SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A viral video on the social media app Tik Tok has put a small South Dakota business on a national platform.
For the love of peanut butter, Erika Mount and her husband Craig created Nerdy Nuts.
“Once you’ve had fresh peanut butter, it’s hard to go back to the store-bought, processed peanut butter and we decided to buy a refurbished old-fashioned peanut butter grinder just for ourselves and it just sat in the garage and we just constantly looked at it like there is such an opportunity locally to expand this and give people this product and so that’s kinda where it started,” Erika Mount, Co-Founder of Nerdy Nuts, said.
Their business started off slowly. Then, the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020 and the couple faced a tough decision.
“We kind of just had this moment of, do we pivot and really expand Nerdy Nuts? Or do we just say it was a fun run and it’s done for now, we’ll pick it back up when we can. And we decided no let’s pivot, let’s figure out ways we can go online and use influencer marketing and really expand on the e-commerce side of it,” Erika said.
Nerdy Nuts began in March of 2018. But it wasn’t until a year ago that an app would change a local shop to a national company.”
When the pandemic hit, the mounts turned to social media.
“And Tik Tok, when we reached out to people on Tik Tok, these were people that were newly famous and it was so fascinating because they were just really grateful that you wanted to give them something for free if that makes sense. So at the time, I feel like we got lucky because we caught on to that energy early. And it was crushing how much business we got from it,” Craig Mount said.
“We had to go to once a week launching it at 7 p.m. and we would open up our website at 7 o’clock Eastern Standard time every Sunday and in a matter of one to two minutes our entire website would completely sell out. We’d have 15, 20-thousand people waiting on our website and maybe 3-thousand jars that we could sell,” Erika said.
The peanut butter started off with pretty basic flavors, like honey-roasted and white chocolate.
“But then we started adding what I call inclusions, we started adding like Oreos, chocolate chips, and M&Ms and all these other things,” Craig Mount, Co-Founder of Nerdy Nuts, said.
Every Sunday, Nerdy Nuts adds new flavors to the mix. And typically an influencer on Tik Tok will advertise some of the products.
And now that the Mounts have started to get the hang of running a multi-million dollar company, they have big plans for the future.
“Instead of chasing that vitality again, we are really going to buckle down on customer experience, focus on growing slowly probably in like a boring way because it felt more stable and a better customer experience and it has worked out amazingly,” Craig said.
“It’s crazy but that’s really how it went. It went from this small garage company to this multi-million dollar company within 16 months,” Erika Mount said.
An unexpected and unique story, but a successful and delicious one.
Nerdy Nuts ships peanut butter all over the country.