How I Started My Own Business At Age 16

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Paola Ochoa teen entrepreneur
Team Size

1

Revenue

< $10,000 /month

Location

California, US

Start Date

July 2019

Meet Teen Entrepreneur, Paola Ochoa, who started her business at age 16 by helping content creators with their social media and video content needs.

INTRODUCTION

PLEASE TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF AND THE BUSINESS YOU STARTED?

Hey! My name is Paola and I am 17 years old. I am a high school student from California, an intern at Relovv (sustainable fashion app) and Nordstrom and a business owner. I am a teen with a passion for making the world a better place and I find happiness in helping people around me. 

I also run my own social media agency where I help content creators with social media management and video editing services. I created this business all by myself in July 2019 without any expectations but with a mission to use my skills to help the people who needed them. I knew there are people out there who needed help with growing their social media or video editing. 

Both business success and impact I made have allowed me to get accepted into FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising) and I am extremely happy about it.

THE JOURNEY SO FAR

PLEASE DESCRIBE THE PROCESS OF LAUNCHING YOUR BUSINESS.

I started Socials By Paola in July 2019 from scratch and without any expectations. My business idea came out of the blue one day when I was simply thinking about how I miss doing and editing YouTube videos. First I created an Instagram page and made my first post. Afterwhich, I used the skills I know to help my account grow and get more exposure.

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I have created a plan of services that I was going to offer and started posting about it on Instagram and Facebook Group. In fact, the day after launching I got my first client. I was going crazy about it because I did not expect it will happen so fast. 

I named my business Socials By Paola because I simply knew I was going to be doing social media and YouTube videos which correlated with Socials By. And I added my name to it so people know it is my business and I am running it. So Socials By Paola was created.

I started from scratch with just my computer and my phone. I created a simple graphic to be able to start with some posts. Then I started to create some intros as samples which were very fun to me and brought back my love for editing. I started with $0 down because I did have all the tools I needed which were my computer and phone. I started out doing it by myself and I still am. 

Also, I ask every client if they can leave a review on my work. The feedback so far has been amazing and that has helped me get more new clients and more referrals.

 

WHAT DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE AND HOW DO YOU STAY PRODUCTIVE?

On a typical day, I have school from 8:30 to 3:30. My school is very flexible and open to the fact that I run my own business. After I’m done with school I work on my business (DM’s, Projects, or Posts).  

 

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT AND YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE SINCE YOU STARTED YOUR BUSINESS?

Biggest Achievement: My biggest achievement as an entrepreneur is being able to get accepted into college because of my business. 

Biggest Challenge: My biggest challenge is being able to handle the workload and finish all the work on time.

 

WHAT STRATEGY DID YOU USE TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS? AND HOW?

I used marketing by spreading the word on Instagram and Facebook groups.

 

WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE FUTURE OF BUSINESS?

In the near future, I would like to hire people, grow my team and create courses to help teens like me. 

RECOMMENDATIONS & FINAL THOUGHTS

PLEASE RECOMMEND ANY RESOURCES AND TOOLS THAT YOU USE TO RUN YOUR BUSINESS.

I use Instagram business tools. for example Instagram Direct Messages.

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE BUSINESS BOOKS, PODCASTS OR BLOGS?

My favorite podcasts are 

  • AFTER ALL PODCAST, 

  • THE REAL REAL PODCAST, 

  • ILYSM PODCAST, 

  • GIRLBOSS PODCAST.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO OTHER WOMEN WHO WANT TO START THEIR OWN BUSINESS?

No matter where you are or who you are, you are able to start this business. No one is going to stop you and don’t let anyone stop you.

 

Violeta Semenova

Violeta Semenova
Founder
theBizLadies

Welcome to the Biz Ladies interview series!

If you’re new to these series, I interview women entrepreneurs on how they started their business, what was the idea behind it, how they got where they are, the struggles, the reality and more.

By sharing their stories, we want to inspire other women to get started.

If you are interested to share your own story on the Biz Ladies LET ME KNOW!