UMAI social circle cpg podcast

#32: Going "All-In" on your CPG Business with Morgan from Granarly

Granarly founder, Morgan Potts, joins Alison and Karin to discuss her dream of bringing granola baked with whiskey to the masses. She shares her business philosophy, how her brand landed on the shelves of Whole Foods, and how taking leaps of faith in business ended up driving much of her success.

In this episode, Morgan shared how she made the jump from “half-in” to “all-in” on her CPG business, and what it’s been like running the daily operations, sales, and marketing! See what’s in store for Morgan and Granarly on this episode of UMAI Social Circle!

Let Us Break It Down For You…

[0:45 – 4:47] Introduction
[4:49 – 7:46] Why granola?
[7:51 – 11:20] Morgan’s entrepreneurial journey
[11:21 – 12:38] Morgan’s big wins & how she made them happen
[12:50 – 18:10] Getting on Whole Foods shelves
[18:11 – 24:45] Advice to other founders in your position
[24:50 – 27:44] Inspiration
[28:44 – 30:41] Morgan’s experience with UMAI’s Growth Course
[30:42 – 33:32] How Morgan continues to market her brand to scale
[34:34 – 36:15] Resources and outro

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#32: Going “All-In” on your CPG Business with Morgan from Granarly

Alison Smith: [0:45]
Welcome to the UMAI Social Circle, where we talk consumer goods tips to help business owners and marketers grow. We’re Alison and Karin, co-founders of UMAI Marketing. And we’re being joined today by Morgan Potts, founder of Granarly, a better for you granola brand made with bold flavors and also a member of our consumer goods growth course. Welcome, Morgan.
Morgan Potts: [1:10]
Thank you so much. I’m so excited to be here and I am-
Alison Smith: [1:13]
We’re stoked, too.
Morgan Potts: [1:15]
Stoked, love that. Already speaking the lingo at Granarly. Yes, I’m excited-
Alison Smith: [1:18]
That’s right. I’m in the Granarly headspace, that’s right.
Morgan Potts: [1:20]
You are. Love it. I love it. That’s amazing.
Alison Smith: [1:25]
But, yeah, we haven’t seen each other in a while, so it’s definitely time to catch up.
Morgan Potts: [1:30]
Yes. Lots to catch up on with me. I … As you know, and follow on social, I am all over the place, but back in Austin. Thank the good Lord. So I’m excited to see you all in person, hopefully. And, yeah, this will be a fun conversation. There’s lots happening.
Alison Smith: [1:45]
Absolutely. So let’s start off with your background. How did you start Granarly? How did you get to this point? Let us hear it.
Morgan Potts: [1:55]
Let’s hear it. Okay. I’ll keep it short so I don’t talk all day long. But I have a degree in animal science and I love mentioning that because I feel like the more people I talk to as I grow up, I guess you could say, a lot of people are either using their degree for their career or they’re like, “I have nothing to do with it.” And I just think it’s funny that I thought I would be a vet. So that’s my background. But growing up, I always thought I would be an entrepreneur. My mom was always like, “You’re going to be an entrepreneur,” but I’m stubborn and I wanted to go save the elephants in Africa and go that route.
So that’s my background. Right after college, I got accepted to vet school or … Right, my last couple months of college, I got accepted to vet school on an island and in Grenada and I was so excited, but the week I got accepted to vet school, I had this dream. And then the dream, it was put whiskey and granola and call it Granarly. And fast forward, that’s what we’re speaking about today. But since then, and we were just talking about this right before the show, it’s been quite the journey. I have not always just done Granarly, but I have worked for Women Founders. I worked for companies like Outdoor Voices, Impact, Cardi, and just really wanted to learn business and everything ever since I started Granarly and turned on vet school.
So that’s where I’m at today. And I’ve been saying this for a couple years, but I’m finally, finally, finally almost to the point of just doing Granarly. So that’s the goal. But, yeah, that’s a brief history of the past seven years.
Karin Samelson: [3:22]
That’s a big deal going from grinding with a lot of different things into just growing your brand. How does that make you feel? Are you excited?
Morgan Potts: [3:35]
I’m super excited. It is scary, but I think … I’m 29. I don’t mind mentioning that on here and I think it’s worth mentioning because when I was 22, I said, “Before I’m 30, I want to go all out.” And I … It’s one thing to preach on our brand. I preach get outside, get out of your comfort zone, take risk, and go for it. And I feel like I do that in a lot of ways, but if we’re being honest and transparent, which I love to do, I haven’t fully done that in every capacity.
And when I woke up on my 29th birthday this year, I said, “If I’m going to preach this brand, I got to live it out.” And so here I am going for it, and it’s really scary, but I feel so supported. And every time I let go of other things distracting me from Granarly, I see something grow in our brand and then the company and in myself. And so I just know that it’s finally time and I could not be more excited. So, anyway.
Karin Samelson: [4:22]
Love when the universe pushes us in the right direction.
Morgan Potts: [4:26]
I know. I tried to get another job and literally like not got fired, but that sounds bad. But basically the door shut on me and I was like, “Okay, world, I see you. I’m going to do it.” Yeah, I’m not even going to glance it the other way anymore. So it deserves it.
Karin Samelson: [4:41]
Yeah. Yes. The brand that you’re building deserves your time and energy as much as you can afford. So you said that Granarly came to you in a dream, but is there any other reason why granola?
Morgan Potts: [4:56]
I love that question. So the Granarly came to me in a dream. I was about to go snowboarding and in my little gnarly brain, I was like, “Oh, whiskey keeps you warm on the mountain. This will be the perfect snack.” And so honestly, I wasn’t much of a granola consumer and I would never make fun of someone, but I would see it around, it was expensive. And I’m like, “I could make this at home.” I never, ever, ever thought I’d be making granola. And it’s humorous now because it’s my livelihood, I guess, you could say.
But what I did notice when I started doing Granarly is, one, whiskey comes from grains. And so it made sense for it to be baked back into a grain product. So I thought that was really cool. And then what I noticed when I was walking the aisles researching about Granarly and figuring out where we wanted to go, I noticed that the granola aisle is the same. All the packages look the same. And I realized that everyone uses it as a topping. Everyone’s like, “I put this on my smoothies. I put this on my yogurt. I eat this with milk.” It was always a topping. And what I say about Granarly is we’re not just the sprinkle on top. We like to be the main event because I wanted to make granola snackable. I’m like, “There’s a million granola bars out there. There’s trail mix, but there’s no in between.”
And so we started our food truck in Austin. And then from there, people love the granola so much that we started doing little two-ounce packages and making it snackable where we were reteaching consumers to consume granola by itself.
Alison Smith: [6:25]
What a journey. I had no idea that you had a food truck, by the way.
Morgan Potts: [6:29]
Yeah. Yeah. I don’t … That was another adventure I could talk about for this entire podcast, but that’s what brought me to Austin, actually. I … For you people listening, this is worth mentioning, too. I do things backwards and I applied for a food truck competition in Austin because I wanted to move here. And literally within 30 minutes, I got accepted and I didn’t have a food truck. And they were like, “Can you send us a picture of your food truck?” And I was like, “Oh, it’s in the shop,” and I’m not kidding. Two days later, I got a food truck. I renovated it for a month. I moved to Austin a month later. I was on the news the next day. And then the next day, I competed in the food truck competition. And that was my first ever time opening the doors of our food truck.
Alison Smith: [7:10]
I love it. I mean, this really goes to show taking chances, they work out most of the time.
Morgan Potts: [7:19]
Most of the time. I mean, [inaudible 00:07:19]-
Alison Smith: [7:20]
Even if you fall on your ass, I mean, you learn something, right?
Morgan Potts: [7:23]
Exactly. I was like, “What’s the worst that could happen? I was smart about the money with it. We didn’t put a ton of money into it. We made it really cute. And I was like, “You know what, this is worth doing.” And I feel like that’s being an entrepreneur and you all know, you have to learn to pivot and not go where the wind blows, but see what the consumers want. And I was like, “Well, at least this gets me to Austin,” and I will forever be grateful for that. So, anyway.
Alison Smith: [7:46]
Yeah, exactly. And probably a platform, too, to start off with. Well, yeah, tell us more about the entrepreneurial journey. What are some wins and also pain points that you’ve had to deal with in the past, what, seven years?
Morgan Potts: [8:00]
Yeah, seven years. It’s crazy. I feel like it’s been a journey and I’m sure you all can relate the more I talk … I love talking with people. I feel like my … I always say my favorite part of Granarly is these relationships and these conversations because the more I open my mouth and talk to others and allow them to speak is that we’re all trying to figure it out, we don’t all know the answers, and I think that’s been the biggest thing. And maybe when, for me, along the years, is just learning from other people. I went into this not knowing what the heck I was doing. I didn’t know anything about nutrition labels or food safety or manufacturing, co-pack, all these things. And I’ll toot my own horn for a second, I think it’s a blessing and a curse, but I don’t overthink.
So with the food truck, I just go for it and figure it out. So that’s been really fun. But with that, I was actually reflecting on my drive back here to have this call and interview with you all about if I would’ve had a different mentor when I was 23, Granarly may look completely different right now, but she was who I got connected with. She manufactures Granarly right now and she runs a family-owned mom-and-pop style business that is really successful, but is a lot different than now where I want Granarly to go.
And so I have no regrets, but I think along the way, I didn’t raise money. I have done this by myself. And now that I’m finally at this point where we’ve seen so much organic growth, I’m excited to bring in a partner, I’m excited to build a team, I’m excited to raise money, but we’ve definitely had those moments where I look at our bank account, we have $50 and I’m like, “Well, now what?” I don’t … So I feel like … But I feel like that’s with anything in life. And that’s the moments I’ve had over the past seven years is like, “Is this worth it?” And to me, it’s absolutely hell yes. I would do it over and over again, no matter what the hardships have come. And they are there, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows, even if I act like it is sometimes. So I don’t know if that answers your question.
Karin Samelson: [9:55]
Yeah. I mean, what a feeling to be doing this on your own and being like, “Okay, the possibilities are endless, but also it’s really freaking scary.”
Morgan Potts: [10:10]
It’s very scary. And I think that’s the moment I had this past year is I got to a point where it was my baby, my passion project. I wanted to grow it, obviously, and not have control over it. I’ve been very open handed with Granarly, but I’m at the point now where I’m like, “If I want this to be a multimillion, billion-dollar company and sell it one day, I can’t do it by myself.” And so I have to really push control. I have to figure out what I’m really good at and what I’m really awful at. Figure out what that looks like to bring people on and just know there’s people out there way smarter than me.
So I think that’s been a big pivot is I want to have conversation with people and make decisions with someone. And that’s something that I haven’t had for the past seven years necessarily. So I’m excited to step into this new chapter of Granarly and build a team. So, yeah.
Karin Samelson: [10:57]
Yeah, that’s super exciting because if you’re listening and you don’t know Morgan, she is a people person. And she has many mentors, many connections. And I think that that’s an incredible thing for any founder, any business person, anybody just having the right mentors and the right community makes all the difference. So …
Morgan Potts: [11:19]
Karin Samelson: [11:20]
… you talked a little bit about those pain points, but what are some wins? What are some big wins you’ve got?
Morgan Potts: [11:25]
Ooh, big wins. I love this. Well, the most obvious is our launching in central market almost a year ago in September and across all Texas. Yeah. And then our recent launch into whole foods in Austin. It’s crazy. I was demoing there today. I’ve been demoing all week and this is worth mentioning, too. You see me on the aisle on this photo at whole foods and I still can’t believe it, and I have to get better about celebrating the wins because it’s a huge deal and that’s something I’ve wanted and prayed about and believed for since I started Granarly when I was 22. But to actually see it, it’s like I have all these other stressful things that I need to be dealing with, but I have to take a second to be like, “This is a huge deal. This is exciting. We’re in freaking whole foods.”
And so … But I’m out there demoing every day, sitting behind a table, passing out samples. I’m at the farmer’s market for four hours every day, but it’s fun. And so with all the wins, there’s all the other things, but that’s been a huge win for us. Yeah. Grocery. And then, gosh, I don’t even know. I’m like there … I have other things we’re working on that some I can’t mention and some I can’t, but just the growth of Granarly and seeing it around town and places I don’t even know it existed, that’s cool.
Alison Smith: [12:38]
Yeah. I mean, I think central market and whole foods is a big enough win for us to talk about. And I would … I think we should explore that more. I mean, tell us how that came to be and what you did, you think, to get Granarly on the shelves and two huge retailers.
Karin Samelson: [12:57]
And also, how did you get on that shelf talker or that shelf thing? I want to know. I … How did you get on that?
Morgan Potts: [13:08]
I think … You mean the picture of me?
Karin Samelson: [13:10]
Yes. I don’t shop at whole foods, so I haven’t seen an IRL. And when I do, but, yeah.
Morgan Potts: [13:17]
Give me a selfie. Please let’s take a selfie. It’s our selfies. So that’s a great question. I think whole foods has really been working on highlighting their local products and local companies because you walk to aisles at whole foods now, and there are local signs everywhere and it’s so cool. I love seeing it with other brands and seeing familiar faces from people in the CPG community here. So I didn’t pay extra for that. I don’t know what I did. Maybe I’m just a nice person. I have no clue, but that was really cool to see in the aisles. And I was very surprised by that.
So let’s talk about … I’ll group them together. I’ve had different experiences with them and I won’t get into the details of them, but I do have to say, first and foremost, working with central market and whole foods with local and Texas has been amazing. They love working with small brands. They have been nothing short of helpful. And especially central market just … I mean, they send you these forms and I’m like, “I don’t know where to start with these,” but just walking you through them, not making you feel stupid and really nurturing you, allowing you to come in and demo. I go drop off my orders directly at whole foods around Austin just because I love to meet the people that are stocking the aisles and are talking to the customers about what products to purchase.
So I do think … You go back to what you said, Karin, like nurturing relationships with people does go a long way because we’re all human and we’re all just living life. And so what happened is the same time I bought the food truck in 2017, I was here at the whole foods at the domain, and I brought my bags of Granarly into whole food. And I put them on the shelve and the guy on the aisle was like, “What are you doing?” And I was like, “Oh, my product’s going to be here one day. I just know it. And I just wanted to see what it look like.” And he was like, “Wait, what is your product?” So we got to talking. I was like, “I’m just so bold.” I was like, “I have to get someone’s attention somehow.”
And so he took to the back. I met the store manager. They were so nice. They’re probably like, “This little girl, what is she doing?” But they gave me an email address, the whole thing. And the buyer that purchased it from me this year is the buyer I got connected to back in 2017, which is crazy. I found my old notebook. I journal everything because I love moments like this. But … And I posted this on my social media when we launched. Looking back, if we would’ve gotten into whole foods in 2017 or 2018 when I thought I was ready, would’ve been awful.
I am so glad that we were not there because I’ve grown as a person, I’ve grown as a business owner. I’m way more connected. Granarly has a better presence here. And then our branding, we rebranded during COVID and now our brand is what gets the most comments. Anyone I meet at whole foods or central market is like, “Your packaging is like no other.” And so I just am so grateful for the timing of everything and persistence. And I really do think persistence and just nurturing friendships before you start selling really goes a long way because at the end of the day, people want to buy from people and they want to know that you believe in your product and you are passionate about it and you’re going to keep going. So that was a very longwinded answer.
Alison Smith: [16:18]
No, but it was a good one. No, I mean, I have two questions. First of all, did he remember, he or she remember you?
Morgan Potts: [16:27]
I think it was one of … I mean, yes and no. I think it was one of those like it got passed down and it got mixed in and I just didn’t give up. I’m big on the follow through. I’m like … I mean, I let email … No, no, you all emailed me and it’s gone way down my inbox. I’m like, “I got to keep up.” And so even if they weren’t like, “Not right now,” or “Try again next time,” I kept trying again and I kept finding ways in. I really do take notes right now until someone’s like, “No, we will never, ever, ever, ever, ever bring this product in our store,” I’m going to keep trying.
Alison Smith: [16:58]
You’re like, “No, please do not contact me. I’m getting a restraining order.”
Morgan Potts: [17:01]
Alison Smith: [17:03]
That’s when we stop.
Morgan Potts: [17:04]
Yeah,”Okay, fine, I’m throwing in the white flag.” But, no, I think … And they don’t refresh their categories all the time so I think it really is a timing thing. And I had to change how I think about things and my buyer was just doing her job. She wants products on a aisle that are going to make sales for whole foods. That’s her whole job.
And so I had to remember, this is not a personal thing. This is a business thing. And so when I started talking about our success at central market and bringing in a new consumer to the granola aisle that’s more of the cool whiskey dads then the moms of the world. Then things started happening.
Alison Smith: [17:37]
Yeah. I think it’s just such a good lesson to know that you’re going to get a lot of no’s and it was probably in your best interest. You might have not have gotten your product, taken off the shelf as quickly because you didn’t have that community built up as you do now. So no, it doesn’t always mean no, it just means no right now.
Morgan Potts: [18:00]
Exactly, exactly. And I am so grateful. Looking back, I am so grateful it didn’t happen until this time.
Alison Smith: [18:07]
That’s great.
Karin Samelson: [18:10]
So … I mean, we can talk all day about the hardships of being a small business founder, but what I really want to know is, what are your favorite things about growing your business? And if you have any advice to other founders as to what they could do to maybe try and improve and feel better about when growing their brand.
Morgan Potts: [18:36]
I love that question. I think it’s all a reframing of the mind. I think … I get in these reps where I feel like it’s the end or I don’t have any ideas, but I think my favorite thing about owning a business is the sky is the limit. We get to create, we get to dream. And I don’t know, I take things in the mindset of why not do that. And I’m getting smarter now about asking conversations and being more wise with money and I can’t just throw everything at the wall and see what sticks, but I do think it’s fun to think outside the box.
I’m pausing for a second because I got distracted because I’m dreaming right now. But, yeah, I think that that’s my favorite thing about Granarly is not being limited to just making granola. And I mentioned this right before our call and I want to talk about it right now. But if I started Granarly as just a whiskey granola company and left it at that, it will probably be great and that’s fun and all. But I just know our new mission is get outside and get out of your comfort zone. And I really believe that when you get outdoors and move your body, it changes something in you mentally, physically, it’s just good for your soul to be outside.
And then also taking risk and getting out of your comfort zone, it is challenging, it’s scary, but it really does help you tap into your potential and unlock parts of you that you may not know existed. And I had to do that with myself and it’s been the most green feeling ever. And I know that’s a little woo-woo, but I really believe that we’re on a mission to create products to encourage you to do that in either small or large capacities, whether it’s going outside on a walk and sharing a snack with someone or going to hike Mount Everest. I mean, it could be anything, but we’re launching a line of whiskey. I can mention that. We’re launching … Yeah. And I have this thing I’m working on that’s like a on-the-go whiskey to take while you are skiing or snowboarding or on a … People throw back a little hard on shots.
Morgan Potts: [20:43]
And so I’m marrying a snack with a shot situation and I can’t really give all the details right now
Karin Samelson: [20:48]
Oh my goodness.
Alison Smith: [20:50]
I know it’s exciting.
Morgan Potts: [
Yeah. And then our lama odist, I called him the God of granola the other day. I probably shouldn’t call him that, but he’s like our adventure guru. He’s our inspiration and we’re personifying him. I want to write a children’s book about him and I want to launch some greeting card lines. I just feel like there’s lots that I can do with what we, as in the team I’m building, can do with Granarly that’s not just granola. And I think that’s my favorite part to circle back around through your question.
I think that when you think outside the box and think bigger than just yourself, there really are so many things that can happen. And my advice to people starting out, or no matter where you’re at, whoever’s listening, no matter where you’re at in your adventure journey, I call it that because I don’t think that I was talking to … I have a therapist and I like mentioning that. I was talking to her the other day and she’s like, “When you’re hiking a fourteener, you get to these peaks where you need to take a breath and drink some water, eat a snack before you keep going.” And you can see the top of the fourteener and you know it’s there, but you have to regroup along the way, or you’ll be so famished and parched by the time you get to the top and you may not be able to make it.
And she’s … This summer, I took a little hiatus. I went back to Georgia for the summer with my parents. And I had that. I said, “This is my moment to regroup.” And I don’t think that’s a bad thing. And that’s why I want to mention to people listening is it’s not linear. It’s not going to be always perfect and it’s going to have hardships, and you’re going to have moments of amazing growth. And you’re going to have moments where you’re like, “Why am I even doing this?” I have those all the time, but it makes the win that much better. And if it’s something you believe in and you’re passionate about, and you couldn’t see a day without, then keep going.
And I think my biggest piece of advice I’ve learned and I love sharing with other people is to talk to other people that aren’t your friends and family, like mentors and business owners, and get honest feedback because not all feedback, even if it’s negative, is not bad. Your friends and family love you so they’re, of course, going to be like, “It’s perfect,” but I think it’s important to hear well-rounded feedback and then base your next move or decision on that, but also staying true to your mission and vision for what you’re doing.
Alison Smith: [22:56]
Yeah. I really like that. And just like Karin was saying earlier, just praising you for how you’ve surrounded yourself with people who can give not only feedback, but trusted advice and guide. I did … What you’re saying about taking a hiatus and taking a break, I think that’s so important, especially as entrepreneurs, business owners, anyone, truly …
Morgan Potts: [23:22]
Yeah, anyone.
Alison Smith: [23:24]
… who has a job or doesn’t, I don’t care. There’s a million decisions that you have to make in the day. And there’s a thing called decision fatigue. And it makes you burn out really quickly, where your brain is just like, “I cannot even think of what … Is it a yes or no at this point?” It’s a real thing and the only way to really solve it is to reduce the amount of decisions, take breaks. It could be months long. It could be just one day out of the week where you’re like, “I am doing deep work and I’m not talking to anyone. I’m just thinking today.” I think that’s super important.
Morgan Potts: [24:04]
Alison Smith: [24:05]
So I’m glad you mentioned that.
Morgan Potts: [24:07]
Yeah, we’re not meant to be robots. We live in this world where we feel like we have to do, do, do and go, go, go. And that’s why I love encouraging people to get outside because I have … Some days, I’m so swamped and I’m like, “You know what, the last thing I need is a walk for 15 minutes.” But it’s the most healing thing I could have done all day for myself to clear my head, even if it’s not long. So, yeah, I totally agree with you. And it’s a hard thing to grasp because it feels like you’re behind, but you’re not. It’s really setting you up for more success, I think.
Alison Smith: [24:36]
Exactly. Yeah. But still, just the excitement and energy that we just heard is you are onto something and you’re killing it. And so I would love to know how you stay so inspired. I know you talk about getting outside and all that, but who inspires you?
Morgan Potts: [24:58]
Oh, I love that question. And I wish I had one person that’s my role model that I look to, but genuinely, and you all are going to laugh and be like, “You’re so freaking cheesy,” it’s people like you all, like my friends, my community, and just even going to demo whole foods and seeing the look on someone’s face, especially like a guy. And I’m like, “I make whiskey granola,” because they just see me with my little samples and look at me and I’m like, “Whiskey granola,” and they turn and then they try it and the look on their face like, “Oh, this is actually really good.” That’s what keeps me going because it’s just like the surprise factor and the … I don’t know, I just love it.
And so I really do feel like it’s the people I have in my life. I don’t think people that I surround myself with would let me give up if I tried. And I talk to people, especially women in business or wanting to start businesses, reach out to me often and ask similar questions like this. And it’s my favorite thing in the world to just encourage them. And I don’t know all the answers, but just be realistic. And so that’s what keeps me going. I don’t have … I mean, I have so many role models and so many mentors and so many people I look up to that are way more talented and successful than I am. But I really do think it’s the people that, hopefully, I can encourage and inspire one day and hope to do along the way. That’s why I keep going.
Karin Samelson: [26:16]
That’s so sweet. That’s so sweet.
Morgan Potts: [26:18]
It’s true.
Karin Samelson: [26:19]
I love symbolism. And I also love therapy. And I love … My therapist was talking about this and taking breaks, but I’m just going to keep building on it because when you take those breaks and you’re drinking water and you’re eating a snack, you’re also enjoying the view from where you are, and it’s still pretty freaking awesome.
Morgan Potts: [26:44]
Karin Samelson: [26:45]
It’s not just when you get to the top, that view’s amazing, too. But I think that that’s something that you do really well. You’re enjoying these parts that might not feel the most glamorous, but you’re making the most out of it, and it’s just really fun to watch.
Morgan Potts: [27:01]
Thank you. You’re so sweet.
Karin Samelson: [27:03]
Morgan Potts: [27:03]
I just got chills. But then … And it’s so true. And one of my friends when I first started Granarly, he said, “You can treat this like a runway. You can either run really fast and fall hard or you can strut yourself and take it all in,” basically, like you’re saying. And not that you can’t. There are businesses that have overnight success and that’s amazing and more power to you, but I am so grateful as much as I’d want to be onto the next adventure right now, I am so glad that these past years have been that. Stopping and looking around, learning along the way, and haven’t just been easy because I don’t think I would’ve learned as much and I’m still learning. So, anyway.
Karin Samelson: [27:42]
Always learning.
Morgan Potts: [27:44]
Karin Samelson: [27:45]
Love that. Well, Morgan, we mentioned this at the very beginning, you are a part of our growth course community, which we are so …
Morgan Potts: [27:53]
Karin Samelson: [27:53]
… thankful for. So we want to ask a couple of questions around that if you’re open to it.
Morgan Potts: [28:01]
Let’s do it. I love being a part of this community. I’m probably the worst student you’ve had, but that’s okay. We can talk about it.
Karin Samelson: [28:08]
We can talk about it.
Alison Smith: [28:08]
I’ll never forget, Morgan’s always in her car whenever we do …
Morgan Potts: [28:12]
Oh, yeah.
Alison Smith: [28:13]
… live calls. She’s always in her car driving with her video down here and it’s like, “Where are you going now?” She’s always on an adventure.
Morgan Potts: [28:22]
Always. And I’m like, “I learned so much and I still am.” I still talk about you all’s course to people. I … Anyway. You’re going to ask questions, but I loved it. I just can’t with myself sometimes 
Alison Smith: [28:35]
That was awesome.
Karin Samelson: [28:36]
Yeah. We’re just happy that we have you here for 40 minutes. We’re here with you. So what was one of the favorite things you liked about taking the course?
Morgan Potts: [28:48]
I think … Well, let me mention, you all know Kate was part of it and she’ll be on the podcast and she’s one of my best friends and she just spoke so highly about it. And I know her business changed so much from it. And so it was a no-brainer for me to do it. And I think I am not afraid to admit, I learned so much. And I said on … The community was so great for me and just the meeting times and you all. And I was going to say how you all dumbed it down for me, but I think the better word to use there is it was so approachable, which I love because it can be intimidating. There’s so much, it’s constantly changing.
You all are always still, to this day, sending me updates on what’s changing with Instagram, what’s changing with X, Y, and Z, and it’s super helpful. And I think that you all really care about what you’re doing. You’re really skilled in it and you’re always staying on top of it and learning, and it’s helpful to someone like me that’s all over the freaking place and would love to focus everything on marketing, and ads, and email, and campaigns, and all that jazz, but it was just tangible and easy to incorporate into our business, if that makes sense. So I really do think that that was my favorite part. I learned so much.
Alison Smith: [29:55]
We loved having you in the community. And you’re still there, you’re just busy, busy, getting into central market.
Morgan Potts: [30:02]
I know. I need … I know. And I’m like, “I needed to be better.” Our website has gotten no attention, but I still reference all the sheets we did and everything like that. I’m like, “It’s super helpful.” So I just think that, yeah, I can’t brag enough about how easy it was to comprehend. So I’m excited to incorporate more.
Alison Smith: [30:23]
Thank you, Morgan. That’s nice.
Morgan Potts: [30:25]
And you all made me not be so scared to spend money on ads, even though I’m not running any right at this second, but I probably shouldn’t say that. But that was my thing. I was like, “You have to spend money to make money.” And I’m like, “I don’t care if I’m in that,” but you all made it more approachable for me.
Alison Smith: [30:39]
That’s good. Yeah, that’s a big one for us. So since this is for the most part, it’s a digital marketing podcast for CPG. What are you most interested in pursuing or what are you currently doing with your current marketing?
Morgan Potts: [30:56]
I have started implementing SMS marketing, which has been fun, and I’m still nurturing my email list, but I did set up evergreen campaigns and that has been great. I have evergreen campaigns with my emails and my texting, and that’s great because those are just flowing without me even touching it. And I think that’s one of the best things I learned from you all is just getting my systems organized. So as an only person doing this right now, I need things to be happening when I’m not happening. You know what I’m saying?
And so right now, we’re not doing any paid marketing at the moment just because our website is getting renovated and we have some exciting things coming to the site with the launch and whole foods and central market. But I am about to start running ads and incorporating things I learned from you all to promote more shopping to the stores to support the stores because I want to do well in central market and whole foods here so we can grow nationwide. And I really do think that’s going to come from some marketing. So that’s my focus right now.
Obviously, I’m always on Instagram and I’m still running that by myself and I use my social calendar to get all that set up and everything planned. So that’s just rocking and rolling, too. And even just down to the basic social calendar that you all gave me, that has been just my bread and butter. So I think that’s all we’re doing right this second. I’m trying TikTok, but there’s so much-
Karin Samelson: [32:22]
Aren’t we all?
Morgan Potts: [32:24]
Morgan Potts: [32:26]
I’m like, “We need to hold catch-up call just on all the new things happening in the world.” I’m like it’s just forever changing, I think.
Karin Samelson: [32:31]
Yeah. Yeah. We need to have another side combo, for sure.
Morgan Potts: [32:35]
Karin Samelson: [32:36]
But just … And a friendly reminder that you never have to do all of it. Even if you have the tools in your toolbox, you don’t always have to use them. Use what works at the time, what’s going to actually help you move the needle and go from there. That’s really exciting, though. You’re always crushing it on social and I need to sign up your SMS.
Morgan Potts: [32:56]
Yes, you do.
Morgan Potts: [32:58]
Yeah, that’s been a fun one and something new. And I feel like text marketing is … I don’t know, people are into it now. So I fall for text message marketing. So I was like, “Let’s try this out.” But, yeah, I think … And I love that you said that because I beat myself up with not doing enough a lot of times, but focusing on these grocery stores right now has been my focus. And until I bring on some other people on our team and have some growth, that’s just … I’m doing the best I can right now. So, anyway.
Alison Smith: [33:26]
Oh. But, yeah, let us be the one to tell you, you are doing enough and you’re killing it.
Morgan Potts: [33:32]
Thank you. You all are so sweet.
Karin Samelson: [33:34]
Who are you going to be hiring first?
Morgan Potts: [33:37]
So I brought on … His name is Matthew and he’s amazing. And he is my-
Karin Samelson: [33:41]
Shout out, Matthew.
Morgan Potts: [33:42]
Matthew, I don’t know if he’ll listen. I’m sure he will. He’s a dad to two boys. They’re so cute. And he’s married and he’s amazing. We went to college together, but I brought him on as my sidekick, I guess, is the best way to put it. He’s really well versed in systems, operations, and finance, which are three things that I do not like. And so he’s getting into the nitty-gritty of all our numbers, figuring out how much money we need to raise, figuring out where our money’s going, all that jazz. And he has been a lifesaver. So I brought him on about a month ago.
And then with that, we’re planning out our first fundraise and then we’re planning out what our key hires will be. So stay tuned.
Karin Samelson: [34:19]
Whoo, Matthew. Let’s see it. Let’s …
Morgan Potts: [34:22]
Let’s see it.
Karin Samelson: [34:22]
… do this.
Morgan Potts: [34:23]
And put him on the spot. He’s got a lot of work to do. I was going to help him ready for a fun time because there’s nothing short of that around here.
Karin Samelson: [34:31]
That’s just CPG.
Morgan Potts: [34:33]
It is, it is.
Karin Samelson: [34:34]
Cool. Morgan, we enjoyed having you on so much. So glad you’re back in Austin, too.
Morgan Potts: [34:39]
Karin Samelson: [34:40]
Let’s definitely go get some happy hour coffee, dinner, whatever. But would you like to leave the audience with a link or call to action? What do you want to tell?
Morgan Potts: [34:48]
Yeah. So you all can find Granarly at I have a code just for you all for 20% off and it’s UMAI 20. So we’ll put that in the show notes or somewhere and you can shop If you’re listening and you’re in Austin, we are … Again, you’ve heard this a million times, we’re in central market and we are at whole food. And also, if you’re listening and you are just starting out in your company business, you have an idea, you want to talk any of those things that I mentioned, I love connecting with other people. And the best way to reach me is probably on my Instagram, which is Morgan A. Potts and just DM me or send me an email,
I love to hear from people and would love to grab coffee or have a Zoom. I welcome that with open arms. And, yeah, just stay tuned. Sign up for our email list and sign up for our text message marketing on our website. And there’s lots of exciting things coming you all’s way.
Karin Samelson: [35:44]
Awesome. Thanks, Morgan. We’ll put all of that in the show notes so people can find direct links and …
Morgan Potts: [35:50]
Love it.
Karin Samelson: [35:51]
… yeah, keep killing it.
Morgan Potts: [35:52]
Thank you all so much. This has been so fun. I want to talk forever with you all.
UMAI Social Circle is a CPG, agency-driven podcast based out of Austin, Texas. We’re excited to share more behind-the-scene insights, chats with industry leaders, and whatever else we learn along the way. Follow us on Instagram @umaimarketing, or check out our website, Catch you back here soon.

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