Laura Kaminer never imagined a single post would lead to a career opportunity.
But that’s exactly what happened after the Grovetown woman purchased shapewear from Shapermint about three years ago.
“I posted a picture of myself in it. They contacted me to repost it. That’s pretty common. It’s not a big deal,” said Kaminer, who had been building a social media presence for about 18 months before that.
A lot of businesses have a club or ambassador program offering free merchandise in exchange for social media advertising, but it’s not a paid position. She was part of a similar program with Shapermint in the beginning.
She liked the product, so she kept posting, but then she had a dilemma.
“At the time, they were only giving away three of their most popular items, and I had all of them — in every color,” she said.
Not needing any more of the same product, she decided to take a different approach. She responded to one of the company’s emails and asked about the possibility of paid opportunities
“I thought ‘what do I have to lose?’” she said.
She wasn’t even sure she was sending an email to the right person, but she got a positive response. They interviewed her and gave her a test job for a bra commercial.
Kaminer said she considers herself a modest person, typically only wearing one-piece bathing suits. The Shapermint bra, however, provides a lot of coverage. She talked with her husband about it, and he didn’t have any problems with it.
She filmed the spot and was surprised by the response. She was expecting the ads to be seen in other parts of the country, but she didn’t think people in her own backyard would see them.
“With my lack of experience with social media ads, I never thought everyone I knew was going to see it,” she said. “Slowly but surely people I knew would send me texts of pictures asking ‘is this you? You have a twin.’”
That later led to a brief sense of panic, she said. She recalled a Sunday morning in church. Someone had mentioned the ad and she wondered how many of her fellow church members had seen her Shapermint ads.
She also wondered if people there might judge her for it, but she didn’t find that to be the case. People did ask questions, though. They were interested in the product. They’d ask if she actually used it. The answer is “yes,” and she does like the product. Then, they’d ask questions about how the product fits and how to find the best sizes for them.
She’s gotten a lot of work from that first commercial.
“In the beginning, it was sporadic,” she said. “Now, they send me work multiple times a week.”
Kaminer does do some work for other companies, but Shapermint is the main one.
Although modeling bras and shapewear wasn’t what Kaminer had thought she’d be doing at this stage of her life, the mom of four said it fits into her overall goal of encouraging women. And she believes God had guided her path.
It was at a low point in her life when she posted that initial photo.
“I wasn’t feeling my best. I wasn’t the slimmest I’d ever been. I was not as confident,” she said. “It’s funny how God threw this into my life when I wasn’t feeling as confident.”
On her social media pages, Kaminer tries to show her life unfiltered and real. Sometimes, she doesn’t have on any makeup and at others, her house isn’t the neatest. She’s also posted about some of her insecure moments.
She does all that because she hopes that can be an inspiration for other women.
“Women are their own worst critics,” she said. “Women 40 and up – my age – are women I attract. It’s good for them to see you can do this – I’m not a size 6. I don’t think I’ll ever be on the cover of Sports illustrated. I’m OK with my size. I’m mid-size, and I’m OK with that,” she said.
In addition to being a spokesmodel, Kaminer is a blogger and was Mrs. South Carolina in 2003.
Find her at laurakaminer.co
Charmain Z. Brackett is the publisher of Augusta Good News. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Subscribe to the newsletter here.