Myrtle and Maude Ltd

The Pregnancy Wellbeing
Company Supporting Mums-to-Be

Myrtle & Maude logo

Hi! Who are you and what business did you start?

Created in Yorkshire and founded by us, Matty & Jules, Myrtle & Maude creates natural products that support women throughout their pregnancy. Our mission is to support parents through those early days of pregnancy and beyond. 

Our recipes have been passed down for over three generations, originating from our grandmothers – Myrtle & Maude is named after them.

Wherever possible we make our products vegan and organic and strive to be as sustainable as possible. This is definitely something we will prioritise as the business grows.

What is your personal story and how did you come up with the idea?

Myrtle & Maude was launched by myself and my husband. Both of us grew up intimately connected to the natural world around us; fresh allotment produce always decked our family table, and my mother, a retired nurse, would always find natural remedies to cure our ailments.

My background is in Fashion and I studied in Paris gaining a Masters in Creative Couture but I have always had an entrepreneurial streak. Myrtle & Maude was created from a side business where I had been selling ‘Acupressure Wrist bands’ . This idea came to me working as a stewardess on the Mega Yachts and people having seasickness.

Julia d'Albert, Co-Founder of Myrtle & Maude
Julia d’Albert, Co-Founder – Myrtle & Maude Ltd

Myrtle & Maude evolved from this business as pregnant women were buying them and we saw a niche for natural products in this sector. We now have evolved further and produce vegan, organic and natural products for the different trimesters for the pregnancy journey drawing on the natural influence of our upbringings.

“The business has evolved over time which I think you have to do and find your feet.”

What challenges did you face when creating your product/service?

Starting a business has a lot of hurdles. We have had issues with finding reliable suppliers, ones that will not let you down and you can trust.

To begin with, we used personal finance and put everything back into the business. We are currently trying to break the profitability barrier and we are trying to do this by increasing sales so we can order larger quantities so the cost of the product decreases. I think we are currently at the hardest part of the business where it has proved its viable but we need to scale.

Also, the sector we are in is very regulated and traceability for being certified organic is quite strict but we use a reliable herbalist and tons of research to ensure our products are as natural as possible.

Conception and First Trimester - Myrtle & Maude Ltd
Conception and First Trimester – Myrtle & Maude Ltd

Who is your target market?

Our main target audience is pregnant women, women considering having a baby, and breastfeeding mothers. However, we are looking to broaden that to new mothers and older women by adding more products to our range. 

Our current target audience’s age ranges from 25-35, she is a contemporary woman into living sustainability, fashion, travelling and health conscious. 

How do you market your business and which approaches have been the most successful?

We have recently started using Google shopping and Google ads which has really driven traffic to our website. 

Our most constant marketing tool is our Instagram page, keeping up with current trends and increasing engagement with our followers has really strengthened our brand and increased our reach.

We also use SEO techniques on the website and blog which has helped build our presence on google. We try to create SEO as organically as possible using things such as keywords and backlinks. 

“I like creating a brand that could potentially become a household name.”

Since you launched, what has worked in not only attracting but retaining customers?

As our products are specific to certain stages of pregnancy it is difficult to get repeat custom, however we find that we get a lot of orders through word of mouth. So although customers don’t need our products anymore they recommend us to other people that do. 

Although pregnancy is a brief period of a women’s life we offer products that support them throughout their whole pregnancy. To encourage customers to use more of our products we send thank you notes with each order with a discount code so they return back to our website. We use emails as a marketing tool to keep in touch with customers after a purchase, we plan to utilise this form of marketing more in the future by starting a biweekly or monthly newsletter. 

In the future, we intend to expand our product range which will broaden our target audience and increase the likelihood of repeat orders.

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What kind of culture exists in your company, and how did you establish it?

We are a start-up business still in the early stages of our company so our culture is not yet established and is something we are still trying to create. As we are such a small team we work by bouncing ideas off each other and collaborating on a lot of things and we find that works best for us.

We try to keep the working environment organised but relaxed having daily team meetings and shared calendars so everyone’s on top of their jobs. We like to think it’s an open environment that if anyone needed help or anything they can just ask.

What software, services or tools do you use within your business?

We use design apps like CANVA and Photoshop for Instagram posts and images for the website but as we’re such a small business we do most customer relations management manually but obviously, as we grow we will implement software to streamline and make the business more efficient. 

What are the most important lessons have you learned on your business journey?

I would definitely have a budget for marketing, we have organically grown and only of late put budget into ‘google advertising’. It took us 4 years to get to this point and we wish we had had the budget sooner as it has transformed the business. We would have gained more traction earlier on and propelled the business forward. 

Additionally I would have perhaps worked part time for the first couple of years to keep a revenue stream coming in. 

However, the business has evolved over time which I think you have to do and find your feet. We made a bold decision to rebrand about 18 months ago and it’s one of the best things we have done; our brand is now stronger and growing. 

What is your favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

I love product development and coming up with new ideas and seeing them come into fruition. Prototyping is my favorite part and seeing a product come together. I like to be hands on with the design and draw on my creative side to make sure all our products look great. 

The other is pushing for success, I like creating a brand that could potentially become a household name.

What is your LEAST favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

The balancing of the finances and trying to become profitable is tough. It is a bit of a roller coaster ride for the emotions because one day you feel like you are on the brink of major success and the next day thinking ‘is it worth it’?

What books, podcasts or other resources have inspired and influenced your business journey?

I have to be honest I did read a few books including ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ and Richard Branson books which are good to boost motivation and the ‘I can do it attitude’ but I try not take influence from them too much as there is no such thing as a ‘blueprint’ for success and at the end of the day you have to put the graft in. 

The financial risk and sacrificing elements of your personal life are necessary when starting a business and it’s something you just learn as you go on. It’s the nature of the beast you make mistakes, you learn from them and don’t make them again. Starting a business is basically that in a nutshell…it’s not for the faint-hearted.

Where do you see your business 2-3 years from now?

We aim to be in 2-3 large retailers and increase our revenue dramatically. We really need to expand into other geographical markets and increase the product range into other areas of wellbeing.

Where can people go to find out more about your business?

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