#319 - From Building a 9-Figure Menswear Brand to Redefining Baby Monitors

May 17, 2024
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Guest Name:
Kevin Lavelle
Co-Founder and CEO of Harbor and the Founder and Chairman of the Board at Mizzen+Main
Company Name:
Harbor, Mizzen+Main
Revenue Stage:
Guest Bio
Kevin Lavelle is the Co-Founder and CEO of Harbor and the Founder and Chairman of the Board at Mizzen+Main.


Kevin Lavelle is the mind behind Mizzen+Main and Harbor, two huge brands in very disparate fields. His story is one marked by innovation, perseverance, and the classic lesson that success often requires patience and hard work, more than just a great idea.

In this episode of DTC Pod, Kevin shares the pivotal moments and strategic partnerships that propelled Mizzen+Main to success. Now at the helm of Harbor, he discusses the shift from apparel to tech and the importance of impactful sleep and wellness solutions for families.


In our conversation with Kevin Lavelle, he shares his ingenious approach to building his company, Mizzen+Main, into a fashion industry success. Initially, Kevin recalls the brute force marketing efforts that shaped the early days of the brand, from going door to door to attending events to get the product in people's hands.

As their digital marketing and PR strategies matured, Kevin leveraged the power of strategic partnerships and influencer collaborations. Specifically, he cites the company's visibility boost through sponsorship deals, like the one with Tim Ferriss's podcast, and endorsement deals, like with athlete J.J. Watt.

Looking into the future with his new venture, Harbor, Kevin discusses the strategies his team is taking to enter the market of baby monitors and pediatric telehealth.

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On this episode of DTC Pod, we cover:
1. Influential Partnerships for Brand Growth
2. Sustainable Growth Strategies
3. Influencer and Celebrity Collaborations
4. The Tim Ferriss Effect
5.  Retail Strategy Insights
6. Prelaunch Strategies and Inventory Management

02:13 Transitioning from Mizzen+Main to Harbor
07:20 Lessons from building a customer base for Mizzen+Main
12:42 The Tim Ferriss Effect, how a podcast propelled Mizzen+Main
14:15 Signing an endorsement deal with J.J. Watt
16:36 The necessity of authenticity and passion in successful partnerships
20:06 Making personal connections for business success
26:00 Creating technically complex, life-critical electronics
29:03 Growing Harbor by creating valuable content for parents
32:36 Wholesalers and their impact on business growth
37:11 Preparing for the pre-launch of Harbor
38:45 Building a waitlist with a refundable deposit to gauge demand
42:17 Harbor’s vision to transform sleep and wellness for parents

Show notes powered by Castmagic

Past guests & brands on DTC Pod include Gilt, PopSugar, Glossier, MadeIN, Prose, Bala, P.volve, Ritual, Bite, Oura, Levels, General Mills, Mid Day Squares, Prose, Arrae, Olipop, Ghia, Rosaluna, Form, Uncle Studios & many more.  

Additional episodes you might like:

• #175 Ariel Vaisbort - How OLIPOP Runs Influencer, Community, & Affiliate Growth

• #184 Jake Karls, Midday Squares - Turning Your Brand Into The Influencer With Content

• #205 Kasey Stewart: Suckerz- - Powering Your Launch With 300 Million Organic Views

• #219 JT Barnett: The TikTok Masterclass For Brands

• #223 Lauren Kleinman: The PR & Affiliate Marketing Playbook

• ​​​​#243 Kian Golzari - Source & Develop Products Like The World's Best Brands

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Projects the DTC Pod team is working on:
DTCetc - all our favorite brands on the internet
Olivea - the extra virgin olive oil & hydroxytyrosol supplement
Castmagic - AI Workspace for Content

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Kevin Lavelle - CoFounder and CEO at Harbor, Founder and Chairman of the Board at Mizzen+Main
Blaine Bolus - Co-Founder of Castmagic
Ramon Berrios - Co-Founder of Castmagic

Episode Transcript & Castmagic Chat

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Ramon Berrios
Founder and CEO at Trend
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Ramon has Co-Founded Trend. It is a curated marketplace of creators and brands. We help brands source high quality custom content. We love working with new, innovative companies that are changing the game.

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Co-Founded Seated,COO at Omnipanel
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Blaine Bolus is the Co-Founder of OmniPanel, the first software platform connecting CX & Internal teams.OmniPanel, backed by top Silicon Valley VCs, is building software infrastructure that powers cross-functional work, in an industry projected to be a $641 Billion Market in 2022.