About

Welcome to the Indie Business Network!

Launched in 2000 by award winning home-based business advocate Donna Maria Coles Johnson, Esq., Indie Business Network is the first trade organization serving manufacturers of handmade soaps, cosmetics, candles, artisan perfumes, aromatherapy products, jewelry, baked goods, confections and other artisinal consumer products. Here’s a quick video message from our founder.

Since 2000, we have provided numerous tools, resources, and professional services designed to empower and to encourage the success of creative entrepreneurs.

From our affordable product liability insurance program to our annual #IndieCruise to the Caribbean, to our webinars with FDA officials and small business experts, our members enjoy thousands of hours of carefully curated original content, ideas and step-by-step tips to help them launch, own and manage a profitable enterprise.

More Than A Trade Organization … We Are A Community

In addition to professional services, Indie Business Network is a community — a community of women (and some men too!) from all walks of life who inspire, uplift and encourage each other every day. From our public social networking community to our exclusive private Indie Business Network member area where we enjoy intimate sharing, the Indie Business Network is designed to help you break all the rules, build your own corporate ladder, and create the life you love.

Indie Business Network helps you break all the rules, build your own corporate ladder, and create the life you love.

The Indie Business Network helps members embrace entrepreneurship by doing a lot with a little. Rather than focus on making millions, we focus on planning your best life and then wrapping a profitable business around it it. We empower you to take action based on what you know, not on what you have, so you can plan a business around your best life.

While many of our members start off as hobbyists, our focus is on business. If you have a creative business, or you have a hobby you want to turn into a business, you have come to the right place. Indie Business Network is for you!

Here’s a link to a list of our member categories and benefits (get ready, there’s a lot!), along with links to join Indie Business Network in one of our three categories of membership!

Meet the Indie Business Network Team!

dMindie2Donna Maria Coles Johnson, Founder and CEO

Donna Maria Coles Johnson is an attorney and an award-winning entrepreneur, and the founder and CEO of the Indie Business Network. She is the author of “Making Aromatherapy Creams & Lotions,” and the host of #IndieCruise, an annual Caribbean retreat to help creative and handmade entrepreneurs take their businesses to the next level.

Donna Maria and her work to encourage entrepreneurs has been hailed by Black Enterprise as a “Haven for small business owners.” Her expertise and/or story has been featured in dozens of media outlets including Working Mother Magazine, National Public Radio, the Washington Post, the Houston Chronicle, the Chicago Tribune, Time Magazine, Global Cosmetics Industry Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, NPR News, ABC World News, Entrepreneur Magazine and more.

Donna Maria was named by Forbes.com as one of the Top 20 Women In The Country Tweeting About Small Business And Entrepreneurship. She is also a winner of the United States Small Business Administration’s Home-Based Business Advocate of the Year Award.

Donna Maria is a guest blogger for Small Biz Trends and American Express Open. Her mission, both personally and professionally, is, “To empower women to maximize their potential through small business ownership.”

A native of Washington, DC, Donna Maria lives in her adopted hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina, with her husband and their children.

One of Donna Maria’s favorite quotes is, “Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little.” – Edmund Burke

Donna Maria (or “dM,” as she is sometimes called) Tweets for Indie Business Network from our Indie Business Twitter, and you can connect with her on her Profile Page at our social networking site. You can also follow Donna Maria from her personal Twitter account if you’d prefer more intimate interaction with her.



DBJindie-1Darryl B. Johnson, Director of Digital Media With a background that includes 20+ years of videography and photography experience, Darryl creates and produces IBN’s original graphics and video programming. Darryl has worked with dozens of well known media outlets, including ABC, NBC, the NFL, Discovery Channel, ESPN, Irish Television, America’s Most Wanted and more.

Darryl’s favorite quote is, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Connect with Darryl on Twitter and at his Profile Page at our social networking site.



Jan Lyons, Assistant to Donna Maria Jan is a certified “craftsy girl,” and helps Donna Maria to keep her head on straight as she serves Indie Business Network members. Jan “gets” makers and creative entrepreneurs, and we are thrilled that she is on our team.

Connect with Jan on Twitter and at her Profile Page at our social networking site.



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