Who are you?
We sell the premier piece of Michigan proud merchandise and save the Great Lakes while we are at it.
Why Did you start your business?
Starting Great Lakes Proud brought me back to Michigan from Montana and back to the lakes from the mountains. I started selling stickers in hopes of giving Michiganders and Great Lakes lovers a simple 'emblem' to showcase their pride in and for our area of the country. What started with 1,000 stickers for friends turned into a 100,000 sticker/year business and awesome partnerships with organizations focused on keeping our lakes fresh and beautiful throughout the Great Lakes basin.
What makes your business unique?
We created the product, brand, and market for our sticker PLUS we give 15% of profits back to lake loving organizations and people throughout the region.
We want to be a local business within the communities where we conduct business.
What's the biggest mistake you've made with your business and what did you learn from it??
The biggest mistake Great Lakes Proud has faced (to this point) happened last summer (2013) when I, for an unexplainable reason, stopped thinking a step ahead and our operations caught up with our strategy planning...it cost us a month of revenue and it could have been worse.
If you are the visionary, be it and don't leave your business without a plan.
what big goal do you have for your company and how do you plan to achieve it?
We want to sell 1,000,000 stickers. Period.
Of course there is product development that will happen along the way and we will introduce and grow our existing product line but at the end of the day, 1,000,000 stickers is our goal and it will be hard to let up until we reach it.
what advice or tips do you have for people wanting to start their own business or follow their dreams?
Be ok with risk but not too comfortable with it; perspective is key.