On this week’s podcast, I enjoyed speaking with mompreneur, Urbana Chappa.
Urbana is fashion designer and celebrity stylist. She began her company Maison de Mini, which is an eco-friendly children’s fashion line which focuses on creating from bamboo, soy, and hemp. Her husband is a songwriter for Bruno Mars and has written many songs such as “Just The Way You Are”. They have four adorable children together and she is an advocate for childhood cancer awareness and giving back to many children causes. Urbana is raw, real, and authentic.
On today’s podcast she gives an unhindered transparency of her experience with postpartum depression and how she overcame it through finding her passion in the fashion world. We also talk about the realities of balancing life as a mom in business and what it means to take care of and make yourself a priority.
What we talked about:
What lead her into the world of fashion design and styling
Her struggles with postpartum depression and how she managed and overcame it
Where she got inspiration for her designs
How she developed her different clothing lines
Some of her favorite style clients (Diane Warren, her husband songwriter to Bruno Mars Natasha Henstridge from Species)
Her biggest passion in life and how her fashion lines reflect her life mission
How having a family affected her career on a day to day basis and how she balances motherhood with running her company
Urbana’s words of advice for mompreneurs out there wanting to live their dreams, but who also really care deeply for family and being a great mom
As women we should… Be comfortable in our skin!Embrace ourselves! It’s all about being okay with who we are in each season of our lives.
writes articles and blog posts for the homeschooling community
Why she began her blog
She began her blog because it was only natural to write about her current lifestyle of homeschooling
She was having a hard time finding homeschool materials and resources specifically for African American students and wanted to reach out to other moms who were looking for similar resources
It started with 12 moms and grew to over 2,000 people in just a few years
What she enjoys most about her blog
She loves being able to help and encourage people with topics on marriage, parenting, and homeschooling. She feels it is important to give back to others and provide assistance to her audience in taking some of the guess work out of the research they are doing on homeschooling.
She also enjoys networking: meeting people and developing in-real-life friendships through her Facebook group.
About Andrea’s kids and a snapshot in her life as a mompreneur
Andrea has 3 girls: ages 12, 10, and 5. She will be homeschooling 8th grade, 5th grade and 1st grade during her upcoming school year.
Her oldest daughter is an athlete and plays soccer and also plays piano. Her middle daughter is artistic and enjoys sewing, art, and dance. Her youngest stays busy!
In order to balance her day, she starts planning the night before with a decent bedtime. She strives for an earlier wake-up time and each morning she starts the day with prayer, devotions, and planning time. Her next goal is to plan for her blog posts and graphics.
On a good day she can accomplish about 2 hours of private work time before the kids arise. This is the time that most of her work is accomplished.
She also garners the support of her husband during his early day off from work to help with the children while she gets a bit of work done.
Additional advice for mompreneurs and work at home moms:
Write things down and look at your schedule. Be realistic about when you can really work.
Fit your blogging and work life around your kids’ schedule.
Keep your family priorities aligned.
Exercise discipline and stick to the schedule.
Limit your distractions from the computer. Keep social media and email for a separate time.
In this podcast, the first one in 2015, I come back with exciting news about upcoming changes. I also share three main reasons why mompreneurs should support one another, and two honors I have received in the past three months.
HUGE shout-out to Neoshi Yaki for including me in her January 2015 issue of Million Moms In Action magazine as a featured mompreneur.
You know why I absolutely love being a mompreneur? Because we stick together. We support one another. We help each other succeed. That circle of sisterhood is a must-have for support, motivation, and encouragement. That’s why I just needed to take some time out today and properly thank Neoshi for her hard work and efforts in pulling together a resource for women entrepreneurs.
Mompreneurs must support one another. It’s mompreneurs like Neoshi Yaki whom I appreciate for promoting teamwork through support.
Building is better than tearing down.
Have you noticed the clique-y groups- moms who divide themselves among the have’s and have-not’s? This pitiful attitude works against us, keeping us from building our futures. If we tear each other down, what do we have left? I need what you bring to the table. You need what I can offer. We need each other in this world, and in business, so let’s work on building each other up.
We’re stronger together.
I love this bible passage:
The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 1 Corinthians 12:21
How ludicrous to imagine that we could simply do away with any part of our body because we don’t seen an immediate use for it. Unfortunately, I’ve witnessed far too many girl clubs and female groups that operate in this backward mentality. In fact, I have oftentimes dismissed myself and gracefully bowed out from groups that I sense is going in an awkward direction.
Ladies, we need each other! As moms, we are stronger together. As wives, friends, and confidantes, we are stronger together. As daughters, nieces, aunts, and cousins, we are stronger together. And as business women, we are stronger together. If we can learn to pool together our resources and assets, we can have a collection of strength that outlasts us.
The future depends on us.
As a mompreneur, you have kids- and you know what I’m talking about when I say that our kids are literally watching us. Oftentimes they follow in our footsteps when they’ve seen our successes, or they make decisions to never repeat the mistakes we did because they watched us fail a time or two.
When we model togetherness and teamwork, our daughters and sons come to see the value in what we are promoting. Who knows? Maybe one day we’ll be able to pass the baton of entrepreneurship to them, and watch our kids soar in businesses they love. But it all starts with us.
Go ahead and subscribe to her magazine and mailing list, and download a copy of this month’s issue. I’m on page 11 if you’d like to take a look at my interview questions.
Here’s to the success of moms in business who know how to support one another! Thanks, Neoshi.
You know why I find this particularly exciting? Because mompreneurs are a unique crowd, and I’m honored to be among them. I wasn’t expecting this honor, but I’m very grateful because it’s just another clue to the direction I’m heading in for the upcoming year 2015- which is focusing more heavily on helping mompreneurs.
So, if you read my last blog post update you’re probably wondering how things have gone with my move. Well, it happened- we’ve moved and we’re settling in- finally! As I’m enjoying my new home and community in San Jose, California, I’m finding that I’m itching to get back into the groove with the business of helping some of my most favorite peeps: and that’s you, mompreneurs.
You’ll most likely find my blog posts lessen to about one or two per month as I continue my behind-the-scenes action to launch my info product line just for moms in business. I also have some special ideas for moms of faith- helping you to take a holistic approach to integrating your faith lifestyle with your business.
So, that’s all for this post. Just a huge THANK YOU to Mompreneur Media- and an invitation to all of my readers and listeners to take this poll and let me know how it is I can help you in your business this upcoming year.
Looking forward to finding out your needs, my friends.
I had the wonderful opportunity of interviewing Carol Dunlop, a social media strategist and web designer, on today’s podcast episode.
Who is Carol?
Carol Dunlop is a published author, web designer, graphic specialist, entrepreneur, expert blogger and social media strategist who mastered the tools of visual communication and design long before computers and the Internet became viable resources for small businesses. Drawing on over 20 years of experience working with nearly every web technology and design software, including good ‘ole pen and paper, she is able to take a simple thumbnail sketch or jumbled client notes and develop it into the creative project her client envisions. While taking a break from the web industry madness, she became her own best client for web design, development and marketing. She returned with a renewed sense of purpose and now shares her insider’s knowledge with small business owners who want to make their website a successful and profitable part of their business. Carol can frequently be seen, heard and read about in one of her numerous media appearances be it TV, radio, magazines or newspapers.
Our podcast conversation
One of her favorite quotes is by J.K. Rowling.
It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might has well not have lived at all, in which case you have failed by default.
How she got started in business:
She began her journey of entrepreneurship as a Mary Kay consultant.
Working with businesses with “champagne” ideas but with no budget, she decided to move on and feed her passions through a new venture which fed into CSI.
What exactly is a social media hub?
The social media hub is essentially your website. You need a centralized place to send prospects to your great content- which is home base.
What type of website is best for an entrepreneur (free, paid, static, or blog)?
Carol recommends self-hosted Wordpress. Free is not always the best because you can’t make money with your free WordPress blog. If you’re really serious, you should set up your company site using WordPress.
So be sure to figure out your goals and how you’re going to make money with your blog.
What are the best social media platforms for businesses to use?
Carol recommends that you have your business on Facebook. With over 1.2 billion people she believes you should not neglect this platform.
She also suggests that we use Twitter. She has met many of her prospects on this platform.
Thirdly, she highly suggests that as a business, you should be on Linkedin.
Pay attention to the culture of each, get used to certain platforms, then branch out into others.
Is email marketing dying out?
No, it’s not dead- and Carol says that if you build a loyal list it doesn’t matter if you have a smaller list. Engagement is key. Definitely email marketing is still alive and kicking!
What is the best kind of information to share?
You should share the information your audience wants to know about. Use surveys, ask them questions, and find out what they need.
As an information provider you become the source for your subscribers.
How do we find the time to post at our blogs?
You don’t find time- you make it. You’ll need time to research, write about, and post what your audience wants. Carve out time and use tools such as Hootesuite to help you schedule your social media postings.
Carol’s business challenges
One of her challenges is finding the time to work within her business while helping her clients plus balancing the time to keep up her own site content. It’s a juggling act but she is able to keep her vision going and help the visions of her clients’ businesses as well.
Favorite aspects of her business and what inspires her to move forward in business
She enjoys designing! She loves what she does, and she also loves getting paid! Helping her clients be their best also helps her to be the best she can be.
How she balances her business and her personal life
Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011 while her husband also suffered a stroke the same year, she developed a resolve that she would not make any more excuses. She and her husband spend time together in the morning at the gym, she works, and when he returns from work they hang out together after dinner. Carol has developed a simple approach to life while living it to the fullest.
**Carol is offering a free social media marketing analysis
I had the pleasure of interviewing Jimmie Lanley and speaking with her about social media and her experiences as an entrepreneur and her appreciation of Google plus.
Who is Jimmie?
Jimmie Lanley co-owns a social media business, iHomeschool Network, that connects bloggers with each other in a supportive environment and connects bloggers to companies in mutually beneficial projects. She started 2014 with a radical decision for someone in the homeschool niche– abandoning her Facebook business page with over 10,000 likes. Instead, she and her network are investing where they see long-term results: weekly G+ Hangouts on Air, podcasting, Pinterest, and YouTube. You can connect with Jimmie on Google Plus or learn more about her professional services at jimmielanley.com.
What we talked about
We start off the show with an ice breaker. One of Jimmie’s favorite quotes is by Zig Ziglar.:
“There are no traffic jams on the extra mile.”
How Jimmie got started in online business. Jimmie is the mom of one teenage daughter. She got started in social media as a blogger which she believes has helped to consult with other businesses in social media.
Jimmie shares a few Google Plus nuts and bolts
Jimmie has over 44,000 followers on Google Plus! We talked about the different reasons Jimmie is attracted to this platform- including: privacy, idea-centeredness
What is Google authorship? Taking advantage of your introduction section on Google Plus+ is optimal.
We talked about some of the benefits of entrepreneurs using Google Plus.
The shelf life of Google Plus postings compared to other social media platforms.
What are Google Plus circles?
How can Google Plus help a business with online networking?
Jimmie also shares some tips on conducting and attending Google hangouts.
Jimmie shares about her business
One of Jimmie’s business challenges: work is seasonal for Jimmie’s business in a type of ‘feast or famine’ way. She also spoke about the discouraging aspect of having to convince companies of their need for her services. Through this challenge, she found that inbound marketing and content marketing has been much more helpful to her in bringing clients to her business who are already convinced that they need her services.
Jimmie’s favorite aspect of your business: she enjoys working one on one with clients. She also enjoys managing Google Plus pages for clients.
Jimmie’s inspiration that motivates and keeps her going with business is bottom line: making money. 🙂 She also has figured out a system to take care of herself and make time for her family and friends.
Words of encouragement/advice for solopreneurs: Get outside of your comfort zone, and just go for it!
Hi, I’m Demetria– podcaster, blogger, and homeschool mompreneur of two beautiful daughters and wife to an awesome Navy officer. This blog is my outlet to share my love for helping women and moms start an online business with a blog. To learn how to start a blog you can read my book, take my course, or get coaching. I’m here to help you!