Tammy Hembrow: 38M Boss Babe

Tammy Hembrow's $38 Million Attention from Instagram

Tammy Hembrow, a renowned social media influencer, has captivated a massive audience on Instagram and achieved remarkable success. With 15.4 million followers, she surpasses other notable figures like Kayla Itsines (14.9 million) and Emily Skye Anderson (2.7 million) on the Young Rich List.

According to Hembrow's interview on The Australian Financial Review's How I Made It podcast, she emphasizes that social media has played a vital role in establishing her brand and launching her diverse businesses. Notably, Hembrow has successfully utilized platforms like Tammy Fit, a fitness app, and Saski Collection, a clothing brand, to build her online presence and expand her entrepreneurial endeavors.

Hembrow's entrepreneurial journey began during her time at Bond University, where she pursued a business degree. Initially, she didn't find much passion in her studies, but everything changed when she enrolled in an entrepreneurship class. It was there that her desire to establish her own company was ignited, planting the seeds for her future endeavors.

"I was just like, yep, this is it," Hembrow says. "This is what I am going to be. My own boss. I want to start my own businesses."

"It was the only class that sort of made sense to me. And then I actually dropped out of uni. I was like, 'See you later, don't need this anymore.'"

During her studies, Hembrow began sharing exercise photos on Instagram, a platform that had only been around for a few years when she started posting in 2012. However, at the age of 19, she unexpectedly became pregnant. At the time, she faced discouraging comments suggesting that her life was now ruined.

'So much influence'

Hembrow, however, had a different perspective. She chose to document her pregnancy and fitness journey on Instagram, and her follower count began to soar. As a result, she now earns millions of dollars annually by endorsing various brands on social media platforms.

"I remember how I had like 15,000 followers or something, which I thought was a huge deal at the time because, like, there weren't a lot of people on Instagram," she says.

"I followed a few women that had like a million followers. And I just thought it was the craziest thing. And I was like, I'm going to get to that. But I also saw them and thought why aren't they doing more with what they have. They had this big audience and they had so much influence over these people. And I couldn't really see them taking advantage of that or starting businesses with it."

"I remember back then I had around 15,000 followers, and at the time, it felt like a significant accomplishment because Instagram wasn't as popular as it is today," Hembrow recalls.

"When I first started, I made an initial investment of around $400 to collaborate with an illustrator who helped me create exercise illustrations for the programs I was developing," Hembrow explains.

"However, my aspirations continued to grow, and I aimed to take it to the next level. That's when the idea for Tammy Fit, the fitness app, started to materialize," Hembrow shares.

From an external perspective, it may appear effortless: simply post pictures showcasing a fit physique during workouts, share workout tips, and watch the wealth pour in.

However, behind the glamorous filters lies a determined businesswoman. Hembrow opens up about the challenges she has faced on the podcast, acknowledging that her journey has not been without obstacles.

"There were instances where I placed trust in individuals I shouldn't have," Hembrow discloses. "At the time, I lacked knowledge and made some regrettable decisions, which resulted in significant financial losses, amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars."

Hembrow explains that the situation arose with a supplier who was entrusted with a specific task for the app. Unfortunately, this individual took advantage of their position and exploited the trust placed in them.

Consult the experts

Learning from past experiences, Hembrow has become more cautious in her approach. She acknowledges that some people may underestimate her due to her youthful appearance, often associating it with a lack of knowledge. However, Hembrow is determined to prove them wrong.

Reflecting on her past challenges, Hembrow emphasizes the importance of being diligent and thorough. Drawing from her experiences, she has learned the value of taking extra precautions and meticulously verifying details to avoid similar pitfalls in the future.

Hembrow advises that if one lacks expertise in a certain area, it is wise to seek guidance from knowledgeable third parties. Consulting with experts can provide valuable insights and help identify individuals who may be attempting to exploit the situation. Their objective perspective can serve as a safeguard against being taken advantage of.

Hembrow's experience is not unique among influencers turned entrepreneurs. Jessica Sepel, the creator of JS Health, a brand specializing in vitamins and skincare, shared a similar story during the first season of How I Made It. Sepel admitted to making costly mistakes while striving to establish her business.

"We put money towards people who screwed us basically. I had an awful experience where it was basically someone who led us on. I think at the end, it was $10,000 to $12,000 down the toilet," Sepel told the podcast.

Hembrow acknowledges that her early entry into social media platforms provided her with a significant advantage in building her business. By establishing a substantial following during the early stages of these platforms, she gained valuable momentum.

However, Hembrow emphasizes that success can still be achieved for those starting out today. The key lies in finding ways to distinguish oneself and stand out from the crowd in a saturated digital landscape.

Hembrow acknowledges that timing played a significant role in her success. She recognizes that starting at a time when social media platforms were less saturated worked in her favor. When she began, she didn't see many others doing what she aimed to achieve. However, she also believes that despite the increased competition today, it is still possible to achieve success.

She encourages aspiring individuals to pursue their goals but acknowledges that it might require more effort and perseverance in today's highly competitive landscape.

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