Mandi Gunsberger understands what it takes to turn a blog into an engaging, market-leading brand. She founded Babyology, a product-focused blog for Australian parents, back in April 2007.
Fast forward seven years, and Babyology has the second-most engaged Facebook page in Australia, according to Social Pulse (2013). In fact, Babyology has over 280,000 Facebook Likes, with over 180,000 people currently talking about the company.
Before becoming a mum to three children, Gunsberger worked in the fields of marketing, public relations and event management in the United States and Australia. Now she lives full time in Sydney, having happily to discarded the world of corporate power suits, in exchange for the causal dress that a mum-friendly home business affords.
Always having an eye for style and fashion, she was the go-to person for advice from friends and acquaintances on many trend conscious topics. After discovering she had a knack for common sense stylish pursuits, her lifestyle choice to be a work at home mum, naturally merged into becoming a blogger for style-conscious parents and fashion-friendly baby products.
It’s Gunsberger’s diligence, hard work and entrepreneurial spirit that became Babyology – the place to find anything for children and parents that’s worth having, from the practical to the sublime and everything in between.
When asked what inspired her to pursue Babyology, Gunsberger explains, “At the time there was nothing in Australia that catered to parents who wanted to know about high-quality products for their families.”
“I had just moved back to Sydney after spending three years in San Francisco at the height of the dot com bubble and was pregnant with my first child. I had to go to overseas websites to research all the products I was looking at for my baby and it just clicked.”
What started as a home business for Gunsberger, quickly became much larger in scope. Her personal fame as a mum entrepreneur really began when ranked number 10 on Kidspot’s Top 50 Bloggers of 2010.
Since 2010, Babyology became an online market leader in high-quality product focused editorial content for Australian parents. The company has a staff of 16 individuals, all working remotely, with company meetings once a week.
The offical website garners over 300,000 unique visitors per month; and now Babyology is leading the social media revolution in Australia. On Facebook, Babyology is the second most engaged Australian page with the most engaged posts in their region, since 2013.
Esssentially, Gunsberger and Babyology help modern parents and kids find hip trends and fashions, but also look for what is economical and quality products.
Babyology’s mission statement is expressed best on their Facebook page, “If you love hunting down cool, innovative gear for pregnancy, babies, toddlers and kids, then Babyology is for you. An online arbiter of good taste for anyone whoís ever felt overwhelmed when faced with buying for little ones, weíre here to show mums, dads and everyone else that good design and a sense of style donít have to disappear when parenthood begins.”
Gunsberger has reason to be proud of her many achievements. When asked what she was personally proudest of, her response was, “the team we’ve put together. We have an incredible group of women from around the country who are as passionate about Babyology as I am and are able to balance a rewarding career with families.”
For Gunsberger, the goal is a combination of keeping her life as a mum and pursuing excellence as an editor and businesswoman.
When it comes to challenges throughout her business career, her thoughts were simple, yet clear: “Balancing work and life. I started this business to give me the flexibility to spend time with my family. It’s a constant struggle to stop work intruding into family life.”
Gunsberger appears to keep herself grounded, using common sense as a guidepost in her business dealings.
“It’s very easy to get distracted by every trend and outside suggestion and competitor. I’ve learnt to ignore all of that as much as possible and focus on our own path,” she said.
Babyology is supportive of companies from all aspects in the parent and children’s niche markets. The company has conducted online interviews and blog posts that promote some of the best companies in the children’s markets today, although coming from a decidedly Australian focus.
Gunsberger finds it easy to name drop, when discussing which Australian brands are her favourites from a promotional and retail standpoint.
“We love working with InfaSecure, Parenthood, Incy Interiors and Eeni Meeni Miini Moh. They are all wonderful people to work with and always willing to try interesting things. It’s important these days to be creative with your message. We get really excited when we can do something unique with a brand,” she said.
Those interested in learning more about Babyology and Mandi Gunsberger need only do a quick online search. She and her company have quite the online presence.
Looking towards the future, Gunsberger seems as optimistic as ever: “We have a lot of exciting things planned for 2014. We’re adding a few key roles that will help us expand our capabilities and do the things we already do better. We are also launching our first events – Babyology Baby Showers. This will be a unique opportunity for the brands we work with to connect with our amazing audience offline as well as online. ”
What began as humble beginnings for a mum of 3 in Australia, now is blossoming into a true story of online brilliance. Gunsberger truly has it all, being a successful businesswoman, a stay at home parent, an online entrepreneur, a top name blogger and an example of excellence that is influencing the Australian children’s market. Hats off to Babyology, as it shoots for the stars, with babies on board.
More information on Babyology is available via babyology.com.au.