I had the pleasure of meeting Mariella Katz, Founder of Frenzr a social media agency based in Montreal, when we organized the 2nd edition of our fashion show. She immediately struck me as a person with a story and a passion for her business and I definitely think she is someone worth discovering and learning from. Here is a little glimpse of her entrepreneurial journey.
We want to know who is Mariella and what led you to become an entrepreneur?
I’m a creative and multi-passionate person. The digital world started attracting me as of a very young age. I’ve done it all, websites, photography, copy-writing, design.. and that was my ‘’problem’’ that led me to become an entrepreneur – my skill set was simply too broad.
I think it’s important to know that I don’t come from a family of entrepreneurs or of business minded people at all. In fact, when my family immigrated to Canada 14 years ago, the goal was to work hard and blend in to be able to survive. I think I did a lot of things differently and all of them have brought me to the path I’m on today.
I started noticing amazing local start-ups that needed a hand with their social media and quickly I had built an amazing freelance portfolio of clients. I loved every single part of it because I was able to apply all of my diverse skill set and resolve their problems.
From the start, I knew that I didn’t want to work alone because you cannot be the specialist of everything – so as soon as I could, I hired someone to help me. Since then, we haven’t stopped growing!
What inspired you to start Frenzr?
The inspiration came when I really saw the need and the problems of all these hard working entrepreneurs! All of them put their heart and soul on a day-to-day basis to grow their businesses but often they’d neglect their digital image.
Every single person with whom I’ve worked with has inspired me – from before I started the agency until this precise day with their passion, creativity and love for what they do.
We were very happy to have you support us at our fashion show. Can you tell us why supporting female entrepreneurship is important to you?
Supporting female entrepreneurship is important to me because we all deserve to achieve and as women we should all support and encourage each other!
Which female entrepreneurs were you most influenced by? Why?
Justine Ezarik, also known as iJustine. She’s a Youtube personality and talks mainly about tech. I started my professional thinking following her channel almost 8 years ago and what I really took out from her is that you can be a women in a men’s industry and be amazing at it without a problem!
It was very rare to see it and the impact she had is still valid for me.
Mimi Ikonn. She has a very similar life story to mine by being an immigrant and moving to Canada with her family (Toronto). During her wedding (on a budget) preparations, she realizes that there are no good hair extensions on the market. In 3 months, Mimi, her husband Alex Ikonn (who’s also an amazing entrepreneur) and sister Leyla start Luxy Hair that’s an enormous success and makes nearly 1 million in profits. But that’s not why I find Mimi inspiring, it’s because of what follows. After making the money and having a successful business, they got depressed (with husband Alex) because ‘’now what’’.. and they had to find all over again their purpose and happiness.
I admire them so much for it, because they did great in business and failed at life all while being 100% conscient of it. That’s hard. Today, too many entrepreneurs get lost in the numbers and the money when it’s so much beyond that – it’s about being happy too!
What were your biggest challenges and how did you overcome them?
Confidence and pricing. Starting a social media agency in Montreal is no easy task because of the competition, all the talent and the relatively small market.
The more people I met and talked to, the better I got at both.
What I learned in the process and that I still try to apply every single day is to DO. Because if we wait until everything around us is perfect, we might just never start. I challenge myself and go out of my comfort zone daily all with the goal to become a better entrepreneur but also person (no one wants to do business with jerks, believe me).
If you had to do it all over, what would you do differently?
Maybe it would sound too cheesy if I say nothing but I will still say it. Nothing.
Every piece of my path has thought me something and that has been the greatest gift I’ve had in life so far. If I’d have to redo it all, I’d want to be less scared of failure.
Your 5 best social media tips?
- Plan ahead of time
- Be consistant in timing
- Be interactive, answer your audience and comment on their photos too
- Create a visual story
- Come to my workshops for all the rest because 5 isn’t enough 😉
I ‘m excited to see what Mariella has in store for us in 2017. In the meantime, you can follow her and her workshops. She is actually hosting one this week-end. Here is the link to sign up: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/social-media-masterclass-tickets-31573044827