Backing himself to the hilt – Matt put it all on the line for PocJox
Anyone who has spent time exercising has run across this problem – what do you do with your mobile phone? Or anything else you don’t want to leave in your bag or locker? Personal trainer Matt Chapman decided it was time to address the issue – and his invention of PocJox has provided the solution. “It’s active, compression underwear with two sweat-resistant pockets, one for your mobile phone, and one for your keys, credit card, cash etc.,” he explains. “So you can train hands-free. The pockets are placed tightly on the side of your leg, so your phone won’t move or bounce around, unlike if it’s on your arm. You can use them for every form of exercise. They’re great for running, training in the gym, rowing – you name it.” Best of all they’re unique – there’s currently nothing else like them on the market.
Matt came up with the idea after over a decade of personal training. He noticed that all of his clients – including himself – were continually ruining their phones and having keys fall out of their pockets. As for the name, PocJox is a clever play on the concept of a pocket in your jocks. The name itself provided Matt with one of his first challenges – and it was a big one. “When I first applied for the trademark, I was denied, because Jockey had trademarked the word ‘Jox’”, he explains. “So I took them on. I filed an application to have the trademark lifted from the word ‘Jox’. And I won, which was huge. I’m just one guy, and I beat the big corporation!”
In terms of marketing, the product itself is a unique selling point. “I’m trying to carve out my own category in the industry,” Matt explains. “It’s between underwear and compression.” Matt’s also enjoyed another significant advantage in the area of marketing. “I’m very lucky, my partner Leilani is in PR,” he says. “I wouldn’t be at the stage I’m at now without her. She’s been a really big advocate for the brand and for myself.”
Confidence in his product and its appeal in the physical fitness industry has led Matt to take the biggest risk of all – selling his house. “People joke, and say you shouldn’t do that,” he says. “But I’ve done it. Someone gave me some really good advice – they encouraged me to back myself, and believe in the product. So although selling my house has been risky, I’m confident I’ll make it work.”
Initially, the underwear will be sold exclusively through Matt’s new website, PocJox.com. “It’s all e-commerce to begin with, selling direct to the public,” he explains. “And then in the future I’m looking to sell to retailers. So with starting online, I can sort out any teething issues, make sure the product is 100% spot-on, before I look at retail distribution.”
Matt’s already been in talks with potential distributors, and confirms that the reactions so far have been positive. “It’s really just a matter of time,” he says.
So what advice does Matt have for anyone else who’s come up with a brand new idea, an invention that they want to market?
“If you’re passionate about it, and you believe in what you’re doing, don’t let anyone get in your way,” he advises. “Focus on what you’re doing, and give it a crack. If you don’t have a go, you’ll never know.”
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