This content is the sixth installment of an interview series with the 2020 Target Incubator cohort. Participating companies are sharing, in their own words, details on what inspired the creation of their companies and how they are all working to change the world for the better. All interviews have been conducted by the Target Incubator (TI) Program Management team.
Meet Good Good Good.
Branden Harvey, Founder and CEO & Megan Burns, Community and Communications Lead
TI: When meeting someone new, how do you explain what Good Good Good does?
GGG: Good Good Good is a media company focused on the good in the world. The stories we share are designed to help you feel less overwhelmed and better equipped to make a meaningful difference. Most uniquely, one of the ways we do this is through our national print newspaper, the Goodnewspaper.
TI: What inspired you to start Good Good Good?
GGG: Our founder, Branden Harvey, spent years traveling the world as a humanitarian photographer, helping nonprofits and mission-driven businesses tell stories of how they were working to create solutions to the world’s greatest problems. In the airport he’d watch the news on the TVs and see them reporting on the communities he had just been in. They were accurately depicting the heartbreaking bad news of the conflict, disease, poverty, or crisis the community was experiencing — but they always cut to a new story before the story of the solutions could be told.
Branden was reminded of the quote from Mister Rogers where he said: When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
Everywhere he traveled, he always found the helpers. No matter how difficult a situation he found himself, there were always people on the ground making a difference.
He thought those stories deserved to be told. So we could elevate and celebrate and support those helpers — and also so we can know and be encouraged by the good news that there are always helpers. And lastly, we knew that would be an on-ramp to encouraging more people to get involved and make a difference.
TI: What impact do you hope Good Good Good has on the world?
GGG: We hope to inspire a generation of change-makers that both noticing and building a better world is possible. By sharing the stories of real people taking on real, difficult, nuanced issues in the world, we hope that our customers and readers will be filled with hope, inspired to see the “thing” that needs changing in their world, and take the next best step to make it better. We imagine the impact of this multiplying all over the world — and can see a very different, better world than the one we currently live in because of it.
TI: How did you learn about Target Incubator and what encouraged you to pursue the opportunity?
GGG: In admiration of Target’s purpose-driven marketing efforts, Branden has been following Michael Abata, Senior Marketing Manager at Target, on LinkedIn for years. Michael works in purpose-driven marketing — and at one point shared about the program. We wanted to pursue the opportunity because we were encouraged by the laser-focus on “businesses that impact people and the planet”. Our mission affects both of those areas, so we thought it could be an incredible fit and a great opportunity to learn.
TI: What makes you most excited about working with Target Incubator?
GGG: We’ve been so close to the Good Good Good brand and mission from the start, and while we’re constantly looking ahead and developing the company, we’re excited to have the opportunity to share it with the experienced eyes, brains, and hands of people at Target. From our fellow cohort members, to our company’s sponsor, we’re so looking forward to getting wisdom from these fresh perspectives.
TI: As a founder, how are you functioning today that is different from how you were functioning 6 months ago? What keeps you motivated?
GGG: Aside from working from our home offices more than we did 6 months ago, we’ve made sure to prioritize serving our customers with the stories and hope they need and want right now. It caused a shift in priorities in both the larger projects and day-to-day operations we’re focused on.
What keeps us motivated is, on a daily basis, seeing how deeply Good Good Good’s products are resonating with and impacting people all over the world — as they’re seeking out good to celebrate and opportunities to make a difference.
TI: What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who are navigating the impact of COVID-19 to their business?
GGG: After making sure your team is taken care of, keep putting your customers first. Listen to what they’re saying and what they need, and find the way that your company or product can solve that need for them.
For us, we saw people were desperate for good news and hope amidst really challenging, confusing, divisive times. We felt it ourselves, and heard it in our comments, customer service emails, and DMs. We were able to meet that need with stories of hope reminding people there was still good going on in the world, and with ways to become hope in their world. We took it a step further and made our primary product, the Goodnewspaper, much more accessible to those in-need of good news by making the first month free — and partnering with hospitals and nonprofits to get good news where it’s most needed.