The State of Repairs

Episode 3 - Build a Bigger, Better Repair Store with Ahmed Abusharbain

February 23, 2021 RepairDesk Season 1 Episode 3
The State of Repairs
Episode 3 - Build a Bigger, Better Repair Store with Ahmed Abusharbain
Chapters
The State of Repairs
Episode 3 - Build a Bigger, Better Repair Store with Ahmed Abusharbain
Feb 23, 2021 Season 1 Episode 3
RepairDesk

In this episode of The State of Repairs, we talk to Ahmed Abusharbain, motivational speaker and CEO of Unlimited Prepay Distribution and UPPLuck, a marketing firm for cell phone and wireless stores.

Ahmed has had a long history in the mobile repair industry. He's seen the glory days of Nokia back in the early aughts, and has worked on providing quality wireless services to his customers, moving into the repair industry as a natural progression.

With his vast knowledge of building businesses and working with all kinds of people, along with a very positive outlook on life, Ahmed has transformed into a business owner who is also a motivational speaker and shares his secrets for success with everyone in the repair industry.

We talked to Ahmed Abusharbain on how repair businesses can grow in the current climate, what practices should be implemented to push towards success, how to take care of your customers, and why loyalty in business matters. Using all these tips, repair shop owners can make their store bigger and better than ever.

Catch Ahmed Abusharbain here - https://blog.uppluck.com/ahmed-abusharbain
Visit his business - https://www.shopupd.com

Sign up for RepairDesk -- https://www.repairdesk.co

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode of The State of Repairs, we talk to Ahmed Abusharbain, motivational speaker and CEO of Unlimited Prepay Distribution and UPPLuck, a marketing firm for cell phone and wireless stores.

Ahmed has had a long history in the mobile repair industry. He's seen the glory days of Nokia back in the early aughts, and has worked on providing quality wireless services to his customers, moving into the repair industry as a natural progression.

With his vast knowledge of building businesses and working with all kinds of people, along with a very positive outlook on life, Ahmed has transformed into a business owner who is also a motivational speaker and shares his secrets for success with everyone in the repair industry.

We talked to Ahmed Abusharbain on how repair businesses can grow in the current climate, what practices should be implemented to push towards success, how to take care of your customers, and why loyalty in business matters. Using all these tips, repair shop owners can make their store bigger and better than ever.

Catch Ahmed Abusharbain here - https://blog.uppluck.com/ahmed-abusharbain
Visit his business - https://www.shopupd.com

Sign up for RepairDesk -- https://www.repairdesk.co

Nosher Khan:

Mr. Ahmed Abusharbain. Thank you so much for joining us. I wanted to start off by asking a bit about yourself. Could you please tell us what you do and tell us a bit about yourself, about your business and how you're helping repair shops

Ahmed Abusharbain:

in general. Okay. So I come from the wireless I was a retailer myself back in the nineties, and I did the retail and up to 2010 somewhere like there. And then I decided to leave and get, not that it just happened slowly but surely because I was always looking for growth and growth. Once I got to a level where I really needed something to new, I started a retail, a wholesale business supporting retailers and this business, the wireless independent stores Then suddenly it's just, this snowball gets bigger and bigger, big, I become consulting, advisor talk about marketing about set up the place uniforms, all these things that just put something together, like a package to talk to people when they open their stores. So you can say, how am I helping them? I'm just giving them my experience and I'm telling them exactly how it is, how it needs to be done. Sometimes I'm a little bit harsh when I talk. I don't mean it because I really want the best for them. And I don't want them to fall in the and the issues that I had when I was growing.

Nosher Khan:

All right. So it's to basically help stores that are starting up getting getting their feet on the ground trying to make the best of their abilities to be able to open wireless stores and various stores and, expand their business. That's what your expertise are.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Actually. Recently I headed the marketing, the social media marketing, speaking, talking to their customers, reaching out to their customers because a lot of these stores and They just forget. It's not my job to know everything. I didn't know everything either when I started my business. So when to start the business that you have a lot of stuff to think about tobacco products and let's experience training, all these things, then marketing comes the last thing, which is, should be in one of the, one of the main process. So I'm bringing this and I'm speaking about marketing nonstop all day long every day to let them know that. It's one of the requirements, one of the most important things that the kids, I forgot about it when I was in retail, but I did it word of mouth, passenger flyers, putting a flag in front of my store and put a big banner. But these things are the old days, the new generation and the younger ones. They need to see you on social media in order for them to come and shop from you. And we're talking about millennials right now is almost 36 days, seven years. So they're old. So we're talking about younger than millennials and the younger until the 20th. So we need to speak their language. That's what I'm adding now. And I'm pushing very heavily into the markets. All

Nosher Khan:

right. So why do you think that a lot of the stores, they focus on marketing last, as opposed to all these other aspects? Do you feel that it's because they don't see immediate gains from it such as increasing the prices, giving the best, getting the best out of their sales. Is that the reason for it?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

No, it's not the job to know about marketing a lot. I'm not saying that it's not one of their fulls that wasn't their place before. I didn't know social media was that powerful. I had to I had to train myself and take classes and seminars and and adding, and I had to do my business and stuff. So when, as soon as we, I wanted to talk to people, I wanted to reach as many as I can. And I want it to reach everybody as a matter of fact, and the easiest cause the fastest and the freeway is. Social media. You run a little bit after that. You have to do some paid ads, but at least start training yourself. The store owners, they need to inject marketing. It's very important. They forget because they're just not equipped to everything and they're not supposed to, it's not smart and stupid. I don't want to say, or it's just lack of knowledge. They just didn't have the time to think about it. And that's why they need to listen to our advisors. They need to listen to the professionals like you and I, and tell them, you need to give me the billing you need to, you need to put a POS. POS is important. POS should be in the store before the product, get to the store. And that's something they keep forgetting about. You need to know your numbers, you need to know your customer count. You need to know how much you're spending on how much you're bringing in all these things that are important.

Nosher Khan:

Of course. And do you think that the focus on marketing is a lot more prominent now with the age of social media,

Ahmed Abusharbain:

the age of social media, and on top of that, it's the pandemic that we're going through with this situation that we're going through, that preventing people from coming to the store, you got governments telling people, stay home, don't go out, don't go to work, don't do this, don't do that. And then you have a business needs to survive and pass the message to the consumer. The only way and the fastest, I don't want to say the only way, the fastest way, the cheapest way, the most efficient way is the social media. If you print flyers and you do mailers and all these things, you're talking about a thousand dollars minimum. If you want to do flyers here, at least in, in, in my, in our area, in the us even more sometimes. So why don't you just push some social media, put a budget for 500 to 1500. It depends on your site. I know some stores are spending 25 and 30,000, 20 550,000 a month. So you can't tell me you can't afford $500 to a thousand dollars. Must need it. And it need to be spent like the light bill or the gas bill. You gotta spend it every month, whether you like it or not. This is must.

Nosher Khan:

I P I feel also because with conventional marketing, it's limited by how far you can reach physically, you can go to the next town, maybe distribute flyers or put up signs over there, but you still need to be physically there with social media, with digital marketing, you can get to anywhere you want, your target, any reason you want and get more out of it.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Absolutely. And I, as a matter of fact, just thinking of this, I just literally had a call with I have clients in Canada. I have clients in the Virgin islands and we're doing marketing for them and it's working very well for them. I'm here sitting in the middle of nowhere in the Midwest, and they're far away from me and we're helping them. It's it's a SAS company and it's, it can be dumb and it can be very managed from anywhere remotely. The idea is marketing and billing. What's repairs shops need everyone. Before you open your store, you going to have a repair POS system repair desk, which is doing very well for a lot of the clients. Everyone is happy with it. You guys keep, repair desk, keep improving, adding more cool tools and showing where's the money. How much money you made, text messaging, all of these things you guys adding that's important for repair shops and market and training. They need to train their employees. They're lacking of training. They need to train their employees. They need to invest in training

Nosher Khan:

experience different with working with people in Canada and the Virgin islands compared to being in the Midwest. How do you finding it?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Let's say it's almost the same. Everybody want to work. Everybody wants to make money. I believe, by expanding. This is for me, this is a new to add clients outside the, the 50 States. It's everybody want to grow. And social media works for every country. I believe every region it's nothing different. Actually, as a matter of fact, I enjoy working with international

Nosher Khan:

clients. Okay. That's really great to hear. So talking about repair shops and how they can grow their business. We also find out that, repair shops often get stuck with carrying out some of the same old activities. They have the certain work routine repairing devices or fixing them, sending them in and that sort of stuff. How do you feel that they can diversify their business prospects?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Invest in websites, start a website immediately. If anybody doesn't have a website, they need to start. Right now. It should have been happening at least two years ago. So websites and sports marketing, I don't want to keep talking about market. Let's talk about other products. They can add prepaid products, ads, revenue, bring customers. I know it's not repair, but it's something support the repair. There's a lot of stuff that we do. In, in our life that does not bring us income, but it helps other products to come in and bring income, like things to their customers. They need to go live on their Facebook sometimes and show their customers what new stuff they have. So that's another thing I keep bouncing back again to marketing. I apologize if I talk about it a lot, but it's just, it's neglected in this market completely. It's like a bad thing to do. Like I don't want to be on the screen. Are you kidding me? No, that's wrong. This needs to change. Hire someone to do it for you. Add electronics maybe audios, maybe speakers accessories. It starts always educating yourself, going back again and attend. Now maybe it's they can't attend a trade shows, but maybe sometime soon they need to start attending trade shows, open their eyes and see what's going on. They need to get out of this. I am one man show and I just want to pay my bills. Nobody opened their business to pay their bills only they want to, you want to grow. And that's what I tell everybody. Invest in your business training, add more products like electronics, accessories, prepaid products is big. Huge. I saw them. I made all my money from prepaid, not from repair, to be honest with you. The pair I had later and because repair was not exist back in the nineties. And when I first start coming in and they galaxies. That's what got the whole thing, the whole thing started. So prepaid is big money and they need to be patient. They need to take the time, no rush and quit copycats. Everybody's just start your own a signature, your own branding, their own name. Push what you think, give the customers what they want. Don't give them what you think is good. We run our business, but by the consumers, prepare desk, you guys always have a million suggestions coming to you and you picked up those ones and the ones that you can implement to do it. I'm saying whatever they want. I think for them, I don't bring what I think is right. I bring what they, and that's what they need. They need to give their consumers what they

Nosher Khan:

want. It's no problem at all that, know, you keep talking about marketing because that's exactly what we know were we're talking about what we need to be able to talk to people about, but things that are lacking in repair shops. So it's okay. If you want to talk about that, because that'd be perfect. I want to be able to learn a bit more about premium offerings as well. Yeah. I wanted to be able to ask you, so if. People want to be given to diversify into this sort of field. There's certainly infrastructure that will be needed. Repair shops that are looking to get into it. Need to have some sort of like groundwork to be able to lay it. Could you tell us a bit about what is with wire?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Nothing just apply, I can send you a link and we can attach it to this. How to apply, to become a prepaid a store. They have a computer easy approval, as long as they're willing to sell it. And not to have it on the shelves because a lot of stores, they get the products and they just have it just to bring in you guys sell it because you cannot be in order for you to be a prepaid provider in a store. A retailer, you have to sell the products and you have to offer it to your consumers and you have to let them know that we can save them. And in order for you to live the people close to your neighborhood, to know you're angry, all your clients, you have to advertise for it for back against advertising, everything you add. Need to be on your Facebook, on your websites to let people, customers, the customers not going to have it. So to be approved for the prepaid, it's a matter of three 72 hours, just apply for it. We get them approved and we will get them all the products. It's just give me 72 business hours and I think they will be approved maybe four days at the most.

Nosher Khan:

All right. So once the pool process has done, so what's the procedure that comes after that. You, how do you coordinate them?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

We send them their logins and username for that for at and T prepaid, for example, or Verizon prepaid or H2O wireless. And then we give them access to, to order some handsets that they want from our warehouse. They can order answers from anywhere they want, but they can order from us or we provide, we represents me to be here and they have a marketplace. That's we train them. It's easy to train. Just order a SIM card. And we asked him to order SIM cards. So we know that they're going to do activations well after they do that, the orders, their first order, some parts before they get it, we already train them. So once they received their products, they're ready.

Nosher Khan:

That's great. So I believe that sort of ties into the whole training aspect that you just mentioned earlier. That is what is necessary.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

We're here from nine to six, Monday through Friday, and we have all kinds of groups that they can reach us even after hours. We asked our calls. We have full staff with customer service here and sales representatives at easy. We will walk them through. We'll make sure that they're profitable. Put it this way. I will make sure. And my team will make sure that they are activating. They're making money and they're enjoying the money. And there's residual income. There's a lot of money behind it. That is the first commission. First month, second month, third month. This is a lot of money and prepaid. If they just need to focus, I don't want to say drop your repair and do a prepaid, but just keep an eye on both because there's two income. Now we get them an extra stream of income coming and they need to take care of

Nosher Khan:

I'm pretty sure they would really appreciate the extra revenue stream that comes in. How has the business operations been affected? Post COVID before I believe situations were different than now. You probably have to scale your business up in different ways out. How's that work for you?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

It was tough, man. It wasn't the beginning of us cared a little bit because we, we lost a few candidates here. We have, we lost some few salespeople, some got scared, some, didn't know what's going on. They're worried about their family. The propaganda was going so crazy. And I believe in COVID assistant, man, don't get me wrong, but now we're well, I'll tell you what, when COVID came in, I went nuts on marketing, talking to my customers, letting them know that things are going to be all right. This is still out there. Open your store. Just be careful. That effect was pretty hard in the beginning, but now we're bouncing back again. And actually it's giving it's slowly but surely. I don't want to say it's as good as before, but it's getting there and we didn't give up. And we added other revenue avenues, like marketing, for example, to help because we have, we smelled that this connection between the store and the store owner and the customers from the COVID. So we made the connection with social media and marketing for the stores. So this is actually was becoming very strong after COVID.

Nosher Khan:

Any special lessons that you learned along the way in making that sort of connection, because it's probably going to be a different sort of environment that you're operating in that

Ahmed Abusharbain:

never feel comfortable. Man. People feel comfortable with what they do, never stayed where you're at always add, improve things, run like someone's chasing you, run your business. Like someone going to take it from grow your business. Always keep fighting, never think that you don't have competition. We do have competition. Called eBay and Amazon every day. So if you don't have someone that's standing next to you, you do have competition everywhere with Amazon and eBay, as I said, an online. So become parts of that space. Work in your websites, invest in the websites, the repair shops and wine shops. You need to get out of your mindset that the business will walk into my door just because I opened the store. These days are not as easy, the days are not the same. We're in different environments. We're in a different time. And invest in marketing, invest in adding better parts. I, I see I'm in a lot of groups and I see a lot of people discussion that jumping from one vendor to another, build a relationship with some vendors and stick with it, stay with your vendor and the good days and the bad days, because they will stay with you with building relationships. Relationships with men go through this bad time because I picked up my phone call, the guys that I know, I said, Hey, things are getting tough. We need to stick together. Let's get closer and see what's going on and help each other. So not being that, being comfortable, always looking for something in you, not new improve what you do. You don't have to bring something new. Just let's improve our stuff a lot. Like you guys do, repair the repair. I've looked at the software and a year and a half ago, and I'm looking at it right now. It's two different things, way better now, every time. And it's going to be better next year or the year after it's going to be better. So you guys are always improving your things and I'm hoping, and that's what the stores need to do at improve efficiency training. Don't give up on your employees, talk to you and please to get to go to meetings and get close to your appliance by talking to your clients on social media.

Nosher Khan:

I'm guessing that, the whole point of view, getting together with your people, making sure that, you tell them all right, let's stick together. They really appreciated that because they were going through hard times just as everyone else. I, yes, they would want to be able to secure their business. They will want to be able to know that, they'll give them to make you go through with it. Same for your employees, because when you know that this is not going well, because of the pandemic, you're going to be very shaken up about it. You'd be very scared. Yes. So sticking around with them, letting them know that yeah, we worked together. We're going to be better. We're going to be fine. That's how it is. How do you feel that, that's that sort of aspect of community is within the repair industry, then wireless, full industry and how do you think it could be made better?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

As an individuals, they need some guidance. I can see the guidance are missing, and that's why I talked to them sometimes. And I jumped in the groups and I say different conversation. And I'm sorry, I don't speak arts. I don't speak screens because everybody's speak that language. I speak marketing and billing and efficiency and training. I bring different value at different conversations to the groups. And sometimes the groups, they, some of them like it, some of them they're like, Oh, I don't know about this. I didn't want to, they have to open their mind for other things. They have to be open, always. So listen I listened to anybody. I'm open to listen. That's why I'm where I'm at, because I'm going to listen. Doesn't mean I'm going to do what you tell me, but I'm going to listen to you and learn from you and and that's what they need to change their mindset and become their business owners. Now you have to be open for everybody. You have to open for good than bad. But the police open your mind, train and invest in yourself. A lot of them don't invest in stocks. And I say, invest in yourself is by training, taking sales training. There's million of them in the online. I'm building my own sales training, but it's taken a little longer because I, I just, I guess when you build your own thing, it's just you need it to be perfect. But one day it's going to be awful for me. But sales training just having a uniform. When customers walk into a store and everybody's wearing the same shirts with the name tag, it changed the whole perspective and bring them up. So a lot of stuff that little bit they're missing these things and they don't, they just think opening a door, customers will come in, I'll make money. I hope it works for everybody, but it doesn't work.

Nosher Khan:

So having that sort of thing really helps out with, getting customers and getting them look, stick

Ahmed Abusharbain:

with you. Put out a loyalty program for customers bring repeating customers, family discount give them coupon when you're finished with them. There's some department stores here Coles. Every time I go there and I buy, I spent a hundred dollars, they give me a coupon with 10% off for the next purchase or 20% off. They just keep dragging me back. For a, with their coupons and they tell me it's expired within three weeks or two weeks, or it started maybe next week, two for two weeks. So stuck like this. And I just look, that's one of them sitting at my desk on my house and my car. I looked at him like, Oh my God, that's very personal. So the bear shops, any business, they need specialty. What are you talking about? It, their shops and pretty big shops. To give coupons and build a loyalty program. It's very important. Everybody wants points. Everybody feels special. They want to feel special. So bringing them back again by doing that.

Nosher Khan:

Absolutely. Their loyalty with you deserves to be rewarded. And that's what customers really prefer. They like feeling special. They like feeling that the other person that you're dealing with on the counter, they care about you. That's why there's a whole, there's a lot of personalization. That's going on with a lot of companies right now where they provide personalized service. They they offer you special discounts. They look out for you and that's what customers really like. Do you think that's the marketing approach is what most more liquor shops and wireless stores need to offer

Ahmed Abusharbain:

more? Yes. If they do that, I think this is, will be an extra step, an extra niche, at least above everybody else. And that will help. So loyalty let's repeat loyalty and adding new products such as electronics or prepaid more accessories. Speakers, because it's a, there's a big streak speaker market now in the U S it's huge, everybody loves music. So give them what they want. Maybe a, how can I say this? Maybe? So there's a lot of gadgets in the electronic world. They can bring it gaming, iPad, maybe Mac computers, laptops offering the hot spots. There's so much they can add. And they can add other, they can have many businesses on top of their business. They just need to open the mind, be open mind and willing to add these things and never think that you're busy with their pair. This has got to continue. Things can change a little bit, something can change, whatever, just add more to what you have. So keep it strong. And that's very

Nosher Khan:

important. I want to be able to talk about this a little bit more. I feel that let's say a normal business owner. Is looking to be able to expand. And there are all these options, like you just mentioned, they can add devices, they can add game consoles, they can laptops, they got speakers. The problem is that These things will, number one, require knowledge of the set field that you're going to go into. And number two will require investment to be able to get into ed, to be able to make a good return on that investment. And I feel that maybe business owners, they shy away from that because they either don't know what they're selling or they don't have the, it'll take away from their gains and they'll have to invest in quite a lot. How do we allay those fears? How do you think that we can make them confident enough that this is a place that you want to be.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Just keep talking to them and and show them examples. And, I want to go back again to when I was at retail, I opened my store and I literally was meeting every week and I local coffee shop to exchange ideas with other business owners. We have a spot here, not too far from my My office actually happened to be of the not too far from my office. We used to meet and talk like face-to-face grab a cup of coffee and just talk to each other. And what do you have? What you got then, let me see. What is this before was talking about before iPhone, before I had the Android, and this is how then the next day I'll stop by and see what he has. And this is all can be done on the groups on Facebook. Someone has a new thing. They can share the idea and that's what they need to get out of the groups. I see a lot of the groups is sometime, they help each other, but a lot of them bring them an issue and they, nobody help him as much. I jumped in the hose and I say, Hey market at prepaid. This is at that application. That's what we're needing. We're needing more collaboration and helping and we need to stop thinking that people, people's trying to copy you or take ideas. I think they're more protective to their business. Then sharing knowledge is powerful. Should you share your knowledge? People will like you, then people will buy from the people will come to me. And that's what I do. I share my knowledge all day long and I wanted to share it with everybody and then another, just let you just keep your eye open in the groups for new ideas, not and stay away from the negativity because it can be some negativity in some groups, so stay and get what you can get to help your business and add more stuff and read. They're not man. Your YouTube, Google has everything. What else? Every day, I'm on YouTube learning and listening to podcasts and what we do right now I love to listen to people talking and exchanging ideas because that's how I learn from these things.

Nosher Khan:

And is a great way to learn, to be able to, go online, look at podcasts, look at YouTube interviews, look at all sorts of people, basically just sharing on LinkedIn. That really helps out a lot because people are there, but they're precious experience with their, the things that they've learned in life the hard way, and they're there to share. It's let your life is easier. You can make better on your business. And that's a great way to be able to do this and is so great that we have technology that supports it these days. We have great internet. We have devices that get us stuck. We have platforms that allow for that sort of stuff. And I feel yes, absolutely. It should be used. Let's talk about your experience with this sort of stuff within that community where you bring ideas, talk to people, share stuff you might have cultivated a lot better relationships. Would you tell us about like how that relationship or those relationships have been cultivated? And how big progressed forward?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

I believe so many friends just me posting on social media and saying, for those two posts I did and it's been working very well. I said, if you need any help, There's there 15 minutes with me and let's talk about how can you improve your business so far? I had over 20 calls. This is just three days ago or beginning of the week I did this. So this is connecting me with people and some of them say, and I'm glad that we spoke. How can you help me with marketing? How can you help me with this? My goal from this post is, and I tell them at the beginning, I'm not here to sell you. It's just to show you what you need to do. And if you like what I say, we can do business. If you don't. It's okay. You let me know when you're ready. So I believe in before we get, we have to get, and I tell the store owners when you give your consumers what they need and the right advice. And let me sh for example, if someone posts on their Facebook, let me show you how to put it to add six months, life to your phone. Let me show you how you can protect your phone from being wet. Let me show you how you do this thing here. Customers will want that. Absolutely would like that they will say this guy is not, this guy is here to help us and shit and give value to people. And that's not every move I have to make. I have to expect money from it. But money will follow that money will come like tsunami, but you just need to show your heart and soul and your available for your customers. And that's how they gonna like it because consumers always think that you are you're after them for money. No. I'm not here for it for, for everybody opened business for money, but you're here to help the community and to give to the community. And that's how you rise and that's how you come up. You you guys do great job by giving a free two weeks. I'm sure you're willing to work with people in all different aspects, but you give so much in order for you to get back. So to get back again, we I invest my time in education. Some of my time like 200% of my time, I give it to the front, to the community. I don't make money from the 80%, but my 80% is pulled aside as 120%. So my 80% is always full. Like I need more time. I'm so happy with my 80%, even 70% it's equivalent to on other guys. I was down in 20%. So that's how we grow. I can get,

Nosher Khan:

right. So basically it's about adding value to the people that you're talking to. Absolutely. It's not just about, selling them a product because everyone is going to be wary of that. Everyone knows a sales pitch when they see one and we've gotten to, it's so bad that we see everything as a sales pitch, but that's not really what it's supposed to be. There's this whole concept about inbound marketing, where it's not about selling the product, it's about vying value so much that people come to you. They want to do business with you. They want to talk to you. And that's, I believe the principle that you're going

Ahmed Abusharbain:

for. Yes. Yes. Give value if value, give value, ask for the sale.

Nosher Khan:

Absolutely. That's great. That's excellent. Yeah. So that is that's basically, I believe one of the things that you feel that repair shops and Barlow stores they can Excel at, they can do better at, because obviously they're businessmen, they're starting new. They don't know how things really work. It's mostly focused on the sale, but there are things beyond the sale that will help them out. Things beyond the sale that will help them secure more investment, more re more revenue. Yes. And that's what they need to focus on. And, obviously when you expand your business, there's only a point to which, you can increase your sales by just, pitching your sets. You have to do above and beyond. You have to go more than that. That's great. That's awesome. What sort of feedback mechanism do you have for people who, you interact with? How do you how do you determine that, this person has taken things positively and if they want to share something with me that I can use to improve my business, or you go to help other people, how do you go about that?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Let's say, for example, I work with okay. I S w I present we do marketing and we, and I help with the prepaid as well. So let me talk about the prepaid. I don't keep bringing every company out there. I present three companies at and T prepaid, Verizon prepaid and HDR. There's about another 20 of yanno is out there. I can't bring all of them and I cannot work with them. I have to work with, I have to be loyal to a few people because reality, if you're doing, if you are, if someone on the store, for example, and to do 50 activations on two products, that's, twenty-five each 2030. You satisfied everybody. If you bring every single MBA at all, out there thinking. That you're satisfying the consumers, which has actually you're confusing. The consumers don't offer every product out there thinking that you're going to help your consumers, your health. You're driving yourself crazy. The driving you please. Crazy. You're not satisfying any of your vendors because you're dividing. you know what I mean? It's not going to work. It's you have to be loyal to a few products and then you need to push this product to build the relationship with the consumers. You become the expert in what you do. What do you do? A few things, not everything. That's experts. You become experts in what you do, and then you satisfy your competitors. Then you build a relationship. Then whenever there is a special, they always will take care of you. I noticed a lot of retailers. They get frustrated by selling six products. The next month they have eight products the month after they have 10 products. Don't do that. When I say products, wireless products, brands, you got Verizon and I make DMT and you have to be mobile. And that's it get one of the carriers, one of the MBAs, that's the present one of these companies and that's it. And if you want, the more you add, the more you're honest, satisfied. And so loyalty is important in this business. I don't see a lot of loyalty. This needs to change. We need to be more loyal to each other. We need to stick with each other. For example, I'm working with, let's say a retailer and I have repaired desk did not pick up my phone because I called them at a time they're closed. I should not be pissed off at them and move to another company. I need to work my stuff with the company. I work. Same thing here. We're not perfect. We, build a relationship with someone and cut them a slot when there's an issue happen. Because if we keep jumping from one, I don't want to call it. I call it the monkey business, jumping from one branch to another branch. You're never going to be a, you don't want to keep jumping like a monkey. We got to stay together. We have to stick to that and build a business. That's very important very important that we need to work on. This industry needs a little bit of loyalty. Need to understand a little bit of understanding and work with your vendors and build a relationship jumping from one to another. You're never building a reputation, build a reputation with someone, tie yourself with them and grow your business.

Nosher Khan:

I think that's a good way to put it because let's say, any store would face any business would face some sort of issues with logistics. With the being able to provide their services properly on time when required is you can't be all on and ready to go 24, seven, it's just not possible. So we need to have that sort of understanding that, if we can face issues, so can our vendors. So looking at the people that we're working with and we need to get them that margin. So that's basically the whole cooperation aspect working with it. Also, you've been mentioning that, your basic thing is that don't spread yourself thin by putting everything that's under the sun in your store. That's not going to work because you're going to be confusing your customers. You're going to be confusing yourself. It's going to be very aggravating because you'll have so much to take care of. And you your marches will be spread so thin that it's not going to benefit anyone. It said stick to one and focus on it. Build that relationship, cultivate that, give your investment to one because it's a lot easier and it's more.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Yup. Yup. If you're in their shop. Work with one or two parts vendors, that's it not 21 or two, that's it. Or if you want to change one of them for a reason, because they're not the lack of service or anything, then you change them and you just drop that. But please don't be jumping from six, seven vendors because this guy has a cheaper screws. This, you got to have cheaper tables. This guy has a cheaper, just stick with one guy I was too. And that's it. Prepaid offer two to three brands and that's it not the whole world. You know what I mean? There's a reason when you go to a chicken store or chicken restaurant, they sell chicken and you know what I'm saying? They're loyal to, you cannot offer every food in the world at one restaurant. It's just not going to work. And invest add when I say, add new products, adds new line of this, for example, there's no order. There's add speakers add prepaid. You know what I mean? The ad Hanson's finance parts, all of these things. Just if it's a whole different Avenue to add, but don't be copying, like I said, when you do a billing system with one company, 10 companies, because you need one system to put everything together, that's what I keep telling them. Don't spread yourself too thin and keep jumping from one vendor to another vendor. When you're pissed off with this guy, you go to this guy from this guy, your

Nosher Khan:

army. Then I have to create that stickiness. You have to stick around with your person long enough that that's true. All right. So in your experience, which vendors and which prepaid services do you feel have been the most helpful for you at, for your

Ahmed Abusharbain:

businesses? I do. I do Verizon prepaid and agency prepaid. The big companies is that prepaid side. I have it show it's an old relationship with them. And then I kicked, I was working with the trapline back in the days, and then I dropped that relationship because of the, a lot of reasons that we were not seeing eye it's okay. It doesn't matter. It doesn't make them bad. It doesn't make me bad. We just didn't agree. And I moved on. I buy my products, my handsets from couple of guys from New York and and a local guy here. And that's it. I've been dealing with the same vendors for the past 10, 15 years. I do not change my vendors. I don't care what happened. I added one extra one during the pandemic because one of my suppliers was completely closed from two months. So I don't jump emails, blast come to me all the time, XYZ a little cheaper than what I buy from this guy. I don't buy from someone. I don't know. It's just not going to happen. I need to know the person. I need to know the company. I'm not driven by the price. Driven by the quality people just jumped from the price. How much does you need to charge? Because if you charge me more, I'm going to go somewhere else. It just doesn't work like that. We're running a business here and let's say you let's say someone in my, one of my vendors increases prices. I'll call him. I'll ask what happened, man. And I'll tell him other people what they're selling, but I'll stick with them until he gives me a reason to leave.

Nosher Khan:

It's understandable because obviously, you've put time and you put effort and you've invested a lot into that relationship. And you want to be able to make it work for the best way that you can. Yes. It's not simple. It's not easy to be able to jump from one vendor to another, even though people do it all the time, but sticking around with your person, there's a lot that goes into it. And you form that sort of bond. You formed that comfort level with it. So that, if anything does turn sideways, you still have that sort of a connection with it to be able to say, Hey, what's going on? Is everything okay? Are we going to be okay with business? So it's a lot more easier to be able to do that when you know, the business that you're working with and the sort of things that are happening there. And you have that inroad as opposed to, jumping from another domain to another vendor where you know, absolutely nothing. And you're just going with it.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Yes. And like I said, again, the loyalty is important. And then you build that trust with your vendor. If someone working with me for five years, you think I'm going to give him bad advice to piss him off, or I'll give him a bad product. Or I will even allow me to buy the cheap products to sell it to my vendor, to my clients, and then piss them off. No, I will always fight for them like I'm fighting for my employees. And that's part of our success here is that we look for nothing, but for quality. And I tell my clients, we're providing you quality, good products that brings you good customer, good feedback from the customer.

Nosher Khan:

How's the response to all of that been so far for your

Ahmed Abusharbain:

customers? Good. Good. We're not perfect. We're gonna make a, there's errors here and there happens, but thank God it's not happening twice a year. Maybe I might have two a year to, one hand I can count them somewhat. That's tough because we do our best to make them happen. So our satisfaction was almost a hundred percent. Unless someone left us flora for a price, someone gives them a better price in a SIM card or something saved them. You'll be surprised that a lot of businesses driven by the price, not by the service. And then they ended up coming back because when you leave and you go and someone's not answering your calls, not giving you the direction that we do not talking to you, you're going to come back again and that's happens all the time.

Nosher Khan:

I can understand that because a lot of the market is motivated by price, but it's price is only like temporary. That's only a temporary sticking factor. It's good customer service. It's good. It's being able to take care of your vendors of your retailers. That is what makes you stick in for the long run. So it's

Ahmed Abusharbain:

understandable. And that goes same for the retailers. And I tell them, don't go cheap. With your products with your parts, with your phones, do not go cheap. Don't be driven by the price, give quality and tell your customers, talk to your customers. Listen, I can just fix your phone for maybe 70% of what I gave you the price, but it's going to be a bad parts that I bringing you back. We're giving you a quality service. We got on tier one work. We have tops technicians here and all these things that you have to put together and talk to your customer. Tell them that I have good products. Good service. And that's what they need to hear. They want to hear it from you. When I go to a restaurant, I like to hear our beef here is organic. It's free. Just tell them these things, talk to your customers a little bit, know that you are there for them to take care of, and then they will come back and broadcast this message on social media. Let them know that we have nothing but the best or we stand behind our products. We stand back and our prices. We stand behind our services and we're here to support you.

Nosher Khan:

I believe, yes, that is absolutely what people want to hear because a good customer service, good quality matters to people a lot, especially in this day and age. Yep. Absolutely. I'm guessing it will be definitely really hard to see a person that you built that sort of relationship with, move over because of pricing because of something like that. How do like work with that? How do you deal with that?

Ahmed Abusharbain:

It doesn't hurt you some time when we want a good customer that you build a relationship with for many years, decided to leave because something just out of your hand, you can control. I really wish, I wish them the best if they stay with us when they leave, but I've seen a lot of them come back. I'm not going to tell you everybody supports me. I'm happy with what they do every now and then there is an error happens. That I'm like, okay we'll just get it. We're gonna move this. I know you'll take care of me the next time you got to do something for me next time. We're not in business to make 100% everything. We do bring us money. That's not going to every business. Like I have a friend of mine. I was talking to him yesterday. I met with a footprint that he sell cars and he said, we sold last month, 190 cars. I'm like, wow, that's awesome. 990 cars in one month. He said, yes. That's if you make money on every car patient. Oh no. 20% of them, we just let them go. We got to recycle the thing. So I said 20, they said sometime 25%, we just have to reset. We cannot sleep on the car for two, for 30 days. If a car stays in our lot for 30 days, we get ready to go. Even if we have to even lose a couple of hundred dollars, because sitting in the lot is a loss of money. I said, you don't go back to the guy who spoke to the car and tried to get your money back. He said, that doesn't work. I said, you know what? That's a great idea. So why would I smell following someone and he going to sell it? He's just billing me for it. Why don't you set up all your costs? Let it go. Let it go. Even throw a couple of accessories on top of it. Just let it go. Sometimes not every move in life is going to bring me money. If I think this is going to be happening, then I have few millions of dollars. I gave it away for free. I need it back. That's not going to work. I give consulting. I work with people. I sit on the phone with someone for a half 40 minutes for half an hour, sometime over the weekends, I give it away for free. I don't ask for money for every phone call I make for every move I do for every product they sell. There's a lot of stuff. I get the same thing. So you need to put your sub clearance, get it out of the way. Don't hate on the guy who sold your product that didn't sell. Billy and yourself were sleeping on it. And that's something they need to understand and don't go cheap on your parts. You knew your vendor was telling you the quality and you went for another guy, cheaper products, and you were pissed off at them. People stop at yourself. You're the one who brought the problem to yourself, the issue. So always move up. Don't go down, move up.

Nosher Khan:

That's actually a very interesting point that you raised right at the end because it's all about accountability. It's about holding yourself accountable, as opposed to, like trying to push it on other people that are like, you know what, this I'm mad at this guy, because he didn't give me the right thing or I'm mad at that because their prices were too high and I didn't stick with them. They could have cut me some Slack. No it's all about, because at the end of the day you have a significant part of it as a business owner. It's your business at the end of the day? No, one's going to be responsible for whether it fails or succeeds other than yourself.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Yes. Yes. And that's something they need to take some accountability on what they do. This is their ax. This is your business with billing and others, but let me yourself and move on and change the way you do an update to the mindset. And another thing. I just want to say, if you're running your business, if you're running your business the same way you ran your business last year, at this time with the Corona virus pandemic, then you're doing something wrong. What did you do? We update an hour life. How did you update your business? How do how are you marketing? Are you broadcasting it? Because are you doing, if you doing the same way, you're running your business before you got to change, we have to change our mindset. We have to update our products. You have to update the way we do business. Safety is important. Work with your consumers, run promotions. Economy's not as last year and it's not bad, but it can't be worse. So be prepared for the worst and hope for the best that's everyday what I'm doing.

Nosher Khan:

That's great. And what'd you just mentioned right now, there's a lot that people can do now. There is so much being able to, I can go on social media, talk to people, what stuff up, keep them informed deals, sales, relationship building, sticking with vendors, that sort of thing. There's a lot that people can do with all of that. It's beneficial. All of that. If they do over the course of a year, if it's different, like last year, it absolutely helped their businesses. Absolutely helped them grow.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Yep. Absolutely. I, life is beautiful. We're still in business. If there's some business now that they made it over, they need just to do a little updates, a little tweaks here and there, and things will be fine.

Nosher Khan:

And, judging by how you've been successful with your clients and with your customers coming back to you after leaving you, it seems like your business is doing absolutely. So if anyone does want to find you, how do they get in touch with you? Where can people find you.

Ahmed Abusharbain:

I have, I have, I can send you my bio just search for my name on that. And you'll find me Ahmed, that books are written and I'll send you a link after the call, you can post it and they can find me all my social media platforms have that link.

Nosher Khan:

All right. And you're based out of

Ahmed Abusharbain:

Missouri St. Louis, Missouri. Yes. And I, obviously, I love it's a prepaid distribution and luck social. Where we're here in St. Louis, Missouri. We would love to work with everybody. All the bear players stores are welcome. We can, we, we'll put a link and I hope you put a link from down Nicole, so they can click on it and they can apply for all the prepaid products. And I appreciate you bringing me on this call. This is amazing, man. I feel even closer to you right now and add to your team.

Nosher Khan:

Absolutely we'll feel the feeling is mutual. Additive was a really nice call. I had a great time and I hope you did too. And it was really nice. Can I ask if we can maybe do this sometime again in the future? Would that be okay? I'm

Ahmed Abusharbain:

available for the industry at any time, just give me 24, 48 hours. I'll get there.

Nosher Khan:

That sounds excellent. All right, Mr. . Thank you so much for everything. It's been a pleasure. We had a really great time and I hope to see you in the future. Sure.