GutPersonal is ONE: Interview with CEO and Founder Bridgitte Mallinson
GutPersonal is celebrating its ONE-YEAR birthday! As a personalized gut health supplement company, founder Bridgitte Mallinson launched GutPersonal last year on November 11with the intention of helping one million women heal their gut, find confidence in their body, and feel AMAZING.
To celebrate, Bridgitte shares with COO Lindsay Maynard how she healed her own gut, how that inspired her to launch GutPersonal, and what's next for this growing brand — that's already helped over 2,300 people.
How does it feel a year after launching GutPersonal?
Bridgitte Mallinson: It feels so surreal. I never in a million years thought I would do it this quickly. I always had this goal and this vision of starting a supplement company and doing it so much differently than so many supplement companies out there. But I didn't know at a year we would have helped over 2,300 women and their families. I didn't know that I would have a badass team of four full-time, incredible women. I didn't know that we’d be impacting so many lives already. And it's really showing me that I can do whatever I desire, and it's showing me that we can make a big impact in this world.
Let’s think back a year ago when you were building the company. What went into that process?
A year ago before launching GutPersonal, I wanted to launch it, but I didn't know how. And so what was really important was…I want to get these products out to women as fast as I can. So I hired a marketing agency, which was awesome, because then I could get gut health quiz created. I already had all of the products that I wanted to launch with and their names and the formulations. That was the easy part.
The hard part for me, as a functional medicine dietitian, was — how do I get a website up? And all of these things that I hadn't done with a supplement company. So those were my barriers and my blocks. But we got GutPersonal up and running in two and a half months.
Tell us about your story. You're a functional medicine dietitian, but why supplements?
My story goes back all the way back to my childhood. I was always a constipated kid. I was getting sick all the time. I was put on so many antibiotics, and as I got older, I was put on different medications, like ADHD medication. I was then put on thyroid medication and migraine medication — all of these different medications I was on, and I was seeing all these different doctors, but I never felt amazing. I was always like, okay, this doesn't make sense. I'm in school to be a dietitian, and they teach us that food is medicine. But I was on all of these different medications, and I still didn't feel amazing.
I had gained so much weight, and I felt so tired all the time, and I was having all of these migraines, and this is all when I was in school to be a dietitian. And so then I found functional medicine, and I did a stool test on myself while I was still in school. It told me that I had so much bad bacteria in my gut, and that my good bacteria was low. I had a gluten sensitivity and was then prescribed personalized supplements.
And my entire life changed. I got off all of the different medications. I finally felt amazing in my body. I felt empowered because it wasn't just medications that were like a bandaid to my symptoms. It was actually me healing from the root cause, which was my gut was a freaking mess. So when I healed with personalized supplements, I then went on to coach as a functional medicine dietitian.
And then how GutPersonal evolved out of that was I was helping hundreds of women as a functional medicine dietitian, but I wanted to help millions. And so I asked myself, what can I be doing to help millions of women? How can I grow this impact even more? And that's when I came up with the idea of this quiz, because I knew I could ask a couple questions of people symptoms and figure out what was their root cause that was causing their symptoms and then heal them from that.
There are so many supplement companies out there right now. What makes GutPersonal truly different?
When I was seeing clients one on one, they would come to me and they would say, “I tried supplements or I tried probiotics, and I felt worse.” And to me, as a functional medicine dietician, I was like, yeah, because you took the wrong probiotic or you took the wrong supplement. And so I wanted to be able to guide women more of taking their symptoms and matching them with the exact supplements that they needed at their certain stage of gut health.
So that's when I came up with a quiz — this is how it's going to match them to what supplements they need. When you go on Amazon, you go into a holistic supplement center or GNC, and you see all of these supplements, what was really important to me as a practitioner is I was using the highest quality with my clients and my patients, but those weren't available on the shelves or on Amazon.
We do third-party testing on all of our supplements. We use the highest quality and, yes, to some people they're going to be more expensive. But what we honor, what we think is so important is, if you're going to put something in your body, you better damn well make sure it is what it says it is — it doesn’t have heavy metals or things that cause poor health in them. So highest quality is so important to us, and that's what I want to make sure I give people.
What would you tell someone who's tried everything and is frustrated with their gut issues right now?
One, I’ve been there and I understand — my whole team has been there at some point. We understand what you're going through. And so this is an important mindset shift for you. If this is you — one, know that you deserve to feel amazing.
Two, the answers are out there for you. And so when you use this ultra personalized approach, whether you work with us and take our quiz or another option…doing poop testing through us, there is a solution out there for you. What you've tried before hasn't worked. So release that, release the past, and move into the future with an optimistic mind. That’s going to really help.
We are a small team of four full-time women who are working in marketing and operations and our clinical side. What is that like, knowing you have a dedicated team now?
I am so obsessed with having a badass team of women. Like, literally, you are amazing. I'm saying you because I'm literally talking to our COO, Lindsay [conducting the interview]. I was thinking today, I am so proud of us. We have this big vision and this big mission and we are working really hard every single day to get this out to more women. So I'm just obsessed with having such a badass team and I know we're going to keep growing and that feels really cool.
On that note, we also have investors! What is that like to have these amazing entrepreneurs behind you, helping you financially, but also just supporting you in all of this growth?
It honestly feels so cool to have investors. The investors believe in our mission. They believe in our vision. And what's really important to me is not only health but also wealth for women. So, you know, I think it's so important with us as women growing our health legacy and also showing that we can be bringing home the bacon.
When I started this company, I knew that I wanted women behind it and some really incredible men, too. But us women who, when we go to sell this company, they're winning too. And so with people who believe in us, our investors in the beginning, it's just a really cool win for women.
Something that we've been doing more is events. Why is it so important for you to connect with people in person and talk to them about what we do for them?
We as a team are loving in person events! Like, I am so obsessed, not only myself, but literally our whole team — we love the connection in person to be able to talk to someone and say, "Hey, I hear you, I care about you, and here are the supplements you need to heal."
And then, after those in-person events, not only do we feel a deeper connection virtually to our customers, but we're also hearing from them of how the supplements that we recommended to them at an in-person event are completely changing their lives. So I think especially after the pandemic — in-person connection, giving hugs, feels so good for me, but I know it feels so good for our team, too.
What’s next for GutPersonal — and you as an entrepreneur?
What’s next for GutPersonal is we are just going to freaking crush in-person events. If you want to meet us, if you're hosting an in-person event, we want to be there — and that's really exciting for us. We're going to start hosting our own pop ups and activations in Boston, Denver, and Phoenix. We’re going to be hosting our own events. So get involved in our community. Our community is just so centered around empowerment and health and just all incredible things for women. So it's an exciting time.
And then what's coming up for me personally is, as a woman, I want to show other female entrepreneurs that you can be a badass entrepreneur and you can be a great friend and you can be an incredible wife. And, in the future, an incredible mom. You can do it all AND have fun. Fun is so important to me. It's a core value of mine. It's something that we try to infuse in our team. I want to show women that you can do it and that you can have it all.
What would you say to everyone who's been a part of the GutPersonal journey? The investors, the team, the customers?
This is just so incredible. All of these people who have backed us, who have believed in my vision, who have believed in me… I’ve never done this before. And a year later, we've helped thousands of people. It's so amazing to be here right now to be celebrating with my beautiful team, and I'm just so lucky to be celebrating with our investors, to be celebrating with my family, and it's just so amazing.
So if we can do this in one year, imagine what we're going to be doing in five years. And I hope whoever is listening to this feels how much we care about you, whether you're a customer, investor, affiliate…that we care about how you feel and about you as a person. We will never lose that as a company — our mission to help thousands and even millions. So just watch out.