For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to own my own business, be my own boss, and make a decent living doing something that I loved. I grew up watching my father turn his business into a success, and while working alongside him I learned little tidbits about the business world. After graduating high school, I moved away to Santa Barbara and dabbled in different jobs but also began my city college education, and after a couple of semesters decided to focus my interests on Marketing. I was also was working for Nordstrom at the time and learning about management, customer service, and visual merchandising, thus sparking my interest in fashion and working my way up the corporate ladder.
After moving back home to the foothills, and after a couple of years off from school, I enrolled in the classes I needed to finish my associates in Marketing at Sierra College. The classes were going to enable me to not only market my business (unknown what that may be at the time), but also market myself as an able and hard working woman with strong ideas in the work force. That is something I knew could be helpful in any career that I took on. What I enjoyed about this portion of my classes was that the world of marketing was taking a dramatic turn, with the chance to reach customers and companies worldwide in an instant with the use of social networking, the global market place that is the internet and cell phones. I learned that my future consumers and target market were right at my finger tips, all I had to do was turn to technology. I took Marketing In The Digital Age, which has been the most helpful class for me in my venture so far. It introduced me to the ways of marketing through social networking, along with the use of cell phones and texting. Also in the marketing program, I took Introduction To Advertising, which taught me about focus groups and how to strategically identify the desired target market. We learned to spark interest and awareness to our target market to create the desire for those consumers to take action and become customers for life!
After studying at Sierra College, life has consisted of working in a coffee house, saving money, and networking in my hometown to ready myself for a business opportunity. Recently, the opportunity arose to put my Sierra College business skills to work and I opened my own business, a fashion boutique in downtown Auburn called Ro-Sham-Bo. As I created my business plan, I focused largely on the importance of how to reach my customers, and then to reach my goals. I immediately started a Facebook business page, and I watched the number of my followers grow daily. These individuals got to see what's new, when the sales are, and what promotions my store had at that time. I have also created an email list with which I can send updates to customers, at no cost to me. The response has been great and I can't tell you how many customers mention that they read my email or saw my posting when they walk through the doors. I even have customers reserve items that I post pictures of, which is helping me to sell through inventory faster than relying on walk ins. I am currently building my website on which customers will be able to buy products that I have in the shop by using their pay-pal accounts. I have also used friends and potential customers as my focus groups (a concept I took from Introduction To Advertising at Sierra College) when choosing merchandise so that I can get honest opinions from my target market. I also created a strong logo that I see as a tie in to brand recognition. Not that I have my own brand, but when people see my logo, I hope for them to think of my boutique and a type of style and positive culture that goes with it.
I look forward to watching my business grow while continuing to use my knowledge of marketing from Sierra College, as well as watching other successful businesses for inspiration. Over the years I have sold all of my textbooks, keeping only a handful of Marketing books because the reference is priceless in building my success and future.