video series that helps you select the product. Give me Give me the details on this.
Unknown Speaker 22:43
Yeah, I think
Jon Tilley 22:46
ultimately, the training series was just saying, you know, how do you going back to the point of saying, you need to find a niche within a niche right. And Amazon is so, so much more of a sophisticated marketplace today. sophisticated sellers, sophisticated listings, much more traffic, big brands playing in that space. And if you go back to who our core customers, which is that person wanting to create a million dollar business, in a private label capacity, those opportunities are there, you know, in massive amounts, because you’re ultimately selling a product where you have 350 million people buying products, right. But what you need is you need data and data visualization to actually pull back some of those layers to find that niche within a niche. And it’s that smaller, less competitive, you know, opportunity that you can grab on to that you can create a moat around. And that absolutely in today’s age will be a million dollar business for you, but you have to be able to find it. And so that training really starts with with using some of our product research tools, which are we’ve actually just launched a brand new one called the niche finder which ultimate is a product database type of tool, but anybody who’s in the space, you know, uses product database tools that that are that are in place for some of the bigger subscription businesses, or software businesses. And you’re, you’re typically finding similar products every single day finding non relevant products, are you finding these lists and lists of products and you just kind of don’t know where to start. And we’ve kind of shifted that onto its head and made it a much more keyword driven process where we’re literally showing you products that Amazon sellers are typing into Amazon right now that they’re looking for, and it’s very fluid. And every day, you know, there’s a bunch of different products their way that you can filter it. And you’ll see as you use that tool, you know, within 20 seconds, you’ll have four or five ideas that you’ve never ever thought of. So, but it’s about, you know, how do you use data to really find the right product idea, and then how do you move it from that to obviously sourcing the products, we’ve just launched a brand new partnership with alibaba.com, they’ve realized that private label and the brand side of e commerce is is a place where they want to be and connect with them. They put out a pitch to a bunch of different software companies that ultimately they ended up choosing us for that. And they partnered with us to help our customers find the best of the best suppliers, for for, for creating private label businesses, so you know, it’s going to their prices, and then obviously, the listing and the launch focus which launching is absolutely critical these days and, and being able to understand what keywords compete on Where are my competitors competing on? Where do they rank? How do I actually visually see where the pockets and opportunities are? And how do I target the right keywords that I think I can actually hit to get to page one. That is something you can absolutely solve right now before we even have a product. And it’s really important to do that up front to give you the confidence to launch your product. So takes you through that. And then obviously scaling so it touches on every single aspect. But really, you know, fundamentally using their business lens to say this is what you need to do at every phase to be confident that you’re going into this market with the right product with the right strategy, that can absolutely be a million dollar Pipe down the road.
Eric Stopper 26:20
You know, I’ve been I’ve been talking with a few brands recently who are riding a wave, right, and they never could have, well, maybe they could have been, I don’t think that they were prepared for how much volume they were going to see online. And they remind me almost of like fidget spinners. how those just went crazy. But they’re they’re maintaining right there. They’re growing in these categories. And they’re not even like they’re not even doing a lot of advertising and they’re just, they’re crushing it right. I’m wondering how much of the broader market does somebody needs to be in tune with, while they’re using the ZonGuru tool to really make a good decision that’s going to have long term value. Right? How do I make sure that I pick a product? That’s not just good on Amazon, but that’s good for the broader market? And is gonna, you know, catch these these waves so to speak?
Jon Tilley 27:13
Yeah, it’s a it’s a really good question. And I think the answer is, yes. Fundamentally, you want to be able to understand the category and the markets and and what’s what’s good is that we have the ability to historically look back 20 you know, you have 2020 hindsight, which is, you know, we have the ability to track products and their sales and and the market dynamics. So you can kind of you can see, when did this category come into play? When did it become popular? You know, how is that looking, potentially moving forward? So, there are tools available within our suite that allow you to look at market dynamics, and importantly, your top competitors, right. So if I was about a launch a product and how have my competitors been faring and what do they cycle sales look like? So you have that access. But I think that the overall answer I would give on that, and this is a really important point for for people who are selling products on Amazon is that it’s not about the one, you know, one golden hitter, the one product that you launch that gets you to the million dollar. Yes, absolutely. There are those cases, and there’s plenty of them. But I think you should be approaching with with the idea that this is the this is the first of many, or the second or many or the third of many. And, you know, when you look at our data, of our sales on aggregate, those people who it’s pretty obvious but those people who launched one product, versus those people who launch two or three or four or five are, you know, the people who have launched five or more in a way better position sales wise than the people who’ve launched one right. So the idea and even from my experience of selling on Amazon. The fundamental mistake is to launch one and just focus on that one and trying to make the best out of that. Yes, get a gun. But then focus on your next and focus on your next. And once you have three or four or five, even with lower sales and potentially one great product, your sales number is going to be higher, and you’re going to do much better. And more importantly, if you’re in different categories, you diversify your risk, and we’re just seeing that especially in the time right now. Those people who’ve diversified in on different categories are just crushing it in some and maybe hurting others. But that’s the important lesson to learn is the momentum of scale is launching more than one.
Eric Stopper 29:32
So there’s there’s kind of two there’s two concerns that a lot of these newer sellers bring bring to me. Everyone, you know, they call in, they’re like, Hey, I like I want to sell on Amazon. I have a small bag of money. I’m just looking to get started on this. The first one is they have no idea how much they should invest how many units they should buy, what their mo q should be. They have no idea how to deal with manufacturers. And the other big concern that folks have is They’re going to get into a market where these bigger brands are starting to migrate to. And they’re hiring agencies like Buy Box Experts, these big brands to just do it. Right. They don’t like they don’t have to learn it, they just hire somebody, and they use their big bag of money and just knock all this smaller sellers out. So I get that concern all the time. On those two fronts, right, the amount of money and then the concern with big brands, what would you encourage new Amazon sellers or newer Amazon sellers to to do and, and how to how to view this situation and how to overcome these these obstacles that they’re facing?
Jon Tilley 30:37
Yeah, I think I think that’s a very real problem, especially, you know, in 2020 and beyond, I think, you know, big brands are coming in and you know, this as much as I do and spending massive amounts on PPC just to knock everyone else off page one, you know, or launching massive amounts of variations to just push everyone else over page one in Miami My answer to that is one, pick a niche within a niche. So use data use the right tools, you’re not looking for a commodity that is on page one that is competing against massive big brands, you’re looking for that niche within a niche, something different. You know, and again, to the point of like, if that product is if you pick that niche and is doing $10,000 a month, once you launch three or four or five of those, you know, there’s your $50,000 a month business, that’s that’s where your growth is going to come. So it’s a long term sustainable business, where you are differentiating, through product differentiation, you creating a moat for your brand, that’s where you want to be. So it is a niche within a niche that you defined. And you need data to be able to unveil those product ideas for you. And that’s what we specialize in. And in terms of large launch budget, that’s that’s that’s a really good question. And it’s actually it’s, it’s part we have this this niche Raider, which is like it’s a rainbow and one of the One of the the arms of that rainbow or the, you know, pieces of that rainbow, is that a launch budget rating? So it’ll say, How much money do you actually need from it from a cost of goods perspective to launch this product and sell at the velocity of page one or whatever you’re aiming for, to actually get there. And it will give you a launch budget figure. So you can you can figure out okay, well, this project product looks great. But I need $60,000 in capital to actually compete, because if I want to compete, I need to compete. I can’t be sitting in the background, right? Or is it a product that I need $10,000 for so we have that aspect? And then I think the other one is, we go further than that we actually go down. You actually come up with your launch strategy to understand which keywords you can own and how many sales I would be doing on a daily basis based on those keywords. And once you can figure that out, you can very quickly understand how much You know, product you need, how much launch budget, you need PPC budget, you need all those kind of aspects. So it’s really important to understand what keywords Am I going to own over my competitors when I launch? And how do and what do I what budget Do I need to put behind that to actually own it?
Eric Stopper 33:17
Now, as somebody getting started, I’ve noticed that they’ll download a software and then, you know, maybe they just get kind of overwhelmed. I’m sure you’ve seen this right. Someone will download it, and then maybe six weeks later, they’re just like, oh, like, this is too much work. I don’t really know. Like, I can’t trust myself because I’m not really I mean, if I have a list of products, I have to pick one like some people don’t trust their gut enough. Do you guys do you guys do consulting with users, users of ZonGuru? Do you send them to consultants? How do you you know kind of guide them along the path of using a software and get getting started on Amazon or? Or the videos that you guys use? How do people get to It
Jon Tilley 34:01
Yeah, it’s so so number one we have a very integrated partnership with reliable education and reliable education is is probably the best education course for Amazon sellers out there and it’s it’s it’s owned and founded by my my partner Adam Hudson. And they focus on on that exact thing, which is how do you create a business on Amazon and coaching around that so, you know, we’re very integrated with them. But on the other side as a software company, especially in our space, education just comes along with with with what our business right and what we’re in. So we have consultants we have an extremely dedicated and passionate support team. And And what’s great about not only our support team but in general is that we we advocate for our Teams starting their own Amazon businesses. So a lot of them have their own Amazon businesses which, you know, just allows them to be experts and to be able to relate and to help other sellers get there which is which is, which is important.
Eric Stopper 35:12
And I understand you as ZonGuru will give your employees some type of loan to get started. Is that right?
Unknown Speaker 35:22
Jon Tilley 35:24
Yeah, we do. So we’re not, we’re not, I guess, the way to give you a little bit of background on that is that one of the exciting things about being a founder and CEO of a company is that you get to build a little family, right or people that work for your for your company. And one thing that is gratifying for me, but also very important to me is giving the recognition that people who dedicate themselves to ZonGuru and the effort they’re putting in is also the time of their life. Right today are giving ZonGuru and it’s important to, to give them the space to not only excel at, at ZonGuru and do incredible amazing work, but also the space to to excel in life in general outside of work the passions and whatever else that they need from life. And that just falls so nicely into into the idea that an Amazon business whether it’s your main hustle or your side hustle, absolutely, if done in the right way can scale you to incredible wealth and freedom. Right. And I absolutely believe in that and I think it’s a perfect marriage obviously with with with ZonGuru. To be able to give everyone an opportunity to create their business. And not only you know, it’s a win win because not only will they build this amazing business that will give them wealth over time but at the same time, they You know, they, they can bring that expertise into their software. And it’s just been amazing to see. As over the years, our team has started their own businesses how excited they get by but also how their wealth of knowledge goes into every single piece of software that we develop. Because, you know, as a, and by the way, developers are like, the best at creating Amazon businesses, they just know how to take action. They know how to use the data, and they grind kind of like they to some degree, they’re emotionally agnostic to certain things and they just look at the numbers and they nail it so it’s just crazy to see how good they are at it and how they access data. So yeah, we give a loan to any ZonGuru teammates to start their own Amazon business and the idea is that after a year if they haven’t made money on their business, they don’t have to pay us back anyway, so Wow. Crap
Eric Stopper 38:01
Well, Jon, it sounds like there’s a lot going on. How can people get in touch with his ZonGuru team or should I send everybody?
Jon Tilley 38:10
Zonguru.com, obviously we have a great support team there you can connect with us at ZonGuru on any social channel or Instagram channel is purely dedicated to product ideas and inspirations. It’s basically like a product feed of ideas, what’s hot, what’s not how to differentiate. So definitely follow us on Instagram, you know, Facebook, all of those platforms are available. And if they want to get in touch with me just hit support, and I’ll be happy to connect with them as well. So
Eric Stopper 38:38
Perfect. And you guys have a start free trial button. So go to zonguru.com. Check it out, go try it out, and you’ll be on your way to a $2 million business. Jon, thanks so much for coming on the show.
Jon Tilley 38:50
Thank you so much.
Thanks for listening to the Buy Box Experts podcast. Be sure to click subscribe, check us out on the web, and we’ll see you next time.