19th January 2022

madi&co – the digital marketing agency for SMEs

After ten years with an advertiser, Marie-Caroline Dumas decided to create her own digital marketing and communication agency and thus became an entrepreneur. Why this choice? And how did she manage to do it, when the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown started the week after its launch? In this article, she explains her journey. Enjoy reading it!

Meet Marie-Caroline

My name is Marie-Caroline Dumas, I am 35 years old and have two daughters, ages 6 and 7. I have a master’s degree in Marketing and Communications, and about two years ago I founded the digital marketing agency madi&co with a focus on SMEs.

I love tennis (I’m a big fan of Roger Federer and Victoria Azarenka) and singing in a choir, which I have done at a high level for 10 years.

The idea of creating a business

At the end of 2019, after working for 10 years on the advertiser side, I started thinking about how to find meaning in my professional life and decided to create my own digital marketing and communications agency.

Today, I work with SME leaders who know little or nothing about marketing and communications. I help them increase their visibility and turn their prospects into loyal customers, thanks to digital marketing solutions as well as structured and, most importantly, customised support.

The stages of business creation

1. Work in a way that is more responsive to the constraints and challenges facing SMEs

When I was on the client side, I worked for more than 10 years with a number of different agencies and was often frustrated by their lack of curiosity about my work and the business goals we were hoping to achieve.

So I wanted to offer something different, not in terms of services, which are the same as those of a “traditional” digital agency, but more specifically in terms of support.

My approach is three-pronged:

1. I build trust: I use simple and accessible language but never talk down to anyone.

2. I only provide my clients with the services that they need because I take a long-term view of my client relationships.

3. I let my client set the pace: I try to match my client’s pace. They often have business emergencies and can sometimes take a long time to produce certain content, since they do everything themselves. I always work around the client’s constraints, no matter the context.

This approach gives my clients a high degree of flexibility and an agile structure. This helps us work together to build real visibility and recognition of their expertise on the market.

Marie-Caroline Dumas

2. Off to a rocky start

It was quite a challenge to set up this type of support since I actually launched my business in March 2020, one week before the first lockdown in France. But I was lucky to be able to count on my friends who are entrepreneurs and my strong partners.

After this false start and a difficult period when school was remote, I quickly contacted the Chamber of Commerce to meet this new challenge of growing my company during COVID. I received support from Nyuko through the “Idea Launcher” programme and, a few months later, I attended the Chamber of Commerce’s “Boost your business” cycle workshops.

This really helped me feel like my project had support but, more importantly, I was able to meet other entrepreneurs who were having the same difficulties or facing the same challenges. We talked about all sorts of things and this really helped me make my plans.

3. Align your values with your business project

I am now really happy that I took the leap into entrepreneurship. I love working with SME leaders to boost their development. I can actually see how my approach builds visibility and recognition of their expertise in the short and medium term, and helps them grow in the longer term. This collaborative process inspires me, and every day I learn new things about different business sectors.

Marie-Caroline’s advice to future entrepreneurs

My advice is to surround yourself with good people. A business project is never something you should do on your own. You need help from your loved ones and support from trusted partners. They will sustain you and give you strength when times are tough.

Marie-Caroline and her bank

Spuerkeess was a great fit right from the start. I was looking for a reliable partner who would make everything quick and easy, and that’s exactly what I found. My advisor immediately understood what I needed and I was able to quickly open an account while taking advantage of certain offerings and services designed specifically for small companies like mine.

Nyuko has signed a partnership with Spuerkeess, in order to foster entrepreneurial spirit and strengthening the bank's position with company founders from the start of their businesses. More info in our article: https://www.spuerkeess.lu/en/blog/experts-corner/nyuko-fostering-entrepreneurial-spirit/.

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