For this week’s Deep Dive Series, we’re interviewing Ianthe Mauro.
Ianthe Mauro (@IantheMauro on Clapper) is a product fairy godmother – known to the rest of us as a business coach! She uses her experience as an entrepreneur to help shop owners on and off Clapper succeed and sell more. In this interview, we talked about her Livestream series, her experience on Clapper, her advice for newer creators, and more!
Keep reading this Deep Dive to follow this creator’s inspiring story. Make sure to tune in every Thursday at 5pm CT on our @ClapperCreator account to listen to the bonus questions that will only be available on our live Radio show: Clapper Talks.
We’ve been hearing so much about you, especially from some of our creators that participated in the Community Fair. Can you tell us more about why they call you the “product fairy godmother?”
I don’t like the word “coach”. It immediately brings up for me this feeling of people that take advantage and charge too much money to people who are desperately trying to save their business. So, even though I do coach small businesses, I just don’t like the word “coach”. But I didn’t know how else to explain what I did. I kept asking my clients “I’m the fairy godmother and I have this magic wand. What would you want me to do to help you? What change would you want to see in your business right now? This is your ruby slipper moment, because you have the power and all you have to do is click your heels.” Then it clicked, and I decided I was the fairy godmother of business!
Non Toxic Tuesdays, let’s talk about it! What made you want to start this weekly Livestream?
When I started my Group on Clapper, I felt this responsibility to actually be helpful. And what could I do, also, that gives structure, that people can depend on? This is a time in my life where I get to do what I want, and I want to be dependable, be present, and create community. Non Toxic Tuesday is really fun for me because I love finding ways to reduce toxicity in our lives. Whether that’s physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually – all the ways. It’s 11:30am ET and I just go Live; I invite people to go Live with me if they want, but sometimes it’s just Ianthe’s TED Talk! Most of the time I get teary, because it means so much to me. You heard my story: becoming an entrepreneur started out of this necessity of getting toxins out of my life. So it’s really close to my heart.
Can you tell us more about your business credentials? How long have you been in this industry?
I was going through a divorce and I was diagnosed with a thyroid disease called Graves’ Disease. I was really scared at the time because it was pretty bad and I wasn’t responding to the one medication and had to do a lot to heal. Every day I would light a candle and set an intention for myself and my children that I would be healthy and I would find my way through this dark time – literally. And then I found out the candles I was lighting were toxic. I was so worried that they were contributing to my autoimmune disease and actually hurting my children and dog. Then the lightbulb went off, and I knew I had to create an eco luxury candle company that I knew only used safe ingredients.
So in 2009 I launched Objects with Purpose! I was in over 200 stores, I did wholesale, trade shows, farmer’s markets, I had a kiosk at the Grove in West LA. I had a brick and mortar store at the Malibu Country Mart. That’s still a pinch me moment. I was able to do custom candles for a lot of celebrities, as the go-to gift for all the Fox Studio Productions, my candles were on the Today Show and in Oscar’s swag bags. I was actually accepted to be on QVC, even though I never went! Eventually I realized I got so much energy, felt so much more alive and in my purpose when I helped people.
But in 2020, all the stores that bought my candles shut their doors on the same day. I remember crying, wondering if my business would survive it. But I took a deep breath and I decided this was my call to help more people. And I found out there were all these women that were scared because they’d been furloughed or lost their jobs. One of the things that kept them sane were having beautiful candles in their home, but they could no longer afford it. I coached hundreds of women to start candle companies out of their homes. That’s when the shift happened for me, and that’s when I moved into being the product fairy godmother. And I actually closed my brand this last July!
In your bio, it says you’re an “eco luxury handmade candle maker.” When did you start making your own candles and how come we haven’t seen them in the Clapper Shop yet?
I’m so open! I do have a Shop, I’ve experimented with it, and there’s three things up right now. One of them is a way you can work with me one-on-one. Another is a lovely bag made by @EssersExpressions! And I also have something up with Maria Tan: we have a collaboration on Thursdays called The Fairy Godmothers of Business, where we answer questions. I’ve loved exploring, and I’m open to more opportunities and collaborations.
When did you first join Clapper and how has your experience been on the app?
It’s been 7 months, I want to say. I feel very new on the app, but I still feel at home – it’s a weird mix! I love the app because it reminds me of Clubhouse and Etsy: I’ve left both apps, I used to use them a lot. Clapper is a mix of them, with TikTok too. (Which I leave to my kids!) I can do social-audio and Radios, I can do Lives and I love Multi Live, and I love that you have a shop that people can immediately monetize. It felt so friendly to me, and that’s what I love about this app. This is the most consistent I’ve ever been on an app in my life.
Since joining Clapper, which feature has been the most helpful in connecting with your community?
It’s a toss up. If I have to pick one, I’ll say the Lives. I’m very visual, so even though I love the Radios, I love the visual aspect of the Lives. And I love that we can have structured Lives, like I do, and also just hang out with people and check in. There’s no worry about having a script or making sure my makeup is just right. I love showing up Live and being real, I love that about this app.
How can the Clapper team uplift the Shop owner community?
I would love to sit down and have a longer conversation about this. I’m such a protector of people who have small businesses, especially people who have handmade products, who work from home, who are artists, and need a place to easily sell their stuff. Money loves clarity, and I say this all the time. When someone buys something, I think the process of letting the creator know could also be an email. Not just a message, so they know when they have an order. And I want them to get paid in the best amount of time possible. Just a little more clarity, because you’ve got a great idea and it’s working, but I’d like to see the next level. So everyone feels more comfortable using it.
What advice would you give to newer creators looking to start their small business journey?
Please know that from the very beginning, when you’re starting your business, you’re a brand. I want you to think of yourself as a brand – much more than a business, much more than a hobby. The difference is a brand, you’re thinking right away about your core values, colors, logo, taglines, you’re recognizable and iconic. There’s no reason in the whole world why you can’t do that from the moment you start your business.
What is one feature you would like to see on Clapper?
I’m so happy with the features you have, I can’t think of a new one. Just better communication with finding out when you get orders. Emails, that would be it! I love all the features here!