Welcome to Episode 78 of the Indie Business Podcast! Today's Indie Story introduces you to Isabel Alvarez of Albisa Candles, in Los Angeles, California. Isabel makes candles that are reminiscent of her Cuban heritage. After the pandemic, Isabel hopes to hire outside help, but for now, it's truly a family business at Albisa, with Isabel making all of the candles and her husband doing all of the packaging and shipping — with a little help from the couple's 9-year old son as his studies permit.
You'll love the story of how Isabel went from making very intricately designed customized candles to crafting the small but beautiful line of candles and wax melts that are anchored by their viral best selling Cuban Bread line, and which includes scents like Cafe Con Leche, Noche Buena, and Havana Nights, which Isabel says smells like “a good looking Cuban man.” Enjoy my interview with Isabel NOW!
Click the arrow to enjoy the Indie Business Podcast
Episode Show Notes
Here are the topics discussed in this episode, with time stamps to help you find the information that interests you most:
- The story behind the Albisa brand, the brand name and the logo. (starting at 1:57)
- The infusion of all things Cuban, and the Cuban Bread candle, into the Albisa brand. (starting at 7:26)
- Transitioning from customizing candles to selling a standard line. (starting at 10:25)
- Finding your people. (starting at 13:00)
- The Havana Nights story, and how it led to creation of the Albisa collection. (starting at 14:50)
- From candles to wax melts. (starting at 37:00)
- How Isabel uses social media, and why she likes to do a lot of it herself, an how that leads to increased sales. (starting at 38:47)
- Hiring help. (starting at 41:10)
- How the pandemic has affected sales. (starting at 43:17)
- What Isabel sees in Albisa's future, including changes to shipping and receiving, and even more fun in her business. (49:30)
- How taking the time to connect personally with customers and buyers enhances Isabel's life. (52:10)
- Isabel's advice to new Makers. (starting at 43:36)
Resources and Links Mentioned in this Episode
In this episode, Melissa and I mentioned the following resources.
- Albisa Candles's Website
- Albisa Candles on Facebook
- Albisa Candles on Instagram
- Education: Brick House Branding
- Blog: My Big Fat Cuban Family
- Social media scheduling app: Planoly
Important entrepreneurial insights from Isabel
1. Find your people
During the conversation, Isabel kept reminding us of how important it is to find your people and your niche. You cannot be all things to all people. Clarify your brand to embrace what is meaningful to a specific type of person so you can break through the noise, have a greater impact, and enjoy more sales.
2. Personalize your brand
Over and over again, Isabel shared that the personal connections she has with her clients and customers benefit not only them but also herself personally. The impact of the work she and her family do together adds such meaning to other people's lives that it alone is one of the things that keeps her going when the going gets tough — as it often does for entrepreneurs. Isabel says that people respond to the personal touch, so even though it's more work, she loves and plans to continue taking the time to connect personally with her people.
3. Ditch perfection
Isabel reminded us several times that people don't want perfect. They want real. Instead of avoiding promoting your business because you are afraid you won't be perfect on video or whatever, embrace promotional opportunities that arise naturally because you are not perfect.
Enter to win a Cuban Bread Candle
Want to win one of Albisa's Cuban Bread candles?
How to Enter to Win!
Do these 3 easy and fast things by 11:59pm on Saturday February 20, 2021, to be entered to win!
- Follow @indiebusiness on Instagram
- Follow @albisacandles on Instagram
- Tag a friend on this Instagram post announcing this podcast episode
Binge Indie Business Podcast Episodes
Subscribe to Indie Business Podcast
If you enjoy the Indie Business Podcast, please subscribe so you can get each episodes as it is released. You can subscribe on Apple Podcasts (on iPhone) or Stitcher (via Google Play or via Apple Podcasts).
Rate Indie Business Podcast, Tell Your Friends and Comment
If you enjoy the Indie Business Podcast, please rate my show on Apple Podcasts, and be sure to subscribe there to receive automatic episodes as they are released.