After six years in business, two local moms have launched the second product in their line of medical accessories – “medcessories,” as they call them – available for purchase on Amazon.
Co-founders Melissa Moody and Yvonne Spencer initially connected over their kids who attended St. Simon Parish School together. Moody, who has to take daily blood pressure medication, said she struggled to find a pill box that wasn’t overly clunky.
“Can you picture a 30-year-old mom who still wants to be hip, and she walks into the Walgreens (for a pill box)?” Moody asked.
She had wanted to start a business of her own for a while when she settled on the idea of designing a more fashionable pill box.
Moody pitched the idea informally to Spencer when they were cleaning up after a Kentucky Derby party at St. Simon in 2016. Spencer, who’d worked in the pharmaceutical industry, thought it was a brilliant idea.
“I sat in focus groups for many years, and people bring their pills in Ziploc bags,” Spencer said. “It’s an unmet need.”
Spencer and Moody identified their inspiration among tech and makeup products, which have become chicer in recent years. Like pill organizers, makeup packaging is nearly always plastic, Moody pointed out, but “everything looks gorgeous.” Similarly, Spencer noted that electronics used to be clunkier and less stylized.
“Now you can get every color of the rainbow phone or phone case or computer case,” Spencer said. “If you could do it with electronics, we could definitely do it with medical accessories.”
They got to work as co-founders, connecting with other freelancers along the way before launching their original product – Mimi’s Medcessories’ Pretty Pill Box – in 2018. The original pill case comes in iridescent shades of gold, pink and black, with a smooth surface. The sleek exterior slides open from both sides to reveal labeled compartments for each day of the week.
With more than 4,000 Amazon reviews, Spencer and Moody appear to have reached their target audience.
“We’re blown away,” Moody said of the response. “People really obviously care about it and are passionate.”
They’ve found customers in everyone from grandmas to bodybuilders – anyone who cares about their health is their ideal customer, Moody said.
The team has discovered that peak sales, unlike most other retail products, come right after Christmas during the season of New Year’s resolutions. This year they launched a new product, The Petite Pill Box – a hexagonal, travel-sized organizer. Spencer said her kids love using it to throw over-the-counter medications in their bags for sports practices.
Spencer and Moody describe their efforts as a family business; everyone from Moody’s in-laws to her cardiologist work as word-of-mouth salespeople. Spencer’s children have served as social media coaches, before the two hired a professional, and as “inventory management” (read: lifting and moving pallets of pill boxes). When recounting the early days of their business, Spencer and Moody said they would bring their kids to meetings and even invite their guests to do the same.
Moody said she’s glad her kids can see her run a business. Similarly, Spencer’s eighth-grader has started a slime business at her school, selling on Instagram. The families comprise impromptu focus groups as well as product testers.
“If we want to test the durability of something, we’ll give it to the teenagers,” Spencer said.
The Los Altos community has provided support and advice over the past six years. Spencer pointed to their patent filing process as an example. She said she and Moody would call patent lawyers they knew from the area who were “receptive to giving us advice and advising us and then putting us in touch with the people we needed to file.” They donate a portion of their proceeds to local schools each year to give back.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Courteous. Be respectful, truthful, and use no threatening or hateful language.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts and the history behind a news event.
Read our full comments policy: losaltosonline.com/comments