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Channel Mastery

Dec 12, 2017

GUEST PROFILE: Mike Wallenfels is a legend in the outdoor industry - having clocked a solid 35+ years for some of the most respected brands around. Throughout his illustrious career, he has been in retail, wholesale management, sales, marketing, and the C-suite. Beyond outdoor, his market exposure includes: travel, bike, consumer electronics, and collegiate. He’s put his vast experience to work also for the Outdoor Industry Association, where he served as a board member for a decade.

Mike led Mountain Hardwear and Timbuktu as CEO. He’s currently slaying it as VP of Sales at Hydro Flask and runs Outdoor Pursuits Consulting.

EPISODE PREVIEW:  You know how “multichannel” sounds all great and sexy and how you really impress your Board, your CEO, your team when you say it’s part of your strategy? Then you know how you silently throw up a little when it’s time to put action to words? Understanding why new channels are good for your business is a whale of difference from knowing HOW the  #$@% to make ‘em happen.

Today, my friends, we’re talking about HOW to open new channels. Yep: you’ll hear that there’s a lot of work. You’ll hear that timing changes, needs change, and mistakes are inevitable. But you’ll also learn from one of the grand-poo-bahs of the outdoor industry (and multichannel wizard and consultant) the steps and non-negotiables and suggestions to making these adaptations as seamless as possible.

And for all my self-professed technophobes out there, the foundations of a multichannel business aren’t built entirely on data and algorithms from the IT department. Those are important, but they’re not ground zero. It’s starts with priming your organization supporting your people. You can do this.

Topics covered: opening and developing new channels, how to decide which channels to open; coordinating sales, marketing, operations teams; resource management and allocation; four points of multichannel management; organizational buy-in, planning, timing, over performing; expectation management; go-to-market channel differences and timelines; the opportunity of adjacencies; cross-functional teams; adding wholesale to a DTC start-up, crowdfunding as a channel,