Most of you don't know what goes on behind the scenes of a small business. There's a lot of hustle and courage - and there's also a TON of learning. Once a business reaches its limits of the owners knowledge, the owner is faced with a decision. Do I continue on with what I'm doing? Or do I push forward into new territory? In my case, I've decided to push forward into new territory. What that means for me is a lot more school!
I know school is not for a lot of people - I happen to be one of the crazy people that LOVE it. If I could get paid to just learn stuff, I totally would (providing of course it was in the subjects I enjoy...as in anything but math), but I digress. For me, that schooling has taken shape in Marie Forleo's B-School. It's an online business school devoted entirely to the creative entrepreneur, like me, who is looking to push their business to the next level "to create a business and life that you love." Its essentially all the meat of what you would get in obtaining an MBA, but without any general knowledge courses - Marie gets straight to the gut of what I need to know to get my business to where I want it to be. There are of course many more things you'd learn in an MBA that you don't in this program (so I'm completely NOT bashing MBAs...they are completely awesome and if I had money/time/ability to do so I'd get my second masters in business) - but it IS exactly what I need to help me streamline my processes, brand my business in a way that actually targets who I want to target (and makes sense), and gives me the necessary steps to push forward into that new territory I was talking about.
I actually started B-School in 2014. The results of which are the website you're reading this on, new logos and a better idea of who it is I think would like what we create and sell. We've since updated our packaging (and continue to do so) and we're working to get an actual newsletter out to all of our adoring fans. The blog itself has been quite an undertaking for me as I am a rather private person who would not consider herself a "writer" and yet I write every day. The first round of B-School taught me what was possible and that I'm only limited by my own creativity and willingness to learn and make mistakes.
This round of B-School (once you purchase the program, you are in it for LIFE!!) things have taken yet another turn for the better. While Lala Land has served us well, we have found that the name itself confuses a lot of our target audience. We do market to children, however our main goal is their mama's! Kids don't buy soap after all, their mama's do! We want to highlight more about WHY we started this business in the first place, and how that's changed and grown over time. We are committed to providing cruelty free, handcrafted artisanal products - for us that means all of our products are vegan (slathering animal fat all over your body does NOT sound appealing to me either) and we put a lot of time, care and attention into each product we make and choose to sell. Any of our outside artists are local to Virginia and also put the same care and attention into their products. We also like to use ecofriendly materials and packaging and encourage you to reuse the bottles and jars that we package our scrubs, creams and butters in. These are all things that I can share in person when people visit us at shows - but it doesn't currently show any of that in our online presence. We want to ensure our customers know who we are as people, why we do what we do, and how much care we place in each of our products.
So what does all this mean? It means that Lala Land is going to become a separate brand encompassing all of our children's products. The bath monsters, SOAPer Heroes, Children's Books, and the art prints will all stay under Adventures in Lala Land as a kid friendly brand (we may even create a whole line of soaps just for kids!). While the remaining products will be under a new umbrella, PeachesNGrapes. This isn't going to happen overnight - in fact, we're not planning on making the switch until 2016 - and all of our products will still be as awesome as always. What this gives us the opportunity to do, is to reach out to more people who need a little happiness in their life. It will also give us an opportunity to find more amazing handcrafted, eco-friendly and local artisans to show off to you! That means we'll have even MORE awesome and MORE things for you to get excited about.
All of this is still in the brainstorming phase - and yet I wanted to make sure that our fans know what's ahead for Lala Land. We care about you and want you to be happy!
If you have ANY questions whatsoever about this process or about our products - let us know! We'd love to chat about any concerns you have. Just reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org