Case Study: Oshki’s Collaboration with Trout Unlimited
This case study details Oshki’s collaboration with Trout Unlimited, a prominent nonprofit conservation organization dedicated to preserving America’s coldwater fisheries and their watersheds. Oshki was sought out to provide high-quality merchandise to Trout Unlimited members that aligns with the organization’s mission. This case study delves into the customer, the project's details, the challenges faced, and the successful outcomes achieved through this collaboration.
Client Overview: Trout Unlimited
Trout Unlimited, founded in Michigan in 1959, is a national nonprofit organization with a deep commitment to conserving, protecting, and restoring America’s coldwater fisheries and their associated watersheds. With 300,000 members and supporters, they work tirelessly to safeguard and enhance trout and salmon habitats. The organization operates through a national chapter and several regional chapters, such as the West Michigan chapter, and is renowned for its effectiveness in the realm of coldwater fisheries conservation.
Trout Unlimited’s approach involves leveraging scientific knowledge to protect spawning habitats, reestablishing connections between tributaries and rivers, and restoring impacted bodies of water. Their work spans nearly a million miles of coldwater habitats across the United States.
Partnership with Oshki: How It Began
The collaboration between Trout Unlimited and Oshki was initiated when Oshki's CEO and Founder, Jackson Riegler, met the editor of Trout Magazine through a mutual connection while fishing. This meeting sparked the idea of partnering with nonprofits with a broad reach, aligning well with Oshki’s dedication to environmentally conscious practices and gifting initiatives.
Trout Unlimited ultimately chose Oshki for collaboration due to the company’s reputation for quality and sustainability. Oshki, although a smaller company, impressed the organization with its commitment to ethical practices and environmentally friendly products. The teams at Oshki and Trout Unlimited worked closely together — with the Oshki team designing merchandise that perfectly captured the essence of Trout Unlimited's mission
The collaboration originally aimed at ordering 300-400 items but eventually expanded to 7,500. This surge in orders demonstrated substantial interest and support from Trout Unlimited’s members.
Goals and Challenges
Trout Unlimited’s primary goal was to provide its members with superior-quality gear while simultaneously supporting their conservation mission. The main issue they faced was finding a supplier that aligned with their values and could deliver merchandise on a larger scale.
The design process was remarkably smooth, with the Oshki and Trout Unlimited teams engaging in 2-3 rounds of collaborative design work. The rapid turnaround from the initial meeting to the nearly finished design showed Oshki’s commitment to meeting the client’s needs effectively.
However, the project faced a challenge during the fundraising period. There was a lull in customer engagement after the initial wave of donations, as customers didn’t immediately receive their shirts or accompanying informational notecards. This communication issue was identified after the fact and rectified as new batches of orders continued to go out.
But despite the challenge, Oshki’s ability to accelerate production and offer a quick turnaround was crucial to this collaboration’s success. This allowed Trout Unlimited to place orders right before the holidays and ensure that customers received their merchandise in a timely fashion.
The success of the project was also evident in the positive feedback and enthusiastic response from Trout Unlimited's members. Oshki's alignment with the organization's mission boosted their gift shop and helped reinvigorate their approach to local businesses and manufacturers.
The collaboration between Oshki and Trout Unlimited was a resounding success on multiple fronts:
1. Fundraising: The project raised over $350,000 for Trout Unlimited, contributing significantly to their conservation efforts.
2. Outreach: The collaboration allowed Oshki's products to reach the hands of over 7,500 people, greatly expanding the brand's visibility and impact.
3. Alignment with Mission: The close alignment of Oshki's values with Trout Unlimited's mission paved the way for a fruitful partnership.
After a successful initial collaboration, there is a strong potential for future collaborations between Oshki and Trout Unlimited — especially given the shared missions and positive relationship that has developed. As both organizations continue to evolve and grow, the partnership promises to foster greater success in the conservation of America's coldwater fisheries.
In conclusion, the collaboration between Oshki and Trout Unlimited not only benefited both organizations but also contributed significantly to the preservation of America's coldwater fisheries and their watersheds. This partnership exemplifies the power of aligning values and mission for a more sustainable and eco-conscious future.