THREE Reasons You Need a Website

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A lot of people feel as though they can grow their business without having a website. Yes, this is partially true, but having a website helps things run A LOT smoother. Imagine being able to have some of your systems automated, and you don’t have to lift a finger. Sounds awesome right? 

When it comes to having a website you have two choices, you can get a designer to build your website, or you can build it yourself. Either way both require an investment. When a designer builds your website you have to invest your money, but when you build your own website you have to invest your time. When deciding on your website be sure to weigh the pros and cons for both, and pick the options that is best for YOUR business. 

Today I’m going to share THREE reasons why you need a website no matter who builds it.

  1. It will save you A LOT of time in the long run. You won’t have to continue to go back and forth with potential customers and clients in your social media private messages. Your website can house ALL of the information they need. Information about your products and services, policies, and brand can be viewed on your website. You can also allow people to book services and purchase products without you having to send an invoice. When people inquire you can send them to your website, and you won’t have to keep relaying the same information over and over again. Having a website is an awesome way to begin automating your systems. 

  2. It’s professional! Let’s face it, depending on what type of Brand you have professionalism is VERY important. Some people don’t want to have to inquire to find out information, they want to be able to visit a website and get what they need. Can you blame them? When customers purchase you can have the funds automatically deposited to your business account. When you have a clean professional website it adds a new dynamic to your Brand. You can better serve your audience, and establish yourself as an expert. 

  3. It’s a great way to generate leads, and you can be discovered on platforms like Google, Bing, and Yahoo! We can’t solely rely on social media to get the word out there about our businesses. What if social media were to disappear? Would you still be able to nurture and give value to your audience? Think about it, a lot of people go to Google to do research, ask questions, and buy products or services. Your website is another opportunity for you to get in front of your audience. Whether they’re researching and you have the answer on your blog, or they’re looking for a specific product, having a website gives you A LOT of freedom to be able to cater to your audience and generate leads. 

Building a website or hiring someone to build one for you can be scary, but think about all of the benefits it could bring your business. It’s time to stop thinking small, and venture outside of the box. 


THREE Ways to Become More Consistent in Your Business IMMEDIATELY

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Consistency in business is key to seeing results and being able to scale. If you aren’t consistent you can’t expect to see the results you want on a consistent basis. 

Today I’m going to share THREE Ways to Become More Consistent in Your Business IMMEDIATELY:

  1. You HAVE to prioritize. Stop trying to focus on everything at once; it’s impossible and there will always be that one area that gets neglected. When creating your to do lists be sure to list them in the order of priority. Stephen Covey created an organizational tool to help us do just that! This tool allows us to organize our tasks based on urgency. You can either write it out or write in a four quadrant table. There are four areas:

    • First quadrant is important and urgent. These are the tasks that must be done, so it’s best to take care of these steps right away. 

    • Second quadrant is important but not urgent, these tasks are important to you, so you have to decide when you will tackle them. Your personal goals fall in this category, so you definitely want to spend time completing tasks in this area.

    •  Third quadrant is for urgent but not important, which are the tasks that just have to be done, but when you complete them there is little or no lasting value. This would include tasks like household chores. It can be beneficial to delegate these tasks when you can. 

    • Fourth quadrant is for your not urgent and not important tasks. These are the tasks that create an illusion of being busy, and can often be pushed off until later.

    For example, if your goal is to become more consistent on social media, then you need to pick a platform to focus on. This doesn’t mean stop posting on the other platforms, but pick one to focus on as far as building your audience, engaging, etc. Focusing on one platform will allow you to get maximum results. *** Many of you will ask, how do I know which platform to focus on? Well, you’ll need to really understand who your target audience is.

  2. Create a timeline. A lot of us struggle with consistency because there isn’t a sense of urgency. Create a timeline for whatever it is that you’re working towards. Pick a start date, check-in/action dates, and a completion date. This will help you stay on track, and get back on track if you fall off.

    • Example: If your goal is to build Brand Awareness and establish credibility on social media you may incorporate going live into your marketing strategy. First you would pick a day to plan your live content, and a day to actually go live. Your check in and action dates would consist of the consistent days you go live and plan your content. Your completion date is the day you analyze your results from going live. Did you book any clients? Did you get any leads? What content was popular? When did people seem to engage the most?

  3. Get accountability! If you’ve struggled being consistent, and you can’t seem to stick with it; IT’S OKAY. However, it is time for you to do something different. GET HELP. You don’t have to do this by yourself. There are two ways you can get accountability:

    • You can get a Business Bestie. Having a Business Bestie changed my life, but I didn’t find her on the first go round. I had multiple business besties, and had been a part of a few mastermind groups before I found the right one. Once we connected we clicked immediately , and have been great friends for over a year now.

    • The other way you can get accountability is by investing in yourself by joining a membership programs or mastermind groups, or working with a coach. When you invest in yourself we tend to be more consistent because there’s money involved, and it’s not a good feeling when money goes to waste.

    Having a Business Bestie and investing in my business and personal development has allowed me to see amazing results in my business. 

Consistency is key to seeing results in your business. By prioritizing, creating timelines, and getting accountability you WILL see results in your business! 

Ready to take action, and start getting the accountability you need? Join my FREE Facebook group below!

THREE Ways to Build Brand Credibility

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Establishing Brand Credibility is crucial to getting the customers and clients that you actually WANT. Let’s face it, you can sell your products and services all day everyday, but it doesn’t mean anything if you’re miserable and working with customers and clients who stress you out. Establishing Brand Credibility gives you the opportunity to get in front of your target audience, and actually make an impression. If you don’t have Brand Credibility, then it will be hard for your to get the sales you desire.

Please note, Brand Credibility is different from Brand Awareness. Brand Awareness is about getting the word out there, and Brand Credibility is about making your Brand noteworthy. It’s one thing when everyone knows your Brand, but when people look at your Brand as a trustworthy Brand it goes a long way. 

Today I want to share with you THREE ways to establish Brand Credibility: 


  1. Make sure you are getting client testimonials or customer reviews. Your audience wants to know that you are a trusted Brand, and other people are buying from you. Make sure these testimonials give insight on what it is like working with you or purchasing from you. This will give your clients/customers confidence in knowing they will get exactly what they need from your Business. 

  2. Be sure to communicate what qualifies you or your Brand to offer the services that you offer, or sell the products that you sell. Whether it’s certifications, degrees, or experience your audience wants to know why they should be buying from you instead of other Brands. We have to be honest with ourselves, you’re not inventing anything new. There are hundreds if not thousands of Brands that do what you do, or something similar, so you need to be able to define what sets you apart from other Brands. 

  3. Partner with noteworthy Brands in your industry. This is also a great way to build Brand Awareness. There are many ways to partner with other Brands such as putting together an event, guest blogging, podcast features, etc. When partnering with other Brands it’s important to make sure that the Brand aligns with your Brand Values. Also make sure the Brand is in front of your target audience! There’s no reason to partner with a Brand that doesn’t align with what your Brand represents and who you work with. 


Establishing Brand Credibility is not easy, but the rewards can be absolutely amazing. As you know building a business is not an overnight process, and building Brand Credibility is only a small fraction of that. 


Whatever you do don’t give up. You got this! 


THREE Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Clear Brand Mission Statement

THREE Reasons Why Your Business Needs A Clear Brand Mission Statement

Have you thought about your mission? 

Mission statements may seem overused and unimportant in the scheme of things, but a well-crafted one can help you focus your business. It can give you a framework for evaluating opportunities and deciding whether they fit your core business model and strategy. Mission statements also help you define your business and establish your brand, and it can help your employees focus their efforts and suggest ideas that fit with what you’re trying to do.

Before you can build a brand that your target audience trusts, you need to know what value your business provides. In essence, you’ll have to craft a clear expression of what your company is most passionate about.

The mission statement basically defines a purpose for existing. It will inform every other aspect of your brand building strategies, from your logo to your tagline, voice, message, and personality. Every aspect of your brand should reflect the mission.

Here are THREE reasons why your business must have a clear brand mission statement:

  1. It sets your company’s direction

Mission statement is an incredibly important navigational tool when you are thinking about the future of your company. Smart business owners use this statement to remind their teams why their company exists. The mission statement serves as the foundation of any organization.

2. It gives your company a clear focus

Having a clear branding mission statement in your business will help you decide what is important to your brand. Your mission statement will serve as a reference point to determine whether the new endeavor fits your business model and is worth your time and energy. You do not want to confuse your audience, so strategic partnerships are VERY important. 

3. It inspires your team

A clear mission statement will inspire your employees. Mission statements contain information about the purpose of the company beyond the desire to make money. It gives them a sense of significance and purpose. It creates a set of common values and behaviors that your team can use to guide their day-to-day work activities.

Be mindful of your mission statement during every step of building your company. It determines your beginning, your growth, and your future.

If you’re interested in gaining clarity be forming a powerful mission statement for your company or organization, CLICK HERE to contact me to help you get started!



How to Get Millennials Interested in Your Business, No Matter What Your Business Is

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Let’s face it, “old school” is just an outdated term that’s been replaced by “vintage” in an effort to sound trendy; it’s not a sufficient enough argument to continue to use your old business tactics if you want to reach the millennial audience. However, that is not to say that your business tactics can’t be revamped and with the help of this article, you can do just that! Here are 5 tips on how to get millennials interested in your business, no matter what your business is:

  1. Use Social Media to Keep Up

As intimidating, disheartening, or unappealing as that may sound, social media is literally the king of successful marketing. Direct messages (or DM’s) have replaced cold-calling and hashtags have replaced rolodexes. If you want to expand your brand and reach out to the younger generation, you have to be willing to create that Facebook page and start tweeting away on Twitter!

  1. But Don’t Try TOO Hard

Using social media as an outlet to stay up to date on the latest news, events, and trends going on in our world can be a great asset to your business, especially when it comes to promotional use. But if you catch yourself quoting daily “Kardashianisms” or staying #lit on Instagram, it may be time for you to dial it down a notch. One thing you don’t want your business to come across as is desperate, and we can see right through the “trying-to-be-hip” grandparent companies of the world, don’t become one of them.

  1. Think Outside of the Box

The millennial generation is one of the most creative and intellectual generations to date (and I’m not just saying that because I’m a part of it). We are constantly thinking of different ways to approach things in art, music, even science! If you want a millennial to tap into your business, you have to do the same thing! Think about your brand. What message are you striving to convey? In what ways can you convey this message? Now think of three more ways. Now five, 10, you get the gist. Be creative in your brainstorming! Don’t be a square, our world is round for a reason!

  1. Start A Conversation

If you truly want your business to flourish, you have to listen to what the people have to say. Start a campaign around a particular topic your business supports, or sponsor a panel discussing a certain value your business upholds (i.e. wildlife extinction awareness for an animal organization, a panel discussing life as a missionary for a faith-based non-profit, etc.).  Events like these not only help your young customers see what you stand for, but how they can contribute to what your business is doing.

When it comes to social media however, starting a conversation must be done wisely. This tip must be used with caution! It is not for the loose-lipped, nor for the close-minded. Posting articles regarding topics involving what your business does can be a great way to inform your audience about how what’s happening in the world correlates with your business. However, having a “foot-in-mouth” situation has led to the destruction of many brands because of their lack of conversation etiquette. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

– Always speak for the business, not as the person running the social media account for the business: in situations like these, personal opinions are best kept separate from professional opinions.

– Always speak from a neutral tone: your goal is to gain customers, not lose them. You never know how many customers an opinionated statement could make you lose.

– Never argue in the comments: it never fails, you will always have a troll (a modern-day devil’s advocate, if you will) who will intentionally try to bicker. In fact, the more followers you gain, the more trolls will appear. Rather than going back-and-forth, you can either choose to ignore them, or use the simple short-and-sweet tactic (i.e. “We here at _____ believe everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Have a great rest of your day!”). The majority of the time, the first option is more likely, however, when you begin interacting with your consumers (BONUS TIP!), the latter option may have to be used from time to time.

  1. Have Fun and Let Them Know You’re Having Fun!

“But Essence, work should NEVER be mixed with play!” I know, I know. I’m not telling you to go out here and slack off, but I am encouraging you to keep some sort of a lively environment and emit that liveliness through your marketing. If you want someone to buy from you, some sort of level of trust has to be created. Millennials aren’t used to the everyday wearing of stuffy suits and kitten heels (unless they’re from Forever 21). So if that’s all they can relate your business with, they aren’t going to be interested. Show them what you can offer that will help them, but in a relatable way. Make them look pass the pinstripes and pearls!

We millennials value the entrepreneurial spirit and supporting businesses just as much, if not more, than the next person. However, it takes a lot more than door-to-door selling to get us interested these days. Use these tips7 you didn’t even know you needed and watch your business go from weak to #OnFleek!  

 

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Branding is one of the most important aspects of your business, and I don't mean having the most extravagant website and logo. What I referring to is being clear on how you will encourage your customers or clients to come back; the experience you want them to have when they come in contact with your brand. It is important to understand the deeper meaning of branding before moving to the visuals.

Your brand is the big picture; it's the deeper meaning behind your business. Three areas we will focus on are your brand purpose, brand mission, and brand vision. These three things are the foundation of your brand, and the three areas you need to be clear on. Once you get clear on these three areas you can move on to your logo and website. While some people do those things first, it is viewed as working backwards (that works for some people). 

Your brand purpose is your why. This is when you'll want to ask yourself questions like, "why did I start my business," or "why am I in business." Understanding your brand purpose gives reason to everything you do when it comes to your business. It will help you make the tough decisions, and walk away from things that don't align with your purpose. For example, I launched HelloBriana Consulting because I wanted to empower and encourage women to create their own opportunities. I also want to show my daughter that she can do anything she puts her mind to. Those two reasons define my brand purpose, so if someone were to come to me and ask me to do something against my why it's very easy to say no, because all business is not good business.

Think of your brand vision as your "what." Where do you want your business to be in five to ten years? The easiest way you can define your brand vision is to determine what you want to accomplish because of your brand purpose. What is the ultimate goal of your business? 

Your brand mission is HOW you are going to accomplish your brand vision. This is where you can define all of the things you would like to accomplish to make an impact. The goal should be to offer value, be of service, and solve a problem for your audience. 

When deciding to start a business branding is one of the most important steps. You want to be clear on how you want your customers to FEEL when they come in contact with your brand. Every decision you make in your business should be made with your purpose, vision, and mission in mind. Sometimes you won't define all three areas at once, but defining your brand purpose (your why) will definitely lead you to your brand vision, then your brand mission. 

 

 

Networking can be scary for a lot of people (I know it once was for me), but it can help your business tremendously. Networking was something I used to avoid, but I couldn't understand why. Once I dug deep to figure out why I avoided it, I realized it was because I wasn’t confident  in my business. This isn’t the case for everyone, but it does play a huge role in why people don’t like networking. Today I want to share three reasons why networking is important. 

1. Networking is all about building relationships, and getting to know others. Who knows you may make a new friend! We're all in this together, and can often share a lot of insight to help each other grow. You may even meet someone that offers a product or service you need for your personal or business life. Attending networking events is the perfect time to meet new like minded people. I have been able to meet and connect with some amazing individuals because of networking. Don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone to make things happen. 

2. Networking helps you gain more confidence in your business. It’s a great opportunity to talk about your business, and learn what aspects of your business people are most interested in. The more you talk about your business the more comfortable you become. If you aren’t prepared for a question someone asks you, then it gives you a chance to be prepared next time. It can be a little nerve-racking at first, but the more you do it the easier it will get.  

3. Networking helps you get in front of your target audience. We have to admit this is one of the main reasons people network. You never know who’s in need of your product or service. Also, you never know who may know someone who needs your product or service. The more people you introduce your business to the more likely you are to reach someone in your target market. 

It is important to have a positive outlook towards networking, because it will make it a lot easier. Think about how much it will benefit your business, and the possibilities that could come about. I can personally say that networking has helped my business tremendously, and I have met some amazing people along the way. 

 

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Entrepreneurship seems to be the “in” thing right now. Many people want to start businesses; which I think is pretty awesome, however I see a lot of people going about it the wrong way. Starting a business can be one of the biggest accomplishment, and one of the biggest challenges. However, when you take the right steps it can make things A LOT easier. To help you get and stay on the right track I put together four steps to take when starting a business. 

First, you need to get clear on the ins and outs of the product and/or service you’re going to offer. What I mean by this is, you need to know what problem you will solve for people. To get clear on this you’ll want to ask yourself questions like, “why should people buy from me,” and “what sets me apart from others.” There are plenty of people who do the same thing as you, but people are going to buy from you specifically because they like you and your brand. One thing I learned in my first sales job is, “people buy things from people they like.” This statement is so true, so get clear on what problem you’re going to solve for people and how you’re going to stand out in the crowd. 

Second, pick a business name that is fitting for your business venture. However, don’t let this make you feel stuck. Don't get me wrong it is important, but still work on other aspects of your business while you figure out that name. Picking a name can be stressful, but there’s a method that I have found very useful. When coming up for names (including my business name, service names, course names, etc) I would brainstorm for 10 to 15 minutes, take notes, and if nothing came to me at that time I would take a break and revisit it later. Taking a break from my notes allowed my brain to subconsciously process everything. Then before I knew it I had that eureka moment. Don’t stress about your business name, it’ll come to you in due time. 

Third, register your business with the state and federal governments. Quick disclaimer, I am not a lawyer, therefore I am unable to give legal advice, however I am a business student so I do have general knowledge on the topic. Registering your business with the state and federal government is VERY important. If your business is not properly registered, then you can face serious consequences. The fees to register your business vary depending on the state you live in. It is possible to register your business on your own (I did!), however if that’s something that you aren’t comfortable with, then there are resources like Legalzoom that can assist you with that. I personally have never used Legalzoom, but I have known a lot of people to use it and they’ve had pleasant experiences. Registering your business is only going to help protect you, your business, and your assets, so please take this step seriously. 

Lastly, you’ll want to define your target audience. Your target audience is a set group of people that you sell your product and/or service to. Yes, you can sell to any and everyone, but selling becomes a lot easier when you have a set group of people in mind. When you have a focus group you can identify the problems that they’re having and create a solution specifically for them. When defining your target audience you’ll want to think about things like their age, their gender (if that matters), where they live, the problems they face, and anything else that will help you sell to them. Having a target audience gives you focus and allows you to create an effective marketing plan that allows you to speak directly to them. 

Of course there’s so much more to starting a business, but this is a great starting point. Starting a business can be stressful when you don’t have the tools, but know that there are plenty of resources out there to assist you on your journey. If you have a business idea or you are in the process of starting a business just not sure what steps you need to take feel free to book a FREE consultation with me here!

 

Social media is one of the most useful tools in digital marketing when it comes to building your business online. In today's day and age many businesses and brands can't afford to not be present on social media. The issue is, many businesses create social media profiles, but struggle with engagement and conversions. The key to this is building a relationship with your audience. There are many ways you can do this, and today I'm going to share four great ways you can do that. 

1.) Consistency

Your audiences needs consistency. Showing that you are consistent on social media most likely means that you are consistent in the other areas of your business. Also, make sure your message is consistent across all of your social media platforms. Be sure to not give conflicting information, because it can confuse your audience.  

2.) Create valuable content

Create content that is relevant to your business, and offers value to your audience. For example, if you are a fitness instructor, then try posting quick workouts on instagram, or create a blog post giving tips on the best foods to help give you energy. There are so many ways you can create content that your audience would love, you just need to be specific on who your audience is and know what type of information they are looking for. 

3.) Engage

Show your audience you're a real person with feelings, and not just someone out there trying to get their money. People want to feel important and needed, and after all you do need your audience. If they comment on a post be sure to respond, and if they share one of your post like the post they share. Start a conversation, ask a question on your post, so it will encourage them to comment.

4.) Shares

Showing your audience that you're a team player goes a long way. Share things that will interest your audience. You can do this by sharing a cool video that may interest them, or giving a shoutout to someone (fellow entrepreneur or Brand influencer). Show your audience that it is not always about you and your business. 

Another part of sharing is encouraging your audience to share your posts. When they share your posts it will be seen by their friends/followers, and if they like it then it will bring them to your page! 

Building relationships with your audience is so important when it comes to brand awareness, and although there are many ways to do this, consistency, creating valuable content, engaging, and sharing posts along with encouraging your audience to share posts will take you a long way. It is not an over night process, so it will take time and effort. However, with consistency the relationships will build and you will continue to accomplish your goals through social media. 

 

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Having a business is something many of us dream of, but very few make it a reality. It takes a lot of time, dedication, and tears (yes tears). 

There have been times when I wanted to give up, but I knew I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I did. Standing and running a business is no easy stroll in the park, and many people continue to work their 9 to 5 job while starting and/or running their business. As a Business Consultant, I can assure you this is the smartest thing to do. I do not recommend quitting your job to start your dream business. While this may be the route for some, it's not for most of us. Unless you have a lot of money saved up to launch your business you're going to need funds to start and run your business, so keeping your job is the smart thing to do. 

You want to set yourself up for success, and although quitting may be the ultimate goal you want to make sure your money is in order and you have a plan in place. Running your business and working a job will not always be easy, but there are a few ways to make everything a little bit smoother. 

Here are three tips to make running your business while working a 9 to five a little bit easier: 

1.) Utilize your commute and lunch breaks. 

Although your commute and lunch breaks may not be long you can definitely get a few things done. Take time to read up on a self-help or book about your industry (if you're not driving of course), listen to an industry related podcast, respond to business emails, or anything else you can think of! Time management is crucial, and the more productive you are the faster you get things done. 

2.) Plan your day out. 

Planning has become my best friend. I may not stick to the schedule perfectly, but having a template in place keeps me on track and helps my day run smoother. You can either schedule your day out by the hour, or write a to do list in the order of priority. Choose which method is best for you, and stick with it. Figure out what you can get done before work and afterwards. If you are married and/or have children take into account the time you spend doing family activities and chores. When deciding how much time you will spend on tasks be sure to give yourself a little bit of extra time; let's face it distractions are all around.

3.) Find ways to automate your business

Trust me when I say this, automation will help you keep your sanity a little bit longer. Whether you're automating your email list through MailChimp, automating social media posts with Buffer, or automating with online scheduling; it will only make your life easier. Automation allows you to spend more time doing other things. No need have someone inbox you for an invoice when you can have a website, the product posted on there, and a direct link where customers can read information and do everything themselves. Automating your business not only saves you a lot of time, but it sometimes creates a more professional feel. 

Running a business and working a job is never easy all of the time, so utilizing your commutes and lunch breaks, planning your days, and finding ways to automate your business are always a huge help. Even if you are a full time entrepreneur already these three things can work for you as well. 

 

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Most jobseekers and people going through a career transition spend all their time submitting their resume to online job boards with the hopes of getting invited to an interview. This approach may have worked 10-15 years ago, but things have changed a lot making this an ineffective way to go about your job search. 

Job boards have become so popular that everybody and their mom is submitting their resume online. When you apply to one position, you are competing with 100 other people who are also applying to the same exact position. There is a lot of competition on these job boards, and the chances of your resume getting noticed is really slim. Additionally, with companies using applicant tracking systems, your resume can easily get lost in the virtual black hole. 

70% of the jobs that are actually open, aren’t even advertised online. Most companies either only advertise in-house or they advertise job openings directly on their website. This is what people are referring to when they talk about “the hidden job market.” The only way that you would ever know about these positions is if you went on the company’s website or you knew someone who knew about the specific job opening.  

How do you tap into this hidden job market? Through networking! I know “networking” is a scary word for a lot of people. It doesn’t have to be though. The truth is, networking is nothing more than building relationships with other people. 

For the purpose of your job search, you want to focus on quality over quality meaning that you don’t want to just connect with as many people as possible. You want to be strategic and connect two types of people: people who have the hiring and decision making authority within an organization or people who have connections with these hiring authorities and can make an introduction for you. 

Before you even begin your job search or networking journey, it is so important to be clear about what you want. When you are clear on your career goals, you can put a plan in place and know the people you need to connect with to help you reach those goals.

 

 

Nika Love is a Self-Empowerment Coach, Inspirational Speaker, and Writer helping women breakthrough barriers and tap into their inner-confidence to achieve their own definition of success. You can learn more about her at www.NikaLove.com. Instagram: @IAmNikaLove | Periscope: @IAmNikaLove