136 – The Key To Driving A Successful Ecommerce Company With Erik Huberman

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Erik Huberman is founder and CEO of Hawke Media, a leading outsourced digital CMO agency for companies including Evite, Bally Total Fitness, Verizon Wireless, Eddie Bauer, Red Bull, and many other brands.

Erik and his team provide complete sales, marketing, and e-commerce for clients. As a serial entrepreneur and brand and marketing consultant for eight years, Erik previously founded, grew, and sold Swag of the Month and grew Ellie.com’s sales to $1 million in four months.

He frequently speaks at events and recently filmed a television commercial airing on CNBC. Erik cultivates a positive environment at Hawke Media, filled with hardworking people who reached their business goals in year one and are on track to do so in year two as well.


3 DIFFERENT ASPECTS OF MARKETING

  1. Awareness Aspect – Get the word out there, make it known that you and your business actually exist. Advertise. Maximize the power of social media by using Facebook, search engines, TV and online radio advertisements. Get people interested in you and create an advertisement that will give you conversions without doing all the work.
  2. Nurture And Brand Trust Aspect  – This is all about telling people about your brand and showcasing what you can do for them. Ask yourself, How’s my website? Is it displaying all the contents my existing and possible customers need to know about my product? How is your email campaign? Is it still effective? Does your marketing plan leads to more customers?
  3. Follow-Up Aspect – Your customers and prospects might be asking the question, “Why should I believe in you?” Now that you have new customers, you’ve got to show interest and go deeper in explaining why they should trust your brand and not your competitors…and why they should give you their hard earned money.

It is also good to note that nowadays, there are too many companies out there falsely making claims about their products.  Everyone has been burden. People are skeptical now, so in today’s business environment, third party validation is very important. Check out a few examples:

  • Coca Cola no longer needs to try and prove that they’re Coca Cola because everyone knows the brand and what they’re getting with it.
  • If your brand is a Supplement and you’re new, you should expect that people won’t know anything about your product. Build and strengthen your brand around what you’re selling.
  • If you are in the fashion industry, validity is less needed however, you need to work on your social media group engagement and strategy. Your social media group should give you a face value, they should be a group with one aspiration and that is to prove that your brand is cool.
“Marketing is all about people.  
Everything you do is to convert people on both your brand trust” 
– Erik Huberman -

THE NUMBER ONE REASON PEOPLE FAIL TO SUCCEED IN BRANDING AND MARKETING

People love to get into analysis.  The have the “maybe this will work” mindset.  Always dipping their toes constantly on “maybes” instead of actually jumping in and giving it a shot.

THE ONE ULTIMATE TRAIT FOR MARKETING SUCCESS

A lot of new ideas are introduced everyday about marketing and you can find them just about everywhere. However, none of them will affect the fact that nothing has really changed.  If you’ll look at it deeply, it’s still all the same – especially for the past 3 years.  The only trend that has really boomed on the internet, is the introduction of Social Media advertising…like Instagram. Speaking of new social media advertising, in terms of ROI social media marketing trends, Snapchat has not really performed and Pinterest hasn’t really seen any promise yet.

What is more interesting, is you’ll see so much gibberish marketing offers right now

It really takes discipline not to chase the new shiny toy all the time and actually just focus on what’s working and be okay with the fact that you don’t need an overly complicated marketing plan, just a simple one.

STOP WASTING TIME AND START SELLING VALUE

In Marketing, you should always remember that there should be a good balance between gaining peoples trust by nurturing relationships that will eventually produce sales later and making direct offers. Whatever your marketing strategy is, the end point should always be how you place “Value” on your products or services.

If you have the ability to explain the real value of your product, then there’s no need for you to sell it “hard”.

If your prospects understand the value you products, then you don’t need to “hard sell” your offers because they will just see importance of buying in to your product without thinking about the price.

The main driver of any business is the “word of mouth” and if you can articulate your value in a sentence that can be rearticulated by others, then you are in the right track.

“Value is working on the emotional appeal
of the product or service that you’re providing,
once you master this,
you are going to be very successful”
Erik Huberman

THE BEST ADVICE FOR NEW ENTREPRENEURS IN 7 SECONDS

Erik interviewed so many entrepreneurs, he is also writing for Santa Monica Daily Press and Forbes Ink, he talked to thousands of people about how to run a business and being successful. So what is his best advice?

“Just Get It Done And Keep Going”
- Erik Huberman -

It is all about checking things off the list and moving forward. It is all about ideas and the skills to put it all together. It is how you quickly move and the determination you have to keep pushing forward.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT THE TRUE MEASUREMENT OF SUCCESS

Even after all of his triumphs, Eric feels like his success is still a long way out. Talking about his personal life though, he can definitely say that he is successful. Why? Success for him is being “happy” at the end of the day and it is doing what you love the most, day in and day out. Defining success by how much money you’ve made is kind of a joke and a lot of people don’t value those kind of goals anymore. Success is finding ways to make other people successful in what they do.

HOW TO SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCH AN ECOMMERCE WEBSITE

Starting an eCommerce website might sound like a huge undertaking, but it’s not as hard as you may think. Below, check out some of the steps necessary to start your own eCommerce website. Erik even shared his favorite tool to help you get started. Just remember to follow Erik’s advice: “Just Get It Done and Keep Going. Don’t just sit there and think about it.”

Shopify is Erik’s favorite eCommerce website mainly for the following reasons:

  • It is inexpensive
  • If you can build a Facebook page, then you can build a Shopify site

Once your Shopify site is built, all you have to do is figure out how to bring people to your site. This is where the magic happens, where the testing comes in.  If your marketing strategy actually works, driving traffic to your offers, then all you have to do is figure out all the different ways to sell your products or services.

GREAT MARKETING ADVICE MOST BUSINESS OWNERS FORGET TO FOLLOW

You may think it’s impossible to get the word out about what you do. That’s no excuse. Aside from everything mentioned so far, here are some additional golden nuggets of timeless marketing advice that you need to start following today:

  • The real value of your business is realized when you do what you’re best at and you trust others within your company to do what they are best at. Hiring the best people to work for your company is not done by most successfully business owners, but by their HR team. They have a CPA doing their accounting and a group of marketers performing marketing. Great business owners know, that it is not just all about trying to do everything themselves.
  • Do not try to be everything to everyone. What you need to be good at, especially if you’re starting an eCommerce company, is be good at creating products. Then you hire people that are good at all of the other things you’ll never get to. If you don’t rely on others, then you’ll never be able to scale – you simply cannot handle everything on your own.
  • Depending on your product or service, figure out the best place to get your customers. You need to optimize your conversions which can be done by nurturing your prospects with Re-targeting, email or optimizing your website.
  • The worst case scenario, which will happen despite all of your marketing efforts, is if the problem is the product itself. If this scenario happens to you, address the issue right away and have a conversation with your clients immediately. Present all of your findings and just be honest.  People may not be buying your products because they just don’t like them. You might be surprised that your clients will agree. By doing this, you are giving them the opportunity to move on and try new projects.
“Do what you do best and don’t try to do everything”
 ~Erik Huberman~

SHOW

Click Here To Read The Full Transcript Of The Show +

Erik:                This is Erik Huberman from Hawke Media and you are listening to social media business hour with Nile Nickel and we’re going to talk about the key to driving a successful ecommerce company.

Woman:          Are you in business or thinking about starting a new business and could do with a bit of help and guidance when it comes to social media? Then you’re in the right place. Social media can seem daunting and even frustrating but it doesn’t have to be. That is why we offer insights and experience from social media experts from around the world. Discover tips, tricks and information that will help you leverage the power of social media so you can start growing your business today. Welcome to social media business hour with your host Nile Nickel.

Jordan:            Hey Nile, let’s take a break for another social media marketing moment. Talk to me about social media posts and the right way of doing it and the wrong way of doing it.

Nile:                Well, so many people that do their posts on social media anywhere on social media -- it really doesn’t matter the platform. They like to inform people. Maybe they like to sell you. Unfortunately that’s not what most people are on social media for. They’re there for a break whether it’s a mental break, whether it’s just spending some time, killing some time so you have to stop the scroll. As they scroll through your social media page, whatever page that’s on they’re seeing a lot of things. What makes you different, what makes you stand out? Other thing you want to is you want to entertain them a lot. In fact, 80 to 90 percent of all of your posts should be entertainment based, not information based.

Jordan:            Thanks Nile. For more tips just like that one join us on socialmediabusinesshour.com, sign up. You’ll be glad you did.

Nile:                It’s so great to have everybody here for our interview tonight. We’ve got Erik Huberman who’s the founder and CEO of Hawke Media which is a leading outsource digital CMO agency for companies including Evite, Valley, Total Fitness, Verizon Wireless, Eddie Bauer, Red Bull and many other brands.

Jordan:            So, in other words, businesses that nobody’s ever heard of before.

Nile:                No, you might scratch your head a little bit, see if you’ve heard of any of these. So, Erik I have a question for you though.

Erik:                Sure.

Nile:                Those are really some pretty impressive clients. That’s a sort of a gold list.

Erik:                Yeah, they’re up and coming.

Nile:                I like that. Especially with Red Bull. There’s a charge there.

Erik:                Yeah, yeah.

Nile:                I couldn’t resist. So, my question is how did you go about acquiring them? They just didn’t fall into your lap.

Erik:                Yeah, no. I mean, it’s -- we’ve been lucky enough that -- first off, location. I mean, being in LA and being an agency that does what we say we’re going to do so our reputation and as well a -- we’re a month to month agency so we kind of went by our execution. How well do we actually do so companies don’t really have to commit to us to hiring us so it’s a pretty easy pitch to say hey, try us out. If we don’t work out, fire us. We have no contracts. And most companies are very open to that and just being -- again, Red Bull’s based in LA, Verizon has a big presence here. A lot of these companies like Eddie Bauer, the active wear branch is what I work with. They’re based here. Like it’s a lot of LA based companies in the beginning and then from there we were able to build off of that and -- because we already had that credibility. But in the beginning it was really just give us a month and we’ll show you what we can do. We’re obviously pretty confident.

Nile:                That’s got to build a lot of confidence with the clients as well.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                So, I took two things away from that. Location, location, location.

Jordan:            That’s three things.

Nile:                And flexibility.

Jordan:            Oh, yes, yes.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                So --

Jordan:            Well, I’ve got to tell you that takes balls and that is really a differentiator, isn’t it? In an industry where you have to sign a big contract, a lengthy contract Erik’s saying no, no.

Nile:                Let us prove ourselves each month.

Jordan:            Yeah.

Erik:                It comes from being on the other side of it. I have three different brands, ecommerce companies that I ran and every time an agency would tell me they wanted a six month contract I’m like no, no, no. if you guys do what you say you’re going to do there’s only one reason I’m paying you in the first place which is because I need your service. All you’ve got to do it is execute it. I’ll keep paying you. That’s why I’ll hire you.

Jordan:            Yeah.

Erik:                And if that’s not the case then I don’t want to sign a contract anyways but if you’re going to perform like you say you are then this is a very easy conversation already.

Nile:                Love it, love it. well, just so everybody knows Erik and his team really provide complete sales marketing, ecommerce for clients and as a serial entrepreneur and brand and marketing consultant for eight years Erik previously founded, grew and sold swag of the month and grew la.com sales to one million in four months so he’s got just a little bit of a track record.

Jordan:            Wow.

Nile:                He also speaks at events and recently filmed a television commercial airing on CNBC. He cultivates a positive environment at Hawke Media. It’s filled with hardworking people who reach their business goals and obviously they have to do it each and every month and they’re on track to do this in a phenomenal second year as well so I think that’s really phenomenal and what I want to do just so our listeners know is Erik really has just a whole bunch of different experience so we’re going to talk about marketing in the first segment of the show today and in segment two which you could download after this and make sure you subscribe to us on iTunes but in segment two we’re going to be talking about business, entrepreneurship and personal development. And in the segment three and the final segment today we’ll be talking about ecommerce and Erik promised at the beginning of the show there are going to be some really tips there. He’s going to help you build your ecommerce business so you want to make sure you stick around for that. So, I have to ask you related to marketing. What are your clear takeaways on how companies create and improve sales and marketing strategies to really maximize their brand awareness and ROI? Now, there’s a whole lot of stuff in there but what you’re doing is you’re really putting a marketing plan in place with all of those words being in there. I think that’s the simplest way to say it.

Erik:                Yeah, I mean, the simplest way to look at it is there’s three aspects to marketing. There’s awareness and getting the word out that you actually exist. There is the nurturing side and actually once they know you exist explain to them why they should actually now convert to be your customer and then there’s the trust side or the brand side where it’s like we told you what we do, we told you like -- we followed up with you but you have to also see like why do I actually believe you say you are what you -- you say you are. So, taking those three aspects as examples. Advertising, doing press, doing a lot of different things. They all overlap in terms of these three channels but example being advertising like Facebook ads, search ads, TV advertising, radio, that’s awareness. You’re telling people you exist. It gets them interested. Sometimes it’ll even drive them through a conversion without doing all the work and that’s where you start. Nurturing side is your website, your email campaign to convert a lead to a customer. A salesperson is nurturing where you actually -- they’re very -- now you’re already in contact. Now you’ve got to explain to them. Okay, you’ve shown interest, our value proposition caught your eye but let’s now go in deeper and explain to you why you should now actually give us your dollars. And then with a lot of brands there has to be a trust factor because some are heavier than others. Example being if it’s something I’m going to eat or ingest like a supplement or a vitamin or something along those lines you really got to explain to me why I’m not going to die and why this thing’s is actually going to make me better not worse because of just the history of how things have been. There’s been too many falsely claimed products out there that people know about so that you have to do a lot whether it’s press or influence or marketing or some kind of third party validation. As an example, Coca Cola no longer needs to try to prove that they’re Coca Cola. Everyone knows what they’re getting with Coca Cola. With your supplement, if you’re new, they don’t know. You need to build that around it. The other example would be like a fashion company. You need a little less validity there and social group there because they kind of can take it at face value. What that does help with though is the aspiration of proving that it’s cool. If you get a bunch of fashion bloggers write about a fashion company that can help you a lot because it’ll show that -- it’ll validate more the cool factor and the aspirational factor than the safety factor. So, it’s those two, three parts are always what you need to make sure you’re covering when you’re staring a brand and sometimes some more than others.

Nile:                I’m really impressed with that because Jordan and I, we were just having a conversation earlier this afternoon related to what does it take to introduce a podcast and build a following. And we were touching on all these subjects and how they interrelate. So, it really does cover everything you’re doing but the thing is -- at least in my impression. I’d be interested in what you think. I find people tend to focus on one of these. Not all three of them.

Erik:                Right. I mean, we get the calls all the time. I mean, obviously we do marketing for people and people would call me and be like I just want Facebook ads. Okay, but what are you doing to convert those people because we can drive people to your site all day. It’s very easy but if you’re not doing other things to make those people convert on again both the brand trust side and the nurturing side, those ads are going to perform very dismally and probably not pencil.

Jordan:            Yeah, I was enjoying. I’m sure you do too Nile. The people who say I just want more Facebook traffic or search traffic and you say okay. Well, tell me more about that and lo and behold they just want you to send traffic to their home page where there isn’t an offer, an obvious offer. It just -- oh, well, they’ll find their way to the offer, right? No.

Nile:                No, not at all.

Jordan:            No.

Nile:                Not at all.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                I really appreciate it. Hey, if we were to say what do you think the number one reason for why people fail to succeed in branding and marketing their products and services what would you identify as the number one reason?

Erik:                Why they fail?

Nile:                Why they failed to succeed in their branding and marketing of their products and services. They’re just not doing what they need to do.

Erik:                This is a hint of what I’m going to talk about later but not doing it. People love to get an analysis _____27:59 maybe this will work, maybe this. Let’s do a tiny test here and let’s spend 50 dollars here to see if we can make 10000 and just like dipping their toe constantly instead of actually jumping in and giving it a shot. It’s like Kobe Bryant who’s now retiring when -- shot one basketball once and went let’s see if this goes into basket to decide if I’m ever going to be good at basketball.

Nile:                Yeah, and if it doesn’t go in maybe I should look at something else to try.

Erik:                Yeah, exactly.

Nile:                A great, great thought there. What do you see that are the big trends impacting the marketing industry today?

Erik:                What’s fun is the things that work haven’t changed in about three years. There hasn’t been a lot of new introduction. Other than Instagram advertising. In terms of ROI generating marketing Snapchat hasn’t really performed, Pinterest, haven’t really seen performance there. Like there’s not a lot of shift. What I think has been interesting is there’s so many offers now, there’s so much fluff that it really takes some discipline not to chase the shiny bubble all the time and actually focus on what’s working and rinse and repeat and be okay with the fact that you don’t need an overly complicated marketing plan but a lot of this simple rinse and repeat blocking and tackling does work.

Nile:                Do you see that there’s a good balance and a rule of thumb for sort of entertainment and education versus offer where you’re really trying to gain people’s trust where you’re nurturing the relationship versus always trying to sell them? Do you find a ratio there or a period of time that you have to do one before you transition to the other?

Erik:                Well, I think it’s all about presenting value, not just selling. Selling, there’s two different mindsets of sale. It’s you should buy this, you should buy this, you should buy this or here’s what we do, here’s why it’s valuable. What do you think? And if you do a good job of like explaining real value you don’t need to sell. You don’t need to have offers. You just explain like -- it’s a very like -- there’s products that we like and need so I think it’s a very simple thing to be -- to come in and just say hey, this is why we’re great and if you don’t have a good way of saying that you need to go back to the drawing board anyways. But this is why our product works really well, this is why it’d be valuable to you. Do you want it? It’s a much more emotional appeal to the product or a service that you’re providing and it’s the way you’re going to be very successful. Mainly because the driver of any business at the end of the day is word of mouth and if you can articulate your value in a sentence that they -- that can be rearticulated, that’s where you get that word of mouth.

Nile:                Man, that is -- right there is a powerful, powerful recommendation. It’s a great idea because so many people just don’t do that.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                And I really appreciate that. Hey, I want to let everybody know we’re just about out of time in segment one but as we get in segment two we’re going to talk about business entrepreneurship and personal development and so I want to know and I’ll be talking with Erik on what made you become an entrepreneur, what’s your best advice to any new entrepreneur, and what defines your success. What makes you successful? But we’ll be talking about that in the next segment so you want to make sure you join us there.

Jordan:            Hello and thank you again for joining us. This is Nile’s trusty sidekick and cohost Jordan and I’d like to take a moment to share with you how you could benefit from Nile’s incredible experience using social media for real business success. If you’re an entrepreneur or thinking about starting your own business then using social media might be the most cost effective and time effective way to get your business real results. That’s not to mention much of what you could do to get those terrific results on social media is even free. Take Linked In for example. Nile always says it’s the best social media platform for business today. And that’s why I recommend you go to linkedinfocus.com and start your social media education today. Sign up for Nile’s free tips, tricks and strategies. Once again, it’s free and it only takes a few seconds. Go to linkedinfocus.com today. You’ll be glad you did.

Nile:                Hey, welcome back to the social media business hour with Nile Nickel and you’ve got a -- we’ve got a great interview going on with Erik Huberman who’s the CEO of Hawke Media and we’re going to be talking about business entrepreneurship and personal development in this segment. Next segment, by the way, we’ll be talking about ecommerce. At the beginning of this he made a promise that he’s going to fulfil in the next segment so make sure you join us there. That will be in the next download by the way but make sure you get it there. Also, Erik is the CEO of Hawke Media and I was asking Erik about that because I notice the way it’s spelled. I said that’s a little bit unique. Where’d you get that name?

Erik:                Yeah, so basically when I was starting out I actually called it Growth Hacker Group because it was a buzzy term when I was starting a couple of years ago. Two and a half years ago. And I mentioned to a friend of mine that was supporting me with media buying at the time and he came to me and said I just signed a contract with Walmart. You think they would’ve ever put their name on a piece of paper that said Growth Hacker Group? I went that’s a good point. And he said yeah. Just make it something generic. Stop worrying about the name being clever. So I grew up in Ojai which is a small town near Santa Barbara where hawks were everywhere. I always liked them. So, I started looking in Hawk Media. Found that if I added an E -- growing up I thought my full name was Erik with a K Huberman. I actually thought that was my name. Like with a K was part of my name so -- that is -- and if you can jumble them around Erik with a K Huberman jumbled around is Hawk with an E.

Nile:                I like it. That’s great. Well, not everybody will get that unless they look at our page here where we’ll share all of our links at socialmediabusinesshour.com but it is spelled H-A-W-K-E so hawk with an E. glad I asked the question. It’s always these little insights that I enjoy so much. So, obviously you’ve had years of developing ideas, founding startups, managing people. You’ve got some great advice. There’s no doubt in my mind on building a successful company and growing a business and so I want to know first off before we even get into that what made you want to become an entrepreneur?

Erik:                I don’t know that there was like a decision. I mean, I -- even now like I almost shy away from the term entrepreneur because it’s like right now I run a marketing agency. I don’t think of myself as an entrepreneur. I think of myself as the owner and CEO of a marketing agency. Like it’s never that I set out just to be a business owner. I set out to -- I had ideas and I ran with them. I grew up. My dad has always owned his own business. I grew up around it. I was always trying to start little things throughout -- even as young as six years old I stole a bunch of stuff from my parents and went door to door trying to sell my parents’ things out of a trash bag so I’ve always wanted to try to find a way to make money probably through example and then when I got -- I started a business in college that went well and then when I got out of college I actually thought I was going to go into real-estate. That was 2008 and I started three days before Lehman Brothers completely crashed and the banking industry just got demolished. So, through six months of having insane amount of listings and no offers and seeing that -- what it was like to just be a salesperson trying to hustle I out of necessity decided it was time to go look into starting something else and that’s when I created my first internet business.

Nile:                I’m very happy to hear that fencing or trafficking in stolen property wasn’t the calling that you kept.

Jordan:            Yeah, he’d probably be giving us this podcast interview from a different location.

Nile:                He probably would’ve. But it reminds me listening to the way that you started. I think I told you this story Jordan but I know Erik, you’ll probably get a laugh out of this. I didn’t realize I had this entrepreneurial streak at a young age either. You never know what it is. You just do things. And I always wanted more money and I loved to go to the -- we had a bookstore in my school when I was six years old. When I was young. First grade. And so I used to like to always get a quarter or 50 cents or whatever it was and go to the bookstore a couple of times a week. Get pencils or paper or erasers or whatever it was. Well, a lot of kids in class wanted to play on the playground before school. They didn’t want to go get whatever supplies they needed so I charge them a markup fee. Like I’ll get your stuff for 10 cents if you want to play. I’ll just make the list. Give me the money. I’ll go buy it. And so I was going to the store, the school bookstore every day buying stuff like massive stuff and then delivering it to their desk and taking my dime or 15 cents, whatever it was. The school took a very dim view on that.

Jordan:            Really?

Nile:                That was the first meeting that they asked my parents to come meet with everybody at the school. I personally thought it was a great idea. They, not so much so -- but it’s amazing how we find those things happen to us at a young age that we just don’t realize.

Erik:                Yeah, no. it really does shape what you end up doing because to me it was never like something you set out to do like start a business. It was just something you did. Like it was never like okay. I’m going to start a business today. What do we do? It’s just like oh, here’s an idea. Let’s go try it. Oh, it worked. Let’s do more with it. Oh, we’re getting more. Let’s keep going. Like it was more like an ongoing thing. Not like a big step which I feel like comes with again a lot of like just being around entrepreneurs as an upbringing. It’s just you assume you’re starting a business. You don’t like step into it.

Nile:                Great, great advice there. So, if there’s somebody that’s new to this journey as a business owner or as an entrepreneur what’s your best advice for them?

Erik:                Best advice for a new entrepreneur?

Nile:                Yeah.

Erik:                Get shit done. Sorry for the French but it’s the thing I -- I’ve interviewed many, many entrepreneurs. I’ve -- I actually write for the Santa Monica Daily Press, I write for Forbes Ink, I’ve talked to hundreds. Actually I’ve talked to thousands because of also the business we run and the ones that are successful versus the ones that aren’t are people that execute. It’s about checking things off the list and moving forward. It’s not about -- ideas are a dime a dozen. Skills are honestly a dime a dozen. Right now what it is is people that actually move and move quickly and keep pushing forward are the ones that are going to be successful.

Nile:                And I know in the first segment you talked about -- when we were talking about marketing and marketing plans is how people -- they really get caught up and they get caught in the paralysis by analysis or analysis by paralysis. Whichever way you’d like to say it. I’ve heard it both ways.

Erik:                Exactly.

Nile:                But one of your comments there in that first segment was the number one reason you see most people fail to execute in a marketing plan is not doing it.

Erik:                Right.

Nile:                They try a simple, small, little test. Well, your best advice here is just do something. In fact, my statement is do something even if it’s wrong because we’ll learn from it. Just do it.

Erik:                Yeah, I mean, Marc Shuster which is one of the more prolific venture capitalists in LA if not the most says that you should make a 100 decisions a day and just be right in 51 of them. At least 51 in person at a time. It’s like just keep going. Go, do things, check things off. If you’re wrong, that’s fine. Just be right more than you’re wrong.

Jordan:            That’s solid. That’s really great.

Nile:                And you know what? You know how to learn to get right more often.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                Do lots of wrong things and learn. Just don’t do them wrong multiple times. At least the same thing.

Erik:                Yeah, I mean, we -- every single business has done things wrong and you learn from them and you move on. Like it’s just -- that’s part of life.

Nile:                Well, one of the things, it’s so fascinating to me and I’m looking at it on our table here is the post it notes. I don’t know if you know this. The glue on the back of the post it note was a failure. They were trying to develop a better glue, a better adhesive. Well, it wasn’t a better glue. It didn’t stick. I mean, it stuck but you could pull it off and so they discounted it as a failure. They wrote it off. And somebody was thinking you know what? There might be a use for that and how much post it stuff do we have today?

Jordan:            Yeah, that’s true. That’s very true.

Nile:                That’s made 3M a lot of money.

Jordan:            Yeah. And one in a history, a long history of failures that ended up being just unparalleled successes.

Nile:                Absolutely, absolutely. So, I want to ask you from your perspective how you define success. Are you successful or do you feel that way?

Erik:                Personally I’d say no because I feel like there’s a long way to go. I feel like I -- let’s put it this way. In the current state and where I’ve come to this point I feel successful because I’m just -- I’m happy where I’m at at this age but I don’t feel like _____41:46 so to speak. Like I’m done. Let’s put it that way. And success is defined by the individual in all honesty. I think the biggest -- so, in my definition I would say I’m successful which is -- it’s about being happy. At the end of the day I think success is measured by happiness. I have a friend that makes barely any money but owns a bed and breakfast on the beach in Thailand that pays for itself and enough for her to live with her two kids. That’s success to me because that is what makes her happy, that is her calling, that’s what she wants to do. Just as much as Mark Zuckerberg with his 45 billion dollars is successful. I think success being defined by how much money you’ve made is kind of a joke because there’s a lot of people that don’t shoot for those kind of numbers. That aren’t ever trying to and honestly there’s a certain level where no matter how hard you’ve worked and how smart you are it’s timing, it’s the right place, right time that you just -- you’re only going to hit a certain level without being in the right place at the right time. To actually call that success is just backwards. I know that that comes from hot wires and _____42:46 a lot of other things that show like -- success needs to be measured on something different.

Nile:                Couldn’t agree more. As a matter a fact I see that -- if we talk about Bill Gates, he made an awful lot of money. I think he’s so far given like 70 or 80 percent of it away to various charities. I saw an article today and I think it will find out how valid it is but I suspect it was valid based on where I saw it that Mark Zuckerberg with the birth of his new daughter was planning on giving away 99 percent of his stock to charitable causes.

Jordan:            Wow.

Nile:                Which just is a little bit but I think that says something about the success. They’ve got enough to make them happy and now happiness is finding ways to make other people successful in what they do so -- listen, in our next segment we’re going to be talking about ecommerce and Erik made us a promise early on that he’s going to tell you how to set up a successful setup and launch a successful ecommerce website. So, we’ll be talking about that in the next segment. Join us there.

Jordan:            All right. It’s time for another social media marketing moment. Nile, do me a favor. Talk to me about headshots in Linked In. Yeah, I hear you talking to people about that all the time.

Nile:                Well, one thing that’s so funny is so many people don’t take that headshot seriously. They’ve got their arm around somebody that’s not in the picture or they’re deep in the background you could barely see who they are. Want to know an interesting fact? People that look at your Linked In profile spend 80 percent of their time looking at your profile, looking at your headshot. Why is that? It’s because people like to look into your eye. They feel if they look into your eye that they could see what you’re about. They get an understanding of who you are and that’s important before they move anywhere else.

Jordan:            Another great pearl of wisdom. Thanks Nile. For more just like that join us at linkedinfocus.com, sign up. You’ll be glad you did.

Nile:                Thanks for joining us in our third segment of the social media business hour in our interview today with Erik Huberman. I’ve enjoyed the interview tremendously Erik because I’ve learned so much and I know that our listeners feel the same way so I’m excited about that and I’d just like to thank you before we even get into the third segment.

Erik:                Yeah, absolutely. Thank you for having me.

Nile:                So, at this point in time Erik’s going to help us all and he’s going to help engage and educate us on how to target audiences on various aspects of ecommerce marketing strategy such as SEO, email marketing and affiliate marketing. And so just to jump right into it, big bold promise we made early on, how can I successfully launch an ecommerce website and what are the pros and cons of various ecommerce content management system? So, we’ll start with how do I launch.

Erik:                Yeah, so go to -- start with going back to what I’ve said in the last two segments. Just first off go. Like don’t sit there and think about it and analyze and talk. Just find the easiest, lowest barrier to entry, lowest resistance and just start going, start trying to sell stuff, find out if people actually want your product. So, my favorite, personally is Shopify because it’s pretty inexpensive. You can -- if you’re any type of -- if you’re savvy with computers on any level you can build your Facebook page, you can build a Shopify site and just go play with it and get it done. I mean, that’s what I got into. I relied on other people to do this stuff for my first two companies and then -- or first two online companies. And finally just went I’m going to go learn how to build a site and found out you can build a Shopify site in a weekend if you really want to dedicate some attention to it and then you have an online business. All you have to do then is figure out how to get people there. I mean, depending on what you’re selling you can go do many things and again, that’s where the testing comes in and the marketing and figuring out different ways to sell but at least you’re up and running which is -- again, that’s probably 90 percent of the battle.

Nile:                No, that certainly is and that’s a good way to get some quick feedback without investing a huge amount of money to find out what you have to do so absolutely outstanding. What do you think is unique about some of your insights to ecommerce?

Erik:                Unique?

Nile:                Unique. Why do I want to listen to you Erik? I know I want to because you’ve been very successful at it but I want to know why.

Erik:                So, I’ve done it myself three times and learned on the side of like actually starting my own and now we’ve worked with over 200 brands on ecommerce that I’m pretty sure there’s not many people that have more insight to what works and what doesn’t and what -- on a data level, on a direct conversational level than myself or my team. We -- there are obviously other ecommerce agencies but usually not at the volume of customer basis that we have where we can really see across again hundreds of companies what’s working, what’s not. We’ve even built a data platform to watch that so that it’s objective not subjective. It’s not me just like eyeballing at you and going oh, this looks to be working. It’s like look at -- across the hundred and something fashion companies we worked with. Here’s where they’re good in their business, here’s what a good conversion rate looks like. Here’s what the average cards kind of span across and how that correlates to other data. All the things that really matter. We do have more knowledge than most on that business.

Nile:                I think that’s a fascinating comment and I’ll tell you why. I had a similar experience but I had the great blessing and opportunity to be a manufacturer’s rep. for people that maybe don’t know what that is. What it allowed me to do was it allowed me to take the same product to literally hundreds of customers in a given territory and it was so fascinating to see with the same exact product what sort of different things people could do with it. Because I don’t think that I had -- for certain products, I didn’t have more than a couple of customers that were trying to do the same thing with the same product. And that does give you unique insight and tremendous value of what you could see and what you could do.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                So, I guess my question is and I don’t know that you’d have an answer for this is how people could somehow find those opportunities to find that great content and experience that so many different people are having with the same product?

Erik:                To find that great content to help market it? Is that what you’re asking?

Nile:                Yeah. In other words, they get tremendous insight when they see so many people doing so many different things with the same product. I know when you’ve got a business like in your case your marketing agency, you certainly get that opportunity because you’ve got people that are using Facebook but they’re using it in many different ways. Same platform, same opportunity.

Erik:                Yeah, I mean, that’s where actually honestly I feel like the value of our business comes in. I’m a firm believer of do what you do well and don’t try to do everything. So, example being we’re really good at marketing. We do our own marketing. We do a lot of other people’s marketing but I’m not going to claim to be an HR company so I’m going to hire -- I hired Trynet not for a shameless plug but an outsource HR company to come do our payroll and our -- and do that. I have a CPA doing our accounting. I’m not going to try to be an accountant, a marketer and an HR person. Like it’s just don’t try to be everything. What you need to be good at, especially if you’re starting an ecommerce company is good at creating a product. Then you find other pieces and if you can't profitably hire people that are good at all these other things you’ll never going to be able to scale anyway because it’s not like you can handle everything forever.

Nile:                Yeah. Great, great, great advice. I really do appreciate it. One of the things I’m interested in is how can companies create and improve their sales through various ecommerce marketing strategies like you’ve just mentioned? Shopify for example and so on. I don’t know if you’ve got any others but I’m curious.

Erik:                Yeah, I mean, to improve sales it’s really a function of looking again -- those three buckets I talked about in the first segment. Looking at where are your people falling off. Do you just not have enough people coming in, period? Or is your conversion rate way to low and rule of thumb, just as an -- for info. You should be at least converting at a dollar a click meaning if you have a 100 dollar average cart you should have a one percent conversion rate. If you have a 50 dollar average cart you should have a two percent conversion rate and _____51:39 if it’s above that, you’re good. If it’s bellow that, you’re not. So, keeping that stat in mind -- that this is obviously a rule of thumb then if you’re above that and you want more business go buy ads and go do Facebook advertising search. Depending on your product figure out the best place to get your customers. If you’re bellow that then you need to optimize your conversion which can be done on the nurturing side with free targeting or email or it could be your website and you need to fix up what it is. And honestly the worst case scenario which happens it could be your product. We had a conversation with a client today that’s been around four months and it turns out nobody wants their product. We’re actually going to be bowing out because it’s just -- and they agree. There wasn’t any hard feelings. They’re actually going to move -- they have another project they’re working on but the product they launched just isn’t wanted and so figuring out where that drop off is so that you need to know where you need to plug the holes.

Nile:                No, that’s great advice and I also think there’s great integrity there in recognizing that and recommending that to a client when it’s just not in their best interest.

Erik:                Yeah.

Nile:                Hey, I want to ask if people are interested in finding out some more about you and what you do, maybe even having a discussion about how you might be able to help them, how do they find you?

Erik:                I’m happy to take emails. It’s erik@hawkemedia.com and remember Hawke is H-A-W-K-E media.com. Happy to take direct. I’m on my email all the time and happy to continue.

Nile:                And we’ll have all of those links on the social media business hour page as well so if you miss that don’t worry. We’ll have it up there for you. One of the things that I’d like to do is personally Erik I’d like to thank you. You’ve shared really a lot of great information and golden nuggets today. I’ve taken a number of notes so I know, from my perspective, and I’ve been doing some of this for a while, you helped me and I appreciate it so I’d like to thank you.

Erik:                Yeah. Thank you for having me again.

Nile:                And for our listeners, I want to thank you for joining us on the social media business hour as well and remember to subscribe on iTunes so you never miss a valuable episode. In the last three episodes we’ve all learned some new ideas and strategies that we could use to improve or grow our business and my desire’s that you take just one of the things that you learned today and you apply it to your life or business immediately. We said that a couple of times through this interview, didn’t we Erik?

Erik:                Yes, we did.

Nile:                So, I know that a small change can make a big difference. I’m committed to sharing at least one new idea each episode that we could implement. So, let’s go back and identify just one small change that we could make to our life or business this week and see what a big difference it will make for us. So, until next week, this is Nile Nickel. Now, let’s make it happen.

Woman:          Thanks for listening. Social media business hour is sponsored by linkedinfocus.com. Be sure to get the latest social media business tips and tricks plus free tips on how you can use Linked In to help your business today. Visit socialmediabusinesshour.com.

weblinks

Twitter Handle: @ErikHuberman
LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/erikhuberman
Website: www.hawkemedia.com