Hello! Who are you and what business did you start?
Hello! My name is Yanet Caliz, CEO, and founder of Gold Spectrum Lifestyle CBD Brand and Silk Bombs CBD Spa Products. I migrated from Mexico to California at age 13 with my mom and younger brother. We lived in a one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment with 18 other people.
When I was younger, I dropped out of high school. I was a single mom, and all chances of succeeding were stacked against me. That didn't stop me. I had a tremendous determination to triumph, and I always believed in myself.
In March 2019, I founded Gold Spectrum. I launched our website in February 2020, against all the odds, in the middle of the pandemic. I can say the only fear is in our heads. So far, our success has increased our revenue to an average of $20,000 a month and it continues to grow. I followed my gut feeling NOT to postpone our launch, and it is paying off.
I got into the CBD business because I always needed to help others, and what better way to do that than through health. My biggest reward is when I hear my clients say how rested, happy, and energized they feel by taking my products. It's a fantastic feeling.
My flagship product is Xtreme X Lifestyle CBD made with only two natural ingredients: 5000 ML of Full Spectrum CBD (from Hemp) and Hemp seed oil as a carrier oil (hemp SEED oil is not CBD). It contains .3% or less of THC, under the legal limit. It gives you the full benefits of the cannabis plant and not just the CBD.
There are no artificial colors or flavors, and it’s excellent for muscle recovery, among many other benefits. These product targets athletes, an equal split of males and females, who are young to middle age, health-focused, affluent, up-to-speed with current trends, and well-informed. They are individuals who prioritize fitness and wellness.
What's your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?
At a very young age, I realize my mom had to work three jobs to barely make a living for me and my brother. Since then, I decided I was going to be my own boss and I started my very first company at age 28. I started doing janitorial services using only the cleaning products I had under my sink. That put me on the path with the person who gave me my next opportunity to start another business. This business was repairing apartments. This was a skill I did not know but I learned to do well quickly. This is the foundation that taught me that I can learn and do anything to accomplish my goals.
Life has shown me that you can start right where you are and with what you have, with no money or support. You can always do it if you have the courage.
Many years ago, after my husband was diagnosed with cancer, a passion ignited in me for natural ways of healing our bodies. I discovered that humans have an endocannabinoid system (ECS), a group of receptors in the brain and throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems. CBD interacts with CB1 and CB2 receptors that strengthen the immune system naturally. Quality CBD is an extremely effective natural alternative to align your health.
When the use of CBD from Hemp was approved in the state of California, I, as well as many of my friends and family members, confirmed its incredible benefits. We experienced the relief of stress, anxiety, chronic pains, joint and back pain, muscle recovery, and more.
After seeing so many bad products in the market, many with no CBD at all, the idea came to me to create my own brand. It took me a long time to learn the hemp growing and extraction process; however, I'm a very persistent person, and I dedicated day and night to learning. And I did it!
Gold Spectrum is a high-quality, high-concentration CBD Isolate and Full Spectrum CBD, which gets validated by a third-party lab test. A Lab Certificate of Analysis (COA) is posted on our website which assures what's on the label is inside our product.
At the beginning of this year, I started to play with the idea of Silk Bombs a CBD Spa Products Company. As I mentioned before, all humans have an ECS (why no school ever teaches us this?) with two cannabinoid receptors, and one of them, CB2 is found through our skin. This is the main reason our bath products are quickly becoming popular because our CBD formulation is created to boost your health through your skin.
Take us through the process of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing your first product.
Our super guarded formula took a while because I wanted a concentrated formula all-natural, no colors or artificial flavors. It comes from the most potent strains of premium hemp which is why our products are quickly becoming popular.
I started by contacting and visiting hemp fields and learning the whole process. Then deciding what concentration I wanted was not hard for me since I already knew exactly what I wanted. Designing the carrier oil was a little bit more work because there are tons of options but after evaluating them all we decided to keep it all-natural, with no colors or flavors of any kind.
Branding Gold Spectrum was a challenge for me since I had no experience or knowledge in graphic designing or marketing. I hired experts in the field who drafted my whole idea. I wanted to create a high-end, professional, trustworthy, legitimate, friendly, and relatable CBD product.
I can say I knew nothing about Google Docs, and worst yet, AI, JPG, PNG, and other types of files were driving me crazy because I had never heard those terms in my life. I have to say this was the most challenging process when creating Gold Spectrum.
Manufacturing my initial packaging run was actually easy for me because I own a supplies company, Annex Supplies Co. Since I already work with manufacturers, I know the process perfectly. The startup cost is almost always more expensive initially, particularly because my initial orders were low quantities, but it gets more cost-effective as demand increases.
Describe the process of launching the business.
Launching the Gold Spectrum website was another challenging process. I honestly thought once my website was live, I would get tons of traffic, but I was wrong. Then I tried running campaigns on FB and IG, and I hit another brick wall: they do not allow CBD campaigns. We had to shift strategy to digital marketing, which has been working well. I wish I knew these things before, however, I have learned a lot.
Collecting email subscriptions is one of the most important assets a company can build. People are willingly giving you their email to run campaigns later. On the other hand, social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram are constantly changing their rules, and you don't know if you could lose your followers.
I'm lucky to say that I funded all expenses. I try to do as much design work for marketing and social media myself to save money because it can get expensive. Just to run social media campaigns you can spend thousands of dollars a month. Even though I can say that by trying to lower my expenses I end up spending more time and money, but I am still learning.
Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?
To attract customers and increase our traffic, we launched a full-blown digital marketing campaign. We are constantly working with influencers, digital ads, digital PR, and currently working on email marketing as well as SEO. We even debuted New York Times Square Billboards to get even more brand awareness and recognition.
To retain customers, we rely heavily on email marketing. I can say it is the best way to bring your customers back by sending them promotions, discounts, and continuously reminding them, “Hey! I'm here, don't forget about me.”
On social media, we are consistently posting to keep it growing organically. We do giveaways to keep followers engaged, and we also work with paid and gifted influencers. We have seen our reach begin to increase through these strategies.
How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
We are a new company. 100% of our sales come from our web sales. We are continuously looking for more ways to get exposure. Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, and other platforms do not allow the advertising of CBD products. Only if they are labeled as HEMP OIL. This has been a hurdle, but we are finding ways to persevere.
Our future looks fantastic. More and more people are discovering the excellent benefits of cannabis oil. We continue to educate people on the subject and clarify many of the taboos. As of right now, I have not recovered the invested money yet, but I am confident that we will continue to grow and recoup initial costs.
Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
I started my first janitorial company at age 28 with no money, using under my sink cleaning products and a house vacuum. Shortly after that, I founded maintenance and repairs multifamily property business. I made over 1 million dollars in my first year with NO experience and very little money to start. I said yes, I could do it when the opportunity was there. Then I went and learned how to do it.
Life has shown me that you can start right where you are and with what you have, with no money or support. You can always do it if you have the courage. I have always said YES, I can do it. That's how I created many different successful companies throughout my life. I'm constantly looking for opportunities and needs, and then I'm there.
What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?
The most influential book I have read and I reread from time to time is The Secret. My favorite quote is, "If you think you can or you think you can't either way you are right.”
Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting?
I frequently see other people thinking about starting a business but they think or convince themselves that now is not the right time, they need tons of money, or they require others’ approval. I would tell them to start where they are with what they have. Most importantly, stay focused on multiplying what they started with.
Where can we go to learn more?
Gold Spectrum CBD
If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!
Hey! 👋 I'm Pat Walls, the founder of Starter Story.
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