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Meet Rocio Villalobos of VidroMedia in Santa Monica

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rocio Villalobos.

Rocio, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Well, as a bit of a gypsy and explorer at heart, I have a story or two in my past – But by far what has shaped me the most both personally and professionally has been my upbringing in a tight-knit Peruvian-American household.

Having grown up in a third world country like Perú, and then having lived in some of the wealthiest parts of the U.S. as an adult, definitely has given me a particular lens. As a family, we went through some pretty crazy life events as well, from my father’s unexpected death when I was just a kid, to living in the midst of an active terrorist movement in Perú, even an extortion/kidnapping threat… needless to say, we’ve been through a lot!

Eternally grateful to my mom who raised 4 kids on her own, somehow managed to keep her sanity and keep us safe and happy. Her core values became our own – open communication, lots of love, that there is power in self-sufficiency, and of course – the secret sauce – an awesome sense of humor. If at the end of the day you can sit around the table and make each other laugh, you can pretty much get through anything life throws at you.

Professionally, my career has always been as a digital creative (from broadcast design to branding, to web design and digital advertising), and in the past 5 years that has organically shifted into the strategic side. Now as a Creative Strategist in the Social Impact and Conscious Capitalism space, I feel like I’ve found that role that my career and life has been grooming me for.

In short, I’m a half planner, half creative, helping brands grow both their profits alongside their social impact. I also love that part of my role is to essentially be a “Chief Inspiration Officer” – so maintaining teams at a realistic, yet ambitious level, all the while keeping the energy positive and the work inspiring. If your internal team is aligned and inspired, and your goals are clarified and prioritized from the start, you’ll be more confident, less stressed, and your brand will have the authenticity and drive needed to be sustainable and create the most impact.

Has it been a smooth road?
Well, I fully admit that I’m a recovering perfectionist – something that I see many designers struggle with. As a designer, it’s a great trait in some ways, but also a double-edged sword when it comes to your emotional and mental wellbeing. My good friend and executive business coach Gene Sullivan once told me: “Do you realize that your 100% in terms of expectations and quality is most people’s 150%?” he then proceeded to give me homework: “For the next week, I want you to do everything you normally do at ‘your’ 70% and see what happens”. And so I did. And you know what? The only thing that happened was that people commented on how light I felt, how relaxed and happy I looked. Not one client or friend even noticed the 30% effort (and stress) that I had removed from my week. This was a big eye-opener for me – We’re seriously too hard on ourselves…! Time to lighten up.

Yet, with that said, being a hard worker has always been and will always be in my DNA – however, I also know that I’m better at my job when I’m happier when I’m out enjoying life more – and not stressing about things beyond my control. When you realize you can just be yourself unapologetically, simply RELAX, trust yourself more, seek out more quiet time, and trust that everything is working out for you – you’ll find that you start attracting people and clients that are aligned with you and vice versa, and that’s when the magic really starts happening.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with VidroMedia – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
I’m the founder and Creative Strategist of VidroMedia, a boutique strategic creative agency in Santa Monica, and I’m also on the Executive Board of the Los Angeles chapter of Conscious Capitalism ( Both of my roles kind of do this amazing little dance together, because under VidroMedia, we are helping conscious or purpose-driven brands grow their impact as well as their business via digital marketing and branding strategies, building brands, websites and digital campaigns, while CCLA is a non profit organization that is literally bringing together and empowering that very community of conscious brands and entrepreneurs here in Los Angeles. I’m definitely most proud of finally being able to apply our talents and skills to be a part of something larger than ourselves, at a direct level with VidroMedia, and at a city-wide level with CCLA.

As a company, over the years we’ve always been known for our creative intuition and our digital chops… we’ve been in the branding and digital space for 15+ years. Now that we’re more strategy focused, we’ve really become known as creative partners who truly help diffuse the marketing madness everyone is faced with. There are SO MANY ways to get your message out there, so much “noise” to compete against, so it’s easy to get perplexed about what your company should be doing, why and how. How do you find the common thread between your purpose, your brand, your users and your business goals? How much digital marketing should you do and where? It’s really a lot of moving parts, and our job is to give our clients a clear path, room to breathe, and the support they need, at all stages of their growth.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love that keeping this list short was harder than trying to get a west-sider to go east of the 405. That people don’t blink an eye when they catch you meditating. That the level of creativity and talent here is as inspiring as it is intimidating – both which keep you on your toes. That you are constantly questioning if someone looks familiar because you’ve met them before, or because they are famous, or both.

KCRW. Lake Shrine. Beach runs. Power Yoga. Sunsets at Terranea. Dirty double hemp chai lattes at Groundwork Coffee Co. Our ridiculous social media bragging rights about our city and the weather, and that yes, most days it truly IS 72º and sunny. And lastly, you will always have visitors.

Dislike: When I have to go east of the 405 (kidding, kidding, I do venture out east…. sometimes!). Meeting someone you connect with right away, only to realize they are #geographicallyundesirable (meaning they live across town).

The tragically rising homeless problem & gentrification. Santa Monica Parking Enforcement. May gray and June gloom. Too many amazing things to explore, and not enough time to do so.

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Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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