Sustainable Pads Startup Books $1M Profit
Nadya Okamoto, a 24-year-old entrepreneur and reproductive health activist, co-founded August- a period-care brand that manufactures sustainable pads and tampons.
Since its launch in 2020, the company has reported profits of more than $1 million and has donated more than 120,000 period-care products.
Created a national movement at the age of 16
Growing up in New York city, Nadya witnessed menstruating women not having access to basic period care essentials such as tampons, pads and utilities required for a safe and hygienic reproductive journey.
Citing this, Nadya, at the age of 16, co-founded a non-profit healthcare organization- Period, which was devoted to accessible period care
Period- a youth-focused association distributes free menstrual-care products like pads and tampons, to underserved communities in the city, such as single mothers and women from low-income backgrounds.
Today, her organization has built a national presence sporting hundreds of contributing volunteers and college campus enthusiasts.
Last year, Period helped cover more than 3 million menstrual cycles through their services.
Using the experience she garnered from running ‘Period‘, six years later, she hired an executive director to head take care of the organization and relocated to New York City to establish her brand.
Partnering with her friend Nick Jain, Nadya officially launched the business in January 2020.
The venture has recently booked more than a million in revenue and continues to grow every passing second.
What is August’s speciality?
The duo fundamentally started August to address a gap that exists in the menstrual-hygiene market.
Their major focus was creating plastic-free, biodegradable, and leak-proof period products for all menstruators, which is also the motto of this brand.
Regular pads take more than 800 years to decompose owing to the plastic used in their production.
However, pads from August take less than 12 months!
Moreover, the pads are made from 100% organic cotton and are plastic-free.
‘Sustainability is one of the most attractive aspects of the brand’, as quoted by Deloitte.
Here’s how these two young entrepreneurs created a successful brand space
Posting 100 videos a day strategy
When Nadya launched ‘August’, she posted more than 100 videos a day on her TikTok to represent her brand’s unique approach to menstrual hygiene.
She discerned the importance of audience engagement and video concepts that would earn her the required exposure.
Her videos showing period blood and bts of her company’s functioning grew August’s as well as Nadya’s account.
Currently, she has more than 3.2 million followers on TikTok and posts about 30 times a day.
The first video that went viral funneled more than 400,000 visitors to the company’s site OVERNIGHT.
With exposure came more chances of people purchasing subscriptions or forming an acquaintance– which sooner or later will turn into patrons.
In her words,
“To me, the TikTok algorithm is like a lottery. The more tickets you put in, the more chances you have of winning or, in this case, going viral.”
Customer feedback- the wand of entrepreneurial success
A big part of the duo’s success strategy was lending special attention to customer feedback.
They used Geneva, an organized group chat app to receive direct feedback from patrons regarding their vision of an ideal product.
They started August Inter Cycle- a community of a few hundred members to receive direct feedback about product designs, marketing tactics and hosting events.
Today this chat room has expanded to more than 3200 members and has spread across 12 chat rooms- which the duo monitors closely.
“In today’s day and age, for a founder to build a successful brand, you have to listen to your customers. When it comes to period care, most brands have failed to listen”, says Jain.
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According to the young entrepreneur,
“I want periods to be a global conversation. That’s why I chose to be in this space — to help eliminate that stigma and help menstruators feel empowered about their bodies.”