What you’ll learn in this interview:
- The girl behind Heart and the Hustle and how her business can seriously help yours.
- Some good advice when starting your business, no matter what you do for a profession.
- This entrepreneurs favorite tools she uses to run her business.
- Her advice on having a positive mindset and what it can do for your business and your life.
- Her simple outlook on the recipe to success.
- Her health and fitness routines to stay feeling her best.
How This Brand Designer Runs Her Small Business Behind The Scenes
1. What do you do? Who do you help?
I am the founder of Heart and the Hustle. At Heart and the Hustle, we help small business owners, the move makers and dream chasers, build strong brand identities and a powerful online presence.
There’s no two ways about it – Your brand is your business’s most valuable asset, and it needs to be mighty. Through graphic design, web design and web development, we set businesses up for success so they can start killing it online and growing their business.
We believe that building your brand must be a well thought out journey, and we take all our clients through a detailed process to ensure their visions come to life, ensuring they are fully set up for success to grow their business for years to come.
No, we’re not in the business of making beautiful things for the sake of just making things beautiful; we ensure the brands and websites we build make an impact, tell a story and are UX (user experience) optimized and that the business owner behind the brand is well set up to grow their empire.
2. List your favorite business tools.
- Planoly – In the era of ensuring your grid-game is as strong as ever, I love Planoly to organize and schedule social feeds in advance. I also love Planoly because they send out really great, resourceful emails to their community, that people can actually learn and benefit from (cough, unlike some others)!
- Mailchimp – I love the ease of use of this platform and the fact that it’s free if you have less than 2000 subscribers. The drag and drop features and the live support they offer are excellent as well! I oftentimes set up Email Marketing Campaigns for my clients and I love to automate these with Mailchimp so my clients don’t even have to lift a finger. I especially love their new feature of automated email sequences.
- ConvertKit – Definitely a lot more advanced than Mailchimp. I use Convertkit for clients who want to take their email marketing game to a whole new level. Convertkit offers more advanced emailing list functionalities such as more organized and categorized subscriber lists and much smarter automated funnels. Yay for platforms like this that make over lives so much EASIER!
- Asana – There’s not a day that goes by that I am not working in Asana. Given that I oversee and manage multiple different design or web build projects, Asana has been an incredible, free platform, that I can collaborate with my clients on each project. In Asana, you can assign tasks and due dates to those associated with the project, map out project phases and easily track the progress of any project of any size. Asana also has an incredible mobile app so I can comment and manage these projects while on the go.
- Adobe AI – Another staple in my life. I am in this program every day and simply could not run my business without Adobe. This is where I am able to get creative and design all of my custom logos and branding collateral for my clients.
- Unsplash – Free for commercial use images, that aren’t tacky and staged? SIGN ME UP! I love Unsplash, and find myself on this platform almost on the daily! This platform definitely helps when you don’t always have the right photography for any creative project.
- Dubsado – Dubsado is a gamechanger for my business. I use Dubsado for invoicing, lead tracking, payment tracking, automations, client questionnaires and mapping out automated workflows. It takes a bit of getting used to, but it can serve as a virtual assistant working for you behind the scenes (yes please!). I do think it can step up on the accounting game, however.
- Square – I’ve always used Square for my payment processing. I love the simplicity of it, the reporting and ease of use.
3. What is a good course, website or book you would recommend and why?
- Goal Digger Podcast by Jenna Kutcher – Jenna gets real on all things business, lifestyle, social media. She’s truly authentic to herself and has built an empire. We can all learn a lot from Jenna.
- RISE Podcast by Rachel Hollis – She’s authentic, sincere and real and an author of some incredible books. Rachel has so much guidance to offer and she’s insanely motivational. Listen to her!
- Work Party with Jaclyn Johnson – Jaclyn started from the bottom just like many of us, I love her stories, her interviews of other successful entrepreneurs and her humour.
- The Deeply Graphic Design Cast – I listen to this podcast to gain more knowledge of my industry. Lead by 3 design experts who talk all things design from strategy, client experiences to legal and advice, I just love this podcast.
- Pinterest – Pinterest is equivalent to my Google search bar. I spend SO much time on here, growing my community, sourcing incredible blog posts and getting inspired for everything business and lifestyle related.
- Creative Market – SO many great resources for designers, I am always jumping into Creative Market for inspiration and online shopping.
- Facebook – This may seem like a given, but I’m talking more specifically the Facebook Communities. There are SO many incredible communities out there that focus on your specific niche, you’d be surprised. Request access into them, and you’ll be exposed to a whole new directory of resources and support from a like-minded community. I get SO many resources and tips and have built so many great networks from the Facebook communities I am involved in.
- Wish I was more of a reader, but to be honest, I get distracted super easily and have a hard time finishing a book! I am more of a podcast listener (so I can multi-task while learning 😉 and have recommended a few of my favorite channels above!
4. What is the best piece of advice you have received?
- Your life is as good as your mindset
Our mindset can literally control everything we do in life and how well we do it. We literally can achieve ANYTHING we set our heart out to do, and it’s all about having the right mindset. Positive thoughts create positive action, so always believe you can.. and then, simply put.. you really can (the recipe is simple, really).
- If you can dream it, you can do it.
Sounds a bit cliché, but again, a simple recipe, that withholds SO much honesty and meaning. We only live one life, and who knows what tomorrow will bring, or if it will even exist… So chase those dreams, live the life you’ve always imagined, surround yourself with those most important to you and bring out the best in you…and do this NOW.
- Define your ideal client early on in your business.
The one thing that I’ve been hearing constantly, in so many business events/talks, is the importance of honing down on your niche and defining your ideal client in the early stages of business planning. Let’s face it, there’s a LOT of competition out there, and within this socially connected world with access to such a wide range of global businesses, ensuring you stand out in saturated markets so important. Defining your niche and focusing on that one market can really help do this.
5. What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
- Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.
As an entrepreneur, you are going to constantly have up’s and down’s, but that’s all part of the process, and to be honest, having that variety is the BEST way to learn, to help you grow even stronger.
- Good things take time.
Especially for starting entrepreneurs who think they may be an overnight success. Businesses take time to build up and a whole lot of hustlin’. You will experience many different feelings, but it’s all a part of the process. Trust the process and give it all you’ve got!
6. What is your beauty and/or fitness routine?
- Drink water – Simple enough, right? I strongly believe in the power of staying HYDRATED. Proper hydration keeps skin dense, elastic and moisturized from within. It also keeps things flowing nicely within the body (also to your brain!) and is one of the most important energy sources for our body!
- Try and use raw, organic products for your skin – I’ve learned a lot about the importance of this over the years, and have been totally inspired (and educated) by the Youtube vlogger @holistichabits. I fell in love with a product line she recommended called Living Libations and now try and use essential oils on my skin such as Seabuckthorn, Jojoba & Frankincense (to name a few) as often as I can. You will totally notice results over time, much quicker than other expensive products, with who knows what’s in them.
- Live a balanced lifestyle. When you do this, you are happier and have reduced stress. In turn, I truly believe you’ll begin to shine from the inside out. Take that vacation, switch up your job if it’s consuming too much of your time, take on that hobby you’ve been dreaming of, and you’ll begin to feel and look more beautiful because you will be happier with yourself.
- As we grow older, so do our bodies and it’s so important to keep them moving. As an online business owner, it’s easy to fall into the trap of sitting for hours without moving, I’ve also felt the effects of this when working long hours at my corporate job prior to running my own business.
Did you know sitting for a number of hours has more harmful effects on your body than smoking? That being said, I try to get up and move as much as I can throughout the work day, and workout at least 3-4 times a week.
7. List the products or items that are indispensable in your life.
- MacBook – this is the powerhouse I run my business off of… without this tool, I have no business!
- Passport – I often need a little getaway to recharge my batteries, get inspired and simply just treat myself! If I stay in one place for too long I get antsy!
- Tea – English Breakfast Tea. I drink tea like others drink coffee, it’s soooo soothing on the soul!
8. Which female entrepreneur(s) do you look up to and why?
- Jenna Kutcher – As mentioned above, she is such a beautiful person, a go-getter and a leader for women in business. She’s grown a business from the ground up all through being her authentic, vulnerable self, and that’s what’s most important.
- Mario Forleo – Because her messaging is always so powerful and real… She’s also hilarious!
- Jaclyn Johnson – Because I listen to the Work Party podcast so often, I totally look up to Jaclyn Johnson because how she started is often how most of us start, and she is totally real, honest and ultimately just wants to help others through sharing her knowledge and expertise.