Today, we had a very interesting interview with Mr. ‘John Bronson'; President of ProToYou at USA – Phoenix.
Below is the full interview that we have conducted with Mr. Bronson
1. What is it exactly that you do and what your start-up is all about?
Pro To You provides pro athletes to any event at an affordable price. With thousands of pro athletes current and former, we utilize pro athletes to be active in their communities and provide entertainment services to the public. Our process is simple, go to www.protoyou.com, locate the pro athlete you want and book it. On the day of event, the pro athlete will show up and perform the entertainment needed.
2. When has your startup been founded? And what stage is your startup currently at?
Having a former pro athlete as the President of Pro To You, has helped to research and beta test the startup for many years. In January of 2013, President John Bronson decided to take Pro To You from hobby to startup. In July of 2013, Pro To You crossed over from beta launch to full launch, providing services in most states.
3. What is your startup’s business model and how does it work?
Our business model is simple, go to www.protoyou.com, locate the pro athlete you want from our database and book it. Day of the event the pro athlete will show up at the time designated and perform the entertainment duties. Booking a pro athlete has never been easier and accessible for the everyday customer to be amongst an athlete who has been to the highest level of their sport.
4. How did your team meet? And who in your team does what?
Concept came from my own personal experience and interaction with consumers. As a former pro athlete, I’m constantly being booked and asked to participate in birthday parties, golf tournaments, school events, charity events and more. After being personally overwhelmed with inquiries, I had to delegate my services to other pro athlete teammate to fulfill the inquiries inquired.
5. What, exactly, makes you different from existing options, what will make your product and/or service stand out in the marketplace? In other words what’s unique about you and what’s new about what you make?
Pro To You is the only company that utilizes pro athletes at a price 98% of the nation can afford. We make it possible and easy for consumers to have additional options, weather its a birthday party, school function or charity event. Customer are constantly looking for ways to enhance a party or charity event. Now with Pro To You, we make it possible to make memories that last a lifetime.
6. What is your growth like? And what milestones has your startup achieved so far?
Pro To You has made tremendous progress in the last six months. We have added an abundant of pro athletes (many more to come) and have actively started marketing Pro To You to our targeted clientele. We are on track to reach our goals, that are set forth for the remainder of the year and into next year.
7. Who are your competitors? And what is your start-up’s competitive advantage over them?
Our only know competitor is a company who services a high clientele of consumers using high profile pro athletes. Our business model services the everyday middle class household who has a limited budget and looking for great entertainment at an affordable price. Our advantage is that we have the opportunity to capitalize on a mass market utilizing the realistic budget that most consumers can spare with trying to complete a successful event.
8. What obstacles did you face and how did you overcome them?
We have been privileged to have an inside perspective on our market and know how to service our clients. Starting Pro To You out as a hobby, has definitely helped us to know exactly our target market and continue on our path to success. In addition, have quality mentors and advisors, has helped to have other evaluate your obstacles so we could grow is a rapid manner.
9. What are the key things about your field that outsiders don’t understand?
Most outsider assume that most pro athletes are inaccessible and make millions of dollars that set them up for life. The reality is the average pro athlete plays for three to five years before retiring from sport. Which leaves the pro athlete with a lot of years in front of them to endeavor in another career. Pro To You brings pro athletes out of their shell and into communities which is a win- win for both the pro athlete and the consumer.
10. Why are you going to succeed?
Pro To You is going to succeed because are company is tried, true and consist of a simple concept of providing pro athlete to events. We add an additional dimension to entertainment that have never been done in the manner that Pro To You brings it. With our leadership and talented workforce who is part of a team atmosphere, Pro To You is destined for success.
11. If your startup succeeds, what additional areas might you be able to expand into? (
When Pro To You succeeds, we look to expand through Canada, Mexico, Europe and beyond. We are already in the process of adding mascots and cheerleaders to our platform, which will only expand our marketshare. We have some additional ideas that we will take a look at down the road, that will help to increase on the marketshare that we will be capturing.
12. Why did you choose this idea and concept to build your start-up based on?
I choose the concept as it was something that I started doing as a hobby just because I enjoyed being out in the community and supporting causes and events. It wasn’t until I started to get overwhelmed with the inquiries, where the idea click to put Pro To You in business form. After talking with my trusted advisors and mentors, I received some great feedback in similar business models that have succeeded and became multi-million dollar companies. After the research phase, it became perfectly clear to me that Pro To You is a business that can become the next big hit in entertainment.
13. What have you learned so far from launching your idea?
I’ve learned that you have to keep pushing to the limit and beyond. A lot of the same qualities that have been instilled in me a pro athlete, have been easily transferable in starting Pro To You. I understand that is a work in progress and I have to put in the work now to reap the benefits later. In addition, starting a business takes consistency , hard work and constant dedication in which some people may not be suitable for.
14. Six months from now, what’s going to be your biggest problem?
Six months from now our biggest problem may be keeping up with demand, which may be a good problem to have. We have thoroughly thought this through and have attacked every possible problem head on with the intentions of succeeding at all cost. Producing a continuous workforce in which we can have consistent growth will be a ever going challenge as it would be in any business.
15. What’s the benefit for the customer/user?
The benefits for the customer are that they now have the ability to book a pro athlete for practically anything. Up until now pro athletes have not been readily available to the public and with over 5 billion birthday parties annually,we are going to be busy keeping up with demand for the customers.
16. How did customers / users find out about you?
Customers will find us through internet marketing consisting of: search engine optimization, search engine marketing, social media like: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube and affiliate marketing with event planners, brick and mortar companies and beyond. We also receive a lot of inquiries through word of mouth from customers who have events and want to hire us through the even that they just attended.
17. Who are your current customers / users? Who are your target customers / users?
Our current customers are mainly sports enthusiast, parents with children who love sports, non-profit organizations and event planner clients. As we continue to expand, we expect to get a lot of inquires from current successful companies that have thousand of events annually. We look to be the go to company for pro athletes bookings. I’m certain we can accomplish it
18. Where do new customers / users come from and what makes new customers/users try you?
New customers come from our efforts in all of the marketing mentioned above. Customer are ecstatic to use Pro To You, as it gives them the opportunity have a pro athlete in their backyard and at their event. Its something, new, different and exciting that most customers didn’t think was possible until now. This is what makes customers book us.
19. What do your customers / users say about your product and/or service?
Our customer say: ” what a neat idea”, ” I’m glad we have the opportunity to book a pro athlete” ” my son/daughter is going to love having a pro athlete at their birthday party,” ” your service was so simple and fun.” Most customer love just going through the pro athlete profiles and looking at the athletes that they can book. The quotes and feedback are endless.
20. How are you going to scale?
We are going to start by providing services in the US, then we are going to scale strategically into other markets across the world once we have made a name in the US market. Having a strong marketing game plan is alway as the top of our priority list. We know we have something special and look to bring it to the mass market as fast as possible.
21. What’s the biggest missing feature? The one thing customers/users keep asking for?
Luckily for us we have been able to satisfy all of our customers needs at this point. However some some customers want “very” high profile players and the affordable prices that we have on our platform. However, we expect to have some features that customers will inquire about down the road and will look to accommodate the request at that present time.
22. Are you going to internationalize? And if yes how are you planning to expand your start-up’s operations accordingly?
Yes, we have plans to go international. Our plan is to have a very similar platform that we currently have now and just expand upon this in other markets internationally. Keeping it simple is something we live by and with the model we’ve created, we’ve done just that. We have and made some great relationships, to help our transition into the international markets a smooth and successful one.
23. How big do you think you can get? Why? And how you are planning to achieve your goals?
I would doubt it if we became the next next E Harmony for pro athlete bookings, the sky is the limit and we plan to reach it. We plan to be the pillar in entertainment from the pro athletes perspective. We will continue to add pro athletes to keep up with demand and effectively increase our marketing game plan from grassroots to nationwide media attention as we continue to move forward.
24. Are you looking to hire a new workforce? And if yes, what job vacancies do you currently offer and where can potential applicants contact you at?
Right now we have a small workforce that is very effective in getting the job done. As we continue to grow, we will add team members as needed. We will look at adding a sales force consisting of sale reps to help manage affiliates and their bookings. Of course, we would need some big companies as affiliates to make this happen.
25. Are you looking for partnership opportunities or funding from Venture Capitals (VC) or other funding sources? Or your business is self-sustainable? And if the first option applies where can potential partners / investors contact you at?
Currently we are not looking for funding or partnership opportunities, however we never say never. As we expand, we will evaluate our situation and make the right decisions at the appropriate time. At this point we have managed to grow organically which has work out so far using the online and referral resources that we have on hand. We understand that venture capital can put us on a differently level faster and is something we’ll take a look at once we’ve grown a little more.
26. What advice do you have for fresh entrepreneurs?
Advice I would give would be: if you have an idea, do your research, to talk someone who has already do it or something similar, create a foresight plan-of-action that you can execute. Everything may not going to pan out exactly as you planned. You will have to re-evaluate and re-strategize and push through the adversity.
27. Finally, do you have any other comments that you would like to add?
Thank you start-ups.co for allowing me to share our new venture ProToYou.com with you. I hope our influence in the business we’ve created,will encourage future entrepreneurs to step out on faith and start that new company.