(Photo by Andreanna Bitsis)
Ever thought of starting your own business? Or are you currently hustling as a full-blown entrepreneur?
This past year I took a leap of faith to start Trend Tribe, and it’s been a whirlwind ever since. Trend Tribe is an affordable jewelry company (everything is less than $50), but more than that, we act as a career launching point for college students. Our campus ambassadors, better known as Trendsetters, host monthly fashion events and social media marketing campaigns to build their resumes as fashionpreneurs. Trend Tribe’s mission is to help our Trendsetters land their dream job or internship.
I started Trend Tribe because when I was in college, I craved hands-on experience and real responsibility. After interning at top fashion companies, I often ended my summers feeling totally unfulfilled and underutilized. So, I started designing and selling my own jewelry where I could create and execute my own marketing campaigns, work on my own merchandising skills, and build relationships. For once, I wasn’t grabbing coffee or filing papers, and I knew there were other college students who wanted the same kind of opportunity.
As an entrepreneur, I’ve learned a lot along the way and there are a few things I wish someone told me before I got started …
1. It may not all happen today, but it’s all going to happen.
I have BIG dreams for Trend Tribe. We’re an accessories company that not only has the hottest trends at the most affordable prices, but we also provide college students hands-on experience as philanthropic fashionpreneurs. With that said, I want to have hundreds of Trendsetters and be able to connect them with top fashion companies in New York City right away.
The truth? This isn’t going to happen overnight. It’s going to take time. Probably more time than I’d like for it take. And that’s okay. When I first got started as an entrepreneur, I was beating myself up for not having everything perfect and amazing. Anyone else out there Type-A? Yep.
So remember, even if your big dreams and goals don’t come to fruition today, that’s normal. Just keep reminding yourself it will happen. One foot in front of the other, one day at a time.
2. You’ll spend less time with your friends, but your relationships will strengthen.
I knew I’d have less time for fun and friends as a business owner, but as things started to take off I suddenly had NO free time. You’d think that the less time you had to hang out, the more your relationships would suffer. Luckily, I’ve experienced the opposite.
I’m sure you have some rockstar friends. Get them involved in your business! It didn’t take long for my besties to start helping out. Although I’m not going out with them on the weekends, I can definitely squeeze in a business lunch date to review Trend Tribe finances and simultaneously catch up on life.
3. There’s no need to be a technology expert.
Not the most tech-savvy person in the world? No problem!
Technology was one of my biggest fears before I started my business. For months I labored over my company’s website. I thought, “I can’t make my own website. I can’t afford to hire someone to make my website. I’m screwed.”
The good news is that there are so many resources for entrepreneurs that aren’t expensive. I created my very first website with Wix and it’s literally the easiest thing ever. No coding AT ALL. Pretty amazing.
4. Your business model will, and should, change.
No matter how many hours you spend putting together the ultimate business plan, it’s important to be open to change. Once you start actually running your business and getting your product or service in the hands of real customers, you’ll start to see what works well and what doesn’t.
I feel like I’ve changed my business a million times, and as a perfectionist it was difficult for me to learn to detach myself from my original ideas. It’s all about how to best serve your customers and if that requires change, do it.
Change isn’t failing, it’s a step towards growth and success.
Have you started your own business or side hustle? What questions do you have for other entrepreneurs? Let’s hear it in the comments below!
Since Trend Tribe believes in leaving a little sparkle wherever you go, the company is offering a free pair of it’s best-selling Cape Cod studs on orders $25+. Enter code quarterlette25 at checkout to receive your free earrings!