In a big world of commerce, brands want to reach out to potential customers. That’s where marketing agencies come in, which help brands to get through the attention of their potential customers. One of them is Market Pro, a rapidly growing hybrid digital marketing agency that helps businesses boost their online visibility and connect with potential clients.
Today, we have an up-close interview with Maryam Ehsan, the CEO and Founder of Market Pro. She shares with us her journey and formula for success in the digital marketing industry.
We’re pleased to have you here Maryam. Please tell us how you stepped into the field of digital marketing.
I started a job as a content writer at Programmers Force in 2019. I put all my efforts into digital marketing, learned new things, and gained experience.
You can say that I dedicated myself to this field. I told the company’s CEO about my vision and what I wanted to do. Thankfully, Programmers Force noticed the spark of passion inside me, and they promoted me to Team Lead in July 2019 as a gesture to help me learn entrepreneurship and develop team management skills. For straight 2 years, I dug deep into the digital marketing field and learned about leadership, team management, and other things required for becoming a successful entrepreneur.
What motivated you to start a digital marketing company after working in the field for a few years? How did your previous job experience prepare you for this venture?
After completing my Master’s, I aimed to do a business. I wanted to create disruption in the market and do something big, and my main interest was in marketing, so I planned to start a digital marketing company. However, I knew starting a business without prior experience in the field was a waste of time, resources, and money. Therefore, I decided to start a job in digital marketing to gain experience and learn the field, and in the previous answer, I’ve answered you about my job background.
So, after dedicating two years to Programmers Force, I recognized that now it’s the right time to do something on my own. I knew I’d learned enough to run my own digital marketing company. Ultimately, in 2021, I took a bold step and founded Market Pro; it was one of the biggest decisions and a turning point in my life.
Leaving a good job and starting your own business isn’t an easy step to take. What was your mission behind starting Market Pro?
My mission is to impact the digital marketing industry by elevating Pakistan’s talent and showcasing my country’s potential to the world. We started the company with around 5-6 employees, which I call “believers” because they believed in my vision and joined my company while compromising their pay and perks. Additionally, I don’t hire employees to work under me; I want them to become leaders one day, and we make all our possible efforts to train them in leadership qualities.
Do you only work with big names, SMEs, or startups? In other words, what type of clients do you choose to work with?
Our theory is to produce big names instead of already working with big names. For that purpose, we work primarily with startups, and usually, companies hire us when they are raising money and need marketing for the initial stages. So we’ve big names, but those are the ones we’ve produced in the market.
What is the one mistake you regret making in your digital marketing journey?
One mistake is I should have started early. For two years, I hesitated, thinking I was not ready yet and needed to learn more about the industry. However, now I know that you learn as you go. Waiting for the “perfect” moment only steals your time. The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
Why did you decide it was important for your digital marketing agency to have more than one contract for revenue, and what steps did you take to achieve this?
Starting a digital marketing agency and relying on a single contract is not a viable option for the long term. Fortunately enough, I realized this early that if the contract aborts, I would not be able to run the company for a long time. Therefore, I knew that Market Pro couldn’t rely on a single contract for the revenue, and we needed to move further from that.
I started working to reach out to additional clients and showed them our portfolio and strategy. Clients liked our service, and Market Pro began to get new contracts.
My essential idea was to have at least one year of backup to continue the operations in case of any emergencies. Instead of spending the money on myself, I started investing in employees and the company’s infrastructure. Even during the early days, I reduced my expenses to invest in the company as Market Pro was my only focus at that time.
What advice would you give to new entrepreneurs who want to start a new company in this industry?
My only advice is to stay focused on what you’re doing and don’t look for shortcuts. It can give you a benefit for a short time, but it can never become a long-term success.
Also, don’t start the idea with the aim that “I’ll be the next big name in the market.” You should dream big, but new entrepreneurs should set realistic expectations. It will take at least 8-10 years to become successful, and it’s not like you start the company right now; tomorrow it’ll be the number one (1) business.