Who are you?
My site, CarrieWithChildren.com started as a way to fill a void in my life after leaving the PR world to become a stay at home mom. I created an online community to share my writing and from there it has grown into relationships with Microsoft, Step2, General Motors and Marriott among others.
My site now serves as a writing outlet, but also as a landing point leading to outside freelance opportunities like my role as the VISIT FLORIDA Family Insider.
Why Did you start your business?
When my youngest daughter was born with Down syndrome - I decided to took to my site to share stories and updates. I was in need of other parents like myself and needed a way to express my thoughts. From there, I renewed my love for writing and have transformed my site into a place of stories and travel adventures.
What makes your business unique?
Prior to becoming a parent, I worked in travel PR. I feel like I've crafted my own space online with the family travel community.
I love having the ability to stay at home with my kids (ages 3 and 5) and still produce an income. And although some people may see me as a just a stay at home mom, my freelance writing opportunities have grown tremendously. I think it's important to shed the 'mom' stereotype, so I attend local networking events and opportunities regularly.
What's the biggest mistake you've made with your business and what did you learn from it??
I've said 'yes' too many times, especially in the beginning. I accepted partnerships early in the life of my site, even when it wasn't a good fit. I should have said no and used that time to continue to grow my site and my freelance writing.
what big goal do you have for your company and how do you plan to achieve it?
My goal for 2014 is to land four freelance opportunities outside of m own personal site. I've found that having a strong presence on Twitter is great for networking and discovering outlets and publications that might be a good fit for growing my business.
what advice or tips do you have for people wanting to start their own business or follow their dreams?
I started my site in September 2010 and from the very beginning, I concentrated very heavily on the look/feel and voice of my site. Branding of the site and myself is something I took very seriously. I feel like that has given me credibility and allowed others to take my site more seriously. The site numbers and stats may not be considered large, but the site looked professional and that was important to me.