Red I: Riders Form Ad Agency

“The idea was that in the action-sports and snowboarding business there was room for an authentic and informed ad agency that knows the sports and the market like we do,” says Adam Hostetter, pro rider and now president of Red i Productions, a multi-media company that he formed with several of his sponsored snowboarder friends.

Over the past year and a half, the agency has slowly gained recognition. From its office in Tahoe City, California, Red i Productions designed ads, catalogs, brochures, promo videos, Web sites, and promoted parties for such companies as Shimano, Gravity Teton Research, Points North Heli Adventures, and others.

They'll even do benefits for friends. “Photographer Rich Van Every's house burned recently, so we put on a fundraiser to help bring in a few-thousand dollars for him,” says Hostetter.

While Hostetter is the president of the company, other partners include Jeremy Jones, Greg Figone, Jason Holmes, and Daryl Butterfield. Janine Macdonald and Madalenia Silva also help out in the firm.

In addition to the home office, Red i also has a mobile home equipped with computer, cellular modem, fax machine, and e-mail. Called the Storm Trooper, it acts as Hostetter's home away from home while he's traveling to different promotions or contests. It also allows him and other employees work from the road, so they maintain close ties to the market while still meeting deadlines. “You can FedEx stuff from just about anywhere,” he says. “We're never out of touch in the Storm Trooper.”

Because he knows the agency is relatively new and probably still doesn't have much of a reputation, Hostetter says the group is eager to serve their accounts. “We're young and hardworking. We're going to bust our butts off for clients,” he says. “We believe in being honest and offering good customer service so that people will enjoy working with us. We're not like lawyers who just bill, bill, bill you to death.”

Hostetter says they have been able to pay their bills and still buy new, state-of-the-art computers. “We're going to grow the business and focus on the national level accounts, and hopefully hire some other people to work toward the local level.”

Of course, the riding is always important, and Hostetter and the group will continue to do that as much as possible, “even if that means I have to work until 1:00 a.m. to make a deadline.”

–John Stouffer