Episode #9: Growth of a Product-Based Business and Brand with Social Impact

Melita Cyril of Q for Quinn

Episode Summary:

On today’s show of the Sunrise Brand Collective, we welcome Melita Cyril, the creator and founder of Q for Quinn.  A recovering banker and management consultant, Melita Cyril had her eyes (and ears) open for different entrepreneurial ideas during her maternity leave. When her baby boy suffered from eczema and she struggled to find the right socks for his sensitive feet, she started Q for Quinn - a company that sells gentle, comfortable socks for the entire family.  Melita is a mom of two kids and in addition to running Q for Quinn, she is also a children’s book author. Melita holds an MBA from the University of Toronto and a BSc (Hons) Economics from the London School of Economics. 

We talk through:

  • The story behind how Q for Quinn got started
  • The inspiration behind Q for Quinn’s colourful brand
  • The challenges faced as a mother and entrepreneur competing with the bigger brands out there and how she faced it… the lessons learned.
  • The joys of operating Q for Quinn, aligning with the mission and social impact made on the earth
  • Three tips for succeeding in a  product based business. 
  • Lessons learned that have helped Q for Quinn grow


The whole journey is about persistence, being adaptable, flexible, dealing with challenges as they come” ~ Melita Cyril, Q for Quinn

 Top Highlights:

At 16:30, Melita shares three tips for succeeding in a product based business:

  1. Make sure you have enough margin (pay attention to your margin), business has to be sustainable, you have to price your product right at the beginning.  There are many unanticipated costs, you'll need to have enough money to last you.
  2. Be open to testing new channels - in the beginning i was on Shopify, then amazon, then Etsy… there’s pros and cons on being on the various platforms. The biggest benefit was being on a market with a huge platform of consumers.  Be sure not to spread yourself too thin.  Now I am comfortable with the growth in my online Shopify store.  I tested traffic from Facebook, Instagram, Google, Pinterest... test what works for your brand.
  3. Create a brand differentiation story - highlighting what makes you different is so important for standing out.  You only have a few seconds to land their attention when they land on your website or social channel.  Have a hook that will draw people in.. the fact that my product is made from gentle materials.. I put that in every part of my website, social channels.  Being clear in your brand story is really important.


Towards the end, Melita shares her key lessons learned and insights gained on her brand journey to success.  These amazing nuggets of advice are shared below:

  1. Be patient with it -  some things take time and building a brand is one of the things that take time.  There’s blood sweat and tears… be realistic and patient in building a business and a brand.  Especially with two young kids I had to take it slow… it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
  2. Mentorship - surrounding yourself with like minded individuals who’s willing to hear you out.  Always great to get an outside perspective and constructive feedback.
  3. Balance - try to maintain a balance because it can consume you.  Try to have those boundaries, making sure that you’re taking care of yourself because it’s a long mentally challenging journey so you have to take care of yourself.


Tune into the full episode for detailed insights and tips on Creating a Successful Product-Based Business with Melita.


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