Welcome to the nineteenth edition of “Startup of the Week” which features many great startups and interviews with successful business heads. This week, I interviewed Lynne Goldberg, the meditation coach behind the app called “OMG. I Can Meditate!“.
I’ve asked Lynne a series of questions about “OMG. I Can Meditate!” and tips for budding entrepreneurs. Have a read at what she had to say.
How did the idea of “OMG. I Can Meditate!” come about?
I had been a meditation coach for years. More and more people were asking me for something they could take home with them to help them practice. My husband is a tech start-up guy and we started talking about how we could combine our skills to create a great meditation product people could take with them wherever they happen to be. The whole thing really came together when we met our business partners, Pierre & Laurence, who have a background in developing mobile educational apps.
Simply, what does your business do?
We have developed a mobile app and a website that teaches beginner meditators how to calm their minds and relieve stress and anxiety. We have eliminated all of the standard spiritual-speak, Sanskrit words and religious connotations so that people from all walks of life and of all demographics can bring the benefits of meditation into their lives.
Did you have a business plan?
Sort of. I would call it more of a “build it and they will come” plan more than a traditional detailed five-year plan. We had a lot of fluidity, which worked out well for us.
What were the boundaries you faced when creating “OMG. I Can Meditate!”?
Not sure what you mean by boundaries but one of the big challenges we faced was to separate our product from the masses of meditation apps already out there. We did that, in part, by creating a brand – OMG. I Can Meditate! – that would stand-out, invoke an image of ease, lightheartedness, and friendliness. We also did that by taking a progressive approach – that is, to teach people the principles of meditation in a day-by-day way. So each day builds on what we did the day before. And we start with just 10 relaxing minutes.
What is the difference between you and your competitors?
We speak to people at their level, in everyday terms, and show them how easy it is to learn to meditate. Rather than just putting a bunch of meditations into an app, which is primarily what you find in the market, we’ve taken the approach of making it a bit of a mini-course to give people the best chance to succeed and to truly understand the principles of meditation and why there are so many benefits. So, all in all, I would say our product is more of a foundation to a long-term and consistent meditation practice than any of the other products out there.
What were you doing before “OMG. I Can Meditate!”?
I was in the import-export business before I became a meditation teacher. As calm and relaxed as I tend to be these days is how stressed and type-A I was then. Whenever people tell me that they don’t have the personality or temperament to learn to meditate, I paint them a picture of me in those days and say: “If I did it, you can do it. Trust me!”
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Have a clear vision of what you’re looking to build or achieve and stay completely focused on it. Have patience, and trust in your vision, even if things don’t progress as quickly as you would like. Don’t get distracted by competition or negative thinking, which can creep up. Just make your plan, put your head down and take one day at a time.
What is the one thing you think an entrepreneur should focus on that they may not find important?
Staying in balance. Not losing site of the important things in life (like friends, family, health) when building a business. It’s a typical character trait of successful entrepreneurs to be obsessively focused on the business. But it needs to be tempered with time to recharge. That’s the beauty of being in the meditation business. ;-)
In one word, describe your job?
iTunes: OMG. I Can Meditate!
Headquarters: Montreal, Canada
People: Lynne Goldberg, Garner Bornstein, Pierre Le Lann and Laurence Ardouin
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