I had the pleasure of interviewing entrepreneur and author, Kristin Marquet. She is the founder of media company, FemFounder.co and a board member of the fashion modeling agency Debut Model Management. She’s also releasing her next book PublicityJumpstart.com on July 30th with celebrity entrepreneur, Michelle Lewis of VisibilityVixen.com.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your “backstory”?
Since I had planned on applying to law school immediately after college, I wanted to work for a law firm so I had developed relevant experience. However, I didn’t want to work as a paralegal or a legal secretary so I searched for other positions, and saw an opening in the PR/communications department at a large law firm in New Jersey. I applied for the position, went on an interview, and was hired two days later. Then after working in the legal field for a little more than a year, I worked in consulting for a few years, and then started my own PR and marketing firm.
Why did you found your company?
After college, I had worked as a PR manager for a law firm for a year because I was considering applying to law school. But then after, I realized that I didn’t enjoy the law (it’s so different from you see on television) so I went on to work in consulting for four years.
During the financial crisis, my office in the Northeast shut down and I was laid off from my position. At that point, I had a tough decision to make: “‘Do I look for a job?’ or ‘Do I start a PR agency?’”
After a few days of weighing the pros and cons, I decided to take the risk and launch a PR and marketing firm (originally Marquet Media, now Creative Development Agency). I never looked back after that.
In 2017, I’ve launched the FemFounder.co platform as a one-stop shop for creative female entrepreneurs. FemFounder.co offers a variety of courses and coaching programs, and we’re finally launching the FemFounder podcast this fall!
I also serve on the board of Debut Models in New York City.
What is it about the work you’re doing that’s disruptive?
Right now, I am working with Mark Moore who is the CEO of Debut Models on changing the narrative around the modeling industry and modeling agencies.
We’ll be revealing the story during NYFW in September. It’s very exciting.
We all need a little help along the journey — who have been some of your mentors?
I’d have to say my mom, dad, and my VERY compassionate and understanding husband, Michael.
Can you share 3 of the best words of advice you’ve gotten along your journey? Please give a story or example for each.
Get clear — Not knowing what industry I wanted to serve cost me a lot of time and resources early on. One week I would want to work with professional services, the next I would want to focus on medical and health, and then the next I would want to focus on fashion and beauty. I finally figured out where my best contacts were and what my strongest skill set was, and committed to beauty and fashion/lifestyle.
Have a strong brand identity — During the first two years in business, I didn’t develop a brand identity and it cost in the long run. I tried catering to everyone but ended up not catering to anyone. If I had a specific brand identity and niche to service then (like now), then I would’ve scaled my business more efficiently.
Don’t discount your work— Back in 2009, I thought I had to discount my prices to compete with the rest of the firms out there, but quickly learned that perception is reality, meaning that you get what you pay for.
What’s a book/podcast/talk that’s had a deep impact on your thinking? Share a story with us.
The most inspiring book that I’ve read recently is “She Means Business” by Carrie Green. I love how she shares her entrepreneurial journey in a transparent way.
In fact, this book helped inspire me to brand FemFounder.co into what it has become today.
Some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this.
Clique Media Group because it’s a primarily woman-owned and operated business that was started by two women who saw a gap in the digital market and worked to fill it. Now the company reaches tens of millions of readers every month through web properties such as Byrdie.com, WhoWhatWear.com, and MyDomaine.com.
How can our readers follow you on social media?
Readers can connect with me on the following social media channels:
Originally published at medium.com