If the most recent of sweeping generalisations paint millennial success as a product of tightly-boxed expectations and an avocado abstinence, then former QUT student Sebastian can attest otherwise. It only takes one conversation with Seb to discover he’s innately ambitious and has a refreshing take on the media industry. With valuable insights gained through a Bachelor of Business (majoring in Advertising), Seb created AstroBrisbane, his own digital marketing business he now manages full-time after a stint in real-estate illuminated the gap in the market. I had the pleasure of catching up with him to hash out his daily routine, the future of media comms and that key advice for any like-minded creatives thinking of kick-starting their own business.
What have you been up to since you left university?
I’ve had two ‘real world’ jobs that have help me grow professionally, one in Real Estate and one as a B2B marketer in a construction company. But realistically I did most of my learning by failing at starting up small businesses and teaching myself using online content.
Tell me a bit about your digital marketing business – what do you do?
We help real estate agents who know they need digital marketing but don’t have the resources to execute it. We do this by providing personalised digital marketing strategies and producing the video content to accompany it.
In your own words, why is digital marketing important in today’s media landscape?
In the history of advertising media, there has never been a platform which allows businesses to reach a large portion of their audience for such a small cost, I’m talking about social media of course. This has put small business on the same level playing field as big corporations, where valuable content is winning over big budget campaigns. This type of reach paired with the right assets like a great website is shifting the power from “who can pay to be seen” to “who deserves to be seen”.
Why did you choose to pursue your own business instead of applying for graduate jobs?
As much as I hate to admit I am very bad giving creative control and listening to direction I don’t agree with. With that being said, I still think the social norms around how businesses are operated are very skewed. Two key points come to mind for me:
- The way businesses neglect social responsibility for the sake of profit
- The way people are treated as ‘assets’ instead of humans
In your opinion, what does the future of media and communications look like? Alternatively, how has it changed the way businesses market the product and services? How should they adapt accordingly?
Coming out of the information age where consumers are so educated, not only about the products or services they buy but advertising itself is making for an interesting cultural shift. Like I mentioned content that provides value is what’s flying right now. There’s also this breathe of honesty and transparency that I see in marketing campaigns which people are taking well to, it feels to me as if the age of the ‘salesperson’ is very much dead. Consumers want some real talk.
So, what does a typical day look like for you?
I think morning routine is very important, I’ll usually get up to a good breakfast and a little yoga. I’ll get in the office around 9, make my phone calls and jump on any task I’m dreading while my energy levels are high. Throughout the day I’ll work on a mix of day to day tasks and big picture goals for the business – always taking time to refresh my mind and eat a great lunch of course. The afternoons are reserved for any client meetings and when I can, I try not to do too much after 5. To me it’s very important to balance your work with your life, pacing yourself will prevent you from burning out.
Lastly, can you offer any advice for prospective students, wanting to follow in similar footsteps as you?
I get the feeling a lot of people try and reverse engineer their life choices,
- I want this job so I’m going to have do this
- I want this partner so I’m going to be this
- I want this lifestyle so I’m going to have to make this
But this sort of thinking doesn’t result in fulfilment, that’s something you’re only going to find internally so my best advice would be work from the inside out, know yourself first
- Know why you do what you do
- Know what you want from a relationship
- Know what your weaknesses are
This level of self-awareness will give you perspective in so many situations and provide a foundation for you to grow from both professionally and personally. It means you can really focus on being the best version of yourself.
By Karlicca Culalic