Talking bourbon and entrepreneurship with radio host ‘Southside’ Steve Rickman

"Southside" Steve Rickman joins The Roadmap to talk about the Legends bourbon distillery and share his insight into the alcohol business

While Kentucky is regarded as the world’s best place for bourbon, the South has earned a similar reputation through its residents’ expertise in the areas of whiskey and distilling. But behind every local scotch, rye and bourbon is a passionate entrepreneur who first envisioned then executed a business strategy.

On this episode of The Roadmap, Steve Rickman, aka Southside Steve, joins host Ted Jenkins to discuss the Legends distillery and its Yeah C’mon bourbon, a low-cost, premium-quality whiskey. Rickman is a radio talk show host and Atlanta native who has spent his career speaking his mind on the Georgia airwaves and launching successful enterprises across the South. Currently, he hosts an independent music and talk show on Fox FM.

Key Takeaways

1. Rickman realized that his industry (radio) was changing due to technological and societal shifts, so he began expanding into entrepreneurship, specifically local alcohol distilling.

2. Rickman’s bourbon, titled Yeah C’mon, was designed to be cost-efficient without sacrificing quality, smoothness or taste.

3. Rickman scaled his business by conducting in-person demonstrations on how to sell his bourbon. This ensured that his branding and messaging stayed consistent wherever the product was sold.

4. Rickman also relied on tastings to sell Yeah C’mon to customers, which allowed him to tell participants about the brand and its story.

5. Rickman notes that advertising is crucial for small and local businesses to expand their audiences. Entrepreneurs have many ways of putting their branding before customers and should search for out-of-the-box marketing tactics to catch the eye of consumers.

"I have always been a great endorser, everybody has something they do best. First of all I have to believe in you." — Steve Rickman