I recently met Amy at a mom event. She is the mom mind behind Big Bee, Little Bee. Talking to her was inspiring when we met up with our kids. She is a mompreneur who literally took an idea for her own child to make her life easier and began making it for other parents. She has two products currently – the Snow Angel and the Scrub-Bee, with more coming! I wanted to share her story because she is so awesome and also to inspire other moms who may be looking to do the same. Your path may not be what you thought it would be, but it doesn’t mean it doesn’t have meaning or is awesome just the same. For these aspiring mompreneurs, her story and advice is so appreciated.
Amy is from Long Island New York studied telecommunications at Pepperdine U who went onto getting Masters education and education administration in education going on to work as a special educator. Her interest aligns with her business in that she finds enjoyment in tinkering and inventing. Thus bringing her ideas to life is what she loves and does well.
Her daughter was 7-8 months old when she realized she wanted a cushion towel for bathing. A towel for that period when you are using the small tub, and trying to pull them out to dry, and then dress… She went to go find one and couldn’t find one – so she made one! She made one by hand. It fell apart in the wash and at the encouraging of her friend, she made another one! (Talk about encouragement among friends making an impact!) After playing with the towel shape, she determined that winged towels made better use of the material which allow for better drying. In addition, she made an adjustable hood on her towel so it could be used beyond the baby stage.
After making a towel for herself, she started making them for her friends. Then she decided to go bigger with the help of Google. Lots of google, lots of playing with keywords for searching. She found resources, fellow mompreneurs to ask questions of and eventually found her manufacturer. Perseverance is how it happened, and not overnight (actually from concept to Amazon it was under a year!).
Selling on Amazon initially was a testing platform. Selling to strangers versus her friends was a wonderful tool to see if her product would sell! She waited for the reviews to come in. While people weren’t leaving reviews, they weren’t returning the product either! Realizing that she was continuing to sell, she knew she had to find a manufacturer who could do larger batches. She went to industry trade shows to meet more people, to ask more questions and to make contacts within the community. And viola, a growing and flourishing company after many hours of months of work, time, research and money.
While Big Bee Little Bee started with the snow angel, the product sharing the name of the company is the Scrub-Bee (our personal fave). It took a little less than a year from concept to actual product as well, but she credits her perfectionism for how long it took – desiring to get the bristles to be soft. She has TWO new products coming out, and when those hit the market, we will be sure to share!
What about for those who want to start their own business? Amy reminded me that negativity is always out there, and the same is said of the business world and the world of children’s products, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. “Your passion has to be stronger than your fear” she said for those who want to start their own business. It isn’t easy starting a business – there will be financial and time constraints, negativity will be fed easier than positivity, but leaning on the passion will help through that period.
What about balancing parenthood with the business? Amy credits her flexible hours to being able to balance it all. Ultimately she loves being creative and having her daughter watch on making it easier to balance parenthood and business.
The bottom line: Mompreneuring isn’t for the lazy. It takes a lot of hard work, perservance, hours and questions. Encouragement from friends can go a long way.
Head over to our Instagram for a giveaway today from Big Bee, Little Bee in celebration of Month of the Military Child!