March 20, 2023
Chicago 12, Melborne City, USA

Human trafficking survivor builds a small enterprise with solely $400.


It began with only a few hundred {dollars}. Entrepreneur Nakia Vestal escaped human trafficking as a teen and commenced working at magnificence salons and retailers. After gaining expertise and disliking her job alternatives, Vestal determined to enter enterprise for herself.

In 2017 and with $400, Vestal based DollMaker Lashes, a magnificence studio in Houston, Texas, that gives eyelash extension companies. She started modestly, constructing her shopper base from her dwelling. However with perseverance, self-discipline and religion, Vestal remodeled her enterprise right into a full-service lash studio, along with her personal product line.

“I began with only a lash mattress and my instruments that I wanted. And I did not have any advertising and marketing,” she mentioned. “All the things was phrase of mouth. I began from dwelling in my eating room.”

Vestal’s enterprise has been affected by the financial slowdown of the Covid-19 pandemic, however final 12 months she obtained a $10,000 grant from Verizon’s Digital Prepared program, which she credit as serving to her increase.

The grant from Verizon helps small companies harm by the pandemic, notably in traditionally underserved communities. Practically 800 small companies have obtained grants of as much as $10,000 to assist pay workers, hire and different monetary wants.

Listed below are 4 suggestions which have helped Vestal to succeed as an entrepreneur:

1. Apply for grants

2. Make the most of social media

In accordance with GlobalWebIndex, 54% of standard web customers entry social media to analysis merchandise. And that share is barely anticipated to develop.

“Social media is free advertising and marketing. You may have Fb, you may have Instagram, now you may have TikTok. These are free instruments you should utilize to actually goal no matter viewers you are making an attempt to get,” Vestal mentioned.

3. Search for free sources

Within the digital age, you’ll find absolutely anything on the web — from free programs and recommendation columns to digital mentors and networking occasions.

“There’s free sources on the market. Do not feel like there is a silly query,” Vestal mentioned. “You need to actually communicate up and you need to search for it.”

4. Set your self aside


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