Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Ashley Kenny, Co-Founder of Heirloom, located in Washington, DC, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Heirloom is a custom-printed video book loaded with your photos and video! Customers visit sendheirloom.com to purchase a video book. They then receive a link to our builder where they can upload their photos and videos and select their cover (we have 16 to choose from) or design their own! We can print anything on the covers - logos, photos, branding; you name it.
Our target customers are typically busy females between the ages of 21 and 55 who are looking for extremely thoughtful, fun, exciting, modern gifts for the people they love. Our product, loaded with videos or photos of people you love, becomes one of the most exciting and fun gifts to give or receive!
Tell us about yourself
My name is Ashley Kenny, and I am the co-founder of Heirloom. I founded the company with my brother in 2020. During the pandemic, we were desperate to stay connected with our 92-year-old Grandma Fran. She has been stuck hundreds of miles away from us, unable to see her great-grandchildren. The months dragged on without her, and it was breaking our hearts. We had enough. We cobbled together a video player and loaded it with home videos of our family. Grandma Fran's reaction was spectacular. Many iterations later, we have a meaningful product that has warmed many more hearts.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment comes from the feedback I get from our customers when they tell me that Heirloom played a major role in their life. When I hear customers say that our product helped them stay connected to their family or memorialize a loved one, I feel like I've really accomplished something huge and made an impact.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
I believe work/life balance is one of the hardest things to manage as a business owner. There is always work that can be done, and because you're so invested in your business, it's easy to neglect parts of your own life while trying to keep up with the business. It's hard to manage, but if you can find the right balance, there is nothing more rewarding than owning your own company.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
The three tips I would give are to hit the ground running as soon as you have a viable product so you can get market feedback as soon as possible, to then ask as many people as possible for their thoughts and ideas, and do everything you can to stick with it as there are always highs and lows, but the longer you're able to stay the course, the more likely you are to succeed.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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