From social media strategist to co-founder, Anthony has experienced a journey most people only dream about. Since completing our Product Management course in New York City, he’s been working on his own business venture. His blossoming startup, Hand & Terry, provides affordable, high-quality socks made from only the best raw materials.
What were you doing before studying at GA?
I came to GA while I worked as a strategist for a social media agency called VaynerMedia. I worked with Fortune 500 brands to develop social media strategy, campaigns, and new technology partnerships.
Tell me about Hand and Terry.
We created Hand and Terry because we were tired of wearing poor quality socks and we didn’t want to pay over $30 for a pair in department stores.
Our goal is simple: We want to create the best socks in the world by using the finest raw materials and technology available. And since we don’t deal with middlemen, our products are affordable as well (no ridiculous store markups).
Why dress socks?
My cofounder, Yale, and I wanted to start with a classic item, something that every guy needs. As guys, we face a problem where we constantly have to pull our socks up throughout the day, and we thought we could do better.
How did you meet Yale, your co-founder?
We met through friends a few years ago, and we ended up sharing an apartment in 2012. He had been working in the sock manufacturing industry for many years, and he told me about his idea for creating a new and improved dress sock. After a while we both agreed to launch a company together. We both talked about our ideas and the direction we want to take the brand, with Yale having the manufacturing expertise and me working on improving our website and marketing.
Of all of our offerings, what made you choose our Product Management course?
I’ve always been interested in technology and the web, but I didn’t see a career in it until I worked at VaynerMedia and had experience working with brands and startups. I started to meet product managers and became very interested in the position, seeing as how they work with the tech side and the customer side of things.
What was the goal behind your Kickstarter campaign last summer?
We knew we had an awesome product, but we still needed to prove to ourselves that other people out there would want it too. Kickstarter was an easy way for us to put our idea out to the public and see if people were interested. Luckily for us, we were funded and we could use the funds to help purchase our first order from the factory and gain an initial customer base.
If you could tell your customers one thing, what would it be?
We want our customers to know that they are not just buying another pair of socks. We’ve put a lot of thought into our products and tested them to make sure they are the best on the market.
What are you working on now?
Right now we are working on adding more products to our line and improving our customer experience on our website.
Any advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?
I think the best advice I got was to keep trying new things and working on projects you’re passionate about. We’re in an age where it’s easier than ever to start a company and reach people, so get out there and build something.
Lastly, who is your favorite teacher and why?
I had two great instructors in Jeremy Horn and Jenn Vargas. I learned a lot from both of them, I don’t know if I can pick a favorite!
Nelson Igunma composes success stories about General Assembly alumni from around the world.