Humna Raza doesn’t credit her rapid success to a strong business plan or the drive to reach a monetary goal, but rather her desire to solve a problem. The young Pakistani entrepreneur felt a real need to inspire young women to focus on their mental health and happiness – even though she initially lacked the know-how for launching an entirely new self-help product.
Finding her purpose
Humna knew she wanted to create a product that centred around mental wellness and self-reflection, helping women to focus on their aspirations and become emotionally intelligent.
“With the belief that writing really helps people understand and resolve their own emotions and state of mind, I decided to create journals and planners that focus on self-reflection and stress management, rather than productivity and time management,” Humna says.
Inspire Me was launched in May 2018, after Humna spent a year researching her product, creating prototypes, and connecting with publishers. Her flagship product is the Positivity Planner, which sold out within the first six days and generated three times her projected revenue in the first month.
Powering through hurdles
However, success did not come easy. Without a business background and no knowledge of industrial product design, Humna had her work cut out for her. Her journey consisted of “mostly trial and error” as she felt her way through with little guidance, experiencing numerous setbacks.
“I was told by most publishing houses that the quality I wanted to achieve was not available in Pakistan, so I spent another six months learning how to create a process that was efficient and cost-effective. But when I got my first 500 products, the quality wasn’t what I wanted – I had to scrap the entire batch.”
It was equally important for Humna to produce her planners locally – even thought there was no supply chain in place in Pakistan to support this. So, she created the process herself, ensuring her business supports local jobs and provides the foundations to compliment future innovations.
“Slowly and steadily all the things that were unthinkable at one point started falling into place. Patience is key to success,” she says.
Already familiar with Instagram, Humna used the platform as InspireMe’s main source of marketing and sales to reach a wider audience across Pakistan – with the ability to expand in the future. Very quickly, she was able to utilise Instagram to share her journey and grow her business.
“We were able to attract customers using Instagram’s explore engine and increase sales. What I love is that a new user can easily create a shop that can easily connect with the audience. Using Story options, we were able to share our journey with our customers while setting up the brand, as well as constantly communicating beyond the launch.”
The biggest learning for Humna? Everything starts small – but the potential to grow is as big as you can imagine it to be.
“If you have an idea and a goal to achieve, just start with whatever you have and push your boundaries from there. Don’t focus on all the reasons why you can’t achieve – focus on what can be achieved with whatever limited resources you have.”
Learn more about Humna Raza’s Network: