Over the last year the word “vegan” has become relatively mainstream. Most everyone knows a vegan or they, themselves, are vegan.
Go back five years and the landscape was very different.
Go back ten years and hardly anyone dared to whisper the words, “I’m a vegan.”
Now imagine going back ten years and identifying as a vegan business owner. In some circles that could be the kiss of death. Only the boldest visionaries dared to call themselves a vegan business owner.
One such person is owner and founder of Vegan Mainstream, Stephanie Redcross West.
Not only has Stephanie been an influencer within the vegan industry for well over a decade, she has also led the way with ideas, strategies, products and services designed specifically for vegan and plant-based businesses.
Stephanie Redcross West started Vegan Mainstream based on a simple idea: to build a pro-vegan world, we need a solid infrastructure of successful businesses and brands to ensure that an ethical lifestyle is accessible to everyone, everywhere.
Realizing there were few marketing services available in this very niche market, Stephanie was ready to fill the need.
Imagine ethical retail stores, restaurants, clothing options, skin care, cleaning supplies and educational materials in every mall or community!
Every step toward making this a reality is a step that moves the vegan movement forward. With this in mind, in 2009, Stephanie started developing tools, training and support for the brave individuals who identify themselves as Vegan Professionals – those starting and running vegan businesses all over North America, and the world. She was well-equipped to do this, with more than 15 years of marketing experience with small businesses and Fortune 500 companies. Since then Stephanie has been a frequent speaker at vegfests, conferences and even her own bootcamp series.
Through these types of engagements, and her day-to-day work with Vegan Mainstream, Stephanie inspires others to turn their vegan passion into successful businesses. She is a leader who promotes the concept that there is room for all types of vegan business owners, not only those developing and selling food-related products. We need vegan carpenters, fashion designers, accountants, and more.
It was not always an easy road to travel in the early days. Some people felt marketing their businesses in the way she proposed was too commercial for the vegan market. After all, they were about saving the world. But with a bit of education, most understood the vision she laid out and promptly contracted her.
Realizing not everyone was in a position to hire her to consult, she created a suite of products, masterminds and services to provide resources for vegan businesses of every size and description.
- Figure out your strategic plan
- Determine the destination for your business
- What are the products and services you offer?
- Keep in touch with customer and clients
- Build relationships with your customers
- Know where your revenue is coming from
- Know that storms will come and go in business
- Be willing to pivot when it’s called for
Known for her impactful 1-on-1 consulting and business coaching services, Stephanie’s clients testify to the difference their work with Vegan Mainstream has made. In an effort to make her services available to more people, and practical for busy vegan entrepreneurs, in 2014 Stephanie started offering online and team-training programs. Now Vegan Mainstream clients can train at their own pace and at their own convenience, from anywhere in the world.
During our time together, I gained fabulous inspiration from someone who is as passionate about marketing as I am. And someone who led the way for what it means to be a vegan business owner who is 100% aligned with her mission, movement and message.