Today, we have the pleasure of interviewing Cassandra Moore, founder of LGBT Commerce, designed to bridge the gap between the LGBT/Trans Communities and Business Owners.
Please tell us something about yourself.
I am a 35-year-old Army Veteran. I am a Technical Support Manager and Technical Writer moonlighting as a serial entrepreneur until my business ventures can sustain my lifestyle.
How did you get into what you do right now? Please tell us more about your journey.
In high school, I found out Herman Poole Blount, aka Sun Ra, was my father's late uncle. I was very impressed by Uncle Sun Ra's pioneering abilities and how he literally created his own lane in the Jazz industry. It really lit a spark in me to create my own lane in pretty much everything I did from that point on.
I tried various things throughout the years, many of them unsuccessful, but one thing I found I was always consistently good at was organizing people. Creating events became something I regularly did by 2015, and being a proud member of the LGBT community, many of my events and activities were centered around LGBT interests.
By late 2019, I had amassed a good amount of experience in various different fields that, oddly enough, all came together to create this perfect storm. What I mean is, basically, everything I had been trying and failing to do separately came together to form LGBT Commerce, and it was perfect! LGBT Commerce is the world's first and only LGBT focused E-commerce Marketplace. I created it partially out of frustration with an over-saturated market for another product of mine. I realized there were no LGBT based E-commerce websites. No Gay Etsy or Gay eBay, so I decided to create it. And that is how LGBT Commerce was born.
Please tell us more about LGBT Commerce.
LGBT Commerce is the world's first and only LGBT focused E-commerce Marketplace. We specialize in bridging the gap between the LGBT and Trans Communities and businesses that will not discriminate against them. As a company, we are most proud of our LGBT Business Expositions. During the Expos, we present the community with businesses that are, in most cases, very unique and always LGBT and Trans owned, allied, and/or friendly.
This allows LGBT Commerce to be the first E-commerce site that has a “cross-over” kind of feature. We aren't just an online marketplace. We really want to feature the LGBT owned, allied, and friendly businesses in every city across America, and eventually, the world.
What's your most memorable experience?
Since we began hosting the LGBT Business Expo, we have had many new companies join our website to advertise that they are LGBT owned, allied, or friendly as well. Thus far, one of the most memorable experiences is the first-ever LGBT Business Expo and seeing the huge desire by the vendors and the public to see it succeed and participate in it again. Many non-LGBT owned businesses simply wanted to let the world know they are LGBT/Trans inclusive, and it was amazing!
Which social media channels work best for promoting your work? What exactly do you do on the social media channel that makes it work for you?
We use Facebook and Instagram, mostly to promote. We have used Blip ads, Craigslist, Taimi dating app, Linked In, Twitter, Google, and YouTube as well. The majority of our ads are posts about the Expo, and we have some additional LGBT related content as well, but we see most of our interaction on YouTube and Facebook ads.
What's your greatest fear?
My greatest fear is LGBT Commerce not becoming an international tool due to failure by one of the many factors that can kill a start-up in the early stages, such as not enough funding, etc. I want to see LGBT Commerce succeed at all costs, and do not want it to fail to reach its ultimate potential. I think a bit of fear is needed to ensure one does not make careless mistakes, so I use the fear to keep myself “in check” and ensure I'm always on my “A” game.
What are the strategies that helped you become successful in your journey?
Some strategies that helped: under-promising and over-delivering. Anticipating and exceeding the expectations of my vendors and customers. Being transparent and honest at all times. Creating a safe environment for all involved in LGBT Commerce, including guests, vendors, shoppers, everyone.
What keeps you going when things get tough?
When things get tough, knowing that this service is needed and will be helpful as an international tool, knowing that we are creating something that has the potential to change the world. And, to be here long after all of us who started it are gone keeps me going.
Any message for our readers.
As far as a message, I would say never giving up on yourself, your dreams, and goals. The only way you can guarantee you will fail or not accomplish what you set out to do is quit or give up. NEVER GIVE UP!