Here to tell his wild Amazon ride from the ground up, is Matt Altman, a $150 million USD seller. He started around 2010 with textbooks and retail arbitrage for 3 to 4 years, building up some cash flow to get into importing from China. Then, he got into health and personal care, a lot of like patented products, and supplements, which is still his niche until this day, making $150 million USD. Because of that, Matt Altman is known as "The Supplement King". He's so good in the supplement industry that investment firms throw money at him so he could geometrically multiply the sales of acquired companies. In this episode, we get to listen and learn from Matt's experience and discover his ways and strategies of reaching the $150 million USD mark.
Topics Covered In this Episode
Getting to know Matt Altman
Let everybody know a little bit more about yourself. When and how did you start on Amazon?
Amazon for New Sellers
Is Amazon still a viable business model for somebody that just is brand new and just got started?
What are you expert at regarding Amazon?
TOPICS THAT YOU WILL TALK ABOUT in PPE3.0
Have you thought about what you could bring to the table in terms of what topics you could talk about?
influx of Chinese sellers coming into Amazon
Does it concern you at all? What could you do to stand out among the Chinese sellers?
Problems and Opportunities in 2021
What can you say are the problems and opportunities Amazon sellers are about to face in 2021?
Mid-level seller to MultiMillion seller
Compare what you were doing when you were a mid-level Amazon seller to what you're doing now
The Professor's Pandemic Event 3.0Are You an Elite Seller Ready To $CALE from 7 or 8 to 9 Figures?
Watch on YouTube
[00:00:00] Welcome to the Professor’s Podcast, where we discuss the best strategies to massively improve the reach and bottom line of your business in the current virtual and economic landscape. Your host, Howard Thai generates over $5 billion for his clients annually using innovative tactics, both on and off Amazon.
[00:00:21] Hi everyone, Hurricane Liz back here for another Professor's Podcast with the man, the myth, the legend, Howie Thai? So Howie, we've got a great one for today and just remember at the end of this podcast, I will let you guys and girls know how you can get more information on the Professor's Pandemic 3.0 event, which is almost going to happen. Howie we've got about two and a half weeks left before the event takes place live from the comfort of
[00:00:46] everyone's own home. So again, like, I usually say you can stream in your undies, just do not stand up. But I, for one am super stoked, particularly because today we've got a gym of a speaker. Howie, you recruited this guy. You pretty much begged him. You pleaded him. He did whatever it was possible, whatever you do, when you get Don Julio in you, you let the magic happen.
[00:01:06] So tell us a little bit more about our Speaker that is going to be talking to us briefly today about what he does and what he's an expert at and all that good stuff. Tell me more about Matt Altman. Well, Matt, he's very interesting. He's a really, he likes to have a lot of fun. We drank, we partied, we did a lot of things together and he's very special because he actually, when he thinks, and when he talks about how he does his Amazon
[00:01:32] Marketing it's really impressive. And so we're trying to get him here today to tell us how did he reach that $150 million sales. And what has he been doing and to kind of share everything that he can within the short period of time to our audience here. Right. Absolutely. And so without further ado, let's start talking to Matt.
[00:01:55] And again, we will tell you guys how to get more information on PPE 3.0 at the end of this, but Matt, let's go ahead and start from the beginning. I mean, I know you and I have spoken briefly about how you sort of started. I think in fact, you even worked for a while for one of my very good friends down in California.
[00:02:11] That might've been how you got your start, but tell people a little bit more about how you literally started. From the ground up to this point where you're at now, which Howie, as said before, he's like, wow, Matt's like incredible. He says nothing but fantastic things about you. So tell everyone how you got started with that.
[00:02:26] Yeah. So I actually started back around 2010 with textbooks and retail arbitrage. Did that for probably three or four years, kind of building up some cash flow to get into importing from China, just basically junk at that point. You could sell anything on Amazon then 2012, 13, 14. So played with that for a while, then got into.
[00:02:49] Health and personal care, a lot of like patented products, things that you couldn't really get ripped off. And that's what I've continued to do to today, as well as supplements. And then I did work for your friend for awhile there and they have the best selling on Amazon for, I think about two years.
[00:03:05] So yeah, it's been a wild ride. Yeah, absolutely. So tell me something for you, you know, usually for people that are brand new out there, getting started, we talked about how, at one point on Amazon, you could sell literally anything you could throw anything you wanted on Amazon, it would more than likely sell, but gone are the good old days.
[00:03:23] And now you've got to put a little bit more elbow grease into there, and obviously you've had years and years of experience. Is Amazon still a viable business model for somebody that just is brand new and got started? Or do you really have to bring and have either special skills or money or something at this point?
[00:03:39] Yeah. No. I honestly think it's still viable for anyone. So, I mean, even outside of right on my own Amazon, I run an Amazon agency. We're going to probably do about 300 million this year across all of our clients. And I've actually helped a few of those clients that we work with. Just kind of start one-off little projects personally.
[00:03:57] We've had one just this past two months that I actually got into the baby category, which is a pretty hard to kind of dominate category. Within a month they're already profiting about 5,600 on something that out of pocket, it was about $2,500. So definitely, still viable. I think the problem is everyone kind of gets dazzled by the lights.
[00:04:17] They want to go after things they like. That is my number one rule. I don't sell anything that I care for. It's, it's a money making machine to me and you can't get emotional about it. So pick something stupid, doesn't matter if you like it. As long as it's selling, the numbers are there, you'll be fine. The great advice.
[00:04:36] Okay. Yeah. I actually started in 2009 on Amazon, actually three on e-commerce or eBay. So you've been in pretty, it sounded pretty long as well, around similar to the same time or as I have been started. So, Matt, can you let us know, let this audience know, like, what do you, what, what are you expert at regarding Amazon on the domain?
[00:04:59] Yeah, I would say are our biggest strengths that we have right now, which a lot of people are starting to get more into is taking traditional marketing and actually using it to pump traffic towards Amazon. So, the big one that we have really been focusing on for at least the last year and a half is traditional podcast advertising as well as influencers on YouTube, just sponsoring nonstop.
[00:05:23] It's part of every launching and ranking campaign that we do. Just getting things out there and you would be amazed like traditional podcasts mean we're buying big podcasts like Joe Rogan, Dax Shepard, for some of our clients, you're getting tens of thousands of people to your page. And two to three day window.
[00:05:39] There's no two step URLs, no super URLs. None of that fun stuff. And you're still ranking at the top after five to six days of running a 10 to 15% off coupon. So there are more effective ways to launch if you combine the right influencers and the right traffic together, you can get a winning combination.
[00:05:58] Yeah. Like I've always told my audience said nowadays, you know, like you need a lot of signals from different, like, different direction from like maybe for you, what you said, podcasts. Advertising to, you know, influencers to affiliates, to blogs, you know, all these signals that you need in order for, to spike up the Amazon algorithm.
[00:06:18] It's not just within the internal and also you do not need to give giveaways in order for you to rank. You know, it's not that that's actually, uh, not very scalable. You're actually losing a lot of money. You know, you actually, you know, like losing a lot of money to give away stuff where you can give actually like 30% and 40% of discount code, you know, and still be able to rank these, their sound code from like from before where people thought it doesn't work anymore.
[00:06:45] It actually does work. You just need to know how to do it. And with what kind of signals. Yeah. And we've seen a lot of people are afraid to send just traffic. That's not going to convert to their day and they want to stay within those ratios. But as long as you're pushing enough sales through, we've seen, we've launched some listings on some bigger brands where we get 60, 70,000 page views in a day because they're sending emails and doing all kinds of things.
[00:07:10] And we have like a 0.5% conversion rate. It doesn't matter. Amazon still moving us, just like if we had a 20% conversion rate, they just love to see the traffic right now. I mean, yeah, like the external traffic is, I wouldn't believe it's, you know, by looking at the data that we have, it's different than internal traffic where you internally start from Amazon and then that conversion rate.
[00:07:32] Drops because within the internal, but you're, you're shooting from outside or external traffic into Amazon. That's where, you know, the, the traffic or conversion rate is different. You know, you're giving Amazon free traffic, you know, why wouldn't it love that that's like what they usually pay affiliates.
[00:07:49] Affiliates for these things. And now you're giving up them for free. They don't have to pay that 5% or six or 7%. We know that you've got it, very diverse portfolio of skills. And obviously you've, you've worked in, I don't, I don't really meet that many people nowadays that have a whole retail arbitrage background.
[00:08:06] I obviously scanned a ton of books, more books than I'm comfortable to admit here on this podcast. So I've got that background as well. But as a result of you having such a diverse portfolio of skills, have you thought about the three to five topics that you might talk about here at the professor's pandemic event?
[00:08:23] Yeah, no, I would say I've got a couple of topics. I think the first one, which everyone's always kind of looking for is just launching and ranking. There's very easy ways to do it right now. Without giveaways, you can do some giveaways, help fluff that up and some discounts, but as long as you're sending that right traffic, you're going to have a good day.
[00:08:43] The second one, I can definitely want to kind of do a thing on starting small with low budgets and how you can really put yourself out there. I don't believe in really starting with anything under 10 K, but I think 10 K is a pretty decent amount that anyone can kind of scrape together in a year or so, and get themselves in the Amazon.
[00:09:02] I don't see the opportunity going anywhere anytime soon. And then I think the third big one is just how to get in touch with these influencers and podcasters, because it's a lot easier than what you think. Podcasts and influencers are more of a traditional old kind of relationship management. It's not as easy as going into Facebook and just buying some ads.
[00:09:22] You're reaching out, contacting these people on how to get those systems in place, because it's definitely what's driving the business we work with. Yeah, I think that'd be very interesting for people because I think for feeling I've got like 25,000 YouTube followers. So for me, it's, I do get a lot of people that request things, but I would imagine that it's a way of trying to stand out.
[00:09:44] Cause there's like a lot of people that have certain pitches where I'm like, you know, it doesn't sound like it's just very one-sided, whereas there's a lot of people that make it look beneficial from my side, as well as there. So I think I'd be definitely interested to see how you managed to stand out and see if they probably get hit up a lot, especially some of the bigger ones.
[00:10:02] Right. Is that about right, but what you think it's yeah, definitely the bigger ones. I mean, anytime you're going after the Joe Rogan's and things like that, they just come back to you with a straight price, but we're working on actually putting together a platform right now to kind of make it more of a demand side.
[00:10:17] Generation. So you can go in and just instantly start buying things. So hopefully by the end of this year, we'll have that out. But for the time being it's who do you know and how can you kind of slide yourself in there, right? Yeah, it sounds pretty exciting. And, you know, I got one more question. I know Howie's got a couple more things that he's got to ask, but we've been talking to a lot of people that have been on the podcast.
[00:10:38] A lot of speakers that are going to be at the PPE 3.0. And one of the biggest concerns from them as a whole, and that I've continually been hearing is the influx of Chinese sellers coming into Amazon, particularly I believe in 2020, Howie quoted a story from, I don't know if it's Wall Street journal that 71%.
[00:10:58] new Amazon sellers are coming from China. Is this a concern for you? I know you said you'd primarily dealt with supplements, but what do you see in terms of, does it concern you at all? Or what could you do to stand out among the Chinese sellers? Yeah, it, you know, I think it goes back to, have you read a Chinese listing in the last five days?
[00:11:17] I mean, they're, they're still missing huge key components. Yes. There's certain ones out there like Anker and those that they hire the right people, everything looks good and great. But they're fly by night operations. Most of them, I mean, I think Howie's been to them, I've been to some of those. There are hundreds of people in a room opening seller accounts, and there's throwing everything they can up on the internet.
[00:11:38] I think it's going to stop at some point. I think Joe Biden actually just signed the American, like back yesterday or whatever that is to help get production back in the U S. There's actually going to be higher tariffs on some things. So it'll be interesting to see where it goes. But, you know, build your moat, actually do something that's unique.
[00:11:56] I think that's the biggest thing right now is trying to figure out how you can truly make yourself unique and start sourcing a little bit more in the US because that's what we've been seeing now. I mean, freight is at an all time high. I think we're paying like $8,300 to container right now. If you had a manufacturer in the U S you're instantly got a leg up on a lot of these people.
[00:12:16] Yeah, that's very interesting. Did you guys hear about that? A freight that lost, like, I think it was 300 containers or something in the Pacific Ocean coming to LA or something. I think something like that. That's crazy. Yeah. Oh, that's unfortunate. Maybe I hope it's not any of our listeners. It's a container.
[00:12:38] Yeah, that's unfortunate, but I mean, I suppose it's. That has to happen at some point the other day, I was driving down inner coast here and there was a boat sinking, so it was halfway down. So boats, sink, containers fall off the top. I would imagine. So I don't think it was unfortunate, but it is a fact of life.
[00:12:55] So, so Matt, I have a question here or two, actually, what is, what are the kind of problems or opportunities you see Amazon sellers having in 2021? I think the biggest opportunity right now that we're seeing on Amazon in 2021 is actually getting into grocery with your own product. So a lot of people think there's huge buy-ins to like, create your own snack product, your own cookies, your own crackers, things like that.
[00:13:22] There's not, it's just as easy as sourcing from China, if you find the right co-packers and put things together. The reason I think this is going to take off is because of Amazon whole foods prime. Now, so most of our clients on our agency side are in kind of that high growth food, or like nutritional supplement, like your bars and things like that.
[00:13:43] And 40 to 50% of our sales have already shifted to Amazon prime now. And these people aren't in whole foods, they're just. Whole foods is buying their products and storing them in the back room and then delivering them when someone orders them. So it's kind of an opportunity that's open for anyone. And I think this has that multiplier on it.
[00:14:00] If you are able to do the same tactics we're doing to sell well on Amazon, you boost that product up. You're going to start getting retail distribution, and that's where the real money is. Like people think Amazon's this crazy game. A single Costco deal is 25, 30 million like Amazon isn't shit.
[00:14:17] when they take on retail. Yeah. That's very interesting advice, man. I love wow. That's a, yeah. That's how a lot of our bigger sellers, they go down to the retail side. That's where all the big money comes in, you know? Yeah. And that's what we've been using Amazon in a lot of our pitch stacks.
[00:14:38] Like we'll take on and show we have the most reviews in the category. We have the most sales, the best BSR, all of that scalable, these retail buyers that you're going to don't understand any of that. And you can make some pretty good pitch stacks out of it and has a great tip as well. Yeah. Anything you, you get like a bestseller badge on your, on your listing.
[00:14:58] People just like drool over it, you know? Wow. How do you get that? You know, and with all those reviews. Yeah. Yeah. So and Matt, let me ask you this question. So obviously you started at the bottom, like literally like the retail arbitrage, like you were out there scanning things you were out there.
[00:15:15] Putting in a lot of effort, a lot of work. What kind of skills does it take? Like what were you doing back then in comparison and maybe not then, because then we know what you're doing. You were scanning and then you were shipping in Amazon. When you first started your FB journey, what were you doing when you were a mid-level Amazon seller compared to what you're doing now?
[00:15:33] Like, what is the difference that it takes from your you're you're running a million dollar Amazon business to a multimillion dollar Amazon business. Yeah, I think the biggest thing that I learned way too late, I could be probably 10 X where I am right now is actually how to outsource it and train the people correctly.
[00:15:50] That is the biggest thing that everyone's missing. I can't tell you how many VA's I've burned through and it, I always thought it was them. It was the, no, it was me not having the systems and processes in place. So like right now we're running a $300 million agency spending about seven, 8 million a month on Amazon ads.
[00:16:08] My entire day is either talking with new prospective clients or continuing to optimize our processes. That is literally all I'm doing. And then we're hiring experts. I was always one of those people that was afraid to hire someone that was the smarter, smarter than you, hire them as quickly as you can and pay them however much they want, because they will help you scale three to four X faster.
[00:16:30] And what portion of your day, what is the majority of your day spent on nowadays? Majority of my day right now is probably actually going through our processes specifically for ranking, because we have seen some changes here in the last couple of months that we've been working through, especially kind of relaunching those older, more dormant products that.
[00:16:51] Needs to be a good seller. You've got some reviews, we've figured out some ways around that and to kick that back up, so continuing to test and going through that data and then just kind of, I still love to get in there and do PPC. So I'm still in our ads every day for about an hour. Yeah. You know, that's one of the things I love about you is you, obviously you pay to get information, you go out there, you hustle.
[00:17:13] So some of the similar things that I like to do, and you're obviously very competitive. You also have a hell of a golf swing. Lot of people wouldn't know that about you, but you were a heck of a golfer. I seen it live, I’ve seen you out there, crushing the ball and kicking people's ass over at top golf. I can't hit the ball further than I don't even know how many yards it is, but I, I am a wicked angry birds.
[00:17:32] Golf player. I cannot hang with the best of them at a angry bird softball. But anyways, how was actually getting with this is that you're, you're very competitive. How, what kind of difference do you see in your day? We talked yesterday with who was it, how he was Zack Franklin. He talked about how he beat every single Chinese guy in his first company that he worked with.
[00:17:53] And he won an award because he worked harder than anybody. It was a, something called nine, nine, six. 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM for six days a week is the way the Chinese work. Do you feel that nowadays you're still putting in a ton of hours like that? Or do you feel that it's gone down now that you've got like this much bigger empire than where you started at?
[00:18:13] Yeah, I mean, it could definitely, I would say I could be working an hour a week if I truly want to, but that's, that's not me. Like, I love the hustle. I love the game. I mean, I I'm, I'm flipping rogue bumper plates right now on Facebook marketplace. No idea why, but I'm doing it. Like, I just love to make money.
[00:18:30] So I probably still do put it in like 10, 11 hour days each day, but I enjoy every minute of it. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. Yeah, I kind of agree with you. I'm still flipping, I got Pokemon cards back here that I'm flipping left and right. You know what the best investment is. Let me see if I have one with me.
[00:18:47] Plus I buy every time Nintendo launches, a limited edition anything. Oh, I've have about 700 of these, every limited edition. And to know going back 10 years, I buy them because they are four to five X value every two years. Yeah, so you too I've got like, I don't know. I got almost full of Pokemon cards right now, as well as sneakers.
[00:19:10] Oh, I'm a big sneaker head. I have about 1500 pairs of shoes. Oh my God. You're just like me. I'll show you guys. The crown jewel. You guys are like showing off, showing off, like whoever. And I'm and I rock them. So they're not just sending their, uh, for their, for generic, cause I love him. But yeah, I, it's a pretty big seller in stock X.
[00:19:32] I love stock X. I love goat. Just like you. I love the hustle and it's almost like it gives you an adrenaline rush. That's kinda, what I love about Matt is he's such a hustler. And the fact that he started with retail arbitrage and built this all the way up is just like really, really inspiring. So I just wanted to thank you for coming on here and answering these questions.
[00:19:51] I know you're a busy man, but it's just awesome to see somebody that truly loves the hustle and I love it. That's why I always enjoy having conversations with you all. Although we're always hustling, networking with people. So we haven't had a lot of time to spend together, but anyways, Howie any last words for you?
[00:20:07] for Matt, before we say goodbye here? Well, Matt, do you, do you remember when we, we met up? I just, the only thing I remember first time meeting you was at, what was it at? What ranch? Santa Anita. But how do we like, like get there? Like, was it just on the, on the groups stuff we have. I think originally I got connected to you through, that's a good question through Liz's friend that I worked for.
[00:20:34] That's how I originally got connected with you. And that was probably like late 2016, early 2017. And then just, we've kind of been in the same circles for a while. So. Yeah. It just took longer than expected to actually meet in person. Yeah. I know. I like, it was, it was pretty cool. Like right after that, you know, we talked and then he got a lot of really good conversations and I really appreciate that.
[00:21:00] You're very open and honest about a lot of stuff that he does because it's not like, not like a lot of other people who kind of like. Don't really share or don't really talk about what they do as well. You know, some, you know how it's not really, if you go out there right now on a lot of these people who would talk on podcasts or anything, they don't really talk too much about what they do as, as a seller, as a big seller.
[00:21:22] They're scared that people might like, kind of use the stuff that they teach or they talk about against them or, or whatnot. But I think as, as an Amazon itself, it's just really huge, you know, it's, it's really hard for really have someone really to compete that much. What do you think about that? Yeah. I mean, I'm in supplements on a lot of stuff.
[00:21:45] So super, highly competitive. There is more than enough to go around. Like I don't need a supplement making me a million dollars a month, like a single one to keep me happy. We've got, gosh, I think like 300 SKUs at this point. Just get 40 SKUs doing 10K a month. And no one will even know you're there. If you're doing 10 K a month on a supplement, and then you just, you stay ahead and no one comes after, you know, on a tax.
[00:22:09] You don't have any issues. You always stay position one for seven on your keywords, try and stay on the smaller ones. And you're good to go and just sit back and collect bank. So what do you, do you get a lot of like, like some kind of tax and supplements because that's the most space. Yeah, we get all kinds of things.
[00:22:29] I mean, we get the FDA like claims all the time. Competitors' stuff in our backend with like Oxycontin drug names, all these other things to take our listings down the review of votes, down votes, but they wouldn't, we've been getting recently. I'm not really sure, a hundred percent what they're attempting to do.
[00:22:46] But we've had basically the same, like 40 or 50 buyer accounts everyday just buying as many units as they can and orders. So if we put a max quantity on a three, they're doing basically a hundred orders, ordering 300 units, just trying to take us out of stock. And then they ended up canceling all those orders.
[00:23:05] And it's from a weekend. You can tell it's from hacked buyer accounts because they are real people in the U S we've actually gotten calls from a couple of them after they logged onto their Amazon account and saw what was happening. But that's been happening on and off now for about three months. It hasn't really done anything to us.
[00:23:19] It hasn't hurt those products because they do cancel out within 24 hours. But not sure what the grander plan is there. We've also gotten a lot of weird merchants recently. I thought zombie merchants were done for awhile, but we've gotten probably six or seven in the past week. Yeah, the mergers are still out there.
[00:23:36] Yeah. So anything else you wanted to tell our audience before we, we log off? You know, not anything else that I can think of right now. Yeah. I think he gave us some pretty good gems there Howie? There was some great information that he gave. And, Howie, how about you, any last words before we give people information on how to find out about PPE 3.0. Not really.
[00:23:58] I'm just, I have to say that Matt here is a, he's kind of like the diamond, you know. You guys gotta have to come and join us at the PPE 3.0, to learn more about what real big sellers do. So you guys don't have to make the mistake as well as what Matt says, you know. He would have done things differently if he would've known more.
[00:24:16] So it would've been 10 X, what he's at right now. So guys, you want to be 10 X, what you're at now, or, you know, you should not, you should guys come on and join us, you know, at the PPE 3.0. Go ahead, Liz. Yes. I was saying that I'm interested to hear what else, Matt’s flipping, but I'll wait until the event to talk a little bit more with him.
[00:24:35] I'll ask him the questions. But guys and girls, as you saw Matt Altman here from zero to where he is at right now, which is a team close to 150 million, $300 million worth of clients that he's managing, which is amazing. But other than that, you will not only hear from Matt, but also 12 other talented.
[00:24:53] Men and one woman, we finally said the hell with the sausage Fest. Let's throw a girl up in there. Howie finally found a lady. Matt, can you believe that? Now they're always sitting awkwardly in the corner of every Amazon made up this thing.
[00:25:10] He finally decided to do it. This is like, I don't know. Very strange. How are you? I'm kind of like, I'm super fired up obviously, and she's pretty bad ass. So she also took everybody to the clubs. So she's a baller. Unfortunately, I wasn't there. I was behaving at home yet. She rocked everybody out to the club.
[00:25:27] They had a ball, they had some boots. Everything was ridiculous from what here. So she's a mad baller. So I'm super fired up to hear what she's going to speak about. She's a $20 million per year, Amazon seller. So we're going to get to hear from her and so many more people at the Professor's Pandemic Event 3.0, virtually held from the comfort of your own home on February 15th and 16th, it will be streaming live.
[00:25:49] However, you will get copies of the recording. If you decide to come and remember for a very limited time. We have a 50% off discount up until February 2nd or first, I believe I'm not sure the date. I will clarify for you guys in the next time around, but you'll get it at 50% off the usual price for whoever is already in the brotherhood slash sisterhood of the most elite Amazon sellers on the planet, you will get the same price that they do.
[00:26:14] So again, yeah. Join us then if February 15th and 16th live from the comfort of your own home, go to power tie.com forward slash PPE the number three, to get more information and to get your 50% off discount. So on behalf of Howie and Matt, thank you so much for joining us. And once again, it's howardthai.com.
[00:26:30] /PPE3 to get that 50 off discount. We'll see you. Welcome to the Professor’s Podcast, where we discuss the best strategies to massively improve the reach and bottom line of your business in the current virtual and economic landscape. Your host, Howard Thai generates over $5 billion for his clients annually using innovative tactics, both on and off Amazon.