Prairie Portrait: Alex Frazier of RecBobMay 4, 2012 by Michael Stacy
Name: Alex Frazier
Bio: I recently graduated from UNI with a degree in public relations and marketing. I’ve taken a head first dive into the startup community which I’m more than excited to be a part of.
Title: Manager of Fun, RecBob
Residence: Vinton, Iowa
Intro music: Are you kidding me? ONE song?! Do you know how many country songs there are?! Alright, 90s Country Radio, best Pandora station to date. A song that comes to mind: “Love Your Love The Most,” by Eric Church.
Silicon Prairie News: When did you realize that RecBob had legs to carry on well past Startup Weekend Iowa City and become a full time gig, and what was that realization like?
Alex Frazier: A couple of things happened actually. First, when we shared the product idea with others, their reactions confirmed that the pain point existed and that we would be addressing a real problem. Then, a couple of weeks after Startup Weekend, we had the opportunity to present at the Technology Association of Iowa’s Pitch and Grow, which we won — without even realizing it was a competition. Additionally, the stars seemed to align, and we were all ready and able to take the leap. The realization was exciting, and taking the leap was equally exciting but nerve-racking.
SPN: What are some key ways in which marketing to recreational athletes differs from the sort of work you’ve done in other marketing and PR gigs?
AF: People that play rec sports are usually fun and outgoing, which makes working with them a blast. I enjoy rec sports and pickup games a lot, as well as the social aspect, which is great because I’m doing something I truly enjoy and understand. Looking back, I’ve worked on a lot of different projects in a lot of different areas, including marketing work on Capons, a castrated chicken, and writing for dermatology clinics — both are as exciting as they sound.
SPN: Your entire team loaded into an RV and traveled from Cedar Rapids to Austin, Texas for South By Southwest in March. What are five words that best encapsulate the experience?
AF: Turbulent. Productive. Invigorating. Malodorous. Hilarious.
SPN: Time to relive the thrill of victory and agony of defeat — or just utter embarrassment — of your own sports career. Can you describe your highest high and lowest low as an athlete (rec or otherwise)?
AF: My junior year, our flag football team made it to the intramural championship at UNI. While we actually lost the game, but making it that far was really fun for us.
Every third grader shoots a basketball at the wrong hoop when starting out, however, not every 22 year old. That too was junior year intramurals, and boy was that a long night.
SPN: As RecBob’s “Manager of Fun,” how do you ensure you keep things fun for your team? What are three surefire ways to liven up the office on a slow day?
AF: The RecBob team is actually made up of really fun people, which makes my job painless. We’re all less productive when we sit at our desk without moving around and it’s really easy to get caught up in work related things. To combat this we try to take a lot of walks. Sometimes we’ll walk around the downtown area, checking out stores we’ve never been into, or other times we’ll walk across the street for a quick coffee. We also do some stretching and brief workouts on hourly intervals and invite other people in the coworking space to join us.
We also host a weekly “Friday Master Challenge.” The previous week’s winner is responsible for coming up with a game and a prize. It’s something everyone looks forward to.
Other ways to liven up the office include surprise attacks with Nerf guns, something including boxing gloves, as well as Michael Scarn dance parties.
Credits: Photo courtesy of Frazier.
Prairie Portraits: To learn more about this series, see our introduction post, or visit our archives for past Prairie Portraits. To suggest an individual for a future Prairie Portrait, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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