Interview with Leslie Perlman – Inventor of the texthook™
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Tell us a little bit about yourself and your entrepreneurial journey.
I am a mom of 3 kids (5 year old, 3 1/2 year old and 19 month old). I live in New York City where I use my strollers to transport my children from one activity to the next. I was pregnant with my third child when I realized there was a void in the stroller accessory market. When parents are out with their children, they always bring three things with them: a diaper bag, a bottle of water, and their phone. There are holders for your water bottle and your bag but no convenient place to put your phone. I decided to develop a safe and convenient place to put my phone while out with my children.
I hired an attorney who conducted a patent search and then filed for a provisional patent. Then I worked with a plastics manufacturer who designed the holder and built the mold. I was introduced to the plastics manufacturer through a family friend. After the prototypes were approved and the mold was being built, I began to work on the logo and packaging. I found the graphic designer, photographer, box manufacturer, velcro strap manufacturer, etc either through the internet or recommendations. The whole process (from just an idea to being sold in a store) took a year.
How did you fund your business?
It was self-funded.
What did you do before launching your own business?
I was a Real Estate Tax Attorney/ stay-at-home mom.
How many hours do you work a week and how much is spent is your home office?
24+ hours per week, mostly in my home office. However, I take my children with me to visit new stores so the retailers can see texthook™ in use on a stroller.
How would you rate your success?
I am very pleased with our growth. In the past year, texthook™ has been featured on The Today Show and in Pregnancy magazine. It is sold in numerous stores throughout the country, as well as in Australia and Japan. The most exciting aspect of it is seeing parents walking their children with a texthook™ on their strollers!
What has been your biggest business struggle as an entrepreneur?
Since texthook™ is new, unique to the stroller accessory market, the biggest struggle has been getting the retailers and potential customers to give it a try.
Before texthook™, parents had to fumble around in their bag or pockets in order to locate their phone. However, texthook™ solves this problem by providing an accessible holder which easily straps to any handlebar.
What advice would you give to a new entrepreneur?
Stick with it! You are going to encounter setbacks as you build your business. Take a step back in order to figure out what you need to move forward.
How do you manage all of your personal and business activities?
My personal and business life revolves around my children’s schedule. I work when the older kids are in school and the baby is napping and then at night when they are asleep.
Connect with Leslie Perlman and texthook…
Facebook Fan Page: texthook
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