Marketing and strategy are two closely related disciplines that work together to achieve a common goal: to help businesses succeed. Marketing is the process of creating and delivering value to customers, while strategy is the process of defining and achieving long-term goals. When marketing and strategy meet, it creates a powerful force that can help businesses grow and thrive.
Roshni Wijayasinha is a visionary with a remarkable journey in this domain. As CEO and Lead Strategist, Roshni’s dynamic leadership is a catalyst for success at Prosh Marketing, a marketing strategy, consulting and coaching company with a mission to empower startups and small businesses with impactful strategies across budgets.
With over 17 years of dynamic evolution, Roshni’s narrative unfurls. Her roots trace back to crafting consumer brand stories on the agency frontlines. Her trail is marked by fortifying domestic tech leaders.
For Roshni marketing isn’t just a profession—it’s a journey of insight, innovation and empowerment. Her presence at the helm of Prosh Marketing augments creativity and strategy, steering startups and small businesses toward greatness.
Let’s uncover how tailored strategies can transform startups and small businesses into success stories!
Brief us about your career path as a Marketing leader until your current position. What were the challenges that you had to overcome to scale your progress?
As a co-op student, I got to experience a variety of different marketing areas through in-field work placements at Honda, CIBC and Scotiabank. Once graduated, my early roles at agencies offered me the opportunity to explore various clients and industries.
Later, I transitioned to global tech giants Microsoft and Sony, where I tackled large-scale marketing communications and product launches, developing and executing both local and global strategies.
A pivotal juncture arrived at Kobo, a startup, where my boss departed two weeks after I joined. Here, I stepped up to lead the global product marketing team and fell in love with the ability to create things from scratch, the test-and-learn nature of startup marketing and the speed at which things operated.
Leading marketing departments, I drove significant milestones, such as JUICE Mobile’s acquisition by Yellow Pages and exits for Thinking Capital and Benecaid Health Benefits Solutions.
Today, I lead a team of marketing experts offering Fractional CMO services to startups. Evolving from a communications agency, we discovered our true value in startup-focused fractional CMO work, aligning with my passionate commitment to startups.
Throughout my professional journey, I’ve encountered a variety of challenges such as handling expansion within limited financial budgets and resources, striking a balance between work and personal life due to extensive travel commitments, and coping with the demands of rapidly growing startups.
But I thrive off pressure pressures and challenges, lean into my creative side to help overcome some of these obstacles and rely on a strong support network to help me pull through!
Tell us more about your company and its mission and vision.
Prosh Marketing is a Fractional CMO & Marketing company that helps startups and small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to build their marketing practice and go to market.
Our Vision: To be the company Startups go for marketing advice.
Our Mission: To help startups and growing businesses achieve their full marketing potential by enabling them to access long-term, sustainable growth through part-time marketing leadership and coaching.
What methodologies do you implement that contribute to new growth opportunities?
To begin any marketing exercise, we need to understand customers so we always start our work with customer and market research.
We also look at marketing mechanisms that can scale rapidly using a network effect. From strong sharable content to social media, partnership and referral programs, finding ways to promote virality can assist in cultivating growth.
Finally, with new businesses, there is a strong need to establish trust and credibility first, before you can truly activate growth. We leverage thought leadership programs, public relations and partnerships to help build this foundation.
Please share your learning of Brand Marketing.
In the startup landscape, a robust brand isn’t just a luxury—it’s a lifeline. In a market saturated with competition and noise, brand marketing isn’t just desirable—it’s indispensable for long-term success.
The essence of brand marketing lies in not just acquainting people with your brand but also cultivating lasting bonds with customers through it. It extends beyond a recognizable visual identity to encompass a resonating brand personality. This involves understanding your customers’ values and complementing them seamlessly into your brand.
It’s more than aesthetics—it encapsulates your business’s essence, messaging and holistic customer experience. For startups, brand marketing holds pivotal roles across multiple goals:
- Brand Awareness: A distinctive brand identity is a necessity for startups amidst established giants. Crafting a compelling value proposition fosters recognition and differentiation, standing out in the crowded field.
- Building Trust: In the competitive B2B arena, trust reigns supreme. Effective branding imbues professionalism, reliability and expertise—essential for instilling confidence in potential clients and outshining competitors.
- Consistent Messaging on a Budget: In an information-saturated world, consistent branding—be it visuals or messaging—bolsters brand recall. This familiarity optimizes a startup’s budget, creating lasting impressions with fewer exposures.
- Fostering Customer Loyalty: For startups, nurturing customer loyalty is a strategic imperative. Branding, with its emotional connections and community-building potential, wields a substantial impact on loyalty and word-of-mouth referrals.
Brand marketing comprises recognition, trust-building, efficient resource allocation and enduring loyalty. Through crafting a distinctive identity, fostering trust and nurturing emotional ties, startups carve a distinct niche. This profound connection resonates with customers, driving meaningful engagement and ensuring a trajectory of sustained growth.
What strategies do you implement to promote gender diversity for Marketing leadership positions at your company?
At Prosh Marketing, we strive to attain diversity across a number of different criteria, including gender diversity. This includes writing our job descriptions to be inclusive and attract a diverse set of candidates, showcasing company imagery that has different genders, and embedding kindness into our company values to ensure all genders are treated well.
Also, in my capacity as an angel investor at The Firehood, my primary emphasis lies in championing and enabling women within the tech sector. The idea is to increase the participation, leadership and prosperity of women in this space. We’re working towards bridging the gender disparity gap and fostering equal opportunities for everyone.
What values do you incorporate to enhance the work culture of your company?
At Prosh Marketing, we foster a unique culture founded on acceptance and inclusivity for our diverse team. Our cherished values—Kindness, Excellence, Collaboration, Integrity, Curiosity, and Optimism—define our approach.
Kindness guides our interactions, reflecting in our relationships with both colleagues and clients. We’re a team of A+ players, ceaselessly pursuing excellence in our endeavors. Collaboration is our cornerstone, strengthening ties with partners, colleagues, clients and vendors for collective growth. Trust, vital in our realm, hinges on solid integrity.
We remain forthright about our limits and care for businesses as our own. As marketers, curiosity fuels us, driving us to ask, learn and excel. We truly believe we can help growing businesses. That’s why we are optimistic in all we do.
What, according to you, could be the next significant change in your sector? How are you preparing for the change?
With the rise of the gig economy, fractional marketing leaders will become more of the norm. People will be able to tap specific experts at an affordable price. Full-time permanent marketing leaders will be more prevalent in larger organizations in comparison to smaller ones.
Where do you envision yourself to be in the long run, and what are your future goals for your company?
At Prosh Marketing, our long-term goals include further developing our presence in other markets. We’ve expanded to the US and Europe from a client perspective and we’re looking to grow our consultant base and develop new partnerships in those markets as well.
What advice would you give to the next generation of women leaders willing to venture into the modern Marketing arena?
For women aiming to venture into modern marketing, I would advise: look ahead and not behind. Focus on what you can achieve and do, and not on the past. Don’t take ‘No’ for an answer and be perseverant. Be true to who you are.
Authenticity goes a long way. Lean into your strengths as unique differentiators, and most importantly, upskill yourself so you have concrete qualifications that can back up your experience and expertise.