Founder, Director / B Creative Enterprises
As far as I’m concerned Bojana is leading the resurgence of the modern day It Girl. There are plenty of them, the Australian Marketing It Girls, paving the way with fresh, smash the box ideas, and heart centered businesses.
Bojana is like a cheerleader without the kitschy pom poms, and jingle, her job is to elevate brands through creative social media strategies. The type of strategies that make you fall madly and deeply in love. She is SO good at it, that she started her own biz. The best part of this #careerstory is the journey that it took for Bojana to get to this point. We LOVE a good trajectory here at The Cool Career, we love the downs as much as the ups, and this interview has plenty of both.
In today’s #careerstory you will learn all about how Bojana went from a sweet and studious primary-schooler to a “Is High School actually for me, teenager”. Personally, I can’t get enough of her explanation on why TAFE was the best choice for her, and why she believed the curriculum rocked.
This #careerstory is epic. Bojana is such an exciting, honest #girlboss with a future so bright, that you will need to need to buy those Ray-Bans to see it.
But enough with the smoke blowing, because she ain’t that type of girl.
Please meet the extraordinary Bojana Maric…
Bojana, you beautiful thing you, let’s start by finding out more about your childhood. Set the tone, where you grew up and how your experience shaped the person you are, and the career that you are in today?
One day I will write a book about my journey but for now, I will give you the short and sweet version. In primary school I was always a high achiever, I played every sport possible and was always the first to put my hand up for any activity. I joined the SRC in every grade and in year 6 I became school captain of Bonnyrigg Heights Primary School. High School was a whole other story though… I struggled to stay focused in class and some of my peers became quite nasty at times. All I wanted to do was have fun and this saw me getting pretty average results. At the time of starting high school, my Mum was suffering from severe depression, which at the time I didn’t realise how much it was affecting my life. My environment didn’t allow me to focus and succeed, which made me feel like the world was against me at times. This encouraged me to leave school and carve out my own path in life.
Where did you go to High School and how was that experience for you?
I went to Cecil Hills High School, I was a rebel and didn’t really care much, as I wanted to have fun with my friends all the time. The teachers definitely needed to invest more time in my abilities and teach the way I learn, as everyone learns so differently. However, as I never got that opportunity my grades decreased and I ended up leaving in year 12 as I wanted to be more independent and earn some money, which didn’t go down too well with my family.
Ahhhh you rebel you. So did your high school play an important role in helping you choose your further education and future career?
Absolutely not. However, I believe that anything is possible regardless of your environment and level of education. What your teacher writes on your report card does not confirm how smart or fabulous you are. You can achieve ANYTHING you set your mind to and sometimes you just need a little bit of encouragement when you’re young.
Did you complete any internships or work experience placements in high school? Tell us about that experience.
I did two internships in Fashion PR, however, to be honest, I didn’t learn much in the internships but it definitely made me more hungry for success and it looked good on my resume.
Did you go to College, University, Tafe or another equivalent? Take us through the courses that you studied and why you chose them?
I went to Meadowbank College/TAFE, as University wasn’t for me. I found that TAFE was more practical and I loved the way the course was structured. I chose to complete my Diploma in Public Relations and Marketing, as I wanted to learn the mechanics, jargon, and strategies. I do believe you need a natural ability first, as you can’t teach passion.
Tell us about your career journey so far. Who you have worked for, and explain any highlights.
In the early days of my career, I was approached by a new company called Groupon, who started in the USA and grew faster than google! My interview with Groupon was SO intense, I was in the city for a good 4.5 hour meeting with every manager and even the CEO of the company interviewed me himself. They gave me some homework to design a deal for a local restaurant and I completely nailed it. They ended up using my deal as training for the sales team. I became the number one in sales across the country for 12 months straight. I built so many relationships with small to medium businesses which lead me to give advice on how they could market their businesses, on top of the deal they were signing with me that day. However, the only thing was – I hadn’t even studied marketing! So I enrolled myself into TAFE and did a 12-month course 3x nights a week – boy was that a struggle! As time went on, I started to feel very unmotivated and I soon realised I started to struggle with depression myself. I decided to take a break from work and ‘figure life out’.
I was in and out of part-time work until I came across an opportunity I fell in love with. It was a national sales manager role for Wedded Wonderland and I ended up landing the position. Coming into that role I realised how much Groupon taught me about building a business from the ground up. I saw that Wedded Wonderland needed more direction and a clearer strategy in place. My role was to offer advertising for small businesses and I saw that so many businesses had no idea how to market themselves. In the meetings, I would find myself playing out our client’s strategies in my mind and I used to get so excited about my ideas but we didn’t offer any of those strategies, so again I found myself giving out free advice. I decided to leave the company after feeling like I wanted to take my career in a new direction, however in my final month with the company I fell pregnant.
Jobless and pregnant – I was determined to create my own business and bring my passion to life. I launched B Creative Enterprises in November, 2014 and gave birth to my darling daughter in May 2015. I brought my laptop to the hospital with me and approved content calendars due to clients the night my daughter was born. I then fell pregnant AGAIN months later and gave birth to my son, which put extra pressure and extra demands on me. I now work from my Glebe office with a team of 4, as we work with brands around the globe to grow their business through Social Media Marketing. The road is still hard with many late nights working and juggling my family life, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
What is the hardest part of your current job?
Nothing is ‘hard’ for me but if I had to choose something then the hardest part would be working on minimal sleep some days due to being a mother of two. Some nights I work to 1am and have to be in a meeting at 9.30am but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.
What does a typical business day look like for you in your current job?
A typical business day would start with a brief catch up with my team in the morning to ensure my staff are all set with their tasks for the day and that we’re tracking along nicely with client work and deadlines. The from there I will be writing online strategies for clients, delegating tasks to the team, creative directing photo shoots, overseeing client work and pitching to new clients.
Who has been your hero, or greatest inspiration growing up and why?
My Mum without a DOUBT. As a kid my Mum was my hero, every debating tournament, tennis match or stage performance, I would look out into the crowd to see her there as my number one fan. She fought really hard for me to succeed in anything I put my mind to and she encouraged me to always follow my heart, no matter what.
What advice would you give girls who are interested in your career?
If you truly want to be where I am right now, you need to start from the bottom. You need those tedious admin roles to really understand how a business works and what is important to build business foundations. Then teach yourself, ask questions, never give up even on the hardest days. Opportunities will NEVER fall into your lap – you need to be a hustler and keep knocking the door until it opens.
List your most valuable resources that you turn to constantly for inspiration:
- Favourite Websites: I check all the latest news in social media, have regular catch ups with our overseas social media contacts to keep our markets current and always find ways to network with like-minded people. I do this rather than checking numerous websites, as I find I get the information I need a lot quicker through my contacts in the industry.
- Name an Instagram Account that you can’t go a day without checking: The first thing I do when I wake up is check every single one of our clients pages (well the first thing I really do is run into my babies rooms and kiss them) then I check my clients pages.
- Favourite Netflix Series: No time for Netflix when you’re running a successful business and raising two kids.
- Favourite all time book/s: I have three: Marching Powder (and not for the drugs but for the amazing story line), The Alchemyst, and now #GirlBoss – I really connected to Sophia’s journey.
- People: My favourite people are my babies, my partner, my family, my staff and anyone passionately living their dream!