A’darah broke free from her fears and depressing job that was causing her high levels of anxiety to become a serial entrepreneur. She is now the CEO of Queensview Creative Studios, founder of IAMQUEEN support group, and owner of Breaking Conference events. Her desire is to provide jobs for other creative entrepreneurs and become a catalyst for change through her music and events. Read our interview with the lovely A’darah below…
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
My desire to be creative in my own way was definitely what pushed me to “do my own thing”. I know they say you have to be a follower before you become a leader, but some of the positions that I was in, definitely didn’t allow me to be myself while following under someone else’s leadership. Depression, anxiety, and fear pushed me to follow my dreams of being creative when and however I wanted to. I mean, to make money whenever you want is a bonus!
Tell us about your business.
So my main company is called Queensview Creative Studios. We are a creative design, photography, and consulting
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
The first steps I took was to just begin creating. Once I started creating graphics for myself, my friends began asking me to create visuals for them. Then when people began asking who did their graphics, they’ve always mentioned me. So when the first person asked how much do I charge, I was clueless to how that process even worked. I began researching pricing for certain services and then the snow ball effect happened. However, it really took off when I partnered with my business partner Aaja Corinne. She really showed me the ropes to professionalism and how to get and keep clients. Word of mouth, however, was the biggest key to success. I guess it’s time to get business cards!
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
The best way I’ve created awareness about my business at first was simply using my personality and attending various networking and entrepreneurial events; which lead to a lot of word-of-mouth clientele. I would also work with clients until we’ve created exactly what they wanted, however, my terms have since changed and have become more strict. This took a lot out of me and was extremely exhausting, but it made a name for myself and my company. Now, I use purchased ads on Facebook and I make sure I send out quarterly newsletters to keep in touch with my brand-friends.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
My strongest issue is being on social media constantly. It seems like I can never get away from it. I know there are so many resources and apps to help you schedule post etc., but by being a graphic artist, sometimes I create at the spur of the moment, always pushing me to go back to social media. So what I am now learning is that I need to get my thoughts and ideas together AHEAD of time so that I can be organized and intentional when entering the social media maze. It’s really hard! I would also say hiring and delegating is my biggest challenge. I’d love to hire the best of the best, but I’ve learned that if it isn’t written and confirmed or explained, it could mean nothing or it could be hard to follow.
How did you overcome these challenges?
I haven’t overcome these challenges yet, but I feel the hope in the future. LOL!
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
Through the difficult times, I create for myself. Creating is what makes me happy, 100%. I try not to get stagnant or stay in “funks”, so I’ll find a picture to take, or a graphic to make, or I’ll just come up with another event for my company. Although all that stuff creates more work for me, it keeps me going.
How did you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
My personality and passion to create is my distinguisher. Also, my attention to detail, quality work and the follow up process are my key assets.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
The best advice I received was from my manager Kelvin. He told me I have great ideas, but I need to be more strategic about how I go about implementing them. It’s great knowing I’m doing a good job, but its even greater when you have people to tell you, you can be greater.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
I would say the slower you start, the faster you’ll grow. By that I mean, if you take your time to carefully plan your next steps, those steps will make a greater way for you.
What is your favorite business tool or resource?
My favorite resource is Photoshop; because you can create anything!
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
· Instagram @iamadarah @queensviewcreates
· Twitter @iamadarah @queensviewcreates
· Facebook www.facebook.com/daraadarah
· Facebook www.facebook.com/queensviewcreates
· Websites www.iamadarah.com | www.queensviewcreativestudios.com
· Hastags #queensviewcreates #iamadarah #brkn
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
I just read “How to be Your Own PR” on forbes.com. You can check it out by clicking here.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
My goals for this company is to totally rebrand, hire in, and start working on purchasing my first building. I have been studying more on how to be an effective leader, searching for the hottest brand trends, and saving and saving and saving!
Check out the special that A’darah is currently offering below…