We spoke with Krystle Downie, Editorial Director of It’s My Magazine, to learn more about her journey of being an entrepreneur.
Check out the interview below!
What do you do and what led you there?
My great grandmother passed away over 10 years ago and that was all of our family history gone. I reasoned that there must be a way to capture it all without being rich or famous, as people of color are notorious for not having anything written down. That’s why It’s My Magazine was born; starting with life stories, we capture our clients’ life and love stories within their own personalized magazines. Our biggest audience is now weddings and love stories for brides.
We’re a mother and daughter team and first appeared on a game show (Million Pound Drop), won some money, and were able to start our business.
What was the most difficult part of starting your business? What was the most rewarding?
Just figuring out the non-creative side. We didn’t come from a long line of business owners. Being of Caribbean heritage, when our ancestors came to the UK, the men worked for British Transport and the women for the NHS. It took us, the first to go to University, the first to explore entrepreneurship to try, make mistakes, and recover. The most rewarding has been achieving success despite these odds, not having to borrow money to fund our business, and to be our own bosses… which again can be the most difficult part!
What do you think led you to your success?
Being a mother and daughter team, we have an intergenerational perspective, which often helps. Our varied backgrounds have also led us to this place – my mother’s in design and I’m in journalism and copywriting – sort of the perfect mix for magazines and publishing. We both also love history – old family stories rock. With everything going digital now, I think there is a resurgence or new appreciation for printed hardcopy. #BringBackPrint
If there was one thing you wish you did differently, or wish you knew what you know now, what would it be and why?
Just getting more digital skills – from Photoshop to InDesign – we’ve had to learn a lot along the way before being in the position to hire freelancers, which is where we are now. Also, it’s difficult being creatives and being expected to sell – but that’s the nature of all business – negotiating, closing, and talking money. You can’t be scared, and you have to be immune to hearing no.
Why do you think it’s so important for individuals to start a business at a young age?
I think for any young person, it’s important not to rely on a 9-5 job and one income stream to provide you with the lifestyle you want. Most ‘jobs’ only pay you enough money to last a month. If anything happens to disrupt that cash cow, you’re in trouble. The ideal way of living is to have multiple revenue streams so you’re not dependent on your money or devastated by the removal of one of them.
What’s the last piece of advice you’d like to leave with our audience, for someone who may be just starting?
Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t.