Taylor Offer and Parker Burr left college with degrees and the beginnings of a business that had the potential to grow into a multi-million dollar company, Feat Socks. Taylor handled logistics and was responsible for developing a social media presence. Parker was in charge of the finances, as well as product development and digital acquisitions.
After graduation, they used an investment from a college advisor to expand and upgrade their product line and increase their presence on digital media platforms throughout the industry. A$1 million investment from a second investor for 10% equity in their business allowed Taylor and Parker to hire staff to help with customer service, marketing, and graphic design. Unfortunately, their business model was not sustainable. The team they hired was ultimately laid off, and the operation was outsourced.
Sales were down, and the two business partners were concerned about having to make up 50% of their revenue in the final quarter of the year while also needing to replenish their inventory. Taylor and Parker look to The Profit’s Marcus Lemonis for help.
Feat Socks on The Profit
The Profit Season 6 Episode 9
Marcus was not interested in the sock business, yet was intrigued by a company that could generate $2 million in sales selling socks. Feat Socks does not have a retail component. They have over $100,000 in sales on Instagram and a significant YouTube presence that has successfully generated web traffic. It is clear these two young men have a solid understanding of digital marketing and understand how to work the influencer game to get maximum presence where it counts.
The problem was that Taylor and Parker had no real business plan to expand interest and drive revenue. Feat Socks seems more like an experiment in digital marketing rather than a serious business that sells socks. The two friends agree with Marcus’ assessment.
Marcus Creates ‘Community’ to Help Boost Feat Socks Sales
While he is impressed with the pair’s knowledge and application of the latest social media and digital marketing practices, Marcus feels they are not great businessmen and makes an unusual proposition to hone their business talents. He introduces Taylor and Parker to some business partners to form a digital marketing team to drive up revenue for a wide range of brands, including Feat Socks.
Marcus calls the new group “Community,” made up of leaders from his other business investments, such as Inkka shoes, Flex watches, Ellison sunglasses, and Everkin phone accessories. Taylor and Parker will handle the social media and digital components of the group.
To improve their overall business skills, Marcus gathers the members of the community to have a new digital marketing campaign created to promote Flex watches. Taylor is aggressively dismissive of the ideas that are pitched in the casting call. Marcus and the rest of the group become increasingly frustrated that Taylor is not knowledgeable of the product. The most effective way to sell a product is to have intimate knowledge of its workings and sales points and have a passion for the product and the means to sell it.
In the past, Taylor has gotten away with winging it for presentations, especially in cases when he is less than enthusiastic about the topic. He pushes back when Marcus suggests Taylor needs to become more focused on the product.
A second selling challenge is met with the same dispassionate approach, with Taylor and Parker showing little knowledge or interest in the product.
Marcus agreed to work with Taylor and Parker because of the tremendous potential they showed with the digital marketing efforts promoting Feat Socks. He put them in charge of marketing at Community, and instead, they were focusing on the finances of the other companies in the group.
Taylor requests to see the financials for all of the other companies in the group so he can run them more efficiently. The more time they spend concerning themselves with the financial data of the other group members, the more frustrated with them Marcus becomes.
The pair continued to make efforts to obtain the financial information of one of Community’s members behind Marcus’ back. Taylor explodes when confronted, saying that he is counseling these other companies for nothing in return, ignoring the financial and inventory solutions the group has provided for them.
The community’s leadership team is as frustrated with Taylor and Parker as Marcus is. They all agree the two have potential, but never put forth the effort to learn about the products or showed any desire to be a part of the team. The duo is let go from Community and is not offered a partnership with Marcus.
Where Are They Now? Feat Socks After the Profit
The experience on The Profit was not pleasant for Taylor and Parker. It showed a glaring lack of the two young businessmen’s ability to communicate with and manage people. They took the lessons to heart and flirted with the idea of giving up the business and entering the workforce with a more traditional 9-to-5 job. They were hurt and realized the errors of their ways.
Taylor was despondent and needed to get away. He bought a one-way ticket to Thailand and took off on his own to reflect on his life and his business. He got in shape, physically and mentally, losing 25 pounds through improved eating habits and a brighter outlook on life.
Today, Feat Sock is a massive success with an expanded product line to include hoodies, t-shirts, and swimwear. Parker and Taylor made the 2018 Forbes 30 under 30 list under the Retailer and Ecommerce category, and have dedicated themselves to their businesses, their employees, and their customers. Ultimately they were able to take the hard lessons they learned from Marcus and have applied them to their own lives and the success of their business.
Marcus’ Community group has continued on. The group is a resource for business owners who have appeared on The Profit and other local entrepreneurs to network and share business practices.
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