#29: Mixing Love and Business with Marisa Tassone

Hosted by Josh Gonsalves
1 HR 38 MIN
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December 21, 2020
1 HR 38 MIN

#29: Mixing Love and Business with Marisa Tassone

Josh is joined by his partner in life and business, Marisa Tassone, to talk about their businesses Contraverse and Longboi, and how they make their romantic-business partnership work.

Episode Description

Josh is joined by his partner in life and business, Marisa Tassone, to talk about their businesses Contraverse and Longboi, and how they make their romantic-business partnership work.

About Marisa Tassone:

Marisa Tassone is the Co-founder of virtual reality start-up Contraverse and Longboi, a dachshund-inspired apparel company. She is a graduate of Ryerson University's Masters of Digital Media and Media Production programs.

Connect with Marisa:



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  • Marisa and Josh launched a virtual reality SaaS product called Expo.
  • Marisa tells her funniest story working at VR film festivals.
  • Marisa and Josh have put thousands of people in virtual reality headsets at events, festivals and conferences.
  • In 2019 the Budweiser Stage in Toronto had a season pass where you could see every concert during the summer for one price.
  • Marisa and Josh were among the first people to use a Cleanbox to sanitize VR headsets at events and in the office.
  • Josh and Marisa took a step back from their VR company Contraverse this year.
  • Marisa and Josh got their dog Tino two weeks before the first day COVID-19 lockdown.
  • When they first got Tino he had two parasites: Coccidia and Giardia.
  • Tino helped Marisa with her anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Marisa created an Instagram for Tino (@tino_theteenyweenie) to journal his growth, and she eventually found a community of other dachshund owners where she could ask questions about Tino and meet friends around their mutual love for wiener dogs.
  • Long hair dachshunds don't shed nearly as much as short hair ones. They're essentially hypoallergenic. Both Josh and Marisa are allergic to fur, but Tino doesn't bother them at all.
  • Josh and Marisa started their apparel company Longboi because of their shared love and obsession with the breed and noticing that everyone who saw Tino out on walks had a big smile on their face when they saw him, and they wanted to share that feeling with the world through the brand.
  • Josh came up with the name "Longboi" after seeing Tino slide down his ramp with his body stretched out, and Josh would call him a Longboi.
  • Josh and Marisa were inspired by Roots for the Longboi brand.
  • YouTuber David Dobrik did a photoshoot wearing matching clothes with Honeydew the Dachshund on TikTok. Watch it here.
  • Marisa wants to create a viral trend with Longboi, similar to other apparel trends like TNA, LuLuLemon, Livestrong bracelets, or Uggs.
  • Marisa loves the Longboi brand so much that she has placed the most orders on the store out of anyone so far. She wears Longboi shirts, sweaters and hoodies every day.
  • Clothing is an extension of peoples' identity.
  • Longboi was launched on Shopify using Printful to test out their first products.
  • Print-on-demand is a great model to test new products before investing in mass production.
  • Marisa started sewing just over a year ago and quickly learned how to design and sew clothing for both herself and for Josh.
  • Josh and Marisa grew the Longboi email list by over 2,500% in 10 days by running a viral givaway campaign using an app called Viralsweep.
  • Omaze is a company that runs viral campaigns to raise money for charities.
  • Marisa grew Longboi's Instagram following by implementing Gary Vee's "$1.80" strategy. She used the app Dollar Eighty to make the product easier.
  • Josh and Marisa learned a lot about romantic + work relationship strategies from Tom and Lisa Bilyeu's podcast Relationship Theory.
  • Marisa used to do daily vlogging on her YouTube channel.

Thanks for coming this far! if you're reading this, it is no accident. The universe brought you to this corner of the internet for a reason, and you're on the right track. I already know that you're an amazing person and I can't wait to connect with you!

— Josh

Episode Transcript

Josh Gonsalves
Mind Meld Podcast Host

Hi, I'm Josh Gonsalves, the host and producer of Mind Meld. I'm also a Canadian Academy Award-nominated director and Co-founder of Contraverse, an immersive media company. I'm a multi-media experience designer living and working in Toronto, operating at the intersection of design and exponential technologies to develop solutions that change the world for the better.

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