139: matt heitmann, chief marketing officer at pro’s closet

“The great thing about our business is, we always talk about being brand and product agnostic. We don’t have paid commissions, we don’t have to have a store stocked full of Specialized product or Trek product and all the parts and accessories they sell. So we can be really authentic and agnostic in our approach to how we write about these. We can write about whatever we want, and we can be really honest about our experiences with those products. And I think people appreciate that.”

– Matt Heitmann

EPISODE PREVIEW:

The Pro’s Closet continues to revolutionize the way people buy bikes. The company offers a very innovative channel strategy that enables consumers to buy used bikes easily online. They build trust with their 141-point inspection process and keep cyclists in their ecosystem with an easy to join and engage with approach where a cyclist is offered the option to trade in a bike and get a new one every year. They’re a retailer of all bike brands, have an incredible bike museum, and are amassing an incredibly unique data set as more and more cyclists discover the site. 

And a lot more cyclists are discovering the site – from COVID-19 newcomers to cyclists affected by the recession; the Pro’s Closet is counting some of its best months in 2020. Simply put, the Pro’s Closet is completely disrupting the way bikes are bought and sold.

I interviewed Nick Martin, the founder of the Pro’s Closet, in 2019, and captured the incredible vision and founding story of the company. It is one of our most downloaded shows and you can listen to that show here

And today, I am so excited to present to you the Chief Marketing Officer of the Pro’s Closet, Matt Heitmann. He’s a veteran in the cycling industry, having served at Competitive Cyclist, BMC, Canyon and more. Now, as the CMO at Pro’s Closet, out of Boulder, Colo., he is creating an orchestration between digital, tech innovation, and cycling that’s never existed before. I’m pretty confident in saying that Matt quite possibly has the coolest job in cycling!

Perhaps the best part about the Pro’s Closet right now is the fact that the company is simultaneously closing the gap between experienced riders and newcomers by offering content and shopping experiences for each. 

The cycling industry has seen a massive boom since the start of COVID, and I was curious to learn what the Pro’s Closet was seeing in demand and also, site traffic. Matt details a lot of trends in this show, which I think you’ll get a ton of perspective from. And, in terms of demand, let’s just say they’re turning over inventory 2 ½ times per month!

Listen in to hear more about how Matt and the team at Pro’s Closet continue to help grow the community of cycling enthusiasts through constant innovation – this team literally never sits idle!

GUEST PROFILES:

Matt Heitmann

Matt Heitmann is a data driven commercial executive and is now Chief Marketing Officer at Pro’s Closet, located out of Boulder, Colo. Prior to the Pro’s Closet, Matt was driving commercial growth for Canyon Bicycles GmbH, BMC Switzerland, Backcountry.com and CompetitiveCyclist.com.

TOPICS COVERED:

Cycling Industry During COVID, Pre-Owned Bicycles, Inclusivity in the Cycling Community

SELECT QUOTES:

“The great thing about our business is, we always talk about being brand and product agnostic. We don’t have paid commissions, we don’t have to have a store stocked full of Specialized product or Trek product and all the parts and accessories they sell. So we can be really authentic and agnostic in our approach to how we write about these. We can write about whatever we want, and we can be really honest about our experiences with those products. And I think people appreciate that. And that’s something that nobody in media can do, and really nobody else in the bike industry can do, because they don’t have the array of products, the diversity and the selection that we have, and the access products that we have. And we also have great relationships with everybody in the industry, and not just one or two that would maybe buy us our content.”

“And I think what we’re trying to do is break down those tribal barriers, and be more inclusive… It’s [Gravel Cylcling} allowing the sport of cycling to be much, much more inclusive. And I really, I love both of those sports for that reason. And it allows us to take a much broader approach to marketing and acquisition, rather than having to appeal to the mountain bike guy, because he only wants to ride a mountain bike. And he only wants to go to a website to see mountain bikes, and the road bike guy, the same thing.”

“…We promote sustainability through reselling product that already exists. And that’s just that a core value of ours is to promote sustainability through the love of cycling. That’s just one of our, our mission statements. So I wouldn’t say that that’s changed or been anymore reinforced because of covid.”

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