Adam: Thanks again for taking the time to go behind the brand. First things first, though, what is something about you that the many people who follow you don’t know?
Olia: I am half Persian, half French and speak French fluently! Also I’ve said it before but a lot of people don’t realize I’m a licensed esthetician!
Adam: How did you get here? How did you become an influencer? What is the inside story?
Olia: Interesting story! I grew up with a French esthetician mother and skin care is VERY big in Europe. She always wanted me to follow in her footsteps and become an esthetician as well and since I grew up around it all I was stubborn and said no (like most kids do). I ended up deciding to go to college and study accounting (got my degree) and worked in a CPA firm for 2 years. After year 1 I realized immediately it was not what I wanted to do with my life and I felt helpless and lost. I thought to myself, “I should have listened to my mom and done what she does” because I’ve always loved beauty. So I decided at that time it wasn’t too late to go back to school and become an esthetician which is what I did. Once achieving my license, I quit my accounting job and went to work full time with my mother. I was so happy and instantly my life felt more fulfilled. It was then that I decided to start a blog and share my tips with other women who would ask me questions regarding, beauty, skincare and fashion. From there, I juggled the two (mostly doing my blog as a hobby) and it quickly grew! My business with blogging started to grow so much that I moved onto focusing 100% on this and that is where I am today! To this day I still have my license active and I’ve always had this dream of creating my own skincare line that I truly stand and believe in which is when I decided to launch my own skincare line O Cosmétiques and I am so excited for this next chapter!
Adam: What advice do you have for those interested in working with influencers? How do you do decide who to work with?
Olia: For those interested in working with influencers I think it’s important to find your right “fit.” Also realize that what we are doing (although it hasn’t been an active career for long) is a career and we are all working as well. Creating content takes a tremendous amount of time which I feel sometimes gets forgotten. I usually decide who to work with based on what sparks my interest. If I receive a pitch from the brand, I usually know immediately if it’s something I love and want to explore or if I feel its just not the right fit. If I’m not familiar with the brand I love doing a little research and going with my gut instinct on their mission and how I feel I could contribute!
Adam: What advice do you have for those interested in becoming influencers?
Olia: One of my biggest pieces of advice to those interested in becoming an influencer is to do it for the right reasons. Find a category that you are super passionate about and be consistent. I feel a lot of people don’t realize how important consistency is and with the internet right at your fingertips there is really so much competition so you want to try to keep up and stay relevant to your audience. Another thing I feel that is important is to never do it for the wrong reasons like money. When I first started blogging, I truly had NO idea it could ever become a career and I solely did it because I was incredibly passionate about sharing my tips/tricks with people. It just gave me so much joy to create content that others were reading. Success always comes when you are passionate about something so always do it for the right reasons!
Adam: What is the biggest misconception about the influencer world and life as an influencer?
Olia: Biggest misconception about the influencer world is that we don’t work! It drives me crazy because I’ll be honest — I work 10x longer hours and busier days than when I was an accountant at a CPA firm. Keep in mind, people who are bloggers/influencers full time mean that they are working 24/7 on their career. I don’t get a day off – I work days, nights and weekends. My phone is always on me and I’m constantly responding to emails. The difference is, I do enjoy my job very much so it never truly feels like “work” but that is because I love what I do. Another misconception is how easy people think it is. Trust me, there is SO much that goes into a photo and the planning that people don’t have any idea of and so for that I would just say always be respectful of others because we don’t know the struggles they are going through and how easy/hard their job is. We are all working hard to be the best version of ourselves in every way.
Adam: What has being an influencer taught you about branding and marketing? What are your three best marketing and branding tips?
Olia: It’s taught me how to navigate business a lot more honestly. Branding is incredibly important in this field and you want to always be consistent again with your brand. It has taught me how to work with brands and the things that brands look for more intensely.
Adam: Who are the best leaders you have been around and what have you learned from them? What do you believe everyone should know about leadership?
Olia: Honestly, this may sound cheesy but I have always just looked up to my mother when it came to her work ethic. She came not speaking a word of English and having nothing to building a successful business and taking care of her children to make sure they have the best of everything. I have always looked to her for inspiration and drive. Because of her ambition, I started working at the age of 15 years old and have been ever since. I’ve always been determined to do everything that I can to create the best future for myself. Having your own business truly is a test because there is no one to tell you to wake up, go to sleep, get work done and pay your bills. It’s all on you to be an adult and create success for your life and there’s something to be said about that.
Adam: What are your hobbies and how have they shaped you?
Olia: I love to work out regularly and has shaped me into an overall healthier and conscious person. I just purchased my 3rd home last year so I’ve been loving renovating and working on it and slowly making it my dream home! I also just adopted a dog (so now I have 2) and I love them so much! I love taking them for walks, parks, the beach and spending time with them! Although I don’t have children, caring for pets teaches you skills to be responsible for something other than yourself and I feel teaches you many valuable lessons.