Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Calloway Cook, President of Illuminate Labs, located in Northampton, MA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Illuminate Labs is the most transparent dietary supplement company in the U.S. We publish third-party test results of every batch of every product on our product pages, proving the purity, potency, and label accuracy of our supplements.
There were no companies doing this when we launched in 2020, and to our knowledge, there are still no herbal supplement companies publishing this much third-party testing data.
Our process solves the consumer safety issues in the U.S. supplement market, which has no pre-approval process, meaning there’s no way for consumers to know if a supplement is tainted or otherwise harmful until post-market data emerges (of someone being injured).
Tell us about yourself
I started this company because I was a supplement user myself and was concerned that I really didn’t know what was in the bottles of products I was taking. Some academic studies found the majority of off-the-shelf supplements to be tainted or mislabeled, and I decided to start a company that provides a solution to this big problem.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Growing our website to now reach well over 500,000 users per month without any paid ads.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
The time it takes. You definitely have to sacrifice social life to a degree unless you’ve raised enough investment that you can outsource almost all tasks (which very few startup owners can do).
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
Minimize fixed costs as much as possible. Don’t hire a salaried team member until you’re profitable (if it’s a digital business). Automate as many processes as you can with AI.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Running a business that genuinely makes the world a better place is one of the most fulfilling things you can do. Although I work a lot, it doesn’t really feel like work because I get up every day and love working to solve the challenges my company solves.
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.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.