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Hidden Gems: Meet Juan Sanchez of Bagby

Today we’d like to introduce you to Juan Sanchez.

Hi Juan, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
In January 2017, my wife Noor and I decided to take our relationship to the next level. We realized that, like many other couples around the world, we were very distracted so it was difficult for us to connect with each other. To try to help fix this issue, I suggested a #PhoneFreeBedroomChallenge. No phones, no distractions. Soon after, we discovered the benefits this simple change in behavior could bring to people, especially couples like us, so we decided to create Bagby. Truth be told, we haven’t brought our phones back in the bedroom since.

Bagby helped us to reconnect, be mindful as first-time parents and build a screen-conscious family!

Bagby was first launched on Kickstarter and Indiegogo to test the idea and receive feedback. Both campaigns worked very well and we reached our goals.

Although Bagby was first designed to primarily help couples (“Reconnect with your Partner”), we realized that the potential to help other people like us and businesses was relevant, too. This is the reason why we took all the feedback we received, updated our branding and widened the Bagby universe to make it “Digital Wellness With a Human Soul”.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Challenges are always part of the journey. No pain, no gain!

I would say the two biggest challenges were finding the resources, especially human capital and being patient. We had to understand that screen overuse, although was a growing problem, it wasn’t mainstream in 2017.

There was a lot of work spent on customer education, reading materials, resources, etc.

We knew we had to go with the flow and being innovative while riding this exciting wave.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
I know It feels contradictory, but being on one side or the other of the digital distraction equation is often a very narrow line.

The decision to take a leap often comes from a eureka moment whether it is from a positive or a negative experience. There must be some kind of pressure or need to sparkle the magic.

My background is actually in digital and social media marketing. I hold two master’s degrees in digital marketing and I spent about 12 years both as a freelancer and in the agency world working for international brands around the planet (Spain, France, Luxembourg, Singapore and Southeast Asia, Los Angeles). One day like any other day, I had a wakeup call and I felt that I needed a change; I felt that I wanted to do something more purposeful that can help people. I wasn’t enjoying my job and as I did previously so my attention of levels and focus were at its lowest. I couldn’t really concentrate and that impacted negatively my performance and client relationships.

We can say I went from being part of the problem (people creating digital distraction) to focusing on reducing it. I’m not going to lie, somehow, I felt guilty and I wanted to do something to reverse the situation. It’s better late than never.

The interesting thing is that many people I’ve connected within this new space of digital wellness/wellbeing have gone through a similar process.

I do, however, think things are never black or white. For example, now I’m leveraging all that digital marketing expertise and knowledge to raise awareness for the digital wellness cause and the dangers of addictive technology. I don’t think I would have ever been able to launch and develop Bagby without my previous digital marketing consultant life.

Today, at Bagby, we believe there is a more HUMAN way to overcome the current overwhelming technology and digital dependency.

We want to solve the problem by creating beautifully crafted and digital-free solutions (no more apps) that help us disconnect from our devices.

Our solutions are reminders that real connections start the moment we put our smartphones away and we proudly celebrate that.

Digital wellness is not an app but an entire lifestyle change. It’s about building positive routines that enhance our human condition, not downgrade them. At Bagby, our MISSION is to decrease people’s screen time while increasing their HUMAN time.

What would you say have been one of the most important lessons you’ve learned?
I’ve learned a lot of lessons but if I have to highlight one, I would say, stay loyal to your why and your core beliefs. This is the only way you can remain authentic and relevant. You can adapt but you shouldn’t change your essence.

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