There are more and more women entrepreneurs if you haven't been around. Women are launching ventures at an larger rate then men and it is always inspiring to hear successful entrepreneurs. Hearprenur spoke with the founders of Socialfly NY, Stephanie Abrams and Courtney Spritzer about their business, social media, and being a women entrepreneur.
What is Socialfly NY? How did you come up with your business name?
Socialfly is a social media marketing and PR agency and consultancy. We help brands strengthen their online presence and achieve their business goals by developing comprehensive social media marketing strategies, and executing such across platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube. By properly leveraging these platforms, we can help with a wide range of objectives including; lead generation, brand awareness, and reputation management. Social media has become an absolute for businesses, and most need help. Without a strategy, you are lost.
The name Socialfly is really an extension of who we are as people and as professionals. We started this company from absolutely nothing. We built it by networking and leveraging our personal network of successful entrepreneurial friends and family to meet and connect with like-minded professionals trying to to accomplish the same. We are always networking, but it can’t always be just about business. We are both very social, outgoing, and easygoing, and it enabled us to meet so many great people and professionals and connect with them on a different level. It allowed us to establish relationships that are aligned with our own personalities and vision. If you are only able to connect with people on a business versus a personal level, the relationship can only be so deep. Having that true human, social connection is when thing can really blossom on more than just 1 level.
Tell us about the state of women entrepreneurship and what do you think the future will be?
We love the state of women entrepreneurship. It is such an exciting time to be in this space. We love it so much we started our own female entrepreneur networking group, Startups in Stilettos. There are so many talented, driven, brilliant women out there and we wanted to connect with and help connect with one another. They are truly inspiring and push us to keep challenging ourselves and growing, both personally and professionally. The best part about female entrepreneurs is how welcoming and supportive the community is. It's sort of a “we are in this together” mentality. When we were just starting out, we expected a cut throat, step over the next woman to get ahead mentality, and that hasn’t been the case at all. It is all very empowering. There is room for all of us at the top! For the future, the sky is the limit. I think the business world has recognized how women can be instrumental in helping industries progress and continue to push forward into new territory. We are amazed at how many men try to come to our networking events to get in front of this new burgeoning crop of talent. Men and women can think very differently on many levels, especially within business. We have a lot of great ideas, and that will only continue to get more and more attention.
Tell us about your background and experience and how it has helped your business?
Courtney: Well, we both started out in the corporate world, which was monumental in our growth as professionals. I began my career with American Express as an analyst, and it really gave me the structure, framework, and discipline to manage the numbers side of our business in a way that has really contributed to our steady growth.
Stephanie: I started in sales at Marriott and then Hilton in their competitive luxury fractional ownership business. This helped hone my sales process and approach and is a big reason why I have been so successful in landing us bigger clients and opportunities as time has progressed. Both jobs had their challenges, but we learned both what to do and what bot to do. This has been instrumental in trying to develop our own culture. By taking the good and leaving behind the bad in trying to create an inviting company for new talent to want to be a part of, we think we have made some amazing strides in the right direction.
What are some future trends and opportunities in the social media industry?
When we started doing this several years ago, the push back was “it’s all a fad.” This has been proven untrue several times over. The non-believers are now scrambling to play catch-up, which can be tough to do in a space that doesn't just evolve daily, it evolves minute to minute . So staying abreast of the trends and knowing where the tide is heading is pivotal to be successful. While you can say it has already been dominating fro a while, video is still the future, especially short-form video. We have always been a TV nation. We are consumers of images. The over saturation of our minds with such has really changed a lot, including attention spans. If you can’t grab someone and get your point across in less than 1 minute, you’ve lost. Being able to leverage these short bursts of video and make them easy to digest, resonate, and inspire to action will continue to be the challenge of brands and marketers everywhere.
What advice would you give to young millennial female entrepreneurs thinking of starting a business?
First and foremost, you can do it! Just be prepared for a challenge unlike any other you may have faced before. It truly tests your will, perseverance, flexibility, and fortitude. You must work on developing the ability to see 3 steps ahead. That being said, you need a clear and concise vision, and a plan to get you there. Driving without a road map will get you lost. Speak to others who blazed the trail for you and learn from their successes and failures. Surround yourself with like minded people and don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are so many resources available to women entrepreneurs, you just need to find them and take advantage of them. Most importantly, stay humble. You don’t know what you don't know, and sometimes it is a big blow to your ego finding that out. You just have to have belief that you are headed in the right direction, and not be afraid to celebrate the small successes when you find them. And network, network, network!
Where is the “hot” social media platform that entrepreneurs should be using?
I don't think we're alone in thinking Spayce, and similar type apps, will make things a little more interesting for us. Like any good entrepreneur, we can always be found at networking events. Some of which are way too bustling and big to get a chance to connect with all you would like to. Apps like these will allow you to track your hits and misses and connect after the fact without scrambling for someone who may have taken a business card or mining for an intro on LinkedIn afterwards. We look at it as sort of a business professionals radar, one that could possibly help facilitate some crucial introductions and be the impetus to eventually developing key strategic relationships. If you miss in the moment, all is not lost.
Where do you see Socialfly heading in the next 3-5 years?
Massive growth across the board. We hope to triple our team over that time. We plan to keep working with bigger and bigger brands, while developing grander capabilities in terms of what can produce across all mediums and platforms. We have seen interest from some larger companies that can be tremendous strategic partners for us. So finding the right fit to align with is a major goal without giving up too much equity or autonomy. While we already work with clients across the country, we would love to continue to grow our presence outside New York, and ultimately, internationally as well.