Better Late Than Not Man Crate! Have Fun Gift-Giving and Participating in the Supply Chain.

Forrester Hinds    October 27, 2015

Organisation name: Man Crates.


Industry: Curated and themed masculine gift boxes.

Brag-worthy Gifts for Guys, Crowbar Included.

With only the $1000 he was allowed by his wife, Jonathan Beekman created the business that is today known as Man Crates. Man Crates offers customers the ability to purchase and ship themed gifts contained in unique and memorable packaging; and contents that won’t disappoint. Being directed at men, the crates all follow a theme of what being a man is about:

Exotic Meats

Drinking Glasses

Retro Gaming

Or Protection from Zombies.

Getting into the crate is considered one of the most memorable parts of the gift receiving experience. Requiring a crowbar to break the seal, Man Crates supply you with the tool needed for access to the goodies. “…I just broke a knife!” “…Hold on I need a hammer…” Exclamations such as these can be heard in this Man Crate unboxing video, and by others who receive the gift.


Man crates started out without any inventory or a means of selling their product. Jonathan Beekman set the website up to accept orders which would immediately be refunded, the purchaser sent a coupon, and questions about what drew the customer to make a purchase. Coupling this tactic with calling and apologizing to the buyer, Jonathan was able to gauge why and what caused interest in his products and adapt them if needed. Jonathan knew he was onto something when he found that the would-be buyers were more than willing to talk about his products. He found himself engaging in more than a few 30-45 minute conversations.

After the initial success and growth of Man Crates, they implemented their Man Crates Brain Trust Facebook group. This invite-only group allows past customers to provide input on their purchases, future crates and suggest new products.

The same type of treatment can be seen on their Twitter account, where they have suggestions, customer relations, and complaints all handled before they get out of hand.

Man Crates CEO Jonathan Beekman considers the ability of consumers to contact and suggest products paramount, even going so far as to call them co-creators, a policy that has served him well. He attributes the failure of his past ventures to not focusing enough on customers and not having enough communication channels.

Through Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook Man Crates has a very active Social Media Presence. Contacting the company is only a matter of mentioning them in a post, be you a company looking to supply them with product or a customer with some comments.

Lessons for others: Man Crates success is attributed to their firm belief in customer service and providing a unique product that creates a memorable gift receiving experience. By allowing consumers to play a role in the development of the product, Man Crates has created an aspect of their supply chain that includes customer input where it is typically not found. The use of Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter has allowed Man Crates to showcase, receive, and pitch new ideas for products. As Man Crate’s CEO Jonathan Beekman says, “What we’re trying to do at Man Crates is channel some of that gifting magic that I saw as a kid.” Do your remember the last gift you were given?

Author: Forrester Hinds, Social Media for Business Performance Student, University of Waterloo – To contact the author please direct any questions or comments to:

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site, please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Programme Director, Social Media for Business Performance.

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