Josh Salvo Headshot 2


As many of you know only too well, starting a business can take a long time! But what we often don’t count in the time it takes to start a business is all the history and experience from past ventures and adventures that make our skill set. All the things you have learned, ever, work together to make you the person you are.

My guest on this week’s Intrepid Entrepreneur Podcast, Josh Salvo, says his newest project has been seven years in the making. The most recent version of the ReddyYeti platform just launched a few months ago in March, but Josh says it couldn’t have happened without his past experiences and websites.

At age eighteen, Josh launched a website to help skiers find the right gear for their needs. He himself will admit he was young, and he didn’t quite realize what he was getting into! Several projects and years later he and his partners are running ReddyYeti, a community for action sport enthusiasts to discover and help startups.

ReddyYeti partners with startups creating amazing products and giving back to their communities. They host a podcast to interview founders, to share the passion and goals of the startups with the community. And they increase visibility of these startups through giveaways. Members of the ReddyYeti community can enter themselves in the giveaways, and gain extra entries by sharing with friends.

Josh is telling me about how he and his two partners started ReddyYeti using The Lean StartUp Methodology: they found a cheap way to prove the value of their product, and took that to companies for partnerships! ReddyYeti is only a few months old and already has 2,400 members.

We’re also taking about how Josh and his partners learned to pivot as they planned for ReddyYeti to launch, and their plans for the future of the site. And, he’s sharing some of the amazing startups ReddyYeti has already partnered with!

Bravery in Business Quote

“Pushing yourself to your limit really help you get to know who you are on a much deeper level.” – Josh Salvo

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Cliff Notes

  • ReddyYeti is a community of action sport enthusiasts that want to help action sport start-ups get discovered and be found. They are solely geared towards helping start-ups related to outdoor action sports.
  • Want to help get people outside and grow the community of outdoor sport enthusiasts by helping start-ups that they feel align with their values ethically, morally, and in terms of high quality products. Also, they want to work with businesses that are giving back to the environment or the community.
  • When they partner with a business, they bring the founder(s) on their podcast so they can tell their story so people can find out more about them and why their started their business, to make it more personal so consumers can know who they’re buying form.
  • Startups partnering with ReddyYeti are also featured on their blog, and their products are in the ReddyYeti giveaway.  
  • ReddyYeti community is currently 2,500 members and growing daily
  • Members enter giveaways via email, and then are also given unique URLs to post/share, and they get more entries into the giveaways by sharing. At the end of a giveaway period the member with the most shares gets a gift card ($100 to evo)
  • They were also doing e-reviews and articles on the products, but based on member feedback going to focus more on podcasts in the future.
  • Josh started out at 18 with a website for skigear called MySkiProfile. Users would put in data about themselves and got products matched to their needs.
  • Then ran the American Yeti, a website with contributors from across the country chiming in about outdoor sports. Just trying to build traction not make money. Operated it for a year, then dormant for a year.
  • Then, Josh and his friends sat down in a basement and came up with the vision for Reddy the Yeti as a new logo/idea. He is Reddy the Yeti, always Ready to help you out and go on an adventure.
  • This version of ReddyYeti just got launched in March 2016, but Josh says it was seven years in the making, had to experiment with all of these other projects to be the person he needed to be to get ReddyYeti started.
  • Seven years of growth / experience has been helpful in getting ReddyYeti launched, and in how fast they have grown (only 5 months old). Josh and his partners (2) had a lot of connections from outdoor sports that helped.
  • Tried to follow Lean Startup methodology: wanted to test product idea. They made a simple webpage with their plan and asked for emails from people who were interested, to be contacted when it launched, and to be automatically entered into 1st giveaway. Grew to 400 subscribers in a few weeks just by reaching out this way to people they knew. They used this as their proof of concept from Lean Startup.
  • Took these numbers to 4 brands and launched their 1st giveaway and got 1,400 more subscribers.
  • ReddyYeti 2.0 will be a platform with all the brands they’ve ever worked with on there, and any sales from that site Reddyyeti will get commission for. (This is how they plan to make money.)
  • Josh grew up skiing on the east coast (Jersey) went to Utah for a winter in college, “best winter of my life”.  Now he lives in West Harlem NYC.
  • Three partners own ReddyYeti, Josh, Drew (childhood friend) and Mott (college friend of Josh’s)

 

“Instead of buying from just another company, through ReddyYeti you can attach a person, a set of values and the community that is that brand.” – Josh Salvo

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Resources

ReddyYeti.com

Podcast: ReddyYeti-Blog-ReddyYeti-Discover

Blog: ReddyYeti.com

OIWC.org

MountainRidersAlliance.com

Culture.Evo.com

Evo.com

Transcription (click to expand)

[INTERVIEW START]

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Josh Salvo, thank you for being here as my guest today on the Intrepid Entrepreneur Podcast.

Josh Salvo: Thank you for having me.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: It’s awesome to have you here. I love talking to motivated founders who have literally lived several lives at a very young age, which is after our initial conversation is how I feel I would categorize you but I know that you’re not at all near close to being done so I can’t categorize you at all. So tell my audience, my awesome Intrepid Entrepreneur audience, a little bit about Reddy Yeti.

Josh Salvo: Sure. Thank you for having me. Yeah. Reddy Yeti is, in short, our one liner’s–we’re a community of action sport enthusiasts that want to help action sport start-ups get discovered and be found. And so basically, a little bit more on that is we are solely geared on helping start-ups related to outdoor action sports. Skiing, snowboarding, climbing, camping, surfing–all of those sports that get you outside. We want to help grow the community and progress it in a positive direction.

And we want to do that through helping start-ups that we feel aligned with our values ethically, morally, and obviously, creating awesome products. We want to help them grow and get in the spotlight. Because when starting a business as you know, it’s incredibly difficult when 90% of all businesses fail within the first couple of years. And we want to help sort of mitigate that and help businesses that we feel add a ton of value and can create a great product, and we want to help them get out there.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Okay. So let’s dig a little deeper. First of all, we have the [inaudible]. The bane of my existence is that statistic that you just shared. I hate that statistic. And I like to think in the outdoors active lifestyle markets that that is not the case but it’s actually there for us, too. And it’s because just the whole sport, if you will, the full contact sport–the cage fight that can be entrepreneurialism is, indeed, a challenge. So obviously, what I’m doing is trying to help support from the business side and networking side and direct to consumer digital marketing side. Tell us about the support that Reddy Yeti brings entrepreneurs in the active outdoor lifestyle markets which, by the way, audience, action sports is the umbrella over that.

And I understand why Josh is doing that. Oftentimes broad market consumers may resonate more with that, it’s easier to say. A lot of people do refer to our sports as action sports. Even though within our trade and our industry, we see that as a separate industry. There really are no walls anymore. It’s one consumer profile. So I just had to throw that out there, too, because sometimes, people get a little like, “Why is there an action sports guy on this [inaudible]?”

Josh Salvo: Yeah, I know. It’s something we’ve always grappled with when we’re first sort of defining ourselves. And we asked a ton of people, and– “So should we say outdoor sports or action sports?” But, yeah. And that’s honestly one of the things that, like, you don’t know when you first start a business. Like, that little detail is so crucial.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: It is. It is.

Josh Salvo: And the detail is so important. And that’s one of the reasons why 90% of all businesses fail. Because no one really–in school, you’re never really taught how to do this or given really any sort of exposure to do it. But, yeah. Going a little bit more deeper is to what exactly we do for a start-up. So basically, what we do is we–a start-up will come to us or we’ll reach out to a start-up, one that meets our criteria of offering a quality product–they have to give back in some fashion whether it’s environmentally or to the community, whether it’s–one of the brands we work with, Tension Climbing, they planted tree for every order that’s purchased on their site. So it’s a nice little way of showing that they care.

They’re a climbing company that makes climbing holds, and all of their climbing holds are made from wood. And they do this because they want to reduce the amount of plastic that’s being released to the environment. So that’s a perfect example of a brand that we will work with. And basically, what we do for them is we tell their story specifically through our podcast, from the Reddy Yeti Podcast where we–I sit down with one of the founders or both of the founders, however many there are, and we sort of dig down, pull back the layers of the onion and find out more about them and why they started their business. What sort of is their “why.” What drives them and what excites them. So that we can make these businesses more personal.

Instead that you buying from a company, you know who you’re buying, you’re buying from a person, sort of a community of people that come together to create this product. And that sort of, we want to help convey that with Reddy Yeti. And we help them grow–specifically, the main drivers to offering a giveaway of a product that they’re offering. So right now, we’re showcasing a company called Boulder Denim that makes climbing jeans. And they make the most comfortable pair of jeans you’ll ever buy. I’m actually wearing them right now. And they are so comfortable. I hate wearing jeans, and I’ve started wearing jeans because of them. You can climb in them, you can hike in them, you can go out with your friends. And they’re great jeans. And these are companies that not that many people know about, that we have the ability to sort of showcase and show to our community of now 2,500 members. And we’re growing every single day.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Now hold that thought. Hold that thought. If you guys go over to reddyyeti.com, you’ll see a picture of Josh wearing Fordham University sweatpants. Because he’s not lying. That is you, right?

Josh Salvo: That is me. Yes, it is.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Okay. And then the second thing I have to ask: do they make jorts?

Josh Salvo: Do they make jorts? I don’t think so.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: No? There’s a product that I’d like to see. Although I get [inaudible] give you the knee protection. Sorry, just had [inaudible]. Okay, well that is a great example. So I also wanted to get into a little bit of your journey to this version of Reddy Yeti because I think that would’ve resonate so well with my audience. Because so often, we have to be nimble, we have to continually change and evolve to what our audience needs to see from us. So I want to get into that. But before I go there, I just had a question. Like, where did the Reddy Yeti name come from?

Josh Salvo: Yeah, this is a good story. I’ll tell you quickly. But essentially, we had an original name which was a horrendous, a horrible name.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: It couldn’t be worse than my first company name. But give me yours.

Josh Salvo: I don’t know. We called it MySkiProfile. In the sense that, basically, it was supposed to be a place where you could–now, the original business model where was you could go on our website and we would have this ski finder, snowboard finder–gear finder, basically. And you would put in a bunch of data about yourself and it would spit out a few products that would be ideally matched for you based on that information. And we’ve solely transitioned away from that, and Reddy Yeti, basically–we sat down–it was basically me and, like, six or seven of my closest buddies, we sat down at my parents’ basement, we had the walls covered with white boards and we just started writing down basically what we wanted to create, and sort of creating this vision of what this brand we wanted to create.

And Reddy Yeti came up–we came up with the name Reddy Yeti–originally was R-E-A-D-Y. It was the Yeti that was already always ready. He was your pal to sort of go out and do whatever adventure you wanted to do. Whether it was skiing, climbing, hiking, whatever. He would always be there to sort of help you and give you what you needed to sort of do that and encourage you. And then we realize that we should change it from r-e-a-d-y to r-e-d-d-y so that his name is Reddy the Yeti, and he’s always ready to help you to get out there and do whatever it is that you’re doing. So that’s really the essence of where the name came from, and it took us few long nights and a lot of beers and a lot of writing [inaudible] come up with it but we’re super happy with it, and the logo is unreal. Everyone loves it.

People are, like, “Can I have a sticker because that [inaudible],” “Can I get a t-shirt? Hat, whatever. I really love the logo. So that makes us really happy. That spending that time and really getting down, to driving down to exactly what we wanted to create really results in a good logo. And brand it.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So tell me, what is the leaderboard all about?

Josh Salvo: So the leaderboard is based on our giveaway. So basically, right now, in the middle of our spring gear giveaway series which encompasses four many giveaways within a larger one. So it lasts eight weeks, and each mini giveaway, it lasts two weeks. And basically, each of those focus on a specific brand, we tell their story and showcase their product and do a giveaway. So at the end of each of the two-week periods, we have a leaderboard, basically. Throughout the giveaway, you can enter a ton of different ways. You can enter the main ways with your e-mail, that’s required, and then in addition to that, you can–you’ll get a unique URL that you can share on social media groups with friends that you have, and anyone who signs up through that URL, you’ll get extra entries for. And you can get more entries by sharing on social media, and all sorts of different things. You can see that all on reddyyeti.com. And basically–

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Dude. Slow down. That’s genius, by the way. So you’re basically turning your fanbase into joint venture or affiliate partners for your list.

Josh Salvo: Exactly. Exactly.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Wow.

Josh Salvo: Yeah.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s pretty cool. So basically, it’s almost–it’s not a pyramid scheme because there’s so many terrible connotations to that. But it’s essentially using the reach of your most active top 5%, probably, and having them turn out and bring in more people.

Josh Salvo: Exactly.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: And it doesn’t necessarily [stack?] the odds for them to win, like, what’s the motivation for them? Like, even here, it has 293 entries. Jesus Mary and Joseph.

Josh Salvo: Yeah, that’s just on the first two-week giveaway. If we scroll down [inaudible] broke them up by giveaway. Some people have close to that. But essentially, the way we position it is–the more entries you have, the more likely you’re going to win. Obviously, it increases your odds. And at the end of the total giveaway series, the person with the most entries over the course of the four mini  giveaways, will win $100 evo gift card, which is a nice [inaudible] little added incentive.

And we like partnering with bigger companies that we feel aligned with our values. And evo is one of those companies that just hits the nail right on the head. I followed them for a long time, and I actually went to Chile with their founder last summer on a ski trip and he sort of helped me come to the conclusion that I need to start this version of Reddy Yeti. So I owe a lot to that sort of experience. And I just love what they’re doing. They do a lot of philanthropy and giving back. And so it’s just–being able to partner with a company like that is great. And with the joint idea of growth.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So, what is evo’s URL for people who are listening?

Josh Salvo: It’s evo.com.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Okay. So this is the retailer?

Josh Salvo: Yeah, yeah. They’re–yeah. Yes. They have two–

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: [inaudible].

Josh Salvo: Yeah, [inaudible].

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: [inaudible] Portland, Seattle, and I heard there might be other news in the pipeline but we won’t talk about that.

Josh Salvo: Yes. We won’t, but yes.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: We have that dear friend, a Verde friend, who’s his marketing director now. Graham Gephart. We love Graham.

Josh Salvo: Oh, nice. Yeah, yeah.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So that’s awesome. What a great mentor to have. And would you consider him a mentor? But he doesn’t have financial backing.

Josh Salvo: No. No financial backing, and he is so busy. Like, he does so, so much. He was a professional skier, he runs evo, he’s got his real estate that he does on the side.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: A total badass.

Josh Salvo: Exactly. And so, for me, he is an idol. Like, he’s someone I look up to, and I’ve–he has mentored me definitely a good amount. And I would love for that to continue forward but our interaction is very limited just because of how busy he is.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So he’s the kind of mentor you have to pony up and go on like, a nice South American ski vacation and get anything out of, right?

Josh Salvo: Exactly, exactly.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: I love those [in the States?]. It’s  one of the reasons we’re in this space. That’s awesome. And that is a brilliant idea for audience growth so congratulations there. Like that is deeper. It’s one of those things like, “Wow, why didn’t I figure that? That’s pretty cool.” So, okay. And this is a great transition point because obviously, your mentor convinced you to transition Reddy Yeti back–you launched this version in March of this year. So March 2016, folks, that’s not a lot of time for Josh and his three founders to have created this much traction. What was Reddy Yeti prior to that?

Josh Salvo: Prior to it was launched, it was–so okay, we looked from the [inaudible] resort site to a digital media platform which what we called American Yeti, and we had about 14 people across the country contributing for us about their daily adventures ranging all over from outdoor sports and climbings, skiing, all that sort of stuff. And we had that for season–part of that was sort of an experiment for us. We’d never really wanted to make any money off it, we just sort of wanted to figure out how that kind of business works and how to grow that, build traffic. And we operated that for about a year and shut it down, and then we had our dormant period for, I wanna say a year. All of these stuff sort of blurs together so I might be a little bit off on the timeline, but I took a year off from the entrepreneur life and got a full time job. I–

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: I was hoping you were going to say you went to the Himalayas.

Josh Salvo: Yeah, no. No, no. So when I had American Yeti, I moved to Utah from the East Coast and I spent a winter there. It was the best winter of my life.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Oh, that’s awesome.

Josh Salvo: It was such an incredible experience, and I had some of my best friends as a result to that trip. I did a semester at West Minister College in Salt Lake City I did there [a winter at?] [inaudible] Program which, unfortunately, doesn’t exist anymore, which is a big shame because it was a great experience, and I learned so much. I got my avalanche certification, I did a ton of backcounty skiing, I did some [inaudible] camping. It was just an incredible experience. I skied with a number of professional athletes, people in the Olympics–like people were just beyond good. And it’s such a humbling experience. And they’re the nicest people so it’s just–it was an incredible experience, to say the least.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Cool. So, just so my audience understands, this iteration was 2016. You had another one that started in 2010 but it’s always been called Reddy Yeti. So my point to bring this up isn’t to grill you or put you on the spot, it’s to actually share with my audience that you actually had to really find your niche and  your reach.

Josh Salvo: Yeah, yeah. I mean, it took us a long time with a lot of pivots. In the beginning, my mind set was–I was an 18-year-old kid and I was like, “I know exactly what people need and I’m going to build it. And they’re just going to show up, and that’s that. I’m going to make my money and I’m going to go on top of the world.” And then I slowly stumbled time and time again, with my business  or like with the ventures that I worked on and slowly realized that what’s most important or what makes a business successful is the value that you add to your community and to your customer. And that’s really–this business is seven years in the making. I would never been able to start this then because I didn’t have the knowledge, the understanding. Really, I wasn’t the person that I needed to be to do it. I learned so much in starting then [inaudible] to that.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: I’m pretty sure that’s my favorite thing you’ve said this entire interview. And I’ve had lots of favorite things, but you weren’t the person you needed to be, start today’s version of Reddy Yeti.

Josh Salvo: Yeah.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s awesome. And, just so everyone knows, I don’t need to disclosure your age because I certainly don’t want to disclose mine. But you are, on the young side of millennial, correct?

Josh Salvo: Yeah. I’m 25.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Okay. So there he goes. He said it, not me. But point being is, 7 years, guys. He started when he was 18. I mean, this is like, not a sequel necessary to 7 years to bet or 7 years of Brad Pitt. It’s 7 years of Josh Salvo, right? And it’s so true because he’s–these companies are such mirrors for us and they really are–if you let your start-up help you grow personally, it is literally one of the biggest ass-kicking growth experience you’ll ever have, I think. And it’s ass-kicking in a good way. Sometimes, it doesn’t feel good, but it’s good. It’s a good solid ass-kicking.

Josh Salvo: Oh, it is. Honestly, it’s the best education I’ve ever had.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Right, I bet. Well, that’s really cool. And you have three partners. Is it three including yourself or is it four of you total?

Josh Salvo: That is three of us total.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Okay. And where are you guys located?

Josh Salvo: So, we are located–we’re actually all over the place. So I, one of my partners lives with me. We live in West Harlem in New York City.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Cool. That’s awesome.

Josh Salvo: Yeah. Which is like, totally not expected when it comes to action sports. But I actually grew up in New Jersey. North Jersey. Didn’t know anyone in [inaudible] but totally unlikely place for someone who just loves being outside and loves skiing. But my family was really into skiing growing up. My dad took me a lot, my brother is responsible for me getting addicted, so to speak, to it. But I just–

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: In a way.

Josh Salvo: Yeah, exactly. It was something that I’ve just always had in my life that has helped me grow and has grounded me. Whatever’s going on in my life, it’s just something that I’ve just had to really help anchor me. And I think that’s really important in growing up, and that’s honestly one of the reasons why I wanted to start a business in this industry is just because I want to help people–young people, old, anyone, really, who’s trying to sort of find not necessarily themselves, but a version, a part of themselves. And action sports, outdoor sports, whatever you want to call it, can really help you do that.

Doing something like skiing–when I moved to Utah, I never really did that much backcountry but I skied some faces that I never thought I could never do. And pushing yourself to a limit like that really helps you really get to know you kind of much deeper level. And knowing how you operate and how you handle really, really stressful situations.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: True. True that. And did you actually kind of grow up with your parents or did you meet them and–

Josh Salvo: Right.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: –gone out on scary trips with them? That’s also a great way to get to know partners, I think.

Josh Salvo: Yes. So one of my partners, Drew Pfundstein, he’s one of my best friends. I’ve known him since he was born. I’m a year older than him. Our families were neighbors when before we were born, and his family actually moved to Georgia when he was born, a couple years after he was born. And we stayed close ever since, and every winter, we would spend them together up in Vermont, New Hampshire.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Cool.

Josh Salvo: Yeah. So we developed a really strong relationship in those early years and we always did the long distance thing and we never really had a problem with it. We’d spend hours on the phone talking about skiing or just whatever adventures. We’ve gotten in some pretty hairy situations skiing, the backcountry or sidecountry up in, like, at Stowe or at [inaudible]. So we’ve had a lot of experiences sort of bond and closer, which is great. And anyone who starts a business, they’ll tell you, business partners is like a marriage. It’s a lot of work. And our third partner, Matt [DelBuono?], I met him in college. He was close friends with my roommates in college. And he went to University of Vermont, also from New Jersey, originally. And he was really big into environmental studies and just the environment, all that kind of stuff, and being outdoors. He’s a big snowboarder and climber.

And so he saw what me and Drew were doing with the early stages of Reddy Yeti. With the e-commerce platform, building skis, and all that went along with that. He sort of was–he came along, was like, “Hey, I like what you’re doing. I want to be a part of it.” And he showed it just by the amount of time then energy that he put in before we ever brought him on as a partner. And eventually, about–I don’t even know when we brought him our own–but he started working with us when we had American Yeti, and then he was with us during the dormant period when we were sort of coming up with the new idea, and then he came on full-time as a partner with this version of Reddy Yeti.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s awesome. Cool. So tell us where you want to take this thing because this is obviously–here’s a cool thing, too, is I’ve noticed that kind of trying to do some of the digital direct community building that I’ve been trying to do with Intrepid, it’s a little new for some of the founders that I’m interfacing with and personally coach. And some of them are, like, “Hey, I’ve worked in-house at a corporation for decades and I want to do my own thing.” Right?

Josh Salvo: Right.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: And basically, I feel like it’s–I’m not sure if people are just kind of new to this whole thing if they’re not excited about giving their e-mail address, but it feels almost like you’ve tapped into a group here who literally is comfortable with that and can actually see why they would do that, why they want to join. It’s not so much that it’s a giveaway site, it’s not so much you’re going to be spamming them, like, they’re really joining something. And I’d love for you to share with my–hang on one second.

Josh Salvo: Sure.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Have you heard that?

Josh Salvo: Barely.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That is so annoying. I’m trying to–my stupid phone is driving me nuts. [inaudible] all these as you know well.

Josh Salvo: Yeah.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: But anyway. Okay, let’s take that from the top.

Josh Salvo: Sure.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So you’ve grown your list pretty precipitously in the last March, April, May, June, July–five months. That’s pretty amazing list growth, in my opinion.

Josh Salvo: Yeah.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Do you think that that is due to the fact that you’re connecting with younger consumers and millennials? That might be a faster way for me to say this anyway, right?

Josh Salvo: Yeah. It’s definitely a part of it. Part of it–and a lot of what sort of launched our growth in the beginning is the fact that we had seven years of experience under our belt. And we had a bunch of connections that we built with people who are in skiing, snowboarding, climbing, and all of those outdoor sports already so when I cultivated this idea–I’m sure you’re familiar with the lean start-up.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Oh, yeah. I just did a podcast with Al Tabor on that very topic.

Josh Salvo: Okay. Yeah. So, exactly. So we–I wanted to follow that [motto?] completely when starting this version of Reddy Yeti because I’ve done the whole work, kill yourself, work 80 hours a week and then at the end, realize you need to pivot and you weren’t doing the right thing. And what you thought your consumer based wanted isn’t at all what they wanted. So we created [inaudible] and we launched with just a landing page explaining our idea, simply– “This is what we’re thinking of doing, this is what we want to do, this is how we’re going to do it. Sign up with your e-mail and we will keep you close [inaudible] with our progress, and once we launch, you’ll be the first one to know, and anyone who signs up now will automatically be entered into our first giveaway.” And so we did that, we grew for 0 to 400 subscribers in like, a couple weeks just by reaching out to everyone we knew. That we thought aligned with this sort of value.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So you did like, a VIP network.

Josh Salvo: Exactly.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Then you did a more exterior-facing launch.

Josh Salvo: Exactly, exactly. So we started with that, and that was sort of our proof of concept and VP [inaudible] we got 400 and like 20 people who love what we’re doing, willing to give us their emails, and want to ride this to the end, so to speak. And so we took that to four brands that I had a relationship with which were Slant Skis based out of Salt Lake, out of Lake Tahoe, [Northwest Tech?], which is a company that makes custom skis and snowboard jackets based out of Seattle, Washington. And [Charcoals?] which makes functional ski poles out of Salt Lake City. And the fourth one was [inaudible] or [inaudible] which makes day [inaudible] and were based out of Burlington. And we launched our first giveaway and we added about 1,400 subscribers during that giveaway, and we’ve just sort of been growing ever since.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s great. And it’s just the three of you there, or do you guys have a staff now?

Josh Salvo: Nope, just the three of us.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s [lean?], all right.

Josh Salvo: Yes, it is. And we’re trying to keep it that way. I did a lot of processes and systems in my finance job, so I came into this with a mindset of I want to do this once and then do it in the most simple, direct way possible everytime next. You know what I mean? Like sort of training, doing it in the sense of I could literally have anyone do this for me, so to speak, in an easy fashion. So we try to be as efficient as possible when working, which helps a lot.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: And I have a quick question. Obviously, you’ve got the podcast, and that’s an awesome way in the founders’ voice to share their vision and story. I love that, obviously. I love podcasting. Other than that, are you putting together marketing packages? Because I know your goal is to help these start-ups grow without breaking the bank on marketing expenses. Is it the podcast and obviously, the giveaway to your list. And what is the other revenue strategy around this?

Josh Salvo: For us or for them?

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: For you.

Josh Salvo: Okay. So for us, our main–[silly?], are you fluent in marketing?

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: I am.

Josh Salvo: Okay. So basically, Reddy Yeti 2.0 will be a platform where you can go on there and you’ll find basically any–all of the brands that we’ve ever worked with. All the startups. And you’ll be able to search, have a smart search functionality to it so you can search by sports and all that jazz. And basically, any sales that are directly related–linked from us to them, we will get [inaudible] commission for. And we’re very transparent with our audience when we do that. So we want them to know exactly how we make money so they know where are our incentives are, where our–what are our goals are, so to speak. So we’re not trying to pull it over on anyone at all. So with our past giveaways, we have done–we’ve told our story through articles, product reviews, and the podcast.

Going forward, we’re just going to focus on the podcasd based on feedback from our audience. And just time because the articles and the e-reviews take the most time. They take a ton of time with creating, perfecting, just making sure that they’re valuable in the podcast. I’m more [inaudible] that, like, I’m a much better speaker than I am a writer. So, it’s just a lot easier for us to sort of feel that around our audience and show them that they value hearing the founders, sort of hearing it directly from them. I just ask the questions and they sort of create all the value and sharing their stories which [inaudible] really done that much in the action sports industry aside from your podcast. And there’s a few others out there, but there’s really not that many.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: No, they really aren’t. Which I just love, though. I love the format. Obviously, your people do, too. This is what they have voted on, it sounds like.

Josh Salvo: Yeah, exactly. Exactly.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: But you still have the blog, so obviously, there’s a content integration plan here.

Josh Salvo: Yeah, long-term. So the blog will basically host a brand. So basically, we’re going to have a brand page. Each brand is going to have their own page. On their page, it’s going to be a short little synopsis about who they are. You’re going to see–their podcast is going to be linked right there so you can hear it, listen to it, learn more about their brand. And then there’s going to be a ton of links to learn more about that brand. This will take them directly to their website or whatever site has the most information on what they’re currently offering. So we just want to be a sort of a central place where like, “Oh, I really want to find a company, a climbing shoe company that is huge based in a certain area that aligns with these sort of values and [inaudible].” You can go there and find them. And that’s exactly what we want to be able to do for our people. And we want them to–we want our community to interact with us and tell us what they want because we don’t want to be creating–and we want them to do it.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So I have another question. What is the cause that Reddy Yeti gives back to?

Josh Salvo: So the outdoor community–long-term we want to be–we want to give back to as many charity–we want to build relationships with charities and organizations that support what we believe in. So you mentioned earlier, and for some reason, the name is escaping me right now.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Outdoor Industries Women’s Coalition?

Josh Salvo: Yes, there it is.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Yeah.

Josh Salvo: Building a relationship–

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s a little bit top of mine for me right now.

Josh Salvo: Exactly. Building relationships with organizations like them and others that really understand and get what we’re doing is really important to us. And we also work with [inaudible] Alliance. Not sure if you’re familiar with them.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: No, I’m not.

Josh Salvo: But they focus on helping–their goal is basically bringing together ski resorts that our mom and pop owned. And helping them survive by coming together, so to speak. So basically, if they need [inaudible] five or six mountains need to purchase a new demo [inaudible], the five of them purchasing it together brings down the cost as if one of them were to do it. You see what I’m saying?

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s awesome.

Josh Salvo: Yeah. And so that’s their main sort of focus, is helping those ski resorts stay in business. Because you can see, especially with this last season with [inaudible] getting into that whole debacle with Park City Mountain Resort and everything that goes on with that. There’s a lot of–

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Hi, drama.

Josh Salvo: Exactly. And we’re not saying that like, corporations are evil and all that kind of stuff. Like there are some that do great things but at the same time, there’s great value in having locally owned and run businesses. And we think that’s really important to sort of preserve so we partner with them and we look to–as we grow, the value that we can add is greater because we have a larger audience that we can show these organizations to.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: That’s awesome. Well, I love the story. This is so cool. And I actually just–I can see your heart’s in the right place. And as many communities as we can build that enable this industry to grow and continue to be great especially around  a start-up innovation, you have my vote. I mean, just let me know what I could do to help.

Josh Salvo: For sure, I would really appreciate that. Without a doubt. And I think that’s what most important is if you can sort of catch that spark in people. Like when first explained Reddy Yeti to people, they’re a little confused at the idea. And as soon as it clicks, you see their eyes go wide like, “Oh, wow,” like, “That’s awesome, I love that.” And we’re like, “Yeah. Yeah, exactly. That’s why we’re doing this.”

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: So you and I need to pull together like, some sort of a virtual or original trade show circuit where we can feature some of our founders.

Josh Salvo: Yes. Yeah, that would be awesome. Without a doubt.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Let’s talk about that.

Josh Salvo: Yeah. For sure.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Cool.  Well, I really, really appreciate your time today, Josh. Is there anything else I might have left out that you think would be important for the Intrepid Entrepreneur audience to know about?

Josh Salvo: I think we covered pretty much it. If you guys want to learn more about our upcoming giveaways, you can check us out at reddyyeti.com. We also have a podcast called The Reddy Yeti Podcast, which you can check out on our blog. We’re going to be rolling out on iTunes in the next couple of weeks. And other than that, that’s pretty much it. Thank you for having us.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: Oh, of course. Welcome to the Intrepid Entrepreneur dysfunctional, awesome, family, Josh. We’re happy to have you.

Josh Salvo: Thank you.

Kristin Carpenter-Ogden: All right. And we will be watching your progress in here to cheer from the sideline so let us know–

[INTERVIEW END]

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