Colorado is considered one of the fittest places to live and work. Residents have many options when it comes to choosing where to buy nutritional supplements and supplies. What seemed to be missing in Greeley was a personal, customized approach to help folks stay healthy and motivated to succeed.
Enter Choice Nutrition, a small business originally located in Greeley’s downtown district as a destination for personalized supplements and vitamins at affordable prices. Owner Victoria “Dolly” Fonseth and her husband, Jeremy Watson, knew there was a huge need for high-touch service and custom nutritional plans not available at chain stores. But getting the word out beyond personal contacts to the northern region of the state proved to be their first business success.
Colorado Enterprise Fund involvement
After being referred by Wells Fargo to Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF), Dolly got a working capital loan to ready her Main Street storefront for business. She knew this was an important step for her woman-owned startup but also was aware she had to do more than just build it for people to come patronize it. She enlisted the help of CEF’s Business Acceleration Services (BAS) team of consultants for help marketing her new business in a very direct, personal way.
Their answer? Social media, specifically, Facebook. Dolly and Jeremy realized that a website—although essential—wasn’t the best way for a business like theirs to be found. So they started frequent Facebook postings of new products, healthy recipes, and great health advice. Their number of “likes” tripled in two months as existing friends reposted on their own timelines, helping their friends in turn to learn about Choice Nutrition’s offerings. “This is all we’ve done” to promote the store,” says Dolly.
The results? Their Facebook turnaround strategy “copiously” brought in new customers, she says. They also use their iPad to video customers trying out new products and talking about how great they taste. “Anything we can do to help others,” says Dolly – the success from which caused her to move her store to a larger location so she could offer more products and services to more people.
Dolly and Jeremy also are involved in the success of another fitness-based business in Greeley, Wow Fit Studio, where they are both instructors along with an energetic team of personal trainers. Her motto from a video posted on the website: “Believe in yourself. You can do anything.” A great message for fellow entrepreneurs and for National Nutrition month celebrated annually in March.