Today we’d like to introduce you to Erin J. Duke.
Erin, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I moved to LA in 2014 from my hometown of Brooklyn, NY to pursue my career as an Actor. I quickly learned that going on so many auditions made it impossible to hold down a job and support myself. I have always been extremely resourceful or a “Scrapper” which my mom likes to call me, so I had to come up with a solution fast so I could keep a roof over my head. My dream was to be a working actor and a social media influencer, so I quit my job at 24hr Fitness and began to do odd jobs like delivering for Postmates at night after my auditions. It was pure hell. I was working like a dog and I wasn’t booking any acting work and most importantly I was unfulfilled.
After attending a digital marketing event I made a decision to relentlessly create content and upload it to Youtube. That content became The BKBooty which is a fitness/lifestyle Youtube channel and blog for the everyday woman who embraces her curves and makes her health a priority. My channel did not become popular overnight. I took the money I had saved from deliveries, driving uber, and cleaning houses and I opened up a vintage clothing pop-up in the arts district of downtown LA called Brooklyn Born Vintage.
After getting a taste of entrepreneurship there was no turning back. I closed the store about a year later when my Youtube channel began to gain steam and I began to work consistently as an Actor. Now about 4 years later I am living the dream I had set when I first moved to the west coast of being a working Actor and a social media Influencer. The BKBooty has amassed a following of about 150,000 and it encourages me to maintain my commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
Has it been a smooth road?
There were so many struggles along the way. Most of them being financial. My determination never waivered but my resources were scarce to none at times which was scary. I had to give up the pleasantries and security that I was used to when I was working a job. I had also moved across the country alone and it was hard to be away from my family. But, I knew that LA was where I needed to be to accomplish the goals that I had set for myself so I made many sacrifices.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into The BKBooty story. Tell us more about the business.
The BKBooty is based on a Pilates-based workout that I used to teach at 24-hour fitness. The class became so popular but the workload and hours did not leave room for my auditions. I decided to quit the job and upload the workouts on my Youtube channel. I specialize in building curves and healthy practices.
I am most proud of the fact that so many women share their fitness goals with us and invite us to be apart of their fitness journeys. I think what set me apart from others is that I put my all into everything that I do. Many people laughed at The BKBooty when I started it. From the name to the workouts it was something that I believed in wholeheartedly and that is why it is successful.
Where do you see your industry going over the next 5-10 years? Any big shifts, changes, trends, etc?
I see content creation in the digital space greatly changing in the next 5-10 years. The possibilities are endless so I can’t even imagine what will come next, maybe something similar to an episode of Black Mirror! (lol) But whatever comes be it changes, shifts, or trends I am willing to change and learn with the tide.
- Website: www.TheBKBooty.com
- Email: TheBKBooty@gmail.com
- Instagram: @TheBKBooty
- Facebook: @BKBooty
- Twitter: @ErinJDuke
- Other: https://www.youtube.com/ErinJDuke