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SBW Issue 11 Jeneth Blackert

Inspirational Mompreneur My Daughter’s Health Crisis Inspired Me to Start My Business My first priority was to create fun jewelry that kids would get excited about wearing, something that other kids -- even those without a medical condition -- would admire. Second priority was creating an interchangeable design system with medical ID tags thatcould be removed from the bracelet and swapped out with other bands so kids could mix and match depending on their mood or their outfit. In other words, it had to be bothfun and practical. Armed with these two concept requirements, I started sewing the bands myself and was taught by a local jeweler how to design the ID plates. The jewelry designer friend who nudged me into business in the first place hooked me up with his manufacturers and I was in business! With product on the way, I shifted gears to marketing. Luckily, there already was a market hungry for something just like this so it seemed an easy sell. Creating an e-store allowed me to accept orders 58 | SavvyBizWomen from around the world. And that’s where the company and I learned a hard lesson. Our first website left us completely dependent upon a technician to make even the smallest of changes which was expensive and time wasting. We should have insisted on a website we could manage and update ourselves.Another thing we would do differently isimplement a free newsletter much sooner. Building a robust email database for future marketing ismoney in the bank. Today, 14 years after its launch, N-Style ID continues to grow. We plan to expand our medical ID line and move into non-medical products. But we want the company to remain small and manageable. It allows us to treat every customer and their order with genuine, personalized care. Building the company and raising two daughters has been difficult at times. The greatest hardship was the time I didn’t get to spend with the girls as they grew up. But Camille, who once was jealous of my time away from her, is now an integral part of the business and will eventually run the company. It just seems fitting that the girl who started us on this journey will be the woman taking it to new heights. Toni Bissell is the founder of N-Style ID, an innovative company that creates and sells fashion forward medical ID jewelry with a particular focus on children. Learn more at: www.n-styleid.com


SBW Issue 11 Jeneth Blackert
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