We had the good fortune of connecting with Barbara Gobbi and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Barbara, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I was sitting in a cubicle, working in corporate America, bored out of my mind. I knew there was so much more that I could be doing to help other business owners besides just the one that I was working for. I believe that when you have a talent or a skill that it’s your duty to share it with others to make the world a better place. Even if you’re only changing one life. But I wasn’t changing lives at my 9-5 corporate job. It was 2011 and the peak of the recession. I was watching more and more small businesses closing their doors. And so I set off to start my own marketing consulting agency to help them keep their doors open.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I spent almost 20 years working in sales, marketing, and advertising in the hospitality industry. Among one of my roles was working on a mergers and acquisition team for a hotel management company. My job was to write a strategic marketing plan for a hotel that my company was planning on purchasing. And I only had 48 hours to complete the project! It taught me to diagnose the problem that was causing the hotel to lose money and write a marketing plan to turn it around. I loved solving problems! When I started my own company I was doing much of this strategic marketing work for small business owners. I was helping companies use creative marketing solutions to increase their visibility, credibility, and profitability. As my company was growing I noticed a market segment of solopreneurs who couldn’t afford to hire someone to help them market their business, and they were struggling to know the right strategies that would work for them. After a lot of market research, I realized the need for an online course that would teach these business owners how to write their own marketing plan. We launched our online course in April 2020 shortly after the lockdown. Business owners who were forced to close their doors were able to use this time to recalibrate and learn how to pivot their business. They walked away with a plan in hand that included strategies and skills that would work for their business in any situation.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Having lived in Florida most of my life I take for granted that we live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. When friends come to visit, it’s my excuse to be a tourist in my own back yard. No trip to South Florida would be complete without a trip to the beach. I love the lively beaches like Fort Lauderdale, Deerfield, and Miami Beaches. I also like a few secluded beaches off of Delray and Boca Raton, and of course Peanut Island. Whenever I have friends visit I also take them to see the Wynwood Walls. There’s something new to see every time I go. For my nature-loving friends, we enjoy taking airboat rides in the Everglades. Where else will they see so many alligators? South Florida is a foodie’s paradise! My favorite restaurants to take visitors are Joe’s Stone Crab on Miami Beach (even though I’m allergic to crab!), Chop’s Lobster Bar in Boca Raton, and Big Bear Brewery in Coral Springs. Get the beer cheese soup!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Along my journey, I’ve had several mentors and cheerleaders. But my husband Victor has always believed in me, even on the days when I didn’t believe in myself. Although he works in a completely different industry than I do, he always trusts my intuition and encourages me to follow my heart. And to go for it! I remember one time calling him when I was especially nervous about a project I was working on and I told him I felt like the train had left the station. He said, “Not only are you on the train, but you’re sitting in first class.” Those words have always stuck with me on the days I need a little extra support.
Rachel Sherman – TSS Photography