We’re absolutely thrilled to have Alishia Thomas of Oh Me Oh Mama in our #FemaleFounders spotlight this week. We talked about how the redefinition of the word ‘mother’ sparked her business into life, who her heroines are, and her life as a female founder. Need some validation as a mother or mum-to-be? This is your gal.
1. Why did you start your business? What spurred you on?
I created Oh Me Oh Mama four years ago. It was built in a time before the mama merch surge, and in a time where the word ‘mother’ was used to identify you as someone’s ‘mummy’, not the superwoman and super chic person you/we are today!
I struggled a lot of with breastfeeding and instead of throwing in the towel, I began researching different ways to help with milk supply. This led to lactation cookies and lactation tea, which then led to other products and gift boxes for new mums.
We wanted to put the emphasis back on ‘mum’. After all, we are the ones who go through all the hard work, labour, and sleepless nights.
2. What are the unique challenges you have faced as a female founder?
Nobody wanted to take us seriously. Boobs, babies, and gift boxes? Yeah, how could that be a business? It was hard breaking down the breastfeeding community as everyone is and still very traditional in their views, opinions on how they raise their children, and how they feed them.
Nobody wanted to take us seriously.
3. What were the steepest learning curves during your first year in business?
If it’s a good idea, everyone will copy. Stay true to you, your brand, and only work with people who you trust.
4. What is your favourite thing about founding your own company?
All the amazing people we have met along the way. Mums who are out there raising businesses and babies at the same time.
A little throwback to the time I took my boobs (book obvs not the real things), boxes and little babe on tour for the weekend at @nextofficial #liverpool. Looking forward to doing it all over again 🙌🏼💖 #motherhood #mum #workingmum #mumsinbusiness #mama #gifts #luxurygifts #giftlibrary #giftsformum #babyshower #pregnancy #breastfeeding #boobs #book #celebratewomen #breasts #baby #newborn #popup #independent #liverpoolbusiness #mummyblogger #mystory
5. What is the best business advice you have been given by someone else?
Done is better than perfect. Get the product, idea, blog or even post out there and refine it as you go along. Beyonce wasn’t built in a day.
Beyonce wasn’t built in a day.
6. What business tools can’t you live without?
My emails, photoshop, and my camera!
7. When you’ve got a tough business decision to make what would be your first steps to solving the problem?
I ask myself three questions:
- Has it been done before?
- Will you lose money from doing it?
- Will it make you happy?
And then, depending on the outcome from those questions, I get to work resolving the issue.
8. Who are your heroines and why? Give us two.
My all-time heroines have to be Kirsty Doyle and Nisha Katona. What they are doing for the business industry and women all over the country is amazing, and I’m honoured to have had them as part of my journey and sharing their pearls of wisdom with me as i go along.
9. What piece of advice would you give yourself if you were starting your business now?
You are never going to please everyone. Do what feels right for you and go with your gut.
10. What’s your go-to marketing tactic for your small business? Why?
My go-to for small businesses would be collaborations. Get out there and meet people, collaborate and find a way to work together that complements both your brands. We have had the opportunity to work with Scousebird, Lush, Next, Harvey Nichols, Lady Bakewell Park, and many more.
Since its birth, Oh Me Oh Mama and myself have grown considerably both online and offline. Everything has changed since we first started our business. Our mamas have changed, our gift boxes have changed, even Instagram‘s algorithm has changed our audience slightly which have all had a butterfly effect in some way or another.
As a mother and an individual, I have struggled to get jobs, keep jobs, or even get interviews for jobs, so I am very proud to announce the next step for Oh Me Oh Mama is a brand new concept called: M0THER, which will be Liverpool’s very first freelance marketing agency for mums. There are so many lost skills out there because many mother’s cannot commit to working full-time.
As a fierce female founder, I want to give mothers their voice and identity back, and for them to hatch a new career path with us, mothering the growth of online businesses.
Follow our #FemaleFounders series
We’re thrilled about our line up of Female Founders for the next couple of months. Check out our Instagram and Twitter for updates! Did you miss our last post? Don’t worry, you can read our interview with MAKE Liverpool here.