Danielle DuBoise is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Sakara Life, the wellness brand on a mission to nourish and transform lives through the power of plants as medicine. A true pioneer in the health industry, she launched the brand in 2012 at the age of 26 with her best friend Whitney Tingle, creating their unique nutrition philosophy which merges modern science and ancient healing wisdom. Since inception, Sakara has transformed millions of lives through its Signature Meal Program, Functional Snacks, and Supplements. In 2019, she launched the first Sakara cookbook, EAT CLEAN PLAY DIRTY, becoming a national bestselling author, and has been honored in Forbes' 30 under 30, MindBodyGreen's 100 Women in Wellness, Goldman Sachs ‘Most Interesting Entrepreneurs’ and Oprah's SuperSoul 100. Passionate about wellness, she shares how we can connect with our audience and live a healthier lifestyle.
You have a business that involves delivering fresh food. How did you get started?
I started the company about 10 years ago with Whitney, my best friend. It was born out of us using food as a tool to change our lives. Eating this way saved my life. So we made it our mission to share this knowledge with as many people as possible. We're best known for our nutrition program that's delivered all over the country. The meals are plant-based, organic, fresh, never frozen, and cover breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Were there specific functions where COVID opened up spaces for you to hire?
No, we planned to hire regardless. Wellness wasn't quite cool when we started. People told us, "I don't know what you're doing. Nobody's going to want a salad delivered. People want pizza delivered." We were ahead of the time. Now, I'm grateful that wellness has become trendy. I don't think it's going anywhere either; it's become quite mainstream.
I think where it missed the mark is self-care became this nice to have lifestyle. If COVID has done anything for us, it's shown us that self-care is not a luxury. It's not a 'nice to have.' It's essential.
Do you have the same customer base you had when you went into COVID?
Yeah, I think we have the same customer base overall. The more I talk to our customers, the more I hear things like, "I am not just looking out for my health, I'm also looking out for my loved one's health." People are ordering for not just themselves but their families.
Our consumer base opened up and shifted into a broader place when we released a cookbook and magazine. Eating is the quickest and most transformative way to heal yourself. That's why we are doing everything we can to make healthy eating accessible for everyone, not just for those who can afford it.
Eating is the quickest and most transformative way to heal yourself.
How are you speaking to people through your marketing? And how are you spending your marketing dollars?
We haven't changed how we talk to people. I've noticed brands that do, and it doesn't sit right with me. We've always been here to boost your immune system. We're not just here to boost your immune system during the pandemic.
Consumers can see through marketing ploys. To founders and CEOs out there listening, it's the time to be our most authentic. People see through things and are demanding honesty and transparency.
What ideas are you exploring?
We share something called Sakara Stories on our podcast. Whitney and I often talk about the stories that brought us here. My story is I had a terrible relationship with food. I counted calories, carbs, pounds, points - everything. And I never felt good. Whitney, she was dealing with cystic acne. She tried everything for a decade, and nothing worked until she changed how she ate.
Our stories lead us to our mission. Then we thought if this started with our stories, what could we do if everyone who felt a transformation got to share theirs? Sharing stories on the podcasts helped spur connections within the community because people related to those around them.
Our stories lead us to our mission.
How do you look at customer acquisition?
We certainly have the traditional efforts behind Facebook, Instagram, etc. But we also have something called the Sakara Circle