5 Tips for Success for Latina Entrepreneurs
Latina entrepreneurs are catalysts in the U.S. economy According to Nielsen's 2017 Latina 2.0 report, Latina-majority owned businesses totaled nearly 1.5 million, representing 87% growth over the past five years, way more than the 39% growth by Hispanic male-majority owned firms and the 27% growth by total female majority-owned firms. Sales of Hispanic female majority-owned firms grew 41% during the period–to $78.7 billion, while sales of all female majority-owned U.S. firms grew by only 19%.
What does this mean? It means we’re on fire.
Our next steps are to keep this momentum by making sure we are all tapping into the right resources in order to set ourselves up for success.
Below are tips we should all be taking advantage of as Latina entrepreneurs:
1. Get online! Hispanic business owners tend to not be online as much as other business owners. I don’t need to remind you that everything is moving towards digital.
Not on Linkedin? Make one. I got my internship at Bank of America through Linkedin and that internship changed my career trajectory.
Get on Google My Business ahora mismo: If you take nothing from this post, but this, I’ll be happy. With Google My Business you get a free Google listing allowing your business to shop up on Google Search and Maps when customers search for your business or businesses similar to yours. You can also Google My post updates, reply to reviews and add photos.
Take advantage of Google Search Console for your website. Search Console helps you to make sure people can find your site on search results. You can also use the data that Search Console provides to find your most successful pages in your store.
2. Invest Your Money in Financial Markets Pronto!
Latinos invest less in the financial markets compared with other groups of people. In general, there seems to be this notion when it comes to investing that one has to have enough money before beginning. Don’t believe that myth. You don’t have to wait until you finish paying off your student loans or until you buy the car you’ve always wanted. Start with $1,000 and open up a brokerage account.
What is a brokerage account? A brokerage account is a fancy way of saying an account where you use your money to buy assets like stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs (exchange-traded funds). I recommend using a roboadvisor, or a service that buys the assets for you based on your investment needs such as your age, your risk tolerance and other metrics, this way you don’t have to worry about picking your own stocks or paying a financial advisor. Don’t know which roboadvisor to start with? Check out Nerd Wallet’s Top Picks.
If you’re sitting there thinking to yourself, but I put my money in a savings account...no! You’re too young to not be taking advantage of financial markets where your returns (or how much you can grow your money) will be much higher than the % interest in most savings account.
3. Tap into the Resources That Are Available to Help Latinx Business Owners Succeed.
Join the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. The USHCC represents 4.37 million Hispanic-owned businesses and advocates on our behalf. There are 200 local chamber members such as New York’s chapter, Illinois’ chapter, and you want to make sure you join your local chapter to have access to a vast network and resources that are made available to entrepreneurs like yourselves.
Check out The Adelante Movement for more resources geared towards Latina entrepreneurs regarding funding, training, and networking.
4. Connect with other Latina Entrepreneurs.
A great place to start is by checking out the We All Grow Latina Network! Every year We All Grow has a summit where Latina influencers and entrepreneurs from all over the country gather. There is also a market where Latina business-owners can put out their products to be purchased. That’s how I met Kim from Kim and Roses and learned about her efforts to empower female entrepreneurs in Honduras. Go to these events where there are other Latinas that want to hear your story. You never know who will fall in love with your products or even your story and then invest in you, whether is through their time, money or social capital.
5. Know your Worth and Demonstrate it Through your Confidence.
I worked in finance for a year and a half within the ultra-high net worth investment management department where I was surrounded by mainly middle-aged white men. What I learned was that nothing compares to the individuality of a person. This is where all that Lean In chatter genuinely comes in. Don’t sell yourself short before even getting to the table by putting those who are wearing fancy suits and vacation in the Hamptons on a pedestal.
People associate entrepreneurship with Silicon Valley and the white male who studied computer science or business in college. What we all need to understand is the woman in Honduras selling her necklaces that she makes to support her family and the blogger using her platform to spread word about her values within feminism are both entrepreneurs and worthy of the title.
Take advantage of the internet to grow your business, start investing early, join networks, and keep reading articles and materials (such as these), because you never know when one resource or tip you read will truly change your life!
WORDS BY Veronica polanco
IMAGE from Burst
Veronica Polanco is the daughter of two incredibly loving Dominican parents. She grew up dancing merengue and bachata at the local church's celebrations and thinking pastelitos are a food group in themselves.
She's an alumni of Cornell University. She started off her career at Bank of America within wealth management and currently works at Google in Global Marketing Solutions. She's passionate about empowering Latinos in the U.S. and all over the Americas by telling our true stories.
Follow her on Instagram @theviplatina
Follow her on Twitter @theviplatina