It’s been a while since I last featured a life update here on ThatGoanGirl. I do my best to share everything that’s going on in my life on social media, but I feel like I haven’t done that quite so often here on the blog.
I don’t know about you, but personally, when I stumble upon a blog I love, I enjoy reading about the person behind the screen. There’s more to their life than food reviews, adventure, travel tips and beauty hacks, right? It’s always nice to read about their major life events, professional updates and more.
With that in mind, I thought I’d share with you what I’ve been up to and my plans for the near future.
HITTING THE BRAKES ON DIGITALLY SCRAMBLED
If you follow me on social media, you’d know that I quit a successful career in advertising a couple of years ago because the demands of a 9-5 job (or a 9-9 here in Mumbai) didn’t allow me to pursue my passion projects. I was extremely frustrated and constantly irritated to have to work ALL the time, even on weekends, when I was entitled to a day off. All those working-weekends, begging for leave applications and hurried deadlines came in the way of my travel plans, food reviews and paid blog collabs, so much so that I just snapped and quit my job one day.
But I still had to pay the bills, and that led to the launch of Digitally Scrambled, my own digital marketing agency that I started with my co-founder, Sandeep, a digital marketing whiz with a different skill set than me. We made (and still make) an excellent team. We handled everything – business development, client servicing, design, coding, content, social media, SEO, running ads, sending invoices, following up on payments…. – all between the two of us.
As a start-up, we struggled to on-board clients for the first year, and as we bagged project after project, we, a team of 2 people, did find difficulty in managing time. We often worked 16 hours a day to keep the agency up and running and our clients delighted, so they stuck with us.
Alongside, I worked on ThatGoanGirl from Mumbai, Goa and while travelling – an even more hectic affair as I pressured myself to create good content for the blog while working on digital marketing so efficiently that even clients didn’t know that I was doing it while not sitting behind a desk.
After 2.5 years of running a profitable company without employees or infrastructure, we realized that we reached a point where our growth is capped because there is a limit on how many hours 2 people can work in a day. We did see this day coming, but we hadn’t anticipated what we would do when it got here. Now that we are at the proverbial crossroad, we’ve decided to put Digitally Scrambled on hold and….
MERGE WITH A GOA-BASED AGENCY
Like I said, our growth at Digitally Scrambled was bound to plateau somewhere, unless we hired people and rented office space – which meant putting an end to travel plans, slowing down the blog, paying salaries even if we weren’t doing so well, and several other things. This was a chance we were not willing to take.
We were recently approached by a Goa-based marketing agency and offered a chance to merge with them. After careful consideration and weeks of weighing the pros and cons, we accepted. Our expertise combined with the new agency’s infra and people power makes our (now bigger) goals more attainable.
How do I feel about it?
Honestly, I’m not 100% happy and on some days, I think we’ve taken the wrong step. But I see it as another chance to get out of my comfort zone. I’ve built a life I love here in Mumbai, one where I answer to no one and live by my own terms. Our merger with an agency in Goa means that I will be based back in my home state most of the time – living under the radar of my parents (ugh!!!!), having to do things I don’t want to – and in general, losing my independence. When I think about it, my heart sinks.
On the flip side, being based at home more often means I can create fantastic new content in Goa for the blog, something I’ve wanted to do for a long time and juggled with on my ever-so-frequent trips to Goa.
WHAT IT MEANS FOR THATGOANGIRL
I quit an international ad agency for the blog. I traveled while running my own start-up (like a headless chicken) out of choice, because of the blog. It will always come first, no matter where the professional world takes me.
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I plan to run back to Mumbai EVERY chance I get for some time away in my beautiful apartment. Being cooped up in an archaic society like we unfortunately have in Goa is not my idea of fun, especially since I’ve gotten used to the progressiveness and open-mindedness of Mumbai. I plan to maintain and build on the strong networks I have in this place, while making more connections in Goa. And of course, I plan to travel just as much as I did when I lived in the City Of Dreams.
I hope you stick on as I make this bumpy transition in April. In the meanwhile, tell me… what’s been happening with you?