What is a side hustle? And, why does everyone have one? Is it the passion, purpose or pay cheque?
Question: What is MIA?
Mia Vicary: Media In Action (MIA) is a Communications agency specialising in Social Media and Events targeting small businesses across New South Wales.
MIA understands what small businesses need and caters to them. Like most small businesses, you only need particular services to really get your brand out there.
I find a lot of people become completely overwhelmed with what they have to do rather than what they need to do which may only be social media, publicity or depending on the client, both. Instead of getting charged around the clock and exceeding a marketing budget, MIA selects which service your business needs and only charge you on the hours it takes.
Question: Why did you decide to start MIA?
Mia Vicary: After some amazing career-defining moments, I had an urge to run my own jam in February 2019.
From a young age I was always torn between either a journalist or publicist. During my late teens and into my early twenty's I was always working in newsrooms. I did love it, but I found it a very negative space at the same time.
A particular role which really changed my mindset was interning at Berita Satu (News One) in Jakarta where I discovered news was very negative and heavily focused in areas I couldn't necessarily be creative or have the freedom to do my own thing.
In my final year at university I took on a role in New York City as a Publicist running the account for the largest dog walking company in the globe, Swifto, and immediately I saw creative side really come to life. We held a flash mob in Times Square with all the dog walkers and seeing the outcome from that, I knew my creativity was my stronger point rather than say, reporting on news. Plus, I was so invested in bringing their brand to life that I knew this was my niche!
When I returned from New York and graduated I landed a role with Prue MacSween at her PR company Verve as a Publicist when I was 22. Fast track six months and I was managing a new branch of her business Verve Studio, handling client's digital and social media.
I remember looking back on how far I had come within only six months and how I helped create a new branch of a business and thought to myself, hold on a second I may be young and a tad inexperienced but I had the determination to succeed so I went for it!
Question: What is a side hustle?
Mia Vicary: Technically speaking, a side hustle is simply a way to earn extra income, apart from your day job but I look at it as a "passion project" which will eventually turn my dreams into a reality.
Question: How do you juggle a full time job and MIA (your own side hustle)?
Mia Vicary: The majority of my clients are social media focused.
I simply shoot content which will last anywhere from 2 – 4 months and schedule it across a scheduling platform and from then on my work is 80% done!
I am always proactive and luckily, I live and breathe social and digital media so if a post is inaccurate or I may need to keep my clients apart of a new and exciting conversation I do so.
The way the business model works is I charge my clients on the lower end of the scale so daily communication is not a part of the contract unlike clients at Verve.
Question: How does your passion help you find the time to work on your own business?
Mia Vicary: Anyone who is truly and deeply passionate about something will find the time to make it happen, it's as simple as that.
If you fail to find the time to do so then your heart and soul is not in it. Of course, there are times you really can't be bothered and that's totally human, but majority of the time you will.
Question: What vision do you have for MIA?
Mia Vicary: I want MIA to be so much more than your typical Communication agency – I want it to be a stream of services which fall underneath the Media In Action umbrella.
Rather than putting all my eggs in one basket I want to make sure they're dispersed and I am open to any opportunities, experiences or challenges that will come.
One thing I really do envision is to change the agenda of how media is perceived and how it makes people feel and having a stream of services that may focus on that will help me to do so, this is something I am working on currently.
Question: Why do you believe it's so important for millennials to have side hustles?
Mia Vicary: If you don't hustle, particularly in a space where it's competitive such as media and marketing, how will you ever get to where you want to be?
Putting in the hard yards doing whatever it is you can to get to where you want to be, will always get you there.
The world works in wonderful ways and manifestation is a real thing.
Question: What advice do you have for other young Australians looking at starting their own side hustle?
Mia Vicary: When I was at university I made it my mission to undertake internships in roles I wanted to land when I graduated. In doing this I allowed myself to live and breathe the role I so desperately wanted and turns out...I didn't enjoy the newsroom lifestyle!
I saved myself a lot of time and energy as I would have taken years to discover that the PR space was more ME than the journalism space.
This is why I find it imperative to hustle in a range of jobs where and when you can to not only figure out what it is you want to do but work towards something you're passionate about (and fast track the process!).
Question: What's next for MIA?
Mia Vicary: As I said, I don't want to put all my eggs in one basket; I was them to be dispersed.
You will need to keep your eyes peeled for what's to come...it's happening very soon!
Interview by Brooke Hunter