Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Adam Chuntz, co-founder, and CMO of Blanka, located in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Blanka is a platform that enables anyone to start their own brand in minutes by white-labeling (also known as private labeling) products that are drop-shipped to their end consumers. We handle all of the messy and confusing logistics surrounding this process, allowing people to become entrepreneurs, pursue a side hustle or expand on their existing brand with virtually no risk - we don't have order minimums. Any plan can be trialed for free! We integrate with top eCommerce platforms like Shopify, seamlessly flowing products and orders between your store's website and Blanka. As of today, we're focusing our 200+ product offering on beauty, cosmetics, skincare, and wellness products that are all made in North America.
Tell us about yourself
I come from a robust background in creative design and direction to marketing and tech, having built and worked for several companies ranging from small and medium-sized businesses to fortune 500 enterprises. My passion lies in creating beautiful and elegant experiences for consumers as they engage with a brand. I love to work with creative people who aren't afraid to try new ideas and evolve how they operate or how the business can shift in a new exciting direction. With Blanka, we saw an opportunity in the market specifically with a non-seasonal and fairly recession-proof industry (cosmetics and beauty products), but wanted to build the tech behind the platform that allows us to expand, scale, and ultimately empower 1000s of people to start their own brand, easily!
The feedback we receive from our customers gives me the ultimate satisfaction knowing we helped them build their brand, created a new revenue stream to support a hustling student, or allowed a parent to spend more time at home working on their own eCommerce company. Knowing that we facilitate that sort of thing is beyond inspiring, and I can't wait to help more people build their brands.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
In addition to helping 1000s of people build their own brands, building the team here at Blanka has been the biggest accomplishment. We're a young but very experienced and passionate group of digital gurus. Everyone we bring on to the team feels more like a close friend than a colleague or employee. I'd say this is in part due to the fact we have a flat organizational structure allowing each person to hold themselves accountable to their teammates and themselves. As a team, we review our KPIs and monthly road map on a weekly basis, so everyone is on the same page working towards the same goals knowing that each person plays an integral part in getting there.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
In today's current economic climate, with supply chain shortages and huge rises in costs to things like shipping, we're constantly fighting to find a balance to offer our customers great value for premium products and services. Navigating the changes to those sorts of items in addition to planning for scale are definitely the hardest parts of building a new business. As a result of those inherent risks any company may face, we've made it a core focus of our planning to ensure we're ahead of the curve with technology, iterating for the next standard and being nimble to react to the quickly changing digital landscape.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Work with people you really get along with and get inspired by! Having a great team around you keeps the energy high and the space to challenge and push each other, knowing we're all working towards the same goals.
- Define your white space and focus your efforts on building that first before expanding into another category or service line. Staying focused on the core function that differentiates a business is crucial to scale and quality. Too often, business owners or leaders fall into the "shiny object" trap, diverging resources into other areas before realizing the true potential of their core business.
- Create space for balance for both you and your team. As cliche as it sounds, work-life balance is super important to ensuring a happy and motivated team. Creating the space for people to recharge and have flexibility on when to work and when not to is crucial for any business to be sustainable.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
If building Blanka has taught me anything, it's encouraging all ideas to be heard, considered, and challenged! I'd rather hear 100 bad ideas than none at all because there's always a chance that idea inspires or motivates a change or even a new business opportunity. So, speak up, take chances, and don't stop evolving as a person or business!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Feel inspired to start, run or grow your own subscription business? Check out subkit.com and learn how you can turn "one day" into day one.