Learn Quickly and Move On…
I sustain a small functional supplement company with my father. I really enjoy it as a past time. It has brought my father and I closer together and the effort I put into it is synergistic with the Live Life Love project and keeps my entrepreneurial spirit alive.
The rules my father and I have set further for the endeavor are that the project must remain fun and not interfere with our daily activities. We have given ourselves permission to change the rules come the day it takes off, but for now it’s just a hobby. As such, we wanted our first product to be fun… but also something people would use. I have discussed in previous posts that a good entrepreneur always looks for a problem to solve. I’m an athlete but I also enjoy the occasional beer. Athletic training the day after alcohol consumption is not enjoyable so we found our problem to solve.
Problem: Athletes that need to train the day after a celebratory event
Solution: Hangover Vitamin
A formula based on the latest scientific studies was put together and Function — the hangover cure was born. So we have our first product but now we need to get an audience. Standard entrepreneurial operating procedure when you have a product to promote is to go to the “water holes” that potential customers might be dwelling. You make nice with whoever is overseeing the watering hole’s activity and get permission to market to their audience. So that is exactly what I did. I researched and reached out to a few dozen influential beer and wine bloggers to offer free samples of Function in order to get some potential favorable buzz. I believe in the product and have gotten great feedback so why not?
The result: “Beat it!!!” I should have known better… The last thing operators of premium alcoholic beverage sites want to be associated with is one of the negative aspects of alcohol. I might as well have been offering discounted bail bonds for alcohol related offenses. In hindsight, why would any of these folks want to showcase one of the potential downsides of the products they are promoting… even if I am offering a solution?
Anyway, I am now searching for other watering holes to mingle in, but I thought since I am usually positioning myself as the knowledgeable entrepreneur, I expose this error in the hope that it helps someone else. Also, to highlight that along the entrepreneurial path there are always missteps. The key is to learn quickly from them and move on.