LuRong Living CEO Signed by Miami Marlins

With hopes of winning the World Series, the Miami Marlins made a splash in baseball’s offseason by signing high-priced free agents Heath Bell, Jose Reyes and Mark Buehrle and bringing in controversial manager Ozzie Guillen to lead the charge.

But with the Marlins way out of the pennant race and the regular season coming to a close, Marlins general manager David Sampson is signing an ecommerce executive to a one-day contract.

Adam Greenberg, CEO and founder of nutritional supplement seller LuRong Living, will get in the batter’s box Tuesday, Oct. 2, when the Marlins take on the New York Mets and leading Cy Young Award candidate R.A. Dickey.

But Greenberg isn’t just the CEO of an ecommerce start-up. Greenberg has a unique story to tell about his Major League Baseball experience.

On July 9, 2005, Greenberg, then 24, got hit in the head by the first pitch he saw as a member of the Chicago Cubs. Greeneberg was put on the disabled list, went back to the minor leagues, but could not overcome post-concussion syndrome and vertigo.

It wound up being Greenberg’s one and only MLB plate appearance, and Greenberg became just the second player in MLB history to have one plate appearance and not take the field.

An online petition posted to by die-hard Chicago Cubs fan Matt Liston earlier this season to get the team to give Greenberg one at bat this season was signed by more than 20,000 people.

The Cubs decided not to give Greenberg the chance to return, but the Marlins had an opening on its 40-man roster, which meant the organization had nothing to lose by taking a chance on Greenberg on the last day of the season.

Greenberg hung the cleats up after he spent the 2011 season with the Bridgeport Bluefish of the Atlantic League, his fourth with the team. Greenberg, Bluefish teammate Danny Putnam started LuRong Living during the 2010 season, after the two started using the deer antler-based supplement.

With five partners involved with LuRong Living, Greenberg said a plan has been in place so that if Greenberg got a chance to return to the diamond, business could run without skipping a beat.

This isn’t Greenberg’s first attempt at business. During a phone interview earlier this month, the Guilford, CT native said he sold candy out of his backpack in 5th grade, sold “personal services” in middle school, and got involved with the stock market as a high school senior.

And during his playing career, Greenberg got involved with the real estate market and Internet-based ventures. Greenberg added he learned a lot of how-to and how-not-to from people who were and weren’t successful in business, and that it helped him with his launch of LuRong Living.

NEXT PAGE: Multichannel Merchant’s Q&A with Adam Greenberg…

Q&A with lurong living’s adam greenberg

Adam Greenberg, CEO and founder of nutritional supplement seller LuRong Living, will get in the batter’s box Tuesday, Oct. 2, when the Marlins take on the New York Mets and leading Cy Young Award candidate R.A. Dickey.
Earlier this month, Multichannel Merchant senior content manager Tim Parry caught up with Greenberg to talk about his business and the One At Bat campaign that made Greenberg’s return to the Major Leagues come true:

Multichannel Merchant: What channels are you selling through, other than your own ecommerce site?
Adam Greenberg: We are selling through affiliate sites, email marketing, doctors’ offices, physical therapists, dentist offices, and our biggest right now is the CrossFit Community. We are running a nationwide paleo challenge throughout CrossFit and currently have over 350 gyms registered

MCM: When is the peak time for your business? Is it New Years, when people make their resolutions, or is it year-around based on the training needs of athletes?
AG: The product is a year round injury preventative, joint health, muscle recovery. Since selling our first bottle in February 2011 we have seen a consistent growth in sales each month. The product has spoken for itself so our focus has been building this brand and educating. Since the summer is winding down and running this challenge, we have seen a tremendous boost in sales. The most important piece for us as a brand and company is retention.

MCM: If you had a “wish list” of tools to help you sell in 2013, what would it be?
AG: If I had a wish list it would be continue with all things social getting our brand out there. I think we’re doing well with social media because we have a couple of people who man the page. They have passion for the product and they believe in it. They answer questions from the community as they are asked, so it makes their journey to wellness personal both with engagement and touch.

MCM: How did you hear about the One At Bat campaign? Do you know the person who set this up, or is this a Cubs fan who wants to see you get that chance?
AG: (Petition-starter) Matt Liston called me out of the blue before spring training this season. He mentioned he was a lifelong Cubs and baseball fan and was looking to do this campaign. I gave him my blessing as long as he represented me in a positive way, which obviously he has more than done. Matt is a unbelievable guy and tremendously passionate about this cause and it has more than energized me to get back on the field and keep the dream alive.

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