Be Blogalicious April 2014 - Be Blogalicious

April 2014 Archive

Solopreneur Spotlight: Sonia Smith-Kang, Founder of Mixed Up Clothing


Sonia Smith Kang is the Founder and Creator of Mixed Up Clothing. She is mixed: Mexican and Black, born in Puerto Rico and raised in Hawaii before moving to California and marrying her Korean husband. Together they raise four beautiful multicultural children. The family speak three languages! Before starting Mixed Up Clothing, Sonia worked as a RN and was taught how different cultures react to being in the hospital. Off duty, she sewed clothes for her kids and when the orders grew out of control, Mixed Up Clothing was born! She uses the beautiful clothes she creates as the vehicle to teach and celebrate diversity and inclusion.

Do you work from home or out of an office?


Do you work alone? Work with a partner or team?


Tell us about your typical work day.

I start at 6:30AM, checking emails and looking at social media. This helps me prioritize my day. Then it’s shower time and getting kids up and out to their schools. By 10AM, I’m downtown starting in on designs, checking in on production, marketing and publicity, working with interns or prepping for photo shoots. I leave downtown to start afternoon pick ups around 2. Kids go off to Korean language tutoring then it’s off to their Taekwondo or other sports. By 5PM, we are back at home for dinner then kiddie showers and they’re off to sleep. I’m up until about 11 or 12AM setting up the next day’s calendar, finishing up blog posts, social media prep or sending off emails.

Then to do it again the next day!

What are your most productive work hours? 

10am – 2pm 

What is your biggest challenge as a solopreneur? 

TIME or lack there of. Having to balance mommy hood with being a solopreneur. And whether you are being mom or businesswoman, being fully “present” is hard. I’m constantly having to work on it.

What is the one piece of advice you wish you knew when you started out? 

Ask for what you want, you might get it. 

If you were given $5k, what would you do with the money? 

I would hire part time either as an assistant with my kids or with the business. 

What is your favorite book and why?

Lean In: Women. Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg The book encourages woman to get in there and get it done. You don’t have to be “bossy” to be successful and you don’t have to apologize or shy away from being a leader. 

If you could have dinner with three people, who would you pick?

Sheryl Sandberg, Mary J. Blige, and Oprah

What is your dream job? Are you doing it right now?

Doing it! 

Mixed Up Clothing is for anyone interested in learning about another culture as each item of clothing comes with a hangtag that tells about the culture. The company uses children’s clothing as the vehicle to teach; Celebrating cultural diversity and inclusion.  To learn more about the company and peek behind the scenes, follow the blog and join the conversation on Twitter. 

Solopreneur Spotlight: Quiana Agbai


Quiana Agbai is a multi-passionate mompreneur who runs a blog on urban family life called Harlem Love Birds. In addition she runs Destination Wedinars, helping brides plan the destination wedding of their dreams and she just launched Trifecta Media Group with her sisters specializing in media, marketing, graphic design and PR services.

Do you work from home or in an office? 

I work from home.

Do you work alone? Work with a partner or team? 

For my blog and Destination Wedinars I work alone and for Trifecta Media Group I work with a team. 

Tell us about your typical work day.

My family is my first priority so once getting my daughter off to school I work between 10AM – 2PM.  Each day kicks off with making sure my morning’s blog post is ready to publish, returning emails and getting into NYC  for meetings for my brand ambassadorship. Since I do work at home I also spend some time doing domestic things like cooking/cleaning/laundry. 

What is your biggest challenge as a solopreneur?

Time allocation – I’ve been working through different systems for time management to find what works for me. With small children (a 3 year old and one on the way soon) and their unpredictable schedules it’s hard to stick to a hard routine!

When your work day gets stressful, how do you de-stress? 

I usually will just take a nap – always makes me feel better. I also re-affirm the things I am able to accomplish vs. what I cannot. I’ve realized I can only accomplish about 3 major things each day and I’m thankful for those 3 things.

What is the biggest/best investment you made toward your brand/blog?

My Macbook Air – I’ve been saying for years I’d get one and I just did! 

If you were given $5k, what would you do with the money? 

Pay someone to completely take my blog from just a blog to a rebranded, SEO, WordPress website for Brand Quiana. With 3 main profit streams I want my name to be the portal to all I do and it gives me a headache thinking of doing this reorg all on my own.

If you could outsource one task so that you can be effective at your brand/blog, what would that be?

Upkeeping SEO

What is the one piece of advice you wish you knew when you started out? 

Think in terms of Brand You in everything you do – I just started my blog as an online journal and didn’t think larger than that initially. It could be a good thing though because it came from a very pure/non-profit motivated place!

What is your favorite book and why?

For business: Never Eat Alone – it’s had the most actionable business book I’ve found most helpful for networking; I read it in my early 20s and it set the tone for how I build and maintain relationships. For personal/life: The Bible – all around timeless advice.


Quiana unplugs listening to music to uplift her mood. Follow her musings on twitter: @HarlemLoveBirds and engage with her on her favorite platform, Instagram. 

Solopreneur Spotlight: Erin Martin – @BagLadies Radio


Erin Martin is a Blogger and producer/host of a nationally broadcast and premier online radio show: BagLadies, targeting women which speaks to the reality of life, living and being a woman.

Do you work from home or office? 

I work from home.

Do you work alone? With a partner or team? 

I work alone. 

Tell us about your typical day?

After sending kids to school, I typically check platform activity and update content on Instagram, Google +, Twitter, Blog and etc. Afterwhich, I respond to emails, conduct follow-ups, conference calls and identify potential sponsorship opportunities. I also manage social media activity for individual clients, curate content, and etc. The second part of my day is typically dedicated to client social media activity. I attend events as my schedule permits in the evening. Upon picking kids up, my time is dedicated to dinner time, homework  and bedtime. Afterwhich, I check emails, do follow-ups and manage platform activity. No real set routine. I get it in however I can, whenever I can and wherever I can, 24/7. 

What are your most productive work hours? 

My most productive hours tend to be in the mornings between 9-11a and afternoon between 2-4p. 

What is your biggest challenge as a solopreneur? 

Doing EVERYTHING entirely on my own in addition to being a single parent. Finding the balance between family and work which requires making a conscious effort to not open my laptop or pick up the phone. Oh, and it’s very difficult to delegate because I’m so accustomed to doing everything on my own.

When your workday get stressful, how do you de-stress? 

Just detach from social media for a bit. Not tweeting, posting, nothing. Fix a cup of tea. Take a break and get outside to grab a bite or go to my Parent’s house. As soon as I step through the door, I feel immediately relaxed and calmer. I go there to work oftentimes too.

What are your favorite apps or websites that help you succeed in your blog/business? 

I don’t have any one app in particular that helps me manage my activities/deliverables. I keep and electronic and hard-copy to-do list. I text myself so I don’t forget stuff and I use my calendar. I know, real modern LOL!

What is your favorite social media platform? 

My faves right now are Google + and Instagram. Both are just personal and I can achieve a great balance between sharing my personal life and my professional life (my brand). And both are good platforms that allow me to solicit engagement from my followers, my audience. And I see consistent growth.

If you were given $5k, what would you do with the money? 

Invest in my brand – New PC (desperately needed), new camera (desperately needed) and other marketing materials.

If you could have dinner with three people, who would you invite? 

Only three? Beyonce, Nene Leakes and Myleik Teele.

What are your favorite brands to follow on social media and why?

Nordstrom, Sole Society, Gain,  and Wegmans because they engage. Because they are responsive. Because they seemingly care about their customers.

What is your dream job? Are you doing it right now? 

Not yet. I love what I do but not fulfilling my full dream yet. That which I started as far as the show was so unintentional as far as the popularity and the response and opportunities that it has facilitated. As a result, it exposed me to the vast and expansive scope that is social media and I love it. I love the ever changing scope of social media. I was a writer before I even started the show. I’ve turned left in the last 6 months and have been rebranding in a sense. I had so many approach me about how I came up with the concept for the show, how did I decide on a platform to use, etc. And I so enjoy speaking about how I did it, how I endeavored to be just candid and transparent when it comes to on-air content. I love when explaining utilization of social media and how it benefits one’s brand that “lightbulb” moment. Anyway, my absolute dream job would be to take my show mainstream to satellite radio. So still be the host but have a production team behind it and more options for accessibility and a much larger platform which would enable me to pull more guests, solicit sponsorships, and etc.


When Erin is not dishing it up on Twitter and Google+, the DC resident enjoys unplugging enjoying a meal and outing with her best girlfriends.


Solopreneur Spotlight: Monica Barnett, Curator for Blueprint For Style

Early during Monica Barnett’s tomboy days, her soccer coach noticed her dirty cleats and gave her some sage advice: “When you look good, you feel good and when you feel good, it changes your game.” As the chief curator for Blueprint for Style, wardrobe styling and image consulting company, based in Washington, DC, her goal is to inspire individuals to define and change their style game for the better because you NEVER get a second chance to make a first impression!



Do you work from home or out of an office space.


Do you work alone? With a partner or team?


Tell us about your typical work day.

I wake up and debate doing some form of exercise. I spend 30 seconds thanking God for everything he’s done and hasn’t done on my behalf. I spend 10 minutes to clear out any emails that are junk. I send texts and then go back to sleep for about 30-60 minutes. After that, it’s on! I send out emails first thing so people have all day to reply. I confirm meetings across the next 48 hours and then I allow my mind to wander for a bit. I’ve taken to doing one big ask each day. (We’ll see if it pays off.) Mid-day exercise and then some food. I head out (now) but try to make it back by 3pm before rush hour. Another round of email answers/replies. I think about clothes and read a magazine. It’s then time to focus on TV or reading….then off to bed

What are your most productive work hours?

8am – 11am

How do you unplug? How often do you unplug?

Yikes, I don’t unplug often, but it means no tech. I’m trying to do 30 minutes tech-free per day.

What three apps or websites you MUST visit daily.

Evernote, Instagram and

If you could have dinner with three people, who would you invite?

Mrs. Obama, Sheryl Sandberg and Diane Von Furstenberg.

If you could outsource one task so that you can be effective at your brand, what would that be?

Creating blog posts. 

What is your favorite book and why?

The Noticer because it teaches you to observe and understand the power of perspective.


Visit to get the latest style updates and tips. You can also buy Monica’s book: “Without Saying A Word: The Silent Power of Style here.

Solopreneur Spotlight: Antoinette Sykes


Antoinette Sykes is creator and founder of Antoinette Sykes International, LLC. As a Business Growth Expert & Life Coach, she helps business owners and organizations expand their message for impact and increase sales; while developing leadership skills from the inside out. She’s also a Blogalicious Conference Speaker alumni. (2012)

Do you work from home or out of an office space?

Home. Panera spots are my “out of home office” locale or the library.

Do you work alone? Work with a partner or team?

Virtual Team. I have a virtual assistant/online business manager and graphic design consultant.

Tell us about your typical work day. 

On any given day it runs the gamut of gym time, walking the dog, eating while working and returning emails in the early morning. Like most, you jump over to social media and promise not to spend too much time. From there, the white board calls my name in my office of my “to-do” list. That includes sales calls at the TOP of the list each day, “touching” someone w/my message + having coaching calls. My calendar serves as my “alarm” and twice a week, I’m at a client site for the DC government where I’m offering executive coaching or a training session.

Snoooze…I know.

Thursdays and Fridays are my “creative days” where I write and develop new projects or flush out ideas. Oh..this is all inclusive of dance breaks or singing from the top of my lungs to my favorite Pandora song in rotation. 

What is your biggest challenge as a solopreneur?

Being “solo”. And by that I mean, not having someone next to you to speak with like in a workplace setting. Or even just hearing the “buzzing” about. That’s the biggest challenge for me.

When your work day gets stressful, how do you de-stress?

UNPLUG – take a walk outside or hit the gym, call a friend for laughs & giggles. Step away from technology. Meditate and pray.

If you could have dinner with three people, who would you invite?

Donald Trump, Oprah Winfrey & Will Smith

If you could outsource one task so that you can be effective at your brand, what would that be?

Blog manager/researcher.

Share one piece of advice you wish you knew when you started out.

That it takes a while to find your groove…all aspects of it.

What is your dream job? Are you doing it right now?

I’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur – yes. But expanding that to a TV show is the bigger dream for my message to reach greater masses.


We should have asked Antoinette what is her favorite song to dance to during her breaks! Check out Antoinette’s Business and Leadership Boutik and circle her on G+.

Solopreneur Spotlight: Teresa Vincent @TTsTrippin


Teresa or TT for short, created her own niche/ brand by combining 2 words Journey and Journalist to make “Journeyist.” She dubs herself the #Joyful Journeyist because she believes “Life is a Journey, FULL OF JOY, and meant to be shared.” On her website:, she shares her life adventures as you see the world through her eyes.

Do you work from home or in an office? 

I work from home, (which is all over the World). My home base is a home in Texas but to me: “Home Sweet Home” is really WORLD SWEET WORLD!

Do you work alone? Work with a partner or team?

Alone. My silent partner is my Boss, Jesus! He is in charge of my day and has final say so on my products.

Tell us about your typical work day.

After about 4 hours of sleep, I get up (with no alarm clock) and start writing. If I am on the road, I head out at sunrise and pound the pavement till sunset. I call this #streetwalking. Walking and talking to people, photographing the beautiful surroundings, hearing their stories and taking notes. Then I head back to wherever I am sleeping and load pics on my computer and relive my day. I start writing a feature (typically turns into MANY features) and fall asleep sometime after midnight. Exhausted and HAPPY to have spent a day with family I just hadn’t met yet. (I don’t believe in strangers)

What are your most productive work hours?

Between 11 pm and 4 am is usually when I get my best writing done. I worked overnight shift as a Medic in the military for many years. My brain and body just continue to be on night shift. The daylight hours are reserved for actual streetwalking.

What is the biggest/best investment you’ve made towards your brand/blog? 

Purchasing the trademark for my name/brand that I created: #Joyful Journeyist. I knew it was going to eventually bring income to me and my family and I wanted to make sure I retained all rights to it.

What book are you currently reading? What is it about?

“Your Life Calling” by Jane Pauley. Its about redefining retirement and “Reimagining the Rest of Your Life”. I am already living this book and am thankful she already wrote it for me! One less book I have to write in the future.

What is your dream job? Are you doing it right now?

I AM! Living a life full of JOY, travel, and sharing my love and passion with the world. Inspiring women and giving them the confidence to travel independently and shedding the norms that society and media have placed on them. Diversity is Beauty and we should ALL embrace what makes us different (our outside appearance, culture, upbringing) while celebrating the things that make us the same (our hearts and our desire to just fit in and be loved). Changing media by liposuctioning the CRAP out of it, redefining what “WE” want as a society and changing the view of the Golden Years are probably my top 3 missions as I find and live my purpose on a daily basis.

Connect with Teresa on Twitter at @TTsTrippin and see her beautifully curated images on Instagram.

Solopreneur Spotlight: Talia Witherspoon – Curator of @TheSassyNation


Meet Talia.

A freelance digital journalist, writing “artista”, sometimes photographer and curator of Sassy Nation residing in Atlanta, Ga. A lifestyle specialist; her brand represents natural beauty, style, travel, food and healthy, simplistic living with a highbrow aesthetic.

Do you work from home or out of an office? 

At home. 

Do you work alone? Work with a partner or team? 

Mostly alone, but I have one friend who has begun to help me with some branding and marketing. 

Tell us about your typical work day. 

On Thurs-Sat I’m typically filling breakfast delivery orders for #SassyAppetit, my latest endeavor– an extension of my Sassy Nation lifestyle brand. However, Monday-Wednesday my day normally starts between 8:30-9 a.m.  I try to go for a run first thing in the morning, followed by a shower, breakfast and tea. By doing things for myself first it really sets the tone for the rest of my day. 

My first tasks as far as work is concerned is to check my email and read through/post to my social media accounts as well as accounts for clients who I work with. Once those tasks are complete I focus my energy on my writing assignments from my editors or my personal projects. Alternately, if nothing is pending (which is unusual) or I need a diversion from writing, I typically research. I work on pitches, I brainstorm ideas for my brand, I reach out to contacts (new and old).

When I get bored with that I might read a chapter or two from one the many books I’ve got in circulation. If I don’t feel like reading I do coursework online to brush up on my tech skills or listen to my Spanish learning CDs. The point is I try to fill my time with activities that are meaningful to me and help me feel like I’m constantly moving forward in some positive way. I take an hour lunch break around 3, and I make one of my #SassySmoothies. If the weather is nice I may go outside to get some sun with my dog. Afterwards, I get back on my computer and get back on task, typically finishing up my day at around 6-7.

What are your most productive work hours?

I think I’m productive throughout the day, but I’m probably the most alert and focused in the afternoon.

What are your favorite apps or websites to help you succeed in your blog/business?

I love Evernote and Dropbox. 

If you could have dinner with three people, who would you invite?

Sade (Because I love her), Oprah and FLOTUS. 

If you could outsource one task so that you can be effective at your brand/blog, what would that be? 

The marketing. It can be fun but it’s never ending, lol. 

To learn more about Talia and how she is #KeepinItSassy, follow her on Instagram and check out #SassyAppetit. She’s creating greatness!

Solopreneur Spotlight: Vernetta R. Freeney

vernetta (1)

Meet today’s solopreneur: Vernetta Freeney from Houston, Texas. Vernetta is the creator of Fusion Tour which creates intimate business conversations for women solopreneurs, blogpreneurs, and socialpreneurs.  She  says women entrepreneurs get better results having intimate business conversations instead of attending networking events. Introverts, look into Fusion Tour and find out when is the next event.

 Do you work from home or out of an office space? 

Yes from home, library and Starbucks.

Tell us about your typical work day?

I usually don’t start working until 10am. Before that I get myself together mentally. I may read or write. I work until 6pm online (If I’m at the library or Starbucks). Then I go home and work on proposals, presentations, researching and etc. I usually work until I pass out. 

What are your most productive work hours? 

10pm – 2am 

What is your biggest challenge as a solopreneur? 

Not caving to the pressure of trying to get all things done at that moment. To actually pace myself and do what I can, when I can.

If you were given $5K, what would you do with the money? 

Invest in my business by adding contract workers to outsource work to. That way I can spend more time on the creative and income generating activities.

What is the biggest/best invest you made toward your brand/blog? 

Attending Speak for Pay to become a more effective speaker.

The one piece of advice I wish I knew when I started out is… 

Don’t spend money on everything. 

To learn more about Vernetta and Fusion Tours visit: and chat with her on twitter: @VRFreeney .

March #ShopTalk Hangout Recap! Our Experts Weigh In on “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook”

What’s All of This Boxing Talk About Anyway?

Last month we had our first-ever Blogalicious Community Read-Along!  Gary Vaynerchuk’s latest best-selling book – Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook – has been the talk of the social media town for many, many weeks and we wanted to get to the bottom of the hype.  In case, you haven’t read the book yet (and we really think that you should!), the premise of it is to teach companies and brands to setup effective social media wins by repeatedly ‘jabbing’ your followers with valuable pieces of content before hitting them with your ‘right hook’ (i.e. your big sell or ask).  Make sense? We think so!

To bring the discussion to life, we invited social media marketing experts Ann Harris of Southern Social Marketing and Lynn Cooper of Socially Ahead to be our special guests for last month’s #ShopTalk Hangout on Google+.  From their Do’s and Dont’s for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, G+ and LinkedIn to The One Thing They Can’t Live Without to Tricks to Beating That Pesky Facebook Algorithm, these two powerhouses were a wealth of information and resources and super fun to boot.  Watch the replay here (excuse the 30-second delayed start):


Bonus! ~ Ann and Lynn’s Super Special Rec’s for Social Platforms That Get Overlooked:

  1. Google+
  2. Quora
  3. GoodReads
  4. Medium
  5. Slideshare
  6. IFTTT

Join us on Friday, April 25th at 12pm ET/9am PT for our next #ShopTalk Hangout! We’ll be dissecting Days In the Life of several solopreneurs in our community to take a candid look at WHAT everyone is doing and HOW they are making it all happen.

We Want to Help Your Hustle!: Tell Us How You Do It


This month is about about YOU: Our Blogalicious social butterflies. We want to learn more about your hustle. Your likes, dislikes, what makes you tick and what strikes your fantasy. Do you run your empire alone? Full time? Is a side job that you get to when the kiddos go to sleep? 

The hustle is hard. And sometimes lonely. Blogalicious is working this year to bring together our community of solopreneurs and give them a boost of encouragement when possible. That’s why we have created #ShopTalk, our monthly virtual Google Hangouts. {Next event: April 25th!}

How do you do it??

We’d love to learn more about you and use our platform to brag about our community solopreneurs. We’ve compiled this questionnaire. Answer as few or as many questions as you’d like. We’ll take 6-10 of your best answers and turn them into a Q&A blogpost to feature on our blog so we can shout out from the mountains how awesome you are. 

We’re celebrating our solopreneurs all month! Submissions will be posted first come, first served. You’ll be sent an email if we feature you.

Ready? Let’s Go! 

Facebook Twitter Pinterest Instagram Google+ Sign Up for the Newsletter