What Is Healthy Surprise?
You’ve probably had this experience: You’re walking down the snack isle at your favorite market, looking at the healthier options and find something that looks kind of interesting. Then see the pricetag: $8! You think “That’s a lot of money for a bag of something I’ve never seen or heard of before.” You wonder, does it taste like cardboard?
The healthier I tried to eat, the more I found myself having this experience. I found myself getting frustrated at the time, money and energy I was spending looking for foods that were both good for me and good tasting. I had to ‘kiss a lot of frogs’ – and spend a lot of money – to find the really good snacks
In August of 2011, I attended Startup Weekend Los Angeles. I felt it was the perfect opportunity to try out an idea that I had been incubating for a couple years after my good friend Justin Zimmerman sent me a box of healthy snacks with a card in it for my birthday. I liked the idea so much that I wrote down this gift in my ‘business ideas’ notebook!
I had attended Startup Weekends prior to this one, but I felt that most of the ideas were either giant-change-the-world-but-probably-not-this-weekend type ideas, or something a little bit more fun-but-not-serious. I wanted Healthy Surprise to be different. I felt that if I was going to invest 50+ hours in something, I wanted build a business and deliver a service right then and there. Take care of business and get things done… that’s just my style
While planning for Start Up weekend I sat down and wrote out my list of goals for this fledgling business idea. In the 50 hours at Start up Weekend I would:
- Develop the business model and user experience
- Build the website and accept payments
- Sign up paying customers
- Take and receive payments
- Deliver a real, valuable product people want
- Generate a profit
- Help people experience delicious AND healthy food
I knew I could reach all of those goals during that weekend; What I didn’t expect was that during my presentation, Healthy Surprise would sell out of all of our $750 worth of product and have more people sign up for our service than there were types of coffee at Starbucks!
Fast forward six months: we’re coming up on the sixth month anniversary of Healthy Surprise!! We’ve packed a lot of boxes, tasted a LOT of snacks (not all good! Trust me, I’ve sacrificed my taste buds for you) and met some amazing clients, people, partners and friends.
I’ve learned SO much during this journey:
- What it takes to create an online business, infuse it with energy
- How to build the tools and services to run the business for almost no capital (except COUNTLESS hours – no four hour workweeks here) P
- How people make decisions about what they eat and why (the most interesting for me, I’ve always loved psychology)
I’m continually impressed by the impact food can have on our lives and how amazing it is to create a business designed to serve people and make the world just a little bit better. After all, Healthy Surprise is all about helping people live happier and healthier lives. Whether that is due to a change in diet, ease of convenience or as fundamental as avoiding serious allergies, I’ve worked hard to bring the joy I experience in healthy (and still tasty!) eating to the masses.
… I couldn’t do it without you!
Questions about starting Healthy Surprise or running a business? Ask below in the comments:
- Joseph Winke