This summer has been challenging. I'm up for it. I have been focusing on some winning moves that I'd like to share.
My recent articles Losing sucks and Pure joy gave a glimpse into our struggles. We have big dreams and it is frustrating when our pace is slowed down. We can continue to take hits in the pocket or we can change the protection, call some hot routes, and get the ball moving again.
Forgive the football analogy - it's how my brain works.
Every quarterback that loves to throw deep is given this bit of advice throughout his career: "You can't go broke making a profit". Coaches are trying to tell these gunslingers that short yard completions are valuable. Sometimes even a 1 or 2 yard play can be a piece to a successful drive. Small wins turn into big wins.
Business is similar. It's easy to look deep expecting big wins. Let me tell you, it is fun when that's working. However, I have learned that business is a series of seasons. There are ups and downs. You have to fight for the ups. You have to fight through the downs. In the middle of the down season we've been going through, the same advice rings in my ear: "You can't go broke making a profit". Small wins will turn into big wins.
Here are some small wins I have been focused on while we fight back to the top.
One perk of slow business is time. I would say I didn't really recognize this perk until recently because we have been in the moving/renovating process since April. Now that things have settled down, I keep thinking "what can I do today?" That thought is quickly followed by "what do I have?"
I have a lot. I have my faith, my family, my knowledge, my love of sports, my cards, etc. I have a phone. I have a computer. I have time. Have you noticed an uptick on our blog articles? Our blogs provide a handful of small wins. We make a few dollars from the AdSense (those add up!). We get to relate/inform/entertain our current following and pick up some new followers along the way. Another upside to focusing on content is that it keeps my wheels spinning while doing something positive. Instead of getting frustrated with a lack of orders, I am getting excited about doing something I love.
With that mindset, we have started a new YouTube series in which I am simply going through my collection. The funny thing about that decision is that we have never really had a successful YouTube series. But I am not looking for a big win from YouTube. I am looking for any win, big or small. So here it goes!
This hobby is so much greater than salesman/customer interactions. If you are struggling to be a customer, don't stop talking to those who you usually connect with. If you are struggling as a seller, you can still talk to those buyers you normally talk to! Relationships are not based on money. They are based on people.
The most common reason we see people cancel their Pack Plus subscription is because they need a financial break for a while. I understand that completely and support any responsible financial decision. Honestly, we are trying to be more cautious and responsible about what we rip as well. From our side of things, we still care about each of our customers and followers - even when they aren't buying our boxes. Those relationships still matter to us. You matter to us.
One great thing about social media is that you are able to support each other without spending a single dollar. Support your friends and favorite brands by watching their content on YouTube, "saving" their Instagram posts instead of simply "liking" them, read their blog posts, and check out their website to see what they have going on. Believe it or not, each of these tasks, while free on your end, can help that business financially. It also gives you talking points the next time you see them at a show or feel like reaching out on social media. We are so thankful for each and every relationship we have in the hobby. Never feel like you shouldn't talk to us because you aren't buying our boxes. Whether we talk about how good this rookie basketball class is or make fun of the Cowboys, we look forward to that conversation!
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AUCTIONS
You have heard "buy the dip" times too many times. There is some truth there - buying when the market is down when you can hold til the market is up makes a lot of sense. But if you're trying to grind through the now, like we are, then buying the dip isn't going to help much in the short term.
So how do you flip cards in a short amount of time? We do a lot of buying and selling, and biggest opportunity we see for our customers is our eBay auctions.
Whichever platform you like to engage in, now is a good time to be taking advantage of those auctions. There are less buyers than there have been in the past few years. Cards are selling at auction under comps frequently. At the height of the hype in 2020, whether we were doing auctions on eBay or WhatNot, it felt like every auction led to a new highest comp. The market was saturated with buyers and there was an abundance of money in the economy. The opposite is happening right now. There are also more auction platforms out there. Auctions are getting less eyes and less bids which leads to more opportunity for those willing to scroll through and wait to snipe as auctions finish.
Truly, we see a staggering amount of auctions sell under comps each week. We list a few hundred auctions at $4.99 each month. I would say the vast majority of them end between $4.99 and $6.50 despite us increasing the amount of $10-$30 cards we put into the auction. We are not going to stop the auctions for reasons we mentioned in a past article. Many other card operations are continuing their auctions for the same reasons - even if sales are weak.
If you have buyers in mind for certain teams or players, I encourage you to check out our eBay auctions or any other auction opportunities. Bid as low under comps as you need to be to make what you want to make. Sometimes you'll lose, but sometimes you'll win. Small wins add up to big wins.
Another perk of our auctions is that you get free shipping if you're in our Pack Plus Program. If you're not in the program you'll only have to pay $5 max for shipping, regardless of how many cards you buy. Cards like the one below are going to sell below comps next week. The comps are going to show the listed shipping charge. So another small win tacked in there if you take advantage.
Zach Wilson Silver Rookie NFL Debut 2021 Mosaic
I hope this article was helpful. We are rooting for you to win! Whether times are low or high, we want to help you move forward and closer to your dreams. I hope you enjoy the little bit of summer you have left!
We are excited to meet many of you at The National in Atlantic City. That event is always a strong kickoff to the fall, which is genuinely a solid uptick for the hobby (thank you football). I have enjoyed being real and transparent through this down season. I will continue to keep y'all in the loop as we move forward. We are thankful for each and every one of you. God bless! If you need one more pick-me-up, check out thie Two Minute Drill devotional video I made at the beginning of last year: