Show cover of eCommerce Evolution

eCommerce Evolution

eCommerce Evolution is hosted by Brett Curry, CEO of OMG Commerce. Tune in for fresh interviews with the merchants, vendors, and experts shaping the eCommerce industry. We take an in-depth look at what's new and what's next in eCommerce.

Tracks

Episode 281 - 800% Growth in 4 Years While Quitting Amazon
We've all dreamed of quitting Amazon. And it's hard to argue with 800% growth in 4 years. That's why I was so excited to sit down with Sean Reyes, founder of ShockSurplus.com. I wanted to discuss Sean's journey of growing his business by 800% in just four years, his decision to break up with Amazon despite it accounting for 70% of his revenue at the time, and the importance of thinking like a media company.While most brands should NOT quit Amazon, some should. And his thoughts around margins and building content are valuable for all eComm brands. Key topics and lessons from the episode:-Sean's strategies for managing margins and advertising costs in a highly competitive environment with intense margin pressure.-The value of creating authentic, informative content on YouTube to build trust and authority with customers.-The decision to move away from Amazon due to high fees, lack of customer interaction, and increased competition on listings.-The importance of thoroughly understanding sales tax nexus laws to avoid costly mistakes and legal issues.-Sean's advice for eCommerce store owners looking to diversify their revenue streams and uncover new opportunities for growth.Quotable moments from the episode:"We've got to be more like a media company that sells parts rather than a parts company that does media. Because I always felt like once you have the experience of producing valuable content, you could direct it anywhere.""You need to get behind the product, use it to drive proper recommendations, and create a customer experience that no one else can give."
45:38 5/15/24
Episode 280 - Prime Day Prep: Tips to Maximize Sales and Protect Profits
Are you ready to make this year's Prime Day your biggest and most profitable yet on Amazon? In this episode, Amazon experts Christine Shiloni and Jonathan Finkes join the podcast to share insider strategies and actionable tips to help you crush your Prime Day sales goals. From deal strategies to advertising tactics and inventory planning to post-Prime Day momentum, this episode covers everything you need to know to come out on top during Amazon's massive annual event.Key topics and lessons include:-Understanding the different Prime Day deal types (Lightning Deals, Best Deals, Prime Exclusive Discounts, Coupons) and how to select the right ones for your products.-Aligning your discount strategy with your margins and inventory levels to maximize profitability.-Crafting an aggressive but targeted advertising approach for Prime Day, including budget pacing, placement focus, and bid adjustments.-Leveraging increased traffic post-Prime Day to gain new-to-brand customers and drive long-term growth.-Preparing for a successful Q4 by capitalizing on learnings from Prime Day and gearing up for October Prime Day and holiday sales.
39:46 5/8/24
Episode 279 - Level Up Your Leadership: How to Hire, Manage, and Lead a Thriving eCommerce Team
I first heard Dave Kline speak at E-commerce Fuel Live in New Orleans a few months ago. It was an awesome event, and Dave's talk was a highlight for me. Dave is a seasoned leader with over 20 years of experience working with teams at Bridgewater and Moody's. Dave shares his candid take on how to level up our leadership skills, spot great talent, hire the right managers, and build a team that drives business growth and success.Key topics and lessons discussed:-The importance of simplifying processes and avoiding unnecessary hiring by focusing on the most critical problems in your business.-How do you identify the right roles to hire for and avoid compromising on character when bringing in new talent?-The benefits and challenges of promoting from within versus hiring external candidates for management positions.-Strategies for maintaining a flat, collaborative culture while introducing a management structure to support business growth.-The significance of setting clear incentives and codifying cultural values to encourage desired behaviors and decision-making processes.-Creating rituals and intentional moments for feedback and idea-sharing to counteract the potential drawbacks of a hierarchical structure.-Balancing the measurement of managers' performance based on team output and the sustainability of the team they lead.-Embracing the concept that being a good manager now requires leadership skills, such as being kind, direct, developmental, and coaching team members to reach their full potential.Here are a few insightful quotes from the podcast:"Leading is just being kind and direct. Leading is being developmental and coaching. Leading is helping people be better than they, maybe themselves, even believe they can be.""People will cut a lot of corners for short-term gains, and you end up eroding the long-term  sustainability of the team."
42:37 5/1/24
Episode 278 - Does YouTube Really Beat Facebook Every Time?
You probably know him from the YouTube ad that begins with "YouTube beats Facebook every time…" ‍In this episode, I interview Aleric Heck, founder and CEO of Ad Outreach and KeywordSearch.com, to discuss how eCommerce businesses can leverage YouTube ads for growth. ‍Key takeaways include:- Aleric's journey from creating a successful YouTube channel to becoming a YouTube ads expert, focusing on coaching and consulting businesses.- The importance of crafting compelling YouTube ad creatives using a "hook, educate, call-to-action" framework.- Leveraging YouTube's unique audience targeting capabilities, such as custom intent audiences based on search behavior and affinity audiences based on interests and URLs.- The power of Google's vast data in audience targeting and the potential for even more advanced targeting options in the future.- An introduction to Aleric's AI-powered tool, Keyword Search, which streamlines the process of finding the right keywords and creating custom audiences for YouTube ads‍Here are a few quotable nuggets from the podcast:‍"If you can give people an "aha" moment in the ad and actually provide them genuine value, they are far more likely to take action." ‍"Google knows everything about everyone, essentially. And so I do think they're holding back on targeting somewhat to protect the user and to protect themselves." 
46:33 4/17/24
Episode 277 - 10 Siblings, 11 Retail Stores, 1 Amazing Brand
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks to Jimmy Sansone (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jimmy-sansone-aa80b881/) about the founding story of The Normal Brand.__Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Chapters: (00:00) Introduction and Jimmy’s Background(11:42) Early Days of The Normal Brand(15:51) Working with Family (22:09) Expansion Into Retail Stores(25:03) Benefits of Having Your Own Stores(32:25) Mistakes Made Along The Way(34:46) Culture and Core Values(39:34) Future Plans & Merchandising Strategy (42:28) Outro __Show Notes: Jimmy Sansone (LinkedIn): https://www.linkedin.com/in/jimmy-sansone-aa80b881/ The Normal Brand (Website): https://thenormalbrand.com/ The Normal Brand (Instagram):https://www.instagram.com/thenormalbrand/ Patrick Lencioni (LinkedIn): https://www.linkedin.com/in/patrick-lencioni-orghealth/ Working Genius: https://www.workinggenius.com/ Hudson Hawk: https://www.hudsonhawk.com/ Ryan Holiday: https://ryanholiday.net/ Supplement Superstore: https://supplementsuperstores.com/ 1st Phorm: https://1stphorm.com/ __Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, Bryan Porter and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024
39:57 4/10/24
Episode 276 - Let's Buy a Business with Jeremy Horowitz
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks to Jeremy Horowitz (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeremyhorowitz1/) about the current state of eCommerce.__Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Chapters: (00:00) Intro(01:58) The State of eCommerce(12:39) Constructing a Healthy P&L(22:48) Would We Buy This Business? (38:38) The Importance of Focusing on Core Customers(43:29) LVMH: The Ultimate Luxury Company(48:44) Outro__Links: Jeremy Horowitz: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeremyhorowitz1/ Let’s Buy A Biz!: https://www.letsbuyabiz.xyz/ __Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, Bryan Porter and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024Episode 263 with Anthony Mink - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better QuestionsEpisode 260 with Preston Rutherford - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston RutherfordEpisode 243 with Jacques Spitzer - Achieving Exit Velocity with YouTube AdsEpisode 228 with Jeremy Horowitz - The State of eCommerce, The Economy, and What To Do Next
46:55 4/3/24
Episode 275 - Amazon Ads News & Trends with Jeff Cohen of Amazon
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks to Jeff Cohen from Amazon (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffreycohen/) about amazon ads news and trends. __Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Show Notes: (00:00) Introduction (07:54) Vertical Video for Sponsored Brand Video(15:43) Amazon’s Facebook Integration (19:27) Prime Video Ads and Sponsored TV(31:33) Amazon Marketing Cloud (AMC) (39:22) AI’s Role In Amazon Advertising (42:15) The Importance of Your Feedback(43:46) Outro __Links: Jeff Cohen: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffreycohen/ __Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, Bryan Porter and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024Episode 263 with Anthony Mink - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better QuestionsEpisode 260 with Preston Rutherford - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston RutherfordEpisode 243 with Jacques Spitzer - Achieving Exit Velocity with YouTube AdsEpisode 228 with Jeremy Horowitz - The State of eCommerce, The Economy, and What To Do Next
43:32 3/20/24
Episode 274 - How to Sell 1/2 Billion in Drink Ware in 8 Years
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks to Brayn Porter (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jbryanporter/) about how to build a brand on Amazon.  __Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Show Notes: (00:00) Introduction(04:11) Simple Modern’s Founding Story(17:42) Demand Capture and Paid Ads(24:40) Building A Brand On Amazon(40:40) Transitioning To a 1P Seller on Amazon(46:23) Outro__Links: Kyle Fraughton: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jbryanporter/ Simple Modern: https://www.simplemodern.com/ __Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024Episode 263 with Anthony Mink - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better QuestionsEpisode 260 with Preston Rutherford - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston RutherfordEpisode 243 with Jacques Spitzer - Achieving Exit Velocity with YouTube AdsEpisode 228 with Jeremy Horowitz - The State of eCommerce, The Economy, and What To Do Next
44:53 3/13/24
Episode 273 - 6 Candid Lessons from Parenting 8 Kids + Running an Agency
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks about the parallels between parenting and running a business. __Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Show Notes: (00:00) Introduction (03:12) Lesson 1 - Where All Making It Up As We Go(06:58) Lesson 2 - You’re Never Really Ready(09:19) Lesson 3 - Listen and Communicate Clearly In Multiple Ways(12:17) Lesson 4 - Admit When You’re Wrong(14:39) Lesson 5 - You Might Want A Coach(19:39) Lesson 6 - Be All In(22:52) Outro __Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024Episode 263 with Anthony Mink - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better QuestionsEpisode 260 with Preston Rutherford - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston RutherfordEpisode 243 with Jacques Spitzer - Achieving Exit Velocity with YouTube AdsEpisode 228 with Jeremy Horowitz - The State of eCommerce, The Economy, and What To Do Next
22:08 3/6/24
Episode 272 - Ambassador Programs that Fuel Growth
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks to Kyle Fraughton (https://www.linkedin.com/in/kylefraughton/) about ambassador programs and the power of UGC.  __Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Show Notes: (00:00) Introduction (02:40) Kyle’s Background (03:53) Authentic - The Word of the Year(05:55) Is UGC Dead? (10:51) The Digital Age Version of Word of Mouth(13:32) Strategies To Facilitate Word of Mouth(15:26) What Does A Good Ambassador Program Do?(16:16) Influencer Program vs. Ambassador Program(26:08) How To Set Up An Ambassador Program(34:50) Ambassadors and Ads(38:41) More About Get Roster(43:06) Outro__Links: Kyle Fraughton: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kylefraughton/ Roster: https://www.getroster.com/__Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024Episode 263 with Anthony Mink - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better QuestionsEpisode 260 with Preston Rutherford - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston RutherfordEpisode 243 with Jacques Spitzer - Achieving Exit Velocity with YouTube AdsEpisode 228 with Jeremy Horowitz - The State of eCommerce, The Economy, and What To Do Next
42:21 2/28/24
Episode 271 - How to Win in 2024 with Sean Frank of Ridge
Brett Curry (https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/) talks to Sean Frank (http://twitter.com/SeanEcom/) about what it takes to win as a DTC brand in 2024. __Sponsored by OMG Commerce - go to (https://www.omgcommerce.com/contact) and request your FREE strategy session today!__Show Notes: (00:00) Introduction (01:18) The Operators Podcast (06:30) Ridge’s Background(09:38) What To Expect For DTC Brands In 2024(16:08) What Does It Take To Win In 2024(25:13) What Channels Is Sean Most Excited For In 2024(30:15) How To Grow Profitably (38:52) Expanding Your Product Line(43:44) Outro__Links: Sean Frank: http://twitter.com/SeanEcom/ Ridge: https://ridge.com/ The Operators Podcast: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/operators/id1684446059__Connect With Brett: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thebrettcurry/ YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@omgcommerce Website: https://www.omgcommerce.com/ __Past guests on eCommerce Evolution include Ezra Firestone, Steve Chou, Drew Sanocki, Jacques Spitzer, Jeremy Horowitz, Ryan Moran, Sean Frank, Andrew Youderian, Ryan McKenzie, Joseph Wilkins, Cody Wittick, Miki Agrawal, Justin Brooke, Nish Samantray, Kurt Elster, John Parkes, Chris Mercer, Rabah Rahil, Bear Handlon, Trevor Crump, Frederick Vallaeys, Preston Rutherford, Anthony Mink, Bill D’Allessandro, and more. __Other episodes you might enjoy: Episode 266 with Cody Wittick - Influencer Marketing and How To Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024Episode 263 with Anthony Mink - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better QuestionsEpisode 260 with Preston Rutherford - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston RutherfordEpisode 243 with Jacques Spitzer - Achieving Exit Velocity with YouTube AdsEpisode 228 with Jeremy Horowitz - The State of eCommerce, The Economy, and What To Do Next
41:45 2/21/24
Episode 270 - Grow on Google Like Never Before in 2024 (Trends, Tips and New Stuff)
If Google isn’t within your top 2 channels for new customer acquisition - 2024 should be the year you change that.In this episode, I interview Matt Slaymaker on the latest and greatest from Google.Here’s a look at what we cover:What are the best brands doing on Google that others aren’t?What are the keys to a better, more productive relationship with your agency?How has PMax evolved, and how can you fully leverage it?What about Demand Gen - Google’s newest campaign type? Spoiler alert: it’s not great... yet. But we see potential. How should we think about AI with Google ads?
46:08 2/7/24
Episode 269 - Winning on Amazon in 2024: Better Ads, Better Branding, Better Strategy
So much has changed on Amazon since we started helping sellers on the platform in 2016 (I can’t believe we’ve been in the Amazon game for 8 years).In this episode, I chat with Trenton Bodenbach, OMG Amazon Strategist. We discuss some new potential game-changers on Amazon for 2024, strategy, and who’s winning and who’s not on the platform.Here’s a quick look at a few of our topics:1) Vertical Video for Sponsored Brand Video. Sponsored Brand Video is one of our favorite Amazon ad types. It’s usually in the top 2-3 most effective ad types for the brands we work with. Now, it supports vertical video. Likely, you have more vertical video than anything else. Now, you can use it on Amazon. 2) Shop on Facebook. Amazon controls this for now, but likely there’s more to come. This will allow shoppers on Facebook to buy products directly from Amazon without leaving the Facebook app. 3) Amazon’s continued growth and dominance and what it means.4) Amazon storefronts, posts, and other tools for branding. We believe that building your BRAND on Amazon is the ultimate key to success. Not just selling stuff. And Amazon has more tools than ever to help you build your brand. 
34:27 1/31/24
Episode 268 - A Better Framework for Using AI + Leveling Up the Customer Journey
I love this episode. Not just because my guest, Rabah Rahil, is a super smart dude with an eye for fashion.I love it because we tackle two of the biggest issues facing brands, agencies, and developers in the DTC space:How to think about and utilize AI for better results (especially if you’ve resisted it a bit).How to evolve the customer shopping experience to wow customers and drive better conversion rates.If you’ve been somewhat bearish on AI or maybe just slow to experiment with it, perhaps you need a better framework.Rabah lays out his framework by comparing AI to oil companies and how oil companies find land, drill for oil, and refine it for profit-producing products. It might not be clear right now, but this is a pretty accurate analogy for getting the most from AI.We also talk about the social dilemmas of using AI in our daily lives. For example, if I use AI to write my wife a poem, does that count, or is it cheating? If I use AI to help me craft answers for a job interview, is that a sign I shouldn’t be hired or that I know how to utilize tools? Or does it depend? We also talk about a few of his favorite tools:Gong(.io): A tool that Fermat now uses to analyze sales performance and run sales meetings. It’s a game changer in taking data from your CRM and delivering actionable insights and talking points. Riverside: The podcast recording tool that now has AI features that are awesome (and getting better all the time). Plus, we discuss some AI features masquerading as businesses. These will undoubtedly come crashing back to reality. On the customer journey side, we talk about how creating a cohesive experience that’s also customized at scale is the future of the DTC industry.3 things have to be in alignment:The adThe post-click experienceThe offerWe talk about when and how this goes wrong and what to do.And we throw in some fun 80s/90s references. Super fun. I hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed recording.
40:19 1/24/24
Episode 267: Building a Brand In Public, Twitter Ads and Dealing with Fierce Headwinds
In the DTC space, there are always headwinds.Supply chain issues. Amazon account shutdowns. Meta or Google ad account issues. And new headwinds pop up daily.That's why I love this conversation with Aaron Nosbisch so much. Aaron and my buddy Nick Shackelford run Lucyd - a social ad agency that focuses on CBD and Cannabis products, and now Brez, a very tasty THC drink that's legal in all 50 states.At Lucyd, Aaron and the team grew from nothing to one of the largest CBD agencies in the world. And the road was anything but easy. The story is a crazy one and even involved Aaron emailing Mark Zuckerberg directly when he was getting nowhere with Facebook support.At Brez, they're building a THC brand publicly. The wins and losses are right there for everyone to see. This interview is fun, inspiring, and insightful. Here's a look at what we cover:Why "hacking" your way to solving difficult problems isn't the answer. Being really, really good at the fundamentals is the answer.Why building in public is more fun and likely less risky than building in private. What being "mission-driven" looks like for a CBD/THC brand.What's working on with X (Twitter) advertising, and what should we expect next year?The two ways to innovate. Plus more!
44:04 1/10/24
Episode 266 - Influencer Marketing and How to Create a Creative Flywheel in 2024
Cody Wittick is the man. College hoops player. Agency owner. Podcast host. And, now, new dad!Most important for this discussion: Cody knows how to scale DTC brands with influencer marketing. In this episode, we discuss the right and wrong ways to build an influencer marketing program. We talk about winning creatives and who's smarter: media buyers or the machine. And highlight the parallels between running a business and being a father. What was my favorite part of the conversation, you ask...? How to use influencers to build a creative flywheel.I'm convinced you need enough quantity and quality of creative on a weekly basis to scale on all of your most important platforms. And in the episode, we talk about how. Enjoy!
42:46 1/3/24
Episode 265 - Million Dollar Insights: Top 12 Takeaways from a Year of Amazing Guests
This year was an AMAZING year of podcast guests.Today, I wanted to reflect on and recap 12 of my favorite lessons from this year.1. Creative Thinking as a Competitive Advantage - Million Dollar Mindset (Ep 231)This episode was the most shared episode of the year. It ended up in a few forums and got a lot of love. What helped Will and the team grow Organifi from $18M annually to over $100M? It wasn’t just hard work. It was creative thinking and problem-solving.Learn the secrets of Moneyball, the Hollywood Black List, and more!2. You Can 13X Through Creative, Data-Driven Marketing - Brendan Bannister (Ep 221)In a similar vein to the podcast with Will Hughes, this interview with Brendan Bannister was a banger. Brendan ran paid media for William Painter during their years of meteoric growth. We talk about the power of design and simplicity. 3. What You Don’t Know About Your Customer Is Costing You. The Missing Piece to Your Attribution, CRO, and Marketing Is Customer Insights - Trevor Crump (Ep 250) / Jeremiah Prummer (Ep 262) I’m completely sold on the idea that when done properly, customer surveys uncover tremendous insights that will shift how you advertise, position, and optimize your products. I cover my 4 favorite questions to ask in post-purchase surveys. 4. Why Your Price Is Likely Wrong and What to Do About It - Byron Myers (Ep 255)The way you set your initial price is not the way you determine your optimal price. There’s an optimal price for rev maximization and one for profit maximization. How does demand and conversion rate shift when price increases or decreases? After you get some data, you need to get scientific. Chart out your demand curve and conversion rate to find your ideal price. This isn’t static, though. You should be testing at least 2 times per year or likely every quarter. 5. Customer Value Optimization Trumps CRO Every Time. And It Informs CRO. - Drew Sanocki (Ep 245)Not all customers are created equally. You have some whales (your most valuable) and some minnows (your least valuable). What’s more important than almost anything else you do is identifying whales and attracting more of them. This is a key part of understanding that there are only 3 ways to grow your business:Get more new customersGet each customer to spend more (raise your AOV) Get customers to buy more often (increase LTV) 6. Organic Growth on YouTube. 3 Types of Content. - Liz Germain (Ep 234)YouTube is the 2nd most visited site on the planet. Users spend a TON of time on the platform. If you’re good at creating content, you can build a large following and drive awareness and traffic for your brand. In this episode, I talk to YouTube pro, Liz Germain, about the 3 types of content you must create to build an organic following.7. Brand is Everything - Person Rutherford (Ep 260)Want a huge exit? Want all of your advertising efforts to improve? Want greater retention and higher LTVs? Want to charge a premium? You need to focus on brand building.The good news is you can do this profitably.If you want customers to seek you out by name, tell others about you, and feel pride in associating with your products, you need a BRAND. Preston Rutherford, one of the co-founders of Chubbies who had a 9 figure IPO, knows all about this. Brand building can’t be done overnight. It’s a long
25:17 12/27/23
Episode 264 - Optimize Your Finance Stack or Risk Going Broke
How is your finance stack?We all love to talk about our tech or marketing stacks, but the financial side gets less attention.Heck, you might not even know for sure what your finance stack is! My guest today is an eComm legend, Bill D'Alessandro. Bill is the founder and CEO of Elements Brands. He's built or acquired 8 brands and sold 7. Before his time in eComm, he spent 5 years in the investment banking and private equity world. Talking about ad creativity or the latest case studies on scaling with Facebook ads is more of a dopamine hit than talking about finance. BUT, knowing what levers to pull, what to do, and what NOT to do as it relates to your finance stack can instantly add $100s or thousands to your bank account. Here are the 4 components of your finance stack that Bill and I dive into today. Trust me, this interview is fast-paced, interesting and guaranteed to put more cash in your bank account.BankingCredit CardsWorking CapitalDebtYou don't need to be a CFO or a CPA to get value here. You just need the 80/20 of how to optimize your finances. Here's a look at what we cover in this episode:Why it's not always best to maximize assets and reduce liabilities; for example, accounts receivable are an asset, but they're also NOT cash in your bank.When it's "OK" to use Debt and when you shouldn't.What's essential and what's not when it comes to a bank?How 2 simple shifts in credit card usage can add $10s or $100s of thousands in your pocket…money you will NOT receive a 1099 for.Why working capital is the blood of your business. A few simple tips for accounts payable - when you do this right, this is the cheapest form of "debt" you can useWhy Merchant Cash Advances so commonly start a death spiral and what to do if you're in this trap.
40:00 12/20/23
Episode 263 - Cut Your CPA in Half by Asking Better Questions
What do you do when you grow 25% YoY but realize you’re losing money? How do you adjust when what has always worked in the past stops working? What steps do you take when your cost to acquire a new customer is skyrocketing, and nothing is bringing it down?If you’re like some brand owners, you keep doing the same stuff but try to do it better. Sometimes, you need a larger shift that starts with asking better questions and understanding what problem you’re trying to solve. This interview with Anthony Mink, CEO and Co-Founder of Live Bearded, was super fun and energizing to record. Live Bearded is an 8-figure brand that experienced something pretty dramatic but also not uncommon in eCommerce. Their new customer acquisition ads stopped working across ALL ad platforms. We know the brand well; we’ve been running Google and YouTube ads for them for years. Seeing their CPA skyrocket across all channels (Facebook, IG, YouTube) and then helping it come down to the lowest it’s ever been was inspiring and insightful. Especially while spending more than ever on top-of-funnel efforts. Ultimately, they discovered they had a fundamental positioning and messaging problem. Their offer was good (basically a free sample), but the way they positioned their product had taken them as far as possible. They needed to reposition! In this episode, we uncover that journey, and it’s PACKED with valuable lessons.Here’s a quick look at some of what we cover:How you first have to clearly define the problem before you can solve it. (This is a step entrepreneurs usually want to skip.)How positioning is likely the most powerful lever you can pull in your business.The power of Stories, States, and Identities in your marketingThe power of Brand and how Nike has it, but Hyatt doesn’t.The concept of Better Your Best (and NOT Better Your Meh).The messaging that cut Live Bearded’s CPAs in half.Plus more!
46:19 12/13/23
Episode 262 - The Missing Piece to Your Attribution & CRO
In some ways, we know everything and nothing about our customers at the same time. We have mountains of data at our fingertips for every customer interaction. But we can’t see our customers. We don’t really know what they love, why they buy, or what they’re into—even insights into why they bought from us or how they first learned about us are muddy. Even when we think we know, our view is incomplete. That’s where KNO Commerce comes in. Sure, you have a few different attribution tools. They can be helpful but also confusing. And they have biases. Sure, you know conversion rate optimization best practices, but every brand and every customer is slightly different. Getting customer insights through post-purchase or abandon cart surveys can provide clarity into what your attribution or CRO data is telling you…or, more importantly, what it’s NOT telling you. The good news is you don’t have to use KNO to get great customer insights. Any survey tool can work. In this episode with KNO Founder and CEO Jeremiah Prummer, we discuss the following:40% of your shoppers buy in less than 1 week of learning about your brand. 60% take longer than 1 week. (This probably contradicts what GA and your attribution tools tell you).The biases in surveys and how to work around them?The biases in the attribution model.How abandoned cart surveys can be a game changer in addition to email flows.What questions to ask your customers for the most actionable insightsAnd More!
47:38 11/29/23
Episode 261 - 11 Youtube Success Factors
Download The YouTube Ads Checklist HereYouTube offers TREMENDOUS scale opportunities.Just ask Dr. Squatch, Purple Mattress, Organifi, and Manscapped.But it's NOT the easiest platform to scale with. We're one of the top spenders on YouTube ads. We've spent more than almost any agency our size on the platform and learned what works and what doesn't.In this episode, I break down the 11 factors that determine YouTube's success.Here's a sneak peak:What has to be true about your landing pages before you can fully accelerate on YouTube?When should you launch a YouTube ad campaign?How to approach YouTube ad performance measurement.What creative elements need to be in place?What role do email, search, and shopping play in your YouTube success?How to think about remarketing and YouTube.Plus, much, much more.
26:38 11/22/23
Episode 260 - Lessons From Chubbies with Co-Founder Preston Rutherford
Few DTC brands have been as polarizing or as successful as Chubbies.The Chubbies story is a wild one. It started with humble beginnings, selling shorts one by one in parks around the Stanford campus, leading to an IPO.Four Stanford college students had 3 things in common: 1. They were tired of working for the man. 2. They didn't fit the "Abercrombie" fashion mold of the late 2000s and 3. They loved shorter shorts - BEFORE the short shorts trend. And so, Chubbies was born.  This is a deep dive with Co-founder Preston Rutherford on what Chubbies got right, what they got wrong, and how to think about building a brand.Here's a look at what we cover:Feedback loops. This started when the co-founders were selling their shorts in person. They could immediately read customers' reactions and hear what they liked, what they didn't like and what needed to be tweaked. As the company grew, this shifted to digital and online feedback loops tied to ad creatives, social posts, and user experience.Downplaying vanity metrics. We all want to brag about ROAS and revenue. But, these metrics can be misleading. If you maximize ROAS, you sacrifice long-term growth for a sale today. And you get into a trap that squeezes profits and becomes hard to break. Obsessing over core metrics. We should focus on metrics like contribution margin, total profits and branded search growth (as a sign of a growing, healthy brand).Building a brand. Want to have a big exit? Want to charge a premium? Want to drive consistent demand? It's all about brand.  
49:21 11/15/23
Episode 259 - 5 Untapped Growth Opportunities
“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.”“The definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results.”Not sure where I first heard these quotes, but they definitely apply to this week’s episode.I firmly believe that to grow like no one else is growing, you must do what no one else is doing.In this episode, I walk through 5 growth opportunities that you’re likely under-leveraging or completely missing.This is the recording from a recent talk I gave in Austin, Texas, to a group of 1,200 eager Amazon Sellers and DTC brand owners, where I unpacked these 5 growth opportunities.  While there are a few cases where seeing the video might be more helpful (watch it here), the audio should still be helpful! I hope you enjoy it.
32:42 11/8/23
Episode 258 - Cyber 5: How the Best Brands Approach it
How can you make the most of the Cyber 5?It all comes down to strategy, planning and execution.Ideally, you’re planning all year and working on the perfect strategies to attract new customers and inspire existing customers to buy more. But planning is only part of the success equation. Making adjustments and tweaks based on what’s working and what’s not is also crucial.On this episode, I’m bringing on a star-studded cast of OMG experts. We talk about Black Friday and Cyber Monday success from essentially every angle. We talk about successful email and SMS promotions. We cover do’s and don’ts for maximizing Amazon profits and share insights for getting the most from Google, YouTube and other channels. My guests:Bill Cover, Google StrategistNick Flint, Email StrategistTrenton Bodenbach, Amazon Growth StrategistWhat we discuss:Top BFCM mistakes merchants make.What you need to plan ahead of time and lock in vs. what you can change on the fly during the Cyber 5.Or favorite Cyber 5 growth strategies.Protecting margin while still driving purchases from customers who expect deals. Can you make a 10% off deal irresistible?
62:50 11/1/23
Episode 257 - Grow Your Leadership, Grow Your Business
I believe in the who, not the how, for more business problems and opportunities.Want to grow faster?Need to solve a nagging problem?Rather than thinking about how to solve it, you might want to start with who.But that only works well if you have strong leadership skills. As your business grows, you’ll be doing less and leading more. My buddy Peter Awad joins the show today. He’s an eCommerce vet. He launched his first online venture in 2000 and co-founded Mission Meats, an online snack company, in 2015.Now, Peter’s passion is coaching and building great leaders. I’m a big believer that culture and leadership will trump strategy any day of the week.Here are a few of the things we discussed:What’s it like on the other side of me?Knowing yourself first.Radical candor or ruinous empathy.The nothing to lose, nothing to prove, nothing to hide approach to discussions.The fact that the life you want, the business you want, is on the other side of a few hard conversations.How to lead vendors, freelancers, and agencies better.How to have better meetings.
36:50 10/25/23
Episode 256 - Unlevel the Field with Generative AI
Are you dabbling with generative AI or using it to gain a competitive advantage? Are you getting better at using AI or staying the same? If you're like some professionals I know, maybe you've gotten frustrated with only slight gains using AI, so you've moved on.I'll admit, I'm still just dabbling compared to my buddy Fred.Fred Vallaeys is one of the smartest dudes I know. His perspective on AI is inspiring and sure to get your wheels turning. But first, take a peek at Fred's resume! One of the first 500 employees at GoogleHe was on the team that acquired Urchin, the precursor to Google Analytics He was on the original Quality Score teamHe was one of the original 6 people who built the AdWords editorNow, he's the co-founder and CEO of Optmyzr and the author of 2 amazing books.Here's a look at the taste AI morsels we chew on in this episode:Practical ways to use Generative AI that you might be missing.How to ground the AI so it doesn't "hallucinate."Understanding the best LLMs and how they impact generative AI.How generative AI is different from Machine Learning.Embedding, vectors, and chain promptingReady to step up your AI game? I am!
42:19 10/18/23
Episode 255 - Why Your Prices Are Probably Wrong
Price. It’s an emotional topic for shoppers and for brands. As shoppers were more influenced by price than we care to admit.As brands we’re often afraid to change our prices. And our current prices were probably created a long time ago. It’s almost a certainty that they price for at least some of your products is wrong right now.Byron Myer’s is a super smart dude. He started Inogen, a med-tech business, while in college and took it public in 2014. Now he runs Glimmer Wish with his wife and daughters. He used price theory and price strategy to add tens of millions in sales at Inogen. He’s also used it to scale Glimmer Wish from 0 to over 7 figures in less than a year. And this isn’t a “let’s raise prices a bit and see what happens” approach. This is a scientific, mathematical way to find the optimal price to maximize profits.Why is your pricing wrong:It’s likely based on flawed strategies like competitor benchmarking or cost plus. Both strategies are ok to start with but do NOT produce your optimal price for total profits.You’re following old customer psychology that states you should always charge $19.99 instead of $19.97 instead of $20 or $22. Often this is incorrect.You haven’t changed the price in over a year.In the current environment if you’re not changing price or running tests quarterly, your pricing is probably off.This topic will make you Cold. Hard. Cash. Give it a listen!
33:47 10/11/23
Episode 254 - 7 Ways to Supercharge Any Ad
Why does one hook work and another flops? Why does one offer get customers clicking and buying and another offer get’s only a shrug? How can you know BEFORE you spend money on an ad if it’s likely to convert?Today’s episode is a recording from a recent talk I gave at Ezra Firestone’s Blue Ribbon Mastermind. I break down 7 ad tests guaranteed to make ANY ad better. Follow these tests and your ads will have more stopping power, more engagement, and drive more ACTION. The visuals do help with this one, so watching on YouTube might be a good idea, but the audio sill captures most of the value.Here’s a breakdown of what you’ll learn:How to tell if your ads differentiate your product ENOUGH from the competitionA test that great standup comedians use that applies to your ads as well A test that’s best illustrated using a cat, and one that’s best identified using a donkey. Any guesses what these tests might be about?How to handle lingering objectionsHow to tell if your ad has the power to motivate your prospects to take actionPlus more!This presentation was super fun for me. Hopefully you’ll find it entertaining and helpful! 
41:44 10/4/23
Episode 253 - How to 3x Product Sales With Amazon Influencer
Liz Saunders knows the Amazon game well. She was the Chief of Staff for Jungle Scout as it grew from under 40 employees to a few hundred. And the founder of Fluencer Fruit. Through software, coaching, and services, she helps brands and influencers maximize their results with Amazon’s Influencer program. The Influencer game is still early at Amazon, but right now, it’s free for brands to participate in and driving some compelling results. Take This Case Study:An Amazon product with no change in ads, no improvement in organic rankings, and no change in ratings saw a 45% MoM increase and a 3x YoY increase in sales - ALL From Influencer content. Do I have your attention now? Check out what Liz and I discuss in this interview: How you as a brand can qualify for the Influencer Program (good news - it’s pretty simple).How to attract and recruit the right influencers for your brand.Where does influencer content show up, and how do you influence the best placements?The difference between the Inspire and Discover Feed on Amazon.How to use Influencer and Amazon Lives.Plus more!
36:53 9/27/23
Episode 252 - Triple Your Ad Spend While Improving Profitability with Amazon DSP
Amazon DSP is a misunderstood platform. Heck, even the name is confusing! The Amazon DSP we’re referring to in this episode is the Demand Side Platform. Not to be confused with Amazon’s other DSP - Delivery Service Provider (the independent contractors who deliver your Amazon packages). Amazon DSP Ads are a way to target shoppers on and off Amazon with highly relevant image and video ads based on Amazon’s behavioral shopping data.No one has more shopper data than Amazon. But Amazon doesn’t publish that data or allow anyone to use it unless…you advertise using Amazon DSP.DSP is one of the most powerful advertising platforms I’ve ever encountered. But it’s also commonly misunderstood, and it is advanced. This is not for beginners. There are a lot of ways to waste money with it. But there are a few ways to accelerate growth. Here’s a look at what we discuss:The top mistakes advertisers make when running DSP ads.The top 3 strategies for accelerating growth with Amazon DSP.Why running DSP remarketing only and testing too small will likely fail.What it means to have a DSP “seat” and why they are so rare.How one seller tripled their DSP spend and accelerated growth by 35%, all while lowering their TACoS.Understanding DSP attribution and why it’s a hotly debated topic.
54:51 9/20/23

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