Meet Jellaine, a business strategist and global growth specialist

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Jellaine Business Strategist

Meet Jellaine,who is a beauty entrepreneur who pioneered a new lash product in the beauty industry and scaled a 7-figure business globally. The product that she pioneered became a phenomenon in the beauty industry and started a whole new category in eyelash products. Since selling her company to a private equity firm in 2017, Jellaine is now a consultant to brands looking to do the same and grow their product-based businesses internationally through department stores, wholesale, TV shopping, and professional distribution.

Jellaine will add her tenacity and first-hand experience to your business in the capacity of a business strategist, with a strong emphasis on marketing, PR, and sales, as well as operational efficiencies.

We were keen to know more about Jellaine and how she was able to make it globally!

What inspired you to make the leap and go out on your own, and when did you first start working for yourself?

I started my business in my late 20’s while working in corporate advertising and PR with 5 maxed-out credit cards. I wanted the freedom of owning my own business, working on my own creative projects, dreaming up products I love and would be useful to women. I also wanted to travel internationally and experience the thrill of seeing a product idea I developed end up on shelves of major retailers like Nordstrom department store in the USA which eventually happened a few years in.

Tell us about your experience of working for yourself?

It’s 24/7, constantly thinking about all the projects, tasks,  problem solving the 1,000 moving parts of the business. There are many highs and lows. Running a business builds character and resilience and eventually confidence once you’ve kicked a few milestones. I am really proud of the female friendships within the business world I have cultivated along the way, one being co-founder of Freelancing Gems, Fleur Madden.

What’s your best piece of advice for someone wanting to make the leap?
  1. Make sure your product sells beyond your friends and family group and has been tested in the marketplace, where you have made predictable sales trending upwards
  2. Measure and manage your data so you can make calculated decisions on when to go full-time in your business. Eg. know your conversion rates, how many customers view your product vs buy, break even so you can start to pay yourself
  3. Get expert help from a consultant who has a track record of achieving more than what you have to date. Lean on their advice and guidance to make smart decisions
  4. Have a “Do whatever it takes attitude” and surround yourself with positive influences like business books and podcasts to keep your mindset right
  5. Multiply what works, everything else can be parked so you can focus & perfect on what’s working
Best tips for winning new business?
  1. Do your research about the company, add value from Day 1 of meeting them, whether it’s giving them a tip or resource they could use, or a connection you can make.
  2. Be a solution to their problem. Your messaging in your meeting should speak to that problem.
  3. Perfect your pitch, tweak each meeting on how you can optimise it to be a stronger yes (e.g. competitor comparison visuals, stats on your success rate, demonstrate your product, leave samples, tell compelling stories of recent wins – people want to work with people who are successful and making moves)
  4. Follow up, do what you can to meet in person, or see them at an event. People buy from people they like, breaking bread with someone over a meal goes a long way in relationship building, especially if they are not geographically close to you.
What has been your favourite project to date?

Launching my lash product to the USA in the world’s largest Beauty Trade Show in Las Vegas with my 6-month-old baby, 11 suitcases, and one staff member. I had no contacts when I landed, however after the trade show we were such a hit, we got full distribution in North America across 50 states, and became a million-dollar brand within 12 months of doing the trade show. Such a high!

What is a business win you’re currently celebrating?

I started consulting to Aussie female-founded brands and helped them with strategy in launching in overseas markets, particularly with manufacturing, exporting, and marketing. Seeing the value I can give to new brands who have not been on my journey is exciting, as I can impart a lot of the experience I gained over the years and have been in their shoes. I’ve been able to help them take some shortcuts as well as avoid some roadblocks and expensive pitfalls if they were to go it alone.

What led you to join Freelancing Gems?

After attending Gem Con and seeing so many wonderful founders speak, I realised there was a gap of knowledge that is missing in the market of growing your brand in the USA, EU, UK, and beyond the online space. I have gained avast knowledge from taking my product from the weekend market stalls of Brisbane, to online, wholesale, and eventually TV Shopping and major international department stores like David Jones and Nordstrom. When I was going through this stage in my business there weren’t many people I could go to for advice. I want to be available for brands and help navigate those opportunities and growing pains.

What is one word you would use to describe Freelancing Gems?


What’s next for your business?

Expanding my consulting business to reach more founders who want to play a bigger game internationally, investing in certain ventures, and creating my own virtual workshops to digitise my expertise.

Jellaine is now looking for her next adventure. She would be happy to help Aussie up-and-coming brands forge a similar path to mine by, helping implement the strategies she has used for success. You can connect with her on the Gem Directory. Not a member? Join now.

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