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Selling On Amazon

What Is The 100 Book Challenge

Read below to see an overview of The 100 Book Challenge and how you can join it, or, if you'd like to go straight to the week-by-week breakdown you can do so here:

Week 1 Update

Week 2 Update

Week 3 Update

Week 4 Update

Week 5 Update

Week 6 Update

Week 7 Update

Week 8 Update

Week 9 Update

Week 10 Update

Week 11 Update

Week 12 Update

End of Challenge Results

3 Months Post Challenge Update

Challenge Overview (transcript):

Caleb Roth:         Hey guys,it's Caleb Roth from, and I've got a couple of my pals here with me. We've got ...

John:                    John.

Caleb Roth:         And ...

Matthew Osborn:            Matthew.

Caleb Roth:         And we're going to be talking to you about The 100 Book Challenge. So The 100 Book Challenge,it's one of the more popular blog posts that I've written. I started my venture into book selling back in 2014. I had a full-time marketing job working for Johnson and Johnson, but I was traveling about 100 days a year. And so rather than The 100 Day Challenge, I figured let's try something else. So my wife and I sat down, we said, "What do we know?" We had dabbled in books prior, and so we said, "Hey, let's see if we can do 100 books a week." So we went out nights and weekends. She had a full-time job as a phys ed teacher at a local elementary and middle school.

Caleb Roth:         So the cool part for me, is I traveled around the country. I worked out a deal with our truck driver, so I could actually ... We'd go to Florida for a lab and meet up with some doctors. I'd have a half day to kill, don't tell my boss, and I would go out and source books in Florida or California or Vegas or wherever we were.We'd load the truck back up, which was nice. So we got access to a lot of inventory, ship them back to Indiana where we lived, and we would go ahead and list them from there.

Caleb Roth:         So the goal was simple, can we find, source, and list 100 books a week? And what that developed into was, by middle of 2015, we took a job out in Denver, worked out a deal where we'd work part time, had two days a week to go source books, and raised that goal from 100 books to 200. And by the end of 2015, we were consistently getting 300 books a week. And at that point we kind of said,"Hey, this business is viable, it's working." And I was able to quit the day job and go full time into books.

Caleb Roth:         So that's my story. And we've got a couple of guys here, like we said, we've got Matthew and John. And we're going to have them embark on the same challenge. So why don't you tell us a little bit about yourselves. We'll start with John here, and we'll kind of, what are you doing right now and what are some of your goals with this?

John:                    Yeah,so right now I am a full-time seminary student. So here at Denver Seminary and working through that. In three weeks, I'm having my first kid.

Caleb Roth:         Yeah, baby.

John:                    My wife technically is having the kid, I just get to be there. But we've been doing books for around two years now and just kind of gradually building the business. And at this point, this is what I do, for two days a week essentially, and go to school full time. So The 100 Book Challenge will kind of be also a kick start to continually being able to get through school and eventually be in ministry.

Caleb Roth:         Perfect. And your arrangement of finding books is a little bit unique.

John:                    Yup.I have a, what would be called a modified bulk arrangement with the thrift store in the area, where I go and purchase books by the gaylord. Typically, if you go to a thrift store, you would not be keeping. But I'm getting them for-

Caleb Roth:         What do you mean by that? Just low margin?

John:                    Yeah, just lower margin books. Typically, you wouldn't be able to sell those because you'd be paying more for the book at a thrift store than what you would actually profit on the book once you listed it on Amazon. So my margins are going to be a little bit lower, but sometimes I get access to more books. So we'll see how this goes.

Caleb Roth:         And then this is Matthew. Why don't you tell us a little bit about what you do right now and what you're trying to do with this challenge.

Matthew Osborn:            So I'm a full-time marketer. I'm going to be doing this challenge on the nights and weekends, going to normal sources, thrift stores, libraries, library sales. I've flipped books off and on for the past, I don't know, year and a half,maybe even close to two years now, but I've never done it consistently. If you average it out, I think maybe I've gotten an average about 17 books a week,which is extremely small. And I'm mostly getting those one week, skipping a few weeks and doing it later.

Matthew Osborn:            So this challenge for me will be about doing it consistently, and trying to get 100 books every single week consistently, which is what, like Caleb was saying,makes the difference. You have to be able to do this game consistently, which is the point of this challenge, 90 days, 100 books every single week. And if the math adds up, end of 90 days, our goal is to have 10,000 in revenue. If you stop listing, then by the end of the year, we'll hopefully have $10,000 in profit from that 90 days, if we do it consistently. So that's the goal with the challenge, I think.

Caleb Roth:         Perfect. So again, we're going to share as we go. I know you're a little nervous about finding 100 books a week.

Matthew Osborn:            A little bit. A little bit.

Caleb Roth:         Yeah. So sometimes you go to a thrift store and just kill it. Sometimes you go and completely strike out. And so we're going to be sharing some of that with you.We'll share some of the creative sourcing that we figure out. So John's worked out a relationship, and is able to essentially get access to as many books as you can handle. Will you do any thrift stores or library sales mixed in?

John:                    I probably will, just depends on what sales are around in the area. Or if a week just doesn't pan out like I would like, then I could go and do a thrift store on Saturday or something like that as well.

Caleb Roth:         Perfect. And Matthew, I think, embodies kind of the normal day job. He's got a regular job and he's going to be, like he said, working nights and weekends. I think too many people jump into this business, and they just think you can make a lot of money, or maybe you go one week and you don't put the time in. So the challenge is consistency. Can you find 100 books a week. And we're gonna invite you to come along in this challenge as well. So find your 100, whatever that hundred is, maybe it's 50 a week, maybe it's 25, maybe it's 250, depends on what your situation is.

Caleb Roth:         But for me,I was building this book business for well over a year before I even thought about quitting the day job. One, trying to convince the in-laws that that's a good idea, was pretty tough.

John:                    And...

Caleb Roth:         And the future grandson as well.

Matthew Osborn:            How faraway?

Caleb Roth:         We are about five weeks away. So John beat us to the punch. He's got about three weeks out?

John:                    Three weeks.

Caleb Roth:         And we've got about five weeks. And Matthew's already got his first.

Matthew Osborn:            Yeah, 10 months in.

Caleb Roth:         We're all like the same people. Sorry, we're not giving you a very diverse opinion here.But again, the concept is not to quit your day job right away, it's to prove what's possible. And for a lot of people going out and being able to find 25 or 50 books a week, is that can change your life. It can help pay off debt, pay fora vacation, et cetera. And if you're able to find a lot of books, if you are good at talking to people and can find other sources, maybe this can be something that scales with you. So a couple of things as you follow along on the venture, you can go to our website. The 100 Book Challenge. Hundred is 100,we'll spell it out on the screen right here, maybe.

Matthew Osborn:            That's it down here.

Caleb Roth:         That's fine.So we'll go with, and we'll have a mugshots of these two good looking gentlemen. You can follow along on the stories. We'll be updating their figures weekly. And again, the goal is 10K in sales within 90 days, and that's a little aggressive. I think John's got a little better chance. No pressure, Matthew. I Think John has a little better chance because I think he has access to some more books, versus Matthew trying to go out nights and weekends. But the goal is 10K in sales within the first 90 days.

Caleb Roth:         But sales are really only a sliver of the story. We're going to be sharing the actual profits as well. So the goal by the end of the year, we're going to be kicking this off in March 1st, 2018. By the end of the year, we're going to be tracking all those metrics and those books we found. So theoretically, 13 weeks at 100 books, check my math, 1300 books. By the end of the year, it should be about 10 grand in profits. So if you extrapolate-

Matthew Osborn:            And that's talking about if you were to stop listing books after that 90 days.

Caleb Roth:         Exactly.

Matthew Osborn:            Not if you continued doing that for a year.

Caleb Roth:         Yep. So books are a numbers game. You can't just list 100 books and expect to sell 50 the next week. You're going to sell a small percentage, probably 4 to 6% each week. And again, that depends on the quality of your books, the sales ranks,and your pricing strategies, quite frankly. So it takes a fair amount of inventory. If you've got 1000 books in inventory, you'll probably sell anywhere between 50, 40 to 50 to 60 a week. And if your merchant fulfilled, maybe a little bit more. These guys are both going to be doing Prime. Space is at a premium here in Denver.

Caleb Roth:         Also, follow along with us as well. At we'll have a spreadsheet you can download. I'm kind of a spreadsheet junkie, I apologize. Actually, John,you've got some pretty good spreadsheet skills as well.

John:                    They're fun.

Caleb Roth:         Yeah. So He's enjoying it. Matthew, we'll win you over eventually. But go to, enter your email address to receive updates. And then two, you can download, basically you plug in how many books you're going to find a week, what your average inbound shipping costs are, your expected turn rates, and we'll walk you through what's normal and what you can expect, your average buy cost, and your average selling price. And it will actually plug in and show you weekly how many books you should have in inventory, roughly how many you should be selling, what your sales are, and more importantly, what your cash flow back from Amazon is.

Caleb Roth:         So you can follow along with that. Start Your own 90-day challenge, and hopefully start that quest, whether it's eventually to quit your day job, or whether it's just to have some spending money or pay off some debt, whatever your why may be. So again, join with us, find your 100, whatever that may be, and we look forward to seeing you out there. Thanks.

John:                    #FindYour100.

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Matthew Osborn
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