Margo Lang, 29
Conscious Period is an organic feminine care company in Downey that offers 100 percent organic cotton tampons.
Financials: Seed funding. We have built regional distribution, a robust e-commerce business and significant brand awareness through public relations and influencers.
What led you to start this business?
The first time I had to go buy tampons on a student budget, after leaving my job at Toms to start a full-time Master of Business Administration program at USC Marshall, I was frustrated by the cost. I workshopped the concept of an organic tampon company with a giving model throughout business school. When I graduated, I met my current business partner, Annie Lascoe, who was pursuing a similar concept, and we decided to start the Conscious Period together.
How did you fund it, and how are you funding it going forward?
We raised over $40,000 through an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign, which helped us get the market validation we needed early on. We raised additional funding from angel investors that allowed us to launch our product and brand in 2016.
Are there advantages/disadvantages to starting a business in your 20s, and if so, what are they?
One of the biggest disadvantages is that so many people say “no” at first glance when you are a first-time entrepreneur. On the other hand, there are many distinct advantages to having this opportunity early on in my career. For example, starting a company before having kids, a mortgage and an established standard of living has made the financial and personal sacrifices required much more palatable.
Do you have a mentor?
Rachel Halliburton, who was my boss at Toms.
Where do you go for advice regarding your business?
The partnership Annie and I have built; our families, and the USC and Yale University alumni networks I am a part of.
Where do you go for professional services (legal help, accounting, etc.)?
How much time/money do you spend on social media for your business?
We invest significant resources into social media because it has been such an important tool in allowing us to be a part of the global movement toward menstrual equality.
Does social responsibility play a role in your business?
Absolutely. Our entire business was founded on three principles: health conscious, socially conscious and eco-conscious. Our business model includes donating pads to women living in homelessness for every box of tampons we sell.
Do you feel that your business is particularly tailored to the Los Angeles market, or do you feel you could have launched it in another location?
Angelenos are definitely more aware of, and willing to invest in, health and wellness than other markets, which made this a perfect place to grow our initial presence.
Do you encounter skepticism from investors because of your age, and if so, how do you handle it?
We have definitely been met with investor skepticism based on age, but more often because this is a product that is specifically for women, and a vast majority of investors are men. We have learned to always demonstrate how a tampon works before diving into any conversation with an investor.
What do you do for fun?
I have been practicing yoga since I was 14 years old and teaching since the age of 17.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.