The Importance of Building a Brand with Your Customer’s Interest in Mind with Adam “Heist” Runquist

Are you putting your Amazon customer’s interests at the forefront before the data? Oftentimes people do it the other way around, but what sharpens the success of a brand lies in creating worthwhile reasons for those customers to purchase.

In today’s show, we have a special guest, Adam “Heist” Runquist, an educator, Amazon brand builder, and advisor to D1 Brands where he has raised $150 million to purchase DTC physical product brands. We have a great conversation about the Amazon space and the projections for the future. He digs into how you can maximize your potential as well as scale your business in the Amazon marketplace. Adam explains that there is still room for anyone to enter the Amazon space, and it’s best to do so with an understanding of what aggregators are looking for. His energy and passion are contagious, you won’t want to miss what he’s got to share.

Adam “Heist” Runquist spent the majority of his career as a buttoned-up corporate guy. After the Fortune 300 company, he worked for acquired outdoor products brand Goal Zero – he moved out to Utah and spent four years discovering the power of physical products brands and ultimately marketplace sales channels like Amazon. He has since started, scaled, and exited numerous Amazon-centric channel brands and recently became an investor and advisor to D1 Brands. Adam also runs the YouTube channel “Adam Heist” – where he focuses on amazon channel strategy and using physical products businesses to “break free” from the 9 to 5.

Listen and enjoy!

[00:01 – 08:01] Discovering the Amazon Space

  • Adam Runquist’s experience before Amazon
    • Working at an energy company (NRG)
    • Doing aggregation for electricity companies
    • Buying Goal Zero (portable power batteries)
      • Visiting 18 factories in China
  • How Adam changed his road once he discovered Amazon
    • Having a $3 million Amazon account

[08:02 – 18:15] Well-Thought-Out Brands and Offers

  • Adam Runquist’s advice for people who what to enter the Amazon space
  • What makes entrepreneurs win in Amazon today
    • They think about the customer first
      • How you can create a reason for customers to click and purchase
  • The importance of focusing on offering the customer first instead of the data on Amazon
    • Keep in mind that dynamics are changing with complexity and costs
  • How much does branding play a role with brands?
    • A brand reveals things that consumers evaluate
      • A philosophical debate of what catches your attention

[18:16 – 41:05] The Aggregated Space

  • Adam Runquist’s outlook about when you should or shouldn’t start to sell
    • Do a personal inventory of your situation
  • Aspects people need to pay attention to when evaluating an aggregator
    • How aggregators are thinking about valuation
    • Consider the post-offer elements, the structure elements, and the human side 
    • Think about how much of the money’s guaranteed
  • Adam shares how he chose one aggregator
    • Have a fair financial offer and trust the aggregators
    • Be sure that aggregators will operate the business through the LOI process
      • Build a durable and predictable business

[41:06 – 45:13] Closing Segment

  • Adam on the four rapid-fire questions

Key Quotes: 

“[Amazon] is not a difficult business, it’s not rocket science, but it’s kind of like a couple of dozen things that you don’t need to be an expert at.” – Adam Runquist

“Use the data to inform and sharpen your decision making, but don’t use it to create your decisions” – Adam Runquist

“[Branding] is about being able to deliver the value proposition of the product you’re representing, in an emotional interesting way.” – Adam Runquist

“You operate differently as an entrepreneur when you have less risk in your personal life.” – Adam Runquist

Connect with Adam’Heist’Runquist

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Podcast Team

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