Ep. #1045 - How Effective is Pay-Per-Click?
In today’s episode of Startup Hustle, review how effective pay-per-click (PPC) is in e-commerce. Andrew Morgans talks to another e-commerce marketing pro, Shan Shan Fu. The latter, founder of Millennials in Motion, reveals all the effective PPC strategies you can use to achieve optimal results.
Covered In This Episode
Want to know whether your product will be a success or not? Is it necessary to expand internationally on Amazon? What should be your focus when doing PPC?
Get all the effective tips and tricks so your pay-per-click campaign pays off. Listen as Andrew and Shan Shan discuss other nitty-gritty about managing an e-commerce business and PPC strategies.
It’s time to plant the seeds of an effective PPC campaign. Tune in to this Startup Hustle discussion now!
- Shan Shan Fu’s journey (02:15)
- On creating passive income (06:37)
- Shan Shan’s first e-commerce business (10:32)
- Venturing into a new and sustainable business (14:08)
- How to know if your product is a success or failure? (17:01)
- Advertising spend on Etsy and Amazon (18:19)
- The value of international expansion on Amazon (20:51)
- The challenges in selling on Shopify (22:30)
- Decision-making process in choosing an advertising channel (27:16)
- What does an effective PPC campaign look like? (30:28)
- The work involved in managing a PPC campaign (32:40)
- How to get in touch with Shan Shan on Trivium (35:46)
I realized that with a typical job, you work really hard, and you climb up the ladder to VP. But then, once you get to VP, you’re going to work even harder. So you’re always working hard forever. And I didn’t like that.– Shan Shan Fu
When you’re launching a product, you know 60% of the heart of whether it’ll succeed or not. Like, is it a good product the market wants? And then the other 40% is execution, which is like doing really good PPC ads and having really good customer service.– Shan Shan Fu
You need to be a real person, whether it’s you or someone you’re hiring to check out your advertising. Set up your strategy and intentionality, and then have great tools to help that user get the job done.– Andrew Morgans
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Following is an auto-generated text transcript of this episode. Apologies for any errors!
Andrew Morgans 00:00
Hey, what’s up, Hustlers? Welcome back. This is Andrew Morgans, founder of Marknology, here as today’s host of Startup Hustle. Covering all things e-comm, Amazon, entrepreneurship, you name it. Today’s episode is called How Effective Is Pay-per-Click. We’re gonna get right to it. And, as always, before I introduce today’s guest, who’s also a personal friend, today’s episode of Startup Hustle is powered by FullScale.io. Hiring software developers is difficult. Full Scale can help you build a software team quickly and affordably. And has the platform to help you manage that team. Visit FullScale.io to learn more. Today’s guest is calling from Miami. Shan, welcome to the show.
Shan Shan Fu 00:43
Hey, Andrew. Thank you for having me.
Andrew Morgans 00:45
You’re welcome. I think we’ve met in so many different places. I didn’t know exactly where you were, you know, always bumping into each other at events. And today, we’re going to be not only representing Trivium, who’s been a great partner of Marknology, and events and a lot of speaking different events and a personal friend and Mina, but also your own company as well. Is that correct?
Shan Shan Fu 01:05
Yes. Millennials in Motion. I also have a brand.
Andrew Morgans 01:09
Yeah, I’m super excited to talk about that. So let’s get on as always on the show. I love getting into nosing the guests and letting my listeners know who exactly is giving this advice. Or who’s bouncing stuff back with me. So let’s get to know you a little bit. You know, before, there was Trivium. You obviously have your own brand, I think. That was started before that. And before that, how’d you find e-commerce? So you were born in China? Can we start there?
Shan Shan Fu 01:35
Start all the way back? Sure. Yeah, I was born in a really rural area of China where there was no, like, plumbing or electricity. Definitely no meat. You could not get meat there. Even if you had money. It’s a very simple life. But I lived there until I was six with my grandparents. And then I moved to civilization. Okay, so is that a little jarring?
Andrew Morgans 02:02
So, where do you move words? So six years old, you moved to the US.
Shan Shan Fu 02:05
I moved to Albuquerque, but then eventually, I moved to Canada. So I’m Canadian; I lived in Vancouver most of my life until the last eight years when I decided to shoot for the stars. I live in San Francisco, Miami.
Andrew Morgans 02:23
Okay, I love it. I’m Canadian as well. I’m a dual citizen. So I grew up in Africa till I was 16. And then moved here to Kansas City. So probably as shocking as Albuquerque in a lot of ways. Kansas City, and now you’re shooting for the stars. I love that. I have some notes here about San Francisco. But let’s talk about that move. So you moved from Vancouver to San Francisco? What was that move about? Was it just, you know, to switch careers? Or was it chasing a job? You know what? How’d you make a move to the US?
Shan Shan Fu 02:57
I felt like I wanted to move out of Canada. Also, it’s kind of cold up there. And I had really good timing because I had just won the global startup battle. It’s by TechStars, one of the biggest celebrators, and I know TechStars very well.
Andrew Morgans 03:12
Okay, so let’s get into the details here because you just said I’m shooting for the stars and moving to San Francisco without saying anything about winning an award with a startup. So, where does that startup come into play?
Shan Shan Fu 03:25
It was a 3d printing startup where we helped artists launch their products into 3d models. Because it’s a very, very difficult process. It cost 1000s and 1000s of dollars, but we kind of did it like a one-stop shop. Workout. We still won the award, though. And like judges like Daymond, John from Shark Tank, and NAS, the rapper, they picked, like my startup, so nice to win that competition against, like, 25,000 entrepreneurs. And then I thought, hey, I shouldn’t resign from Cisco and just like to break into the startup scene. So I got a visa from a tech firm that hired me to run their business development. And at the same time, I was doing both jobs and trying to make it in San Francisco.
Andrew Morgans 04:16
Okay, I love that. Thank you. I love more details about her. So, okay, so you move from Vancouver. You get a visa or are sponsored by a company to work with them and their business development. Partnerships, what tech was it like, what were you? What were you working on at that point?
Shan Shan Fu 04:35
Generally, we would help businesses like fortune five hundred to run their websites, and we launched websites like advil.com, viagra.com, and visitcalifornia.com. So I’m basically an IT consulting firm.
Andrew Morgans 04:52
I got it, okay. It can just be so broad, and I have a degree in computer science, networking, and security have nothing to do with econ. Emerson was definitely like, where I started out when I was pursuing, you know, having a computer science degree. There were like three degrees at the time. So you got to choose, you know, there weren’t a lot of options. Now, I feel like there’s a plethora of options. Okay, so you’re working in San Francisco and the startup scene. For me, like, you know, if I thought about startup or entrepreneurship, I would have definitely thought of San Francisco or something like that. Definitely not. Kansas City. We do have TechStars here in Kansas City, which is pretty cool. I got to meet Lisa. She’s an amazing woman and has done a lot in the Bay Area, I think, too, as well. Okay, but now you’re in EECOM. So how do we go from, you know, working in business development to starting your own brand and now working? Is it for an advertising company that focuses on Amazon brands? Like, how did that transition happen? I guess it’s been over the last eight years, right? You know what, what made you kind of migrate into those roles.
Shan Shan Fu 05:57
So I started watching his YouTube channel called Graham Stephen, which is about like passive income and money management, and in 2019, I got really into the idea of passive income because I realized that with a typical job, you work really, really, really hard and you climb up the ladder to VP, but then once you get to VP, you’re going to work even harder. So you’re always working hard, harder, and harder and harder forever. And I didn’t like that. Because, you know, as a woman, you know, maybe one day I’ll have kids, I would love to hang out with those kids. So I would rather do the opposite, which is to work really, really hard now and then work less hard in the future because the income is passive. So then I started thinking, okay, how can I create passive income, and I really felt like it was gonna be e-commerce. And then, I started watching YouTube channels like Tatyana James and other Canadians. And I knew that I wanted to launch an e-commerce company. I just didn’t know what product until 2020 hit. And I decided to do face mass.
Andrew Morgans 07:08
Okay, I love that. I want to know more. Number one, number two, something very similar. I’m in Kansas City for that very reason, I think, not for e-commerce, but just that idea of passive income. And for me, this has been my home base. Anytime I traveled overseas, like as a kid coming back, this is where the family was, you know, actually moved away, got married, divorce came back. Just a place to regroup. Part of the country has a lot of pros, one of them being real estate. And the cost of real estate here is much lower than in a lot of areas in the country, yet capacities are at 99%. And the city is booming. In tech, we were the first good Google Fiber. There are lots of different reasons why Kansas City does well, but it just doesn’t really get hit in. You know, with the economy, high highs and low lows, it kind of just stay medium, medium, and growing. And so it’s something it’s on the coast. We don’t get hit by that much weather. Real estate is doing very well. Speaking of passive income as someone in the income, you know, what happens if Amazon goes away? What happens if you know you pass an agency? What happens if you’re, you get kids and you want to spend time with them? What happens if your health starts failing you? You know what else you have to depend on. And for me, that was real estate and a big reason why I’m here in the Midwest, so I aligned goals in that regard. The other one is e-commerce. I was reading a blog that actually is why I found I started freelancing and EECOM and built a company. It was talking about passive income, and it was talking about doubling down on skill, and you’re in your free time or your second job, your third job that benefits the first one. And so for me, that was like, okay, instead of going to bartending or starting doing something completely different, which is usually what I like to do, I’m ADHD, I’m like, I want to do a bunch of different things. I started freelancing on Upwork, and Upwork turned into Marknology. That is today. So similar train of thought, a similar path of thought to get you where you are today. And I was just resonating with that. I think that’s pretty cool. Canadians. Passive income. Here we are calm, you know, talking about what we’ve done. How do you end up on face masks? Was it something that, like, you know, 2020? We all spend it differently. I think a lot of people spend it differently. If you’re in California, I know you’re in Miami now. There is a big difference between California and Florida and the way that the pandemic happens, and kind of just like the energy around the people there. I visited both places, and it’s completely different. You know, a lot of people had time to think that they were working remotely, maybe sometimes from home for the first time. And a lot of great ideas and I think even great music. We were talking about music earlier. A lot of great music came out during that time when people were really innovating. Were you doing research? Was it something you’re using yourself? Was it like, How’d you come across your first product idea?
Shan Shan Fu 09:52
It was just that nobody had a facemask. It was like March or April in San Francisco, and nobody had the chance to have surgery. That’s even that it was hard to find. And the demand was so obvious. And it’s just so rare in a lifetime that you get that much obvious demand. So I knew that I had to do face masks. Plus, it was small. Plus, it was lightweight. Plus, it was cheap. And therefore, I talked to my family, who works in import-export, to chat with the factories in China and see if we could get some really good quality ones, you know, the ones that are nice and designer and have zippers and stuff. And I’m able to get them to my door. And that really helped launch in April, early in the pandemic, when everybody needed it.
Andrew Morgans 10:44
Yeah, cuz I was getting blown up as an agency to work with manufacturers that were switching the masks or people that could get access to them or, you know, whatever the case might be, there’s a certain number of protocols you had to jump through to sell on Amazon if you’re selling a certain type of mask and forget all the abbreviations for all those agencies. But it was, you know, we got several of them approved. They were big plays, but most of them took too long to really capitalize on the demand, you know, convenient for you to move that six to still have a relationship with a family that works and imports and exports. You’re just setting up. You’re set up to win. I love that. And was it an Amazon business? Or was it a website business? What was your first time going to an e-commerce store?
Shan Shan Fu 11:28
It is actually Etsy because Amazon like you said had, they didn’t want to profit from the pandemic, so you couldn’t launch face masks, I actually figured out that all you had to do was not call them face masks, as long as you call them just mask that you can launch whatever you want. And not only will they let you launch it, they’ll also shoot you up to the first page because the demand was so insane. But at first launch an Etsy Etsy did not have any of those problems. Because you know, they’re like a handmade, artsy store. So like selling, you know, products like that. And it did really well. I think in 90 days, I was able to do 10k per month.
Andrew Morgans 12:10
That’s amazing. That’s absolutely amazing. And also another thing we have in common is one of my very first brands landlocked, which is an apparel company here in Kansas City. I like tweeting and I actually went viral. I didn’t even know how to tweet at the time. But I just happen to get retweeted by a big blog. And I was only selling on Etsy at the time. And my Etsy account went crazy. I think I had three or 400 sales. And it wasn’t during a pandemic. So three or 400 sales of my item I would just kind of tinker with, like in a weekend and I was like, wow, this is amazing. Even before I was as headstrong about Amazon as I was now at sea, it was an easier place to get started. And I still recommend it to a lot of people. Because it’s built more for the seller and the maker than it is for the customer. It’s not that it’s not built for both, but it’s just designed differently. You don’t have to have white background photos and you don’t have to go through all this paperwork, I guess if you’re selling certain types of products to get through. Excuse me, okay, so we’re moving along well, okay, so I’m starting to get your story here. Now, whether I’m picking it out or not. Okay, so you did face masks. But we talked earlier about women’s clothing. Was the facemask the first move and then you pivoted since then? Or is it just something that’s kind of continued to evolve from that first product into into different products as well now, where are you at now?
Shan Shan Fu 13:28
So what are the facemasks I would say that facemasks my first launch was the easy part? That was the easy game, the hard game was launching my second product, which is trying to find a sustainable product that isn’t dependent on the pandemic. And I tried so many different things. I tried retail bags that weren’t available. I tried Monterrey but that was a failure. And I ultimately settled on clothing, especially except socks and tights and also much actual clothing like dresses because that was also a failure. Because dresses for women are very fickle. When it comes to sizing, I still struggle with it actually with socks and tights but not as bad as with let’s talk about that for a second.
Andrew Morgans 14:17
Because I think there are nuggets in all of this. I brought 18 pieces of clothing, women’s dresses, like probably 2020 2021 I had met a client we work on another brand he goes to India often he had some high end designers that design for like biggest winners designers in LA and Miami and you know he’s like we can recreate these we can create our own with these types of designs and patterns and like to make some cool stuff. And I just love fashion. So I was like, you know, women’s fashion. I worked with my sisters. It wasn’t something I was trying to do on my own as a man but was trying to do it along with them and we actually Lee said, No, you know, we got samples, we got edits, we got samples back, and just like you said, call it a fail and moved on quickly. But for me, that was like several months in the works of getting that there. And again, it was size, it was such a difficult thing to do. You know, we didn’t try to sell it and then got bad reviews, and whatever I just knew we were getting into something that we weren’t ready for, in regards to all the different the particular things that gotta go into women’s clothing to make them fit the hips, right or fit the legs, right or fit the, the chest right, or the shoulders or, you know, there’s so many different nuances to really designing well, and something that in the other areas of product development on Amazon or whatever, just simply aren’t there. But so, tights, socks, I think this is also some of the reason Amazon fashion has, like the fashion category to me is still wide open. Actually, I think it’s completely wide open. I don’t think anyone’s really doing it. Well, other than people selling very basic items. You know, on Amazon, you talked about fail, fail, fail, fail, fail. For me that was like I ordered samples and decided not to go with it and said like, oh, let’s invest time. I hadn’t invested that much money on some of those things that you were trying. Were those things that you brought them over and couldn’t get them to sell or like, you know, what does fail mean?
Shan Shan Fu 16:21
Exactly, they mean, the market didn’t want the product. And it was too difficult to make it work. Like, you know, when I launch a product 20% succeed, and 80% fail. And it’s so obvious which ones succeed, like, you’ll get a really good click through rate, you’ll get really good conversion rates and you’ll grow, right. Whereas with products that aren’t 80% done, they just don’t grow, you know, you’re pumping in tons of pay per click, and it’s not turning into sales, you’re bleeding money, you’re getting bad reviews, it’s just you just don’t see the growth. And that’s where I feel like I had to pivot and find out just for our listeners out there, like how much would you invest?
Andrew Morgans 17:06
Like not time, just like, you know, is? Are you ordering by samples? Are you ordering? Like, you know, feeling very strongly about the products? Or is it like, let me get a small box of these items or these items? And like, let’s see if they test if the customers liked them? Or is it something that you go into and you’re like, wow, we spent 5000, you spent 10,000 on that let’s pivot and try something else. What’s your kind of methodology for trying a product category or product type? And then in knowing quickly, whether it’s a 20, that part of the 20% or part 80% work extremely lean.
Shan Shan Fu 17:39
And that’s with my advertising spend. And with my purchases, I really don’t purchase more than 20 to 50 pieces per product. And I launched them on Etsy first. Because it’s very correlated with Amazon. Like, if you launch them on Etsy, and it’s obvious in 20, top 20%, then it’s also going to be top 20% on Amazon. So I would launch on Etsy, spend a tiny bit of ad spend with Etsy, like five $10 A day kind of things. And then once I figured out if it’s a top 20 Winner, then I would spend the big pay per click box on Amazon. And that really saved me a lot of leads on Amazon.
Andrew Morgans 18:22
I love that. And I think that’s an amazing strategy. And a big tip, if anyone’s listening to this, like that’s actually a golden nugget. One other thing I would say is that, you know, being in the space 12 years, what I’ve seen is it’s a mixture of product demand, it’s a mixture of timing, it’s a mixture of is it demand generation or domain capture? Like are you trying to tell people about something that they don’t even know they need? And you need to educate? Or is it something that’s like everybody wants? And you’re the one that has dope last? And so you’re capturing that demand that’s already there? Is it something that I’m trying to do with your images or your images or your content? Are you mis-selling or misrepresenting the product? Are you missing the right target customer? Sometimes that can be the difference in, you know, a product taking off or not is for us it’s been getting the photography, right? The content, right, helps people understand what they’re buying, or where they’re buying it or you know, things like that. I think some products are super visual. And some products are, you know, I’ve had amazing products that we can’t get sales to go but every time it’s a five star review. And it’s like look, when people get this product in their hands, they love it, but I can’t get enough people’s hands and so that also makes it a dud in a different kind of way. But it’s definitely one that you’re like okay, how do I get the price point right? How do I get it because it can be price point it can be any number of things right to know if it’s a dud or not. And for me sometimes that that knowing that if I get that right or I’d make this little change we can make turn it into a 20% can be some of my difficulty at least as a as a consultant as a Brand Builder to be like is this one I should move on from or is this one that I continue to tweak to try to get it right. But I love your methodology for Etsy and it’s one I probably don’t think enough of, is treating it like a launch platform. In a lot of ways, if it can do well there it can do well, in the bigger market. Another thing would be talking about Etsy in saturation, and like, you’re in this product category, where not a lot of people have it. For me, international expansion on Amazon has been one of those things where we take a product in the US and it’s just like hard to make a splash, we take it to Canada, we take it to Amazon, Australia, the product is really great. out the gate. So depending on who I’m working with is someone I’ve got a lot of trust with. And I’ve been building a lot of relationships with them. And they know, we have like kind of a chemistry together, we might try to launch a product in a foreign market first, actually, just to know with very little ad spend. And you know, with very little investment, we can essentially see, okay, this is going to be a successful product or not, let’s invest a lot in the US market. But I might have to bring Etsy back to the drawing board a little bit as he is treating it as one of those. Okay, so you move into socks and leggings. And so you’re a site that and this was all on. We’ve talked about Etsy and Amazon, but you have a website as well. Do you see play? Right?
Shan Shan Fu 21:17
Yes, I also have a Shopify store.
Andrew Morgans 21:19
Okay. And that is that one that you actively grow? You know, in the Amazon community, I just simply asked us for like, you know, not to make assumptions. But in the Amazon community, a lot of times a DTC site is ignored, or they’re not equally building on multiple platforms. You come into the industry a little bit different than through just the Amazon channels, and you’re like, I want to do EECOM. And, you know, starting on Etsy is even outside Amazon, is it one, your web play has always been just as important as the marketplaces or, you know, where do you live on that spectrum?
Shan Shan Fu 21:50
I wish it was what I really, really do. But the problem with selling on Shopify is I don’t have the golden golden nugget of Amazon pay per click, you know, Amazon pay per click is really just a godsend to launch products and get sales on Shopify. I mean, I tried using influencers. But the problem when you’re selling sexy tights, is that when you find girls wearing them, we look great on them. Their followers are men, like creepy men. I tried to launch a TikTok following and it was all guys that followed me. There was like, and I didn’t even show my face. I literally just showed my legs. And it was just all guys who didn’t buy them, right? Whereas I need women followers who buy these products. So I kind of really slowed down Shopify. I wish I could crack it somehow, but so far I have focused mostly on Amazon.
Andrew Morgans 22:50
I think it does come down to product selection, like what we’re selling right to the content that goes with it. And then is it influencer marketing? Or is it branded marketing. And that’s something that I’m spending a ton of time on just researching and understanding. I’ve recently worked with $80 million, we’re still working with him. They do about 80 million a year in jewelry sales, okay, through all different channels, watches, they have a huge collection of products. And some people might know they’re listening to this, but I don’t want to name them just in case just for a little bit of protection. But they essentially were very novel in that they sold women’s jewelry to men in magazines. So it was actually airline magazines targeted towards men to buy as gifts for their ladies. And that was just a very interesting play. They were kind of the first to do that. And I’m not sure that that can work with every brand by any means. But this was one that a jewelry company kind of took the lead on, built like a massive empire on and trying to re-purpose that for econ because it was a catalog-ish type of business, if that makes sense. They call it and they make this order, you know, they sell them that thing. But it can be, you know, different channels for different products. And another lesson I’ve learned recently on the DTC side is specifically we have a brand like do you know what a blender bottle is? Like the brand that’s like you have a bottle and it blends it with you on the go like, you know, it’s battery powered or something like that. So you can just blend up your shake a lot. Okay, so Blender Bottle, this is the competitor to them. Big UK brand that’s like making their push into the US. They’re like number two compared to blenderbottle. So they’ve always struggled on the DC side. And it’s this thought that no one goes to the GNC or the supplement store to get blender bottle but they will go there to get vitamins or to get their supplement powder or protein powder or you know, whatever the case might be and on their way out, grab a button while they’re there. And so that type of product is amazing for Amazon, but not so great for Ditas because no one’s going just to get that wonder bottle so to speak. And so how many different products can apply to that where the item that you’re selling is like an accessory item, less than it is like, let’s say socks, for example. Okay? So a lot of times, when I pick up socks, if we’re looking at me, as an example, I go to Nordstrom Rack. And I’m trying to find a shirt or some shorts are there specific items there that I like to get, it’s pretty much like Nike shorts, or a Nike hoodie or something that’s just like I’m adding another pair to the gym routine. But why I’m there, I almost always go and get a fresh pair of socks. Okay, so I wouldn’t go there just to get socks by any means. But it’s an item that I’m like, why I’m here, I know, they have good socks selection. And I can grab three, six pair for a couple of bucks, much cheaper than buying them. Let’s say I’m not gonna go to their website and buy from Nordstrom to buy a pair of socks. But I’ll get it when I go to get the shorts, so to speak. And I think that that’s a lot of items. When you think about that DTC side, that website play, would people come to your store just to get your item is your item more of an item that goes, someone’s coming to get something else and they pick it up on the way out? So hopefully, that made sense to a little, a few of you a few of the listeners, but understanding what kind of product you’re selling, how to get to that target audience that you’ve got. And I think that’s why a lot of influencer accounts, tick tock accounts etc, have gone that way of like, if it’s a woman or influencer selling product, it’s been like, almost like, not inclusive of men, because they want to try so hard to not have those many followers that they almost like want to me and hate a little bit. Because they’re like, I just literally don’t want men following my account. I want to build a women’s brand. And so they go so far to one way or the other, because it’s just really hard to get that targeting, right. It’s something I’m still trying to crack. So as we talk about trying to crack that nut, you know, still trying to figure out what products, you know, should we invest in email marketing, should we invest in SMS? Should we invest in tick tock ads? Should we invest in influencer marketing? Or is this one that’s like, let’s put all of our focus into Amazon, which has been the go to for many years. And as we come on to like the last 20 minutes of the show, let’s talk a little bit about PPC. And you talked about it being like, Hey, I Amazon is such a big part of what I do even Etsy being able to turn on ads a little bit. How important is it to like, you know, one, validating a product and knowing it’s going to be a winner, and then to just like, you know, continuing to grow that product or be able to get eyeballs on it.
Shan Shan Fu 27:24
Yeah, and that’s where the testing comes in. Right. And, one strategy is use et Cie, there’s other strategies, I’m sure out there. And once you figure that out, then it just comes to scaling. And I personally use pay per click to scale. It’s been fun actually, to do it. And quite straightforward. I always say that when you’re launching a product, you know, 60% of the heart of whether it’ll succeed or not, is really the product. Like, is it a good product the market wants? And then the other 40% is execution, which is like doing really good PPC ads, and, you know, having really good customer service. And, you know, all the branding looks great, and the reviews are great. That’s 40%. But that 40% is the easier part because you can either do it yourself, or you could hire someone to do it. Right. There are lots of great people that you could hire to do that. But the hard part is the product getting the product, right?
Andrew Morgans 28:32
I love it as an agency owner, that’s also an investor. That’s also you know, I’ve got equity in 19 projects now, that are my own internal brands. So quite a few. And what I’ve learned is that I don’t love the conversations with China, I don’t love the conversations with manufacturers. I don’t love the conversations with Latin American manufacturers, that detailed nuance of getting the samples being super OCD about it to get the product right. And I would rather partner with those creators, those makers that have a great product and then need a great need that 40% From a team, you know, and that’s what I’ve kind of, even as someone who wants to run my own brands, I found and discovered that that’s what I love. I love joining the project when someone has gone through that work to have something that they really believe in and that they have an amazing product. And it’s like, okay, I’m here. Let me help where I’m best. You know, because I meet tons of Amazon sellers that are like they love the sourcing part. They don’t love storytelling. They don’t love the content. They don’t love pushing it out there. They don’t love all that human interaction. They want to just develop something great. Let’s talk about the PPC you talked about if you have an effective PPC strategy or you have an effective PPP partner PPC partner. What is effective PPC, even mean and what does that look like?
Shan Shan Fu 29:48
What is a good strategy? And then two, it’s really I think, attention, right? Some people I know including me. They’re looking at the PVC, you know, once a week or two weeks or rarely, but really you should be looking at every day, if you want to really hone in on that cost and cut down on profit while also skills going up at the same time. So it’s strategy and attention.
Andrew Morgans 30:20
I think you’re exactly right, I have a couple of more things I want to get into. But first finding experts, software developers doesn’t have to be difficult, especially when you visit FullScale.io. We can build a software team quickly and affordably. Use the Full Scale platform to define your technical needs, and then see what available developers, testers, and leaders are ready to join your team. Visit FullScale.io to learn more. So I know you’re a big fan of PPC. I know it’s been working well for you. So far. You work at a PPC agency with Trivium. And Mina, I know he’s one of the best in the game at what he does. We approach things a little bit differently in regards to PPC, but very much similar in regards to strategy and how we do it. You know, I was working on Amazon in 2015 already for I guess now, four years before PPC came to Amazon. It was an absolute like, I mean sluggers fast when it came out, and just like the cost of it was so low. And you know, through the years, everything has gotten harder, it’s gotten more difficult, you need more attention. And you know, me and Mina went together at the sound scale summit in Vegas. And we had a big, you know, we had a big slogan on the back of our booth. I don’t know if you’ve seen it or remember it, but mine was like, Don’t let your sisters, cousins, friends, you know, create your content. And the Trivium side of it was like and don’t let a robot run your PPC. And we were just trying to be a little bit not offensive, but just a little bit eye catching a little bit of attention grabbing for people to stop and look at it and either laugh and chuckle or, you know, hate on it or comment or come and talk to us whenever and I think the job the job got done. But my point of bringing that up is because the PPC needs a lot of attention, daily attention, and you need to be looking at it all the time. A lot of people have moved toward a software or a robot so to speak, that makes those changes and looks at that for them because they don’t want to they want to go design the next bikini, they want to go design their next product, they want to be on the beach, they they built this company to have passive income, whatever the case is, the reasoning might be. But to continue to have that to grow it to be successful. It’s like you got to do what you don’t want to do. And that is, you know, I think people have overcorrected when it came to, okay, I want someone to look at this every day, I want to have a robot, I want to have a software look at my stuff. And that is that checkbox is checked when someone chooses software to run their PPC. But that’s only half of the job. That daily checkup, like making sure things, the bids move around, you still need that human aspect of paying attention to what’s happening in there. What are customers searching? What exact search terms? Are they typing in? When will they find your product? Are they typing in women’s leggings? Are they typing in black women’s leggings? Are they typing in white women’s leggings? Are they typing in leggings for Lean women? are they typing in like you know, recyclable or eco friendly? You don’t know what people are searching for unless you’re paying a lot of attention to your advertising. And really having a strategy that says, How am I going to make this I’m paying for a click, I’m literally exchanging money to get eyeballs on my product. So I’m paying for that; this is something I need to pay attention to. It can’t be an honest sight out of mind. Not just what am I spending? But how am I spending it? What customers deserve me to spend the most on them? Who’s going to bring back the most value? Am I convincing people to buy they’re then going to return it and so I’m reaching the wrong customer. So many people go and get sales from the wrong search terms and then come back and turn into returns. And that straight line is rarely ever drawn. But I just know that if you sell well, people can have buyer’s remorse, right if you oversell, so you’re not trying to make those things happen. You’re trying to find the perfect customer that’s made for the product that you have, it’s going to love it and enjoy it when they get it. So I went down a little bit of a rabbit hole there. But I think that at that point of need to be a human, you need to be a real person, whether it’s you or someone you’re hiring to check out your advertising and set up your strategy and intentionality, and then have great tools to then help that user get the job done. Before we wrap up. I got a couple of questions for you. One would be, you know, where can people like one interact with your brand or to follow us specifically Trivium or on LinkedIn? And then secondly, what’s something you’re working on as an individual that you’re excited about in the New Year? You know, for your business, your career, your development? And then something in your role at Tribune that you’re excited about? That’s like, you know, coming up that the team’s focused on or something like that. So a three part question one where can people kind of find you follow you. And then the next to being something you’re personally working on is something you’re working out with in your role.
Shan Shan Fu 35:06
Yeah, so they can reach out to me as Shan Trivium co.com. And also actually have a free gift. If you are an Amazon seller, and I can get my engineers to do a 30 minute video, film a video of them going through your, your PPC account and giving you free advice, like telling you exactly what to change what’s working, what’s not, where the opportunity, they haven’t, you know, capitalized yet and it’ll be like, very specific, very comprehensive, there’s, we have no secrets, you know, we tell you exactly what to do. So if you just email me, I can definitely get my engineers to help you with that.
Andrew Morgans 35:53
And then you don’t need to mention a code or anything like that, or just send you an email and say, Hey, I heard you on Startup Hustle, I’d love to get in, just send me an email.
Shan Shan Fu 35:59
And then, what am I excited about? I am trying to meet other e-commerce founders because I just love to build community. I did that in San Francisco in the tech community. And now I’m gonna do e-commerce. I’m gonna host a series of dinners for e-commerce founders at the Soho House in Miami here, and then probably in New York, as well, because they also have a little house there. And mills anywhere that were there. So house, you know, hit me up with an email. We could just get like three other founders because I saw how you can only bring in three people. And we get like three in any city where there’s a house, so I will fly there.
Andrew Morgans 36:46
And that’s an offer for sure.
Shan Shan Fu 36:47
So I just really like people, and I want to chat with them and eat with them and have fun. And I’m also throwing, and then with Trivium, we love to throw events, we just did a big one, and LA added this huge mansion. You are there, Andrew? Like 120 people RSVP, we’d all like 789 digit Sollers hanging out and with a, you know, Wonderland theme. So we’re doing another one, probably in April. So if you’d like an invite to that, also email me.
Andrew Morgans 37:29
I love it. Events on events on events. In the best way, though, it sounds like a ton of fun. And I like the intimate ones where you just get to know people and really see what they’re about and what drove them to build what they’ve built or be who they are. That’s the kind of stuff that gets me excited and inspired. And so thanks for sharing your story, sharing your journey. I think it’s the first of many conversations. I feel like I know you much better already than the several times we’ve met before, just knowing what you’re about and what you’re working on. And you know what you’re excited for goes a long way. So you guys know, she gave her contact information here on the show. But I’ll have all of that in the footnotes of the show on the podcast. So if you guys missed that of your driving, you can look it up on Spotify, Apple iTunes, or wherever you’re listening and see her contact information there so you can get in contact. Super excited. For what’s next for Trivium? I know big things are coming. We’re working with Mina to make some of those things happen. And I’m excited about it. Shout out again to our sponsor for making this podcast a free podcast full of value for you guys. FullScale.io is an absolutely amazing company. If you’re looking to outsource any of your development and find someone that can join your team permanently. If you need to hire software engineers, testers or leaders, let Full Scale help. They have the people on the platform to help you build and manage a team of experts. When you visit FullScale.io, all you need to do is answer a few questions and then let the platform match you up with a fully vetted, highly experienced team of software engineers, testers, and leaders at Full Scale. They specialize in building long-term teams that work only for you to learn more when you visit FullScale.io. Even if you’re not looking for developers and you just have professional curiosity, check out FullScale.io. What they’ve built with their team and resources as a service provider is super cool. They’ve got animations, they’ve got to meet the teams, you get to kind of see who you’ll be working with or like you know about that person before you even reach out. So it’s like it’s a really cool system, even just the checkout for yourself. Thank you, listeners, for tuning in. As always, I appreciate your time and attention. And Shannon, thank you so much for sharing your story. Value, the offer to audit any of the Amazon sellers’ accounts, I hope you get overwhelmed with emails and the team is saying, Hey, we got to be careful when we do that next time, so you can’t do it so freely. Thanks for being on the show. And I know I’m trying to come to one of those dinners as soon as possible. All right, great. We love to have you. Alright, well, enjoy the sunshine. And we’ll see you next time, guys.