Originally published on The Industry Cosign December 20, 2014
Most entrepreneurs, when they start their businesses, dream of becoming millionaires and be wealthy for life. Successful entrepreneur, Ming Lee, started her business so she can have a few extra dollars in her pocket to pay her bills. It just so happens that she became a millionaire by doing so!
The owner of snoblife.com, Ming Lee earned a scholarship to attend the Aveda Beauty Institute in Atlanta, at 21 and she ended up opening her own salon, SnobLife Studio in July of 2013. Lee found time from her busy schedule to talk to The Industry Cosign about how important social media has been for her, what gets her up daily and what her dream job is.
What led you down the path to a career in the hair industry?
Ming Lee: I was raised by my adopted grandmother, who is 91 today, so when I was younger, cool hairstyles to her was not so cool to me; so I learn how to do my own hair.
As an entrepreneur, how do go about running your business in a successful way?
I built an amazing team that could not only maintain, but help me build on my ideas!
It’s rare for anyone to start a business and in the first year, turn it into a million dollar venture. Did you anticipate being so successful so soon and did that change the perspective of your own goals?
I didn’t even start my business to be a millionaire, I started to have few extra bucks during the month so I could stop robbing Peter to pay Paul. But once I realized the growth potential, my goals changed and I focused on turning it into a sustainable business.
What was the purpose of launching Snoblife.com?
I started off as iamminglee.com which was my social media handle. I quickly learned how important it is to build a lifestyle brand and Snoblife.com was born.
What is Ming Lee doing now and for the future as far as your business?
I’m turning Snoblife into a lifestyle brand. In addition to hair, I have plans to expand the brand into the cosmetics, nail polish and perfume categories.
What advice would you give to anyone dreaming of starting their own business and looking to be successful at what they do?
Everyone will not appreciate your craft/talent or art! Stay focused on your vision.
What gets you up daily as far as inspiring you to continue to work on your brand?
My Gigi, she is 91 and calls me every morning to tell me how proud of me she is. I want to keep making her so proud . Also the emails I get daily on how I’m the reason they started and the reason they didn’t give up!
If you weren’t involved in the hair industry, what would you be doing?
Marketing! It my first love! My dream job to this day is to create or work on the team that creates Super Bowl commercials.
How important is utilizing social media for your business and do you think you would have been successful if you didn’t have social media at your exposure?
It is so important to utilize social media, it gives you direct access to the most influential people. I would not be where I am today without social media. When I am traveling around the world, people thank me for my YouTube videos on hair. It’s very humbling.
As mistakes are common in life, are there any you have made that you wish you could do over again and if so, what and why?
Only one mistake is not starting sooner. I started at 24, I feel like if I started at 20, my father would still have been alive to see my success. He passed in 2009. My only regret in life is not starting soon enough .