My”Buddy”Towel® / Women Owned Business
Tell us a little about yourself and your childhood.
I am Angelyn Myers. I’m a Wife. And a Mom of 6. I turned my idea into a product in less than a year. I grew up in a small Illinois town. I have 1 brother and 1 sister. (I’m the oldest!) I’ve been very independent, self motivated, and following my gut feelings ever since I can remember!
When did you decide you wanted to start your own company?
Ever since I can remember I’ve always wanted to run a business, be my own boss! I started to babysit when I was 10yrs old, I did waitress in high school, I became a a preschool teacher, and then I ran a daycare out of my home for almost 10 years-During that time I also sold Avon.
Was there a specific moment when you knew this was what you wanted to do?
My daughter insisted on using 3 towels after each bath. One for her hair, one around her shoulders, and one tied around her waist! Yet she’s still complain about being cold! One day after the same bath routine I had a light bulb moment! My child needs something with full body coverage as soon as she gets out of the water!
Angelyn Myers, Founder and creator of My”Buddy”Towel®
After you made the decisions, what steps did you take?
I googled and researched and found nothing on the market comparable to what I was thinking and what I needed! So I solved my own problem and designed and made prototypes. My husband Bought me a sewing machine I picked out cotton fabric and I made my first prototype! It wasn’t perfect LOL but It gave my family A better picture of my idea. I spent a lot of time on Google finding a manufacture. But I found a good one! Within a couple weeks I had manufactured (working) Prototypes! It was amazing to see my idea come to life. I negotiated quantity and prices and soon had my 1st batch of inventory. I started selling to boutiques and water parks and created an online store through Shopify! Soon I will have 2 new designs available-pink flamingos, grey sharks.
How did you fund this project?
Self funded with the help from my amazing family.
What were the hardest hurdles?
When I get an idea I want to complete it fast! So my biggest hurdle is having the patience to wait for patent work to be complete!
What advise do you wish someone would have given you?
Prepare for one hell of a roller coaster ride! Being an entrepreneur can be depressing and lonely. But the moments where everything comes together....there is no greater feeling of satisfaction in the world! Be prepared to experience a roller coaster of emotions, and make sure you have a support system to carry you through the dark time
Did you have a mentor?
I have created my own amazing community of entrepreneurs that I look to as role models and for advice! I did find a mentor program called Score. They have been great with business plans and answering any questions I’ve had along the way!
At any point did you want to give up?
Yes. But that would have been the easy way out! I had to go with my gut feeling to keep pushing forward! I am so glad I did. I have had an amazing year filled with great opportunities.
What made you keep going?
I turned to family and friends when I felt like giving up. With their support and a couple individuals gave me inspirational advice, which gave me motivation to keep going!
How long did it take to become profitable?
A work in progress! Hey Coca Cola only sold 25 gallons their 1st year in business! Any money I make goes right back into the business—advertising, more inventory, business supplies etc.
What was the best thing you did to grow your business?
The best thing I did was was invest in myself and have manufactured inventory. I took every opportunity to enter contest, to travel to entrepreneur events, as well as audition for shark tank. Each event I gave out My”Buddy”Towels® Asking for social media like/share/feedback! Every event I made connections which turned to interested investors, customers and growing friendships!
Do you feel it was more difficult because you are a women?
At times, because I do not have a business degree! But I surround myself with supportive like minded entrepreneurs! (including successful ones!)
Do you think social media is important?
Absolutely!!! That is were most of my leads and follow up happen! Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram.
Was there any life lessons you learned along the way?
Step out of your comfort zone-- you never know unless you try—it can turn into an opportunity in the future!
What is the happiest memory from this journey?
So many! If I had to choose one it would be winning and being named American Small Business Champion through an organization called Score. I won a trip to beautiful Reno NV for a 2 day conference.
Where do you see your company in 5 years?
I see The Original My”Buddy”Towel® Being a household name brand. (Maybe the next snuggi!) so in 5 years I see a variety of styles being sold in big box stores—Target, Buy Buy Baby, etc.