YSBEC Success Stories: Spellcraft Bath

Going Chemical Free Spells Success for Local Business


Emily Van Den Oetelaar discovered she had a talent for sales and loved talking to people when she signed up as an independent consultant for a beauty product company. She soon realized that in order to be successful, she would have to differentiate herself from the thousands of others selling the same product lines.

Eventually she discovered something unique that would help her stand out – her friend’s homemade bath and skincare line.  Spellcraft Bath products are free from harmful chemicals and parabens, and are an affordable, high-quality alternative to mainstream bath and skin products.

Her friend was creating these products and giving them as gifts.  Oetelaar decided to help this friend distribute and sell the products to a wider audience.

“I knew I wanted to work for myself running a business and thought this would be a great way to start,” she says.  “I had no idea about many aspects of running a business, but was up for the challenge.”

Oetelaar started looking for business building information and marketing guidance. She was overwhelmed by the amount of information available and needed help to find what suited her particular business model.  She discovered the York Small Business Enterprise Centre (YSBEC) and hasn’t looked back!

The Small Business Consultant at YSBEC helped her pinpoint what she needed to know – how to set up a business, how to register, accept payments, even ideas about marketing herself and her product.

Oetelaar was able to start marketing her business to her community and one of the first initiatives helped her develop a personal service she continues to offer.  She had mailed out postcards advertising her product and received an unexpected call from a potential client.  The client was unable to leave her house and wondered if Oetelaar would come to her.  This request developed into a service that she still offers – a no obligation home visit where you can sample the products before you buy them.

The marketing assistance provided by YSBEC has helped grow the business and success has also translated into opportunities to contribute and give back to her community.  She currently sits on the Board of Directors for the East Gwillimbury Chamber of Commerce and takes part in many charity events throughout her community.

“Being successful is not just about the money.  Being successful allows me to give back to my community in a fulfilling and meaningful way.”

She’s also looking towards the future.  As her business grows she is looking for a permanent storefront rather than relying on home visits and craft shows.

Her advice to others in the early stages of developing a business – be original.  Look for different ways of marketing yourself and experiment to see what works.

“Don’t be afraid to try something new.  Stand out from the crowd and you will find success.”

She continues to utilize the resources of YSBEC, most recently attending another seminar on marketing a business.  Oetelaar believes the information provided by YSBEC is a priceless resource and will continue her relationship with them as her business grows.

You can learn more about Spellcraft Bath and continue following this local York Region success story at www.facebook.com/emilysspellcraftbathpage

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