Go Behind the Business of The Brave Pants Company, an equestrian apparel brand that represents and supports the physical, mental, social, and emotional facets of a successful equestrian!
One of the things we have yet to do is tick off the “start a company blog". So here goes, our very first blog, and no better way to start with a "Who are we?" blog.
The Brave Pants Company comes from what many of you may call "Down under", New Zealand (not Australia, not an island off Australia, not in any way, shape, or form related to Australia. We are a totally independent nation NOT related to Australia!). We love Australia, but it’s kind of like your famous brother or sister who gets all the glory.
Anyway, fourth to our founding story. The Brave Pants Company was founded on the premise that we wanted to be more than just a "brand". We wanted to be a way of being. A culture and a mindset. We didn’t want to have the “buy me and look rich” vibe. We wanted it to be a “buy me and be a part of something greater” vibe. The more we researched, the more we realized there was a gap and a space in the market to achieve being ‘more than just a brand’ in Equestrian. There was a space ready for us to create a brand that united riders and created a culture of people all aspiring for the same thing – to become better riders and improve as athletes. We wanted to create a brand that encompassed all the elements of the equestrian athlete and equestrian lifestyler. Ensuring our brand could represent and support the physical, mental, social, and emotional facets of a successful equestrian was imperative. So, the journey began:
One — we needed a name that we knew could touch on all the above.
Two — we needed to create a supportive network where people could challenge themselves within their own boundaries.
Three — we needed to find the most kick-ass material that would withstand the demands of the sport while still offering the most innovative technologies on the market.
And finally, (I know starting a sentence with ‘and’ is bad, but it’s equally dramatic, right?!) finale drum roll…FOUR- we needed to combine all these things to create an epic culture for people to embrace their journeys and smash their goals.
Voila! The Brave Pants Company was founded.
THE MENTAL GAME – the name:
We chose the name ‘Brave Pants’ because of the mental game it brought to the table. The word ‘brave’ has an abundant amount of positive and heroic connotations. This is not to say you have to be a hero to be brave, but simply to be the hero of your own story. We wanted our customers to see the word, hear the word, and say the word. What we think, say, and hear is what we become. We wanted our customers to repeatedly practice this word as a positive affirmation so that they could connect and use it purposefully within riding and, actually, any part of their life. This is a huge part of our brand.
The physical part of the brand is the equipment itself. Having the best equipment on the market is both a physical and psychological advantage. We knew as a company we couldn’t compromise in this area. It was the best or nothing. And - I must give fate a bit of credit here, we were extremely lucky to land a contract with a manufacturer who works with 3 of the world’s leading equestrian brands. Or perhaps it was our company’s good chat that did the trick (social element, tick)? After an extensive trailing period (700 rides per pair) we knew we had created a material that was going to ‘cut the mustard’ as we say in New Zealand.
We had the physical and mental game down, we had it nailed. But we needed to think about the social aspect of our brand. How are we going to band and unite our riders to support each other?
We came up with three initiatives:
A social network page on Facebook (BPCO COMMUNITY – go join :P) where people can share their experiences with our products and a place they can share their journey of becoming brave. Completely run by customers or people who just want to be involved with our culture.
A solid hashtag that could relate to all levels of riding. #beyourbrave and #doitall was created to set the culture and president that we all understand that everyone’s ‘brave’ is different. For some, it might be riding for the first time in 20 years. Others, it might be competing in their 100th Grand Prix, but can still use this hashtag to inspire others to challenge themselves.
We made it a goal, that for every purchase made, we would invest 10% of that sale back into the community it came from. Things like sponsoring local shows where you are from, reducing costs for clinics by top coaches, etc.
This part of the puzzle is intertwined with the social and mental game plans. By having a positive mindset (creating positive self-talk through positive affirmations) your psychology changes its attitudes toward failures and difficult encounters. It’s hard to have emotional regulation if you don’t have positive psychology. Alongside this, our social network is here to support you, which all adds to our customers ability to regulate emotions. Feeling appreciated and supported helps you also stay positive.
All of these aspects, in all their glory (not just what I have mentioned) are what create a great athlete and we like to think, what equally creates a great brand. The Brave Pants Company was founded by myself, Rose Cruden, a sporting specialist here in New Zealand with a Bachelor of Sport and Exercise Science and a Master’s Degree in Physical Education. As a coach, a teacher, an academic, and a human being, I know (and you know) that being an athlete, and a decent person for that matter, is not a one-dimensional path. There are and always will be multiple facets that will determine whether you are successful or not and as a brand, we want to help you in every way we can to inspire you to #beyourbrave.
If there’s one thing we want you to take away from this, please let it be this! We are your cheerleaders, we are a culture, we are a mindset, and we are an epic brand.