Launching A Skincare Brand, Getting Into the State Fair & Growing a Product Based Business
An interview with maker, product based company “Essence One” and their founder Lauren VanScoy
Bio: About four years ago I was a big ball of stress and anxiety after the birth of my daughter. It came on suddenly and crippled me socially as well as mentally. All I wanted to do was stay home with my family and I
was a mess even when I was hanging out with my closest friends. I could barely form sentences without stumbling over my words in social situations. This was a new feeling for me and initially I had no idea
what to do or where to go for help.
I found a counselor that diagnosed me with major depression that manifested as anxiety. The first step I took was medication but I knew I eventually wanted to try more natural ways of dealing with my situation.
That spring I was introduced to essential oils and that was the experience I needed to launch myself into my new passion. I decided to enroll in an aromatherapy
certification program in order to learn the science behind essential oils and aromatherapy through experts.
After receiving my Certification in Aromatherapy from Aromahead Institute, I founded Essential One, LLC, as a way to help people discover the benefits of aromatherapy and the advantages of replacing toxic products with all-natural replacements. Through studying phychoneuroimmunology and the means by which aromatherapy can mitigate our level of stress and support our immune system, it has become my priority to provide aromatherapy resources – to improve quality of life.
Aromatherapy has provided comfort and grounding during times of stress as well as times of joy and happiness. As a mother of two, trying to live a healthy life and raise my kids in a safe and toxic-free household, I am constantly trying to find ways to replace toxic personal care and cleaning products. I also enjoy customizing blends for people who have specialized needs and also conduct private aromatherapy sessions.
I am now studying to be certified in herbalism as well as international organic skincare. I will be constantly introducing new products inspired by my studies. I also appreciate suggestions on what I should offer next – so suggestions are welcome! Being a mom is hard! People warn you but you really can’t understand how much it messes with your life as you knew it, your hormones, your mind, your confidence, your time, your body, etc. and I think that is why we need each other more than ever. When I revealed my struggles with anxiety, I had so many people tell me they had the same struggles and even though their life looked perfect on Facebook, they were just has unhappy as I was. Lets be real people! Lets come together and find natural ways to deal with our stress and anxiety whether it comes from family, work or socially.
Finding a way to help people through Essence One has helped me so much. Meeting new people, my faith, helping people overcome emotional hardships, work and life with kids keep me busy and thriving. Essence One has provided a way to share how important it is to keep our immune systems strong, our stress levels low and our spirits high.
Hey, everyone, welcome to Twin Cities collective podcast. I'm your host Jenna Redfield Twin Cities collective
Lauren VanScoy 1:18
I'm Lauren van soy, and my company is called essence one. And everything we produce is all natural. And any, it's all got different aroma therapy benefits to
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 1:28
else. It's awesome. So we met I think I'd go creative. Yeah, pretty sure. Like, maybe a year or two. I don't even know it's been a while I would Yeah. Is it a year ago? Yeah. I don't remember which one. But um, yeah. So we, I've seen you around at other, you know, events and such. And then I was at the State Fair, I ran into you. And I was like, Oh my gosh, this is so cool. I definitely want to talk about your experience there and how you got in. So but I want to talk a little bit about like your background, like, how did you get into this business?
Lauren VanScoy 1:56
Well, I started I started essence, what about two and a half years ago. But before that I had struggled with anxiety and depression, which was kind of a new thing for me, after my second child. So it was, I'm assuming induced by hormones, and then just developed into this crazy thing. And I didn't know what was going on. So eventually, I got to a counselor, and she diagnosed me very quickly, to say it was anxiety or major depression manifesting as anxiety. And me. Because I just didn't have the social drive that I had, I didn't want to go anywhere. I didn't want to do anything. And you know, even my closest friends, it was uncomfortable for me to be there. Yeah. So once I got diagnosed, I started looking at my options. My doctor, of course, talked about medication, and then different natural ways to kind of supplement. So I went with medication, of course, because that was like the quick Yeah, snap me back into something that I knew, hopefully. But then also looked into aroma therapy. So I started using essential oils just kind of on my own, and then decided to go to school for it. So I got certified in aroma therapy. And then from there, I was teaching people how to make all their own natural products, just because one element of living a healthier, kind of more stable life is using more natural products. So you're not bringing those bad chemicals into the house and your body. And so I was teaching people how to do that. And then they started saying, Can you just make it and I'll buy it from you. I started that since one. But I along the way. I've done a Roma therapy. consultation. So yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 3:36
So what is what is aroma therapy? specifically? Like? What is the difference between that and like all the other
Lauren VanScoy 3:42
words? Yes. So Roma therapy is all based with your olfactory system. So your sense of smell, and then the sense actually get into your brain. And yeah, in either trigger, like old memories, or associations with the scent or create new ones. So let's kind of develop knew, like if, if lavender is a scent for you that you love. You know it, it's going to create that memory of relaxation, if if it's not already there. But then chemically, they can cross the blood brain barrier to so they absorb into your body. Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 4:14
I know essential oils are so big right now, I had never really heard of them until a couple years ago. And now they're everywhere. Yeah. So like, how did you get into those? Was it just because of this doctor and going to having anxiety? or What did you know about all no for
Lauren VanScoy 4:30
so the doctor had mentioned actually herbal supplements at first, which was like St. John's wort, which you can take multiple times a day, but it takes like, weeks or months to kick in kind of thing. But actually a friend had just gotten started with essential oils and started telling me about them. And I just immediately like I've known I've always associated memories and feelings with sense, like, they're just very comforting to me. And so I knew that that was something that would help me smelling something. And you know, I always say some people laugh about, like, you know, essential oils, they don't really do anything. And if you don't believe that they do anything to you, you know, chemically within your body, at least it makes you stop and take a deep breath, which is something we don't do enough. And stress builds up and we don't take a minute. So you know, even just smelling something that you enjoy the smell of to make you stop.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 5:27
So what are your favorite essential oils? And I'm sure you have a lot in your products. What are your favorites?
Lauren VanScoy 5:34
Orange is a favorite, because it's a brightening, energetic, and it's also good for the immune system. So especially if you're dealing with the kind of blues and you know, depression kind of thing. It's just one that helps brighten your day. Yeah. Lavender is a lot of people's favorite. It's actually not my favorite. So if I use lavender and certain products, I combine it with other oil. But you know, that's the is it. So based on personal preference, there's certain oils that you know, promote relaxation, but you know, there might be 10 of them. You might love lavender, I might love cedar wood, you know, there's lots of different options that can work. That's also a good part about Yes,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 6:16
you kind of have a different variation on people's preferences, I makes a lot of sense. So, so you were started creating these products, because all your friends asked you. So when did it become a business?
Lauren VanScoy 6:29
It was May of 2016 that I started, I had my first show at the art world. And then from there, I started doing farmers markets and finding out about different local events. I started my online site at the same time. So okay, everything's online, as well as all the different events I do. And then wholesale account, how did you come up with the name? So I am someone who doesn't love to waffle over one thing too much. So I got a lot of people's input. Family especially. And then we went through a lot of different names. And my dad actually thought of essence one. And what does it mean? Like why is it basically just starting with like, the essential elements of anything. So number one, and then going building from there. So everything every ingredient in all my products is a basic ingredient you find in nature, so kind of building all those different beginning blast.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 7:28
I like the name I remember it, you know, yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 7:29
easy to remember. And it's awesome. And so when did you see you so you decided you came up with a name first? Or was that came up with the name? slips and then lunch? Okay, you know, you buy the website and try to learn I tried to learn how to do a website. It's still kind of Yeah. Building. Yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 7:49
And then you decided So did you have like a logo and stuff brand? How did you brand? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 7:54
my brother is just creative and came up with my logo, which was awesome. And then my boss for my day job, which I don't have anymore. She's a creative marketing person. Okay, so she helped me do all the labels. I showed her my label, and she's like, Oh, my goodness.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 8:14
Definitely need to outsource it when you're not. That's not your skill area, for sure. And I was like, that's why I always hire graphic designers. I can't graphic designer. So that's like, I need I need a little help. If that's one thing you can't fake, you know, it can make them break your business. Yeah, if you because especially because you're selling a physical product then like, like for me, I'm a very like, visual person. And if it's not cute, I'm not gonna
Lauren VanScoy 8:36
buy it. Yes, I agree. So,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 8:38
so I have some of your products right in front of me. So we've got like a miss spray.
Lauren VanScoy 8:43
What does this do? So the mist spray is a either room spray linen spray, clothing spray, some people use it as a body spray. But the uplift is a rose, lemon and orange. So it's very uplifting.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 8:57
And then we also have a hand. So I always need that. Yeah, so what are your like best sellers?
Lauren VanScoy 9:04
The natural deodorant is a really huge Yeah, cuz
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 9:08
that's I've heard so many things about doing right and how they how it like affects your snack. Yeah, yeah. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 9:13
It does one just simple thing is it blocks the the pores and you're under Oh, yeah. stops you from sweating, which sweating is a good thing. Yeah. And that's the aluminum in it. So any kind of natural deodorant shouldn't have aluminum in it. And then also, you avoid parabens, also with a natural deodorant. And it does work. You know, the difference is that you will sweat. And I don't find that I sweat excessively using the natural deodorant, but I probably smelled more when I used regular.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 9:47
Interesting. Yeah, yeah. Cuz I feel like I'm trying to think I feel like I still sweat even with deodorant. But yeah, it does help the said
Unknown Speaker 9:55
yes. Yeah. If you can find a good natural that Yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 10:00
Cuz like I've heard about, like, basically, the main place you can buy natural talent is like Whole Foods. Like the one place I know where you can get. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 10:07
I never know if the word I'm saying. Yeah, I know. You know? Yeah,
there's definitely some that don't work. Yeah. And there's also everybody has a brand that's going to work better for them just because everybody's recipes are different. So if you find one that works, I just say stick. Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 10:22
for sure. I've seen all that stuff on like shark tank and stuff. So. So when you first started, you're working full time. And you have this is a side hustle for you. Yes. So at what point did you decide to like make the leap?
Lauren VanScoy 10:36
one month before the state fair? Okay. Actually, yeah, month before? Wow. Because it was just becoming so major. Yeah. And then I had already signed on for some different mall. gigs. Yes, in the fall, which are coming up. And so it was just it was kind of just piling up to be a bigger feet. Then
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 10:58
I saw were you doing it? Like in the evenings? Or when were you doing it? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 11:00
a lot of guys. Yeah. My husband put the kids to bed a lot and making it. And then evenings weekends, it just became
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 11:09
cuz you sold a lot of like pop up shops. That's really where most of your stuff. That's where I've seen you and stuff before
Lauren VanScoy 11:15
pop ups and then online. Yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 11:16
So how did you? So like,
I'm trying to think of my question. So So let's talk about the state fair, because I think that's something I really wanted to cover on this because I read an article that you were interviewed about the state fair, and I you said so many interesting things that I was like, I really want to have on the podcast to talk about them. Because honestly, like, I've never thought about having to apply that even being safer and how competitive it is. I had no idea. I thought it was just like expensive. So it's like only the people that could do it. You know, I think there's probably so many businesses that want to be there. So how, so why did you decide first of all to go to the state fair and sell?
Lauren VanScoy 11:52
Well, I it was one of those? I'm Yes. I'm just gonna try. You apply to a lot of different things. Yeah, well, here. Yeah, give it a whirl. But I love the state fair. And I always have. I didn't shop a lot at the State Fair. Usually it was food. places I wanted to eat. But I, I just decided to try it.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 12:17
Experimenting is the entrepreneurship. Yeah. Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 12:20
but hanging in notes had been there.
So we had heard that, you know, it went well for them and that they got in which, you know, I also did think it took 10 years to get in, because the list is long. But what I learned is that I think if you feel a certain niche, you get in
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 12:41
gotcha. Or no one in your niche. Sure. Was it?
Lauren VanScoy 12:44
I don't know if they're there might have. She was the woman that I had been in contact with. I asked her about that. And she said there might be one other person but not in my area. So I was in the West End. Okay. Which was probably the best place. Yeah, like I were sure.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 13:02
You had a big booth. I went to Yeah, it was it was like a double sided. Yeah, it was like almost like two stalls. Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 13:07
a lot. That's the standard size in here.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 13:09
Okay, but I felt like you use it while like some of them. I feel like they're just kind of like buried in like you have to like, get in, but you're just kind of like open and easy to like walk into. Yeah. So how did you come up with so you were assigned that spot? Or how does Yes.
Lauren VanScoy 13:23
So you don't even choose where you are. They say this is where you are? Which I lucked out because it was across from the Nordic waffles, which was always busy. Yeah. And this year, it was new. Yep. And they had lots of delicious foods in the area and different view new beer. Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 13:39
it's a really, I love that part of the state fair. I mentioned before the podcast, my grandma's cousin owns Samson's jewelry, which is right down the road, basically, from you guys. Like I think it was all a bit across. But um, so I always stopped over there. My My family has been selling there for 40 years. And my grandpa helped save, you're probably in like the 70s. My dad used to do for each with the sheep and stuff. So it's like, the State Fair is kind of one of those like classic Minnesota. Like everyone knows someone that's like work there. Yes. You know, the corn, but, you know, I just feel like, but to have your own businesses like really cool. Yeah, it's super awesome. So how did it go? Like, what I just wanted to talk about the things that you learned and the things that you you experience from that and things that like, what did people say to you or stuff? So just any any experiences you want to talk about?
Lauren VanScoy 14:29
Well, it was very fun. First of all, I didn't you know, it's 12 exhausting days. But am you not sure what you'll be like at the moment? Yeah, but it was. Yeah, I learned. I learned some things. I also had talked to some people before I went or set up and all that who had done it before, to get some advice. But yeah, well, first of all, it was like the great Minnesota get together, what they call it, it was accurate. Because everybody, like I saw so many people that you knew that, whether they were working their booths, or they were there with their family. And then you see how many times people come like three or four times, you know, in 12 days, some people came like nine days. And some would come and shop and then they come back and buy something else the next time or they you know, check it out and then say, Okay, well, Thursday's my shopping day. So I'll come and I'll buy it. So that was fun. But yeah, getting in I think people should apply if they're interested in you should apply there. It's not. It shouldn't deter you from a Yes, because there's a long line or long Yeah, maybe. But I got my application in and maybe two days later, they're very prompt and organized in their communication. They said thank you for your application will keep it on file for the next three years. And basically like we'll be in touch. Yeah. But you get that letter first. And you think, Oh, my gosh, I got in. Just Okay, thank you. And then you just wait. So I applied in January, and then I think got a phone call in May. And I was actually traveling for my day job at the time I was in Spain, and I had missed the call. And it was from like two days before so I thought oh, no, did I miss my chance? So I quit called her back and said yes, count me in. And then you just you have no idea. At first, you know how much you need to set up. So it felt like I was spending so much money basically between me and September. On signs and furniture. Yeah. And brochure. You know, it was more stock than I'd ever needed. I didn't know how much I need. Yeah. So it was looking at past shows. I'm seeing like, what's the maximum a day I sold this? Like, what was my best show? Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 16:40
it's hard to get. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 16:42
And you don't know what will sell so I and then you're you know, I knew I needed more staff. So I scheduled I scheduled three people every six hours so that I had kind of fresh you know, we were there feeling fresh. If we worked half day or, or then I I worked eight full days and did four half days. So I could go make product so I had to make more proud Really? Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 17:06
it's all sold out. Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 17:09
great. It was good. Yeah. But then I was
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 17:13
like, I gotta go tomorrow. Yeah,
and you sold some of Heidi's products. Yeah, they're
Lauren VanScoy 17:18
so Excelsior was in there. And then maximalist she made a Roma therapy bracelet, some candles and aroma therapy bracelet. So
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 17:25
what were all the things that you offered at the fair? Was it most of the stuff you sell? Like I saw you had that Miss soap?
Lauren VanScoy 17:31
soap on a stick was? Was that was
Unknown Speaker 17:33
a color? Yes. Really good. Awesome.
Lauren VanScoy 17:36
After I got I was on care. 11 without Channel Nine and then Radio Podcast. Once they started getting more publicity, then people, you know, knew that.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 17:47
I don't know where I saw it. But I was like, Oh, I gotta make sounds really cool. Yeah, and I know Laurin
Yeah, so So what was it like with people coming into that a lot of them know about your brain or word like they nobody, a lot
Lauren VanScoy 18:01
of them new new, really? For sure.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 18:03
They are they knew of, you know,
Lauren VanScoy 18:06
I would say the majority hadn't heard of me. Okay, it was great. And then I had my I had like, special State Fair pricing. So I lowered prices just for the fair, so that my regulars could come back and stack up. So I had a lot of people come Oh, that's awesome.
Unknown Speaker 18:20
That's I mean, that's again, incentive. Yeah. And I just,
Lauren VanScoy 18:22
it's, it's more fun when you see people and you can talk to people. You know,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 18:27
I mean, you were one of the people that I knew, I didn't know that many people at the fair. So like, it was cool that I was like, wow, least I know, one person that's selling, you know, and and then Heidi was there when he returned. So that was exciting to see her too. So she's like, it's cool to like, run into people that you know, and know that they're going to be there versus like, just running into someone just walking around. Yes, exactly. So what was your experience, like with all of the just like, you talked about, like the signage, but like, is that stuff? Do you think you're going to probably do the fair again, and have repeating some of that stuff?
Lauren VanScoy 18:59
Yes, I wouldn't, I definitely want to reuse.
So I figured the investment in a next, you know, next year would be less but so they we find out in October, back. So it is an annual thing. I don't think food might be different. But for merchandise, it's a
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 19:18
really have to get invited back, or is it? How did they decide?
Lauren VanScoy 19:22
Do I you know, I don't know for sure. And I don't I don't want to. But from what I heard, it's basically, you know, as long as you didn't do anything wrong, and people liked you, you get invited back. But of course, now that I say that,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 19:35
I bet you will. I feel like I feel like you You I felt like you guys did a really good job of like, it looks beautiful, which I think you know, I think that some of the sellers that have been there for years, they just kind of don't know what's current, in terms of like, you know, like the marketing, I'm just like, dang, guys need to like, update your stuff. Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 19:53
because they have followers, they have the true. I mean, I agree. But there's, it's amazing. I would talk to these people who had been there for 40 years. And they, you know, still do everything the exact same is true. I mean, if you
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 20:06
know, yeah, I guess I just feel like I get excited about the new brands that are like very current Yeah, and like are doing a lot on Instagram. And just like they're just it's very trendy. And I'm brand and like, I get excited about seeing those there. I'm like, Yes, finally, like something that's like current, I don't know, I like new and exciting. I'd like soda clothing, for example. They have their like, trailer thing in that area. Like it's just cool. Like, there's just things that like certain people are doing that are like different and like the Nordic waffles. Yes. Like, I've had them at like pop ups around town. And I was like, dang. Like the fact that they are doing so well. And like bringing so many people to area. It's like, No, that was like a no brainer to bring them to the fair. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 20:46
And it does give you hope to as like a small business owner as a maker. Yeah. To see how people do want to support that, for
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 20:53
sure. And you so because I've seen you at a few different pop ups around town. So you were at the Mall of America as well. Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 20:59
wrasse in the spring, and then they are reopening. And now on November 1, yeah. And new name. Oh.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 21:10
Stop by there. And so what was your experience like with that at the mall, which is like a it's like a lot of people but different. Yeah, say not, not probably as busy because it's all the time. Yes.
Lauren VanScoy 21:20
It's definitely waves of business. And then very cool. Very quiet days. Sometimes. A lot of people just looking, you know, the fair people wanting to buy they came in, they're like, I want to buy something, you know, choose what they want. And buy it. But it was I enjoyed it. It gave you more exposure and there's something about people seeing you in a store or or a state fair. Yeah. They it legitimizes Yes.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 21:48
I would totally agree with that. And I feel like you guys, like, I feel like I've just seen just a huge growth because I feel like when you started Yeah, you didn't. You weren't really in any store. And it was just kind of like you were just Yeah, I was like, I was like, What is this? Yeah, like, I know, you're selling stuff on my account. Like, I was like, Oh, good. I don't know like, but it's just it's cool to see like that overnight growth just like, like be legitimize for sure. Because there were other people in Ras that I knew. Yeah. Like, Sarah, who does the history? No,
Lauren VanScoy 22:22
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 22:24
Sweet. Yeah. Like, I remember the first time that she I met her she had just started Uh huh. And she had laid was like our first event. And so she was like, it was at, I forget what event it was, but no, it was at like a networking event. And she was just like, donating her goods that she had made. And so then to see her like, at the mall, America is just like really inspiring us, you know, and there was a few other I'm trying to member the other brands that were there. But like, I recognize quite a few of them. And like, I was like, Oh my gosh, like they used to be so little. And now they're
Unknown Speaker 22:55
made. They made it.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 22:57
Like it's just it's so cool. And I I always want to support like local businesses, because it's like, you get to follow your dreams. And you get to actually like, make a difference. Like, so what are like, what are some of the like testimonials people have for your products? Like, we obviously have people coming back? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 23:12
yes. So well, I get a lot of don't ever stop making. Especially especially with the deodorant, just because some people have tried so many brands, and they are excited to find what works. And then of course, like most like the mist sprays, I have diffuser blends that are essential oils that you don't end up users roll. Essentially a roller balls are like headings and stomachs and all of that those kinds of things where people say, you know, I don't have to use Advil anymore for my cramps because I can use the roller bottle and yeah, they love the smell like some people want to shower multiple times a day using. Yeah, that's awesome. Yeah. So it's it's good. Good feedback, especially to ya to motivate you because I think as an entrepreneur, you you have great days and you have really low days thinking whatever you're doing. Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 24:04
I mean, that's the thing. It was like it is a roller coaster I talked about on the previous podcast all there's like a roller coaster and downs, ups and downs. So how did you originally like market your product? Was it just giving people products and saying try it? I don't know. Like that. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 24:18
Okay, yeah. And then, I don't know, I just went for it. Because it was just that was what I love to doing. So it was stress relieving for me to make things and then the thought of helping other people with their stress was so big. And then I did decide that my, I'm a giveback company. So when I started it right away, I knew I wanted to donate money to different mental health organizations. So I choose a different one. It was going to be every quarter but now I'm switching to every year just because so much time you know that that you have to take to figure out who you want to donate. And then my deodorant. I do donate Susan G. Komen Minnesota. So, yeah,
Unknown Speaker 25:02
awesome. We're gonna take a real quick break, and then we'll come right back before.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 25:15
Do you struggle with your Instagram, growing it and making it look really nice? Well, I'm so excited because twins, this collective now has our own online courses all about Instagram, we have three available right now on our website, you can go to Twin Cities collective.com. And click on online courses to get our Instagram growth course, our Instagram Stories course, and our Instagram TV course, all of these courses are just $35 each, and you can get them all bundled together for 97. So if you want to grow your Instagram to over 10,000 followers like we have, or if you just want to learn more about the platforms and learning how to edit videos to make them look awesome, make sure to head on over to our website 20s collective calm to get our Instagram courses today, the 20th collective is super excited to announce that we have launched the Twin Cities collective circle membership. This is our first membership group, you get to be part of a smaller team of people meet monthly for events. We also do discounts for upcoming workshops, as well as our online courses. We also have accountability partner program. So you can actually meet with someone monthly to go over your goals and make sure that you follow through with them. So if you're interested in learning more about the Twin Cities collective circle membership, head on over to www dot PCC circle calm. And you can sign up for our membership today and get added to our Facebook group, you'll also get added to our online directory as a premium membership where people can find out all about your business straight from the Twin Cities collective website. I hope to see you there. So we're back with Lauren, and I was just looking up an article that was written by Ellie Kaplan about the state fair. And basically we talked, she talked a little bit about just kind of like some of the things you don't think about, like the setup costs. We talked a little bit about that. But But like, How much is it to actually rent there? Or is it is that something to pay for your
Lauren VanScoy 27:04
so you have to pay? So the space itself? That it depends on how much space you get, but I think it's 100 approximately $100 per 100
Square? Yes, actually. So I it was 20 $100
for me for 12 days so bad.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 27:22
I mean, I think that's not that
Lauren VanScoy 27:24
no it's not bad now for 12 days
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 27:26
not for not for like the amount of exposure right stuff.
Lauren VanScoy 27:29
Yes, it's well worth it's more just the things on top of it that Yeah, yeah, exactly. So
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 27:35
I can look good. I think you get to reuse that. But you so how when did you find out that you gotten in Jenna me? Excuse me? You had about three or four months? Four months? So what what was your first like? So you found out but what did you find out what the actual space was gonna look like then? Or like where you were?
Lauren VanScoy 27:53
Yes. They told me Well, yes, you wait, you say Guess I'll do it and then they you wait for it to come in the mail. And then you find out what your spaces so I visited I had done an area before so I went to go see where the
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 28:06
like look at kind of picture. Yes.
So where did you like did you order all of your stuff? Or did you buy like how did you find your stuff?
Lauren VanScoy 28:15
I ordered a lot of her body? Yeah. I actually got some stuff at IKEA, okay, which is an amazing place and then went through a local sign maker sign mines for my science. And then I had some furniture that I you know, got it target but then also maximalist had some furniture that we use. So it was kind of a Columbia.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 28:38
It's kind of like a bunch of thing. Yeah. So So another thing that we didn't really talk about is just figuring out like, what, what how people buy, because I feel like people that never heard of you might not buy but do you have you felt some of the repercussions since the fair? Like have people remembered you? Yes,
Lauren VanScoy 28:57
I've gotten, like my online sales this month has been Oh, it's ever been awesome. So people who can't make it to the will buy and a lot of them. A lot of it was like the TV the coverage like
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 29:10
that. Actual media. Yes, those people saw. I think that has been super helpful, because I've never really talked about traditional media on here. And I think I should I want to have Ellie on at some point. Like, I just think that like, a lot of people still use that as the way of finding out versus Instagram, which is like more of my thing, ya know? So yeah, so so you I want to talk a little bit about that, too, is like how you market and how on social because I know you have a good social media account and all that. So how are you? Is that something that you started right away as well? He Yes, I started. Actually, no, I have only been on Instagram for a year and a half. So my first year I did mostly Facebook. And then MailChimp. You know, as you get people who sign up for Yes. Is that been helpful? Okay, interesting. So do you talk well, I guess like deal
Lauren VanScoy 30:01
products or if there's a sale? Yeah, but I don't. I don't have a lot of time to send newsletters. So people will sign up for it knowing that I don't have time. Yeah,
I tried to do more, but Instagram is big, and a lot of people came in who said oh, I follow you on Instagram. That was great. Yeah. But then people after the traditional media. Yeah. You know, people would be on the phone. Okay, Mom, what? Do you have the laundry detergent here? Okay. Yeah, she's got it. How many do you want? Like their moms? or Why? They don't know how.
Right? Yeah. So So they sent their kids and they're watching the waves?
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 30:39
What is your average like, age of people that are?
Lauren VanScoy 30:42
Um, I would say 30s. 40s? 50s.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 30:46
Oh, okay. So kind of a range. So maybe not even on Instagram?
Lauren VanScoy 30:50
And some people yes or not? Yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 30:52
So that makes sense that the traditional media, good for you. How else have you promoted yourself in other ways? Like Have you been on that the news or anything? Yep.
Lauren VanScoy 31:02
little snippets of news, podcasts.
Article newspaper articles I got in the Star Tribune. While I was at the great, you know, local paper.
That's kind of in them. Yeah. so
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 31:19
crazy that like it's all kind of comes together in one package. It's like, you're on social, you're on the TV. You're in the newspaper. Like you're just kind of it just kind of helps your whole brand be like this is a legit business. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So it's just, I think, and then another thing is what like from the people that were at the fair, it was probably a lot of good market research for you. So how did you like what did you get from people? Like, did you get new ideas? Or like, how does that help? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 31:45
so I always get new ideas just because people say oh, can you make a you know, beard balm? Or things that I don't have a great one? I know. So I've got a lot of products I want to make someday. So definitely those words good, you know things to add to my list. But otherwise, it was just feedback. You know, I have a scent called Morning Calm that people are obsessed with. Yep. And I don't make it in every product. But then people would say do you have this and Morning Calm? You know, I don't have it in the media, but people wanted it in the mist spray. So what is that one? It's patchouli, spearmint, and bergamot. And it's just very uplifting, but at the same time calming. So it's like, Yeah, sounds opposite. Yeah, it's got that it just makes you take a deep breath, essentially. Like it's so good. And then I had just started the essential oil blends, which were new. And those like, those are what I was making the most at night because they're really selling out like,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 32:39
those are the ones that like are just like in the bottles and bottles. Yeah, yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 32:43
In your diffuser and diffuser jewelry. I put it like on the inside of my shirt smell nice. Yeah. And if you some people use them on their skin, which is completely fine. But you just need to put a carrier oil for sure. Like,
like coconut oil. Yeah, yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 32:57
I've learned a little bit from Pinterest.
Unknown Speaker 33:00
I don't believe everything I'm Yeah, that's true.
Unknown Speaker 33:02
Do you use Pinterest at all? I don't,
Lauren VanScoy 33:05
I took a class in the beginning, online. And I just,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 33:09
I feel like for us, not my business. I feel like that would be a great spot. Because like we did a Pinterest Episode Two weeks ago. And that was super helpful for me, because I'm like, Oh my gosh, I have like a local business. So that's why I'm focused so much on Instagram. But since you have an online business, creating, like, you know, graphs or infographics and then having your link and like having people go and learn about essential oils and stuff, that was such a good thing for you. Have you ever hired anyone to do marketing or as a job?
Lauren VanScoy 33:36
So I have somebody who does my social media part time, and she'll if she has, she has access to my images and things and social set stuff up. And then I'll go in and edit it or post it or add, you know, more posts. So she kind of does what she has time for. And then we work together to try to post every day. Yeah, which is what they say. Twice a day. That's a that's
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 34:01
what I recommend. Yeah, to grow. So what you've talked, I talked a little bit about some of your collaborations. But how has that been helpful for you with like some other makers and brands?
Lauren VanScoy 34:10
Well, first of all, just getting to know other brands is really helpful and hearing, you know, the things that worked for them and the things that they recommend or don't recommend. But collaborating is just fun, because especially if you can figure out like the perfect fit. I've got a current one with urban undercover. Yep. And that one's exciting, because it's like, she's got the travel bag. I've got the travel product, so it just fits really well together with Heidi. And Heidi we had one yeah, we had a candle. So and something else interesting. Yeah. So yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 34:46
cuz I feel like, I feel like when I go to a lot of these pop ups, it's a lot of the same people. And so I feel like you guys kind of help each other and tell each other about other pop ups or you know, because I'm like, oh, that that group like I went to when they were for the Super Bowl. Were you part of that? Want to know? It was? Yes. The Super Bowl one. Yeah. And she works a lot with like timber and tulip. Yeah, and like there, you know, so it's just like, kind of like crystal, she shows off. Some of them are in tulips. Yeah, so it's just like, kind of like, it's crazy. Like all these helping each. Yeah, helping each other. And I feel like, honestly, I'm not really a maker. Like I have never really had much products. But we're coming up with shirts. I just announced that. So that's gonna be fine. But it'll be my first foray into like, selling physical products that are really we have a mug but it's not you know, it's a mug. You know, it's not like it's that much but everybody. Yeah, true. And so, but for sure, it's I think it's allied sizing its color. It's, you know, all these things that you don't like, I've never dealt with you ever. So how did you like, understand like how to like buy, you know, in bulk, all of your, you know, things like, how did you outsource? Like find, you know, on the manufacturing
Lauren VanScoy 35:48
parts, finding a lot of different I mean, searching a lot of different things. So, you know, figuring out the best cost that I try to do all glass now, okay to know is able to reset more or less. It's a little bit more expensive. Yep. And plastic. It's better quality, you can recycle it, which is very important. And yeah, so you just kind of trained and then of course asking other vendors. Yeah, us. What do you find? Yes.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 36:17
What do you use for your website for online?
Lauren VanScoy 36:20
Right now I use WordPress, but I think I'm switching to Shopify.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 36:24
I feel like for people that use a lot of online shopping, I just found that to be the best Shopify. Yeah. Because like I use Squarespace, but I'm not like, I'm not focused on online sales. It's more like a website. And like, you know, I do the podcasts on there and stuff. But I feel like if your sole focus is products is to go and shop. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 36:42
That's why I'm discovering
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 36:44
a lot of other people on there, too. Yeah.
Unknown Speaker 36:46
There's a lot of people in
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 36:48
Yeah, I think, I think eventually, like, I'd love to learn Shopify, just so I can know it. Because it's like, people are like, should I use it? Like, I've never used it before? So I don't know. Like, I can't like give you a recommendation. But I've just heard from other people that Shopify, yeah, is a great platform. So are you the one that packages everything and said, Yes,
Lauren VanScoy 37:04
I do everything. So I make it all I label it all. packet. ship it. I do have people who helped me. But yeah, everything is done. In our studio. Yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 37:15
Are you selling on Etsy at all?
Lauren VanScoy 37:16
A little bit on Etsy, so the Minnesota as are their great gift item, like people love them, they'd probably take me the most time to make anything.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 37:27
So I love her a lot more. Or
Lauren VanScoy 37:30
I try to keep it low enough, but also justify the time Yes. And so it's it's good soap, but and some people might compare it to a regular bar soap. So it's not going to cost what a regular bar of soap. But so those are, those are on Etsy, because they're just people, there aren't any other Minnesota shapes that's
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 37:52
got to get that niche. And I think Etsy is a good way to get your name out there. Also, I've had lots of monetization, my stock photos. And so I've learned a lot over time. That's like, should I be on Etsy? Because it's like, there's so many fees and stuff. But at the same time, it's like, as long as I'm making a profit, right? I have a pet very passive income type of Etsy shops. I don't really have to literally once I post them, I don't have do anything. But it's just like Etsy, and I don't know, there's just a lot of controversy is like, should I be on Etsy? Should I be my own website? And it's like, I'm like, Well, do you do both? Right? It's like more of an audience. That to me is like a no brainer. Yeah. And
Lauren VanScoy 38:26
I have heard it recommended that you have both by people who are, you know, curating, or Yeah, representing magazines. And just because they, they want to see as much as they can especially.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 38:38
It's just an easy way to find out about you when they have it before. And I and I, have you ever thought about going on Amazon at all? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 38:44
so I have everything loaded and ready to go on. My sister helped me do that. But there's little tiny details that I have to you know, she did everything. And it was great. But then it was like, oh, gosh, what do I do for this or that? So it's all ready to go. I really, I'm excited. Hopefully that comes out soon. Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 39:04
I think I think that is a good place to get a huge audience that Yeah, everyone. I buy everything on Amazon. Me too. So and your part is at the Amazon handmade Amazon handmade?
Lauren VanScoy 39:15
So my understanding is you have to actually go on hand me to search for Oh, I don't know, or No,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 39:22
I don't think so. Okay, that's great. Because I know Heidi was on and on. And I searched accelerator candle and I found her so I might I don't know. Okay. I think so.
Unknown Speaker 39:33
I don't know, I don't get news on but
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 39:34
I feel like that would make it really confusing. If you had to go the handmade to find it. I feel like Amazon is smarter than that to be like, Yeah, well, I don't know, if you click it. And it's like, it's part of Amazon handmade. Like, I'm not sure how that works. But I feel like people wouldn't think to go to Amazon. To start.
Lauren VanScoy 39:49
That was my hesitation. Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 39:51
I'm not sure you don't take me but I feel like as a as a user of Amazon, I feel like it wouldn't make any sense to have a separate website, just search. I mean, that. I feel like they lose a lot of things true. So I don't know. I feel like there's just so much. I have, like, so many thoughts about like, the different platforms, but I feel like, I feel like obviously having your own website is so important. And I've always preached this because it's like, you know, those companies could die. Like it could go under and then you're like, What? What now, you know,
Lauren VanScoy 40:18
you also don't own your context on that. See? Oh, really know.
Unknown Speaker 40:24
What do you mean? Like you can't you can't contact them? emailing list, right? Yeah,
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 40:30
I've never really done that. So that makes sense. Because like, these people, you know, it's funny, though, I just have to show sorry. So I sell a stock photo of a mug. People think I make mugs. So I got three messages in the last week. They're like, really can't design a mug for me. I'm like, No, I sell stock photos of mugs where you're supposed to it's a mock up. So basically, like mug designers buy this stock photo that they ply their thing. They're like sell their mugs, and people so I had to I had to let rename it like, I do not sell mugs. Like, please do not contact me like it was just kind of funny. I'm like, crap, this is not i think i think people don't get it. So I'm like, okay,
Unknown Speaker 41:09
that made me
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 41:10
laugh. Cuz I'm just like, people just don't read on Etsy now. But I'm so awesome. Well, thank you so much for being here. How do we find you? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 41:19
so everything's online. So the website is www. essence one dot life. Okay. La FP life. And then Instagram is essence one life and Facebook. Does that sounds fun? And yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 41:31
And so we can go and then you you're in vanilla towers. But do you do sell out of there? Is it mostly just the work? Yeah,
Lauren VanScoy 41:39
it's it's a studio right now. Or you can pick up your orders there and shipping them or just, you know, come and smell product or whatever before you buy.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 41:48
They have to like, alert you that they're coming. Yeah. Yeah.
Lauren VanScoy 41:51
So it's kind of by I guess, technically by appointment. Most days, and they're just holding. I have kids. Yeah.
Jenna Redfield Twin Cities Collective 41:59
Just don't show up. And she's not there. Right. Awesome. Well, thank you so much, Lauren. And I hope you guys check out essence one and I'll talk to you soon.
Thanks for listening to the Twin Cities collective podcast with Jenna Redfield. Make sure to click subscribe if you haven't already. And make sure to leave us a review on iTunes. Thanks again for Ian at Studio Americana for producing this episode, as well as Melanie Lee for designing the podcast art. And thanks to Nicole I had less for the use of the song in the intros outros. Thanks so much again, and I'll see you next time.
Jenna Redfield is the leader of the Twin Cities Collective, the largest resource in the Twin Cities for bloggers, small business, entrepreneurs & creatives.
Join the Facebook Group
Read our Blog
Instagram Coaching Services
Logging Out Web Series
Signup for our email list for upcoming workshops & events
Follow us on Social