#081: How to Be Self-Taught and Build an Online Empire with Laura Fuentes

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I interviewed today’s guest, Laura Fuentes, about a year ago on the show. The interview was one of my most popular ever!

Laura is the creator of MOMables, food plans for families. What I love about Laura is that she is very down to earth and practical about the empire she is building.

Building a Food Empire

Laura’s MOMables business consists of meal plans, courses, and digital products.

The meal plans are based on a subscription model. Every month, Laura provides her customers with 5 meals, a meal prep sheet, and a shopping list.

Laura also sells health and wellness programs in ebook format.

Laura’s programs can be compared to Whole30, but specifically for families. It is a 30-day program for both kids and adults.

Laura also has courses where she teaches parents how to put healthy eating for their family into practice.

She has a course on picky eaters, as well, for those parents who are battling out mealtimes and need some practical help.

Laurafuentes.com is her lifestyle blog and it’s where she shares how she lives the life of the courses she sells.

Learning to Create Video Content

Laura was a self-taught cook who competed on Food Network in 2014 and won!

She had never been on camera in her life when she auditioned for the show.

In fact, Laura taught herself how to cook by watching Food Network.

Her readers were asking Laura to create videos for her recipes, but she was much too afraid of the camera to comply. But after her stint on television, she decided that it was time to give her audience what they wanted.

Laura told her husband, “I now know that I can do it and it’s not about winning. From that experience, I learned that I could, so I did.”

Later in 2014, she began her dive into video. She took 2 full years to get her processes down and learn how to make great, high-quality videos.

At this point, Laura owns a video production company where she produces videos for large and small clients alike.

Growing the Video Side of a Business

Laura is not creating the “hands and pans” style cooking videos.

She does all of her videos in front of the camera, no overhead views. She wants her audience to get to know her through her videos.

Her videos average about 3:20. Laura has found that anywhere in the 3:30 - 4: 00-minute range is what her audience wants.

From the time she began doing video in 2014, all the way through 2017, Laura was releasing 1 new video per week. Because she had other facets of her business to run and needed to hire out all of the editing and preproduction of her videos, her budget didn't allow for more than 1 video per week.

Since the fall of 2018, she has begun releasing 2 videos per week. And of those 8 videos a month, 1 or 2 will be sponsored videos.

Laura uses the returns from sponsored posts to build the areas of her business that need growth but aren’t bringing in enough income on their own.

Monetizing YouTube

Ads on YouTube don't make Laura a lot of money. Over the last 28 days, Laura has made $227 from YouTube.

She is not what you think of when you think YouTuber; someone who pays the bills solely from their YouTube account. Laura’s goal isn’t to be a famous YouTube star. As a matter of fact, she doesn’t even like to wear makeup for her videos.

As she puts it, “I’m not that funny, I don’t wear makeup. I just make my recipes.”

But she is happy with how things are playing out on her channel now. She is experiencing true joy with her YouTube efforts and looks forward to creating video content.

Social Media Burnout

Laura doesn’t experience burnout over creating YouTube videos.

She personally experiences burnout over the pressure to constantly be churning out new content. But the majority of her burnout comes by way of social media.

Because brands are focusing so heavily on Instagram nowadays, Laura feels the pressure to focus on that platform. Whereas, her preference is to send people to her blog or YouTube channel.

Laura says, “If I could get rid of every platform and just choose one, I would choose YouTube. I just feel like IG is an exhausting race that I have no interest in winning.”

Being Enough For Yourself

What Laura thinks of herself matters so much more to her than what anyone else thinks about her.

We all struggle or go through periods of struggling with looking for outside validation.

Laura wants to model for her children that outside opinions are not the be-all, end-all. She wants to show them that they don’t have to put on a show of perfection for others; they can be themselves.

Laura does care, but she cares about how she thinks about herself, not how others think about her.

When you’re in it to win it, you cannot drag yourself down with negative talk. That is not the way to gain success.

When you get turned down by a company or a client, it doesn’t mean you’re a failure. It means you’re not the right fit for that project.

You have to be about serving others, not being emotionally invested in others accepting you.

Once you don’t care what others think, you can jump into things and do them without fear.

You will have new opportunities, you will grow so much as a person, and your business will grow too.

I don’t know about you, but I always feel so inspired every time I talk to Laura. Let’s all look in the mirror and be happy with who we are.

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Laura’s 2 previous episodes on The Blogger Genius Podcast: TIMESTAMP
  • Intro
  • 3:18 Building a Food Empire
  • 7:27 Learning to Create Video Content
  • 10:45 Growing the Video Side of a Business
  • 18:43 Monetizing Youtube
  • 20:35 Social Media Burnout
  • 26:00 Being Enough For Yourself
Read the podcast transcript for “How to Be Self-Taught and Build an Online Empire with Laura Fuentes” TOP 4 TAKEAWAYS
  1. Take the time to learn new skills, even if it means you have to teach yourself.
  2. Slowly ramp up your efforts as you learn more about what you're doing.
  3. You don’t have to be everywhere on social media all the time; choose carefully to avoid burnout.
  4. Focus on serving others, not on what others think about you.

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