Every Amazon seller wants more reviews for their products, but many of the traditional “hacks” for early reviews at or before a product launch are now against Amazon’s Terms of Service. However, many sellers, like today’s guest, have found remarkable opportunities to drum up early demand for their products on channels outside of Amazon. Social media plays a big part in this process, but nothing gets customers on your side faster than actually talking with them through messages, open forums, and valuable content.
Steven Black is an Amazon seller who has worked out a near perfect system for establishing his brand as a trusted authority in an appropriate niche on social channels and other selling platforms. In doing so, he is able to funnel his new “fans” to his Amazon listings for more sales and a higher likelihood for reviews.
In episode 15 of the Serious Sellers Podcast, Helium 10’s Success Manager Bradley Sutton and Steven Black discuss:
- 01:16 The Reality of How and When Customers Leave Reviews
- 02:30 Reaching Out to Customers Beyond the Borders of Amazon
- 03:45 Two Methods to Encourage Customer Reviews on Amazon
- 06:23 Restrictions on Product Inserts Set by Amazon
- 07:18 The Best Way to Ask a Customer for a Review
- 08:35 How to Leverage Being in Contact with Customers Off Amazon for Reviews
- 10:41 Using Other Platforms to Redirect Customers to Buy on Amazon
- 12:05 How to Leverage Facebook and Instagram Groups for Amazon Reviews
- 13:33 Beware of Being Too Pushy About Asking Customers for Reviews
- 14:41 A Better Way to Give Out Product Discounts
- 15:38 Using a 2-Step URL in Tandem with Social Media Ads
- 17:15 Giving Customers a More Valuable Experience with Your Brand
- 19:03 Using Facebook’s Custom Audience Feature to Get More Reviews
- 22:14 The Optimum Number of Reviews to Have to Improve Sales Organically
- 24:12 The Importance of Stating Why Your Product Will Solve a Customer Problem
- 26:36 Steven’s Product Launch Formula and a Huge Misconception About Launches
- 31:07 The Importance of Generating Hype for Your Product Months in Advance
- 33:14 How Steven Uses Helium 10 to Improve His Amazon Business
- 35:44 How to Contact Steven Black
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Bradley Sutton: What’s one of the biggest obstacles that Amazon sellers have in 2019? You’d probably say getting reviews. Well today, Steven Black is gonna give us a lot of tips and tricks on how we can increase the number of reviews that we have.
Bradley Sutton: How’s it going, everybody? This is the Serious Sellers Podcast and I’m your host, Bradley Sutton. I’m very honored to have somebody I’ve never met before. Actually 5 minutes ago was the first time I’ve ever talked to him. Mr. Steven Black. How’s it going, Steven?
Steven Black: It’s going very, very well. Bradley, thank you for having me.
Bradley Sutton: Excellent. Excellent. Steven, you are, from what I understand, an expert marketer, have a lot of experience in that, you’re also an Amazon seller and you have a lot of value that you’re gonna be able to bring to us. The first thing, actually, Sean, your buddy Sean, who introduced you to me said that “Hey, Steven has some really cool ways to get reviews. And that’s probably one of the biggest topics out there. So let’s dive right into this because people are always asking me, I’m sure they ask you all the time, “Hey, it’s like so impossible to get reviews nowadays in a legal way, you know, white hat way. How do I do it?” So I literally do not know what you’re going to say because I didn’t ask you this before. So I’m going to learn along with our audience right now. What are some Steven Black ways to get reviews on this day and age in Amazon?
Steven Black: Alright, so the first thing you have to realize is that when anybody buys anything on Amazon when they exchange their money for your product, they’re expecting it to meet whatever their expectation level is. People don’t leave reviews unless it either exceeds or doesn’t come close to their expectations. Alright? It’s like, if you go out to dinner somewhere and you know, you have the chicken and rice you expect it’s gonna be pretty good. Now, if the experience in the restaurant is amazing, if the manager comes up to you, if it gives you a free dessert or if it atrocious, then you’re probably gonna say something. But other than that you expect it to meet a certain level of satisfaction when you put your money down.
Bradley Sutton: That’s kind of true. Like you know, I rarely–I love looking at Yelp, but you know, when I go to restaurants I like, I rarely am inspired I guess to leave a Yelp review unless it’s like terrible or unless it’s bad, it doesn’t meet my expectations. Or it just like goes above and beyond where I’m like, “Oh my god, I got to leave a review.” So that totally makes sense what you’re saying.
Steven Black: Bingo! So, what it comes down to then when I started wanting to really really push reviews on Amazon, because a lot of times Amazon–the reviews rather, are worth more than the product itself. I said, “Okay, why do people leave reviews?” It’s because of user experience with the company. Now the problem with Amazon is that they limit our experience and being able to reach out and touch people, so to speak, as far as our customer base goes. So I found a lot of ways to get customers to reach out to me or to touch customers before they go to Amazon. So lots of fun there. Now the two biggest things that I always see if we’re going straight from just the Amazon platform only, no external presence, a lot of people will send another email provider and that’s great, but it has a problem and that you don’t really get to talk to the person, Amazon pulls stuff out of your emails, right? If you’re trying to link them anywhere else, you can’t really lean toward mentioning a positive experience in your email or they’ll flag the email. So what do we do? Well, there’s really two solutions that people use outside of email on the platform. The first one, of course, is insert cards or a website on your packaging, but what a lot of people are doing, to push extra reviews just on the Amazon platform is they’ll take out another domain online, and they’ll set up a landing page where you can go ahead and say, “Okay, I bought a product and you incentivize it off of Amazon.” I know a lot of people do that and they’ll give you a free product for review. That’s not my personal take. What I prefer to do is–and I’ve had about a 12% to 14% optimum–this next method I’m telling you about. What I do is all of my packaging, I go to ManyChat and I set up what’s called a parametric QR code. We all know what a QR code is. It looks like that black and white snowy garbage on the old TVs, right? Well, in ManyChat, you can use one of their growth tools and set up a whole messenger bot flow, right? And it has this cute little blue circular thing you can put around your logo, you can put or insert whatever and you put it on your packaging. You can put it on your inserts as, “Hey, scan this with your Facebook Messenger app for more product ideas or 10% off your next order or whatever. And what that does is it gets people to say, “Hey, what’s this?” And when they scan it, now they’re in your messenger bot flow. They’re subscribed to your bot, you have them now in your data set and they go through your bot. You can give them links to say, “Hey, here’s 5 more things you didn’t know you could do with the product. Here’s an unboxing video, here’s a product direction, here’s how you contact customer service if you have an issue.” And I’ll tell you what, that has saved me more than once where I could turn a negative experience into a positive review because all they had to do was scan. They hit one button and they’re in my messenger bot saying, “Hey, the product didn’t have this or, you know, it was crushed and it was broken. You know, what do we do?” And you just–the fact that you can talk to them immediately and send them a new product to rectify the situation, you’ll oftentimes getting reviews from that, saying, “Hey, I had an issue. This company’s awesome. There were so many there to help me. They gave me extra instructions. They got me a new product right away. No questions asked.”
Bradley Sutton: Let me interrupt you for a second here. We’re talking about like on the package or inserts. Now I don’t know too much about this, but what–I know something is not allowed like for inserts, like what that just came out like in the last few months I thought, you know, hearing through the water cooler or talk around the water cooler.
Steven Black: The only thing that I have heard about inserts is you cannot try to ask for a positive review. And you can’t incentivize reviews. So if you, you keep it pretty generic and say something along the lines of “for product directions and more product ideas. Scan here with your Facebook Messenger app.” That’s not asking–
Bradley Sutton: So it’s more like a–you’re offering a customer service experience just as if somebody puts their website on a package or email address. Okay, that makes sense.
Steven Black: Instead of asking for a review right away, if we go back to the restaurant example for a second. If I’m getting my meal, I don’t want them to ask me to leave a Yelp review right away. That’s irritating, so don’t ask for a review right away. I usually leave it for a couple of weeks when I send an email on Amazon and you’ll usually get, you know, your 1 to 2% to review. But with the Messenger bot, if I’m getting a 12% to 14% opt-in rate on that, now I can not only build an audience, but I can bring them into my social media.
Bradley Sutton: 12% to 14% of the people who get your package opt in on that?
Steven Black: Bingo.
Bradley Sutton: Wow. That’s a pretty decent opt-in rate, but a lot better than email blasting somebody.
Steven Black: Plus, they’re reaching out to me. Now I’m off of Amazon, I can point them to my social media, I can give them customer service. We can talk back and forth if need be as opposed to blind email. Do you know what I mean? That more personal touch is where you’re gonna get more reviews.
Bradley Sutton: So just by–or are you talking like just organically, just by having this personal touch, even without asking for it, it’s going to increase the number of reviews you get. In addition to that, are you doing anything else now that you’re in contact with them off of Amazon to ask for the review, or how do you work that?
Steven Black: Yeah, I was gonna get to that in just a second. But yes.
Bradley Sutton: Great minds think alike.
Steven Black: So for all of my brands on Amazon, I also have a Shopify store that parallels all of them for a number of reasons. And I have social media presences on Facebook, on Instagram. I have pins on Pinterest and it’s all content around the niche. And all I’m trying to do is instead of sell them, sell them, sell them, or try to, you know, bother them incessantly for reviews, the purchase is not the bottom of the funnel. Get out of the mindset of a funnel for that. Think of more of an hourglass. Once they get to the purchase, I want to give them so much for customer experience to enhance their interest or hobby or whatever that now they feel like, okay, there’s really a big deal behind this. They’re giving me more than just my purchase. They’re much more likely to leave a review if you ask. So as a ‘for instance,’ we’ll go three different routes here. We’ll go Shopify, Instagram, Facebook, real simple, keep it organized. On Shopify, I’ll have people buy through that platform and there’s a review app called LOOX, L-O-O-X. And what that does is anybody that buys through your Shopify store, which you can still fulfill through FBA, by the way. Anybody that buys through your Shopify store, LOOX will send them an email and you can get them to leave a photo review on your Shopify store. It’s pretty easy once someone does that, to get them to go ahead and send it over to Amazon if they, you know, if they’re gonna buy on Amazon in the future, say, Hey, by the way, I saw you left a review you bought from us, you know, next time you buy, maybe buy on Amazon, we’d love to have your review there. It would really help us. And because you’re giving them so much customer service, they’re more like you too.
Bradley Sutton: Can people leave reviews–I know people can, it’s called unverified reviews I guess. But is that something that you would suggest like having people leave a review on Amazon even before they purchase on Amazon since you knew they had a good experience on your Shopify or is that not recommended?
Steven Black: I don’t recommend that. I don’t really recommend that. Now I use my Shopify store because it gives me more control of the buying process. You have to realize when people go to Amazon, they already have an idea of what they want. They searched on Google. They have an idea what they want to buy. They go to Amazon with buying intent. So I use Shopify and anybody that comes across there that wants to add to cart, or initiate checkout but didn’t buy, I’m going to re-target them with a Facebook ad and give them the link to Amazon because most of the time that I found, people are willing to buy if I send them to Amazon because they trust the Amazon platform. Okay, cool. I’ve seen this product, oh it’s on Amazon and on my Shopify store is one of the things I mentioned is you know, hey, I have 205-star reviews on Amazon. Sometimes they’ll leave the store, they’ll go to Amazon and buy it. You email them or you talked to them in the Messenger by this, Oh, I saw your store and saw you on Amazon. So I just bought it there. Perfect. Easy. So just giving him everybody as much direction as possible off of Amazon to get back on Amazon has been a really big deal. Now I will also say Instagram and Facebook groups around your niche brand are gold mines for reviews, gold mines. Now, let’s go Instagram. Real straightforward, real easy. If you post niche relevant content, say you’re selling beauty supplies. If you post little one-minute beauty tip videos and beauty content on your Instagram, right? While you’re also posting about your product, what you can do in Instagram Stories is say, “Hey, would you be interested in this product? You know at 15% off?” And all people have to do with your following is hit yes or no. Everybody that hits yes, you get that in your inbox. You can now reach out to them, have a one on one conversation and direct them to Amazon and because you’re having that one on one conversation if they buy on Amazon, you can also follow up and ask them for a review. Easy stuff.
Bradley Sutton: So how are you tracking if they’re the ones who bought it or not so that you can follow up on the Instagram DM?
Steven Black: You ask them.
Bradley Sutton: Okay, so you just buy it. It’s not like you have some, you have to have a VA monitoring the orders names and telling you. You just reach out to them, “Hey, did you have a chance to buy it?” And then either yes they did. Hey can have a review or no, they didn’t, you know, is there anything I can help you with to–
Steven Black: Yeah. And what–and everybody that does buy, it’s not, “Hey, can I have a review?” You don’t ask for more. I go the opposite way because that’s what most people do. And that’s why they don’t get enough reviews. Instead, when they say, “Oh yeah, you know, I bought this.” “Hey, thank you so much. You know, hey, by the way, here’s a link. Here’s an article we wrote: 10 more things that you can do with your product. Here’s our Facebook community. If you haven’t seen that where everybody else had bought this is talking about other ways they can use it. And they go, “Oh, that’s great.” Hit him up again, 4 or 5 days later and say, you know, “I hope you’re really enjoying your product. If you really like, it would really really help us if we could get–if you could leave us the review, tell people what you think.” And they say, “Yeah, sure.” Most of the time they will because you’ve given them more, you’ve helped validate their purchase. You’ve given them more than just the product. You’ve given them more information to check out and have more ideas on using that product. Right? You’ve given, given, given, given, given. Now you ask for a review and give them a link to the review site? Easy, easy, easy, easy.
Bradley Sutton: Now quick question though. Rewinding about two minutes. You mentioned like a 15% off coupon, so if it’s 15% off, is that still eligible for verified review?
Steven Black: Yes.
Bradley Sutton: Cool, alright. Well, that makes sense.
Steven Black: You have to understand. If you look at anything that I say across any of the Facebook groups or anywhere else, I am the anti giveaway, big discount guy. I hate that. I hate it. So like 10-15% off is probably the deepest I ever get. No way. Because I, you know, I’d rather validate what my product is worth, and have full price sales that way than try to do massive monstrous giveaways. I don’t do that. So yeah, 10 to 15% off. If you give enough value up front, it’s not hard. You can get people to buy on that. Absolutely. All day long. Everyday.
Bradley Sutton: Alright. And when you send outside traffic from whether it’s from a Facebook ad or from an Instagram message, are you just sending them directly to your listing or are you also using like 2 step URLs or anything to help kill two birds with one stone or what do you suggest doing?
Steven Black: Yes, yes, yes. So be it from an Instagram message, be it from a ManyChat sequence, be it from a Facebook group, or re-targeting Facebook ad. I always, always, always, always, always have. Since I’ve been involved in Amazon, used 2 step URLs and you guys have the helium10.com/gems page. That is amazing. You can use those links. They were–my favorite one right now that I’ve used for probably the last 5 months is the field plus ASIN link. That’s my personal favorite. That one works really well.
Bradley Sutton: I completely agree. And the test, I don’t know if you ever saw my blog, but I did a test where actually the storefront URL seems to not be working as well as it did. You know, for some people I guess it did, but for me, it just wasn’t, but the field ASIN was probably the number one, and the brand URL were working the best for me.
Steven Black: Yeah, brand URL and field plus ASIN has been very good. I use both of those and set it up and knock them down all day long with those. That’s all–I mean that’s all I use. I’ve never used a straight super URL.
Bradley Sutton: Yeah, I don’t think those have worked in a few years.
Steven Black: Yeah. So I just– I use the two steps and just go forward from there, you know? Um, but so–
Bradley Sutton: So basically this is pretty cool because you know, that’s gonna help you with your organic ranking and these are not like, you know, 90% off discount sales, which don’t count for as much, you know when we’re talking about ranking 10-15%. I haven’t done much testing, but I would just imagine I know organic hundred percent sales, obviously, you know, work way better for ranking, but I would assume that 10 to 15% is not too far off from there. So, you’re getting that exposure so that, I mean, even if they don’t go through with a purchase, even if they’re just maybe adding it to the cart, or they get to the end of it, I mean, no matter what. Or they just buy it. I mean, no matter what, you’re getting something positive out of this exchange. And then at the end of the day, you’re getting what many consider is the holy grail of getting a review because in your experience, if you don’t use these techniques, I know it back in the day the ratio was like, you know, a hundred sales for one review. Like is that if you’re not doing extra things, is that what you see nowadays or is it worse or better?
Steven Black: If you’re just emailing the customers, you have to realize probably half of Amazon customers have opted out of receiving emails from third-party vendors on the Amazon platform. So you already batting half that you were even exposed to. So, yeah for everyone in a hundred–that’s about the right number. That’s why I started thinking, I said, okay, how can I control the data off of Amazon so I can give people a better customer experience with my brand? I don’t want people to say, Oh yeah, buy their stuff on Amazon. I want them to know through the Facebook group, through the Facebook page, through the Instagram channel, that they can reach out. There’s always somebody there. And one of the other things that I do. And here’s another trick for reviews, and anybody can do this regardless of if they have an off Amazon presence. This is my number one trick. It gives me the most reviews of all of them. Alright? When you–we all have read, most of us that are more advanced, we know how to generate a custom audience from our purchasers from Amazon. We know how to do that, right? So you get your Amazon purchase order data, upload that as a custom audience to Facebook. You’re not going to get a hundred percent match, okay? But say you have a hundreads sales, say you got a 35% match, that’s still 35 people and it will grow. The more sales you get. Now use that custom audience and send everybody in that custom audience a thank you video, simple video. Seriously. Saying, “Hey, you know, it’s maybe, Hey, it’s Steven Black from XYZ brand, yeah I just want to thank you so much for buying this on Amazon. We really, really appreciate it. Here’s our Facebook group, here’s our Instagram channel. If you have anything you need, reach out to us. Here’s my email.” Say it right in the video, because only they’re seeing it. That customer experience, that’s going to pop up in their Facebook feed. What? They’re gonna go, what the hell is that? And because you’re giving afterward, they are gonna sniff you out. They’re gonna check out the Facebook group. When they find out you’re really somebody behind the brand? Now you’re a person, not just some name on a listing? You’re more likely to get reviews. I mentioned in the video too. “Hey, if you haven’t yet, take a look at the package or the insert, scan that with your Facebook messenger app–that’s going to get you to where you see some of the other goodies that we have for our customers. It’s all free. We invite you to do it. Let us know what you think!” And people do it. It’s crazy. That thank you video is the goal. I’ve used it in every single one of my brands off and on Amazon. I can’t even tell you how good it is.
Bradley Sutton: Interesting. Well, that’s awesome. That’s awesome. Now, I’m assuming you yourself said you’re currently selling on Amazon yourself, right?
Steven Black: Yeah.
Bradley Sutton: Yeah. So I’m assuming you’re using all of these methods that we’ve talked about and probably even some more. So with everything that you’re doing, have you ever checked what your ratio is now? Like as far as a number of orders to the number of reviews again? That’s a good question, isn’t it? That’s a good question.
Steven Black: It is, I know how many people opt-in from each channel. But, as far as sales to reviews, I have reviews coming from my Shopify store and I have reviews, you know, that go straight to Amazon and I know all of us, like to–I know all–I put it this way, I know all of us like to wake up to sales and wake up to money. I like waking up to reviews every day and I wake up to multiple reviews and each of my brands every day.
Bradley Sutton: That’s awesome.
Steven Black: So let’s just put it that way.
Bradley Sutton: I’d say it’d be safe to say like–let’s say it was a hundred to one that easily, you could be 3x, you know, three out of a hundred it would be a very conservative, you know, and–
Steven Black: Yeah, it’s probably somewhere in the 3 – 5 range, if I’m honest.
Bradley Sutton: How many of you guys out there would love to have a 3x or 5x number of reviews? I mean that’s probably the number one thing. Now, one last question. I can’t believe we’ve had this for over 20 minutes already, but when you start a listing, right? I know you don’t do giveaways, but other people might do giveaways. Other people are maybe are trying to bid heavily on PPC, whatever they want to do to get to page one. You know, their biggest concern is, yeah, you know, I’m going to put in this money in PPC or I’m going to put this money to giveaways and I’m going to get on page one but dang it, I’ve only got 3 reviews, you know, so like it’s gonna be hard for me to convert organically. It’s getting more and more important to–once you get to page one, how do you get to page one to start converting organically right away or else you’re going to fall off. So how many reviews do you suggest for people to like really start going with their big-time promotions to get on page one?
Steven Black: I would say from the data that I’ve seen as actual data, there’s been big studies on this as to like how many reviews people read. Like you gonna have 2000 reviews. Somebody is only gonna read about 10 – 12 before they make a purchase decision. That’s all it really is, so if you get–you know 10-ish reviews–if you’re batting against somebody that has 500, the key then becomes, hey, are you positioning yourself that you’re a better solution for people’s problems? So the listing itself on top of the reviews is gonna help convert people organically. A lot of–I would say 95% of the listings that I see on Amazon are listings of what the product is or has in it. If it’s a multiple pieces, you know, product, most people do not write into their product descriptions how the product is actually gonna benefit the customer.
Bradley Sutton: Yeah. So important.
Steven Black: And so you have to realize, and I don’t say this gently, customers are dumb compared to the marketer compared to the brand owner. They don’t know nearly as much as you about your product or your niche. They’re not even really sure a lot of the time how to describe the problem they have and why they’re looking for a product. So it’s your job as the seller to say, “Hey, by the way, this does this and this, it helps this problem or it helps this issue. It does this kind of thing for you.” It’s going to have people go, “Oh yeah, I’m looking for something that does that. That’s what I need.” And if you have little social proof in the way of reviews?
Bradley Sutton: I call this like kind of like the emotional connection that you have to make with a buyer.
Steven Black: Yeah, you connect–you’re bridging the gap in brand and customer awareness. Like the highest customer awareness level is they know your brand. They know the problem, they know the product, they know the product solves their problem. That’s it. That’s the easiest one. Most people fall somewhere in the middle, in where they know they have something going on. They know the sort of a product that might solve it, but they’re not aware of what products are out there. So when they’re looking and they’re on Amazon in buying mode, what you do is you say, “Hey, by the way, it has this and this and this, and this is how it’s going to solve this problem.” Oh, okay. Yeah, that’s much more–much, much better. The guiltiest party, oh my god. Camera Equipment. Go to the electronics section on Amazon with your camera equipment. Everybody’s a carbon copy from the manufacturer on the product features and that’s it. That’s all it is. And it’s all technobabble. Shutter speeds and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. All that garbage. As opposed to, you know, “hey, this is a great travel camera because xyz. Hey, this is more of a pro photographer, you know, kit set up because of xyz. Hey, if you’re a blogger, you’re gonna want this, this and this together, this package I put together.” Do you know what I mean? That kind of stuff. You cannot expect people buying to know all of that for them. You’re the seller, you obviously know more. You did your product research.
Bradley Sutton: Yeah, of course. So, I mean, that’s definitely gonna help, you know, with those reviews and also just getting traction regardless of the reviews, but at the same time, do you teach, you know, your audience at all to like say, “Hey, don’t put a lot of money into your launch until you have x number of reviews?” Or “hey, do this differently for your first five 10 reviews and then launch.” I mean, did you have anything like that?
Steven Black: Yes, yes.
Bradley Sutton: So what’s a suggestion?
Steven Black: Two things. Number one, there’s a cancerous echo chamber in the Amazon advice community. Anywhere you look on any part that you–
Bradley Sutton: I think you were about to say there’s a cancerous echo with my microphone. And I was like, oh no, what happened? What happened?
Steven Black: It’s in the Amazon community.
Bradley Sutton: Amazon community, okay.
Steven Black: For new sellers get out of the mindset that if you’re not on page one within a week, everything is gone, everything is lost. Oh my goodness. Have some patience, you’re just fine. You can build and as you sell, you will get reviews. That’s the first thing. It’s gonna take more than a week. Okay. Now secondarily, another thing that you can do if you set up a Facebook group around your niche, it’s not hard to get people to start coming to that with a little tiny bit of content. You can also find meet up groups locally that are involved in the niche for your product and both of them point to the same direction. Talk to people. If you go out and you can meet up with people locally, do that. Or if you have a Facebook group where people are talking, all of a sudden, “Hey, by the way, I have this product, I’m “thinking about”, you know, can you tell me what you think of it?” You know, and run like even I say I don’t do discounts but I’m not above doing like a 3 or 4 product contest giveaway kind of thing. 100% no coupons, I just mailed them the product just to kind of get buzz going. If you can get a group of people going, and this is one of the best things you can do and this actually one of the things I teach. If you can get a group of people going a couple of months before you launch, say 3 months, write some content, post on their funny memes. Get people talking. If you’re going to run supplements, run a niche group on Facebook around the health issue that your supplements take care of. Get people talking. Then after you got a few people in there, a few hundred people it’s maybe a couple of months at most, at worst they’re engaged. You then come in and say, hey, we have a sponsored deal. This brand is gonna be launching on Amazon. We’d like to give away five products. Just enter here and what happens is now you’ve given away 5 products into your group, but now you can also reach out to those people and get feedback into the group. What that does is now you got user-generated content and feedback in the group. Then you come back in and you say, “Hey, you know the guys, the brand is going to launch their products. You’re on Amazon and like 3 weeks they would like to extend “special pricing” to the members of the group. All you gonna do is click here to be put on the list.” And you build yourself a prelaunch list of people that are already in the group that you’ve already been talking to and you send them to Amazon on launch day ready to rock. They buy and guess what? They’re in your Amazon group. Hey you guys, you know, we’d love to hear some feedback from you guys. You know, from, from the company. If you guys could leave a review on Amazon, let us know what you think. That’d be great. You’ve talked to them for like 3 months now. You’ve given them so much upfront. Now they’re going to go and buy on launch day. You’re getting some good price sales and you can still talk to them and get them to go and leave you a review. It’s time to like having a friend leave a review, but they’re not really your friend. You’ve just given them so much value that you’ve become more familiar as an acquaintance.
Bradley Sutton: Interesting, alright. That’s–I don’t even know what to say. There’s so much stuff that I think our audience is gonna love and almost makes me wish I was, I still was Amazon consultant cause its stuff I would want to tell some of my clients that they could start implementing it. But–
Steven Black: I tell you this, that last thing I talked about with running pre-launch hype to a group. Every single product I’ve ever launched, I’ve used that and it’s never failed me. I was a consultant for six, eight-figure companies in 2018. Four of them were on Amazon. We ran free pre-launch hype to their group, spent a little bit of money to get a little traffic to the group and got people talking for 3 months before hand. And each of those eight-figure companies, we built a list of like 3000 people that were at least interested. So on launch day we had like, I don’t know, I think 600 or 800 people within the course of three days going by the product, like boom, done next. And you know, probably we had a hundred reviews within a month and a half. Like not even thinking about it.
Bradley Sutton: That right there, that’s, I’m going to have to go deeper into that because I think that’s a podcast in itself. Going through that process.
Steven Black: Yeah, I would–all we were is spend on that. I think we spent less than three or four grand per company to launch like that. So I think about that. If you got all those sales and all those reviews within a 6 week period for just a few grand. Yeah, I do that. And it’s giving people content and value and all that stuff upfront and then running the stuff in the Facebook group where you’re talking to people all the time. You’re building a following for your brand, for your company. They’re gonna trust you more because now they know you’re gonna give, even if they don’t buy, that makes them more likely to buy.
Bradley Sutton: Yeah. I mean that principle works in so many different things. You know, it’s about giving value and then getting something back, you know, not just ask, ask, ask, you know, for things, that’s where people go wrong. Quick question. You said you use Helium 10 gems. How else do you use a Helium 10 in your business?
Steven Black: Oh, goodness. Well, I use Helium 10 to validate product ideas. Now when I go for a product, I don’t just use like Black Box or something like that as a filter like everybody else does because that’s what everybody’s doing. When I have an idea, I say, okay, where do these kind of customers hang out? I’ll join a few Facebook groups. I follow some Instagram channels, I’ll start listening to what the guy, what the people around that kind of product or niche are talking about. So then I can say, okay, now I’ve got an idea for a product. Then I’ll go and search on Amazon of course. And I’ll say, okay, what else is there like this? I’ll grab some ASINs, I’ll put it in Cerebro, I’ll break it down and see how they’re doing as far as velocity and units moved and all that kind of thing. I might even, you know, look at some of their keywords and see where it is in Magnet, and kind of see, can I really get in here? Is it feasible for me to invest what moving capital I have into this new product right now? I look at Helium 10 as a way to look at the market with all the features you guys have and analyze the opportunity that I’ve thought of. I see an angle here, somebody is not doing something like this or maybe they are, but if–are they not doing good enough. And that’s one way. The other way that I like to do it is I will absolutely spend hours searching the 2-star products in Helium 10’s product catalog, all day long. 2-star products are my favorite because those are products that either they got slammed by some kind of fake reviews and somebody gave up on them or they’re just bad products. Now you’re gonna catch a lot of them in there that with some tweaks and a relaunch, you can go ahead and capitalize on it. And somebody already came up with the base of the idea. They just didn’t have enough to run with it or it was cheaply made or something like that. So I’ll use it to analyze things when I get an idea or if I’m just kind of searching around, I’ll spend a few hours looking in the two-star products all day. The 2 and 3 stars are a gold mine that most people won’t search for it.
Bradley Sutton: I like it. I like it. I don’t think many people are doing that. Well, we got to get off this call right now. This has been a really insightful, I appreciate it. So now I’m sure people have, I mean I have more questions, but I’m sure our audience might have more questions or might want to get some help from you for some of their campaigns or anything? How can they reach you? Where can they find you on the interwebs?
Steven Black: It’s really, really simple. All you got to do–you can go to Facebook and look up Unstoppable FBA, and there’s a group, it’s Unstoppable FBA and its marketing hacks for Amazon Sellers and it’s a free group. All I talk about is marketing for Amazon. I’m not gonna tell you how to, you know, do all the mechanics of Amazon, where this other stuff that a lot of other groups talk about. It’s all marketing talk, all my secrets, all the knowledge bombs, all that kind of stuff is all in there. And I also have a YouTube channel, the same name Unstoppable FBA. I put content on there that is marketing for Amazon. That’s it, simple stuff.
Bradley Sutton: Perfect. Alright. Well, I’m literally joining your Facebook group right now. I’m going through this. It looks like they’re asking me three questions and what I need to do to join. So I’m gonna do that right now. So I’ll be there and I’ll see you, the rest of you guys there. And, Steven, thank you for your time and we’ll definitely have you back for another time.
Have you ever tried generating hype for your Amazon product offline to get reviews later on Amazon? Share your story in the comments below!
Cerebro is Jonathan's favorite Helium 10 tool because of it's versatility and value for FBA sellers.
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