Introduce yourself and profession to our readers:
My name is Ayo Thomas Founder and Editor in Chief of WOE (Women of Excellence) Magazine
What inspired you to pursue this area of interest?
I have always had a vision to launch my own publication since 2001. However fear of the unknown and failure delayed my process. In 2005, I launched a women’s ministry called WOE Fellowship to Educate, Empower and Encourage women to live a lifestyle of excellence. After several years of meeting in small intimate spaces, I decided to increase my platform by stepping out on faith to pursue my life long dream. I launched WOE Magazine in partnership with Nordstrom in Annapolis MD July 2016.
What advice would you share with those interested in a similar pursuit?
My advice for anyone who desires to launch a magazine is to do your research to determine niche, create a solid marketing plan to gain exposure, and be confident in your vision The magazine industry is very competitive so you will have to think creatively on how to stay relevant.
Discuss a professional challenge and how you overcame it:
My professional challenge was overcoming fear of the “unknown” and fear of failure. I had a great vision but feared failing by mentally falling into the statistical survival rate of magazines in the first year. Also I feared not knowing enough to even step out on faith to pursue my dream. Until one day I realized that fear is a destiny destroyer hindering me from chasing after my dreams. So what if I failed, at least I will gain life lessons to apply for future endeavors. Also I decided not to focus on my weaknesses or what I did not know by partnering with others who strengths were my weaknesses to fulfill my vision.
What is next for your brand/business in 2016?
We are currently working on our 2nd issue for Fall/Winter 2016 and planning an amazing event to kick off in January 2017 called #NoFilter Girl Talk Experience. An event bringing women together sharing real and raw stories about their journey to success.
How can readers connect with you online and through social media?
Readers can connect with me online via social media IG (Iamayotthomas)
Facebook Ayo Thomas and my website is www.ayothomas.com
To connect with WOE Magazine via social media:
IG and Facebook (WoeMagazine), Twitter WOEMag