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5 Things I Wish I Knew When I First Got Started: Elma & Amra Beganovich of A&E

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“Don’t listen to individuals… Listen to the market and what the data tells you”.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Elma & Amra Beganovich of A&E. Today they run a top digital media agency in New York City, but as glamourous as their life may be today, it didn’t come without sacrifice. Born to Bosnian immigrants, these sisters were merely children when their parents decide to pack up and move to a foreign land. Growing up, their parents stressed the importance of a good education and they both landing positions in top Universities. By 2012, they both had a very bright future ahead of them. However, like many great entrepreneurs that came before them, they decided to take a big risk to explore their true calling. I was truly inspired by their story of triumph, bootstrapping a company to one of the top social media agencies in New York.

Gene: Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your “backstory”?

I was at Georgetown Law pursuing my LLM in securities and financial regulation, and Amra was working as an economist on World Bank projects. One night over dinner, we were discussing just amongst friends how to make a face mask out of your kitchen ingredients. A friend suggested to put these recipes on a blog and that this sort of content was much more relatable to an everyday consumer than the advice from Cosmo or Vogue; let’s be frank, most people cannot afford to spend millions on cosmetic surgery or tens of thousands on skincare. After our guests left, Amra stayed up all night trying to figure our HTML, CSS and JavaScript and set-up our first blog on Blogger. Shortly afterwards (only 3 months later), our DIY posts were receiving over 100,000 unique monthly visitors. This was when brands began knocking on our door.

Gene: Please tell us what exactly your company does?

A&E is a leading New York-based digital marketing agency with a focus on social media, influencer marketing, business growth and photo/video production, i.e., making brands explode digitally. We work with Fortune 500 companies and growth stage brands to boost ROI through social media, spectacular content, innovative digital strategies and influencer marketing. Currently, we are focused on releasing our proprietry technology, A&E Influencer Analytics, for brands to be able to quickly find influencers who share their target demographic. Brands are able to search and analyze the influencers, anywhere from their engagement and reach to their growth rate.

Gene: How do you use your influence as a leader to give back?

We work with a variety of non-profits, like Rescue Dogs Rock NYC, WWF, and BCRF, to donate and raise awareness about their causes through our social influence. We have worked on everything from photo production for Rescue Dogs Rock NYC to promoting Earth Day and World Rhino Day across our social channels for WWF.

Elma Begonovich Co-Founder of A&E

Gene: Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you founded your company?

In the beginning, I was flirting with the idea of raising capital (much to Amra’s opposition), thus we had gone to a sort of speed dating investor event. Investors would switch chairs while entrepreneurs presented their companies. One of the venture capitalists came over to our table and asked “so, how do you plan to scale this?” We both turned to each other and then back to the investor and asked “what do you mean by scaling?” Now, I can look back and laugh about how much we didn’t know but I suppose that is part of the journey – being open to learning and stepping outside of your comfort zone every single day.

Gene: What project are you working on that truly inspires you?

I believe we are all connected: humans, animals and the environment; as humans with this sort of a super brain and with our technology, we have an enormous responsibility to take care of our environment and of the animals we share this Earth with. Hence, we work with Rescue Dogs Rock NYC; they are a truly inspirational group of individuals because of their humility and selflessness and all in order to rescue and save abandoned and abused dogs and puppies. They are a diverse group of volunteers. A variety of people, from stay at home moms to truck drivers, who rescue, raise funds to treat and foster abandoned and abused dogs. Amra and I are huge advocates for animal rights and environmental conservation. Hence, Rescue Dogs Rock NYC and WWF really resonate with us.

Gene: What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

As a digital marketing agency with a focus on social media, I think Amra and I stand out because ultimately the proof is in the pudding: we have invested an enormous amount in our content, capturing images from some of the most desirable destinations around the world, have a following (about 2.3 million), and have worked with industry leaders like Johnson & Johnson, Uber, HTC, and Avon. Many agencies only recently started their digital divisions after working for decades on TV and magazine campaigns.

As a technology company, there are only a few influencer platforms that serve as directories to find influencers and analyze their following and engagement rates. Furthermore, these influencer platforms certainly do not have the background of working with brands as influencers and as a social media agency as Amra and I already do with A&E.

Gene: None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are?

This is one of my favorite questions because I do not believe in individuals as mentors; I believe in the market as a mentor. In other words, do not listen to individuals because if they knew, they would do it themselves. Listen to the market and what the data tells you. I have never been more wrong than when blindly listening to “mentors” because their experience is limited not only to their industry but to their time, that time when they succeeded in their craft. The market is a lot more objective.

Gene: What are your “5 things I wish I knew when I got started”

1. Create a product that the consumers actually need and can afford. With technology and the Internet, you are able to reach a wide consumer base for a fraction of a cost; hence, work on having a quality product that people need and can afford. This is your priority. In other words, there are options outside of taking VC (or angel) funding. Focus on generating a healthy revenue rather than over leveraging your company. Then use whatever revenue the product generates to support your operations. Be resourceful, like using influencer marketing, social media and e-commerce, to reach a wide consumer base. Lastly, one does not need a fancy office space and rockstar employees to get the ball rolling; hire contractors or part-time employees, and park into a humble office space. Focus on generating actual sales rather than supporting fancy operations.

2. You don’t need mentors. Listen to the market.

3. You don’t need rockstar employees to get your operations off the ground. Find individuals who are committed and consistent.

4. Don’t be afraid to bargain with your contractors and employees. Remember that salaries and hourly rates are whatever the market dictates them to be. Some people need jobs more than others; find those individuals and offer them positions.

5. Don’t take on an enormous amount of debt until you have a proof of concept that the market actually wants to buy your product. See point #1.

Gene: If you could spend one day with any person (alive or not), who would it be any why?

My day would probably be spent with Walt Disney because of his ability to imagine the unimaginable, persevere against all odds, and never take no for an answer.

Gene: Thank you so much for speaking with me and sharing your inspirational story.

Note to Hufforbes readers: If you appreciated this interview, please click on one of the buttons on the top left to post to your twitter, facebook or pinterest.

Mubashir Khatri Success life. Making people successful in a changing world. Ranks feed

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Fashion Designer Job Description – Making Stylized Outfits

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A designer is an individual who facilitates the movement of the article of clothes or outfit through idea to begin. Designers are accountable for analyzing current developments and deciding what’s popular, as well as picking out ideas for brand new styles and drafting designs on their behalf. Designers can work in many different industries as well as settings, including clothes manufacturers, design companies, or private companies and individuals.

Fashion designer Job Description:

Fashion Designer

With respect to the fashion designer’s knowledge, experience, and company, he/she can play another role within the making of the new outfit. Fashion designers who’re hired by big design firms in many cases are responsible for creating the designs as well as overlooking the development process. They’ll pick the colors, materials, and patterns for that outfit and monitor tailors and sewers because they recreate the style. Fashion designers dealing with smaller firms may have a less managerial placement. They will frequently draft their designs in addition to make the prototypes that they’ll show to customers.

When people think about designers?

They often think about the people that create high-end, “haute culture” styles. These designers often concentrate on producing very stylized as well as trendy outfits with regard to wealthier customers. They are the fashions which are seen in publications, fashion shows, as well as on celebrities. High-fashion designers could also work for individual clients to produce a personalized ensemble. Nevertheless, this is not the only real type of designer.

What kind of styles involved in the Fashion designer job description?

A designer employed by a wholesaler or even manufacturer creates styles for mass viewers, rather than higher-end styles. These designs should be catered toward a sizable audience and changed to fit a variety of sizes. Depending about the design, the outfits can also be manufactured in many colors as nicely. These designers must develop styles that may suit men, ladies, children, and babies. The designs should also fit the spending budget and expectations from the company the custom works for.

A lot of people work in much more specialized fields. For instance, some fashion, creative designers works only on wedding gowns. These designers will frequently work with individuals or wedding gown retailers to create customized dresses for his or her clients.

Look for a Reputable Fashion Design School

You can spend thousands on the certificate, but whether it’s not recognized, it will likely be hard or in some instances, impossible to progress your studies. It may even hinder your likelihood of getting a job popular. Look out for schools which are accredited by the actual country’s education ministry – it’ll at least keep your certificate is recognized in your country. Look out for his or her track record; learn how their graduates are faring within the fashion industry.

Know more about their work:

Numerous designers work just on costume style for the film and also the performing arts. Though this work doesn’t necessarily focus upon current fashion developments, a costume designer has most of the same responsibilities as every other fashion designer. Costume designers may need to research the type of clothing worn through another culture, in various time periods, as well as in an imaginary world. Costume designers should work closely with directors and discover out what kind of clothing is necessary, since directors usually have specific ideas of what their characters should seem like.

A large amount of people are self-employed as well as work from task to project. They might be called to design a variety of different outfits based on what the customer wants. Their jobs in many cases are less stable and they’ll generally have to regulate their schedules to satisfy the needs of every client. Each fashion designer’s job changes depending on which kind of work they perform.

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Reformation Just Launched A Line Of Sustainable Denim

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Eco-fashion retailer Reformation just dropped a new line of sustainable denim, and it’s worth checking out. The move comes a little over a month after eco-friendly brand Everlane dropped its first-ever line of sustainable denim.

Reformation’s new collection, aptly branded Ref Jeans, is held to the same material standards as the rest of the brand’s products: with 100 percent recycled materials, leftover fabrics, or sustainably sourced fibers. The line features 46 new pieces, including 11 denim styles in 14 washes, 10 tops and 4 dresses, all designed to pair perfectly with denim.

“My biggest dream is to bring sustainable fashion to everyone,” writes Yael Aflalo, the brand’s founder and CEO. “This year, we decided to tackle the worst polluting type of clothing that we all buy all the time ― denim.”

An absurd amount of water is typically needed to produce a single pair of jeans. That’s why, until now, many eco-first retailers have kept their distance from the closet staple. A single pair of jeans takes about 1,500 gallons of water (or sometimes more) once the dying and washing is complete.

“On average, one Ref Jeans saves 1,468 gallons of water, compared to a conventional pair,” Aflalo writes. “And we are working on making them even better.”

If this all sounds a bit too good to be true, it might be. Understandably, eco-friendly fashion often comes with a higher price tag to account for the quality materials and production standards. Even so, these jeans run you about $100 to $150 for a single pair (compared to $68 flat for a pair of Everlane’s denim).

And, unfortunately, neither retailer is super size-friendly, so if you’re a curvy lady looking for a nice pair of jeans, there are plenty of other places to snag quality denim.

But, for those eager to find the perfect fit from Reformation’s newest collection, they’re available for pre-order starting Oct. 12, and can be purchased online and in store Oct. 23.

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29 Roomy Loafers For Women With Wide Feet

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Blistered heels and squished toes are run-of-the-mill symptoms for wide-footed ladies who try to break in a new pair of shoes.

Though loafers look comfortable, folks with wide feet know just how painful those pointy toes and slim widths can be. But, because we refuse to let the shoes win, we’ve rounded up a list of 29 of our favorite loafers for wide feet.

Check them out below, and be sure to sign up for our Full Carts, Can’t Lose email to stay on top of the best sales each week.

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