Growth Story: Christina Valenziano of Peerfit
Welcome to our Growth Story series, where you’ll meet startup team members—either natives, boomerangs or transplants—in Tampa-St. Petersburg who are building and scaling their ventures to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges. We interviewed Christina Valenziano, Senior Marketing Strategist for Peerfit, a digital platform for employers, insurance carriers, and brokers to offer wellness solutions to their clients and employees.
Where are you from?
I'm from Tampa and moved back after living in New York for a year.
Tell us more about your role at Peerfit. What does a day in the life look like?
My day-to-day at Peerfit has changed quite a bit over the last (almost) five years. I went from focusing on social media to overall content strategy to, eventually, general marketing strategy. Currently, I work everyday with my team members to ensure we are moving the needle and growing toward not only our marketing goals but our goals as a company. In addition to the collaboration and management of our team success, I have my hand in a lot of copywriting, product marketing, engagement strategy and mobile marketing.
How did you get your career started and what challenges did you face along the way?
As odd as this sounds, I began my career in marketing as a recipe developer, blogger, and food photographer. I dove in because of my love of cooking and came out a self-taught marketer. After three years, I called it quits on blogging and focused on my role as a marketer and decided to put all my energy toward the growth of Peerfit. Working for a tiny startup, and even now as a growth company, challenges have been persistent, but our grit has been the key to overcoming them. I’d say one of the biggest obstacles has been catering to three different audiences within one product. We’re a small but mighty marketing team, however, and this has never stopped us from pushing toward success.
How has this region shaped your career or startup journey?
The different communities I’ve been able to immerse myself in in Tampa have greatly shaped my journey. Whether that be the fitness community, local young professionals, or even local Peerfit team members (we’re completely remote!), I've always felt a sense of pride and support in this city for startup growth and career evolution. There are so many groups, events, and initiatives in Tampa that support the startup environment and from the beginning to now, I’m grateful to have been here for most of this journey.
What tactical advice can you share from building your startup or career?
You’re going to get frustrated, you’re going to be stressed, and you’re going to feel discouraged. It’s inescapable. You’ve got to keep your eyes and heart on the mission of your organization to stay afloat and move forward.
Where do you see Tampa Bay next? How do you play a role in this future?
I see a huge difference in Tampa Bay from five years ago when I moved back from college to now. Even after living in New York City for a year, I’ve come back and see growth in plain sight. Tampa is making a name for itself and I can tell it’s not stopping anytime soon. The startup movement and trend for innovation is getting stronger, and I think companies like Peerfit and professionals like me and my local colleagues joining, forming, and presenting ourselves in the community will help bring Tampa’s potential to fruition.
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