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Meet Trailblazer LaLa J

Today we’d like to introduce you to LaLa J.

LaLa, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
It was my freshman year of college at the University of West Georgia. The winter semester was just about to begin, I was out of work due to my school hours always interfering, and my mother called me right when I got back to campus and told me that she was done paying my car note because she personally felt I had completely let myself go. I was in a relationship that was reflecting a side of me that I did not notice but everyone around me picked up on. Alongside from the relationship; my ambition, my hustle, my grind, everything that I had always told myself I wanted to do and wanted to be was put on hold. I think a lot of it had to do with going from such a structured environment at home to having to adjust to such a free space with no one telling me what’s right, what’s wrong, what I should do, and what I shouldn’t do.

After I got off the phone with my mother, and this was no typical conversation of ours, I sat for hours to take in everything she said. She gave me the idea of starting a business. She told me to start my days earlier, spend my time more wisely, pay attention to what I give my attention and my time to, think about my purpose, and then get back to her. But no matter what, she was done paying my car note.

After I sat in silence for hours, I started to think about the demographics of my university. As a woman, I wanted to start a business that was catered to women. I would always see women promote their business services and products on social sites likes Twitter and in the universities group messages, so I took a few hours just scrolling and getting a feel for what was already being sold and who had already mastered their market on campus.

While doing my research, I saw that no one on campus sold hair extensions. Ironically, in 2013, my mother and aunt created an entire blueprint for a hair company that neither of them ever used. I called my mom, told her I was coming home to overlook the outline, and I set my mind on starting a hair business.

At the time, I only had $113 to my name, which was certainly not enough money to invest into a billion dollar industry. I used $30 of my $113 to create a website after I made it home to review the outline, used another $10 to purchase my business name, and used the remainder to sample the hair from the hair vendor.

I sat on the website maybe five-seven days because I had no clue how I was going to sell hair without having the hair and without having the money to get it. After a long night of thinking and noticing that my car note was due ONCE AGAIN and I didn’t have the money ONCE AGAIN, something told me to just post the hair as if it was in stock, and to use the money that I hoped I made from an order to then purchase the hair. I did just that, and before I knew it, I had not only mastered a sales tactic called drop-shipping but I had also made over $8,000 within that first week without touching a single bundle of hair and with using my very own marketing strategies.

I continued the steps I took in marketing, branding, strategizing, and by the end of the semester, my $113 turned into $25,000+ in profit.

At that time, I wanted a new start, I wanted a new reach, a different crowd. I was needing a fresh start because I had finally felt like I was getting back to the “me” that I always said I wanted to be. THE BOSS. THE HUSTLER. My focus was back, my energy was at an all-time high, and moving schools was going to put me exactly at the point I wanted to be.

I finished the semester out and registered for Kennesaw State University. When I switched schools, I noticed a lot of things different in the market that I now had to cater to on campus. I sat at home the first day after classes and wrote out my brand story. It was supposed to serve as my “press release” for all the newcomers I had on social media from my school and what I was going to pitch to all the new people I was going to market to on campus. While writing my brand story, I drifted into writing my mission statement that then lead me to find my purpose of business coaching and mass marketing.
Hair was no longer doing it for me. It made me money because of how great I am in sales but selling hair is a life style, not just a job and I couldn’t fit it into my lifestyle. I didn’t keep up with the hair trends, I didn’t switch my hair as often as I should have, and at the time I hated having to personally put myself “out there” on social media. So I backed out and went into selling in a lot of other different businesses. I sold any and everything you could think of that was new in stores and flying off the shelves. Clothes, shoes, accessories, technology, home furniture, anything that I saw people were loving and buying. Before I knew it, drop shipping lead me to earning six figures, which then lead to all the questions from supporters and followers on how to start and run a business. That is when I outlined my new business journey of becoming a business strategist.
I sat on the thought for a few weeks, by then I had met anew friend, and I called her after class one day and said, “This is going to be it. This is my passion. I am going to quit my job (I was working part-time at Wells Fargo and Champs at the time) and I am going to just go for it. She said, “Do it.”
January rolled around, I took four months from the day of that conversation, outlined my plan and how I was going to construct everything, saved enough money to fall back on if I fell on my face, put in my two weeks, and started advertising business and marketing services.
It started slow. I had a few clients come in the beginning, loved the service, and referred me to others. I was patience with the growth because I knew I had something that a lot of people wanted to learn. Before I knew it, I had hosted my first sold-out event in the summer, 2 more sold out events following, went viral in August from hosting another sold-out event I held that was noticed by quite a few big influencers on social media, and landed myself 1000+ customers overnight.
It’s been two years since then and I am now a wholesale distributor to many small companies, drop shipping my very own inventory, and a business strategist and marketing analyst for many. I would say I am where I am today because I took a lot of time, put in a lot of energy, work REALLY HARD and made a lot of sacrifice in aligning myself with where I always said I wanted to be and with who I always said I wanted to be.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The road has definitely been a bumpy one. I personally think the bumps are something you can’t avoid unless you play it small and play it safe. Some of the struggles I experience along the way was opening up, getting people to trust me, getting people to see the value in what I was offering, not seeing the fruits of my labor as quickly as I would have working for someone else, not knowing where to go next at times, not having a lot of people to talk and connect with about ideas because everyone doesn’t always relate or can relate, there were and still is a lot of bumps, I could go on forever.

But to the women who are just starting their journey, I would like to say it all starts with you and has to do with you every step of the way. DO NOT GIVE UP.

Confidence is key, have strength, be ready, and take it all one day at a time. It wasn’t until I started owning my loses and bruises from the bumpy roads I fell on as wins that I started to feel like no matter what, I have to and can keep going. Somedays I wanted to throw it all up in the air, but I prepare myself for whatever it is I have to deal with, take a step back to regain my strength and focus, and set my mind to just finishing the day strong. I remind myself through every low I feel I’m having that I asked to be where I am so I can’t back out just because it got a little frustrating. I always tell myself to be appreciative of the things that I have to complain about and to stop complaining.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about LalaJ Mass Marketing – what should we know?
I am a business strategist and a mass marketer. I help men and women all across the world take their business ideas and turn them into actual businesses by providing them with tools like vendors, website development, marketing strategies, and much more. I am pretty much a partner and manager to all my clients, assisting them in every step of the way of launching and growing their business to the goals they give me and that we set as a team.
As a brand, I am most proud of the 3 years I’ve been in business consistently and the value that I give to the people I have helped and even the people that I simply reach by what I post. I would have never imaged that at 22 I would be 3 years into running my own business. I also never imagined my voice and knowledge would be so powerful and helpful to others and it feels amazing to know that I am not just selling a product to the people who choose to support me but I am also giving them life lessons, mentorship, life coaching, personal development tips, and an experience that they will never forget.

I believe what sets me apart from others is the “real” that I give everyone. And when I say “real,” I don’t mean the bluntness and open book that I feel everyone is trying to give nowadays, the “this is me, this what you get, take it or leave it”, but the “real” when it comes to how entrepreneurship works, how success is really met, how money is really made, how hard the journey can really be, how much work has to be put in, and all the things I feel people really want to know. There are a lot of people and influencers giving out the food, but not a lot of them are giving out the recipe so that their supporters could learn how to feast for a life time without them having to constantly feed off what they post on Instagram or when the boss moves their hand and I think that I provide the recipe.

Do you feel like there was something about the experiences you had growing up that played an outsized role in setting you up for success later in life?
I think I’ve made it this far because my childhood was very structured.

My mother and all of the adults who were apart of my life were really big on grades, on being the best, on giving everything your all, and not conforming to what is “normal.” Everything was pretty set and stone for me as child growing up. I had a set schedule for everything, I was an athlete, so I didn’t have too much free time to partake in anything other than school work and traveling for competitions. Grades and remaining focused were very important, so anything that could have possibly been a distraction or was causing distractions such as cellphones, guys, and social media weren’t allowed.

And at a point, I felt doubt from a lot of “friends” and people who felt they just knew what path I would take being that they watched a lot of young women around me take a turning path. So apart of it was also wanting to show a lot of people what I was made of and what I could do. I’ve always had a thirst for knowledge, high achievement, and always wanting to be the difference in my community and to others but growing up and in grade school I didn’t know how to fully tap into it. I was still in the stage of learning and adapting to myself and everything I was taking in. I unintentionally dimmed my own light a lot, and would place myself behind others. I had a lot to say, just hadn’t established my voice or platform to say it.. my surroundings had a lot to do with it. I felt too ahead of my time often, felt like an OutKast often because I always had interest in the things no one else cared about.  my 10th grade year of high school my mother moved me from my high school and neighborhood.. it was a brand new performing arts school but she wanted better and always knew what was best. Going into a completely new setting and knowing no one is what made it all click for me. It was just the focus I needed. Right after we moved, I remember telling myself by 21 I would make a huge impact on everyone around me and everyone I connect with, didn’t know how, but I knew I would. Once I started to focus in more on it, it happened.


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LalaJ Mass Marketing Media Team

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