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34 minutes | 4 days ago
Scott Buelter, Ascent 360
Scott Buelter, CEO and President of Ascent 360 joins us on this episode of Channel Mastery. Ascent 360 was founded with the mission to build advanced technology that does amazing consumer personalization and bring it to the outdoor industry and specialty businesses and brands. This idea was an incredibly forward thinking idea at the time and I truly believe it has elevated the opportunity for small and mid-sized specialty brands to earn the hearts, minds and trust of their target consumers - a mantra you hear me say often, Channel Masters. If nothing else, 2020 granted us all in specialty business experiences that worked or didn’t work. We now have so many things we can look back on and either graduate forward as we’re looking to manage another year or leave behind. Consumer behavior shifted at unprecedented rates last year and with that, consumer expectations changed too. We have to continue to be nimble and connect with our consumers on an emotional level and Scott is here today to offers real life examples of how to do just that. This episode is a great way to lead into 2021 and I am excited to see what Ascent 360 does next! GUEST PROFILES: As CEO and president, Scott Buelter guides Ascent360's strategy and vision. His mission is to bring enterprise-level marketing capabilities to midsize businesses through a powerful CDP, allowing them to better understand their customers and achieve continual growth. Buelter draws upon his data analysis and digital marketing experience at companies such as Nike, Disney, Royal Caribbean, Loews Hotels, American Express and Samsung, as well as upon his academic background. Buelter received an MBA from the University of California–Irvine and a Bachelor of Science in economics from the University of San Diego, in addition to studying at the London School of Economics and the Institute of Education Sciences in Berlin and Vienna.
39 minutes | 10 days ago
Andrew Osborn, Outdoor Research
In this episode of Channel Mastery, I am joined by Andrew Osborn. Andrew became the VP of Brand Creative at Outdoor Research, a beloved Verde Brand Communications client, after years of working in creative studios and on the design side of advertising agencies. He started at Outdoor Research just weeks before Covid-19 hit the states and has played a pivotal role in rebranding and guiding creative efforts throughout 2020 and is leading the charge into 2021. Outdoor Research proved to be the leader of innovation and product development when they pivoted their productions early in the pandemic to create their face masks. In this interview, we dive into Andrew’s past work, how they quickly shifted production in the pandemic, where OR is headed next, and what 2021 has in store for brand storytelling, consumer engagement, and hard goods marketing, and more. With a background in design and interactive experience, Andrew Osborn isa creative director who blends passion and profession with a strategic focus in the athletics and outdoor industries. He currently serves as Vice President of Brand Creative at Outdoor Research.
47 minutes | a month ago
Michelle Duffy, Life Time
Michelle Duffy, Director of Off-Road Events and Marketing for Life Time leads a small and mighty team with huge hearts and a huge commitment to their event athletes. If you are a long-time listener of the podcast, you have likely heard me talk about my love for Leadville and other events that the team at Life Time puts on annually. If you haven’t heard me talk about it, episode 100 recaps the significance of the 2019 race for me personally and introduces Kimo Seymour, SVP of Operations at Life Time. Understanding my own personal love for the events they host, it was obviously unfortunate that almost every single event was cancelled due to the pandemic this year. What I am most proud of though in working with Michelle directly and Life Time as a client of Verde Brand Communications throughout the year, is that their team did not shy away from the public, they didn’t climb into the figurative holes each of us likely considered, even if just for a second. No - Life Time’s team immediately found ways to stay connected to their target consumers. They offered challenges to all groups of people to participate in, they rebranded in the midst of a pandemic, they raised unbelievable amounts of money for foundations and organizations within their racing communities and pivoted in so many more ways than you’d believe. I cannot wait to see what the Life Time team does in 2021! Michelle Duffy is the Director of Off-Road Events and Marketing for Life Time.
60 minutes | a month ago
Earl B. Hunter, Black Folks Camp Too
Earl Hunter, President and founder of Black Folks Camp Too joins Kristin Carpenter and Alice Baker on this episode of Channel Mastery. Black Folks Camp Too is a marketing-driven business with a mission to increase diversity in the outdoors. He and his son took a three-month road trip, staying at campgrounds across America and in those three-months, he saw only one other black family. It was through this experience and more, that he began his mission to help bring people of color into the outdoors. Earl’s passion, energy and enthusiasm is infectious. He challenges brands and companies to join him on his mission, a marathon, not a sprint and lean on him and his company to help drive the change in the outdoors and the outdoor industry overall. We were elated to have Earl on as a guest and look forward to following his mission and connecting Channel Masters with his cause. Earl Hunter is an experienced business leader across multiple industries. He has been widely recognized for his ebullient personality, hard work ethic and non-traditional approach to building relationships and closing deals. He is the founder and President of Black Folks Camp Too - a marketing-driven business whose mission is to increase diversity in the outdoor industry by making it easier, more interesting and more fun for black folks to go camping too.
29 minutes | a month ago
Eric Porter, Diamondback
Eric Porter is a professional mountain biker that I have worked with over the years in a variety of different ways. At the end of every year, he’s traditionally planning his trips for the new year, but just like so many of us in 2020, he had to change how he approached this past year. With cancelled trips, races and essentially all plans, he pivoted to focus on video production and ramped up his Youtube Channel - Porter MTB - over the past year. His goal throughout the year was reaching 100k follower and for him, he’s committed to turning out high quality videos, ensuring the videos he shares feature him authentically and that he’s connecting with his fans and followers. As we’ve all seen in 2020, we have to adjust to where our consumers are and how their behavior has shifted. Eric and his fellow athletes at Diamondback and other brands are practicing what they preach and providing authentic content that speaks to their followers. Listen to the full episode to hear how he reached - and exceeded - that 100k followers goal and what’s next to come for him! Eric Porter is a father, fly fisherman, backcountry snowboarder, and Professional Mountain Biker. He grew up racing cross country mountain bikes, then switched to downhill and won Collegiate National Championships, and then switched to freeriding, where he was the first to grind handrails on a mountain bike. He spent the next 8 years on the World Slopestyle Tour and filming for big free ride videos, which piqued his interest in traveling the world. Since 2011 he has been on the forefront of mountain bike adventuring, riding his bike places no one else has been, and sharing those adventures with the world. He spends time on all of his bikes, from the road bike at home while training, to dirt jumping in his legendary backyard riding setup, to the XC bike for endurance and adventure racing, and mixing in a healthy dose of bikepacking as well. He is also trying hard to help as a public lands and trails advocate, volunteering as President of Wasatch Trails Foundation, helping to build and maintain multi-use trails in Utah.
35 minutes | 2 months ago
Steve Matous, NICA
The year 2020 will forever be defined for outdoor recreation with the word “Boom.” That’s especially true in cycling. In April, bike sales grew 75% year over year and in June, 63% according to Axios. Creating a more inclusive, welcoming community for newcomers has always been a focus of Steve Matous, President of NICA, but especially during the bike boom of 2020 and the pandemic. Steve was last on the show in August of 2019 for Episode 98 and I am stoked to have him back to Channel Mastery at this critical time. Steve’s insights shed light on how NICA has spent the last nine-plus months shifting their operations and races during the pandemic. He shares how NICA immediately reached out to partners and sponsors at the start of the COVID-19 outbreak to ensure they could still operate and continue to serve the cycling community, their initiatives to invite newcomers to the sport, the importance of their missions through the pandemic and more. You’ll be inspired and amazed at the outcome Steve and the nimble NICA team has created so far through COVID. I hope you gain a lot of inspiration from this episode, I certainly did! Steve Matous is president of the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA). He comes to NICA from a broad-reaching and successful career in the outdoor industry from both the commercial and not-for-profit side, having led Outward Bound, Entre-Prises Climbing Walls, and the American Alpine Club, among other organizations. He is a strong advocate for youth participation and developing lifelong outdoor enthusiasts.
24 minutes | 2 months ago
Cassie Abel, Women Led Wednesday
This week on Channel Mastery, I’m pleased to introduce you to Cassie Abel, who is spearheading Women Led Wednesday, an online shopping event taking place on November 25th, 2020. This annual event joins together 400 women-founded brands across multiple industries and is a solution to try and keep the acceleration going on developing women in leadership. As part of Channel Mastery’s justice, diversity, equity and inclusion series, we are elated to offer a platform here on the podcast that helps people who may need more visibility and elevate their voices and their missions. Whether we realize it or not, along with the pandemic and recession, we also have another crisis moment to keep a close eye on and work to avoid together. We’ve seen a high percentage of women leaving the workforce through 2020. Cassie is leading by example with Women Led Wednesday by supporting and encouraging us to support women founded brands. Join me in celebrating women by visiting www.womenledwednesday.com and through the collective purchasing power uplift the women-founded businesses featured on their site. Based in Sun Valley, Idaho, Cassie Abel is a long-time outdoor industry professional who has committed her career to elevating women in the outdoors and in business. Abel is the co-founder & CEO of Wild Rye, a women’s mountain apparel brand dedicated to crafting beautiful and technical apparel that fits, inspires confidence and welcomes more women into the outdoors. In addition to Wild Rye, Abel founded Women-Led Wednesday, a purpose-driven shopping holiday that occurs annually with the goal of encouraging the general public to vote for women in leadership with their dollars. The holiday occurs annually the day before Thanksgiving – November 25, 2020 – and to support the holiday, Women-Led Wednesday hosts a robust women-led brand directory that features well over 400 women-led brands across all industries. Prior to Wild Rye and Women-Led Wednesday, Cassie founded White Cloud Communication, a boutique PR & Marketing consulting business in addition to holding roles at Smith Optics, Visa, in finance and as a division one NCAA lacrosse coach. When not working away to bring equity to women in the outdoors and in business, you can find Cassie playing in the mountains of Idaho (most frequently on bikes and skis) with her husband, Mike, baby, Sawyer, and fur-baby, Kirby.
31 minutes | 2 months ago
Ashley Korenblat, Outerbike and Your Friend in the Bike Business
This year brought countless challenges, but 2020 also granted us with opportunities we likely didn’t expect for some of our businesses and brands. Outerbike, the premier experiential consumer cycling event dedicated to helping mountain bikers and gravel grinders find their perfect bike, stepped up in a unique way in 2020 instead of retracting and taking figurative shelter. When Outerbike’s expanded in-person events were cancelled, the small and mighty team designed and launched a digital tool designed to help lead consumers to the bike that’s best for them. And what a necessary resource! Please add in stats on bike growth here, thank you! Ashley Korenblat, founder of Outerbike, joins me again on the show (she was also featured in episode #86) with a special announcement. Launching this week is Outerbike’s interactive guide leading consumers to the bike category that’s best for them: Your Friend in the Bike Business. This interactive digital resource takes away the intimidation of walking into a bike shop for help as a newcomer to the sport, but is also tailored to work for experienced riders, whether you’re looking for a new bike or just exploring options. The cycling industry saw huge waves of newcomers to cycling and outdoor recreation in 2020. Now businesses of all sizes have the opportunity to catch, collect and keep this newcomer. Listen today to see how Ashley and her team are creating a welcoming and inclusive environment to newcomers and experienced cyclists alike. I for one was super inspired to see this small, entrepreneurial company take massive action to nurture our amazing newcomers to cycling and outdoor. I hope you enjoy this episode and share it with as many cycling enthusiasts - new and experienced - as you possibly can! Ashley Korenblat is CEO of Western Spirit, founder of Outerbike and managing Director of Public Lands Solutions.
34 minutes | 3 months ago
Nancy Guinn, Dog Krazy
Hello my friends and welcome to episode 149 of the Channel Mastery podcast. It’s the end of October 2020 as I’m recording this - we have a big day happening next week. It’s a lot, isn’t it? This election? What I have planned for you today is a light respite from the rhetoric you may be being bombarded with on EVERY CHANNEL known to man and woman kind - right now. So…. Let’s drop in! Channel Mastery exists to level the playing field for specialty brands as the competition continues to climb around reaching, engaging and converting today’s consumer. Winning their attention, let alone keeping it? It’s a continual street fight… My guest today is the absolute epitome of specialty and I am delighted to present this interview to you because it literally screams to us that we need to pay attention to the details, be as human as we can, and live to serve the people in our brand and retail specialty communities. Nancy Guinn is the founder and President of Dog Krazy, a retail pet product store that is so much more than that. Nancy takes the time to get to know and tailor service to her shoppers and her community. She knows what she’s great at and what her business excels at, and she keeps building more surprise and delight of the specialty variety into the channels that her people follow her and Dog Krazy on. So, Dog Krazy was founded in 2006, but you know what’s amazing? Her expansion hit a fever pitch in 2020 - yes, the COVID 2020… They now have seven total locations and a very robust, regionalized social media presence and following. The channels all feed each other, and give Nancy and her team the opportunity to present their forms of customer care in so many ways throughout their target shoppers’ journey. This is an entertaining episode, and Nancy is very very energetic. Take note of three things you can either resurrect in your specialty business, or that you can start to try through the rest of 2020 and into 2021. I hope you enjoy this special episode of the Channel Mastery podcast - consider this cross-training for your specialty business! Nancy Guinn is founder and President of Dog Krazy Inc. The first location was established in August 2006 when Nancy realized she wanted to spend every moment of her life with her bulldog, Pignet. Piglet was the inspiration for Dog Crazy and since her passing, Dog Krazy has expanded to seven locations throughout Virginia.
25 minutes | 3 months ago
Aaron Foley, Director of the Black Media Initiative at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism, CUNY
Today, Verde launches the first of a regular monthly episode series featuring resources and solutions to ensure people of color are more comfortable identifying as part of the outdoors communities. Verde is committed to strategically using our reach and the reach of our clients to welcome a more diverse participant base into the incredible outdoor community! Today’s guest on the Channel Mastery podcast is Aaron Foley, who was named Director of the Black Media Initiative at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism in June of 2020. The collective goal in his new role is to increase the potential for community media. This is defined as Black media, Latino media, Indigenous media, Asian media, and media that is geared towards immigrant communities. It can also include Jewish media, Muslim media, Catholic media, etc. Ensuring Black media outlets are more sustainable is also a top initiative in his role. Prior to this position, Aaron was a Fellow at the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowships at Stanford University, where he served as one of 19 professionals selected for a 10-month residency at Stanford assigned to research and innovate solutions in Journalism. Aaron and his cohort worked on topics like: revenue streams from public entities to fund independent newsrooms; curbing spread of misinformation and disinformation among Black news consumers. He’s also been a journalist, of course. He served as Chief Storyteller for the City of Detroit, a position that was a Mayoral appointment, a first for a city government in the U.S. And was Editor In Chief for BLAC Detroit Magazine. Aaron comes from a family that is deeply rooted in journalism, as his mother was a reporter, editor and photographer for the Michigan Chronicle, which is considered one of the oldest Black newspapers in the country. Through his work in his new role, he wants to ensure Black media outlets are more sustainable. He offers ways for brands and businesses to successfully reach broader audiences and also sheds light on how our specialty businesses can support black media outlets and enable more people of color to feel part of our outdoor communities through media. Kristin is joined by a co-host today, one of her esteemed Verde Brand Communications colleagues, Alice Baker! Alice has been a part of the Verde team for about three years and crushes it day in and day out leading her clients at the agency. Alice has stepped up to lead Verde’s commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Verde’s agency-wide goal is to strategically deploy its reach, and the reach of its clients, to enable more people of color to feel welcome in the outdoors. Once a month going forward, the Channel Mastery podcast will be dedicated to that commitment. Alice will be co-hosting these special episodes. Without further ado, here’s the Aaron Foley interview on the Channel Mastery podcast! Let’s do this! Aaron Foley is a journalist from Detroit who has had an extensive freelance career and was the city of Detroit’s first chief storyteller from 2017 to 2019. Before joining the Newmark J-School’s Center for Community Media (CCM) in June 2020 as the Black Media Initiative Director, he was a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University. His freelance work has appeared in BuzzFeed, The Atlantic, CNN, Forbes, The Root, Ebony, Columbia Journalism Review, New Michigan Media among other platforms. He also helped launch the successful digital news site MLive Detroit and was editor-in-chief of BLAC Detroit magazine, a publication covering black life, arts, and culture in metro Detroit. He is the author of How to Live in Detroit Without Being a Jackass (2015) and has an impressive public speaking record, including a Ted Talk. Foley describes himself as “a product of Black media.” His mother was an editor at the Michigan Chronicle, one of the oldest and last remaining Black newspapers in the country.
118 minutes | 4 months ago
2020 Holiday Summit, 3-part interview with David Howell, Ryan Riggs and Kelly Ramirez
This episode combines three interviews, which took place during a 3-day interview sprint with some of our most popular and knowledgeable Channel Mastery guests. David Howell of Howell and Associates, Ryan Riggs of Pattern and Kelly Ramirez of Prismatic, joined me for the first ever Verde Brand Communications and Channel Mastery Holiday Summit. They are absolute knock-outs for when it comes to specialty business experts and they’re here today to help offer tips and guidance for all of us leading into holiday and finishing 2020 as strongly as possible. Each of these speakers bring a unique perspective on how consumer behavior trends and a surge in ecommerce will be reshaping the holiday season this year. Their information is invaluable as we wrap up the year. Listen here and subscribe to Channel Mastery! David Howell is Managing Partner and founder at Howell & Associates. For 19 years he and his firm have specialized in traditional Global Brand Protection, Anti-Counterfeiting, and the Newera Open Marketplace and Ecommerce Channel Compliance. Having worked with over 500 manufacturers in recent years, he has a level of uncanny foresight in helping manufacturers solve online issues in just about every facet. When he’s not working long hours for his client’s success, he can be found deep in the Idaho mountains hiking, biking, or on his paddleboard on beautiful Payette Lake. Ryan Riggs is the Vice President of Business Development at Pattern. His career has spanned over 14 years in global commercial sales, and brand and product management. He has worked for KEEN, Columbia, Mountain Hardwear, and Montrail in the outdoor footwear, apparel and equipment sectors. He has successfully led global and regional teams to develop multi-channel product and merchandising strategies that grow revenue and increase profitability for both the brand and partners. Kelly Ramirez is founder and CEO of Prismatic, a growth consultancy that bolts onto brands to improve E-commerce performance and accelerate revenue from digital channels. Kelly founded Prismatic after nearly a decade at Google, where she led global growth initiatives for the top 1% of digital native travel advertisers including Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, Hotels.com. With hyperfocus on the foundational elements that enable a company to succeed in the new e-commerce ecosystem, Prismatic is an advisor, an interpreter, and hands-on practitioner for brands in growth mode. During the COVID crisis, Kelly and her team have been working in lockstep with clients in the SaaS, Outdoor, and Travel industries to interpret macro impacts, develop strategic and authentic response strategies, and evolve their approach to scale in the dynamic retail environment.
48 minutes | 4 months ago
The Inside Line on the Launch & Experience of the Multi-Channel Marketing Academy, with Rick Saez of the Outdoor Biz podcast
A few weeks ago, I had the honor of doing my second interview for the Outdoor Biz podcast, a show produced by podcast leader Rick Saez. It was refreshing to be interviewed about the Academy, and franky, to be the interviewee and not the interviewer. The episode turned out super well for a couple of reasons: 1 - It definitely outlines who the course is for, why we launched it, and the intentional timing of our launch (it very much serves specialty brand and business leaders transforming during a pandemic and recession while balancing living through palpable social unrest in the world) 2 - This podcast episode brings to light the very real, very human experience of launching something like an immersive, digital product and the personal change that calls for (from your’s truly). Never have I felt this vulnerable in what I thought was my safe zone - business. … Channel Masters, you’ll get a lot out of this episode because it answers questions about the offering of the Academy, but also, because it gives you a front row seat of what it was like to literally LIVE THROUGH what I was about to teach in the Academy - choosing to intentionally change and up-level through a very very uncertain time. I’ve learned since doing this show that this expansion of Verde's service and support offerings for our specialty communities required a mindset shift. It called me to step up on a level I never had before, and to lead a small but mighty team within Verde to bring it to life. And we are SO glad we did. Why? That’s easy…. The Multi-Channel Marketing Academy opens for enrollment again this week, on Tuesday, September 15th. Mark your calendars! Whether you are a seasoned marketing professional looking to up-level your multi-channel strategy, a business leader looking to rethink your strategy in light of recent changes, or a startup working to create and execute marketing that will put you on the map, this course will give you the skills and strategies to grow and engage your community across the most relevant channels, while driving your end goal - generating sales. And your instructor, me, WILL be able to coach you through leaving your past identity behind, and stepping up and into a much bigger calling and a bigger way to serve and create expansion: through becoming a multi-channel master, and a change agent within your organization. I hope you’ll join us in this cohort of the Academy! Listen to the episode and subscribe to Channel Mastery and The Outdoor Biz podcast! Rick Saez is an avid Outdoor Adventurer a 30+ year career in the outdoor industry. He’s held leadership roles with iconic brands such as Montbell, Eagle Creek, JanSport Dana Design and Lowepro. He is Founder, producer and host of the Outdoor Biz Podcast and author of Trails to the Top: Outdoor Adventure Insider Stories and Advice to Manage Business and Grow Careers.
49 minutes | 5 months ago
Andy Inman and Chris Young, Springs Wealth Group
As we’re in the year of pivoting, quickly shifting consumer behaviors and uncertainty, I thought my guests today from the Springs Wealth Group would be great to feature on the show, which is our first official “Cross Training” episode, a new type of show we’ll be hosting every other month or so. In this series, we get to learn from specialty brands that are not retail or physical product related. No matter what kind of business you have, your customer is online today and we all need to be re-examining how our target customer is discovering, engaging with and buying from us. The Springs Wealth Group is no exception. My guests today include Andy Inman and Chris Young are co-founders and financial advisors at the Springs Wealth Group, a financial advisory practice with offices in Colorado Springs and Texas. What they do is very important throughout the year, but in a year like COVID and as we're heading into the last couple months of 2020, business finances and personal finances are top of mind for many of us. Andy and Chris talk about their unique way of getting to know prospective clients, which I LOVE and how they’re trying to change the way of thinking from, I’ll enjoy life when I retire to let’s enjoy it now. They’re also here to talk more about Corporate Social Responsibility and the trends they’ve seen in the financial world when it comes to people and businesses supporting brands that math their ethics and belief systems. Andy Inman is a financial advisor and co-founder at Springs Wealth Group, based in Colorado Springs, CO. For the past 11 years he has partnered with both individuals and businesses/organizations to help them align their financial strategies with both their individual lifestyles and long-term goals. When he’s not busy collaborating with his clients to help them live their best life, he can be found somewhere in the Rocky Mountains camping, mountain biking, skiing or snowboarding (yes, he does both). He considers himself an avid supporter of the Colorado lifestyle, an outdoor enthusiast, a semi-pro bourbon drinker, and an amateur handyman. He currently lives in Colorado Springs with his wife Emily, and their three dogs. Chris Young is a financial advisor at Springs Wealth Group. He started his financial services practice in 2002 in San Antonio, TX. Since then, he has worked with hundreds of successful families and business owners helping them to reach their most important financial goals. After spending the first 17 years in Texas, he and his family made the decision to move to Colorado. His decision was both personal and professional. Personally, for his youngest son Dean, who has autism, to could get additional resources in helping him to have a successful life. Professionally, to join together with my current business partner, Andy Inman, to focus on working with individuals and businesses with a passion for the outdoors and the outdoor lifestyle. He currently lives in Colorado Springs, CO his wife Adrianna, and three boys, Jack, Cole, and Dean. He is actively involved in their lives through sports, scouting, as well as autism awareness. He enjoy camping, backpacking, snow skiing, and anything outdoors.
43 minutes | 5 months ago
Roy Steves, Co-founder of StatBid
Channel Masters are very entrepreneurial in how they think and approach problem solving. In fact, when they have a problem they can’t find solutions for, they build the solutions themselves. That scrappy approach is what makes us inherently nimble. Roy Steves, my guest on today’s episode, is one scrappy problem-solver, and his client base is grateful for that. In this episode, you’ll hear right from the beginning - the founder’s story of Roy’s company Statbid, that he ushered in a new approach to paid search, one that put the client first. That approach is more appreciated in 2020 than ever before for Statbid’s clients. Why? Well, Roy calls 2020 the year of irrelevant data. You need to know what he means by that, and in this episode he goes deep on why it’s important and how to act on that fact. What’s in this episode is mission critical for marketers as they enter the last quarters of this challenging year. You’re about to witness the earliest onslaught ever of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Holiday 2020 promotion and yes, Roy has advice on how to set a plan that will get your brand through in fine style. Roy also points out that going direct to consumer is no longer an added bonus, but an absolute for brands and retailers meeting the needs and expectations of today’s changing consumer. We discuss what’s working best today for online discovery and traction building and explore actionable steps you can take to prepare your business for the upcoming Q3 and Q4 of 2020, as we continue to work through COVID-19 and the unexpected changes of 2020. Roy Steves is the co-founder of StatBid, a paid search agency specializing in direct to consumer and retail eCommerce brands. Previously, he had been CMO of PoolSupplyWorld, where he started as a web developer in 2010, but struck gold designing and implementing marketing and attribution systems, then building a marketing and merchandising team, ultimately doubling the business in just two years. This led, in 2013, to an acquisition by Leslie's Pool Supplies, the largest retail chain in their industry. During this period, he was a regular speaker at eCommerce conferences (eTail East and West, SuiteWorld, StatBid Summit) and podcast guest , where he thrived on conversations with fellow eCommerce operators. StatBid, founded in 2015, is the perfect vehicle for assembling an unrivaled team of experts, helping build eCommerce businesses, and talking shop.
33 minutes | 5 months ago
Chris Steinkamp, Principal and founder, Baselayer Group
For the past five-plus months, through the COVID pandemic, recession and also, the social unrest that’s become part of our day-to-day lives as we shepherd our businesses, we’ve been talking around the importance of connecting your brand to a cause. Today, we start a series on Channel Mastery about how to take action on that super important goal. Connecting your specialty brand with social justice, social impact or a cause is not a nice-to-consider any longer - it’s a must do. No matter how you refer to it, it’s the action of having your brand stand for something and taking action toward supporting that cause every month going forward. Consumers are demanding that their favorite brands align with them ethically and that those brands are taking action to make the change happen in the world they want to see. They no longer witness their government or other trusted institutions creating that change; so they’re now expecting their favorite brands to do just that. Our first expert resource on that topic, hand picked for you, Channel Masters, is Chris Steinkamp, my guest on the Channel Mastery podcast today. Chris is the Principal and Founder of Baselayer Group and one of the founding members of Protect Our Winters (POW). Chris is a fantastic resource for specialty brand leaders intent on aligning their ‘why’ with social and environmental impact. In this episode, you’ll learn how to give you fans and followers what they want: a cause to believe in and join, as well as a way to “roll up their sleeves and do something” with you to create change. Chris shares stories from the early days of POW and how other brands are leading by example to make real impact. So many brands want to do the right thing right now, and consumers are tying their dollars to their values and supporting brands and businesses that align with them. We dive into creating movements and how brands can build deep loyalty from their fans and followers through corporate social responsibility. Chris Steinkamp is the principal of Baselayer, a marketing consultancy that helps values-driven businesses and organizations build their brands and drive change through impactful brand strategies and consumer engagement initiatives. In 2007, he started Protect Our Winters (POW) with Jeremy Jones and was the executive director of the organization for a decade. He wrote the mission and the strategic business plan, built the POW brand and launched numerous initiatives and partnerships that established POW as the pre-eminent climate organization representing the outdoor sports community around the world. He spent most of his career in Los Angeles, at advertising and marketing agencies such as TBWA\Chiat\Day, Deutsch and Octagon, developing award-winning campaigns for Nissan and BMW, and was part of the core team that won the Grand Effie for Nissan.
66 minutes | 5 months ago
Replay of Outdoor Retailer The Weekly Chat Webcast with Doug Schnitzpahn and Kristin Carpenter
This Channel Mastery episode originally aired as a live webcast produced by Outdoor Retailer in late June 2020. The webcast, The Weekly Chat, is an extension of The Weekly, a digital magazine for Outdoor Retailer. It launched in the face of the pandemic and economic shutdown and was very well attended by Outdoor Retailer’s audience. Channel Mastery host, Kristin Carpenter, was asked to appear on the show with Doug Schnitzpahn to discuss the battle for trust, and engagement, and how more traditional media institutions can serve today's ever evolving consumer as they search to build trust and community online. Traditional media entities are searching for ways to bring value to their audiences and readerships. Let’s face it - media is being disrupted in a big way and has been for the past few years. People are continually re-trained to expect both content and community to be presented in new ways and on new channels, and this evolution is not slowing down. There isn’t a playbook for the pandemic and now recession so it’s our responsibility as business leaders to listen to and watch where the consumers are going, how they’re getting there, and adjust our way of thinking to best serve that North Star - our target consumers/shoppers. Doug and Kristin dive in on this topic as it pertains to the discovery facet of the consumer decision journey. Doug Schnitzpahn is an experienced innovative freelance writer, editor, and team leader with a demonstrated history of working in the publishing industry. He is skilled in Journalism, Corporate Communications, Social Media, Digital Media, and Editing. Doug is a strong media and communication professional with a Master of Fine Arts - MFA focused in Creative Writing from University of Washington.
39 minutes | 5 months ago
Ryan Eittreim, Sales Director of Consumer Products, Wintersteiger
Though it’s still a few months away, the Winter 20/21 season will be here before we know it. Specialty businesses and brand leaders are in the throes of preparing for business with new best practices in the COVID-era. On this episode of the Channel Mastery podcast, I sat down with Wintersteiger’s Sales Director for Consumer Products, Ryan Eittreim. Wintersteiger is the leader in service and rental solutions for the ski and snowboard industry. Ryan’s led a super interesting initiative that Wintersteiger is producing for the specialty community: A best practice guide to serving consumers at both retail and rental this winter. What’s more, these incredible resources are in your favorite color: Free! In addition to walking through these resources in this episode, Ryan and I also discuss the specialty markets’ journey through modernization of the consumer path to purchase through COVID. Specifically, we discuss how retailers and brands must be more consumer centric as the way consumers research and buy continues to change. I like to think of this conversation as a foundation of sorts to building a new plane while you’re flying your existing plane. Jedi! I invite you to listen, learn and share this foundational episode created to help you best prepare your business to serve the moving target that is our consumer in the COVID-era. And don’t forget to grab the free resources at channelmastery.com. Ryan Eittreim, born and raised in Sun Valley Idaho, is a 30-year veteran in the Snowsports Industry with focus on Bootfitting, Repair and rentals. Ryan has spent the last 20 years with Wintersteiger, Inc. in Salt Lake City, Utah as product and sales manager for machines and rentals, is currently the Director of Sales for Wintersteiger’s consumer brands Hotronic and BootDoc.
54 minutes | 6 months ago
David Howell, Managing Partner and founder, Howell & Associates
We’re on the verge of August, 2020, which marks a shift into a new selling season, a kick-off into a key planning window for the coming year, and also, puts Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Holiday on the near horizon. Episode 140 is the start of our brand-new season of the Channel Mastery podcast. David Howell is managing partner and founder of Howell & Associates. He has helped hundreds of fortune 500 and specialty brands with selling online, keeping brand and pricing parity and offers valuable insights from the trenches. So, if you’re wondering how COVID-19 impacted the Amazon marketplace, or lived that impact yourself, you’ll want to tune in to this show. And, if you’re interested in knowing what David’s paying clients are hearing from him in terms of his counsel on how best to distribute product and branded content going forward? Trust me, you want to listen to this interview. David Howell is Managing Partner and founder at Howell & Associates. For 19 years he and his firm have specialized in traditional Global Brand Protection, Anti-Counterfeiting, and the Newera Open Marketplace and Ecommerce Channel Compliance. Having worked with over 500 manufacturers in recent years, he has a level of uncanny foresight in helping manufacturers solve online issues in just about every facet. When he's not working long hours for his client's success, he can be found deep in the Idaho mountains hiking, biking, or on his paddleboard on beautiful Payette Lake.
35 minutes | 7 months ago
Matt Heitmann, Chief Marketing Officer at Pro’s Closet
The Pro’s Closet continues to revolutionize the way people buy bikes. The company offers a very innovative channel strategy that enables consumers to buy used bikes easily online. They build trust with their 141-point inspection process and keep cyclists in their ecosystem with an easy to join and engage with approach where a cyclist is offered the option to trade in a bike and get a new one every year. They’re a retailer of all bike brands, have an incredible bike museum, and are amassing an incredibly unique data set as more and more cyclists discover the site. And a lot more cyclists are discovering the site - from COVID-19 newcomers to cyclists affected by the recession; the Pro’s Closet is counting some of its best months in 2020. Simply put, the Pro’s Closet is completely disrupting the way bikes are bought and sold. I interviewed Nick Martin, the founder of the Pro’s Closet, in 2019, and captured the incredible vision and founding story of the company. It is one of our most downloaded shows and you can listen to that show here. And today, I am so excited to present to you the Chief Marketing Officer of the Pro’s Closet, Matt Heitmann. He’s a veteran in the cycling industry, having served at Competitive Cyclist, BMC, Canyon and more. Now, as the CMO at Pro’s Closet, out of Boulder, Colo., he is creating an orchestration between digital, tech innovation, and cycling that’s never existed before. I’m pretty confident in saying that Matt quite possibly has the coolest job in cycling! Perhaps the best part about the Pro’s Closet right now is the fact that the company is simultaneously closing the gap between experienced riders and newcomers by offering content and shopping experiences for each. The cycling industry has seen a massive boom since the start of COVID, and I was curious to learn what the Pro’s Closet was seeing in demand and also, site traffic. Matt details a lot of trends in this show, which I think you’ll get a ton of perspective from. And, in terms of demand, let’s just say they’re turning over inventory 2 ½ times per month! Listen in to hear more about how Matt and the team at Pro’s Closet continue to help grow the community of cycling enthusiasts through constant innovation - this team literally never sits idle! Matt Heitmann is a data driven commercial executive and is now Chief Marketing Officer at Pro’s Closet, located out of Boulder, Colo. Prior to the Pro’s Closet, Matt was driving commercial growth for Canyon Bicycles GmbH, BMC Switzerland, Backcountry.com and CompetitiveCyclist.com.
43 minutes | 7 months ago
Kelly Ramirez, Founder and Chief Growth Officer, Prismatic
While consumer behaviors continue to shift, one trend is here to stay: Our consumer is just plain comfortable being online now, for the entire decision and purchase journey. And with that, the battle for their attention is at an all-time high. Today’s guest is like a secret weapon for specialty brands struggling to engage and serve their target consumers. Kelly Ramirez is the founder and Chief Growth Officer of Prismatic, a Bozeman, Montana-based specialty brand growth agency. She has a background in-house at Google, and a love for small brands taking an artisan approach to customer experience online through her firm’s mix of services that include marketing analytics, performance marketing, marketing automation, conversion-rate optimization, forecast and growth modeling and user experience. The best part about Kelly? She knows that our specialty consumers are searching for a more human connection. In this episode, you’ll learn how to use tech to enhance your human, specialty connection with your consumer. I hope you get a ton out of this episode, Kelly is an incredible resource! Kelly Ramirez is founder and CEO of Prismatic, a growth consultancy that bolts onto brands to improve E-commerce performance and accelerate revenue from digital channels. Kelly founded Prismatic after nearly a decade at Google, where she led global growth initiatives for the top 1% of digital native travel advertisers including Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity, Hotels.com. With hyperfocus on the foundational elements that enable a company to succeed in the new e-commerce ecosystem, Prismatic is an advisor, an interpreter, and hands-on practitioner for brands in growth mode. During the COVID crisis, Kelly and her team have been working in lockstep with clients in the SaaS, Outdoor, and Travel industries to interpret macro impacts, develop strategic and authentic response strategies, and evolve their approach to scale in the dynamic retail environment.
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