Networking is an important activity for women entrepreneurs. Building connections and seeking out networking opportunities can result in enduring and mutually beneficial relationships.
Gabriela Chavez understands the importance of networking and finding like-minded individuals who can provide support, exchange of ideas and offer a sense of community. As such, she has created Beauties on the Go to give women a supportive community on the Web and provide the opportunity to network with other women.
We talked with Gabriela on the importance of networking and how Beauties on the Go addresses the need of women to connect with others:
What is Beauties on the Go?
Beauties on the Go’s mission is to simplify women’s lives and bring out their inner and outer beauty by inspiring and supporting them by providing resources that help in every aspect of living. It is a community created by women for women that lead busy lives. Beauties on the Go provides women with the most inspirational and supportive resources, network and events available.
Beauty On The Go n: a smart, beautiful, loving, stylish, driven, and active woman who places high value on inner and outer beauty.
What are your goals for the site?
The Goals for Beauties on the Go:
- To be known as the most inspirational, positive and supportive women’s organization that truly cares about our members and focus on quality more than quantity.
- To have 5 different BOTG chapters in the next 2 years in the following cities: Los Angeles, Albuquerque, New York, Miami, Atlanta, Boston
- The 5 different BOTG chapters will simultaneously run our Teen L.U.V.E Program chapters.
- To launch more VIP memberships that benefit our members in their personal and business lives (i.e. advertising,personal/business goals program etc. )
What made you decide to start this web site?
I have always been the “go to person” for all of my friends when it comes to positive and inspiring advice or resources. I started out by hosting small gatherings, then workshops and turned hosting women’s gatherings into a business. When not hosting events I noticed our women would contact me asking for the next event and/or that there was a need to provide resources for women 24/7 and/or for women that can not attend our events, thus the site. I wanted women to feel they always have a positive support system and resources that are available to them.
What are the needs in the market that you saw that BeautiesontheGo can address?
1) There are many wonderful organizations for women but women want more than JUST a womens organization and more than just to “network”. Women want to make sincere new friends. Women want to know that they truly have a support system and a cheer leading team that is rooting for them and their accomplishments or here to pick them up when they might not be feeling so positive.
Beauties on the go is here so provide the positive and inspiring environment for like-minded women.
2) There is also a need for women to feel that they are not just being sold another product or service.
That the resources they are being offered are truly of value and will add to and simplify their lives.
What were the challenges you faced in starting this business?
- A sincere support system. The “friends” or people I thought would be supportive were not necessarily as supportive as I originally assumed they’d be.
- An deep understanding of just how much would be involved to provide all that I was excited to provide.There is a definite need for as much man power as possible when having such a big network.
- Capital in this recession we are facing
How important is networking for women entrepreneurs?
Networking is extremely important for women entrepreneurs because there are so many valuable resources that people can help contribute to one’s business. However, it is my personal belief, that networking in “numbers” should not always be the ultimate goal. Meaning that we can go online or attend an event and network with 10 or more people and walk away with 10 contacts, however, if we do not follow up with all 10 it could almost be time invested that we should not have invested. Or you can spend too much time trying to juggle a large amount of new contacts and not get results from even one person.
As women, we have so many different offers and opportunities introduced to us by the media all of the time. What we want is not always just “more” but more quality. In other words, when I meet someone new how can I add value to their life and how can they add to mine? This can happen when networking in small numbers. When we start out with the end goal at the beginning and know what we want to get out of social networking, and what our current needs are then we can network in a way that will ultimately benefit all parties involved. You can be involved with social networking and only speak with 2 new contacts and those 2 can be the most beneficial for you and your business and in turn you can find ways to make your new business relationship beneficial for them as well.
The beautiful bonus in networking in small but quality numbers is that the new contacts do not have to just be business contacts. Women can benefit greatly by networking with like minded women and gaining new long-term friends. Which is always great to have because one can’t have too many great friends and cheer leaders.
How can women entrepreneurs network in BeautiesontheGo?
We just launched our new VIP Business Membership. It is a three tier business membership to help small businesses become the number one choice to consumers in the marketplace. The membership levels are Pink, Sepia and Purple.
The benefits that these membership programs offer are top notch for any female business owner. Beauties on the Go that all members are supported and remain inspired through the entire program. Moreover, members receive the support of Beauties on the Go and resources that help toward the advancement of women entrepreneurs; access to targeted business demographics; live/interactive customer relationships, valuable savings on exclusive event invites online, phone conferences, workshops, as well as chances to enter VIP drawings/contests.
Beauties on the Go simplifies women’s lives and is a community created by women for women that lead busy lives. Beauties on the Go provides the most inspirational and supportive resources and network available.
Grow your business while giving back to your community. When purchasing your membership, part of the proceeds go directly into funding the TEEN L.U.V.E Program-for at-risk teens as well as support for other charities Beauties on the Go believes in.
The Pink membership has a $59.00 set up fee and starts at $39.00 per month and offers the women’s inspirational guide, Her Little Ways to help women get through the difficult and frustrating times, the e-book Crush Your Competition and Brand Yourself and Your Business in the Social Media Age, a guide that shows women how to crush and take market share from their competition as well as a business directory listing, back links to help with search engine optimization, VIP passes to conferences and 20% off all BOTG events, products, web design and social media services.
The Sepia membership has a $129.00 set up fee and starts at $99.00 per month and offers all of the products/services in the Pink package with an additional 30 minutes of personalized life coaching and 30 minutes of personalized business consulting, while the Purple membership provides the most resources.
The Purple membership has a $229.00 set up fee and starts at $199.00 per month and includes all of the products/services that the Sepia package includes but with one hour of personalized life coaching and one hour of personalized business consulting, an introduction into the Beauties on the Go newsletter, a Woman Owned Store Front, and Young Living all natural health energy drink.
Aside from BeautiesontheGo, you are also involved in a non profit called Teen L.U.V.E Program to empower at-risk teens. Can you tell us more about this program?
The Teen L.U.V.E Program is a not for profit program, 501(c) (3), created by Beauties on the Go to empower at-risk teens. Providing our teens with Listening (L), Understanding (U), and a wide range of confidence building experiences will give them a Vision (V), while constantly being Encouraged (E).
The Teen L.U.V.E Program was founded on the strong belief of looking beyond external factors and breathing belief into teens. We strongly believe that every human being has the inherent potential to make a powerful positive contribution to society.
The Teen L.U.V.E Program is currently working with at-risk teens in Los Angeles and Albuquerque, New Mexico. We sponsor much needed workshops and fun-filled as well as confidence building days for our teens and are looking forward to expanding in other cities.
What are your tips to women in terms of balancing their lives — e.g. careers, businesses, families?
First and foremost to always always remember to take care of themselves. As women we always tend give and give and we forget or just put off taking care of ourselves. We all have at least one thing that brings us personal peace and happiness. I definitely believe we should take time to do at least that one thing.
When we are feeling peaceful and happy it then helps simplify our lives and leads to helping balance the rest of our lives.
How are you marketing BeautiesontheGo?
Beauties on the Go is a very exclusive and invite only network. As mentioned before Beauties on the Go promotes quality versus quantity. Therefore, we are currently only promoting via word of mouth and BOTG interviews.
What lessons can you share to other women entrepreneurs?
It is great to have visions and goals of how we want to run our business, but being an entrepreneur involves being very flexible and open minded for your own sake. It does not mean we have to change our visions and goals, but I know that I have learned that being flexible and open minded has helped me in times where I encountered obstacles.
Running a business has a lot of positive elements and there is a wonderful sense of freedom, but there are also the times you come across when you can feel overwhelmed. Or there are times that you feel you are running into a few walls; these are the times that having a flexible and open minded attitude helps. When things aren’t necessarily going “as planned” being flexible that changing a thing or two or (i.e. doing a little more research or forming a strategic alliance with a company that could help your company) could help prevent you from stressing out and overwhelming yourself.
As entrepreneurs we will experience many wonderful experiences as well as some that are not ideal. However, another added tip would be to just stay consistent and not to turn away when things are not as ideal. Our hard work does pay off!