Adrienne Anderman of PiP PEA POP on selling out only three months after launching, and how she turned a frustration into a business
Describe your business in a few words?
PiP PEA POP is an ultra-practical, organic and sustainable baby apparel line that creates elevated essentials for a baby’s first year of life.
What made you take the leap to start your own business?
The idea to start PiP PEA POP came to me from a point of frustration and need; I found the early days of having my newborn son overwhelming. I couldn’t wrap my head around all the things that were needed for him and didn’t understand why something so simple, like dressing a baby, could be so complicated. I found that there was an overwhelming number of choices of clothing on the market, but I was equally disappointed with the options. As I talked to other parents, I found that most had the similar frustration as I did.
The leap actually happened though when I went back to work after having my son. I felt that if I was going to sacrifice time away from him, it would have to be for something I truly loved and felt passionate about – and that would be my own company. I built this business for my son and knew I had to do this for him.
What was your background prior to starting your own business?
Before launching PiP PEA POP, my background and professional experience was within branding and marketing. After working at a digital marketing agency for five years, I was the first employee at Function of Beauty; helping establish their brand, created their go-to-market strategy, built their digital footprint and marketing and customer service teams. Following that, I consulted as the Head of Marketing for numerous digitally-native direct-to-consumer brands. I have firsthand experience strategizing, planning and executing marketing efforts across multiple channels and industries, especially for digitally-native startups in the consumer space.
Take us back to when you first launched your business, what was your marketing strategy to get the word out and did it go as planned?
PiP PEA POP is built on the ethos of bringing parents joy and delivering families exactly what they need. The launch strategy was very much focused around community, events and live-activations. I was planning on launching in March of 2020, but of course with the pandemic, it didn’t feel like the right time to do it and there were major set-backs! With manufacturing delays, I didn’t have inventory, so I waited until Sept 2020 to launch. More importantly, the launch strategy was very different, I quickly changed gears to launch online only. I am looking forward to live events returning and being able to bring families together again.
We always learn the most from our mistakes, share a time with us that you made a mistake or had a challenging time in business and what you learned from it?
You often need to throw things against the wall to see what sticks. Learning what sticks is invaluable and helps propel the company forward in so many ways, but what doesn’t stick can be seen as a mistake. I spent a handful of dollars working with influencers who weren’t right or didn’t drive sales for the brand, and looking back on it, I shouldn’t have spent money in those areas, but I wouldn’t have known that if I didn’t try.
What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?
I sold out within three months of launching! Far quicker than I anticipated! It’s a great feeling to launch something that I have so much conviction with and to see it so well received in the market. Reorder rates and offline word-of-mouth recommendations are far stronger than I would have thought, which makes me incredibly proud.
When hiring for your team, what is your go-to interview question? Please share any hiring tips you can share from your experience?
Go-to question: What is the biggest misconception someone has about you?
Rather than evaluating a candidate based on how well they answer my questions, I see what thoughtful and creative questions they ask me. It says a lot about the candidate. I love candidates who ask a lot of questions, and really thoughtful, challenging ones!
How has your business or industry been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Given we manufacture our products in Peru, there was a manufacturing delay which led to a three-month time of being sold out of our entire inventory! The good news was that supply far exceeded demand, the stressful part was trying to live up to customers expectations.
Our launch strategy was focused around community and live events and had to quickly change gears and launch online and harbor our community digitally instead of through in person events.
What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?
Community events that bring moms and families together, interesting collaborations and partnerships, especially ones that support important causes. Most of the decisions at the company are made based on what moms and babyies want and need – so a lot of the new product roll-outs will be in their hands based on what they share 🙂
What is the biggest lesson you have learned in 2020?
How incredibly fortunate I am and to not try to take that for granted. I try to remind myself daily how important it is to be grateful for my children, husband, our health and doing something I love.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you were first starting your business?
It will probably take 10X as much work, time and money than anticipated. Patience and persistence, with grace always. Highly recommend reading the 10X Rule by Grant Cardone
How have you managed to stay grounded this year?
Trying to stay grateful and appreciate what I have: health, family, friends, and their health
Do you believe in work/life balance? What are some of your best tips?
Everything in life is moderation and trying to find the best balance between the two as much as possible. But I also believe if you do what you love, it’s no longer work. I think Oprah said it well once: you can have everything, just not all at one time.
What’s something our audience would be surprised to learn about you?
I grew up in Honolulu, Hawaii.
What are your top 3 tips to stay productive each day?
- The Pomodoro technique: breaking projects down into intervals of 25 minutes of intense focused work, short breaks in between.
- Drinking a lot of water and stretching.
- A nice working area, but changing scenery. I love sometimes working on the couch, then moving to the kitchen table, then maybe back to my home office. I feel inspired with diversity in my life.