#SWAAYthenarrative

Bump Club and Beyond: How A Mother-To-Be Created A Community For Expecting Parents

People

For nearly ten years, Lindsay Pinchuk worked in publishing, advertising, and marketing at Hearst, The Tribune Company, and Time Inc for brands including Good Housekeeping, Sports Illustrated, and Nickelodeon. While preparing for the birth of her first daughter, Pinchuk debuted her mom started business, Bump Club and Beyond. Launched in March 2010, Bump Club and Beyond was created as a way to connect with other new moms and at the same time provide them with the best of the best resources.


Now the largest social event company in the country for parents and parents-to-be, Bump Club and Beyond connects its audience with the best information, experts, products, and most importantly, with each other- both online and through dozens of premier events per month in over thirty cities across the country. Since launching Bump Club and Beyond, it’s revenue has grown over 3,500%, making it one of the fastest growing brands for parents and parents-to-be in the country. SWAAY talked to the founder and CEO of Bump Club and Beyond, and Chicago’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2014, Lindsay Pinchuk, to find out.

The epiphany for Bump Club and Beyond did not come while Pinchuk was pregnant, but rather, before she was even thinking about having children. “Pregnant women can’t just navigate this journey on their own when they have so many questions,” she says. While trying to help a pregnant friend look for a community of expecting moms in Chicago, she came up empty-handed. “I knew that when I wanted to start a family, I would want to have pregnant friends to lean on.”

So, before starting her family and her business, Pinchuk and her husband ventured off to Argentina for one final trip. “I took my computer on vacation and started building a basic website, and that’s when I said to my husband that there is really a business here,” says Pinchuk.

Soon after coming back from Argentina, Pinchuk got pregnant. “I actually announced Bump Club and Beyond a couple of weeks before announcing my pregnancy,” Pinchuk says. Thus, with the first event of a prenatal workout, Bump Club and Beyond was officially born. The second event that BCB held was a shopping event at a maternity store in downtown Chicago, at which over fifty women showed up. At the shopping event, mothers and mothers-to-be were shopping and talking to each other, and there were gift bags and raffle prizes.

“After the shopping event, people kept asking what was next, so we started hosting educational dinners for expecting parents,” says Pinchuk. The first educational dinner had fifty people attend, and from there it snowballed. “Five weeks after giving birth to my first daughter, Jordyn, we hosted our first new moms brunch and we brought in a sleep consultant because everyone was just so tired.” Now, Bump Club and Beyond is hosting events in over 25 cities across the country, with a database well over 200,000, and is working with some of the biggest brands in the world.

One of BCB’s biggest events is hosted in fifteen cities and is called Gearapalooza. With guest attendance between 150 and 300, Gearapalooza offers a “chance to meet many of the top baby brands in the world, learn what to register for and add them to your registry through Babylist.com, and have all of your questions answered by The BabyGuyNYC,” according to the event’s website. “The parents spend the first part of the even walking around and meeting all the different baby gear vendors, which can range from fifteen to thirty.” The vendors at Gearapalooza are doing demonstrations of their product, talking to parents, answering any and all questions, and educating parents on their product. Following the time with the vendors, attendees can grab a sandwich and sit down for the featured speaker, baby gear expert, Jamie Grayson, The BabyGuyNYC. At the end of the event, everyone goes home with a giant gift bag, which is worth over two hundred dollars. Attendees purchase tickets to attend which start at $50 and go up to $300 (which include a crib mattress!)

In addition, Bump Club and Beyond hosts events with companies such as Target, Nordstrom, and The Honest Company. “Companies hire Bump Club and Beyond to create an in-store experience or brand experience,” says Pinchuk. These events include Mom's Night Out with The Honest Company, and BCBasics for Target: Registry 101. On top of that, BCB also hosts a series of webinars. “In Chicago, we were doing a ton of educational events for parents up to age five: potty training, sibling preparation, discipline and others. Parents across the country wanted to hear the talks too, so we moved them online creating a webinar series that parents all over can access and watch.” Webinars are hosted two to three times per month, and range in topics from expecting parents, new parents, and toddler parents.

To attend a Bump Club and Beyond event, all you need to do is sign up online. Some of the events are paid and some are free, all depending on the nature of the event. “We also have a parent perk program called BCB VIP, which has an enrollment fee, and gives you access to multiple discounts,” Pinchuk says. The BCB VIP program provides exclusive discounts on products, services, and fitness facilities across the country. In addition, BCB VIP gives discounts to any events or programs through Bump Club and Beyond. So, if you are a BCB VIP, you can attend any webinar for free, but if not, you must pay ten dollars to tune in.

Lindsay Pinchuk (center) and friends.

“Being a mom and having both of my children have been huge moments for Bump Club and Beyond because it allows me to connect with our audience, in a way that is totally unique from any other business owner,” Pinchuk says.

The long-term goal of Pinchuk for her business is to become a household name. “I want it to be the source, support, and authority for expecting parents and parent,” says Pinchuk. One of the main things that make Bump Club and Beyond different from other companies is the level of trust that they have with their audience. “The parents trust us in terms of our product and service picks and trust the experts we put in front of them, which I think is one of the most important things that BCB has done for our audience.”

With a staff of six full-time employees, including Pinchuk, BCB has never received outside funding. BCB also has a group of contractors and brand ambassador moms who help run events across the country. “We did two hundred events last year, our Instagram has over 20,000 followers, and our Facebook page has over 93,000 followers,” Pinchuk proudly states. To learn more about Bump Club and Beyond, visit their website and follow them on Instagram or Facebook.

Creative DIY Tips for Making Your Own Calendar

The current state of the world definitely affected us in many ways, it made us stay locked up in our homes away from all the social events and seemingly fun stuff. But the responsibilities didn't just vanish into thin air, they are still there, waiting to be organized and prepared. Times are super hectic and you are probably not in the mood to think about the foreseeable future, but there are ways to turn in into a fun time. Starting a journal or making a simple calendar can bring you peace, use that creative time to yourself and relax while doing it. Grab your colored pencils, stickers, scraps, and everything in between, your inner DIY queen is about to jump out!

Fill in the blank

So probably the easiest way to start when it comes to making your own calendar is by simply printing a blank template found online. This way you'll have a base, a blank canvas if you will. Take all the materials that you have in your house, like washi tapes, sticky notes, glittery colorful pens and anything you can think of that could work as a decoration on your calendar. And go at it! There are no rules when it comes to decorating, it's super personal and it can differ from person to person.

The only real advice you'll need is to leave some space while decorating, don't overdo it since it will clutter and distract you from the written parts. Finding the perfect template that will suit your aesthetic is extremely easy and fast, a simple google search could get you whatever you want and the best part is, it's free! There are many printable options out there, so don't worry about not finding something you'd like, the possibilities are endless and you'll find just the right calendar you imagined!

Start from scratch

If you don't have a printer at home or you're just determined to make the calendar yourself, there are awesome ways to make the best and most unique personalized calendar there is. This gives you the full freedom to do whatever you can think of, want to make a calendar from old newspapers, do it! Want to cut out a certain shape and disguise the calendar as an art piece in your kitchen, why not?

Nothing is stopping you when it comes to unleashing your creative side, use everything that you can get your hands on, think outside the box, don't be afraid to experiment. Making a calendar from scratch is an amazing opportunity to explore your artistic side, especially if you've been busy with work and responsibilities. This is a great excuse to do something creative, at the end of the day you are making it for the purpose of being more organized and having everything mapped out and planned. So make this time, the best time possible, be free and create!

Mix and match

Since there are absolutely no rules when making any diy project at home, what's stopping you from making the ultimate, super personal calendar! If you have basic knowledge in photoshop, you can even modify the blank calendars you got online, add pictures of your loved ones and family, maybe your pets or anything you like, and then print it out. Or you can print the blank template right away and add pictures or polaroids later on by using some washi tape.

Also, you can even paint over the printed blank calendar, this is a good option for those who aren't as skilled, so you'll have a base to start, just dip in your paintbrush in some acrylic or watercolor paints (or whatever you have around the house) and go for it. This is a great way to start doing artsy projects while still having some form of direction and help.

Have fun

Sure keeping your priorities at bay and making plans and notes for everything is important...but the heart of this project has to be your willingness to turn something as boring and blank as a calendar into something spectacular. This calendar should proudly be up on your kitchen wall, so loud and colorful it just draws your attention to it.

If the calendar is decorated, personalized, and fun to look at, maybe it will inspire you to look forward to some events or responsibilities even if you didn't feel like it in the first place. So be creative and free, there are no rules so just go at it. With everything that happened this year, try to be positive and find little joys in seemingly insignificant things like diy calendars!