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Key Business Lessons After 50 Episodes of The Opportunity Podcast

Vincent Wong Updated on September 30, 2021


Hey, everyone! It’s Vinnie!

Not long ago, Sarah shared some great insights from the first 10 episodes of The Opportunity Podcast. Now that we’ve hosted 50 guests and counting, we thought it’d be a great time to share the best highlights so far!

It’s hard to pick a favorite podcast since all the guests have been great. We looked through some of our most popular episodes to see what they had to offer and pulled out the best lessons for your benefit.

So without further ado, let’s dive in.

Invest in Your Business by Hiring Actual Experts to Write Your Content

How do you build an authority content site in one of the most competitive niches in the industry?

By trusting experts to produce high-quality content.

In episode 41, Doron Wolffberg shares how he distinguished his niche brand in the pet care industry from the competition by building a network of highly knowledgeable writers. Even though it cost up to 10 times to hire specialists as compared to hiring a general freelancer, the ROI in time-cost opportunity and level of engagement more than made up for the investment.

Episode Highlights:

  • To build an authority site in any niche, plan from the top and ask yourself, “What would it take to build a top site in this space?”
  • Focus on content written by experts to survive the algorithm updates instead of relying on SEO tactics such as scholarship links.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Create video content alongside written articles and focus on the synergy between these two platforms to create an omnichannel journey.


  • Working with specialists cost 3-10 times more than what we paid initially, so the shift in mentality wasn’t easy, but we realized that we’re making an investment that’s going to have a positive ROI moving forward.
  • The ROI of hiring expert writers compared to non-experts is incomparable. You need more time to review a non-expert’s content, you need to update the articles more frequently, and it’s also easier for competitors to come in and copy the content while doing it slightly better. The amount of time and effort you need to put in feels like five to 10 times more than working with experts.

Focus on Building Quality Brands You Believe In to Get the Attention of the Fastest Profitable Unicorn in History

Thrasio is the fastest US company to reach unicorn status. But far from being just a really big brand aggregator, Thrasio built its reputation as one of the best FBA operators in the industry.

In episode 19, John Hefter shares how Thrasio identified their competitive advantage in the ecommerce rollup space, along with tips that you can leverage to start building your own portfolio.

Episode Highlights:

  • Thrasio developed a 500-step process to increase ROI from a new asset.
  • They built up a world-class team of brand builders, including PPC specialists who can rank a brand for new keywords by optimizing PPC campaigns or even tearing down branding and rebuilding it from scratch.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • To plan for success, identify which verticals you understand and what product sets you have enough knowledge about. Then ask yourself where you want to take a new brand in the next two years and identify what the risks are.
  • Don’t force something if you don’t have a clear-cut plan about where you can leverage your strengths.
  • Identify what you’re not so good at so you can outsource those tasks to someone else. Then you can focus on working on your business, not in it.


  • You need exploratory autonomy, you need structure and disruption, in order to get to where you want to be as a company.
  • It’s okay to be sleeping on your friend’s couch at 30, as long you believe in your product and idea. You’re not fighting for tomorrow’s lunch; you’re fighting for something that’s a year or two down the road.
  • Having the humility to admit you don’t know how to do something but commit to finding the solution shows your commitment to your project. What you need most is in the place you don’t want to look.

Increase Your Portfolio’s Diversity by Acquiring Assets with Active AND Passive Elements

As Lucas Carlson shares in episode 12, he failed several startups over a 10-year period before starting up a SaaS business that was acquired by a Fortune 150 company for eight figures.

Yet his biggest challenge wasn’t engineering the exit to receive the windfall; it was what to do with the windfall.

Lucas figured out that a sustainable way to continue growing his wealth was through an investing strategy that’s distinctive from what other investors advise. He found the best way to invest wasn’t through “safe” investments like index funds and the general market but through online businesses.

Episode Highlights:

  • Lucas built the MVP for his golden goose project in 3 weeks and built up a 6,000 subscriber email list with no active promotion.
  • Invest in assets that have a blend of active and passive aspects to mitigate risk and increase your ROI, such as online businesses.
  • Lucas loves online businesses for their wild ROI, as he has experienced 100% year-on-year increases in revenue compared to stocks gaining 10-12% ROI each year.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Buying an established business instead of starting from scratch means you have an existing cash flow that you can reinvest into the site to protect your asset.
  • Learn how to spot opportunities you know how to leverage. This could be adding monetizations, optimizing content, or improving technical SEO.


  • Money that comes from active investments funnels into more passive investments. Over time, as that “bucket” grows, true passive income comes into fruition.
  • Warren Buffet has done at the corporate level what we’re doing at the website level: he looks for opportunities that had great cash flow but were a little ugly, or forgotten but financially solid and never likely to go under. That’s just like picking the right website to buy. That’s how he made his money because he’s been an active investor his entire life, so it seems crazy to me that there’s only one way to invest when there are so many options.

Know Your Worth so You Know When to Outsource to Quickly Scale New Acquisitions

As one of the voices of authority on anything SEO-related, you might not have realized Matt Diggity started off with a monetized blog about why people get hungover.

Since then, Matt’s come a long way and now runs a portfolio of around 10 large authority sites. Definitely tune in to episode 23 to see what one of the best SEOs in the game recommends when it comes to picking the right business to acquire and how to develop a strategy to scale your new digital assets.

Episode Highlights:

  • Pick up sites with high-level domain names so it’s easier to branch into shoulder and sub-niches.
  • Focus on acquiring “class A” backlinks, which are hard to get since they usually require manual outreach and more relationship building than a class C backlink.
  • Get ready to give up a task to someone better than you at it. Time is the ultimate commodity, and you could be spending that time expanding your business. Work out what your time is worth so you can quickly decide which tasks should be outsourced.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Look for niches that are recession-proof and evergreen. For Matt, these revolved around health, wealth, and relationships.
  • When looking at CRO improvements you can put into place straight after buying an asset, think about improving technical SEO, which is fairly easy to fix and can be immediately impactful (e.g., site speed or backlink profile).


  • Time is the ultimate commodity that you never want to sacrifice, so when I’m doing a task, I’m getting ready to let go of it. I’m doing it in a way where I always take good notes so someone else can take over it eventually.

Building an In-House Team by Nurturing Local Talent to Double the Value of New Acquisitions

Adam Smith used to build links for someone else. Now, he builds links for himself while running his own digital marketing agency to flip content sites for 2x their cost.

From employee to employer, Adam gives an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour in episode 23 of what it’s like to run a business. He states that his team sends out one million emails and writes three million words of content each month to double the value of several assets that he’ll flip for more than 100% ROI.

Episode Highlights:

  • Creating an in-house team can be much more cost-effective than hiring freelancers over time.
  • Preparing for a Google algorithm update requires that your site is in top condition: you need good content and a healthy backlink profile.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • When adding ads to an affiliate-only site, start by testing with ads throughout the site, then observe their CTR and narrow down to the pages that convert the highest.


  • The only problem with finding writers on platforms like Upwork and Fiverr is it’s really time-consuming to find a good writer, which makes it really hard to scale.

Focus on Building Sales Funnels to Build a Strong Business Foundation

Renae Christine bought a KDP business from our marketplace in cash upfront, making it an important cog in her money-making machine. Some of her success in building a 7-figure business is creating a system to make paid advertising work for her.

It’s why she could sink $400,000 on social media ads and feel confident in the ROI.

In episode 30, Renae shares her learnings from her fruitful entrepreneurial journey regarding paid advertising, how to build effective sales funnels, and why you should look to scale outside of Amazon as a platform.

Episode Highlights:

  • After spending $400,000, the biggest CRO factor was the image (colors, the copy inside, the meme, etc.). As long as people like it, they’ll click it!
  • Treat paid ads like a video game—don’t expect a knockout on your first try. Experiment with different tactics, and once you’ve found a winning one, stick with it.
  • The best practice is to establish a strong business foundation instead of following social media trends that are constantly changing.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Building an audience outside of Amazon means you can build multiple sales funnels without needing to rely on one ecommerce platform.


  • I saved up all of my money to purchase this business outright because I wanted the money coming in to be instant cash flow.
  • Amazon KDP as a business model is really wonderful because it really runs on its own. I don’t have to do anything. In fact, when I touched it I ruined it!
  • There is no trick to social media ads beyond testing a $5 ad, and whatever hits, double down on it.

Great Copy Levels the Playing Field, So Don’t Be Afraid to Try New Things

In episode 49, Emma Schermer Tamir brings ecommerce copy to life and discusses how copy far and away transcends what happens on a page.

Great ecommerce copywriting can lead to tremendous ROI—everything from avoiding returns to outplaying bigger competitors in the space and gaining coveted reviews.

Episode Highlights:

  • Don’t settle at PPC—it’s not what converts, it’s your listing that converts.
  • Think of your copy as a way to build actual relationships with customers instead of trying to convince them to buy your products.
  • Customers who are aligned with your brand values and principles can be more forgiving if products have flaws.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Instead of trying to cram everything in your copy, hone your copy to match what a customer needs at a certain point in their journey and focus on what they need to know there.
  • Pay attention to how influencers create communities around certain products or topics to see what pain points they address.


  • Take the time to look at the movers and shakers in your space and see how you could gain inspiration that you can bring to Amazon that might be slower to adopt current trends.
  • The more you can bring that curiosity as a customer to brands and ask why do you like this brand or why you clicked a certain ad will help you in the decisions you’ll apply to your business.

Leverage FBA to Build an 8-Figure Business, and Use a Good Broker to Sell It for What It’s Worth

Max Chu is an alumnus of the school of hard knocks. It was inspiring to hear his story of how he went from living off $10,000 per year to scoring an eight-figure exit from his Amazon FBA business.

As he shares in episode 37, Max shares how he built his eight-figure FBA business from scratch with just his brother alongside him, and how he felt safe with Empire Flippers as five buyers were competing to acquire his business (and he got to choose who he went with!).

Episode Highlights:

  • Brokers prevent buyers from sending you low-ball offers off the platform. While you might not pay the commission fee when you avoid using a broker, the overall deal value will probably be much lower than you want and deserve.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Keep pouring your profits and revenue back into your business for growth and make sure you don’t struggle with cash flow issues. Max didn’t take any profit out of the business until the fifth year of running it!


  • My brother asked me, “What do you think about an exit?” and I told him I didn’t want to go back to another job! I’m really into the FIRE movement and the 4% rule, so as long as I’m able to live off the 4% rule, I told him I’m okay with letting the business go.
  • For our trademark, we just wanted to differentiate our toys from the competitors. If we’re profitable, we could exit one or two brands and see if it was possible.
  • We wanted to choose a buyer who could continue running the business that knows FBA, so we could get the stability payment and earnout. It’s not just about bidding high; if you choose a buyer who just bids high but is totally new to FBA, then they’re gonna run into a lot of issues.

Less is More for Greater CRO Success

Amazon Affiliates has fallen out of favor since their huge commission change in April 2020. Yet Cody James sees large opportunities to improve a portfolio with Amazon Associates business when used in tandem with other content sites.

In episode 44, Cody shares some CRO tactics to generate increased revenue from new acquisitions and to negotiate with affiliate partners to get better commission rates.

Episode Highlights:

  • Building a site from scratch is great for building experience, even if your first site fails.
  • Get used to treating your site like a sandbox, where you treat CRO like testing hypotheses.
  • Avoid making wholesale changes when you first acquire a business so you don’t “shock” the system.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • For content sites that are monetized through Amazon Associates and are pulling a decent amount of traffic from different countries, make sure the site is registered for the Amazon Affiliates program in those countries so you don’t lose out on revenue.
  • Micro changes can make a huge difference, such as making sure all pages are indexed, especially your most popular articles.


  • Knowing when to start CRO is difficult when you’re first starting out. It’s better to start focusing on optimizing content first.
  • Acquiring a site allows you to buy into diversity. Diversity is always on my mind because there’s so much out of my control. Diversity is your biggest hedge against an affiliate or algorithm change, so buying into diversity like this makes your portfolio so much stronger.

Reorganize How You Think About Inventory to Maintain a Good Relationship with Amazon

In episode 42, we learn from an inventory management expert about how to avoid every FBA seller’s biggest fear: running out of inventory.

As an Amazon seller herself, Chelsea Cohen discovered these pains early on in her journey. Since figuring out a system to manage stock effectively, she built out resources and found herself becoming a mentor to other sellers, who asked her how she stays calm under the pressure of unexpected storage limit changes.

Amazon has upended sellers with their recent inventory changes. Chelsea demystifies what this means for sellers.

Episode Highlights:

  • Treat Amazon FBA warehouses as distribution centers instead of storage.
  • If you have a choice, prioritize storing your best-selling units in FBA warehouses because they’ll sell quicker than your newer SKUs or products, which are typically slow to move.
  • Avoid getting into a stockout cycle at all costs, as Amazon will detect stockouts and use this to decrease your allocated storage next time you send a shipment to them.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Connect your marketing team to your inventory management team to share data and avoid stockouts.
  • Promote certain products more if you need to move them out of FBA warehouses, especially if the best-selling SKUs don’t need much help to sell.
  • Send certain products to 3PLs or ask suppliers to hold inventory so Amazon doesn’t have all your stuff.


  • When people start out, there’s so much going on, and they’re usually running things by themselves. So inventory management is usually the last thing to do, but you can’t wait too long, or you’ll find that you should have ordered more stock two weeks ago.
  • Talking to PPC agencies, brand managers, and one of the biggest issues was that the marketing team wasn’t communicating with the inventory team. So the one thing you have to shift is getting data from the marketing team to the inventory team and vice versa. It’s what we coined “inventory-minded marketing”.

Put the “Link” in Link Building by Nurturing Relationships

In episode 35, Bibi Raven turns link building on its head in a way that would make most SEOs uncomfortable: building human connections.

Many content site owners struggle with outreach because of its perceived low success rate and diminishing returns. It also stings if getting sponsored guest posts is your tactic of choice!

Bibi covers her experience of link building for businesses in all types of niches, and she shares how to take a step back so you can look at link building with fresh eyes. Over time, hopefully your domain will be a farmer’s market—full of organic content driving tons of traffic that naturally generates backlinks!

Episode Highlights:

  • Focus on your prospects’ needs when you reach out to them, and think about how link building would benefit them.
  • Segment your prospects based on their level of expertise, and tailor your outreach templates by using industry-specific language and terminology.
  • Join communities to build relationships with other SEOs and brands in the same space for new opportunities to help each other out instead of just competing against each other.

Hidden Growth Opportunities:

  • Build links with authority businesses instead of content-only sites that rank for certain keywords.
  • Personalize your outreach by using humor.
  • When you’re researching different prospectus segments, get a feel for the language and terminology they use so you can make jokes that only they’ll find funny (e.g., the opening line for a cold outreach for dentists could be, “You know the pain when patients use “religiously” too literally when you ask if they floss?” [i.e., ONLY on Easter and Christmas?])


  • Anything that anyone’s passionate about, there’ll be jokes about it. It doesn’t have to just be about jokes; it could also be about super interesting trends.
  • A good link is one that helps you increase rankings, but the best link is one that increases rankings, brings you referral traffic, AND sets you up as a soft leader in your niche.

The Best Is Yet to Come

We’ve come a long way and interviewed lots of smart people who were relentless in their journey to success.

As the podcast series is snowballing in momentum, you’ll continue to find more exclusive nuggets of wisdom. Make sure you’re subscribed to our podcast so you don’t miss out!

If you have any guests you’d love to hear from, drop us a comment! We’re always open to finding new guests who have tasted success from buying and selling online businesses and learning from their experience so you can become a smarter entrepreneur.

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