EP 39 - Steve Simonson - The Power of the “Dear John Letter” in Making Your Voice Heard by Amazon

Awesomers Insights  - Steve and from time to time other "insiders" will share their knowledge about specific topics to help the listeners improve their knowledge on a subject. We considered calling these episodes noesis shows, but we didn't know how to pronounce the word. By the way, Noesis means: The psychological of perception and learning and reasoning. We would choose this word because we want to help leaders develop into decision machines vs. always looking for an external solution. 

YOU can help influence the entire Amazon marketplace program in a very important way.

We’re asking Amazon marketplace sellers to please participate in the DEAR JOHN letter writing campaign.


We’ll submit these letters now and potentially during future meetings with Amazon to help drive awareness and understanding throughout Amazon regarding the seller experience FROM sellers. An exclusive group of Catalyst88.com mastermind members led by Steve Simonson will provide these letters to Amazon team members during upcoming meetings to help Amazon see what sellers are facing in their own words.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the Dear John Initiative 


Entrepreneurs are constantly making a positive difference in the world and anyone can take part in it too.

On today’s Awesomers insights episode, Steve talks about entrepreneurship, cooperatives, E-commerce  and Amazon. Here are more key points on today’s episode:

  • The three general propositions for a cooperative to work.

  • How Empowery leverages the strength of its community.

  • The Dear John letter project and why it is important.

So join us on today’s episode and learn how you too can embark on your entrepreneurship journey.

Welcome to the Awesomers.com podcast. If you love to learn and if you're motivated to expand your mind and heck if you desire to break through those traditional paradigms and find your own version of success, you are in the right place. Awesomers around the world are on a journey to improve their lives and the lives of those around them. We believe in paying it forward and we fundamentally try to live up to the great Zig Ziglar quote where he said, "You can have everything in your life you want if you help enough other people get what they want." It doesn't matter where you came from. It only matters where you're going. My name is Steve Simonson and I hope that you will join me on this Awesomer journey.


If you're launching a new product manufactured in China, you will need professional high-resolution Amazon ready photographs. Because Symo Global has a team of professionals in China, you will oftentimes receive your listing photographs before your product even leaves the country. This streamlined process will save you the time money and energy needed to concentrate on marketing and other creative content strategies before your item is in stock and ready for sale. Visit SymoGlobal.com to learn more. Because a picture should be worth one thousand keywords. You're listening to the Awesomers podcast.

1:16 (Steve introduces today’s episode.)

Steve: Today is going to be an Awesomers insights episode where we talk about something that's very important to me and you're going to get a very special opportunity to do something I think that is not a common thing. And I'm going to talk to you more about that here in a minute. Now this is Awesomers episode number 39. And it's surprising to me that we've already cranked out nearly 40 episodes. And this episode 39 is going to talk about something very special. But before we dive into that I wanted to share a couple things with you. First of all if you haven't been to Awesomers.com and you want to know about any show notes and details about this episode, you just go to Awesomers.com/39. Now if you just go into the regular Awesomers.com website by the way you can join our mailing list and you'll get drip fed some free stuff. We don't oppressively email your spammy trying to get you to buy a bunch of stuff is a matter of fact we don't directly sell anything. Often will refer resources to whether they're bookkeepers or a software program or things that we use and like but we're just not hard sales guys running out and beat you down to buy stuff. We share what worked for us and that's part of the the magic of working with the Awesomer community. And so this particular episode we're taking a little bit of a diversion from our normal interviews with either book reviews or the backtalk live episodes and even the interviews with entrepreneurs. Because we've got a very special opportunity.

2:51 (Steve talks about the Empowery Ecommerce Cooperative.)

Steve: Now the Empowery Nonprofit Cooperative, it's called the Empowery Ecommerce Cooperative if you haven't heard of it. I want to just give you a kind of a brief overview and then tell you something very unique that's happening right now. The Empowery Ecommerce Cooperative is all about members joining together and the members actually own the coop. Each member has one vote, they have one share and they own the coop. Every member side to side owns one share and they all have one equal vote. There is no corporate owner. There's no kind of mothership. It's a member owned nonprofit cooperative and a cooperative as an actual business model type. A lot of people don't realize this but there's corporations and there's C corps and S corps and LLCs. Well a co-op is a whole other kind of structure and this particular co-op was set up in Minnesota. Because Minnesota has some of the best laws about how to set up and form and operate ultimately a cooperative. If you've ever wanted to talk directly to Amazon. This is a very special episode for you today.  After I could be a little context we're going to talk about a very unique opportunity to get your message and to share your story with Amazon executives who are really interested in doing the right thing. and I'm going to dive into those details after. Again we set a little bit of context here. So first of all why does Empowery exists? Empowery believes that if entrepreneurs work together they can leverage buying power. They can leverage the strength of lots of members to try to gain a better scale of purchasing. For example if we all buy Freight together, if we all buy a software things or certain services together we should be able to get a little better deal. And Empowery was set up along the lines of something that I believe in. And I call it you have to have three general propositions for a coop to work, one is you got to have a beat the street price. So a little better deal than the average guy and most everything at Empowery offers that. There's some things that are too rigid on pricing that they can't change in the marketplace but most of the time you're going to have a beat the street price. The second thing is you get this thing that I like to call the perk pack. This is when the velvet rope at the club is open up and you kind of go to the front of the line or you get extra perks and benefits that  just anybody any Joe off the street is not going to get. And then of course the third thing is the cash back incentives and the cash back is designed so that the more you use Empowery aligned vendors and service providers and so on and so forth the more cashback you earn. And I've been in cooperatives for a long time and this is one of the reasons why I'm helping found and fund this cooperative is that over time the members actually get paid every year to be members when it works best. So they you know by aligning your purchases and by aligning your services to work through the co-operative you can actually get a big fat check at the end of every year of cashback check. It's so amazing and it's a really great feeling to have not just this big you know the size of the cheque obviously varies based on how much you put through the co-operative. But you get this nice cash back which most often will completely supersede the amount that you have to pay a monthly maintenance and we'll talk a little bit about that after this. But the reality is just part of it the other thing is you get a full-time team that's kind of working for the benefit of the co-operative. There's four or five full-time people maybe more now. And they're working every day to try to make members lives better. That's something that is phenomenal and to to be able to get you know access to that world-class team and be able to work together and build a community that you participate in and you own. That's again quite unique. Now a lot of people say alright you know that's sounds fine. I don't quite understand how it works but I'm concerned about the cost and the cost is very nominal essentially. You pay a thousand bucks for onboarding that helps the team get a little action to help each person on board. And you pay a thousand dollars for your share of stock that gives you your voting share. By the way if you ever leave the cop you get that thousand bucks back and then you pay 250 a month in kind of ongoing maintenance fees or membership fees. Now the best part again, your cash back should fully nullify that 250 bucks, you can do more in cash back, acquire more in cash back to where that 250 bucks a month is a non impact to you financially. And by the way once you hit like $12,000 a year of cash back or rebates then you don't even have to pay the 250 a month. So that fee completely goes away once you hit that level. So it's a really easy way to see that cash besides a little bit something up front to show. I'm serious there's not much in there if you truly use the system. Now I want to say unequivocally Empowery members please use the system. Make sure that you're going out of your way. That you're contacting the Empowery team to use the the vendors and the providers within the system. You already need these services you already need. So that the things that are being offered not necessarily every single one but you already need a lot of them and certainly enough to earn more than the 250 a month. Which means you're going to be in a cash flow positive position at the end of the year. So again you're kind of like being paid to be a member when it all works really well. So it's a very exciting thing and I'm not going to dive too much more about the coop. If you want to know more go to Empowery.com, contact them directly but the opportunity that Empowery is put in front of us is a very special project to communicate with Amazon. And you go to Empowery.com/dearjohn. And I want to just share what a special thing this is and we're going to do a little bit more of this discussion right after this break.


Catalyst88 was developed to help entrepreneurs achieve their short and long term goals in E-commerce markets by utilizing the power of shared entrepreneurial wisdom. Entrepreneurship is nothing if not lessons to be learned; learn from others, learn from us. I guarantee that we will learn from you. Visit catalyst88.com because your success is our success. You're listening to the Awesomers podcast.

Steve: Okay gang we're back again and we're talking about this special project that I feel really really motivated and optimistic about. And we call it the Dear John project and essentially this is targeted towards Amazon Marketplace sellers that want to communicate with Amazon and kind of share some of your experiences. So let's first of all set the groundwork that Amazon and being able to sell in the marketplace, leveraged the FBA program. Sometimes you're able to get Amazon lending and there's so many things that Amazon does really really well. And it's created this really unique opportunity for businesses all around the world to create extraordinary life-changing businesses of all sizes. Anything from, I sell a couple hundred bucks a month to I sell a couple million bucks a month or more right. So it's a fascinating beautiful thing but just like anything that's fast growing and dynamic. It's got some wrinkles in the system that need ironed out and you know I'm fortunate because I live in Seattle and I'm genuinely, I love entrepreneurs and I want to see the very best come out for entrepreneurs and in every possibility including this marketplace. So I often talk to Amazon and there's really caring people at Amazon. They want to make the experience of sellers much more positive and much more I don't know delightful if you will. But we have to recognize a couple things first and that is it's extraordinarily complex because they can't just be nice guys and assume we're all nice guys. Because there's a just a boatload tons and tons of criminals everyday hacking seller accounts using fake credit cards, hacking consumer accounts and having stuff shipped to them, doing a return fraud. And so their cost being attacked from all sides by all these criminal elements. And so they have a very complex problem and I want anybody to just take a step back and remember to have some empathy when you're dealing Amazon. Even when you feel oppressed or even when things are getting you down. They got a tough job to do over there too. So I like to be a fair guy when I look at this stuff there's certainly things at Amazon that I would advocate for. And I'm loud about the need to fix these sorts of things but I do have a high level. I would say of understanding and empathy about the complexity of these things especially is such a dynamic fast moving environment. And so some of the things that upset us are when Amazon has to make fast changes and we feel like they're reacting or reacting unfairly perhaps to media or other stimuli in the marketplace. And so those types of surprises can be unwelcome and so the premise of the Dear John project is to give you as an Amazon Marketplace seller the opportunity to reach out. And just send Amazon a quirky and a fun memo that says hey what I'm going to dump the Amazon because there’s certain things I just simply can't take anymore. And so the premise here is by delivering a... I don't know a State of the Union speech to Amazon but in a fun and quirky way. It's much more likely to get traction and get executives to understand there's humans on the other side of this. If we all just send hate mail to Amazon to go hey you suck I do better that's not kind of a second of positively affect change in my humble opinion. So here's the premise, have you ever wanted to dump Amazon? Have you ever gotten up in the morning and faced some unwelcome surprise, maybe your account suspend and maybe all your reviews were deleted? As if this kind of stuff bothers you or you've had a competitor deploying blackhat tactics? There's probably a chance that you wanted to just wake up and tell Amazon what you fired right to quote an OLE apprentice. Practice ISM if you will now. I want to be clear that this Dear John letter doesn't mean you actually are breaking up with Amazon but it's a look in the future of what could happen if Amazon doesn't change its ways, right? There are some things that are happening that are just simply not acceptable. I'll give you a quick example and again I want to reiterate, I love entrepreneurs but I also am absolutely enamoured by Amazon. I respect so much of what they've been able to do. So this is not about me trying to be bad or mean to Amazon. And it's not about hate, it's about love right? We've got to do more together and we do that by communicating. So the situation I was going to share is there are more and more times where Amazon is getting a return from a customer and they're putting that back into sellable inventory even when we've said don't put my returns in a sellable inventory. And then they ship it out and then a customer says they ship me used inventory and then we get dinged for it, right. We'll get a negative review, we might even get a product suspension, we might even have to send in a plan of action, a POA as they're called. We have to confess oh I'm sorry we checked and it turns out a package got through or something news got through. We're confessing this stuff we didn't even do because that's how the system is kind of set up and in many ways quite broken. Now I want to reiterate I'm being fair on both sides there's Amazon's got a lot to deal with but if we can give examples of how this stuff works or in this case doesn't work and humanize it a bit. I think it can have a big impact. So I'm going to read you very briefly or as quick as it can be done the the quirky fund Dear John letter that I wrote to Amazon. And this is again this is about being fun and quirky it doesn't diminish the severity of this situations but it makes it more palatable to read and understand in my humble opinion. Okay I'm going to read you this letter that I've written to Amazon and it's just an example. It certainly doesn't have to follow this but I also talked you through the template that we're providing for you or that Empowery it has online as well for you. So again you can go to Empowery.com/dearjohn and you can see the example of template and the whole premise explained to you online. So here's the letter.

15:34 (Steve reads the Dear John letter.)

Steve: Dear Amazon, it's over. I can't take it anymore. I'm leaving you and it spent a long time coming. You've ignored me for the last time. I used to love how you helped me grow. I appreciated the chance to store all of my junk in your warehouses that was so sweet. I knew you cared about me because you really helped me grow my business. And I love that about you. It felt more like a partnership and that's what I need. I could scale my interests while using your already established infrastructure that felt like this would turn into an LTR right? Long term romance. My heart used to leap when I grabbed my phone, open my seller central app and see my sales. I remember the first day I topped $1,000 in sales on Amazon, what a feeling of pure joy. I remember when my customers would send me their feedback about how great my service is and that made me smile every time I got those messages. Those people loved me and I thought you were really into me. But I'm not giving you the it's I'm not giving you the old it's not you it's me. I want to be a hundred percent clear it's you. You no longer seem to care about me. I often can't sleep at night wondering if you're going to suspend my product or account and then ignore my calls for help. By the way your definition of the word support is something that needs help, probably need support and Icicle has a better chance of building a condo in hell than I do of getting a support message that actually acknowledges or understand my core needs. With everything happening in our relationship, deleting my reviews, allowing my competition and deploy blackhat tactics. I'm simply over it. Here are a couple other things that have been building that show your lack of attention and even care about me. Your price is an FBA are out of control. If Casas rising fine but you change too often. Your lack of brand protection is killing my business. You allow too many people to pretend to be me and during the same time we're fighting about it I lose sales every day. Nobody seems to care about that part. Do you remember that certain one-star that time? A certain one-star review suddenly got 500 up boats and my conversion sank. That was my competition manipulating the machines. Why can't you stop that? It's so obvious to us. Remember when you took my reviews without cause or explanation not everyone cheats the system. I agree that you should eliminate the smelly bad fish from the ecosystem but you're catching dolphins in your neck too often. Here's an idea, save the Dolphins. Today as I write this you now seem to simply view me as a walking ATM machine because every time I turn around you're raising prices for FBA and other marketplace fees. You don't appreciate me. When we started there was a place for the little guys. That window seems to be closing you prefer china-based cheap stuff or big known brands. This means that emerging startups have little chance to succeed now. At least that's how it feels at times. By the way when I complain about the fact that you have too many counterfeiters on your site and on my private brand listings. So you come up with a program called transparency and you want me to pay for it five cents a label. You must be out of your mind. Is there is everything there a revenue stream for you and your solution to hijackers to have me pay five percent protection money to be part of the Amazon exclusive program. Are you from Sicily? I've often wondered is there anyone inside your big corporate offices asking what value that is being provided from something that should be inherently included in any market place EG brand protection. And obviously my writing or that was not particularly well that the point of that statement is there anybody saying we should deliver value as part of the marketplace offering? Did you know when you suspend my product for a bogus safety complaint just before Black Friday despite us having provided all appropriate safety documentation multiple times in the past for the same product for other past bogus complaints, you cost me $200,000 over the weekend until the listing was reinstated. Did it ever occur to you that the scumbag sellers use us as an offensive tactic to take down their competition during peak periods. Run the reports you will see a spike in safety and other critical complaints against best-selling items before peak selling periods. I guarantee it. How about the time when a thousand of my best fan letters, eg reviews were randomly deleted because your algorithm clearly got drunk and started throwing random punches. The reviews were organic, your attention to detail is non-existent, your pride, your propensity to pick up false positives is a big turn-off. There are more reasons but I felt like I should let you down easy. And that's why it's over, it's a shame but that's life. By the way don't talk to me if you see me at Geoffrey's wedding because I'm now dating Walmart.com. Jillian. P.S. I'm keeping the jewelry. Now I wrote this letter to illustrate a couple points. One you can have fun with this letter. You can add some levity if you can and remember that this is not just one long hate memo about this or that. This is really designed to help Amazon shine the light on critical problems. I think sales tax is something I probably should have included in this letter and I did not. But whatever is important to you, I really think it's important to get that in front of Amazon.


Empowery, the name says it all. Connecting E-commerce entrepreneurs with great people, ideas, systems and the services needed to sustain business dynamic into growth. Empowery is a network; a cooperative venture of tools and resources to make you better at what you do. Because we love what you do. We are you. Visit Empowery.com to learn more. You're listening to the Awesomers podcast.

Steve: Okay we're back again and I want to just share the template very quickly with you. So I know that not everybody is into copywriting and creative writing or whatever. So we've got a template or the Empowery. These guys have a template to share with you that kind of takes you through the format of the typical Dear John template. If you just send a long list of things that you're mad about that it's just going to get caught up in the noise. If you make something quirky and even artistic you're going to have a better chance of kind of cutting through and getting the message across. Remember everybody we're talking about humans dealing with other humans. I know we have machine learning and AI and all this other stuff but this project Empowery.com last year John is about humans human sellers talking to humans who want at Amazon who want to improve the customer experience. This is a very special opportunity very special indeed. Now you don't have to use your real name, this particular page the Empowery.com/dearjohn actually has a submission. Once you have gone through the template, once you've written your letter you can go in and you can submit your letter through that system. And we'll get those on a weekly basis to Amazon. And again we have executive reading these already and I have to say not only do they care. And this surprise a lot of people. A lot of people think Amazon is full of people who don't care about sellers. And listen it's not completely off-base that you would make that assumption or make that conclusion based on some of the treatment. But I would say that the vast majority of them do care. Yes I've talked to some people who had experienced it with seller performance work. Seller performance is like, hey you made a lot of money on this stop being a baby about it. And it's like it doesn't matter how much money I made. If I'm not in the wrong in other words I'm the good guy. Then stop oppressing me. It doesn't matter how much money I've made that's the symbiotic relationship we have here. So there are some bad apples in the bunch but I want to say by and large they're absolutely people who care and who want sellers to succeed and they want to hear all those positive happy life changing stories that are true and legitimate and absolutely genuine about the Amazon Marketplace making a difference in people's lives. So the general Dear John concept right. You and and I want you guys to remember to share your own situation and share your own perspective. Don't just copy the template, that won't help anybody. If you don't want to use your real name even as you submit this information we won't submit your real name. They're only going to get a copy of the document. In fact many times we will copy and paste a document to a new document. So that there's no even metadata that saying who the author was right. And I just don't want you to think that there's any chance that if you don't want to be identified because you're scared then don't worry about it. But I will tell you in my honest opinion there's absolutely no problem and by the way I've submitted other Dear John letters to Amazon without fear of repercussions. I just did that one example so it could be public and everybody could see it under the name Jillian. I have a little niece named Jillian. So when you open the letter, you want to talk about you've had it up to here the straw that broke the camel's back just occurred. That's kind of like the reason you're writing the letter but now for context you go back to when things were good right. You think about the good old days and you know maybe maybe you've got a glass of wine out you got the candles and you're like oh man this was so good. Amazon was so totally into me at this point and I was in the Amazon. And it was a dream relationship and then of course there's some sort of transition that happened right. You had some really good stuff but then the bad stuff started to kind of supersede the good stuff at least in terms of volume. And then you kind of talked about in the transition way of how you feel about the things that are happening because really everybody can say business is business. But this is a very emotional situation. We have people that literally can't sleep at night because they don't know if their products will be turned off or suspended or whatever. At one time had one of my accounts the entire account suspended for two weeks due to a velocity suspension and they never communicated the entire time except to say we'll be back to you within 24 hours. And they never got back to me in 24 hours. So I get it. I understand and by us sharing these stories in again a creative a quirky and a more fun way, I think we can help Amazon shine the light on these important topics. And I absolutely know they're committed to making things better. So once you get into the transition then you get into your core message a reason A,reason B, reason C. These are things that are concerning to me and then you add anecdotes and stories related to each. That the truth is the more we share stories and make it personal and show the true impact right. I remember talking to a seller and they're like hey I got in a big fight with my wife after I just been on the phone with Amazon for two hours. I was very frustrated then they got in a fight with their wife because they were just so wound up. The wife really didn't do anything wrong that seller was just so wound up and so angry that their family got the raw end of it. And that's the real human toll that happens on these things. Now let's be honest this is not unique to Amazon. You get a speeding ticket on the way home you can take it out on your loved ones but my point is I don't think Amazon wants to be the stimuli that pushes people into the negative space. Amazon really they have a philosophy called sell or love. They want to be obsessed about their customers and they they want to convince us that they really do think of sellers as customers and for all the things that are going on with reviews disappearing and that has killed. It really has killed one of my brands. I'm not going to lie to you and I bought this brand about a year ago and every single review on the product or two that it has is completely gone and the conversion is dead and the PSR is dead and I don't even know. Now if I'm going to carry on with that business. I may just close it so there are real things happening but I'm not going to cry and moan about that individually. I'm going to just say how can I make a difference and writing a Dear John letter. I believe you can make a difference. So with each of the themes areas each of the areas in the template we kind of talk you through. Here's the logic behind it and then we give you an example and the example is largely taken from the letter I just read to you. And then of course at the end you want to sign off and but I think it's fun to remember that you know let's have a little put in a joke or two in there for you. If you have one it's okay right. Any time you argue with somebody if you can just have a little joke here there it just kind of lightens the and lets everybody know that maybe there is hope at the end of the day. So I want to reiterate what a powerful program this is and what a unique opportunity this is I've never seen a time where we're on a systemic basis that you can put in very clear communication to Amazon. And that there are people on the other side at Amazon who are wanting this feedback and they will take this feedback and they will make it part of their culture. And I'm going to tell you a little bit more about how I think that's going to happen in real life at Amazon right after this message. Okay we're back everybody and I  love this initiative. Again go to Empowery.com/dearjohn if you want to participate and please share this. Get out there and share it with people. If they're Marketplace seller it doesn't mean that you today are going to break up with Amazon but it gives Amazon a picture of the future. And everybody likes to think of Amazon as the only game in town right. Yes there's probably some level of perception at least that Amazon's arrogant they're like hey we're over 50% of sales. You need us more than we need you. And today that's probably true but I'll tell you what, there was a time when Palm Pilot was the king of the hill and they couldn't imagine anybody dethroning them nor could the rest of the world. And along came blackberry and palm was gonzo, right? They were out and blackberry rode around like they were now the king of the hill. And where's blackberry now right? They're kind of an afterthought in the security world. Very few people have a blackberry at this stage as far as I know. And Apple kind of came in and cleaned there their clock. And of course even apples under stress from Android although the Prophet Android degenerates is not nearly what Apple does. The point is things do change people are dethroned and the smart people at Amazon know that if they get arrogant and they don't take care of their customers they could be picked off by somebody else in the future. Maybe it's somebody like the big guys we already know, maybe it's the Walmarts of the world, maybe it's an emerging company like Rakuten.com or maybe somebody new that's never come along, right? We don't know yet but nobody is ever safe, nobody's ever secure. And if you get complacent you will be in trouble and this is the entire philosophy in my opinion that Jeff Bezos talks well about. And he has for over 20 years about day one. So at Amazon they have this philosophy every day is day one. They've been in business for over 20 years but every day is day one because as the second year on the day - that complacency sets in and and then everything just kind of atrophies. It starts breaking apart and that's when the arrogance of the organization takes over and it's a terrible situation. So I really respect that philosophy and I think this initiative and the cooperation that these brilliant people at Amazon are having by taking these letters in and internalizing them and sharing them what's in the organization. And so I wanna I told you before the break I was going to give you a tangible example of how I see this happening. Amazon is very good at identifying kind of hero stories and I have to say I've seen some of the hero stories and the posters in some of the buildings of Amazon. And there's some of my friends some catalyst88.com mastermind members have been kind of featured as wonderful examples of life changing stories. And really great success stories and that's such an amazing thing. Those are hero stories but there's a general feeling that it's not all rainbows and unicorns, right? There there's some wrinkles that I talked about earlier that need to iron down and by bringing these Dear John letters into the equations where they can at least stand side by side with the heroes stories. I think Amazon and their teams will have a more balanced view of what's really happening out there. Now I hope you guys can see number one that I'm passionate about this. Number two I hope you can see how special this is. That the Empowery Cooperative is giving people this chance to communicate and again the team there is helping facilitate this. They put the forum's together. They're going to collate all the stuff and then we'll make sure that we get it over to Amazon. Again on a semi-regular basis whether it's weekly or bi-weekly whatever makes sense for Amazon or whatever makes sense for the volume. But the point is this is an ongoing opportunity to communicate from you directly to people at Amazon who are in a position of influence and a position of power to make a difference. And secondly people who care. So often I talked to marketplace sellers I talked to dozens or hundreds a month on a direct basis and often many more at events and and there's a certain level of cynicism that has crept into this selling ecosystem. The marketplace sellers ecosystem where they just assume it's us against them. And again there's many things that I'm critical about Amazon about and I'm quite transparent about. I'm open directly to Amazon about anything and everything I would never say something to you as an audience that I wouldn't say directly the Amazon or haven't already said. Okay so that everybody knows I'm a hundred percent transparent or at least I try to be doesn't mean I don't make mistakes. But my point is I'm trying to view this in a way that is both beneficial to Amazon and you as a marketplace seller and of course when all of you guys win then I'm a happy guy. Because entrepreneurs are making a difference, a positive difference in the world and again that's the final note I would leave you with today. As we wrap up this episode number 39, the Awesomers.com/39 episode I want to remind you that Empowery is a very unique opportunity for sellers of all types and sizes to band together and to work together. As for buying power for knowledge, sharing best practices. I'll give you another quick example of how great coops are and I've used to bet my past and we'll probably talk a little bit more in detail about this in a future episode. But one example of how great a co-op is if you're having a problem with a vendor often vendors will try to do the best they can but at a certain point they're like a juice ain't worth the squeeze. What we last one life goes on but when you're part of the co-operative they don't look at you as one member. They don't look at you as one customer. They might lose. They see that potential impact cascading through all of the other members right. And that's a powerful image I want you to think about. Instead of you being alone. You're not part of something and as Evan Hacker, one of the cofounders of Empowery talks about as marketplace sellers, as E-commerce people were better together and there are great examples. I won't quote their names but I know one of the newer Empowery members. She was able to save almost as, actually she told me more than the amount to join Empowery on some of her initial shipping offers with some of the Alliance suppliers that we had. So she paid for her membership just like that. We have another member who's already accruing just from one supplier each month enough cash back to pay her entire amount that the monthly 250 bucks. So she's already in the money. If she uses any other program she will be getting a cash back check at the annual conference that Empowery will have once a year. So I've been a part of coops and franchises and kind of business of all sides and the team that has been putting Empowery together put together multi-billion dollar coops and businesses. I just can't stress that enough. Barth Getto the president, Ed Karr, Evan Hacker. These guys have collaborated with massive massive multi-billion dollar coops. And so they know how it's done and there's other folks who are lending a hand in terms of the E-commerce piece of the puzzle. There's just so much opportunity. So I'm really excited about it. I love it. I think it's an important thing for the community and I think for you listening if you are an e-commerce person and you haven't yet signed up and and kind of gotten involved with Empowery. You're missing a chance to make history. I really do think at 10 years people will look back and go. You remember that when nobody knew what Empowery was or when nobody knew how it worked. And before Empowery could go to them with a list of demands and say we want a better price. We want faster service, we want premium this or that the dream ultimately is that Empowery can work with large market places as a group to negotiate. And to work together a more positive and productive way and this is not a threatening thing. This is just an idea that says, would you rather deal with one guy at a time or what if you could deal with a thousand men and women or ten thousand men and women. And strike deals that make sense for both parties better economics, better efficiencies of scale? It's better for vendors. it's better for marketplaces. And it's better for members that's the true triple win right there. So again I love this thing it's really important to me and I hope it becomes important to you and at a minimum please go to Empowery.com/dearjohn and participate in this very important project. It's not every day the Amazon gives us a signal that says we want to hear from you please give us this input. And this is again I just can't tell you how unique and how excited that I am that every seller out there has this opportunity to tell your story and to share that with the good people at Amazon. So I thank you guys as always for listening and I hope and I encourage you to pay close attention to this initiative. And we'll be reporting back on it from time to time and keep it everybody appraised. So thank you again for listening and we'll be right back after this.


Hey Amazon Marketplace professionals, this is Parsimony ERP and we get one question over and over. Can you please tell me exactly what Parsimony does? Well, we'll try but this only a 30-second spot so we're going to have to hurry. Connect to your seller central account and pull all the new orders, enter the orders with all customer data, enter all of the Amazon fees and charges, store them at the item level, generate profit loss reports at the SKU level, automatically generate income status, handle multiple companies, handle multiple brands, handle multiple currencies, facilitate budgets and forecasts so all customer interactions is in a sophisticated CRM system. Hey you get it. That's Parsimony P-A-R-S-I-M-O-N-Y.COM. Parsimony.com, we've got that. You're listening to the Awesomers podcast.

Well we've done it again everybody. We have another episode of the Awesomers podcast ready for the world. Thank you for joining us and we hope that you've enjoyed our program today. Now is a good time to take a moment to subscribe, like and share this podcast. Heck you can even leave a review if you wanted. Awesomers around you will appreciate your help. It's only with your participation and sharing that we'll be able to achieve our goals. Our success is literally in your hands. Thank you again for joining us. We are at your service. Find out more about me, Steve Simonson, our guest, team and all the other Awesomers involved at Awesomers.com. Thank you again.