Greg Smith has been involved in the health and fitness business for more than 25 years and has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon in human development and performance. Smith has been extensively involved in health promotion and education. His experience includes working for health and medical publisher Krames/Staywell and focusing on disease management and health promotion for county, state, and federal government agencies as well as all branches of the military. Smith worked for the largest consumer health publisher in the nation, Rodale, Inc., with publications such as Prevention, Runner’s World, and Men’s Health magazines. Smith also worked as director of admissions at Wellspring Academy, a school that deals with childhood obesity and runs fully accredited academic programs and 12 summer camp programs around the world.
Smith, and his wife Beth, also owned a small chain of women’s fitness centers in California. Seeking a delicious, healthy beverage for their members in response to the growing wall of fat- and sugar-based energy and coffee house drinks on the market, their simple solution was to develop a protein-based, espresso, all-in-one nutritious drink that helps people lose weight one cup at a time. Thus, CLICK was born. Their company, CLICKco LLC, strives to be an ethical organization providing a better-for-you, premium, all-in-one beverage for people seeking to enhance their healthier lifestyle.
Q (Sheldon Baker): What’s the early sales results you’re seeing from your new CLICK Active drink?
A (Greg Smith): CLICK Active has been well received from consumers, retailers and popular social media influencers such as @DiaryofaFitMom. Her CLICK Active product review has already received over 20,000 views and is growing every day. Walmart.com, Amazon and with several other online retailers are now selling CLICK Active. People love the taste, which is what we had hoped for and they also appreciate the healthy energy CLICK Active provides.
Q: Is CLICK Active just for people who exercise regularly and drink coffee?
A: In contrast to CLICK, our weight-loss, coffee protein meal replacement drink, CLICK Active is designed for performance and recovery to support people on the days they are active whether it be in the gym or outdoors biking, running, rowing or even heavy-duty gardening. CLICK Active increases energy performance and lean muscle mass using a unique 70/30 blend of whey isolate and micellar casein. Whey provides a quick burst of protein synthesis while casein makes an ideal protein supplement to sustain long periods of an anabolic environment for muscle growth. With a double shot of espresso coffee, the 150 mg of caffeine stimulates the central nervous system, which increases the oxidation of fatty acids and raises your metabolism to help your body use fat as a fuel source. It also reduces the perception of fatigue, effort, and pain.
Q: Did you develop the drink’s formulation, including selecting the ingredients?
A: Yes. With the goal of replicating the great taste success of CLICK’s wow effect, coffee-house taste and premium ingredients, we wanted to create a product line that delivered the most effective formulation for performance. As a lifelong fitness expert myself, I wanted to deliver a product that went beyond just the typical whey protein powders that are a dime-a-dozen in the marketplace. We also wanted a formulation that provided the best solution for the active lifestyle market, not just the body builder or elite athlete, which is why we formulated the two fast and slow absorbing proteins. Also, CLICK Active does not contain artificial colors or flavors and we use only natural, high quality espresso coffee, not coffee flavorings or synthetic caffeine, which some of the competition uses.
Q: Describe your nutrition plan targeted to people who are concerned about weight management.
A: Let’s face it, we are a time-starved, grab-and-go society. Everyone would love to have time to cook delicious healthy meals to ensure they eat a well-balanced diet full of fruits, vegetables and protein. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, and you need a quick meal option especially at breakfast. In fact, over 30 million Americans consume only coffee, which is the worst thing you can do for both health and weight loss. This is where CLICK comes in. We found that taking behaviors and making them healthier is easier than a diet that takes away what you enjoy. What better way to help with weight management than to make your coffee experience one that supports your weight-loss and fitness goals?
Q: Are your products only available online?
A: The online market is where our target market feels most comfortable shopping, due to the online reviews. On Amazon, CLICK has more than 1,000 reviews. We are in some specialty stores such as Nutrishop in Clovis and Fresno, but we are finding that the future of buying products is moving more online. Given this, we are in the premiere online retailers such as Amazon, Walgreens.com and Walmart.com, to name a few.
Q: Do you and your wife workout regularly?
A: Yes. For Beth and I, working out is like brushing your teeth. We just wouldn’t feel right without it. We workout five to six days a week. Since we work from home, it becomes two things – a social outlet as well as to help us stay active, healthy and CLICK’n throughout our lives.
Q: As a business owner, what keeps you up at night?
A: Great question. Wow, competition, innovation, cash flow just to name a few. But, if you are passionate about what you do, the rest will take care of itself. Anyone who knows us will tell you Beth and I are passionate about CLICK and serving our customers. We do it for the love of our CLICK fans who email us regularly to tell us what a great product CLICK is, how much they have lost weight, become healthier, saved money and time from not going to Starbucks, or simply to say thank you for the community we created and the support we give to people wanting to live a healthy lifestyle one cup at a time. This fills us with gratitude and certainly makes sleeping easier.
Q: If you were a type of food, what type of food would you be?
A: Coffee, of course. With CLICK, my coffee can now be my meal. People, including me, have a love affair with coffee. Coffee is a place where you find energy and reconnect with the world. It’s also a great social food where dialogue and opinions are shared over a cup of brew.
Sheldon C. Baker is chief executive officer for Clovis-based Baker Dillon Group LLC and has created numerous brand marketing and public relations campaigns for companies and brands. For Q&A interview consideration e-mail Sheldon at SBaker@BakerDillon.com.