In the early days of selling Perfect Pushups, we categorized our sales into five groups: mass retailer, sporting goods big box, sporting goods small box, web sales and telephone sales. Examples of each are Walmart and Target (mass retailers), Dicks and The Sports Authority (sporting goods big box), and Big Five and Sports Chalet (sporting goods small box). Two of the aforementioned companies are no longer in business—The Sports Authority and Sports Chalet—thanks, in large part, to a retailer that we included with other online retailers in our web sales category. That retailer is Amazon. Back in 2007, Amazon sales represented less than 10% of our revenue—today it represents more than 30% and, more importantly, it now sets the tone for a product launch. How well a product does is directly dependent on its Amazon ratings. With well over 100 million US customers, and upwards of 80% of all customers using Amazon to search for and evaluate products, ratings become a critical early indicator of the product’s success.

Think about it for a moment: you hear about a new widget and search it up on Amazon, what’s the first thing you look for after seeing its price—maybe even before its price?—how many stars the product has or in others words, its customer ratings. With each star worth 20%, if a new product gets just a single 1-star rating, then it needs another seven 5-star ratings to bring it up to a 4.5-star average rating, based on a 5-option voting system. Today’s products live and die by those independent ratings. If a product has too many 1-star ratings, then it’s doomed. In many cases, we would pull the product and either re-design it or trash it. For a brand that prides itself on “Perfect” products, having 1-star ratings are terrible.

The 5-star rule holds true when you talk to yourself—you know those little voices in your head that either whine, “you can’t do this” or whisper, “you CAN do it; keep going?” The same rules apply in keeping you motivated to reach your goal as they do for keeping a product selling on the Internet—Amazon isn’t the only one using the 5-star rating system, they just happen to be the biggest one! For every negative thought you think to yourself, you need another seven positive thoughts to offset it. This is an important rule to incorporate into your goal-achievement arsenal as you go All-in and Move forward toward your goal. As mentioned many times before, your achievement depends on to your ability to keep believing in yourself—and every negative thought of “I can’t” in whatever form it comes in requires an ambush of positive “I CANs” to muzzle the negativity before it drowns your dreams.

This is the year of “I Can,” because to make it your best year yet, you’ll need consistent 5-star ratings of positive re-enforcement from the most important person on your goal-achievement journey—YOU.

Go All-in and Move-forward toward your goal every day.

You got this.

Alpha Mike—Alden