by Karima Mariama-Arthur, Esq. | Featured Contributor
A marketing expert, Tiffany is the Chief Executive Officer of Emerge the Magazine, a company that focuses on promoting entrepreneurs. She is also the Program Director of Access Virginia, a non-profit organization that is focused on providing access to live theatre and the arts for the disabled by providing open captioning and audio description services.
We caught up with Tiffany to learn more about the magazine and upcoming premiere in Washington, DC.
- I want to begin by inviting our readers to get to know you a little better. Tell me a little bit about yourself and why you decided to launch Emerge the Magazine.
I am a mother of a wonderful ten-year old little girl. I have Bachelor degree in Business and am working towards a Masters in Management, with a focus on non-profits and association management. I started Emerge to provide numerous avenues of exposure for small businesses and the people that run them. I grew up seeing a lot of talented people struggling to share their talent with the world and wanted to do something about it. Initially, I started with mostly models and entertainers. But, over time, the focus also became business professionals. The magazine is really a medium where likeminded professionals can increase visibility and network across industries.
- Why did you decide to name the magazine Emerge?
It took a long time for me to decide what to name it! I wanted something that would encompass everything we were doing, our mission. I looked at synonym after synonym, but nothing caught on. Eventually I came up with ‘Emerge’: It was all about emerging into growth and success, both as a company and for our clients. Essentially, I wanted to convey the feeling that you could you come into this company at any stage in your business and still experience growth and accomplish more.
- What do you feel is the #1 challenge facing entrepreneurs?
Hands down, marketing. It’s hard to know how to market yourself because there are so many different platforms out there. Also, the way you market yourself very much depends on the business that you are in. At Emerge, use social media to increase exposure and engagement, the newsletter feature for subscribers and then various other sales platforms. I think it’s also important to point out that you don’t need to use all forms of social media simply because they exist. You have to know your industry and understand your options. Beyond marketing, I think that networking presents another interesting challenge for entrepreneurs. But it, too, can be overcome.
- Do you have a PR/Marketing/Branding formula would be easy for entrepreneurs to follow that would guarantee their success?
Ha—I have not sat down to think of one! However, looking for places that you can be listed for free is my first recommendation. If you are not willing to go through SEO and pay a fee, then you have to look for free options. Anywhere that you can get a free profile (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc.,) will help increase your visibility and take you to the top of the list. When people go to search industry that you are serving, you want your name to get pulled up first. Also, once you develop your own unique hash tags, use it everywhere you post to promote your brand. Another great tip is to join associations, where you’ll have great opportunities to network.
- How do you select your cover features? And how can an entrepreneur get featured in the magazine or the online “profiles” section?
Usually, a cover idea is brought to us by a publicist. The committee will review. We take a few things into consideration, like what we are trying to accomplish with the issue. We want the focus to be authentic and for people to be drawn to it. I wanted to break away from traditional covers. So, we welcome covers from various industries: artists, creative’s, models, entertainers, and business people. It was important that people to see that business doesn’t have to ‘look’ a certain way to gain traction. Our recent cover featuring Leela James was selected with these ideas in mind. She’s emerging and encompasses what the magazine is all about. We’ll be making the announcement about the next cover at the DC Premiere.
- You have an online feature for contributors—the blog. How can entrepreneurs get involved in writing?
Just email me email@example.com. Send me a sample of your work. You don’t have to be an experienced writer to be selected, but you do need to be able to convey thoughts in a clear and concise manner. We’re interested sharing passionate, useful ideas with our readers. Additionally, we welcome one article at a time or regular monthly submissions.
- Tell us more about the upcoming ‘Emerge Premiere’ in Washington, DC.
It’s going to be amazing! It’s on Friday, May 29th at the City Club in Washington, from 6:00pm-10:00pm. The lineup includes a red carpet, live band, speakers, and an opportunity to meet people featured in magazine. Plus, VIPs like Tawana Williams will be there, who has an incredible story. There will also be lots of great food, drinks and of course, swag for VIPs. In fact, there’s still time to get tickets here: Emerge Premiere.
- You’re a more seasoned entrepreneur, what’s the one piece of advice you’d give burgeoning entrepreneurs?
Do not be afraid. I know it sounds super cliché, but I’m serious. When you have a passion, you have to go for it.
- What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made?
That I started so late—because of being afraid and not trusting myself to stand on my own two feet. When you are in a nine to five, that safe structure that keeps you in your comfort zone. Having a child you kind of want a structure that gives you security and a guaranteed paycheck. I believe that if I would have officially launched in 2011, when I originally came up with the concept, I would have been much further along.
- Thank you for chatting with us, Tiffany! Now, where can readers find your magazine?
Go to: www.emeregethemagazinecom. Click on magazine feature, where you can purchase. Or if you want, you can opt for the digital version. We are always happy to take pre-orders, although we do not offer regular subscriptions at this time.
Founder and CEO, WordSmithRapport
As the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of WordSmithRapport™, Karima brings more than two decades of comprehensive, blue chip experience in law, business, and academia to the field of professional development. A leading authority in cutting-edge adult education and professional development, Karima is distinguished by her commitment to excellence and extraordinary talent for elevating executive brands. As an expert facilitator, executive communications consultant, and strategic leadership advisor, she trains, coaches, and consults individuals and organizations on the dynamics of complex communication and high performance leadership competence.
Karima is a Distinguished Toastmaster, United States Senate and a Corporate Speaker, certified by the International Association of corporate speakers.
Karima is the author of Get out of Your Way & Stop Sabotaging Your Success and the highly anticipated Boardroom Talking Points: A Guide to Polished Communication for Executives. A regular contributor to numerous high-profile media outlets, she has clarified the discussion on professional development as a leadership imperative. Karima is also featured on She Source, an online braintrust of female experts on diverse topics designed to serve journalists, producers, and booking agents who seek female guests and sources.
A Cornell Fellow and graduate of the University of California, Davis, and Roger Williams University School of Law, Karima enjoys helping young adults to increase self-confidence through communication and leadership excellence when not coaching executives.