Sunday, May 26th

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Hotseat - Martha Jane Marsden

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Martha Jane Marsden is an entrepreneur and people's person, who plays a key role in working behind the scenes to help establishments grow and promote their services. She is involved in marketing, promoting, event coordination, bartending/managing and photography and is also a videographer. She currently serves about five clients including Sunset Beach Bar in Beacon Hill and Basilico International Italian Restaurant in Cupecoy. She also just opened her own small businesses and is working on growing that as well. The Pisces born, whose mantra is to "go with the flow of things" as she "likes it when everyone is happy and having a good time," gives a sneak peek into her world in this week's Hot Seat.

How would you describe yourself?

I'm a creative people person, who loves to help others, make everyone happy and see everything work out well.

Where were you born and how did you end up in beautiful St. Maarten?

I was born in Boston, Massachusetts. I travelled a lot until I landed in St. Maarten. The variety of cultures, diversity and friendly people made me not want to leave since it's the whole world in one.

Where were you educated, what did you study and why?

I attended Michigan State University, University of Massachusetts and Boston University and I studied Graphic Design and Digital Photography. I also played field hockey, was captain for two years in university and got involved in the student government and the school newspaper. I consider myself an athlete who likes to face challenges.

What are 'Marsden Creative' and 'What's Happening SXM'?

"Marsden Creative" was my company in the USA engaged in event coordination and photography. "What's Happening SXM" was a Facebook page I created to make people aware of what is happening in St. Maarten, which has become very popular. It currently has over 20,000 followers.

You are heavily involved in marketing of several establishments, how did this come about?

The major factor I would think is my friendly attitude towards any task and the craving that I have for marketing and event coordinating. I believe it's important to have face-to-face connection, as much as it is viral and computer based interaction. Also my professional skills in digital photography and graphic design have helped in achieving this.

What is it that you like about marketing and business?

It is the challenge and the satisfaction of taking part in businesses to promote, build and see results.

What differentiates you from similar operators in the field?

That I do not compete and I have my own personality involved in my work.

What's your approach to effectively marketing the establishments you represent?

To identify the strengths, the market, the clientele, rectify the weakness, use social media and promote events.

Future plans (personally and professionally)?

Presently, I am a one woman operation and would like to build into a marketing firm synergising many talents.

Benefits, downsides to being a 'one woman' operation?

The benefits to a one woman operation are that I am versatile enough to handle the projects all by myself and give it a personal touch. The disadvantage is perhaps being too busy.

What are your favourite pastimes?

Painting, poetry and photography.

Pet peeve(s) and why?

Negativity, as anything is possible if you set your mind to it.

Biggest fear?

Snakes.

What is your favourite type of music?

I enjoy a variety and anything that I can dance to!

If you could invite three famous people (dead or alive) for dinner, who would they be and what would you cook for them?

I would invite Jesus, Buddha and Mohammed. It would be interesting to see how beautifully they get along at the dinner table. As for cooking, I would keep it simple and fresh.