Written by: Stuart Foxman
When Ronit Soroksky was on maternity leave, she arranged a photo shoot with the neighbourhood moms. Eight were waiting at her house. The photographer never showed or responded to Soroksky’s subsequent messages. If only, she thought, she could have vetted someone by seeing reviews of their work.
That was Soroksky’s lightbulb moment. She thought it would be great for new and soon-to-be moms to have a directory of relevant services, all reviewed by moms. Soroksky, who worked in marketing in consumer packaged goods (PepsiCo, Dempsters, Maple Leaf Foods), did some digging. She couldn’t find the platform she envisioned. So she created it, launching League of Moms in January 2018 (leagueofmoms.com).
“It’s like Yelp or Homestars for moms,” she says.
There are now more than 300 services on the directory, and growing. Users can find anything from lactation consultants to night nurses, baby classes to financial planners, nanny and babysitter services to party performers, and gate installers to pre-schools.
Right now, the directory is tailored to moms with kids up to toddler age. Aside from the listings, League of Moms has a blog section on things like baby proofing your home, podcasts for new parents, healthy eating and baby sleep.
League for Moms is free for users. Soroksky is basing the business on an advertising revenue model, with vendors also having an option to pay to be listed.
Although she has experience building brands as a marketer, Soroksky says not all her skills were transferrable. Most important as a new entrepreneur has been her soft skills. “I know how to roll up my sleeves and get things done,” she says.
Much of her promotion takes place via social media. She spends time on Instagram and Facebook, and joins forums where moms are talking about service needs. “The moms I want are online and doing the research,” says Soroksky.
She has also attended baby shows as a vendor. Many companies that list on League of Moms are small businesses themselves, and lack large marketing budgets. So they welcome this vehicle to reach their target consumers.
Soroksky grew up in an entrepreneurial family. Her father ran a gymnastics school. She helped out as a coach, and at one point as general manager.
“Entrepreneurship is in my blood, and for years I was a person with an idea. I wanted to start something of my own. I wanted that to be part of my story.”
What held Soroksky back? “There was a fear of failure. You need to get over that.”
Things changed when her son was born. “I felt that I want this person to grow up and do great things, and with that comes risk. I can’t just tell him. I have to show him.”
While operating League of Moms, Soroksky is also a freelance marketing consultant. She loves the challenge of working with brands, whether established or start-ups, to think creatively about how she can help them achieve their goals.
She’s happy to be betting on her own League of Moms brand. She knows that would-be entrepreneurs can be hesitant. She was too. Her advice is to just give it a shot.
“If you can start something as a side hustle, do that. But there’s never a ‘right time’. You can talk yourself out of a dream. What’s the story you want to tell about your life in five years? That you tried something or that you’re still thinking about it? Take a chance on yourself.”
Photo credit Zlatko Cetinic, Images Made Real