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How I Built My Business Right From The Start

There are many struggles people face when growing a business. I would say the main thing people fear is not being able to get clients let alone create a regular clientele that gives you a stable income. I want to talk about how I did 5 years ago but also how things have changed over the years as more people have come into the industry (which is great by the way).

If you read my previous blog post you will know I came to Reading from London and I didn't know one single person here. I had no friends and no family and I didn't start in a salon, it just didn't cross my mind to. My background wasn't beauty so I didn't really have a clue. What I did understand was social media and a little bit about paid ads so that was what I focused on! If you are a newbie now in 2024 do not start by focusing on paid ads! The market is extremely different now compared to when I first started. Don't let having no experience or not knowing anyone stop you from trying because its absolutely possible but I won't lie to you it will probably be harder but from my experience it truly is worth it.

If you are looking for an easy way to make money in business - GIVE UP. I am sorry to say there is no business that is easy. I don't want to sell anyone the dream, the point of this blog is to be honest about my journey and what I have learnt. So let's dive in.

When I first started I got really clear on what I wanted to be be known for. This was before I found the deeper meaning to Sienna Beauty. All I wanted to do was become a specialist in mega volume and strip lash creation. I thought about what I didn't like within the industry and at the time my main thing was I couldn't find a lash tech in the area that could give me lash extensions that were equivalent and as dramatic as strip lashes. I ended up putting strip lashes over the top a lot of the time. The first time I ever got extensions I payed £75 and I felt like I could barely see them. I told people I grew my natural lashes with vasaline and people believed me! I thought I can't be the only person that feels this way so I made it my mission to get AMAZING in these styles. I was marketing to people's pain point without even realising it but first it was important that I figured out who I actually wanted in and that person was me. I think it is a lot easier to create a business that markets to you as your ideal client so you can really understand and figure out what these people want! I wanted to people to feel as glam as they would when they would go on holiday but everyday, so originally I was named Beach Lashes. I did run some paid ads at the start but like I said I wouldn't do it now unless you have a big budget to spend. You can very much build your business organically and for free it just takes time and effort. As I had no one to practise on I decided to get models in for a ridiculously cheap price but this was so I could get really good as well. I wasn't focused on the money at the start I just wanted to make sure no girl ever felt the ways I had many times after spending loads of money on lash extensions. I joined my local Facebook pages and asked for models. I made sure I took content of everyone and a lot of it too so I could start building my portfolio on my pages. You would be surprised at how many people just want a deal! I got a lot of clients from Facebook asking for models. Once I had some things to post on my Instagram I started the outreach. So I would do things like search "Reading" in the search bar and go to the tab that says location. People would tag when they were out in Reading so I went there and started to follow and engage with girls in my local area and people who commented on their photos. I didn't do this too much in the likes because I wanted people in the same area so I thought the ones that were commenting were probably close friends. I really tried to put myself out there, as people would follow me back I would direct message them giving them my offer! I had cheap prices for a good few months. I didn't do any of these kinds of posts "the first 10 people get £10 off." The reason for the this is I generally just wanted to focus on my skills and networking with girls in my area. I did offers for referrals and I really tried to focus on building real relationships with people. I really wanted to understand what peoples wants and needs were so I would really ask people which a lot of businesses don't ever bother doing.

Now I know you probably don't want to hear this as you have probably heard this a million times but consistency was everything! I was active every day on social media, showing my followers behind the scenes and constantly showing my work as I wanted to be a constant reminder to people. You have to remember people have their own busy lives, they will not remember you! It can take someone 8-12 times of seeing you before they decide to buy from you so you cannot give up! This was something I was extremely good at the start, I struggle more now as I have a lot more on my plate but when I slack I notice the difference every time even now.

The next thing that really grew my business was being relatable. I could not believe how my business was already taking off, I was so unbelievably grateful and because I felt like I would never of started if I didn't fall pregnant I felt like I owed it all to my little Sienna. I was very proud so I started to share our story and my brand started to change. I felt like people then started to connect with me on a more personal level which is where I saw the shift in my business and I realised how true it was when people tell you people buy on emotion. We all love to relate to people because it makes us feel less alone in the world. Social media is so full of fakeness and accounts that look insanely perfect. I felt like the only way I could be unique was just being me. I wanted to create my own tribe of normal people who just wanted more from life but the only way to do that was show up as the real me and I had to show that online. It was really hard at the beginning as I wasn't confident on socials but I was so passionate about my business I pushed myself out of those comfort zones.

It takes a lot of courage to start your own business. Depending what business your started as this doesn't apply to all industries but I do believe it does apply to beauty businesses especially now as the industry becomes more saturated. The only way to stand out is just by being you. No one else can be you, no one else has your story so share it. I have continued to do this throughout my career and I will always do it as I believe my story may help others and I need to use my pain for something good so I didn't have to go through everything I have done for nothing. I have seen brands blowing up just because they are authentic.

Really appreciate the importance on your online presence even down to the way you present your work. You should look at your content and think I love it it looks great! If you don't think that don't bother because everything you do online is painting the picture of you in your potential clients mind. Someone who bothers to take good content and puts that effort in shows you care about your work. All the little things add up when it comes to running your small business but caring about it all is how you are going to create that stable income for yourself. There are now other effective ways to market, things such as email marketing, paid ads and TIktok are all great ways to grow. One bit of advice though is don't try them all at once because you will get overwhelmed. Today I spoke about what I did to build my foundations and this is what I believe everyone should do first. You cannot build your house without building the foundations first so don't overwhelm yourself and start with the basics because doing that is hard enough! Push yourself out your comfort zones, if you are feeling uncomfortable this is a good thing! I have been in plenty of uncomfortable positions now and every single time growth and success is on the other side. I really hope you take away something from this blog even if it is just one golden nugget.

I am so excited with how our training courses have developed over the years, I always aim to over give to my students because there is nothing I love seeing more than my students succeeding. Anyone who trains with me will now get in depth ebooks that will take any beginner to a pro when it comes to social media/marketing and building your business. This side of the business is just as important as learning the skill because at the end of the day you want to be making money! Your success is our success. If you are on the fence I beg you to take that leap of faith for yourself, this is truly your sign - and if you decide its us you want to start that journey with us please get in contact with us today for more info on our courses!

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