#mumpreneurstories is a series of interviews by mumpreneurs who share their journey to inspire and encourage others mums to live their dream. There is a lot we can learn from each other :) #mumpreneursquad
1. Tell us a bit about your family
Hi! Our crazy little family consists of myself, two little bean shoots Willow (3) and Barnaby (1) and my husband, David. A wholesome military man with the patience of a saint. We currently live in Putney, shortly moving to Colchester and then finally to the New Forest. Phew!
2. How did you come up with the idea of creating your own brand Family Rule?
When I was pregnant with our first I made a very crude height chart using a plank, some stickers and a sharpie pen as a gift for my husband. Over time I made them for friends who had babies, christenings etc. I started to develop my skills and designs and thought (to myself at first) I would enjoy building this into a brand. I still have the ‘original’ Family Rule in our hallway - it reminds me of just how far we’ve come.
3. What do you wish you'd known when you started Family Rule?
That shipping would be such a big part of the process. They are not the easiest of items to have delivered (they are 1.8m long!) and this adds to the cost which irks me…and my customers. I’m always looking to improve this and have just managed to secure a £5 reduction with a new courier which is awesome!
4. How do you handle the production process? Are you producing them yourself or externally?
As the brand has grown this is the part that has evolved the most/fastest. It is central to the companies ethos that it remains family orientated, sustainable and collaborative. I now source all my wood from a wonderful timber yard in the New Forest who have the same ethic as we do. I have also started to utilise the creative skills of local mums who come and help with the hand painting a few days each week. It works completely around their family schedules/commitments and means I get the help I need as well as an excuse for some ‘grown up’ company.
5. What do you think is the best marketing strategy to get your products out there? Which channels (website, marketplace, social media, etc) are the most effective?
Advocacy and word-of-mouth are incredibly powerful. They help to build trust in your products, their quality and brand credibility. Especially when first starting out. I’m lucky to have wonderful support through both Facebook & Instagram where I currently focus most of my marketing efforts.
6. On which channels do you get the most orders and why?
All orders, at the moment, come through our own brand website. Mostly driven from social posts or web searches.
7. What are your plans for advancing your brand? For example, are you planning to add any further products?
We are all about ‘growing’ so continuing to grow Family Rule is certainly the plan. I also have something new coming soon for all those creative people who feel they could make their own height chart. Watch this space!
8. How does a typical day in your life look like? How do you balance being a mum and having your own business?
Most of my days are as random as my toddler's tantrums! I try to get some work done (if not painting then business admin) in the mornings so I can do something fun in the afternoon with the kids. I then often come back to painting at night after the kids have gone to bed.
9. What advice would you give to a mum when dreaming of her own business?
Go for it! Don't be afraid of beginning…that’s the best bit. Find what resources you feel you will need and just get started. There’s no other way it will happen.
10. Thank you so much for your insights! Is there anything else you would like to share with us? ;-)
Yes, please! All our ruler height charts are hand stained, painted and personalised. They make wonderful New Baby, Birthday, 5th Anniversary (wood!), Christening and Teacher gifts. Come check us out www.familyrule.co.uk or @thefamilyrule on IG. I’d love to know what you think!