Episode 212 Featuring Alex Bond

Increasing Brand Awareness with Johnathan Price

Increasing Brand Awareness with Johnathan Price

Johnathan Price is the Founder of Down4SoundShop.com. In the span of just five years, he went from working out of his parents' attic to 20 million in sales online annually in the car audio industry - a milestone unheard of in that sector. Now, Johnathan has a thriving YouTube community of fellow "Bassheads" with 500K subscribers and he coaches others on creating their passion business. On this episode, we talk about his grassroots marketing strategy of Down 4 Sound, how he uses his online and public persona to leverage brand awareness for his business, and much more.


Down 4 Sound and how it started

Johnathan Price: Down For Sound is a distributor of car audio products worldwide now.

We started off really small and now we ship shipments worldwide to mostly do-it-yourself type audio people all across the world. 

Alex Bond: That's awesome. So how did you initially get into that? I've read some stuff online. How did you get into the car audio as a business, if you could walk me through the inception of Down for Sound and, and what that first year kind of looked like?

Johnathan Price: So the first year at Down for Sound, I feel like it was probably like a lot of other people's very difficult or the first few years very difficult to get going. I didn't really know what I was doing but was going to shows. I have a large, I have a Chevrolet Tahoe with a very large car audio system in there and I've always enjoyed going to car audio shows, cars shows and like showing it off. 

And the more that I would go to these shows and I would play my system and my vehicle more, it would draw crowds of people over. So they would be interested and they would want to hear it. And this thing is on the level of if you sit in there, it's blowing your hair all around, your shirt's, flapping around. It's just absolutely over the top.

So people that experience it are just blown away by it, literally because the the amount of base and audio that's going on, so, anyway, the more I went to these shows, more people would start asking me, where do you get your products from? And at that time I had a, like a little sponsorship from a few different companies.

So I would tell them, oh, you just need to go to sundown audio.com. Or like these brands that were partially sponsoring me because that's my part of the sponsorship, that I would refer people back to them and they would get a return on their investment for sponsoring me. So I was referring them back to these companies. 

And one day I went to the show and somebody asked me that same question, where do you get these products from? And it was like the light bulb went off in my head. I'm like, I could be selling these people this product that they keep asking for. I'm out here promoting it. I'm out here showing them what it can do. And that's kind of how the idea of Down For Sound started or selling products started. 

So that's how it, that's when the light bulb went off in my head, but, At that time, I didn't know anything about business. I didn't know anything about selling stuff or I'm like, but the idea that I could sell people, these things happen. But I had zero business knowledge and zero experience selling anything. 

Alex Bond: So you were practically selling things already, you just weren't getting the money for it. You know, in the way that you were operating in this space, you were practically selling this stuff accidentally. But someone else was reaping the benefit for you.

So you essentially had this idea, why don't I cut out the middleman myself and so I could hold on to all the money. So you started down for sound. What did that first year look like? How were the growing pains? 

Johnathan Price: So the first year after that idea kind of started I had to figure out how do I become a dealer for these products that I want to sell. So I reached out to these companies that I was running their products and I asked them like, hey, can I become a dealer? And they're like, well, do you have your business license so we can, for the tax reasons, I'm like, a business license. What's that? So, because I didn't know anything about it. 

So anyway, I looked up how to get a business license, which isn't that hard, and ended up getting one. But at that time they had so many dealers for their products they said that they weren't looking for anymore. So I got turned down time and time again on becoming a dealer for these people's products.

And this is while I was working some other jobs at the same time. So I was working these other jobs. And that also was giving me the comfort of knowing I have this income coming in. So I wasn't really trying to push this new business idea because I had the comfort of my weekly paycheck from like so many. Do you get comfortable. 

Anyway, I wasn't really pushing it. Fast forward, I ended up losing my job that I have for 10 years. And I was devastated. I'm like, oh my gosh. Well now I don't have a source of income. What, what am I going to do? So I had like, I don't know, $5,000 saved up. That's all I had to my name.

I was typical paycheck to paycheck person. No real savings or anything like that. So I ended up taking that money and I got the green light to become a dealer for a few different companies. And black Friday was coming up and I'm like, okay, I need to get some product because I know people buy stuff for Christmas and the Black Friday sales and stuff.

So I'm like, this would, I could try to capitalize on this. So I took the $5,000 and bought all the product that I could, which wasn't that much product, but, and I was living with my parents at the time, so I was storing the product in my parents' attic and their office, like it was, it was trula. I wasn't even, we didn't even have a garage so, You know, you hear the Jeff Bezos and bill Gates and all these stories that start in a garage.

I didn't even have a garage. I just had an attic that we were storing this little bit of product in. So but it was very slow going and, and I mean, I was probably getting a sale like once every two weeks or something. So very slow. The Black Friday sales started happening and it started picking up a little bit.

So I every time I'd make some money, I would reinvest it back in, I'd buy more product and I kept flipping it. But then I decided that I was going to move to Las Vegas to be with my then girlfriend, now fiance fixing to get married in a couple of months progressed well. 

So I'm like, okay, I have to figure out how I'm going to move out to Vegas and also move my little operation out there. So I moved out to Vegas. I was still uncomfortable cause I didn't, even though I had some more inventory, I didn't have any, I was cash flow poor. I had inventory but I didn't have any money to like, live off of or anything like that.

Well my YouTube was paying a little bit of money at the time, so, It was kind of getting me by, but it wasn't great by any means. But I was using that to get me by while I was trying to get my business going. So when I moved out to Las Vegas before my job was, I was working at an airport where I fueled airplanes.

I worked on airplanes, basically anything to do with private aviation. I was all into that for 10 years. So when I came out here, I'm like, okay, I'm gonna go around to the airports and apply for jobs to get that, basically that comfort of a weekly paycheck back and I'll keep growing my little business on the side.

 And I'm like, I know I was so cocky at the time, like cause I knew everything there was to know about fueling planes, like the aviation thing that I was in. I knew everything about it, and I had 10 years of experience. So when I went and applied to these places, these airports around Las Vegas, I'm like, I know I'm going to get hired.

I even got lazy on my own business because I knew they were gonna be calling me wrong. I never received one phone call and after a few weeks, I'm like, what? What is wrong with me? Why would they not hire me? I have all the experience I have, like I could just literally be stuck in there and I could do everything that the person would want. Never got a phone call. 

So now I know that ended up being in a blessing in disguise to me that because it really put my backup against the wall to. I had to figure stuff out. I had to do something to become successful in my own business. So at that time, I was living with my girlfriend and I went through a stage of feeling like a bum because I wasn't getting any sales. I was just living in her house. 

I had some product in her garage and her living room, and, but I wasn't getting a lot of sales. I had a little bit of a following online and I'm like, how do I leverage this to possibly get more sales? I started, if I did get a cell, I would make a little video of the product that the person bought and me pa packaging it up and writing a thank you note on there and everything like that, it started getting more traction, more people started commenting on it and liking it.

And they were developing that personal relationship with me because I was just sharing my journey with them and and growing. So it made people want to buy from me. And a chance to have their order shouted out or, or talked about online. So it started growing in that way as well. 

Alex Bond: It sounds like you're in that process, you're creating something that's a lot more personal and I think people like being attended to personally like that.

Johnathan Price: Definitely. And I still, even to this day, I do stuff like that when I'm in town, I'm gone a lot, but when I'm in town, the process is, like my team knows to print out all the invoices, even though we're shipping hundreds of orders a day sometimes. This is in here, and let me sign these invoices every morning that I'm here.

Thank you, John. My autograph. Thank you. Like, so it's still to this day, putting that personal touch on these people's orders. And some of them, they'll send me pictures on social media or whatever. They'll have 20 invoices. They keep these things. 

Yeah, basically. So they keep all their invoices, they'll have stacks of invoices like, man, I've been buying from you for 10 years or seven years, or whatever, and, and this is all the invoices I have. I'm like, man, that's crazy. It really takes me back to, because some days I wonder, I'm like, do people really care that I'm personally signing their invoice?

And that shows me that there is a good amount of people out there that do care that it does make an impact on them. So that's how it got started. And throughout that first that was kind of like a six month transition, I would say, right there. And after I started getting a little bit more traction. And I was tearing up my girlfriend's town home at the time, walking all through there with my shoes and getting all the pacing around the house. 

Oh yeah, it was dirty. And she was arguing with me because I was tearing up her house, basically. But I was trying to get this thing figured out. Okay, I need to get a place to store all this product at, because the product was growing the amount that I had in inventory. So I needed to find a place to get the product out of the house so it could be more of a house.

And of course, still have my office there. So for a couple of, I think two or three months I had a couple of storage units, two 10 by 10 storage units, so nothing major. So I had like an office at our house in the storage units down the road, half a mile wasn't far. So I was doing that. I would get an order, say in the morning, I would drive down there and get it. I'd bring it back to the house.

I would pack it and get it ready to be shipped. And some days I would just have one order or no order. So it wasn't that big of a deal. But as thing has progressed, it was turning into two or three orders throughout the day.

So I'm like, man, I'm driving over there, getting that. Come back here, sit here for a couple hours, driving back over there again, all this back and forth, back and forth is not efficient at all. So I need to start looking for an actual location for me to have a business where I can have a little office and then have a place that will store the inventory at.

So I started looking for that and when I saw the, I was thinking I needed like a thousand square feet or something that would last me for a while, and I started talking to the people that I do business with and like, man, we see the way that you're growing, like how hard you're working. You need to get something at least two or three times bigger than that because you're gonna outgrow it like super fast.

We see the potential in you. Now, a lot of times we can't see the potential in ourself because we have all those doubts in the back of our mind. What if this doesn't work out? What if I can't grow? I think I should be or could be what if I fail? So you don't wanna put this big amount of investment in on the front side.

Anyway, I end up finding this, I think it was 2,500. Square foot warehouse and Okay, that's kind of in the middle. I'll look into that one. And again, I still don't have really any money because I'm just putting everything back into inventory. And they tell me that they need three months up front and it's, it's a dollar a square foot, basically.

So I'm like, man, $7,500. Like what? But I knew I needed to do it. And so I started really pinching all my pennies for a, a few weeks and I was able to get up to that and I, I invested into that, didn't got into that place. So that was seven years ago. I did that. I think a year and a half. Or two years after that, I was maxed out on the space there and I went to, yeah, I know you said a year, but this will just give you the story, like over the past seven years, really quick in the transition of how the business grew so rapidly.

So it went from that to two years later we moved into to the second warehouse, which was 7,500 square feet. Two and a half years ago, we moved into our third warehouse, which was 30,000 square feet, and it also was taller, so we were able to do more racks like higher. 

So in the course of right at seven years, we were able to go from basically my parents' attic to a 30,000 square foot warehouse here in Las Vegas with a bunch of team members. And we also have another location over in North Carolina that so we're able to service east and West Coast customers a lot faster. That's kind of how that transition happened. 

Main factors to Down 4 Sound's exponential growth

Alex Bond: And then, you know, it sounds like in about three or four years time, You then tripled, quadrupled your square footage from 7,500 to to 30,000. I mean, that's practically four times as big. So that's pretty impressive growth rate. And speaking of growth rate is being in this for about, is it six years, seven years?

Johnathan Price: So I started doing this full-time, I guess you could say. Well, like right after I got let go from the company I was working for 10 years. So, but again, I wasn't really taking it serious as like a full-time thing because I thought I was gonna get another job at an airport. During that, so I would say six and a half-ish years. 

It went from basically a start and not making any revenue to the past two years, we've done right at 18 million a year for the past two years. Grown pretty rapidly, and I'm super excited and grateful for the, what we've been able to achieve. 

Alex Bond: No, absolutely. And that's the number that I think a lot of entrepreneurs aspire to is to pull in about a million dollars in revenue a month is, is what I've read. So my question to you is, what are the main factors to that exponential growth rate over time? 

Johnathan Price: It's definitely something that's been the biggest, I guess, shot in the arm for me being able to grow so fast was I was growing my following online organically and not selling anything initially, like I was going to all these shows, I was starting to, and people were saying you should share some video or you should make some videos.

You should share videos on Facebook. Or sometimes I was getting started around the MySpace age, so that tells you how long ago that I was. I didn't know what, I was growing at that time. I just thought, I was like, oh, I'll be popular on the internet. That'll be cool. I'll be efamous like, that'll be cool. But I didn't know one day it would transition into people having this personal relationship with me and wanting to purchase from me for mostly that reason. 

So that's been the biggest thing. I started growing my online following. Before with, without selling anything before had a business. So if you have a business and you start like a social media page and people know that it is a business, they're kind of, we're so bombarded with advertisements all day long. They're like get away from me. I don't, won't see another advertisement. I don't wanna see another person talking about a product or whatever. 

So they really have their guard up towards subscribing to a person or following a person for that reason. But since I started mine, before I was selling anything, they already were following me and I had already started growing this. I mean, I think at the time I had, I don't know, collectively on all social media platforms. Maybe a hundred thousand followers. 

So that's between, and YouTube was my biggest one, but I had like some on Facebook, some on Instagram, some on Snapchat, and even my MySpace stuff was starting to peter out and transition over to Facebook. Having that when I did start a business and me sharing like, Hey and this is a funny story. When I first started my business, I didn't want to be known as a person that sold something. 

I thought being a salesman was embarrassing, so I, I did, even though I started a business, I never said anything publicly about me starting this business because, I had seen these videos or whatever of people saying, salesman are scams. They're just trying to take advantage of you, like they're bad people. And so this was in my head, so I'm like, I don't wanna be known as a bad person. I don't wanna be known as a salesman or anything like that. 

So I would never post publicly at that time that I sold anything for that, that fear of somebody thinking I was a bad person. The only way that I would contact somebody, say they made a post on Facebook I'm looking for this speaker or whatever. I'm like, oh, I sell that speaker. But I wouldn't even post in the comments there. That I sold it, I would click on their name and go and send them a message and say, hey, I can get you that product.

Because again, I was embarrassed. I was like, I don't want people to think I'm or know that I'm a salesman, so that I had to obviously transition out of that, and that's how it got really moving in the right direction. When I had that mindset change on, okay, I do need to tell people that I offer these products. I do need to be more in the public eye about these things for that reason. 

And that's been definitely the biggest way of being able to grow my business. Obviously taking care of people. You wanna have good customer service, you want to have fair pricing, treat people how you wanna be treated. I think that's kind of cliche, people should know that it should be common sense, but the online persona is the biggest one.

But doing those other ones as well is we also have like what's called the down for sound difference, guaranteed lowest prices, faster shipping, best customer service. Like I put that out there all the time so people know that we have this guarantee and they, they hold our feet to the fire all the time.

And that's what makes us continue to be better because if we slip up and we don't get their order out that fast or something happens, they'll make a post about it online.

Oh, you said you had the fastest shipping, but it took what, whatever amount of time. Yeah, they'll put it out there and so what, what do we do? We have to go on high alert and figure out what's going on with their order and get it fixed for 'em. So, but it makes us always be the best that we can be. 

Reaching a wider audience

Alex Bond: So I wanted to ask about your products a little bit more specifically. I mean, generally they have like a finite demographic in customer base, you know, in, in car audio systems.  So typically your audience and your customer base is gonna be car enthusiasts and car audio enthusiasts. So have you been able to reach a wider audience than just that? 

Johnathan Price: Oh, definitely. Okay. So before, like we were, when we started out, we were just selling other people's products and the more that we continued on, people started asking if we were ever gonna do our own brand of products.

And initially I'm like, no, I'm, fine. Like, we're doing okay with selling other people's stuff. I'm fine with the way that we have this going. People just kept asking and asking. It's almost like, I don't know, is that called an epiphany when you have some realization or whatever? Yeah, when I'm like, I feel like I've been in this situation before, when the person was asking me, where do you get your products from?

Where do you get your products from? And then that light bulb went off in my head. So people kept asking, when are you gonna do your own brand or product? When are you gonna do your own brand of product? And it kept happening again and again. So then one day, the light bulb. Turned on again, and it's like, well, maybe I should start doing my own brand of products.

We slowly started coming out with our own brand of amplifiers. And then people would ask for different stuff like Bluetooth speakers. And so this, initially it was just car audio products, so it was. A really a focused niche that we were going after. And then people were like, man, it would be cool if you had a, or I was at a tailgating party and we were listening to my speakers in my truck, but I didn't wanna have my vehicle running.

And man, if you just had a portable Bluetooth speaker, that would be cool. So I'm like, okay, well maybe I need to call some portable Bluetooth speaker. So that transitioned it to where a person didn't have to be just into car audio to be a customer of ours Now. A person that is having a, a barbecue or a get together at their house or, or wherever or at work, they're just doing their day-to-day job.

They want some good tunes, like they can get one of our portable Bluetooth speakers. And then a person said something about like, well, that's too big for me. I need headphones. So it came out with, headphones , in ear, the airpods style. Like, so we started expanding our offering to be able to reach more people than just your car audio niche.

But obviously that's where we're most heavily focused in. But now we have stuff that we can get. Other people. And as far as the next car audio person, you never know who that person's going to be. Yes, there's a heavy focused amount of people safe from the age of 18 to 35. That's gonna be your heavy. 

But we have people contacting us all the time that are in their fifties and sixties and they're like, hey man I came across your video and I used to be into car audio. I really wanna get back into it. So you never know the what the next person that's gonna be trying to get another system for their vehicle is going to be, it can, it doesn't matter the color, it doesn't matter the age. It's all these people. So it's really cool to see how music is able to bring people together, so this has been really rewarding for that reason as well. 

How Johnathan built his social media following organically

Johnathan Price: I would say it was easier when to build something when we weren't so much selling something. But now, like I said, that's when I learned lesson for me and I know. I know what the problem is, but sometimes it's difficult to fix because one of the biggest things that people like to see on my social media is me like playing my system in my vehicle to, and getting people's reactions.

Everybody loves reaction videos, whether it's somebody getting a pie in the face or, you know, like there's a lot of reaction video channels out there. But so they wanna see that. But when my, when it's not car show season. I kind of run out of. Material to upload that? Is that what they're following me initially?

So I'm like, okay, how do I feel the weekly YouTube uploads or content with what do I feel it with? And I'm like, well, we're constantly coming out with new products or people are coming out with new products. So I could talk about that. But again, it turns into, oh, he's just trying to sell us this stuff because it is just a new product, a new product.

Even though some people would probably like to see it, it's not as many people want to see that exact product as a reaction. Somebody's crazy reaction to hearing my system video. So that's how I grew it the fastest initially. So now my numbers, and again, like I talk about my wins, I talk about my losses and now sometimes my engagement is can be lower than it once was because it's been a lot more advertising or a lot more product sharing than reaction videos or really what people want to see. 

But I'm kind of get stuck because again, there's not really any car shows during the wintertime because it's so cold. So I'm kind of juggling that as best as possible where it's not super heavy in advertising and cramming things down people's throats, so they, they don't want to be consuming. But anyway, so that's where I'm trying to learn on that because like I have seen and I'm aware of seeing sometimes my poster and then obviously sometimes there's just an issue with the platform.

For instance, I'll use this as an example. The other day my front office manager, she got like her new dream car and I was like, man, this is so. Cool that you were able to get your dream car. And I made a post about her, like so proud of her. She's been able to do a lot of good things and, and grow as a person.

And I shared it on my Facebook page and like on my Instagram page, pretty much the same thing, word for word. And on my Facebook page you got like over a thousand likes, hundreds of comments and stuff. And then on Instagram it got like three likes. And I'm like, what? How interesting. Yeah. I'm like, and then so I'm like, I mean, it is what it is.

I'm not sharing it to brag or whatever, so whatever. And then come to find out, somebody brought to my attention that there was an actual issue with the Instagram platform at that time, and they were making posts and they all got, Like hardly any likes or anything like that as well. 

So there was an actual issue because usually something that's good and wholesome like that, people get a good vibe from. They can, they vibe with it. So they're like, oh, I'll like it, I'll comment or whatever. Having good wholesome content and helping people is. Has been a huge thing in getting them to engage as well. 

Alex Bond: No, I think there's a lot of value in creating that sort of positive content like that. So to kind of maybe switch gears a little bit, some of the best salesmen that I've ever met personally say that you're not selling your idea or your product, you're selling you. And I think that's something that you've actually capitalized on. 

Well, Jonathan, and frankly, I think you're a solid down to earth guy. I've also seen in like the car audio community that you're kind of a polarizing figure to some people, and that, let me word this correctly, is your influence and public persona as someone who kind of tells it how it is and can be a little edgier.

Something that you've conscientiously cultivated over the years to help with sales. Because I think you're a a wicked nice guy and there's certain things that I've, I don't know, seen that seem like a, not a tactic necessarily, but a way of sales, you know? 

Johnathan Price: Yeah, definitely. I mean, I am a pretty, like I said, I'm very transparent on my journey and everything, so people get that connection with me on a more personal level of, but I always try to help people, especially on my personal page, like I'll put out whatever. 

If I go through a lesson and, and it's even helped a lot of my competitors, they would never say this, but I see a lot of monkey see monkey do type stuff. But I, like, I see me sharing, for instance, writing, thank you on all these invoices and then magically over the years where they never did that, now they're all doing that. I'm like, all right, I see you. 

Alex Bond: And they were probably the same people making fun of you for doing that too until they see that it works, it's like they need someone to take a machete through the jungle so that they could take the path that person created, you know? 

Johnathan Price: Definitely. So but I'm always sharing that stuff and it could be good stuff, it could be bad stuff, and if a person, sometimes they will read something about me online, and for whatever reason, a person will believe something a hater puts out there that has no credibility whatsoever, doesn't have any following, no credibility, they'll magically believe what this person says about me. 

That always, it is really perplexed me to the highest degree because I'm like, why would a person believe that person over a person that has a huge following and people that are always engaging with me and say, I'm a good guy and stuff, but you want to believe this random person that said whatever they made up about me.

That makes me think that no matter what a person, if they want to hate you, they're gonna find something to hate you about. Like, it doesn't matter what it is, even if you sure you cured cancer. They're like, oh, he just did that so he can make money. Like, it's totally negating like, you cured cancer. But they just say, oh, he only did that so he could make money off of it.

Like it would, so anyway same thing in car audio. Like I deal with people like that all the time, but luckily I have a ton more supporters than I do negative people. And a lot of the people I also have, when I go to these shows, they'll come up and talk to me and I talk to 'em, just like you said, like I'm just a normal dude from Mississippi.

I don't like, I'm not some prick or anything. I talk to anybody and I give people the energy and respect that they give or don't give to me. So if you approach me with a negative attitude or talk in smack like. I'll give it back to you. I'm not gonna give you respect if you're disrespecting me like that. That just doesn't equate to me. 

So, but anybody that just comes to me at a car showing like, hey, jp, what's up? I'm like, hey, what's up man? Like like talk about systems or whatever. And I've had so many people go online after they see me at, they actually see me in. In person at shows and they're like, man, I just have, I'm publicly apologizing to Jonathan because I made some bad posts.

I judged him off of what other people said about him, and I was totally wrong. I met him now once or twice at different shows, and he always takes time to talk to me just like I'm a normal person. He is not too good to talk to people. And so I feel like I need to apologize to him for judging him. Just off of what somebody else had made up about him. So that's always rewarding for me to see my people cause it takes a lot for a person to accept take responsibility for their prejudging me and doing the wrong thing.

So but that lets me know I'm doing the right thing. And at the end of the day, if you always know yourself, who you are and what path you're going down, and if you're doing the right thing, then the majority of the people are going to see it. And that's what I've always done. One of the things that upsets people, but it's more so like haters. Whenever I share something that has to do anything with money, they lose their minds because they're like, oh. 

Alex Bond: It's fake. Gimme the receipts. All that sort of stuff. 

Johnathan Price: Yeah. Well, that, and they're like he's just bragging, like he's flashing it or whatever. I'm like, no, I'm trying to, I'm sharing my journey with you and it does include, like, I share my losses, I share my wins. Like if we did 18 million last year, I make a post about 'em. Like, hey, super grateful. Like we were able to do 18 million in revenue last year. Most of the people, 99% of the people are supporters.

Man, that's awesome. You motivate me to do better in my business. All this, and then you have the haters that chime in there. Oh, you're always, all you do is talk about money. I'm like, I may post about money like every three months or something, but that's what they get out of it. Oh, he only talks about money.

I'm like, I haven't said anything about anything monetarily in months. But that's their comment because they just want to hate me for whatever reason. And that's their time that they're like, oh, I can make a comment. Now out of all the things I've talked about over the past three months now, they comment. And say something, oh, he's just talking about money. That's all he is about. Like, man, come on. 

Importance of transparency and authenticity in a business

Alex Bond: Aand I wanna dive into that kind of, that transparency a little bit because I think that's decently refreshing. I've worked in the past in a, also a niche market where essentially I was working on agricultural TV shows, which has like a very large following, but it's also very niche, kind of like car audio, right? Both very similar in what I've seen in research. Essentially the audience really responded to the authenticity of people. 

So I can understand the value both internally and personally, that that has to you and being self-fulfilling, but also the value that that can have financially. Do you think that that's because people in certain industries like car audio respond to that transparency more than in other industries? Or do you think it's because people at large generally respond to authenticity instead of maybe data or other sales tactics?

Johnathan Price: I don't think it's specific to car audio. I think it's any industry really that could benefit from, I mean, I'm not how by far, like, I say this every day, like I don't know everything. I'm always trying to learn and who, I don't know if it's the right thing to do or not, but it seems to work fine for me, and I've always been transparent with it.

And I think it also shows I'm not lying about what we're doing, what we're able to grow. Because there are so many other companies out there that always are saying, oh, we do this number or we do this number. Anybody can say anything. 

And that's where I think it's hurting them to say that with no proof. Then it's helping them because you know how the news is these days, like they'll tell you, they say anything. They lie to us all the time. It's been proven time and time again. So now people. If you make a claim with no data to back it up, they're on guard about it because they're like, oh, I've been told things like this a ton of times and it's been a lie. I see it all the time. 

So tell the story. I provide the data, I show the truth, and people, like I said, 99% of people are man, happy for you like you're doing awesome. Keep up the good work. You inspire me, you motivate me. And it, and it also is cool for me to look back on in like my Facebook memories or whatever. I can go back four years ago when I was so hyped up about getting to $5,000 in sales in a day. I'm like, man, this is so awesome. 

And like, so seeing, it's a reminder of where I have been and like I haven't given up and I've been able to, And now we do 50 or a hundred thousand dollars a day like so. And so it's cool for me to be able to go back and reference those days of everybody's always like, remember where you came from? Don't like, bro, I go back and visit my hometown once a month. I know where I came from. You don't have to keep telling me that. 

But anyway, it's I like it for my journal as well like to be able to go back and see these things and see how so excited to be there and just equally as excited today to be able to see what it's grown into. And I'm like, man, if it was like that four years ago, what is it gonna be four years from now? Like, man, that'll be amazing, but as long. 

So that's another thing, like I know it's, again, there's so many cliche sayings and stuff in business, but the hardest person to beat is a person that never gives up. Like I had so many times going through business where I'm like, this, this isn't gonna work.

I don't wanna do this as a waste of my time. And I'm like, man, I mean so many of those, especially in the beginning years and that's when so many businesses fail because people give up and I'm like, man, if I would have given up at that time, I don't know what I would be doing now, but it wouldn't be doing 8 million, 18 million a year in revenue. I know that, so I'm glad I never gave into that temptation of giving up for the easier road maybe at the time. 

Alex Bond: Well, I think there's a lot of humility and gratitude that permeates when you tell your story. And I think that responds to people well, and sometimes sales is a story at the end of the day. It definitely business is a story. 

So I wanted to ask you, essentially part of car audio culture kind of involves content or areas that might be considered a little like taboo or as I mentioned earlier, like edgy, is that something that has prevented any sort of business opportunities for you? Or is that something that was actually more beneficial for you to lean into? 

Johnathan Price: I would say definitely it's created more opportunities for me. I mean, I have companies reaching out to me all the time, so I think the only way that a big following would hurt you is if you're not true with yourself and your intentions.

Like, cause one day people will find out like, if you were being honest or you were being yourself, or you were just making up this fake persona or whatever, it's staged. And the longer you do it, the longer you do do the right thing. I think the more, the more wins you will, they will start coming in like big waves where.

Back when I first started, I'm like, man, can I ever catch a break? Can I ever get a win? And now I'm like, win, win, win, win, win, win. Like, they like come in all the time and all these opportunities, but it's because people have been watching me for so long and they, they either wanna do business with me or work out some deal with me or, or use my platform to try to advertise their product.

I was having to pay for a product to do a to make a video of it. Like they're like, I just had a company. Contact me about a new dash cam that they came out with. And it is awesome. And I'm like, well, I don't sell dash cams, like, and it's gonna take up a lot of my time. So I'm not really interested in doing it unless it, it makes sense dollars wise.

And so they're like, okay, well I'll give you $5,000 to do a six minute video on YouTube. I'm like, that's pretty good, but it has to make sense. And nobody would ever do that in the beginning because, I don't have the, I didn't have the reputation. I didn't have the following. I didn't have all these things that it took for me to, I had to build this over time.

But now the winds come a lot more often for that reason, cuz people see that I'm authentic and there's the proof is there. It's not just somebody saying, oh, I'm a great guy. Like, anyone can say that and then like, they're over here doing the exact opposite or, or whatever. So I definitely think it's a great thing if your intentions are pure.

Alex Bond
Alex Bond

Meet Alex Bond—a seasoned multimedia producer with experience in television, music, podcasts, music videos, and advertising. Alex is a creative problem solver with a track record of overseeing high-quality media productions. He's a co-founder of the music production company Too Indecent, and he also hosted the podcast "Get in the Herd," which was voted "Best Local Podcast of 2020" by the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia, USA.

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