Brief update for a lackluster week.
- I put in test orders for several different products. In total, I've received two sets of samples back. The quality on Product A is pretty good. The quality on Product B isn't good, but isn't terrible. I wasn't expecting much for Product B. It's actually not a bad item at the right price point, but at that price point it doesn't make sense to sell it through Amazon unless I buy them in bulk, and I'm not convinced there's a market available to justify that order quantity. I'd just end up with a bunch of stuff that doesn't move fast enough, taking up space.
- I began researching methods for getting reviews early without resorting to outright buying them, which is certainly an option, but not one I'm particularly interested in. So far my favorite has been The Facebook Method (explained below).
- I did NOT do any serious research into packaging/labeling. My thinking so far is not to overthink it. Stay as simple as possible. Test the product, and don't spend a lot of time/money on fancy packaging.
The Facebook Method
I've read about this in a couple different places. The Facebook Method is quite simple:
- Start a Facebook Page focused on something related to your product. For instance, if you're selling kitchenware, start a community around cooking. If you're selling running gear, start one for runners.
- Trickle 3-5 items per day to your page.
- Promote your page with paid Facebook advertisements until you hit critical mass and it can start to organically grow.
- Once your product is available, offer your audience a coupon in exchange for an honest review of the product. Provided the product is good, the result is a verified purchase and a favorable review.
The one part about this that doesn't quit click for me is the jump from Step 3 to Step 4. Unless you're cultivating an audience that is used to heavily engaging with your content, I don't see people converting from spectator to participant. But maybe I'm wrong.
Getting down to the wire here. There a couple things planned for this week.
- Testing The Facebook Method for getting intial reviews.
- In the interest of meeting my January goals and getting over the fear of selling online, I'm going to try to sell at least one of samples I purchased, by any means necessary, even if it's at a substantial loss. Quite frankly, given the shipping costs I paid to get them here quickly, it would be quite hard to profit on a single sale.
- My wife Ruby became interested in Kingpin, and has some ideas she's been playing with. Haven't decided if we'll roll them into this project. But, more data is awesome!
I didn't get as much done as I wanted to this week. I'll be out of town until January starting this Friday, so I only have a few days to get things moving before the pressure to meet January's goals is in full effect.