The Startup That Made $10 Million in One Year
The Mermaid Pillow Company first came to life when Tom Sailors’ wife, Tracy, saw a viral Facebook video of a sequined pillow. Every time you ran your hands over it, the flip of the sequins resulted in the pillow changing colours. After seeing the pillow in action, the couple was confident that they could create something similar. Together, they went on to create Mermaid Pillow Co.
More than just pillows, the company also carries different products such as bracelets, sensory boards, and blankets. They make for great gift ideas, decorations for your home and items for everyday use.
Reaching $10 Million
Selling $10 million worth of anything in one year, is very seldom heard of for any start-up business. However, despite all odds, that is exactly what the Mermaid Pillow Co. did.
According to Sailors, the entire experience of selling that much product was both exhilarating and exhausting. It was unexpected, even for him. No one expected the company to profit as much as they did, especially when considering the nature of their product. However, despite the surprise and the nerves along the way, they did whatever it took to maximize the amazing opportunity in front of them.
Sailors and his whole team invested immense time in mastering the product they released. Studying the marketplace and advertising to fit their target niche, they worked hard to get the word out about their product. A main focus for the team was to cater their designs to fit everyone’s interests. After designing their products, they used Facebook ads and other social media in order to promote their business.
From 50 to 1500
The journey of their growth is truly fascinating. From 3 employees to 40 in a matter of weeks; from shipping 50 packages per day to 1500. As demand for the product increased, so did the demand for more manpower. In order to be organized and meet all of their needs, they used a payroll company to manage their employees. A time tracking system to monitor the clock-in/clock-outs was implemented.
The need for a bigger warehouse also became evident. In a matter of days, the company went from a single USPS pick-up system, to 3 semi-trucks worth of deliveries. Their carrier had to purchase another van just to accommodate their shipments! Within 6 month, over 300,000 pillows and bracelets were shipped out.
Focusing on the next 12 months ahead of them, Sailors and his team are working hard to add new designs and products that will attract further attention in the marketplace, and draw in more customers.
More Than Just a Pillow
Sailors has also recently launched an eCommerce initiative for kids. The program is an online course that teaches children how to design, market, manufacture, and advertise their own mermaid pillow. His inspiration came from his own two children, who have helped the couple every step of the way in the creation of Mermaid Pillow Co. According to Sailors, his kids played a key role in the product designing, marketing, and photography of the pillows. This project is his way of helping promote the entrepreneurial spirit of the upcoming generation.
The Mermaid Pillow Co. has a passion for giving back to people in need and sharing their joy with other people. Over the past two years, the company has donated their pillows to organizations, such as the Children’s Hospital, to help out children who may be suffering from an illness. They strongly believe that sharing what they have is one of the best ways to grow as an individual, and as a company. Seeing the joy their pillows bring to the children impacts their whole team, and how they view the work that they do. It’s not only about shipping pillows, but also putting in effort to give back.
“I am encouraging other entrepreneurs to consider some form of ‘giving back’ — it’s something I rarely did prior to Mermaid Pillow Co., but it makes what we do each day mean so much more.” – Tom Sailors, Founder of Mermaid Pillow Co.