As a blogger and entrepreneur, it’s so easy to get caught up in the glitz and glamour of popularity, celebrity and the ever changing definition of “success”. Growing up in Southwest Detroit, I was definitely considered an “at risk” student enrolling at Michigan State University in 1998. As the eldest of seven children, the first of my generation to ever attend college and being a product of a one-parent household, you could imagine the amount of cards stacked against me becoming a college graduate – so you can imagine my surprise when I got the call to return to my alma mater 15 years later to share my journey.
Spartan Innovations complements the work being done now by MSU Technologies, the university’s technology transfer office organized in 2007, and Business-CONNECT, created in 2009 as MSU’s portal for engagement with the business community. All three units are part of the MSU Innovation Center. The MSU Foundation, which serves as fiduciary and trustee for MSU’s charitable annuities, trusts, and gifts of property, provides major funding for the initiative.
(*Breaks out my vision board from 2012….) Working with Spartan Innovations and sharing my journey from a 1st generation college graduate to career media professional, entrepreneur and STEM advocate is a great opportunity that I’m truly honored to share. If there’s at least one student or entrepreneur empowered by my words then I know that I’ve done my job…and that expensive tuition bill was worth it! (LOL) [Get your tickets here.]
Join me for a full circle moment this Wednesday, September 23rd as I kick off the Innovate State Speaker Series and share my story of corporate ups, entrepreneurial downs and valuable lessons learned along the way.
Michigan State University
Wednesday, September 23rd 6pm – 8pm
Did you miss one of the most insightful blogging conferences of the year? The Blogalicious “Build Your Own Empire” Weekend 2015 was action-packed three days in Baltimore, Maryland. Armed with a 3-day itinerary filled with the who’s who in the Blogosphere – Blogalicious “Build Your Own Empire” offered a weekend of learning, building and gathering resources to become better businesses as well as better bloggers.
As a sponsor for two years, Toyota recognizes multicultural bloggers as the voice of new media and partners with these social media influencers nationwide to build lasting relationships, promote the brand and help grow the multicultural blogging share of voice in the automotive space.
Upon the announcement of my participation as a speaker, I was also selected to serve as a Blogalicious 2015 Toyota Brand Ambassador. I’ve become very vocal about my passion to empower bloggers to think beyond “influencer status” and act as a brand. So partnering with a brand like Toyota was a dream opportunity that pushed my Blogalicious experience to new heights.
On Friday, September 11th my “Billion Dollar Branding” panel co-hosted by Maya Elious, and Kailei Carr, empowered bloggers on the necessities needed to brand themselves for success. Attendees learned about the importance of professional photos, personal branding statements and the art of cold calling, pitching and closing the sale.
During my portion of the presentation, I made reference to some of television’s modern day heroines like Olivia Pope, Cookie Lyon, Mary Jane Paul and Analese Keating. Each popular television character has different characteristics that are necessary when cold calling, pitching, handling objections or closing a sale. It was the perfect opportunity to introduce proven “Act Like A Blogger, Think Like A Brand” sales techniques and actionable tips to an audience that’s ready to empower their brand at one of the most impactful blogging conferences of the year.
In addition to sharing selling tips on the “Billion Dollar Branding” panel on Friday, I had the illustrious pleasure of hosting Toyota “Help Desk” (office hours) where I assisted bloggers with one-on-one information, brainstorming and input on how to build, brand and monetize their blogs. During the “sold out” session, I spoke with bloggers of all skill-levels and industries to define areas of branding and improvements. It was an opportunity to assist others, but it also helped me in so many ways too!
Brainstorming, problem solving and creating solutions has always been a part of the entrepreneur journey that I’ve enjoyed most. So the opportunity to help so many others, while sharpening my skills and applying the same ideas to other areas of my brands was definitely a bonus!
From identifying revenue streams, creating partnership target lists, developing sales calendars and structuring weekly/monthly budget goals – we got to dig deep into the business of blogging. There was so much sharing and building during the Toyota “Help Desk” that we extended the hours to accommodate and ensure that everyone walked away with a plan and action steps on how to “Act Like A Blogger, Think Like A Brand.” [Sign up for your FREE eSales Guide HERE]
As a veteran entrepreneur and experienced blogger, it’s easy to fall into a blogger conference rut. But thanks to the A-List of speakers, activations and experiences that Blogalicious 2015 “Build Your Own Empire” cultivated in Baltimore, this was an amazing and re-energizing experience that I’ll never forget! Thanks Blogalicious and Toyota!
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post by Toyota. All reviews and opinions expressed in this post are unbiased and based on my personal view.
You’ve waited all summer, and now the Lyons are loose! Luscious, Cookie, Jamal, Hakeem and Andre are back at it again and season two promises to be filled with more excitement than ever before. Empire Season Two is just around the corner and thanks to Lincoln Motor Company, select vips, fans and journalists got the chance to experience the EMPIRE Season Two Premiere in NYC.
Cast members Taraji P. Henson, Terrance Howard, Jussie Smolett and more graced the stage inside NYC’s illustrious Carnegie Hall where guests were treated to an exclusive sneak peek at EMPIRE Season Two premiere episode on the big screen. Following the screening, Director Lee Daniels and the entire cast spoke about character development and just how they landed the role of their dreams on the Fox hit show!
Of course an EMPIRE NYC Premiere party wouldn’t be the same without a huge musical performance of “You’re So Beautiful…” by Jussie Smolett and Yazz. With major star power, music and more. This season promises to be the biggest yet!
Also this season, Lincoln’s latest lineup of vehicles will be integrated throughout the show including the all-new Lincoln MKX, which will be featured in Episode 6 airing early-mid November.
Lincoln has a longstanding relationship with Fox and has extended that partnership with EMPIRE for a second season in a row as automotive exclusive sponsor. EMPIRE serves as an additional platform to communicate Lincoln’s new and exciting Lincoln product portfolio including a new class-exclusive Revel sound system on show like EMPIRE, which is built around music.
Check out more exclusive photos from the celebrity-studded EMPIRE NYC premiere below.
EMPIRE returns Wednesday, September 23rd 9/8c on FOX – Are you ready?
Are you a blogger, online influencer or someone that wants to learn the real world practices of becoming a career blogger? Want to learn how to research, pitch and close six-figure deals for you and your brand? Now that I’ve got your attention, let’s talk the business of blogging at Blogalicious!
As a top media marketer for companies like CBS and iHeart Radio for over 10 years, I’ve learned a thing or two about monetizing influence. [How I Learned To Master Consistency And Become Profitable – MadameNoire.com] Discover how I’ve amassed relationships that span beyond blogging with Fortune 500 companies like Coca Cola, Verizon and Ford Motor Company and learn how to pitch and get paid for your brand online and beyond.
Join me at Blogalicious 2015 and learn step-by-step strategies to creating your Billion Dollar Brand and Empire Thursday, September 11th at 4:30pm! Learn from blogging and branding strategists @Kaileicarr, @Mayaelious and myself to uncover branding secrets and apply proven techniques to monetize your influence and blog better than ever before.
What You Can Expect
Practical answers, illustrations and solutions to your sales questions. How to create the demand for partnerships? How to initiate the sale? What makes a billion dollar brand want to work with bloggers? What does a six-figure influencer proposal look like? How do you find the right brand with the right budget?
Register for Blogalicious 2015
Blogalicious 2015 Build Your Own Empire | September 10 – 12 | Baltimore Marriott Waterfront
Blogalicious Weekend conference – the first and only event of its kind – is THE go-to destination for influential multicultural women social media enthusiasts from all over the world to collaborate, connect and uplift one another. Whether you are a blogger interested in connecting to a welcoming sisterhood or a brand looking to engage with a robust network of social media influencers, the Blogalicious community is rich with meaningful relationships and limitless opportunity. [Register today!]
Let’s Talk Now
How do you make the most out of a blogging conference experience? What are the conference essentials that every attendee needs? What are conference mistakes to avoid? What’s the best way to prepare for a conference that could change your life? Join blog conference veterans Terrance (@BrothaTech), Ty (@GorgeousInGrey) and myself as we discuss the Do’s/Don’ts and what to pack for Blogalicious 2015 – on Blab! Subscribe & check out the replay! http://techb.ro/techstyleblab
Meet smart people. Hear success stories. Discover what’s working. Discuss ways to create smarter creative content, impactful web-based marketing, as well as new programs, people, and platforms that engage your audience and build relationships. Want to learn more about Blogalicious? Visit BeBlogalicious.com.
Apple’s Unveiling The New iPhone RIGHT NOW! (PLUS 5 #AppleEvent Innovations The World Will Be Talking About) [LIVE BLOG]September 9th, 2015 by Christen
Let’s go! It’s September 9th and there’s no better day than our (6th year anniversary) than to spend our afternoon salivating over today’s Apple Event announcements. This could be one of the biggest Apple events ever, happening right now in San Francisco. Apple CEO Tim Cook may introduce as many as three new phones (including an iPhone 6S), a redesigned Apple TV set-top box and a 12.9-inch, business-friendly iPad tablet.
While rumors abound, do not expect a radical redesign of the iPhone. We’ll learn release dates for iOS 9 and the OS X update El Capitan; the Apple Watch is getting some stage time, too, with WatchOS 2.
Follow along with us below. You can also watch Apple’s live stream online.
Discover the live updates below!
The Apple Watch Sport is currently available in silver and space gray. It didn’t really make sense not to have a gold option for gold iPhone owners. For those who want a matching watch, rejoice! Apple heard you. You can now buy a gold Apple Watch Sport in its full aluminum glory.
When it comes to the new bands, Apple is partnering with Hermès on a new collection. It starts with a new hand-stitched leather “double tour” band. This band is going to be available in select stores in October.
It looks and feels like a bigger iPad Air, with an aluminium casing, thin bezels and curved edges. It features a 2,732 x 2,048 display that lets you display more stuff. For instance, you are now able to take advantage of the recently announced split-screen multitasking to run two apps side by side with very few compromises. It’s also a great device to take advantage of the picture-in-picture video playback feature in iOS 9. Starting at $799 – it’ll be available online and in stores come November!
iPad Pro – Apple Pencil
Apple also announced a smart keyboard accessory, which looks a lot like the Surface keyboard cover. You connect it to your iPad Pro thanks to a new smart connector on the side, as well as the Apple Pencil, a stylus. Priced at $99 it’ll be available online and in stores come November!
iPad Pro with Microsoft Office
Today’s Apple Event wouldn’t be complete without guests! And Apple invited Microsoft executive to talk productivity on the go! Microsoft’s goal is to make the best apps it can and to get as many people using them so that it can sell them some of its more specialized services. Office has long been the go-to suite of productivity tools, and — while they debuted on the iPad a bit late — Microsoft is still pushing for Office to take that role in the tablet world as well. So far there’s no obvious winner in the tablet productivity world, and having a great choice will be important once the iPad Pro is released.
One of today’s most anticipated Apple event announcements is the new Apple TV. Apple Tv is making it easy and exciting to watch tv again. From exclusive digital content to the unique remote – the Apple TV may become your favorite entertainment device later this year. Apple TV Pricing: 32gb $149 64gb $199
iPhone 6s / 6s Plus
So what’s new with the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus? It responds to the pressure of your finger and totally changes the way you use your device. It shoots 4k video. Now your screen is the flash. You can get it in rose gold. Your photos move now and the price is the same as the original iPhone 6 and 6+… starting at $199 and offering installment plans – it’s pretty much a great new deal on a new iPhone and all available September 25.
Stay tuned for more in depth details on today’s Apple event announcements including the new Apple Watch colors/accessories, iPad Pro, Pencil, Apple TV and iPhone 6s / 6s Plus later today.
Are you excited about the latest Apple announcements? What are you looking forward to buying first? We want to know what you think! Let us know in the comment section below!
Are you ready for a Power Twitter party unlike any other?!?
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you (like most of America) have been watching this summer’s hottest show on TV – Power starring Omari Hardwick and 50 Cent on Starz. Each Saturday we’ve been blown away by the drama and scandal that follows James “Ghost” St. Patrick during his quest to transform his drug business into a legitimate nightlife empire.
This Saturday, we’re fired up and ready for the anticipated season finale of Power and there’s so much left to be answered. Will Ghost and Angela have their happy ending? Will Kanan & Dre get the best of Ghost? What about Tasha? All of these questions will be answered and more during our Power Twitter Party and Digital Sorority will be right there tweeting all the juicy goodness LIVE!
Join Digital Sorority and Rosa Regale on Twitter for a Twitter party like no other! Filled with plenty of trivia, live commentary and Rosa Regale gift packs this #PowerTV #RosaWatchParty is one you don’t want to miss!
A twitter party is only as fun when you’re tweeting with your favorite Power starz and super fans too, right? Catch up and keep up with the action with some of our favorite #PowerTV commentators below:
@Power_Starz | @OmariHardwick | @JosephSikora4 | @CKAgbohOfficial | @NaturiNaughton
@HelloBeautiful | @MadameNoire
Follow @DigitalSorority @KelaWalker @GorgeousInGrey and @DivasandDorks for all the fun and join us Saturday, August 15th at 9pm for the #PowerTV #RosaWatchParty.
<BONUS> Before the #PowerTV Finale and #RosaWatchParty at 9pm on Twitter BLAB with @DigitalSorority and chat all things Omari, Curtis and Power. Using Google Chrome, Log onto Blab.IM at 8pm and take the open seat with us! http://bit.ly/PowerBlab
Are you looking for an enriching and rewarding opportunity to work with one of the best magazines out today?
Essence Magazine is looking for three amazing Ambassadors to join their team and represent on colleges across the country!
This is an amazing opportunity for college students to align their personal brand with the mission and values of ESSENCE, while expanding their knowledge about Media. Essence Magazine is looking for Three Game Changers from three different schools (Yes, guys can apply too!) who are making bold moves on campus and living authentically to become College Ambassadors. As the “eyes and ears” on campus, Ambassadors will provide monthly video, social and blog content that addresses the needs, wants and desires of young adults in a voice that is relatable and recognizable to their own. They will also have the opportunity to facilitate on-campus events. The initial entry deadline is August 18th!
Paid opportunity (8-10 hrs/per week)
Gain real world experience
Enhance research, leadership, and communication skills
A one-year subscription to ESSENCE Magazine
Other benefits- (Exclusive invites to local ESSENCE events, discounted/free merchandise, and much more!)
Must attend a accredited 4-year College/University in Michigan, Georgia, Virginia, Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Washington D.C, Maryland, AND Louisiana (ONLY)
Must be a Sophomore/Junior;
Must have a minimum of a 2.8 (on a 4.0 scale) Cumulative GPA
Applications are being accepted now through Tuesday, August 18th.
Click here for the official ESSENCE College Ambassador Program social cards.
To learn more please visit: www.ESSENCE.com/Campus-Ambassador-Search
During my recent 10-day stay in New Orleans for the 21st Annual Essence Festival – I got the chance to explore the city, culture, celebrities, home-grown entertainment and so much more! From new restaurants to hidden gem boutiques, New Orleans offered so much more than I’ve ever expected it to, even after visiting NOLA for the last five years, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the street style, gourmet delicacies and amazing architecture found around every corner.
If I had to narrow my summer style obsession down to one piece, it would definitely have to be the jumpsuit. It’s super-easy to wear, stylish and can practically be worn everywhere. Since I’m a tall girl, it’s sometimes challenging to find stylish jumpsuits that look good, feel good and fit good too! After searching all over, you can’t imagine where I’ve found my favorite jumpsuits, including this blue cutout number below…
After searching online and in stores, I finally found this beautifully fitting jumper from H&M. Offering just the right amount of style and sass, this jumpsuit is lined with small waist length cutouts and a sleek back zipper that can be office appropriate with a cardigan or street-chic appropriate worn as shown.
Blue Jumpsuit | HM.com | $59.99
Ford hosted a wonderful media dinner during ESSENCE Fest at Little Gem Saloon. The Little Gem Saloon is a historic restaurant and live music venue that dates back to 1904. The Little Gem Saloon offers a new century twist on a historic space that first introduced New Orleans’ jazz to the world. Located in the historic 400 block of South Rampart Street, the Little Gem Saloon is just steps the French Quarter and all the authentic and historic sights that New Orleans has to offer.
Perfect for foodies of all ages, The Little Gem Saloon offers a dining experience unlike any other in New Orleans. The Little Gem Saloon offers lunch, dinner and a true-to-its-roots Sunday jazz brunch, upstairs and downstairs bars with outside balcony seating, and live entertainment five days a week. During the Ford media dinner, guests indulged in southern soul food while mingling and enjoying the cool sounds of songstress Audra Day.
Smoked St. Louis cut ribs with a creole twist was #DivasAndForksAPPROVED
No NOLA meal is complete without Louisiana Gulf shrimp & southern style biscuits
New Orleans Moments
The media dinner, hosted by Ford’s Manager of Multicultural Marketing, Shawn Thompson introduced guests to singing sensation Audra Day – pairing awesome music food and entertainment all in one exciting night.
Photo credit: Chris Mitchell/Ty Alexander
I truly enjoyed celebrating Ford’s commitment to educating and empowering NOLA communities via breast cancer awareness and more at ESSENCE Festival. Check out how Ford continues to celebrate Essence Festival fans this year as the official automotive sponsor of the 21st Annual ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans here.
The My Black Is Beautiful Movement Continues With Laurieann Gibson, Sevyn Streeter & More #MBIB #AllTogetherBeautifulJuly 9th, 2015 by Christen
As part of its long-standing commitment to touch and improve the lives of African-American women, Procter & Gamble (P&G) was proud to be a major sponsor of the 2015 ESSENCE Festival for the eighth straight year. This year, P&G’s My Black is Beautiful inspires women to celebrate and share their All Together Beautiful message during the 2015 ESSENCE Festival and beyond by providing signature experiences with its partner brands, CoverGirl Queen Collection, Pantene and more!
What does confidence mean to you? To me, it means the ability to walk into a room full of people with my head held high and begin dancing, like no one’s watching. Confidence is what the My Black Is Beautiful movement is all about. (And that dancing like no one’s watching part, it actually happened… but I’ll get to that later.)
Kicking off their weekend of fun, MBIB hosted an exclusive influencer dinner with guests including Laurieann Gibson, Raheem Devaughn and performances by Sevyn Streeter and Amber Riley.
Getting in the groove with celebrity choreographer Laurieann Gibson.
Kindred the Family Soul
Sevyn Streeter and Digital Sorority
In addition to celebrating the goal of reaching and empowering over 3 Million young women and girls to embrace their beauty from within, the My Black Is Beautiful campaign also lead Essence Fest as the epicenter of self-love, beauty and entertainment.
BlogXilla and Vanessa James hanging with the Digital Sorority crew
Amber Riley and Raheem DeVaughn
Photo credit: Chris Mitchell
Friday launched the MBIB Digital Sorority Social Newsroom Takeover with Kela, Ty and I hosting celebrity interviews and revealing #AllTogetherBeautiful moments from Essence Festival in New Orleans. We got the chance to chat all things beautiful with Essence Fest celebs, plus get a few beauty makeovers and touch ups of our own from the fabulous beauty baronesses from the My Black Is Beautiful team.
Digital Sorority talks being #AllTogetherBeautiful in the MBIB Social Newsroom.
Kela Walker of KelasKloset.com cracking up inside the MBIB Social Newsroom
It’s only befitting that I got the chance to sit down with celebrity choreographer – Lauriann Gibson and discuss her favorite My Black Is Beautiful moments, why she partnered with MBIB and who she finds inspiration from. (Check out the video HERE.) We also chatted about my impromptu dance session where your’s truly had a dance party solo! *LOL*
Essence Fest may be over, but you can still enjoy the celebration by reliving all the fun at the My Black is Beautiful booth and check out the amazing makeovers, live music, celebrity meet-and-greets, and more on social media using #MBIB and #AllTogetherBeautiful. For more information about My Black is Beautiful, visit www.myblackisbeautiful.com and follow on facebook.com/MBIB, Instagram (@MBIB) and Twitter (@MBIB), using hashtags #MBIB and #AllTogetherBeautiful.
In today’s society, there’s no shortage of women who seek validation though beauty trends and societal standards. Tara Paige, the “Inner Glamorcist,” and author of “The Book Of G.L.A.M” wants to fix that. Kicking off Essence Fest weekend, Tara teamed up with Digital Sorority to host a FREE GLAM lounge in New Orleans. As an author, Tara is committed to empowering her readers to focus on the inner as well as outer glam. With the help of Kela, Ty and I – The G.L.A.M. Lounge is kicked off the 21st Annual Essence Festival experience, Thursday July 2nd at Magnolia Makeup Studios.
Author Tara Page and Digital Sorority at The G.L.A.M Lounge experience in New Orleans.
Tara’s new book has her traveling the world empowering women and teaching 4 Requirements of Your G.L.A.M. SQUAD!
G-Give constructive criticism. You cannot have a team of people who only tell you what you want to hear. They have to tell you the hard stuff. Those weaknesses and blindspots that we don’t like to see in ourselves.
L-Like you. Yes. There is a difference. Your family pretty much loves you. But your glam squad has to be made up of people who not only love you…they LIKE you. They want to be around you. Your bad off day does not stop them from being in your life. They are rooting for you to be the best you can be.
Guests enjoyed makeovers, custom color applications, freebies and more!
A-Articulate your strengths, not just your weaknesses. You need people who can spot your strengths, your stellar traits that you don’t see in yourself and root for you as you play to your strengths.
M-Move you into action. They will not allow you to play small. They will not allow you to dim your light They will be there to pick you up when you are knocked down. They will move you into being your best and greatest self.
Check out Tara L. Page via her latest tv news segment here.
Tara Paige isn’t just an author of this insightful knowledge, she’s also a student as well. Once a single & depressed mom of five, she’s now happily married with 8 children and travels the world empowering and enriching the lives of women by asking one simple question. WHO’S ON YOUR G.L.A.M. Squad?
I can definitely shout to the world that the ladies of Digital Sorority (Kela and Ty) are apart of my G.L.A.M squad. They keep me sane, encourage me and support me unlike any other team a girl could ever imagine. So who’s in your G.L.A.M squad?
For more information about the author Tara L. Page and the new G.L.A.M movement, visit FixYourGlam.com today.