One Year On...
As I approach one year since the launch of my business, I wanted to give an update on what has been going on for the past year and what my plans are moving forward. A lot has happened in the past year and I am very grateful for the growth and reception received over the year. The learning curve is steep and I hope to apply much of what I have learned in Year 1 to improve and grow into the coming year.
I launched my business on March 5th last year. I had a modest website and about 50 bottles of two different products each. I announced my launch on social media; primarily on Facebook and Instagram; where I felt I could have the most outreach. I inaugurated my launch with a blog post about my decision to start the business and what I hope to accomplish with this business. The launch was an opportunity to put myself and my business out there to the public and gauge the reception. I was very excited, and safe to say, I was not disappointed. Sales did not skyrocket from the first day, but the response overall was encouraging and heartwarming.
This Past Year
At this point, I had already sought out wholesalers to sell my product a couple of months before the launch. Fortunately, two local shops expressed interest and decided to put my products on their shelves. In the meantime, as we approached the month of Ramadan and local events would be taking place. I decided to attend a couple of events so people could see who I was in person, and so that I can meet people and hear first hand what they thought of the products. Meanwhile, through family and friends, I was able to sell my first batch of honey and some of the black seed oil within a couple of months.
During Ramadan, I attended two local events and the response was very positive. One of the events I attended was Chaand Raat at a local mosque, and the reception was very warm and encouraging. Meanwhile, in the wholesale department, things were moving; but very slowly. At this point, three stores carried our products and were slowly but surely selling them. In July, not long after Ramadan, we incorporated our third product, black seed oil capsules.
In late August, I worked on improving the quality and content of my website and migrated to a new version of the site on August 24th. We also decided to pivot a little bit with our content and spice up our website with a travel blog, Pasha’s Trade Routes. Tying in our international business with international travel was a good way to incorporate my travels with my business. We wanted to keep you interested and so in between the occasional blog post or product shot, I wanted to also talk about where I travel and what inspires me to sell the types of products I sell and from where I source them. So, with the launch of the website, we also launched our travel blog, Pasha’s Trade Routes. With upcoming trips to Spain and Egypt, we thought this would be a great opportunity to launch the blog. So far, we’ve written extensively on our trip to Spain in several blog posts. Within the coming weeks, we will be launching a couple of posts about our trip to Egypt back in January.
As time went by, sales were steady but slow. Getting the word out can be difficult. Despite this, the business was moving in the right direction. Brand awareness was growing, and people were slowly getting more and more familiar with Pasha International. In December, we ramped up our wholesale to now include six stores! This was a major boost to our brand and our overall sales.
Now, as I approach the new year, I look to continue this growth. As we increase brand awareness, we hope to increase our orders both online and wholesale. I am working on a major rebranding effort and an online marketing campaign for the new year.
Additionally, I plan to do more traveling locally to achieve a wider network of wholesalers. Along with this, I am planning on attending a number of events this spring and summer to create awareness and meet customers face to face. I will announce these events as they approach.
Lastly, in the next couple of months, I am looking to incorporate a new line of products coming in from Turkey! Stay tuned and we will announce it as they arrive. We are very excited to be expanding, not just our product line, but our categories of products that we are now selling. This will be our second country of import and we are very excited to be diversifying.
Your continued support is what allows this business to keep going. We are looking to partner up with other mutually-interested businesses, personalities, and startups to continue the growth of our brand. We are immensely grateful to our family and friends who have stood by us and helped us this past year. We are also, of course, grateful to our customers and to everyone else who has contributed to the success of our business in the past year.
If you are interested in working with us on any capacity, please feel free to reach out to us at any time! We look forward to hearing from you.
Also, don’t forget to reach out and let us know what you think of us, and what we can do to serve you better!
Onto the New Year with greater success insha’Allah! 😊