Name: Cameron Miller (who runs the biz alongside co-founder Rome Green)
Our business: Shady Side Up
Year founded: 2020
Based in: Los Angeles, California
Why we started our business:
Shady Side Up is a lifestyle brand built on shifting one’s perspective through pairs of our frames. Our mission is to empower everyone to have frames that allow them to express how they truly feel. Back in college, we had a vision for a sunglasses brand, but we put it on the back burner for other dreams. During the pandemic, with an endless amount of time, we decided to be productive and come out of it on top. So, in 2020 we placed that vision back on the front cap and turned the stove on medium-high to get that vision cooking again.
The only things we can control in life are our attitude, effort, and actions. If you keep that perspective, you’ll handle anything life throws at you with grace.
Build Black with Shopify was developed to create one million Black businesses with partner organizations like Operation Hope. Its aim is to provide tools, resources, and education to remove the traditional barriers to Black entrepreneurship. Join the Build Black program to connect with other entrepreneurs like you.
The biggest challenge we’ve overcome:
The biggest challenge we overcame was realizing we needed to pivot from working “in” our business to working “on” our business. We learned that to truly scale we can’t do everything—as CEOs, we have to focus on the bigger picture. Once we did that, we were able figure out what needed to be automated, delegated, or eliminated from our business.
What the future holds:
We recently hit six figures in gross sales last year, so the next goal is seven figures.
Advice I’d give to a new entrepreneur:
Figure out the person you need to be to achieve the goals you have for your business. This forces you to make decisions and take actions based on your future self. Eventually, your reality and business will reflect that. This is important, because if you keep making decisions from [the perspective of] your current self, you’ll keep creating your current reality, and that’s where a lot of entrepreneurs get stuck.
People need to realize they have the power to shift their perspective and look at the positives in any situation. The only things we can control in life are our attitude, effort, and actions. If you keep that perspective, you’ll handle anything life throws at you with grace.
Every successful Black business shows another Black person it’s possible and that they should go after their dreams as well.
What it means to be to be a Black business owner:
Every successful Black business shows another Black person it’s possible and that they should go after their dreams as well. A lot of times we get caught up thinking we can only make it by being entertainers or athletes, but there are so many other possibilities to reach generational wealth. We’re proud to promote that we’re a Black-owned business, because what’s the point of being successful if you can’t help the next aspiring Black entrepreneur achieve the same thing?
The social platform we use most for marketing:
We use them all, but our most conversions come from Instagram and YouTube.
How we use social media to grow our business:
Luckily, we come from a content creation background, so we use those skills to make engaging ads that fit each social platform. It’s the one place that the majority of our supporters gather—and it’s free—so why wouldn’t you take advantage of that?
Feature image courtesy of Shady Side Up