Business & Finance
Entrepreneur Magazine

Entrepreneur Magazine January/February 2019

Entrepreneur magazine is the trusted source for growing your business and offers surefire strategies for success. Whether you are just thinking of starting a business, have taken the first steps, or already own a business, Entrepreneur offers the best advice on running your own company

United States
Entrepreneur Media Inc.
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12 Issues

in this issue

7 min.
birchbox’s next act

In 2010, Katia Beauchamp changed the face of the beauty business. With cofounder Hayley Barna, she launched Birchbox, sending monthly boxes of beauty samples to customers who paid a small fee to try the industry’s latest products. More than a million subscribers signed up, and Birchbox expanded into men’s products as well as retail, launching multiple pop-up shops and opening stores in New York and Paris. But after six years, the industry changed. The subscription-box model felt more tired than novel, and some Birchbox customers complained about receiving products that didn’t suit their lifestyle. The company struggled to raise expansion capital and endured two rounds of layoffs. Beauchamp reportedly searched for buyers (Walmart was rumored to be one) to no avail. Still, the company maintained a valuable, growing base and in…

2 min.
cut costs without cutting staff

1/ Learn something new. “I love to work with other creative professionals who are excited about the brand and are willing to collaborate within my budget, but I’ve also found that educating myself has helped cut costs tremendously. I take advantage of online learning resources such as Skillshare and Lynda.com to brush up on design techniques and other areas of my business.” —VICTORIA ASHLEY, founder and CEO, Laundry Day 2/ Spend smarter. “When we have had to cut costs, we went line item by line item in our P&L and cut anything that wasn’t necessary. We cut marketing spend with more than a nine-month payback, unnecessary travel, and legal expenses where we could, and we downsized our office and moved into a WeWork, which turned out to be cost-saving and something our team loves.” —LINDSEY…

2 min.
inside bumble

BUMBLE’S GOT good buzz. The dating app—which gives women the power to make the first move—launched in 2014 and has since expanded to help users meet new friends and make professional connections, too. CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd originally worked at Tinder but left and alleged that its cofounders engaged in sexual harassment and discrimination. She in turn created Bumble, a company obsessively focused on its culture. Its Austin, Tex., headquarters is known as the Beehive and promotes a cheery sense of community, bolstered by sunshine-yellow walls, playful decor (signs that say bee kind ), and plenty of happy hours, volunteer sessions, and even some parades. CAITLIN SULLIVAN/ Senior manager, people and culture “For reviews, every employee comes up with a proposal for how their responsibilities, compensation, and title should change based on…

3 min.
doctors’ orders

Paris Sabo was a California breast-cancer surgeon who thought very little about toothpaste—until her toddler son started eating his. That got her wondering about how to make a natural paste. Her sister, dentist Pooneh Ramezani, had been thinking the same thing, because her patients kept asking for chemical-free products. So in 2013, the sisters set out to build Dr. Brite, an all-natural mouth-care brand. It wouldn’t be easy. The manufacturing industry was a mystery to them, and they hustled to build relationships with hesitant suppliers and vendors. Today, Dr. Brite products are sold nationwide, and in 2017 the cofounders won the Tory Burch Foundation’s pitch competition. Here’s how they got started. 1/ Start from scratch. Sabo made a homemade paste using natural ingredients purchased on Amazon. “My son could eat it all…

2 min.
one size must fit all

As eco-minded residents of California, Farzan and Jennifer Dehmoubed were thrilled when the state banned single-use plastic bags in 2016. But soon their home was packed with a new kind of waste: heavy-duty totes that, despite their intended reusability, were often forgotten, susceptible to mold and bacteria, and ultimately destined for the landfill. The couple saw this as an opportunity and created the Lotus Trolley Bag, a compact set of four machine-washable, mold-resistant grocery bags that hang inside a shopping cart, suspended by rods that help you easily move items from cart to car to home. Then came the big question: What size does it need to be to fit inside most carts? The couple thought the answer would be easy; they visited their local grocer, Ralphs, to measure carts. But…

3 min.
finding the right customer

Chad Laurans was convinced he’d made the perfect product for the perfect customer. He’d done his research, refined his marketing, launched a home security company called SimpliSafe with high expectations—and then was promptly disappointed. “Things were going pretty slowly,” he says. “It felt like we were headed toward this middling outcome where we could spend years and maybe decades and not have much to show for it.” To save his business, Laurans began asking himself a difficult question: Did I build the wrong product, or target the wrong customer? It’s a puzzle many entrepreneurs face as their businesses evolve, and as they seek what investor Marc Andreessen famously calls “product-market fit”—that is, the right product for a good market. Entrepreneurs may think they know the answer, but until they launch, they…