I have recently been meeting a lot of entrepreneurs working on great projects. Their projects and our conversations inspire me, and I thought it would be a good idea to share the stories of these individuals that are making it happen with my readers.
My new column “Entrepreneurship Corner” highlights a short interview that gives my followers an understanding of entrepreneurship – what it means to be entrepreneur and to run a business.
For my first interview I want to introduce you to a dear friend of mine, Rob Peters – the creator of bodyjocksport.com, a lifestyle blog for men and BODYJOCK Co., a premiere online retailer of men’s underwear, swimwear, activewear and sportswear. I love his brand!
Rob thank you so much for taking time off your busy schedule and sitting down with me to answer these question for my entrepreneurship column.
- How did you get your idea or concept for the business?
For more than 25 years, the Internet has been infiltrating our lives in so many different ways, and since then, it has completely changed the way we do things. For shoppers, the Internet has become a great place for people to become more educated buyers by comparing prices, find great deals, and ensuring sizes they are looking for. Nothing is more annoying than going to a department store, finding something you like, and realizing they don’t have your size! As a result, shoppers may only visit a “brick and mortar” store to make sure the product they are looking at online is what they want and/or like. Since online stores do not have the typical overhead costs as a traditional “brick and mortar” store, prices online are typically better than those in the stores
BODYJOCK Co. saw this new trend in shopping and to stay ahead of the Internet curve, decided to created the next level of online boutiques specializing in men’s sports apparel.
- What is your BODYJOCK’s mission?
At BODYJOCK® Co., our mission is to be the premier provider of quality sportswear and activewear products for men across the globe. Established in 2008, our goal is to build a global brand winning the respect of our customers, associates, business partners and the community. The company sticks to its core values and adhere to these principle to achieve success.
- What service(s) or product(s) do you offer/manufacture?
BODYJOCK Co first launched its collection in Spring/Summer 2012 – the BODYJOCK Classic Collection. Inspired by Miami’s art deco design and the South Florida lifestyle BODYJOCK Co. produced a swimwear collection to reflect this incredible lifestyle.
The BODYJOCK Classic collection showcases two swimsuit styles; the boxer cut and classic brief. Boasting 84% Nylon/16% Spandex, BODYJOCK swimwear is form fitting and comfortable to wear. Colors include black, navy, yellow, and red.
In 2014, BODYJOCK launched another swimwear line called the SOBE collection, which infuses a sporty new look in men’s designer swimwear with the endless fun of summer. Still accommodating Miami’s active lifestyle, BODYJOCK rose to the challenge by creating a sporty men’s swimwear collection that offers year round outdoor fun.
Much like the classic collection, the SOBE collection that showcases the two main styles, the SOBE collection has both square cut and classic brief styles. This newest creation, boasts 90% Polyamide/10% Spandex, BODYJOCK brand swimwear is form fitting and comfortable to wear. Colors in this collection include a mixture of black, red, light blue and sage.
- How do you advertise your product/service?
Since the Internet has become a very complicated place to navigate. BODYJOCK Co. mainly advertises through word of mouth, blogging and other social media platforms. As the Internet evolves, web browsers are using more sophisticated algorithms making it more difficult to find online stores. As such, old search engine optimization methods are losing their place and we are seeing the need to come up with new and creative ways to get our products noticed.
- To what do you attribute your success?
Since our principle business focuses on developing a strong sportswear brand including underwear, swimwear and gym attire, we attribute our success to the products we develop and our customer service. That said, the passion for what we do is a major driving force in pushing the BODYJOCK brand forward and getting the word out about our products.
- What is unique about your business?
At BODYJOCK Co., we are not just about selling products, we are creating a lifestyle for the modern guy. This past year, we launched BODYJOCK Sport (www.bodyjocksport.com), a website dedicated as the ultimate guide to the modern guy. We hope to create a “go-to” community for guys looking to up their game and help them make more fashionable decisions. With styles changing so rapidly, men need a secure place to go to find quick information to make better choices.
- What made you start your own Brand?
In 2010, we became so dissatisfied with the selections of men’s sportswear from the other leading designers, that we established our own brand, BODYJOCK®. Starting with men’s swimwear, our collection was moving away from the many odd styles, patterns, & colors that were being offered at the time. We believed we needed to create something that was wearable for most men.
- What made you create the new line?
As an online retailer of men’s underwear and swimwear, we’ve been distributing the “best of the best” of designer brands since 2008. Truth be told, we were less than impressed with swimwear collections over the past two years, as well as were receiving feedback from many of our customers regarding the styles we were offering and asking for something they would feel comfortable wearing at the beach or poolside. We listened and designed a sporty square style featuring dynamic colors and full coverage. For those wanting to be a bit more adventurous, we created the brief line cut.
- If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
Hindsight is 20/20! Meaning, if we were to start all over again, BODYJOCK Co. would have had immediately launched its brand of sportswear before looking to other manufacturers to sell. While there are incredible designers out there, we feel we could have appealed to our customer base quicker with our own line of products.
As stated earlier, the Internet is a very complicated space and it is not very easy to navigate through. There are many people who contact companies professing to be the real deal in getting your website noticed. After many failed attempts (and lost money) BODYJOCK Co had to take this process internally and learn for ourselves the best way to market our products. There are many people who think they know about SEO or social media, but have no idea how to really use these resources. Buyers BEWARE!
- How do you define success?
Before BODYJOCK, I served the not-for-profit community for over 23 years. Whether I was helping people with disABILITIES or providing food to the poor, I learned early in my career the importance of corporate social responsibility, and the need for all businesses to be good corporate citizens. The sportswear industry, being a multi-billion dollar industry, has a huge responsibility to get involved! We define success as “giving back” of our industry for the betterment of the community.
- If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?
The greatest advice we can give to someone starting out is to do your homework, become a complete expert in the field you’re entering and develop a very long, thought out business plan. In fact, if you are entering a business and do not have a written business plan, your destined for failure. Do not skip any step in the process, as a business plan is your road map to success!
Please make sure that you follow BODYJOCK in Social Media!
BODYJOCK Co – FACEBOOK FAN PAGE
Twitter – BODYJOCKCo
Pinterest – bodyjock