Why DTC Should Reconsider Wholesale: With John Wong

John Wong is the former Co-president of Jack Rogers, an American footwear and accessory brand. With over 20 years of experience at leading retail organizations, he has experience in multi-channel distribution, international and domestic sales, merchandising and planning, and e-commerce. John has worked with notable brands, including DFS Group, Coach, Marc Jacobs, and Tory Burch.

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • John Wong shares his definition of wholesale
  • Wholesale versus DTC: significant pros and cons
  • Key considerations for adopting a wholesale model
  • How to foster wholesale partnerships
  • What is a department-level P&L?
  • The importance of integrating wholesale and DTC marketing budgets
  • VR’s impact on the shopping experience
  • How John’s upbringing shaped his success in retail
  • John opens up about his health struggles

In this episode…

eCommerce comprises approximately 15% of total retail sales. Yet brands expend their marketing dollars and efforts exclusively on DTC channels, limiting brand awareness and reach. Alternatively, wholesale models allow you to acquire more customers and maximize lifetime value. What are the long-term benefits of wholesaling, and how can you capitalize on this sales method?

With a wholesale model, brands provide the product, and third-party retailers manage checkout and distribution. While this restricts control over the customer experience, wholesale expert and brand builder John Wong says partnering with leading retailers like Macy’s and Nordstrom helps build your brand with an established consumer base. Additionally, DTC models require utilizing third-party logistics companies that charge a fee per shipment. Conversely, wholesale retailers ship bulk items to customers, leading to higher returns and profit margins. When partnering with retailers in a wholesale agreement, obtaining shelf space for your product can be difficult, so John recommends acquiring space in retailers’ digital marketplaces.

In today’s episode of the Up Arrow Podcast, tune in as William Harris invites John Wong, the Former Co-president of Jack Rogers, to speak about leveraging wholesale models. John explains department-level P&L statements, the impact of virtual reality on the shopping experience, and why you should integrate wholesale and DTC marketing budgets.

Resources mentioned in this episode

Sponsor for this episode

This episode is brought to you by Elumynt. Elumynt is a performance-driven e-commerce marketing agency focused on finding the best opportunities for you to grow and scale your business.

Our paid search, social, and programmatic services have proven to increase traffic and ROAS, allowing you to make more money efficiently.

To learn more, visit www.elumynt.com.

Episode Transcript

Intro  0:03  

Welcome to the Up Arrow Podcast with William Harris, featuring top business leaders sharing strategies and resources to get to the next level. Now, let's get started with the show.

William Harris  0:13  

Hey, everybody, it's William Harris here. I'm the founder and CEO of Elumynt and the host of this podcast where I feature experts on the direct to consumer industry sharing strategies on how to scale your business and achieve your goals. I'm excited about the guests that I have today here, John Wong. John's been in the retail industry for over 20 years. I'll be it with a non traditional career path that has afforded him an expertise that is truly all encompassing. He's had roles that brought him to Guam managing travel retail for coach and Marc Jacobs, had him set up a pop up store at a Tokyo department store at five in the morning at Tory Burch as director of international launch a new e commerce website at East Dane as footwear and accessories buyer and oversee merchandising sales, DTC channels for a 60 year old American heritage brand at Jack Rogers as CO president. What keeps him in the industry is his curiosity and the continuous desire to learn of which the retail sector is rich with opportunities to do so. John, I'm excited to have you here today.

John Wong  1:13  

Thank you. Well, I'm excited to join and talk a little bit about wholesale. Yeah,

William Harris  1:19

and I always like to give a little shout out to whoever introduced us. And while he maybe didn't introduce us, I think our mutual connection, and then we just met through LinkedIn, but the mutual connection when I was like, oh, wait a minute, you know, him too, was Scott Garber, super smart guy actually went to high school with him. And somebody that I think is just a just an all around, good dude. Family Guy loves his kids loves his wife, you know, somebody that can't say enough good stuff about

John Wong  1:44

Yeah, Scott was great. I met him at one of my previous companies. And we were looking for a kind of a BI tool, in particular, to help us analyze our wholesale sales. And he was at an organization that provided that but gotta love Scott.

William Harris  2:00

Yes. Before we dive into the meat of the topic today, which we're gonna be talking a lot about wholesale versus DTC, which I'm really excited about because nobody's talked about that on the podcast yet before, I do want to announce our sponsor. This episode is brought to you by Elumynt Elumynt is an award winning advertising agency, optimizing e commerce campaigns around profit. In fact, we've helped 13 of our customers get acquired with the largest one selling for nearly 800 million. And we were ranked as the 12th fastest growing agency in the world, by Adweek, you can learn more on our website@elumynt.com, which is spelled elumynt.com. That said, that's enough of the boring stuff, let's get into the good stuff. When we're talking wholesale. There's a lot of different things that that can mean. And I feel like some people, especially if you're in the DTC world don't even understand the breadth of what wholesale means. Some of the things you were talking about. It's like an umbrella term, you know, Macy's, but also marketplaces, new services, streaming covers, QVC outlets, like when you think of wholesale, what does that mean to you? Yeah,

John Wong  3:02  

you know, it's interesting question, and I think it evolves and it continues to expand. For me, I would identify wholesale as a channel where the you the end consumer, the consumer checks out the hand, kind of the cart, and that whole checkout flow is handled by a third party. And what makes it interesting nowadays is that, you know, back 30 years ago, wholesale was pretty much a singular model, you're selling to a department store or a privately owned specialty independent shop, you charge them an X price, and they sell it at a wide price. And that's how the world worked. You know, with the introduction of internet, Amazon kind of opening this era of marketplaces and all these other new channels, it's harder to describe, but essentially, you know, a lot of it is where you don't really control a lot of the consumer experience, the product is provided by you, or the service. But after that your hands are kind of tied. But I think that's where a lot of people are stuck with. That's how traditionally it worked. But now there's so many new models of getting product out there on a platform at a store that you might not control or own, but gets your product in front of more people. And I think that's what's exciting, and requires a lot of nimble nimbleness in our industry and leaders at these companies into tiny determining which channel goes into it. Yeah,

William Harris  4:40  

I think it makes sense because you need to be where your customers are, and your customers are in all of these other places. And if you're not there, they're finding something else. They're not finding you they're finding someone else and that's market share that you're losing that opportunity that you're losing. That's lifetime value that you're losing, right because you're not even acquiring them in the first place. And so, being in these Other places, it makes sense to have a strategy there, I was looking at the stats for even e commerce as a whole compared to total retail sales. And if you look at E commerce as a whole compared to total retail sales, it only takes up about 15%. That's not that much. Now it's growing fast. But fast might be the, you know, another percent this year or something. And so we've got a lot of market share that's out there that, you know, the traditional, let's say, DMVs and direct to consumer, the DTC darlings that are out there have been missing out. And I think they're starting to wake up to that. And I think that's kind of what what brought me to one of the discussions that we wanted to get into, which is just wholesale versus DTC. What are the pros, what are the cons? What are some of the things that you're seeing when you think of this? Yeah,

John Wong  5:48  

I mean, I think, you know, most recently, the most kind of APT example, right now is what's going on with Nike, you know, Nike, I would say, even pre pandemic had already made moves, it was a big initial kind of strategy, or strategy for them to really grow their DTC business, really control their brand. I think it was, it was the right move for them at the time, I think, you know, their, their distribution might have gotten a little bit too wide. And by bringing it back in, they were able to control it a lot more. And that's the same, you know, drumbeat that everyone talks about when, you know, 10 years ago, decades ago, when DDC really started, a lot of people were kind of turned off by the wholesale channel, and thought, Hey, let's go on it, go on on our own and really own this whole experience. I think the challenge, that's what's going on is that, fundamentally, you, you kind of run into a problem, because it costs a lot of money to own that whole experience, especially if you are DDC brand that has taken on capital from venture, venture capital or private equity, or any other of the capital markets where they want massive growth. And I think that's where we're stuck on, right, you've got years and years where people, the capital markets were flooding brands with just tons of cash with the assumption that, you know, five, 610 years, 15 years down the road, the economics turn, and they're just going to have profitability that matches their revenue growth. And I think it's, it's pretty clear, that's been very challenging. You know?

William Harris  7:34  

Yeah, there was there was a, you know, we, we looked at it from a DTC perspective of let's look at our CAC to LTV ratios, which is good. And so we were pushing hard on acquisition. And, and, you know, running a little bit more in the red, and to your point that that's maybe okay during periods of time for rapid growth, but you end up in a in an economy like we're in today. And that can bite you pretty badly, especially if you haven't set up some of these other channels, to sell your products and make sure that you're there.

John Wong  8:11  

Yeah, I mean, that's, that's a great point. Because, you know, one thing I, in one of my previous roles, I was responsible for a multi channel brand. And what was happening was that, as marketing, digital marketing got more and more expensive urgh, as expectations were still held to a pretty high target. And so you just start kind of funneling your budget to that low funnel, that then lead that transaction where charity knows she or he knows your brand knows the product is maybe shopping for the the best price or the fastest delivery speed. But then you just choke out and not focus on a future bench and flow of new customers, right, you haven't really, you started taking budget away from more brand building initiatives, top of funnel marketing, and that's where that's where it gets, you kind of get stuck. And that's where wholesale, I think, is a great solution. You know, wholesalers if you think about it, especially the big guys out there, the Macy's and Nordstrom is of the world, they don't really need to spend a ton of money on brand awareness, right. Everyone knows them. They are literally a household name. There's stores across the country and so they focus on the really kind of more the middle to the low funnel of the marketing journey. And so you don't I think that is an easy way to really address brand building is having a partner Mike Nordstroms and Macy's or Amazon or Walmart or whoever it is that you that is right for your brand, to really get your name out there. Right. And I think the other thing is is retail stores, right along with this whole discussion of DDC? Most of them didn't have retail stores in the very beginning, right? That was 100%. Ecommerce. But I think that value also, no one really understood that true value of actually having a retail space that customers can come in and experience your brand. Yeah,

William Harris  10:23  

we're still human beings, we still end up liking online, offline, many different forms of experiences, you know, Let's even say newer experiences, VR experiences, there's very, very few things that are really being done with that in a way that I think is just beyond novel. And just, you know, I don't novel is not the word I'm looking for. But just novelty, really, it's just for fun, right. And it's not beneficial and helpful yet. But you've been thinking about, I was talking with somebody couple weeks ago about Tesla was more or less kind of like one of the first DTC disruptors within their space as well. And I think 70% of their transactions and purchases were happening online. And that was a very big shake up from the, from the rest of the car, Auto Group. And I think what was interesting there is they still have showrooms, they've also just done their showrooms better than everybody else is doing to where it's like really this experience that you come in and enjoy. And so to your point, you know, there's, there's both of these that need to happen. There's the online, there's the offline, and then there's partnering with other really big people who your customers are already hanging out with. And I think of that, like any other partnership that you have in business, where, hey, if you're wanting to do something, well, who else? Who else is your customer hanging out with? How do you partner with them? Anyways, that just makes sense. From that perspective, what are the other benefits?

John Wong  11:51  

I think that point when use when you're mentioning about, you know, kind of being around, like brands, like customers that are looking for that type of product, that is a really great example and kind of characteristic that is impossible to really replicate in DTC, right. And that actually can help you help build your brand, you know, say your mid price brand, but you want to attract upper class customer, being around brands, and a retailer that has that attracts that customer base is huge, right? And also helps customers that might not know you think, Okay, well, hey, they're sitting next to XYZ brand that I like, I'll take a look at it. And then if you win on better quality, better design, better pricing, then, you know, that's a new customer you've captured, and it's so much more lift to do all that on your own on a website to which is sometimes it's hard to convey.

William Harris  12:51

It is what are some of the other benefits. So outside of improving even just, let's say the the p&l side of things, and the relationship side of things. What are some other benefits? I think you mentioned like picking and packing? Well, you don't have to do that, like what are some of the other like intangible benefits that you most don't even realize are happening as a result of doing?

John Wong  13:10  

I mean, I think it goes back to that p&l discussion. And you know, in it's it was interesting, because throughout these last years when DDC was, was a huge topic from a media perspective. And people were talking about the growth in the revenue, but no one really talked about profitability. No one talked about how much money people were actually making. Right? It was just talking about the initial revenue. And so yeah, to that point, then pick and pack, right you got this is say you've got a DC brand. And your site and your average, say one and a half units, right, you are responsible for the pick pack. If you use a third party warehouse average, let's say 13 to $15 per shipment, with that one and a half unit metrics. And when on a wholesale perspective, if you are in stores, or they pick you up for their website, you are bulk shipping it to that customer, right, so most 30 part warehouses, they don't really charge a per unit fee. And if they do, it's significantly less than a ecommerce pick pack. And so that there That in itself, you're going to save five $6 on that pick pack fee. You're charging wholesale prices, right. Usually wholesale margins are obviously lower than your retail margins. But that is pretty much consistent. Right? It doesn't doesn't really change. Right? It's kind of say 50% Keystone pricing, then you're getting a 50% margin pretty much off the board and there's no unless and then you got your discounts and that sort of thing, add it in, but you know, it's A fairly stable margin department, you can kind of rely on it from that perspective and headcount. So about your head or your office, right headcount for off price, or sorry, wholesale is, you don't need a ton, let's say, three to 10, depending on the size of the business and how many accounts you have. And if you think about what it takes to support a DVC business, it's significantly larger. Right? And so I think from that perspective, it's it's a, it's a lot easier to be profitable immediately, for wholesale. And, and that's why I think there is there always will be a place for wholesale for brands, right? I think Nike going back to their example. They started, I would say, this year, really kind of opening back up wholesale, more, they're going back into some of their previous accounts. But if you read about it, there are new agreements, right? They've lined on, sort of build out a strategy with them, most likely, it's going to include marketing. So my guess it sounds like it's kind of following some of the the hallmarks that they that Nike rolled out for their DDC expansion. And they really want to make sure that brand experiences is consistent, which is great. You know, I think wholesalers would want that too. But, and this is where I think you can really get into this channel, and do it in a way that helps alleviate some of the risks that most brands think of when they go to wholesale. Mostly loss of control. Right. And markdowns. I think.

William Harris  16:39  

One that's interesting, right? So there's there's a lot of benefits, obviously, on the p&l you're talking about, even there's there's aggregate benefits, overhead benefits, there's unit economic benefits there. But you bring up some good points, there are some pitfalls that maybe people have been ensnared with in the past. Maybe I've even tried it and ran into some issues. If somebody is looking to explore getting into the wholesale game, especially if they're already a DTC mark, your DTC brand that's doing very well, what are some of those things that they need to be careful about or make sure they're negotiating or, you know, setting themselves up for success?

John Wong  17:18

I think one of the biggest things that I've ran into whenever I've had this conversation with a team is is the margin erosion, especially if you're in a category, like kind of that mid tier fashion and higher up to luxury, where the price is very much tied into the brand value, right? That elevated pricing. And brands spend a lot of effort in really having a tight control over that, even so where some friends kind of suggest when you go on markdown, and for in a lot of times, in the past a wholesale would, because of of free market laws in price fixing laws that are out there, they try to, but with very little effort control the pricing that wholesalers sell it to and so you'd always get to this cycle where, you know, X retailer marked you down by 30%. And then all of a sudden, all your other channels have to follow and that cycle really scared a lot of people. Right. And I think sometimes it's hard to work around that. I think that's where you really have to discuss with the partner that you're you're entering an agreement with, and really make those kinds of notions and expectations set in the very beginning. You know, and what is great, if a brand has been 100% DTC, they're going to have a lot easier time than a brand that might have already been or is in the wholesale market. In meaning that if you're in DC, you already the markets already clean if you will write the pricing set by your own company, so you don't and this distribution has been limited just to your own site. So you don't have you know, gray market sellers on Amazon selling you for a discounted price that you have to kind of work around. And so it's gonna be easier for those type of brands that have had a greater control. But you know, there's ways around it if there could be product differentiation, right, if there is an item that or a certain category or group or product that you can't get around and cleaning up the market because of pricing then maybe you start looking at developing products that is specific channel specific, you know, a lot of brands have done that. Yeah. HSAs are a famous brand right? If you've ever shopped for a mattress, there's not one brand name and model mattress that usually is in multiple retailers, they're all different. And I one of the reasons is so that you don't can't price match and you can't price shop right now. xy, cloud mattress can't be found at at only this one retailer. So you just assume they have the best price and so forth strategies around that. But I think that's primarily one of them. Margin agreements, I ran into most of that, usually in a fashion. And that's where retailers want to protect themselves, right? If they're bringing in unknown brand, and they might see you in a lot of marketplaces, or being sold in a lot of different retailers with pricing, that's inconsistent. They also want to protect themselves. There, there's first four kind of goal is to sell, right now, if they need to price match, so that they are fair and competitive in the market, then they're going to price match, but that's their margin they're losing. And so a lot of times you'll you'll get into discussions where a certain brand might say, hey, I need a guaranteed I've had 58, I've heard of 59% gross margin. And essentially, if there's any difference in variation from that you write them a big check within the season. One that's scary, right? And I think that'll, so I know a lot of independent brands decided not to go into wholesale because of that. Now, I'm not quite sure if if wholesalers are still doing that, my guess they probably are given the challenging environment. But again, you know, there are ways of doing that. And if you are a have had a better control over your distribution, then you might not run into that problem, either.

William Harris  21:42  

Yeah, so let's say let's say that we've convinced people that this makes sense. We've given them the pros, we've given them the cons, what are some practical ways to go about initiating this? Let's say, if they wanted to reach out to some retailers, they wanted to start doing some wholesale? What are those companies looking for? You know, are they looking for, you know, aside from the margins, and all of those things, but how what makes them say like, makes them excited to bring on a DTC brand and say, like, Yes, this is the brand that we want to bring on. And they're looking for like social followings, things like that. Yeah, I

John Wong  22:24  

would think so. I think, you know, especially if it's, if you're in a high like a collateral category like footwear, right? There's, there's not a shortage of footwear anywhere to be found. So you, you most likely have to offer a product, a price points, a characteristic of your of your product, or your brand that is different from what they have on the floor. And that's where I think that's going to be the biggest challenge for anyone wanting to go into Wholesale is convincing retailers to give you shelf space. And right now, it's going to be really hard, I'm not gonna lie, I think most department stores are struggling. And it's going to be challenging for you to convince them to give you one table for a new brand, unproven, doesn't really know what the reach is what the profitability looks like, and take that table away from a proven brand, right, and think that's gonna be the biggest struggle. I think, in the past. One way around that was to go on their digital properties, right? A lot of brands started opening their version of a marketplace. Macy's and Nordstrom come to mind as as to the largest, and where and when I say marketplace, it's it's the allowed third kind of dropship. Essentially, it's not like an Amazon thing where it's more self service, you still have to go through a buyer, the buyer still selects the product they want on the page. But the dropship for dropship phenomenon is been really one way of getting getting you on to a wholesale retailer sites without that constant negotiation. And I think that's where you can kind of get your foot in the door.

William Harris  24:16  

It gives them an opportunity then to kind of test this out. They say Wait, are we are we getting sales for this product? And if you start driving sales, and they realize, okay, maybe this isn't we want to stock in our actual retail locations. Yep,

John Wong  24:28

exactly. It's a lot easier conversation when you are, you know, reporting and they're seeing 80% Sell throughs hardly any margin erosion and return rates are good. And I think that's the other thing about wholesale that I love, and I think is an aspect that people don't think about is kind of information collecting from the customer. Right and they have a much usually they have a larger wider base, their national rate and and sometimes DC brands might not be national, they may be focused on a certain geographical area. If you being in a retailer that's that large and have you exposed, you can get data from there, right? Um, one thing was return rates, right? Especially in the apparel and footwear category where that is a huge struggle for everyone right now be able to have a larger base, you can kind of you can collect more information on what the return rates look like. Typically return rates are higher and wholesale versus DTC. Right DTC usually is a customer that knows you as a repeat customer. So he or she knows your site or they're sizing, where wholesale, you usually are dealing with a new customer. And so sizing and returns are looked different. And I think that's also kind of really compelling. To look at as well.

William Harris  25:57  

Yeah. So, you know, wholesale lot of benefit here, we talked about it, even from a profitability, p&l standpoint, when you and I first started interacting together online, it was some stuff around just EBITA in profitability in general. And so if we wanted to shift away from Wholesale a little bit and talk about some other p&l, things that I found interesting that you wrote about to one of those was department p&l is and I feel like that's something that does get talked about a lot. When you talk about a department level p&l, what are you talking about? Yeah,

John Wong  26:30  

you know, I think I've been, it's been something I've been kind of thinking about more and more and how most companies, I'm not saying everyone, but the companies I've worked with, look at their different sales channels. For the most part, it's fairly in a silo that a wholesale has their own p&l, and other costs are loaded into this, and so on, so forth. But I've been thinking about it, does that serve the brand? Right? Does that serve how the customers look at you, you know, customers don't look at you wholesale versus etc. And so why should you be operating that way? Even your merchants, right, the merchants, the buyers, whoever is the decision to on the product that they're selling and the price that they're selling, tend to usually look at data bytes sales channel, and I think that's where I think it's, it's, our industry needs to shift that a little bit. Marketing is a perfect example. You know, every channel has marketing opportunities. If you are multi brand, or multi channel brand, you usually have a marketing budget just for your DDC. And then you might have a marketing budget or wholesale. Some people call it dilutions, some people call it Co Op, whatever it is, it's usually an expense line on someone's wholesale p&l, but very most likely, the wholesale marketing is really handled by the wholesale team, the account executives and the in their leadership, their decide on, you know what emails, they want to sign up on what you know, Christmas books, they want to be in on what homepage placement they want to be on. Usually, it's with very little involvement with the DDC partners, the same partners that are doing marketing for the DTC channels. And that doesn't really make sense, right? Why would you have media, half of the company's media being handled and managed by someone that isn't overseeing the whole brands media, right. And I think that's where I think with that change, if we change marketing that perspective, and really took, say, marketing, all channels to be managed by one team, you can kind of start thinking about how that will evolve, right? If you are doing say, a big push on a new handbag that you've got created, right? You want that to hit on every channel, and not a lot of brands do that very well. But then to follow that journey through you want the packaging to be the same across all channels, you want the the sales analysis and everything to be all inclusive as well. And so I think there is an opportunity for us to kind of step back and for brands to step back and take a look at some of those things and not really silo those channels, because that's not how the customer shop. That's not how I you know, I personally shop and so I think that's where some of it gets lost.

William Harris  29:34  

One of the things that I like to do is try to explain things with visualizations or whatever and, and when you were explaining this, it kind of reminded me of things operating in silos. My daughter's are playing softball now which is really fun. 1310 and seven with the 13 year olds, not but the 10 and seven year old are and it's like if they were gonna go try to catch the ball. And let's say that my right hand is Is wholesale in my left hand is DTC. And, you know, both of these are operating independently. And then they both go to try to catch the ball at the same time. And it's like, wait a minute, I thought I was going to do it. It's like, well, I wanted to do it. Well, it's like, well, I didn't want to, I didn't want to move at this. But it becomes very confusing. I use my hands because I was gonna use my feet, but I can't show my failure. But it's the idea that it's like, you know, if you're trying to run and it's like, the left leg wants to move at the same time, the right leg? It's like, no, no, you have to do these things, you know, together as a team, as opposed to operating independently. And I feel like that's kind of what's happening to your point. And we see this very often, even within the advertising budget, which is where we come in. And one of the ways that we try to help rectify, this is reminding brands that, let's say that you are a DTC company that also now has Amazon that also has some retail stuff, you just got into Target or something. And we'll do holdout tests there as well. So we can say, well, this might be for instance, within Facebook, it might be optimized for purchase. So we're optimizing it to make sure that it actually drives a purchase on your DTC website. But if we look at this spend, in a geo holdout test, we'll see that it has a significant impact on your Amazon sales in that geographic region, in in your retail sales in that geographic region as well. And we need to understand how much is that total impact of what we're doing, even though we have a goal, a targeting goal or an optimization goal for the website, it's impacting these other things, then in the vice versa is also true. If we're running, let's say, maybe it's a coupon for people to come into your retail location that that weekend, it's Memorial Day sale, or whatever this is, and you're running this coupon and you're trying to get people there, that also still drives purchases on the website, even though you're literally telling people to go to the store. And so understanding how these work together, that they're not siloed, and they need to be evaluated more than aggregate way. One of the ways that we look at this, then is we just have like an enterprise MBR, or an enterprise CAC, we, we talked about that as being like the roll up of all of this blended together, how is that being impacted? And is that moving in the right direction?

John Wong  32:01  

Yeah, I you know what, that's that brings up a good question, you know, you're talking about and how Elumynt would would take a look and maybe look at it from an enterprise level? There are certain retailers on top of that top of mind, is Amazon, right? They're building a giant advertising platform on or off the Amazon site? And are you seeing them kind of provide you the the analysis and kind of that Google analytics type of data that that a company like yours would want from a platform?

William Harris  32:36  

I mean, they have some data, is it what I want? It's, it's, it's better than you get from a lot of other lists to say, like, if I was going to lump Amazon into anything, not D to C, I certainly can get more data there that I typically would get from Target, for instance. Now to be fair, I don't get the data from target, the target, the data from Target is going to go to my to my customer that my customer is going to share whatever parts of that they want with me. And so I can't say for a fact that, you know, target isn't sending enough data. But I will say that, yeah, typically I just get access as a company, we get access to their Amazon account. And we can see significantly more data, which is helpful from from an analysis standpoint. But at the most basic level, when we're talking about even running these holdout tests, from a geographic perspective, I just need to almost know, sales by date. If I could get sales by date, then I can see if I start this holdout test Am I getting and I would just say sales by by SKU by date, for the most part that gives me enough to understand whether or not what we're doing is impacting something there. Yeah,

John Wong  33:40  

I that's, you know, that's so interesting. And I don't know, I guess who whoever finds that solve in the marketing world is going to be very wealthy. Because you know, and correct me if I'm wrong, I'm not a subject matter expert on marketing, but a lot of marketing attributions, digitally, is still on the last touch parts, right of where the customer kind of last engaged, a lot

William Harris  34:05

of a lot of big companies still go off of last touch, they're doing something whatever their ERP says or something, there's a lot of another getting better with some of those models. Now as well. We, we like to use a blend of a lot of different data points. And so as at a high level, parts of what we're looking at would just be what does Google Analytics say about this? What does the platform say about this? What does your your actual, like bank account data say about this? And for this, it's like your customer data profile, or whatever this might be that we're getting the information of the actual orders and what's going on there? And then also, what does your your post purchase survey data say? It kind of blend all of these to put together in the best way that I describe this as it's three dimensional data, but then I go a level beyond it. I call it four dimensional data because I've got to add in the time dimension, but what I should see here is there should be A picture that you could only see in three dimensions, if you try to flatten that at all. You you miss it in the way that I like to look at this as an x ray. If you take a two dimensional view of a broken wrist, you won't understand what that break really looks like unless you take a couple of different views of that. And I think the same thing is true for any type of data, whether you're looking at last click, first click any kind of touch, even when we're doing the holdout tests to see what the actual incremental difference is there. All of those still play a role and understanding what's actually taking place in any one of those in and of itself is absolutely true, just like any one view of that extra is absolutely true. But it's absolutely incomplete as well. And so without the other views, you're going to miss understand what's going on any kind of flattening of that. Yeah, that's

John Wong  35:47

interesting. I mean, that that makes complete sense. And it shows how challenging it is to be a marketer nowadays, because the data is there. But you there's a lot of, I guess, post analysis and kind of attribution that needs to happen.

William Harris  36:04  

Yeah. And I think it can be visualized three dimensional. And I will say that I actually have started working with Scott's team on a couple of things on how to visualize the data in three dimensions. And then fourth dimension with time, but there's actually some some things that I've been doing with quaternions that actually get into fourth dimensional math that I think help us visualize this even a little bit better. And just intuitively, you can look at something and say, that's the same shape, right? It's just looking at this saying that it's like, it's like, no, no, if long is that shaped stays the same as you're scaling or whatever, that it's different. But if that shape morphs, or turns or twists, then you know that something is becoming skewed, something is changing, then within that shape is off. Exactly. Yeah. That's

John Wong  36:47

so that's so interesting. I mean, I think that yeah, echos kind of what we've been saying all along, I think there, there is a way that wholesale, or there should be a way to look at wholesale marketing as part of that whole strategy.

William Harris  37:03

Yeah, it has to be, because like you said, that your customers are shopping, they're not differentiating when they're shopping. So yeah,

John Wong  37:11

you know, and it's interesting. The other channels that that are out there for wholesale is QVC, QVC, and kind of that home shopping, home media category, had a bit of a uptick during COVID, right, everyone was staying at home, these channels in the past traditionally tended to be a little bit older, I believe they're mostly be skewed a little bit more female LED. But you know, they're starting and trying new things. I know. QVC has parent company is jumping into live streaming, right, which has been around a lot of people have tried like, right streaming, Amazon tried it, Instagram, Facebook, everyone's tried it. But I don't think the success has been where it was, or where they expect it to be, compared to what China has seen with light shopping, right? They can do an hour and bring in a couple million dollars in GMV. But I think that's, that's interesting, right? Because that is think about the millions of impressions that might be seeing your product. And that's where I think that's, you know, that's another thing that I think most leaders should take a look at, for a new opportunity, right? TVC might not, or these platforms might not be exactly your customer base. And but the impressions there, right, that one hour show that you can be included on you just got your product, you know, flashed in front of a captive audience for an hour and 15 minutes. And I mean, that's millions and dollars, I mean, the impression that is hard to make up, right, and so that anybody,

William Harris  38:55  

if anybody can crack the code, I think that it would be like the QVC and HSN of the world, because we're seeing that this has worked well, even on some social media platforms where, you know, there was a tool called comment sold, I know that Facebook and instrument both decided to do this themselves as well, where, you know, you basically just go live on the platform, and people just comment Yep, you know, sold medium, that's all I say. And it automatically routed as a purchase. And so it's very similar to like, what was going on with, you know, QVC and home shopping network, but it was just on the social platform. And so I think that we've seen that this has worked fairly well, even on the social platforms. But I think that to your point, like in an even larger level, I think that there's something still that can be unlocked there with QVC home shopping network, somebody like that, that can make a bigger splash with that. Yeah, I

John Wong  39:49  

agree. I mean, I think there's there's so many things that it kind of addresses especially, you know, fit our trust of a new brand. And regardless of if you know The host that's doing the stream or not having someone kind of actually walk you through the product, the same direction you might get in the physical store. But now, there's a, there's a path of providing that same experience, I can see it being very, a great channel to get, especially for new brands.

William Harris  40:22  

Do you know what I like? Okay, so this just opened up something that I hadn't thought about until right this moment. So I also really liked VR. And I, I've invested in a VR company up in Toronto called allegory that I'm really excited about, actually, the former head of VR at Wayfair is the is the CTO, they're really interesting company. But so let's imagine this, Google also just launched their AI. And when I say just launched, by the time this goes live, it might be several months from now. So I have to be careful about saying just launched. But when we're recording this, they just launched this AI tool where you can view a particular dress or something on, like 100 or million, I don't even know how many different model types body types. So you can see almost what does it look like on you for the most part, right? But we're also seeing that you can you can superimpose basically your avatar, your, your your body type now on a lot of other things within the VR world. So let's just say, you know, a couple of years from now, I don't think that it's that difficult to almost see that, that QVC model, but then it's instead of it being that model, they just instantly in fact, wonder dynamics has what's called wonder studio, where they can you basically just click on the face of of a character that you recorded in video, and it will CGI a completely different character in there if you want and which is absolutely wild. I mean, it's like almost like mindlessly do it. So it's not gonna be that hard to basically say, you're just like, Hey, John, you're looking at this shirt, you want to know if it's gonna fit you and how you like it on you. And so rather than you seeing out on a model that maybe like you, it's your dimensions, it's your face, it's your body, it is your complexion, it is everything about you. And it's but it's that model now, you know, basically modeling the clothes for you. And it could still be recorded by like this QVC purse, just going through talking about it, showing it showing how new the fringe or whatever, right, like all of those things, but it's you.

John Wong  42:19  

Yeah, yeah. I mean, I mean, that's, it's wild to think about, but the possibilities are endless there. Right. And I think I think most people were talking about the VR, and it was more about avatars that live online, but not a lot of people are talking about how that can impact, you know, real life, clothing and your personality. And, you know, that experience. So, yeah, I mean, it's, it is very interesting. Hopefully, that it gets over the hurdle. You know, I know that I don't know what your experience, but I've shopped at plenty of sites that have, like a sizing tool, they help you, you know, there's a couple of platforms that are cross brand. So if you have a profile on you know, this site, we will follow you or should follow you. But I would say my success rate on those is about 60%. Sometimes it feels

William Harris  43:12  

higher than a lot of others. Yeah. Probably. Yeah.

John Wong  43:17  

I mean, because I think I, you know, a lot of that relies on data, right? Those models, and it's, you know, what I found, and I'm making massive assumptions here. But a lot of it is, especially if it's a marketplace, or like a retailer that wholesale sells products that they don't make themselves, a lot of it that requires the actual, the pattern, the dimensions of the pattern of how the product is cut, if it's an apparel item, and that needs to be properly provided to the retailer in that and someone at the retailer needs to properly upload that to the sizing system. I've worked at plenty of companies to know that is not that simple. Most people don't know what they're looking at, they don't know what, you know, their, their shoulder width versus their, their waist width and all that. And so I think having this kind of VR tool, maybe that can kind of circumvent a lot of that, because it's a doesn't require as many data inputs. You know, especially for customer, right, you hopefully it's some kind of like scanning kind of method where it scans you with the VR goggles. But um, it's I mean, that's, that's another solve that someone needs to address. Yes,

William Harris  44:36

it's coming. Right. Apples vision Pro is Apple's vision Pro is wild. If you've if you've seen the codec avatar that Facebook has developed, it's you is literally you. It's absolutely wild. I could talk about this for another five hours with you. But I want to shift because I want to get into also, who is John Wong and I always like getting into the person of who you are. And so one of the first questions I wanted to ask you is just about your childhood. What what shaped you to make you who you are today, the person that was able to do all of those things we listed in your bio. I mean, you've done so many different things, you seem to be able to just jump into any situation and find success in it. Why?

John Wong  45:20  

Ah, oh, that's a good question. I, you know, my childhood was, I guess, a very kind of traditional or similar to a lot of immigrant families. My, my mom and dad actually met in Portland, Oregon. That's where I was born and raised. But they were, they had just immigrated from Hong Kong, a couple years before that. And so they met in Portland, and they had me and so I was my brother and I were the first generation in the States. And we're, I am one of the handful of people that actually went and finished college and got a bachelor's degree. And so I think, you know, it was a combination of living that immigrant experience, you know, my dad spoke, fairly broken English, has a high school equivalent degree. But he kind of worked his way up in Chinese restaurants, as most people did back in the 70s, and 60s, and, and so he saved up enough money. And by the time I was 15, they open their first restaurant. And so I was there. You know, every weekend, my brother and I were just sitting at the restaurant, either helping them out or doing our homework, that was our downtime. And so I think seeing that, that helps kind of guide me into business. Kind of seeing that the benefits of of that I think I always had an entrepreneurial spirit, but it probably might have missed it in my life in terms of doing something on my own. But I've been, I think a lot of that has also brought in some curiosity, right. And my family and my parents were, they were just focused on feeding my brother and I, and going to work. We didn't have a lot of time for vacations and museums, and kind of those other extra activities that families usually did. We didn't have time in for that. And so I think because of that, though, I just became curious on my own right, I had to learn about certain things myself, and kind of a lot of it was self motivated. And so that carried in to college. And then I studied psychology. I did not want to be a psychologist, but I was curious about it. I liked people I like learning about human behavior and how sometimes weird it is, and then fell into retail, the I went to Santa Clara University to have a great Retail Studies. Minor. And so I did that. And I thought that was a really good balance, right? I didn't want to go 100% Into get a business degree. But I knew I liked it enough to do something around business and and that sort of thing. And so that that minor helps kind of opened my, my path into into retail. But yeah, I think it's been, it's been great. I love doing what I do. But a lot of it is because I've, I've always challenged myself to do something different. Right. As you mentioned in that great intro, I have done a little bit of everything. And that's been it's a non traditional path for a lot of people in the industry. But I've got to learn about so many different things, right. I think my second job was at coach and I remember two months into the job. I was in Guam, the island of Guam, most people don't even know where Guam is in the air. In in my in my jeans, and I was there looking at the we have three retail stores in the island of Guam, if you think about it. And so I learned about international business I learned about travel retail, right. And that's because I was was the reason why I was on Guam is because travel retail and that's that's another part of the industry that not a lot of American retailers know about, because it's fairly are experienced with it. If you travel within the US or depart from the US airports, it's mostly liquor, tobacco makeup, right. But abroad, mostly in Asia, initially, and now pretty much around the world. There was a huge business in people wanting to shop when they travel, and especially places that had a really high vat or because of luxury pricing strategy. So they were paying significantly higher prices. And so I learned about that like who I was A little Asian boy from Portland, Oregon. Why was he in Guam? And so I think that has kept me doing this. And I've always found something interesting. Right? I jumped it, I had never done buying, really wanted to do buying got a chance to join Shopbop when they were launching the E stain site, and that was really fun. And so, yeah, I think it's kept me engaged. It is a fun product to work on. It's not life and death. It is everyone. It's universal. Right? Everyone wears clothes. Everyone needs something in their closet. And so that's been that's been kind of kept me going. I

William Harris  50:43  

love it. Curiosity, hard work, right? Like, these are two of the top qualities. I think of anybody that does that. You strike me as somebody who's also routined? How do you stay? How do you stay sane, with all of the crazy things that you've done? Like, there has to be some kind of a routine that you've established for yourself? Yeah, I

John Wong  51:04

have, um, it's, you know, my friends have made fun of me for it. It's not

William Harris  51:10  

nothing to make fun of. That's a good thing.

John Wong  51:12

It's the it's, it's what's worked for me. And, you know, I've kept pretty much I have hours of, say, from 5:35am, to about 6pm. Sorry, yeah, I kind of have a routine. And I always wake up very early, I go to the gym, have breakfast, and then I start getting into work. But my bedtime never changes. And my wake up type never changes. And that's helped kind of kind of stabilized me in. What's what's weird or interesting is I kept that, even when I'm not working. You know, I mean, between things right now I'm looking for opportunity. But I've kept that I'm still waking up at 5:35am to go to the gym. But I think that that helps center me. I think

William Harris  52:10

it's important, right? We've, there's more and more studies that are showing the importance of our circadian rhythm. And even on days off, maintaining that circadian rhythm that your your body can rely on certain things. And I've even seen studies that suggest, you know, like you said, like the bedtime that it's like, we need to minimize the distractions that we have within our bedroom that it's like the bedroom is like this, you know, place for sleep and rest. Not having a TV in there and things like that, that, that allow your brain to think, Oh, this is not the place where restaurants should almost, you know Pavlovian like condition you that it's like you stepped foot in that bedroom, and you're like, I'm ready for bed. I'm ready to go to sleep. Yeah.

John Wong  52:52  

The weird thing is I break all those rules. I have a giant TV. I have my phone. And it's everything's in the room. But I think that routine, though, has helped the time. Like when I see the clock and it's getting close at 930 10 o'clock. I'm like, Okay, it's time to go to bed.

William Harris  53:10

Yeah, something else you were talking about here when we were chatting before was health. Zero, we can sometimes have health issues that pop up from time to time in our lives. And and there's something that you've been kind of working through here as well, that you were willing to share. Take me through that.

John Wong  53:28  

Yeah, I had I, in the middle of pandemic, as with most people that were going through it, I was under a lot of stress. I developed hyper lead pressure. I had Bell's Palsy. It's you know, they didn't say that it was directly tied to stress. But stress is a major factor in that I was grinding my teeth, I started having to inject botox in my jaw to weaken the jaw muscle. And I remember to nightguards it was something was going wrong. And so I decided to kind of take a break from my last role. But then halfway through I also had a little bit of a heart. What do they call it? A heart arrhythmia. You know, those stories that Apple loves to tell when the Apple Watch and you get an alert on your watch. I had that. And so that kind of freaked me out. And I'm good now but you know, part of that was really taking things seriously. I've always been overweight my whole life. It's definitely genetic. But there are definitely things that I probably could have done better. And my cardiologist suggested a whole food plant based diet. That was overwhelming that day. I didn't know what it was. I've never heard of it. But essentially, it's not veganism is essentially trying to eat food that is not altered or there's not a lot added to it or taken away from it. And so, since I started that I've been lost over 30 pounds my mouth, right? And my numbers are looking cholesterol dropped by 50%. And all these numbers look good, and I feel great. But, you know, I just stood there thinking I'm 42 when all this happened. I've had a struggle with my weight my whole life, what would my life have looked like if I knew about this 20 years ago, you know, or even, you know, when I was just a teenager and learning how to eat. I, you know, my life might have changed a little bit might have been a little bit different, but it's about kind of finding what's right for you. You know, I think this diet, definitely, I'm not gonna call it a diet, it just the way of eating has definitely surprised me. You know, I didn't think I was eating unhealthy. I mean, like I you know, as falling pretty mindful kind of diet. But so it wasn't a huge change for me, but it it kind of whatever it did, my body needed it. And so that's been really interesting. And weirdly enough, now, there's been a lot of dialogue and conversations about what they call Ultra processed foods. Right? There's a there's this great doctor in the UK who's coming out with a book called Ultra process people. And he's the one that couple years ago, he I think went on a diet of McDonald's for a month, or two weeks or something like that. And he recorded himself similar to God, the other guy that that did this similar Supersize Me or whatever, yeah, similar thing. But he this, this particular author was a doctor, and he looked at it from a medical perspective. And, and so there's been a lot of conversations about what we eat, or what is it food as medicine, right? That's kind of a buzzword. And, you know, it starts, you start thinking about how we're trained on a lot of our eating habits, right. So the other day, oh, it was visiting my parents and they know about his diet. And they were trying to cook dinner, and they made chicken. And I was like, Oh, we made chicken. I was like, Oh, I can't eat that. Like, what chickens not meat. Meet men beef. Like, they're not the only ones that made that correlation. And I find that fascinating that most people when they say meat, they just think of red meat. They don't think of fish and chicken and poultry and all the other things. But it's yeah, it's it's been kind of mind changing, or life changing this whole diet, it's worked for me. I'm content. I'm not, I'm never hungry. But yeah, that's been that was been a life change.

William Harris  57:55  

I think the thing that I liked about what you were saying there, too, is just this idea of Whole Foods in general, we think that sometimes we're so smart that we can outsmart biology, right. And so it's like, we're going like, we've got 1000s of years of developing, not just our own cells being used to like real foods that just existed out in nature. But all of the cells that are contained within us, and I forget the exact figure, but I think I've seen something like 90% of the cells that make up who you are, are not even human, they're like by bacteria and viruses, and all of these things that are inside of us that like that are on our skin like art, like it's this ecosystem, right? And all of these things have existed for 1000s of years on real plant based in whatever foods out there not processed foods. And then we come in and we say, Hey, as long as you get enough vitamin C, D and A You're okay, right? And it's like, well, maybe there's these other things that we just are completely ignoring. There's a there's a chemical I remember seeing called I think it's called Apple Genin or something right. And it's this thing that causes causes apoptosis, or cell death in cancerous cells. that's found in celery, and celery, think there's nothing there. There's no calories. There's, there's literally nothing there's like no vitamins or minerals. Like is this is like celery, this is zero, you look at the nutrition messages, zero everything. But there's all these other chemicals that we we maybe don't even have names for every little compound that exists within it. But we know that these things cause these things that are beneficial to us. Now we're starting to learn that. And we got away from a lot of it. And so I think that's really cool that you've kind of gone down this path and that you're seeing this result.

John Wong  59:42

Yeah, it's it's, I hope I'm on the right path. Right. I 10 years ago, I was trying, what is it? Atkins, right. That was the buzzword it was carbohydrates was the evil and the devil and so I was trying that and all the science talk supported But at that time, I thought I was doing the right thing, I lost a little bit of weight. But I was the mood swings I had were fierce. So this time around, I don't have that I'm trying to listen to logic here. I'm not I don't have cravings anymore on this, I'm always contented, meaning like, I'm not hungry, I feel good, I've got an energy. I'm not lethargic. And so based on those things, this is definitely a lot more successful of a diet, if you will, than anything else I've tried. But who knows, you know, maybe five years from now they're gonna say, not having me, is gonna cause brain damage. But, but yeah, I think logically, it makes sense. And the good thing on this is I do allow me, you know, I'm just very careful. The type of meat I eat, and when I eat it, and how much right so I try to save that for really, like when I go out, you know, and that's the other thing about the social aspect of this, I didn't expect it to impact socially. You know, a lot of lot of people when I go out, they, they're sympathetic, and they want to support me, but finding a restaurant that adheres to this is almost impossible. And so you kind of does impact that a little bit. You know, our system, especially here in New York, it's about grabbing a drink, grabbing a bite, having dinner, lunch, brunch, whatever it is, there's always food involved. And so I just, you know, you have to do a little bit more planning from that perspective. But it's worked for me. And so and hopefully it kind of circumvents feature issues as well.

William Harris  1:01:42

I think that's the key. It's just like, even within marketing, right, where you say, hey, you know, maybe one brand is finding wild success on tick tock, but another brand isn't going to and it's like, it doesn't mean that tick tock is wrong. It's just not right for that brand. And yeah, this might be perfect for you, Atkins might be perfect for somebody else. And that's okay. Go on it, use some data study, see how you're feeling? How do you feel? Are you losing the weight? You want to wait? Are you gaining the weight that you need to gain? Are you you know, Are you mentally sharp and like, using that and, you know, obviously, working with your doctor to make sure your numbers are where they need to be and stuff? And just, I think that's, there's a lot of truth to the idea that it might be something different for each person, but find out what's working for you.

John Wong  1:02:23  

Yeah, it actually reminds me of this advice that I've been trying to give to anyone that asks me for advice, especially the younger people is, trust your gut, I think, for me anyways, and I can't speak for other people. But over the years, I for some reason, didn't trust that I trusted what I was told, either from someone I knew something I read something I heard in the code numbers, usually it's like numbers and facts, and like this many grams of this and that sort of thing. But then we started kind of getting away from trusting our instincts. And we're, all of us are grow sorry, born with, with that instant, innate instinct. And so just go with it. If something doesn't feel right, okay, well, maybe there's something there. Right? What do we and try to find out what it is. And that's in life too, right? If it's a job, a significant part of like a partner, or whatever situation, social situation you're in, if it doesn't feel right, and if it makes you uncomfortable, then there's something there, listen to that.

William Harris  1:03:29  

I'm going to sound like a hippie here. But I promise this is much more scientific than it really sounds. I really like where you're going with about trusting your gut. We're just now starting to uncover the science. I just think science hasn't caught up to a whole lot. But we're just starting to uncover a lot of science, about you know, there's as many neurotransmitters in your gut as there is in your brain that's massive that I don't think we even understood that even you know, a couple of decades ago. But let's go beyond this. I really like I'm a big fan of string theory. And for like, quick primer for people, you can quantumly entangle atoms, in in the data can transfer between atoms that are constantly entangled, despite the distance in time or space. And so this is a wild phenomenon. But let's imagine they're connected by these one dimensional strings is more or less kind of like this idea of string theory is that things are connected through one dimensional strings. But let's imagine that this is true. Let's imagine that some of these things that we might feel our gut instincts might be vibrations that we just don't even know how to process here. We only know how to process in our stomach, that are vibrations of things that are quantumly entangled to other things that are going on within the universe. Like I said, sounds maybe very metaphysical hippie, but I'm simply saying, I just don't think science has caught up to understanding why sometimes our gut is right, and our brain just doesn't know how to process that.

John Wong  1:04:54  

Yeah. I mean, have you ever had an experience or have you noticed that You know, maybe an experience you had when you're a kid, when you were a teenager? When you look back on it, you're like, Oh, that is not my perception of it now as an adult, right. And that's a that's a prime example. You may be a science hasn't caught up, like you said, Maybe we don't know how to interpret the signal or this feeling. But yeah, there's there's a lot of unknown. But I think what's for me, what's worked is just kind of trust my own instincts.

William Harris  1:05:29  

Yeah, that's very smart. John, I've had an amazing time talking. Today, we've gone on some really fun tangents. But I think we covered some really deep stuff for DTC and wholesale as well. If people wanted to work with you, or follow you or connect with you, what's the best way for them to get in touch?

John Wong  1:05:47

I'm probably still LinkedIn. I'm up there. I know, my name is fairly generic in terms of Asian names out there, but it's John Wong and have my photo up there so people can in all my contact information is on the profile.

William Harris  1:06:01  

We can link to it in the in the show notes as well. I share a similar thing with you, William Harris, as far as names go is about as dime a dozen and a million of us out there in the world.

John Wong  1:06:13

the no fly list minus well,

William Harris  1:06:16  

yeah, okay, so quick tangent before we end that I was on the no fly list for a period of time as well. I remember getting to the airport one time maybe when I was shortly outside of college and being told I couldn't fly. And I was like, why? And they were like, well, you're on the no fly list. And I was like, I don't think that's me. I think that somebody else was my name. But you said you're on the no fly list right now. No,

John Wong  1:06:37  

no, I don't think so. But this you know, post 911 I was I was stopped every time I went to the airport and I was traveling internationally at that time and so I think maybe that elevated it and it's because I don't have a middle name. And so there was a couple of agents and homeland security people that are like you know, you're not the only one that rents into this but we will suggest you just make up a middle name and then get your passport and that sort of thing but yeah, I but it's Dunhuang is like an old Bill Smith or something. Sure.

William Harris  1:07:10  

Yeah. Yes. So I my middle name has saved me a couple of times. And this was maybe not even that long ago, maybe six months ago. I remember getting pulled over by a police officer. And I was not speeding or anything I was actually pulling out of the bank. But you know after I went through the bank, I went through the drawn a blank on what you even call it we just get to cash in from the teller you just drive the drive thru. Thank you. Yeah, I'll get there eventually. Then. So I went through the drive thru and then as soon as I get out, there's a little parking spots and I'm like, okay, great. I'm putting my money in my wallet. And then after I do that, that I pull out to go pull up, but apparently at that time a police officer came in, and they pulled me over and he was like, you know, you you took out all of the parking lot as soon as I came in. Is there a reason why and I was like, I just got done put my money in my wallet like nothing there. Right. Right runs my plate sees my name is William Harris. And he goes we actually have a warrant for your arrest. I don't think that's me. But let's go on on right and so I just remember them running things and I was there for a while and eventually they were like yeah, you're right it was the wrong will Harris you're good to go kind of thing but I can share in some of your sympathy there with with the name thing. You were

John Wong  1:08:22  

gonna have a black mirror episode live out. It's not me. You got the promise I didn't do it.

William Harris  1:08:30  

Anyways, all right. That was a fun last minute tangent. John, thank you for coming out. Joining us sharing your knowledge, your time and your wisdom with us today.

John Wong  1:08:37  

Thank you, William. It was a pleasure.

William Harris  1:08:40  

And thank you everyone else for joining in. Have a great day.

Outro  1:08:44  

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