September 12, 2016
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Think of the essentials in life: oxygen, sleep, water and food. On the whole, humanity is better at taking care of some essentials than others. We would never skip breathing for more than a few minutes, but we’ll fall asleep randomly. And food is the worst: we’ll often stock up on junk food or skip a meal without bothering to puzzle out what these diet tweaks will wind up costing us down the road.
Which is fine; we just need to find a way to let others crunch the numbers. Enter Boulder, CO-based Skratch Labs, a supplier of natural foods and drinks aimed at bikers, climbers and health-conscious athletes of all shades. From their very first product, the Exercise Hydration Mix, to food and drink products so new they have yet to be seen by the public eye, everything at Skratch Labs is designed to deliver a health boost to customers and their active lives.
I spoke with Skratch’s marketing specialist, Shawn Milne, in order to suss out the secrets behind the business and what advice the company might be able to share for any budding entrepreneurs, foodies or otherwise.
Start from the Literal and Figurative Scratch
Milne shared two factors behind Skratch’s success, and they define a mantra that any startup would be wise to study. Here are his words, an expansion on why it’s “never too late to start from scratch”:
“That is the core of our motivation here at Skratch Labs and these two ingredients are the first two in each and every one of our products: Real ingredients made by nature and an eye that looks at the sports nutrition category without any preconceived notions about what is considered to be the best.”
While using natural ingredients may be the literal interpretation of starting from scratch, throwing away old nutritional assumptions is the figurative one. And knowing when to change in the future—pivoting, to mix the metaphors—is one of the startup community’s basic ingredients.
Skratch’s Plans for the Future
So, what does Skratch Labs have cooking? Nothing they’re willing to share:
“While we can't just yet talk about anything new coming down the pipeline, I will say that it's a very exciting time here at Skratch Labs as we have set goals to refine our processes as a company, as a family, and as product developers,” said Milne. “So, keep an eye out. It's going to be an exciting next few months and years!”
Align Your Passion with Your Problem
Milne did share advice for others in the small business world, and it’s something that resonates with Skratch’s approach to blazing new, better trails:
“Were I to give any advice to the fellow startup community it would be to find a problem that needs to be solved, see if the possible solution aligns well with your talents and passions and go from there. Also, make sure to stay humble to yourself and know that there will be many mistakes along the way as well as opportunities to learn. No matter how far you have progressed and how much you already know, always be willing to hear new ideas and allow others to teach you something new.”
The products Skratch Labs deals with – food and drink – might be as old as oxygen, but that doesn’t mean they can’t find a new spin on an old concept. No matter how old you are, it’s never too late to start from scratch.
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