The Ruralpreneur #3 - Ducks = Bucks

Empowering small town entrepreneurs to expand their businesses using digital tools and ecommerce

A state trooper stopped a sales rep for going 15 MPH over the speed limit while rushing to a sales call. After he handed her a ticket, she asked him, ‘Don’t you give out warnings?’ ‘Yes, ma’am,’ he replied. ‘They’re all up and down the road. They say, Speed Limit 55

In today's email:

  • Ducks = Bucks: How 100 VHS tapes turned into a multi-million dollar empire in West Monroe, Louisiana

  • Ecommerce Isn’t Scary: Start with the basics and watch what happens

  • The Human Touch: Screens don’t sell things, people do

🎧Listen or watch: The Ruralpreneur Podcast episode 1 now available on Youtube and Spotify - Episode 2 coming next week!


Flying High: America’s favorite hunting family generates millions in West Monroe, LA (population 12,856)

You know them. I know them. It’s the Robertson family of Duck Commander.

How did a group of bearded guys in little West Monroe, LA create a massive media and products company? Well, they just got started.

Phil Robertson, the family patriarch, was manufacturing duck calls for 16 years before he got the idea to film their hunting ventures and capture the techniques they used to call ducks.

In 1988 when he released his first set of videos, he sold about 100 copies. The videos were engaging and humerous and began to increase in popularity. Over time, the Robertsons gained the attention of major companies in the hunting industry and eventually secured sponsorships and partnerships across the country.

Today, Duck Commander (and the many other entities that the Robertsons operate) is known worldwide yet still holds it’s headquarters right there in West Monroe. A town of less than 13,000 people is home to a massive operation of employees, products, and revenue.

Takeaway: Get started. Produce content and information that your customers want to consume. Document and entertain. You may think the product itself is what you’re selling, but many times you’re selling something totally different.


Embrace Ecommerce, Don’t Run From It

Ecommerce can seem intimdating, overwhelming, confusing, difficult… well you get it. There’s a lot to it.

You’re good at a trade or making a product and you’re already busy running your business as it is. To think about taking on ecommerce and growing your business in a new and different way only piles more on your plate.

I can’t promise you a magic pill to make it easier, but what I can suggest is this: Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS method).

Don’t try to take on everything about ecommerce at once. Think about this:

  • Instead of tackling all of these different marketing channels, focus on the ones that make sense.

  • Instead of loading all 4,000 SKUs into your new online store, put the top sellers on and promote those first.

  • Instead of building your website to perfection and never publishing it because it isn’t perfect, start with a basic layout and grow from there.

  • Instead of sitting around thinking about all of this, get started now!

Amazon wasn’t built in a day, and neither will your ecommerce efforts. Start with your foundation and grow from there. You won’t burn out as quickly and you’ll be able to build on your success with a simpler setup from the beginning.


People Buy From People

real housewives people GIF

In today's digital world, where transactions are often a click away, it's easy to forget a timeless truth: people buy from people. It’s no different than how we do business in small towns!

While e-mails, chats, and online ads flood our screens, authentic relationships and human connections remain pivotal.

Take the rise of influencers, for example. Their power isn't just in their follower counts, but in the trust and relationships they've cultivated.

Consumers aren't just buying a product; they're buying into a relationship, a story, a person.

In an age of digital saturation, the businesses that remember the human touch are the ones that thrive.

We can take our small town charm and replicate it through our online efforts.


And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

Luke 12:15