A visionary is someone who continuously shows up and out for the culture — a person like Jeff Staple, who holds a direct ear to the streets.

Staple pulled up to AfroTech World 2022 to chat with Blavity co-founder and Chief Technology Officer, Jeff Nelson.

During the conversation, he shed light on his passion for developing brands — whether they are rooted in streetwear, fashion, sneakers, or design and how it all intersects with technology.

In 1997, he founded STAPLE, a pioneering streetwear brand that stems right out of New York.

“It’s definitely a blessing what I’ve been able to transcend decades and generations,” said Staple, on the latest episode of Black Tech Green Money. “I see fathers and their kids both rocking STAPLE and both rocking other stuff that I’ve done so it’s really cool.”

He continued: “Technology and how it plays a role in fashion started really early on for me. When we first started marketing, the idea of going viral or marking meant that you would make a postcard through a company that I believe was called 1-800-POSTCARDS, which was honestly like a technological wonder because before that, making flyers, posters, or postcards was a very gated process.”

The Evolution of Marketing

As someone who initially got his start through word-of-mouth marking, Staple learned early on that the key to succeeding was going beyond just his ability to shake people’s hands and spread knowledge as quickly as possible.

“The moment the digital revolution started to happen, where instead of putting an ad in a magazine and sort of crossing your fingers and being like, ‘I hope hundreds of people see this.’ There was no validation or idea of whether or not it was actually happening,” Staple said.

Throughout the episode of Black Tech Green Money, he further explained that once analytics and tracking provided through social media and other mediums hit the ground running, the rest was history.

Learn More On BTGM

For more on how Staple built an empire that spans generations, his take on non-fungible tokens and Web3, plus more, listen to the full episode of Black Tech Green Money below.