KONFESSION: A NEW TWIST TO THE CANDLE MARKET

A NEW TWIST TO THE CANDLE MARKET logo

Konfession is the new face to the candle market and we are coming in hot! Our eCommerce business is located in Kitchener, Ontario and we ship out all over Canada and the US. We sell handcrafted candles that have a hidden confession inside from others who have submitted online.  People from all over North America can write in and submit their secrets. Konfession offers two different methods for how you can submit. You can either write to our confidential forum or you can direct message our Instagram page and include your social media handles. If you attach your handles you have the ability to connect with others around Canada and the United States. 

O U R S T O R Y

The owner of Konfession is me,  Lindsay Schoneveld. I am a recent graduate from Conestoga College  (class of 2020). I studied Visual Merchandising with the idea of one day running my own business. As my final school year was wrapping up, the COVID-19 pandemic hit. I  spent months trying to find a job in my field of design. After many, many, many failed attempts at landing a job that’s when reality hit me. I had a lot of time in my hands due to lockdown and all the resources I would need were at my fingertips.

I spent my time in isolation wisely and created an inclusive brand. I was adamant about creating a safe place for people on social media. A place where everyone is accepted regardless of your past, present and future. I  combined my passion for art, interior design, business, and social media to combine the brand known as Konfession. 

The pandemic had many disadvantages, to say the least. One of the many things that stood out to me, is how important our mental health is. Globally there is an increase in anxiety, depression, and substance abuse due to isolation and job loss. According to a Kff report, there was a concerning increase in data from adults suffering mental health symptoms. 

Source: Kff.Org (The implications of COVID-19 for Mental Health and Substance Use). February 10th, 2021.

I knew that I needed to provide a  service far beyond the candle industry. Konfession is a reflection of all of us. It is a place of empowerment and raising awareness on topics that are sometimes hard to talk about. It is also a fun uplifting community where almost nothing is off-limits. From naughty embarrassing stories to more serious topics,  always expect the unexpected with us! 

I was motivated by my own personal struggles.

As most of us do, I spent endless hours comparing myself to others on social media.  After a decade of doing so, I came to the conclusion that everything online is a false narrative. What people post on social media is not reality. All we see are the end results of people’s “success”. I say  “success” because what really is success? It’s different for everyone. What we fail to do on social media is show all the real and raw moments in between the successful posts. The breakdowns and hardships are what build us and make us the people we are today. Why is everyone so fixated on the final product and not the actual journey to get there? Konfession focuses on the moments that make us who we are. The good, the bad, and the ugly secrets that we keep off social media. 

Source: Konfession, Hush candle (2021). 

I created this brand because I wanted to create something inclusive where people have a place to confide in. A place where people can vent and share their truths. An uplifting community where (almost nothing) is off-limits. I guess you could say that this brand is a little personal to me because I myself needed this outlet when I was younger. I was in need of a place that made me feel safe and for someone to tell me that being different is what actually makes us so much alike. 

C H A L L E N G E S

The candle industry is growing by the day. View Research, the North American candle market is sitting at a value of USD 533.5 million and is reported to grow 3.3% in the next 7 years. The global market is projected to reach USD 4.22 billion by the end of 2024. That being said the biggest challenge the candle market faces right now is over-saturation. My response to that is just because something has been done thousands of times before, does not mean you should pass on the opportunity. Find your niche, make your brand unique and offer something your competitors don’t. Competition is healthy. Competition creates growth and change.  Konfession is exactly that. I have found a gap in the market and I am making my way through with a  loud bang! 

The good thing about an over-saturated market is that you know there is a demand for it. Everyone loves candles. According to Candles.org, approximately one out of five women says they use candles to decorate their homes. Nine out of ten women say they use candles to make a room feel more comfortable and inviting. Both men and women claim that a candle is one of the most appreciated gifts and you can never have too many.  

Another big challenge the candle industry faces are huge household names such a Yankee candle and Bath and Body dominating the field. Small businesses are trying to compete with million-dollar companies and they are at a little disadvantage. However day by day, more and more people are deciding to buy and support small businesses. The public is starting to realize that there is more value in supporting small. There are many benefits of supporting small businesses.  

Community: The money that you put into a small business will most likely go back into a community where the money will help others.  

Customer service: Small businesses are more likely to give you the best customer service and go above and beyond your expectations.  

Customize: When working with a small business you’re working with an artist who wants to please you. That being said you may have more options when it comes to customization. 

Being in a market with high saturation there is a sigh of relief in knowing that there is opportunity. The opportunity will come when you stand out from your competition. A saturated market is not the end of the world. It simply means you need to be innovative and different. You need to grab the attention and trust of

your target customers. A really important way to build loyalty is by providing a valuable experience!  So… find a niche, create an innovative idea and deliver an outstanding experience. 

A D V I C E

Some advice I have for others for starting a business is…  NEVER chase after the money.  Find your passion, talent, or hobby and make a living off of that. If you do it well the money will follow. The best feeling in the world is waking up every day and being able to turn a profit off of what you love to do. Another huge piece of advice is to not give up. I know that sounds like the obvious, but 20% of businesses fail within the first year. Even worse 60% of businesses fail within their first three years.

So word of advice, technically the statistics are already against you. So… don’t be that statistic. The worst days happen, and it can be really depressing.  Sometimes you feel like you aren’t doing it right. I get it, but you have to get back up and keep going.  Another tip I have is to use the internet to your advantage. EVERYTHING and I means everything you need to know is online. Need some marketing tips? Look it up. Need any ideas for social media posts?  Look it up. Branding aesthetics? Look it up. SEO help? Look it up. Be your biggest advocate! If you don’t know where to start. Just start, write it down, build a vision board and literally watch your idea come to life! 

I am so proud of the brand I have built thus far. I can’t wait to see what happens in this next year. I  plan on building Konfession past the candle market. I want this to really become a community-based brand. I will be branching out more into home decor, accessories, and possibly apparel. I plan on expanding my social media platform and one day launching a podcast where we raise awareness on tough subjects and help people become the best versions of themselves. My vision is to create a  world without judgment. Konfession is a safe place, and your secret is always safe with me. 

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