By Andreea Glodea Paleologu
Ten years from now, Sag Media Communications founder and CEO Andreea Glodea Paleologu dreams of handling mind-driving campaigns from a beach in Latin American during rush hour. But today, we first welcome Andreea to The After Six Club’s Ambitious Tribe. Today, she tells us first how her background in content publishing, marketing, and communications led her to build her own team of like-minded and independent professionals.
Read on and learn how Andreea’s passion to provide non-traditional online strategies to a niche market of startups, SMEs, and NGOs help her to drive her ambition further.
I started off as a content publisher and went on to conduct public relations and branding campaigns. Slowly but surely, I migrated towards online marketing. I believe that over this course, I mastered all the necessary tools to be my own boss and to be able to steer other passionate, independent, and professional individuals to come along for the ride. Sag Media Communications was born.
Our Southeastern Europe (SEE) marketing and communications (MarCom) agency was set up as a brand in 2011, but business flourished, in particular, some two and a half years ago. We are a boutique agency, specializing in the out-of-the-box online strategies for SMEs, NGOs, and start-ups, but we also offer a wide array of offline services in the MarCom fields of expertise.
We have operating teams in Bucharest and Timisoara, Romania, but we are also constantly on the move in Central and Eastern European Countries (CEE) and SEE countries, where we have affiliations, such as Greece, Czech Republic, Poland, and Slovakia. We are, therefore, dedicated teleworkers and are not confined to an office space.
Our team consists of members with tech, marketing, and human studies backgrounds. But all of us have intertwined our skills and knowledge. Therefore, the choice to go down the Sag Media Communications path came as a result of the right set of people at the right time.
What do you believe makes your business stand out?
We offer MarCom solutions to businesses that didn’t have an omnichannel approach on promotion up until they met us.
Is it always necessary to be passionate about what your business is about in order for it to succeed?
I would say that if you lose passion, you lose the spark in your core business.
How did you obtain capital? Were there investors?
There were no foreign investors involved with Sag Media Communications. My colleague, the Managing Partner with Sag Media Communications, and I set up the boutique agency with funds that we had saved up.
How did you build your customer base? What form of marketing has been most effective for you so far?
We use online MarCom strategies to gain new clients. We are members of entrepreneur associations and also use referrals as a means to expand our client base.
How do you generate new ideas for your business’ growth?
We are currently in the process of expanding our services to recruitment marketing and personnel enrollment—basically, services deriving from clients’ requests. We look to market gaps in terms of particular services and how we can fill those gaps with prior and future expertise derived from our team assets.
What kind of company culture are you implementing? What are your core values?
We are focused on an out-of-the-box, hands-on, results-driven culture. We act independently but within a tight-knit group of people who can think on their feet and who walk the walk and talk the talk.
How do you deal with major mishaps? What would you say is one of the biggest mistakes you’ve made?
Thankfully, we haven’t reached big impasses throughout our time in the field, so to speak, given that we are a medium-sized organization handling requests as a boutique agency.
What skills do you believe are necessary in handling a business?
A good eye for details, an analytical, macro approach, even as micro-campaigns are concerned.
What would you say are some dos and don’ts in starting one?
For our particular type of micro-business, here are my thoughts: Don’t spread out too thin in terms of unnecessary investments and costs. Do focus on horizontal as well as vertical business development pillars.
Was there ever a time you felt afraid that this might not work? How did you manage this fear?
Fear is the mind killer. Hazard can occur at any given time, but, so long as you have a back-up plan in your macro plan, I should say particular mind-wrenching scenarios could be best handled.
Describe a typical day for you.
I typically wake up at 7.30 A.M. every day, and I try to do so even in the weekends. I always start my day by browsing the news bulletins and Twitter international news feeds. I begin work at 10:00 A.M. at the latest and my day ends when it ends, depending on the projects we are currently undergoing. In the mornings and evenings, I try to work out at least for 1.5 hours daily.
I generally have team video calls every other day with clients and colleagues. For face-to-face meetings, I usually limit it to two days per week tops.
How many hours of work a day do you put in? How many days per week?
Between 10 and 12 hours daily. Depending on the projects flow, I can work even 6 to 7 days a week, but I compensate for working weekends with time-off ones.
What is your greatest fear?
Being stuck in a non-evolving environment.
What sacrifices have you had to make to get here?
I would not name them sacrifices, rather, I would consider them adjustments and flexibility. All the choices I made I made out of my own volition.
What can you consider is your greatest success?
My mindset is my greatest success.
What would you say is the secret to success?
There is no particular recipe for success, and what may seem like a failure might turn out to be a life-course changing route for the best.
What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
The independence to be your own made man or woman.
What motivates you? Who has been your greatest inspiration?
The need for change and progress, evolution on a global scale. We should all see ourselves as a global citizen and work together for a bigger purpose.
Where do you see yourself and your business in 10 years?
Operating on the other side of the ocean, handling mind-driving campaigns from a beach in Latin America, at rush hour.
Do you consider yourself an ambitious person?
I am a very competitive individual and I am my own harshest critic and best friend. I believe I am also a community-driving individual and a leader who inspires and stirs up the will for progress in all shapes and sizes.
Do you think being ambitious helps you in business? How?
Yes. I don’t settle and always look towards progress as the grand scheme of things to come.
What piece of advice can you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Know your niche, exploit it to the best of your abilities, take the plunge, and enjoy the ride!
Edits: Kath C. Eustaquio-Derla | Image Credit: Andreea Glodea Paleologu