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Crafting a Successful eCommerce Business Strategy with Charles Moyer, Founder and CEO of Badass Beard Care

Charles Moyer 14:29

Where I was looking. So at the time I was looking on Craigslist, just because it seemed like the easiest thing to find something local. I know that Craigslist does not generally yield the best applicants so I guess first thing would be just utilizing the best channels to find the best people. And the second thing would be looking at personality, and not necessarily what’s on the resume on paper. A lot of people exaggerate or outright lie or omit. And so you can’t really go based off that, so I find, especially for lower level tasks and lower level employees like that, that you know, you’re going to do on the job training to get them up to speed that they need to do anyways, just to look at personality and work ethic and whether or not they are going to contribute to the culture that you want to create at your workplace.

Joshua Chin 15:21

Gotcha. And I think every, every entrepreneur, well, I certainly did come to a point in time where they come to terms with what you know, what they’re good at, where their superpower lies, and where they’re absolutely shit at. And I’ve come to the point where I understand what my strengths are, where my areas of geniuses are. So my question to you is, what is your superpower? And how do you deal with the rest of, you know, rest of the stuff within your responsibility that you’re just not good at? What do you do with those things?

Charles Moyer 16:03

To start with, I don’t have a lot of superpowers, I am shit at a lot of stuff. Not very good at a lot of things. But I think what has helped me to succeed is attention to detail, I feel like I have a really keen attention to detail. I’m very particular, part of what makes it challenging to work for me. But yeah, just having an attention to detail, and the ability to put myself into the place of consumer, and try to think like them. And I tell people this one particular story a lot, because I feel like it really emphasizes a change in thought process I had about consumers in general. And it has to do with the free sample offers I was telling you about. So when people would ask for the coupon code. And so I would I was getting the coupon code through messenger. And so there was already an open line of communication. And the most common response I got after sending someone, a coupon code for the free product. Is this a scam, because the coupon code doesn’t work. And it did work, and I even made it so where the coupon code could use more than one time, because sometimes he would press apply, but then go back and look at something. And so it would un-apply the coupon code and then go to use it again, the system thought it was already used because one, one application would have been hit. So I tried to change so that it was very, very user friendly. But what I was not prepared for was people calling it a scam, because they were misspelling the coupon code.

Joshua Chin 17:44


Charles Moyer 17:45

And I didn’t think would be a problem. But very quickly, I mean, it was probably at least 10 messages a day. And I found that if one person messages you about a problem, you’ve had 10 people that actually have the problem and want to reach out. So, it was like, there’s like 10 people a day that are reaching out telling you that this is just a scam it’s too good to be true. I’m going to go enter it and it’s not working. And I would ask, I struggled with trying to find a way to ask them if they were spelling the coupon code correctly without sounding condescending, or sounding like I was, I was implying they were doing something wrong, while also trying to say that through a text. Because you don’t have the inflection, they can’t see my face. But oh like, it happens, you know, like, a lot of people mess it up. And I was also getting very frustrated because the coupon code was “free trial.” And so it wasn’t necessarily a hard, you know, a hard coupon code and it was typed out, they can copy and paste it with all caps they can see it very clearly. And so I started getting frustrated, and instead of having these customers are the ones who message me, but I’m just getting mad and frustrated at these consumers. Like you know, it is not something hard, and you’re calling my credibility into question saying that I’m a scam, I’m trying to offer some free, it got really aggravating. And so I realized that I need to stop thinking that they need to figure it out and be up to my standard. And I just needed to remove all barriers for these customers. And so what I ended up doing was like creating different versions of the coupon code, with all the misspellings that people have sent back to me, when I asked them the Hey, sorry your code not working, I promise you it’s not a scam. I started asking them to please just tell me which coupon code you’re using. And that way they had to write the coupon code back to me. Instead of asking like, are you using “free trial” because they see it and they automatically reading and looking to see if it’s spelled correctly say yes, I’m using that. I would ask them to tell me what they’re using. And then I started using those misspellings and create new coupon codes and what I found was that 10% of people misspelled coupon. So looked at, you know, over the course of over the course of four years, how many times the correctly spelled coupon code is used and how many times misspellings were used and it was literally 10%. So I made our, our only on for four years was a free sample app. And I made it 10% more effective by spending three minutes to create those extra coupons. And then I never had any complaints, so it also saved me an hour a day having to respond to these 10 people that were really pissed off thinking that I’m trying to scam them. So I learned like, not getting frustrated, stop getting mad when those consumers are irrational or that don’t follow instructions or don’t get it. And just get smart, remove those barriers to entries and get them there get on their level, just make it sort of worth it. And it’s been much, much, much less stressful for me, much less stressful for my customer service team, and much more profitable for our company.

Joshua Chin 21:03

That’s really interesting, and obviously has worked out really well for the business. You were telling me that we’re talking a little bit about conversions in the site. And we’re talking in at eight to 10% on daily conversions on the site, on sitewide.

Charles Moyer 21:22

Yeah, when we have free offers on our primary advertising campaign, yet we’re running a 10 to 12% conversion rate over time. In 2020, when the pandemic first hit, we transitioned our marketing we are essentially cut our marketing down to a small fraction what was that March, because sales plummeted and nobody was buying, nobody knew what was happening. But when the first stimulus check started hitting our sales, so much like Christmas, it was a very big swing. Yeah. And we decided to market and advertising full size products as well as a free sample and do more of a mix. And so over the course of 2020 and now into to 2021, we have transitioned that now about 80% of our budget, a little more than 80% of our budget goes towards full size products, and just under 20% goes towards free samples. And so that is why our conversion rate has dropped from 10 to 12 down to 8, 10. But it’s still –

Joshua Chin 22:21

Still impressive.

Charles Moyer 22:23

Yeah, it’s still a really good number. And the feedback that we get from our customers is just incredible.

Joshua Chin 22:31

Eight to 10% is absolutely bonkers. I think that’s definitely top 1% then I think in the industry.

Charles Moyer 22:41

I know we’re talking. I know we’re talking about subscription based models, right?

Joshua Chin 22:46


Charles Moyer 22:46

So if you look, if you look on the average churn rate, you know what churn rate is?

Joshua Chin 22:50


Charles Moyer 22:52

Yeah, so our churn rate is 1%.

Joshua Chin 22:55

Wait, your subscription churn is at 1%, like month to month?

Charles Moyer 23:00


Joshua Chin 23:01

That’s, that’s something interesting. Let’s dive a little bit deeper into that. Let’s tell me a little bit more about the how the subscription is structured.

Charles Moyer 23:10

So it’s totally customizable. Customers can subscribe to any parts they want to at any frequencies they want to, with any amount that they want to. They get additional discounts on the products for subscribing. They also get discounts statewide, once they become a member on one time purchases for accessories and apparel, and things like that, and things that are branded, they get huge discounts on like, 30% off. And then they also are able to get shipments whenever they want, they don’t feel a need to cancel because like, oh, I’ve got some product building up. And we’re like, Hey, you can just skip the next couple of shipments or you can schedule your next shipments be every three months instead of every month. And so that flexibility, I think has really led to that really low churn rate. So we’ve never advertised our club once, we spend about a half million dollars a year on Facebook ads. And we haven’t put $1 towards our club advertising that this does telling you that we’re planning on revamping and relaunching our website and it’s been a multi-year ordeal, I didn’t want to put marketing dollars behind it until we had a totally ready. And unfortunately, it’s taking a lot longer than we wanted. But the good news is I have a lot of analytics now and a lot of data on what that club has done without any work behind marketing. You know, I said no ads and nothing the only way to find it is through a tab on our website, but then read more about it and then get into it. We don’t even post on our social about it. And we’ve had a constant growth in that club for the last five years. And it’s currently formatted with a 1% churn rate and 4x on what our customer lifetime value is compared to customers who shop for one time things.

Joshua Chin 24:52

That is crazy. 4x customer lifetime value versus just a single purchase type of customer. What’s your, what’s your advice for brands thinking about starting a subscription, subscription offer a product?

Charles Moyer 25:11

I would say don’t wait. It needs to be, it needs to be a very value driven prospect in order for people to convert really well on it. So I would say don’t [], when you’re looking at it as obviously a subscription is going to be a recurring thing. So you no longer look at their average order value, and your average cost per conversion, and then your average cost per product in order to determine if it’s going to be a profitable marketing campaign or not. You’re gonna have to start to look at your customer lifetime value, and it might not pay off that first month. But you know, over the course a few months, it’s going to start to pay dividends, and then as it grows, it’s really gonna start to pay dividends. So you can take a little bit more of a hit or offer a bigger value proposition, especially getting people to sign up, I guess, a really big one the offer something, to get them in the door to get them to sign up. And whether it be through sheer laziness or through a sense of commitment to the company or obligation. Because you’re receiving discounts, or whatever it is, or you know, whether it’s content we’re getting, if you give them some kind of value for being in, and they just won’t cancel, even if they have product they don’t need anymore, or starting to build up. And you normally would not get that customer to come back and buy one time, they just keep letting those subscriptions roll. So it really helps with the lifetime customer value, and helps to keep those customers engaged, they get that shipment, if even if they didn’t want it, that means they have to reach out, that gets them back in your flows, it gets them back on your website. It’s a great opportunity. There’s a lot of companies that are very hard and fast on return policies for subscriptions, once the order is processed, there’s no canceling it, it doesn’t matter if somewhere else that order is going out. What I found is those types of packages, it really kills the customer loyalty. They don’t want to be subscribed to a company that, you know, they have one issue and they want to make one return. And they don’t have that option. They just back out entirely. So what I found is that, especially if you’re if you have low margins and want to keep, keep that money in your account, not lose the entire refund and have to resend it, I usually offer to trade them or to send them another product of similar value. And listen, keep the product like that. Our margins and the product itself is very, very small compared to the cost to acquire that consumer. So instead of refunding them on the $30, for this oil and balm that came out, I’ll say, well, I have a $15 comb and a $15 brush, I can send you one of each of these that will complement the products you’ve already got. And then you won’t be out that $30. And I would say nine out of 10 times, especially because they like the company so much already, the customers totally agree with that. And not just agree but be kind of ecstatic that they get to keep the products they got by accident or that they didn’t need. And we’re getting something in addition, it just helps that customer lifetime value, it makes it so that in our customer groups on Facebook, when someone posts about an issue they are they are responded to by a dozen customers before our customer service rep even sees it. And they are all positive things like Don’t you worry this customer, their customer service team is awesome you’ll be taken care of. Like, here’s the email you need to contact here’s hours of operation like our customers just go in there and squash any negativity. And then also just uplift to some customer and positive. Everyone else personally positive as well. And a new customer see that. And it’s like just like your best friends are getting a glowing testimonial or product you have never met them before. Seeing someone say this in a social forum like a group like that. I feel like outweighs just a review from a random person not from a website 10 to one easy.

Joshua Chin 29:05

Effectively you have basically 350,000 customer support agents working on your behalf. And –

Charles Moyer 29:13

Yeah, yeah, and the difficult part and also once you get into it, you need someone to kind of monitor it. That’s what, part where I struggled as well as I was trying to handle it all myself. And inevitably, especially with the politics and everything else and Coronavirus. Drama happens with most people, you get one one person that gets in and posts something in the middle of the night at 2am that you don’t see until 8am and this guy with 200 comments. And because mods haven’t taken this down, they must be complicit, they must agree and I mean, it’s just they can get to be a nightmare. When something bad does happen. I need to have someone dedicated to monitoring those groups like that. But yes, so effectively, you create these groups of fully loyal, outgoing, they want everyone to know about your product, just fan club and it’s really cool. And they help each other out. It’s really cool to see the community that these people will bring to each other when we kind of kind of foster it a little bit and lead the way. And, you know, if we, if we have time I’ll give one more example.

Joshua Chin 30:20

Yeah, let’s do it.

Charles Moyer 30:22

So when I first launched that group, we had, I think 600 people join at the first night. And that was just to post on social wasn’t email blast just an association post, and they thought about their best and their research weeks, especially makes you have to know some of these customers, you’re not in depth, but you know, take care of customer service issues or answering questions, they had a lot of product or just introduced myself in the company and why I created that group. And one of the guys was like, he made a post saying how he is totally in a dark spot. And needed someone to talk to. And our customers all jumped in. And they were really great. I mean, he had, there’s hours and hours of conversations and hundreds of comments in that thread. They really helped him. But I sent him a hat, I saw it I knew his address because he’d been a customer. So I sent a hat. I didn’t tell him anything. I just wrote a little note. And I sent it without making, I didn’t post about it, and they had no fanfare about it whatsoever. And that guy, in the next year, and keep in mind these are beard care products, and I’ve got a decent size beard. A bottle of oil, cost $15. And it’ll last me about two months. This guy had a beard, about a third of the length of mine. In his first year, in his first year, he had 85 orders for a total of about $2,800 in beard care products.

Joshua Chin 31:51

No way.

Charles Moyer 31:51

And he was buying for friends and family, he was buying for other people in the group. They were like, Hey, I can’t afford my subscription this month, I was really looking forward to that seasonal. And he would, he would pick up the tab for subscriptions. And he was buying for random people he met on the street, like meet at the bar he says really to try this, buy this oil from him. It cost me one hat.

Joshua Chin 32:17

That’s crazy.

Charles Moyer 32:20

And then, and I don’t have to go in and post about it because as soon as he got it, he made this big heartfelt post about how much it meant to him. And he shared the experience with everybody in that group. And it was like I did that for everyone. It was like not just for him, it was for everybody. And so it’s just little things like that, where it was like once, you know, once a month or once every other month, you see something just random, no fanfare, and I would send them something out. And the reactions were priceless. Really, really made me smile. I made it everyone smile, but in terms of customer loyalty, it it made our fans hardcore fans.

Joshua Chin 33:00

That’s a you know, that’s such a simple gesture. And, you know, I’m going to go on a different route here with something like this, I see that a lot of brands are trying to, I guess the word to use would be manufacturer, a similar reaction. But often that’s counterproductive because that then becomes ingenuine or just fake? You know, with all the, yeah, it’s –

Charles Moyer 33:30

And there is. Because there’s I think that’s part of it, right. I would send things out without fanfare, I wouldn’t post about it. I think that if I had posted, Oh, hey, this guy was going through a hard time maybe I’ll send a hat. And, you know, click here to read the blog about it. You know, that, that seems like you’re doing a press release. But when the post from someone else, they received it, and it’s just a genuine heartfelt post. And then they get good interaction on it, which makes face to face. Although it’s really happy and assertion that’s more and more people. And certainly organic. Getting all these people are seeing it you’re not it’s not a paid advertisement campaigns from people with not a lot of blog posts that I wrote, and I’m trying to funnel people to it. It’s just organic, and it pays off dividends. That doesn’t always pay off, I’m going to send out a lot of things in the person that we post about it or doesn’t say, doesn’t say anything to me about it. I don’t even know if they ever even really got it. I’m assuming they did and I’m assuming that they’re happy. And you know, in terms of like the the cost to meet these these products that are not in the margins are they’re the most expensive products that is getting my customer and so if I can if I can lose a couple bucks by a sending a hat or a free bottle of oil or spend a couple extra minutes my time after hours to message one of the customers on Facebook to take care of an issue personally instead of waiting until, you know, Monday. Especially on weekends. If I see something on a Friday night, and I’m not doing anything and that customer has an urgent issue, I know a lot of business owners that are like, my customer service team will handle that on Monday. That’s what they’re there for. And the way I look at it is that customer has an issue, they’re on their phone or their computer right then, which means they have our website up right then as well. And my best shot, best helping the customer. But then also getting a sale or getting that conversion from this customer is to answer them right there while they have the website up as soon as they leave, they close out, you know, the chances dramatically drop. So I’ve just saved a little extra initiative to make sure that I have those connections to the customers and try to be genuine about it.

Joshua Chin 35:44

It’s the little things it’s those extra mile that that you go there really build a community of not just fans but loyal, raising fans. And I yeah, there is that the mushroom effect of that one loyal fan that goes out to tell it creates 10 other fans and those 10 fans that go talk to their friends about their brand. Charlie, what about brands, what other brands do you personally look up to? That you think does a great job of building a good brand and a good community like you have?

Charles Moyer 36:25

Black Rifle Coffee Company would be a really good example of a brand I look up to. Not just for work in the ecommerce space, but because they instil seamlessly transition networking, ecommerce, also doing brick and mortar. Now there are three openings or even more coffee shops and four locations. They’re killing it with their wholesale, they’re in every event in California here. It’s got Black Rifle coffee in it, they’re killing it with a direct consumer, they have K-Pods. So the content is phenomenal. And they’ve been killing content pretty much since day one when they launched out. And I mean, they’re the numbers support it. So I definitely, definitely look up to them there. Another company would be Grunt Style, it’s a veteran-owned apparel company. And they have done a really good job of fostering communities within Facebook and other social platforms that bring a lot of veterans together and a lot of patriots together and have created very large communities that way. They’ve also got subscription programs, they have their Grunt Style, or they call the Clump Grunt Style as their subscription platform along with one time orders. And they’ve done well as well. So look at them. Deathwish Coffee?

Joshua Chin 37:36

Oh, yeah.

Charles Moyer 37:38

Yeah, they were really, really heavy on social. And they built some really good communities. And I saw some really good communities within the Deathwish Coffee groups. And they had a really big they I don’t know if you saw they won a contest to have a commercial in the Superbowl? I think that was in the 2019 SuperBowl.

Joshua Chin 38:01

I did not.

Charles Moyer 38:03

Yeah, I saw that contest come out and I was gunning for them, and they got it.

Joshua Chin 38:10


Charles Moyer 38:12

So I will do them. And I’m sure I’m sure there’s some there’s some other ones and that everyone has, things are doing well, and things they can improve on. There’s a lot of companies that are doing exceptionally well. I know me personally, you know, I’ve done a lot of things that I can prove is that I have that attention to detail down. But I need a lot of help. And this partly, I said the very first thing hiring our first employee, hiring higher level employees now it’s been the challenge finding people that I trust, to have my same vision to have the core competencies, and that are willing to work for a smaller company as well. You know, we have 20 employees, but only four or five upper level everyone else’s production or shipping or customer service. So yeah, finding people will take on these higher level tasks as we continue to grow has been difficult. And that’s why I think those companies why they were they’re crushing it. I think Grunt Style just brought on a CEO that used to be CEO of Under Armour.

Joshua Chin 39:23

Under Armour, okay.

Charles Moyer 39:25

Maybe or maybe or a similar type brand. I mean, they brought in a real heavy hitter on to bring their company up to the next level. Same with Black Rifle coffee. Their founders are still very much a part of it. But they brought in some very high level talent to help them grow and they started getting viral content. And, yeah, that’s something that I’d get better at finding our talent, and then finding what I’m good at focusing on that and then letting that talent take care of things that I’m not good at.

Joshua Chin 39:56

With that, with that in mind, what’s the next phase, the next stage of growth for Badass Beard Care.

Charles Moyer 40:03

We have a couple of things in the works. We were doing Amazon for a long time. And it does it does pretty well for us. It’s about 20 to 25% of our revenue.

Joshua Chin 40:13


Charles Moyer 40:14

I guess it was the replacement option in 2019 2020, when the pandemic hit, our site just kind of exploded and late April and closer to Christmas numbers. And so the Amazon did not reflect did not reflect that. Now some of the rest, but upcoming growing our Amazon side, I think they were getting the clump merged and operating correctly. And we launched, we probably the biggest thing. And then I also recently brought on a wholesale manager by how about recently it’s been a year now, I brought her on February of 2020, right about when COVID hit and everything locked down. And all the retail partners closed down, we actually had not a signed contract but intent to move forward with a very large brick and mortar stores across the entire United States. Here is our very biggest wholesale account, we’re in a lot of barbershops, but this was going to be like a big first big heavy hitter we got. And so I’ve gotten retail packaging and hired a wholesale person in order to manage that program. And I get shells and put on the back burner since we’re closed down. Here once things start loosening up a little bit, we’re hoping to get those talks with them again. And host the wholesale manager really starts making some big gains there. But also to do that right now we are 98% direct consumer.

Joshua Chin 41:41

Wow. Gotcha. Amazing Charlie is, as our listeners, they’re interested to connect with you or learn more about Badass Beard Care, where should they go to?

Charles Moyer 41:55

Well you can find my profiles on social media. Just Charlie Moyer or Charlie BABC Moyer on Facebook. Be sure to follow all of our company’s stuff. We do a lot of behind the scenes and the team and information videos and content to all of our social platforms. And they’re really starting to grow our YouTube, we said we’d hire that content creators. Now we’re putting out a steady flow of new content to include some really funny skits and informational videos. So be sure to check out our YouTube and subscribe.

Joshua Chin 42:25

I’m personally looking forward to the next phase in your company’s growth. Charlie, thank you so much for being on the show.

Charles Moyer 42:32

Thank you for having me. And yeah, if you have questions, feel free to reach out. Thank you, Joshua.

Outro 42:40

Thanks for listening to the eCommerce Profits Podcast. We’ll see you again next time and be sure to click subscribe to get notified of future episodes.

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