We had the good fortune of connecting with Lynna Choi and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lynna, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
One of the #1 business questions I get asked is – how did you grow your business so quickly?
Starting a business during the pandemic and in a generation of such huge social media presence, I knew I had to be smart with my marketing. During the first 6 months of running Woofboard, I posted on Instagram every. single. day – sometimes even more than once a day! Because I was dedicating my time to Woofboard full-time, I was able to spend days on end creating content, doing photoshoots, being quick to respond on social media, staying up to date with trends, and post so often.
With social media & growth, it’s not just about posting, but it’s about engaging with your audience and building relationships. By engaging with your audience, you start to build relationships and trust in your brand. I believe building trust is one of the most important aspects of growing a business. By building this trust, I’ve been able to build an amazing community of loyal customers, friends, and fellow small business owners.
By no means is social media marketing EASY. I am a millennial constantly trying to keep up with Gen Z’s trends. Since I put most of my focus into Instagram last year, I made it a goal this year to focus on TikTok more. I’ve even hit a couple “viral” videos that turned out AMAZING for sales! For anyone that’s scared of social media, you eventually get over the whole fear of looking silly to the world. If you don’t go out and try it, you’ll never know what incredible outcomes it could result in!
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I was unemployed during the pandemic and struggling to figure out what I wanted to do next with my life. I always dreamed of a career that included my dog, Puck. When I started to see barkuterie pop up on social media, I thought it was such a fun & creative way to celebrate our pups!
When I was developing the idea of creating Woofboard, I knew I wanted to include 2 missions that I was extremely passionate about – ingredients & community.
I wanted to show fellow dog parents that there are so many healthy & delicious options for their pets! One of the main missions of Woofboard is to provide clean & healthy treats for my pupstomers. Why? My dog, Puck, went through a period of suffering from hives & blisters due to allergies. After trying to treat them with ointments and prescribed shampoos, I ended up ordering an allergy panel for Puck. He had a 3 page list of things he was allergic to, but oddly enough, nothing that was in his regular diet. That’s when I made the decision to switch his diet to an all natural one. I switched his kibble to a cooked meal subscription plan (Farmer’s Dog) and started to pay attention to the ingredients listed on treats. I only purchased treats with ingredients that I could easily read & understand. Puck’s allergies went away almost instantly! This experience has played an enormous role in how I source treats for my barkuterie boards. I promise my pupstomers that all treats sourced are all natural, preservative-free, & contain minimal ingredients.
Right off the bat, I knew I was not interested in making treats myself, so I turned to the small business community. With the hit of the neverending pandemic, my passion to support small businesses only continued to grow and Woofboard was the perfect outlet for it. I made it a mission to make sure that not only were the treats I sourced clean, but that they were sourced from fellow small businesses like myself. The community has been so welcoming, supportive, and innovative! My hope is to introduce my pupstomers to treat businesses that they haven’t heard of and support them!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Although I’m a Bay Area native, I absolutely LOVE visiting SoCal! I even have a spreadsheet of places to see & eat for each major city (yes, I’m one of THOSE people).
No LA trip is complete without spending an entire day stuffing my face with food! A MUST for any LA trip is one of my favorite restaurants – Bongchu. They pretty much only have one dish, but that’s how you know they’re so confident in that one dish. It’s a braised chicken dish covered in melted ooey, gooey cheese on top of a bed of sweet potato noodles. They are my favorite noodles EVER and packed with so much flavor! Make sure you get the scorched rice too! Another Koreatown highlight of mine is Mister Bossam. My go-to order is their green onion bossam and grilled cheese pork ribs. I am literally drooling as I type this. And you cannot say you’ve been to Koreatown without getting some KBBQ. My favorite spot is Kang Ho Dong Baek Jeong. The meat combos are so delicious – and if it’s not Bongchu, you can most definitely catch me here for a meal. If you have room after all of that, make sure you get some sweet dessert from Cafe Bora.
If you’re in the DTLA area, you can spend an entire day or two exploring the fun neighborhood & of course, eating more food! One of my favorite activities is strolling through Santee Alley and going on a shopping spree! If you’re into photography, the Walt Disney Concert Hall has some beautiful architecture and all the right vibes. If you’re in town on a Sunday, you must check out Smorgasburg. It is an outdoor food market with LA’s yummiest food trucks & vendors! There’s always such an amazing variety of food, drinks, desserts, and more! Plus, it’s located at Row DTLA which has some beautiful murals to take more photos of!
Little Tokyo is also a fun way to spend the day immersed in culture! You can get lost in all the cute shops & then enjoy a hearty Japanese meal at Marugame Monzo where they have creamiest uni sea urchin cream udon!
Lastly, one of my favorite things to do is drive down Melrose Blvd! There are so many fun murals, shops, and cafes that you can stop by! Park your car in one of the side neighborhoods and just enjoy strolling down the famous street!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Woofboard wouldn’t be where it is today without the help of my friend, Maleah. She was the first person I told about the idea for Woofboard. I was actually first introduced to healthy, single-ingredient treat businesses by her – which catapulted my obsession of discovering more dog treat small businesses! She sacrifices her weekends with me at almost EVERY SINGLE pop-up event, pitches ideas, gives critical feedback, offers photoshoots using her own dog, Mako, and just overall is one of my top supporters. Woofboard truly would not be where it is without her help & support, so thank you so much. I love you <3