Empowering Women with Kelsie Downs
Our empowering woman of the month is Kelsie Downs. Each month we are collaborating with the talented Mike Aguilar Photography to show and feature our amazing boss girls in our community.
Kelsie is a local blogger but her main day job is running her own marketing business. Something that has started as a small gig turned into a full service digital marketing and advertising including SEO, Google Ad Words, Blog Management, and Social Media directing, websites, and more.
Kelsie is from Oklahoma and attended the University of Central Oklahoma and graduated with a degree in Psychology. She initially planned on going to graduate school and becoming a counselor. However, while doing part time social media management in college, Kelsie began to have a passion for digital advertising and found a niche for it. With her dad owning an advertising firm for over 30 years, she started to mentor under him in order to grow her digital marketing skills.
After working a full-time corporate job for a year, Kelsie knew she didn't want to pursue student loan debt and work in a cubical for the rest of her life. So she started to reach out to local businesses, cold calling and sharing marketing expertise with friends and family. So May 17th, Kelsie decided to go full time with her business and to continue to grow her knowledge in photography, content creation and all forms of digital marketing. With all this knowledge and information, Kelsie started her own blog, KelsieDowns.co, in December 2017 and mainly wanted to use it as a platform to help small business owners with necessary marketing skills. It has since turned into a great way for her to feature local businesses.
Getting to know Kelsie!
What lead you to marketing as a career?
My dad, my passion for social media management and desire to work for myself. Not to mention my husband's schedule doesn't match an 8-5, so I needed something that worked for us.
What inspired you to quit your day job and start your own marketing business full time?
I was already doing it part-time, and I struggled in my full-time desk job, it was hard for my personality and then when my husband's schedule switched to 2 pm - 12 am, I knew I couldn't live long with only seeing him every five days or so. I started to put more effort into growing it and about 3-4 months later was able to supplement my income and quit!
What are some challenges and barriers you face with owning your own marketing business?
The biggest challenge for me has been having confidence in myself. I have the results that advertising works for businesses, but I struggle with selling myself, I hate being pushy or "salesy" so that part is hard for me. I also struggle with time management, my schedule is very different from the average person and if I want time with my husband it has to be in the mornings so a lot of times I work until midnight and find my most productive hours to be from 8 pm - 12 am. Haha!
What are things you love about being your own boss?
I love that I can make my schedule, I love that I get to connect with people and I love seeing small business owners thrive in OKC! My job is to help their businesses grow through digital marketing and having the opportunity to assist them in that is energizing!
How is your personal life effected with running your own business?
My personal life is affected by my business due to how closely I associate with my identity. When I screw up, I take it hard and usually allow it to change my entire attitude or mood. The hardest part is understanding I am not just my business; my identity has to be found in something much greater and taking that to God is something I will probably have to do for the rest of my life.
What is your advice to anyone that is wanting to branch out and start their own business in marketing?
I would say don't allow fear or lack of confidence to hold you back as I did. I'd also say to start with one niche and grow it from there, I began with becoming an expert in social media management and built it on that!