You may recognize branding and digital strategist Christina Brown as one of the faces of Dove Beauty Bar’s recent campaign or from her popular website, lovebrownsugar. The native New Yorker is busy by design. After graduating from college (she’s a University of Pennsylvania alum), the business major tried her hand in various aspects of social media, editorial work and marketing before deciding to quit her gig and invest in herself full-time.
Over the last few years, her business has evolved, but her commitment to supporting creatives of color is hasn’t changed. In fact, Brown’s Instagram mantra is, “I create dope digital destinations for savvy brown girls.” It’s clear Brown isn’t just living her best life, she’s helping other do the same.
EBONY caught up with the badass millennial mom to dish about what makes her tick.
Loving What You Do. In addition to running lovebrownsugar, I work at The Montage Agency, specializing in public relations and influencer engagement. There I have the opportunity to connect influencers with brands they are naturally promoting—this is big for folks of color. There are so many influencers who focus on subjects such as hair, beauty and style and talk about really amazing brands. We drive media and pop culture, but there is not always an equal exchange when it comes to compensation. We’re here to connect the dots.
On the Go. Travel is a big part of my life. I’m on the go for meetings, consulting, presenting and connecting with influencers. No trip is ever exactly the same because sometimes I’m serving as a manager and others I’m the talent—and on some I’m both.
Jumping, Leaping and Soaring. Career building is a process. In 2013 I decided to quit my job; I’d worked as a social media consultant and transitioned to public relations. At the time, I had a blog that was growing exponentially and I had a decision to make: Leave or be a bad employee. But I didn’t leave on a whim. I’d set aside about three months of savings and became a consultant with my former company. I advise all entrepreneurs to be strategic about their departure—don’t just quit one day because you’re fed up with your boss. Figure out your next moves.
Small Changes, Big Results. The biggest sacrifice I had to make when I first started out was social—I simply couldn’t afford to commit to some of the things I did before. When I had a paycheck coming in, I had the luxury of going to every happy hour and taking trips. When I started working on my brand full time I had to make strategic choices to invest my money in places where it would grow. I had to adopt the project vs. party mentality—and the project always won.
Business First. I think my business background definitely gives me the competitive advantage a lot are missing out on. So many people are misinformed on what to do once they have an idea, like how to set up legally. There are so many amazing creatives who’ve had their ideas taken or haven’t set up systems so their businesses falter after a few years and they lose it.