Essence Interviews- The FruitFul Woman

Hey!

So wellbeing and anything that shouts out female betterment and development is something I will always advocate for, so I am so excited to feature on the lovely Mary, founder and owner of The Fruitful Woman brand, a Christian Woman brand, with a great vision of moulding the everyday woman who is rooted in Faith and pursues Fruitfulness

1. What made you start The Fruitful Woman?
It started off as a home decor blog with a completely different name. Then it developed in wanting to sell home products. At the time, I had just completed by undergrad degree and I used to stick scriptures written on paper around around my Uni room. So when moving back home I wanted to make it more stylish and started designing and printing them on canvas. People loved them and were willing to pay! So Scripture Canvases became my first products.

After Uni, I also learnt that I was always very busy (with work, business, ministry, social and family life) but not actually producing anything worthwhile. To put it bluntly I was not achieving any goals I had set myself! So I had to take a step back to really analyse why and came to understand that I needed to be a lot more intentional with my time. I have a deep love for pretty stationery, I am always buying new notebooks and planners but I couldn’t find a planner that had everything I needed in one, so I created my own! Thats how the Fruitful Life Planner was born and that’s how stationery got into the mix. 

Now The Fruitful Woman a lifestyle brand with the aim of helping women stay rooted in faith and be fruitful in all they do.

2. How did you go about building the brand? (e.g what was your vision?)
My vision is to create a community of women who love God and want to fulfil all their goals and their purpose in accordance with God’s will. Fortunately for me, I am my own target audience, so I started building something I needed and sharing it with others online. I talk about fruitfulness not because I am perfect at it but because I work on it in my life a lot. I had to create systems and structures for myself and all I do is share it with others now. 

Social media has been a great tool for building a brand and connecting with customers. 

3. Why is it important as a woman to be fruitful?
It is important for all people to be fruitful; I focus on women because I am a woman and can identify with women better. Fruitfulness is important because it was one of God’s first commands to us. For Adam and Eve, their purpose was to populate the earth, so fruitfulness for them meant exactly that. Imagine, if they kept themselves busy doing everything but that… What would the world look like today? There would have been no fruit of their existence. It is the same for us, God created each and every one of us with a purpose. I would hate to go to heaven having not done what God created me to. In this current age, it is too easy to be busy, there is SO MUCH TO DO !!! So much! And I realised that and decided I am not going to get trapped in the busy life, I want a fruitful life. If I am going to be busy let it be because I am actually achieving my goals and my purpose. 

4. What have been some good points/low points with the brand so far?
Great points are the fact that I get the opportunity to connect with and meet some amazing women, which is what it’s all about!! Also, the opportunity to impact lives is priceless, we get some touching messages that just make all the stress that comes with business worth it! Our Vision Board Parties have been a very big high point, so much fun and hearing the testimonies that follow, again priceless! We also won a Premier Gospel Award for our blog a couple of years back and I was personally selected for the 30 under 30 list in the Stationery Matters awards. Recognition like that means a lot to me and I trust God that it is only the beginning. 

Low points are probably to do with suppliers haha. Anyone in business knows that it is really difficult finding the right supplier who had great service, great quality and the right price point. Honestly, it’s really stressful. Some years I just think maybe we should just skip this year’s edition of planners but God always makes a way. Event planning is also pretty daunting, I can get very anxious about it all, but God always makes sure it works. 

5. Any advice for people who want to start their own business similar to yours? 
My advice will always be; start where you are and use what you have. Starting a business can be daunting because it is difficult to see the end and how you could possibly get there. But once thing I have learnt is that that when you start where you are using what you have, no matter how small and insignificant it might seem, it opens doors and teaches you things you will need in the next level. The Fruitful Woman started as something completely different years ago, but if I didn’t start, I definitely would not have got here. 

I would also say study your competition and their audience but also identify what makes your business unique. Why should a customer pick your business over another? No matter how many other competitors there are, if God wants you in that industry, He will make space for you. 
Do lots of research and find out what customers actually want; it might not be what you think. 
Finally, don’t be discouraged. Starting a business is not easy and is not as glam as what Instagram makes it. Even if you get no likes, no comments, no follows, no sales in the first week, you keep going, you will get there eventually! Think outside the box and keep trying new strategies until you get the one that works.. and be consistent!! Consistency is a major key in business.

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for my next interview!

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