Boss Lady

Lessons learned while building a women’s health business

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Launching a business in any economic environment is a monumental task. The energy and risk involved is great whether you begin as a lean startup or in capital campaign. Even if you have the perfect idea for a product or service, you will without a doubt run into road blocks right out of the gates.

These include things like worker turnover, possible barriers to entry, saturated markets, competing products or services and even things outside of your control like politics and economic landscapes. The current pandemic is an example of something outside of anyone’s control.

So, as you can see, starting a business and building it up takes time, dedication and patience. As the old saying goes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day”.

At Intimate Rose we have found that leading with empathy and providing value in educating current and potential customers has helped to steady our business and thankfully we are in a growth phase once again.

Our brand consists of products and solutions for highly sensitive women’s health issues. Due to the nature of the products, use of traditional marketing and social proof methods have simply not worked. There are many challenges in breaching taboo topics such as urinary incontinence and pain after gynecological cancer that have called upon our team to be creative and bold in order to get our message out.

We have found that once we opened the lines of communication, it sent a message to our customers that it is ok to ask questions and talk about their issues. This in turn has allowed for greater awareness and conversation about what our products can do to help. Where social “likes”, “shares”, and paid advertising has been challenging, word of mouth messaging and the use of private groups to allow for a safe space for our customers has been extremely helpful over time.

Here are some additional insights we have found in running a women’s health brand:

  1. Education and awareness are key

    When it comes to women’s health, there are many gaps in understanding. Additionally, there are many myths and false information that has been handed down generationally or through the internet. We have found that disseminating useful information in an easy to digest manner has helped our customers find solutions to their sensitive health issues through our brand. We have made it a priority to provide informative blog posts, videos, and social media posts for both our customers and health care providers to earn trust and gain footing as a thought leader in the women’s health space.

  2. Provide a story

    We have found that by sharing my story of injury and pelvic pain, we have been able to break down the barriers between brand and customer. As the face of the brand I have truly been the patient and the customer of my own brand. My own suffering lead to innovation and creation of the devices that we offer. Two years ago we placed my story on our website, offering up my own experiences as a “light at the end of the tunnel” to offer hope of complete resolution of pain.

  3. Empathy in customer service is key

    When you have customers writing or calling customer support in the women’s health space, many of them are experiencing emotional distress due to the sensitive nature of their issues. We have made it a priority to respond to our calls and emails with compassion. Some women come to customer service with questions that have not yet become a customer- some have even bought products from our competitors. We continue to help them and by providing sincere support, many become customers eventually.

Finally, the lessons we’ve learned may not apply exactly to your market but hopefully you’ve learned something from our journey and can take it and apply it to your business or startup. Just know that there’s no success blueprint, despite what Gurus tell you. We’ve gone through the pains of letting members of our team go, investing in products we thought would be a huge success only to discontinue them and had to weather storms outside of our control. However, our mission and focus on the customer has been the backbone and will continue to be.

About Amanda Olson

amandao@thebusinesswomanmedia.com'

Amanda Olson is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and the CMO of Intimate Rose, a women’s health com-pany helping women who suffer from from pelvic pain and other medical conditions.

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