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Reduce Friction and Generate Value – Return on Podcast Ep. 12 with Rolando Rosas

Reduce Friction and Generate Value - Return on Podcast Ep. 12 with Rolando Rosas

The following is a transcript of Episode 12 of Return on Podcast, the show where we help e-commerce sellers improve their ROI in business and in life. For more episodes, subscribe to our YouTube channel or listen on Podbean, Apple Podcasts, and Spotify.

Tyler Jefcoat (00:08):
All right. Welcome to Return on Podcast, where we’re gonna talk about the experiences, obsessions and habits of the most successful e-commerce entrepreneurs. I’m your host, Tyler Jefcoat. And I wanna welcome you to this episode of ROP. You’ve heard of return on investment. Well, this is gonna be a return on the podcast. In today’s episode, I’m pumped to talk about how to bootstrap an Amazon business from zero to over $7 million in annual revenue, staying profitable while the ecosystem continues to evolve. You do this by scaling processes and teams, automations, leveraging technology better, more quickly, more effectively than your competitors. So lemme bring in my friend, Rolando Rosas. Rolando is the owner of Global Teck Worldwide, which is a leading provider of technology to scale support teams. Listen, if your organization has sales people, customer support folks, remote workers that talk to clients, you probably need to talk to Rolando, ’cause he is gonna remove the friction. That’s gonna turbocharge your productivity efficiency, probably improve your sales. He also has a really cool podcast called What the Teck, T-E-C-K. Rolando, we’ll put the link in there. You’re also one of my buddies that I really enjoy having you as a friend. Rolando, how you doing today, man?

Rolando Rosas (01:23):
I’m doing fine, Tyler. Thank you for that wonderful introduction.

TJ (01:28):
You bet, man. You bet. It’s always a pleasure to be able to sit down and talk to folks that have been doing this for so long, and you and I have so much that we could go into in today’s discussion about how to properly scale an e-commerce business, how to survive as the landscape changes. But I wanna start way back. We’re gonna roll it back. Tyler was still an accounting student at the University of Georgia, 2005. Lots of great things were happening. I think you know, Britney Spears was still in her prime, right?

RR (01:59):
Something like that, right?

TJ (02:01):
What was going on in your life, Rolando, and in your head that made you decide to pivot and start Global Teck in 2005?

RR (02:08):
Well, I’ll – small correction, 2002 was starting.

TJ (02:13):
I’m so sorry.

RR (02:14):
That’s alright. 2005 though, we did do some pivoting. We were solely based in Florida, although we were selling around the world, and decided to make a strategic and move to the DC Metro area. You know, one thing that I learned in the, my previous job before doing Global Teck was that you don’t want to fight a battle where there’s a lot of competition, if you can avoid it. And at the time, you know, the web was still getting going and people were still doing hand to, I call it hand-to-hand combat with selling, right? You go see the customer, they see you, you pitch the thing. Now, you know, it’s a different world in 2022, right? You still can do that, but now you have many more options.

RR (03:01):
And so DC offered us many more options in a much bigger pond. And in the backyard of all of the high profile people that always come through DC, there’s always an opportunity to talk to people. People are traveling, although we’re not Vegas, right? Where everybody’s going to – you get some of the important decision makers from around the world coming through here once in, every now and then. And so it’s, it offers a great opportunity to meet some of the decision makers that you otherwise probably wouldn’t meet or have access to.

TJ (03:34):
No, that’s beautiful. And so here we are 20 years later and you’re like, you’re in really good shape, dude. I’m not just saying you look great, but like you actually like – my conversation – ooh, there it is. But it’s interesting, like grinding through a startup is hard. It’s hard on your mind. It’s hard on your body. It can be hard on your family. Like what would you say your secret is to being able to stay not burned out 20 years into this Global Teck Worldwide experience?

RR (04:04):
You know, this is something that for me is very close to the vest because at some point last year I was very burnt out and I didn’t even realize I was burnt out. I know I was tired. And I was like, I just wanna, I just don’t wanna do this. You know, I wanna do something else. And what you gotta do, especially as you grow very quickly, you realize you are overwhelmed with all the tasks. At first, you’re gonna be the accountant. You’re gonna be the sales guy. You’re gonna be the customer service, right? You’re gonna be the guy or gal that’s gonna do the packing and shipping. Right? You can do it all. And I started that way. But as you evolve, you, even when you add more people, what you have to find is to outsource yourself. That is the secret for, let’s say small business. It’s different if you’re a multinational and you’ve got hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of people or thousands, but when you’re a small business, you know, maybe you got 20, maybe you got 50 people, you still need to find a way to outsource yourself in that.

RR (05:00):
If I’m not – my strength is not accounting. I know it. Could I do it? Maybe, but that’s not my thing. And if it’s weighing me, weighing me down, let me give some of that responsibility over to a professional like Tyler and let him come back to me with, hey, the numbers are saying this, the numbers are saying that, you may wanna take action here, may wanna take action based on the finances. Same way in other areas of the business, like for example, warehousing. But that was something that you know, for a while, when you’re small, you could, you know, have goods and products in your garage and stuff, and then eventually it overtakes the whole thing. Let’s have a professional 3PL take care of that. And so once you start going through some of those easy things, then it becomes more nuanced.

RR (05:47):
What can I outsource myself? Or you realize that I’m really not delegating the responsibilities that I have, that I could to some of the workers that work with me. And so that for me was the “a-ha” moment. And also I would say you have to take breaks. And this literally just started at the beginning of this year for me. Being burnt out is a function of doing too much and not having time to take off or downtime for your brain, your body to relax and recover. And if you have both of those things or don’t have relaxation time, or you don’t, you’re not peeling off some of those tasks over to your subordinates or the team members that could, that can do the job, you are 100% gonna get burnt out every single time.

RR (06:35):
And I could tell you now, and we’re taping this in June, I feel much better. And it’s not like a ton has changed. I just managed to take some tasks and put ’em over here. I still have meetings with my staff. I’m not an absentee – I’m an owner-operator. I’m in it. I’m in the mix. I’m in the meetings. I’m giving direction. I’m giving strategy. I’m giving my thoughts on things. So I’m not absentee, but the tasks have been delegated, and I’m much more clear on what I’m doing as well as taking time off for myself so that I can be at a hundred percent when I’m at work.

TJ (07:12):
Yeah. And if you don’t do that, this is, I learned this the hard way actually yesterday. It’s funny, we’re talking about this on a Wednesday here, Rolando, and I had a failed experiment with some new supplements I was testing yesterday. It was like in the humbled position of having to cancel like seven meetings ’cause I just felt terrible. Like it was a really bad position. And what I realized thinking about it yesterday was I actually had overextended myself. So you’re right. You’re talking about like being aware enough of your body or your mind to intentionally choose to rest before it’s cataclysmic, before you have an issue that shuts you down like I did. And then I heard you say something else there that’s also really important, which is, I feel like you do a really good job of this, of just regularly peeling off the things that don’t give you life.

TJ (07:57):
Like you talk about accounting. Like I’m a good CFO. I’m one of the owners of an accounting shop. And so yes, we do accounting. We’re good at that. But like, I think something that makes you wise is like, okay, this is a function that is I can do it, but I probably shouldn’t be doing it right now. And you know, it’s funny that you’re in the technology space where you’re selling the hardware, the products that help companies reduce friction from communication. I think friction is the word that comes to my mind when I think of burnout so much. If there’s, if I’m having to grind through doing task, I should probably remove that friction by hiring someone to do it or outsourcing it. If I’m taking seven steps to communicate with my customers, maybe I should buy better technology to, again, remove that friction. Right? Make it a better experience. Is there anything else that you found that’s helped you be proactive in managing yourself so that you don’t get burned out? Don’t end up just out, just empty in the tank?

RR (08:51):
Well, you know, I think some of this requires a little self evaluation, right? Everybody’s situation is a little bit unique. And, but at the end of the day, Tyler, what we, what you have to do is find out where you’re investing your time. If you’re investing a lot of time and email – I heard this from actually Chad, Chad Rubin, which you also know, he says, you know, what you should try and do for a week is actually monitor and take account of the tasks that you’re actually doing. How much time do you spend on email? How much time do you spend on meetings? How much time do you spend, you know, on all these things. And you’ll find out where you can cut some time and maybe delegate or automate or just say, you know what, I’m not good at that.

RR (09:40):
And now let’s just outsource it to some folks or hire some folks that can take care of that because I’m good at sales. I’m gonna just say it, I like sales, and I like talking to people, but again the numbers, could I do them? Yes, but I’d be much better served, I’d serve my whole organization better if I could focus on sales and marketing. And I could put, because I can really go deep, I can get nerdy, I can talk about all of those aspects that could trip people up in the sales. I’m in the operations side. So taking away the things that really like either keep you awake at night, or just like, “ugh, I just, I don’t want to, I just,” if you have that thought, whether it’s sales or the customer service or the logistics, you need to start looking at outsourcing it or giving it to somebody else that they can take over it, because you’ll find you’ll feel better.

RR (10:34):
And the person that’s gonna be doing it is gonna like, probably like what they’re doing. And you are gonna be able to take care of things that you didn’t think you could do, because now you’ve handed that off to somebody that can manage that for you. That’s really, it’s no magic trick. It’s just reminding yourself that sometimes you’re your own hardest trick and sometimes your own worst enemy in getting in the way of really taking off. And really for small business, the key is to try to scale and grow, and you can’t scale and grow if you’re in every single aspect, it’s just not possible. You will, like you said, you will burn out if you try to have your finger in everything.

TJ (11:13):
Yeah. And it really is. It’s this critical – I feel like every entrepreneur has to has some moment. You’ve started up, you had zero when you started, you know, we’ll talk about bootstrapping here in a minute, but you know, for the first six months, you’re probably not gonna pay anyone to do anything because you’re trying to find a path to revenue . And by the way, you’re not gonna pay yourself either. Right? No, one’s getting paid.

RR (11:31):
Oh yeah. I remember that.

TJ (11:34):
And you get to a point, Rolando, where it’s like, okay, am I gonna choose to evolve and become a business owner, become an executive in my company? Or am I gonna choose to own a job where my grind is the only thing that generates value? And I was actually talking to a friend of mine yesterday yesterday named Ron, who had this happen recently where – multimillion dollar company – and he was shocked. Well, he did the exercise you described, where he took a week and he forced himself to actually document the amount of time he was spending on different tasks. And he would’ve estimated that he was spending about 20% of his time on admin. And he was shocked to find out that it was more like 60%, and he was way underestimating the amount of time he was spending doing things that not only did they not kind of give him life and rev his engine, but they were really sucking away his time where he could be generating content or he could be developing new partnerships. And he just hired an executive assistant. And I actually promoted my executive assistant to be our content director, Nikki, who’s helping us in the background here as we’re running the show.

RR (12:37):
Wonderful. It’s wonderful, man. If you could do that there, you know, it’s – this is not like when I started. The ability to go hire people from around the world, that really was, you had to go get a recruiter, they went head hunting for people, right? That, those days are over. Right? So if you’re a small business, you gotta take every advantage and bring it on, you know, like being able to bring on an executive assistant, getting VAs, if that’s what you’re into. It was a scary thing really, when you’re gonna get employee number one, right? It’s just you, and you break out of just yourself and go to employee one or virtual assistant number one, it’s an ultimate scare. Like I’m telling you, fear and panic sets in, ’cause you’re like, are they gonna take care of the stuff I need? Are they gonna do it right? Can I trust them? Will they run off with the state secrets? Right?

TJ (13:34):
Yeah. Or am I gonna run outta money? And I can’t pay them in three months because I wasn’t ready –

RR (13:38):
The most important part. Am I gonna have money to do that? But once you do that first one and you’re, you can, I could breathe. I could maybe go Friday afternoons and do a little lunch early, take out, you know, go away. And that’s when the light bulb, like, maybe I could do this and then just start finding other ways to replicate that. So where, you know, you’re, “okay, maybe I can give that to somebody. Maybe we could bring, okay, well, I can’t bring in the second person just yet. Let me get growing a little bit more.” And then at some point you’ll find, “oh my God, we can’t handle -” bring on a third person. Right?

TJ (14:14):
And I would even say that there are like two entrepreneurial leaps that take a tremendous amount of courage. One is to like quit the day job and then actually try to do something. That’s like, hey babe, I’m thinking about quitting my job that was paying us a salary, and let’s go do this thing. That’s the one courageous step. And then the second step is what you just described where it’s really tempting to look at, oh my gosh, my bank account’s finally getting a little bit bigger, but wait a second. If I hire Julie, I’m gonna have to take a pay cut. And this is one of the most crucial moments for any business owner to say, no, no, no. I need to have a growth mindset and convince myself that viewing things from an ROI perspective, if I can place investments in my infrastructure, my automation and my people, it’s gonna allow me to not be schizophrenic forever and actually own a company. Right?

RR (14:59):
Right, right, right. Right. And you know, somebody said, I don’t know who said this, but I think it’s so true. And it’s becoming even more apparent, you have to grow or die. If you don’t grow – and it’s like learning, the same thing, if you don’t keep learning, you will die. In from a conceptual standpoint, as a business, as an individual, you need to grow as a business or you will die. Because things get – every single month costs go up, every single year, things go up. And if you’re just kind of flat, unless you have like a thousand percent margins, you can withstand a long time of that, but will come a day where if you’re not growing, and that’s, I think one of the reasons why companies fail, is that you gotta grow, and you grow sustainably where you’re making profits, you’re gonna be around for a long time. But if you’re not growing, you just can’t, that’s not sustainable. And then growing means that you have to scale up, like you’re saying, I need to scale up. I need to find a way to bring more people in. I need to find a way to maybe outsource myself or have 10 of me. And how do I, I’m always thinking if I can have ten of me, I’d probably conquer the world. Right? But I can’t, I can’t do ten of me, but I can find others or other tools that can replicate what I’m doing and do it on autopilot. So I can go to sleep at night at a good time.

TJ (16:19):
And for most of us, by the way, scaling up doesn’t have to be a hundred million in revenue. Right? Doesn’t need to necessarily be, but it could be. But I think your point is really well taken. Like if I’m doing half a million a year in revenue, I’m like $500,000, I’m not gonna have the budget to service my customers and actually build a team around me. And so I’m gonna need to be on a quest to get, I don’t know, depending on the industry, like for accounting, the magic number’s probably about $2 million in revenue where I’ve got enough cash to put the right butts in the key seats so that it’s not just Tyler and our other core leaders. And for you, and maybe this is a good kind of pivot into Amazon here – there’s this a little company called Amazon, Rolando.

RR (16:54):
That little startup, it’s a little startup called Amazon. Right?

TJ (16:57):
Little scrappy startup, you know another bald guy like me running it, used to, at least. He’s a, he’s wealthy, but so help me. Is it – here’s a question for you. Is it possible that resellers can still succeed on Amazon? If so, how?

RR (17:13):
Oh, heck yeah, look. Okay. First of all, the answer is yes. We’ve done it, and we’ve been on Amazon for eight years and been very successful as a reseller and in the last few years introducing our own line of accessories. So we’re doing reselling and private label, but what happens, Tyler, and this just happens this week, what happens is you have a lot of people out there on social media, and I’m glad you asked this question because you have people on social media that will pitch something like this on social media use Helium 10 or whatever tool, doesn’t have to be, or Jungle Scout, doesn’t matter. “Use Helium 10 to go on Amazon. And you see this widget, fidget spinner thingy. It costs, it sells for 30 bucks. Now go over here to Alibaba, get it for a dollar, come over, back on Amazon, sell it. And now you can make a fortune.” Now that’s –

TJ (18:08):
Sounds perfect, sign me up!

RR (18:10):
Yeah. If I handed you a basketball and I said, go play basketball and be Michael Jordan. Because I saw him play basketball, therefore, if I give you a basketball, you’re gonna be Michael Jordan. You’d say that’s ludicrous.

TJ (18:23):
Yeah. Good point.

RR (18:24):
You know, and a lot of consultants pitch that you could go find some cheap product on Alibaba. And then because Helium 10 or some other tool says that product sells, the top seller on that product, sells a hundred thousand a month, you are gonna be able to do that. Wrong. There’s a lot of work that goes into becoming a successful Amazon business. I think you’ve seen the stat that I think Marketplace Pulse put out where it broke down the sellers on the Amazon platform. And there’s somewhere between two and three million sellers, right? Somewhere in that neighborhood.

TJ (19:02):
I think so.

RR (19:03):
Only 1% make a hundred thousand dollars a year selling, not earning, selling on the platform.

TJ (19:12):

RR (19:13):
And that number has gone up a little bit, so maybe like 2%, but that tells me and anybody else that wants to look for this information on how successful or not successful you can be on Amazon. That over 90% of the sellers in the US that are on Amazon are not making enough to even have a business. Come on, let’s be real. A hundred thousand dollars for a business that’s selling products, not services, but products on Amazon. That’s nothing. When you talk –

TJ (19:48):
You’re not paying the mortgage. Mom’s not happy if you bringing in a thousand dollars a year. No, I get that.

RR (19:53):
Yeah. Imagine at the end of the day, what you take home after you pay everything and Amazon took their cut, ’cause in that figure, we’re talking just the top dollar, right? The earnings, right? What they’re selling it for? You gotta cut out the fees, the cost, the goods, paying the bills. You may be left with 10 grand at the end of the year off of a hundred thousand, maybe less. Right? You work with people, you know that. So I, that’s a pet peeve of mine. You gotta be real with people and tell ’em look, you can be successful on Amazon, but you better be ready to work ’cause it’s not passive income. There’s nothing passive. And I’m sure a lot of the folks that you represent and work with in your agency could tell you the same. There’s nothing passive about being successful on Amazon. It’s a grind. It’s a ground war. It’s dirty. It’s ugly. And if you don’t have that kind of fortitude, Amazon is not for you.

RR (20:49):
But getting back to your question about reselling, yes, you can resell successfully. We resell about eight brands right now on Amazon. And one of the things that we’ve done and I was, I thought you might ask me about that. We were able to take a SKU, one SKU in December that we were selling for about $8k a month, $8k of that SKU. And we’ve now as of May, we’re gone almost at $50k a month on this one SKU that we’re reselling. And we’re not the cheapest. And so there’s other competitors that are selling that exact same product, including the manufacturer of the product. But we still manage to find a way to sell $50k of this one particular SKU. But it’s not just by, oh, we’re gonna throw it, we’re gonna throw this product online and we’re gonna magically be the top dog on that particular SKU. That doesn’t happen that way.

TJ (21:50):
Wow. So how, I mean, that’s like, by the way, you articulated there, finding a way to carve out some meaningful, competitive advantage that isn’t trite. It isn’t a get rich quick scheme. It’s just doing things the right way. I mean, are there, I know you, don’t give away all the secret sauce here, but what is it? What is it that someone should be approaching the way they’re thinking about their listings, whether it’s private label or an existing brand that may allow them to get that kind of traction?

RR (22:16):
You know what? We’re not all immune to, and I’m learning this more like literally this year, we’re not, our eyes are not playing tricks on us. When you go on Amazon, when you go to YouTube, when you’re on social media, they are not playing tricks on you. There’s a reason why some followers, some social media folks have a ton of followers. Some of them are outrageous, but they understand the business, but the packaging, the presentation, what you’re seeing, like when you go on Amazon and you see a, let’s just say fidget spinners, ’cause we were talking about that. But there’s a one listing that either the, that main image that you’re looking at, wow, looks, something about it. Maybe the colors, the lighting, the angle, the actual picture quality, the picture itself stands out, and more people gonna click on that product.

RR (23:11):
And because more people are gonna click, there’s a high likelihood that they’re gonna capture more sales, as opposed to somebody just went in and snapped a picture of the product, threw it on Amazon. Now, could that work? Maybe. About five years ago, you could get away with that, but things have changed so much on the platform that you really have to look at things from a professional’s perspective in order to get the most of the platform. Five years ago, you could get away with that. Five years ago, you could get incentivized reviews. Five years ago, you could do a lot of tricks and games that are just no longer there. Now it’s just, what does that product look like when the, when I’m scrolling. And you got literally seconds for a person to say, I want that, or just keep going.

TJ (23:56):

RR (23:57):
And if you can’t do that with a product, then you’re gonna have problems now. And what I’ve just told you here, by the way, about this SKU, we’ve done it as well on a couple of other SKUs. And on another one we actually had to keep increasing the price. And we’re, we, this, you know, really low end accessory, it sells for like $23, but you can get it on Google for like $12. So we’re almost double the price. And what we did was really went out of our way to create a high quality image and present the product at a different, in a different way that everybody else was just using one or two images, basically either rotated or flip flopped. We went completely like, let’s go high end on this and see what – and you know what? Every month we kept seeing sales go up, and keep going up.

RR (24:52):
And I just kept telling my people, keep raising the price. At some point, somebody’s gotta stop buying, just keep – and then, you know, we settled on like $23, but we started at $12, $12.99. And there’s many, many, many, many other companies selling it for $12-$15. So can you – and that’s also reselling. That product’s a resell product. So it defies logic that you could sell twice, essentially twice the price of the going price and sell more. So you don’t necessarily need to have the cheapest price, but if you can present it in a way that’s different, nobody’s doing anything like that. You’re gonna stand out. It’s like the pink elephant, you know, if there were a pink elephant on Amazon, all of a sudden the pink elephant appears, you can’t stop thinking about it. It’s kind of that mindset. Well, how can we plant a pink elephant on Amazon when people are searching for products?

TJ (25:48):
I think what the great reminder on what you just said, Rolando, is there are ways to generate more value in the eyes of your customer. And, you know, you can spend a lot of effort trying to find the latest, greatest hack. You kind of talked about some of the, you know, mini chat sequences for rebates, Gimme Five survey. Like there’s all sorts of hacks and tactics that have come along, white hat, most of them black hat over the last few years, but at the end of the day – and this is such a great case study for your business here at the end of the day, generating actual value for your customers. And by the way, like lowering buyer anxiety through great images and great, you know, great lifestyle images and great infographics and great videos and really descriptive bullet points so they know exactly what they’re buying.

TJ (26:33):
And like, it’s kind of cool to think that just doing things the right way, in a way that serves your customers can work. And it’s interesting, like how important, by the way, I’m telling myself here a little bit, we, Nikki and I recently were reviewing our website and we realized, oh gosh, this customer experience isn’t nearly as seamless as I thought it was like getting from point A to point B if you were gonna try to engage with Seller Accountant was actually pretty clunky. And we’re working really hard right now to try to streamline that. Because a lot of times we can get caught in this trap of reading our own paper. We’re grading our own listings, we’re grading our own bullet points, and we can miss that our customers are confused, or they don’t know what to do. And I think there’s a lot of market share to be captured, just taking the time to get outside of the grind and say, okay, how does the customer feel when they interact with this product? Instead of maybe like sending a product to somebody randomly to just to get a five star review, what if we send a product to ’em to get some actual feedback on how to improve the experience? Yeah, that’s really neat, Rolando. Anything else about how you’ve been able to grow and scale, maintain that competitive advantage on Amazon that you would say, ah, these guys really need to hear this?

RR (27:38):
Well, you know, if data is king, then the application of the data is an emperor. And that’s where we’ve been really doubling down on lately, which is there’s a lot of data, right? Amazon can, Amazon and a bunch of third party tools can give you a lot of data, but then there’s gotta be something that you say, this is the key for us, whether it’s, you’re after profits, and you’re after ROAS. These are the indicators that we need to pay attention to. Or these are the products that are growing, or something else that you find works for your business. For us, it’s return on investment and ROAS, if we’re doing ads. And so we want to spend a dollar and we wanna get $20. Why should we get two or three? So if we wanna grow and we want to grow profits, how can we make that product that maybe has a little bit less volume, but is generating $20 for every dollar we spend?

RR (28:39):
And we’ve done things in experiments, like what you’re saying. It’s really not sexy. It’s dirty, it’s ugly, it’s optimization. It’s A-plus content. Like you said, it’s the images. And when you package that all together, you’re doing that all, you get really good results. And I’m sure other people have said this. I don’t, there’s nothing proprietary about that. But when you do all of those things and you do all of those things well, and execute, you will see results. It’s simple in some ways, but complex in some others, but it’s, that’s the real way to grow. And you know, when we started Amazon, we went nine months and sold, almost a year, and sold only $4,000 of product the first year. Again, nothing, and we were about to quit. I was about to quit. I’m like, this is a total waste of time.

RR (29:30):
And our website generates more in revenue in a few days than our, than selling on Amazon. But it turned out that the mindset and approach to Amazon has to be like, it’s a completely different planet. It is not like selling on Shopify, not like doing Google ads. It’s not like being on eBay. You have to approach Amazon like it is trying to get products to Mars, right? How do we do that? It is not like anything else. And Amazon evolves so fast that if you don’t get your mindset around that, Amazon is very different and I have to approach it differently and really find out what are the levers that work, that you will never, ever, ever really achieve really good success on Amazon. ‘Cause it can be achieved, but Amazon requires you to master many aspects. And I’ve seen this even with big multibillion dollar companies that I’ve talked to.

RR (30:24):
They have three people working on Amazon. Multibillion dollar companies. You know, a legal person and two other people that kind of manage the day to day. And that’s just not enough for a multibillion dollar company. You’re not gonna be able to cover just the problems alone, the problems, not even the sales, but the problems that come with selling on Amazon with two people. That’s just, it won’t. For a company that size, right? So it’s really understanding the platform and knowing that you’re gonna be challenged, it’s gonna be tough, and you’re gonna have to be a master of several things. And if you can’t master it, like, again, I can’t conquer it all. Eh, I’m gonna get Tyler to help me conquer, at least on the financial side, because I need somebody to keep watch on that so that we can keep the cash coming in and redeploying it in the right way.

TJ (31:15):
No, yeah. It really makes sense. You mentioned something really pertinent in there about deploying – data is really important, but actually you said it was the emperor, deploying that data, using that data is the emperor, right? That’s the, I think that really is the key. I continue to hear this over and over again, even in these interviews on Return on Podcast, where it’s not enough, if you guys hear nothing else from what Rolando said, it’s not enough to just hang a shingle. So think theoretically like a Nordstrom’s, you’ve gotta actually sweep the floor. You’ve gotta do the little things, the little things that seem too little, like keeping the shelves organized, like keeping your product. And so this kind of happens remotely when we’re selling on Amazon or on our website, but the principle actually hasn’t changed. Our job is to help our customers interact with the value we generate to lower buyer anxiety, and then to get the deal closed.

TJ (32:02):
And I do believe that sometimes you look at a listing, and like 90% of it’s good, but there’s really crappy images or really – something, and it’s amazing, it’s like subconscious, you don’t even realize this, but you immediately are turned off by it. And then you’ll turn around and pay twice as much for Rolando’s version of the product. Because guess what? He’s lowered your anxiety and has convinced you that you’re gonna get exactly what you want. And I’m like that, by the way. I wish I was, sometimes I wish I was a more price-conscious shopper, but if you could actually guarantee me that you’re gonna solve my problem, and it’s gonna cost me 20 bucks instead of 12 bucks, well guess what, I’m probably gonna pay the 20 bucks because I don’t wanna have to do it twice, ’cause that’s a waste of my time.

RR (32:38):
No, that’s a hundred percent. So you have price sensitive customers. You’re never gonna get rid of that, but there’s a good chunk of customers on the consumer side, as well as business, the business side that, you know, I don’t want the frustration. I’ll pay a little bit more ’cause I can see exactly what I’m getting or I know exactly what I’m getting or I know exactly how to set this up. I’m not gonna deal with, you know, these low cheap-o products ’cause I’m not sure, I could probably make it work, but this looks exactly what I’m looking for or has the thing that I’m, that I want. And people will pay more. Not a hundred percent, but enough businesses and people are out there that are of that mindset that you can make money on it.

RR (33:24):
Right? You know, you said something, I wanna say something, you said something about the little things. You know, who’s really big on that? If you’re looking at, if you played team sports like I did, some of the great coaches in football, Chuck Noll, Jimmy Johnson, Bill Belichick, they’d say the exact same thing. And you can apply that to the business world where the little things matter, and at a level like the NFL where you got a lot of big guys, a lot of fast guys, you know, there’s the little, itty, minute details make the huge difference. You know how you step in at this angle. And when you step back and you throw and your elbows here to there, you know, all the positioning, the eyes, it’s really a matter, literally a game of inches, and these inches, which are teeny, fractional details in the whole scope of the game, make a big difference when you have now an entire team doing the small things well. So when an entire team does, and if you have, the bigger the organization, the more it matters. The bigger the team, if the team is functioning, you know, efficiently, and you’re paying attention to details, now you can scale much faster. Now you can grab more market share. Now your competition and you, there’s a lot more distance they gotta get to you, right? Or you make up a lot of ground on the bigger guys.

TJ (34:47):
That’s so good. By the way, you and I need to write the white paper on how building a successful e-commerce business is a lot like winning a Super Bowl or winning like national championship. We both love football a lot. Like, you know, you think about even my beloved Bulldogs won the national title here recently in football. You think about Nick Saban, probably greatest college football coach of all time, Belichick, obviously at the NFL level. And you’re exactly right. They do some things that other teams don’t do. They focus on, actually they focus on return on investment. And what I mean by that is you look at the way Belichick builds his rosters, and he doesn’t overpay for players. That’s one thing. And again, you and I are gonna write the white paper. People are gonna read it. They’re gonna love this.

RR (35:26):
And did you know that Belichick also, I don’t know if this is still true, but I had heard that he prefers getting college grads, kids that finish, versus juniors and sophomores in the draft because he feels that they have a sense of trying to accomplish something and seeing it all the way through. Rather than high profile guys that are hotshot sophomores or juniors, and that could be bust. He’d rather get that person that went four or five years and then brings them in house and says, I’m gonna spend time with you ’cause I know you’re gonna stick with this.

TJ (36:02):
Amazing. Well, it just goes to show you, I heard somebody talking about this on a podcast the other day that these successful starting quarterbacks in the NFL right now, you know, if you include like Pat Mahomes and the kid Lance and Brady of course, and some of these other guys, a lot of them didn’t come from the highest profile, highest recruited college programs. They actually were the kids that had the character, you know, Josh Allen from Wyoming or –

RR (36:24):
Brady, Brady. He was, wasn’t he like a fifth or fourth round? He wasn’t first round material.

TJ (36:28):
He was a sixth round. He’s the only sixth round player in history to have more than a decade-long career.

RR (36:33):
And how many rings does he have on his finger too?

TJ (36:36):
He’s running outta fingers. I mean, it’s crazy.

RR (36:39):

TJ (36:41):
So, hey, listen, let’s – this has been such a great such a great conversation. I wanna get a little closer to landing the plane here. We’re talking about football. See, listen, look it, business, pleasure. Bam. All at the same time here, Rolando, this is what you get on Return on Podcast. One final question I had for you just about the business is related to social media. Like I think you and I are both seeing some pretty significant changes in the way social media is impacting Amazon sellers, but maybe your industry and the technology space in particular, anything on your mind when it comes to tech and social media?

RR (37:10):
Well it’s definitely changing, and TikTok is doing that. And if you’re not, haven’t watched what’s happening, TikTok is now overtaken the number one spot for social media in terms of views, viewership, length on the platform, more than YouTube. On YouTube, you know, they’ve responded by putting Shorts out. That’s their response to TikTok. Instagram is now saying that they’re gonna, they’re all in on video versus photos. And so everybody -Pinterest as well. They’re also all in on videos, and they’re gonna serve up more videos. And it’s because of one competitor that decided to flip the script and said, we’re gonna do this a little bit different. And so that’s having a change on some aspects of the business and some businesses are going there ’cause that’s where the action’s at. Some aren’t and we’re invested into TikTok. And you know, it’s a platform to watch.

RR (38:06):
Business gets done. It used to be a bunch of young kids that were shaking their rump. That’s not the case anymore. There’s folks that are, I’m not a kid, and I’m on that platform. And many other folks are getting business. I heard Gary V say recently how he got a letter or an email from somebody that is in the cement business. Cement. Okay. So that eliminates probably 95% of the people that are on that platform, right? That this cement business got a six-figure contract as a result of putting out some TikToks. Right? So if a cement business can get business and contracts on TikTok, then just about anybody that sells something can find an audience there as well. It doesn’t take a lot to do that.

TJ (38:57):
Well, it’s amazing. And I wanna hear kind of the “how” here, but you think about it. You’re selling office technology. I’m an accountant. We talk about a concrete guy and yeah, I’m like you, I’ve been avoiding it because I’m not a big social media guy myself, but like –

RR (39:09):
You would do well because the guys and gals that do services like yours, which is, you know, you’ve been in the business and you co,uld teach essentially a lot of the education and teaching, that does really well. So I’m gonna teach you how to look at your numbers. Here’s what, you know, good will means in a balance sheet. Here’s what to look for, you know, on the P&L versus the, all of that stuff. People eat that up and it may take a little bit of time to get your footing, but a lot of the lawyers, accountants, and coaches that understand that really well and teach people, here’s how you do X. And it seems so like below you, ’cause you know, you’re so advanced, let’s talk about ROI and you know, redeploying cash. And there’s so many people that are at step one, it’s ridiculous. And they need advice from well seasoned folks like yourself.

TJ (40:04):
And so to bring this to kind of the seller, ’cause I appreciate you saying that. If I were, whether it’s Tyler in accounting and if I’m a use case that’s fine, or if it’s like a, maybe a million dollar brand out there that’s selling on Amazon, the question is what would be the first steps in kind of getting into TikTok. And is it more I’m trying to address step one, step two of my customer journey, or what does it, how are you kind of strategically thinking about it? If you’re gonna advise me or somebody else, what would be the thing you would do next quarter that would maybe get the ball rolling?

RR (40:32):
If you’re gonna start, know that you don’t need a lot of fancy stuff. You could go right into your car and get a little tripod with your smartphone and turn video on. That’s step one because okay, if you don’t like talking to people, then forget about it. But if you’re just kind of shy and unsure, it’s gonna take probably a hundred videos for you to sit down like what you’re doing. We’re just having a conversation. And the more at ease you could be about having a conversation with something being recorded, the better you’re gonna get. And that’s the thing that is like a craft, right? Like Jordan being – you wanna be Jordan, it didn’t happen overnight, but you gotta start somewhere, start with a video or two or three. And then once you start seeing, oh, this is working and I’m getting a little more comfortable, you just start seeing the views start going up, up, up and up and up.

TJ (41:26):
Cool. That’s awesome. Such great advice. Let’s close the podcast as we always do with the Return on Podcast, Rolando. He’s mentioned so many practical things that my listeners will take away from this episode. Thank you. Do you have any habits, hacks, practices, things that you try to do regularly or something you’re experimenting with right now, that’s giving you an unusual return on investment that you’d recommend us checking out?

RR (41:50):
Well right now what I’m really focused on is on A-plus, from the business side of things. A-plus content. It is underrated. And so if you are brand registered and you’re on Amazon, I would highly recommend you do that. And I think, I had been hearing about it for years, right. And you know, you should have A-plus content and da da, and you just think, well, this is just more images. You know, what’s the difference? Well, Amazon treats A-plus content differently as well as the customer. And we’ve had a lot of success in the last five months generating more A-plus content. And I wish I had like a staff of a hundred people that that’s all they were gonna do for the next six months. And every single listing has A-plus content.

RR (42:40):
If I had the ability to do that, that’d be awesome. We’d probably quadruple or quintuple our profits. And that’s what I would say. If you’re brand registered, go ahead and invest in A-plus content. You won’t regret it. There’s a couple of little tips and tricks in there with A-plus content. There’s several guys like Steven Pope, My Amazon Guy, he’s kind of in your backyard there. He’s really knowledgeable. And I’ve learned a lot from him. So big props to Steven Pope, if he listens to your podcast, and folks like that, that really know what they’re doing. They give you a lot of good guidance on A-plus content, but essentially A-plus content is the way to go if you’re a brand.

RR (43:22):
Now, if you’re not a brand and you’re trying to find another way to grow, and you’re on a listing where you’re competing with other sellers, you know, having a repricer is really going to benefit you, especially as the more SKUs you have. That’s what I would say. If you’re not a branded account on Amazon, you’ve gotta find a way to be able to be savvy about the inventory you have. And it’s either by the price going up and down and fluctuating with the competition or on the inventory side where you have access to inventory or more of it than the competitors do. Because as the global supply chain is right now, one day there’s a ton of inventory, then there’s no inventory, ’cause all the boats are taking forever to get out of LA and move it onto trucks. And that’s happened a lot in the past two years. Right?

TJ (44:14):

RR (44:14):
So A-plus content, if you’re branded, invest in that, you won’t regret it. On the non-branded folks, go in and either get a repricer for, I mean right away, or really take a look at inventory ’cause that could be the way to more profits.

TJ (44:32):
That’s so good, Rolando. So this has been a great conversation, buddy. And it’s you know, think about the inventory we talked about early on, about not getting burned out about staying in the game, even though this is a grind, think about making sure that you automate and outsource the elements that don’t give you life as an executive. If you, even as a almost eight-figure seller that has private label in reseller products, Rolando’s talking heavily about A-plus content and how to make sure that you’re optimized for conversion. I think that’s really good advice, repricer for some of those not your brand controlled products. Buddy, this has been amazing. If people wanna learn more about Global Teck and your offerings, how can they get ahold of you, Rolando?

RR (45:10):
Well, they can, we have all kinds of – we’re on social media. So pick your social media, Global Teck spelled T-E-C-K. Our website is global-teck.com, T-E-C-K. And if you, we’ve got a lot of videos on YouTube, just type in What the Teck spelled T-E-C-K as well. And we got a lot of tutorials, a lot of advice. We’ve talked to people like yourselves as well with podcasts, and we’ve got tons of information there. I myself am, I’m on LinkedIn. And if you wanna reach out to me, look for Rolando Rosas on LinkedIn, and I’ll be glad to chat with you and see how I can help you.

TJ (45:51):
Love it, buddy. And we’ll make sure we put those links in the show notes here for anyone who wants to try to grab, drop it in links, drop it in the links. There it is. All right, Rolando, this has been awesome. And for those of you guys who have stuck with this through this podcast, I just wanna say thank you so much. I mean, we really, we do this show because we wanna generate value for you and your business and for your life. And so I hope this episode has given you a return on the podcast. Hey, if you like it, share the video, share the podcast, like the channel, that would very much serve me. I’m still learning how to market. I’m a better accountant than I am a podcaster, but I love these conversations with friends like Rolando. And with that, what we’re gonna say is have a great week, kill it, and we’ll talk to you next week. All right.

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