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There have been many successful women throughout history that have changed the world around them. Though not all are were recognized due to to sexist ideals back then, it still didn’t negate the impact that women have had on us.
Today, more women than ever, are changing the way we view business. Women are taking advantage of entrepreneurial leadership and doing business their way. With so many advances in technology and the way we interact with each other, women are now make a huge impact on our society, from industries in cosmetics to technological, even healthcare and financial areas.
Women who are investing in business want the same thing that most men who open up a company want- the opportunity to make money for themselves and to be able to call the shots while acquiring leadership abilities. As women have gained more traction in the business world, we have obtained some powerful leaders, from inspiring fashion brands such as Tory Burch to Zhang Xin, the founder of SOHO China, a real estate development firm.
A good education in investment is key to obtaining the most out of your business. For these women, it might not have came fast and easy, but overtime, gaining the knowledge needed to expand their businesses has truly paid off, even more than some might have thought.
Here are some things that you can takeaway from 3 of the world’s top female entrepreneurs, in varying business sectors that you can also apply to your own startup.
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#1) Geraldine Weiss
As the top performing student at the University of California’s financial school, she now owns Investment Quality Trends (IQ Trends), one of the the most successful newsletters about finance. Geraldine Weiss aka, the Grand Dame of Dividends, didn’t have it so easy as a financial maven starting out. As soon as she graduated college, she couldn’t find any work in what she majored in beyond a secretary position.
As a result of the hate mail that she received, claiming that women should have no voice in finance, she began signing off her posts as G.Weiss anonymously. Using astrology to guide her in her investments, Weiss grew up with two investor parents, grabbing her interest and eventually she taught herself about stocks.
“Stocks has it’s own individual profile of value, it’s own criteria for high and low dividend yield.” Says Weiss. ” Obviously when the yield is high, it would be time to buy the stock., and when the yield is low, it’s time to consider selling.”
Simply put, teach yourself the highs and lows of the market. Watch the trends and you’ll grow your funds exponentially. As women, it’s important to invest as means of saving for any uncertain times.
#2) Beyonce Knowles
When thinking of investments, Beyonce is probably the last person that comes to mind, but not only is she one of the world’s most successful entertainers, beginning with Destiny’s Child and moving onto the fashion realm with House of Dereon in 2004, she now has another venture under her belt with shop.beyonce.com.
As one of the world’s most powerful and influential figures, Beyonce has made a name for herself as a business woman, working hard all her life to make it where she is today. Her strong work ethic has landed her at Forbes’ #1 star on it’s “World’s Most Powerful Celebrities” list.
Her cunning ways of marketing have even helped her to sell 828,773 copies without any promotions or marketing tactics, earning her unorthodox habits top billing.
By posting her un-named album on Instagram, her post accompanied the message, “surprise!” Many people probably wouldn’t think to ever market in a sort of non-marketing way, but it worked for Beyonce and just goes to show you that conventions aren’t always the best tools to go by when getting a product out there.
According to publicity expert, Melissa Cassera, ” Beyoncé makes her fans feel adored and respected by giving them exactly what they want: backstage photos, candid vacation snaps, etc. It’s a personal aspect that consumers connect to, and you can apply that same methodology to your own social media presence.”
In many ways not forgetting your roots, so to speak, can help you gain the sort of notoriety that you seek. Although we all aren’t Beyonce, it helps to treat your customers as though they are your friends. Invite them into your world and allow them a say in influencing your marketing agenda and your business will flourish.
#3) Leslie Blodgett
When working for Bare Escentuals, I thought that the whole mineral makeup thing was brilliant. Not only did Bare Escentuals pretty much popularize a beauty trend, but the flawless, non-cakey foundation was truly lost to some people, who couldn’t fathom a powder to look just as glamorous as a liquid foundation, instantly winning over new clients and introducing them to a newfound system of doing makeup.
Leslie Blodgett, the former product developer for Max Factor and Neutrogena and now founder of Bare Minerals (Bare Escentuals), took over this company when it was struggling in 1994. Taking it to QVC, a home shopping network, she re-branded the marketing and the rest is history. In 2006, you probably noticed those powdered makeup tutorials popping up on your television screen, which was all the work of Blodgett’s ingenuity.
From then on, other makeup companies began following suit and the powder makeup empire sprung up over night. Although mineral makeup might have seemed like a trend, the lightweight feel and flawless finish keeps loyal fans coming back for more.
“What I realize is when you touch a woman’s face a few minutes after you meet her, you form an emotional bond; it’s powerful stuff,” says Blodgett. “ You have to hire people who love people, and you have to take care of your customers. Sometimes they come to you after a bout of cancer or an emotional trauma, so what we do is not superficial kind of stuff that only helps women look good for their husbands. We’re helping women feel good about themselves.”
With community in mind more than making a sale, Blodgett’s business took off. With copious amounts of time spent watching QVC, Blodgett decided not to sell her Bare Escentuals in department stores or drugstores, but instead wanted the intimate feel of a boutique.
In 2012, Blodgett received an acquisition for $1.7 billion from Shiseido. “While we didn’t go looking for Shiseido,we were looking for better inroads into Asia. Shiseido has been in business for 140 years with distribution in 87 countries, so it makes perfect sense,” declared Leslie.
While it makes perfect sense to keep the company running under her name, Bare Escentuals eventually succumbed to the economic pressure and had to sell. Although Leslie is no longer CEO, she is back to where she started as product developer, which has given her a chance to step back and re-brand the airbrushing that seems to infiltrate it’s ads that goes against what the brand stands for.
“What I like is that I finally have the time to spend more time with customers and employees. Now that I’m back where I started, I realize I’ve been missing some of the fun. Recently, while reviewing the photos for a new ad campaign, “something bothered me. What bothered her were that all the photos for the ads were of models and had been retouched. “They looked fake, and that’s not who we are.”
While Blodgett’s title has changed, what the brand represents is more important than creating false images of what the makeup can do. Rather than fool her customers, Blodgett is determined to let the results speak for themselves. In the end, woman want real, which will make a great deal more money.