KEYPER CEO Dana Robinson was featured in Women of Wisdom.
See the original interview here
Tell us about your business
KEYPER is a key-ring that slips right on your wrist, keeping your keys handy and accessible. But unlike other brands, its patented strap is complete with a snap hook that allows you to clip it to a chair, railing, shopping cart, stroller, luggage or anything else. That same clip can attach the accompanying IT BAG clutch (in two sizes), creating the perfect wristlet for women on the go. Our target demographic is any busy woman of any age. KEYPER spans generations. We hear from college students who love our sorority line, which they clip to their backpack. Students and sports fans are loving our clear bags for games. Busy moms always love an extra hand, which they often use to strap a diaper bag to a stroller or grocery cart. Our older customers have said they clip the bag to their walker or wheelchair, allowing them to carry a purse while hands-free.
Please tell us what being a business owner means to you and why you became an entrepreneur in the first place?
I grew up in a small town, graduated with a BBA in Marketing from the University of Kentucky, worked for several governors, moved to LA and was a personal assistant to Woody Harrelson. I later moved to New York City, where I worked at Macy’s in special events. After moving back to Kentucky, my mom had the idea for what she called “pursekeyper.” I thought it was a great idea and really took the reins. I never expected to own my own business or become an entrepreneur, but this invention spoke to me. I was a busy mom myself and was passionate to find something that could help other women like myself. I still learn something new every day, and I love hearing when my product has made life a little easier for other women.
What or who has been your greatest influence in business and why?
I follow countless female entrepreneurs, but the person who influences me and inspires me the most is Sara Blakely, the inventor of SPANX. She had a product she believed in and had to convince women they needed to try it; women didn’t know they needed it until they needed it … just like a KEYPER!
What would you say is your greatest professional accomplishment to date? Starting a foundation and giving back. Our foundation is to help women “keep it together” in times of crisis. (www.keypittogether.org)
What’s the best advice you have received in business that you wish to pass on to our readers? Change is constant, you have to constantly adapt to the marketplace with your products and marketing. You have to be open-minded to listening to your customers. We have evolved and tried to keep up with the constant change.
What has been the most effective marketing initiatives or programs you have used to promote your business? Public Relations.
What one thing have you learned as a small business owner that has served you well over the years?
I’ve learned to accept corrective criticism and asking for help from other entrepreneurs and professionals who have success.
Are there any resources or tools you’d like to share with other small business owners that have helped you run your business? If yes, please describe (and include links if available).
Our local Greater Louisville Inc and Scores program helped me without fees to do customer surveys and learn. But honestly, just talking to everyone. Neighbors, friends, other entrepreneurs, every professional I can.
Do you have any new projects coming up (or have you just completed a big project ~ reached a milestone, etc.)?
I learned PurseKeyper needed to rebrand to KEYPER because it is more than a purse holder, which falls under adapting, change.
What do you do for fun/relaxation?
I like to run, play golf and spend time with my kids. I am a mom to two teenagers growing up quickly. As a single mom, I have to be there for them constantly and it brings me the most joy.
What is Number One Business Goal you plan to accomplish over the next year? I am hoping to get our NFL and NCAA licensing over the finish line.
You want to write a book on: Concentrating on the next 15 minutes of life. As a planner, I can’t plan the next day, let alone the next two hours. I try to take advantage of every business opportunity I can while juggling the rest of life as a single mother.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers? I am a passionate and hard-working single mother who is struggling to get my business noticed among the noise of the e-commerce world. I know I have a life-changing product. I have the ambition to make this business a success. I think the combination is unstoppable.
What’s the best way for the readers of WE Magazine for Women to connect with you …?
I read every single comment on social media and every google review or note to our website. I still fill most orders out of my basement, so I take great pride in every single order.