Today we’d like to introduce you to Dalia Patrón.
Dalia, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
There are 2 sides to my story…
One is my blog Stylish Little Stories and the other is my business.
I started my blog in 2015 and I think learning how to build a website from scratch got me curious and thirsty to learn new things in tech. This same year, 5 months later, I left the corporate life to start my own business.
I worked in retail management for 10 years, holy smokes! Still feels crazy weird to say it, makes me feel old! I had been contemplating a new career move for a couple years and finally in late 2015, I decided to take the big leap.
I had a big influencer, my fiancé (boyfriend then) so, I can’t take all the credit. He’s a natural-born entrepreneur and he pushed me hard! He encouraged me to believe I could and deserved the freedom to work for myself. Once I had enough money saved, I said now or never!
The rest is history! We gave away all of our possessions and started traveling the world! I started an e-commerce business and officially became a digital nomad. I also started blogging about travel along with fashion and food. We lived remotely in San Diego, Hermosa Beach, Playa del Carmen, Mexico and kept Los Angeles as home base. The goal is to continue live a life of freedom and travel. The entrepreneur life it’s not about working less but working when and from where I wish.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Was this new journey hard or easy? I will put it like this? I cried for like 2 months straight from frustration. At this point, the only thing that kept me sane was my blog. Staying creative really helped me get through the tough days. I had been getting a steady paycheck since I was 15 years old and suddenly not knowing when your next paycheck is coming is scary as heck! I didn’t make any money for the first 2-3 months but very quickly, I started to see the light! 🙂
My biggest advice, not only for women, but anyone starting their new business is PATIENCE. This also applies to blogging. Never start a blog because you want to make money or be “famous.” I still see blogging as an art project and as my hobby and if this hobby pays all my bills one day, well then great!
As Zig Ziglar said, “there is no elevator up to success, you have to take the stairs.” The stairs are tiring and sometimes slippery. You may fall a few times but if you remain strong you will keep climbing to the top. There is nothing more rewarding than the freedom to call the shots in your own destiny. As I always say, if it was easy everyone would be doing it. So, if you can’t stop thinking about it, do it!
Alright – so let’s talk business. What should we know?
So…what in the world do I do for money/work now? I am in eCommerce (so what the heck is this?) My first business was selling private label products on Amazon. In short, I would sell anything from yoga products to jewelry on Amazon. I would find manufacturers overseas, slap my brand on it and ship it to Amazon (and they would do everything for me (for a cost) a.k.a. Amazon Prime. Easy right? Well not entirely, this cost me to drain my hard earned savings and got me in some debt because buying inventory is not cheap even overseas! Nonetheless, this was my first business and it supported me for the first 2 years, after I quit my 9-5 so not to shabby.
My second and current business in which I am a 50/50 partner, it’s also in eCommerce but I am doing it a bit differently. I make deals with manufacturers so, I don’t have to buy inventory and they ship all our sales. 🙂 So, sounds easy right? Well yes and no, this is heavily focused on product research, testing hundreds of products daily and fully driven by advertising on social media (cost $$$$). So that’s where most of the moolah is invested, those ads you see on FB/IG, etc. I also do some consulting on the side to help others start their own shops and FBA (Amazon).
I believe what sets me apart, it’s the #1 reason why I left the corporate life, freedom. I made the decision to educate myself to build a life in which I can work from anywhere. I also never thought it was possible to get an education outside of college. I got my bachelor’s degree but I feel that in the the last couple of years, I have learned more than the past decade combined. I encourage college because it was a great experience but know that if you are determined you can also get an education outside of college.
Blogging, it’s not paying all my bills yet, but I always disclose any posts that are collaborations/paid.
We’re interested to hear your thoughts on female leadership – in particular, what do you feel are the biggest barriers or obstacles?
Generally speaking, there is not many females in tech or online businesses in general. I never really think about this but recently, it was brought up to my attention. I showed up to consult a tech accessories business with their FBA (Fulfilled by Amazon) business and I sensed a bit of surprise by one of the employees but paid no mind. Later on, this employee admitted to me that when I showed up, she was a bit surprised. Obviously curious, I asked her why? She replied, “I expected a guy to show up to do this kind of tech work but, I am so happy to see a girl doing this!.” I, of course, laughed as I took it as a compliment.
A lack of women in tech, it’s the sad reality but we must continue to show up and stay educated and ahead of the curve! Specially with the fast-moving world of technology.
- Website: www.stylishlittlestories.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/stylishlittlestories/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StylishLittleStories/?ref=bookmarks