Let the customer guide you.
Lisa Jacobson is a chronic migraine sufferer who has had over 9,000 migraines over the last 28 years. As an accomplished entrepreneur, she always wanted to use her expert business skills to help solve a social issue. In 2014, when her migraines were at their worst, she founded www.TheDailyMigraine.com as a passion project — a place to give a voice to people with migraine through help, hope, healing and humor. Today, her 300,000+ followers are the largest group of migraine sufferers anywhere in the world. Because migraine still continues to have the stigma of being “just a headache,” the funding for research is appalling low. Under 500 doctors in the U.S. have sought to get credentialed in the field. With TheDailyMigraine.com, Lisa aims to change all of that. She is educating and motivating those with migraines to help make the change as a group and ultimately use their support, funds and votes to find a cure.
Lisa is currently in migraine remission. Her highly engaging Facebook Live sessions on various migraine topics typically attract over 15,000 viewers, and she has become a sought-after patient advocate and speaker on the national stage in the field of migraine. She is on the board of The American Migraine Foundation, and volunteers her time to work with biotech companies, the FDA and other groups, as well as small migraine research and support groups all over the world, unflaggingly working to reduce migraine stigma, raise funding, and most of all, create hope in people who have all but given up.
Where did the idea for TheDailyMigraine come from?
I am a serial entrepreneur and I wanted to put my skills to use to solve a social issue and intentionally — not make money from the idea, but funnel it back into the project. When I turned 55, I felt that it was now or never. The idea hadn’t come to me yet, so I simply told myself “it doesn’t matter who you help—just help someone.” I had been a chronic migraine sufferer for 25 years knew I was an expert on everything migraine, even though I wasn’t a doctor. I didn’t know anyone with daily migraines but knew that 37 million people in the U.S. suffer from migraines. I created www.TheDailyMigraine.com in 2014 as a place for them to come and not feel alone while getting hope, help healing AND humor! The following has grown to over 300,000 sufferers who are often misunderstood because people think it’s “simply a headache.”
Furthermore, I wanted to come up with an idea that is like would be as successful as the Ice Bucket Challenge, so I designed Migraine Hat . All proceeds are donated to migraine awareness. I created a wearable icehat that gets people vertical and knocks their migraines down a few levels.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
In addition to my regular job, I spend 40 hours per week on TheDailyMigraine.com. This is my passion entrepreneurial project — I get to do what I want and use all my skills. I spend my 40 hours creating art (memes), curating articles and studies, asking questions to the group, facilitating the experience for the followers, and working on the many creative ways to grow the following.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I keep on trying different ideas and some sticks. This is the way to determine what my audience wants in order to increase followers and engagement.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I take two hours super early every morning at a local diner. I show up when they open the doors. I go through everything that I have and make a plan for that day. Then when I’m done, I go to the gym and plan for two hours of phone meetings and just walk on the track—exercise done! Then I go about my day and the amount I accomplish is voluminous.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I think my younger self had a good instinct. I had to learn everything I learned and I don’t’ consider anything a mistake.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on?
A Migraine is not a headache.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Everything is about relationships. Technology is a tool. I truly enjoy people and am energized by them. They can tell that and that helps grow any business when they believe you are real and authentic.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Let the customer guide you.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I don’t consider anything I did a failure. It was all a learning experience and was as valuable as when I made the right decisions the first time.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
A lunchbox that is structured as vertical to put in your purse or backpack..
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I did an hour of tutoring to learn how to use bells and whistles on my IPhone that I had no idea were there.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
Ipad Pro as a laptop.