GUEST: Lish Aquino | “The Amazon Queen”
Lish Aquino was an Amazon VA turned Amazon FBA Seller. Her international company sells over 20+ products worldwide. In the last 3 years, she has generated over millions of dollars in gross revenue.
Now, she teaches Filipinos how to become in-demand Amazon Virtual Assistants and how to build international companies through Amazon.
Lish Aquino generously shares her secret to success as she narrated the hustles and struggles that she went through before she became the Filipino Amazon Queen that she is highly-regarded for today.
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN
Q: How you got started before you became the Amazon Queen that you are today. Who was Lish Aquino?
- “It’s my mission to share with you what I’ve learned throughout my career. I started as a freelancer back in 2010 as a VA. I started with different kinds of jobs like social media, project manager. I tried everything simply because I got redundated from my corporate job. It’s a good thing that I was also pregnant. I had to help with the household. It was a honeymoon baby, and adjusting with the married life. That’s when I discovered freelancing and after 6 years, I learned about my client selling in Amazon. He was earning 1 million a month and I was the only VA that he has. He was so lucky because I was doing all the work and he was earning so much.”
- There were three things I was looking for a business – online, passive income, earn millions of dollars – sky is the limit. So with Amazon, I said, “This is it.” I borrowed ₱250,000 for a course. My mom gave it to me, thank you. I have already tried several businesses and failed. I wanted to prove them that it will work.
- So I launched my first product in 2016. Whatever I earn from VA, it’s used for household expenses. So I borrowed ₱40,000 from my sister and used itto invest in scarves. I hired a model, studio, makeup artist. It failed. It didn’t sell because it’s a seasonal product. I launched in February and winter already ended at the time. So that’s my first lesson, I didn’t do enough background check.
- Second product was copper socks. 3000 minimum quantity. This time, I can’t borrow from my sister and my mom. Another ₱200,000. I had 10 clients as a freelancer. Puyat is life. OT is life. My 2nd product also failed. I was getting depressed. I wasn’t getting enough sleep, I was rearing three kids and breastfeeding my bunso. I wanted to give up but there are bills and loans to pay. Plus, I didn’t want my story to end that way. So with my 3rd product, it was successful.
- May purpose si Lord why this is happening. At the Payoneer event – it was my first time to speak at such an event. That’s when coaching started and the rest is history.
Q: Before I ask, how was your overall journey as a VA and mom. How did life looked like before? How was the transition?
“Madugong transition from the corporate world. Before you join Amazon as a freelancer, make sure your savings are enough compared with your previous job.
From being a freelancer to being business owner, you’re doing two things and you’ll be very busy. Very long checklist. I had to give up sleep. I was just thinking that if I do the right thing in two years, it will be over soon.”
Q: If you were to share your best practice that contributes to your overall success, what would be it?
A: “Karamihan sa amazon technical. The secret is in in your attitide is in how you will play the business.
Always think big and long-term. I know business owners who only think about what to sell tomorrow. If it doesn’t sell, hanap ulit ng item na pwede bumenta. It doesn’t go this way if you want to stay long. Anker product is the best example.
If you are to plan a business now, ano ba yung product na bumebenta naman pero marami pa gusto yung market. Example, itong Bluetooth speaker. Long before this was launched, maraming tao na may speaker pero de saksak at malaki. Then a wise person simply thought of a speaker na di na kailangan isaksak. It’s the same hat that you will wear pag nag-iisip ka ng long-term business that will answer a problem and that you can sell worldwide. Just treat Amazon as a platform for your bigger business.
Also, you don’t need FB Ad skills or any digital skills to sell on Amazon. Amazon has it’s own ads and it’s easy to set up.”
- What mistakes struck you the most that contributed to your overall new self?
A: “I had so many mistakes in the past. Not only the scarf and the socks. Only few people know na naglalako ako ng pizza sa mga canteen. Bakit hindi ko ito dalhin sa Manila? May nakilalala ako na nagbebenta ng cute na pizza kasi naka-roll and wrap sya. Sikat na sya sa province where I lived before. Syempre wala akong kotse so I had to wake up 4am para sunduin sa bus yung box ng pizza at ideliver ko sa canteen ng mga schools. Nung nauso ang cellphone, nag-buy and sell din ako ng cellphone. Sa mistakes, ang napansin ko, di ko siya pinag-isipan mabuti. I started a business with no plans at all. No plan is planning to fail. I always do things on my own. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
Bahala na, ako na ang delivery, ako sa pick up, ako na ang nakipag-usap. Di pala nagwowork yun. Now that I had coaching sa Amazon, napansin ko na mas lumalaki yung business. “Team work makes the dream work…” The more that you have a group of people who will help you in the business, the more your business will grow. Sa ngayon, isa lang VA ko pero with that, kasama rin ang supplier ko, forwarder ko… If I didn’t have a relationship with them kahit na malayo sila, di magiging okay ang business ko. Kasi right now, sila-sila na lang nag-usap at malalaman ko na lang ng papunta na sa Amazon. The secret is the relationship with your team aside from thinking big.”
Q: If you had to leave 3 guiding principles as a legacy for the next generation, what would they be?
A: “Everything is not instant and automatic. There’s an impression that if your mindset is okay and that if positive ka naman sa lahat, everything will go smoothly and automatic magiging mayaman ka na. It doesn’t work that way. Everytime you want to build something, everything worthwhile doesn’t come easy. So lahat yan, pag meron kang gusto, pagtatrabauhan mo ng husto. Usong-uso ngayon, yung mindset, yoga, meditation, positive thinking, okay naman sila eh. But if you don’t work hard for it, you won’t get anything in return.”
“Always commit to your promises. Your word is your law. If you commit to your promises to your suppliers and customers, it gives the impression not only of your credibility and your professionalism in the business. If you don’t follow through your promises, your brain is telling you that you can’t keep your promises, therefore, you are not credible and you are not worthy to have this or to have that. You are not aware but you begin to have self-doubt. So the more you commit to yourself and your business, everything will follow.”
“Always be grateful for what you have. With the negativity on social media, it’s easy to lose this. If you are grateful for what you have, all things are possible. You’ll be more encouraged to do things because all you see is good.”
Q: If your bank account went to zero, what’s the first action you’ll do to build your empire back up.
A: “First, I’ll call my agents to stop auto-deduction to avoid bouncing checks.”
“The beauty of establishing a business in Amazon, is if you maintain it, you will still earn passive income.”
“Skills and network. Your network is your net worth. It’s easy to build a business with the people that you know. As long as you have these people and the right mindset, babalik at babalik yan.”
Q: How do view money? What does it represent to you?
A: “Money is a score card (of what you’re doing). The more money that you have – the more people that you can help. Eventually you will find that sweet spot where you’re helping others, you’re happy with what you’re doing and at the same time, you’re earning from it.”
“Always prioritize your eCommerce business before freelancing work. Always do it first thing in the morning before you do your freelancing task. Where your focus is, that’s where your energy is. At the same time, you’re building the habit of building your business.”
“I’m enjoying minimalism. You should be careful of your schedule and the people you hang out with. When you’re growing, eventually, you’ll part ways with people who don’t share your mindset and you cannot blame yourself for that. Even if they’re your friends, you can advise but don’t forget that you’re growing and you deserve to grow and you deserve to have friends who have the same mindset as you. Don’t feel guilty about that.”
HOW TO GET INVOLVED
For more related content, follow Lish and Melissa at:
- FACEBOOK – AMAZONATIONPH
- INSTAGRAM – AMAZONATIONPH, LISHAQUINO
- Join the Queen’s only Tribe http://bit.ly/enterkingdom
- Get to know Melissa Profeta at hhttps://www.thisismelp.com/
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