Welcome to the Inspiration Station, where we celebrate fellow dietitians whom we admire for motivating us with innovative ideas and fresh thinking. This edition, we’re shining our spotlight on fellow dietitian Amanda Clark, Adv APD.
Amanda is the founder of Great Ideas in Nutrition, an award-winning practice of dietitians, nutritionists and exercise physiologists located on the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia. She is also the creator of the internationally renowned diet plan, Portion Perfection, for women, men and children.
For our DC podcast, we recently interviewed Amanda on creating a successful business venture that resonates globally. Here are highlights excerpted from that conversation so that you, too, can be inspired by the work Amanda is doing.
On becoming a “shopkeeper”…:
“I’d been intrigued by the idea of being a shopkeeper, so I set up a mail-order bookshop for dietitians through the DAA. I could be seen on my lounge room floor packaging up books at night, after the kids had gone to bed.”
Becoming one of the first dietitians to have a storefront:“
I was in fIve different locations around the Gold Coast at the time, and wheeled a 30-kg suitcase around, so it appealed to me to have one visible location. I also had my mail-order book service, but I never had those books with me to sell to clients. So, by setting up a single location, I could have books available for the clients, control what was available in the waiting room – and oversee how much the receptionists knew about what we did.”
On how the Portion Perfection products came about:“
I started with the Portion Plate back in 2004. Because I already had my mail-order bookshop, I had an outlet for it. That went well, and I was trying to get it into retail shops [pharmacies], so I needed to write an accompanying brochure. I read a book called “Maverick Marketing”, and it gave me some great ideas. One was: instead of writing a brochure, I should write a book. So, I developed one.
”On self-publishing, vs. using a publisher:“
A publisher gives you the opportunity to have a bestseller quite quickly because they have the outlet — you’ve got to have the audience already. A great direction to go is this: develop a blog, develop followers in the area of interest, and then write a book. If you’re going to self-publish, make it look professional. Have a good look at what a professionally published book looks like and imitate that — and get yourself a good editor.”
On expanding internationally:
“I went over to the U.S. four years ago, and met up with dietitians there. I took my products, showed them what I had, and asked if they already have something like this – or if this was something they were interested in. They showed amazing interest. I made some great contacts, and enlisted the help of many of those dietitians that I met to help me Americanize the content. You also need some help with the [legal and tax] requirements, including exporting and importing, so I enlisted the help of TradeStart.”
“I’m strategically involved in conferences, presentations or exhibits, and then apart from that, we do email marketing and Facebook. My son has helped me with my website – specifically the search engine optimisation, which really saves you money on advertising.”
On using podcasts:
“We’ve just started a podcast called “Beyond Bariatric Surgery: Everything You Need to Move On”. We already have eight episodes, with 6,000 downloads, and we’ve started a Facebook group with 5,000 people, I think, from the U.S. and Australia.”
On starting your own business:
“Think about multiple income streams. Know what your expenses are, and put some [money] away. Maintain a professional presence. Be realistic and create a vision of almost anything you do. Picture how it’s going to work. Be persistent. Be resilient. Finally, I fInd that my optimism and efforts to be calm under pressure really contribute.“
LEARN MORE: Follow Amanda online (click the link): www.greatideas.net.au