Jessica started her blog, The Trendy Voyager back in 2016 as a way to express creativity and showcase her travels.
A year and a half later, she’s become a total #girlboss! Jess had become a part of many blogger communities, but noticed that there were no communities to connect with other Latina bloggers. So she created one!
Tell us about yourself and your business!
I am a NYC-based Latina Lifestyle Blogger. I started blogging two years ago and my content was focused around traveling and fashion. Throughout my blogging journey, I realized that there weren't many platform that I could relate to that spoke to me as a Latina. I wanted to connect with other Latinas and also find a place to talk about my challenges being a Latina Blogger.
While there are a few groups out there for Latinas, I felt it was too corporate and didn't feel comfortable in those groups. Therefore I decided to start my own group geared towards Latina Bloggers in 2017. The Latina Blogger Network is a group that is focused on creating more opportunities for Latinas in blogging and business through community, connection and empowerment. The group quickly started to grow once I decided to take the leap and post regularly in the Facebook group.
What inspired you to start your own business?
What inspires me is knowing that I am making a difference in the lives of others. Seeing the girls support each other and relate to each other's content in the group. I feel inspired by their stories and love to see them support each other in the group.
Is this your full time job?
No this is not my full-time job, but being able to do something I love is the goal.
How do you structure your days?
I work Mon-Fri, 8am-5pm and so I schedule my days using my Happiness Planner. Sundays are my days to knock out as many to-do's as I can for the week. This way, when I get home after work, I can focus more on writing a blog post, editing a video etc. Saturdays and Sundays are my days to get content and schedule posts. Whereas Mon-Fri I am having conference calls with other bloggers in the group at night.
Where and how do you work best?
I work best from my beauty room. It's a space I renovated in my parents house with minimalist vibes with a touch of glamour. It's filled with positive quote decals and things that make me feel like Beyonce. I work best when my mind is at peace. Nothing begins until I have my Cafecito bumping to Ozuna or listening to a podcast like The Model Health Show.
Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?
I am not currently running giveaways or contests at the moment, but I certainly will very soon.
Where is your business based?
My business is based in New York - with the goal of branching out to different cities.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
One day, I decided to start a group. With no experience other than being in different groups, I created an account on Facebook and ran with it. It took me awhile to learn the ropes and figure out how I was going to manage it. Then I create an Instagram page called Boss Chicas Global. And now, I am working on building the website, hosting meetups and events.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and attracting new customers?
Honestly, asking questions has been the best tool for my business. I ask my members all the time for their opinions, and what they would want in a group for Latinas. This is for them and I want it to speak to them. Another thing is posting consistently and engaging with my audience. It's all about providing value but also having that value given to you. You don't always want to be the one delivering information - you have to listen to your audience as well.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
When I first started this group, I had no idea how I was going to get the engagement I wanted. I wasn't posting as much and I didn't really have a strategy. I was hoping girls would just start posting and engaging with each other.
How did you overcome these challenges?
I overcame this by picking one day to schedule posts ahead and organize the content for the week ahead of time. I posted polls asking them what they wanted in a group, surveys etc. I started to host livestream sessions once a week with a different guest and that really increased interest in the group.
How do you keep motivated through tough times?
You know, staying motivated is something I struggled with. Especially at the beginning when I didn't know what I was doing and I had my own personal problems going on at work at the same time. What kept me going is the comments I received from my girls in the FB group. Seeing them start to engage more, and asking them if this was valuable to them - then seeing they really loved the group kept me from closing down the platform all together. Knowing that I am impacting others' lives in a positive way is what has kept me going. I tell myself all the time - you started this and you're going to finish it. You've already come too far to give up now.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
I distinguish myself from my competitors by being truthfully and organically me as I can be. I am honest with my audience in the rawest way and they appreciate that. There's too many people out there trying to do the same thing - I am just going to be me and that's ok. It's ok to be different. In fact, people appreciate you more when you can be authentic and be honest.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
I recently read "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck" and in the book the author says, if you try something and it doesn't work out - you fail. If you don't try something, you'll never know what could have been so you'll also fail. So why not try it anyway ? There's so much potential to gain.
What do you wish you had known when you started your business?
When I started, I wish I had someone to push me to keep going or someone to steer me in the right direction. Sometimes you need support to get you going and keep you from giving up.
Who are your biggest influences? Who do you admire most? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?
My biggest influence has been @DianaChantel. She's a Dominican blogger I've been following for the last 5 years. I watched her start by making YouTube videos from her bathroom in the Bronx with no money, to then being so successful moving over to Los Angeles and collaborating with the biggest brands in the beauty industry. She's been a huge inspiration to my work and I hope to meet/work with her someday.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
My advice is, keep doing you boo. You got this. Don't be afraid to keep going. It's ok to have your day job and start your side hustle. Being an entrepreneur isn't always quitting your day job and trying to make ends meet. If you're not happy with the way your life is going, change it. Do something on the side that you love and when you're ready make that your full time job. There are so many tools out there for you to learn that don't cost any money - go get it.
What business tools/resources could you not work without?
I cannot work without Hootsuite and the Preview App. The fact that I can schedule my posts and plan out my feed is such a big help for me. I also like Evernote for drafting posts and Google Analytics.
What surprising lessons have you learned along the way?
I've learned that people actually want to know about my life. They are super interested in what I am doing, how I'm taking care of myself and actually want to see more of me rather than me not showing my face with my voice in the background.
Where would you like your business to be 5 years from now?
I see my business as my full-time job in 5 years. Thats the goal - to be able to do what I truly love as my job.
Where can we find you?
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1925499701070514/