What started as a conversation over coffee is quickly becoming a national movement in female-driven local businesses supported by Girl Tribe Pop Up, according to Forbes.
Girl Tribe Pop Up officially started as a Facebook group of about 60 female business owners, but its genesis lies in an earlier meeting over coffee between its founders, Sarah Baucom and Carrie Barker. The two women, who were middle school acquaintances in Charlotte, North Carolina, wanted to exchange ideas and see how they could collaborate. The first venture between the two, Pink Social, launched in 2014 with four styles of graphic tees featuring women-positive messages, but both felt that there was something bigger for them out there.
“We felt that there was something in the air,” said Baucom. “We were both in our mid-to-late 20s, itching to do something different, and we looked around and realized that a ton of other women were doing the same thing and owning their side hustles.”
The Facebook group eventually coalesced into a brick-and-mortar popup space in Charlotte featuring a one-day event with 80 vendors, but over the past few years has grown into a weekend event with over 6,000 attending customers that features 115 women-led businesses.
After April’s event, Baucom and Barker took Girl Tribe Pop Up on a national tour, including events in Atlanta and Nashville, before returning to Charlotte to end the year. Next year, Girl Tribe Pop Up will expand to Austin and Washington, D.C. in 2019.
There is certainly a market for their concept, as a study by the National Retail Federation has found that 61% of new entrepreneurs are women and are the fastest growing group of new business owners.
“The new American dream for women is finding what they love and creating a business that makes money, and these numbers demonstrate that trend,” said Baucom. “We believe women are a force to be reckoned with and shows no sign of slowing down, as we continue to move forward and create lives that will leave us happy and creatively motivated.”
With an original vision to support women in business by creating a network of female-owned businesses, Girl Tribe Pop Up is both a progenitor and a beneficiary of the recent female empowerment movement.
“It doesn’t have to be perfect, just put it out there. Get it done. Stop second-guessing yourself and making it perfect, because you’re not going to get the answers back that you need,” said Barker. “We’ll launch something overnight if we have to, because as soon as it’s being consumed, we’re able to draw conclusions or pivot or create another product. Some things don’t need to be perfect, they just need to be put out there so you can move forward.”