Swapped Stories: Boomerang Energy
Most people seek for something to help them get through the day. Coffee and, of course, energy drinks are more popular than ever before. These companies are competing to “one-up” the competition, seeing how much sugar or caffeine they can put into the drink to make it stand above the rest. Duluth native, Donny Pearson, had an idea to introduce an energy drink that went against the idea of putting harsh chemicals and substances in your body that would make you crash and fatigue. He wanted something that would get your energy back and stay with you throughout the day, thus Boomerang Energy was born.
In 2016, energy drinks were already a well-established product and sponsored esports and gamers alike. The beverages were coming into the scene as a replacement for coffee. As a drink, you could refuel with at any time. Pearson saw the opportunity to create an energy product that was focused on a more pure, natural type of energy.
Boomerang Energy started as a powder supplement that you could mix into your drink. After a while, it became clear that a canned product was more recognizable, and was easier to gain a following. Pretty much everywhere you go, you can buy canned energy drinks.
“We always wanted a canned beverage because of the economic impact, environmental impact, and the cost-effectiveness of recyclable aluminum, not to mention canned beverages are everywhere and more available than powder,” says Pearson.
Boomerang started out with five people doing this as a side job. “We started with what we had and were eventually able to get full-time people in on Boomerang,” says Donny. Some of the people working at Boomerang have previous experience with Fortune 500 companies, which helped jumpstart the company and make the correct business decisions. Donny also says that they are very pleased with the current state and growth of the company.
We asked Pearson why he chose the name Boomerang Energy to which he replied, “It just fit.” The name made sense with throwing an idea out and having energy come back and stay with you throughout the day. Pearson also commented on why they chose a turquoise hue and yellow for Boomerang Energy’s brand colors.
“Blue and yellow are lighter and set themselves very differently from other energy drinks that have a very dark color choice and image. We wanted it to pop and be more eye-catching while having a friendlier, more wholesome feel to it.”
Boomerang takes pride in making what they call “Real. Good. Energy.” Real means the ingredients they use are 100% natural. Good stands for all the ingredients are healthy for you and can be processed naturally by the body. Energy is just that, a natural result of feeling energized without the crashes. Pearson says that Boomerang Energy gets you better energy that will last longer and is perfect for people looking for a healthier alternative.
Despite its success, Pearson says that it wasn’t easy to bring a new energy drink to the market. There is a negative stigma behind energy drinks, people sometimes refer to them as a “necessary evil” needed to get through the day. Donny says that he wants Boomerang Energy to help reshape the image of what an energy drink is supposed to be.
As far as what Boomerang’s consumers look like, it’s broader than you might think. When you typically think of an energy drink, you may think of a younger generation that isn’t as health-conscious about what they’re putting in their bodies. But Donny noticed a larger group of what he calls “young professionals” taking more interest in Boomerang. He says Boomerang tries to go for a healthier, more eco-friendly image and as a result, this has attracted a more diverse group of consumers that are more interested in a healthier alternative.
Now let’s get to the big question: What are the benefits of the natural ingredients in Boomerang Energy? All of Boomerang’s sweeteners are completely natural. One is cane sugar which is a familiar sugar to the body and one that it can break down as opposed to artificial sugars and sweeteners. Another is the monk fruit extract which is famous for its sweet concentrated juices. Boomerang also uses green tea and ginseng as natural energizers, both of which are proven to stimulate physical and mental activity.
We asked Donny what the flavor of Boomerang Energy is since none of the products are named and instead, the flavor is based on the can color. He says that the main flavor is based on a blueberry-citrus taste profile. He also mentions that Boomerang has less of that energy drink taste to it and more of a seltzer flavor.
Boomerang Energy does some remarkable work by giving back to the community. Pearson says that an important part of Boomerang Energy is looking for ways to give back.
“We’ve been able to leverage our real good energy lingo to partner with the community.”
They started with organizations like The Ablegamers Charity, Game Changer, and Gamers Outreach. All these organizations help children in hospital conditions to play games and make their journey a little better.
“This was a way to not only to help these kids play games but to give them the means to interact socially online through videogames and to help take their minds off of hospital life,” states Pearson.
Boomerang then turned their gaze more towards their city of Duluth and to helping their local community. Boomerang has always tried to promote an active lifestyle so supporting the Superior Hiking Trail seemed a given. They also wanted to give back to first responders and people working in the medical field of Duluth. To this day, Boomerang provides its products and services to help these men and women through their day so they can continue to do the amazing work for the citizens of Duluth and beyond. “Charity: Water was also an obvious one for a quality of life perspective,” according to Pearson. Outdoor Afro is the most recent organization that Boomerang supports. The organization helps black communities, especially younger generations, connect with nature and outdoor experiences.
When asked about growth and what Donny saw for the future of Boomerang Energy, he responded by saying that he just wants to grow the business so they can have a larger reach.
“We want to get this company large enough so we can have a positive impact on more people and find more ways to give back to our communities.”
COVID-19 has had some setbacks for the Boomerang Energy business. They wanted to do lectures and set up at concerts to expose the brand but all that was put on hold. Boomerang has now switched to a more digital means of spreading the word and has been extremely grateful for local support that has helped them during this time.
“Whatever we can do now to keep moving forward is a great line to the future,” says Pearson.
We asked Donny as a business owner what the hardest part of starting a business is. He says having the resources to start up and get a foot in the door is more daunting than you may think. He does say that starting out lean led them to make smarter business decisions and put them on the right path forward. He says you need to push outside your comfort zone and understand that the business will succeed, but you have to be willing to do the long, hard work to make sure it gets there.
Boomerang Energy can be found at select locations in Duluth and surrounding areas. Locations are as listed and are constantly updating:
– Whole Foods Co-ops
– Mount Royal Bottle Shoppe
– Lake Aire Bottle Shoppe
– 27 Liquor
– Duluth’s Best Bread
– Play It Again Sports
– B&B Market
– Cromwell Self Serve
– Carlton Gas & More
– Caywood Country Store
– Ukura’s Big Dollar Store
– TJ’s Country Store
– Belknap Liquor
– Superior Meats
– Four Corners Store
– Nelsons Speed Stop
– Jim’s Bait & Convenience Store
Happy swapped stories, friends!
All photos approved and provided by Boomerang Energy.