Life in the Soap Lane — small business

| Danielle Vincent

Cha-cha-cha changes!

Outlaw Soaps has been around for many years, and over that time, I've pretty much been the only person maintaining the website, writing the product descriptions, updating the photos, and, possibly most importantly, making all the design decisions in the company. In the past year, we've brought on some new...

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| Danielle Vincent

Why we need your help in leading this Outlaw gang (and we're givin' out a hefty bounty to boot)!

I often say that we have a very democratic soap company. We take so much guidance on product quality, values, and development from our customers (like YOU!). And Lord knows, I appreciate it. In so many circumstances, it's our customers who help us make right decisions about products, figure out...

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| Danielle Vincent

The Road to AmericasMart: A plucky little soap company moseys to Atlanta for some wholesale soap sales

This Friday, we're heading to Atlanta to be part of AmericasMart, the largest gift show in North America. It's really wild to even think about it... so wild that I scheduled a few day of us to be there in advance just in case we needed to race around and...

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| Danielle Vincent

Measuring What Matters

This week, I've been thinking a lot about measuring what matters. I read lots of business books, and this week's hit parade is Measure What Matters by John Doerr, so it'd be only natural for me to ponder how to measure the things that matter in our business. I also...

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| Danielle Vincent

I get by with a little help from my gang

This week, I have been hella sick... and not just for a day or two, for a whole week! 7 days of feeling lethargic, cruddy, cranky, and blerghy. (so blerghy, in fact, that you may have noticed we didn't even send a newsletter last week) We've had many phases of...

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| Danielle Vincent

"Sometimes the person who wins the rodeo is just the person flexible and stubborn enough to stay in the saddle the longest." - Danielle

This is Tad Lucas. She was a professional rodeo rider. I bought her photo (this photo, in fact) off eBay about a decade ago and it sat on my desk at ABC and then at Oprah, reminding me that even on the rugged and wild ride of entertainment (which was...

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| Danielle Vincent

The growing gang of Outlaws

This week, we interviewed several people for a few new positions at Outlaw HQ here in Grass Valley, California. The weekly newsletter has been assembled by our new associate, Stacie, who has taken over the weekly email as well as several logistics duties. A month or so ago, our friend...

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| Danielle Vincent

6 Years of Outlaw Soaps, thanks to customers like YOU

March 15, 2013: Russ and I launched a website featuring Fire in the Hole, Unicorn Poop (along with some other scents that aren't with us any longer). We were relatively new to soapmaking, but we had huge dreams of creating a multi-million dollar company based on awesomely scented sundries. (we're...

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| Danielle Vincent

News from the Outlaw Safehouse

Things are pretty rockin' in the safehouse. The spray cologne sold out so fast that we decided to order 160 bottles and 2,000 labels. The boxes are going to be pine boxes with an Outlaw Cologne brand on 'em (yes, a real brand! Trust me, I'm worried about my ability...

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| Danielle Vincent

Outlaw Soaps and how I keep going even on tough days

This is me at work! You may recognize this photo from the other day's tour of the Outlaw Soaps safehouse. As the head of this little operation, I am responsible for the company strategy (including everything from sales channels to website tone), the marketing, the design, the website, the copy,...

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| Danielle Vincent

Made in the USA: What it's like to have a small business in rural America.

Outlaw Soaps is based in Colfax, California.When we first told people that we wanted to start a soap company and move to a small town, we heard a lot of negatives:"People will be all up in your business.""People in town won't accept you.""Aren't you more of a desk type?"And then when we selected Colfax, on the first Transcontinental Rail Line, in Gold Country, we heard many other negatives:"I hope you're not planning on having a retail business. There just isn't enough business here.""California regulations are going to kill you.""Those people aren't going to buy artisan soap." This past couple weeks have been particularly rough on our little business (and employees), so to honor what we're going through. and also to share a little insight into what small business ownership is like, I wanted to tell you a little about our experience: the challenges, the unlikely friends, and where we are...

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| Danielle Vincent

New Product Developments: On the horizon of the Outlaw landscape

One of the fun parts of our jobs is inventing. But due to the nature of our business (outlined at the bottom of this post), we can't do a whole lot of it. Spring, though, is time for us to order a whole messa new supplies and start inventing with great fervor, since whatever we invent in the Spring, we're stuck with for the rest of the year. And if we don't invent something in the Spring, we don't get to start inventing it at any other time, since it's too close to Christmas (yes, really). Here are some exciting products that we're working on this Spring! Look for these in April and May!

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