Ladies We Love is a monthly interview series with women from around the world that provide us with inspiration through their travels and personal stories. This week we got to know entrepreneur Beth Doane.
Beth Doane is an entrepreneur, journalist and author who has photographed her way across more than 80 countries and became known for the portraits she takes using only her phone. You can see some of her incredible work here. She was also named by Inc Magazine as one of the top branding experts in the world and she is currently Managing Partner of Main & Rose, the multi-million dollar female-led strategic branding agency she built where she advises some of the world’s most iconic Fortune 500 companies, celebrities, governments, executives and nonprofits. She has spoken to audiences at Google, Harvard, Capitol Hill and more, and sits on the Pacific Council for International Policy, The Forbes Council for Young Entrepreneurs, and is an advisor to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights Project. She also contributes to The Huffington Post, Forbes, and other major outlets.
1) For our readers who don’t know you, can you tell us who you are, where you are from (or live now) and what you do for a living?
The nature of my work means I’m almost always in the air. I run Main & Rose, a strategic branding firm where we help build the profiles and brands of individuals and organizations doing incredible work all over the world. We have teams across the US, Europe and the Middle East.
2) You are a contributing writer for Forbes, Huffington Post and Thrive. Can you tell us how you got into travel journalism and made your way to writing for such major publications?
Travel has always been one of my deepest passions. To me, travel is about encouraging a positive perspective on life: being open to new people, cultures, ideas, and adventures. I wanted other people to learn about some of the remote places and remarkable cultures I’ve had access to, so I began writing about my experiences. I also see travel journalism as part of my social impact work. I’m focused heavily on highlighting conservation initiatives and sustainable properties, because I think that it is important that people know about them and that they thrive.
3) What tips would you give to writers looking to follow in your footsteps and get published in some of these major outlets?
It’s not easy breaking into this field. But I would advise that people write as much as they can to build up their portfolio, and that they bring to the table a perspective that is authentic and uniquely them.
4) As well as writing, you are also a managing partner at branding agency Main & Rose. Can you tell us how you started this company and how you juggle the workload this must bring along with your other commitments?
How well a story is told can start a movement, sell a great product, drive awareness and create massive social change. Main & Rose was started because my business partner and I care about telling stories that matter and we’ve been lucky to tell stories for some of the most interesting and powerful people and companies in the world. The firm was built on our shared vision, our experience in marketing, our insight into current cultural shifts and lot’s of very hard work. I also see my writing and my work leading Main & Rose as inspired by the same mission: building a better world. As to juggling the workload: I’ve learned to get used to jetlag!
5) In terms of personal branding, what top pieces of advice would you give to our readers who are looking to build their own personal brands and businesses?
Here is my number one piece of advice: tell your story; don’t sell your product, sell your narrative. Especially in this digital era, people are craving a personal touch and connection that they can relate to, and that can inspire them.
6) What branding mistakes do you see many new entrepreneurs make and what advice would you give them to correct these?
I see this over and over, in so many industries, even among the most successful people in the world: many people get stuck in a 20th century mindset when it comes to branding, and don’t focus enough on their personal narrative or on using social media to reinforce and amplify that story.
7) You are an advocate for women in business and entrepreneurship, do you have any advice for young women coming out of college and looking to start their own business?
Be brave and be persistent. Starting a business is one of the hardest things you can ever do. Make sure it’s what you really want and are passionate about. If it is, and you are relentless, surround yourself with the right partners and build a great team you will succeed.
8) You are launching your own website soon, BethDoane.com what can readers and visitors expect to find when they come to your site?
They’ll learn about my work, but more importantly, they’ll learn about why I’m so passionate about creating positive impact in the world — whether that’s empowering women, encouraging conservation or helping youth.
9) Lets talk travel! What is your favourite travel destination and why?
My favorite question :) It’s so hard to chose, but traveling to Oman earlier this year changed my life. The geography is incredible, the food was phenomenal and the people were so warm. I spent time in Muscat as well as some more remote areas and it was magical.
10) What are your top tips for surviving a long haul flight and avoiding jetlag?
I feel like there are never enough hours in the day, so I use my long flights to catch up on work. Always bring a book or print out work in case the WiFi doesn’t work, and drink plenty of water (long flights can do a number on your skin!). I also don’t eat much on long-hauls because it’s harder for our bodies to digest food while in the air.
11) How do you go about picking and planning your own trips? Do you have any apps, or go to web resources that you use to help you plan?
I use Instagram to discover new places and get inspired! I’m always on the lookout for stunning properties that have a strong commitment to sustainability.
12) Finally, we like to end on a fun question – what is your favorite quote right now?
“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do.” Amelia Earhart
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