Hey it’s Evan Carmichael and today we’re looking at how Michelle Phan went from living on food stamps to multi-millionaire YouTube entrepreneur and the 3 lessons that you can learn from her success.
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1) Do what you love:
As a teenager Michelle Phan started a personal blog talking about her fantasy life she wished she lived with lots of money and time to get dressed up. She took a waitress job as a way to make money because she got turned down to work at the local Lancome beauty counter… they said she didn’t have enough sales experience. She did her first makeup tutorial in response to two readers on her blog who asked her how she did her makeup. She felt it would be easier to show it than write it so she created a seven-minute video response and put it up on YouTube. She initially thought only those two girls would watch it but soon found people asking her to do more and more videos. She kept making videos because she loved helping people and slowly the videos got better and better. Videos like how to make a facial mask out of unscented organic kitty litter and “How To Get Lady Gaga’s Eyes” makeup tutorials took off and rocketed her to stardom. She loved what she did and it came through in her videos. Do what you love.
2) Model Success:
Michelle Phan wanted the focus of her channel to be on teaching so she looked to teachers who inspired her, especially Bob Ross. Ross was an American painter and TV host. He was the creator of The Joy of Painting, a TV program that taught people how to make oil paintings and broke it down into simple steps. Michelle loved his soothing voice and how even the casual viewer could learn how to paint from watching the show. To this day she still plays Bob Ross tutorials in the background of the room when she’s working as a way to relax.
To expand his business, Ross started selling his own art supplies and how-to books. Today Michelle Phan has her own line of makeup supplies and a book. You don’t have to figure everything out yourself. If someone has already accomplished what you’re trying to do, model their success, even if they’re from another generation.
3) Partner up:
As Michelle Phan grew in popularity she wanted to have a bigger impact on the world and she recognized that partnerships would get her there faster. Her first break came when an executive at Lancome, the company that wouldn’t hire her for a counter job because she didn’t have sales experience, Googled around and found one of her tutorials where she was showing people how to apply makeup on a plane. They reached out and signed her as a spokesperson. She has continued to partner with companies to make her own cosmetic line with L’Oreal called “em”, create a talent network with Endemol Beyond, launch a record label with Cutting Edge Group, and release a book with Random House. She wanted to inspire more people and build her business at the same time. Forming partnerships helped get her there faster. Partnering up can work for your business.
So remember: Do what you love, model success, and partner up and who knows? You might become the next superstar entrepreneur!
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