Starting a supplement business is an exciting prospect, and smart planning is key to success. One of the pillars of a solid foundation is researching what’s worked for similar enterprises – and also learning from their mistakes. The following are eight of the most common errors and miscalculations made by new supplement brand owners (so that you can avoid making them yourself):
1. Not Clearly Identifying Your Target Customers
Being too diffuse in your marketing efforts is a common mistake made by all too many new vitamin and supplement companies. Every brand needs a niche and a target audience to set it apart from the competition. What is your passion? Which area of health and wellness to you want to contribute to with your products?
Specializing helps you to zero in on your target customer base. Some example target markets might be high-intensity interval trainers or middle-aged consumers looking to preserve health and quality of life. Other ways to create a niche might include being gluten-free, organic and/or vegan. From there, all the elements of your products, packaging and marketing can reflect your focus.
2. Cutting Corners on Visual Branding and Packaging
Another common mistake by vitamin and supplement companies is hiring an inexperienced family member, friend or other untested party to be your graphic designer. The result is often very amateur-ish packaging and marketing materials, which can be extremely off-putting to consumers. First impressions count, so don’t cut corners on your logo design, branding and packaging. Hire a professional writer for the text and make sure it is in compliance with all FDA rules and guidelines.
3. Being Unrealistic About Lead Times
Newcomers to the vitamin and supplement industry often underestimate how long the creation process and initial order manufacturing will take. For tablets and capsules, it can take around 10 weeks to receive your first order; powders can take up to 16 weeks. Check with your vitamin and supplement manufacturer for specific lead times for the products you will be making. Be sure to choose a manufacturer who is known for reliability as well as great communication throughout the process.
4. Not Asking the Right Questions of Supplement Manufacturers
Information is power, and not being well informed about the manufacturing process can set vitamin and supplement companies behind. Create a list of key questions to ask potential suppliers to ensure they will meet your needs without surprises.
5. Branding That’s TOO Edgy/Unique
While supplement companies want their products to stand out and make an impact, it is possible to be too different or trendy. While your branding should be modern and attractive, too much flash can be seem gimmicky and off-putting to consumers. If your ideas are too trendy, they could be out of style within a year.
6. Being Uninformed About FDA Regulations
Not following FDA rules can land vitamin and supplement companies in hot water and result in costly lawsuits. Educate yourself and become fully versed in all applicable laws related to the products you will be creating and offering. Your manufacturer should be able to offer information and advice related to these concerns and what language is allowable on your packaging.
7. Not Being Focused On Customer Service
Some vitamin and supplement company owners can become so involved in the logistical part of their business they push customer service considerations to the back burner. However, customer service is every bit as important as the quality of your product line. Create a solid plan for ensuring all of your customers will feel taken care of throughout every phase of the shopping and ordering process. Monitor customer responses in reviews and on social media. Address any concerns that come up immediately so that you will enjoy positive brand sentiment for years to come.
8. Being Too Focused on Cutting Costs When Choosing a Supplement Manufacturing Company
It’s understandable that entrepreneurs starting a supplement business are focused on their budgets and reducing costs wherever they can. However, when selecting a manufacturing partner, quality should be the primary consideration. Don’t skimp and settle for low-caliber results and customer service from unproven or untrustworthy manufacturers.
ABH Pharma can assist with the custom creation of high quality vitamins and supplements from scratch for health and wellness brands. We also offer premier customer support and assistance with packaging, marketing and every other phase of the process. Don’t settle for less!
You’ve had a vision of starting a supplement business, and there are some key things you should consider to ensure it is a success. One of the most effective steps you can take is researching other companies to learn from both their successes and failures.
These eight common mistakes made by vitamin and supplement companies have often led to the downfall of these businesses. Take a page from those who learned the hard way and avoid these potentially major missteps. ABH Pharma is ready to assist you in all of these areas and more. We’ve helped numerous startups just like yours to hit the ground running. We look forward to being your partner in success!