What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
A few years ago I wanted to start something that I enjoyed. I wasn’t sure where to start and I realized that I wasn’t truly motivated to try. I bounced around looking for a job that satisfied me for a couple of years. I ended up landing a creative job in Marketing; it refueled a passion inside of me. Now I am more determined than ever to expand my business and help others bring their visions to life.
Tell us about your business.
Christina Elmen | Brand Consultant is a business that helps individuals and brands create their image and presence. I help others create their online confidence while helping them expand and connect with others. I specialize in Web Design, Social Media Management, Branding, and Digital Marketing. On top of helping others grow, I am also expanding myself and my digital presence by working with brands and promoting them on my blog and my social media pages.
Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?
Currently I am doing free consultations for web design and branding.
Where is your business based?
My business is based in Burbank, CA.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
The first few steps that I took were, focusing on what I really wanted to accomplish. I made a list of what I wanted to do and what my goals were. After I made the list I started to dive into what I needed to do to make it happen. I reached out to a few friends and started to build my client list. At the same time, I built my website, created the look that I wanted, and then started to rebrand my social media presence.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
The most effective way to growing my business has been talking to people. I love what I do and I think that others can tell that I am genuinely there to help them. When I make that impression on others whether they are friends or new acquaintances, they tend to tell others about me. I have been able to get referrals that way. Word of mouth is a great way to build your business, whether it is in person or on social media.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
I think that the biggest challenge has been financial and my self-confidence.
How did you overcome these challenges?
I want to grow and be taken seriously as a professional. I had to focus on my personal development, I was able to build my confidence and prove to myself that I am just as good as everyone else. While focusing I built a confidence that has been able to push me harder than before. I have been able to talk to more people and really show up instead of hiding in a corner or behind a computer.
On the financial side, I have been pushing so hard. I work a full time job, I babysit, housesit, and work my new clients budgets. I never want to push someone away because they are also new. I have noticed if I work with clients and help them, they will provide me with the respect back. I am investing in my future, focusing on the outcome rather than the exact moment that I am in.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
I keep motivated by reading books or blogs by other Female Entrepreneurs, I listen to personal development, and I talk to my close friends. Sometimes it gets tough, but when you surround yourself with others that are just as motivated, no one will let you fall.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
Everyone is different, we might have similar titles or skills, but no two people are alike. I always make sure to be myself and be genuine. People love to work with me because of my qualities; I am friendly, honest, and hard working. I will always make sure to be who I really am with everyone.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
I went to a networking event a few weeks ago and a couple phrases stood out to me.
- The fortune is in the follow up.
- Behind effort is success, behind success is passion and behind passion is your courage to try.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
The advice that I always give others is to network, volunteer, and be you. All three of those will help you tremendously. Lastly, never give up. Remember sometimes it takes 10 years to be an “overnight success”.
What are your favorite business tools/resources and why?
My favorite business tool is my iPhone. I have everything on there, everything that I use for myself or my clients I am able to have in an app so I can track everything. I also love Google, Google analytics, Google AdWords, etc. I love seeing the effort pay off by watching the numbers increase. Also, the analytics page on Instagram business is pretty awesome. Those numbers and stats can really motivate you to stay on track.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
I recently started reading “Girl Code” by Cara from “The Champagne Diet”. I love it! I didn’t want to put it down.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
Currently, I am learning how to create ads with Google and Bing, as well as working on corporate sponsorships. I am growing steadily, but I would love to expand in 2018.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
The next few months I am focused on promoting my brand and myself. I am creating an image while creating for my clients. I know that there will come a time where the focus is only on my clients so now is the time to work on myself while promoting my work. I am going to continue to focus, networking, and educate myself so that when the time comes I am 110% ready to dive in full force.
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