Entrepreneurs: Guranjan Chandok & Tanya Mehta
Business Name: Spoil Your Body Now
Welcome to Entrepreneurs of India #startupstories episode 65
When all major brands are going natural after decades in the industry, some are starting off that way. Tanya and Guranjan are giving a new shade to the trend with their range of organic skin & hair products.
The duo started off their venture when they had just finished secondary school. Now, four years into this business the duo is making plans on expansion and diversification. Spoil Your Body is not simply a range of products but a way of life.
Tanya and Guranjan were best-friends from school, just that unlike most best friends they didn’t restrict their ideas and conversations to just having fun together but leveraged on the warm companionship they share to build a dream together. It is good ideas and great partnerships that pave way for a successful entrepreneurship journey. The journey of entrepreneurship is always better together, either with your partner/s or with your team.
There are numerous players in the beauty and skincare industry, new entrants need to battle with both large and small enterprises to make a space for themselves. Tanya and Guranjan had the advantage of being members of their target group, which is young urban dwellers who prefer classy and fun products catered to a niche audience. That helped them strike the chord with their customers and took them on a whole new journey with a promising future.
1) How did you get your idea for this business?
Two 17 year old bestfriends, lazing around after 12th grade board exams and suddenly we never had to wake up for school or to study and felt like we must start doing something productive in our lives.
We are really passionate about skincare, so we knew we wanted to do something along those lines but what we didn’t know was the struggle behind setting up the business. Passion trumps struggles and a week later we had created 15body scrubs and a website to sell them on all by ourselves, with no investment from anyone. Slowly the word spread and we got a great response from the market.
2) Why is “now” a good time for this idea to exist?
There is never a ‘good’ time to start a business or for an idea to exist because a good idea or product will always do well no matter what the circumstance.
That being said, The beauty and skincare industry is one of the topmost industries in the world and the reason being, people always want to look the best version of themselves. There is so much scope to expand and people are always willing to try new products.
3) What was the reaction from your family when you first decided to become an entrepreneur?
As young girls who wanted to start their own business they of course had their doubts but they were really supportive and that was because we never asked them for anything and we had it all planned out.
We were adamant that this is what we wanted to do and so they gave in and that pushed us to do even better. Till date, they are always interested with what is happening and try to help us out whenever we need it.
4) What was your biggest mistake in business and what did you learn from it?
When we started off, we didn’t know enough, everything was new for us, we had to pick ourselves up when we fell and pat our own backs when we did something good. We trusted people too quickly and easily.
We were very young and people fooled us quite some times but that just made us smarter. What we learnt was to be passionate but not naive, to be headstrong but also open to people’s suggestions and to always stand your ground.
5) What is your biggest obstacle in the next 12 months and how will you overcome it?
We have just invested alot of time and effort in expanding our product line from being a home based business to now getting the products manufactured in factories and also our website. 4 years of hard work has finally brought us to this moment and we are really excited and nervous at the same time.
We are going to sell other brands on our website and they counting on us, we need to prepare the market for our products. Since we are a small team and we have to manage everything by ourselves.There will definetly be alot of brainstorming and collective research. We do not think of it as an obstacle but rather as a challenge so no matter what happens or what comes our way we know we will get through it as we always have.
6) What habits contribute to your success?
As young girls we had to give up a lot of time that we probably would have spent with friends/ family so our priorities were always in order. People say that working with your best friend ruins the relationship but we don’t think of it that way.
Maybe we got lucky in the fact that we understand each other so well and we both are really focused on the job at hand. We motivate each other and have so much fun doing what we do.
We started so young and it could have gone completly wrong but thankfully it’s worked out amazing.
7) If you had the opportunity to start this business again what would you do differently?
Of course, we could have read up more, perfected the product before selling it, thought out the finances but that’s all part of the journey to success. No one in the world is perfect.
It takes time and effort and a lot of all nights to get to where you actually want to be. Nothing great comes easy. We yet have a long way to go and a lot to learn. All the mistakes, all the problems. They make the journey worth it.
8) What is your favourite inspirational quote?
“Success doesn’t come from where you went to college, success is about trusting your insctincts and following your gut, knowing which rules to follow and which to break”- Sophia Amoruso ( Girl Boss)
9) Where do you find inspiration?
Previously we both have done many internships and always come to the conclusion that it was not for us. We always wanted to be our own boss. There is just something special about working for yourself. Being an entrepreneur has changed our lives.
Inspiration comes to us in all forms but mainly in the vision we have for our brand and where we want to take it.
10) What is your favourite book?
Unusual billionares by Saurabh Mukherjea
11) What advice would you give to someone starting out?
First think it out, know exactly what it is that you want to do and once you know, don’t look back.There’s no substitute for hardwork. People will tell you to take a shortcut, people will pull down, you will have to make 100 calls until that one person acknowledges you but you need to know whats more important, your business or the things people say.
In school we are always told that if you get good grades you reap the benefits but life is so much more than that, take it from two girls who only fooled around in school and have a business now. The grades dont matter, it’s how passinate you are that does.
Success will not come overnight no matter how great your idea is. People who you think have achieved success overnight have worked for years before in silence.
So if you have a business idea, take a shot. And never give up.
They say any time is a good time if you are ready to go. The ideas that are brimming within you has to be released into the world sooner or later. One can never be fully prepared and all entrepreneurs learn on the go. It is a journey you often make blindfolded and it takes practice to attain familiarity and expertise.
Entrepreneurship is filled with learning until your very last day of work. One can never fully know but one can always learn. Keeping yourself open to ideas that serve your growth is key, Guranjan and Tanya shows you how. Inspiration comes in all forms, combine it with a spoon of conviction, a pinch of courage and you are good to roll!
You can connect with Spoil Your Body on Instagram now!