Rachel Allene, a creative spirit, resigned her first job after starting her health science degree program and dived deep into business. She had no formal education in art or design, but she decided to focus on health science. She has self-taught most of her art and design work, but has completed an online calligraphy course and has friends who are proficient in Adobe Illustrator. She started showcasing her product design skills online after switching fields, and her main interest was in photography.
After starting her firm, she faced uncertainties and setbacks, such as getting poison oak at the first picture assignment after quitting her job. To overcome these challenges, she advised talking to her mother and remembering that she is valuable regardless of her accomplishments. If a product doesn’t perform as well as expected, it doesn’t always mean people don’t like her. It’s not usually a personal attack. Remember to give yourself a boost of confidence, believe in yourself, and carry on.
Although many people have a creative spirit, not everyone uses it. The passion of Rachel Allene could not be suppressed. She resigned her first job quickly after starting her health science degree program and dived deep into business. Her experience demonstrates to us the importance of taking the first step. The greatest way to succeed in business is to learn as you go along, as Rachel is live evidence.
What training in art and design have you had? Do you have a formal education? If not, how did you learn?
Unexpectedly, I don’t have a foundation in art or design! In college, I considered majoring in both art and health science, but after realizing that it would take too long to finish, I chose to focus on health science. Oh, how silly! The majority of my art and design work is self-taught, although I’ve completed an online calligraphy course and have friends who are proficient with Adobe Illustrator who I can turn to for advice when I’m stuck.
What inspired you to start showcasing your skills online?
I recently graduated from college and was working a job I hated, so I made the decision to switch fields. On the same day that I left my employment, I launched my business. However, my main interest was in photography. I soon came to the conclusion that I preferred calligraphy and design over portrait photography. So I started to lean in that direction. From there, things have only grown better!
After starting your firm, did you encounter any uncertainties or setbacks? How did you find solutions and overcome challenges?
Yes, of course! Everybody encounters difficulties. I got poison oak at the first picture assignment I did after quitting my job, which left me bedridden for a week. What a great way to start things off! In addition to health setbacks, I’ve also had my fair share of disappointing product releases and expectations that weren’t realized. My best piece of advise for overcoming obstacles is to first talk to your mother and then keep in mind that you are valuable regardless of your accomplishments.
If a product doesn’t perform as well as expected, it doesn’t always mean that people don’t like me. It may mean that people are not checking social media while on vacation. It can mean that people are living on a tighter budget and don’t have any extra money for personal expenses. It may mean that people missed my Instagram post as a result of Instagram’s new algorithm. There are several explanations as to why something does not launch as smoothly as expected. It isn’t usually a personal attack. Remember this, give yourself a boost of confidence that you’re still strong and capable, and carry on. Don’t glance behind you.
Can you point to a significant turning moment in your company’s history? How did this happen?
Sincerely, I think the choice to start selling mugs was the pivotal one for my company. When I started sharing more of my own narrative through daily calligraphy quotations, my Instagram feed became more lively. The two taken together have drastically changed how my business has developed.
Handwritten lettering and brand development
At the moment, lettering is highly common. How can you set yourself apart from other inventive companies with similar brands that market rival goods?
This is challenging. I try not to evaluate myself against other lettering experts. If someone on Instagram could identify one of my quotations without seeing my signature, I would consider it to be a success. By sharing brush calligraphy quotations in black and white and using my own hashtag (#lesshustlemoregrace), I have made an effort to stand apart from the crowd. I’ve created a slogan that people may use to identify myself.
You have such a strong online presence on social media, especially Instagram. What tactics helped this effort succeed?
You are very nice to think that my use of social media and branding is beneficial! There are a few particular reasons for this, and I hope that it will be helpful to others. I make an effort to limit the number of unique “themes” I use in my social media posts. I don’t upload photos of my family online, despite the fact that I spend the majority of my weekends with them. I don’t show many pictures of my husband because he isn’t a big component of my image. I don’t post pictures of my vacations or sunsets. These products don’t fit my brand. Products, workplace photos, motivational quotes, and some behind-the-scenes stuff are all part of my brand. This is what I follow.
People are more likely to trust me since they know what to expect from me. I also try to provide my viewers with something. Everybody wants to receive things. I thus make an effort to think of each post as a gift for my readers. It may be a proverb, bit of advice, a brand-new item, a gift idea, or a lighthearted remark. I think about how I can help them all the time. I also try to engage my audience in conversation. I do this through responding to comments, asking questions in the captions of my Instagram posts, and using Instagram stories to share more of my personality, voice, daily problems, and real life. People enjoy how it makes me seem more sincere.
How do you handle shipping in particular for your home-based business? Any suggestions for people making the same effort?
Oh my, this is hard! However, I have set out specified days for delivery to give the situation a feeling of organization. My usual shipping days are Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. I am aware that purchases placed on Monday evening will be dispatched on Wednesday as a result. As a result, there is far less unrest and anxiety. Setting boundaries and timetables is really helpful!
Can you name a book, podcast, conference, or person who has had a lasting influence on your life or your business?
I had a great time at Creative at Heart in July. I also like texting with friends I met online and listening to The Creative Empire podcast. It is really beneficial!
Aspirations and desires
Which aspects of your creative and entrepreneurial careers do you still want to develop?
I’m trying to get better at establishing boundaries and managing my time. In addition, I’m putting processes in place for sustainable business operations.
What are your ambitions for the company’s future? Do you still have the same opinions on any personal objectives or aspirations?
I am always coming up with new concepts! In addition to giving courses, speaking at conferences, and expanding my wholesale clients, my goals for the coming year include diversifying the goods in my inventory. There is a lot more to say, but I won’t.
For further information
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