Meet Stefania, a bright and bubbly graduate of our Diploma in Digital Marketing. Originally from Colombia, Stefa has made a fantastic career for herself after studying digital marketing in New Zealand.
We had the pleasure of chatting with Stefa about her study switch from creative technologies to digital marketing, landing a job a few months into the course, and some of her achievements in the role. Check it out!
Choosing the Path of Digital Marketing
Her passion for creativity and communication drove Stefania to pursue digital marketing in New Zealand.
“I began a Bachelor of Creative Technologies at AUT, which sounded pretty interesting. But then, after the first semester, I realised that I was a bit disappointed with the delivery.”
Stefania explains her decision to switch from a Bachelor of Creative Technologies program to digital marketing. Uncertainty and a desire for a program aligned with her interests and goals led her to choose digital marketing, ultimately securing a job within three months of completing her diploma!
Stefania’s decision to study digital marketing was driven by the higher job prospects and paid in the field compared to other options like graphic design.
The desire for a creative career
As a young child, Stefania was interested in humanities, social studies, and creative pursuits like performing arts and theatre.
“I always wanted to find something that could apply both personality traits. I was thinking about studying journalism and social communication, but I never considered marketing.”
After studying business to reach her path of residency in New Zealand, it was time to choose a desirable career path that matched her creative personality.
“First, I decided a bachelor’s would be a good idea because it also has the technology. But then I realised there that my skills in design, creating content and problem-solving. So then, I came across digital marketing. I thought this was much more related to my personality.
I asked the marketing department and my work what they think about NZIE’s Diploma in Digital Marketing. They said, Yes, this seems pretty up to date and what the industry needs, so they said go for it. And that was like the final decision to say, ‘Yeah, this is what I need to do.”
NZIE was her final choice
As anyone does when making a big decision, Stefa weighed up NZIE’s Diploma with other courses.
“I was also considering graphic design at Yoobee and the Media Design School or going to university. But I couldn’t find another place that was teaching digital marketing. I got very fixated on the idea that that’s what I wanted to do to start with and that perhaps graphic design and digital design could be what came after.
First, for the high demand and the possibility of getting a job, the pay was much better. There were many more benefits to studying digital marketing rather than graphic design, which I was also interested in.”
Luckily, NZIE’s Diploma featured a Graphic design paper.
“I was just starting from Level 5 with the previous bachelor’s I studied, whereas this diploma was Level 7. So, the quality of education was much better and more challenging. The tutors’ expertise was amazing, like Miriam, Rajika and Lasma. Everyone was really good. The canvas delivery was great. The content was useful.”
Online Studies: A Convenient Path to Success
Stefania advocates for online studies, highlighting their convenience for individuals who wish to balance work and education. The comfort of learning from home can be a significant advantage.
“I would recommend that if you want to continue working, that it’s great to start online and be in the comfort of your home. It’s great that you can have the opportunity to continue your life as usual and learn something new.”
While initially studying full-time while working, she later switched to part-time to focus on her studies. The convenience of online learning allowed her to continue working while gaining a higher-quality education in the digital marketing program.
“The positive thing is that what I was doing at work was similar to what I was studying at NZIE. It was very beneficial because I knew fresh in my head that I had done assessments on my KPIs. So, I could just use all of that and apply it. That was making it easier and more sustainable.
But then it got to the point that I was overworked because the more I was applying at my work, the responsibilities grew because I was doing so great. It got to a point where I thought maybe I could now change to part-time since the last papers were SEO and analytics. I thought these were the ones I wanted to take my time to focus on. So I changed to part-time. And it was much better. I had time to breathe.”
Her Favourite Paper and the most useful
You could guess her favourite paper was design, which she describes as “really fun”.
“The first assessment was to create a logo. And then, the second assessment was to give that to a marketer, so another classmate, for the person to design the brand guidelines.
We got to see both sides of the client and the marketer, which was fun. And then we got to design something cool.”
The most useful paper was SEO, in addition to Google Analytics.
“I suggested to my boss to give me access to our Google Analytics and then get all our ads linked to see more measurable results. And I have that confidence because of these two papers.”
Transforming Social Media and Customer Engagement at Green Acres
With a passion for communication and an eye for design, Stefania has successfully transformed the social media presence of Green Acres, an innovative home services franchise, managing everything from cleaning to lawn mowing. She scored the role at this company just a few months after graduating with the diploma.
“In my role, I have the admin side, which is like taking care of the office for the franchisees and customer service.” Stefania mentions, highlighting the multifaceted nature of her work.
She handles administrative tasks and customer service for franchisees while supporting the communications manager with internal and external communications.
However, her primary focus lies in managing social media accounts and email newsletters: “I have ownership of the social media, so Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, as well as the email newsletters for our customers.”
There’s no doubt she’s busy juggling so many tasks!
Reaching 4,000 Followers
Through her efforts, Stefania has successfully increased Green Acres’ Facebook followers.
“The company started over 30 years ago and their social media presence started a few years ago, when I started we had 3000 followers on Facebook, and only in one year I was able to hit 4000 followers meaning in my first year managing the account I generate more than a 200% increase on followers.”
Stefania’s content creation and design dedication have significantly contributed to the company’s social media presence and growth.
A Modern Touch
She also discusses her role in bringing modernity to the company through organic advertising and design. Her company works with an agency for paid ads, and it’s her job to produce organic content.
“The idea is that the organic content comes from me, along with my manager… I make the design and change the template and everything… So, we shouldn’t be doing this, making adjustments. That’s also a benefit: I’m bringing in a bit of modernity to the company.”
Her success in managing social media and email newsletters demonstrates the importance of expertise and strategic content creation. Stefania emphasises the significance of testimonials and videos in social media marketing: “You get so much attraction with a video compared to just an aesthetic image.”
Successful EDM Campaign
In addition to strong social media results, a successful email campaign boosted KPIs for Green Acres, created by Stef:
“I have seen amazing results when I send my EDM every month. It’s for customers; we provide tips and CTA’s to encourage them to create and make quotes. I have received a few replies saying, “Your email was useful because of the tips and tutorials. I mix it up. And that has been useful. Some people say, “Can I please book a job? Can I request a quote?” ”
As a migrant, Stef discussed some of the struggles and imposter syndrome she faces working in New Zealand.
“We feel that as migrants, don’t give ourselves the value that we have; we are underappreciated. We underappreciate ourselves; we don’t feel like we can expect anything for ourselves or ask for anything extra, which is also the barrier why we don’t progress any higher. And why also, some of us are unsuccessful.”
However, Stef maintains a good attitude towards herself, ensuring she doesn’t beat herself up over mistakes.
“I learn from my mistakes; and know that the mistakes are not so huge that I’m going to be affected or that I’m going to be in trouble with my management or anything.”
Plans and Goals for the Future
Looking ahead, Stefania aspires to gain more experience and eventually become a freelancer, where she can work for herself, make decisions, and have the flexibility to work from home or travel while earning good money. She also expresses interest in design and product branding, highlighting her desire to gravitate towards these areas in the future.
Stefania’s story is a testament to the transformative power of digital marketing education and the endless possibilities it offers for career growth and success. With her expertise, creativity, and dedication, she continues to shape the digital presence of Green Acres and inspire others to pursue their passion in marketing and content creation.
Think you’re ready for a career that aligns with your passions? Check out our Diploma in Digital Marketing.