All through the month of January I've dedicated to my blog to highlight and interview my fellow filipino entrepreneurs and show case all the amazing things they're creating in their business. We learn about their unique story and how their business got started.
This week I had the pleasure to interview Mark Flores, Founder and Creative Director of Falcon Creative, specialising in video storytelling and production.
Read on and learn how Mark started his business, lessons learned and tips he has for those who want to start their own business too.
1) How did you get into creating videos and production?
I've always been a creative person - music and drawing became a passion of mine growing up. Later, I became fascinated with technology and when I bought my first video camera, I started recording family and personal events as a hobby. I also used video to document my music and upload them to YouTube. Back then, I had no intention of making video production a career.
After high school, I decided to pursue a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Television Production because it was a "creative" course. Then I worked in the TV industry for FOXTEL for over ten years in various broadcast roles. Still at that time, I only created videos as a hobby.
Eventually, I became interested in self-development which led to the entrepreneurship path. I felt it was an opportunity to manifest the creative freedom I sought. My first business was life and business coaching yet people were noticing a lot of my videos which I posted on social media.
This led me to a decision to pursue video production and especially with the popularity of online videos today, it made sense to follow my natural path and take advantage of where a lot of attention is going to.
2) Tell us more about your story, your WHY and your bigger vision for your business.
I've always been a shy kid growing up, I had very little confidence to express myself freely. Music became an outlet and slowly I began to regain confidence to perform in front of people. What I've learned is that although I love pursuing the things I'm passionate about (music, art, videos, etc) the most fulfilment I get is when I see others doing what they love.
In music, I loved seeing my band members play on stage. I love seeing people being aligned to their authentic self and expressing that...because it was my biggest struggle.
Today, although I'm in business to create videos for my clients, there's more to it than that. My mission is to help brands and businesses translate their unique story or message to video that allows them to connect with the hearts and minds of their audience, builds brand awareness, market penetration and lead generation.
We create a rich and compelling message that touches the hearts and minds of the people my clients serve and ultimately enhance communities around the world.
3) What are the struggles that you're finding as a Filipino entrepreneur here in Australia and how do you overcome them?
I used to think that there is such a thing as "The Asian Complex" for example, Filipino entrepreneurs in Australia need to work harder to get people's attention compared to say, a white caucasian male or female with good looks. There may be truth in that although it's not something I ponder at anymore.
I choose not to be bound by the stereotypes. I believe the key to overcome the struggles is to be 100% accountable, embrace my uniqueness and surround myself with all sorts of people from different backgrounds.
Since white Australians are the largest in number in our country and obviously the biggest market, it's important to immerse myself in that culture and not be separated from it and at the same time, acknowledging my roots.
4) How has starting your own business changed your life?
The best thing about starting a business is it gives you a whole new level of perspective - you gain a wider understanding of people and you learn more about yourself than ever before.
I believe there's two things you need to succeed in business - empathy and self-education. Know what it's like to be in your client's shoes and continue to learn and actualise who you are. With greater perspective comes bigger opportunities and success.
5) Lastly, what are the tips you will give a new Filipino entrepreneur starting out here in Australia?
#1 Before setting goals, get to know yourself better. What are your highest values? What are your natural strengths? What are you truly passionate about? What contribution do you want to make to the world? What key problem do you want to solve? Begin with yourself because that is your foundation.
#2 You don't have to quit your day job straight away so invest in a mentor who can teach you about business. Find someone who knows how to set a business plan and be strategic, knows how to formulate your KPIs, can help you identify your ideal customer, knows how to market your business on social media and the online world, etc. Plan and execute!
#3 At the start no one knows you so you have to do two things: One, you need to get out there, network, meet people and build partnerships. Two, you need to create a brand identity and "touch points" that shows you as a specialist, is professional-looking and consistent. Touch points are things like your website, social media pages, lead magnets, events, videos, etc.
#4 Build relationships with the everyday Australians! Don't limit your opportunities to only hanging out with the Filipino community. If you struggle with English, then find an English teacher.
#5 Use videos!
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