Did you know that four of the most commonly used companies by women today — Uber, Pinterest, Airbnb, and Venmo — were all started during the 2008 recession? While we all sit at home practicing social distancing, this could be the opportune time for you to get started on that big business idea you’ve been thinking about, especially if it’s in the health and wellness industry. As a woman currently building her own brand in this space, Empress, I gathered my thoughts and outlined tips for starting your own health and wellness brand so you can take this time to make your dreams a reality as well.
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We live in a world where social media can be used to our benefit for not only our personal brand but also physical products. Make sure that whatever product you want to create in the health and wellness space, speaks to your personal brand — who you are and what you are passionate about. If your expertise is in fitness, as a model or coach, it makes the most sense for your brand to be in that area. Consumers care about who’s behind the product and when that person is authentic and true to themselves, it basically sells itself. Because at the end of the day, you have to come across as genuine, and you will when you actually have a passion for what you’re selling.
Do Your Research
I cannot stress this enough! Know the ins and outs of everything to do with your new brand. This means you should have a full analysis of all of your competitors. Know their price points, their selling points, and above all else — their weaknesses! You want to show the world why your product is superior, even if your main differentiator is yourself.
You also need to research the science behind your product, since this is health and wellness, as investors will definitely ask why your product is beneficial. If you plan on having a title of founder or CEO, then you’ll likely be engaged in public speaking too and will be expected to give detailed answers about your work, so know your stuff!
Maintain Quality Control
This is probably the most important tip. In the health and wellness space, there are so many frauds and you don’t want to accidentally be one of them. Don’t cut corners with your input ingredients or use cheaper alternatives that have impure additives. It’s not enough to care about the quality yourself. Make sure your suppliers do too, especially if you are manufacturing overseas. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you don’t understand what the ingredients are. It’s better to be safe than sorry. We owe it to our fellow sisters out there to deliver a quality product.
Assemble Your Team
Think you can do it all on your own? Well, you don’t have to. Running a start-up company takes way more work than you might think. Whatever amount of time you think it’ll take you to get this product into market, double if not triple that. You also have a specific set of skills that are unique to you and you’ll likely need to call in help from people that are skilled in other areas to compliment yours.
There’s no shame in asking for help from others, and you’ll scale a lot faster if you have a team to help you. This doesn’t have to mean splitting the company with someone else. It can be that you just find a good mentor or advisor who gets a bit of equity in exchange for helping you grow the company. Pro tip: look for people who have done this before!
Don’t Give Up
It is so hard to build a company. Trust me, I am faced with challenges everyday while building Empress and sometimes I feel like giving up. But the key is…I don’t! Don’t give up when it gets hard. The obstacle is the way! You might find out that there is a competitor launching a similar product at the same time, or that there is already a comparable product in the market. That’s okay. It just means that you’re on the right path because there is already a market for it.
When it feels like everything couldn’t get any worse, that’s the universe testing you to see how much you trust the process. Growth happens when we face our fears and step into the darkness, not knowing where we will end up. You’ll find that as soon as you walk through that dark doorway, there is a light switch on the wall next to you. It’s up to you to find it and turn it on.
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