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SOCIAL media permeates our lives. How many times a day do you glance at your phone to check on Facebook or Instagram updates or perhaps news updates on Twitter? Probably a lot more times than you’d like to admit.

While most of us engage in social media sharing, Teoh Mei Ying does it for a living. She’s a social media consultant who’s managed to carve out a niche little business for herself operating out of her apartment, or even on the go, depending on how you look at it.

Mei Ying’s foray into social media began when she was working for a digital agency several years back. Her motivation to start her own boutique social media agency was both a push and pull factor. Her role at the digital agency had changed and she wasn’t happy with that so she was looking for a change. At the same time, several companies who couldn’t afford to engage an established digital agency for social media work approached her to do work for them.

The thought of being on her own didn’t worry her. “I wasn’t nervous at all,” says Teoh. “I was extremely excited and everything happened so fast I guess I didn’t have time to get worried.”

As it turned out, there was nothing for her to worry about as business boomed. Her modest aim at the beginning was to simply generate the same amount of income as her last drawn salary. She doubled her salary within six months and doubled that again six months later. Business was so good she had to take on staff and freelancers much sooner than she expected.

Mei Ying talks to Savvy about her work and her fast-moving lifestyle.

Brainstorming session to generate ideas.

What do you do for your clients?

My team and I take on the role of an external social media team for our clients. We manage their social media profiles by providing them with consistent, relevant content as well as manage the conversations that happen on the accounts. We will also brainstorm with our clients on social media marketing campaigns to run throughout the year to engage their fans and customers.

How do you scale your business without becoming a full-fledged agency?

I have one full-time staff and occasional interns. I also work with outsourced contractors who do certain things that I don’t do. Each person plays a different role the way an agency would have different departments. So different contractors would provide different services such as photography, videography, graphic design, website development and so on.

As they are not permanent employees, my overheads are low. My clients are aware of this arrangement and they are not put off by it. As long as we deliver the results, they are happy.

You work mainly remotely. How often do you meet clients in person?

I…

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