"The most important lesson from Metta Skincare – which I am still learning about – is about getting to know my customers as well as I possibly can to work out what they want and need."
What made you take the leap into starting your business producing natural skincare products?
I had always been passionate about natural, healthy living and so I spent several years researching natural and organic skin care formulations. It’s a fascinating science and art. I wanted to help other people experience the difference that all-natural beauty products can have on their skin. At the same time, I also wanted to create a business that was an experiment in change-making entrepreneurship: I was interested in finding out if it’s possible to found a successful enterprise like Metta Skincare that creates value whilst doing well for its stakeholders.
How did you get your business started?
I had wanted to do this for a long time. So, in early 2013, I gave myself a challenge: for the remainder of the year, I would do at least one thing every day towards turning Metta Skincare into a real business. As with every new project, the beginning is always the hardest. But after the first few months, a snowball effect took place and I began to see some real progress. I was motivated to do more. I soon found that I was doing much more than one thing a day. From there, it took me 6 months to have the business ready to launch.
What lessons have you learned so far on your business journey?
The most important lesson from Metta Skincare – which I am still learning about – is about getting to know my customers as well as I possibly can to work out what they want and need.
How important for you has it been to have a mentor?
I think it’s absolutely critical to have mentors when you’re starting up a new business like Metta Skincare. And, while it does help to have a mentor from the same industry as you, it’s also important to have mentors from different backgrounds. They can often give you a fresh perspective.
What are your top 3 tips for starting a business?
1 – Start with your ‘why’. If you are deeply passionate about what you’re doing, you will always find the strength to get through the challenges and scary amounts of hard work that are required to get a business off the ground.
2 – Surround yourself with supportive people. If entrepreneurship doesn’t run in your family or your closest circle of friends, be prepared for your idea to be met with a lot of skepticism. This is all the more reason why you should cultivate and nurture relationships with those who are willing to help you grow your business idea.
3 – Just start! So many entrepreneurs delay their launch until they are satisfied that their idea is perfect. You need to realise that you’ll constantly be looking for ways to improve your launch product. So, choose some must-have features, set a deadline for the launch and stick to it. Then your customers will help you decide what improvements are needed for version 2.0. That’s been my experience with Metta Skincare.
The websites that were most influential in your journey towards launching your business?
Website: Seth Godin
Reason: Seth Godin has been my go-to source for everything relating to project managing the launch of my business’s website, Metta Skincare. This has included his tips for marketing, building trust with my audience/customers, bootstrapping, and keeping the ‘lizard brain’ in check so that it didn’t derail the launch!
Website: Launch Grow Joy
Reason: I recently discovered the Launch Grow Joy Website and podcast, but I wish I’d known about them before I launched my business! They’ve got lots of valuable, relevant and easy-to-follow marketing tips for businesses with physical products.