Photo: UDO SPREITZENBARTH /Z!NK
It’s hard to believe that Tyra Banks has been a television mogul for more than a decade now, but the success of her first-ever TV project, “America’s Next Top Model,” is still going strong today. In fact, ANTM is coming up on its 21st season, an honor Tyra talks about in the April issue of Z!NK magazine where she also graces the cover in a mod hair/fashion look with a futuristic beauty spin. (Those sequins apparently took so long to attach that Tyra fell asleep in her chair, she confessed on Twitter.)
But Tyra has a lot more going on than just teaching people how to “smize” and pose on ANTM. AS tech investor with her own VC firm, Fierce Capital; is a mentor to young women through her TZONE Foundation; and is one of the top 50 most followed people on Twitter–right now she has 11.2 million followers (want to make it 11.2 million and one? Follow Tyra here) she’s a boss lady in her own right.
In order to maintain what is undoubtedly a busy and hectic lifestyle, you have to be a bold go-getter, which doesn’t seem to be a problem for Ms. Banks. Citing her mother, Oprah Winfrey, and Richard Branson as role models, among others, Tyra has built her career around knowing what she wants, going for it, and getting it. And as she heads along into her next decade of success, Tyra is all about banking on the future and continuing to make her dreams, and the dreams of others, come true through her business and TV production pursuits.
We could all learn a thing or two from this model mogul, which is why we love reading what she has to say in interviews. See below for a brief preview of our latest dose of Tyra wisdom, and pick up your copy of Z!NK on newsstands now for the whole enchilada.
On the success of ANTM: It’s really mind blowing what Top Model has evolved into. Sometimes I think about being that young model with an idea for a television show and how far it has come. People send me photos on social media or take photos with me in person and say, “Smize,” instead of, “Cheese.” Words like “Tooch” and “Booch” that I made up are now mainstream. That’s a true sign of a pop culture mainstay, and I’m so excited by that.
On tech investments: For Fierce Capital, I look for companies that are either founded by, run or targeting females. Entrepreneurialism among women is something that I teach my TZONE girls, and it is something that I am very passionate about supporting. Ideas that solve the small intricacies of life and make it easier, quicker or more enjoyable are the kind of startups I look for.
On being a social media influencer: My social media revolves around following your dreams and making them come true. So many people on my social media platforms come to me for advice and guidance that I’m happy I can give first hand, like a fairy god sister.
On her goal as a TV producer: Being the first to break into a certain genre or production style and being UNIQUE is how I approach television. I have a lot of ideas on my creative slate right now that incorporate digital platforms and out of the box ideas. I really believe that the future of how people will be consuming their entertainment is not just staring at a screen and I try to think about producing through that lens.