How One Entrepreneur Launched A Successful Business By Accident

This post originally appeared on TheBlaze HERE

When Lynsi O’Dell’s husband suffered a debilitating brain hemorrhage in 2007, the responsibility of providing for their family fell on her shoulders.

She had to leave her job running a day care to look after her husband and immediately set about looking for ways to ease the strain on the family’s finances.

So, as a means of conserving cash and addressing her children’s sensitive skin condition (eczema), she started mixing and matching different laundry detergent recipes, looking for the perfect natural blend.

Two birds with one stone, right?

“I received a recipe from a friend and I was desperately trying to save money at the time,” said the Jenison, Mich., resident in an email to TheBlaze.

Juggling a part-time side job, caring for her sick husband, being pregnant with their fifthchild, and experimenting with different recipes, it was a full year before she hit on the perfect formula.

“I was working as a server in a Bistro at the time and it seemed like a great recipe. I loved making it, but my kids’ skin sensitivities and eczema were at the forefront of my mind. They were still breaking out so I took a year to tweak it and make it natural,” she said.

After she had perfected the blend, something happened: People really, really liked it.

“Once my friends found out about what I was doing, they wanted to try it,” she said.

And the more it got out, the more people wanted to try it. Eventually,the inevitable happened: The Michigander decided to go into business for herself.

“I thought my Mom was nuts when she suggested I should go into business. Starting a business was not on my radar at all. I mean really — who wants to start a laundry soap business and compete with big name companies?” she joked.

“Against my better judgment, I sent an email out to my friends and family and sold 15 gallons. I then went to a craft show and sold 75 gallons. I knew I was onto something! It has been nothing but a gift since I made the decision to quit my Bistro job and work it 150 percent!” she added.

And thus was Coconut Rain born. From there, her business continued to grow — but it wasn’t easy.

“I’m going to be honest: It’s really hard sometimes! I have to work in blocks. I produce for an hour then go to a doctor appointment, school party, etc.,” she said. “Sometimes I mail out my daily orders on the way home from getting the kids from school.”

“I am forced to complete orders up until the early hours of the morning. Without a doubt, my family comes first. I will never get this time back with them and I don’t want to miss it,” she added.

A few years after launching Coconut Rain, she connected with The Marketplace by TheBlaze, an online store featuring some of the best and finest small businesses in the nation.

Luckily for her young business, it wasn’t a moment too soon.

“On the day of launching with The Marketplace, exactly six minutes after, I received a phone call from my biggest client. Their fiscal year budgets were not allowing the purchase of our laundry soap any further. I was absolutely devastated. How would my business continue to thrive? My faith was shaken to say the least and I questioned the future of my company,” she said.

Not all was lost.

“The next morning as I logged into my account, I had more orders than I could have even imagined. In the first four days of the website being live, I generated more revenue than I had with my ‘biggest client’ in a month,” she said.

They received 323 orders in their first 24 hours. In September 2012 alone, Coconut Rain tripled its normal monthly profits. It has since grown by roughly 40 percent since joining The Marketplace, according to Grand Rapids Family Magazine.

“I manage five distributors across the state of Michigan, where the meaning of unemployment is very well understood,” she wrote in an op-ed that ran on TheBlaze in September.

“With their commissions they provide food for their families, diapers for their babies and gas money for their minivans, which they use to transport their children to and from school,” she added.

Still, even with the success of her business, there’s still a lot of work to be done — and the whole family is pitching in.

“My husband has been my biggest cheerleader. He works in Business Development for an Electrical Company so he helps me with marketing and sales. I don’t have a college degree, so I had to learn about the business world the hard way,” Lynsi explains. “He’s a great help – he will make retail deliveries for me, mail orders and help me produce product. OR, just simply make the kids dinner while I am working.”

“My kids are so helpful. My 15 year old is a big help! She loves earning money, so she will help me label product bags and such. My 13 year old son likes to earn his payment in the form of video game time or a milkshake from his favorite fast food restaurant.”

“He helps to load finished product into our vehicle for delivery and helps me lift product boxes. We have been in the media a lot lately and they feel a sense of pride when asked about the family business. They are helping to make it a success by the contributions they make as well,” she added.

So where does she see her business going from here?

“Our business is debt free, so I think that plays a major part in our success. We don’t have any financial investors to pay back with our profits. So I’ve never faced the challenge of thinking that my business is in danger — because it has been really lucrative,” she said.

“In recent months, my business has received national attention because of its success. It is growing quickly and has experienced a 38% sales increase since May alone. The need to expand to meet demand is evident,” she added.

As Coconut Rain continues to grow, seemingly defying this struggling economy, her business savvy grows as well.

Starting a business “can be very rewarding, [but] it can be very trying on your family. Dedication to making any business successful is a must. You can’t put in an hour this week and an hour next week. You need to be devoted 100 percent,” she said.

“Start slow, build a solid foundation and a solid reputation so that people can trust you. My Dad gave me that advice and it was the best advice I’ve ever gotten,” she added.

 

 

Eric Weinstein, managing director of investment firm Thiel Capital and host of "The Portal" podcast, is not a conservative, but he says conservative and center-right-affiliated media are the only ones who will still allow oppositional voices.

On "The Glenn Beck Podcast" this week, Eric told Glenn that the center-left media, which "controls the official version of events for the country," once welcomed him, but that all changed about eight years ago when they started avoiding any kind of criticism by branding those who disagree with them as "alt-right, far-right, neo-Nazi, etc.," even if they are coming from the left side of the aisle. But their efforts to discredit critical opinions don't stop there. According to Eric, there is a strategy being employed to destroy our national culture and make sure Americans with opposing views do not come together.

"We're trifling with the disillusionment of our national culture. And our national culture is what animates the country. If we lose the culture, the documents will not save us," Eric said. "I have a very strongly strategic perspective, which is that you save things up for an emergency. Well, we're there now."

In the clip below, Eric explains why, after many requests over the last few years, he finally agreed to this podcast.

Don't miss the full interview with Eric Weinstein here.

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Glenn Beck: Why MLK's pledge of NONVIOLENCE is the key to saving America

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Listen to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s pledge of nonviolence and really let it sink in: "Remember always that the nonviolent movement seeks justice and reconciliation — not victory."

On the radio program, Glenn Beck shared King's "ten commandments" of nonviolence and the meaning behind the powerful words you may never have noticed before.

"People will say nonviolent resistance is a method of cowards. It is not. It takes more courage to stand there when people are threatening you," Glenn said. "You're not necessarily the one who is going to win. You may lose. But you are standing up with courage for the ideas that you espouse. And the minute you engage in the kind of activity that the other side is engaging in, you discredit the movement. You discredit everything we believe in."

Take MLK's words to heart, America. We must stand with courage, nonviolently, with love for all, and strive for peace and rule of law, not "winning."

Watch the video below for more:

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Conservatives are between a rock and a hard place with Section 230 and Big Tech censorship. We don't want more government regulation, but have we moved beyond the ability of Section 230 reforms to rein in Big Tech's rising power?

Rachel Bovard, Conservative Partnership Institute's senior director of policy, joined the Glenn Beck radio program to give her thoughts and propose a possibly bipartisan alternative: enforcing our existing antitrust laws.

Watch the video below:

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Dan Bongino, host of The Dan Bongino Show, is an investor in Parler — the social media platform that actually believes in free speech. Parler was attacked by Big Tech — namely Amazon, Apple, and Google — earlier this week, but Bongino says the company isn't giving up without a fight. In fact, he says, he's willing to go bankrupt over this one.

Dan joined Glenn Beck on the radio program to detail what he calls a "smear" campaign behind the scenes, and how he believes we can move forward from Big Tech's control.

"You have no idea how bad this was behind the scenes," Dan told Glenn. "I know you're probably thinking ... well, how much worse can the attack on Parler have gotten than three trillion-dollar companies — Amazon, Apple, and Google — all seemingly coordinated to remove your business from the face of the Earth? Well, behind the scenes, it's even worse. I mean, there are smear campaigns, pressure campaigns ... lawyers, bankers, everyone, to get this company ... wiped from the face of the earth. It's incredible."

Dan emphasized that he would not give up without a fight, because what's he's really fighting for is the right to free speech for all Americans, regardless of their political opinions, without fear of being banned, blacklisted, or losing jobs and businesses.

"I will go bankrupt. I will go absolutely destitute before I let this go," he said. "I have had some very scary moments in my life and they put horse blinders on me. I know what matters now. It's not money. It's not houses. It's none of that crap. It's this: the ability to exist in a free country, where you can express your ideas freely."

Watch the video below to hear more from Dan:

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