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Meet Grey Almeida of Ashgrey Marketing in Wrentham

Today we’d like to introduce you to Grey Almeida.

Grey, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My path to launching Ashgrey Marketing has literally been all over the map, but what surprisingly inspired me the most along the way were hamburgers.

My parents expatriated from Boston to Geneva, Switzerland shortly before I was born. Their plan was to stay in Europe for only one year, but time went by and we never left. I’d always assumed that I’d finally go to college in the US, however, once it was time to start my applications, I didn’t want to leave. I ended up going to The Ecole Hoteliere de Lausanne (EHL), a hospitality management school in Switzerland. I had no specific intentions of opening a restaurant or running a hotel one day, but I had watched a documentary about the school’s culture and knew that it was a place where my not-quite Swiss, not-quite American self would fit right in. I’ve always had a broad imagination, but today I am convinced that EHL shaped my creativity and ability to turn my ideas into business opportunities.

During my studies, I had the opportunity to do a Public Relations internship at DANIEL, a restaurant in New York City owned by Celebrity Chef, Daniel Boulud. I worked alongside Georgette Farkas (now the owner of Rotisserie Georgette in NYC) and Gail Simmons (who went on to be a judge on BRAVO’s Emmy-winning series Top Chef). The internship was an incredible experience because I participated in so many interesting projects such as working on one of Daniel Boulud’s cookbooks or attending special events in some of the most spectacular apartments around Manhattan. One of the most memorable moments though was when Daniel Boulud came out with the most expensive burger in America. The ground beef burger was stuffed with red wine-braised short ribs, foie gras, and fresh black truffle, and cost $27 at the time. That day, our phone was ringing off the hook! Every single press outlet wanted to learn more. I remember rushing off in a taxi with Georgette to the set of a talk show where Daniel was invited to cook the burger. Gail and I also went to the NBC studios where the burger was served on live television to the news anchors. That burger was the best marketing move I’d ever seen. Daniel Boulud had taken a huge risk by giving the all-American dish a French makeover. It worked though, and everyone around town was talking about it. That’s when I realized that the best marketing ideas aren’t always the ones you’d expect.

15 years later, in 2016, I had graduated college, worked in Swiss Private Banking, moved to Boston, met my husband, worked for a Tech market research firm, bought a house in Wrentham, and become a stay-at-home mom to my two daughters. My life was moving along nicely but I had no idea where it was going to go professionally once my youngest started school. Not until I read about what three old friends from Geneva were up to. They were driving around town in a food truck, serving hamburgers. As I read more about their story on their website and followed their social media I realized that they weren’t just flipping burgers, they were giving Switzerland a taste of their American Dream. I got so inspired that I knew that marketing was what I wanted to do. That’s when I decided to get my real estate license and market homes my way. I took a photography class and figured out how to build my website. Many of my Wrentham friends owned beautiful homes so I asked them if I could do home tours for my blog, Ashgrey Properties. This was my strategy to show everyone how I would market a home if it were for sale. It didn’t take long before I got my first buyer client. Someone living out-of-state contacted me through my Instagram account because she and her family were planning to relocate to Massachusetts and needed a realtor. She liked my Instagram content so reached out to me. Shortly after, I got my first listing. The house had been sitting on the market for six months, however, once I got my hands on it, we got offers within days. It was amazing! Fellow realtors started approaching me for help with their marketing and once businesses from other industries started hiring me too, I rebranded Ashgrey Properties to Ashgrey Marketing.

In addition to Ashgrey Marketing, I recently launched The W Shops, which is a local online market of goods and services. The market is a website where local businesses have virtual storefronts to market themselves online.

Has it been a smooth road?
It’s been a very smooth road though I’m still working on finding a good work-life balance.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
With Ashgrey Marketing, I help small local businesses with their marketing. I design websites, create marketing materials, help my clients’ with their social media and specialize in real estate photography. I am proud of the fact that I can personally design, create, and implement all of my services. I know my strengths and weaknesses, but I am always excited to learn new skills.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Yes, absolutely! People living in towns like Wrentham, Norfolk, and Franklin are very interested in shopping locally and many of those small local businesses need help with their marketing.

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