Pet Age spoke with Stephanie Boone, who in 2009 founded Wondercide, a market leader in holistic solutions for natural pet care.
Q What is your company’s philosophy?
A There is a lot we stand for and a lot we won’t stand for, but if I had to sum it up without cliché marketing jargon, I would say that our philosophy is “when you know better, do better.” As parents, none of us gets it right all the time, and we all wish we had more time to make informed decisions. Wondercide aspires to be the brand people just know they can trust. They trust that we do the research and work for them, so they can enjoy a healthier, longer life with their pets and family.
Q How has your appearance with Wondercide on “Shark Tank” in March 2016 impacted the company?
A National exposure shines a bright light where there wasn’t one before. So now we are on the map, on the radar, of our competitors, of state and federal regulators (everything we make is regulated by someone, somewhere), and also mass retail. It’s a next-level game that requires more resources than simply cashing in on the revenue spike resulting from the show.
Q Wondercide has created more than 30 products. Which one has been the best seller and why?
A Our all-time best seller is Flea & Ticks for Pets + Home. I think it’s a best seller because it’s unlike anything else on the shelf. It’s as safe as it is effective and, unlike other brands, we offer fragrance options and no clove oil. Consumers have a problem and we solve it with a great product, so they come back for more and tell everyone they know. We’ve never spent much on marketing or sales. Our brand loyalists are the reason we’ve had over 100 percent organic growth year after year.
Q You source all of your ingredients in the U.S. and manufacture everything in Austin, Texas. Why is that important to you?
A It’s important to trust the source of the ingredient and the supplier because ingredients come in many grades. Purity and premium quality are essential to accomplishing our mission of improved health and wellness. U.S.-sourced means we are supporting jobs in America and people in [our] communities. We just love how that feels. We manufacture [in house] in Austin, Texas, because I’m a bit obsessed with controlling our product from source to customer. It’s just in our DNA—we do everything from customer service to logistics, and I believe my team does it better than anything third party and at a lower cost.
Q What do you look for in a retailer to carry your brand of products?
A We love retailers who are passionate about providing trusted natural products for their customers. A large portion of our retailers started carrying Wondercide because our online customers walked in requesting it and have since fallen in love with the products themselves. We love the personal experiences they share with customers because it feels like we are all part of a bigger cause for the greater good. I also look for retailers who educate their staff because they are the face of our brand when people are looking for safe and effective solutions for various pe
t care needs.
Q Does Wondercide have any new products in the works?
A We have a lot of products in R&D but haven’t committed to any launches in 2017. With all the growth we’ve had in the past couple of years, we are taking this year to build more infrastructure to support independent retailers and our select distribution partners. Keep one eye open, though—we’ve got big plans for the future!