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Get inspired by a one-time science teacher now a successful business owner.

In conversation with Helen Lavette

In this episode of eCommerce Experts Talk, Marc Bishop interviewed Helen, a beauty aesthetician who owns a business online. She reveals how she got inspired, what are her challenges and how she utilises digital marketing strategies to upkeep her online business. Watch now for some profound insights.

Everyone, welcome to another episode of the online community for e-commerce business owners and entrepreneurs. And today we have a very special guest, and she is the owner and founder of Helen Lavette Consulting. It's HelenLavette.com and her name is Helen Lavette. Thanks a lot for joining us today. How are you?

I’m good. How are you?

I'm really good. Thanks for asking.

Awesome. Thank you for having me today and I’m really happy to be here.

Great to have you. So just to help our viewers a little better. Would you mind sharing a little bit of your background?

Sure. So I am an Aesthetician. I’ve been in a situation for the last nine years now. Prior to doing so, I was teaching science. I was a science instructor. I have a degree in biology. And so science is my passion. Initially, I wanted to, you know, take a stab at medical school and it didn’t work out. And once I started teaching, I kind of took a stab at like doing makeup. And that was fun. But I had a deeper passion for wanting to know more about people’s skin. So I became an Aesthetician. Now what I do is teach people about how to take care of their skin because, believe it or not, it’s a science behind it. Even makeup is the science behind it. And so that’s the passion that I have, which is helping people understand not only what’s going on with your skin, but why it’s happening and what you need to do to correct it. And outside of that, I have a studio where I perform skincare treatments, makeup, you know, lash extensions and other beauty enhancements.

Great. So I think obviously, you know, people's self-esteem and everything is really tied up with their appearance and their skin. So someone can improve their skin, which probably helps or self-confidence sort of it, I assume.

Oh yeah. For sure. Definitely. For sure. You know the first thing people look at when they see you is your face. So you know it. I think it’s an underrated asset. And as an entrepreneur or as someone who is in a leadership role constantly in front of people, it is definitely something that you have to take into consideration when it comes to your everyday image. I think people.

Are. I'm sorry. Go ahead.

I think people when they think of images, sometimes automatically think of style and clothing or maybe hair. They tend to forget about your skin, your makeup and things of that nature.

Yeah. I mean, you can dress yourself up and everything, but then if your skin is a mask, how much does it help? So I think it's commendable doing that and I guess it must be really rewarding when you get a client and you got to improve their skin and do better about themselves.

Yes, for sure. For sure.

As far as I know, a lot of people say, well, I'm starting an e-commerce business now. Something's online. And starting an e-commerce business is actually much more difficult than most people realize. So can you share some of the challenges that you faced when started and how you working?

So starting an e-com business, it is definitely different from when you have like a brick and mortar. And I think for me, the most difficult thing was to figure out my target market. And when you’re building organically, you have a small budget and very few ways that you can do that. You know, the market testing, a lot of times it requires a bigger budget. So it’s you could run ads. I’ve been in business for some time now and I’ve just gotten to the point where I figured the whole actually out. So it took time. It took time just for me to understand exactly who I was marketing to online in order for them to buy the products and services.

Right. So who are you marketing to what's your core market?

My core market is entrepreneurs, women who are constantly on camera or content creators, people whose image affects their profession to a certain extent, like salespeople, and people who are actors and models. I have a lot of those clients as well.

Yeah. And social media is so huge. I mean, I must be a very formal marketer.

I had to find my niche. Exactly. Once I found my niche, it became a lot easier.

I know that you offer beauty services. Yes, but also image coaching and training. What would you say separates your offerings from the competition?

I feel like my background with me having such a strong understanding of the science behind it, gives me a little bit more leverage to educate the client and not just sell to the client. It gives me the opportunity to connect with them more by educating them so that I can understand their needs better.

I would imagine that once you demonstrate a grasp of science for people or give a lot more credibility, even more trust.

Sure. It helps. It definitely helps. That way I’m able to answer any questions that they may have or any doubts they may be having.

Great to have you on. So finally, our three pearls of wisdom that we might have to pass along to entrepreneurs who just started e-commerce.

I would say just trust the process. I think sometimes we make it more difficult than we have what we have to do. You don’t have to do everything on your own. You can outsource things that you don’t know and allow you to focus on the things that you do know or what you are passionate about in it. It’s a lot less draining. It took me some time to figure that out, and then once I started outsourcing different tasks, things became a whole lot easier for me and I was able to focus on the things that I wanted to focus on. Better in my brand started to grow.

Well said. You know, that's a common theme, I think, with a lot of entrepreneurs is that once they've figured out that they do trust other people to do things, that they want to do this, I guess, and they go, especially when it's your baby, their vision that you created is what I'm trying to say.

Yeah. But outside of interesting, I know starting out, sometimes people don’t have a lot of money for certain things. The budget is smaller, but even with doing that, there are ways around that. Like with marketing, I knew that I needed help, but I couldn’t exactly afford a virtual assistant or actual assistant or whatever, so I hired an intern. And so that was helpful. That was I was able to focus on some other things while she was doing things for me. We both benefited from the relationship, so sometimes you have to think outside the box. And then once I was able to start paying her, she started doing my marketing for me. So there are ways to get around the things that you need. You just have to be patient, trust the process and think outside the box.

Once that happened. Story. Absolutely. Exactly. How do you want it?

A lot of it now is online. But for my studio here locally in Atlanta, Georgia, it’s word of mouth mainly.

That's the best business. Yeah, it really is. Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, yeah. When it goes away, you know, like that, that’s I feel like that says highly speaks highly of your services.

Yeah. And it just seems like when you get business that way, your clients are better.

Yeah, that’s true. That’s true.

All right, great. Well, thanks again for joining us. Today is an informative, pleasure speaking with you today.

Yes, for sure. Thank you for having me. It was a pleasure and I look forward to seeing how it comes out.

It's going to be excellent.

Bye-bye.

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