Discovery to Stonepath – The healing way to Product Development and Design

Cathy    February 18, 2018

Whether you feel the draw of healing products or the distinct feeling of energy when encountering healing stones there is no denying that there is a market for these products.

Has this product and belief exploded  in the last number of years? Has the power and feeling of stress and anxiety from a world that goes 200 kms an hour caused people to stop and explore other ways to find peace within themselves?

Yes it has! Society as a whole has become so unconnected and connected since ironically, social media has taken over our lives. Mentally and spiritually people are realizing that you have to take a step back and find peace within ourselves to be able to continue on with our crazy busy lives.

Whether you believe in the power of crystals and stones just know that it has been around long before we even knew it was a viable product.

Many sites promoting crystal healing allege that the history of this practice is ancient, dating back at least 6,000 years to the time of the ancient Sumerians of Mesopotamia. But the philosophy of modern crystal healing is based on traditional concepts borrowed from Asian cultures, most notably the Chinese concept of life-energy (chi or qi) and the Hindu or Buddhist concept of chakras, which are vortices of this life-energy, said to connect the physical and supernatural elements of the body. Live Science, Elizabeth Palermo, Associate Editor

The power of healing stones and crystals has never been as powerful and profitable as they are now. Many experts are calling this the billion dollar industry and it’s on trend to continue to grow.

Stonepath was opened by Tracey Mitchell and Matt Harris in 2016. This is a brand new business for the two of them. Tracey though, has been in the healing business for many years. Tracey owns and operates Mitchell Equine Massage since 1999 . Yes, you heard it right – healing massages for horses and now dogs as well! So it was not a far stretch for Tracey and Matt to open Stonepath and add more value to an already healing business.

Life is built on connections, and the link between humans and animals is one most people understand. Be it the relationship between a horse and its rider or the affection of a family for its pet, connections run deep. Stonepath wants to make those connections stronger and healthier. We offer a line of custom-made leather goods — brow bands and pet collars — adorned with your choice of healing stones. Additionally, we have a number of accessories for you, too — making sure you stay connected to your four-legged friend for a long time- Tracey Mitchell and Matt Harris

When Tracey and Matt were first thinking about opening their new business there where many thoughts about what products they should carry, how extensive it would be and how to market and promote the new company to the world. They had generated many different ideas and concepts about the business they wanted to start. They researched and engaged in many conversations online and in person with other like-minded businesses.

They followed the easy steps to open a business online:

  • Find a need and fill it.
  • Write copy that sells.
  • Design and build an easy-to-use website.
  • Use search engines to drive traffic to your site.
  • Establish an expert reputation for yourself.
  • Follow up with your customers and subscribers with email.
  • Increase your income through back-end sales and upselling.

Stonepath was opened with very little money but tons of want, desire, love and the belief that people and animals need the healing power of stones and crystals. Matt and Tracey knew that the power of the internet was their best friend! That social media if done right, was the way to market and promote their business. The first steps in promoting Stonepath was to write a kick butt business plan. It included business description, target market/ audience, product and services, market research, operational plan, demographics, competition analysis and the marketing plan.

Tracey and Matt knew they had to use as many social media platforms as possible to get the word out about their niche products Browbrand, Polished Pups and Soul Stones. They opened a Facebook page first and have been able to engage 255 followers. They have an Instagram account and a Twitter account. Matt realized very quickly that the key to engage customers was to make sure to tell the story about the stones. They list the stone of the day on their social media platforms and tell people what the healing power is of that stone. They use many hashtags like #Loveyourpet . After they set up their social media platforms they opened the e-commerce website in late 2017. They are now directing traffic from social media to their website for purchases. Tracey shared the info that three days after starting their website they had their first order.

Tracey and Matt found that Facebook ads work to build followers on their site, but they also found that it really depended on the ads and their target. They ran a couple of contests as well and saw great return on them. It had reached over 1200 people. Their goal is to reach 300 followers as of March. To reach that goal they plan to run more contests and also attending consumer shows like horse and health fairs. While at the shows they can gather more engagement with customers by getting people to like their page, enter contests and be able to post videos and testimonials about the products. With Tracey doing horse massages for so long  she also knows that using her influence and the trust her clients have in her will no doubt help promote their products as well.

They also feel that it is very important to connect and engage with like-minded business people as well. They can share their synergy and best practices with each other, including tagging each other in posts and hashtag each others products. One of their contacts that would compliment their product line is De La Coeur Bonnets, who makes a line of high quality equestrian products for the horse and rider. Stonepath have been able to reach out to a few different TV stars and have even sent one of their Soul Stone bracelets to one of the Toronto Blue Jays players as having some sort of celebrity endorsement would be amazing for them.

Tracey and Matt would like to see their business continue to grow and prosper. Now that they have their feet a little wet by using social media they would like to add a You Tube channel with testimonials and teachings of the stones powers and abilities. Their future plans are to start tracking visitors to their site, using Google ad words, doing more outreach to people through all social media outlets and add a few different products which include candles, books, meditation music and accessories, clothing and skin care. All to expand their business in an attempt to reach more people.

Lessons for Others

Stonepath was born out of love and hope to make animals and people feel better and be more in tune to their inner selves. I personally have a beautiful Polished Pups collar for our three legged dog Bebop. Bebop has also been the very lucky recipient of some amazing massages for her hips to keep her mobile and strong. I have two healing Soul Stone bracelets that I wear faithfully.

Do I believe they heal and help me? Some days I totally believe in them other days I’m unsure.  But honestly, do they hurt me in any way? No and if I feel good wearing them then I will wear them.

Does Bebop like her collar with all the healing stones in it? She seems to love it. I personally believe that what you feel and say to yourself is healing power for your brain and if the power of healing stones and crystals are available  why not love them and embrace them.

This is a billion dollar industry and there is no slowing down of this business trend in the future. People will grasp what they can to ensure peace and tranquility in their lives. Stonepath is an amazing company that will continue to grow and prosper. Their use of social media and the pure ability to tap into a healing positive business will continue to flourish in the future.

Lessons for others:

Analysis need of product

Research and Development of products

Engagement with customers

Competition analysis for viability of products

Continue social media interaction

Customer service and response

Organization: Stonepath
Industry: Online Retail
Name of Organization Contact: Tracey Mitchell and Matt Harris

Authored by: Cathy Bieman

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