Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in design services but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Anna Long, CEO of Norlo Design, located in Denver, CO, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Norlo Design is an award-winning creative agency specializing in the unique needs of the craft beverage industry. The majority of our clients are within the craft beer and coffee industries. Our specialty lies in packaging design and illustration.

Tell us about yourself

I fell in love with package design and beer when I was hired to be the graphic designer for a craft brewery in college, and I never looked back. I knew I wanted to eventually own my own agency doing graphic design for the beverage industry because of my love for package and tactile design. When I moved to Colorado, the state of craft beer, starting Norlo Design, became more and more tangible. What motivates me to do what I do is my love for graphic design. The graphic design process is like a puzzle; it takes a lot of determination and patience to put a ton of puzzle pieces together visually. When you finally do get that puzzle assembled, however, it is the most rewarding feeling. I love working with our clients who trust us in this process because they allow me to live out my creative expression while working in an industry I love.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

My biggest accomplishment so far as a business owner is being able to design for the Colorado Brewers Guild's largest fundraiser, Colorado Pint Day, two years in a row. The Colorado Brewers Guild held an artwork competition to see which design would be printed on the pint glass that sold over 25,000 copies in one day. I am very proud of winning the Colorado Pint Day artwork competition two years in a row because it has brought some great opportunities into my life.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

One of the hardest things about being a business owner is being able to manage your time effectively. Since you wear so many hats and have no job description besides 'the entire company,' it can be challenging trying to balance the time as an owner.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

My top three tips for aspiring business owners is to not be afraid to seek out help. Whether that's seeking out a professional accountant, a hired freelance designer, or a lawyer, it's always beneficial to seek others out when you don't know where to turn. Another would be to make sure you take breaks from your work. It is easy to get burnt out, so making sure you allow yourself to breathe is important. Lastly, there's never going to be a "right" time to start a business. Have faith in yourself and take the leap because it just might work out!

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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