• Bismarie Plasencia

Bis's Love Letter to SparkIt

Updated: Mar 3, 2021

Dear SparkIt Creative,

Hi, my name is Bismarie Plasencia, and many of you know me as SparkIt’s co-founder, President, and Creative Director. However, you may not know how exactly I ended up here. Let’s go back to May of 2017. A second- year University of Florida student had recently switched her major from telecommunication to advertising and was looking for a way to begin working in her new field of study. While checking her UF email, a job posting for an advertising sales representative at the Independent Florida Alligator caught her eye. She swiftly submitted her resume, scored an interview, aced that interview, and was offered the position.

I held that position for an entire year, beginning to learn more about the advertising world and perfecting my sales skills, whilst selling $142,000 of advertisements in the paper. When August of 2018 came around, the Alligator sales team began to experiment with social media management. It was clear there was an attraction from clients to digital marketing. I then began to shift more towards the social media management side of things, partnering with Karla Paredes as the advertising sales representative. We worked together like this from August to December of that year.

One rainy day at work in November I began to think about a potential advertising agency. With my eyes peering off into the distance of the office, a vision appeared in my mind: a group of talented students, working together with local Gainesville businesses, not only improving their creative skills, but also having an amazing time doing so. I looked back down at Karla and said the words that would change my life, “We should start an in-house agency here.”

Thus, our work began. Over the next month we drafted up a proposal to pitch to Shaun O’Connor, the general manager. Our pitch went swimmingly, and the real grunt work began. Karla and I moved our two-person team into a recently vacated office adjacent to the collection of cubicles that the sales team occupied. Walking into that office gave me a rush of excitement. I remember sitting down on the large, brown chair and placing my hands on the desk, breathing in and thinking “Big things are going to happen in this room.”

Fast forward to April 2019 when SparkIt Creative officially launched. We had a small, but brilliant team that assisted with that launch. As the team went on, SparkIt struggled in ways we could not have imagined. In the Summer of 2019, we had lost the majority of our staff and were down to two people, including me. While on my study abroad trip to Australia during the month of May 2019 I was posting for our social media accounts at 3AM Australia time. Even though we were understaffed, I wanted to make sure our clients were provided with the best work. Though struggled throughout that summer, those struggles helped us grow even stronger as an agency. I worked tirelessly to make sure SparkIt stayed standing, even if I was the only one actively working. Thankfully, the months to come were going to be exactly what we needed.

SparkIt truly began to see potential in August 2019. We acquired some incredible talented and dedicated students that helped the agency sore to new heights. It has been an incredible pleasure seeing these students grow professional and creatively within SparkIt walls.

The love I have for SparkIt Creative and its employees is endless. Even 10 years from now, if a student at SparkIt calls me for any type of assistance, I will answer that call in a heartbeat. I truly cannot wait to see how far SparkIt will go. Without a doubt, I know this agency will be one of the biggest aspects of Gainesville, FL. Good luck to everyone on the current SparkIt Creative team and the future team members as well. Do not ever let anyone ever make you feel discouraged because you have got this.

It truly breaks my heart writing this and having to say “goodbye” to something I started from the ground up, but I know that I am leaving it in the best hands.

I will leave here with my favorite quote from one of my biggest inspirations: “When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way, implicitly and unquestionable.” - Walt Disney

With endless love, Bismarie Plasencia

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