#WIB – Q&A With Prenessa Nalliah Founder Of Perana Viosa

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1. Can you please tell us more about your business?

Perana Viosa is a multidimensional marketing agency, offering Fractional CMO Services, Managed Marketing Services and Marketing Education & Training Services.

Our goal is to cut through the noise of a saturated digital marketing industry and deliver high-quality services that help businesses open and grow meaningful relationships with new and existing customers, respectively.

2. When, how and why did you start your business?

In 2012, while studying full time at the University of Cape Town, I started what I intended to be a charity fundraiser. I had a side hustle, doing photography, and a client at the time had a family member who needed surgery. I wanted to help them and I knew that I needed a wider range of skills to make me more employable once I would have obtained my degree.

We taught fashion modelling and entrepreneurship to help youth access creative career opportunities, and develop self-confidence and other communication skills that could help them. I didn’t want other children to be targeted for their best qualities, the way I felt for most of my childhood.

By 2013 we registered formally, but I kept trading as a sole proprietor until 2017 when we held our very first luxury event to promote local youth talent from our township communities. By 2021 I grew frustrated with the limitations of my corporate career, and depending on someone else to determine my financial worth.

That’s when I launched our agency operation at Perana Viosa, because I wanted to work somewhere that felt like a happy place, where I could take the ethos from my first projects into a corporate quality operation. I built this with the help of my fractional team, so that we can wake up genuinely happy to go to work every day.

3. What is your role in the business?

Founder and Director.

4. Where did you study and what did you study?

I completed 75% of a Bachelor of Architectural Studies (University of Cape Town) before switching across and completing a Bachelor of Arts in Corporate Communication (Independent Institute of Education).

5. How did you finance your business?

In the early days I used my student allowance to fund my public transport and cab fare to suppliers and malls, for sign-up meets, then I got help from my dad while I also self-funded the operation. Our agency operation is completely bootstrapped, profitable from Month 1.

6. Describe your average workday, if such a thing exists.

I have experimented with a few routines. What works best is what I now depend on:
⦁ I don’t take meetings before 10am
⦁ I don’t take more than 3 meetings a day
⦁ I spend most of my time on value-adding activities
⦁ I delegate and outsource work and trust my colleagues to do the work assigned to them
⦁ Because work is joyful, it’s hard to put it down, but I allow myself 2hr lunch breaks and if I work late into the night, I take advantage of a late start the following day.

7. How do you balance your home life and your work life?

I’m an entrepreneur who’s about to marry another entrepreneur — we met through our social development work and we both enjoy what we do. We try to carve out time each week for literally doing nothing, and leave blank space in the calendars on weekends.

8. What drives you and inspires you?

My core values are integrity, discipline and respect. Wherever I see evidence of these qualities, the best of me will shine through.

9. Where and when do you have your best ideas?

Thinking time and space is a part of our daily operation; we have great ideas all the time and particularly when we’re in conversation with one another as a team.

10. Where and how do you market/advertise your business for sales leads?

We rely on our website, organic social media and get a lot of referrals. I believe that your daily behaviour is the best advert for who you are, and my consistent application of my values in my life has really been the best advert for any project or brand with which I’m associated.

11. What is next for your business?

Marketing Education & Training — We want to be a driving force for significantly improving the average quality of both, marketing clients and marketing providers, in the next 10 years.

12. What advice would you give to female entrepreneurs hoping to start their own business?

As long as you’re not hurting anyone else or placing a barrier in their path, and you’re willing to take action when you notice an injustice, there isn’t a single person who has the right to tell you that you shouldn’t go after your business ambitions — family included. If you don’t have supporters where you are, find us online and we’ll cheer you on and even share resources.

For more visit: https://www.peranaviosa.co.za/