Phoenix-based social-media aficionados Lorena Garcia and Sakura Considine are bringing their popular online-branding workshop series to Austin.
By Emma Whalen, Photos courtesy of the Bloguettes
Lorena Garcia and Sakura Considine first met in 2013. At the time, they had both been getting a lot of questions from co-workers and friends about Photoshop, graphic design, photography and other skills essential to building a successful brand, and they were often singled out by friends who knew them as social-media gurus. Garcia, who holds a master’s degree in finance, and Considine, who has a background in marketing, saw a demand for their talent and decided to join forces to teach a monthly branding workshop.
Fast-forward four years and the workshop has grown into their full-time business venture, Bloguettes. In addition to workshops, their services expanded to include webinars, online classes, one-on-one consultations, stock-photo memberships and more. With spacious offices in Phoenix, a staff of marketing managers, event coordinators, creative directors and interns, as well a growing social-media presence (They currently have 55,000 followers and counting on Instagram.), Bloguettes are emerging as a powerhouse force in the field of creative consulting.
Austin Woman: In your own words, describe the Bloguettes mission.
Lorena Garcia: As you probably have noticed, especially in a town like Austin, there’s so many people who want to become entrepreneurs. Everyone in this age wants to be their own boss and have their own business, so our whole mission here at Bloguettes is to empower people with that entrepreneurial itch and help them take their brand successfully into the digital space.
Sakura Considine: In today’s world, it’s very easy to start a business. You can start a website tomorrow or you can start an online store tomorrow, but because it’s so easy, it’s so incredibly hard to stand out from the crowd.
AW: What has been your proudest moment since starting Bloguettes?
LG: For me, it’s every time that I finish a workshop and people come up to me with a smile while we’re all so tired—because they’ve been with me for so many hours in those three days—and they say they’re going to go home and practice. You see you’ve opened their minds and they’re so motivated and inspired. That makes me feel so proud.
SC: Honestly, just pausing and reflecting on where we started. Now, seeing how our office, team, company and website have all grown: All of that makes me proud.
AW: What are some of your clients’ most common concerns?
LG: They’re very frustrated with social media in the way that they’re using it but not seeing results from it. Whether they are bloggers or small businesses, they have a social-media presence but they’re not getting what they want from it.
AW: What’s one thing anyone can do to improve his or her social-media presence right now?
SC: Step one: Stop doing what everyone else is doing. Don’t try to appeal your brand to everyone. We see so much on social media that we get influenced very easily. I think that what people need to do is stop and take themselves out to coffee and really think about themselves, as well as their brand. As entrepreneurs, we tend to just go, go, go and get really excited, so it’s easy to not take a second to stop and think about it.
LG: Start by understanding what branding is and what goes into the brand process. There is a conception that your visual identity, your logo, your colors and your photography are all that go into your brand. But your brand is a very inclusive process, from every time there is a customer experience to the way you respond to emails and the voice of your brand. So, my No. 1 recommendation for improving is understanding all that goes into your brand, not just visual identity.
AW: Do you have any advice for women who want to start their own business?
SC: Knowledge is power. Educate yourself in every field of what you want to start. That is extremely important. So, it’s not just about creating your product; you need to market it in today’s world too.
LG: Don’t try to look for approval from everyone else. If you think something is a good idea, don’t tell it to 20 people. Everybody will tell you no, especially if it’s an innovative idea. Of course, listen to people because sometimes they will have something very important to say, but don’t let them discourage you. If you truly believe something is going to work, find a way to make it work.