Can you tell me a bit about your background and your current role?
My name is Andjelka Ducic and I am Marketing Director of Symbiotica, a digital agency from Serbia and Founder of F5 Digital Solutions, an agency based in Estonia, that is focused on startup consulting. I am a full-stack digital marketer with over 15 years of experience in the field. I have successfully managed more than 450 various digital campaigns for the clients and startups all over the world.
Along with my work, I am very passionate about teaching digital marketing and I am a regular guest on digital marketing podcasts, conferences, radio and TV.
Who were mentors that encouraged you?
It is very important to find and surround yourself with people that are not only the best at what they do but are also willing to share their knowledge. I was fortunate enough to be surrounded with women like that, who have encouraged me and supported me throughout my career and now I try to give back the same way. That is why I am a part of the ITGirls initiative that actively encourages more women to join the IT sector. I also volunteer as a Communications Director within an NGO called ‘Center for the Development of Human Society’. The main focus of this center is finding innovative IT solutions for societal issues, which I am greatly passionate about.
Is it more difficult for a woman to start her own business in the tech sphere?
Women entrepreneurship has both been a hot topic and a challenge for years now. Tech is an industry traditionally dominated by men, but on the other hand, it is also one of the industries with the highest rate of early adopters. That includes new tendencies in business development as well. So, yes, it may be challenging, but the tech space is becoming increasingly more open to female founders.
When we talk about starting our own business – how to choose the right business idea?
That is the million-dollar question. Here are three things to focus on:
1. Yourself – are you good at it? Are you passionate about it? Are you ready (financially, mentally, physically) for that endeavor?
2. Competition – are there other people doing the same thing? What makes you special and how will you stand out from the crowd? If there are no competitors, ask yourself why – is it because the idea is not good? Or maybe the customers don’t need it? Which brings us to point number three.
3. Customers – who is your target audience? How will you reach them? Are you solving a problem they are having and how?
If you can answer these questions in a satisfying manner, you’re well on your way to building a successful business.
Ok, but how to deal with a failure of a bad one?
There is this very common misconception that failure in entrepreneurship is a bad thing. In the competing world we’ve been raised from young age (where the second place is just the first in the long line of users), failure is always seen as something terrible. But really doesn’t have to be. Most of the successful business people can tell you a lot of stories of their past failures with a smile on their face. That is because they didn’t see them as the end, but as a way to learn something, recuperate and return stronger than ever.
What’s the one piece of advice you find yourself repeating over and over again to fellow women entrepreneurs?
Don’t apologize. Women tend to be overly apologizing and keep saying “I am sorry” for every little thing. It’s just something many of us were taught since we were young. Stop apologizing for no reason. If you’re right, and you know that you are right, own it! If you made a mistake, own it and learn from it. Just stop apologizing and start conquering the world!
/Editor at DiTech Media/