Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Matthew Aguiar, Owner of Mems by Matt, located in Rockmart, GA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is taking flowers from an important chapter in the lives of my clients and preserving those memories into a tangible keepsake. My client base includes individual people, wedding planners/coordinators, florists, jewelry stores, and funeral parlors.
Tell us about yourself
I was a bridesman for one of my childhood friends. After her wedding, I took her leftover flowers and air-dried them in my bedroom. I had an old dirt sifter in my basement, which I repurposed and made my frame. Thus, came my first preservation piece.
What keeps me going is, first and fore, the positive effect on my mental health. Working two other jobs keeps me pretty stressed out. So, when I get home, I get to unwind by making these keepsakes. Secondly, I love getting reviews, videos, and feedback from my clients.
Their happiness is everything to me! When my clients look at their custom piece, it reminds them of a loved one, celebrating a milestone, or starting a new chapter. It is fantastic knowing that my work encapsulates the emotions and mercies associated with those times in a person's life.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
STARTING!! I can not stress it enough. It was a giant step out of my comfort zone to sit with my thoughts and believe in my talent enough to sell my skills to people. Like Beyonce said, " Don't just talk about what you're gonna do." DO IT - NIKE
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Handling all aspects of the business is challenging. Content creating, handling all client correspondence, getting the items preserved, bookkeeping, etc. All of the not-so-glamorous parts of a business are no fun but are the most important. Somebody has to do it!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Research and experiment. Build your knowledge. If you plan on selling a service, you must understand time frames and other factors that can negatively impact your final result.
- Know your pricing structure, compare the competition and figure out a price that makes you competitive but profitable.
- Be easy on yourself, you will go through many ups and downs financially, mentally, and physically but the other side is worth the trouble.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
It's been one of the most freeing journeys, starting this business. I can over-critique and analyze my pieces for every imperfection. However, these imperfections are a part of it being a man-made product. I, as the creator, am not a machine. I don't input formulas and electricity to make these pieces. I put in my time, energy, and heart. I am grateful for the opportunities that will present or have presented themselves.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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