Quentin “Q” Allums: Master Visual Storytelling | E28
#28: Master Visual Storytelling with Quentin “Q” Allums
Did you know that video is the best performing content type on most mainstream social media platforms right now? Video is super compelling and connects you to others in a way that words or images can’t— so if you’re trying to build a following or grow your personal brand, it’s in your best interest to master visual storytelling! Joining us this week is Quentin “Q” Allums, one of the first video creators on LinkedIn and prominent influencer on the platform. Aside from being one of the best visual storytellers of our time, Q also runs a video marketing company as well as an events company under his conglomerate, Urban Misfit Ventures. When Q isn’t working on his start up, he’s interviewing great minds on his podcast “Strange on Purpose,” and traveling the world for speaking engagements on notable stages from TedX to VidCon. Tune in to learn the elements of a visual story, tips to make your video go viral, how to use video marketing for your personal brand and more! We also touch on Q’s inspiring rags-to-riches story, and his advice on becoming a better public speaker.
#28: Master Visual Storytelling with Quentin “Q” Allums
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[00:01:14] I'm Hala Taha. And today we're Yapping with Quentin “Q” Allums. One of the first video creators on LinkedIn and prominent influencer on the platform. Who has generated millions of views over the years, aside from being one of the best visual storytellers of our time. He was also an up-and-coming entrepreneur, who runs a video marketing company, as well as an events company under his conglomerate Urban Misfit Ventures.
[00:01:38] When Q isn't working on his startup, he's interviewing great minds on his podcast. Strange on purpose and traveling the world for speaking engagements on notable stages from TEDx to VidCon.
[00:01:53] Hey Q. Welcome to Young And Profiting Podcast.
[00:01:56] Quentin “Q” Allums: What's up. I appreciate you having me.
[00:01:58] Hala Taha: Of course. We're super excited [00:02:00] to have you on the show. So let's kick it off like many successful people. Your life has been filled with ups and downs. You've recently had some very impressive milestones. For example, last year you were on Wisconsin's 25 Under 25 List.
[00:02:14] And you presented at the world's largest video conference called VidCon, but I. That not all your projects were so successful and you hit rock bottom at 23 years old. And you couldn't even afford a 99 cent chocolate bar. So let's start off with the not so happy times. What were you working on before all the LinkedIn fame and success hit?
[00:02:37] Quentin “Q” Allums: So I bounced around a lot during college and I was working with a lot of agencies, a lot of startups in the tech space. I fell in love with technology. And I ended up getting a job offer with a wearable tech company and then a virtual reality startup as well. But I didn't want to be just like that.
[00:02:54] Their social media guy didn't want to just handle marketing. So I ventured out on my own launch, my own [00:03:00] virtual reality startup. I had no idea what I was doing. Built a team. Failed within six months, because again, I had no idea what I was doing, but I realized that I just wanted to be in that space because I wanted to look cool.
[00:03:11] I wanted to look innovative and I didn't want to see all my peers doing amazing things and be left out of the dust, that was unsuccessful. And then I launched my first agency around the same time because I needed to make money. And I ended up, started off with like full stack, ended up pivoting a bunch of different times from just social media to, okay.
[00:03:28] Let's do content marketing. Let's just do social media management, all these different things. Ultimately, during that time, I was creating a lot of content as well, ended up on personal branding and going in companies and teaching them that their employees were the greatest asset. So how can we use our employee story to drive traffic for the company?
[00:03:45] Yeah. Ultimately ended up on, but I struggled for a very long time trying to build a profitable company. And it wasn't really, until I jumped on LinkedIn, that I did start making money and finding a little bit of success.
[00:03:57] Hala Taha: So tell us about that. How did you get back on your [00:04:00] feet? If I remember correctly, you had like negative $900 in your bank account at one point. What was the turning point for you to be successful and go in the right direction?
[00:04:09] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yeah. So the Richard Reality I just dissolved it essentially. It really wasn't even an LLC at that point. It was a basic project. So I decided I was going to stop it, but I was working on this agency, negative 900 and I think 57 point something in my bank account. I remember like just walking out of my room at the time.
[00:04:26] And I had a roommate, a deal was supposed to go through that week and he backed out the last minute. So I walk out and I'm talking to my roomate. Dude, like if I don't have one client by the end of this week. I just, I can't do this entrepreneur thing. I'm just not meant for this. So if I don't have one client at the end of this week, I'm just going to go get a job.
[00:04:42] And at the end of that week, I had three clients and rent was due at the end of that week. That's why I set that deadline. But that was really the moment that I realized that someone like me could do this. I still struggled after that, but I actually made money. That was the first time I really brought in something that I was able to pay my own bills with [00:05:00] my own sweat equity.
[00:05:03] Hala Taha: Cool. So let's move on to the good time. So you are one of the first video creators to make their mark on LinkedIn. And you grew your fame from vlogging on the platform back in 2017. When many people weren't doing that. But based on my research, I saw you actually launched a YouTube channel first without much success.
[00:05:19] So can you share how you initially got the idea to vlog and why you think it took off on LinkedIn? rather than YouTube?
[00:05:26] Quentin “Q” Allums: I needed to launch my YouTube. I called them video diaries. I suppose they've vlog. Video diaries for me, because it was really just me checking in and talking about what was going on, which I guess is a luck.
[00:05:36] But I remember I was interviewed by a friend of mine who was also my mentor and entrepreneur out in Virginia, when I was launching that first virtual reality project. And he's dude, I'd love to interview you about what you have planned for this project. And I sat down with him and it was probably the most embarrassing thing that I've ever done in my life.
[00:05:52] Like it was so bad. I was so embarrassed and I stuttered. I had no idea what I was talking about. I realized I hadn't [00:06:00] done any research really. And I promised myself, I would never feel like that again. And if I was going to be an entrepreneur, I would have to pitch myself. I would have to get comfortable talking to people and I have to get comfortable on camera.
[00:06:11] So from there, I just dedicated myself to shooting a video every single day for a year, at least. And I ended up going 500 plus days across platforms. And that was the reason because I didn't want to be embarrassed and I wanted to get really good on camera. And in terms of like success that I found in other platforms, YouTube for sure.
[00:06:29] Like view eyes, like total, like failure. When I was first getting started, but that's where I got comfortable. And then a lot of people don't know this, but like I bounce from Instagram to Snapchat and all these different platforms, but actually did find a lot of success on a platform called ask it doesn't exist anymore.
[00:06:44] And it was fairly. But the founder of Reddit was there. Jeremy Lynn was there and all of these huge names and influencers, and it was like a Q and a platform. YouTube got me ready for things like that. And then when I jumped to LinkedIn, I was ready because I was so comfortable on camera [00:07:00] because of that video diary.
[00:07:01] But in terms of LinkedIn yes, I was one of the first, it was very easy for me to stand out, but I still had to work to retain that attention. I was able to do that because of all those hours I spent on YouTube and in those other platforms.
[00:07:14] Hala Taha: Totally. And that's what people have to keep in mind. You gather all this experience, all these skills from even failures.
[00:07:22] And it's important to know that just because you necessarily failed on a project. Doesn't mean that you can succeed, if you apply it in a different way and you still get that advantage of having those skills. So that's very inspiring. Let's dig into your main expertise a little bit more, which has visual content.
[00:07:39] Online videos are everything right now. In fact, videos are the best performing content type, pretty much on every single social media platform. Right now, just a few stats to get my listeners to understand the scale of this trend. According to HubSpot 81% of businesses use videos as a marketing tool up from 63% over the last year. [00:08:00] Google reports that six out of 10 people would rather watch online videos than television.
[00:08:05] And Cisco predicts that by 2022 online videos will make up more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic. So why do you think that video content marketing? So hot. And why is the demand accelerating in this space?
[00:08:19] Quentin “Q” Allums: I would say like number one video right now is so hard, especially for businesses because it is that epicenter of all content. You can then repurpose that video to audio, to written to little snippets, to screen caps, whatever it is, there's all these different things that you can turn that video into.
[00:08:34] But again, it does allow you to make that emotional tie with that person or that story that you're watching on camera. But I would say for me, like it's so important because it is that epicenter. I'm actually a writer before anything I'm known for video, but I'm a writer before anything. And people read my writing because they understand and they connect with me on camera and they know what kind of person I am, but that wouldn't have happened without that video.
[00:08:57] Hala Taha: Oh, that's really interesting.
[00:08:59] So video [00:09:00] also has a lot of power when it comes to purchasing decisions. Do you know any like science behind, why video heightens our motivation to click the buy button?
[00:09:10] Quentin “Q” Allums: I was doing a workshop and I got this from one of my mentors and I walked in and I was like, yo, raise your hand.
[00:09:16] If you have an iPhone, and of course, a lot of people were raising their hand and I'm like, okay, if you had an iPhone before that, keep your head up raise. A lot of people kept their hand raise. If you had an iPhone before that keep your hand raised. And basically all of them had their hand raised and I kept going.
[00:09:29] And really again, a lot of them had their hands raised and I explained to them that people buy not because necessarily like it's the better choice or it's so much better than an Android. They buy it because of clarity, because they really understand it. And I would say video works the same way. It's so much easier to communicate a message when you have visuals and you have audio when you have all these different mediums in one place, and that's what video allows you to do.
[00:09:53] Again, you get to connect with someone and it gives you that overall clarity.
[00:09:56] Hala Taha: Got it. And another element [00:10:00] of video that I know that you're really good at is visual storytelling. And as the common saying goes, facts, bore and stories sell. And in my opinion, stories that are visually engaging, sell even more. So what are your key elements of a good visual story?
[00:10:16] Quentin “Q” Allums: So my team is absolutely incredible when it comes to the visuals again I'm a writer, and I'm really good on camera. That's where I'm best. But I would say a lot of the things that a lot of people pay attention to on their TV shows and movies, like the same things apply for the most part, all stories are the same, right?
[00:10:31] Like they start someone, you have that main point and then they build up and then there's that problem. Okay. How do they get over that? What's the outcome for the most part? It's the same thing. At least visually being able to take your viewer from point A to point B and communicate those things that are happening in that story visually. I would say is the biggest thing, but taking your viewer from point A to point B.
[00:10:51] Hala Taha: And you recently said that conflict is a gateway to connection.
[00:10:54] So can you share your thoughts on that related to storytelling?
[00:10:58] Quentin “Q” Allums: Oh, absolutely conflict is [00:11:00] innate. And it's been there since the beginning of time. And if you look at all of the successful stories, like Harry Potter, game of Thrones, Batman, like any story, like there's that conflict and that's why we heavily attached to that character.
[00:11:12] Otherwise it's going to be boring. What's that thing that they overcame and what did they become? So I'd say when it comes to. Just like all of your favorite stories when it comes to communicating your brand story or your personal brand, whatever it is, like what's a conflict in your life and it doesn't have to be huge, right?
[00:11:28] It doesn't have to be, Hey, I had negative $900 in my bank account or Hey, like this happened, that was terrible when I was a child, but just everyday conflict that people can resonate with. That's going to make your story so much more compelling versus the static character that doesn't change.
[00:11:45] Hala Taha: Okay.
[00:11:45] So let's talk about how you actually create a video. What is your production process? Do you write a script? Is it more on the fly for your LinkedIn videos? Are you guys planning camera angles and [00:12:00] things like that?
[00:12:01] Quentin “Q” Allums: First, it was over-planned when it was just me, then it was running gun because we needed to make money.
[00:12:04] And now I'm really at the point where I want to take everything that we do to the next level. So we are spending a lot more time planning versus, Hey, like here's the topic. Go, just go rant. I do want to test and see what's working. So I have this spreadsheet, essentially, that maps out all of our different content tracks, different variables like, Hey, did I have my hat on this day was outside.
[00:12:25] What was the copy that I use? Was there B roll? Was there music? What was the message? What was the CTA and the copy? All of these different variables that allows me to see. Hey, what's resonating. And from there, I lean into the thing that's working, but we do spend a lot of time planning out what topics we want hit.
[00:12:42] And then at least outlining the main points of that topic. I would say personally, I don't spend a boatload of time, but for my team and for our clients. We do spend a lot of time there because that's when you're going to get that share-ability. That's when you're going to get that for reality. When you really understand what works and it's a science and you know it because you've tried.[00:13:00]
[00:13:00] Data is law. Data doesn't lie.
[00:13:03] Hala Taha: So you just mentioned your black hat, which is like your icon. People call that a brand anchor, another LinkedIn star. Her name is Dr. Italia. She wears blue glasses. So what do you think about brand anchors? Is that something that you would encourage others trying to make a name for themselves to do?
[00:13:22] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yeah, something I like to say is let your ship sail. Don't be afraid to let your ship sail before you find that. I think a lot of people obsess over that. I had a message one time it's Q like people only watch your stuff because you have a cool hat. And I was like, okay like there's some truth in that.
[00:13:37] It's definitely like science to that. But that's not the reason before I had my hat. Like people still watch my videos, but my hat. It took me to the next level. Cause it was like. Hey, have you seen that guy with the black hat? I immediately increase share-ability right. And people were talking about me and then people knew, Hey yeah, he talks about this.
[00:13:53] I'm going to click on this video because I've heard about him. So it'd be just say, don't be afraid to let that ship sail. If you look at the most [00:14:00] successful people like Gary Vaynerchuk, you could argue that he doesn't necessarily have a brand. At least he didn't for a very long time. And now he's known for things like hustle and like sneakers and the jets, and like the sounds that he's implementing into his videos now.
[00:14:15] He didn't have a brand anchor for a very long time. So I would say you don't need one, but it definitely helps to have those visuals. And that can be colors. That could be sounds honestly, that could be style of clothing, that you wear, whatever it may be, anything having that visual or that thing that's attached to your identity.
[00:14:31] Visuals make it a lot easier, but it could be anything. But you don't need it and don't be afraid to go without it.
[00:14:36] Hala Taha: That's so fascinating. I need to think about what my brand anger is.
[00:14:41] Let's talk more about optimizing your videos. And like you said, you're doing like AB testing and really looking into what's working.
[00:14:48] What's not dropping, what's not. And focusing on what is. I personally have found that videos are deep prioritized on LinkedIn, my regular text posts or texts with images [00:15:00] always do better. Granted, I don't really do a lot of videos, where it's like me in person. It's more still videos and things like that.
[00:15:07] So I don't think what I'm saying entirely fair, but maybe you can give us some tips on how to make our videos perform better. So like how long of a caption should we have? How long should our videos be in general? Is there certain types of videos that work better than others?
[00:15:24] Quentin “Q” Allums: I would say in terms of the different mediums, for sure.
[00:15:28] Text posts get more views, but that's just the algorithm in terms of like video. Like every time I go live, typically. Lead for my company, right? Every time I post a video and I know it's going to go viral, that's a lead from my company. It just depends. But in terms of getting your videos to get more view, I get more views.
[00:15:45] Like I know this is an unpopular opinion. It's not what people typically want to hear, but I would say you have to test it. That spreadsheet that I have looks very different for all of my founders. What works for me does not necessarily work for them. I know for me personally, [00:16:00] whenever I talk about something emotional and I'm telling a story, and I'm leaning into my strengths, which is strategy.
[00:16:05] And like, when I speak, there's that flow like state, whenever I'm doing that, I know it's going to do very well. It doesn't matter if I have my hat on it, honestly doesn't even matter. B roll music does make a little bit of an impact, but that's completely different for all of my founders.
[00:16:19] So I would say test those things and really pay attention to the shares metric. I think that's something that a lot of people don't look at. They look at the views, they look at engagement, they look at likes, right? Pay attention to the shares and the more. Like further than that. What are people saying when they do share it?
[00:16:33] Because that's a good indicator of, okay, this has a likelihood to go viral because more people are sharing it there. So pay attention to that. In terms of actually getting your views to perform better on like a basic level, though, I would say that first frame is going to be your thumbnail. So make sure it's an attractive visual, make sure it's related to the video.
[00:16:49] Of course. Like it shouldn't be looking up your nose, right? Like smile or something like that. But that first second of your video is going to be the thumbnail. So make it attractive. I would say copy is huge.
[00:17:00] And again, that's why you need to test. But give everybody that information upfront when you're writing always don't make them click the video, make them want to click the video.
[00:17:08] If that makes sense. I would say also collaborations will help in terms of increasing views. Like maybe you link up. Two to 10 creators that you really enjoy and you go and comment on each other's posts when they post them. Just because again, the way that the algorithm works, that will speed that up a bit.
[00:17:24] Other than that, I would just say test, and see what's working. And I know that's not what people want to hear, but it's something you have to do. If you do want to grow continuously.
[00:17:32] Hala Taha: Yeah, totally. And it's clearly working for you. So I think you mentioned a lot of great tips that we should keep in mind.
[00:17:39] So you've used her videos as a way to build a very thriving community on LinkedIn. I would say you're one of the most popular people on LinkedIn right now. You recently posted a video on the importance of retaining your following and not just focusing on getting new followers and more traction. In my opinion, the way you made it sound was it's basically treading water [00:18:00] if you're doing that.
[00:18:00] So can you expand on this?
[00:18:02] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yeah. It's just like a business, right? Let's go out and let's just get new business. But if you're. Doing the work for the business that you do get for the clients that you do get, you're going to fail. Because again, there's not going to be any referrals.
[00:18:14] People are going to talk bad about you because why are they there? Why are they working with you? Why are they making this investment in you? And I think a lot of creators are like, Hey, like you're following me. Like you owe me that follow versus earning it. And I think if you build that relationship with the people that are following you and you actually build a community now, Following.
[00:18:32] You're going to have so much more longevity because of that. And they're going to share your message for you. They're going to feel that attachment to you, which is going to give you so much more longevity. So I would say again, like how can I keep these people engaged? And like also, yeah, if you want new followers, we want more people in there, but by bringing that value to the people that are following you, you're right.
[00:18:51] To bring in more people.
[00:18:54] Hala Taha: Are you getting all of your engagement totally organically. And just based off your content, [00:19:00] or are you proactively doing things like whether that's inviting people to connect or using another person's platform as your leverage, like commenting on Gary V or whatever it is, or are you just doing it purely organic?
[00:19:16] Quentin “Q” Allums: So right now, it is just all organic. I want to do more strategic things like commenting on those big names and things like that. But for the most part, it's all been organic for me. And then of course, like I've collaborated a boatload, but also the community. That I've built has helped tremendously like physical community, like a group that I have had multiple, but those people in those groups, they're like.
[00:19:36] Hey.Q is doing this. Maybe you should go watch his content. That's not the purpose of the group, but that does happen because of the group. So I would say my community has helped a lot, but other than that, a lot of it is just organic and the collaborations.
[00:19:51] Hala Taha: I think your community is what Mike Winnet it calls an engagement pod, have you heard of him?
[00:19:58] Quentin “Q” Allums: No, actually. What'd you say his name?
[00:19:59] Mike [00:20:00] Winnet like wouldn't no. I haven't.
[00:20:02] Hala Taha: He was on my show. He's known as like the UK is number one D motivational speaker. He's like a satire type of a guy, but yeah. He talks about these engagement pods where a lot of big names on LinkedIn basically have an agreement to like, each other stuff to boost up the algorithm.
[00:20:17] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yeah, and they do. And I have my team. So my community, like I have a couple, one of them is a video innovators group. We don't allow any like sharing of links or anything like that. The group's purpose is to propel video innovators, compel video creators forward. And because of that, I get credibility.
[00:20:33] People are like, Hey yeah, Q started this group. Then I have my main misfits group, which is just influencers and creatives. And again, it's, we don't share any links or anything like that. I would say the only pot I have really is I've got like the small group of Milwaukee creators that I want to bring up.
[00:20:46] And that's basically just my team. There's a lot of pods.
[00:20:50] Hala Taha: Yeah. I think it's fair game to do anything like that. There are a lot of pods. I have a group on slack, which is a network of listeners. And they help boost your content. I feel like that's the [00:21:00] game nowadays.
[00:21:01] Quentin “Q” Allums: It is. I need something at least.
[00:21:04] Yeah. There's a lot. There's people on 20, which makes no sense to me. I would have no time for that, but whatever.
[00:21:09] Hala Taha: Nobody has invited me yet. What's up Q.
[00:21:14] Quentin “Q” Allums: I don't know.
[00:21:14] Hala Taha: I'm doing pretty good considering. Okay, so your sweet spot is video, obviously, but you're also in the podcast space. So tell us about how you got into that.
[00:21:22] Quentin “Q” Allums: I'm just like big. And there's just massive opportunity in that space. And honestly, like it was on a bunch of podcasts and I saw my friends talking to all these amazing guests and I'm like. Hey, do you guys want to start a podcast? And they said, yes. So we started one and now we actually do have a podcast studio that we're helping others launch their show.
[00:21:40] And we're allowing others to use their space, like DIY style as well. So we're super excited about it, but I just, I like the space in general and I listened to a lot of them.
[00:21:49] Hala Taha: Cool. Do you feel like it's been successful? How have you felt about the business model of a podcast?
[00:21:56] Quentin “Q” Allums: Just strictly podcast business model?
[00:21:59] I would say if [00:22:00] you're wanting it to be a business model, probably not going to be the best, but the way we've gone about it, it drives a lot of traffic and we get a lot of leads because of it. It's good lead gen tool. So I would say if you just want to make it a business, don't make that like your main source of income, but it definitely can generate money later on so long.
[00:22:17] Building that brand, but for us, it's been super helpful for the business.
[00:22:21] Hala Taha: Totally. Yeah. I definitely see podcasts as like a lead generator type of tool and just really good to just get your name out there and get your brand out there.
[00:22:30] Quentin “Q” Allums: Absolutely.
[00:22:31] Hala Taha: Another space that you have recently entered and you've been doing really well in is public speaking.
[00:22:38] So can you tell us about the different engagements that you've had so far and how you were able to secure those?
[00:22:44] Quentin “Q” Allums: Public speaking is interesting. So recently I just did my first TEDx and I did VidCon the year before that. And I just got approved to be a speaker at inbound as well. And I've done a bunch of like small scale ones as well.
[00:22:56] Like a bunch, probably too much. I need to slow down. [00:23:00] Honestly, I got in by accident. I was drinking and at a networking event slash LinkedIn local in Dallas. And they're like, Hey, Q you in to speak. She's yeah sure. I had no idea what I was talking about. And again, it went terribly and I related that back to my experience with video.
[00:23:15] And I was like, okay, if I'm going to be an entrepreneur, I gotta be good at this. And I don't like being bad at things. So I promised. I would do a bunch of these things. And I did, I think 15 before, VidCon, which is again, too much, but I got comfortable, still not really good or anything like that.
[00:23:32] It wasn't until recently, like leading up to the TEDx where I really felt comfortable on stage, but the biggest thing for me. Again, building brand equity in leveraging that. So every time I did a speaking engagement, I recorded a video. And then from that video, I would find the point that I believe would go the most viral, the point that I believe had the most share-ability.
[00:23:52] And then I would share that on LinkedIn. And then again, I would probably get a speaking engagement from that because all of those shares and honestly started by accident. [00:24:00] Instruct people to put together like a one-sheeter and start reaching out and asked to speak for free. But the most important part then is documenting, when you are speaking and then leveraging that from there.
[00:24:11] Hala Taha: And it obviously helps that you have a big following and people are looking up to you and things like that.
[00:24:17] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yeah. You have to know what makes you unique thousand percent.
[00:24:20] Hala Taha: So how do you prep for your speeches? When it comes to things like nerves or body language or annunciation and pay.
[00:24:27] Quentin “Q” Allums: So initially it was, let's just go on stage and let's go.
[00:24:30] And it was terrible. At first I got better at it and I can totally do that. But TEDx really taught me to prepare. And I am a very go with the flow type of guy, but I'm also deeply strategic. And I want to start spending more time, like planning these speeches and then riffing. And I like to think of it like music.
[00:24:47] I was a musician. So you learn a song, you play it, how it's played normally. And then once you memorize it, then you can start riffing and doing all these things. So for me, like I have been writing out my talks now. I might go off script. I might go way off [00:25:00] script. It just depends, but I do have the same routine, every single speaking engagement that I do.
[00:25:04] Like I eat my peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I sit on the stage for an hour beforehand. If that is allowed, I listened to the same playlist and I don't have my hat on until I go up on stage. I put my hat on and then I just forget about everything. And I go, it's just the same thing for me every single time.
[00:25:19] And I've found that's helped me separate myself from those nerves in the more prepared I am, the better and more. I feel like myself.
[00:25:27] Hala Taha: That's awesome. That's great advice. Thank you. So the last topic we're going to cover is entrepreneurship. What's the hardest thing you've faced so far as an entrepreneur.
[00:25:38] Quentin “Q” Allums: Honestly, like I feel like I can name off a million different things. I would say though it's a point I'm at now. I was talking to a friend. New entrepreneur this morning and he's man, I'm so close to locking down this deal. This is so hard. And he was like, I didn't realize it would be so hard.
[00:25:55] People say it's going to be hard, but you don't realize it until you're in it. And I totally [00:26:00] went through the same thing and. Even now when we're in this growth stage, like we've reached this point where okay, let's get a business coach because we want to take our company to the next level. But now we're realizing, wow, there's so many areas that we just absolutely suck at.
[00:26:13] We're good. And in a few lanes, but managing everything financial, not to say we don't have cashflow or not making money because we are, but like just organization and communication and overall vision and things like that. Every day, every new stage gets harder and harder. I'm more equipped to deal with those things.
[00:26:30] But I don't think I could just straight up answer. This has been the hardest thing because literally every week it all sucks, but it's also fun and rewarding.
[00:26:39] Hala Taha: And you partnered with three others for this venture. Why did you decide that you needed a team and was it you who decided to recruit this team and then how did you select them?
[00:26:50] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yes. So first startup, I was the founder and then I brought a team. Second agency. I was initially the founder and that I brought on two people later [00:27:00] and then it was just me again. And I would outsource, and I really stepped away from that because I did want a team and I didn't want to do it alone anymore.
[00:27:08] And I wanted it to have real impact. And that's when I meet Eric. When I was thinking about those things and he was big on Twitter, big on Instagram. And I reached out and I'm like, dude, let's do something together. So we started a YouTube channel and we just talked about LinkedIn and it went pretty well.
[00:27:24] But after one video, I was like, okay, I want to do more. And this dude, I have convinced a lot of people to jump on LinkedIn at this point in my life. And he did 90 straight videos, whereas everybody else pretty much fell off. So I knew this guy was good for it. So we decided to launch a business, had no idea what we're going to do.
[00:27:39] We just knew that we wanted to create full-time. And then around that time, Brahma who I was earlier introduced by my fourth business partner, Izzy. Who I was college roommates back within the day, but Brahma and I met each other through this group that wanted to do something similar to my company. Now they ended up kicking Brahma out and me out because we just weren't aligned.
[00:27:57] And I hired Brahmato do some work with my previous [00:28:00] company. I hired him to do a shoot with me and Eric when we were starting this company. And he's wow, I really what you guys are doing. I have no idea what you're actually doing, but I like it. And I want to be a part of it. So we brought him on and then Izzy, who was my old college roommate, seven years.
[00:28:14] He was transitioning from director of corporate sponsorships at this previous venture. And I'm like, dude, like we need exactly what you have to offer right now. I knew what I was good at. I knew what Eric was good at. I knew what Brahma was good at. And I knew what his, he was a good at. So we got together, we hashed it out and we decided to start this together.
[00:28:31] And from there, it just grown faster than any of us have ever expected. I would say when you have a lot of people. It does get difficult. So just make sure you outline everything before you get started.
[00:28:42] Hala Taha: Yeah. That's great advice. Sometimes just getting the team ramped up takes so long and it's so difficult, but once everything's moving like a well-oiled machine, it's so nice.
[00:28:51] Quentin “Q” Allums: Absolutely.
[00:28:54] Hala Taha: So this is the company that's called Urban Misfits, correct?
[00:28:57] Quentin “Q” Allums: So it's Urban Misfits Ventures.
[00:28:59] Hala Taha: How did you come up with [00:29:00] that name?
[00:29:01] Quentin “Q” Allums: So the name, I had built a community of misfits before I started this company and I was known as a misfit on LinkedIn. That's what I've built my brand around, but I wanted to do something with that.
[00:29:13] And originally we were just going to do MK misfits. Now our events company that we own. And they were like, Hey wouldn't it be cool if we had this agency that we could launch different brands under our original company, different brands under this company. But we had an agency as well, and we could run those brands through the agency.
[00:29:30] So the idea is to own different companies, but not necessarily run all of them, but have full control over all of them under this venture, under this umbrella company. So as misfits, I don't know where the name exactly came from. We are going to have and do have multiple ventures.
[00:29:46] Hala Taha: So that's brilliant.
[00:29:47] That's awesome.
[00:29:49] And I've heard you compare your company's value proposition to the likes of Kim Kardashians. So can you tell us what you mean by that?
[00:29:57] Quentin “Q” Allums: Oh, I don't remember saying that, but that's funny. I would say a [00:30:00] big thing for us is when you partner with Urban Misfit Ventures, you're not just getting a team that's going to come in and help you with content.
[00:30:07] You're going to get the strategy. You're going to get the content and you're gonna. Packable story, but you're also going to get, Hey, we've got this community and events company will able to drive a lot of traffic, and they're people that deeply believe in what we promote. So they know that we're only going to push products and push companies that we believe in.
[00:30:26] So they're more likely to buy your stuff. But also on top of that, you're also going to get my brand and all of my founders brands, and all of my employees brands. We're able to drive all of that traffic to you. So if you partner with us, you get that full package. Influencer package.
[00:30:42] Hala Taha: Very cool. And if you have to give one piece of advice for an up and coming entrepreneur, what would it be?
[00:30:50] Quentin “Q” Allums: Honestly, I would say stop listening to advice. Not necessarily don't consume. I think consuming is great, but especially when you're first getting started out. It's very easy to get bogged [00:31:00] down by advice and get analysis paralysis. So I would just say, do, and then. Learn from that failure or the success, whatever it is, but just don't listen to too much advice and start taking more action.
[00:31:11] And then as you learn, as you grow, then you can start consuming more. And then eventually you're creating and doing as much as you're consuming, ultimately. But at first I would just say, stop taking so much advice.
[00:31:22] Hala Taha: That's good advice. And where can our listeners go to find more about you and everything?
[00:31:28] Quentin “Q” Allums: Yeah. So our website is urbanmisfitventures.com. Otherwise MKmisfits.com will take you to the same place. You can find me on any social media platform by searching at tag just Q otherwise on LinkedIn I'm Quintin Allums.
[00:31:42] Hala Taha: Awesome. It was so wonderful to have you on the show. Thank you.
[00:31:45] Quentin “Q” Allums: I appreciate you having me.
[00:31:47] Thanks for listening to Young And Profiting Podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, don't forget to write us a review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to the show. Follow YAP on Instagram @youngprofiting [00:32:00] and check us out at youngandprofiting.com. You can chat with us every single day on YAP Society on Slack, check out our show notes or youngprofiting.com for the registration link.
[00:32:08] You can find me on Instagram @yapwithhala or LinkedIn, just search for my name, Hala Taha. Big, thanks to the YAP team for another successful episode. This week on YAP, I'd like to give a special shout out to our audio engineer and producer Danny McPhatter. Danny is a super talented lady who keeps our podcasts sounding amazingly clean and professional.
[00:32:27] We are so very lucky to have her. This is Hala signing off.
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