Alain Burrese is a former U.S. Army sniper and a fifth degree black belt. He's an attorney and a certified active shooter response instructor through Safari Land Training Group. He's the author of nine books and 11 instructional DVDs. He's also the instructor at BrutalSelfdefense.com and he's the author of books, Survive a Shooting: Strategies to Survive Active Shooters and Terrorist Attacks.
NOTE: Complete transcript available at the bottom of the page.
Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 368
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars[05:09] Tom's introduction to Alain Burrese [11:20] Writing reviews on Amazon [15:31] Amazon changed the “rules” [19:08] Current strategy for doing reviews [23:33] Not get rich quick but could be worth pursuing [25:25] Getting “adult” stuff for review [26:32] Being honest when using another person for the review [29:32] Video can help a lot [30:45] Better reviews are those that help others [33:09] Having all 5 star reviews is not “believable” [35:06] Sponsor message [38:48] Alain's most memorable reviews
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars
Screw The Commute – https://screwthecommute.com/
Screw The Commute Podcast App – https://screwthecommute.com/app/
College Ripoff Quiz – https://imtcva.org/quiz
Know a young person for our Youth Episode Series? Send an email to Tom! – firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a Roku box? Find Tom's Public Speaking Channel there! – https://channelstore.roku.com/details/267358/the-public-speaking-channel
How To Automate Your Business – https://screwthecommute.com/automatefree/
Internet Marketing Retreat and Joint Venture Program – https://greatinternetmarketingtraining.com/
Amazon Vine – https://www.amazon.com/vine/about
Lost Conscience book – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B008Y2RDFQ/
Reflex Protect – https://reflexprotect.com/
Survive and Defend – http://surviveanddefend.com/
YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmjmyfiYNgmho9XK4RZcbBA
Your Warrior's Edge – http://yourwarriorsedge.com/
YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/user/YourWarriorsEdge
Tough Guy Wisdom – http://toughguywisdom.com/
Tough Guy Wisdom on Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B006OUEY7U/
Alain's page on Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/Alain-Burrese/e/B001KIHVY4/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Cell Phone Automation – https://screwthecommute.com/367/
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Episode 368 – Alain Burrese Amazon Reviews
[00:00:08] Welcome to Screw the Commute, the entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire Tom Antion.
[00:00:24] Hey, everybody it's Tom here with episode three hundred and sixty eight to screw the Commute podcast. I'm here with Alain Burrese. So think this is the third or fourth time he's been on the show. He's a good friend of mine and he's one of the few people on earth I would trust my life to. How about that? Today he's going to talk about another part of his life. I mean, he's a big martial arts expert and when you hear his credentials, but he's here to talk about a different part of his life I think you're going to be interested in because you can get free and cheap stuff out there. I said you can get cheap stuff for great Christmas presents, but he's going to tell us the ins and outs of how that's worked for him over the years. Hope you didn't miss Episode 367. It's all about cell phone automation. I mean, you won't believe the things you can do with your cell phone. I mean, some of it is like if you if you sit it down, face down, it does one thing. If you turn it over a dozen others thing, it's just automate. It'll turn your lights on at home just automatically.
[00:01:30] So amazing things that these cell phones will do. Now, how would you like to hear your own voice here on screen, the commute? Well, if the shows helped you out at all in your business or give me the ideas to help you start a business, we want to hear about it. Visit, screwthecommute.com and look for a little blue sidebar that says send a voicemail, click on it, talking to your phone or computer. Tell me how the shows helped you and also put your website on there so I can give you a big shout out in your own voice on a future episode of Screw the Commute. While you're over there, pick up a copy of our Automation eBook. And this go I'm in episode 367 goes way deep into cell phone automation, but all the other kinds of automation I use are in this e-book. It's screwthecommute.com/automatefree. It's we just we figured it out actually two years ago. So it's more than this now. But just one of the tips in the book has saved me seven and a half million keystrokes. OK, guaranteed it saved me carpal tunnel syndrome. All right. So grab your copy.
[00:02:39] We sell this for 27 bucks, but it's yours free for listening to the show at screwthecommute.com/automatefree. And then also, while you're over there, pick up a copy of our podcast app at screwthecommute.com/app and it put it on your cell phone and tablet does all kinds of cool things and you can take us with you on the road. All right, now, I know the pandemic is still going up and down and you're you're locked down and you're not locked down and you're wearing a mask and you're wearing a I don't know what else, a football helmet. I don't know what they're trying to do to us, but but it hasn't affected me or my students like the general populace and maybe you that's listening to this because we can sell from home. And I've been doing it for 26 years straight since the commercial Internet started. So I'm not giving you any book report here, folks. I mean, people call me up, say, OK, Tom. And I'm like, from what I sit here in my big old house and sell stuff. I formalize the trade. I've been teaching this for about twenty two years.
[00:03:47] I formalized the training in the form of a school. It took me three years of living hell to get the license, background check, financial checks, everything. And I'm certified to operate by SCHEV, the State Council of Higher Education in Virginia for my school. But you don't have to live in Virginia because it's distance learning and it's good quality distance learning, not the stuff they're trying to shove down kindergarten kids that are failing.
[00:04:16] I heard statistics the other day that there's like 800 percent more failing grades in in grade and middle school, 800 percent more because of this. So so, you know, you don't want that if you can help. But I mean, a lot of people are going to homeschooling, so this doesn't happen to their kids. But anyway, one of the best things you could do is get your kids selling on the Internet and and helping the family out and you learned how to do it. So check that out at IMTCVA.org. And a little later, I'll tell you about if you're in my mentor program, you get a scholarship to the school that you can use yourself or gift to a nephew, niece, your own kids, grandchildren, one of the best gifts you could ever give them to keep them out of this traditional college mess that just runs their debt up and then they compete for jobs at Starbucks.
[00:05:09] All right. Let's get to the main event. Alain Burrese is a former U.S. Army sniper, a fifth degree black belt. He's an attorney and a certified active shooter response instructor through Safari Land Training Group. He's the author of nine books and 11 instructional DVDs. Oh, also, he's the instructor at BrutalSelfdefense.com, don't forget that. And he has one of his books, Survive a Shooting Strategies to Survive Active Shooters and Terrorist Attacks.
[00:05:42] Is the gold standard of this sicko industry. OK, we didn't do it. We wish this industry didn't exist. But if it does exist, you want to stay safe and you want to keep your employees safe. And if you're in a company, get this book and tell your CEO to get this book and then bring Alain into the team because it could save lives. I mean, it does save lives.
[00:06:07] So he brings his education, extensive experience to reflex protect as the director of Active Defense Training, where he develops and conduct both live and online training with a common sense approach to staying safe, the pen defending yourself and surviving workplace violence and active threats. Alain, are you ready to screw? The commute?
[00:06:32] How are you doing, man?
[00:06:34] I'm doing great. Thanks for having me on.
[00:06:36] Oh, man, I always love to have you on and catch up with you. I hope we get back to the point where you can come out to the retreat center like like you've been doing quite a few times over the years. We miss you over here.
[00:06:48] So tell everybody about all this stuff you're doing now to keep people safe and the reflex protect. And then we want to get into something you have done for many years and actually quit recently. So we'll give them the whole picture on this, getting a lot of free stuff and cheap stuff in return for a review. Tell them to bring them up to speed on the stuff you're doing now, sir.
[00:07:11] You know, as a director, as the director of Training for Reflex Protect, you know, part of my job is to get out there and teach people in person with covid. You know, we did some online training so we could develop and deliver online training. So I don't have to go to places.
[00:07:28] Well, tell them what this stuff does anyway.
[00:07:30] Reflex Protect is a brand new defensive spray. That is the gold standard. And it's taking over pepper spray in different markets because it works faster than pepper spray. It does not cross contaminate everyone like pepper spray does, which means only the bad guy's affected. You and anybody else in the room are fine. And we have a decontaminate that we can reverse those effects quickly, which is extremely important for our hospital clients, our law enforcement clients. Those that have to clean somebody up after they've been sprayed for a person, if you want some protection in your pocket, less than 20 dollars, you can have a small pocket sized paucity of gel in your pocket. Somebody jumps out at you, you spray them in the face while he's withering in pain. You get to safety.
[00:08:21] So you have the personal ones out now. I don't think you did last time.
[00:08:26] You can go to reflexprotect.com. And if you use my first name, Alain, your listeners can save a little bit. Put that in the coupon code, you'll save a couple of bucks. And so again, it runs 1995 for a pocket version. You'll get a couple of bucks off using my name and you have something in your pocket that will stop somebody 15 feet away and give you ample time to get to safety.
[00:08:53] Yeah, and typically we you know, when we taught this stuff in the brutal self-defense, you got to be careful indoors using the old pepper spray stuff. Right?
[00:09:03] Exactly. It gets in the HVAC system. Everybody in the room is coughing where with this presidia gel, which is a CS based gel. It's a brand new it's not like the old CS like your grandfather used. This is a new formulation that I could have my arm around your shoulder. And if you got sprayed in the face, you'd be in pain and I'd be grinning because I'd be fine.
[00:09:27] That's perfect for a girl when a guy comes up and puts his arm around her. Oh, yeah, you're going to put your hands on me. OK, check this out.
[00:09:35] Exactly. You know, an Uber driver guy gets violent in the back seat. If you sprayed with pepper spray, you'd be jumping out of the car and you would take forever to clean your car up. This you could spray the guy in the back seat. You would be fine. And if you did get a little bit on the seat, you could clean it up with the reflex, remove, decontaminate, and you're back on the road, you know, fine. Oh, and having to go dickon the car. And that's what the cops love it for because the cops will tell you how they hated cleaning up after pepper spray.
[00:10:08] I get it. I got to tell the story about your name because they want to make sure that they write that down for this guy.
[00:10:15] But it's Alain and the way we met was on email for I don't know, it could have been a couple of years for all I remember.
[00:10:23] But I always thought he was a girl because it's L.A. And then one day he called me up and I'm like, Wait a minute.
[00:10:35] You're not the only one that's had the first first day of law school classes, is Miss Elaine breezier? It's Al and I'm not a miss.
[00:10:46] Is this French or something or what is it?
[00:10:48] It's a French spelling. So, I mean, I had a good buddy in Belgium who speaks French and he was talking to another good friend who is over in Belgium. And Wim is like, you keep talking about this Alain guy, like, I know who he is. And Mark's like, yeah, Alain, the sniper hapkido guy in Montana and Wims, like, are on because he always had read it. And just being a French speaker, it's Alain I'd use American, Alan.
[00:11:19] So. All right. So let's talk a little bit about today's topic. You were a really, really top reviewer on Amazon. So I want to go back to the beginning and say how you came up through doing all that, but then tell me why you quit and what's the difference now? And and there's still opportunities there for people to get cheap, cheap stuff. Tell them your experience.
[00:11:44] I first started writing reviews because I read a book on marketing books that talked about writing reviews on similar categories and that gets your name out there. And so obviously my first books were on self-defense.
[00:12:01] I started reviewing a lot of self-defense books and then it developed into all kinds of books and then products. And I did become I was an Amazon top 1000 reviewer for a number of years, and I think I cracked the top 500 for a short spell. I'll write that down these products.
[00:12:23] As you were starting out, were you purchasing them or how were you getting them right in the beginning?
[00:12:29] If you can remember, I was purchasing everything in the beginning or they were already books that were on my bookshelf and I would be reviewing them because I did a lot of defense books and then videos at the beginning and a lot were Paladin press because I had a ton already on myself because I was a Paladin press author as well.
[00:12:52] Now, do you remember when they started putting verified buyer on on listings?
[00:13:00] Because not 100 percent wasn't always there, I don't think. Yeah, it's when I started, you know, was in the early 2000s and, you know, I thought I did it for years. And then they did start cracking down more, making sure that you put that if you were if you received it for free or whatever. So you had to make sure you started putting those notices in.
[00:13:24] Yeah, and and so when was the turning point, if you can recall, I know this is thinking way, way, way back when people started coming after you to that and giving you stuff.
[00:13:39] Probably when I got into the top 1000, because you can go on Amazon and you can research the top 500, the top 1000 and get a list of those names.
[00:13:50] And so places would do that. And I would start getting emails for all sorts of different things, asking if I would review it. It would be authors wanting to send me their books. It would be companies that wanted to send me their products. And then I also was invited to be on the Amazon Vine program. Tell us about that, though. I believe so. OK, and the Amazon Vine is invitation only to reviewers. And if you write a review for an Amazon Vine product, it says right on the review, Amazon Vine, which people know they should know that you do receive Amazon Vine products for free. And its books and products, they're sent right, right from Amazon and you review them and there's that little Amazon Vine and you made some pretty big gauze with this, right?
[00:14:49] I did. I mean, I've got computers, computer screens, printers. I got a lot of different things from the Amazon Vine programs that that expensive.
[00:15:00] I think you were telling me you got a laser early, like a four thousand dollar laser printer or something along.
[00:15:06] I did what I did. I got a really nice laser printer. I got a couple really nice inkjet printers. I got a nice copy machine. So I got a they got a really a four K computer monitor hooked up to my other.
[00:15:23] So you're still using it there?
[00:15:25] Yes, I have that computer monitor sitting in front of me right now.
[00:15:31] And so. So why did you quit?
[00:15:34] Well, there were a number of reasons. One is the time. You know, when when I was reviewing it just got more and more time, and as you're getting more stuff, obviously you have to write more. And I felt my time would be better used for some other things. The Amazon Vine program, while great they changed their rules and they started taxing you, you know, they give you a 1099 is the income. They started giving you a ten ninety nine for the things they sent you during the year. Where the first number of years they didn't do that.
[00:16:09] Did you have the option of sending it back?
[00:16:13] I don't think so.
[00:16:14] Yeah, I thought a one way street and they did start, they told people that then they, you know, they were telling people what the taxable value is going to be. And it might not be 100 percent of the price, but sometimes it's pretty close. So that was just another thing. It's like, yeah, it's cool to get this stuff, but I don't really want it counting as income. So that sort of weaned me off of not being as thrilled to get some of the free stuff.
[00:16:43] Then they also just a lot of different rules and different games were being played with Amazon that I really didn't want to be a part of in some of those games will get you in trouble with Amazon.
[00:16:55] Such as? Hey, buy my product, get a verified review, and then I'll paypal you the cost back, which really isn't very honest. You can't really say you're a verified purchaser if they're actually paying you back. And then some of these companies even want to pay you a premium. So they'll pay you the ten dollars that the item costs and an extra five bucks. And Amazon really frowns on those. I never did any of those. I mean, I took a lot of free stuff, but I wasn't going to get paid to do a review like some of the people want you to do out there.
[00:17:35] Yeah. And it's still people are talking about that they'll doing it. But it's a risky thing and it's clearly unethical.
[00:17:45] Yeah, I still get emails now. I get emails now saying review this and we'll paypal. You you know, the purchase price. Plus a lot of them are from China and Chinese products. And not to say that all those products are bad. I got some good things from Chinese companies, but there are some Chinese companies out there that are wanting you to review sort of crap to get any voting machines or anything.
[00:18:11] Yeah, and I would never get paid to write a review because that's just it's not right to do.
[00:18:19] Now, I understand some of them now are giving you discount coupons and I guess not now, no matter what, if you're compensated in some way, you've got to reveal this, right?
[00:18:33] You are supposed to. Yes. And if Amazon catches that you're not, you receive something for free or at a discount for review purposes. You're supposed to disclose that in the review.
[00:18:44] Ok, so that's, I guess, more ethical that you're revealing it.
[00:18:49] And I mean, I still see this like there's a lot of people on YouTube, you know, saying, hey, I got to tell you, you know, I got this, you know, from so-and-so company and asked me to review it.
[00:18:59] And, you know, so they're making a big deal of reviewing this because they don't want to get shut down. Probably YouTube has some about it, too.
[00:19:09] So are you saying this is no good to do or this still could get you a lot of this kind of things? And what would what would be your strategy if you if you wanted to pursue this?
[00:19:19] Well, I think it can be good if you have the time and if you can write really good or do video reviews really good that are informational, that will help people. And if you get a lot of likes and followers and you get built up. Then you can go and request things from companies, and I used to do this, especially if it was something that went with the surviving defend and the safety and self-defense.
[00:19:47] So in it so you tried to stay in a certain genre of stuff and then your name gets around in that.
[00:19:52] I guess I would first, especially if I'm going to request something. And sometimes for like books, I would request books from any genre because I say, hey, look, I'm a top 1000 reviewer. I'd really love to review your book. And I'd have authors say, sure, but often instead of just Amazon, I would say, look, I'll put it on this page of reviews that has 100 reviews of martial art books on your Warrior's Edge website. Plus, I'll do a video on your Warriors Edge YouTube channel and Facebook page. It has, you know, 10000 likes. Or if it was real self-defense, I'd, you know, promote the Survive and defend YouTube channel and website as well as Amazon.
[00:20:35] So if you have multiple platforms that you can put a review out that can be more attractive, especially if those sites attract, you know, that market. Obviously, I couldn't say, hey, I want to do your pots and pans on the surviving defen website.
[00:20:55] You know, survival pots on the pots and pans. There's there's survival pots and pans, wood, but not just regular ones. Exactly.
[00:21:04] So if you have some different if you have Amazon, especially if you get up into a top reviewer, that that pulls a lot of weight. But if you have other platforms where you can review these in multiple places, people will send you free stuff. If you can show them that you can get that review in front of the eyes that they want to see it. Yeah. And your platforms you have it's going to be easier.
[00:21:28] Yeah. And if you're if you're on, like, your own website, you can probably just not be so blatant about, you know, there's no restrictions that somebody is going to shut your website down. If you if if your disclosure isn't on each item, you could probably just put a general disclosure and then people, you know, if they went into your terms of service could see it, are just a little one at the bottom of the page rather than being forced to make, hey, I got this free.
[00:22:01] So don't trust this review on every every review.
[00:22:04] Right. You would probably want to just put that. You know, I do receive products for free or at discount for reviews and links on this website are sometimes affiliate links. Yeah. How you want to do that. Put all that together in one little place and you'd be fined for your website and you're still being honest with people.
[00:22:26] Now I think Amazon really cracked down on that. You can't resell these things if you get caught, but that wouldn't apply if you're reviewing other places.
[00:22:38] So could you resell stuff at the time when you were doing this?
[00:22:42] Yes, if I want to add, you know, Amazon really crack down when I was doing the Vine reviews, they didn't want you reselling Vine stuff. Right. But again, yeah, they have no say over.
[00:22:54] If you say you sent me one of your products to review and I turned around and sold it, Amazon couldn't do anything with that because they weren't part of it.
[00:23:04] Well, with the if you had your product listed as a vine and I requested it through the vine, Amazon could get mad if I sold it.
[00:23:13] Of course, you would never sell one of my products because, you know, it'd be a collector's item or something.
[00:23:18] And that's why I had at the VHS and cassette tapes out there on the bookshelf. The first thing I bought from you back in the 90s. So go ahead. Go ahead. Review them. See? Yeah. Nobody will care at all either.
[00:23:33] So what other important things about about this should somebody know you're saying it's not any kind of get rich quick kind of thing or get rich quick because it's time consuming. If you don't write good reviews, you might as well not even do this, I imagine.
[00:23:49] Right. And I think, you know, the most important thing is to be honest and write about what people want to know about the product. I mean, so whether it's a product or a book, you want to have an honest, detailed review of the good and the bad. And one of the things I was criticized a couple of times because so many of my book reviews were positive, almost all of them. And the reason is if I pick up a book and I don't like it, I don't read it, I don't finish reading it and I don't waste my time reviewing it. Now, I was sent some books and I was sent some products for free. And I couldn't honestly write a good review about them, and I told the author or the person who sent me the product, I wrote them back saying, I can't write a review that you would like. So I think it's best that I just do nothing at all.
[00:24:53] And they said, OK, and they were fine with that.
[00:24:56] I mean, because I was sent some self published books that were just horrendous. Right. With spelling and grammar mistakes and just terrible. And I, I couldn't give them a good review, but I didn't want to go on Amazon and bash the heck out of this guy.
[00:25:12] That was just, you know, asking me politely saying, hey, can I send you a free book to review? I wasn't going to go slam him, so I would just write back and say, I can't really write a review you'd like, so why don't we just not do anything?
[00:25:26] Now, I understand you got some interesting stuff sent to you one time.
[00:25:34] Well, I never had it sent to my house, but I used to get emails for different sex products, lingerie for different things that if they did show up at the house, my my wife probably wouldn't have cared for too much and wondered why I was getting some of this weird stuff.
[00:25:52] So when your name gets out there, especially when you get into that top one thousand or more of Amazon people can research and get those names and start e-mailing you stuff. I would get solicitations. Just I was getting them literally daily. Multiple e-mails. Would you review this, would you review this? And I said some of the stuff was pretty cool and I would write back and say, yeah, I'd be happy to. Some of it was absolute garbage. Some of it was like said stuff that was pretty questionable. Not something you'd want delivered to your house, probably.
[00:26:32] So now let me look at this scenario, see what you what you say. So let's say in martial arts and in self-defense stuff, let's say you got sent a a woman's bra holster, which they exist, you know, to put a more back up handgun in a in a bra holder. Well, I doubt if you're going to review that personally. I mean, I might be a better candidate since I'm way fatter than you, but is it OK to give it to somebody else to try out and give you their feedback and then you write the review?
[00:27:10] I think if you're being honest with it, you could you know, I mean, my wife, that she doesn't carry a gun. So I mean, but she could try it on him with a weapon and stuff. And we could definitely you know, I could definitely write a review saying, oh, my wife tried this on. It was comfortable or if it wasn't comfortable, it it held the weapon securely, blah, blah, blah. So I don't think there's any problem doing that if you're honest about what you're doing.
[00:27:36] Got it. Now, what would you say? Makes a good review.
[00:27:41] Besides, being honest, is honesty being one being detailed? You know, you see a lot of these reviews on Amazon, and they're not by top reviewers because, oh, this item is great, this item sucks. That doesn't tell you anything. If you're going to say something's great, why? What are the features? What does it do? How how did it work for you? You know, the same things that you would want to know about a product that you were going to buy. You want to be telling other people about those features or if it's a book, you know why you enjoyed it. You know, obviously, if it's a fiction book, you can't give spoilers. So you have to be able to write a review that, you know, people knowing about the book and why you enjoyed it without giving any kind of spoilers away to.
[00:28:35] Speaking of fiction folk, Alain's book, Give Him the title of It is the only fiction I've read in 30 years.
[00:28:44] Lost confidence.
[00:28:47] Yeah, and I could not put it down. It was just so interesting in the story of what? Because I know Alain and then I'm reading this book and I'm thinking, is this how and in this story or is this a fictional character.
[00:29:02] I don't really know.
[00:29:03] Well, that is the secret of Ben Baker is based on me, and I think it is based on my buddy Frank Spears.
[00:29:09] So, I mean, there's a lot of both of us in that book anyway.
[00:29:13] If you if you like military kind of stuff that that skill sets, let's put it that way. And if you like the bad guys getting eliminated, this is the book for you, man.
[00:29:32] So details. And so do you think video helps a lot on some of these?
[00:29:38] I think the more work I get, you know, I think video can help an awful lot if you're good on video and especially for different products that maybe are easier to describe and show and illustrate with a video format. You know, like Reflex Protect would be a great video review because you can show the features and how easy it is to use and how it operates. And more so than you could with just writing.
[00:30:08] Yeah. And you could go you could go down the street and shoot somebody with it and then look at their reaction. Look at that person like that.
[00:30:18] So definitely some products lend themselves much better to video. And a video review can really enhance the usability for the viewer, which then gets you likes if you're on Amazon, the more helpful reviews are that boosts your rankings. So it's not just how many reviews you write, it's how many reviews are helping others that help get you up into those top levels.
[00:30:46] Yeah, so you just have families that I'm sure you get better at it over time. But but you got to put some thought into it to make sure that it's helpful to people. So you get those those clicks on this review was helpful for sure. Now there was. Yeah.
[00:31:02] Another little secret sometimes that if you can be the first person to write a review on something, something that's new and people and it's helpful and people start clicking, that is helpful.
[00:31:16] It stays in that top position and we'll keep getting more helpful clicks because if you're the fiftieth or sixtieth person to write a review, it's buried way down there. People may never even see it or click on it to get the help for things I say.
[00:31:34] So would you say it's worth or it's not worth the trouble if something already has a five hundred reviews to even bother with it?
[00:31:46] If you're trying to boost your score on Amazon, it might not be if obviously you got the product for free or you want to review it because it's in your genre, you already reviewed it for your website. So it takes nothing else to put on Amazon. It still counts for the number of reviews that you have. But I did notice when I was reviewing things that if I could be one of the first people to review and then people thought it was helpful and it stayed at the top, then it would get more and more and more. If it was buried down below, it would get as many helpful comments and helpful clicks.
[00:32:23] Yeah. Now, it's interesting because, you know, you can sort the reviews and I always sort for one star reviews.
[00:32:31] I want to see what the bad things are about her, about a product.
[00:32:36] I don't know, could they sort in those days or still, even if you can sort the best reviews, stay at the top?
[00:32:42] They do. I mean, so and again, you know, people are lazy. I like to look at the bottom reviews and the top reviews, too, and get a good and even picture of why people are saying what about it? But if, you know, if there are fifty five star reviews and mine was the fiftieth one, it's going to be hard for people to see it. They're not going to see it as readily as they're going to see that. Number one review that the best five star review because you know. Thousand people have already clicked and it was helpful.
[00:33:10] Yeah, and, you know, I saw a study not too long ago that all and I have this trouble with my school. I got one hundred and fourteen reviews on the school and they're all five star. And I read this study that said all five star reviews are not believable to people. And so I'm like, what do I do?
[00:33:33] Ask somebody to give me a bad review to even things out. But they said like four point two or something is the most believable review for a good company. It can't be 5.0.
[00:33:47] I've seen some of that, too. And we both know that there are individuals out there, especially in the book industry, that have they make these launches and campaigns and all of a sudden there's a hundred five star reviews on the day it's launched. You know, they have it all set up in advance to drive those books to an Amazon bestseller, which is not the same as a New York Times bestseller by any means. But there's games that people play doing that and most people know about those games.
[00:34:19] And so they're they tend to shy away from. You know, too many positive reviews, all like the day that the book comes out.
[00:34:28] Yeah, and if anybody in the know knows that you can be brain dead and get an Amazon bestseller because they you know, they just go to some obscure category and you sell two books in a month and all of a sudden you claim you're a best seller.
[00:34:44] Exactly. And that's why, you know.
[00:34:48] When they say Amazon bestseller, you want to know, OK? Was that the best book over on Amazon overall or was that the best book in underwater basket weaving on the Fourth of July in the year 1946?
[00:35:06] Yeah. All right. Well, we got to take a brief sponsor break. And when we come back, I'll give Alain a chance to think about some of his most memorable reviews so far. About 20 years ago, I kind of turned the Internet marketing world guru world on its head and the guys at my level and girls, too, but mostly guys in those days were charging 50 or 100 buck up front to teach what they knew to small business people.
[00:35:32] And I said, you know what, I know a lot of these people, they're they're rip offs. They'd be hiding in Mexico. If you gave them 50 grand up front and wouldn't help you at all. So I said, I'm going to fix this.
[00:35:42] So I kind of turned everything upside down in and made them all mad because I charged like an entry fee. But then I tied my success to the student's success. So for me to get my fifty thousand, they had the net 200000.
[00:35:59] Well, people just love this idea. And seventeen hundred plus students later still going strong here.
[00:36:06] And it's, I call it the most unique, longest running, most successful program of its kind anywhere. And nobody has had the guts to challenge me on that.
[00:36:16] I've I actually begged them, come on, bring a program up and compare it to mine line for line and nobody would because they'd be embarrassed.
[00:36:25] It's got so many unique features. You have an immersion trip where you actually live in the retreat center here. We have a TV studio where we shoot videos for you, which on the open market go from from 700 to 1500 dollars apiece.
[00:36:40] And we've never had anybody get out of here with less than 10. And we had one couple do 53. All right. And we added them, put all the the graphics on them and gave them all these marketing videos as just part of the deal, just a small part of the deal. And it's also all one on one other than the group. When you're immersion weekend or there's maybe five people, everything else is one on one. Me and my entire staff work with you one on one. We hate group stuff because we're talking to an advance person. The beginners are lost. We're talking to the beginners. The advanced people are bored. That's no way to to get people to their success. So it's all one on one. Nobody else to even talk to you, let alone work with you one on one. So that's part of the deal. And also, I told you at the beginning, if you're in my mentor program, you get a scholarship to my school, which you can either use yourself for additional training or gift to someone. We had one guy who had spent 80000 bucks on his daughter's crappy educations. He's working a lousy job and he gifted it to her. And she's after four months in the school, up to eight or excuse me, last time I checked, after four months, she was six thousand dollars a month as a side hustle.
[00:37:57] All right. So the stuff is that we teach in the school is extremely powerful. The nuts and bolts stuff I've been doing for 26 years. And the demand is massive. Every business on Earth, small and large, needs email marketing and chatbots and text marketing and blogs and websites and all the stuff. And so that's the stuff we teach. And that's why our students are in high demand or they can start their own business or both. So. So check out my mentor program, at greatInternetmarketingtraining.com and I'll be glad to talk to you.
[00:38:39] There's no machine guns or sniper hides hides here to pressure you. It's just a great program and we're happy to present it for you.
[00:38:49] All right. Let's get back to the main event. We're here with Alain Burrese. He's a long time friend of mine. He's a military guy. We thank him for his service, martial artists, but he's got a unique sideline. He did four years to get lots of free stuff by doing reviews.
[00:39:05] So, Alain, what what are a couple of your most memorable reviews out of all the thousands of them? You did.
[00:39:13] Sort of hard to think, I mean, I guess one right here that that nice screen in front of me was a nice review.
[00:39:18] Just how big is that thing?
[00:39:20] They oh, it's I don't know. It's 18, 19 inch 4K screen. It's more it's bigger than that. It's because my my new laptop, 17 and so I must be a 20 something, 30 something. It's big. How much is it worth. It was worth I don't it was over a thousand bucks or I mean it was up there because I mean it was 4k we're sort of brand new in this time and now they're coming down and then you got a four thousand dollar laser printer.
[00:39:55] I remember.
[00:39:56] Yeah, that was nice. Wow. And I actually I didn't actually have room for that and I actually gave that as a Christmas present one year. Oh my goodness.
[00:40:07] Oh, I wish I was on your Christmas list.
[00:40:11] But, you know, one of the things that, you know, people should know and it's memorable to me is you need to have a thick skin because some of your reviews are not going to be popular. Now, you know, I mean, sort of to the right, and so some of the books that I read and I'm an avid reader, weigh over one hundred bucks a year. So, you know, I wrote books not only on Chuck Norris is martial art themed books. But I wrote a review on his political themed book, I have books by Donald Trump way before he became president that I wrote reviews on and other people. Well, there are going to be folks out there that disagree with you because they don't like the person. So even though I wrote like the book on Chuck Norris, I said, if you are a conservative, you will enjoy this book because Chuck Norris has a very conservative political views and they really come through on this book. If you are a liberal, you will not enjoy this book. I mean, I was very honest.
[00:41:21] Yeah, well, it's hard to get mad about there.
[00:41:23] I mean, exactly. And because I gave it five stars, because I agreed with Chuck Norris, his conservative views in most of the book.
[00:41:31] But I got comments saying bashing the heck out of me and stuff because and it's like, well, you don't like his political views, but why are you bashing the review that pointed out that it made no sense. I got bashed for some of my Donald Trump reviews, even though the books were on business and success. And and Donald Trump didn't write them straight or writes all his stuff. But the information in them on success and positivity and thinking big, that's all good stuff. And I said I enjoyed it. It was a fun read. It's a positive read, some good advice to be successful. But, boy, when he ran for office, did I get bashed on positive reviews of his books? So that's going to happen out there.
[00:42:20] So how do they bash you? So they respond to your review, right?
[00:42:24] Yeah, they can comment on our review. Right. You know, there was there's a guy out there. He's questionable about his military history. I've read several of his books. I really enjoyed the books and I wrote positive reviews.
[00:42:40] And I really got bashed for him because there's people out there that say he lied about some of his military.
[00:42:48] And you're talking about.
[00:42:49] Yeah, I have no I no idea if he did or not, but the book on the face value of the book had good information, and that's what my review was. But people are out there and they'll get stupid like that.
[00:43:02] And you just have to learn to ignore that kind of things that add up at all, like the comments on a review in your in your reviewer kind of rating.
[00:43:12] I think it can. And I don't know if, you know, I mean, obviously those people vote that the review wasn't helpful, which, you know, can hurt your ratings. I mean, so but, you know, I had way more positive than I ever had those negatives stand out.
[00:43:31] Yeah, so, yeah, so it's an interesting thing here, it's changed like most things over time on what you can do and what you can't do. But but if you like, they're right. And if you I'm thinking if there's product that you would buy anyway.
[00:43:48] Why not review them and then build your reputation in that genre and then you might start getting free stuff or discounted deeply stuff on things you use anyway or that you'd like, I guess.
[00:44:03] Yeah, I think you can I mean, I started with martial art and self-defense books and videos because that was my books and videos were on and I wanted to get known in that category. And I got to the place where there were publishers of martial art books and videos that would send me stuff to reveal. And so, yeah, it definitely can be done. And if you have the time and you do a good job and you're honest with it, you know, it is a way to get some free stuff or some discounted stuff. And you can help other people by giving a good, solid review of, you know, what's out there for people to purchase.
[00:44:44] Yeah, and like I said, Amazon is kind of the big kahuna.
[00:44:47] But like I said, YouTube is full of people that this is all they do.
[00:44:53] They get hundreds of thousands of views and they get ad revenue from their videos, you know, that are monetized.
[00:45:01] And so there's other outlets now that that, you know, probably the rules aren't as strict, so.
[00:45:08] Right. And if you can build up a following, you know, that's the key, right. You need to either be a top reviewer or have a, you know, huge following in that genre. Then people are more apt to give you stuff to review to get in front of your audience.
[00:45:24] Yeah. And when you say use, I mean, I see all the time people have like 9000 views on a video and they say, well, I got this. You know, it was given this the review by so-and-so company. So we're not talking millions. You don't have to have millions of views to to get this ball rolling because people want to get their name out there. And the the regular ad methods are not as good as they were. So it's if you have nine thousand faithful followers on a YouTube channel, you're valuable to them. You know, if you're in line with their product mix, though, so it's something that is definitely doable still, even with the the rules.
[00:46:05] Know, I believe it is, and again, you know, a lot of stuff, it doesn't take too many guys from your review for that company to make up their money. So, you know, they will give out free stuff to get more people to come to their.
[00:46:20] Yeah, I think I think I'm going to get into it, I'm going to concentrate on lingerie and sex toys, I think they're out there.
[00:46:29] I've got e-mails. I'll tell them how to get a hold of you.
[00:46:33] I want to tell them about the reflex protect site. And all the different sites that you have will have been shown that don't hold back because you got a lot of stuff going on.
[00:46:44] Reflexprotect.com. You can get a hold of me there for training and for the product. And again, less than 20 bucks. And you can have some safety in your pocket, a peace of mind, have something to keep you safe and you and your loved ones. So reflexprotect.com. If you want to know just a lot of stuff about staying safe in self-defense, go to surviveanddefend.com and it survive and defend YouTube channel. If you're a martial artist, go to yourWarriorsedge.com or your Warriors edge YouTube channel, and that focuses more on the art of martial arts where survive and defend focuses on self-defense and safety. And if you just want some motivation, go to Alain Burrese at YouTube, you'll see some motivating YouTube videos.
[00:47:55] And tell them the name of that fiction book again, because folks, if you like, the bad guy getting their just desserts, this is a book that I have read one fiction book in 30 years, and I could not put this one down because I just love when the bad guy gets the get taken out.
[00:48:13] And that's lost conscience a Ben Baker's tonight sniper novel. And basically, in a nutshell, when the law doesn't do what it needs to do against some child traffickers, Ben Baker calls up an old sniper buddy and they take things into their own hands.
[00:48:31] I love it. I love it. I'm gonna have to read it again.
[00:48:33] That's on Amazon Kindle. If you're Kindle fan, you can get it on Kindle or paper on Amazon, or you could get a hold of me for an autographed copy as well. At any of those websites, all of my books and DVDs are SurviveandDefend.com or yourWarriorsedge.com.
[00:48:51] Oh, and there's one other thing I love. It was those movie quote books. The Tough Guy Wisdom Books website still, or they're on Amazon Kindle or paper, yeah, why does it have the Billy Jack thing about there, about where, you know, I'm going to take this side of my foot and put it on this side of your face and there's not a damn thing you can do.
[00:49:13] Billy Jack quotes are in those books and Clint Eastwood and you got to be good. Denzel Washington in their.
[00:49:22] There should be.
[00:49:23] Yeah, he's he's got that one about they said, you know, God forgives.
[00:49:28] And he said, well, that's between the bad guy and God. I'm just here to arrange the meeting.
[00:49:34] Yeah. Oh, yeah.
[00:49:37] Oh, it's good catching up with you, man. So you help people out here, give them another kind of side hustle to save money on products and use their writing skills. And I said it's might not have been as good as it used to be, but it's still doable. It seems so. So thanks a lot for coming on, man.
[00:49:55] Thank you so much, Tom. It's always a pleasure. Like you said earlier, I hope things change and I can get out and see you again in person one of these days. Not too distant future.
[00:50:03] Yeah. Yeah. I'm ready, man.
[00:50:06] All right, we'll catch everybody on the next episode. See ya later.
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