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PODcast – with Craig Roberts

The PODcast is our very own series of exclusive interviews powered by Moteefe, and it’s available everywhere podcasts are heard! In our conversations, we discuss everything there is to know on e-commerce marketing and everything that is Print-On-Demand.

In our second episode, our special guest is Craig Roberts, Co-founder and CEO of Marcazo. He talks about how Marcazo came to be and how it was to merge it with Moteefe. Our PODcast is the perfect opportunity to gain excellent insight from professionals within the e-commerce community. Go ahead and get comfortable, grab yourself a cup of coffee, and head towards your podcasts app, searching for Moteefe!

This is the first episode:

Transcription.

Announcer:
The PODcast, the podcast about all things print-on-demand, is powered by Moteefe at moteefe.com.

Bernardo:
Hi, everybody. Welcome to the second episode of the PODcast. My name is Bernardo Pinto and I’m the brand and content manager here at Moteefe, the print-on-demand solution and your business partner. Today, I had the chance to talk with Craig Roberts, CEO of Marcazo, a company that was recently acquired by Moteefe. I met him here in London to talk about print-on-demand, the big markets out there, and the future of this business.

Craig:
My name is Craig Roberts and I’m the co-founder and CEO of Marcazo.com. Basically, marcazo.com is an easy way for people to sell into new markets, specifically Brazil. My background, I’ve been in the print-on-demand business for about, well, since 2013, basically, and initially helped set up Europe as a way for print-on-demand entrepreneurs to sell into the European market. Following that, I saw that a lot of competition in North America and Europe, a lot of sellers were asking, “How can we explore these new markets, like Brazil?” So much untapped opportunity there. So, basically, Fred and I, we set up Marcazo as a joint venture with Moteefe and we decided to see how we could open up new markets for international POD sellers, specifically Brazil. You know, Brazil is one of those markets which is very protectionist. It’s very difficult to enter into. We had to do a lot of research, a lot of homework, find unique solutions to difficult problems, but in the end we got there, and we’ve been up and running since October, 2018. People absolutely love it.

Craig:
Print-on-demand is an interesting new business model. It’s a spin on the old model. It’s disrupting what was traditionally a very sort of old-school kind of model where, I’ll give you an example. If you wanted to go and print T-shirts 10 years ago for a specific cause, well, you know, you’re going to have to find a supplier, printers, you’re going to have to build a website, do payment processing, all of that boring stuff, customer service. But what we do is we do all of that. It’s an end-to-end solution, so all you need to do is bring your ideas and your audience if you have one, or generate the sale. So in a nutshell, all you do is you upload a design onto marcazo.com, create your products from the sort of products that we have, and set your selling price, build your stores, and away you go. Generate the sales and leave all the boring stuff to us, basically.

Craig:
Moteefe acquired Marcazo earlier this year and it’s pretty exciting. I think we were working closely with Moteefe for a long time. Through various discussions we realized we could do more together rather than sort of separately. So, yeah, I think it’s an exciting new chapter for Marcazo in terms of there’s more resources, there’s more heads together working on the same problem, Moteefe has a fantastic logistics and supply chain team, global finance team, all of these kind of things that can be leveraged to really amplify the opportunity in Brazil, right? Open up way more, more opportunities for sellers. Moteefe specifically offers, it’s the opportunity to, it’s is easy way to crack into e-commerce if you’re new to this, and that’s specifically serving North America and Europe, European markets.

Craig:
Well, Marcazo specifically offers these kind of access to these new markets that just haven’t typically been there. I think we’re the only print-on-demand company in Brazil that caters to international merchants selling to local Brazilian buyers, so that’s something very unique and something that just hasn’t been there before. I think that’s very special, and as we can see, people are already taking advantage of this and making some good money. Print-on-demand is still in its early stages. I think, quite interesting, you’re seeing a lot more bigger brands doing this. You see Nike, Adidas all getting into this customization, which is really interesting. Generally, in a broader macro sense, I think print-on-demand and customization is really kind of early-stages. I think Marcazo and Moteefe are perfectly positioned at the early stages. The supply chain, all the technology behind the scenes, you know, it’s really complicated and it takes a long time to perfect, and I think that’s interesting.

Craig:
So what the future holds? I think it’s only going to get bigger and better. Typically I think for people that are looking to enter the print-on-demand market, I think it’s an exciting opportunity. There’s still a lot of potential there. I think it really suits people who have two sides of the brain. I think if you’re a half creative type who can come up with interesting ideas and if you’ve got that analytical side as well, you’re good with numbers, you can do good marketing, I think that’s a perfect combination. So I think there’s a lot of opportunity there. It’s something that you can do in your spare time. I do it in my spare time. You know, it’s quite fun. There’s always a million campaign ideas or design ideas that you come up with. You have these ideas in the shower and you quickly turn them into a design. There’s various ways you can drive traffic through paid means or organic means, and yeah, it’s great.

Craig:
It’s like fishing. You create your bait and you put it out there in the ecosystem and you see how many fish you catch. I think for newbies it’s a great way. There is a little bit of a learning curve, but pull the resources that are out there on the internet, including Moteefe Academy, so yeah, I would definitely urge people. It takes a bit of time, like anything in life, if you want to really perfect it and get good at it, so I would just start small. Run a few tests, run a few campaigns, read some blog posts, watch some videos on Moteefe Academy. All the content is out there. All the knowledge that you need to know is out there, so if you just dedicate your time and set yourself some goals, say, “I’m going to do 10 campaigns a week for two months,” or whatever it is, inevitably you’re going to get good at it. It’s just about being a little bit disciplined, and trying, and not giving up so easy.

Craig:
For the experienced guys, I think … I mean, that’s a whole nother topic, but yeah, I think for the experienced guys, it’s much of the same. It’s testing new things, new designs. Things like custom text, which Moteefe and Marcazo launched, is a game changer, really. I mean, there’s big companies that can’t even do that, right, allow buyers to really create a product so interactively. Like, see a product, add their own specific details to it, their name, their age, whatever. That just creates a whole other dynamic, so I think that’s a huge opportunity. Likewise with new products like jewelry. All sorts of things like this. I think the big sellers know what they’re doing. It’s just about trying new things, not doing much of the same stuff that you’ve always done, just keep innovating, try new things, try new markets, new audiences, new niches, new designs, new products. Much of the same, really.

Craig: Platforms are super intuitive. I mean, it can’t be easier, right? I mean, for a newbie, maybe it’s a little bit more of a learning curve in that you’ve got to figure out what a campaign is, figure out how to get your designs made a specific way, but these things are not complicated. Once you figured that out, it’s really easy. And I think the Moteefe and Mercado platforms are super intuitive. All the information is there. If it’s not really on the website, it’s definitely on the blogs or on the Academy, so yeah, again, just about dedicating some time and being disciplined, and making sure you can figure out a way to do it. Brazilian market I think is really special because it’s one of those markets people just overlook, you know? People forget that it’s almost the size of the US. It’s bigger than France, Germany and the UK combined. 220-odd-million people. Facebook’s third biggest market behind India and the US. It’s huge. Absolutely enormous, and it’s not a poor country. People have money there, they spend money, they’re hyper engaged on social media, absolutely addicted to social media, so all the ingredients are right there. It’s just there’s not much competition.

Craig:
It really reminds me of like the early days in the US and Europe back in like 2014, 2015. Similar kind of vibe and obviously, we’re seeing similar kind of successes. We’re in such a golden age, right? Where in the world could you, or where before in history of time could you, reach such a big audience from your living room with a little bit of money, a little bit of ad spend, a little bit of creativity? We have so many tools that are disposable nowadays that we just really take for granted. You can build a community on Facebook or online or through various tools so easily nowadays. You just need to dedicate some time, know your audience, scratch and itch, right? Figure out where there’s a problem and provide a solution or create something that’s engaging to people. You’d be surprised. You know, I’ve created some shirts myself through things that I’m interested in, and I’m so surprised how easy it is. You just got to just got to get started and be a bit disciplined about something, set yourself targets, dedicate the time, really go for it, and success will follow for sure.

Craig:
I’ve seen it firsthand. I’ve seen people who were working on building sites earning $15,000 a year, or whatever it is, go to making that in a month doing this in their spare time. There genuinely is an opportunity here and there’s thousands of case studies online. Go to YouTube, search print-on-demand on Google case studies. You’ll see it, and it’s generally there. All the information is there. Just go out and search for it, come to the Moteefe Academy, look at the YouTube channels, whatever. All the information’s there, and these are real case studies. These are not get-rich-quick schemes, because they’re not. There’s work involved, but all the tools that you need, all the ingredients are there to make a cake. You just need to get in the kitchen.

Bernardo:
Thank you, Craig and everybody listening to these podcasts. We’ll be back very, very soon. See you there.

Announcer:
This podcast was hosted by Bernardo Pinto and edited by Francisco Sampaio. Additional album artwork by Robert Hughes and Pedro Mello. The PODcast, the podcast about all things print-on-demand, is powered by Moteefe at moteefe.com. Moteefe is a tech e-commerce company helping users with selling custom merchandise online and developing their own brand in a fun and reliable way. Launch your campaign now and become a print-on-demand expert. For more information, visit moteefe.com or follow us on our social media pages. Moteefe. Let’s do business together.

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