Be The Riton Revolution.
Brady Speth 0:08
Everybody, welcome back to the Riton podcast. With respect to your Riton Optics. Today we have a special guest in studio here in Tucson, Arizona at the Riton HQ. Dan Haban. He is the owner of Brand Makers going by branded dad, we were kind of talking and laughing a little bit about titles and different things that we go by and what’s important in our life and I like to give every guests an opportunity to how would you like to be introduced and he thought about it actually for a little while, which is cool. So welcome to the show. We’ll dig into the the brand part in the dad part. So both are obviously huge in your life from us kind of BS and a little bit. So welcome. Kind of old stomping grounds. It sounds like back here in Tucson.
Dan Haban 0:52
Yeah, I love Tucson, grew up in in Sierra Vista, right next to Fort Huachuca and moved here when I was almost eight years old, but came up here to Tucson to play a lot of sports, graduated in Sierra Vista. So from all the way from eight years old until I graduated. And ever since then, I’ve been out of state
Brady Speth 1:12
nice. The so we were kind of talking a little bit, and you shocked me when you said where you were actually born. So let’s dig into that because you literally are the first person I’ve ever met from this island. So where were you born? And kind of tell that backstory a little bit?
Dan Haban 1:26
Yeah, so my, my dad on the youngest of three boys. And so my older brothers, they were able to travel a lot more than me, just because I was there early stages of my dad being working with them working with the military. Okay. So I have a brother that was born in Hawaii, I have another brother was born in California, they’re able to travel a lot. And my parents moved from California to Japan where my dad was stationed for a few years. And then I was born there. And then my dad had to do multiple trainings and some of his trainings was just going back home to Hawaii. Okay. But yeah, my mom and dad, they both grew up on Lanai, small, small island in Hawaii. There’s, there’s a one stop sign. And I think now there’s two grocery stores. I spent a while back there, but a little over 3000 people, right, so that’s why
Brady Speth 2:20
Yeah, that’s why that’s why I’m like, Oh shit, like, a decent amount of people that are you know, either lived in islands or grew up there and like to have somebody actually like on Lanai, That’s super rare, just based on the size and then yeah, you know, a lot of natives that don’t leave. I mean, that’s a big part of the night too. So it’s kind of that homegrown and you kind of stay so. Yeah, that’s pretty cool. So what’s it like so eight, you’re there to eat then right? So what’s it like kind of being that kid run around in the Hawaiian Islands?
Dan Haban 2:48
Oh, it’s uh i mean, back then. You’re so young. I don’t remember too much about it. But it’s just my brothers. My brothers and I just running around barefoot going to the beach. That’s all I remember. Yeah. I don’t remember anything about you know, growing up inside of a home. Being in Japan was that was that was super interesting. I think just being able to we lived on on the base for for a little while. Then we lived off base and so we’re living surrounded by a whole bunch of Japanese families. didn’t speak a lick of English. So for us being young if you just learn those those easy phrases in Japanese and communicate with Mama-san, Papa-san, the mom dad Yeah, the older generation Japanese and but we would play play a lot of soccer, a lot of baseball and those those kids are good. Yeah. They’re they’re super disciplined. And but it was fun because we were just young, having fun, and then moved to the mainland and realized that I got a I got a some stronger competition. Right. So we picked it up and my brothers and I were super competitive. And it was it was fun to be on the mainland and kind of see what it’s like over here and grow grow up in Arizona. Yeah. Learn hunting, learn fishing, learning the whole outdoor life growing up and doing some farm work and being right next to a military you kind of learn that mindset, that military mindset and learn from veterans and it’s I couldn’t ask for a better upbringing. Yeah, marathon. Yeah,
Brady Speth 4:18
the I can’t imagine the difference between going from Lanai to Sierra Vista. You can’t take two different places.
Dan Haban 4:25
I think the funny story about my coming from my mom was my dad was taking my mom down to Sierra Vista movie Pass, pass a Huachuca city, you know, very, very small, small town out there. And I think my mom said that she was crying is like what the hell did I get? Yeah, she asked my dad. I really hope our house is a double wide. And because that’s all that’s in there and what you can city and then we ended up passing forward Touka and then growing up in that larger Sierra Vista town. That’s hilarious. Awesome, but it’s not a small town anymore. It’s
Brady Speth 4:57
Yeah, thank you for that. Yeah, that’s a shock to the system. So your parents are still in Sierra Vista then? Yeah,
Dan Haban 5:03
Brady Speth 5:04
So yeah, you get to come down a little bit and see family here in Arizona. So now I love the southern Arizona tie. So um, talk about growing up then hunting and fishing, we were kind of talking about kind of coues deer and you know, taking now get a chance to maybe take your kids fishing and hunting down here. And
Dan Haban 5:20
that’s, that’s my life. I base almost every principle that I live by based on the the outdoors, hunting, fishing, and shooting. Shooting has been one of the times where I learned the most from either from my father, my brother, or other people who just took us out shooting. But hunting is that’s that’s heaven for me just being out there. Even if you don’t harvest something. Growing up I had really close buddies that we would if we didn’t have to go to practice, we rush home, grab our bows, grab our guns and go go up to the mountains. Yeah, go scouting. I mean, Saturday mornings, you never got to we never slept in. Right, which is a lot of what you mean. I don’t know. Right now. I feel like Saturdays are the times where people just want to not do anything, right? Yeah. Uh, growing up it was. Hey, what time are we leaving to go coyote?
Brady Speth 6:17
It was your free time. Yeah.
Dan Haban 6:18
What time are we gonna go fishing? What time we’re gonna go dove hunting. And that that’s all we did. And now that I’m an adult and a father, I can’t wait to get to the point to where I’m just saying, hey, you want to go hunting tomorrow? Yeah, yeah, fishing tomorrow. My kids are like, Yeah, let’s do it.
I yeah, that’s, that’s what I look for.
Brady Speth 6:36
Yeah. You know, what’s cool is that some of you touched on, and I think people outside of even a lot of people within, like the hunting world, and then everybody outside the hunting world doesn’t quite understand. Is this what you just said. And I say it a lot of times I grew up in Montana, I hunted since I was five, six years old. You know, like, I was shooting, I was hunting. We live on a Black Angus cattle ranch, like I have access to the outdoors. That’s what we did. He didn’t hang out inside. I don’t know if our TV worked to be honest with you, because that was what we did. And, and we did not like we got cable anyways, even if it didn’t work like rabbit ears or that whole thing. But I think something you touched on that’s important. And to me, it’s huge now is like hunting is my escape running RIton and the day to day of this and being a parent and baseball practices and soccer and football and all this stuff that just pulls us 1000 different directions. Honestly, I love getting an animal. Right. Right. But the other side of that is and I think people forget is it for me. It’s just getting out. And that’s something you kind of touched on and running a company now and kids and that precious time of being able just to get outside and I’ll just sit there and glass and I just love every minute of it fall asleep probably half the time in the sun just sitting there hanging out trying to glass. Right, no matter naps than glassing naps. But no, I think that’s important for people to understand. Because I think a lot of people within looking from the outside and think it’s you know, bloodthirsty, and all those guys are hunters, they’re just out there killing anything they see, like, you know, when he was like passed on, compared to how many I’ve actually shot, you know. So I think that’s a big important thing. And I love that that’s a side of it, I think it it takes a little time to get from wanting to go hunting everyday with your buddies to then maturing to a level of like, I just kind of want to go out and now you get to that phase of, I want to take my kids like I have more fun. And one of the guys that works for us. He got his first deer ever I was with him. And I was like, wow, I was more excited for him than I ever was shooting a deer. I was like this is awesome. So to be able to pass that on to employees or friends or, or even now kids is that’s amazing. So I’m glad to kind of touched on that point.
Dan Haban 8:34
Yeah, one of the in, including in that is the the whole health aspect of it.
Brady Speth 8:38
Dan Haban 8:39
I like to work out as I’m growing up as an athlete is something that I’ve always enjoyed doing something physical. My wife likes to workout we like to be active. And there’s a point in our early marriage where we we weren’t healthy. And when I went out hunting, I couldn’t I couldn’t go anywhere as good. Yeah, I’d go a mile and I’m done. I’m like, I’m just gonna sit here. And then realize I’m not even close to the animals I need. I need to get in better shape. In addition to that, as I strive to get more in shape, to be a better outdoorsman. Because of that it’s made me in better shape. Just straight up, be. Be able to keep up with my kids. Yeah. So yeah,
Brady Speth 9:20
that’s a never stop of having what three kids under would you say your oldest was four
Dan Haban 9:26
Brady Speth 9:27
three kids under four homes.
Dan Haban 9:28
So at one point we had 3 under 3.
Brady Speth 9:32
Yeah, that some energy levels
Dan Haban 9:36
Coming out of my mouth It sounds it sounds crazy.
Brady Speth 9:39
Like what the hell are we thinking? That’s awesome. So let’s talk about hunting a little bit. And then and then I kind of want to dive into the professional side but so you live in Utah now. Right? What what do you hunt up there and do you get a chance to get out? Is it is it still the same as it was? Do you still have that kind of passion for it up there?
Dan Haban 9:57
Yes, yes and no. It’s definitely harder, just because it’s saturated by I mean, there’s so many great outdoorsman in Utah. Yeah. Being able to hunt on public land, you really have to be able to be in that shape to just hike as far as you can and be away from the crowd. So I haven’t most of my hunting has been with other other people with tags. And so we I mean, we we’ve done some coyote hunting out there we’ve done some waterfowl, some some duck and up there you have grouse and chuckers. So this is kind of kind of a weird way to hunt. Yeah, because you’re hiking up mountains to hunt birds. For us here in Arizona, you’re kind of on flat land in the desert wash in the desert. Yeah. So in in Utah, you’re you’re walking straight up and then to get to go after chuckers. But it’s, it’s beautiful. Wherever you go. Doesn’t matter the season, you really have to enjoy weather. It’s hot in the summer. And you have mule deer archery hunts. And that’s kind of going into the fall, right. And then you get into the actual late season, and it’s starting to get really cold. And then you get into the winter and the mountains covered in snow. So you’re freezing your butt. Right. So you have the hunting season is is full of so many different seasons. So you really got to train yourself on how to hunt. And whatever terrain or whatever conditions it is. So it’s tough. But I mean, anywhere you go in Utah, the outdoors, it’s just going to be everywhere. One of my favorite things to do Provo, Provo River. It’s a wonderful place to go fly fishing. During January, February is when we go ice fishing. And that was new to me. And the first time I went out my my buddies had me haul the the sled. Oh, no, it’s super easy.
Brady Speth 11:52
Dan Haban 11:52
You’re on. You’re on slippery ice. Oh, yeah, right. Um, I’m pulling. I’m pulling probably around 50 pounds on a foot and a half of snow. Yeah, I just know that so hard. But when you get out there, people think it’s super cold. But when you have three guys in the small, five by seven tent, it’s actually quite warm. We’re on T shirts. And catching some some big trout out of Strawberries a big fish Lake there. Yeah, there’s, it’s man. It’s great. So would you? It’s definitely definitely different from Arizona. Yeah, but either way, you’re you’re outside. You’re just loving it.
Brady Speth 12:27
The I’ve had a lot of chances to have family that live in the Provo area. And Jeremiah, our director product development is in what Spanish for mableton area. So I get a chance to get up there and hunt a lot. Man, this is 20 years ago, behind Lake Utah. Yeah, there now it’s like houses. There’s like development out there. We used to go out there and shoot rabbits and coyotes by like the hundreds. Like it was just nothing but open desert. Yeah. And I think the last time I drove through, I look over and I was like, Oh, just houses like everywhere we used to go hunting. It’s crazy how it’s grown in that valley in that whole area. But yeah, I love I love hunting up there with that diversity. That’s something that we take for granted here too, in Arizona, where you hear we get the different weather changes, but we also get the different, like geographic changes just from south to north, if you want to mountains go drive four hours to Flagstaff, and you’re in, you know, 7000-8000 foot elevation and big elk. And you know, so we’re lucky we kind of get that. Although I haven’t been drawn for elk in the last like four years. So Oh, man, we’ll see how that goes. The draws out again, I think in the next week or so. So wherever your cross.
Dan Haban 13:36
I was going to plug in something that last year, you know, COVID kind of took everything. For some people, but we, my dad and my brother got drawn for a cow elk tag in Payson, Arizona here. And I told my wife was turned into a full blown it’s my mom’s birthday, its there my parents anniversary, let’s all go and turn into a huge big huge deal. Nice. And sure enough opening day my dad gets his like an hour and a half into and then the next day was our anniversary. We didn’t do anything we just celebrated. The next day probably an hour and a half right after daylight my brother sheet says oh geez, animals cool is that we had our entire family they’re all our kids are there. Yeah. And it was one of the one of the one of the most special moments in my life to have my kids play around with, you know, our harvests and seeing up close what we do, right. More importantly, my mom was actually there because usually it’s her. She doesn’t come with us. Okay, and it’s your birthday. Yeah. So we were able to drive back and we picked her up on the truck and we all got there and we we hiked maybe half a mile to to my dad’s kill, man it was it was cool like
Brady Speth 14:49
three generations Yeah. That’s that’s about
Dan Haban 14:52
my son’s like rolling rolling around on the fur. Yeah, like playing with the the meat and stuff. And might even my daughter they she wasn’t scared because we look at hunting stuff all the time. Yeah. And she was this is love that like we’re gonna go next year we’re gonna shoot an elk Yeah, let’s do it.
Brady Speth 15:09
That’s cool. That’s perfect man I love getting kind of introducing that to the next generation. And that’s it’s really kind of cool that make that a family type event and be able to do that because that’s pretty rare to be able to have that opportunity. So well, let’s talk a little bit about kind of your professional side of things. So Brand Makers 2008. Correct. Yeah, when you founded it, it kind of talked me through the thought process by that, how’d you even get into the kind of the marketing side of the brand side of things?
Dan Haban 15:41
So it was founded in 2008. I joined about almost six years ago, okay. joined a group of guys that so I went to school for business. And I studied specifically branding, looked around, try to see what other companies that were, what they were doing in regards to branding, and went out of state to win the state and got in touch with with Brand Makers spoke to them trying to see what do you guys do. And I really enjoyed. number one, the culture they had there. And number one, what they’re just the concept of branding, what they’re trying to do, joined the team. And it’s been a dream come true. Ever since then we’ve grown 30 to 40%, every single year since then. We were just ranked I mean, ever since I’ve been there, we’ve been ranked in the top 25 fastest growing companies in Utah. And then last year, we were surprised when we receive when we saw in instead of Public Marketing. It’s like one of the top kind of online magazines for our industry. And we were ranked in the top 50 as one of the best companies in the industry. What the heck’s going on? That’s It’s awesome. It really comes down to we’re a small company, we don’t have a lot of personnel, but we we work with so many awesome brands, yeah, we help them grow. And because of that, I mean, we we’ve been able to turn those profits in those revenues year after year and grow and grow, grow. And it’s for me, it’s, it’s just being able to work with individuals that have a passion for their brand, right? And it’s figuring out, hey, what can we do to expand that brand? And then we just put together a game plan and go from there. It’s a blast.
Brady Speth 17:25
Nice. So that’s interesting. Yeah, I was trying to figure out like the progression of kind of looking at how well you guys have done, we kind of get that kind of question a lot too. And the you hit the nail on the head, that passion of like, you have to love what you do. I’ve had I was military, I was law enforcement, I had some some shitty jobs growing, you know, growing up, scrapping cow shit and on a ranch and like changing irrigation pipe, and like, I’ve had some horrible jobs, and I’ve had some really good jobs and, and so it’s nice to be able to take that and kind of kind of infuse it into the culture of a company and have that passion. You find the right people that love doing what they do. You can do amazing things with a small group. And then a lot of who you partner with, I mean, that’s been really big for us to our growth is our partners and who we align ourselves with. So talk about kind of the ups and downs, a little bit of that everybody sees from the outside of growing company. Right, right. Oh, that’s awesome. You guys are doing. I know what that’s like sitting on the inside of that. talk through that a little bit about the kind of the ups and downs and the the troubles of, you know, growing that company like that? Yeah. Well,
Dan Haban 18:30
I mean, you look at last year, a lot of companies had to make adjustments, right? Things go up, things go down, you just have to adapt, and you have to change. And you got to keep trying, you got to figure out okay, that worked a little bit. Let’s see, let’s try it again. Let’s see how we can expand, expand on it. One thing that a lot of people when I speak with brands, I always the first thing I asked him was like, what what is your brand? I don’t you introduce me as the branded dad. And the reason why I like branding and personal branding, because we work with business branding, personal branding, social branding, it really comes down to because you have branding, advertising and marketing, right? branding is what do people think, when they think of you, right? And then you have marketing that’s basically telling people why they should buy and advertising is informing them why they should buy. So when it comes to branding, I like that because it it kind of encompasses everything, everything that you do. So when people think of me, the branded dad, Dan Haban, what is it that I want them to think when they hear my name, right? And so when I bring that up, they a lot of times they have to go back to the drawing board, which is a good thing because in reality, they never really understood their brand, right? So when they go back and they say okay, when when they think of my company, I want them to think of quality quality products, the best service or you talk about personal brand. I want people to know that I’m willing to drop everything and help you or I want them to know that I love them 100%. And you’ll see all this, you’re able to bring in all this passion. So like for me, same thing as, as the branded dad. I’m starting to love that a little bit more.
Brady Speth 20:08
Dan Haban 20:10
So thanks for asking
Brady Speth 20:13
for that one. That’s a good one.
Dan Haban 20:15
I want people think, yeah, Dan was the guy that really helped me grow my brand. But he was also willing to take me a hunting, fishing, shooting he he’s the one that showed me how much how much fun it is to get out and once in a while in the outdoors and not stay at home or in the office.
Brady Speth 20:30
Dan Haban 20:31
I want I want them to know that he loved his children, he empowered me as a dad to be a better husband and a father to my kids. Yeah, that’s, that’s what I want my brand to be.
Brady Speth 20:41
Dan Haban 20:42
And so when it comes to the up and downs of a growing business like that, it’s going to someone that has so many demands for me and my company, but then asking them, Okay, tell me about your brand. And then you have to start over. Right? So it’s kind of like, yeah, it’d be nice to just take an order and say, Hey, we want we want 1000 shirts. Okay, let’s, let’s talk about that. Let’s How do you want to? How do you want to present it? What kind of shirts do you want? And then they’ll tell me, and then I’ll ask him, Okay, tell me about your brand. And then I’ll say, okay, does this represent that brand? Because it doesn’t match up? Right? And they’re like, Oh, well,
Brady Speth 21:24
that is not matching what you want to put out
Dan Haban 21:26
Yeah, yeah. So it’s, it’s tough because we, I don’t want to, when it comes to our service, I don’t want to give, I want to be able to elevate brands. And if a company wants crappy, I’m willing to give them if they really want it, then sure. Yeah. If you’re gonna force me to give you crappy service and crappy products, and I’ll give it to you, but
Brady Speth 21:53
but just know what the end results could be.
Dan Haban 21:54
Yeah, yeah. If this is what you, if this is what you want, then let’s talk about it. It’s really build, build your brand. So when it comes to the ups and downs, it’s more going through that process of going to a company and say, let’s, let’s look at your brain a little bit more. Yeah. So
Brady Speth 22:15
something that is kind of that triggered for me is we always talk about like, so we we sell riflescopes, right? That’s the end product, right? Of the entire sale cycle is yes, we get somebody to purchase a riflescope, right. But we’re not actually selling riflescopes, we’re selling us we’re selling, what is that we stand for the type of people we are the type of image we want to put out. What are we expecting. You know, what image is our customer taking on by being a part of our brand? So there’s a lot more stuff than like, he kind of said, People come to you in like, hey, I want a shirt. Okay. But you know, I think a lot of people don’t understand. And I talked to a lot of other kind of conversations like this and other small businesses that are coming along. And he kind of, I don’t think a lot of people quite quite grasp the fact that it’s not just a product, anybody can walk up and just sell you this. That’s great, right? If it’s a good product, but at the end of the day, how do you get them to come back? How do you get into tell their friends about it? How do you get what do you want to represent? And I think that’s a big key that a lot of people miss on the marketing and on that kind of brand side of the world is, what is it that you’re actually selling, they’re buying the scope, especially in the beginning, when I first started the company, they were buying it because of me, they didn’t really give a shit, there’s a lot of people like, I don’t need to look through it. Like I trust you, your you know, oh, and and that’s a huge one, if you can get that kind of the brand side of it is like the product doesn’t necessarily matter. If you can build a kick ass product on top of that, then that’s even better. And that’s what we try to do. But ultimately, you’re selling yourself. Yeah. When we look at like trade shows and stuff like that, we kind of do that, our products at the back normally, because I want you to come in and talk to me, I don’t want if I walk up to any type of booth at a trade show, and somebody hands me a product, the very first thing they do, you take a look at this, I’m already out. I don’t care about your product, we’ll get to that. But I care about you. I want you to kind of sit here and bullshit with us. We we serve coffee, we serve beer, we serve whatever, like come hang out with us. And at the end of this, you’ll want to do business because yeah, we have a kick ass product. But we’ll get to that. Yeah, it’s our brand that you’re going to like first. And so that’s a big one that really resonated with me when you’re kind of talking about that, because that’s everything we’ve done. Yeah, you know,
Dan Haban 24:19
I love it. Because I always tell people, the brand is the person not the product. Yep. And I mean, even going back to your guys’s ambassadors and you’re the people that carry your brand on on social media. They I’m sure you guys you guys. Don’t pick anybody. Right? You guys look at people that represent the brand like you want them to. Yeah, and just like you said, they’re the frontline. Yeah, they see those guys, and then say, Oh, yeah, I’m gonna I’m gonna give what they have. Yeah, because I like that guy. And that’s the brand and
Brady Speth 24:46
they may not be the world’s greatest shooter in our instance, right? I don’t need somebody that’s the world’s greatest shooter. I don’t need somebody that you can be a great shooter, but be an asshole. And I want you to have anything to do. Yeah, you know what I mean? Just because you’re a great shooter. That’s good for you. You’ve perfected your skill. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want you anywhere near my brand, you know if that’s the type of person you are, so that’s a huge one, like, I kind of, I laugh at some of my managers and some of the directors of our different organizations within the company, because I sit in on a lot of kind of the final interviews for some of the positions. And they’re like, do you have questions you’re gonna ask, now they know. But in the beginning that I was like, No,
Dan Haban 25:22
I just, you know,
Brady Speth 25:22
I just wanna sit and look, I want to sit here and just see that person, just how they are, what type of person they are, I’m not gonna ask them about the job, that’s your you handle that part. I’m gonna ask you about your kids, I’m gonna ask about what you do in your spare time. I want to know that have a person you are. And I can look over Chris. And he probably remembers that his whole nervous sitting on the other side of the table. Because that’s, that’s what’s important. And that’s why I like having this conversation with somebody that actually understands, like a lot of people that have failed have tried to sell the product. And that’s not a long term success solution. So
Dan Haban 25:54
going back to that question that always asked, tell me about your brands. Yeah, I can, I can tell you already know your brand to the tee. And you know exactly what you want to represent that brand. And so you’ve gone through those questions. Yeah. And you’ve built it so much, that now like now, it’s, it’s not the scope, right? It’s the name and the people behind the name. Yeah,
Brady Speth 26:13
that’s cool, man. And it’s funny too, because we get a lot of like, when you guys are growing crazy, what’s your secret sauce, you can go to the same place that we source our glass, the same place that we source, our aluminum, our reticles, you’re not going to end up with the same product, because the product isn’t the raw material. It’s not, you know, the product is how we present ourselves and how we interact with you and the people around us. If you want to duplicate what we have, you’re gonna have to take our entire team move it and put it somewhere else, because that’s the only way you can duplicate that, you know, and that’s something that we’ve kind of prided ourselves on is finding the right people and surrounding ourselves with people that are way smarter than me, that’s I get to do this because I have all these guys. Yeah, that’s kind of the cool part. So So talk to me a little bit. I kind of just freeflow man and so let’s, let’s talk a little bit more. I like to see kind of obviously, you see me kind of leaning towards the hunting side. So you talk a little bit about archery, is that you kind of go to you rifle? both? If I have both sitting here which one you grab him first the bow? Yeah,
Dan Haban 27:09
yeah. I mean, that’s a that’s a great question. This podcast is three hours long, right? Let’s talk. So when it comes to like recreational shooting, I would take a rifle. Okay. Just because you’re able to move you’re you’re able to reach out further. But when it comes to hunting, I’ll grab my bow. Nine out of 10 times. It’s a I still remember the first we’re just talking before that that Parker Canyon, I shot my first archery bow, yeah, small little coues. They’re about a basket, only about five inches apart. But it was it was January 1, I told my dad I was like, Hey, I found this spot. I’ve been I’ve been scouting this area for quite a while. It’s beacon, park at the lake and just hike a few miles out and there will be I just have one spot. And I called it like the deer sanctuary or something like that. And I took I took antlers out to rattle. I took the calls out on my dad’s like you are dumb And then so I was doing my sequences. And sure enough, I think we’re there for for 35 minutes. And my dad, my dad just hits me on the shoulder say, dad, hey, Dan, there’s a there’s a deer coming. There’s there’s another deer coming. He’s like, Oh, it’s just a doe,
Brady Speth 28:32
because you can’t see it till we get within about 20 yards.
Dan Haban 28:36
And so my dad’s pulling up the binoculars as it gets closer, and then I can see him pike up a little bit. He’s like, yeah, there’s antlers that’s a buck. And he the look on my dad’s face, to be able to experience that with number one my father, who taught me everything about hunting, right, who taught me everything about shooting. I’m like, Okay, I’m not gonna F this up. Yeah. Yeah. And I couldn’t see I was in a bad spot. And so I crawled to a small little bush in front of me. And I looked back to my dad and my dad. He’s still I mean the deers probably 20 yards away. He’s because he didn’t want to scare it. Yeah.
Brady Speth 29:11
Didn’t want to breathe.
Dan Haban 29:12
Yeah. And so people are gonna laugh and think this is cheating. But I i rattled one more time. And it turned and started walking straight to the bush. And I’m like, oh, man, I need to situate myself self now to get a good shot. Yeah, it’ll walk five yards away from me. And I shot high and broke its back. I was timid Yeah, for sure. But sure enough, I shot and ran off. Took us you know, we waited took us probably half an hour to find it. Yeah, I shot broke. Its back. Okay, but that was my first deer. Nice and that. That feeling? Oh man, right. You can’t beat it. There’s something that close that you kind of manipulated to get in And then I remember coming coming back home and from from college with my brother and saying the same thing we spotted and spot in stock. My brother went to go park park the truck and I walked a few miles in, got within about 2020 yards and just stood up and it just looked at me and it’s I’m in my heart, my heart. So I love archery when it comes to hunting. Well, rec recreation. I love shooting my handguns in your AR your tactical. And always it’s always nice to be able to reach out 300 500 yards with a with a rifle too. So there’s a there’s a lot that goes behind shooting, but not a lot of people understand. Yeah. But I was I was taught by a lot of great people and learned a lot of life lessons to shoot and shooting a handgun or rifle. But hunting, you can’t beat bow hunting. Yeah.
Brady Speth 31:05
It’s funny because I thought I thought I was a good hunter. And then I started bow hunting. Right. I was like, I’m killing a lot of animals with rifles. Yeah, like that. I started bow hunting. I was like, Oh my gosh, I gotten that lazy with my stock. Yeah, like, you get so caught up especially with like, technology nowadays with rifles and optics. And in a factory ammunition like we were out this weekend 1155 yards was that’s how far we are shooting on a silhouette plate. It’s doable and repeatable. Now with factory that was a factory rifle with factory ammo and one of our x7 scopes. Not like some crazy, you know, 10s of 1000s of dollar rig or anything like that. And it’s something that you can do so repeatable that I think I’ll admit I got lazy hunting, because I could shoot some 200-300-400 yards. Yeah, you know, within still an ethical range where I felt what I was within my capabilities, and then all sudden you get a bow in your hand, you know, like, I’m comfortable out to maybe 50 or 60. That’s a huge difference getting 50 yards away from a deer versus 400 especially here in Arizona with the coues deer that are like, well, they’re desert ghosts, they just disappear. I don’t know what the hell they do. They like can time travel and warp or something because they’ll be right there in front of you. And you blink and you’re like never see him again. Just calling out over the desert. Like I don’t know what led me out. But yeah, it’s uh, I love that part of it. So yeah, I’ve with you on our tread. I definitely got the bug. I told you before the show we got a bunch of us got drawn for javelina. So I got my first ivelina kill this year in January, which is awesome. I was actually chasing over the kind of deer tag. And I found a good size muli with like four or five doe around his house kind of chasing them. And just happen upon this little group javelina and I was like well first of first, I got out of like just little over 20 yards, which was awesome. It’s awesome. The way I describe it is like it’s rifle hunting is it’s harvesting it’s still hunting still to have skill. bow hunting is intimate. It’s, you hear the animal breathing before you shoot it, you hear it walking, you hear it take its last breath you have you know, it’s a, it’s a lot more of a like after I shot that have led to havoline for crying out loud. Like, I was like, holy shit. Like, that’s an experience I’ve never felt before hunting. And I’ve hunted for 30 years, you know. And I was like, I was pretty humbled by I was like, Oh, this is something that like imagine when you had to do this, you know, a couple hundred years ago, put food on the table and you have this you know, not compound bows that shoot at 340 feet per second. But I was I was humbled by the experience because I was like this is it’s a lot more intimate and close bow hunting is you know, you feel a little bit more in touch with kind of you have to be in touch with what you’re hunting and you know, one false move one twig one breath one something and they’re gone. So yeah, it definitely requires a higher level of commitment. So I’m with you. I think the archery bug is bit pretty hard. So
Dan Haban 33:58
I still remember growing up, um, and you know, I was I played a lot of sports, I was super competitive. And with that comes with, with rage, I guess the best way to put it right like sometimes you get angry, you get angry. And sometimes I’ll be home and I’ll come back from a bad practice or losing a game. And my parents will understand like, Okay, he’s frustrated. And my my parents would say go shoot your bow. Yeah. And that’s the you know, because you calm everything because if you mess up your if you break it out, you’re gonna get more pissed off have to focus, I still remember that. So yeah, I still do that too.
Brady Speth 34:36
We recently did a I’m trying to think that the was the name of the group. It was a group we started working with a file, think of the name that they’re using kind of archery is sort of like PTSD treatment and stuff like that. And we just did a hunt. They brought a bunch of people into Arizona and did a hunt. Operation Enduring Warrior. Thanks. Um, yeah. So we did a group with them and one of the guys who’s a double amputee. He was Like this is like, this is my zen this is how I you know, kind of cope with the all the shit that’s happened to me is like I can just go for 10-15 minutes, shoot some arrows and it kind of just brings me back to center and I was like, you know what there’s you can go into rapid fire gun right right with archery it’s it takes like you have time you have to actually think about what you’re doing there’s a breathing there’s so I was like wow, that’s actually you know kind of cool to see people turn on a passion like he oves hunting before his injuries. Yeah, and you know, turning that into, you know, kind of a way to heal a way to kind of just get back to yourself, you know, especially when you don’t have a ton of time with three kids and all that. Yeah.
Dan Haban 35:39
Yeah. Going back Yeah, I just teamed up with Nodens Outdoors, okay. And he he was special forces Matt Williams, he founded Nodens Outdoors. He was in the Special Forces and he he was with the CIA. And now he’s he founded this organization, organization to transition Special Forces veterans into the real world through outdoor immersion. Specifically bow hunting. Nice. So yeah, I’m excited, man.
Brady Speth 36:07
I’ll look into it. Definitely do you have their website. Feel free to shout it out. If you didn’t know what the best way to reach out and Nodens Outdoors you said,
Dan Haban 36:15
Yeah, Nodens Outdoors. N-O-D-E-N-S Outdoors? And then same thing on Instagram. Oh, Nodens Outdoors. Perfect. Yeah,
Brady Speth 36:22
we’ll put people there. If we can put a link or something. I’m all about that being both military and law enforcement that like that’s those are my brothers, man. So whatever we can do, and especially if it invloves hunting and shooting archery i’m in. I love that. So and that can’t be enough of them. That’s the beauty of Yeah, you know, when it comes to those type of charities and those types of organizations that can’t be enough of them that are trying to help out and transition and in honestly get people back outdoors. I think COVID had an interesting effect, we were kind of looking at Arizona fishing game website. And they’re like, we’re going through application still. It’s up like, I don’t know, the numbers like 60% or something like that. It’s it’s kind of been a weird reset. And I don’t know, if you tell us kind of like that where you’re at now. But it’s been a weird reset of like people wanting to get back into like, being prepared outdoors, maybe harvesting their own food. You can’t take that, you know, annual trip to Disney World, or whatever you used to do. So let’s go camping. And it’s been this weird. Like, it’s kind of cool. Like, from my perspective, I love it. Cuz I thought our country and a lot of people are getting away from that. I don’t necessarily love the extra 60,000 people put it in for elk tags. But I know, it’s good to see the you know, people kind of transitioning back to, hey, the supermarket might not have food, how am I going to get food, you know, so I don’t know if you’ve kind of seen a little bit of that or any of that. But it’s we’ve seen that a big change down here as far as people kind of getting back to nature almost.
Dan Haban 37:46
Yeah. I mean, the Cabela’s is about 30 minutes away from me. Yeah. And they’re just like, no fishing poles. Yeah, camping, camping gear is down to down to the last five or six, right? I mean, all the Walmarts I mean, you can’t wait, you can’t go which is Yeah,
Brady Speth 38:01
it’s I hope it lasts, honestly. I mean, I don’t like I said, it’s that catch 22 where like, like you said, there’s so many outdoorsman in Utah, and you know, it’s hard, but at the same time, like, if we have a society that’s getting back towards nature getting back towards I’m all for it. Let’s get out there, get out there and get you out of that Walmart tent and setup soon. But hey man, if that’s what you got to get started. Go do it. Yeah. I think teaching that next generation and letting people I love that your kids understand that, like, hey, this elk is our food. This is you know, like, this is what we’re putting in the freezer. This is what we’re putting on the table and like my kids helped us process my deer from from last year. You know, like we butcher at home, we process it, we do everything and, you know, I want them to understand that it’s not you know, it doesn’t come from the supermarket. That’s great that we have that, you know, it’s a it’s convenient, but it’s it’s nice to kind of have them understand how much better how much more would you appreciate if we harvested this right? Yeah, exactly. And then just that that burger tastes so much better that steak tastes so much better when it was it was you that put in the work for it. Love that. Um, so what is your dream hunt now? I’m curious. Oh, man, what have you not done that you would love to do?
Dan Haban 39:14
All right, well, growing up it’s always been the New Zealand stag. Okay, right. Well loves to go out there. Yeah. And then after that it was it’s probably an Iowa whitetail. You always have the South Texas whitetail. Yeah, those are fun. This is all archery. I got a if it’s gonna be a dream hunt, it’s got archery is good. If it if it’s elk, I want it to be in Utah. Since I’ve been in that terrain for a few years now i would i would love to be able to, to harvest and elk in Utah, but more kind of high end. I don’t know if you would call it exotic but it would be that go to New Zealand. Yeah, and go after one of those stags.
Brady Speth 39:56
That’d be crazy because that’s a hunt and inhabit. For the amount of miles you put in and the time you have to be out there. Yeah, that’d be awesome. I’d love to do that I had a trip to New Zealand that wasn’t for stag, it was for some different type of ram that got cancelled because of COVID. So I was like, oh, man, that’s because that’s one of my dream ones that just the landscape itself would be awesome to be out there. But yeah, the stag would be amazing to go do that. I think kind of the, I’ve always thought like, even in like Scotland or something like that, like the traditional, you know, like, I want some guy in some tweed jacket taking me hunting. There’s something about that. It’s been happening for hundreds of years, you know, that gamekeeper that landed? Like, there’s something about that, like, I was like, man, that’d be a fun hunt to go stag hunting that they’re
Dan Haban 40:37
very traditional. Yeah, nothing’s really changed since 100 years ago. Yeah,
Brady Speth 40:41
exactly. That’s cool, though. No, I think that’s fun. So the Well, good, I hope that you make one of those happen. That would be that’d be a lot of fun. Oh, yeah. The Utah elk one should that should happen pretty quick.
Dan Haban 40:53
Yeah. I’ve been speaking with Awesome Land from wild Wild Country Outfitters. And he’s, he’s married to Taylor Drury outdoors. And we’ve been talking and hopefully we can get something set up. I can go on 100. And you can take me elk hunting up there. Nice. It’s up in northern northern Utah.
Brady Speth 41:12
We need somebody to schlep your gear around, let me know. Okay. These guys are laughed by the camera cuz they know it doesn’t take much to get me out. That’s why what escape it’s a work event. And I get to go Hadid. So yeah, that’s done. Yeah, these guys, I think the last guy was on I was like, We’re going horseback. And he was all that it’s the, it’s been kind of fun to try to. I love it personally, just because the body inside of it, too, is the, the, the friendships I’ve made through hunting through, not the physical act of releasing the arrow or pulling the trigger, right. But that other 23 hours and 58 minutes, you’re out there during the day that you’re not doing that, you know, and then times that by 2, 3, 4, 5 days, that’s that those types of relationships and like, some of the closest friends I have, or the ones that I had no clue who they were, and then you go spend, you know, you go hunt for a week or week and a half and all sudden, you’re you know, you have that tie, that’s forever, you know. So that’s kind of my thing with hunting. I know these guys give me a lot of shit about it, because I talk about it a ton and always want to do it. But to me, it’s almost encompasses all the good things in the world, you know, and brings out the best in people when you’re under hardship or you’re hiking or you’re on heavy loads. And you really get to know who somebody is pretty quick when you’ve been with them for four or five days. So
Dan Haban 42:30
there’s a lot of times where, whether it be you or the person you’re hunting with, I mean, maybe you’ll have 30-40 pound pack under and you’re carrying a gun. Yeah. And you’re climbing, you’re going to gain 1000 feet. And then you just you want to quit Yes, I can. This is dumb. Let’s just go back. Or let’s just stop right here. And then you finally get up there. And then you just take that moment to stop. You look around you realize oh worth it. Hell yeah. Let’s do this.
Brady Speth 42:57
Now. That’s awesome.
Dan Haban 42:58
I love it.
Brady Speth 42:58
I love it for sure. So well, I want to wish you and Brand Makers continued success. We’ve been happy working with you guys. And you guys have done right by us. So appreciate that. I always love seeing your guys’s growth. So like good people that are successful. And so that’s I love seeing that. And then obviously, the branded dad side have fun with that, man, it’s my kids are getting a little like, to that point where it’s fun. And you know, you’ll get through it. Everything happens we had diapers only last for so long, so well, you know, you’ll get through it. So when you get to that point, and you can throw it in the truck and go out and do different things like that. It’s all worth it. So yeah, you already looks out and like you’re getting to that point. So almost there.
Dan Haban 43:37
Yeah, thanks, brother. So
Brady Speth 43:38
it’s fun. So real quick before we finish up the he gets to be submitted to the dreaded five questions. So we can do rapid fire I think you probably listen to the podcast so you prepared for this. So here we go. Got the five questions we kind of ask everybody the same ones just so we can kind of get an idea of where everybody’s at and we’ve got some pretty good answers to this. So first thing that comes to mind shout it out and let’s hear it so if you had one superpower, what would it be?
Dan Haban 44:05
Fly I’ve always wanted to fly
Brady Speth 44:06
nice. Are you going to do it outside of superpowers any any want to get a pilot’s license anything like that? Part of line
Dan Haban 44:14
my dad my dad gave me an option right high school to do things join the military go go a different direction. Yeah, and I went that different different direction. And I but I’ve always wanted to fly nice. So one of these days Yeah, I definitely want to be able to get that that license and I’ll want to take my dad out flying.
Brady Speth 44:31
Nice. Yeah, cuz the way you answered that was less superpower and more just wanting to be able to
Dan Haban 44:36
I could tell but I love being in there.
Brady Speth 44:38
Love it. If you could sit down and have a beer, steak dinner, whatever it may be with one person past present. Future. who would it be?
Dan Haban 44:46
Brady Speth 44:47
Yeah, no, I only asked why. But now for some reason. I want to hear some of these.
Dan Haban 44:51
I love I love this country. Yeah. And I want to I would love to sit down and see what vision he had for this nation.
Brady Speth 44:57
Right. I would actually like to compare what that vision was versus the vision that we seem to be on.
Dan Haban 45:05
him or any of the founding fathers. Yeah, I would love to understand what vision they had combined before this great nation. I mean, there’s there’s nothing better than being part of this free nation.
Brady Speth 45:16
Nice. I love it. Dude. If you were stuck eating one food for the rest of your life, what would it be? It could be a genre of food as well. Not just a particular food.
Dan Haban 45:28
My Yeah, sushi. Yeah,
Brady Speth 45:32
that’s the first one isn’t it? Everybody defaults to steak. I like sushi. Yeah,
Dan Haban 45:37
I mean, you get sushi. Sushi is different from being in Japan than Right. Yeah. So being able to come here and it’s different, right? Yeah. But I when you get the real stuff. Oh, man.
Brady Speth 45:52
sushi in Arizona? Sort of fresh. That’s right. What would the title of your biography be?
Dan Haban 46:05
Think I’m gonna go with the branded dad
Brady Speth 46:06
you say you got to go branded dad. I like it. That’s a good title. If I hand you a million dollars cash, what’s the first thing you would buy? You can’t pay bills. You can’t do any of that. You got to buy something. People have tried to find loopholes in this. So we got to we got to crush the loopholes.
Dan Haban 46:22
I would get a barn. There’s a lot that goes into this.
Brady Speth 46:26
I gotta hear this.
Dan Haban 46:27
I wouldn’t buy a big ass barn. Okay, number one. For a place to to work out. And well, going back, it would be a barn where veterans can go and work out. And then right behind it would be a big shooting range. Not even joking that that’s what I that’s what I would buy.
Brady Speth 46:48
That’s a great answer.
Dan Haban 46:50
different from what I would do with it. But yeah, it was you had to buy something.
Brady Speth 46:54
Dan Haban 46:54
I buy a barn
Brady Speth 46:57
it. I love it. That’s definitely a first. Well, dad. It’s a pleasure, man. I’d love to definitely have you back sometime. You’re welcome here at Riton anytime you’re in Arizona. So
Dan Haban 47:05
Brady Speth 47:06
Appreciate it. And thanks for being on the podcast.
Dan Haban 47:08
I hope no one take my idea.
Brady Speth 47:13
Appreciate it. Yeah. Thank you. Thank you.
Riton Optics 47:23
Thank you for listening to the Riton podcast. Please like, subscribe and review. For more information on RIton Optics visit us at ritonoptics.com that’s R-I-T-O-NOptics.com