Ronnie Siegel of Ronnie Siegel Marketing & Design on Transforming Her Passion for Art and Design into a Business of Her Own
Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business:
I am a graphic designer. I create digital and print marketing materials to help organizations and companies communicate their missions to attain business goals. I have a BFA in communication design from the Parsons School of Design and an MBA in marketing from NYU. Before launching Ronnie Siegel Marketing & Design in 2020, I worked as both a graphic designer for ad agencies and non-profits, as well as a marketing professional in the credit card division at Citibank. My unique selling proposition is my ability to infuse marketing know-how into the design materials I create.
What excites you about being an Entreprenista League member?
I am excited to meet a group of like-minded business owners and to learn from everyone’s experiences.
What made you take the leap to start your own business?
I always had a passion for art and design but had been working more recently in business and administration roles. So, when I was suddenly let go from a non-profit organization as a result of COVID, I decided to follow my passion and create my own design business.
What was your background prior to starting your own business?
I worked at a small non-profit where I wore many hats- I designed all the marketing materials, but also managed the business side of the organization. I was responsible for managing the budget, attendance at organization events, analytics, creating e-newsletters, updating the website, and more!
Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
No! I always liked the idea of the freedom and control of having my own business but had never actively pursued the idea until now.
Take us back to when you first launched your business, what was your marketing strategy to get the word out, and did it go as planned?
I did a lot of word-of-mouth with past colleagues and friends, which helped me get my feet wet. I got hired for my first projects, which were very successful. I also sent out an e-newsletter to my LinkedIn contacts.
What is the biggest challenge you have encountered along the way and what did you learn from it?
My biggest challenge has been how to market myself beyond my own circle to acquire more clients. My colleagues have been great in advocating for me and my work, but I need to find where the clients are that need and want my services and how to reach them to be heard.
What is the accomplishment you are the proudest of to date?
Pivoting several times between careers and industries, raising a child, losing a job and creating a business- growing and surviving throughout it all, in a place that is way outside of my comfort zone!
Do you believe in work/life balance? What are some of your best tips?
Yes! I believe in focus and efficiency. As an organized person, I always aim to complete projects in a timely fashion. Since I work at home, I prefer to start and end my days at fairly consistent times. I usually deliberately shut my computer by a certain time, or at least not respond to emails after certain hours. I also think it is important for my physical and mental health to make time for exercise, which I do on a consistent basis.
What’s a piece of advice you can share that you wish you’d known when you first started your Entreprenista journey?
Embrace the uncertainty, instead of being afraid of it.
What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?
I recently created an annual report for a small rare disease non-profit. I pitched the idea of doing a report for them (they had never done one) and they agreed to doing it. They were thrilled with the completed piece and I am happy with the relationship I was able to build through this project.
What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?
My goal is to grow my business to include projects from larger non-profits and small to mid-size companies or agencies, and perhaps develop partnerships with other marketing professionals.