Edinburgh digital entrepreneur is truly trans-European
When Felicitas Betzl’s parents began their lifelong love affair with Scotland, this German digital dame could not have imagined that one day she’d be setting up home and business in the Athens of the north.
Serps Invaders, Felicitas’ multi-lingual full service digital marketing agency, might be based in Edinburgh, but she’s a woman who’s truly international in her ambition and outlook. Since setting up Serps in 2010, Felicitas has already built a company with staff and partners in 35 countries, and has the whole world within her digital sights.
With Serps Invaders (the name chosen as an amalgam of Search Engine Results Pages and Space Invaders, the latter a youthful favourite), Felicitas provides a border-crossing, international digital offering. With services including multi-lingual SEO, SMS, email marketing, social media and digital design, the whole world is within reach for this trans-European, world-beating entrepreneur.
She may be a jet setter nowadays, but Scotland seemed the natural choice for Felicitas to lay her hat, after years of holidaying here with her parents. She arrived in Auld Reekie to study business and HR Management at Napier in 1997, but even back then, this young German was a grafter, working as well as studying.
Her studies were followed by stints with other agencies, but Felicitas soon felt frustrated and wanted to do digital marketing in her own unique way. She set out her business stall to fit with her own principles and ethics, and was pleased to be able to take everything she’d learned in working life, the good and the bad, and apply this hard-earned knowledge to her own digital venture.
Year one with Serps Invaders saw Felicitas running the business solo, but right from the beginning, she applied plenty of start-up savvy to her plan for steady expansion. She turned down investment and loans in favour of keeping control of her own vision, and operated on organic growth principles alone, not an overdraft. A member of staff was added after the first year, but the addition of extra full-time staff added some initial sleepless nights as Felicitas learned to live with the responsibilities of being an employer.
The Serps staff are one of Felicitas’s main business assets, she takes great pleasure from having a great team, and from the positive feedback she gets from them about being a good employer. Another source of great joy for Felicitas is Serps’ ability to land big clients despite the relatively small size of their operation, and their client CV already features household names like Olay, Gillette and Seat.
For Felicitas, trust in her staff is critical to Serps’ success, because this is a truly trans-European enterprise. The company already has offices in Edinburgh and Gibraltar, but Felicitas and her partner, both in life and business, Ruaridh, have moved to Barcelona where Serps Invaders aim to open a new office in 2015, expanding their digital horizons and exploiting the wealth of linguistic talent to be found in the Catalan capital.
In true digital style, Felicitas manages her business with regular daily Skype calls to the Edinburgh HQ, and makes the short hop between Barcelona and Scotland for a few days every month. In the digital age, Felicitas Betzl is living proof of a business ethic that can work anytime, any place, anywhere. And with more staff in the pipeline, and new projects starting up in China, Korea and Japan, the world’s within reach for this most impressive multi-cultural entrepreneur.
Follow Felicitas @SERPS_Invaders or visit http://www.serps-invaders.com/