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eCommerce Momentum Podcast - eCommerce Momentum Podcast 22nd March 2018
288 : Kim Jensen – Earning 100k on Merch by Amazon fuels a Private Label business
00:00:00 01:04:19

288 : Kim Jensen – Earning 100k on Merch by Amazon fuels a Private Label business

Title is a little misleading as it suggests one caused the other to happen. She had already had a successful private label product thanks to Andy Slamans and Amazing Freedom while she hit the grand slam on Merch by Amazon. At the end of the interview I was surprised to find out how really successful she has been (and is now) with Merch by Amazon. Kim is very humble but she is generous to help others when asked. Great story of a lifestyle design business.

Mentioned:

Chris Green’s Merch Dojo course

Amazing Freedom Private Label Group

Kim’s Facebook contact

Sponsors

Gaye’s Million Dollar Arbitrage List

Solutions4ecommerce

Scope from Sellerlabs

GoDaddy

Grasshopper

Transcript: (note- this is a new tool I am trying out so it is not perfect- it does seem to be getting better)

Stephen:                             [00:00:00]               Wanted to take a second and recognize my sponsors this week, you know, Gaye lisbey’s million dollar arbitrage as edge enlist group. That’s all it is. But guess what? It’s a great opportunity. You know, you can build a big Amazon business. You don’t need a lot of capital when you start. I mean we all started, you know, um, most of it started selling books and then you move into retail arbitrage that is the place that you can turn your money the fastest and online arbitrage. And so by having that skill set, by learning those skill sets, you can get the best bang for your buck. And so [inaudible] group will help you learn online arbitrage. It’s, it’s more than just a list service. They’re going to give you a whole bunch of actionable inventory every single day. Write Monday through Friday. However, there’s also a mentor ship that goes on.

Stephen:                             [00:00:53]               And that mentorship is so important because sometimes it’s great to know what to buy, but it’s more important to understand why to buy it again. That’s that, you know, learning the fish are just getting fit, you know, you really want to learn because ultimately you want to strike out on your own and this is a great way to do it. So how about seven days free trial, I a free trial, right? Very, very cool. So it’s amazing. Freedom Dot com. Forward slash is the mouthful. The word momentum. You’ve got to use a hyphen and you put in the word arbitrage. So it’s amazing. Freedom, [inaudible] forward slash momentum dash arbitrage. And you’re going to get a free trial in gaze group. You got to tell her I sent you, right? I’ll also have the link in the episode, but it’s such a great opportunity. She is amazing.

Stephen:                             [00:01:41]               Amazing. I’m in that group so you’ll see me there and amazing, amazing person who’s there to answer your questions, who’s there to help lead you and help guide you. And that’s what gay does. She does it every single day. The testimonials are real. Go take a look. You will be blown away. And again, it’s a free trial. I have the link on this episode to reach in, you know, seller labs, Jeff Cohen and the team. They have blown me away with this scope project. We use this all the time for our business. We do a lot of private label. We also do a lot of wholesale and wholesale bundles, you know, or multi-packs, that kind of thing, which a lot of people do, but we use a scope to help us figure out what are the key words. And so it’s really simple. You basically figure out where you’re going to sell, what you’re going to sell, what category, find that light product, find the top couple of sellers and find their keywords.

Stephen:                             [00:02:33]               Boom magic. There you go. You copy the best because it’s working. And guess what? That’s a proof of concept in scope allows you to do that. So it’s seller labs.com, forward slash scope. So our labs.com, forward slash scope. Use the code word momentum and you’re going to get a couple of days free trial and you’re going to save a little bit of money and you’re going to get some free keywords. It’s worth every penny. I’m in that group. Come and check me out. So our labs.com, forward slash scope. Again, use the word momentum solutions for e-commerce. Karen Locker, great, great, great group. I’ve been using them for a long time and I guess move or two years and I’m in there and I pay just like everybody else. Yes, she’s a sponsor my show, but she makes me pay and I got the same $50 discount that you can get.

Stephen:                             [00:03:22]               Oh by the way, you’re going to get that through my link and my link. Only one. And you’re also going to get the free inventory health analysis. Great way to start [inaudible]. Get your inventory in line and Karen will help you do that. We use them for everything. I mean the basically uh, you know, long-term storage fees coming up. Guess what, show evaluate. She’ll make some recommendations and I’ll say, yeah, check, check, check, check these out, this return, blah blah blah, blah blah. And magically it’s done. I love it, love it, love it. I love the fact that they take and get rid of stranded inventory. For me. I see it in there and then next time I go in and it’s gone. Love it. Love it, love it. Got An ip infringement. She’s going to help you work your way through that. This is the kind of service that you get from Karen Locker. That’s solutions for the number for e-commerce solutions for e-commerce dot com forward slash momentum, right? So you got a forward slash momentum and you’re going to save $50 a month, 600 bucks a year by just clicking that link. She pays me. I don’t want to hide that. I never do. I’m always upfront about that, but it doesn’t cost you anything additional and you’re going to get that inventory health report. The only way you get that is through mind link the solutions, the number for e-commerce dot com, forward slash momentum.

Cool voice guy:                  [00:04:39]               Welcome to the e-commerce momentum podcast where we’ll focus on the people, the products, and the process of selling. Today is your host, Steven Peterson.

Stephen:                             [00:04:53]               Welcome back to the e-commerce momentum podcast. This is episode 200 and eighty eight. Kim Jensen will get ready to eat to get inspired for March. Yeah, we talk Amazon, we talk E-bay, but we talk about merge and the potential. Um, and right now, you know, Chris Green has a course out of [inaudible] and yes, I’m pumping it up a little bit because it’s Chris and he deserves it. He’s done so much for me and so many of my friends, uh, so I absolutely have no problem promoting his stuff. I don’t personally benefit in any way other than you, if you take action having success and when you hear Kim endorse it to because she, that’s how she learned about Merck’s, like most of us from Chris and she’s taken it to places that most of us would dream at the end. We talk about what percentage of our income has come from it.

Stephen:                             [00:05:43]               It blows my mind how steady, you know, she’s very humble about it. Um, and that’s well deserved. Um, it’s just so cool to hear somebody who has so much success, but if you met her, you would understand why, but it’s just such a neat story. And let’s get into the podcast. Marie, welcome back to the e-commerce momentum podcast. Very excited about today’s guest. And today’s episode as, this is the first one I’m recording from my new studio, which is not finished, but at our new warehouse and so I’m excited about that so I don’t have to run and edit elsewhere. I can actually stay steady for the day, so. But this person is going to blow your mind because she has, she has figured stuff out faster than probably anyone else I’ve talked to, um, about just pieces of the e-commerce business and I can’t wait for you to all to hear about her success. Kim Johnson. Welcome Kim. Thank you for having me. You really did adopt and adapt very quickly. Is that your nature? I mean, if you figure something out, are you all over it all in?

Kim:                                       [00:06:46]               Oh, no, no, no. I have to think things through and make sure I’m doing the right thing. And normally it takes me a while to actually take action.

Stephen:                             [00:06:55]               You can’t tell me this is going to be blind luck. This, this couldn’t have been blind luck. Could it have been?

Kim:                                       [00:07:01]               It kind of was. Yeah,

Stephen:                             [00:07:03]               that’s exciting. You know. But here’s the key. You could do it again. Is that where you, does that give you confidence?

Kim:                                       [00:07:10]               It does, yes. I mean, uh, it made me realize the potential and merge.

Stephen:                             [00:07:15]               Ooh, she dropped a clue. So Kim has no, it’s awesome because Kim has had incredible success with merge. I’m probably an outlier. You had a home run. What is a grand slam? I’m all over it because you were probably first to adopt. I was talking to a gentleman last week and he was telling me that he has software. So if somebody, if the president makes a statement, some crazy statement, his software could literally launch shirts like immediately for that across a whole myriad of platforms, software driven. So if you search for that crazy term, it can launch a shirt with even though it’s never been created before. Is that crazy? It is crazy. But those are a word only and you did more than that. So let’s go back first because you are an Amazon seller. You and I met at a private label conference a maybe a year or two years ago. I don’t even remember it because they all rolled together and. Go ahead.

Kim:                                       [00:08:16]               It was almost a year.

Stephen:                             [00:08:17]               OK. So it was a year ago. And so you were selling, um, prior to that because you wanted to learn private label. Were you selling just, you know, the wholesale or retail arb or online or.

Kim:                                       [00:08:30]               I was primarily doing retail and online arbitrage and had a little bit of wholesale in there.

Stephen:                             [00:08:35]               OK. And was this your first attempt at selling on Ebay seller from way back or bookseller?

Kim:                                       [00:08:42]               Um, I started on Ebay, like, Whoa, just over 12 years ago. Whoa. And then probably switch to Amazon like eight years ago or so.

Stephen:                             [00:08:53]               So 12 years ago. What led you to E-bay? Was it, you know, you need to make money, you wanted to get rid of crap?

Kim:                                       [00:08:59]               No, it started out. I had a baby and so I was home. I was only working one day a week and I was getting these formula coupons in the mail for baby formula and I read somewhere online that you could sell those on Ebay. And I had just been throwing them away. So I’m like, hey, that’s free money. So I figured it out the Ebay thing on my own and I’m not tech savvy at all, so I was pretty proud of myself back then that I figured out how to take a picture of these coupons, how to list it on Ebay. Um, and I think it was like $18 worth of coupons and I sold them for $15 within five minutes of when I listed on. And from then on I was hooked.

Stephen:                             [00:09:40]               But it’s the power of moms group. There is a pro tip right there. Think about it, right? That you never heard of that before. You never thought of it. But now you’re a new mom. So you’re in the moms group, right? You saw something somewhere that attracted you and then boom, you guys are like, you’re like, that’s why you’re the more powerful sex because you guys take advantage of this, that we’re still just dumb guys. Just only. Yeah, yeah. Some coupon somewhere and whatever, you know, we just move on. You guys are like all over it and I love that. So, uh, what, uh, what was your career? Um, that you work working one day a week.

Kim:                                       [00:10:14]               Um, I was, I was actually a social worker in a nursing home and I was working full time prior to, that was my third child that was born and then I cut back to one day a week for probably like a year or two and then I went back to full time. Or are you full time now? No, I quit that almost six years ago.

Stephen:                             [00:10:33]               Almost six years ago. So you had Amazon full-time, not success. So you got a taste of it with Ebay. Things were going well. You still working a little bit. How did you find Amazon? Don’t tell me that moms group again.

Kim:                                       [00:10:45]               No, I was actually part of a forum for while it was, it was a different moms group. It was for like stay at home moms.

Stephen:                             [00:10:53]               See, do you think I’m that kid and I’m telling you there’s power in those moms groups.

Kim:                                       [00:10:57]               There are. And I’d heard about Amazon and I thought, oh well that’s Kinda cool. I could try that. So I started out merchant fulfilling, um, and then the stuff was just taking over my house.

Stephen:                             [00:11:08]               Yeah. That gets old, doesn’t it?

Kim:                                       [00:11:10]               Yeah. And you know, shipping out 40 packages a day in December. That was not fun after working all day. So I learned about the FBA program and just the, after I decided it was OK for me to give up control of my inventory because Amazon could probably handle it, you know, I started doing that and just fell in love with that program.

Stephen:                             [00:11:31]               Did uh, what did that do for your relationship with your husband? But he’s, cause he, I mean, he probably loved the money, but he saw that junk, right? Yeah. Now it’s gone. I still have a little bit of stuff here, but you can’t get rid of. It could be you have nothing compared to what I have moving into a warehouse was the best move for my marriage. I’m by far because she can’t see it now. It doesn’t mean it’s gone, but it’s out of sight, out of mind. When, uh, when you have conversations with your husband about Fba that you want to go full time six years ago, how does that grow?

Kim:                                       [00:12:08]               He was very supportive of it and I, at the time I didn’t really realize that people did this Amazon thing as a real business. It was just kind of a side Gig for me and I knew it could make some money and I was and I didn’t leave my job for the purpose of doing this full time. My job was really stressful and I was just getting burnt out. I’ve been there 16 years. It was a half an hour commute without traffic. My kids were getting older. I felt like I was missing out on their lives and I come home from work. I get home at like [6:30] to make supper and be too exhausted to even know what was going on in their life. So it was more of a, I needed a lifestyle change and I felt like I wasn’t being a good mom. I wasn’t doing being a good social worker for the residents I had. So I needed to make a change and I knew that I had this selling on Amazon thing that would give me something to do during the day. And so that’s just kind of what I figured I would do with that because I needed, I didn’t want to sit around and watch soap operas all day long. I want it to be able to be productive and do something.

Stephen:                             [00:13:16]               Did you think that you were going to like cover your whole income or was that something that you would considering that you had to do?

Kim:                                       [00:13:23]               No, it wasn’t it. No, I had no idea that I could replace my income with this.

Stephen:                             [00:13:30]               But isn’t that the powerful message that I, I think more moms should here right now. Did you need. I mean if you’re not working right, you don’t need as much income generally, right? Because you don’t have to, you know, buy their clothes to go bring your lunch gas to get the car, you know, all that different stuff. Or especially if you have daycare, really, um, that could really make a difference. So you could adjust your lifestyle back and if you could earn 60 percent or 50 percent and still make a go of it, but then have all that freedom. Because to answer this for me, when you were working full time and you were shipping versus when you went full time and then you were just sending it to Fba, how different were the hours? I mean, did you double your hours? Did you trip alone? Did you keep it the same and not including your work is what you get what I’m saying? So let’s say you’re working 40 hours a week at the nursing home and then you’re putting 20 or 30 hours a week and on your Amazon business, so that would be 60 or 70. Then you go full time. How many hours did you reduce too?

Kim:                                       [00:14:33]               Um, I probably cut down

Stephen:                             [00:14:37]               40 total. OK. So you picked up 30 hours of your life plus driving,

Kim:                                       [00:14:43]               right. That’s huge. It was huge. And you know, that extra 30 hours I could spend with my kids in the evening.

Stephen:                             [00:14:52]               Your friends, if you went out to your friends, I’m sorry, I don’t want to move this, lose this because I hear this from so many moms, they get a little envious and they say, man, I just wish I would spend more time with my kids. Especially moms. Now Dad’s, it’s a different story, but moms especially, and so if I say to you or one of your friends, Hey, ah Jill, whoever is um, if we’re going to cut your pay and 50 percent, but you get all the time with your kids, how many of your friends would be like their hands raised bursting through the door?

Kim:                                       [00:15:24]               Yeah, I think most of them were, you know, they can make the bills, you know, make it work financially.

Stephen:                             [00:15:31]               Well, why aren’t they though? I mean, in your circle, how many people have you told about this little secret Amazon world and how many of them did take the plunge?

Kim:                                       [00:15:44]               Yeah, most of my, I mean, most of my friends know what I do and I, none of them do it. None of them don’t know why. I tried to get one friend and she actually sold for a little bit and she just decided that that wasn’t her thing.

Stephen:                             [00:15:58]               Is it because they look at how successful you are and how easy you make it because I don’t know how you are, but generally guys say, you know, we blow it off like it’s no big deal. This Amazon thing or this Ebay thing or this whole calmer, this march thing that’s. It’s not that big of a deal because it isn’t because you figured out 100 little things that you have to figure out. You’re already past a hundred. They have to come in and learn every hundred. You kind of take it, I don’t want to say take it for granted, but you downplay the rough side of the business. Is that fair?

Kim:                                       [00:16:29]               I think that’s fair and I didn’t have to learn it all at once. I’ve learned that over the last 12 years, so it doesn’t seem as overwhelming as you know, oh, I’m starting this from scratch and I’m just learning. You know? It seems a lot easier if you take it in small pieces.

Stephen:                             [00:16:46]               The advice I give people just master the one thing because everybody’s like, oh, can you show me? I’m like, no, no, I can’t because it took me, you know, longer than that to learn all these different things. But if you master this one piece and you really excel at it, you’re, that’s a home run. And then eventually the next one you actually already know 50 percent of it because it’s an overlap. And then you learned that piece and that piece and that piece. I wish more moms would hear this and just sit back and say, you know, be patient. Yes, you’ll get there. You don’t have to earn a hundred percent of your income. Even guys, they don’t have to. I know so many guys who are dying to quit their job, but they just so fearful and um, you know, my advice to them is don’t quit your job, build up this business over time and then reduce your hours if you can, similar to what you were able to do with the nursing. And I think that’s a genius move, um, where you could work part time and take care of things. Not many businesses are that way, but maybe today with the economy the way it is and it’s hard to find good people. Maybe those opportunities do exist. You just have to ask, right?

Kim:                                       [00:17:49]               Yeah. Maybe

Stephen:                             [00:17:51]               so, so six years ago, you go full time, your husband supportive and it was easy, I’m assuming, right? You just immediately hit a home run.

Kim:                                       [00:18:00]               Um, I don’t know that it was these pretty sure it wasn’t. I quit like may 26, 2012 was my last day of work and so I’d kind of timed it so that my kids were home for the summer, so I don’t know that I worked real hard, um, over the summer. But it was really fun to be able to spend that time with them. And my daughter, who was, I think 13 or 14 at the time, she had been diagnosed with scoliosis and there was the thought that she might have to have surgery and to have a spinal fusion to crack that. And that’s a very serious surgery. And it’s your spend a week in the hospital and it’s a couple months recovery and I didn’t want to have, if she did have to have that surgery, I didn’t want to have to take vacation time and worry about missing out on work at, but I want it to be able to be there for her. And so she did end up having that surgery. It was a year after I left, but I was able to be at the hospital the entire time when she was there and the two month recovery, she got it home. I could be with her and I didn’t have to worry about going into work. And to me that was priceless.

Stephen:                             [00:19:10]               Think of what you’ve infused in that young woman’s life that my mom was there for me. I mean, what would you have felt like going to work every day? How guilty would you have felt? Right.

Kim:                                       [00:19:21]               I would have felt awful and I would have hated it in.

Stephen:                             [00:19:24]               You might have then made a bad choice because you kind of were forced to mean you would have had to leave. Not on your terms, just you would have had to leave because that would’ve been, might have been the right thing to do, but you didn’t have a [inaudible] plan. So because you design this lifestyle business as you, that phrase you used. Um, I mean, I just think it’s so powerful because I tell people all the time, I mean, life is going to happen, right? No matter what your life, Kim, life is going to happen my life. And so if you don’t have a plan of, for example today we’ve got about nine or 10 inches of snow and it’s still snowing, we can go to work or you don’t have to go to work, you know, that’s pretty fortunate. Um, OK. Well, I love, I love that piece of it. Um, I just think that you are absolutely doing the right thing. So six years ago you go, you make a go of it, you’ve got some challenges right away, you adapted and got through that. And then, um, how does business go for a period of time before you looked at private label?

Kim:                                       [00:20:23]               I’m going back to school that following fall and they were all in school at that point, so I had all day where I could work during, you know, work on the business and I think it was about five years ago that I discovered facebook groups for people, for Amazon sellers, and that’s when, that’s when I realized that people really do this for our business. This is a living and people in wives do this together and that’s their only income. And I started seeing the potential and it was just like, wow, this is crazy. This is so much bigger than I ever thought it could be. And that’s just when my eyes opened up.

Speaker 5:                           [00:21:03]               OK,

Kim:                                       [00:21:04]               I saw how big this could be and how incredible of an opportunity this is

Stephen:                             [00:21:08]               because you and I personally know many multi-million dollar sellers and if you meet them and it isn’t down to downplay it, but you just like really? And you’re like, but they’re not the,

Speaker 5:                           [00:21:20]               a, a, a

Stephen:                             [00:21:22]               mark, Cubans of the world. They’re not mean either, you know, none of us. It, it doesn’t take that right. It doesn’t take that mit graduate or the, uh, the Harvard business graduate to be successful in the e-commerce world today. Correct?

Kim:                                       [00:21:37]               Exactly. Yeah. I had a psychology degree, so I have no business background.

Stephen:                             [00:21:41]               Well, but you know, what you understand customers and, and perhaps that’s why you’ve done so well on [inaudible]. I mean that might be, that might be a real key right there is that you understand people

Kim:                                       [00:21:52]               well maybe, hopefully

Stephen:                             [00:21:55]               plus your mom. So you’ve been dealing with kids. So things are going well and you see your boundaries got expanded. You now realize that this is real, this could be as big as you want it to be, right? It’s a effort and reward. And what did you start thinking you were going to do? I mean, did you, did you see the million dollar business saying that’s what I’m going to do? Um, I think that’s my number and I can make it there. Or did you have a different plan?

Kim:                                       [00:22:23]               Um, I guess I never really strove to try to build that million dollar business. I right now my daughters, my only employee. Um, I don’t want a big warehouse. I don’t know that I want a bunch of employees, you know, I like where things are going. I don’t want to be, I don’t really want to be responsible for other people. I just like taking care of myself and being responsible for me and that’s going really well. So, but that’s what’s so nice about this business. If you want to have 20 employees in a huge warehouse doing millions of dollars, you can, but if you want to work out of your home so you’re home when your kids leave for school in your home, when they get home and you know, you can do that too. Which I think is so wonderful about this opportunity.

Stephen:                             [00:23:09]               Let me ask you this, do you see that then when you see somebody else posting incredible success, how does that make you feel? I mean, are you mature enough to say good for them? That’s awesome for me because I don’t want to give up what they’re giving up, whatever that would be. Or do you get a little envious sometimes?

Speaker 5:                           [00:23:29]               Yeah.

Kim:                                       [00:23:29]               Um, I think a little bit of both. I mean, I think it’s really cool and I, I like hearing how well people are doing because I like to know what’s possible

Kim:                                       [00:23:39]               the way I was doing it with just retail and online arbitrage hitting a million dollars with just me. That’s, that’s not feasible. Um, you just have to give too much up. Right? Right. And I don’t want to work eighty hours a week because that’s why I quit my job because I don’t want to work that hard. But I think now transitioning to wholesale and private label, you know, I could hit a million dollars in a year was just me because if I’ve got products and they, you know, they’d go to a prep center, I don’t have to prep them. Um, so I mean I, it is feasible, I think to hit a million dollars in sales with just me doing the business or my in my daughter who works on my merge stuff. So

Stephen:                             [00:24:21]               that way you just described is very powerful. So you’re saying when you do get a little envious and you’re being honest, everybody gets a little NBA sometimes, but you’re saying, OK, uh, just steve, adjust and bring, build out your team through a prep center or if you’re buying merchant designs or whatever you’re doing, just adjust a little bit so you could still have that success. You can do all those things. But in Kim’s life and in Steve’s life, there’s some absolutes. I don’t want employees, I don’t want the hassles that come along with it and I think that’s a very fair way to look at it rather than sit and say, oh my God, I’m failing. Or um, or I’ve got to give it more and give it more and give it more because I think the more is how you burn. I’ve seen a bunch of people burn out.

Stephen:                             [00:25:04]               You have to write. Yeah, absolutely. And it’s unhealthy. And like you said, you’ve already left one of those jobs. You don’t want that. When you look back six years now, are you working? I know you’re going to say you’re working smarter, so I don’t want to ask that question because it can be like dusty, but are you working more hours, less hours or roughly the same? You know, and I guess that depends on the season because of lifestyle, but it is that, is that kind of fair because some people think it’s going to be the four hour work week. I haven’t had the four hour work week get, have you?

Kim:                                       [00:25:35]               No, I haven’t. I’m on vacation but then even I even then I think I work more than four hours a week now. I’m probably working more hours now and my business then I was working at the job but it doesn’t seem like work to me.

Stephen:                             [00:25:51]               How so could, could you give me some in your life and your job, your business crossover in a good way?

Kim:                                       [00:25:58]               Yeah, I mean I work with my daughters, she stuff and so I get to spend time with her and um, she w she was home last summer from college and she worked for me with other stuff for the summer and it was just really fun to get, to spend that quality time with her. So, um, I don’t know. That’s one example.

Stephen:                             [00:26:17]               What do you see [inaudible] especially because you’re teaching a young woman that she doesn’t need a man? I mean, you know, to be dependent upon any, but do you think that independence, she’s seeing it because she sees you and I don’t know how involved your husband is and I don’t mean it as a negative, I just mean it from a self esteem point of view. Um, I just love when young people figure out that, you know, just because we’re older doesn’t mean we’re better. We just a little more experience if they can just see that. And then they were like, wait, I can do that to. Yes. Have you seen that?

Kim:                                       [00:26:50]               Yeah, a little bit. And I mean, she’s kind of gotten the entrepreneurial bug and oh, that’s started her own merchant account that she’s working on because she thought she was part of the success that we had with it. And I mean that was, that was a really hard thing for me when I quit my job because I’ve always been very independent and I’ve always wanted to know that I could support myself, you know, my husband’s very supportive and he’s great, but I just wanted to know that if something were to happen to him that I would be able to support myself. So it was really hard. That was probably the hardest thing for me when quitting my job, knowing that I wasn’t going to have a steady income. But then this business came about and I’m like, Hey, you know, I could support myself should something awful happened, you know, I could support myself in the business so that, that was really good for my self esteem too, to know that I was able to do that.

Stephen:                             [00:27:43]               So you got it too and then you could transfer it to her. I love it. OK. What do your parents say about your success? I mean, looking back, you know, hey, you got this sociology degree, you’re, you know, you’re going to go and change the world and now you’re doing this and you’re changing your family. So I would hope they would be proud, but what do they say about it?

Kim:                                       [00:28:01]               Yeah, no, I mean my mom thinks that’s pretty cool and she just thinks it’s great and she never would have guessed and I never would’ve guessed 10 years ago that this is the path I would be on. Um, but I know she thinks that’s pretty cool.

Stephen:                             [00:28:15]               When you look back at those last six to eight years, what do you think is the thing that has made you so successful? When I wanted to get to the merge success, but, but all along because you’ve been able to run a business successfully for six years. That alone because most businesses fail and what three or five or some stat I read. So the fact that you’ve been able to keep on going and thriving quite frankly, is pretty cool. What, what would you say are one, two, three of the things that you’ve done really well that others might be able to benefit from?

Kim:                                       [00:28:45]               Um, I think one of them is like going to conferences and meeting other people, networking with other people is huge. Um, this can be such an isolating business, um, and building those small groups of people that are also Amazon sellers that are kind of going through the same thing that you’re going through that you can bounce ideas off of and that has been really beneficial and not being or you know, some things are really scary. It’s really scary to try new things, but not being afraid to try those new things and say, you know what, I got to try this. This is just private label was really scary for me to try that. Um, but it’s like I see that that’s kind of where I want to take my business. So if I want to change what I’m doing, I need to change my actions.

Stephen:                             [00:29:37]               Let’s talk about that because I remember you went to private label event, you spend a lot of money to get there and you spend a lot of money for the course, but I do remember on a Saturday night while everyone, not everyone else, most people were networking with an adult beverage in their hand quite frankly, and I was right there just in support only though, you know, just making sure. And, but I remember you, you didn’t leave your computer, you, you went to that. I’ve used you as an example because some people ask me, hey, what does it take? And I use you as an example. That event. While she did that, she took full advantage. He had all the experts there and she made sure that she left there with a plan. You put in some hours and some real effort. You had found products before you left. And that was like a light bulb for me. I’m like, wow, there’s somebody who truly gets it, who’s disciplined and ready to do the work. Um, were any of those product successful?

Kim:                                       [00:30:32]               Um, yeah. I actually, one of, um, I’m the one that I found that Andy had helped me order samples on that night. I’m, I’m still selling and it’s a very summer item, so it was kind of slow over the winter, but now it’s picking up again. So it’s been really fun.

Stephen:                             [00:30:47]               You got there on a Friday, if I remember correctly. Right. And the next day you ordered samples and I’ve used that example to, at these, the next events we w we’ve had a couple more since then. And, and I always talk about that, that that’s what it takes to be successful. Now. I also say this, as you went in, you didn’t have a lot of boundaries about listings and all the rest of that stuff because you were experienced, um, you, you surpassed all that stuff. So then it was able, OK, now I’m on a product only mode. I’m not fearful to create a listing or any of that jazz. And I really honestly believe that’s quite frankly why you were so successful. But imagine you went on a Friday on one day later you actually found a product that you’re still selling almost a year later. That’s a return. So I would say that that course was a good deal for you in that event.

Kim:                                       [00:31:36]               Yeah, it was. Yeah, it was great. I loved that. Definitely worthwhile.

Stephen:                             [00:31:39]               And so that’s the amazing freedom. Um, they do a retreat. There’s one actually coming up, uh, next month, but that one’s full and uh, but they do it once a year, so keep an eye out there if you’re not an amazing freedom and yes, they sponsor my show and blah blah blah. But I’m at the event too, so you get to hang out with me. Um, OK. So your, your private label business is chugging along. Have you been able to find other products or are starting to think about other products since then?

Kim:                                       [00:32:03]               Yeah, that’s kind of come along. I have two other private label products, so I have three total right now and I just ordered samples for another item this morning.

Stephen:                             [00:32:11]               Is it what, what was the fear? Because I’m assuming that’s why most people can’t make that turn. Right. They can’t pivot to private label because there’s a fear. Right. What was that moment for you? Was it andy standing over your shoulder saying, you know, Kim, you’re right. That is a good product you have, you’ve gotten and then that little confidence boost or what was it?

Kim:                                       [00:32:35]               Yeah, I think that was it. And just. I mean it seems so scary to import from China and it seems like there’s so many things that could go wrong or what could happen with customs and it’s really nice to have somebody who’s done that, done that before and his experience with it and knows how to do it right there. Kind of walking you through the process step by step, so that was a huge help for me.

Stephen:                             [00:32:58]               No, you don’t do retail or online anymore.

Kim:                                       [00:33:02]               I’m urge once in a while. Don’t you got out on Q4 last year? I’ll do a little bit of online now, but I haven’t stepped foot in a target and a few months, which is kind of sad.

Stephen:                             [00:33:17]               Just driving past and gives me anxiety. That’s why I don’t go in, I just find it easier to stay away. OK. Because I ended up buying stuff I don’t want anyway. So. All right, so you’re, you’re mostly wholesale and private label and then because you’re not busy enough, you find this merch by Amazon who to hear it from?

Kim:                                       [00:33:35]               I heard about it from Chris Green when it first came out back in September 2015.

Stephen:                             [00:33:41]               So wait, you were an early adopter. I mean that’s way

Kim:                                       [00:33:46]               I didn’t sign up for it then I, that’s when I heard about it.

Stephen:                             [00:33:49]               So you heard about it and what were you, what did you think? Like, come on really? People are going to put up shirts and they’re going to buy him.

Kim:                                       [00:33:55]               Right. And I’m like, yeah, I don’t even know how to design shirts. That’s not for me. I was too busy running around at target and Walmart because it was Q4 and I’m like I don’t have time to learn anything new. I’m, I don’t care about that and I’m just not going to pay attention to him.

Stephen:                             [00:34:12]               When did you apply for your merchant account?

Kim:                                       [00:34:14]               Um, I think it was around February of 2016. The q4 rush was kind of over and Chris was still really talking about it and I’m like, well, OK, I suppose I can apply for it. I don’t know what I’m going to do with it. I don’t know how to design a shirt, but it doesn’t cost me anything, you know, it’s completely free. So yeah, Chris says it’s good. I just need to listen to what he says.

Stephen:                             [00:34:34]               Well, to get smart, what you’re saying is that here’s a leader in our community, right? Somebody who’s, who’s done it right, wrote the book arbitrage proven to people that that model works a helped launch scan power, all the different things that he’s done. Very successful and consistent. Right. You know, and we all know a ton of people who’ve benefited here. He’s preaching and Preaching and preaching and I think to myself, you know, come on Chris, he’s always preaching about this stuff like really? And he’s absolutely right, of course. And so you’re like, if Chris says it, I’m going to do it right? Because there’s no risk like you said. I mean, I think that’s fair to. All right. So, so you launch a. are you apply, how long does it take for you to get approved?

Kim:                                       [00:35:16]               Um, I think it was a couple months. OK, remember, I’m pretty sure it was a couple of months. Um, but I really didn’t do anything with it because I didn’t know. You didn’t know how to at that point there wasn’t any design services, so either you had to design your own designs or you know, you don’t get a design and I didn’t know how. I’ve never used photoshop or illustrator or nothing like that. You think that’s where most people stop right here.

Stephen:                             [00:35:44]               They’re there like that. I don’t know, you know? Yeah, I did it, but I didn’t do anything with it because I got stopped. I didn’t know how to push it,

Kim:                                       [00:35:50]               pass that. Right. So what I did was my daughter, I only have one, so she had just graduated from high school. She was going off to college. She needed a job. So I thought, well, I could probably have her work for me and I could find enough stuff for her to do for me remotely. And I thought, well, this merge, that’s the kind of a good thing. She doesn’t have to be where I’m at to do that. And she had a little bit of photoshop experience and um, I bought one of Chris’s courses on merge one of his early ones and I gave it to her and I say, here, watch this course and figure out how to do it is that I don’t know how to do it, but you’re smart. It did. She like just instantly

Stephen:                             [00:36:37]               take to it. Um, and if so, why? Why is she able to adapt to it?

Kim:                                       [00:36:42]               Um, well I think that’s partly their generation. Um, and it w, it wasn’t an instant thing. I mean she was, she was doing some other kind of administrative stuff for me for my fba stuff and reimbursements and that kind of thing. And she slowly started designing shirts. I think it probably took about a month or so to do her first shirt. Um, you know, it’s still, it’s sold, really know. Um, so it was a like a pumpkin themed one that I thought was pretty good. She spent a lot of time drawing it by hand and oh wow. She put up a couple of designs and I think I took about a month before the first one sold and it was like, oh, that’s really fun. That’s Kinda cool. It looked free money type of thing. What was the conversation with you and your daughter? Oh my God. A shirts sold of. Yeah. Her eyes light up like you did. I mean she, she sent me a text, we sold our first shirts. I’m like, because I wasn’t even logging in. I knew nothing about merge at that point she was doing managing my entire account,

Stephen:                             [00:37:52]               so she was probably signing in and probably disappointed nothing selling nothing, selling nothing. Sewing. Right. Boom. Did you see a or have you seen a transition? A. Because she’s going to college, so usually there’s a, you know, a broadening of experience writing and confidence usually. But if she had success in a business in any role that also would play into it. Is she different today? You know, looking back to what she started.

Kim:                                       [00:38:19]               Oh, I, I definitely think she has. I mean she’s got a lot more confidence and you know, she has her own merchant account that she never would have had had we not had the success that we did.

Stephen:                             [00:38:29]               And so she, she has the ability then to be out on her own too, if she needed to write that kind of what like you about that you need that. Do you see a lot of yourself in her?

Kim:                                       [00:38:40]               I’m not really. She’s kind of an engineer type mindset since she loves math and that’s not me at all. So she’s more like my husband.

Stephen:                             [00:38:51]               OK, well she got something from you though because now she’s got some confidence it sounds like. OK. So plugging along, she’s hammering along and then you hear or how does this idea come about? Because this, you know, everybody’s gonna be like, of course Steve. Yeah. Wow. You wait for it all because now it’s easy to look back and say, of course we should have done that, but we didn’t. Right. So how long before the event did this idea come up?

Kim:                                       [00:39:21]               Before the eclipse? She, I, it was back in March of last year, somebody years ago. She had been plugging along with merchants use uploading some designs and we’d sell maybe five to 10 shirts and one, um, no real money. I mean no one ever paid more than $100 a month. Um, and she was really struggling with ideas and what to put on shirts and she’s like, you know, can you help me come up with some ideas? I said, yeah, I’ll see if I can figure something. I’ll see if I can come up with some ideas for you. So I was watching tv one night and playing around in the computer and happen to see that there was an eclipse coming up last summer and I looked on Amazon and at the time there was two eclipse shirts up and one of them had a sales rank. So I knew that it had sold. So I’m like, oh, somebody must want to clip shirt. So I told her to do something and so she did five different designs and the first design she uploaded, we’re March 30th of last year.

Stephen:                             [00:40:22]               So. So the eclipse isn’t until June. So this is August 20, first August 20 first 20 second. So now it’s even further along, four plus months away. You guys, just because you’re, you know, that this event is coming. Right. And so, hey, somebody else already had the idea and there is a pro tip. When she went on Amazon, she saw that it had rank. There’s a clue that it’s sold, right? If it’s sold then it gets a rank. He doesn’t get a rank until it sells. So you’re like, Huh, somebody would want one

Kim:                                       [00:40:54]               that’s amazing array. I may not have even thought that it was a possibility. I mean, I may not have even stuck in my head.

Stephen:                             [00:41:04]               It’s your whole world this way. I mean, when you look at anything now, is it like, go check. I mean, you and her both. Oh, I see. Uh, you know, there’s no earthquake and I don’t want to celebrate bad things. That’s a terrible. I’m positive things. Yeah, you can’t do that. So a new lake forums in Michigan, I don’t know, something cool like that, right. Woo. Let’s go check and see. I mean, is that the way your mind works now?

Kim:                                       [00:41:30]               Um, it’s starting to, yeah, and just trying to think of, I mean there’s so many different opportunities for tee shirt ideas that you can do or thinking about, you know, I don’t want to say what it is, but a goal that I have for me before I turn 50 and I’m like, Oh, I should’ve put that on a shirt because other people might have that same goal. And so I did and I sold a couple of them.

Stephen:                             [00:41:53]               It’s funny, you know, because I want to get to the end of the story because it’s an amazing story, but I don’t want to miss this. What I keep hearing though is like, Kim, look, there’s no more opportunity, you know, as you said, it’s been out there. Chris has been preaching it for three years. Every shirts taken, all the ideas are done. Kim there. Am I too late?

Kim:                                       [00:42:13]               Absolutely not. No Way. It’s, it’s such. I mean we’re two years into merge here. Two and a half years into that. This is still and it’s t shirts and long sleeve shirts and hoodies and sweatshirts, but there’s so many other more products that think are coming that the sky’s the limit with merge

Stephen:                             [00:42:37]               and, and I’m going to pitch Chris’s course and you know, don’t benefit. They asked me to. I didn’t at timing isn’t right, but I’m going to pitch Christmas course because he has a course and Kim and I both would tell you is that if Chris is involved in it, it’s going to be strong. It’s going to be great because he has been consistent in his delivery. So it’s merge Dojo, d o j o m e r c h d o j o.com. I don’t benefit personally other than if you take that course and you have success, I get to celebrating your success and I just think that that’s awesome because there are so many people that are afraid. When you think back to what Chris has taught us, I mean, how many, how many times have you used Chris has advice over the years that can. Have you ever thought about that?

Kim:                                       [00:43:24]               No, I mean I don’t even. I can’t even count.

Stephen:                             [00:43:27]               Right. And, and generally it’s pretty good, right?

Kim:                                       [00:43:33]               Very smart guy knows what he’s talking about

Stephen:                             [00:43:35]               and I don’t see him trying to benefit from. Everybody’s got a course and it’s a couple of hundred bucks and his time is worth something and so to me it’s like ran by as Mitchell Lipo. He says you got to buy time Steve, you got to buy time and that’s what you do when you pay for a course. So I’m a hundred percent behind Chris on it. If he says it’s good, it’s good. Merchant Dojo again, I don’t benefit other than your success and Kim gets to benefit and your success, right? I mean is it cool for you when you hear other people having home runs? I mean, what’s that say to you?

Kim:                                       [00:44:05]               Yeah, I mean it really shows that this opportunity is available to anybody. That you don’t have to be a graphic designer, you don’t have to be experiencing an experienced business person to make this work, that any written, literally any person with a computer and an Internet connection can do this business. What was your daughter going to school for? Mechanical engineering.

Stephen:                             [00:44:28]               So I didn’t hear in there merchant design. I didn’t hear in their graphic design. I didn’t hear in their art school art background. I didn’t hear any of those things. And yeah, you to have figured this out and created a business. OK. So let’s talk about success because I just want people don’t measure yourself against Kim because we have a merchant account. We’ve never hit a home run but we’ve had a few yourself, eight designs and a day of the same shirt and you’re like, oh that’s a family or a team or whatever. You can tell it’s a bowling team or something, you know, a work group buying. And it’s so cool because it’s like, oh that’s awesome cause you made their life like somebody. I always think about this, you know, when I worked in corporate America, somebody would come back with wait till you see what I bought us all, Steve, and it’d be like, oh, that’s so cool.

Stephen:                             [00:45:16]               And then everybody would be like into it, you know? Right. And so that’s very rewarding for me, but I have not hit the home runs. Um, but I’m not comparing myself because again, I sit back and I see what you’ve done and I say, man, it’s just so cool and so awesome because my guess is this is probably allowed you to fund a good portion of your business. Has No cap was pretty good. All right, let’s go there. So you go along and it’s four or five months out from the eclipse and you get five shirts created and does anything. So I don’t know if we’d left it there.

Kim:                                       [00:45:50]               Yeah. I mean a couple of them started selling right away. There was two that did really well. All of them saw a little bit, but two of them really started taking off. And like I said, up until the end of March, I didn’t make more than a hundred dollars any month in April. I mean $600. Like wow, that’s really cool clips. I’m pretty, well not all, but probably 90 percent of it was eclipse. Um, and then may was like $1,500. I’m like, wow, we’re like, you know, like doubling here from the month before and what other kind of business can you do that? Then it just snowballed from there and went crazy. And August was ridiculous.

Stephen:                             [00:46:34]               Well, how much inventory did you ship for that? $1,500. Absolutely nothing, nothing. And you’re saying to yourself, wait a second, I’ve got to go scan and cabs, or I’ve got a wholesale or I’ve got this and that. Or I got a check. I mean a true. I guess at that point it really is a passive income. A set it and forget it, right in that design. Very cool. All right, so we hit 1500. And then you’re like, is this for you? That must have been like, you know, because if you think about the success that we’ve heard, that would’ve been probably one of the really, really successful stories that I’ve heard at that point. Yeah. Not much bigger. Yeah, it was, it was crazy. OK. And so does it end there?

Kim:                                       [00:47:18]               No, absolutely not. I mean, it just kept selling more and more and more. And um,

Stephen:                             [00:47:25]               you’re being humble. Come on, go ahead and tell us. No, it’s an NBA thing. It’s just a very cool statement because it was an outlier. It was a home run, but it can be replicated. So go ahead.

Kim:                                       [00:47:38]               My highest sales day was August 14th, which was one week before the eclipse and that day I sold 1000, 79 shirts, [inaudible] shirts in one day without having to touch inventory with no upfront costs with no risk involved.

Stephen:                             [00:47:59]               Did you sell, and this is between us, nobody’s listening. Did you sell over six figures worth of eclipse shirts? Yes, I did. Oh my God. When, when you tell that story, what happens? I mean, because I’ve seen you tell that story and so I can tell you from my perspective, but what happens, especially for people who are not Amazon people,

Kim:                                       [00:48:19]               nobody believes me. And like I had a friend I tried to get into emerge a year ago and she’s like, no, no, no, no, no. She never replied to never apply by August. She was like, Oh man, I wish I would’ve applied when you first told me. I’m like, yeah, you should have. Um, but b, nobody believes me.

Stephen:                             [00:48:38]               So, you know, you hit a beyond home run. Probably the biggest success of most people and I’m sure there are some companies that have crushed it, but this is the Kim and daughter company. So we’re not talking massive company. I think that’s a good perspective to have.

Kim:                                       [00:48:53]               Right. But I mean I’m just a normal person with no business background, no graphic design background that if I could do this, anybody truly can do it though. And you talk to moms groups, did you do anything special to market it in any way or do you just let the Amazon machine take care of it? Um, there, there were a couple like eclipse facebook groups that I posted it in, but I don’t know that it got any traction from that, I’m not sure.

Stephen:                             [00:49:22]               Right. But it logically, I mean, it’s just a anything. I mean it’s gotta be had to have some impact,

Kim:                                       [00:49:28]               right? Maybe, um, but otherwise I think just once they started selling, they were showing up better in search results and you know, they are on the first page when you search for eclipse t and then they just started selling and I think the designs were really good. I think Kayla did a great job on them. Um, so that was probably part of it. To what number did you hit? Do you remember what number ranked? Um, one of my shirts got to a rank of four in clothing.

Stephen:                             [00:49:57]               Oh my God. So I don’t think people who don’t, who sell, who don’t sell on Amazon would understand four. Out of how many millions, millions, millions, tens, twenties, 30, a hundred million to hit number four. It’s the fourth best seller period in velocity of every piece of clothing on Amazon. Wow.

Kim:                                       [00:50:21]               Yeah, that was a fun day.

Stephen:                             [00:50:24]               So how do you follow up with that? I mean, because that’s gotta be like the, you know, I’ve seen how he’s thinking about that. I’m a storage worst show that guy a darryl who supposedly bought a comic book collection in one of these storage units like a million years ago and he always, he sold it and then he tells a story, if I would have held on to that, it would be worth a hundred billion, you know, some crazy. But he didn’t write his. So he’s held on to that as his success. That’s it. It’s like he’s hit the pinnacle of his career and he’s now just trying to hold on to it. What happens in your world?

Kim:                                       [00:50:58]               I’m in my world. I actually, after that happened, I decided, oh, I should probably take this merge thing a little bit more seriously and maybe I should learn how to upload a shirt, um, and hire some designers to get more designs. Um, because at that point Kayla was back in school and she didn’t have time to do designs and didn’t have as much time to spend uploading. So in, well I also, there was a merge conference out in Seattle in September that I went to that and that was really cool. You spoke at that too, didn’t you know, I didn’t speak, I was just listened. OK. So you were just attended and. Well, what did you learn there? Well, I, I just, it was fun to talk to other people that do merge, you know, and there are people that only do merge, that don’t sell on Amazon, so they have a very different perspective and they learned about or they talked about, um, you know, how to do a design. I’m like, I’ve never designed a shirt in my life, you know, I don’t know how to design. So that was, it was good to hear other people’s perspectives and how they work their merchant business.

Stephen:                             [00:52:03]               Did you come back and apply it? I mean because ultimately you can go to these conferences, you can listen and hear a whole bunch of things and learned a bunch of stuff, but if you don’t apply it in a really, it didn’t advance your business. Right,

Kim:                                       [00:52:14]               right. Yeah. I mean, I think I’ve applied some of it, obviously I haven’t applied everything I probably could have applied, um, but I mean now I’m spending probably two to three hours a day working on my merge business by uploading designs and um, so yeah, I mean, I, I hope I benefited from it.

Stephen:                             [00:52:34]               Let me ask you this, this was kind of personal, so you don’t have to tell us everything. What percentage of your business now revenue wise is merge? I mean, wow. And revenue is not a good number. A profit wise, I guess it would be a better meaningful number.

Kim:                                       [00:52:47]               Um, right now it’s probably 40 percent or so. That’s significant. Yeah, it’s good. Yeah, it’s Kinda good. I got three successful private label product, so. Oh, and by the way, mom crushing it,

Stephen:                             [00:53:05]               Steve. Yeah, it’s Kinda good. Well, you know what, that humbleness, uh, the fact that you’re putting three hours a day, um, that’s what it takes, isn’t it really, isn’t it that consistency? I, I think that’s the answer for almost everything.

Kim:                                       [00:53:20]               Yeah. I’m just, you know, working on it a little bit every day and that in, if you do get burnt out on it, it’s OK to take a couple of days off to [inaudible] it’ll still be there and you’ll still be selling shirts and you’ll still be making money.

Speaker 5:                           [00:53:32]               Um,

Kim:                                       [00:53:34]               but then that’s the nice thing about it.

Stephen:                             [00:53:36]               Does it take away from your,

Speaker 5:                           [00:53:38]               uh,

Stephen:                             [00:53:39]               private label plans? I mean, because that’s what I would think a lot of people would say. Well that’s Great Steve, but I’m already in over my head on my private label, my wholesale or retail or whatever it is.

Kim:                                       [00:53:49]               Yeah, it probably takes a little bit of time, but generally I find I like usually when I upload my shirts in the evenings and I’m kind of done working on private label stuff and Amazon stuff because I tired and I’m ready to sit and watch tv or something. So it’s kind of a mindless thing that I can do when I sit and watch TV with, but it’s better than, you know, wasting time or playing candy crush or something like that. I can actually feel like I’m being somewhat productive.

Stephen:                             [00:54:21]               You’ve added that segment to that lifestyle. You’re looking for that small segment. That’s what I’m willing to give it. And you gotta reward to hear that 40 percent of your income is made with that. That’s significant. I mean, that’s a really significant. So looking out where do you go from here?

Kim:                                       [00:54:39]               Um, I just want to keep, keep working on merge, upload anymore designs and you know, find more private label products and more wholesale accounts and do that.

Stephen:                             [00:54:51]               And you said you, you hardly ever get the itch to go back out and, or you don’t scratch the itch. Let me say it that way, uh, to go out and retail arb or online arbs. So you’ve really kind of narrow down your focus and a lot of stuff is not going to. You’re sending it to prep centers, which absolutely compliments that lifestyle business.

Kim:                                       [00:55:08]               Yeah, I mean it’s part of that is hard because you know, it’s hard to switch your focus because it takes a little bit of time to build up your inventory and you know, your sales may not be as high as they were last year, which can be a little bit depressing because everybody talks about, oh, you gotta do more than you did last year and you got to make sure you’re selling more and growing your business. And so it’s, it’s kind of a mental thing and it’s hard to, to say that it’s OK, it’s OK if I don’t sell as much this month as I did last March of 2017 because I’m switching my focus her, it’ll be OK.

Stephen:                             [00:55:46]               Right. You have to pull back to move forward. You have to, you know, I think that’s really hard for people to kind of a trench themselves, right? To try to figure out the lane that they want to stay in. And I mean, what do you do about shiny objects syndrome? Do you get it?

Kim:                                       [00:56:04]               Oh, absolutely. Avoid it. Tell us, come on, tell us the secret. I wish I had the answer.

Stephen:                             [00:56:15]               Well, I’m glad you didn’t get the Shiny Object Syndrome when it came to merge because, you know, when you make that kind of money, what does that do for your business? Uh, investing into private label and things like that.

Kim:                                       [00:56:28]               Well, I mean it gave me a lot, a lot of a cushion to have the money to put into private label that and just gave me more confidence that, OK, if I lose $5,000, it’s not the end of the world. It’s like winning at the slot machine and then you’re betting the house’s money, right? In essence. Right? Right. But what can I learn from this process that I would change and do differently in the future to make it a success?

Stephen:                             [00:56:53]               Well, that’s a good question because, you know, people are sitting here saying, well, this is all great, Steve, you know, Kim, you, you’ve hit a home run, right? Uh, but you know, what, how can I apply that to my business? So what have you learned that you can take forward?

Kim:                                       [00:57:08]               What have I learned? Um, I think just to be willing to ask questions to other sellers that you know are successful and make those connections and sometimes go out of your comfort zone. I am very much an introvert and much prefer to sit by myself all day long, but that’s not gonna help me in situations. And so I need to get out of that comfort zone a little bit and don’t be afraid to reach out to other people and you know, if I can help, you know, if they can help me, what are some ways that I can help them? Because everybody has their strengths. Everybody has weaknesses. Then if you can hook up with somebody who’s got their strength, is your weakness and try and meet, be a mutually beneficial for both of you, then it’s good for everybody.

Stephen:                             [00:57:54]               You know, I, I always take away things from these calls and I sit back and think, here’s two really powerful things. One is of course networking right now. I hear that from every successful seller getting out of their comfort zone. But, you know, it surprises me how many people describe themselves as an introvert in this business. Um, so that makes it really challenging for you to put yourself out there. It really does. Um, but it’s a pattern. I do see that pattern. But the other thing I heard you describe is really segment out your time to invest into these businesses. So it just doesn’t magically happen. Private label, right? You got a block away. I still picture you at that table on a Saturday night and it was late and you just stayed on it until you found something and you found a couple of things but you stayed on it and that, that’s, that’s probably going to stay with me and I’ll tell that story for a really long time. But segmenting out that time, I just think it’s so important. It’s not a four hour workweek, right? It’s just not.

Kim:                                       [00:58:49]               No. And it takes work and, but that’s OK because it doesn’t seem like work, you know. But I think if you can put in the time to find some good products and to make sure it’s gonna work, it’s gonna benefit you in the end and

Stephen:                             [00:59:04]               it’s a year later and so it’s taken you a year to start hitting a stride is, as you said, you’re ordering some more samples so you get to that place. It doesn’t happen overnight. Right.

Kim:                                       [00:59:15]               Right. And I’m sure some people would have moved much quicker, but you know, I did a lot of Ra and oh wait, in queue for. Cause that’s such good money. So I really didn’t focus on private label at all during that time.

Stephen:                             [00:59:30]               Kim, you’re so inspiring. I mean it really is. When I sit back and I hear the way you’ve moved through the business and you figured out where you fit in and to me that you didn’t fail it, Ra, you didn’t fail it. Oh way you figured out where you want to be in this business. And I think that that’s the powerful thing for people to hear is that what works for Kim might not work for Steve, which might not work for Bob, but that’s OK. There’s so many places to fit in here. I can’t see my hands. They’re waving in the air.

Kim:                                       [01:00:01]               I mean some people love our Ra and that’s great and, but I’ve decided I’m getting too old for that APP and I don’t like to pack boxes and I don’t like to mess up my house and I don’t want to get a warehouse because I like being home.

Stephen:                             [01:00:15]               You don’t want employees and all those things, but you’ve partnered up and so you found other ways to work around them. And here’s the last takeaway is to push through these things because, and again, this is where that networking come in. Every single problem. You’ve had somebody else’s seat fair. Yeah, absolutely. And how many times have you been able to say, hey, billy Bob, don’t know billy Bob is, but he’s pretty cool. Hey Billy Bob, you know, I’ve got this problem and how many times if they said, oh, here’s what you do,

Kim:                                       [01:00:42]               you can always find somebody you know or let’s say I go to billy Bob and he doesn’t know the answer, but he’s like, Hey, well I know that Jim, he had this problem in here, you know, contact him and he can help you out. So that’s the beauty of the networking too, is that people get to know what each other’s strengths are and can hook you up if you’re struggling with something.

Stephen:                             [01:01:05]               All right, very cool. So if somebody has a follow-up question, what’s the best way they can get in touch with him?

Kim:                                       [01:01:12]               I’m taking on my email. That’s fine. I’m on facebook too, under Kim Jensen.

Stephen:                             [01:01:18]               I’ll put your contact there for Kim Johnson because I think that that’s the best way, the emails, unfortunately, marketers don’t get ahold of it and they’ll start sending your stuff. So I don’t want to do that until you. OK. All right. Last thing, and I in you might have already answered it so. And it’s OK to answer it the same way. Maybe it reinforces it. The the podcast is for people who get stuck, right? We’ve all hit that point of stuck. Kim’s hit that point of stuck, right? You have to push through it, so give the best piece of advice you can give to somebody to get past that point of stuck.

Kim:                                       [01:01:48]               Just do a little bit at a time. You know, if you’re. If you’re like, oh, private label, I don’t know, private label, that’s too scary. Just take start little by little and learning a little bit about it, like start trying to find other products that people are private labels and like, oh, OK, well then I don’t know, just take little bites at a time because then it’s not so overwhelming. You sound advice. Elephant one, bite at A. No, I

Stephen:                             [01:02:20]               think it’s sound advice because it’s overwhelming when you look at it all and if I just said to you, Kim, all you have to do is instead of that whole giant wall of boxes need to be moved. Just moved one box today and then tomorrow you moved to boxes and tomorrow and eventually it started to get a flow. In that process gets in there and you start, it starts to get easier, right? Because you build processes and things loving, inspiring, inspiring, inspiring. I hope people hear us about Chris and his program. Again, I just, anything that Chris is involved in, I always want to be part of just because he’s so strong and he’s always delivered. Um, and if, how many people sat back and said, man, I wish I would have taken action in 2015. Right? Or early 2006. How many people are kicking themselves for?

Stephen:                             [01:03:04]               Not, especially after hearing Kim’s story. Um, yeah. We should have all done a eclipse shirts. Yeah. No kidding. But we did. But what’s coming next? And there are s, there is something coming next and you could take advantage of it. So merge Dojo, [inaudible] Dojo. Hey, thanks Kim. I wish you nothing but success and thanks for having me again. I’m making one more pitch for merge Dojo. <UNK> Dojo.com. Chris Green’s course, he’s going to help you have success in merge and he’s going to help you figure it out. You heard Kim say she’s done a designer and her daughter’s, now she’s an engineer and yet they’ve been able to figure it out and it’s a small approach. It’s a bite sized approach. It’s free to join. Um, and you know, some of the coolest things you heard me describe when we had eight shirts sell one day and it’s a very cool and rewarding thing and I just think that more people should try it. The sooner you get in, the sooner you can have some success. So apply today, but go to [inaudible] merchant Dojo. Take care.

Cool voice guy:                  [01:04:06]               Thanks for listening to the e-commerce momentum podcast. All the links mentioned today can be found at e commerce momentum dot. Under this episode number, please remember to subscribe and like us on itunes.