Educate yourself — Enroll in courses. Invest in coaches because they’re going to help you propel a lot faster than when you’re figuring things out yourself. I’ve been trying to figure out the online business for more than 7 years, but it was only when I started learning from someone, I discovered how to do it better.
The COVID19 pandemic has disrupted all of our lives. But sometimes disruptions can be times of opportunity. Many people’s livelihoods have been hurt by the pandemic. But some saw this as an opportune time to take their lives in a new direction.
As a part of this series called “How I Was Able To Pivot To A New Exciting Opportunity Because Of The Pandemic”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Mye De Leon.
Mye De Leon is a hand lettering maven, business mentor for creatives, and mastermind behind The Elite Creators. Her mission is to help creatives grow past “starving artist” and into six-figure success that doesn’t require 80-hour work weeks. Mye’s Elite Creators have landed murals, commercial projects, launched their own products, doubled their annual income goals and made over 109K dollars in the middle of the COVID pandemic.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we start, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?
I’m the eldest of four siblings, and we grew up in our family bakery business. I watched my parents work day and night until they’re exhausted just to keep the family afloat. I’ve seen how it was too much hard work for them, and at a young age, I always knew that it’s a business I never wanted to pursue. I wanted more, and that never changed when I was growing up. I’ve always been an overachiever, and I find ways to make things happen. When I was about to stop studying in high school because of money issues, I found a way to get a scholarship. I made sure to find another scholarship in College so I can continuously study and earn a degree. I became the first female Engineering student to land a University President’s Scholarship Award.
Those are skills that I still leverage up to this day. Knowing what I want gives me the best motivation to achieve whatever I put my heart into.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
My favorite has always been the quote by Buddha, “The mind is everything. What you think you become.”
I’m a dreamer, and I’ve always wanted to get what I’ve been dreaming about as a kid. I’m pretty much aware there’s really no magic formula to that and if I badly wanted to get it, I need to start taking action. I never question my reasoning behind thinking of achieving the impossible. As an optimist, I’m confident that if I put my mind to anything, I’m capable of doing it.
Most of what I have accomplished in life is a result of thinking — nothing is impossible.
Is there a particular book, podcast, or film that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?
The year that I discovered Jenna Kutcher’s podcast was the year that my life and business changed. Hers is a story of a typical woman who achieved great things because she pursued what she wants. Whenever I listen to her episodes, I feel like looking in the mirror and seeing my reflection through her stories. It validated my thoughts that I can be anything I wanted to be.
That same year, I purchased my first online business course, started growing my email list, and created content to nurture them. I sold a course idea to my email list, and that made over 20,000 dollars. From there, I worked and launched the program publicly in February 2019. It made 6-figures in total (including pre-launch and public launch). It allowed us to go back home, bought our house, and get my husband out of the corporate world. We’re now working on the business together.
I don’t know if I would’ve achieved the same if I didn’t discover her podcast and got inspired by her story.
Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion. Can you tell our readers about your career experience before the Pandemic began?
I was already in the online space before the Pandemic began. I’ve sold my first online course in 2019 and made a 6-figure income from that launch. I opened a membership program the same year and The Elite Creators VIP which is my 1on1 coaching program. I planned so many things for 2020 and everything just went off the tracks.
What did you do to pivot as a result of the Pandemic?
When the lockdown happened almost the same time globally, I was in the middle of a launch, and I wasn’t sure how to pivot at that point. I had no time to prepare, so I just get on with the launch, changed my messaging to address the Pandemic issue and its effects on everybody, but because it was too early that time, my sales goal was affected. Many creatives lost their jobs, and everyone is just scared of opening their wallet because we don’t know what will happen.
I have high-tier products, and people are interested in learning but are too afraid to invest, especially artists. So, to cater to their needs without breaking the bank, I started offering lower-tier products so they can start on their journey to kick off their creative business and make money from the very thing they love doing (even in the middle of a pandemic). That was exactly what they needed, and I started selling more again. I also never put my products on sale. But this year, I offered a Black Friday sale that helped me get an extra 20,000 dollars.
Can you tell us about the specific “Aha moment” that gave you the idea to start this new path?
It wasn’t exactly an Aha moment, but more like it was the voice of my customers. They’ll respond to my emails about wanting to be in my programs, but the timing isn’t right because of the Pandemic and the uncertainty we’re facing. The interest is there, but they’re protective of their money. I badly wanted to help, and the only thing I can think of is offering lower-tier products. That wasn’t part of my business model before, but now, it is.
How are things going with this new initiative?
This pivot from offering exclusively higher tier products to offering lower-tier products helped me think about my business model from a different perspective, and it gave me new ideas to pursue for the coming years. I learn that you can make big money even if you’re offering a less expensive product. It also gave opportunities for creatives to start their own business even during this very challenging time. That, to me, is a big win!
Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
The first person I can think of is my husband, Kris. He sacrificed a lot and did not pursue his own passion to give way to what I was doing at the time. He stayed in the corporate world so I can do what I do best. So now that we’re working on the business together, all the sacrifices were worth it. I also have my coach Ron Reich to thank because he taught me so many great things about my business and, of course, Laura Belgray of Talking Shrimp. She was my very first mentor, and I learned how to write better emails because of her.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started in this new direction?
I got more new clients since I started in this new direction and the best thing about that is yes, they might’ve gotten a lower-tier product, but I can nurture and continuously help them so they’d eventually become future clients of my higher tier programs. It’s a lot easier to sell to the people who already purchased something from you than those who are new to your business.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me before I started leading my organization” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
- Educate yourself — Enroll in courses. Invest in coaches because they’re going to help you propel a lot faster than when you’re figuring things out yourself. I’ve been trying to figure out the online business for more than 7 years, but it was only when I started learning from someone, I discovered how to do it better.
- Learn to write — I never knew writing would be an essential part of my business. I thought it was just a thing for bloggers and authors, but it wasn’t. Now, I make an effort to write every day to get ideas flowing and improve my writing skills.
- Start before you’re ready — Don’t wait for permission. Don’t wait until you’re ready or when everything is perfect. I’ve had so many great ideas in the past, but I put them on hold because I thought I wasn’t “good enough” or needed more experience and more audience. Before I knew it, someone has already done it, and I lost that opportunity.
- Niche down — I feared alienating people who are following me, so I try to make an effort to cater to “everyone,” but that didn’t get me more clients nor the income I was trying to make. Getting clear on who I’m serving helped me nail down my messaging and target the right people who actually need my products and services.
- Do less and do it better — When working in the corporate world, we are required to multitask. It’s a skill that our bosses praise, so I did the same thing when I had my own online business. I was spreading myself too thin, trying to do more but not really accomplishing a lot. When I read the book Essentialism, I realized I was doing way too many things, and not everything is helping my business. From there, I learned to identify what’s essential and ignore everything else.
So many of us have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. Can you share the strategies that you have used to optimize your mental wellness during this stressful period?
I’ve dealt with serious bouts of stress and anxiety during this time, which triggered my Myofascial Syndrome even more. To divert my attention from the news, I stayed away from social media and focused on getting indoor plants. I learned so much from taking care of them — understanding their behavior, their needs, and whatnot. Most of all, I learned to relax and take things easy. I enjoyed repotting with my husband and daughters, and it became our bonding time away from any gadgets.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be?
I have a son with special needs, and I understand the challenges of raising someone who isn’t “typical,” so if I can, I want to empower parents of children with special needs so they can pursue what they want despite all the challenges that come with raising our kids.
Is there a person in the world whom you would love to have lunch with, and why? Maybe we can tag them and see what happens!
Marie Forleo. I’ve been a fan since her YouTube brick wall days and I learned a lot from her so I just want to thank her for empowering women and small business owners to share our gift to the world.
How can our readers follow you online?
You can find me at myedeleon.com. That’s where I share most of my valuable content for creative entrepreneurs. I also am inviting you to listen to my podcast, The Confident Creators Show. On Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, my handle is @myedeleon.
Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!