YEDaily: Mario Zelaya

Mario Zelaya started his career in finance, but slowly came to realize it wasn’t for him. Wanting to be excited to go to work every day, he started Majestic Media, where he now represents major global brands on Facebook, from Gatorade to RBC and tons in between in today’s YEDaily…

Why did you start your business, what was the inspiration? 
I was in International Banking before I started Majestic Media. Those were rough times; I had my Master’s in Finance and Economics, I decided not to pursue my PhD in pursuit of the “American Dream” in the corporate finance world, but in the pursuit of that dream, I came to the realization that I didn’t like finance or banking…it was too simple and boring. On top of that, I quickly got sick of the politics of working for a larger company. It was about the number of years you put in and not the quality of those years. 

My choice was either I stay in finance and eventually become a senior executive after putting in over a decade of work OR I start up a company doing something cool and get paid more than any of those executives while doing it in a few years. The choice for me was easy, from a financial perspective and a personal wellness perspective.

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part? 
The fact that my days are never the same. There’s never been a single day where I have to do the same repetitive tasks over and over again. It’s awesome. My team and I work on large global brands such as Kia Motors, Infiniti, RBC, Virgin Mobile, Gatorade, yellow tail, Visa and many others so our challenges we face constantly change and evolve. It’s fun. I love it, my guys love it.

As for the most challenging part, It’d definitely be keeping up with demand. It’s tough because we get a lot of companies requesting face-time and for us to meet their internal group, brainstorm with them, come up with strategies, etc. Because of it, we’re mainly starting to do meetings via conference calls and GoTo Meetings (WebEx type meetings).

Where do you see your business going in 5 years? 
It’s tough to say, because I’m confident the company will be acquired by then. We’ve already had a lot of interest in the company, some companies interested in acquiring us, other firms interested in investing. Either way, Majestic Media will either grow into a much larger international organization or be acquired by one.

What does success look like to you? 
Working 9am-5pm, no overtime, living stress free, never having to worry about finances, and having a beautiful family to come home to. I’m lucky enough to call myself successful.

What is the most memorable milestone in your career? 
Saying I would never work for anyone again. Once I had that in my head, there was no turning back.

Do you have any advice for other young professionals? 
Whatever it is you do, make sure you love it. Pick something you’re passionate about and be awesome at it. When you do that, you don’t see your daily tasks as work. It becomes fun and it’s passion that will help overcome those late night and long hours when you’re starting up. Financial reward will then follow. Just remember, the key is passion.

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you? 
I’m a strong supporter of The Salvation Army. When my family and I came to Canada, we initially came as refugees. We had no home, no place to go, nothing. When my parents found a place they could afford, The Salvation Army provided us with everything we needed. They were great with us.

What is Notable to you? 
Having the confidence to take on an industry and challenge you know nothing about and in the process, becoming the best.

Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?  
Definitely an iPhone.

How do you keep active, energetic, and vibrant?  
I wake up every morning to work out, then I start my work day. This gives time for me to relax and have quality time with my wife and kids once 5pm hits. It’s having that perfect work/life schedule that keeps my mind fresh.