The Christmas Tree Hugger entered the Shark Tank with their pole covers to make fake trees look real. At one-size-fits-all, they Velcro around the bottom of your tree, and come in two styles, brown bark or white birch, which both reverse into a candy cane design.
We interviewed creator Ryan Kenny, who said his hope is to make this product ‘a new standard’ in trimmings for artificial trees. This Christmas marks their second holiday season in business, and to date, they’ve sold close to 15,000 units.
As for the future, it definitely looks merry and bright for the Atlanta-based company, who, as of now, sells solely online at places like Amazon, Etsy, Wayfair and Zulily. In time for Christmas of 2018, Kenny’s goal is to enter into big-box retailers such as Target, Walmart, Hobby Lobby and Home Depot.
Here’s what else he told us about…
How the Idea Came About
A few Christmases ago, my wife and I purchased our first artificial tree. I remember we were admiring the magic of it all, when she noticed how crumby that fuzzy ugly green pole at the bottom looked. Naturally, I wanted to make my wife happy, so I decided to come up with a way to fix that eyesore when I couldn’t find a natural-looking simple solution online.
An ‘Amazing’ Experience With QVC
QVC was amazing! Just as stressful in some ways like Shark Tank, but it’s a totally different dynamic. The hosts and employees at QVC are there to help you succeed and are extremely supportive in every step. I couldn’t believe how many units we sold at 1am in the morning in July! QVC knows what it’s doing.
Advice to Contestants- ‘Do a Few Mock Tank Practice Sessions’
The number one advice I would give is to do a few mock Tank practice sessions in front of real people. Family, friends, coworkers- the more nervous and awkward it makes you feel the better. It’s the only way to prep you for how crazy it feels to be on that stage. You in front of a mirror talking to yourself won’t cut it.
Being Inside the ‘Tank’- “I’ve Never Been That Nervous in My Life’
I’ve never been that nervous in my life and like most people on the planet, public speaking has always been on my top list of things to avoid if possible. But fortunately, it also happens to be something that you really do get more comfortable with over time and with experience. Between the trade shows I attended to show off my product, being on QVC, and a coincidental increase of presentations at my day job, 2017 was full of mini practice sessions before the show. I was still extremely nervous, but I felt like I was in control of it.
Other holiday season products from Shark Tank: