The Plunge: Melissa Wallace

On finding the unmet need in the marketplace

Name: Melissa Wallace

Position, Company: CEO, Fivefoottwo Marketing

Previous Titles: VP Marketing

How long have you been solo: 8 Years

Where you can find me: LinkedIn

Why did you decide to go into business for yourself?

I saw a need for early-stage startups. I wanted to work with early-stage but knew it was a bad idea for them to hire me vs. use that budget toward marketing spend. So I partnered with Laura Maiurano and we created "expert systems" to give tech startups a place to start efficiently and get a whole team for the cost of one employee.

What do you do and how do you differentiate yourself?

I bring over 25 years of marketing expertise, spanning across diverse sectors including consumer, B2B, and creative agency realms, with a primary focus on pioneering technologies and entertainment. My illustrious career path includes pivotal roles at renowned consumer brands like Superfly, DIRECTV, A&E, and eMusic. However, my true acclaim stems from my exceptional track record in revitalizing and propelling the marketing strategies of numerous startups, notably Buddy Media, which was acquired by for a staggering $689M at just four years old.

What do you miss about corporate life?

The office - I know, crazy, but I do. I would not mind being in an office with my team at least once a week. I miss the benefits too.

What do you love about entrepreneurial/consulting life?

I am in charge! I get to decide what makes me happy or not. The same goes for my team. I like bringing a flexible work experience and environment to contractors who need and thrive there.

What’s your best piece of advice?

Do what you love. Sounds soooo easy, I know. But it's amazing how busy work can be fun when you are doing something you love. And to back that up - take the risk. It will hurt and be hard at first, but when it all comes together it is worth it!

Give me three takeaways

  1. Life is better balanced (emotionally) when you are charge, however…

  2. It's only good if you are doing what you love

  3. And you cannot get there without taking the risk. Just remember - the universe has your back. GO FOR IT!