Cortney Martin is a 26-year-old entrepreneur consumed with changing the world.
She’s resourceful, creative and extremely willing to take the risks necessary to succeed in such a formidable task.
For starters, Cortney quit her job and used her 401-k to start and scale a myriad of different businesses from designing and creating various consumer products and then testing and selling on social media sites like Craigslist.
Her ambitious, no-holds barred, “ride or die” approach to entrepreneurship yielded tremendous fruit.
Now, she runs Tax Time and Company, a successful accounting business she started just 2 years ago, which now has 400 clients ranging all over the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.
Her “you can be anything you want to be” mindset has given her the freedom to work just 4 months out of the year, while devoting the rest of her year to volunteering in ministries, traveling the world and launching a social enterprise – which is her real-life passion.
She states that as a Christian who has had her own hard times, she is passionate about recognizing and celebrating individuals’ perseverance through their unique struggles, challenges and tribulations. She is currently building a social media site, Champion Life Style, on the premise that “all of our trials and experiences have developed us into the champions we are today.” Cortney says this social media site will focus on “liberating people from painful life experiences by empowering them to share, teach and grow” and in turn, find a community in which they can share inspiration and be inspired to be whatever they want to be.
In Cortney’s eyes, Champion Life Style “gives people a sense of accomplishment. Everyone won’t be the next great businessman, but we are all fighters and have all had to succeed through something.”
We had to hear what this young entrepreneur and change agent had to say about programmatic advertising, especially given her adventures in small business:
Programmatic Advertising.org: Hey, Cortney – thanks so much for being willing to do this interview with us.
Cortney Martin: No problem!
Programmatic Advertising.org: What are your thoughts on programmatic advertising – site retargeting, this more personalized ad serving and all of the other features it involves? How do you think it is changing the world of advertising and marketing in general? I’m especially interested in hearing how you think it will impact small businesses and start-ups, given your experience.
Cortney Martin: Having this programmatic really circumvents all of the overt marketing we are seeing. We capture what you are really interested in. I don’t have to even “market” to you in the normal sense, I just have to present the objects that you have already, clearly demonstrated that you want as a consumer.
Programmatic Advertising.org: This is interesting, you are presenting this kind of as an “anti-marketing.”
Cortney Martin: You know what your interests are and we are just now here to supplement and accompany what you already have. This isn’t marketing. Marketing, in the more traditional sense, is just getting them to want your business and your product. With programmatic, you know the consumer already wants it! They know they want it. It’s more of an indirect way of marketing to them.
Programmatic Advertising.org: That’s quite an interesting point of view. I haven’t ever heard it phrased that way before. How do you see programmatic advertising then, affecting our consumer culture? For better or worse?
Cortney Martin: I don’t have any concerns about how this will change our culture. Marketers already have a slew of my business interests and I could find myself saving a lot of time in buying and selling – and time is money. I think it’s great for our culture, actually. It’s great for the small businessmen that don’t really know how to sell themselves well yet. Maybe they aren’t pros in marketing and sales. But, if they are pros at capturing a potential client’s information, clients will come to them. The client reaches towards the business, rather than just the other way around.
Programmatic Advertising.org: That’s an interesting point there. You’re referring to it kind of like it could be used for inbound marketing.
Cortney Martin: Yeah, I love this for the small businessman! It has a lot of capacity and potential for them. I’ve met so many businessmen and entrepreneurs that have great business plans and business materials, but what they lack is marketing. [Programmatic] kind of captivates your client base for you. They could reach in, and they might not even really realize it. Their customers would be thinking, oh, this company has what I was looking for.
Programmatic Advertising.org: I’m curious, speaking of business success, what would you attribute to yours?
Cortney Martin: Life happening – my experiencing the lowest of total pitfalls from living in a drug transitional home to losing everything from accounts embezzling. Tens-of-thousands of dollars, just lost. So, when you experience a level of success and then you see life happen, you realize that [place] could be your life forever, or I could be the creator that God called me to be. I realized I could create everything I want in my life. Life happened but I decided I just wouldn’t allow it to defeat me.
I made a decision that I was going to succeed in all of the things that I did, and I did just that. I communicated with God, and I did practical things too, like reading tons of books. I sought out resources from people, through a lot of talking and travelling. I’d visit random places, like a busy coffee shop, where there was a lot of energy, and as I soaked it all in I would just start getting ideas. I made a goal to meet someone everywhere I went to figure out what am I supposed to take back from this person, not just an experience, but to learn what perspective they could share with me that would help me see life in a completely new and different way.