Below is our recent interview with Alvaro Psevoznik, President at DM Agency:
Q: Can you tell us something more about the company and what you do?
A: We started as a small graphic design studio in 1991, with a computer we borrowed from our family in Argentina. In less than a year, we were working for 5 local clients without knowing anything about running a company, banking, invoicing or payroll. It was crazy, but my partner and I at that time were 19 years old and we felt like anything was possible. In 1997 we started developing websites. At the time, most websites looked ‘geeky’ and ‘blocky’, so we decided to add some creativity to our sites, and everyone loved them.
In 2002, I moved to Florida and defined the company as a “Digital Agency,” a term nobody knew and understood for a while, but since it was clear to me that everything was going in that direction, I decided to keep the concept and move forward. In 2003 we developed our own email marketing platform, in 2005 we joined the Google Advertising Program, we started managing our clients’ social media content and ads in 2009, and since then, we’ve been focused on offering a true one-stop digital marketing solution to our clients.
Today, we are still a small agency, but we offer everything a company needs when it comes to marketing themselves: design/branding, web, social media, online reputation, email SEO, and advertising.
Q: You are one of the Top 25 Website Design Companies according to DesignRush; what does it mean for the company?
A: It means a lot. Everyone can open their own web design agency from a Starbucks or at home, but just a few see growth or last more than a year. I believe this award and others we’ve received reflects all the good work we’ve done for over 25 years.
Q: There are already a number of digital marketing agencies on the market, why do you think yours is superior?
A: I don’t see us as superior; we are different. I see us different in two main things:
First, we’ve been in business for more than 25 years; we’ve been a digital agency since the beginning, and we’ve been the first ones to implement almost everything that’s being done now. Of course, it came with a high price: Making a billion mistakes in the process. At the end of the day, the trial and error paid off, and this is what our clients see in us: experience, reliability, and innovation.
The second reason we’re different is that we are a bi-cultural agency. In our country, where Hispanics are an important piece of the market, you must understand that Latinos don’t just speak Spanish. We also don’t just Google Translate our copy to Spanish like most agencies do. We know how they think, behave, and buy, and that puts us on a different level than other agencies. That connection to the Hispanic market is what makes us different.
Q: What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your business and how did you overcome it?
A: The biggest challenge was during the 2008 financial crisis. I wasn’t ready, my bank account was in bad shape and our debt was huge. We had lost most of our accounts because of that. As I was looking for a job and getting ready to close the agency in 2010, someone who let us go two years earlier called me and asked me, “Are you guys still alive? I have a lot of work for you!” and that saved us and put us back on our feet.
Q: What are your plans for the future?
A: Most would say: Grow. I’d rather say: Learn to grow. This business we are in is changing every day and that’s a big challenge for us. I am constantly attending seminars and classes, and reading a lot about new digital marketing trends and tools. I believe that with my “old school marketing” expertise, everything I’m constantly learning and applying to my clients’ strategies, and DM Agency’s growing team of millennials, we’ll get there successfully.