Interview with Katie Hunt, Founder of Proof to Product (ep 129)

inventory scaling the inventory genius podcast May 15, 2023

Katie Hunt is an ecommerce guru and the founder of Proof to Product, a coaching program designed to streamline product sales and scale profit. I'm talking to Katie about her background, her work with clients and her advice to product-based business owners who are looking to grow.

Katie started a small stationery company and quickly decided she wanted to move to a wholesale model. She jumped into the wholesale world fast and as she explains, pretty blindly. She soon realized she had many artistic colleagues and that those colleagues struggled with the numbers behind their businesses. in 2011, she started Proof to Product and began helping business owners understand their finances.

Proof to Product helps creative business owners get their products on shelf stores. Katie loves helping business owners succeed.

Katie teaches a four-part framework when selling wholesale:

1. Focus on the product. Is it priced right? Does it have the right proper margins? Can it be produced in high quantities and still meet industry standards? Can inventory be kept? If it's not a strong collection, nothing else matters. The product has to be solid.

2. Know and understand sales tools. Retail and wholesale are completely different models. Wholesale is selling business to business. Buyers' mindsets are based on business decisions. You need a catalog, you need terms and conditions, you need to make it easy for businesses to buy from you. You need tools to help facilitate the sale.

3. Marketing. The outreach process for wholesale includes a lot of cold-pitching and trade shows - it looks very different from the retail sales world. It's essential to know your target audience.

4. Tradeshows. Decide whether in-person or virtual tradeshows work best for your business. Figure out how to build a booth that works for your brand and budget.

When it comes to avoiding wholesale burnout, creating strong terms and conditions is key. These are the boundaries and guardrails that support your business. In wholesale terms and conditions, it's essential to be firm in writing and flexible in practice.

Wholesalers should always remember that their product won't ever be for everyone. Knowing this will ensure you don't disrupt your whole process in order to please one potential buyer.


Here's a glance at the episode:

[2:54] Katie shares her story.

[8:25] Katie explain why people might not succeed when moving to a wholesale model.

[14:55] How can we avoid wholesale burnout?

Click here to listen to the episode.

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Connect with Katie:

Website -
Proof to Product Resource Library -
Is Wholesale Right for You Private Podcast -
Paper Camp -


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Weekly bite-sized advice from Ciara Stockeland.