Today we are continuing our leadership series bringing you an exclusive interview with a exciting young entrepreneur who is looking to revolutionize an industry. Victoria Brodsky is the Founder and CEO of DrinkLyte a beverage company that is bringing together lifestyle, health and technology to reach the masses. Check out this incredible story today!
What inspired you to start this business?
The idea for DrinkLyte was born in March 2019 when a group of my friends from college reunited. We had been “young professionals” for a few years but were still determined to go out and have fun like we used to. But being a little older, and more sensitive to alcohol, we bought Pedialyte (an electrolyte beverage designed for babies) to help us prevent a hangover the next day. I’m typically not a drinker, and this was the first time I’d ever tried using Pedialyte for a hangover, but there were a few things about this experience that led me to start thinking more about it:
- A group of successful mid-20s professionals, were asking Target employees where the baby aisle was and were sifting through diapers, and baby formula to buy a baby product that will supposedly help us recover from drinking alcohol.
- This is not a product that we were informed via marketing. My friends only knew about this “life hack” from word of mouth from other friends attributing to its effectiveness.
- After trying the product the next day, I quickly realized I had felt better than I ever felt after a night of drinking alcohol. I had tried other supposed hangover products in the past. None of the others worked, but this one did something.
Pedialyte is a very simple (yet widely under underrated) formula called an Oral Rehydration Solution or “ORS.” It’s basically a specific ratio of water, glucose to electrolytes, and it’s just as effective as an IV at curing moderate to severe dehydration (which is one of the primary factors people feel bad or “hungover”). So the way an ORS helps you after drinking is not by medicating your symptoms (masking the headaches or nausea) but instead by mitigating one of the worst things that alcohol can do to your body – dehydrate you. This means that taking an ORS after drinking alcohol will not only make you feel better the next day but is actually extremely healthy for you.
I really was drawn to the idea of a simple beverage that was scientifically proven to be effective for immediate rehydration and used as sort of a post-alcohol wellness practice. There was this opportunity to create something specifically for the 21+ market, creating a healthy product that could be sold not only where alcohol is sold, but also consumed – bars, clubs, festivals, mini bars – in addition to the liquor isle in a grocery store. So, that’s where the initial idea for DrinkLyte came from. That’s the short form, but the truth is that I’ve been into Nutrition all my life. I studied Nutrition Science at UC Berkeley, and have an obsession with CPG products that use proven formulas with sustainable and smart packaging to improve the live of people.
What inspired the name of the company?
We actually came up with the Moon and Sun idea first, because in our testing we realized 12oz of an ORS at night, 12oz in the morning would be the most effective regimen. It was very much a “function-first” idea. But we knew the Moon/Sun concept was kind of abstract for consumers, so we thought we need the word “drink” and something that alludes to electrolytes in the name of the company. So “DrinkLyte” was where we landed. MoonLyte and SunLyte just worked thereafter.
How has being an entrepreneur affected your life?
I’ve kind of been an entrepreneur more or less my whole life. I came from a single parent household with three other siblings so as early as I could, I was trying to make money. At 11 years old, I took a babysitting class and started “TLC: Tori’s Loving Care” – a babysitting service for families in the neighborhood. But I also worked restaurants throughout school, etc. I’ve worked for startups since I got out of college and have tried multiple side projects but DrinkLyte is the first physical product I’ve gone this far with on my own.
Being an entrepreneur in the “real world” is a lot of sacrifice – financially, mentally, and emotionally. It requires a lot of patience and learning to be comfortable with risk. But my personality type is such that I don’t think I’d ever be happy with a “normal” 9-5 life.
What motivates you?
I’m motivated by the passion for creating a something I really believe in. I love everything about DrinkLyte because I believe in it 110% – I think that there needs to be more products that straddle the line between fun and healthy. It’s the type of lifestyle I’ve always strived for – a balanced one, where I’m happy and living life, but also being mindful about how I’m treating my body. In today’s world, most options are one or the other – “fun” or “health.” I’m a strong believer that with creative solutions, we can have both.
How do you generate new ideas?
Generally, I get new ideas via life experiences and exposing myself to new places, people, and products. The more I learn about people’s behavior patterns and lifestyles, the more ideas I get about how to improve them.
What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
Not accomplishing what I’ve set out to accomplish. The only way I can overcome this is to consistently work towards my goals, no matter what setbacks or obstacles come my way.
What are your ideals?
Doing things the right way. I want to do things in a way where they don’t come at the expense of anyone or anything – meaning I don’t want to cut corners, I don’t want to mislead anyone who buys my product, I just want to create something that’s honest, that I’m proud of, and that helps people. However I do that throughout my life, I’m happy.
How do you define success?
It depends on the context – Financial? Spiritual? Physical?
I think that success can’t really be quantified in a vacuum, you have to look at every aspect of your life. For me, if in every aspect of my life, I am able to find peace with myself, know I’ve done the best I can, and have helped people using my unique gifts, then I’d consider that success.
Do you believe there is some sort of pattern or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur?
No, and I think that’s what makes entrepreneurship so cool, it’s very much up to you how you’d like to approach it. Sure, there are steps in the startup world you can take, but no matter what, your journey is going to be different than the next.
I think having certain qualities like leadership, grit, and the ability to problem solve are going to be more helpful in becoming a successful entrepreneur than trying to follow a formula of how to build a business.
What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
Sharing my product with others. I just want people to experience the same excitement I have for it.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Every time someone sends me an honest positive review of DrinkLyte.
What do you wish this company to accomplish within the next year?
This answer would have been a lot easier to answer before COVID19 shut down the hospitality industry, but knowing what we do know, I hope to accomplish the following in the next year:
- Local distribution of our product in at least 10 locations
- Partnerships with like-minded brands to improve brand awareness and sales
- Grow the core team of advisors and investors to ensure we have a supportive group of people helping the DrinkLyte brand
What do you wish this company will accomplish within the next five years?
I want our product to be selling in every bar, nightclub, hotel mini bar, and grocery store in the biggest cities around the US. I hope that we will be known vendors at every large event where alcohol is consumed.
For the aspiring entrepreneur reading this what advice will you give?
Self-awareness is key to being a good leader for your business. Make sure you’re in tune with what you want, what your good at, and what you need the most help with before starting your business.
What final words do you have for all of the supporters?
Try DrinkLyte at Drinklyte.co. Follow us on Instagram @drinklyte to find out about where you can find us as we grow!