#151: Matt Johnson, Founder of The Feed

Today, I’m joined by Matt Johnson, founder of The Feed, a curated sports nutrition platform.

Designed to support athletic training, The Feed’s e-commerce platform uses the expertise of its founders, athletes, and coaches to build a performance-minded marketplace, offering products across healthy snacks, supplements, and recovery gear. Doubling down on community, its expert coaches are available to chat live with you and provide you with a customized fueling plan.

Beginning with his own experiences in professional cycling, Matt discusses building a trusted resource for endurance athletes and explains the difference between performance, nutrition, and wellness supplements. Plus, we cover why personalization and education are key to creating customer loyalty.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How Matt scaled The Feed despite having a small marketing budget
  • Why The Feed’s bottom line was unfazed by the COVID pandemic
  • Matt’s secret source of inspiration for new marketing ideas and strategies
  • How Matt decides which products to offer and which ones to avoid

Links & Resources

Matt’s Links

Episode Transcript

This is a machine-generated transcript. Please excuse any errors.

[00:00:00] Matt:
We had this huge untapped learning with the world tour riders, where we’re like, if we could take all of this knowledge and make it more accessible to the guy or gal that’s out there doing their first triathlon or their first marathon—for someone that didn’t know what they were doing to start with—they might take 30 or 45 minutes off of a marathon.

So, how can we share this super-elite knowledge, but make it approachable and understandable to the everyday athlete?

[00:00:37] Joe:
Welcome back to the Fitt Insider podcast. I’m your host, Joe Vennare.

Today I’m joined by Matt Johnson, Founder of The Feed, a curated sports nutrition platform.

In this episode we talk about building a trusted resource for endurance athletes. Matt explains the difference between performance, nutrition, and wellness supplements. Plus, we cover why personalization and education are key to creating customer loyalty.

Let’s get into it.

Hi, Matt, welcome to Fitt Insider. Thanks for joining us.

[00:01:00] Matt:
Thanks, Joe. Thanks for having me.

[00:01:02] Joe:
Yeah, I’m looking forward to chatting today. Before we get into it, maybe just introduce yourself and tell us about The Feed.

[00:01:10] Matt:
Yeah, I’m the founder of The Feed. The Feed is an online marketplace for everything the endurance athlete needs to support their training, racing, and lifestyle. Our primary categories are nutrition, supplements, recovery gear, those kinds of things.

You could picture it as what GNC or bodybuilding.com is to the strength world, this is the equivalent for an endurance athlete. It’s a healthy dose of education on what to use and how to use it. We bring people up the learning curve of what performance nutrition is, and then we have a massive selection of products for them to choose from.

[00:01:58] Joe:
Yeah, I’m a big fan, and love checking out the site, seeing not only the products, the nutrition, and the supplements, but also you mentioned the education and content piece, which I think is really thoughtfully done.

Obviously you came very organically and naturally into this space. You have a background in the competitive endurance sports, the adventure sports, all sorts of different things. Can you talk about when The Feed actually started and how your experience led you into that?

[00:02:31] Matt:
Yeah, it was, you know, it’s obviously the overused adage of you. Figure out what you love and make it into a business. And, so I grew up as a, you know, endurance athlete, racing my bike in Europe and, and then quickly got into tech. You know, I started a e-commerce business and sort of the mid late nineties that sold college textbooks online.

And, that was sort of my business school education. You. Funded by VC dollars. And, you know, we grew this, you know, it was a wild time where we went from, you know, third, zero to like 30 million in revenue selling books in 18 months. And, you know, and, it was a real rollercoaster of, of, of, of a lesson in the eCommerce space.

And then I was out of e-commerce for many years. And then, you know, started to get back into cycling, you know, sort of 10 years later and said, oh, I sort of have a passion for this. I grew up in this. And, we wound up starting, you know, two guys were starting, world tour cycling team and said, you know, just as they’re getting started, do you wanna join us?

You know, you wanna run the business side, the marketing side. And then I participated of course, in, you know, a lot on the sports science side. And that that company was called slipstream sports. And, it was, but more known in the public as what is the garment cycling team. And then we were the garment Cervelo cycling team, and then we were the Canada cycling team.

And now it’s the EF education first cycling team and continues to go today. I ran it for about 10 years, with my partner. JB or Jonathan boughts. And then we, when EF bought the company, I sort of helped them transition it or bought the team. I should say, they became the sponsor and then bought the team.

I transitioned it. cuz I had this little sort of pet project that we had started, you know, a few years earlier and it was sort of nascent to, but really started to show promise. And it was really like, I wanted to spend more time on it and that, that was The Feed.

[00:04:24] Joe:
Yeah, it’s awesome. And you say kind of nascent pet project. What, what year was that? Or how long has it been now?

[00:04:29] Matt:
We started in like 2013. And it was, you know, honestly, if, if I had looked at it more carefully, I probably never would’ve done it. Cuz it would make no business sense whatsoever selling like $1 gels or $1 cliff bars. When you, you add up with the margin is you add what it costs to pick and pack that you add up what it cost to ship it.

And you have. $35 AOV, way, way back then. Like that was a terrible business idea. I should never ever have done it, but I sort of put too much money into it and I wasn’t really running it cuz I still had, you know, interest in a few tech businesses and I was running the cycling team. So I was really, you know, I guess the dumb money funding it, you know, and, and had some really great guys that sort of started it and did a great job building loyalty and building the.

But weren’t necessarily scaling it to sort of what the potential was. And I kept saying, I think there’s a massive potential here. You know, we’ve, we’ve gotta expand products. We gotta, you know, really double down on education and, you know, around 2017, you know, after the business had sort of been, you know, kicking along, we said, let’s really like.

Just go all in and sort of make this into something. And so we already, you know, the advantage was we had a bit of a head start. we had some vendor relationship again, that business was a FRA. We probably do, you know, in half a day, what we would do or in a day, what we would do in a month, you know, back then. And then, you know, new team came in place and really sort of, looked at the entire lifecycle of what that endurance athlete and all athletes, but you in particular endurance around is really when we started hit our.

[00:06:07] Joe:
Yeah. And so even thinking about like that transition, you talked about, you know, margins, weren’t super great. And there wasn’t a lot of focus on the business, but you you knew there was something there both from, you know, your passion for it. And just kind of looking at the overall market. How did it transition from, you know, kinda getting over that hump?

Was there an inflection point, whether it was, you know, internally at the company or in the market, or did you just kind of will it into existence to get it to a place where, and you can kind of describe like how big or how you would quantify how big the business or team is today that it’s like definitely moving in the right direct.

[00:06:41] Matt:
Yeah, we’ve gone from, I would say really about 20 people, even, you know, a little over a year ago to about 80 people now. So it’s, it’s really, you know, exploded. Now. we were probably a little understaffed back then you know, we like our old office, like I didn’t wanna rent two offices. And I think we, it was about 4,000 square foot office and we had only of only about 2000 square.

Of that was fulfillment space. And we, that year we did 105,000 orders out of 2000 square feet. Every day, we had to open up the parking lot with tents to store the boxes before ups came to pick them up. And, and then we had inventory stored like all over the neighborhood. At little places we could rent.

And we were like, every day, we’re like, I gotta go over there and get this. It’s like, it was a full time job. Now it’s a, you know, 45,000 square foot facilities. We’re installing, you know, robotic automation now for all the, the shelving and moving the units around. It’s like a whole other level, you know, but we, we went as far as we could go to really keep the cost in check and, and, you know, really sort of run a, break even, or just losing a very little bit amount of money until we could.

Find what was the secret sauce? What was that sort of, made it work with our consumers and where we really started to see the.

[00:07:59] Joe:
Yeah. When you like thinking about the market, you know, it because you live it and then, you know, there’s a period of time. I was into triathlon and ultramarathon and, you know, transitioning in my case from. Football and, and, you know, a, a strength training background into endurance sports. It’s like nutrition is such a learning curve.

You know, when people say that you Bon or you hit the wall or whatever, it’s like, you don’t really have that in the same way, in like a, you know, strength training, sport, or a fast switch sport like you do in endurance sports. so I definitely see from like the education side and the, the knowledge base that required to go into that.

But how do you take. And I’ve heard you talk about it, you know, on, I think a couple different podcasts, your level of knowledge and expertise around this, this, fueling and supplementation and, and all the ins and outs, but then make that accessible to somebody, like you said, endurance athlete, or just kinda like fitness seeker, casual exerciser.

[00:08:57] Matt:
Yeah, well, I, that’s a great question. This is maybe two part, two answers there. One is that is really the Genesis of the business, you know, so when I was running the cycling team, why we got started was I would bring the riders on charity events or sponsors, you know, we’d go to garment headquarters, or we would go on. you know, this big ride, you know, in the fall, in the off season to support some charity. And we would do these like town hall type meetings with the participants or the employees at the company.

And the majority of the questions always were like, when do I take that gel thing? You know, when, what are these things for? Like how much do you guys actually eat?

And, And, it was amazing how many questions were related to what I call performance nutrition, which is before, during and after. So we’re not really, you know, talking about breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But like, what are you doing specifically to support that training or that workout?

And it there was a huge knowledge gap in the marketplace, but at the same. We had this huge, you know, sort of untapped learning that we had with the world tour riders, where we’re like, Hey, I could, if I could take all of this knowledge and then make it more accessible to, the guy or the gal that’s out there doing their first triathlon or their first marathon.

Oh my God. Like we see a difference at the super elite that already have it pretty. Well, dialed in and small changes have huge advantages for them. It, you know, for someone that didn’t know what they were doing to start with the difference is massive. Like, you know, someone might take off 30 or 45 minutes off of a marathon, you know, start to hit their goal times without training more.

Right. They’re already. That was the irony is they’re already putting all the time in, they’re already putting the effort, but weren’t so how that elite knowledge approach and understandable you.

[00:10:43] Joe:
Yeah, I think there’s, there’s so many brands that kind of have this concept that they, they want to do that. And we’ve like previously talked about it as like trickle down health or taking this high performance and using that technology or the knowledge or the nutrition, whatever, and like solely over time implementing that into like a more consumer market.

And sometimes that happens. Very organically. And sometimes it happens very thoughtfully, but when you go to The Feed, I think from like the, the branding to how the site is laid out the navigation, like typically the experience of, well, really shopping for almost anything online at this point. But, you know, especially shopping for like supplements or, or anything performance related, it’s just like, it’s so overwhelming.

And I can’t imagine as somebody walking into that kind of cold or for the first time, Figuring out how to do that. So what went into the, you know, even from like the design to how it’s curated to how you select brands that somebody goes there and they basically know like, oh, a, a huge portion of the work is already done for me.

And I just need to like follow through with this journey.

[00:11:47] Matt:
Yeah. Well, I think while we sell a lot of stuff, we don’t sell everything. And I think the reason is, you know, I feel like I have to be able to tell a story to our community. You know, that of why

I’m interested in this product or why this product is. Different than, you know, all the other brands or products that we have in these categories.

And if, if I can’t tell like a, an authentic story, it’s not worth carrying it. You know what I mean? So we pass on more brands that we bring on board these days, just because, if we feel like we can’t be helpful and this product doesn’t have a differentiated angle, it doesn’t mean that it’s better than all the other ones, but it could be different.

Right. And appeal to a different. You know, kind of athlete different use case scenario, different kind of energy needs, you know, whatever the, the product is. then it works right. And then it fits sort of this family of curated products. So again, we wanna carry a lot. We want to be the one stop shop to get whatever you need, but we don’t necessarily, you know, Just take anything.

So there’s a, there’s a heavy curation up front, and that actually makes our job much easier because then it makes it much easier to market those products, to tell the story of those products, to share when people call into customer service, how those products work. I think we do an okay job, you educating that first time consumer, most of our customers say we do a great job, but we really feel like there’s more we can do.

Like, we really that’s a major focus for us is like, how do we take the person that’s just starting out and really not overwhelm them, you know, not fill their shopping cart with too much stuff and make it really expensive. And they have a bunch of stuff that is wasted. We would much refer someone, run outta stuff at, you know, day 20.

And then come back to us on day 30 to purchase again, then have too much stuff for 90 days. Right. And then like, you know, have it go, you know, bad in the pantry. we try to give people the right sort of starting point and then evolve their understanding and their fueling strategies, you know, from there as they stick around with us as athlete.

[00:13:44] Joe:
And kind of down that path, if you, you think about, and I’m sure this has evolved over time and will continue to in the future, how are you reaching consumers, new consumers, what channels maybe are working? I know the content piece is part of that and, you know, doing an excellent job, especially it’s it’s within the kind of endurance community, right?

Word of mouth goes a long way. So I’m sure a lot of referrals, people talking about it kind of athlete. Endorsing it or talking about it. but maybe just what’s working. And, and how do you see that kind of acquisition evolving?

[00:14:17] Matt:
Yeah, we, you know, because we were, you know, self-funded up until sort of last year, we, we got, you know, I, my goal of this was to really have a self-funded sort of, A hundred million e-commerce business. That That was the goal. And unfortunately I didn’t get there And we did bring in a great partner, not a fund individual, that had started the brand Vega, and you know, successfully sold it so himself and his sort of family office came in and sort of partnered with us.

And we were just at the point where we were planning for growth and we used to be able to plan like maybe 60, 90 days ahead. And we’re like, wait, when you’re growing, you. A 20 million jump in this short period of time. Like, I can’t do that. And like I needed to plan, you know, nine to 12 months ahead, you know, to have the infrastructure and the team.

So I was like, I can’t just cash flow this anymore. Like we need to actually like plan on this little bit But one of the ways that I think, you know, they were interested is we weren’t heavily marketing spenders. Like I because it was all my own money. I was super impatient I was like I want to. not only make back my money on the first order, but also, you know, maybe make a little bit of money too on that first order. And so we were just like, I guess, super impatient with a lot of our programs where everyone else, you know, a lot of these D TOC brands that have come up in the last five years, like they were spending. 40%, 50%, 80% of their revenue on marketing, and then having phenomenal growth curves. And a lot of them have come to us in the last six, 12 months to get bought.

And I’m like, I’m not even sure what we’re buying, because like, you really were just buying revenue. you know, you weren’t necessarily building, you know, loyalty or, you know, letting the brand, you know, find its place in the market. And so I guess, it was sorta looked like we were. maybe missing on the hyper growth side when maybe we should have been spending more, but we spend like less than 8% of gross revenue on marketing.

And, so there’s a lot of word of mouth. There’s a lot of education, you know, it’s, you know, a lot of nurturing, you know, very, very high conversion rates for people that do visit us and like probably best in class retention. You know, that’s out there like people literally stick along forever.

[00:16:19] Joe:
Yeah. It’s one of those things where you you kind of not only make it easy, right. From the curation piece to the experience piece, to the education piece, but to some extent, where else would they go to get that level of curation expertise and kind of knowledge? So, it’s, it’s a good spot to be in.

[00:16:38] Matt:
Well, I joked that, that like the fact that it was such a terrible business idea to start with, you know, it wound up becoming our greatest asset because no one else wanted to figure out the space. And, you know, we were sort of like, you know, we got in and I was like, oh, it’s too late to back out. I can’t let this fail.

We gotta. We gotta crack the coat of figuring that out. And, you know, it’s interesting. That was everything we did. It was like, let’s find the best new brand in Europe or another

Part part of the world and bring it to the us where we don’t have it available. So like, you know, bringing in these really unique products and, you know, we’ve done that now, you know, half dozen times, if not more where we’re like the first to introduce it into the us market, we become the biggest retailer for that company globally. and we really become a partner for them, but it’s also all the way down to the warehouse. Like we All like, it’s my background’s in software. and so like all the warehouse system, the pick pack and ship system, everything it’s, it’s all about. It’s all written by us, but what it’s allowed us to do is be really, really efficient, cuz our average box has 10 picks in it and that’s the average box.

Like we’ll have many boxes that have, you know, 30 or 40. If you were at like a three PL or even an Amazon would go nuts with that many individual items going into a, into a box. And, and the reason for that is we sell a lot of stuff as single serves, because I personally just get flavor fatigue. And I, I, you know, I was just writing yesterday and I was eating these, these chews that I I’ll only name us or one of my favorite ones.

And I was like, God, you know, I’m actually getting sick of this. Like, like I had a big box. Box of 24 on my counter. I’ve been using them every day. I was like, I’m gonna switch this up. Like you just get bored of either the flavor or the brand and you wanna rotate and you don’t necessarily wanna buy 12 or 24 of them.

So we let people buy one of everything. So it drives a huge amount of picks, but it creates this great experience for the consumer where I can mix brands. I can mix, try new flavors. I can try out a new, product that comes out without a big commitment and worried that I’m not gonna like it.

And so. It was one of the value products, but then we had to write systems to, to handle that. And that’s at this point, given us this huge competitive advantage, you know, our goal is to within like,

[00:18:49] Joe:
Yeah, it’s a, a growing and, kind of ever evolving complication of, of how you do this. It sounds like getting it figured out now from like owning the, the kind of distribution of this, but, certainly a big lift to get it there. As you were talking about it. Something that came to mind was even the last couple years, during COVID it was kind of like a unique time.

Well, obviously for the world, but in particular for like endurance sports and even like outdoor activities recreation, it was kind of like, There’s not races anymore. So the kind of racing aspect went away, but people certainly went outside. They bought bicycles, they got trainers. They continued that training aspect of it.

And then now kind of hopefully at the tail end of this, you just went into toward France season, which is another huge peak. So what is that roller coaster been like?

[00:19:40] Matt:
That’s a great question. I was actually just doing, working on that earlier this week. So, you know, we thought we did, you know, COVID was tricky, you know, and then supply chain was tricky and, you know, the lack of events, people staying home, we saw a huge drop off in the nutrition business, but a huge increase in the supplement and sort of wellness.

Of the business. Right? So, so that, you know, the fact that we were diverse enough, nothing really changed. We have, we stayed on the exact same trajectory in terms of growth through COVID, but no better, no worse. And, I, I would say if you asked me this a year ago, I would say, oh, I think we did well in COVID like, you know, it, you know, we benefited from it, but now what’s happened since April of this year.

It’s been. You now look at the chart and it’s like this, and now it’s a hockey stick. It’s just absolutely boomed post COVID. And I, I don’t think I even realized that impact until the end of July of this year, where I could really see like the scale of, you know, how it’s taken off. So we’re getting this massive post COVID bump.

From all those people that bought bikes and started running and doing stuff because we’re in the consumable space, unlike the hard, good space where they already bought the bike or the indoor bike or whatever they’re doing now, they’re using it. And they’re buying our products to sort of fuel the, that training and getting more out of what they’re doing already.

So, so it’s been. It’s been crazy to see this post COVID bump and this is all like totally new and I’m sure other people in the space are, are seeing something similar. And the probably also has a lot to do with that. Well,

[00:21:12] Joe:
Yeah, I think in particular, in the fitness space, there’s like still a lot of, maybe fits and starts. We it’s like, we think we have it figured out and then, oh, this maybe shifted a little bit and then are people buying this? Are they going there? so it will, it will take a little bit, but I think one of the.

You know, positive outcomes. If, if you could frame it that way from COVID is just the number of people who kind of discovered outdoor recreation, cycling, hiking, like anything. Now that hopefully becomes way more of a lifestyle than, you know, maybe just somebody who was doing it for a race or one time kind of thing.

In the case of fitness sometimes, like they bought it. And to your point, like whether they use it or not, like we really don’t know.

[00:21:54] Matt:
I think the total available market is probably like three to four times what it was in like 2018, 2019. Like it was already growing, right. More people were running, more people were riding, more people were doing adventure, sort of, you know, opportunities, more people were doing triathlons and that’s growing, but I think. Took that from maybe a bit niche, you know, sort of marketplace really pushed it into the mainstream. And it’s just like, it’s just exponentially grown on itself. So I think we’re now dealing with, you know, a multi-billion dollar marketplace that was, you know, maybe a, you know, a few hundred million marketplace, you know, three, four years ago.

[00:22:33] Joe:
Yeah. And then in terms of how or what that means for the platform, you mentioned this kind of like wellness, consumables supplement growing quickly, being potentially untapped relative to the market you’re serving now. I love the way that you framed it from like

Performance nutrition. Because oftentimes you hear when people just say like supplements and they kind of use it very vaguely. It’s like, well, do we need this? What do we use it for? What’s the what? Like, what’s the outcome, but performance nutrition is pretty direct. So how do you think about maintaining the focus on that kind of core consumer or performance nutrition while saying like, Hey, there’s this whole wellness kind of market that, that we can lean into.

[00:23:15] Matt:
Yeah. It’s interesting. I think, you know, obviously I think there’s a overlap between the athlete and endurance mind person and their wellness focus. So we’re, we’re sort of learning from them about what the broader wellness marketplace is.

You know, I, I guess we’re also. Skeptical, you know, of the traditional marketing around the supplement space.

And so we approach supplements from a very different perspective, which is, what can we do that is efficacious? What can we do that? Like, there’s no question that there’s, you know, This is the qual the top best quality of product. So we didn’t go super broad in that but we went really deep on quality, definitely more expensive. we had wor like, you know, world tour cycling teams and, you know, trainers and doctorate from all over the world saying, listen, you know, I read this study that say, Collagen, you know, is great for, you know, potentially preventing soft tissue injuries and, you know, prophylactically ahead of time.

But the formula that was used in the clinical trial was, you know, a, B and C ingredient. And I can’t go buy a product that has a, B, C ingredient. Like, why can’t you get that for me? And so the super elite was. Were telling us that. And we’re like, you know, that’s a really good question. Why can’t you get that same product that was used in the trial?

And normally the answer’s always like, it’s a patented formula because that’s how they afforded to do the clinical trial to begin with. And then it was too expensive. So everyone went with generics and sort of then, you know, attached this trial or study to something that’s not even the same product. And we’re like, well, Why doesn’t that exist? And so we started sourcing stuff that would like match the clinical trials, for example, in supplements. And that was really just the focus. And then the other thing, because I’m also not good at sticking with supplements. I saw what Amazon was doing with like PillPack, you know, and I’d love that business, right? like the idea of getting a. A daily pouch instead of a bunch of pill bottles.

And I was like, well, why can’t we do that for athletes? Like but I don’t want to just give them generics. Like I wanna give them the same, the same high quality products that we’re selling, but I wanna change the format. And so we launched this thing called feed formulas, which is you get a, like a really nice countertop box every month. you know, we take each square, we slice them for you. They’re they’re there individually. So, and you can create your own formula. So you. Pick from like 70 different supplements that we have of what is in your routine. And that was just like, what we were really trying to do is add value, in the chain.

Like we can sell it to you and we can sell you the same bottle, but wouldn’t it be better if we could like insert ourselves and say, Hey, we’re gonna repackage this. Let you combine these three supplements and make it more convenient. And then what we realized is people were sticking. Where we would see this fall off where someone might do it for a month or two, and then they just get tired of it or they forget to do it. and they follow to the routine. Once they had the convenience of that pouch, it actually made it the product more effective, not because it made the supplement better, but because people actually took it on a regular basis, that was more important for, You know, the, the results that they were getting.

Than anything else. So, so we keep finding things that really is like our personal problems. And then we focus on trying to solve those, you know, and then we’re like, I hope someone also had that problem and sometimes, and most.

[00:26:22] Joe:
Yeah, that’s a, that’s an awesome insight. maybe a couple more questions as we get towards the end of the conversation here. One related to what you just talking about there. How do you think about white labeling or just, Hey, we’ll release our own version of this, and now you have your kind of, in-house brand.

[00:26:39] Matt:
So I think it’s important. like, from a business standpoint, obviously you consider it like, can I increase margin? you know, that way, you know, and, and you know, the Delta’s not insignificant, you know, we generally, you know, have sort of 50%, you know, gross margins on average across the board and maybe in a private label, you get it to 65 or even 70%.

So, so there’s, there’s a business reason to consider it, but what we haven’t done and what we won’t do is create a feed branded product That’s like at the generic. And sell it for less, you know, that’s just not really that interesting to me. so we focus where we have looked at private label is where we think there’s a gap in the marketplace and you know, it, it, it has turned out not, not on purpose, but you know, it, it has turned out a lot of times that’s a more expensive product that is a higher quality product where we just think that there someone wasn’t realizing that there was more. Ability of the consumer to spend, if you could give them a better product and I’m not saying that’s universally how we’ll approach it, but where we see those opportunities, we really dive into it. So, you know, first party brands are about 25% of our revenue now and growing, you know, double like.

Really quickly, for us, but that’s all a question of like, we don’t really even set a goal. we don’t say like, oh, we’re gonna go into this. And it has to be a 5 million business on its own. We’re like, is this solving a problem that we have? And do we want this product? And, can we actually get it to market and, and maintain the quality, and, and be different than What we’re selling now. Cause what I don’t wanna do is launch a product that just competes with the brands that we’re already selling. We would never really want. We’d never wanna do that. We always wanna carve out a different part of the, the, the marketplace that is just not being served.

[00:28:18] Joe:
Yeah, it’s super smart to think of it more from. The framework that you laid out, like solving a problem and like filling the void versus like trying to compete or drive down pricing, which ultimately upsets kind of the balance within the, the, the marketplace. So, looking ahead here, Before we wrap up, we were kind of talking a little bit offline about this, and I think about it, in terms of just maybe all the things selfishly that I’m passionate about from like recovery to like this health optimization to strength training.

And obviously you have the kind of endurance angle covered, but then there’s other really great takes on like this highly curated marketplace from like a Huckberry from like a men’s interest standpoint, or even like Super smart, like media play like a gear patrol, right? Which you do elements of that within the platform.

How do you think about evolving The Feed and just the opportunity cuz you did kind of say like, oh, nobody else wanted to figure this out for, for this particular market. And we spent all this time figuring out, but in terms of where you think it’s can go or where you want it to go, what does that look like?

[00:29:20] Matt:
Well, there’s no bigger probably consumer and fan of, Huckberry, you know, I don’t really like shopping either. you know, but I’d love actually going on there. It’s the only place I shop. So I definitely probably steal a lot of ideas from what they’re doing in their space. And I think they’re, you know, super creative, what they’re doing.

So we, we pull some inspiration from there for sure. What is the right expression? It’s the purest form of it’s the of flattery. Yeah. So, thank you to those guys. but we think of it right now. I think the real play is personalization. No two athletes are the same.

Right. Your nutritional needs are gonna be different than the next athlete next to you. I, I can’t necessarily prescribe the exact same, you know, product without knowing your unique needs. And so where we’re really gonna win is in personalization. And we, we have elements of that, you know, some is. About the experience.

Some is about how we fulfill the product. and some is how we educate the product. So I’ll lay out an example and, and this is how I think we win in the long run and create differentiated value. If you’re combine the same hydration from us or for someone else, you are getting the same product, right. We can probably get you better and we can combine it with more other stuff that you’re liking, and maybe We can sell it to you as singles. But now, we make every box, you know, that the product goes in. Specific to that order so that we don’t have no waste from an environmental standpoint.

We now create a feed formula if you’re ordering supplements. So you now can get your stuff in individual daily, serving pouches, as opposed to a whole bunch of bottles, cluttering your counter and having to count pills every morning. We are more on a promotional side thing. We put a whole infrastructure in place to print water bottles. So we used to give out a lot of water bottles with orders. We’re like, you know, you know, what would be better is, if we could put Joe’s name on the water bottle, right. You know, so, or fit inside it, like we’ll put we’ll brand the bottle to you.

Or a lot of people have been using it with like words of motivation or they’re giving it to friends doing an event and saying like, you’ve got this, you know, motivation to these balls. So now you can always. totally personalized bottle. And then we have a whole printing press. That’s going live shortly where you’re getting a booklet.

That’s a pretty substantial booklet on every product in your order and educating you on that product, how to use that product, you know, you know, giving you information specific to your order. So everything is, and, and we try to produce all that stuff within two hours of that order being placed. So it’s, it’s really meant to be like real time.

And so what we feel is that. I, I don’t know. I guess it’s the strategic value in the larger, or what we’re betting on is people will appreciate a personalized, you know, experience in this space and, and that all really comes for free. And, you know, in exchange, we’re asking for your loyalty, you know, in terms of being a consumer.

[00:31:58] Joe:
Yeah, I think that paints a very clear vision and differentiation in terms of how a lot of people might be thinking about it. So it’s super exciting to think about how that continues to evolve.

In wrapping up we’ll get you outta here on this: if somebody wanted to check it out, follow along, where would you point them?

[00:32:19] Matt:
Yeah, TheFeed.com. That’s the home. You’ll find everything you need from there. If you have questions, email us. You can even email me directly, MattJ@TheFeed.com. We’ve got a whole team of coaches that I work with every day on what advice are we giving? How are we helping people put a nutrition plan together?

Again, maybe we’re silly, but we don’t charge for any of that. That’s all free. That’s on us. We just wanna help you get started. So chat with us. Call us. You’ll talk to a live person. We actually pick up the phone. Email us if that’s more convenient. Whatever you prefer.

Chat now is probably dominating. I bet you about 80% of the people want an immediate answer and chat with us. Our goal is within 20 seconds to answer every chat. You’ll get a dedicated person that’s not doing five chats at the same time. They’re with you to help you with your experience. If you have questions we’ll also help you with them.

[00:33:10] Joe:
Yeah, another level of personalization you talked about in education.

So, yeah, thanks for making time, Matt. I definitely hope folks check it out. Thanks for being here.

[00:33:19] Matt:
Thanks. I appreciate it.