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Founder's Story with Robby Switzer & Daniel Stafford of Shopanova





Summary

On this week’s episode of Rogue Creators, Bryan and Loren talk with Daniel Stafford and Robby Switzer, co-founders of Shopanova. Daniel and Robby were commercial fishermen in Alaska before settling down and creating one of the country’s most successful e-commerce growth agencies. Their clients’ return on ad spend is so high that Daniel and Robby are almost embarrassed to advertise it to prospective clients for fear that people might think they are lying. Tune in to hear about commercial fishing, being a by-application-only agency, creating a company culture where it is safe to fail, and potential ad videos that Daniel and Robby say cross the line! As always, thank you for listening!


Shownotes

(0:30) Intro

(5:54) Shopanova’s backstory

(12:10) What sets Shopanova apart

(16:49) Company culture

(21:56) What you communicate with your ads

(26:11) Advice for people starting their own business

(31:37) Wrap up


Links

Bryan Fittin

Loren Lewis

Daniel Stafford

Robby Switzer

Shopanova

Shopanova Instagram

Shopanova YouTube


Quotes

“I feel like if we could do it, knowing what we knew and building this out, like it should inspire anyone to be able to take those same steps and build a successful business.” (11:13)


“It’s not going to be about us showing up and trying to just take a flat retainer, take their money, even though they might be willing to pay for those services. Maybe they need those services, but we really want to have this idea that we’re working together to create an awesome result together.” (14:59)


Founders Story with Shopanova


Are you sitting on a dream but are hesitant about being able to turn it into a living? Turning your ambitions into real-life goals that you can accomplish is often daunting, but people do it all the time!


Daniel Stafford and Robby Switzer are one of the many success stories you might hear. The two friends were commercial fishermen in Alaska, but they used their off-seasons to travel and make videos. When they began to settle down, marry, and have kids, Daniel and Robby decided it was time to change career paths to something safer and more consistent.


Their passion was videography, and their goal was to be the most successful video production company in Alaska. Their first year in video production was met with several struggles and setbacks revolving around being based in a small market. They started researching digital marketing and eventually pivoted their company in that direction.


They are now co-founders of Shopanova, an e-commerce growth agency focusing on full-service marketing strategies for online stores. Shopanova has seen such great success that Daniel and Robby are hesitant to advertise their clients’ return on ad spend, as they fear some will think the numbers are fake.


One strategy that Daniel and Robby attribute to Shopanova’s success is being a by-application-only agency. When talking with a possible client, Shopanova completes a full audit of the other business, allowing Shopanova to do its due diligence and ensure that it can help the other company. Daniel and Robby emphasize being growth partners with their clients, and they refuse to offer services that they do not believe will benefit their clients. Shopanova’s penultimate focus is helping its clients reach goals rather than pulling as much money from its clients as possible.


It’s not going to be about us showing up and trying to just take a flat retainer, take their money, even though they might be willing to pay for those services. Maybe they need those services, but we really want to have this idea that we’re working together to create an awesome result together.” (14:59)


While the company’s early days were spent focusing on making sales and generating revenue, Daniel and Robby have spent the last year emphasizing a company culture that goes the extra mile and works with integrity. Their goal is to foster self-governing employees that know how to be their own boss without needing too much oversight. Being headquartered in Alaska, Shopanova has several remote employees who cannot be supervised in the same way they would be in an office.


The two founders also promote a work environment where employees are not afraid to make mistakes. While mistakes are inevitable, Daniel and Robby hope that their employees will take ownership and learn from theirs while simultaneously not being fearful that their boss will come down on them with a harsh reaction.


Shopanova’s success might seem unattainable to you and your dreams, but Daniel and Robby feel differently. According to them, if two commercial fishermen can create a wildly successful digital marketing agency, anyone is capable of reaching their goals.


I feel like if we could do it, knowing what we knew and building this out, like it should inspire anyone to be able to take those same steps and build a successful business.” (11:13)


For more information on Shopanova, click here.

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