Polina Nioly is a young and outrageous girl, around whom there are numerous rumors. She is wrongly compared to the famous fraudster Anna Delvey. However, Polina is the founder of a fast-growing marketing agency and runs a blog with more than 2 million subscribers.
Polina, you are so successful at such a young age. Will you tell me in more detail how your path to success began?
It all came from many years of hard work. Four years ago, I started working with social media. Then, I began doing promotions for a company. After that, I was invited to work on other projects — commercial accounts and personal blogs. Around that time, I realized that I could not only help companies grow their audience, but also achieve their financial goals.
I began receiving more clients and I needed help managing them. I gathered a team that I trained myself. At that time, there were no experienced blogger managers, it was all new. Every month I set new goals for the team. In 2021, we started working with American influencers, and in early 2022 we entered the international market.
It’s really impressive. There are a lot of rumors out there on the web about you, for example, on reddit. How do you feel about such pettiness, and how do you deal with the hate?
This is an inescapable part of gaining popularity. It is impossible to please absolutely everyone. Especially when you start to stand out for achievements. It’s clear that those who are not inspired by my successes but are instead made jealous by it are those that look for a reason to tear me down. In some cultures, people are taught to dislike and distrust successful people. So, I it doesn’t bother me that this is how they view me. Moreover, sometimes haters, without realizing it, increase the traffic to my social networks and raise people’s awareness for my brand. S, I recommend to others in my position that they don’t fear criticism. I teach my clients how to use hate in their favor.
Some people compare you to Anna Delvey and call you imposter. Where do you think they get this idea?
The comparison with Anna Delvey does not surprise me, because this story is so popular right now. People think that to be in my position, you have to have committed some kind of fraud. But it’s just beyond their comprehension, that’s all. I’m even flattered that someone would take the time to come up with such a strange rumor and make an effort to spread it.
What is the secret of your agency’s rapid growth?
It has always been important for me to not hesitate and go for every idea. Sometimes, it cost me a lot of money, but it always gave me results much faster. Thanks to this, I have had a unique journey.
I find bold solutions that we instantly test using my own platform. Then, we use them as a tool while working with clients. While others are stalling, afraid to take risks and try something new, we are moving forward.
Do you represent any unique services in the field of SMM or do you have your own special approach?
We are not just doing SMM in the traditional sense. Rather, I would call it a kind of PR strategy for social media promotion. That is, by using two of the strongest tools (social media marketing and PR), we achieve the target goals.
A client comes to us with a specific goal that they want to achieve for their personal brand or business, and we immediately begin creating a unique comprehensive strategy to achieve this goal. In our work, there are no template solutions, each client is unique to us. Even if it is the fifth or hundredth client in the same niche, we will build a strategy that highlights their unique qualities and targets their unique audience.
To create an effective strategy, we focus on the specific audience’s psychology. This allows you to create content that grabs their attention. Without extensive monetary investments, this is the only way to build a successful following. This is what distinguishes us from the ordinary SMM agencies, where they use template packaging and mass targeting. Our story is about an individual approach and an emphasis on organic PR growth. Thanks to this, customers get quick results and reach the top in their niche.
The agency’s website says: THE OLD STRATEGIES NO LONGER WORK. IT’S TIME FOR NEW SOLUTIONS, BRIGHT STRATEGIES AND AN INDIVIDUALIZED APPROACH. Can you explain what this means to you?
Any promotion strategy is not the end all be all and must constantly adapt to social media’s trends. But the problem is that not all people understand this and continue to use methods that have outlived their usefulness three years ago. As a result, they won’t get the outcomes they’re looking for. I have never implemented the same strategy for more than a year. I always generate new ideas and approaches to promote my account to stand out from everyone else. Nioly Media Group operates on the same philosophy. We get quick results because we use the most up-to-date methods.
How do you understand what is trending now, and which systems do you think are outdated?
Every day, I track what content is trending in different social media platforms, analyze the interests of the audience, pay attention to how other bloggers and businesses are progressing, find relevant information guides, follow celebrity news, and research various topics. I’m interested in all of this, although it can sometimes be very challenging. This approach is what allows me to get on the same page as my clients and quickly understand what will help them achieve their goals.
Once I know this, I try to implement different tools and evaluate their effectiveness. You can only assess these things by putting them into the real world, so I’m in favor of constantly generating a lot of ideas and testing them.
Do you promote differently based on the country?
Definitely. For example, social media users in the USA are not as easily interested as they are in the CIS. In the USA, they do not like long posts and a lot of stories. Another difference is that earnings there mainly come from advertisements. But in the CIS, long posts with reflections are received well. People there like to get involved in discussions and they like when there is a lot of content. Plus, it is important to consider the political and cultural landscape — which topics can be touched on and which should not. You must analyze the way people generally respond to content.
Is it difficult to get a job with your agency?
Yes, because I take full responsibility for all clients and managers. The manager is responsible for the whole company, so we have strict control of the team members.
Only managers who have completed an internship are allowed to work. This ensures you not only get the skills needed in Nioly Media Group, but that you learn our exact approach to working with a client. After various interviews and a final call with me, we decide whether to take a person into the team or not. Only after that we’ll assign them to projects. Nioly Media Group recruits only experienced managers who have proven themselves as proficient specialists. Additionally, the senior manager and I supervise their work.
What is the agency’s motto?
Nothing is impossible for us.
We don’t do promotion for the sake of promotion. We create a strategy to achieve a specific goal, because each client is unique.
The Agency’s mission: Change the way people see social media. It’s not only for entertainment but to make money.
Agency values: hard work, tight deadlines, keeping things simple, and monetization
Tell us about your failures in business and what conclusions did you draw?
There have been a few crucial mistakes along my journey. The first lesson I learned was around having unrealistic expectations for deadlines. Back then, I wanted to get large-scale results within days. At that time, I was working at a ridiculous rate, following those standards. It was very difficult for me to take time and stop working. So, I drove myself into professional burnout. I then began working with a psychologist and a coach to move through the burnout. It was important for me to continue to move quickly towards my goals, but at the same time maintain rationality and no longer bring myself to such an unhealthy state. Now, we still complete quick turn arounds but within the time and energy we realistically have.
The second problem that arose was with delegation. At first, it was difficult for me to entrust my projects and tasks to other people. But it’s inevitable if you want to grow and scale. Now, the company has more than 10 key managers, each of whom has their own areas of responsibility. This has helped the business grow faster and with more stability. And I can devote more time to strategic decisions and PR. Now we have fully smoothed out all team processes, and I 100% trust each of the employees.
In what areas would you still like to prove yourself?
Now, I’m focused on developing my business and my blog to increase my personal brand awareness. But I like to try new things and develop in different directions. To achieve success, you need to be a versatile person.
You have fame and wealth, but what really makes you happy?
I like to achieve goals and see results. Not all my goals come out of necessity or from what society deems makes you a successful person. I clearly know what I want, and in accordance with this, I set a goal and scale it to achieve the result. And these results make me happy.
You’ve come a long way. What are your plans for next year?
The plans are grandiose. Next year, the Nioly Media Group office will open in New York. We also have plans for Dubai. We have a lot of clients from the UAE and see the prospect of working with local influencers and experts, so we will open an office there in the future.
In addition, I plan to open my own restaurant and launch an underwear brand, Nioly Underwear.