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Proven Ways to Get Your New Product Into CVS and Walmart - TookTake

Updated: Jan 6


In this episode of The Harvest Growth Podcast, host Jon LaClare sits down with Leeanna Gantt, the founder of TookTake. Leeanna shares her journey from beating breast cancer to developing and growing her innovative product that helps people keep track of their medication. She discusses how she successfully connected with retail buyers from major stores like CVS and Walmart, as well as her strategies for direct-to-consumer sales. Leeanna also delves into the challenges and victories of building a business and the importance of being genuine and vulnerable in both marketing and building connections with other founders in the industry. Tune in as we uncover the story behind TookTake and the insightful lessons learned along the way.




 

In today’s episode of the Harvest Growth Podcast, we’ll cover:


  • The value of joining a community of like-minded founders and entrepreneurs.

  • Increasing the authenticity of your marketing with testimonials and success stories.

  • Why Founders should contribute to marketing and sales activities.

  • Why testing and experimentation are integral to marketing success.

  • And so much more!


 

You can listen to the full interview on your desktop or wherever you choose to listen to your podcasts.



Or, click to watch the full video interview here!


 

Visit www.tooktake.com to learn more about how their medication tracker and prescription reminder labels help you keep track of your dosage intake.


To be a guest on our next Harvest Growth Podcast, contact us today!


Do you have a brand that you’d like to launch or grow? Do you want help from a partner that has successfully launched hundreds of brands that now total over $2 billion in revenues? Set up a free consultation with us today!


 

Prefer reading instead of listening? Read the full transcript here!


Jon LaClare [00:00:00]:


Today's guest launched her business in 2019 and quickly got onto store shelves with national retailers like cvs and Walmart and has also grown her direct to consumer business. She shares simple ways to connect with retail buyers and also how to connect directly with your customers to have them help sell your product for you in a way to keep your marketing dollars lower.



Announcer [00:00:23]:


Are you looking for new ways to make your sales grow? You've tried other podcasts, but they don't seem to know harvest the growth potential of your product or service as we share stories and strategies that'll make your competitors nervous. Now here's the host of the Harvest Growth podcast, Jon LaClare.



Jon LaClare [00:00:44]:


Welcome back to the show. Today, I'm really excited to have our guest, Leanna Gantt. She's the founder of TookTake, and she's got a really interesting story on how she developed her product. And I have to say I love the product. I'm a huge fan as well. So we're going to dive into what it is and hear more about her story and how she's turned it into really a fast success. This business has only been around for a few years, and it's been remarkable what she's been able to do on this journey. But first of all, I want to say welcome to the show, Leanna.


Leeanna Ganttt [00:01:14]:


Hi. Welcome. Thanks for having me.



Jon LaClare [00:01:17]:


Absolutely. So let's, if you could introduce to our audience, first off, what is TookTake. If you talk about the product and how you came up with the idea.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:01:27]:


TookTake is a super simple way to know if you took or still need to take your medicine or vitamins. It's basically a little sticker with perforated tabs. So our daily label has the days of the week on the little tabs. So when you take your medicine for the day, you just pull the tab off and then you know that you did it. So there's no sorting or counting or anything, which makes it really easy to use. I came up with the idea for TookTake during my own treatment for breast cancer. During the chemotherapy part, I had like a dozen medications, all in different forms, all in different schedules. And it was really stressful for me and my family to keep track of them.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:02:03]:


And a lot of them I couldn't take more than once. And it was the whole thing. And I started to make little labels to help us so that we wouldn't be so stressed. And over the year that I was in treatment, we just kind of kept refining them and I'd make different ones for different needs. And at the end of the year, we realized, like hey, these are really helpful. We'd been using them on other things as well. Like our dog got an ear infection and she had medicine. So I stuck one of my little labels on her medicine, and we just realized they were really handy to have around.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:02:32]:


And we thought, hey, we can help some other people, too.



Jon LaClare [00:02:35]:


Yeah, absolutely. And before this interview, we were talking about how you originally developed it for when you're taking a lot of medications, but also found it very helpful when you got down to finally having just one medication a day. Talk to me about, I guess, the number when you're taking a lot of meds. It makes it more obvious. But is it hard also just on the one a day? I'm sure anybody listening that takes medications realizes that it is, but we'd love to hear how from your story that's also helped in that regard.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:03:04]:


Yeah, I mean, that's actually really when I decided this is really helpful for everybody, not just people going through a crisis. Because I had one pill I had to take every day, and it was supposed to help keep my cancer from returning. But as I got back to my normal daily life, it was really hard to remember because I'd never been a big vitamin and medicine person. I didn't have a routine in place or a system for remembering to take anything. And I tried all the tips people gave me, and I still couldn't remember. So I started using my little labels. I'm like, well, maybe I still need this. And it was the perfect solution because I'm a mom, I'm working.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:03:41]:


There's just a lot going on in the morning, and I couldn't remember where. When I was in treatment, my whole day revolved around what do I take and when. But in your normal daily life, that's not usually the case. So I started asking a lot of my friends, saying, hey, do you happen to take anything every day, like a vitamin you take once or twice a day, or a medicine? And I was surprised to find out how many people had medications like mine for thyroid things or cholesterol or different conditions, like chronic conditions. I never even knew they had these conditions, but they had something. It was really important for them to stay feeling their best and to keep themselves healthy. And they said the same thing, that it's like, oh, yeah, at the end of the month, they usually have three or four left. That's just how it goes.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:04:24]:


And they just sort of resigned to the fact that they were going to just forget some of them, and now they don't because I give them all TookTake labels.



Jon LaClare [00:04:34]:


It's one of those things too. I think if you've got anything you do on a daily basis, the more you do it, the harder it is to remember, right? So this reminds me, it's very different from your products, but it's the thing that bothers me the most, that I need you to develop this as your next idea to help me out. Every day I leave my office. Most days I'm the last one there and I lock my door, walk right out to my car, I pull my car out, I start driving away and. And 99% of the time I'm like, I'm thinking about something on the way out, right? And I do it every day. I'm like, lock the door. Every single time I stop my car, I walk back out. I'm like, I know I did it, but I think it's just with medications it's like that too.



Jon LaClare [00:05:11]:


The longer you take it, it's just when it's part of the routine, you're not thinking about it anymore. It becomes automatic. So anything you can do to create a process to remember, to think, right, to make it different. And with yours, you've got that quick little tear off indicator. It's so easy. You really don't even have to think of these things that become daily habits and become very difficult.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:05:33]:


Exactly. Because I think that was part of my problem, is that I would sometimes take the medicine and I didn't know if I did it. It became such a habit, like you were saying, that I didn't realize that I had done it or I wasn't 100% sure I did. And that's when you're left like, I don't know what to do. So like you said, that's sort of the beauty of TookTake, is that it lets you know if you did it or not. And you can double check yourself really easily.



Jon LaClare [00:06:03]:


Absolutely. Now there are some other solutions, or attempted, let's call them solutions on the market that are trying to do this, right. Of different types. How is TookTake just, if you could describe it for our audience's sake, how is it different from other things that they might be using or be aware of on a daily basis?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:06:21]:


I think one of the biggest differences is that most adherence products, which is sort of what these are called, are designed for the elderly or people taking a lot of medications. So there are complicated systems or really elaborate systems where TookTake is really simple and it's designed for busy people. It's designed for someone who doesn't want their medication to become a huge part of their daily routine. They just want to know if they took it. So I think the simplicity of it and the other big difference is TookTake labels work on anything, not just pills. Like a traditional pill container really only works for pills. So if you have a face wash from your dermatologist, that's prescription you're supposed to use. If you have drops for your eyes, if you have liquids, lotions, creams, powders, people trying to use collagen powders, protein powders, really any wellness product, TookTake can help you establish the routine so that you're using the product.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:07:17]:


And one, you know, if it's actually working and helping you because you used it as directed, and then also you will feel your best. If it does help you, you will know you're using it and you'll stay feeling your best. So I think those are some big benefits of TookTake is it works on anything.



Jon LaClare [00:07:32]:


And I love how you coupled together. So there's kind of two core benefits, at least that I grabbed from that. One is the anxiety of did I take it? Did I not? Just not knowing. And then the other important part is there's a reason that these are daily medications or creams or whatever they might be, is when you take a daily supplement, even, right. That there's cumulative benefits, so missing a day makes it worse. They don't work as well, so you're going to have better actual results as well. So it's a very simple way to make sure that you're getting the most out of medications and staying in the best health possible. So I love that.



Jon LaClare [00:08:07]:


What are some of the most common uses that you see beyond the pills? Right. So you mentioned a couple of them, face creams, that sort of thing. What are some of the most common? You see.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:08:18]:


I think medications and vitamins are the most common, but a lot of people lately have been telling me that they use it on things like a collagen powder, a protein powder, or a lot of people use it for beauty products because a lot of these routines people are buying up, especially with TikTok, they'll see something and they'll buy all of these products, and it's a big investment. So you want to know. It's like, does this work before? Especially if it's a subscription product. If you start falling behind, you end up with like a pile of it in your house. So people are using it for beauty products for really all kinds of different things. This time of year, we've had a lot of moms really excited about the labels because it works on all the liquids, kids medications, and with cold and flu season, a lot of them have that pink liquid antibiotic. I think it's some oxygen, but there's not a good way to keep track of a liquid. You can't tell if you did it or not.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:09:12]:


So this time of year, that's one of the most popular uses for it is all those kids meds.



Jon LaClare [00:09:19]:


I got to say, I love it for sure. I've got four kids. Everyone has different health things here and there. Luckily, nothing too major but various medications and that kind of thing. And it's without your product. It used to be a process of filling pill containers and like a Sunday night routine. Right. It takes up your ultimate planning.



Jon LaClare [00:09:38]:


No one wants to think about this. I love that you just take away the excess thinking, especially when you're only taking a couple of medications, but making sure that they are, that they're taking them and that we can keep track of it and that we are as well. So I just love the concept, love the product. It's very well done, which transitions me now. And let's talk about the success. It's been phenomenal. So you've only been around for a few years. Can you talk about what was your first big success as a business?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:10:03]:


I think it was CVS. A buyer from CVS contacted me and that was really exciting because we were pretty new know they. She started out saying she saw me in there was an online trade show because it was during COVID and she just saw me do a little presentation about TookTake and she messaged me right when I was done saying, here's my number, here's my email. Reach out to me, I need to talk to you. And it just so happened that her daughter had been homesick and had an antibiotic that they had had that exact problem that morning. So it really resonated with her right away. And, yeah, so that was my first big thing is getting an email from the buyer at CVS, which was great.



Jon LaClare [00:10:50]:


I love that. When you've got a great product, you've got to find ways that the buyers will see it, right. You can't just sit and wait for them to come. So you're going to the right places, like these online trade shows at the time, et cetera, getting in front of them. But when you do buyers, they see a lot of stuff, but when you've got a really cool and unique product, it's going to stand out, it's going to resonate. It reminds me of back in my days with Oxiclean when they as a company first got into Walmart and Sam's club, part of it was due to the wife of a buyer that happened to see the billy maze or spots on tv and tried the product, loved it. It was personal use and anyways brought it into retail from that point. That was know the first part of a big retail success.



Jon LaClare [00:11:33]:


But again, part of the answer I would say is having a great product. Right. The next part is getting in front of these buyers. So you described the CVS one, you've grown your retail since then. How have you had success in connecting with other buyers since that point?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:11:51]:


It's a lot of legwork. I think I naively, having not tried to get a product into retail, thought, well, you just let them know that you have a product and they buy it. I didn't know that that wasn't how it worked. It's a lot of legwork finding the right buyer. They change around a lot. I use LinkedIn a lot for that, to just try and make contacts and try and find the right person that way. And we got into Walmart through Walmart's open call program, which is a great resource for small businesses trying to get into Walmart because that actually they pair you up with the right buyer, which takes a big part of the workout. Yeah, and other really, it's just a lot of cold calls and emailing and being really nice and just asking people.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:12:41]:


It's like, hey, if you're not the right person, would you mind pointing me the right way? And I find most people are actually really nice. If you're just polite and direct, you're also taking up people's time if they do read your email. So I try not to tell a whole story in my email. Just like, this is my product. Here's the category I'm looking for. I'm not sure if it's you. If it's not, would you mind pointing me the right way? And I'd say 50 50. Half the time I do get a reply and get the email of the proper person.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:13:11]:


And then at least if I'm not talking to the right person, then I can give them a little bit longer pitch.



Jon LaClare [00:13:17]:


And I think I would add to that, which I know you do, but being genuine, you kind of alluded to that at least where it's these buyers, like a lot of anyone who's on LinkedIn, you realize you get these bot reach outs for people trying to sell you stuff all the time or whatever, but when you're doing this on your own and you are the owner of the company. It makes such a difference. Right. Because it's clear that you're being genuine. You're not just hiring a broker. And there's a place for brokers. A lot of our clients use them. It's a great way to scale.



Jon LaClare [00:13:46]:


There's a place for it for sure. But as you start out, especially and try to reach out to these buyers directly, being genuine, being truly from the company. Right. And representing that in early conversations. I love how you said respectful too. Right. They're so busy, but they appreciate respect and they're looking for good products. That's their job.



Jon LaClare [00:14:05]:


Right. They literally are buying and looking for the next success to bring in.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:14:10]:


Yeah. I have a few brokers that I work with and I find even with the brokers, sometimes it takes me being persistent with the initial outreach and then introducing the broker in and saying, I'm going to bring so and so into the conversation now to help facilitate the onboarding and continue the conversation because they'll be trying. And it is different. I think the tone of the message, even though I love all the people that I work with, the tone is just different. And I think I tend to get a response more often than not of some sort where they don't. So I think that's a good point. Just like I think as a founder, there's a way that you talk about your product that nobody else can.



Jon LaClare [00:14:56]:


Absolutely. It makes a huge difference. I see that too, as I do reach out to the founder of our company. And it's very different from when our team reaches out. And it's understandable. Right. Like they know you are the company in many ways. So you've had great success in retail and now you're shifting or growing, let's say not shifting, but growing your direct to consumer sales as well from your website, et cetera.



Jon LaClare [00:15:21]:


What so far has worked well for you on the ecommerce or direct to consumer space?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:15:31]:


Our website. It's strange because I started to take with the idea that it has to be right next to all the wellness products. It needs to be near all the things people get in retail, and that's where people will discover the product. So I really didn't push the website very hard at first, and now I'm discovering people don't care where they bought. So now we're pushing people back. We're directing them back to the website as well. We're saying you have a choice. Wherever's doing it for you, you can get us.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:15:59]:


And really just letting people know that we're available wherever you need us. If you're at CVS, get it there. If you're at Walmart, get it there. If you're not in those places, just order it. You can sign up for a subscription program on the website. We'll just deliver it to you every month, every two months. We've just sort of made the story about, we're trying to make it easy for you to get this, just as easy as it is to use it. We want it to be easy for you to get when you need it.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:16:26]:


But yeah, a lot of social media, we do all that ourself and it's all organic. So a lot of trial and error and learning, but slowly but surely we're making progress.



Jon LaClare [00:16:40]:


You do your own social media, your own organic. What's your process for that? How often do you post? What do you talk about? What's been, I guess, effective for you in organic social?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:16:52]:


My husband and I do that together. Both of our background is this. Creative directors in advertising, we try to post every day. We use a scheduler we use later for scheduling posts so that we don't have to do it all. Wait, are we still using later? Yeah, I think we are. And yeah, again, like I said, trial and error. I think we're learning that different times a year, like this time of year being holiday season, it's so competitive out there with paid ads that our reach drops. So we're learning, and I think it's improving as we go.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:17:34]:


We're seeing what people respond to, what they don't, being a brand, that the whole point is to get interaction from the consumers on social media and engage and form this community. That's the ideal goal. But with our product being so simple and it doesn't change, it's harder to build that community. Like a friend of mine has a spice company, so they can post recipes and cooking demos. They have a lot of new things to pull from and new information to share and expanding things. Our information is more limited, so keeping people engaged is harder, but we're working on it. We find humor works well for us, just not taking it so seriously, not being scary about having to take something and try to encourage people to share how they use it and not be ashamed of having to take something because a lot of people don't like to admit that they take a medication. So we try to encourage those kind of conversations as well.



Jon LaClare [00:18:39]:


That's a great way to think about it, too, where it's like, social media is a good space where you can open up those conversations and help customers, or even potential customers realize that there's others out there like them. It's good to hear these stories, I guess, directly from other people that are like them and from you, but also from existing customers. What's worked well for you, I guess to get existing customers to post or share content.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:19:09]:


I think sharing my own story, I think that I'll talk about my cancer treatment and why I use it. And also just even beyond the cancer treatment, just it's like I'm just a person who has something I have to take to stay healthy and stay well. And it's stressful. Sometimes it's hard. I don't want to make a big deal about it. And I think by talking about that, yeah, I have these feelings that it's like, I wish I didn't have to take this and sometimes I don't want to. But then I see the little label and it's like, oh, you really need to take that. You didn't do it today.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:19:41]:


And I think just being open and vulnerable about my experience and why I use this to help me helps other people want to share, saying, yeah, I realize I do feel better when I take my anxiety medicine every day and I wasn't doing that and I really should and there's no reason not to. And people share stories like that. And then another person will say, I have this other condition, and I don't like to tell people I have a medication because I don't want them to look at me like I'm sick or ill because this is just a chronic condition. But the more people open up, the more people share with each other and give each other like a little pat on the back for taking care of themselves.



Jon LaClare [00:20:21]:


I do appreciate that. I think I feel like the world has gotten better in that regard, where we still are reserved in sharing too much about ourselves, which is okay, too. And meds we might be on or whatever, but we're more open in general than we were certainly 20 years ago. That kind of thing people are willing to share. And it's been so helpful for myself, our family, as well as we see other people, other people have struggles or health issues or whatever it might be, and it's okay. It's part of life and we're kind of in it together. I don't even want to guess as to why that's changed, but I do feel like it's gotten better. And I'm glad that you're helping that cause too, of getting the word out, especially in the medication world of helping people to be more open and be okay with it because medications can be very helpful and there's no reason to push them off if it's the right thing, of course.



Jon LaClare [00:21:06]:


Right?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:21:08]:


Yeah. I think for us, I've noticed that a lot of it comes from younger people in their 20s because there's such a big conversation about mental health specifically that they're really open about talking about their mental health issues and what works for them and different things they're trying. And I think that's inspiring more people to talk about that, which is overflowing into other conditions where people are willing to share and say, yeah, I have this and here's what I'm doing. Maybe that'll help people. So a lot of our customers are younger, they're in their twenty s. And yeah, I think a lot of it's coming from them just saying like, hey, I want help remembering to take this medicine or I'm not going to be the best person. I can be the best friend, the best child, the best person. So I think they're asking for help and they're sharing, and I think that's a huge part of it.



Jon LaClare [00:22:02]:


Agreed. Absolutely. Well, Leeanna, are there any books or other resources that you recommend for audience that have been helpful for you?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:22:11]:


There's a book called Supermaker by Jamie Schmidt about how she started know, but basically from her kitchen table all the way to selling to Unilever. And I find that to be a really inspiring story because it just talks about all the mistakes, but how she recovered from them. And like we mentioned earlier, I think every big story, people like to just, you look at the end and say, wow, they were huge. They just came out of nowhere overnight. But then when you hear the founder's real story, you realize they didn't come from nowhere overnight. It was a process. It was a stressful situation. So I like those stories.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:22:49]:


And I liked how I built this on the podcast, too, because. Same reason.



Jon LaClare [00:22:54]:


Yeah, absolutely. I could not agree more. We've helped launch hundreds of products and businesses over the last almost 20 years now. And I've seen a lot of these journeys firsthand. Right. And some of them really big and some of them respectable, but not as big or whatever it might be. But a commonality between all those and the massive successes that you read about in books like this is there's always difficulty in the journey. Right.



Jon LaClare [00:23:17]:


It's never easy from day one. And I think it's important for especially new entrepreneurs or inventors to realize that they're not alone in the journey. They're not alone in the struggles. Their struggles might be different than the ones you or I had or the Schmidt's deodorant people had, but their struggles are part of the journey. And I think as I look back personally, it's helped me to grow. It's helped our business to be better. And I'm sure you'd voice the same thing as getting through the trials and struggles makes the business better, makes us better as part of that process.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:23:49]:


Definitely. I agree 100%.



Jon LaClare [00:23:52]:


Leeanna, is there anything I didn't ask that you think would be helpful for audience?



Leeanna Ganttt [00:23:58]:


I think if you're just starting out and even like, I'm not just starting, but pretty early in the process, I think reaching out to communities of like minded founders and it might take a while to find your people. But I get so much support from talking to other female founders out there, especially in the packaged good area, and just comparing notes. And we help each other when we're having a down day or when we're having a good day, we cheer for each other. And I think that's really important because it can be a lonely journey if you're a solo founder. And even though friends and family want to be supportive and cheer for you, it's different when someone really understands a glitch in your EDI system. Most friends don't have any idea what I'm complaining about, but my founder friends do. They're like, oh yeah, that's the worst. And it just makes you feel better.



Jon LaClare [00:24:50]:


I will definitely second that. It's been extremely helpful for me in my journey. And they may be completely different businesses even than your own, but their journey, there's going to be commonalities. There's going to be things you can learn from them, but also help them, right? So it's a chance to give and to serve others in their journeys as well at every stage of the process, whether it's year one or year 20, whatever it might be. Well, Leanna, thank you so much for your time. This has been a really fun interview.



Leeanna Ganttt [00:25:16]:


Thanks so much for having me. I've really enjoyed it.



Jon LaClare [00:25:18]:


Be sure to visit tooktake.com to learn more about Leanna's great line of products. And did you know that you can meet with a member of my team absolutely free for a 30 minutes strategy consultation? We've launched and grown hundreds of products since 2007 and learned some of our strategies while growing Oxiclean back in the Billy Mays days. We're here to help, so please go to harvestgrowth.com and set up a call if you'd like to discuss further.

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