Category Business

Dear Entrepreneur: If You Were Your Bravest Self, What Would You Be Doing?

Dear Entrepreneur, When was the last time you gave yourself permission to dream big? When have you stopped work to think about where you want to take your precious business in the next year, the next five years or even ten? We are so bogged down with the everyday hustle. There never seems to be enough time or energy. We are creating new content, building relationships, serving our clients, posting on social media… the to-do list is never ending. We are caught up IN the business. In the every day. In the daily minutia. I encourage you to make the space and give yourself the grace of envisioning where you want to go next. Brain dump all those wild and crazy ideas. Don’t get caught up with the I can’ts or the I don’t haves. Be open and daring and dig deep into your heart’s desires. Allow yourself to reach

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5 Powerful Ways Your Business Grows When You Use Your Story

You know you have a great product/service. People tell you they love what you’re doing and you’re seeing engagement within your online presence, and yet, no sales. What gives? You’re not using your soul and you’re significantly missing out on the value your story has ready to serve up for you. Even though my entire community and the success of my brand is largely attributed to and founded upon vulnerability, there was a time when sharing my story (and the struggles within it) seemed like the worst possible path to growth. I kept talking to all these other business owners around me, even my clients, seeing them struggle, and I so badly wanted to scream, “I’m with you, I’m suffering with depression and anxiety just like you.” But, it heightened my anxiety just to think about exposing my heart in such a way that could open me up to judgement. I

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Be Confident, Love Yourself, and Stay True to What You Believe

I don’t know about you, but few things in life stress me out more than packing – and I’ve found myself having to do a lot of packing lately (not complaining, I LOVE traveling, but that doesn’t make the putting my life together in a suitcase for a week part any less anxiety provoking). I’m always like, “Okay Allyn, let’s only pack what we need, plan outfits out beforehand, and not have to sit to close the suitcase”. (My recent New York Fashion Week adventure really did a number on my suitcase, it has some battle wounds and a large rip sidelining the zipper… whoops.) Entrepreneur Sarah Yonover (above) has innovated quite the hypnotizing product to combat such situations! HipKnoTies is 30 styles power packed into one garment. Yes you read that correctly – one piece, 30 ways. Need I say more? Your HipKnoTies is 20% off with code GemNation20!  I’ll

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Influencer Marketing: It’s All About Creating Connections

As entrepreneurs, I think that getting your awesome product or service in front of the eyes of the right people is one of the most challenging, yet important, things you can do for your business because it’s so directly tied into your profit.  So, what if I told you that 92% of people trust their peers or trusted sources to make product recommendations and that 72% of people rely on social media to make purchasing decisions (source)?  It’s pretty clear that word-of-mouth marketing is the most effective.  A recent survey by Think With Google further solidifies this point by showing that 60% of consumers are more likely to buy a product recommended by a YouTuber than a mainstream celebrity.  All of this sounds pretty, incredibly awesome – you connect with a couple of influencers in your field, have them put up a review, and you’re flooded with sales from their

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Riding Solo: Five Lessons I Learned from the Emotional Rollercoaster of Launching StorkStand (Without A Co-Founder)

I read every business book.  And they all said don’t start without a co-founder.  So that’s what I did.  I launched my first company a year out of college, as soon as I convinced one of best friends to join as my co-founder. In the moment, I was ecstatic.  I had a great idea (at least I thought so), and was ready to a build a product with a talented friend who I trusted.  Awesome! But within a couple months of working together, it became obvious that we weren’t the right balance of complementary skills, nor passion.  We pushed on for several more painstaking months together before going our separate ways.  Having taken a major hit to our ego, and our long-standing friendship, we stopped talking to each other (thankfully we’re great friends now) and both went on to new startups. Fast forward two years, and there I was again.

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A Movement Toward Honest Media with Holl & Lane Magazine

Many trends are popping up all over our social media feeds, but the deeper momentum I am seeing for the upcoming season does not deal with colors, shoes or anything like the #GemFinds in this trend analysis report. What I see are people who are opening up and truthfully speaking about their life story. Sarah Hartley of Holl & Lane Magazine, a forerunner in this shift towards honest living, has created a business by encouraging real woman to be bold and brave about the truths they have gone through. She fully believes that when you are courageous enough to tell your story, you are then helping someone else feel less alone. Gem Nation couldn’t agree with her more, after all, your story is without a doubt what paved the way for you to dive in to chasing your dreams. RELATED: Bloggers Telling Honest Stories (via Holl & Lane)  Holl and Lane is published bimonthly on the first of the month as

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Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid To Launch And Learn

Do you ever feel like you are trying and failing, but never getting anywhere? Rebecca Marie of Graphic and Web Designer/Owner of Bex Marie has been through the ringer, but she never lets a failure get the best of her. She was born with an entrepreneurial spirit. In her middle school days her passion included teaching herself HTML and how to build websites in her spare time. When college rolled around she decided to give computer science a chance. After realizing you use letters and not numbers, Rebecca said to herself “this isn’t as fun as web design anyway”. After breaking her leg in roller derby, yes this girl does it all, she started a part time job in soapmaking. The more time she spent in the handmade/soapmaker community, the more she found a huge gap for entrepreneurs who couldn’t afford their own graphic design, but wanted help creating their own website. Officially now

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After Lifelong Struggles with Anxiety, Janelle Martel Creates Self-Care Subscription Box

When you can’t find what you are looking for, create your own! That is exactly what Janelle Martel did when she couldn’t find any care packages for people that want to give their mental health some love. Channeling her love of psychology and passion for helping others, Janelle created Caring Crate, a subscription box for those who are suffering from chronic illness, experiencing mental health issues, or just need a little extra TLC. With goodies from healthy snacks and scrumptious tea, to journals and beauty products, Caring Crate helps put self-care back at the top of your to-do list. Janelle was sweet enough to send me a Caring Crate to try recently. To be honest, I completely forgot it was coming, so when the box landed on my porch in the middle of a hectic week, the anxiety prone, overwhelmed, and overworked parts of my soul stepped forward to indulge in some much needed R&R. My

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