Jeremy Bloom had a successful career as a professional skier and NFL football player under his belt when he decided he wanted to launch a tech company.
His business-school professor at Wharton had some tough-love advice for Bloom. “Go lose somebody else’s money first,” says Bloom during an interview at the Entrepreneur 360 conference in New York City. “Join a company, see if there is a challenge. And then go solve it.”
That’s exactly what Bloom did.
Bloom, who is a two-time Olympian, 11-time World Cup gold medalist skier and a former football player for the Philadelphia Eagles and the Pittsburgh Steelers, got a marketing job where he was in charge of customer generation. While he admits he was hardly qualified for the job, he did discover that the process of sorting and organizing leads was a total mess of overstuffed excel spreadsheets.
In 2010, Bloom co-founded Integrate, a demand-generation marketing-software company, to automate and organize the process of collecting and following up with leads on potential new clients. The Scottsdale, Ariz.-based startup went from two co-founders to a 30-person team in the first year, and the growth hasn’t slowed down. Today, Integrate is turning revenues in the mid-eight figures.
To hear more from Bloom on how he transitioned from athletics to business, along with his best marketing advice, watch the video above.