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Sweet Addison's with Addison LaBonte feature #116 of Together Talks

"Together Talks" feature #116: Sweet Addison's presented by KLS, freight company

Some Background on Sweet Addison's

Today's edition of "Together Talks" campaign, KLS had the privilege to interview Sweet Addison's and Founder, Addison LaBonte. Sweet Addison’s has revolutionized the way we indulge. These desserts taste like your favorite childhood treats, but they are made with ingredients you know, love, and trust. Sweet Addison’s is made with the cleanest ingredients and contains absolutely nothing artificial.


Division 1 Soccer to unable to run

After a four-year stint at the University of Maine playing Soccer, Addison knew how important fitness was to her. She wanted to find a way to stay in shape after her athletic career. She had always wanted to do a marathon so she started training for a half marathon. However, she continued to have difficulty running. She described it to us as "my legs would go numb. I couldn't feel my steps, the only way I can describe it as the feeling after your foot goes to sleep." She confided she tried every type of shoe, compression sleeve, you name it, she gave it a shot. Nothing was fixing her problem. She saw a handful of doctors who ultimately told her she had Compartment Syndrome. Their only proposed solution was surgery on each leg with a recovery time of 6 months each. "I was devastated, but truly confused. I couldn't believe my only option was 12 months of no activity.", Addison shared. She felt there had to be a better option and happened to speak with her Aunt who runs marathons. She told Addison she went Gluten Free because it makes her feel better.


In July 2016, Addison went cold turkey and cut out Gluten.

4 days later, the numbness was gone!

9 months after that she finished her first marathon!!!


She was so grateful the pain was gone and she could follow her dreams, but she told us she was most proud of advocating for herself. She is living her healthiest life and simply put "It is amazing!". She explained how she hopes to challenge everyone in some capacity with how they can live better. Addison posed a simple question, "How can we live a full life if we are not feeling our best?" Very insightful and proof of her transition.


After removing gluten from her diet she began posting about her recipes on Instagram. Over the next 5 years, she built an audience where she would not only share her journey but also the recipes she was creating and consuming. At the time, Addison was working in corporate finance and she felt unfulfilled. Call it a perfect storm, but the demand from her audience and the lack of creativity at her current job was a lightbulb moment. In January 2024, Addison founded her company Sweet Addison's.


6 month runway

Before starting her company, Addison spent 6 months preparing herself and her product to launch. June 2023 is when everything clicked and she started to pursue her newest venture. She looked at cookies, specifically chocolate chip, so she set out to create the best-tasting cookie that she ever ate. Oh, and it happened to be gluten free as well. Being a clean food eater, Addison was determined to only create it with wholesome ingredients.

 

She shared how difficult baking is without traditional ingredients. Over four months she concocted different formulations. She felt she got it absolutely right on her 25th iteration. "Getting to taste an awesome cookie is great, that was the first step. But in order for this to actually be a sustainable product it had to ship across the country and not lose its consistency", Addison explained. Once she had the final recipe she brought home samples during the holidays for her family to test. Addison explained how no one in her family is gluten free and most don't actively seek out the ingredients included. She felt this would be a great litmus test for her. And the results were exactly what she expected, a rousing endorsement.


Her next challenge was to ship from her location in Texas. She sent a package to her friend in California and one to her parents in Maine. The first package she shipped was to her folks and this proved to be the first lesson in her CPG career. "I knew nothing about packaging and shipping. It turns out I shipped it without the barcode to scan. It went all the way to the post office in Maine, then they shipped it back to me in Texas. Two weeks later I got the returned package. I was embarrassed by my mistake, but it was a learning curve for myself and also our product. It was still completely intact and tasted great!"


To date it is the only box that has ever been returned, lesson learned indeed.


Addison shared that she had no idea what it took to start a food company. But being a Division 1 athlete, turned marathon runner, she relies on the motto of "you have to figure it out." She confided in us that it would have been easier to launch with a product that she was only 80% happy with and get the ball rolling, but her discipline and dedication to providing not just a product with quality ingredients, but truly striving to produce the best cookie ever made is her goal. And she equates it being the right decision based on the support and feedback she has received to date. Addison is working on her second flavor now. She admitted it was challenging her, she had just finished up recipe test #11. She is hoping to have it wrapped up by #15, but she won't settle for anything she doesn't have full belief in. It goes back to her motto when she explained her optimistic outlook, "It is less about should I or if I am capable and instead how do I figure this out?"

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Our nationwide coverage provides companies a reliable, consistent, and dependable logistics partner to handle your trucking needs.
For more information on how we can help call our office today 708-980-0920 or reach us via our email quote request here!

Brand awareness and penetration

Sweet Addison's cookies are completely allergy-friendly. They contain nothing artificial, no fillers, every ingredient can be not only pronounced but recognized. Addison stands by every ingredient and product as she has been making some version of it for the last few years and consuming it. Her competition is any brand that makes cookies, but competing in such a highly competitive industry is challenging. Corporations with huge billion-dollar brands have been around for decades and are household names that she is attempting to disrupt. Educating consumers with the definition of why her cookies are better is a challenge, but one Addison is passionate about. "Because our cookies are made with better and clean ingredients it won't spike sugar. Consumers can choose mine knowing it is even more delicious and healthier as well", she explained.


It is a grind being a solopreneur, but Addison admitted she absolutely loves it. She moved from her family home in Maine to Dallas, Texas. She eats, sleeps, breathes her company. The ability to create her own schedule is the aspect she is enjoying the most, but she also mentioned testing her creative output by not having someone watching over her. Being her own boss means she has complete control, but also all the responsibility is on her shoulders. The freedom she has now has given her a new outlook on what work truly means.


We wanted to know the meaning behind the name. She told us that she is often told she is sweet so that is part of it, but she also wanted her name to be part of the brand. Ultimately this is an extension of the audience she had created online previously, she knew she had to continue to be the face of the brand. She has told stories for years about eating fast food, being sick, to training for marathons and living her healthiest version currently. She is hoping to inspire others to find that same version for themselves and in turn become a legacy brand that revolutionizes not only the dessert industry but what it means to be sweet. She explained, "People think of sweet immediately as sugar, but that doesn't have to be true. I want to redefine what it means to be sweet. Our products will be just sweet enough because we also want customers to think of being sweet to their body and their health."


Giving back, hoping to reach more

With Addison making the change in her own life and then expanding on that to help bring change to others' lives, she is determined to make her company sustainable for years to come. Coupling her experience as a collegiate athlete with her mindset, she explained how she struggles with celebrating the wins along the way. An example was a few weeks ago she had her record sales day, but her mind was focused on something else rather than her newest accomplishment. Admittedly, she is a long-term vision type of person, being Type-A organized and disciplined she has a focus on slow and steady wins that will propel her forward. Her focus is on the foundation of her company, and celebrating things outside of numbers like the support and feedback she receives.


Getting customers to try her product is the first hurdle, but reordering is her true gauge of the success of her product. The amount of 5-star reviews, messages, and feedback from customers is what is encouraging her. Addison shared an example with us, "I am realizing that I am helping change people's lives. On my 3rd day in business, I had a customer buy them for a friend who was going through Chemo. That individual loved cookies, but couldn't consume them due to white sugar not being permitted during Chemo. The ability to provide that type of value and happiness for someone makes me realize this is so much bigger than me and the endless potential our brand can have."


Being able to serve others is what Addison is truly enjoying about all of the hard work that goes into creating a brand-new company. Addison confided that with any entrepreneur the biggest hurdle is self-doubt. She shared with us the weekend before she visited family for the holidays for her test run, that she wasn't sure anyone would buy her product. She was living with the fear of failure. Despite moving across the country to Texas, she still talks to her parents every night. She reflected on calling her Mom, prior to visiting, "You have to realize what you are doing is so brave. Most people will succumb to those fears and never take this journey, When things get tough, remember you are tougher. It will become a success because that is who you are." Addison told us while the journey has humbled her, it has been one of the most rewarding things she has ever done. She is grateful for the journey so far as it has made her mentally tougher and a greater sense of appreciation for helping others


Piece of Advice

Our conversation with Addison ended with her sharing her piece of advice:

"Never give up. My parents drilled it into my head growing up. Keep going, keep fighting, do whatever it takes. Recently I heard something so brilliant. “Businesses don’t fail, founders just quit.” Most successful people never quit. Some setbacks and obstacles could potentially break me, but I won’t give up. Those days in December crawling out of my skin, it would’ve been easier to quit. But never giving up is instrumental for success.

 

I thought the goal was to be fearless, but realized if you are fearless then you are living too comfortably. Instead, be bold and courageous. Have fear but tackle it. What would your life look like if the fear didn’t hold you back?"


Visit her website and place an order using the coupon code below!

Welcome10 ---> 10% off


Interested in being featured with "Together Talks"?
KLS is booking our upcoming schedule now!
Contact us as we would love to learn your story and share it amongst our audience.
Weekly we provide 2 companies our platform to expand their reach courtesy of our campaign. Let's collaborate!!!
In Closing

KLS wants to thank Addison LaBonte, Founder, of Sweet Addison's for today's "Together Talks" feature. Follow along for their journey with their social handles below!


Together Talks with Sweet Addison's feature #116 - presented by KLS, Klimson Logistics Solutions, freight company

Business Resources!

Look at our new page HERE designed to provide excellent opportunities that may be of interest to you. These are a compilation from our chats within our "Together Talks". If you have any suggestions please let us know as we would love to provide more valuable insight to our community!

Klimson Logistics Solutions - Together Talks with Sweet Addison's feature #116

*Klimson Logistics Solutions is an Industry Leading Customer Service 3PL. Our focus and commitment to our clients has us striving to be the BEST customer service 3PL for LTL, FTL, Reefer, and Drayage in the country. KLS, freight company, is a 3PL providing nationwide logistics solutions. KLS shipping services include: LTL freight, FTL freight, Reefer LTL freight, Reefer FTL freight, and Drayage. Klimson Logistics Solutions thanks you for viewing our marketing campaign, "Together Talks". If you have any interest in being featured or questions regarding your freight operations please contact us today!


Why KLS?

Our precise and reliable effort.

We handle every shipment with the exact same process. It does not matter if you move one shipment a year or ten per day, you will receive the same level of customer service from us. When we started this company, we had one goal in mind, treat every shipment like it was our own. With our vast knowledge of the industry, we understood what a customer would want from a communication standpoint. We applied that process to be the standard here at KLS. Our reliability and being able to depend on our consistency is why we have such long-standing relationships with our clients.


Our Process?

Every shipment in our industry starts with a quote. We are firm believers that time is money, thus we strive to have quotes back in a 5-10 minute reply time for LTL and FTL, any FCL quotes are at the mercy of the carriers getting back to us. For LTL we have the flexibility to quote both off of NMFC and also Density depending on the carrier. Utilizing our services, you’re allowing us to use our expertise to class your freight accordingly to ensure we are providing the best rate we possibly can.

Once a quote has been submitted and a client chooses to proceed with KLS handling the arrangement of the shipment our full process begins. We create the BOL that will be used for the shipment. If it is a new location for our system, we will obtain all the important/special details (reference numbers, contact details, shipping hours, closed for lunch, dock/doors, etc.). We meticulously build every detail into our software for all future shipments involving that location. After we have both locations built and necessary reference numbers have been applied we will tender the shipment to the carrier. We use this method because it provides us a real time pickup number from the carrier to obtain updates prior to pickup. Our staff will either email the BOL directly to you or to the shipper (at your request) the minute after the tender has been accepted by the carrier. LTL carriers require a 2 hour window prior to close time in order to schedule it for a same-day pickup attempt.

The following morning you’ll receive an email from us. It will either provide the reason the pickup was missed (driver’s trailer filled up, driver missed the close time, truck broke down, shipper said no freight, etc.) or if the pickup was successful you will receive the PRO (tracking) number from us, along with the eta for delivery. Our staff will track it throughout the duration of transit and advise if anything happens that will alter the estimated delivery date. The day the shipment delivers we will email you with confirmation and the POD (Proof of Delivery), should you require it.

Your shipment has been quoted, scheduled, picked up, and delivered. The next step is waiting for the carrier to invoice us and make sure the rate matches up. If it does, we close out the invoice from the carrier in our system and automatically your invoice is created and sent to the requested party at your company. In the event the carrier has an additional charge on their invoice “Variance”, we will never send you an invoice with an additional charge without first identifying you of the charge.

Let us repeat, NEVER WILL WE JUST BILL OUT AN EXTRA CHARGE WITHOUT YOU BEING NOTIFIED.

You are our customer, we represent you. Should the carrier provide an extra charge on an invoice, “Lift gate, additional weight, reclass, detention, etc.) We notify you of the charge via email first. Second, within that email we identify what is required should you choose to dispute the charge. Again our goal is to honor your request, if you want to dispute, we will dispute. During a dispute we will provide you updates every step along the way. Once a dispute is closed out, whether it is approved or rejected, then we will invoice you as the invoice has been resolved.

For reference, our company only had 6.2% of all shipments go to dispute in 2022 and we successfully won 91% of those disputes on behalf of our customers.

This is our process for every single shipment you move with us. We don’t cut corners, we don’t hide from difficult situations. We believe in being available, honest, and transparent. We don’t ever want to tell you that a shipment is lost, damaged, misrouted, but it is our duty to notify you the second we find out something has gone wrong. We hate to present bad news, but it is part of the job. What you can guarantee is that we will work a shipment all the way through and turn over every stone until we get a resolution for our clients.


Services offered?

Our core business is LTL and FTL. Within these options we have options for both dry and refrigerated/frozen. We also offer FCL/Drayage options. Our company as a 3PL has nationwide options and services clients across the US.


Let’s breakdown our services more in-depth

LTL: Standard and Guaranteed CFS (Imports & Exports) Tradeshows Hazmat Anything that is on a pallet can be moved LTL. Typically LTL is up to 10 pallets, but the sweet spot for a carrier is 6-8 pallets at most for an individual shipment. LTL quotes are good between 5-30 days depending on the carrier. LTL can be quoted either via NMFC or density to determine the class (we do this for you).

Volume: Anything over 10-12’ of space in the truck is the technical rule for a volume shipment. When we run a quote for you we will determine if it qualifies for volume and provide you a rate if available. Volume moves allow you to get a reduced rate for larger shipments. The caveat to volume shipments it the quotes are only valid for 3-7 days and they move on capacity between terminals. If a terminal is backed up they will move their LTL freight first before the volume freight, which can lead to longer transit times for volume moves.

FTL/Dedicated/Expedited: 53’ Dry and Reefer 26’ Box trucks with lift gate Sprinter Van The main difference for FTL vs LTL is space and transit time. For standard pallets you can fit either 26 or 30 pallets in a 53’ dry van. The other main difference is transit time, for FTL each day counts in the transit time, whereas LTL does not count the day of pickup, weekends, or holidays in their transit time.

Reefer/Frozen: LTL and FTL We specialize working in the CPG space with food manufacturers. We regularly deliver to the following locations: Kehe UNFI Core Mark DPI Wegmans Cugini H.T. Hackney Netrition HEB ALDI Chambers and Owens EBY Brown Nassau Candy Harris Teeter Wakefern NU INC Long Distribution

What makes KLS different?

There are thousands of freight brokers and 3PL in our industry. Barrier to entry is rather easy and agents or owners will often hire sales people without any intention of properly training them. It results in high turnover for many freight companies and a forgettable experience for the client. We choose to operate differently through our consistency. We truly care about doing right by our clients and prospects too. While we would love to help provide our services to every company we speak with, that just isn’t realistic. We won’t always be the right fit for every company that moves freight and that is ok. Our authenticity as a shipping company sets us apart from the competition and that is backed up by our testimonials. We also run a marketing campaign bi-weekly called “Together Talks”. We interview, highlight, and promote two businesses every week. Our goal is to grow our network, make new connections, and learn something new with each collaboration. Check it out on our website and if you’re interested in being featured reach out.

Our company also runs a year long charity promotion. Book your first shipment through KLS and we donate to the charity of your choice in your name. Our way of thanking you for giving us an opportunity to show you the KLS way and what makes us one of a kind. This entire package is what we offer to every prospect and every client. Our goal is to help provide answers that customers may have when it comes to shipping. We want to always be available as a resource and will always offer a lending hand whenever we can.

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