Welcome to the latest installment of Cratejoy’s new merchant success series, “Unboxed”! Each month, we’ll learn tips, tricks, and subscription box secrets from Cratejoy’s top merchants.
Today we talk with Ru Foster of BomiBox! (Find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!)
How did you get the idea for BomiBox?
BomiBox is a Korean beauty box subscription that includes a curation of Korean skincare and makeup products. I was inspired to start my business by my own skin concerns and the lack of options available at the time. I was already a skincare fanatic and a Korean drama fan, and after discovering the advances in Korean skincare, it was a natural extension of the things I was passionate about.
Take Action: Ru’s right. If you choose a focus for your subscription box that aligns with your interests, you’ll be more passionate about and invested in your business. Get started with Cratejoy’s ideas for 50 subscription box niches, then our guide to turning your hobby into a business.
Why did you choose Cratejoy?
I found Cratejoy to be the most user-friendly and feature-rich software, and the support was amazing in helping to set up my business exactly the way I needed. I initially used another subscription system, which became a nightmare to manage across customers with different renewal dates and different shipment months. Cratejoy allows you to choose your renewal and shipment period with a detailed dashboard, where you can view the number of successful renewals and shipments for any period.
I have also always been consistently impressed with the level of customer service from Cratejoy, especially when we just launched and had a lot of questions. I would hands-down recommend Cratejoy above another subscription platform.
How did you acquire your first 25 (or so) subscribers?
Social media was the key factor behind customer acquisition. I’m a firm believer in being where your customers are, and most skincare enthusiasts are on all social media platforms. I also had a detailed prelaunch, launch and post-launch plan and checklists to ensure that I had a complete roadmap of where I wanted the business to go. This includes operations, marketing and finances.
Checklists are everything.
Tell us how you went about designing your packaging.
I have a background in media design and web development, so the design of our box and inserts was fairly easy in the beginning. I chose to customize our boxes monthly as I do believe that presentation is key in the unboxing experience. We now design everything through another company I own specialized in web and media design.
What do you know now that you wish you knew then?
Everything! I had to learn about the subscription economy from scratch, but most of the expensive lessons I learned were not found in books.
If I had to choose one thing I wish I had known then, it would be to calculate and weigh costs right down to the last penny.
When it comes to the subscription box business, every single cent counts towards your bottom line.
What mistake do you wish you could have avoided along the way?
When I [had] just started, taking time for granted was an expensive mistake. With a monthly box, planning in advance is important to avoid last-minute costly purchases and to have a backup plan when things go wrong. I’ve learned to plan everything and work to a detailed daily, weekly and monthly checklist.
Take Action: Planning is everything when you start up a business, especially if you’re bootstrapping. Stay prepared with Cratejoy’s breakdown of common challenges for subscription businesses.
Anything else you’d like to share about your success story?
We have been fortunate to have loyal customers who have been with us since the beginning. If there is one thing that has made the most difference in the growth of our business, it’s loving our customers, listening to them and giving them value for money. It’s easier to keep existing customers than acquire new ones.
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