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Founders Of GreenPod Coffee Packing Company & Guided Roasting Company: Gary & Julie Kratzer AKA The Coffee Bosses – S2E20 (#48)

“You’ll always have an opportunity to work for a large company. They’re everywhere. You can always go find one of those. But very few people get to work for a startup or do their own business. So if you have that opportunity, start early. It’s a lot less risky.”

In Season 2, Episode 19 of the Boss Uncaged Podcast, S.A. Grant visits Richmond, Virginia, and sits down with founders Gary & Julie Kratzer of the GreenPod Coffee Packing Company & Guide Roasting Company. GreenPod brings this one-of-a-kind technology to the U.S. by creating a completely compostable coffee pod made with ZERO plastics!
As coffee roasters themselves, they know a GOOD cup of coffee. Through their packing company, they allow roasters to deliver to their customers high-quality coffee without the guilt of harming the environment with the disposal of thousands of KCups.

“Our customers wanted something to use in their little single-serve brewers. But we weren’t really excited about the idea of getting into all the little plastic cups. And the coffee doesn’t taste great out of those. And that’s when GreenPod Coffee Packing was born.”

You will smell the coffee roasting after listening to this awesome episode covering topics on:
  • How to work with your spouse and own your strength and weaknesses
  • Discover the best way to set up your business: LLC vs C-Corp/S-Corp
  • The importance of passing down a legacy
  • And so much more!
Want more details on how to contact Greg & Julie? Check out the links below!

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/greenpod_coffee/ https://www.instagram.com/guideroastingcompany/

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Boss Uncaged Podcast Transcript

S2E20 – Greg & Julie Kratzer – GreenPod – powered by Happy Scribe

And all right, so we are reporting live. All right, so Gary and Julie. Are you still sensitive enough? All right. I want to make sure you’re a little square. All right. Three, two, one. Welcome welcome back to Boss uncaged podcast. On today’s show, we’re remote today, we’re actually out of Vae and we have a dynamic duo. We have the founding fathers and mother of Guide Roasting Company and green green pod coffee packing. Now, to explain what these two companies do, we’re going to go ahead and lean over to the queen herself.

Julie, hi. So we started a roasting company a few years ago now, and really we got into that because our youngest child did not sleep and we sort of became coffee obsessed out of necessity. And Gary bought us an espresso machine for the house as a wedding anniversary present. And then he started roasting on this little tiny baby roaster, enjoyed that, decided to go to roasting school. And then we upgraded to a bigger roaster and it became less of a hobby and more of a business. And as we were doing that, our customers wanted takeoff’s they wanted something to use and their and their brewers, their little single serve brewers. But we weren’t really excited about the idea of getting into all the little plastic cups. And the coffee doesn’t taste great out of those. And that’s when Creampie Coffee Packing was born. And we hooked up with a company that already had some technology to do compostable pots. And they built us a small machine so that we can do compostable coffee pods on a small scale. So that’s like the quick story.

Got you So this is just take it back a little bit. I mean, so why did you guys decide? I mean, obviously as a team, right. You can kind of dove into anything. You guys became a real estate agent. You could have been pretty much anything under the sun. Why did you guys pick coffee? Is that niche?

Well, one thing is we saw just the craft brewery market explode. And, you know, maybe some of it’s just the area we live in. But more and more people have been supporting local and food in particular was taking a more artisanal approach where people were specializing in certain areas. We had our natural love for coffee. So we thought, hey, why not try specialty roasting, digging into it a little bit? We realized that it could be a viable business. So that’s kind of what we started, as Julie mentioned, with a little roaster. And then over time, we had it grew into something much larger.

So let’s just talk about I mean, how did you guys meet each other? How did that story come to fruition?

School school safety. That we were at Louisiana Tech says small school in north Louisiana, it just so happened that my parents and his parents had gone to that school and then we ended up there as well. And we met when Gary was in business school, he was doing a masters and I was actually over there for education. I used to be a classroom teacher before we started coffee. So. So, yeah, we met there and then we ended up getting married. And Gary’s previous job brought him to Virginia. We fell and then we fell in love. We did not want to leave. So now we’re trying to convince all of our family to move up here. So we actually have four seasons and you can get to the beach and get to the mountains. It’s just it’s just been so great. So I decided to stay for long term.

OK, so, I mean, so it seems like you have a business background. I mean, you went to school for it. So being that you have essentially two different brands, right? You have the green pod and you have got Rose and company, are those set up like EZCORP, Seahawks’, LSD, like what’s the behind the scenes on the structure of your business?

Yeah. So we’ve you know, we’ve always wanted to be entrepreneurs even as even as a young child, you know, during high school working, I worked with a lot of small businesses. Some of the owners were great mentors and only, you know, how businesses function and and how to structure it. So we actually started our LLC, Kretzer LLC in 2009. And, you know, over the years, we’ve done a variety of things from Julee doing private teaching. When we moved here, she had a success, success in selling business point point at and over the years. We’ve just kind of adapted that to whatever direction we were going. And then once Coffee started to take over cookbooks, while we had to kind of focus on on that is that was the majority of the revenue. So we have an LLC and then basically are doing business as business licenses. We have two of those, one under Greenport and the other undervalued roasting that they all end up running into one limited liability corporation.

So I mean, obviously you guys are a family centric, but we always know that it’s always a difficult thing to run a business with a family member. So how does that work? I mean, obviously, there’s left brain is right brain. So who’s managing what in this business as far as you and your wife?

Well, I think, you know, we’ve gotten asked this question a lot because most people are shocked with your work. And I think what what helps the most is we have in different roles and responsibilities and we just kind of respect each other’s, you know, their place and what they do. So I do the finances. I do the, you know, running the equipment, the type of construction and coordination, project management, that type of thing. When it comes to sales and marketing, social media, media. I just I just really and all hands off on that and hope it helps us just kind of stay within our our own lane and out of each other’s way. But at the same time, we share an office, we sit side by side with each other.

So I think that would be definitely beneficial. Right. I mean, being that you guys are on joint ventures within life and within business overcoming hurdles. Right. Like just talk about some of the hurdles that you guys were able to tag team and kind of overachieve and get past,

I think well, there’s one hurdle we have is not so much of a business hurdle as it is just a time management hurdle. Julie likes to stay up all night long. I like I like to go to bed early and wake up early in the morning, though. So it’s kind of on different schedules. And sometimes it’s difficult to kind of coincide with the family and the kids. And when we’re working together, I mean, sometimes I wake up at four or five and I look at my phone and it says, you received a text message two hours ago from Julie. Where in the world are you doing up at three a.m. sending me messages.

So that’s the messages.

So just, you know, kind of orientating or through our different schedules, it’s been a you know, it’s a little bit of a challenge, but we make it work.

So in the journey of a business. Right, there’s always a level of achievement to success that you want to get to. And we always hear about the overnight success stories that took 20 years to come to fruition. That seems to be something that happened in three weeks. How long did it take you guys to build up the brand and to get to where you currently are?

We’ve been at this for for about three years, so. Yeah, yeah. Like Gary mentioned, we had been doing some small things with the with the LLC for a while. But the coffee thing, it’s only been in existence about three years, so it really did happen fairly quickly. And the time management, like you said, has been the hardest thing, just. Having enough hours in the day to accomplish everything I want to get done, so I stay up late at night because everybody’s in bed, nobody’s asked me to make a sandwich. I can sit down and work consistently for a while. And and he finds that time in the morning when the kids are still asleep, he’ll come up here and and get his work done. So, yeah.

So your partnership is a fruitful one in the sense that you guys have the synergy between the night and the day, the yin and the yang, the positive and negative. So, I mean, it’s definitely a beautiful attribute to have. What’s something that you guys would want to do differently if you could do it all over again?

Oh, that’s good.

Yeah, I think and I want to know, one of the the struggles has always been on just how fast you grow, how how quickly you dove into a business myself, just like most other entrepreneurs. A lot of times they don’t just come out of high school and open a business. Right. They’re doing some other career or some other job. And they have to at some point decide, you know, are they going all in on their own? How much and how quickly to invest in those things are always tough questions. And one of the things that I don’t know if I do it differently, but all but I always wonder is I’ve gone vidauban falling faster. But I’d be I’d be on this point. No, you know, a year earlier, you know, than a year, maybe I would have run out of money and not been able to be a success, maybe weren’t able to time kind of slowly work your way into building a lot of debt. So I don’t I don’t really know if I would if I would do it differently, but I kind of wonder what I be like to take different approaches.

So, I mean, it sounds like not only do you have a business background, it seems that the combination between you guys, you’ve grown into being more business savvy. Do you either one of you come from an entrepreneurial background?

I grew up with my dad owning his own business. So I saw that my whole life, the. The positives and the negatives to that, he was a workaholic of sorts, but he loved what he was doing. He’s an optometrist with just a single practice. And I can remember as a small child, like thinking that my dad lived at his office, so maybe there wasn’t enough balance there. So I feel like that’s something that I’m trying to stay really aware of, is that, you know, when you’re starting something on your own and you just want to pour yourself into it completely and there’s there’s never an end, there’s never a stopping point. Finding that balance between the work and the family life is it’s hard to. It’s hard to do that, but definitely seeing that as a kid growing up that way, I feel like that kind of helps me in this journey.

Do you think that was a factor to your current success, being that you grew up in an environment?

It definitely gives me perspective on what we’re doing and how I want to do it and. I don’t know if I would be more or less nervous if I didn’t see that growing up because. When we were when we were going into this and Gary was talking about going all in and leaving his other career, I was more hesitant. It’s because of the things that I knew from from growing up with our own business. So I feel like that still gave us like a good balance and gave me a good perspective on what we were getting into.

So earlier you voted to not having to be able you can work late and not have the question. That’s right. So that kind of opens up to say to your family, right. And you have potentially kids. Just how do you guys juggle your work life with your family?

Like, right now, that’s tough with covid staff because the kids aren’t in school. So. So I was used to working and working while they while they were at school and now they’re home all the time and and more of the teacher during the day. So juggling that has been hard. I feel like Greg is able to carry more of the weight during the day and I’m having to balance with the kids more. And so then that is why I stay up late at night, because I can work for a longer stretch of time. So he’s we’ve also split them up a little bit, like Gary will bring one to the office and we keep one at home and try to tag team the school work that way. But yeah, that’s definitely been one of the hardest things.

And what would your response be?

Yeah, yeah, I think, um. You know, one of the things we’ve tried to do is make the kids have a role in the business to some extent. So, you know, here they have an office playroom. You know, we try to be pretty relaxed with them up here to try to make it fun. So, you know, if we need to talk to customers and do things like that, we’ll have them watch a movie or something just to make sure they stay kind of quiet, quiet and out of the way. But at the same time, you know, they’ll help us clean the floors, will help us to package coffee. You know, they’ll sit with us when we’re doing roasting. So, you know, we try to give them a little bit of a role and feel somewhat involved. And we try to make it to where the office wasn’t necessarily a bad place for them to be. We want it to be a little bit fun. And then also we try not to take them up here more than we have to. That way, it doesn’t start to get just, you know, old and miserable for them.

It’s great, so talking about just the routines, right, and being that you guys especially have kids, like, what are your morning routines look like? Good morning habits.

So right now, usually Gary, like he says, gets up really early and he’ll often come up here before the rest of us have started our day. And when the kids are doing virtual school, it’s just for the first half of the day. So I’ll keep them at home as often as I can through that period of the day. And then we come to the office and mom tries to work and then we let them do some things up here. So it’s kind of Gary starts then and the kids do school. And then by the afternoon, we’re all up here together. And and like he was saying, the kids enjoy being a part of it. They like to ask questions. They like to tell other people about our business. The six year old tries to sell coffee to pretty much everybody we meet. So they are really into it. So that’s kind of been fun and something that we’ve tried to keep going. And, you know, it’s a learning experience, too. So since they’re home for school, we sort of build this into school.

It’s always great seeing entrepreneurs, including their kids and in the environment. And I always say, like, you know, obviously school is a great tool, but is nothing more fruitful than giving your kid an education on a first-hand experience about how to monetize something. So I definitely commend you guys like you’re bringing in, like you say, your six year old. This is selling it for you, which is a beautiful thing. So like when they go from being six to 12 or an 18, by then, they’ll understand that behind the scenes of the business, they’ll see, you know, not necessarily the wealth behind it, but they’ll understand where that money is coming from and they’ll have a greater appreciation for it. Would you to concur with that? Is that one of the reasons why you guys are bringing them in and showing them on?

Yeah, I definitely agree. I mean, I think our older child, the more she can learn about, you know, just money and transactions and how the world works, you know, things aren’t for free. You have to you have to buy certain things. You know, I think the more she kind of learns about that, rather than learning math, you can count change things to where she actually understands and kind of sees what she’s learning at work, I think is helpful. The simple things is using a scale to weigh out coffee beans and, you know, add numbers. Those are things that I think just make a lot more sense when you see it in action.

Yeah, that’s definitely very insightful, too, and this is one of those things that I would hope that whoever is listening to this and seeing that you guys are a couple, you’re not working on one brain you’re working on to bring your full time parents, but you’re also saying of finding opportunity to educate your kids in addition to the education that they’re getting at school. So that definitely a win-win situation. Usually when I speak to people, I mean, we’re talking about entrepreneurs, talking about small business owners, startups, intellectuals. And I think you guys fit that bill. One hundred percent. Right. And so what books are you guys reading? Are you more audiobook? Are you more e-book? Like what flavor of education are you guys into?

Oh yeah. Well, you’re going to say you don’t read right now.

I read a short thing, so I like to read a lot of smaller articles rather than just fill out books. I struggle to find the time, hopefully over the next few months as our business kind of gets it gets rolling. You just recently, our machine that we ordered a year ago from Italy finally arrived. So the past the two days we had to relax was Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. So, you know, we’re finally getting a little bit of a break. But I think in general, you know, I like to read articles. You know, sometimes it’s just searching the Internet for a topic and find a couple of articles that are written on on a few things. It also, you know, different magazines. I think something that helps a lot is a trade show, magazines, if you can get or not necessarily trade show magazines, but, you know, articles of publications within your trade space, the more that you just start to learn and some of it’s, you know, coffee talk, we get a daily email with half a dozen articles and then, you know, you click a line, you click on a couple of links, you just kind of through osmosis, learn about the industry, learn about the players, learn about trends. I think that’s helped us more from a very tactical level of our business versus just like an overall self-help kind of kind of publication.

That’s definitely an interesting approach. So if you don’t mind, I mean, what kind of you URLs are you go into? Is it like a particular, like coffee article generator out there or.

I think that’s the beauty of the Internet, and I’m not really sure what I click on, but somehow they like the advertisements, find me or, you know, I just get a couple, you know, even through people that that that sell stuff like what example is a website called called A Whole Lot of Love. And there may just be like an article and a grinder and then you start to click on that. That might go to another article talking about coffee grind size and coffee extraction. And you can really get into some, you know, some technical aspects just from, you know, somebody advertised advertisement in an email.

Yes, definitely going. I mean, you’re talking about what I refer to is understanding the algorithm of Facebook and YouTube and letting it work for you. So if you click on a roaster, then all your ads are going to be roasters. All right. If you click on a brand of coffee, then all your ads are going to be. So you’re following that without even realizing you’re following. And which is great, because now all that information is always going to be in your feeds and it’s kind of like your bloodline to your business is great. So, Julie, you coming from an educational background to where you were educators? I would think maybe your views are probably a little bit different. It is.

They are. So I actually love to read before we started this business, and I really don’t have time to finish a whole book either. But what I have, I love learning new things and doing new things and running this business has been nothing but learning new things. And like you mentioned, I’m trying to do all the social media and the marketing and selling. And I had never done any of that previously. Maybe a little bit of the marketing side with my sewing business, but but not much. So I’m constantly in like these articles, like he was saying, you know, I’ll I’ll ask friends that are in these certain spaces, like we have a friend that is in marketing. He’s come in and sort of done some classes with us and then I just grab as much information from him as possible. And then I’ve gone out and read everything I could find that he sort of suggested to us about email marketing and how to keep up with our customers. And each day I’m basically on something else. So like I’m also learning how to use Adobe Illustrator. And so that’s something that for a few days all I’ll read is our articles and in the health sites for for the Adobe Illustrator and try to learn that to them constantly, just trying to pick up these new skills that will help us in our business.

So collectively, both you guys are active readers, you’re looking for how tos and then you’re going to find that information through the searching. So, I mean, you also alluded to that you used to have opportunity to read. So this is travel back a little bit, right? I say in the last five years, are you more of a non-fiction or fiction reader,

more of a non-fiction book

I’m probably 50 50 on that. Like, I really enjoy nonfiction. But then I also liked having that time to just read something that wasn’t important, I guess, you know, just for fun. So. So, yeah, I’m about fifty-fifty there.

So going into season two, we had an opportunity to kind of and that’s why I’m kind of just talking to my books in general. We decided to create like a book club. So if there’s any books that either one of you would like to recommend so we can kind of put it out there to kind of say this is your top round pick of a book, which one would that be?

Oh, gosh. Oh, oh. Got anything, Gary?

Now, you picked the wrong two people to ask that question. It’s a long story. Read rule books,

the like actual book that I finished with, something related to parenting and not business

and not non-fiction.

No. Well, I mean, it’s great because, I mean, a diversity is what we’re looking for, right? I mean, you’re saying if you have an opportunity to read articles, right. Versus necessarily reading books, but just the way you guys were talking about it, it’s kind of influential in the sense that, OK, if you’re not having opportunity to read a book, you’re still having an opportunity to educate yourself. And you’re using current media, using current search tools to find information on a day to day basis. And like for you, you’re talking about marketing and then you’re talking about illustrator and you’re jumping around. And I’m sure for you you’re looking, OK, this part’s broken. How do I fix this part? How do I repair this machine? So it’s definitely influential and it gives people opportunity to find out how you’re processing and how you’re finding information.

Yeah, I think, you know, as we were talking and thinking, I have listened to some random podcasts and also tried to if I was going to read a book, one of the things that I think is critical is just how to create deals and get sales, you know, just how to make the right pitch and get people engaged. Because, you know, I don’t know of any business that survives without customers and being able to actually talk to people, get them energized about what you have getting sells is that makes or breaks you. So, you know, there were some some podcasts and stuff like that. I listen to I listen to one that was unrelated, but it was simply a podcast on cold calls. And I don’t remember which one. This was probably nine months or so. But, you know, that’s kind of you know, when we got into this business calling random roasters, calling, you know, equipment suppliers, it’s easier to talk to somebody selling to you versus you trying to make a sale. But just getting in touch with the right people and figuring out how to, you know, kind of get your hooks into something is, you know, it’s not it’s not easy. And sometimes it’s not fun, fun on personality. But those are those are tasks that we had. We had no option. Right. If we’re trying in the case of every pod to package other roasters coffees, we have to go find roasters. You know, we have to just go beat down the doors and figure out how to get people energized and start to make sales.

So just jumping back on you on a personal level, right. You guys have a business. Your kids are still fairly young. Where do you see yourself?

I’ll let you go with that one, Gary. You’ve got the big picture, though.

I want I wanted to sit on a sailboat, but yeah, Julie’s she’s cancelled all my several plans and

I cancelled.

Delayed.

I do not have the urge to go out in the ocean on a small boat. Just put it that way. But in the lake. Sure, sure.

I think in 20 years, I struggle to think that I’ll ever just step away from a business, but I like to think that in 20 years we can have a business such that, you know, our kids can have an active role if they if they choose to. I’d hate to make them feel obligated, but, you know, if they wanted to be able to kind of keep things going, I’d love for them to be able to do it. You know, I’d love for us to have more time to travel and kind of do our own things, but, you know, still be still be engaged the business to some degree.

It’s funny that you brought up sailboat’s because I just got into sailing last year and I bought like a twenty-eight-foot boat last year. So we’re just learning how to sail. I look at it as a life skill.

I’ll write a book on that. Like when I was a full book I read.

Yeah. So it’s it’s I definitely saw it. Would you, as far as I can with the irony of this entire conversation, is that my wife, on the other hand, is looking at a sailboat, is kind of like where is the power behind it? And I was kind of like, well, the life skill.

Yeah,

you can survive on a boat version that have bad gas, but definitely humorous in that way. So just looking at your business. Right, like what tools do you guys use that’s behind the scenes that are like, not necessarily obvious to run your business.

OK, I have a know this may mean that I should go, but we’ll talk like software tools, you know, I worked at Fortune 100 companies and they used all the big stuff, right, SAP Salesforce.com. And one of the things I found is a lot of these tools are just it’s a disaster. And I think it’s because big companies don’t necessarily know how to use it. And it becomes a lot of work that’s not helpful. And then as we got into this and we start to talk to, you know, talk to other people in the space and, you know, that’s a whole another topic is just like reaching out to people that can help you and listening what they have to say. i remember we’re about to launch and we talk to our neighbor. That’s a marketing guy. And he said, So how are you going to email people? I was like, oh, we’re just going to have one of our employees go to Gmail and just start emailing. Well, that’s a horrible idea because I don’t do that. So there’s something called active campaigning, like never heard of it. And, you know, we learn about how just a simple tool like that can help you organize all your leads, automated emails, collect analytics. I didn’t know any of that was possible for a long time. I’m pretty sure that’s with things like Salesforce are supposed to be doing. But, you know, I’ve never been exposed to that. You know, other tools, such as, you know, the calendar app calendar, you know, as we learned, talking to people that you email, some people, you’re asking for a meeting, you’re trying to coordinate a meeting. And it seems like, you know, a half a dozen emails go by and you don’t have anything on the calendar. And again, from our friend Phil, we learn about this calendar app to where rather than going back and forth asking when a good time is, you immediately give them a link to where it’s you know, they can click a time and it’s linked up with your calendar. And then all of a sudden within one email that day, we’re getting meeting invites, simple tools like that. And honestly, it’s like, you know, a few dollars a year or free for the most part. But there’s a lot of just simple free tools that have been game changers to us.

Yeah. And asking friends, like he was saying, asking for help, you know, I was having to learn all these new things, things that I had no experience with. And once I started just reaching out a little bit and asking for help from from friends. People started coming and teaching me all kinds of wonderful things, you know, I was going to try to do a video for a Kickstarter and it was going to be a disaster. But I was trying really hard. I was reading I was learning like the equipment, the type of music that I needed. And then when I asked for some help with getting the equipment, some friends just started offering to actually do it for me correctly. And that’s kind of how Phil came in with the sales side of things. And so reaching out to other people that are willing to help you succeed is just been huge. Just really a game changer recently, because I think in my past, I just always try to do it all myself and think that I was going to just learn all this stuff if I stayed up late enough and read enough and asking for help now is kind of new to me and working out fabulously.

That’s great. I mean, I’ve just definitely two great tools that I mean, one is physical and one is is using your environment. A lot of people, they don’t think that people are willing to help. But if you don’t ask them to help them come. And to your point about automation and systems like that’s like I preach that day in, day out, if you’re not an automatic system that’s going to create results for you, then you’re essentially you’re you’re wasting your time. So I’m going to ask you guys just a question like just like in the marketing classes, we kind of dove into that space. Right? How often are you guys sending out emails and what kind of content are you sending out in those emails?

We’re not sending out enough right now. I know that because I haven’t taken enough time to create the content ahead of time. I’m trying to create things on the spot because I’m always out of time. But when we were launching Green Pod, I was more intentional about setting up setting up a schedule like our marketing friend was explaining to us the best way to kind of map out where we were trying to go. And with that, it was just educating roasters on this new option that had never been around before. And there were hurdles of getting past the the bad vibes people had from K Cups in general and being able to teach them that this was something completely different and better and new. So for that little stretch of time, I was doing it correctly and I was planning out the content and sending out just it was education type emails to let them know what we had and and that we could help them.

So I think one thing that you guys can kind of add into that that streamlined to kind of help you build content a lot faster, is that if you have a list of people to say you have one hundred people and their clients already send them out, survey now nine out of 10, whatever platform we’re using to talk about active campaign, there’s a way to send out a survey. And in that survey you can initiate feedback. And then once you get that feedback, so let’s say you send out an email saying, hey, guys, we have these two new types of coffee beans. Which one do you prefer? And they say they pick the Colombian bean. Then what you can do when your site is created, video talking about the Colombian being that everything that you’ve learned about that being and then chop that up into 30 second, 60 second, 90 second videos, get those transcriptions and then email those back out to them. And then obviously, that’s just one of many things you can do. We’re just talking about beans. Then after that, you can talk about flavors, you can talk about subscription services, and you’re constantly giving your audience the opportunity to feed into your system. And then they’ll see the results based upon the answers. And if you keep doing that, then you’re you’re not just building products. You’re building community.

yeah, it’s a great idea,

so let’s say I am. Twenty eight years old, coming out of college, starting a family, and I stumble across my love for coffee, what words of wisdom would you give to me to kind of help me on my way?

I think you should take that one, Gary. Yeah, I don’t know that I understood your question.

So it’s a young a young kid coming out of college, starting a family loves coffee. You’re asking as a customer, somebody wanting to start a business,

starting a business or start a business.

So the one thing I would say, unlike what we did. Start your business early, you know, you got a lot less to lose when you’re coming right out of college. So if you ever want to take the risk and I’ve kind of mentored a couple of young young graduates before and, you know, they’ve talked about work for a big company to work for a start up. They look, you’ll always have an opportunity to work for a large company. They’re everywhere. You can always go find one of those. But very few people get to work for a startup or do their own business. So if you have that opportunity, start early. It’s a lot less risky. You know, you don’t have to worry about feeding a wife and kids. Potentially, you may or may not have a house. It seems like the older you get, you just get more expenses, you know? So we you know, that’s one of our struggles, right? We waited to a good 15, 20 years till we delve into this. But I always wonder, like, what if I just started it early on? It just kind of rambling, because as I think through that, I think something that’s helped us been successful today is the experience I have learned working for other people for 10 or 15 years. So, yeah, I guess to that degree, I’m not sure, not sure which one would be better. But for sure, somebody, if they have a dream, dream they’re coming out of school by all means. I think you should pursue it early and always there’s always the rest of your life, you know, to work, to work for someone else to fall back and catch up.

So, I mean, that’s an interesting answer, which leads me to another question. So let’s say I’m 50 years old and I’m tired of corporate America and I’m looking for opportunity to change and I fall in love with coffee. Coffee. What would your words of wisdom be to me?

Uh. Yes, I think I think if you’re if you’re that age group, age group and you could afford to do it, I think the best thing to do is just jump into the industry industry and to some type of role. You know, maybe it’s buying or getting if they have enough of a corporate America background job and they could do sales or marketing or manufacturing it, maybe you jump into that industry using your prior life experience to make sure you like it. And yeah, I think the the the same thing. You know, at that point, life, I kind of think you want to test the waters a little bit before you just jump in just because you probably have more to lose. But if you look, there’s got to be opportunities out there. But, you know, you also want to chase your dream. You know, I’d hate for anybody to go, oh, man, I wish I’d done this 10 years ago. You know, that’s something that, you know, I always tell people don’t have a regret for not trying know at least try and fail than just don’t even try at all. You’re never going to have an opportunity to be successful if you don’t try.

There are ways to dip your toes in sort of I mean, we didn’t just one day throw all of our other income streams away and say, we’re doing this. You know it. We built it, even though it was sort of sort of fast. When you think about it, we were still able to do it on the side while still having security of other jobs. And, you know, we did it more on the weekend or at night and things like that. But I think you can you can do that without a lot of risk. Make sure you like it. Make sure that you are going to fit into that space and then just gradually leave. The other stuff behind is basically what we’ve done so far hasn’t been there are a couple of times where there was a big leap and it was a little scary. But for the most part, you can just take it step by step and you don’t have to throw it all to the wind on one day.

Yeah, definitely great words of wisdom. So, I mean, with that, I’m just looking at both your brands. Right. And obviously, one is a green pod and one is roasting. So you going to kind of just dive into the differences and kind of just explain, like, the definitions behind both these companies and why you have two versus one.

Yes, I think the why we have two versus one, I guess to go back to Julie describing it earlier, we started with roasting coffee and having a roasting company. And then as we started to get into trying to make our customers happy and we found the need for our coffee pot, it’s a lot of people asking for cups. You know, we went to a trade show looking for a machine or somebody to do it for us. And that’s when we found that there are small people, there are companies that are backers that will package for people, but not necessarily the very small ones like ourselves. So it was people that were doing container loads of coffee, not 20 to 50 pounds, like likewise the equipment to to make small scale eco-friendly pods didn’t exist. And that’s what we stumbled across this company out of out of Italy called Eco. And they had a plan to make what they thought was a R&D machine to make small scale manufacturing. And as we talked to the sales guy and the owner of the company, Chisari, we learned that, you know, we could be a coacher for other people. And, you know, these machines are so expensive we don’t have enough demand to pay for the machine, which is why all the roasters don’t have it. But if you can have enough demand that basically you could become a copycatting service. So that’s why, as we thought about it and manufacturing was was my background, we said, yeah, let’s let’s get into this. It’s say it’s a neat it’s a it’s a growing market with a lot of the new regulations and then just the consumer awareness of single serve plastics. You know, we felt like this was definitely an opportunity of growth. And we started this as a separate, separate name just for the standpoint of when we’re trying to do business with other roasters, it’d be a lot better to have a name around more of our packaging technology than just the coffee roaster. We want it to be more around our technology and what what our service is. And that’s why we went to different names, to different logos, to different brands.

Yeah, I mean, so I mean, you guys have a great understanding of like marketing and branding. So to Twitter, we’re pretty much what you just said. To summarize it is essentially guide Renxing is Amazon and Green Pod. It is prime. Right. And the union between the two works seamlessly. They support each other in all aspects of the business. But Green Pod is more developed and designed to talk about a particular product and guide roasting essentially is more of a service. And the union between the two is a beautiful marriage. So I think that’s definitely insightful and a great choice as a business option to have both sides of the coin. So just going into like who could people find you, people find you online, like, what’s your links? And again, just two separate brands. So what’s your websites for the brand? What’s your social media for the brand, phone numbers and so forth?

So we have websites and Facebook pages for both, so guide Roasting company.com and green pod coffee packing.com and then on Facebook where Guidepost and company and green pie coffee. So we try to, at least with green pod, be really intentional about the name helping people to find us since we were creating something that did not previously exist. People don’t necessarily know how to search for it. So if they’re searching specifically for green coffee pods, we’re hoping that they would find us that way, despite the name. And then we’re also on Instagram. But I’ll be honest, I’m not very good with Instagram. So mostly Facebook and the website is where you can find us. And then we we have two separate phone numbers here. So the guide number is four point one eight thirty one sixty four.

It’s the Blackphone.

We have a black phone and a silver phone, so we know which one for answering. And then the green pod coffee packing is eight eight four five six two five five five zero.

That sounds right. That’s it. It’s definitely interesting that you brought up Instagram and I think a lot of people may have debatable issues with Instagram versus Facebook. So just to kind of just dove into that just a little bit, think of Facebook as being the older uncle to the younger child of Instagram. So the demographics are essentially different between Facebook and Instagram. But Instagram gives you an opportunity to showcase more of a lifestyle brand. And that’s what I’m thinking. Your green pod is so diving into green pod. I mean, I think that’s more eco-friendly, is more environmentally friendly. So if you want to kind of have more of a robust following on Instagram, then that’s kind of the content that you want to post on Instagram. And more so driven towards video, Morschel talking about the environment, talking about landfills and putting that content in a visual presentation on Instagram would help you grow on Instagram a lot faster than, say, Facebook. Facebook is more so here’s my brand, here’s my product. And then you can target the audience, which essentially could be age 18 to 55. So just understanding that hopefully that can kind of help you to market a little bit differently on Instagram and get a larger following.

Yeah, that’s certainly true, and I feel like my age range, I’m in the Facebook age, but I just like like just outside of the Instagram page, so it’s hard for me to sort of relate to it, I suppose. And then I’ve had people telling me, oh, businesses are on Tik-Tok now and all these other things, and I haven’t even downloaded that one yet. So we need to hire some younger people to help me with this side of the social media and

just starts with your messaging. I mean, whatever your mission statement is a statement and then you create content that supports that mission statement. And again, going back to the surveys, you do surveys, figure out where that audience is and what they want on that particular platform. And then you just filling the void and you step repeat. If you just start doing that on Tick Tock and Instagram, you’ll definitely see a difference. Currently, what you’re seeing right now and it doesn’t have to be you personally understanding, just let the audience tell you what they want.

And I love the idea of the surveys, something that we haven’t done at all.

So this goes back to my point. I don’t know, 10, 20 minutes go however long it’s been. People just share information with you. You know, you’re telling us all about Instagram and tick tock. And, you know, you just have to be aware enough to know that it may not be your expertize, but it doesn’t mean it doesn’t matter. So, you know, we we’re at least aware that that’s an area we need to do something. I mean, your ideas are great and helpful. So, you know, I think to be successful, you have to just listen to other people. And, you know, like you said, don’t try to do it all. Find somebody that can help you find somebody that can do it for you or teach you how to do it.But, you know, don’t don’t waste time just trying to muscle through it on your own and stumble or at least get somebody to help you do it. Right.

Definitely agree. So going into the bonus round, right, if either one of you could spend twenty-four hours with anybody dead or alive, who would it be and why?

All right, you have one yet, Gary?

Yeah, I got a part of this is you know, I grew up in southeast Texas. And, you know, as far as history, all we learned about was Texas history. Now we learned about it. So like the whole revolutionary history is kind of kind of a hate to say it’s new. But, you know, they had during the pandemic we watched the show Hamilton, you know,

just that’s where you’re going to go.

Yeah, well, it’s just like any of the founding fathers, you know, it’s just to know what it was like back then during their time, you know, the problems they faced. It just seems like it’s just interesting. You know, those guys did a lot of great things that people just or at least people like me aren’t 100 percent aware of. So I think it’d be interesting just to kind of understand what things were like back then.

Oh, and for yourself julie.

So I was going to say that I thought I could probably guess where he was going to go because we have sort of gotten obsessed with watching Hamilton. And then that has led me on to, like, read more in-depth about these different people. And like you said, that I shouldn’t say this as a school teacher, probably, but a lot of the history that you learn in school is not always super accurate. So it’s been cool to kind of go back and get more of the story per say. And yeah. So I was going to say I would probably want to spend the day with the founding fathers. Hamilton in particular just fascinates me how he has what his life story, you know, how he came as an immigrant and did all of these things. So so I would that’s who I was going to go with. And I let you steal it. But I just wanted to see if that’s what you want to say. Before I did write the

OK with, like, you know, Ben Franklin or George Washington or somewhere else.I’ll that you have Hamilton.

Hamilton.

Yeah, it’s definitely cool watching the way both of you process. I mean, obviously you guys are different, but you guys share so many commonalities that kind of see the synergy. So, I mean, working together makes perfect sense. And I mean, it’s a it’s a great opportunity, not just for you guys, but for people outside looking in and have an opportunity to see what a husband and wife that are synergistic inside of an environment that are kind of opposite work together to get the same common goal and the same common achievement. It is a great insightful thing to be coming to fruition. So going to like the last bonus question would be if you could be a superhero, who would it be and why?

I go first. I want you to accuse me stealing your wealth.

So for this one, I don’t have one for sure. So super. When I think superhero, I think someone that can can help people. But but I don’t know which superhero is best estimate that like I would maybe want to create my own superhero-like.

So if you created one, what would be the superpowers of that particular superhero?

OK, well, you have to be able to fly because that’s fine. But I would want to maybe you could like. Thinking like Jesus, the fish and the loaves thing, like be able to multiply food, so that’s something that just I’m sure it bothers everybody, but in particular. I think about it often how much food that we waste and then there are so many people that don’t have food and are hungry, like how can we have so much food in this world and not be able to to feed everyone. So being a mom, I would be the superhero that feeds everyone and flies to all the different locations.

The answer is intersting

I was going to be I was going to go off with Iron Man mostly because, you know, all the cool technology and is is computer assistant. That’s super helpful. You know, I have I love technology. I like all the things that could do. I lack the patience to figure it out. So, you know, I like to think that, you know, all that stuff could just kind of be created in there for you. And and, you know, if you need something, just ask for it. So.

All right, well, let me I definitely want to thank you guys for taking out your busy schedule to get on this podcast today. I think you guys definitely gave some solid gems, and I think more so than anything else is just the synergy between a couple that’s working to our common goal is something that I think more people need to see and understand that even if your significant other is not on board yet, they potentially can be on board and then you guys can figure things out and grow together. So I definitely commend you guys and thank you for for doing this particular episode.

And thanks for having me visiting today.

S.A Grant over now.