This article marks my first blog post after I took a break from my 3 year blogging journey – and it’s probably going to be an emotional one. I used to be a blogger, saying that actually hurts a little because it really wasn’t an easy choice to take a break. I started blogging when I was a 2nd year student at Strathmore University pursuing a degree in Marketing and Business Administration. Little did I know that I would end up falling in love with a topic slightly different to what I was studying.
Before joining Google Kenya in 2014, I would not have described myself as a techie. The much I interacted with the internet would have been Search, Youtube, Facebook and Twitter. And I don’t even Tweet that much. Ideally I thought I would end up in the fast moving consumer goods career trajectory. It was my dream to work for Unilever. Sometimes I wonder how things would have played out if I explored an opportunity I had with Procter & Gamble. I am passionate about marketing at scale, and I do hope that one day I will apply my digital skills for fast moving consumer goods companies at scale – did you see what I did there?
It is on February 8th 2013 that Odanga Madung and Sameer Costello helped me publish my first blog post. Having joined the dots backwards, it’s quite crazy to realise how two individuals can have such a long lasting impact on someone’s career. There I was, Esther Kinuthia, having no clue what a domain or hosting space is. But I knew that having a blog meant learning more about technology, I could no longer use “I am not a techie” as an excuse.
And so the journey of demystifying the web began. It’s through my blogging initiatives that I met Ken Kiunga from Marketing Society of Kenya who informed me that Google Kenya was looking for an intern. At the time I genuinely had no idea what this company is about, I was however excited about the fact that it was a Marketing internship. I love Marketing. Back in university, students would come to me with all Marketing related queries because they knew how much I love it.
I suppose expressing my passion for Marketing during the interviews enabled me get an opportunity at Google. This is just an assumption, I guess I should make a point of asking my then manager what made her choose me. Considering that I did not see myself as a techie, may be I suffered from imposter syndrome and never got the courage to ask her that question. Perhaps I was afraid that I would not believe in her words, who knows!
Nonetheless, I had a blast during my internship. I loved my manager, sometimes I was not sure if I should even say that because I guess the ‘professional’ term to use would be anything but ‘love’. Although the word that really describes it well would be just that -“love”. She was exactly the kind of manager I needed entering this new world I never envisioned myself in.
It’s through my internship that I began falling in love with the power of technology. I was like a child in a museum, seeing things for the first time and falling in love at first sight. A year after what was an amazing experience, I relocated to Dublin in 2015 where I took a digital marketing role in Google EMEA HQ. As an Associate Account Strategist , I have gotten the opportunity to work with thousands of businesses in Africa, Middle East, United Kingdom and Ireland. It’s constantly an amazing experience to discuss with business owners how they can hit their short-term and long-term goals through digital marketing.
Moving to Dublin meant big changes, I was not able to maintain my blog partners making it very difficult for me to continue blogging. I also had to prioritise getting settled in the role. I am just happy that a year after I stopped blogging, I am back at it again.
Just like my managers enabled me step into the world of technology, I would like to help business owners in Africa do the same. Just like I was once naive about the internet, I will not judge you for not being an expert on digital marketing. I was not judged, I instead received love and guidance, I can only do the same for you!
It would also be great if I managed expectations at this point. Everything that I post will not be supported by internal company data. I will only use my knowledge on Marketing and external data. I will be objective, do not expect me to take sides because at the end of the day, I need to help you make a choice from an informed perspective not influenced by bias.
I may not be working for a fast moving good company marketing products at scale, I will however take a chance to use this blog to market my knowledge and experience at scale. My sincere hope is that what I share here helps you grow your business. Kindly subscribe and leave comment for me below. Until the next blog post, keep thinking about the digital marketing opportunities business owners can explore in Africa today!
Let’s learn digital marketing!