Rachel Brown is a CLT native and the owner of Queen City Chic, a lifestyle, food, & fashion blog. It highlights local brands, shops, restaurants, celebrities, events, & more! Check out this social media queen's tips & advice below:
1. What's your story? What makes you unique?
I went to UNC Charlotte and majored in Communication Studies with a concentration in PR. As I got closer to graduating, social media was getting big, and Instagram was just created. I decided to create Queen City Chic. It was another resume builder and way to show my writing, photography, and creativity. It also let me practice my social media skills. The passion behind it is that I'm born and raised from Charlotte and wanted to share the good local food, fashion, and fun events to attend to really get the most out of the city. I'm unique because I've lived in every part of town, I'm from here, so is my family, and that is uncommon. Also, because I'm a young, woman, entrepreneur, that had a dream to share and create with the community and I stay true to my brand everyday I'm doing it. It's unique to be your own brand in general I've come to realize.
2. What motivates you?
The city of Charlotte and the people within it motivates me everyday. I love to help others and being able to share amazing small businesses and charity events for example keep me passionate. I get to meet and work with people who believe in their dream as much as I do everyday. Also, my followers, family, and friends motivate me to keep chasing after my goals and that means a lot too. Last, myself. I motivated myself when I was not at the best place to do this and put all it takes and that's why if you follow me, you notice I like to motivate you too! If you believe in yourself, you know you really can do anything.
3. Who is a hero of yours?
Both of my heroes are my parents. I can't pick or choose but their support and love is so admirable and hard to find. They have helped me in the smallest and biggest ways and let me do my own thing trusting that I had/have what it takes to be successful. When you see two people give up things and root for you, not only are they your biggest cheerleaders, but heroes too.
4. What's your future plan? Your goals?
Media changes everyday so I don't make long term goals. But not my short term ones are to get my website that's being built up and running. Eventually have a place to shop my CLT styles and more of a structured way of suggesting where to eat, events coming up I'm hosting, etc. I have a lot of people say they search through my Instagram and I can't wait to publish this soon to help them even more. I currently also do social media consulting, freelance writing and a lot of things. So, instead of an exact plan right now, it is to take all of these amazing opportunities I'd never imagine to even have, enjoy them, and figure it out along the way. I am still young!
5. If you could give one piece of advice, what would it be?
My piece of advice would be to know that you can do anything you dream of or you spend time thinking about, and while you're doing it, be so confident that no one can knock you down. It's not their life, passion, or place to have a say. I just keep going for myself, and by myself sometimes with only family and small friend support but that's okay because I'm doing what I love everyday and don't' want them around anyway if they can't believe in me. Confidence is everything..
6. What is something you feel strongly about (a cause, belief, etc.)?
I feel really strongly about supporting others dreams and businesses, young entrepreneurs too, but especially woman. It is hard to have confidence these days as a female with the pressure and also so much easier to just support, compliment, and help others to grow and feel good about themselves. I work with woman entrepreneurs everyday who are giving everything they've got and it's quite amazing. I've learned and also made some amazing friends instead of competed. Just never ever forget to clap for others is my point. Life is so much more enjoyable to. I team up many women businesses to get this point across, help them share what they're doing in the city, and like to say were a "girl tribe".
7. What's one of the coolest things you've ever done?
One of the coolest things I've ever done was get to attend the new Hornets menu tasting on behalf of press. I got to enter through the side door with the TV stations, etc. in my Queen City Chic name tag and try all of the new dishes that chef made for that upcoming season. Being a Charlotte native and clearly a big Hornets fan, this felt like it was too good to be true. Another cool thing I've done is go back and speak as an alumni entrepreneur only two years out of my college alongside of three other amazing UNC Charlotte alumni CEOs. I was thrilled!