From outdoorsman to entrepreneur
While Groove Life’s products are sold across the world, the brand’s heart lies firmly in the great outdoors. Born in untamed Alaska, Groove Life sprung from the founder’s need for a wedding ring that would better suit hours spent guiding tours in cold, wet and often harsh conditions.
Whether in the wilderness or the warehouse, traditional metal rings can catch or break, putting the wearer at risk of serious injuries. Working from a freezing garage in Port Alsworth, AK, Peter Goodwin solved these issues by designing and perfecting the original Groove ring. Groove Life’s rings are designed with safety in mind. Made from lightweight, durable, medical-grade silicone with special grooves on the inner surface that let in air, Groove Life’s rings block out moisture and keep up with a demanding lifestyle.
“We got in touch with a bunch of factories whose workers weren’t previously allowed to wear rings because it was a hazard,” says Ticia Pinto, Groove Life’s Director of Marketplace Growth. “Metal rings can easily get caught in machinery, and, because they don’t break, you can quickly lose a finger. But with our silicone rings that have a lower failure force, those workers can now wear their wedding rings while they work."
Partnering up for success
Since its launch, Groove Life has seen strong growth year after year, forging ahead with an ever-expanding array of adventure-inspired product lines, including belts, watch straps and a staggering selection of rings.
Within just a few years of selling via Amazon, the brand’s popularity took off.
“We’ve seen crazy amounts of growth. Just in two years, over 300–400%. It has just exploded.”
But with such success comes no shortage of imitators, keen to cash in on a lucrative new market.
“In the beginning, there were just three companies doing what we do. But people catch on to areas of growth, selling lower-quality counterfeits of our products that are a quarter of what we charge. But we stand by our brand, the quality of our products, and all the research and development behind them,” says Pinto.
For the most part, the brand was aware and accepting of this challenge, understanding that competition of this sort was an unavoidable part of doing business. However, this imitation crossed the line into counterfeiting where bad actors were manufacturing and selling lower-quality products as Groove Life’s products. This proved to be damaging to Groove Life’s sales and reputation.
Customers who purchased these products were often confused by the poor quality of what they’d received and expressed their frustrations by leaving bad reviews. When Groove Life’s customer experience team reached out to these customers, they discovered that the products were counterfeit.
“People would say to us, ‘Your rings are horrible, they break after two days’, but they weren’t our products," explains Pinto. “So, we did the best we could and sent them one of ours so they could try it.”
As well as providing the means to turbocharge Groove Life’s growth, Amazon also offered the means to protect it through programs such as Transparency.