Carter Kostler, Successful Teen Entrepreneur, Shares Business Tips On Reddit AMA
If there is one thing adults know best, it’s that earning decent money is one of the most painfully difficult tasks to accomplish. In a world where wealth is king, most of us struggle for advancements up the financial ladder. That is why it’s always inspiring (if not a little bit envying) to find people half our age becoming stars in the field of entrepreneurship.
Meet Carter Kostler. He’s just 15, but unlike most people his age, Kostler is making big bucks. And no, they aren’t just your typical teenage summer jobs mowing the neighbor’s lawn or serving fries at McDonalds. Kostler just made a million dollars in sales through an ingenious item he invented.
Carter invented Define Bottle, which, on their website, is described as “a beautifully-designed, eco-friendly water bottle that allows you to take delicious, nutrient-rich, fruit infused water to go.”
In an effort to lessen America’s consumption of sugary beverages, Kostler invented a bottle that can infuse fruit essence and plain ol’ H20, giving body conscious people a healthier alternative to sweet and carb-loaded drinks. His parents have been incredibly supportive of his business pursuits, and even took a $300,000 mortgage to fund the project.
Today on Reddit, Kostler shared his experiences establishing his business and making it into Good Morning America and Shark Tank. He also shared a few of his business tips budding entrepreneurs can use. Here are a few of the exchanges.
spot9901 asks, “As a 16 year old who is looking to get my product on store shelves, how would I do that? Just going store to store and asking managers or something? Also, I remember seeing you on shark tank. Define bottle is amazing.”
Carter Kostler answered, “Going from store to store and cold calling companies is exactly what I do. You know how I got into several Whole Foods in the Mid Atlantic region? WALKING IN, PITCHING MY PRODUCT TO THE MANAGER AND NOT LEAVING TILL HE MADE A PURCHASE! Don’t be afraid to look stupid or be aggressive!”
Redditor MikeBotz asked, “How’s the business doing since you were on ‘Shark Tank’?”
Kostler’s reply was amazing and truly motivating.
“Just threw a party last night at my house to celebrate hitting a million dollars in sales. everything is FANTASTIC. Home Shopping Network is taking the bottle, I’m doing several trade shows all over the U.S, a reality TV show is in development, and I will be doing a TED Talk this November! Couldn’t be happier.”
Ozfarts asked, “Is your parents mortgage paid and dealt with now that you’ve hit 1m in sales, or were there huge costs associated? I bet there was/is a lot of pressure on you with your parents being in it for that much.”
Carter replied, “The mortgage isn’t fully dealt with yet but we are close! and yeah, absolutely, my parents have obviously put a ton of not only time but capital into my business so there is some pressure for good results!”
Here is the rest of the Reddit AMA.
[Image from Imgur]