We had the good fortune of connecting with Lana Yazmeen Colon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lana Yazmeen, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Funny enough, I actually didn’t get a choice when it came to starting my own business. When I was 9, My mom and I lived in a Budget Inn and Suites in Austell Ga, and I had very idle hands and an idle mind to match it. I was bored one day and I wanted to know if the ceiling would melt or catch on fire if I tried to burn it (It melted btw). My mother later discovered a spray painted burn hole in the ceiling and freaked out. After I got my behind handed to me that day, she decided I needed something to do and a business would be PERFECT! So she asked me what I wanted to do whether it be paint, make clothes, or basically anything in Michaels and I choose jewelry. Four years went by and I was unsatisfied with my business because women didn’t want to buy my jewelry. They rather buy it from their grandmother or they just so happened to be the grandmother who made it. At 13 years old, I realized that costume jewelry was a dud, and I needed to be way more innovative. I had just got into crystals myself as well and I thought the prices these metaphysical shops / private sellers were charging was unrealistic and unaffordable for the average consumer. This was the birth of Angelic Hearts Gemstones, which 7 years later is now renamed Gems By LYC.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Gems By LYC is a business focused around all gemstone products. At the moment, we focus on jewelry and whole crystals, but in the near future we will be branching into different gemstone related areas. The goal is to become a gemstone one stop shop. I want the world to know that Gems By LYC is a reliable place to purchase gemstones from and it will be that way until the end.
It was not easy getting to this point at all. Gemstones are an untapped market and with that being the reality I live in, I have to create my own market and my own demand if I want the chance to become a huge corporation one day. I still haven’t overcame this challenge either. When people view my brand online they have a hard time trusting it because fake stones have become very popular due to their affordability. This means people are more likely to buy a plastic amazon bracelet and think it is a real quality item. That also creates a situation where people think my jewelry is fake because they are uneducated. The only method I’ve found actually work to combat this issue is going to in person vending events and getting the chance to speak with customers one on one.
I’ve learned a lot of lesson along the way when it comes to my business…
1) As the owner, you need to be the most active person in your business paper work. Your registered agent can do good, but you can always do better. This will ensure that you not only know when all your fees are due, but you also have the best understanding of when to pay your taxes. Your registered agent doesn’t handle payments only paperwork filings. You definitely don’t want a situation where you owe back taxes or worse you lose your business name for 5 years.
2) Keep your family out of title positions such as CFO, Marketing Director, and etc, until you’ve established your company and your secure with your role as Owner/The Boss. If you aren’t secure in your position, family might run over you and start running your business like its there’s, or worse they put no effort in because they feel like you aren’t doing enough.
3) Start that business LEGALLY yesterday! There was a brief point in my business where it wasn’t registered because of the name switch and I put getting my LLC again last because I thought it was the least important and most expensive. Little did I know I was counting myself out for various Covid loans/grants, because my business no longer had a history with the government. I also couldn’t get a regular bank loan either because of Covid and the PPP Loan, and that is making everything 1000x harder than it needs to be. So get your LLC the second you have an idea of a business… its only 100$
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Food Places Big Dave’s Cheesesteaks
Mary Macs Tea Room
Places to Go
Main Event/Dave n Busters/ Andretti’s
Cascade Skate Ring
Any dance club (Tops include: Escobar, Gold Room, Sutra Lounge)
Any strip club (Tops include: Magic, Platinum, Blue Flame, or KOD)
Any Dance Studio (Tops include: 705 Studios, Rhythma Dance Studios, and Dream Girls Lyra)
Big Escape Rooms
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Shout out to my mother Angela Colon-Purvis, without her I would have never started a business. She has her own company called M’eye Magickal Lyfe where she teaches spirituality and spiritual healing through your preferred religion. She also teaches chakra healing, Ifa Yourba, and so much more. @mymagickallyfe on IG and FB