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Why Amazon is not a research site

Written by Oliver Brushfield-Smith


Amazon is, at the very least, it’s a great teaching tool. Like a simulator that’s very fast to learn whether you’re right or wrong. So what I mean by that is a lot of people that are listening aspire to be entrepreneurs and there are so many things you have to do when the moment of truth comes.
It’s one thing sitting at home in your undies in the middle of the night with your Excel spreadsheet going ‘If I only get 1% of this market… Look at all these people who drink coffee and if I only had 1% want this wooden lid on their coffee cup…’ Whatever. It’s all easy.

But the actual moment when you have to do the metaphorical walk down on the street with your wares that can be delayed for years for people. When you go to Amazon, Amazon takes away so many of the barriers. You don’t need to set up a website. You don’t need to set up a credit card facility.

You just need to find a product or develop one and then put it into the marketplace. You don’t need to figure out traffic. You’ve already got traffic. You can already see where the money is being spent. And you can, from day 1, from the moment that product is ready to go, you can pay for your ad to appear on page 1.

So let’s say we’re looking at coffee cups here on the table. We have so many types of coffee cups. The only reason they’re on Amazon is to buy coffee cups. It’s not a research site. They’re there with the credit card in one hand, they’re ready to buy. Your coffee cup can appear on page 1 along with the best selling organic coffee cups on Amazon. It is a pure test of skill.

Did you get it right with the design and look of your coffee cup as well as the economics of it. The price, right? Is the price you’re asking and what you’re offering commercially viable and is it superior? And you’ll find out in a week. Right? So it is a pure test. It is a fierce place to do business. There’s competitors everywhere. And it’s a really canny test of skills, right?

So it’s a matter of bouncing. Do I go into those areas where there’s huge volumes being done and as a result fierce competitors, or do I go into sort of quiter, less obvious niches and fight with sort of more inexperienced people for a smaller pie. Right?

So it’s this whole strategic game, but it’s a microcosmos of what all entrepreneurship is. Right? There’s very few places, very few fields where there’s no competition. Right? But Amazon is great because you can get the analytics, the actual numbers before you go to battle. And it’s just a wonderful test of emotion.

Like the moment you sit there buying the course, and you poop your pants when you buy the course. And the next moment you poop your pants is when you have to send the money over to China or somewhere for your first order that’s like $5,000. You spent $5-10,000 on a holiday maybe before, or a wedding. So you spent these kinds of dollars before.

But now you’re emotionally invested, cause no one’s gonna tease you if the car you bought is not really that cool. But if your business fails, the stigma, you know. So it’s gonna push all of your emotional buttons and you’re gonna learn so much about yourself.

But it’s highly addictive and it’s risky. There’s real money involved. There’s real time involved. And there’s real competitors, you know. It’s a hard world.

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