Diverse Gift Shop was established in 2018 by two sisters ready to make a bold statement through their products. As a new retail store, Diverse Gift Shop has already made strives to stand out. Tykeah and Tamara's brand epitomizes diversity through their products; as each item is bold and unique in its on way. "Gifts make you feel special and we love that!" Their goal is to create products not only to make you feel good about being yourself but to feel like someone was thinking of you specifically.
Q. What was the inspiration behind starting your business?
The lack of positivity we were seeing in the media (including social media), we felt like this was a great way to spread positivity. Especially in a world that can seem so divided and cold. Diverse Gift Shop is a way for us to make a statement.
Q.How did you get started? What steps did you take to launch your business?
First, we did a lot of research. We knew what we wanted our brand to stand for, but we had to do a lot of research to decide how we would effectively execute our ideas. We design each mug ourselves, so once we created the designs, we sent them to our manufacturer. We then completed our website and started to promote our brand via social media.
Q. What products or services does your business provide and who benefits from it?
We currently sale candles, coffee/travel mugs, jewelry, wall art and T-shirts. Each coffee mug and T-shirt is designed by us; so, you will only be able to get them through Diversegiftshop.com. We also create the sayings on the candles. In the future we would like to allow customers the option to add-on items such as gift boxes. This way when they receive the items all they have to do is package and give it as a gift. Everyone can benefit from our products; we make gift items to inspire everyone.
Q. What are some of the marketing techniques that you’ve taken to bring awareness and visibility to your brand?
We have taken advantage of social media to market our brand. In addition to Instagram we were featured in magazines (Fashion GXD magazine) and we were featured on a billboard in Time Square. We have also sold our products at local marketing events.
Q. What makes your brand stand out?
Our brand stands out because, we are creating products with unique looks. Our vision is to create a gift shop that you have never seen before with bold messages.
Q. Have you come across any roadblocks in your path to success? If so, how did you overcome them?
Yes, too many to count. Owing a business is a lot of work and there is not a step by step manual to explain how to be successful. We honestly learned from trial and error. Whenever we were faced with a roadblock we would sit down and access the problem and research how we could fix it. We are definitely still learning as we go because, you never stop learning.
Q. What are some of your favorite resources or tools that you like to use for your business?
Right now, we like to watch web seminars, and read books. We are reading books about entrepreneurship and financial freedom. This has been very helpful because it can change your way of thinking. We are also utilizing social media to market our brand.
Q. Any upcoming events, projects, or services that we should look out for?
Right now, we are focusing on expanding our brand. You will definitely start to see Diverse Gift Shop more often. Our main focus right now is adding features to our website where our customers can add gift boxes, tissue and wrapping paper at check out. This way when they receive their items, all they have to do is package them as a gift.
Q. Is it safe to say that you are living in your purpose?
Yes, we are, my sister and I love creativity and being able to express ourselves. We always knew we wanted to start a business. So, we decided to start a brand that would allow us to express ourselves. We want our brand to not only depict diversity but be powerful and uplifting in a simple way.
Q. Any great reads that you would like to recommend to our audience?
Yes, there is a book that we recently read by author Jen sincero titled " You Are A Badass At Making Money". This book is really good for anyone experiencing self-doubt and teaching you to let go of your fears. It teaches you how to change your mindset and how beneficial it is to step out of your comfort zone. We also read Atomic Habits by James Clear.
Q. What does success mean to you?
To us it means living in your purpose, success cannot be measured by money or a job title. success simply means to be happy and love what your do.
Q. What advice can you give to aspiring entrepreneurs who would like to turn their dreams into realities?
If you are just starting your brand, we suggest that you start by creating a business plan and figuring out what made you start this business, then do your research. You must be determined and focused with tunnel vision. Believe it or not making a lot of money is not a good reason to start a business because, there are so many obstacles you will have to face prior to even seeing a profit. If your main focus is only money you may struggle. Start a business that you are passionate about. Also, don't be afraid to be different or to stand out. There are going to be a lot of people who do not understand your vision. That is ok, just make sure you do not lose your vision and things will start to fall into place.
Q. Where can our audience find you?
You can follow us on Instagram @Diversegiftshop_ _. Also check out our website (Diversegiftshop.com) and subscribe to our newsletter to stay in the loop. Feel free to reach out to us via firstname.lastname@example.org as well.
Interview by: Leading with Lee Magazine
Photos by: Pilar Scratch Public Relations
Provided by: Pilar Scratch Public Relations