During our first couple of months launching NanaBowls, we planned to launch NanaBowls in 7 cafes in 7 days….
WE KINDA FAILED!!!!!
We only actually launched in 5 cafes.
NanaBowls is a passion project for Jess and I.
We created it simply because we wanted to eat healthier smoothie bowls ourselves.
We wanted a smoothie bowl that was more than just sugary fruit puree.
A smoothie bowl that literally smashed nutrition without compromising taste.
A smoothie bowl that contained a healthy dose of vegan protein and healthy fats to regulate blood sugar levels.
…oh and NO ADDED SUGARS (not even dates or honey)!
And so for the past few months we’ve worked relentlessly to create recipes that taste great without compromising our values when it comes to health and nutrition.
It’s been incredibly challenging to get the balance of taste, nutrition, cost and simplicity right.
But over the past few months, and in the past week in particular, we’ve learnt a sh*t load.
The biggest learnings?
1. BEING THE RIGHT FIT MATTERS, A LOT!
We rushed to put our product into a lot of cafes and stockists.
But we didn’t adequately consider the fact that buying NanaBowls should be an experience for the customer.
From the bowl, to the topping, to the taste and the crunch!
Even service and atmosphere is part of that.
We learnt that we need to stock in places that have the same vibe and values as NanaBowls.
We got excited and perhaps we chose locations that weren’t the best fit for our unique NanaBowls…
Maybe we’re too pricey.
Maybe we’re too niche.
Maybe we’re too specific.
All our cafes are great.
But it’s important to both them and us that we’re doing them justice and matching their values (and price points) too!
2. TOO MUCH CHOICE IS A HEAD F*CK!
Eager to please and share our recipes we went ahead and offered every cafe unique flavoured NanaBowls.
Guess we wanted to show the world how great and tasty all our flavours are!
But here’s the problem…
Each flavour has a unique topping.
This saw us supplying dozens of NanaBowl packs to cafes.
Even though we’re only in half a dozen cafes this has already proved tricky in terms of training cafes and supplying them with sufficient stock to meet daily demand.
Often freezers aren’t big enough to store many packs so we’re spending a lot of time delivering to replenish stock.
Driving around in traffic in Phuket’s heat is no fun.
So we kinda FAILED here too.
But again, WE LEARNT SO MUCH.
We learnt the importance of simplicity.
We call it “SIMPLEXITY”.
That is, the art of making the complex simple!
It’s easy to make things complex.
The real skill is the ability to make things simple and smooth, and effortless!
Here at NanaBowls we really need to simplify our range down to 3 or so flavours with a simplified approach to our toppings.
We already have many ideas on how to do this… and are actually super excited to get this underway!
We want to bring Apple’s simplicity to the smoothie bowl world
3. SOCIAL MEDIA ISN’T 100% REAL!!!
When we first started NanaBowls we kinda let our egos get in the way.
We wanted to be perfect.
Or at least give the impression of perfection.
But guys, trying to be perfect is freaking tiring.
Having every photo shot with an SLR and then edited is such a huge investment of time.
We were literally spending hours discussing which photo to post, what to write and when to post it for optimal “LIKES”…
Yes the results on www.instagram.com/nanabowls look swish and nice…
But why is this “apparently” so important?
To be honest, we did it to give the impression of professionalism and build a huge fan base.
Yes this is important too.
But isn’t it more important to have quality over quantity?
Isn’t it more important to be real?
Yes, it’s important to get our message out and share our story.
To develop trust etc.
But we’ve learnt that we have to be ourselves.
In the first few weeks we were rehearsing videos and writing scripts.
But here’s the thing…
We’ve learnt it’s best to be real.
To be engaging.
To be authentic.
And the truth is, although we may seem like we’ve got our sh*t together…
…we are always learning.
Always changing our minds.
We are kinda “failing” everyday… but we wouldn’t change it for the world!!
Because the best way to maximize your chance of creating a masterpiece is to JUST DO MORE.
And often this means… a little more failure too.
But that’s cool!
Because only then can we test the waters and discover what actually works, in the real world.
Real time, real life, R&D!
Slowly we’re learning to embrace a bit of failure, even if our egos kinda hate it
ONE FINAL THOUGHT TO END…
So guys, thanks for taking the time to share our journey.
We’re anything but polished… but one day we may be… so please hang on in there with us…
But right now, we’re just a guy and a girl who love nutritious smoothie bowls with a thick ice cream consistency that don’t leave you feeling bloated (or guilty).
Oh, and we like it crunchy too!!!
But we wanted to take the time to share this with you.
Hopefully this may just inspire a few of you to take tiny steps… low risk steps… to move mildly, to moderately, to significantly closer towards your current passion project.
To quieten the ego.
To lessen the need to be perfect.
Remember, “failing” a couple of times… actually “failing” a lot of times…. means we’re pushing ourselves, challenging what’s possible and ultimately testing our egos!
Remember each little “fail” is a little speed-bump to slow you down, redirect you, and put you back on the best path.
So, it’s time to embrace a little “failure” peeps!