Tanya Stanley is a multi-award winning business owner for the following categories in our 2020 AusMumpreneur VIC-TAS Awards
- Silver winner – Emerging AusMumpreneur
- Bronze winner – Hair & Beauty Business
Tanya Stanley is the driving force bee-hind Beetanicals, loving wife to Warren – beekeeper of the Stanley family and devoted mother to two little bees Cooper and Toby. Beetanicals is an Australian skincare brand founded by a third-generation beekeeping family in rural Victoria. Championing holistic health and wellness, Beetanicals offers a range of award-winning natural skincare balms as well as premium 100% Raw Australian Honey including soon to be released, Manuka Honey.
When did you start your business?
We launched our business in September 2018 after a few years in development bee-hind he scenes.
What was the inspiration behind starting this business?
When we had our first baby Cooper, he had very sensitive skin and suffered from a dry skin condition. Like many parents I wanted a natural, safe and effective solution to soothe his skin and minimise the discomfort he experienced. However, my search for a natural, toxin-free product to soothe, nurture and protect his skin proved unsuccessful. So, I decided to create my own.
As a long-time lover of bees and wife of a beekeeper, I was well aware of the wonderful anti-bacterial benefits of beeswax. The product I had been searching for was right before my eyes! When my home-grown balm proved effective for Cooper, and for tending to other family members skin issues too, my dream was realised – to deliver a range of natural skincare products to enhance skin health and overall wellbeing in families like ours. A subsequent family holiday caravanning through central Australia exposed us to some of the amazing healing powers of Australian Natives and traditional bush medicine. And so, in conjunction with a qualified formulator and a world expert in aromatherapy and essential oil safety, we created the first batch of Beetanicals balms. We are proud that 18 ingredients in our balms are from fellow Australian producers including beeswax & honey from our very own hives.
What are you most excited about in your business?
I am excited about sharing our growing range of products and honey with many more families to support them naturally with products they can trust and are effective. Growing our team so that we can serve you to the best of our ability. Raising awareness for our buzzy little friends and giving back where we can. We have four new products that have been in development for quite some time and three honey’s that will be launching soon.
What has been the most challenging thing about starting your business?
The Beetanicals journey has certainly been a rollercoaster ride. Since formulating the very first skincare balm in our kitchen in 2015, we have been determined to get it right from the beginning, ensuring every box was ticked before launching.
I spent many sleepless nights researching, learning and upskilling while intermittently breastfeeding. I have travelled far and wide (literally) to rural and remote towns across Australia learning about bush medicine, sourcing the best ingredients, and collaborating with experts in their chosen fields in order to bring Beetanicals to life.
One of my main challenges, commonly experienced by women in business, is juggling the role of mother to two young children, and simultaneously operating a business. Time management continues to prove challenging and I continue to treat each day as a learning curve and an opportunity grow, evolve and adapt. Coincidentally, having recently setting up a Beetanicals shop/business space in the same little town our boys go to school and daycare it has worked really well separating work and home. I am finding I am so much more productive. I have met likeminded mums and reached more rural families in the process – introducing them to Beetanicals along the way. With so many factors to get right in a business; from branding to production logistics, from legal processes to cash flow management, I have always upheld my mission to build a safe and effective product brand that families can trust. Maintaining this core focus during the day-to-day operations, is especially helpful when it comes to decision-making in the business.
What advice would you give to other women thinking about starting a business?
Find your niche and bring your brand to life.
What sets you apart? Identify what you are passionate about, and this will shine through and set you apart from competitors in the market. We connected with an incredible branding agency to help bring their brand to life and a website developer that I met through the Women’s Business School. This was a big investment but so important. I had seen brands launch and invest so much into their logo, packaging etc to find out that they had infringed on a trademark. When we decided on the Beetanicals name, that represented our business to a tee, we invested in trademarking prior to going to market. You learn to be patient; this process took at least 9 months, but was well worth it in the end.
Put yourself out there;
My mission is to share the Beetanicals products far and wide and to support families with the natural goodness from bees. To achieve this, I needed to get the word out. Applying for awards and approaching wholesalers can be daunting. Beetanicals have over 30 stockists in Australia and international interest. Sometimes you need to get out of your comfort zone and back yourself.
Since launching Beetanicals in 2018, I have taken our natural skin care and honey range to countless markets. While markets can be time consuming, they are a great way to connect with customers and gain valuable feedback.
Seek expert involvement in areas that you aren’t up to speed in. You don’t have to know it all to be successful. Late one night while I was breastfeeding our son Cooper, I reached for the stars and decided to email the world expert in aromatherapy and essential oil safety. I thought why not go to the top, if you don’t ask, you have no chance of receiving. To my surprise he replied and checked over their formula’s and tweaked for safety and effectiveness.
Know your limits
Don’t take on more than you can manage. I am guilty of this and is well aware of the effects of over committing on your health. I am working hard to make Beetanicals work around her little family and seeking the right support to make this possible. My incredible mum is an amazing support in our business too. My moto is – Bee kind always. This includes bee-ing kind to yourself.
Protect your business
Not only with trademarks but with your IP and ensure you have contracts or non-disclosure documents in place with anyone that you are letting in. We have learnt the hard way and I highly recommend you make sure they are thorough and get a lawyer to look over as this is your ideas and creations that you need to keep protected. “Nevertheless, she persisted”, is a little sign on my desk. Take every challenge as a lesson and keep persisting.
Why did you enter the AusMumpreneur Awards?
I entered the AusMumpreneur awards as I truly believe in the incredible network that Peace & Katy have grown and I have been inspired by so many past women who have been part of the network and recognised over the years. I backed myself and was so overjoyed and proud to have placed in two categories. Awards of this kind can help you reach many more with your product or service to grow your business.
What did you enjoy the most about being part of the awards?
I loved applying for the awards and actually sitting there and reflecting on our journey. With the application process and the questions asked, it really allows you to dig deep. I was quite taken with my persistence over the years and how we kept going even through the toughest challenges. It was also amazing reconnecting with some women that I went through the Women’s Business School Ignite program with.
What surprised you most about the awards?
It was incredible having an interview with three judges and sharing our journey and being asked some big questions and gaining feedback. I got a lot out of it.
How did the awards help you in your business?
The exposure and PR opportunities that come from placing in an awards really helped with exposure for our small family run business.
What advice would you give to others mums thinking about entering the awards?
You have nothing too lose, back yourself and the process is so worth it even if you didn’t end up placing. We grow by backing ourself and taking some risks in our journey. Follow your passion always!
What’s happening next in your business? Any big plans for the future?
We opened our new bricks and mortar shop last Friday which was really exciting step for our family and business. This is open on a part time basis around our young family. The space for our business allows us room to grow. A growing range of products in development and we can’t wait to share them with you all over time.
All images featured here are from Tanya Stanley.
2021 GLOBAL BUSINESS MOTHERS AWARDS
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