Q&A with Mary Cope | Co-Founder, Live Pure Smoothie Cubes
Posted on January 17 2020
Tell us about your career path leading up to starting your own business.
12 years ago (that is weird to say...) I went to an amazing school called The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. I had no idea what I wanted to do when completing the program but as I started to practice everything from school- I could not believe the changes, both mind and body. Growing up, I considered myself somewhat healthy but did suffer from major body and headaches at a young age, depression and so on. The passion was there- the business experience was not but I went for it. Right out of school, I started a health coaching business and did quite well! As health was trending, corporate wellness started booming so naturally, I wanted to explore those areas. That is when I re-connected with my now business partner and co-founder, Tiffany Tatom. We started an amazing, nontraditional corporate wellness company that taught us a lot. Mostly, people wanted healthy food fast & most things on the market tasted TOO healthy. We did a lot of easy food prep, tastings, etc. to teach people that health did not necessarily mean cardboard and okra but did have trouble finding quick meals for people on the go. That's when we started making smoothies for our clients. I have to say, we even impressed ourselves as we made smoothies that ended up tasting like milkshakes. Well, people were ADDICTED. They wanted the Game Changer once, twice a day and begged for more recipes. Tiffany and I found ourselves measuring ingredients and bagging the recipes in individual zip locks so clients could grab the baggies to take to work or make on the spot. It worked out so well expect the frozen food would sometimes break lower-end blenders... not so good. We also tried other smoothie direct-to-consumer companies who offered somewhat the same idea as our ziplock ideas- same trouble. Breaking blenders AND still tasted "healthy". We knew we could do better. That is when smoothie cubes were born! We found pre-blending was the best option for any blending system and as we have grown, you do not even need a blender. Our cubes can be eaten right out of the bag, shaken to make a smoothie, melted for post-workout fast food, boosted in your current smoothie recipes or overnight oats and more! So here we are, with an amazing concept while we make our way in this crazy food business world. Holy shit it has been a ride.
What made you want to start your own business?
I think the(smoothie) concept came first, but honestly, think I suffer from an entrepreneur mentality (HA!) and have started and failed at a lot of concepts in between. I have never followed a traditional path- both personally and in business which can be SUPER difficult but have also learned so much along the way. As far as Live Pure, having a few amazing people in my life has been a game changer. There are a few people in my life who have completely changed my mentality and pick me up whenever things get rough- which happens A LOT in business. My husband has been my ride or die and my business partner + co-founder is everything. She is a force and we have been through so much together. Pretty much, no is not an option and we think BIG.
How did you go from idea to execution?
Just freaking doing it. It took an extra year to get our business off the ground but we did not give up. We taught ourselves everything and have always been open to help. Our mentor, Peter Houchin at Blue Mountain Organics was the best thing that happened to Live Pure. I have no idea where we would be without his expertise and help!
What were some unexpected hurdles you faced when starting your business?
How much you are married to your business and how much money it takes to run our business successfully.
Best advice you’ve received
Honestly, it is a collection of advice through the years. Whether it was directly to myself when I felt like quitting or in other interviews with successful business'. It sounds cliche but keep going. The information is out there so learn how to do it. Be smart but take chances and allow yourself to fail. My friend, Matt Tatom said look at each failure as an opportunity. Well, opportunities are truly endless!
What does Support Your Local Girl Gang mean to you?
This is EVERYTHING. When starting Live Pure I was dumbfounded how open and willing business owners were willing to help us! And guess what- the most creative and encouraging business owners I have come across are women. Collaborate, repost, talk about your community of women. Show up, be vulnerable, tell your girls they fucking rock. I could not do it without my girlfriends, my sister, my daughter, my business partner, my mom. I truly believe that women will change the world.
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