June 24, 2021

TheHorseNet.com with Marsha Martin

TheHorseNet.com with Marsha Martin

Marsha Martin is the creator of TheHorseNet.com an online software platform that allows you to keep track of your horses vet records, performance records, and much, much more.

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Transcript

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Hey, everybody. Welcome to the only podcast that talks about the Appaloosa horse and the people that love them. And today I've got you as marsh vine, but is showing up here as Marshall Martin.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah, Marsha Martin is happy.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Okay. Go ahead and tell us a little bit about yourself and a little bit of your background.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yep. Okay. Well, first get started. I love your intro. It really got my blood pumping. It was super exciting. So, you know, I'm here and I'm super excited to be here. I'm a horse enthusiast. I love horses of any. Creed color everything. And , I love the horse industry and the people who are , in the horse industry doing what we love every day. So , I've had a long background with horses. I've done everything from trail ride and camp out with my worst to winning an AQH a world championship in amateur team roping heeling. So. As you can imagine. I just am thrilled to do everything with horses. And , I actually used to work for an Appaloosa trainer as well. So , I do identify with the Appaloosa horse

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

okay. Tell us a little bit about your , Experience with making it to becoming a world champion that , I think that's pretty good story. And it's kinda leads up to what we're about to talk about. So,

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Sure. I purchased my, what I call my heart horse in 2007. I've had them for 14 years now and, you know, right from the start, he was a horse that really fit me and I compete in team roping. And , as a woman competing in a male dominated sport, you need to have the, the horse be the partner and a strong partner at that. So my horse's name is Gustavus James, and , in 2007, I started roping on him, got along, great, went all over , from Texas, Florida, and I live in Wisconsin. So I'm all over roping on him. Did really well at the U S TRC finals. And then two. 2010. I had coming out in the spring to do spring maintenance, just check all of the horses over and spring shots. And as I was leading Gus and a couple of other horses in, from the pasture, the vet was doing his once over assessment that all of us were owners do. Right. You can glance at them and you know, you know, something's not right. And he looked down at Gus his right front leg and he said to me that good and. It was like, you punched me in the stomach because I knew this bet for a long time and he was fairly stoic. And I knew that that was really bad news. And what it turned out was that Gus had broken his , exterior assessment wide bone in his right front leg. And , it was months and months of, you know, stall, rest and rehabilitation. And , And now , he is sound 21 years old and sound and you can't see anything that there was even a break in that bone. I'm so very lucky. And , after that I started competing in AQH team roping events and , Made the finals a couple of times. And in 2013, I was the world champion on Gustavus, James. So, you know, how unlikely is that number one, a horse that had a broken leg. And then number two, I'm a woman from Wisconsin. The first woman that won the AQH team roping , amateur team roping heeling was about 34 years, I think before I did. Yeah. So it was, yeah.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

All right. Well, that leads us to why we're here. You have developed or created a online platform for horse people to help track their horses, but that kind of comes out of your horse, being injured, breaking his leg and kind of resulting from that.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

yes. You know, taking care of my horse is, is so important to me. I've had him for a long time. I have a lot invested in him. I, you know, emotionally, financially, and , and I just want the best for him. And I lost the x-rays. Of his broken sesamoid bone and , my computer crashed and the, the vet that I had used retired. And at that point there were no more records. So I started thinking about, you know, ways to help people keep track of their horses records, health records, and also performance records , and maintenance, you know, a lot of small vets. Have reminders and automated things and , really eloquent ways to keep track of health of their pets or animals. And I felt like there was a little bit of a gap in the horse industry. And , and so I wanted to create something that helped people keep really great record of their horses , and also provides them with , reminders that can be customized. And , even to keep track of, you know, goals and milestones, you know, Hey, your ranch horse did his first flying lead change tonight, you know, record that, celebrate it, enjoy it.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Yeah. Now I've been on the platform. I played around with the platform and. If anybody is, I mean, it's great for if you've got one or two horses, but if you've got a lot of horses, it's awesome. It's great. I've been on there. We played around with her. We started loading our brood mayors in there and our horses and, you know, stuff like that. And it allows you to. Obviously put your horse in there. You can put your vet records in there. You can put, like you said, your performance records, your CA and then your Coggins and stuff like that. The cool thing about it is it's accessible from your phone. So we've, I think we've all been in that situation where you've driven. Hundreds of miles to get someplace. And you've got your binder, it's got all your papers in it, your registration, your Coggins, you know, your vet records and all that. And I know we've been in situations before where. You know, w w when we lived in Virginia, you know, we'd pay, we taken two or three, four students to a horse show and inevitably somebody forgets something, or it didn't get put back in a book from the last year or whatever. The cool thing about it with it being on the phone is you can just pull it up on the phone and you can email it to. The show office or whatever, you know, you know, just show it to somebody or, you know, whatever. That's what I like about it. Particularly you're a trainer and you're taking students to shows or you're a aboard and barn and you got new horses coming in. Now I will say it. takes some time to get all that stuff in there. There's no way of getting around that. Unfortunately. I mean, it would be cool. If your vet could just somehow send it all to you in a PDF or whatever, but, you know, I know some vets can do that and some that's camp, but you know that it is what it is. But Yeah. if, if somebody has their trainer or they got a boarding barn or whatever, You know, once you get everything loaded in there, it makes it really easy. I know we're getting ready to start. Putting stuff in there for chocolaty. I haven't quite figured out how we're going to use that for our customers, but there's definitely some good stuff to use to go there, but that's not the only thing it does though. So, I mean, keeping vet records and all that. It's cool. So want you to explain some of the other stuff it does? Cause this is a pretty robust platform. Do you got.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah. You know, I was going to launch in 2020, and then a lot of the venues were closed. So my idea, the, the hub of it being the records and performance records started to grow. And I realized that there are a lot of people who are in the horse industry that have a horse business, and it's hard to find them, you know, there, there are no farriers online. With websites or maybe, maybe there are some not very many. So I felt like I wanted to help the horse businesses have an online presence and help them with logos and get , all of that taken care of. So the horse net will provide a one-page website template. It's so easy to hook up. You don't have to worry about getting a URL and getting a server and making your own web design. And you don't have all of that out of pocket costs. On top of that, I take care of all of the search engine optimization. So. Even if somebody has a really great website, if they're not paying for search engine optimization, a lot of times they're not being found in the search engines. So my site will be found in search engines. I take care of search engine optimization and everything of business can literally go from not having an online presence to having an online presence. And I'd say 15 or 20 minutes, it's so easy. It's designed to be easy for people. And, you know, I know was horse people. We don't want to be in front of the computer, designing a website. We want to be on a, on a horse, out at the elements, you know? So , that's what it does. And I wanted to make it affordable. A one-year membership for businesses is $97.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

so now everybody watching or listening also. If you haven't checked in that, what, how much websites costs lately? 99, 90 $7 is a steal. I mean, straight off at $97. in steel. Just for that, just for the website. I know I maintain three websites right now and all together, all three of them are probably close to a thousand dollars per year. To maintain all three days in, you know, that's getting your domain domain and, and , hosting of the website and all that. So that, and alone price is worth that. But as you said, SEO, if you don't have a website, people can search your name or search your business all day long. And. They're not going to find you because number one, you don't have a website. Number two, you're not getting that SEO juice that you could from a website. And for the listener, SEO stands for search engine optimization. If you don't have an online presence, people aren't going to find you. There's just no way they're going to find you. And I, like you said, finding a farrier, finding. You know, training barn, finding a lesson barn, all that kind of stuff that can get kinda difficult sometimes, you know, I'm trying to look them up and find you it's ma it's still word of mouth right now. I mean, for the most part, it's still word of mouth and Yeah. you gotta have it. You just gotta have it, but you've also got this marketplace that you're trying to get going on there also. So can you explain that a little bit?

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yes. Yes. As this, as this massive site was evolving, I realized that I was going to a website to look for horses that were for sale, a different website to perhaps look for trailers and yet a different website to try to find , you know, use tack and that sort of thing. And I thought, why don't we have this all in one place, one eloquent place where you can do some really great searching in your area. And , you know, as, as a horse industry, we're, we're a fairly large industry. The fact that we don't have a really, really robust marketplace to support everything from fence building to, you know, the

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

right, right.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

I guess , in our industry. So my marketplace is searchable by area and all different kinds of venues. It has things that. You know, you might not even think about being in a marketplace, like, you know, fencing materials or , you know, barn assistance, or, you know, how about even trying to find somebody to work for you in the horse industry or, or posting wanted ads for, for health? You know, there's a lot of people that identify as forest people that don't really know how to find the horse industry or get involved in it. So I'm hoping to help bridge that gap with the

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Yeah. And I know some people, you know, like us, for example, finding somebody to horse it or house it, I mean, that's. That can be real tough. I mean, you think we live out in the country, we got a bunch of farmers all around us, but a lot of people around us know how to deal with cattle, but not a whole lot of know how to do it, but Yeah. And obviously as you get more people in there that market pays marketplace will be more robust and all that. But Yeah, I think it's a great idea. So what I mean, I understand where you came up with this concept, but. Most people wouldn't have gone. Hey, let me develop this on my own. What great. Got you to that point. I mean, cause this is a big, is a fairly, I think you said it's a pretty robust platform. It's pretty monster.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah, well, there's, there's one more part of it. I want to talk about really quick first. There's the ability for , clubs and , events to post events in the horse net as well. So, you know, you have a platform here that you can keep all of your horse records. Health and performance records, you can find businesses, you can buy, sell trade on the marketplace and you can find events if a club or a business posts an event. That event has a flyer with all of the details and the Google maps directions are hard-coded into the flyer. So when you pull up the event, You have one click to take it to your phone and get a get directions it's really slick. So, you know, when now back to your question, I have been in the horse industry in Wisconsin for over 30 years. And there is , an arena just down the road from me. And there was a small club that put on an event and I didn't know about it and I would have gone and I would have participated. So I felt like if I was having that. Certainly there's other people that are looking to find things to do and places to go with their horses. And if they would know about, you know, the different avenues that are out there, there would be more people going and participating. So, yeah. That's that's how it all evolved. And I started getting excited about the idea because I'm so passionate about the horse industry. And I, I really liked the aspect of, you know, taking great care of horses. Why do we have a website like Carfax to keep track of our car records?

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

right.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

But we don't have great way to keep track of our horse records. So, you know, I started getting excited and , it just kind of evolved and, and everything came together really, really quickly and easily. I worked with a web development company here in Wisconsin. They're really great to work with. And , things just started to fall into place. And, and, you know, here we are 2021 and, and the platform is

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Yeah. Yeah. I'm glad you brought that up. I almost forgot about that. That , and that was one thing that I did, I want, do want to talk about because, you know, I talked to , Laurie wander Lich a couple of weeks ago. She's on the board board of directors for territory five, and she's also involved with , Garden state Appaloosa association. And she said, we're kind of bad about not tooting our own horn. And like, I was always telling her, I said, we have a rodeo club right down the road from us. And when we know that there's something going on at the rodeo club is when we drive by and see something going on at the rodeo club. Now they do have a marquee sign out there. and they'll put stuff out there every once in awhile. But. You know, I, and I guess if we were part of the rodeo club, we might have a little bit more information, but for these regional clubs, you know, this would be an awesome thing for them. You know, a, they could keep track of the horses within the region. If that's something they want to do, but B they could be posting online when their events were in, where they were and all that. And. People who don't know about. I'm just, like you said, you had an event going on right down the road from you that you never knew anything about. You know, people can go on there and going back to what we were saying before about the SEO juice. Now searchable, you know, so it should start popping. You know, when people do a search horse shows in my area, it should start popping up. Doesn't mean that they have to actually be on the platform. I mean, obviously you want them on the platform, they're horse people, but w might help it might help get two birds with one stone on that one. So , Yeah. I'm glad you like,

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah. And

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

ahead.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

yeah, along those lines, a lot of the local , clubs are nonprofit and , any nonprofit, whether it's a therapeutic riding center, a horse rehabilitation or any kind of , venue, event venue, any non-profit is free on the horse net, no

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

okay. Well, and then also, I mean, it'd be great if the regional clubs got on there, but. If there's a member of the regional club, they can still post it if they have the business account. So, you know, if you're the secretary of regional club and you've got an account, you can be posting for the regional club, so you can still be helping them out in that respect, but it be kind of cool. They got on there too. And then the cool thing is we, we were kind of talking about this offline is if you have your performance records on there, and I know. I've talked to , Carrie Lowery. She's won the Appaloosa distance horse , championship couple times two or three times. Actually last year she won the whole thing, whole kit and caboodle. She'd be all, Arabians, all have rabies, everything, everybody. But she was saying that one of the, her hardest things with the PHC is you have to mail in all your distance, your records. And sometimes it can take a while to get, you know, add it in. Well, it would be great if with this app, you can put your stuff on there and then you can just shoot it over to them and they can just pull it straight off and not have to worry about that. Of course, that means we got to get a PHC office to climb on board with that. And that, that might be the issue we we've been.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Oh,

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

We've been bugging him for awhile about doing more stuff online and there's been a lot of pushback. So, you know, most of the members are like, yes, please. Yes, please. But if we can find a way of making it easier for them, Hey, we might be good.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

You know , APH has a really great new website. It looks pretty good. Maybe things are kind of going in that direction. And I will say in this day and age, With the technology that we have. And , I have a little bit of a technology background and I also have a healthcare background. So I see all of these really robust services in the healthcare industry. And there are different solutions that we could really, really, you know, make. Interfaces, if you will, between different systems now that you know, the technology wasn't there five years ago, but it is now. So I'm, I'm really looking forward to once I have some more members and have more people using the horse net to having an interface with the different breed associations and, you know, providing different ways for people to track their riding and, you know, different incentive programs and things like

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Yeah, I'm trying to think of what is that. There's a software out there that all it's designed to do is. Between different software platforms. And I know, I know juice pills and stuff like that, but , that was a lot of the different sales stuff that they put. Do you. Don't communicate. So you got to have the middle the level, but yeah, like you said, there's so much technology out there now is getting to where there shouldn't be an excuse to where they cannot do that kind of thing. I think sometimes it's the people. You know, you know, people, people don't like to change. They don't, you know, that's just a fact, that's the way we are. So, but yeah. Well, thank you. Ma'am is there anything that we didn't cover that. you want to cover? And then I forgot about like, go ahead.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Well, I do, I do have one thing. So Tony, I'm so excited to be here. I created a coupon code, so people who are listening or watching this podcast can type in API 2021. That's a P P Y. 2 0 2, 1 into the coupon code and receive a 20% discount for their first annual membership. So we didn't talk about prices. I'm excited to give this 20% off a regular membership fee, which is not a business, but a regular membership fee is a $27 a year regularly. So the 20% off would give you $4 off. It comes down to about $23 a year. It's less than $2 a month guys. You know, it, it it's, it's designed to be affordable. And then the 20% off of the business membership, the business membership is typically $97 a year. The 20% off tastes it down to about $80. So. I'm hoping that that's encouraging to some people to give it a try , the platforms out there and Hey, I'm here to help if there's businesses or people or clubs that want to get started, reach out to me and let me know. You can reach out to me on the force net.com and if there's any non-profit clubs, reach out to me directly and I'll make sure that your membership is free.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

You say nonprofits because that would probably be regional club because they're considered, I would assume. Let's back up a little bit difference the individual or the differences between steps

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah, all of the health and , health records is the same. The access to the marketplace is the same. only thing that's different is that a business will have the online presence for their website and they can post events and, you know, A lot of us are thinking of horse show, but a barn or a riding stable could even post an event. That's an open house to attract new business. So, you know, any kind of business , even , attack store could have, you know, a sale that they post. So those are the two differences, the, the events and also the , online

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

oh, yeah. There's, I'm sure there's probably other things that other people are thinking, but yeah. I mean, if you're having a trail ride, you could post that , you know, as an event or,

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

you know, I mean, if you're a lesson barn fact that you give lessons, you can post that as an event, you know, or summer camps. I know a lot of. Training barn or not train barns, but Lez and barns are probably getting ready to do summer camps this year and stuff like that. So, Yeah. there's man, there's so many different ways you can go with that, but.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

And, you know, it really helps people who would otherwise maybe not know how to get into the horse industry. It helps them find us. I did realize as hearing, I decided that I wanted to do driving, for example , with my horse, I don't know that I find the driving club and, and get in touch with them. I mean, that would be very difficult to try to do so, you know, I'm hoping that with having the free online presence , for non-profit clubs, it's easier to get more people gauged. And you know, the more people that are in the horse industry, the more people are buying and , you know, Going to buy him horses, going to events and , you know, it's good for the industry. It's good for breeders trainers , event venues and

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Yeah, yeah. I agree. Yeah. I would probably have to agree with you about the driving now. Like I recently found out because I talked to somebody. Here a little while back that does Western massage. There is actually a Western massage club in Oklahoma. Had I not talked to that person? I wouldn't have Googled it and I wouldn't have found it, but I'd actually, they have a Western dressage in Oklahoma, which is kind of surprising, but in a way it's kind of not. So that Nash. The web can get in there and play around and kind of works and all that

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

you're breaking up just a little bit. Tony, can you say that

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

free to where you can get on and learn, work and idea. If that's something.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah. Yeah, there are some free areas. If there's a free membership that people can just go ahead and sign up, it doesn't have any horse records, but it does give them the opportunity to post some things for free on the marketplace. And , it also, you know, gives them the chance to kind of understand how the site will behave and how it can

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Okay. So , what I was about to say is anybody at nationals will be there at nationals. If they want to come by and look at it. I can pull it up on my computer and walk them through it and show them around and all that. If you want to get into it before then, because obviously that's a month away. Just contact me, Appaloosa podcast.com, hit me an email or whatever, and I can do a screen share and walk people through it. So that's, that's not a big deal, but I, I think you got something great here. I truly hope that it. Takes off. I think, you know, there are other software out there that help you manage records and all that, but they're very expensive. I think they're expensive.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Yeah,

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

as robust as this. It's been a while since I've played around with them. A lot of them. didn't have the online mobile capabilities that you have. So Yeah, I think you got something really good going on here. And we'll do what we can to help you with it. We'll get the word out there and hopefully other people will kind of get onto it also.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

well, I appreciate that. And, and I agree with your sentiment, you know, if there was a solution that I felt was affordable to me and was, you know, doing a really great job, I wouldn't have created my own. So, you know, a lot of the, a lot of the other ones out there, they limit the number of horses. You can look, I don't limit it, you know? They, they also have , Different levels of membership where, you know, maybe you get the basic records or maybe you get the performance records, but not the health. I have it all there. Just one, one membership. It's supposed to be easy guys.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

Okay. Well, thank you. Ma'am I appreciate it. Thanks everybody for watching and for listening. again, if you have any questions, oh, how can they get ahold of you, I guess , info@thehorsenet.com. Is that correct? Or is it.

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Offered office@thehorsenet.com. Yeah. Or there's a contact me form on the horse net. Reach out to me that way. And I'm also on Facebook. So you can reach out to me on Facebook, which is the horse net.com.

Tony Bottoms Audio 1:

And it last resort. If anybody needs to get ahold of me, tony@appaloosamedia.com or. Appaloosa podcast.com. You can go on our website there and there's a contact me, you can leave me a voicemail. There's a little in the bottom. Right-hand corner is a little microphone. You can hit that and leave a voicemail. so way , well thank you. Ma'am I appreciate it. And having a happy day,

Marsha Martin Audio 1:

Hey, thanks Tony. Have a happy day too. Bye.