JSMM Celebrates 11th Anniversary
This month marks Jennings Social Media & MarTech’s (JSMM) 11th anniversary and we could not be more excited about this accomplishment for the JSMM team!
Since JSMM’s launch 11 years ago, CEO Valerie Jennings had been awarded 2014 Most Influential Women in Business by KC Business magazine, featured as a Woman To Watch by FridayGirl TV and interviewed by a handful of media outlets. JSMM continues to represent clients in the Kansas City area where the company was founded, as well as representing companies from all over the world such as Wyndham Vacation Ownership, Time Equities, Inc., Orient Express Hotels, as well as many other established and up-and-coming companies in the U.S., Canada, Ireland and St. Martin. More recently, in 2012, Jennings created her second startup and JSMM sister-company, Viral Bolt Media (VBM).
To celebrate this milestone of 11 years, Jennings reflects back and discusses her journey to become CEO and cofounder of JSMM.
How did you know to go for it, what made you take that risk to start JSMM?
I am a Midwestern girl by heart, but I knew I had to broaden my horizons from Iowa. I started my business at the age of 24 in Overland Park, Kan. I didn’t really know much about starting a public relations firm. I didn’t know any entrepreneurs. I had no understandings for financials. I certainly didn’t have any family money backing me so I really jumped into it eyes wide open and went with it.
What sparked the idea for Jennings? Was it something you were looking for or did you stumble upon the idea?
I had a vision of what I wanted to accomplish, and while I didn’t know what my career was going to look like, I knew I had to take some risks early on. We were in the right place at the right time and we jumped into social media before it became extramurally popular. There were some publicly traded clients that sought us out because they were looking for early adopters in social media to run some test pilots in their business, and those pilots turned out to be very successful.
Is there an aspect of your business career that you enjoy most?
I love being a spokesperson for woman in business– I enjoy doing what I do. I love the opportunity to inspire others and encourage them to live their dream and get out there no matter where they come from or what resources they have at their disposal.