Pivoting Entrepreneur Series -with Sally Bunkham

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Pivoting Entrepreneurs blog series by Lucy Griffin-Stiff at Starting Conversations

Over the summer I’ve been chatting to business owners and entrepreneurs about how they’re pivoting and evolving their business and brands.

 

I know when most people my age hear the word “pivot”, they immediately picture that scene from “Friends” when Ross was trying to get the sofa up the stairs!

And perhaps pivoting your business can feel hard work like pushing a sofa up a stairwell. However, to make the “pivot” much smoother, working on your offer, positioning, difference, and message will set you up for success. And will mean you truly land your message with your audience.

In this series I’m sharing other people’s stories of how they’ve adapted or are in the process of adapting their business, brands, and message to “pivot”, grow and evolve.

This week I’m sharing Sally Bunkham’s story, Founder, and CEO of Mum’s Back.

Sally came up with the idea for Mum’s Back following two back to back pregnancies where she missed all the yummy stuff she wasn’t allowed to eat and drink. She founded her business based on the idea that mum’s should have a gift that celebrates and recognises them too, not just the baby.

I have to say I remember my first post-baby glass of Sauvignon Blanc really well. It was a few days after I’d had my daughter, we were back home and it tasted like nectar from the Gods! So I totally appreciate what Sally has started here!

 

Sally Bunkham, Founder & CEO Mum’s Back

 

 

“After my second baby was born I realised all the gifts I’d received as a new mum were focussed on the baby.

There was a gap in the market for something purely for the mum to recognise the crazy journey she’s been on.

I also wanted to create something that acknowledged that “I’m still Sally – here’s something for you”.

“I had a tough time with Post Natal Depression, adapting to motherhood was not that easy, so I also wanted to create a business that had a social aim at its heart too. Through my business, I support the PANDAS Foundation and raise as much awareness as I can for perinatal mental health conditions, because the business wouldn’t be what is without that at its heart.

When I started out I had just one type of hamper…it contained Rioja, cheese, pate, crackers, and chutney. I realised I needed to evolve more options fairly early on after listening to customer feedback asking – don’t you sell prosecco, Gin etc?

Adapting Quickly

Then I was pushed to expand my offering quite quickly when the opportunity came to partner with Not on the High Street (NOTHS). They loved what I was doing and they wanted me to produce more options of my hamper.

So I was quick to adapt to that.

As I’ve progressed on this journey I’ve realised that it’s not just new mums who need and deserve and hamper, all mums deserve a little bit of recognition at different times, different milestones and special moments.

So my latest pivot, which I’m working on now, is to offer Hampers to all mums, not just new mums.

Unashamedly all about Mums

It came about partly from feedback from Mum’s saying they’d love a hamper but they weren’t “allowed” one because they weren’t a new mum, and partly from my own experience of having two babies grow to age 3 and 4, and there are times when a bit of recognition, thanks, and a treat would be a nice thing to have. ( And well deserved too!)

So now I’m in the process of adapting my offer to cater for all mums, and I’ll be working on my brand and messaging so it’s not all about new mums anymore but about all mum’s, and the milestones and moments on the way.

Luckily Mums Back – can translate well to both new mums – getting back to themselves after having a baby and also to Mum’s “we’ve got your back” – Mum’s Back. So that part of the brand will stay the same.

But I will be working on messaging that speaks to all mothers, and the milestones and moments on their journey, so the message resonates with them and my new offers.”

Getting the message out there

Sally plans to start introducing her new positioning and message through a series of blogs and social media posts. Posts that mums can see themselves in and relate to. Connecting with those moments and milestone’s on a Mum’s journey that deserve celebrating, surviving, commiserating… whatever the occasion.

When chatting about the process of pivoting her brand Sally said

“At first when you start out in business the thought of pivoting is really scary. It can feel like your idea hasn’t worked. But that’s not true. Now I realise that all good businesses are pivoting all the time. “

“I started out super niche to keep it simple, with a very simple product offering and now I can see that by developing more product offers, and by getting the right message out there I can grow my audience and my business.”

So Sally will be adapting her core message from:

Providing gift boxes designed for new mums, full of all the yummy things they’ve not been allowed whilst pregnant

to something that is unashamedly all about Mums, the challenges, milestones and moments we experience and how that deserves a hamper!

Sally’s new messaging will enable her to “pivot” her offering from catering for only new mums to all mums.

I can’t wait to see how it turns out and look forward to reading more about it in her blog series.

Finally, I asked Sally if she had advice for other new business owners and entrepreneurs:

“I think it’s vital to keep experimenting,” said Sally.

“I think that’s where I may have gone slightly wrong in my first year. I should be experimenting more. Experimenting and testing the market gives you vital info. Don’t be scared of change!

“What keeps me going on my journey is definitely my social aim.  £1 from every hamper sold goes to PANDAS Foundation to support their mission helping families going through mental health issues.

I love the freedom it gives me. And I love the challenge as a mum. Childcare can be all-consuming, working on the business seems like a holiday compared to that for me!”

 

The best thing about what I do?

The freedom! And the creative license. I love being my own boss. I love the rollercoaster ride it gives me….I never know what is going to happen from one day to the next…it’s exciting!

You can find Mum’s Back and Sally via the links below and her website www.mumsback.com

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Lucy Griffin-Stiff - Starting ConversationsIf you are looking to grow or evolve your business and would like some support getting absolute clarity on your offer, positioning, difference and messaging – get in touch – and become the obvious choice to your ideal clients.

You can find Lucy Griffin-Stiff, Founder of Starting Conversations, on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn 

 

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