From Innovative Idea to Thriving Business: How One Woman Is Taking Her Industry by Storm (And You Can, Too)

Small Business & Entrepreneurship

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  • t From Innovative Idea to Thriving Business: How One Woman Is Taking Her Industry 
 by Storm (And You Can, Too)
  • Steeped in tradition, the wedding industry
 is not an area of enterprise we typically associate with cutting-edge innovation.
  • However, sometimes it’s the areas that you least expect that are primed for innovation. (Perfect example: Uber taking on the taxi industry.)
  • Meet Jen Glantz After being asked to join the bridal 
 party in more than a dozen weddings, Glantz had witnessed every bridal meltdown imaginable. This experience earned her more than just the nickname "the professional bridesmaid" though, 
 it gave her a business idea.
  • On a whim, Glantz posted an ad on Craigslist offering her services as a professional bridesmaid, and within 48 hours hundreds of brides from around 
 the world emailed her to inquire. Just like that, Bridesmaid for Hire was born.
  • – 4 – While more than 2 million brides walk down the aisle each year in the U.S., Glantz noticed that no one was focused on helping them through their important day. “The bride’s friends are busy getting ready and wedding planners are there to focus on the venue; there isn’t anyone there to give emotional support to the bride," 
 Glantz says.
  • Make It Happen: Don’t be afraid to focus on an idea no one else has tried — it just might mean you have a good one on your hands. Test the waters by sharing your idea with a few friends, or like Glantz, creating an ad for it and taking note of the response. 1TWEET THIS TAKEAWAY
  • Success is rarely instantaneous, and Glantz kept that in mind while jump-starting Bridesmaid for Hire. While she had a lot of inquires at first, it took two months after her initial Craigslist ad to book her first wedding. Sometimes there is a demand for your product or service but your potential customers may not need it right away. 8
  • Make It Happen: Be patient — you might not know within the first 90 days if your business is going to succeed — give it at least nine months instead. Glantz says she knew her idea was going to work right after her first wedding. “I remember sitting on the plane ride home thinking, ‘Wow, there is such a need for 
 this business,’” she recalls. 2TWEET THIS TAKEAWAY
  • – 4 – Even though Glantz knew 
 she was onto something, 
 she still worried, like many entrepreneurs, that her 
 business wouldn’t be a success. She conquered 
 her fears by being open to change and evolving her 
 core offerings as needed as 
 her business grew.
  • Make It Happen: “Take steps to launch your product or business now, and then revise and refine as you go,” Glantz says. You don’t need to have all the answers on day one, especially if your product or service is new to the market. 3TWEET THIS TAKEAWAY
  • – 4 – Part of Glantz’s refinement process involved not investing a ton of time and money into her business before being sure it was going to work. Instead, Glantz got her business off the ground through ads on Craigslist and building her own website.
  • Make It Happen: Start with small investments that won’t strain you financially while you work to improve your product or service. The less you have invested up front, the easier it will be to make changes based on customer and market feedback. Focus on creating an exceptional customer experience before putting time and money into bells and whistles. 4TWEET THIS TAKEAWAY
  • After working with several bridal parties and paying attention to what brides and their friends really needed, Glantz started offering add-on services such as: Undercover Bridesmaid, a package that offers behind-the-scenes help How to Not Hate Your Wedding, a more hands-on, 50-step guide, filled with tips and tricks on how to eliminate unneeded wedding stress, confusion and overall anxiety about your big day. Whenever she notices another gap in supporting brides, she aims to find a way to fill it.
  • Make It Happen: Innovation feeds on itself, so when you notice your 
 first unique concept taking off, continue to think about 
 even more ways to expand upon it. 5TWEET THIS TAKEAWAY