Sheepdog Response

How We Grew Top-Line Revenue by 64% YOY for Sheepdog Response

Prioritizing consistent, small, and profitable wins over time

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Full-service Growth


Shopify, Klaviyo, Meta

Project Timeline

2021 - Pres



Increased in ROI revenue

How We Grew Top-Line Revenue by 64% YOY for Sheepdog Response

Project Overview

Sheepdog Response (SDR) exists to protect and preserve life.

Founded by former UFC fighter, Green Beret, and entrepreneur Tim Kennedy, SDR provides elite in-person and virtual training for the everyday protector.

For us, it was an easy brand to stand behind.

After 4 months of YOY decline in 2021, we were called in to overhaul their e-commerce strategy, marketing, and operations. This is how things looked when we were reached out to.

About the Brand

We were excited to work Sheepdog Response because they had: 

  • A credible founder with a unique product (training events for the everday Protector) 
  • An audience that was loyal to the brand, both in the form of SDR's Instagram following, Tim Kennedy's Instagram following, and their email list
  • A product that we believed made the world better, the more that it was sold & engaged with

As a result, we jumped in with our audit around the 6 key areas that we provide value in: 

  • E-commerce Strategy
  • Email & SMS 
  • Paid Social Media
  • Search Engine Marketing
  • Web Development & CRO 
  • Creative & Social Media Content

There were a few other areas of opportunity that fell outside of our usual e-commerce growth areas, but were needed for the brand, and those included: 

  • Operational automations
  • Registration & sign up flow
  • Online virtual course platform development
  • Product development & merchandising

The Roadmap

SDR had scaled fast, and they needed the tech, marketing, and systems infrastructure to catch up with the growth of their product and audience, and that was what we were positioned to do. Our initial priorities consisted of the following: 

  • Conversion rate improvement through a website relaunch
  • Driving traffic through paid social media channels
  • Streamlining course registration & organization
  • Maximizing the value of current subscribers through email flows & campaigns
  • Social content that sought to convert followers to customers rather than just fans
  • Developing an online course platform for virtual courses
  • Developing a product strategy that allowed them to upsell course attendees the tactical gear and apparel they needed

The Execution

Conversion Rate Improvement Through a Website Relaunch

When you navigate to, they have a lot to offer. Live trainings, virtual trainings, and products and gear for everyday carry.

Each training contains a set of required gear, and some have specific pre-requisites and requirements as well.

Because of this complexity, SDR needed a site that was easy to navigate, easy to filter, and easy to find the required products for their courses.

We immediately set out to build this functionality, and we re-did their site in the first 15 days of working together. This had an immediate impact on conversion, and we saw a 47% YOY increase in conversion.

Driving Traffic Through Paid Social Media Channels

Up to this point, Sheepdog Response had spent very little on paid social media advertising, partly because of their close affiliation to the firearms industry and fear of suspension of their accounts. And while you have to be diligent, offering training is not in violation of Meta's policies, so we were able to create scalable campaigns that strategically targeted their customers at course locations across the country.

To date, our lifetime spend has produced a ROAS of 5+, profitably driving sales to various locations and campaigns around the country.

Streamlining Course Registration & Organization

Using Shopify as an event registration platform is not a native set up. You often end up with customers purchasing courses for friends and family members which creates a mess of data and registration processes on the backend.

This is the pain that SDR was dealing with.

As a result, we set up a variety of technical implementations that allowed for the following: 

  • Customers to correctly identify the attendee name
  • Customers to correctly identify the attendee email address
  • Trigger subsequent informational Klaviyo flows based on the attendee email address and not the customer
  • Set up course dashboard for backend logistics and training staff to accurately assess and report on course attendance and financials

This integration was set up through a combination of MESA, Zapier, and Shopify backend processes.

Maximizing the Value of Current Subscribers through Email Flows & Campaigns

The three core e-mail flows that any e-commerce business should have are: 

  1. Welcome Flows
  2. Abandoned Cart / Checkout Flows
  3. Post Purchase Flows

These three flows allow you to convert potential prospects, capture sales that are almost across the line, and re-engage customers with new product offerings and upsells.

SDR had not implemented these flows, so we set up multi-part flow sequences to engage customers that immediately increased conversion, retention, and reduced cart abandonment.

Social Content that Sought to Convert Followers to Customers Rather than Just Fans

Tim Kennedy & Sheepdog Response have a lot of fans... and righty so.

He's energizing, exciting to listen to, and has lots of valuable ideas to add to the world.

But as a result, we found that the SDR social following was getting plenty of content, but not enough information on how to become a customer. Course, product, and event launches were not easy to see or interact with. As a result, we quickly implemented a strategy to combine both educational contact and promotional content to maximimize the value of the SDR social following.

Developing an Online Course Platform for Virtual Courses

It's hard to always show up to training in person. SDR may not be in your city, or at the right time, so SDR has built out a great set of online courses. The challenge was delivering these to customers in a way that was easy-to-follow, had takeaway documents, and tracked your progress.

Prior to our involvement, the tech infrastructure for this was pieced together and hard to use.

We developed a brand new platform to improve this customer experience, created takeaway documents for all courses, and our media department produced, filmed, and edited the Vehicle DefenderProtector Fitness Courses.

Developing a Product Strategy that Allowed them to Upsell Course Attendees the Tactical gear and Apparel They Needed

When attending a Sheepdog Response course, it helps to be prepared. Each course comes with a packing list of a wide range of items that you may need for the weekend.

The challenge is that Sheepdog Response was recommending these products, without carrying most of them. As a result, we worked with them to develop a product strategy that allowed them to carry and recommend the correct products for their weekend training. This allowed them to increase AOV and conversion rate as people didn't have to navigate elsewhere to get the gear they needed. We partnered with them on both the sourcing and the manufacturing side of their business to get these products to market.

The Results

In our first year with Sheepdog Response, we turned around a brand that had been flat to down year over year, and drove 64% year over year top-line growth.

As with most brands, this wasn't immediate success. It wasn't up 100% MoM or YoY in our first 60 days... but we quickly laid the operational infrastructure and marketing automations in late 2021 to drive sales and profitable growth in 2022 for SDR.

From the Customer

And you don't just have to take our word for it... hear it from Justin Lakin, the COO of Sheepdog Response.

Red21 has been an amazing partner! Since working with them our company has experienced substantial growth in new customer traffic, conversion rate, and average order value- all 3 major drivers for our e-commerce store. We’ve been steadily growing over 6 years since the company was founded, but Red21 was the difference maker for our company to breakthrough to the next level and in reaching the new markets we were hoping for.


We've been successfully working with Sheepdog Response for over a year and a half now, and it's developed into a great long-term partnership. We've seen our strategic roadmap come to live and drive long-term, profitable, and healthy growth, all the while empowering people to protect and preserve human life.

We don't promise or guarantee quick fixes (and we think you should run from any agency that does)... but we do promise to apply our thoughtful and proven growth framework to your e-commerce business. If you're interested in discussing together, click the button below to get started.

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