Checking in on Sword

Sword Endurance drink mix fuels the athletes to push their performance boundaries. We collaborated with their two founders in 2015 to create a brand identity directly inspired by their product: simple, smart, and powerful.

We checked back in with them this month to see what they’ve been up to.

Shawn Stasko, a creator and founder of Sword, chatted with us from his new office in Denver, Colorado. Deemed the ‘high-altitude office,’ Denver is Sword’s new headquarters for conducting business.

Back in Lexington and the southeast, Sword is unique. There are few brands that offer a completely natural endurance supplement made locally. But Colorado is a far more saturated market. And the Sword team is finding new ways to spread the word about their great product.

“We’ve really got a firm grasp on how to actually grow in a new market. We don’t try to go into every bike shop/retail location that sells sports nutrition, that’s not our model. We use retailers as strategic partners to help us connect with the local athletic community. We work with each shop to support their events, personnel, and in-store environments.”

Denver is located in close proximity to Colorado Springs, home to a flagship training center for Olympic athletes. These elite athletes are the perfect user for the Sword product, and they’re a prime audience for the Sword brand experience.

Sword’s social media has grown with the company – and in surprising ways.

“Now we have some of the top US Olympic athletes and professional runners from Nike…who have found each other through the ‘push your boundaries’ hashtag when they are drinking Sword. It’s built this really unforeseen network of athletic communication.”

In addition, Sword launched a Sword Select program, which coordinates with brand advocate athletes around the country who are passionate about the difference Sword makes in their performance.

“We wanted to find a way to recognize the athletes in our network who are really doing a good job at representing Sword in their individual circles.”

Whether it’s face-to-face communication or online networking, Sword understands how important the customer is in growing a business. Their branding and product lineup grows with their customer in an equitable exchange. While their team provides the technical expertise and development innovation, their athletes’ demand for product shapes how they grow.

“Because we have pretty good core values to start with, we will go where the customer tells us to go. It brought the company into an exponential path. What we do is try to be a company that adapts to you.”

This year, Sword is tripling in size. Combining their business model, strong work ethic, and their branding, this is a company on the rise. “We would not be where we are without the work of Bullhorn…The packaging and language has been absolutely paramount to creating success to this company.”

“I’m proud to show where Sword has come and I’m proud of our very bright future.”

All photos courtesy of Grey Dog Studios.