Microentrepreneur Stories: Gigi Rodgers @ Puck'n Khaos

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Microentrepreneur Stories: Gigi Rodgers @ Puck'n Khaos

She is an absolute mood in technicolor. 🎨

Her words, and ours.

We’ll let the absolute kween of paints and sneaker redesign speak for herself.

Without further adieu...Gigi Rodgers of Puck’n Khaos!

Here’s a transcript of the convo for you to follow along 👀🔍

What is Puck'n Khaos and how did the dream start?

I hope this coincides with what I told Paul when we talked on the phone. These need to match up, or I could come across like a little suspect, but what's up everyone? My name is Gigi Rodgers and I'm the director of doodling over at Puck'n Khaos, which is a fancy way of saying that I paint sneakers. Behold them in all their glory. But more importantly, I teach you how to paint your sneakers as well. And I'm the Chop Shop Chief over at the Puck'n Studio, where I take you along from video content and turn it into micro content for you, the client, to share across your social media kingdom. So let's get into Paul's questions he has for me.

So in the early 2000s, I had a company called Kontrolled Khaos. And one day, I linked up with a guy, Noma Ciano, who had a company called Pucker, which is the coolest name for a company ever. So we were at a bar one day talking about how we're going to collaborate and do our thing, but we need a name for our business and no first name out the gate he said, Puck'n Khaos. Sold. I'm in. Let's do this.

We were selling t-shirts, stickers, original paintings, and I had these custom leggings. I mean, that was our gig. And after a while of us trying to kick that off and it not really going anywhere, we decided to split up, but I still wanted that name, Puck'n Khaos. He said, sure, and that was how Puck'n Khaos was basically born. Now I got to say, it's gone through some iterations and it wasn't until late 2020, where I finally determined what its purpose is going to be, and I'm not going to tell you, not just yet what it is, but I'm really, really excited about the direction it's going to go in.

What made you want to be a microentrepreneur?

I caught the bug in the early 2000s. First, I read Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and then I stumbled across a guy we all might know of ,Tim Ferriss, author of the Four Hour Workweek, and the idea basically just snowballed from there. Now, have I done a good job in execution over the years? Absolutely not. It's been a Nightmare on Elm Street rollercoaster ride. I sucked at this for a very long time, but I've started to get my footing on everything. I'm asking for help or advice more, which is huge because I don't know where I got this from, but I thought that if I'm going to be a solopreneur that I had to do everything on my own, that I had to either Google it or figure it out all on my own. And let me just tell you, you can drive yourself crazy going about it that way. Questioning your intelligence, unnecessary stress, and just mentally putting yourself through the ringer, trying to find the answer.

And it wasn't until I started to ask people and communities on Alpha, Reddit, Facebook groups, LinkedIn professionals, and take some online courses from people who really know how to teach, that I started to get my footing in this space. And now, I just feel like entrepreneurship is a part of my DNA. Now that I've seen and learned about this world and opportunities you can make for yourself, I can't un-see it. I could have the best full-time job in the world, and I would still have a side gig, especially if I see that there's a hole in the market and I know that I can provide value.

What's special about you as a microentrepreneur?

I honestly don't think that I'm special. So I'm just going to pare it back some of the qualities of myself that others have told me they liked. So I have a YouTube channel, that's getting neglected right now, and I've created two Skillshare classes. You can type in my name on Skillshare and they'll pop up, and the main feedback I get is that they love my energy, I'm a natural in front of the camera and there's a trick to that, that I reveal in my Skillshare class, Charisma On The Cam. I'm fun and relatable and that I'm cool. And when they say that, I think they're talking about my style. I mean, how many black women do you see teaching about camera presentation and snicker painting while wearing blue, black or green lipstick?

Who is a micro-entrepreneur you admire and why?

Tania Brianna Fox runs pretty solo and she's a boss at what she does, which is helping multi-hyphenates, like myself, organize ourselves so we can execute on our ideas. She has been my guidepost and the fog a many times. There's a YouTuber and artist named TenHundred that is crushing his YouTube channel. I've been watching him for years, and you can tell he's becoming a full time YouTuber, which is no small feat. The way that he's approaching his work or presenting it to the audience in a style is so dope, so different and overall just entertaining. And I'm looking at how he's branching out and finding all these different verticals to pat his income. And honestly, I plan on following his lead. It's just smart business.

And let me give a shout out to Vicki Young or Cestlavic on Instagram. She's a sneaker artist as well, and she's doing it all on her own. The managing of orders, brand deals and collaborations, creating content on a consistent basis, editing video, which is melting her soul right now, and trying to build a sustainable business around her artistry. Her and I are in the same boat on a lot of things, so mad respect for her hustle, her organization skills, and of course on her execution.

What advice do you have for new micro-entrepreneurs starting off right now?

I'm going to take this as the, if you had to do it all over again, question. If I had an idea for a product or service, I'd find someone who was doing something similar, probably not in the same industry. I'd approached them with a skill that could help them either save money, make money, or save time, so they'd hire me and I would try to make myself so viable that I've become the right-hand woman. So I could sit in on their meetings and see how things are really done. And then I take that experience and apply it to my product or service. And by going this route, I bypass a lot of those epic fails that costs time, money, or pieces of my sanity. Now, there will be mistakes and hiccups along the path like any business, but by going through it this route, I would have that experience under my belt. So I'd have a better understanding of how to navigate it, then if I didn't.

Also, get comfortable with negotiating and talking about money, find your edge from everyone else in the market, learn how to promote you and your services by providing value to your audience. It's not all about selling. It's about starting a conversation and building your relationship with your people. Create systems for tasks you repeat on the regular, have a person or a group of people you can talk to about entrepreneurship problems. If you don't have that support group, then check out the podcast Startup Therapy, where these two founders talk about the emotional, mental, and physical toll starting a business can have on you. And these guys are funny, spot on with the subject matter they talk about, and they give really great advice on how to navigate this space.

And finally, this is something I really need to do for myself as well. Start email marketing and don't offer something as lame as, join my newsletter. No one wants to join another lame newsletter that offers vague promises, but if you give them a compelling reason to join, like get the seven skills you need to learn to become Jason Bourne in heels, you're being specific with what you're going to offer. This is something your audience wants to know about and will help them in their endeavors. If you're a bad-ass lifestyle blog for women, and it would be an email series that builds a better relationship, but more importantly, trust with you and your audience. So, yeah, that's my advice to new micro-entrepreneurs or people who want to become a micro-entrepreneur. I hope that helped.

Predictions for the future of micro-entrepreneurship?

I have zero clue. The only thing that comes to mind is that more and more people will have their full-time job and a side business, whether it's selling spicy pickles or their video editing services. I think entrepreneurs will get younger, which we're already seeing that now. Those are my only two guesses right now. I try not to time travel to the future too far ahead because you never know what's going to happen. And that's the end of this video interview. I hope you enjoyed it and found some of this information I provided to be useful.

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