The Tanscript Is Auto-Generated And May Contain Grammar And Spelling Errors
You’re listening to biz ninja entrepreneur radio. This show was created for entrepreneurs, business owners, marketers and dreamers who want to learn from the experts of today and drastically shortcut their own success to build a business that supports their dream lifestyle. Since 2011, Tyler Jorgensen has been interviewing business thought leaders from around the world a serial entrepreneur himself. Tyler also shares his personal insights into what’s working in business today. Welcome to biz Ninja, entrepreneur radio.
Tyler Jorgenson 0:41
Welcome out to biz ninja entrepreneur radio. I am your host, Tyler Jorgensen. And today, I have a friend of mine, Josh Orr Josh is the founder of streamline retail. They are a company that helps brick and mortar businesses take the absolute best parts of their business and sell online and embrace the 21st century of e commerce. You can find them online at at on Instagram at retail, Josh, welcome back to the show, Josh.
Josh Orr 1:07
Oh my gosh is so good to be here. And that intro
Tyler Jorgenson 1:11
Yeah, that was my like mid hype. I’ll go I’ll eventually get to like full levels of hype because I’m really excited to talk ecommerce and retail and the the crossover or the bridge of like yesterday to tomorrow, right? Because you get to work with with brick and mortar businesses that a lot of them are dying and give them a give them a lifeline. My first question to you Josh is this when was the moment that you first realized you were an entrepreneur?
Josh Orr 1:38
first moment, I realized I was entrepreneur that is tough. You know, what’s funny is I I feel like I’ve just gone through this like life transformation, I growing up to terrible in school, like absolutely terrible. And I somehow went to college on he doesn’t even I graduated high school with a 1.9 GPA, you may not even think that’s possible. But then I finished school. And I like didn’t really have a lot of drive. I didn’t know what I wanted to do. And then I stumbled into this position. And I was at the time, I was like helping retail stores get their point of sale. And you know, that company kind of went away. And then so I started my own thing, because it, you know, I was able to keep doing what I was. And somewhere along the way there. It just clicked where I think it was about the impact I was having, and realizing I was really helping businesses get to turn around. And so it probably was either when I was young, and I was wasn’t doing well in school, and I realized that I hated how everyone did it. And I wouldn’t have to do it my own way. or later in life with the impact.
Tyler Jorgenson 2:39
I find most entrepreneurs have at least one example where they just didn’t fit the mold. Right? And you have that with even in high school like this did not this does not make sense me doing this just for the sake of getting the grade or doing this is not me. But then you found a career. And this is also really common. You found a career that was rewarded merit based, right. Like I’m assuming in POS like that’s a sales job, right? Oh, yeah, reset. Yeah. So like you’re in a position. So it makes a ton of sense. So you found yourself in the retail world? How did you decide to start streamline retail?
Josh Orr 3:11
Yeah, so originally, you know, I was selling like point of sale systems, so like Mac based modern tools to old to like brick and mortar retailers. And what was interesting was that all the companies that were out there at the time, it was always just about software. And I somewhere along the way I learned about value proposition. And if you you can sell the exact same thing. But if you present it in a different way, it can change everything. And so I started my own business, because I said, like, hey, what if the point of sale was the means to an end. And instead, I could teach you how you can transform your business through operations and use the tool as a means to get there. And then eventually, we transformed to do that online. And now we’re not just web designers. There’s a ton of really good ones out there. Now we’re going to teach a brick and mortar business how to completely transform their business by beginning to sell online and we’re going to teach them the strategies and all the things that we need there. Anyway, that’s where I got started in and that’s how it’s kind of morphed over the last almost seven years. So however long it’s been started.
Tyler Jorgenson 4:15
Yeah, so even in that seven years, retail has changed a lot. I mean, the number of big big companies that have gone under just in that past seven years is not small. Some of them I suddenly thought we’re gonna make it somebody new we’re on their way it was just a matter of when the when it finally hit when it finally got there. What were some of the challenges that you faced in that seven years and how do you overcome them? retail changed
Josh Orr 4:37
so much over the last several years and navigating through like what is good advice? What is bad advice? was really challenging I remember early on when I was just doing point of sale I had some people come to me and asked me like Oh, so ecommerce should we do it? And I was like, No, like, that’s not for you. shippings too expensive. You don’t want to deal with returns. And I was like the naysayer on it. And then I saw proof of like, Oh, this thing can really work. And then I was like, oh, online only, that’s where you need to go. And it wasn’t until I discovered like this third way that I was like, Oh, you can actually do both. And to do it well, it just takes a unique strategy, but learning to navigate that and give advice to people who some are wanting to adapt and wanting to change. And some I mean, let’s be honest, and retail, as with a lot of industries, a lot of you might be listening and things are shifting, and people aren’t willing to move. And as you’re trying to talk to them, you want to be respectful of who they are, and their vision and their goals. But you also need to be like, Do you not see how much the world is moving and changing around you and navigating? That was really hard.
Tyler Jorgenson 5:44
I fully agree. And I think I like that you address like, given your perspective, were you at one point were like the naysayer. And then you became yoga convert of eecom. And I love the way that you’re selling, which is that you can do both, but it takes a special strategies and operations. Luckily, you can learn how to do that it’s streamlined retail. Right? What are you seeing are some of the big challenges facing people like that are trying to be more adaptable, they like they’re aware that they need to do something different than just traditional brick and mortar. But what’s the biggest thing holding them back?
Josh Orr 6:17
You know, I don’t think this is a retail exclusive problem. I really think that this is a business problem. In general, I think that one of the biggest struggles of being adaptable, as we might say is the is the concept of like looking at the difference between the intentions behind what you do what you do, and the actual actions that you take. And what I mean by that is like, let’s take this to retail for a second. If someone walks into a store, you might welcome them and you’re gonna greet them in a certain way. Well, online, people will put up a picture of their store and say, welcome to my welcome to Josh’s boutique. Well, the intention of that welcome was so people would feel like they were in the right place. And online, when we put that Welcome to Josh’s boutique, no one feels like they’re in the right place from that, we have to look at the intention of our actions, not our the actual action itself. And so when we think about any change in business, like especially, we’re talking about primarily going from one channel to the other, you always have to look at Okay, why did we do what we did for on Instagram? Why did we do what we did to engage our audience and reels and whatever, then we take that to tick tock, we take that to LinkedIn, we can apply the same strategy that we did in LinkedIn, Instagram, to LinkedIn, by looking at the intention of the action and the use, apply it a little bit differently, to a boring context.
Tyler Jorgenson 7:34
That’s really good. I think the importance of looking at intent, intention versus just taking the action is super powerful. And I have an example of making that mistake. So I owned a restaurant at one point, and I bought it from someone I knew. And the first thing I did was because I had seen it done so many other times is I did one of these big signs I said under new management. In my brain, that was a positive thing. And I remember somebody came in and I kind of asked like, what do you what does this mean under new management? They’re like, Oh, it didn’t. And then I could tell from the conversation. It wasn’t an exciting thing for them. In fact, it gave them uncertainty. And the last thing somebody wants in a restaurant is uncertainty of like, what’s the quality? Right? Like, they may not have had any issues with the previous management. And so now they’re like, Oh, great. Well, there goes that experience I used to enjoy. And so my intention was to say something positive to let them know, like, hey, there’s been a change. But the outcome was actually I introduced uncertainty to the, to the potential buyer like shoppers, right. I just thought that was really interesting. Like I learned that lesson A long time ago. But I think the the difference between the intention of the action and the action, make sure they’re aligned. Absolutely. So there’s, I mean, again, in seven years that you’ve been doing this, there’s a lot of changes in e commerce, a lot changes in brick mortar, but I love that adaptability is really the same in any business. What are some things that you are seeing as like best practices right now in today’s ecommerce and retail environment? Yeah,
Josh Orr 9:00
I mean, it’s all about experience, right? Like, no matter where people are engaging your brand, whether it’s on social media, or in a store, or online, it’s all about the experience and the emotion, the way you serve people. And this is where we go wrong, and not even in retail, whether it could be your websites, your funnels, your ads, it all comes down to the way that people feel when they engage your brand, the way that you serve people the way that you solve a pain point that they have, which in retail, a pain point might be needing something cute to wear this weekend, and other world other worlds. It’s how do I make a million dollars my business. Ultimately, no matter where people engage us, they should feel something similar. They should experience something similar. And so if a brand can figure out how to do this, I really believe that they’re future proof that they’re, you know, if, quote unquote, e commerce as we know it goes away, which I don’t think it will. But who knows, like if it’s replaced with voice Over over our Alexa devices, ultimately, people are still going to be able to say, like, how they acknowledge how they serve their customers and take it to that channel also. So that’s the I think that’s like the core of e commerce right now is really understanding the customer experience. And then building your your, you know, then you can apply it to a channel, you can apply that to your website and actually start to think there every click that someone has and how you’re serving in that particular spot.
Tyler Jorgenson 10:30
So you’re mentioning something that I think most brick and mortar businesses are really good at, which is being able to have an inner personal experience, like it’s an experiential moment when someone comes into their store. It’s easy to say you need to create that online. Give us an example of how somebody is doing that. How are they? How are they doing e commerce differently? Right? How are they doing it in a way that actually creates an experience?
Josh Orr 10:55
You know, it’s not that it’s necessarily that different from online only. I really think that like, what, why or where brick and mortar retailers can have an advantage here is it’s kind of like a copywriter who actually did phone sales for a really long time. They know how to talk like a human because they had to talk to humans, and it’s gonna serve you better when you know how to do that. And when you know how to overcome objections, you know, what your customer is looking for, you’re able to build out a unique experience to do that. Now, like what that plays out, like online, a really good example of this is there in California is Vici collection. You know, if a woman walks into a store, and you know, hey, what brought you in today? Oh, I’m looking for a dress, a salesperson has it turned around and just hand them for dresses? And like, what do you think? Now? They’re gonna like, oh, what for? What do you What’s the dress for? So online, you go to their website, and their navigation is dresses by style, dresses, by occasion dresses by link. That’s the way that a woman shopping dresses. And it’s guiding a customer through the journey through the way people think. And I think no matter what industry we’re really talking about, that’s how I think we need to think about it is like, if you were having an in person conversation, what would it be like? How would they respond? And what questions would they have? And then what can we do to guide that?
Tyler Jorgenson 12:17
And I think that could be even seen just in how your product descriptions are written? Right? Like, are you writing about this dress as if you’re answering somebody’s questions, right? Or are you writing it about like, well, it’s cotton, and it’s 36 inches long? And it’s right, like it just stating facts, right, like, and I think that is I like that that’s it gives them an advantage because they speak the language at a deeper level, a more personal level. And I think anytime we can make websites and online experiences feel more human, I think we’re winning, right? Like that’s, that’s the right direction to go. What are some mistakes people are making when they’re moving from brick and mortar to online, gosh, putting
Josh Orr 12:54
pictures of their store up as though you’re going to like experience the store just because there’s a picture. People are so proud of their store, and they put that picture up. And they are just saying welcome to my store, kind of like when you go to a website and their logo, not even ecommerce I mean, in general, you visit someone’s funnel and literally like just their logos, front and center. And it’s like, no one cares about your brand. No one like you and your mother are the only two people that really care. Otherwise, they care about themselves. And they want to understand how can you solve their problem, your e commerce website, your funnel, it doesn’t matter what we’re talking about should do that. And that’s the first and foremost, that’s the number one mistake that people make. Second, it’s funny, as soon as we start talking about e commerce, this applies everywhere. But it’s this trust element of like using bad photography, making your site not really look like it’s a human being. And I think we’re store for reason why brick and mortar retailers deal with this differently is they have the disadvantage because they’ve had automatic trust by standing there talking to people. And so they’ve never had to earn trust, whereas an online only person understood that very early on because getting those first five sales. It’s like climbing Mount Everest because no one believes that you’re a real brand. So establishing trust through photography, through your copy through you name and there’s a million things we could do on a site that would do that. But those are some of the huge ones right now.
Tyler Jorgenson 14:24
What are some things that brands can do to get ready for Black Friday, Cyber Monday?
Josh Orr 14:30
Gosh, I love the question. One plan that’s have an actual plan. Have an actual plan. You know what, come up with your promotions right now. And honestly, if I were gonna give a side thing to that, I would say everyone’s focused on Black Friday, Cyber Monday. I’m starting to look outside of those a little bit. One go early this year as early as you can. A cool thing that a friend of mine does. Her name’s Ashley Alderson at the boutique hub. She is Something called pink Friday, which is the Friday before Black Friday. And the idea is to shop local first, this is your first Christmas shopping local businesses, not the Saturday after you did all your stuff on Friday. So think through some creative ways you can use holidays around it. Holidays are expanding, so use it to your advantage. But think through, you know, as you’re creating your plan, think through your one, what are your loyal customers doing with you? And how are they SHOPPING WITH YOU ARE WE if you’re a clothing boutique, is your perfect customer stuck with her family and bore playing on her phone, in which case, you need to speak differently. It’s not all gift guides or any of that it’s something else, understanding your customer what they’re doing, then you can build everything around that your offers, your promotions, your emails, your ads, all of it around who you know your customer to B. And I’m gonna keep doing this. But I think this applies to all of digital marketing. You know, if you’re a if you’re, if you have an offer on Black Friday, where’s your customer on that day? Or they shop on the shopping on their phones while they’re out with their wife? In which case, why are you writing long form sales copy, because they’re not reading it on that day, your offer needs to have shorter copy. And go, I could go this is the stuff I can nerd out about loving
Tyler Jorgenson 16:21
I’m wanting you to keep going like Okay, so let’s pivot off of Black Friday. But I think okay, I want people to catch that because this will be good every year for the rest of your life with Josh just said, Look outside of the holidays like look, you know go early if you can, I love the idea of shop local before you shop big box. And but the really the the personal part of it like where is your customer that day? And are they buying gifts that day? Or are they buying for themselves that day? Like what level of you know, do you need help them justify the purchase? All of those things are like super important. That’s powerful. Now, a lot of those same principles, principles can be applied to like running sales and running things at any given moment. What are some of the foundational principles that it like online stores should know about promotions and sales? Like? Should they always be running sales? When the tips there?
Josh Orr 17:13
Gosh, no, I mean, depends on your business for one, you know, if you have a value customer, that discount shopper, then sure always be running sales. But if you are not, then don’t know there’s a difference between promotions and sales. promotions are things that entice someone to come in and purchase. That’s that 10% off your first purchase, when you give us your email address, you know, you’re gathering a contact, they’re getting a discount, but then their selves like 20% off. And I think those can be good to utilize on things like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Because ultimately, that’s what people are expecting now. And so you can do act a little outside of your brand on those days, because I think people are coming to expect it. But know the difference, know who your customer is and understand what you’re trying to attract. The things that I really love is starting to think through, especially for independent businesses. And now I’ll get like super ecommerce specific. But start to think through like Jan, December and q1 type things. So giving gift cards with spends over certain amounts that can only be used after January one, starting to think through some of those things that are going to get people coming back. Even just giving gift cards away and like, Hey, here’s one for you. And here’s one for a friend. You know what, even if 50% of people are just like, cool, I’ll keep both of these gift cards. Okay, but the other half, you just gained a new customer bringing them in. That’s really effective marketing. And I think it can be really cool to to do these things like throughout the holidays, whether it’s online or in store, I think it’s an effective way to grow and to start thinking a little outside of just that current season.
Tyler Jorgenson 19:00
I really like I love the gift cards after you like in the gift gift cards like hey, this is you weren’t expecting this. And here’s one to give away too. It’s this weird thing like this reciprocity, if they get to give a gift away, right, it builds loyalty for you. Because they got it, they got to help them elevate their status. One of the best promos that I ever did, I had an e commerce store that the the cheapest product in the store started at $79. And we did a $29. And he was like $27.16 or something credit that we applied to every single person in the store. And we sent it out, send out an email that says hey, you have a you have a credit in your store, like don’t lose it type of thing. And it was this weird thing it would it worked way better than doing a $25 off coupon because it was like it’s their money already. So now it wasn’t like if I don’t use this site, like oh, I don’t I won’t use the coupon. It was it flipped the script on him of like, Oh, that’s my money. I need to go get it right I need to get my money. So the idea of just looking outside the box with promotions, and that’s what I was looking at with there. So I think that’s amazing. What, uh, what are some big trends that you’re seeing in the in the space as we get into? Holy cow? What year are we coming into? I can’t even think, to me, it’s still 2018. Man, it’s fine.
Josh Orr 20:16
Oh my gosh, I think it’s 21 I have to check. Like, I have to check my age all the time, like remembering. So I tell people the right number. Because at this point, like, I don’t count, think about it that often. times the trends and the world. I mean, right now, there’s just so much and I feel so bad for the retail world, they’ve, you know, retailers have, like, a lot of people have really had a hard few years, and we’re seeing things with shipping and with trying to hire and all this stuff. And so one like the, I guess I don’t really answering your question, but just like, there are these industries that I just want to, like, Oh my gosh, like you made it through this well done. But general trends, you know, I think we’re starting to see content really starting to be king really good e commerce brands are producing stellar content. This, you know, sometimes blogs like Huck Berry’s a really good example of like, have great blogs, great emails, that sort of thing. But sometimes it’s things like your, you know, the way you’re using reels and that sort of thing, is really becoming a trend, what I’m loving, is what rails have done is kind of reminds me of Instagram, eight, nine years ago, where small businesses had the upper hand and could blow up and all of a sudden, you know, they go they have 1000 followers and their videos are getting a million views. And it’s it’s incredible. And so brands that are utilizing this stuff, are really getting to see get get to see some cool results right now.
Tyler Jorgenson 22:00
I love that now, as you’ve been growing your business, as you’ve been doing this, not only are you working in this space as volatility, right, but you’re an entrepreneur, and you’ve had to be growing a company throughout it all. Over the recent years as you’ve been growing, what were some of the challenges that your your company faced, that you weren’t expecting? This may
Josh Orr 22:18
not be your perfect answer. But you know, I said that I started out in the point of sale space. And over time, we had transitioned, we were doing point of sale and e commerce. And it got to a point where ecommerce was starting to grow. But I was holding on to point of sale, it’s still a majority of our revenue. But I was starting to speak on e commerce. So I was speaking on stages and like bigger and bigger stages. And there was this moment where I’m speaking on a stage. And it went really well I get off the stage. And you know, after an event, you get off and a bunch of people come in, they’re asking questions. And everyone’s valuing every second of my time, and I get to my hotel room and someone had submitted a support ticket for a receipt printer, and I’m on someone’s screen, who doesn’t even want to be talking to me fixing a receipt printer. And there was this moment where I was like, I’m done. I’m not doing this ever again. And we literally fired half of our team, we fired, graciously fired half of our team, we fired most of our clients, we completely pivoted in our business to do something, even though we already had that piece. There. It was not it at that time, it was probably like 55 or 45% of what we were doing. And I took the risk. And that risk was taken like halfway through 2019. So the timing was good, in that it going into 2020 obviously, doing what we do has worked out really well. But at the time, realizing that even though I was serving a market that I enjoyed serving, I wasn’t doing something that I wanted to do. And I don’t think most people feel the freedom to really pivot and be like, you know what, I hate this. I hate doing this, I’m not going to do it anymore. I’m gonna have to find a way to do it. And at some point, you know, you got to do the Tony Robbins, like burn the bridges and you you got to move forward and that that revenue that was there, it It hurt. It really did hurt. And I let that go willingly and it sucked. But what was on the other side? And yes, there’s luck there. And I can’t like yes, there was strategy. We did some things right. But I have to acknowledge like luck was a big piece of it. But I would like to think that even without that we still would have succeeded because I think it was ultimately the best move. And I hope that those people listening that are maybe doing something that they hate feel the encouragement that you don’t have to be stuck in this thing that you hate. Even in your own business. Like we build businesses that we Hey like Dude, burn it down, do something else. Now it’s the fifth time Maybe you need to evaluate. but you get the point.
Tyler Jorgenson 25:04
Absolutely. And I, I echo that so much, having rebuilt more than once and having made hard calls to make pivots, it’s that you use the word freedom to pivot. And I think that’s so fascinating, because most of that lack of freedom is self imposed, right? Like we’re stopping ourselves from doing it just because it’s hard. But we’re never going to reach the next levels of freedom or happiness or whatever if we’re not willing to also leave the past behind. Which segues into great great into my last question, Josh, to me, business is about lifestyle. It doesn’t matter if you have a thriving business, if you hate your life, what is one item on your personal bucket list that you’re going to accomplish in the next 12 months?
Josh Orr 25:47
One item on my personal bucket? That’s a hard question.
Tyler Jorgenson 25:53
That’s the point you got to think about us, right? Like, what what are you gonna do with your life, man? What are you gonna do in the next year?
Josh Orr 25:59
You know, this is this is small. You know, first of all, in the last 12 months, I’m really grateful, like, I got to buy my dream car, we moved it was, we had some cool stuff happen. That was really awesome. I don’t know why. But I’ve always been excited about the idea of coaching my kids soccer team. And this year, I am coaching my kids soccer team. And interestingly enough, I know for a fact that four years ago, I would never have been able to do that timewise and this is the first year ever, in my own business, like I’m almost entirely removed from the delivery of what we do. Like I don’t, I can’t code I can’t do any of that stuff. And so it’s exciting to have the freedom to do that. So it’s no big deal. It’s not sexy, but I’m getting to coach my kids soccer team. No, I need to learn how to do it because I play soccer.
Tyler Jorgenson 26:48
That’s huge. I’ll send you some stuff. I went through all of that too. And I and it’s so amazing because a lot of people give me these big answers of go to Machu Picchu or they’re gonna do something or buy their dream car and I there’s there’s nothing wrong with those answers. I love every one of the answers people give. But sometimes the most meaningful answers are I finally on my business in a place where I get to coach my kids and so I love that love you for sharing that. And to all my businesses wherever you are watching, listening, tuning in or reading it’s your turn to go out and do something.
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