Hartwell Fishing – Small Business Story

I had the pleasure of talking to Dustin Hindman of Hartwell Fishing recently about his company, living in Austin and some of the things he likes about the small business community here.

Tell me about your business. We develop high quality fishing products for salt water, warm weather environments. We have apparel and tools.

How did you get into your business? I like to fish and I realized that the current products on the market were not meeting my needs as a fisherman. Rather than complain, I decided to do something about it and started the company with my business partner.

Why Austin for your business? Austin is a very creative city, there are a lot of very talented people here. For me, it is close to the coast so there are a lot of salt water fishermen here, including myself. Austin has the combo of creative people and proximity to salt water and other salt water fishermen.

Do you use promotional products?  Yes, we have hats with our logos on them. We sell them and have had specials at the Coastal Conservation Event where if you buy two shirts you get a hat. For certain individuals we give them out for free, for example we would give them to people we want to connect with in our industry. That’s all we have done with them so far, and we wear them of course.

How has social media changed your business? I would rephrase it to how is it helping my business. We use it as a way to connect directly with customers or other businesses in our industry. I see it as a good way to keep the conversation going and keep people thinking about Hartwell fishing company. It doesn’t drive sales for us right now as far as I can tell, but we are still kind of early into using it.

What is your favorite social media outlet for your business? Facebook is my favorite right now. I like our page on Facebook because you can get a comprehensive story of who we are and what we stand for. You can see lots of videos and posts at one time whereas Twitter is a continuous news feed so you don’t get all the information in front of you. Twitter is more about what were we thinking about five seconds ago.

What other ways do you market your business? We do print advertising and Google Ad campaigns and are looking to do a TV commercial this fall in places like outdoor life channel.

What is your favorite local business other than your own? I like Bicycle Sport Shop because of their great selection of bikes, really good service, their repair shop does really good work, and they have community service events like “learn how to ride these trails”. They are locally owned and I like that. It seems like they stand for good quality and I appreciate places that stand for good quality and good customer service.

Any advice for other aspiring business owners? Eventually you will find the idea that you want to pursue, keep thinking of ideas.

What else do you want to share about your business? We’re pretty excited about getting our production shipment of our The Osprey 4 in 1 fishing nippers this week. You can find them on our website www.hartwellfishing.com on August 18th.

To find out more about Hartwell Fishing you can check them out at www.hartwellfishing.com or https://www.facebook.com/hartwellfishing or https://twitter.com/HartwellFishing

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