Monday, April 30, 2012

Spotlight on Mommy -- Laura Black, Creator of Baby Face Band

This week, I wanted to introduce to you to Laura Black, creator of the Baby Face Band, a personalized sippy cup ID label, designed with KIDS in mind.  With the Baby Face Band, you simply slide a photo of your child into the band opening, along with their name, making it easy for your little one to find their sippy cup

Head back here on Friday, when I will share my personal review of Laura's invention, and share a "2 for 1" coupon code, so that you can by Baby Face Band for your child(ren).  But, in meantime, please enjoy my interview with Laura.

Name: Laura Black
Company Name/Product/Service:  Baby Face Band
Company Location:  Birmingham, AL
Company Website:
Facebook URL:
Twitter Handle: @babyfaceband
Age of Company: First year
Favorite Inspirational Quotes:  Just do the next, right thing.
Favorite Book:  The Bible

Tell us a little bit about yourself.  How many children do you have?  What are their ages? Your hobbies? Etc.  

My husband, Bill, and I have been married for almost 15 years.  We have a 9 year old son, Will, an 8 year old daughter, Gracy, and a 4 year old daughter, Caroline.  I enjoy reading and writing.

Briefly explain your business.  How did it come about?  
I'll admit it.  I'm somewhat of germaphobe.  So imagine my reaction when I was helping out in the church nursery one day and constantly saw children picking up and drinking from someone else's sippy cup.  Ewwww!  Most of the cups were labeled with the child's name, but there was a problem -- kids can't read!  With three children of my own, I set out to stop the germ swap!  I wanted a sippy cup label that was mom AND kid friendly.  Kids can't read until they're almost finished with sippy cups, but they can recognize themselves in a photo between 12 and 15 months -- about the same time they start using a sippy cup.  Perfect.  I designed a label that had the child's photo and name on it: a patented silicone band with a plastic insert that allows the parent to customize the band.  Voila!  With my husband's help and business knowledge, Baby Face Band was born.

What is a typical work day like?  

Crazy!  We are still trying to figure things out and there's a lot of "trial by fire."  We feel like we've learned so much in just six months.  Most work days are spent trying to come up with new ways to market our product and get the word out about Baby Face Band.  I also spend my days contacting our retail partners and sales reps.  

What has been a struggle while starting up your company? 

Marketing!  My husband and I neither one have a marketing background.  We love our product and are excited about it.  However, it doesn't matter how great your product is if no one else knows about it.  We are constantly challenged to come up with new, different, and unique ways to market Baby Face Band.  Some of the traditional methods such as crazy-expensive trade shows have not worked as well as we would have hoped.  However, there are other low cost methods we have used that have been great.  It's amazing how  complicated some of the "simpler" marketing tools can be.  For example, did you know that Facebook uses algorithms to determine how many people see your status?  It can be confusing, but it's also fascinating and a lot of fun!

What did you do in your past work life?  

I was a lawyer and, later, a stay-at-home mom.

What have been some of your major successes?  

Every time we add a new retailer we feel like that is a major success!  Also, press has been great.  We also felt like we had hit a milestone when we sold our first 1,000 Baby Face Bands.

On those impossible days, what motivates you to keep going?  

I love what I do!  It's been so much fun to see an idea come out of my head and become a reality.  Also, it's fun to see other people's reactions to Baby Face Band.  When other people say things like, "Why didn't I think of that???" or "This is going to be huge!" it's incredibly motivating.  

What is your balancing secret in managing a business and family?  

Family first, business second.  It's just that simple.  Keeping that in mind, as long as I stay organized and disciplined, there is enough time for both.

What is next for your business?  

We would love to add new product lines!  But our primary goal is making Baby Face Band the premiere sippy cup label.  

Do you have any advice for other mom entrepreneurs that are starting out and struggling, or are on the fence about starting a business? 

If you're on the fence, don't do it!  You have to be incredibly dedicated to make a new business work.  It's so much harder than I ever imagined.  If I knew "then" what I know "now" I probably never would have started Baby Face Band because it would have seemed so overwhelming.  However, now that I'm into it, I love it and can't imagine doing anything else.  It really is incredibly rewarding.  Also, choose your timing carefully.  I had the idea for Baby Face Band in 2009, but at that time, I had a 2 year old, a 5 year old, and a 7 year old.  It just didn't make sense at the time for me to add a business onto an already full plate.  Now that my older children are in school full time and my younger child will start kindergarten next year, things have settled down enough to leave time for this business.  There are seasons in life.  You can do it all -- but not all at the same time!

1 comment :

  1. Sadly, Laura Black passed away on June 23, 2012, following a battle with breast cancer that lasted several years.