This week we interviewed Dr. Yvonne Bohn, co-founder of Mommi.
What is your business?
Mommi. It’s a company that makes nutritional products for mothers, in all stages of their journey: trying to conceive, currently pregnant, or breastfeeding. We sell a prenatal vitamin shake to promote a healthy mother and baby. I was really interested in helping pregnant women discover a product that would help them avoid excessive weight gain and possible gestational diabetes, because I saw that so often in my patients. The protein component of the Mommi shake was important because most pregnant women over-consume carbohydrates and don’t get enough protein. Adding the prenatal vitamin to the formula made everything come together, as an all-inclusive supplement I was excited to offer my patients and women everywhere.
What sets you apart from your competition?
Typically, prenatal vitamins come in pill form. They are usually big horse-pills that are hard to swallow and keep down, especially in the early stages of pregnancy when mothers tend to be sick. Instead, our prenatal vitamins come in the form of a healthy and delicious protein shake that is much easier to take.
How long have you been in business?
We started in the fall of 2013.
How many employees do you have (or is it just you)?
Currently, Mommi has 5 employees and a lot of partners outside the company.
What’s your favorite thing about owning a business?
Knowing that you can make something of it on your own. What happens with your business and its success is based on you and your decisions. it’s really a creative process as well as business process. Everyday is a learning experience. It’s both terrifying and fun having the ability to own it and be creative.
As a physician you may feel limited in what you do, either being confined to an office or hospital. By starting a business it allows you to apply your knowledge and years in clinical practice to something greater. It allows you to impact the lives and health of many more people that you could ever reach in an office or clinic. It also allows you to do something creative and different which helps prevent physician burn-out.
What’s the hardest thing about owning a business?
Marketing. Figuring out how to appeal to our target users can be tricky. Ensuring that you reach people at the right time and in the right place is often overwhelming because there are so many marketing options to choose from.
Why did you decide to start your own business?
I wanted to find an alternative for my patients besides the prenatal vitamin pill. Many expectant mothers weren’t taking vitamins because it made them gag and feel sick. I needed to come up with an alternative to help my patients and their babies stay healthy.
What advice would you give someone looking to start up their own business?
Just go for it! There will always be an excuse for why it isn’t the right time, or why you aren’t ready, etc. At the end of the day, you’ll make lots of big decisions and might as well get started with the process. Things will never be perfect, so now is as good of a time as any to get started. Business owners really learn as they go.
What is your secret sauce for success?
Staying passionate about what we’re doing here at Mommi, and doing something that we feel excited about everyday. If you feel like what you’re doing is mundane and you’re tired of it, it’s time to find new motivation. You need to be excited about it and not just work for a paycheck. Instead, know that you’re doing something meaningful, and that makes the difference for your success.
We hope that Dr. Bohn’s answers are helpful to all of you small business owners and entrepreneurs. Don’t forget to check out her website before you go!
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