Updated: Nov 9, 2020
From “thought to finish,” MiniTrencher exists to reinvent the way workers can dig trenches. In 2014, the U.S.-owned corporation launched, distributing green industry products within the U.S. Two years later, he developed a handheld trencher, the GeoRipper®.
We did a Q&A with JJ Harris, General Manager of MiniTrencher, to learn more about the innovative company that’s revolutionizing an industry.
What is your business background?
I was originally trained as an architectural draftsman where I owned DesignWorks. We are a small business specializing in home remodel design and contract structural engineering drafting. During the 2008 market crash, I moved into lumber sales while finishing my degree in accounting and then achieving my MBA. I have held different lower-level management positions as well as owning my own business.
What has life been like for your business during the COVID-19 pandemic?
A lot of the same. We are fortunate to be involved with the green industry. This has been an essential industry that has worked in most areas of the United States continuously throughout the pandemic. We have been busy the entire time. Our biggest issue has been our dealers limiting the salesmen from visiting and those same dealers running on skeleton crews. That, and the monotony of not going out and doing something different.
However, what we have found is that our management team has been ready to adjust, pivot, and completely change their sales and marketing strategies due to the limitations of in-person visits, lack of in-person tradeshows, and other face-to-face contacts that we would normally utilize. They have done an admirable job at making this year as profitable as possible.
What was unique/different about the commercial creation process that you didn't expect?
We have had videos created for us before, and the most frustrating thing has always been that a video production company only wanted to film the production. Past experiences have burdened the marketing department with creating the script and the overall feel of the video, and only relying on the crew to stage, film, and edit the shoot.
This time we utilized a full marketing company that specializes in video commercials. After asking a lot of questions, they formulated a script that we only had to give input on, they set up the location, talent, and all of the materials needed to create the videos. All we needed to do was bring the main product. In my opinion, this was a welcome change from before. The marketing company we used was not the cheapest choice. It cost more to do this than what we spent on internet ad spend for the last three years combined. But the video is of higher quality than we have had before because of the total production value, not just the overall prettiness of the video.
What should we be on the lookout for from MiniTrencher?
MiniTrencher is excited to showcase our new ALL electric georipper kit. This kit fits on the all-new Milwaukee MX314 battery-powered power cutter. Now you can trench in your crawlspace or basement and not have to worry about toxic fumes from the 2-stroke or 4-stroke engines. You can find these on our new website, which is easy to navigate and fun to visit with testimonials, videos, and more!
Almost every Friday on our Instagram and Facebook pages we do live demos! Come and chat with us about our machines and get your questions answered in real-time! Follow us at both and get the scoop on new innovations, fun contests, and the craziest entertainment at any trenching manufacturer site.