Here at Bannor Toys we truly believe in small businesses doing big things! Each Monday we will give you the chance to get to know one of our favorites. Today we would like to introduce you to Nicole of Honey Bee True Co. We've all heard about the mama hustle, but we think Nicole invented it! With every single piece painted by hand, you can feel the love in Nicole's products. Everyone please say hello to Nicole of Honey Bee True Co...
Who's in your family: Myself and my son Beez.
Favorite way to spend your free time: Playing with Beez and watching him learn new things.
Age when you started your business: 29
Tell us about your business in 3 sentences: Honey Bee True Co was built as an escape from my day job but with the amount of love and passion put into HBT it became a full time job. Drawing inspiration from daily life and with the support of family and friends I am able to keep it going two years later. It means a lot to me that every garment cared for by me; processed, painted and shipped with love.
What made you start your business, what did you leave behind: Working opposite shifts as my (then) husband took hard toll on our family. I left behind a part time pharmacy technician job so I could stay home and grow my shop.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers/expanding your audience: Instagram was a much different world when I started. It was much easier to reach and engage with my audience. Since then I rely on other shop friends as well as forcing myself into markets for face to face exposure.
Single most important decision you've made for your business: Starting.
Something about you not many people know, business or personal: I do not screen print any of my work. In fact I do not know how to screen print. All work is done by hand.
If you could go back to the day your business started (whether it was intentional or by accident), and have 15min with your former self to communicate any lessons you've acquired with the intention of saving yourself mistakes and heart ache, what would you tell yourself? Start small. Too many options overwhelm and turn customers away. Make ordering as absolutely clear and easy as possible so there is no question what they are getting and what you are selling.
How did you distinguish yourself from your competitors? I am able to customize every order with my unique way of painting my work. I am also putting out new items and designs all the time not just for new seasons.
Best piece of advice you've gotten that you still follow? Stay true.
My favorite quotes is... The biggest lesson I have ever learned is… Nothing is forever so if it is worth it hold on for dear life.
My favorite business tool or resource is… Other business friends.
If I could go back in time 10 years ago I would tell myself… Don’t settle. Don’t give up on you.
Where can we find you?