Event Planner Maria Lago Says Don’t Believe Your Own Hype, Keep it Simple

Learn how Maria Lago went from being "competition focused" to becoming single-minded in the pursuit of her passion, ultimately using every business opportunity to grow personally and professionally.

Last Update: July 10, 2015

It’s easy to get caught up in the hype of your new small business. But as a fledgling entrepreneur is it wise to forget the hoopla and keep it simple?

Maria Lago, President of Three / Events & PR, says that she’s learned how “keeping things simple will help you get to your goal faster in the long run.” Lago started her event planning and public relations business at home and despite the challenge of ‘going at it alone,’ Lago networked her way to success.

Learn how Maria Lago went from being “competition focused” to becoming single-minded in the pursuit of her passion, ultimately using every business opportunity to grow personally and professionally.


Company: Three / Events & PR
Founder: Maria Lago
Location: White Plains, New York
Industry: Advertising and Marketing
Startup Year: 2010
Startup Costs: $500


How I Got Started

My passion has always been organizing and planning, so it would make sense for me to start planning events. In 2010, given my passion and educational background in Public Relations, I created Three / Events & PR, an event planning and public relations firm.

I started my company with minimal overhead costs by working from home. I utilized established vendor connections from previous business dealings in the wedding industry, and began to spread the word through grassroots social media efforts. Soon after, I started networking which enabled me to meet local business owners and successful entrepreneurs.

Today my company specializes in creating beautiful and trendy special events, public relations, marketing and communication management. Our core business focus is in beauty, hospitality, fashion and entertainment.


Success Story

My best success story is creating Three Gets Furry, a fundraising event dedicated to create awareness and raise funds for the SPCA of Westchester, a local animal shelter.

The event brought together local animal lovers and their furry sidekicks for a wonderful evening of cocktails, photographs, entertainment and fundraising. I plan to make this event a yearly contribution to my community and to the SPCA of Westchester.


Startup Challenges

I’ve learned that the hardest and sometimes most frustrating aspect of starting your own business is going at it alone. Sure you’ve got your friends, family and possibly a significant other to support you, but in my case I didn’t have anyone I could talk to and bounce ideas off of.

I would watch my competition become more and more successful and I felt as though I was stuck in a rut that I couldn’t get out of. I realized things had to change and it would start with me.

So, I immediately changed the way I was thinking. There will be competition everywhere — it is inevitable. Therefore, I set out to focus on growing my business through networking and meeting other successful business owners. To my surprise, everyone was very eager to help and chat with me.

It really helps to get out there and know that you’re not doing this alone. My newfound network opened up the opportunity for even more networking and business opportunities.


Startup Tips

Don’t get wrapped up in the hype of your new business. Once I embark on a new project, I want to make sure everything is perfect. In this case, I couldn’t start with everything I needed as soon as I began. For a long time I wanted to have my own office space … heck, even my own desk!

I had to stay focused and keep my costs down. I worked from my coffee table for quite a while until I had sufficient resources to set up my office. I still don’t have my dream office, but I’m slowly and surely getting there. I’ve learned that if you keep things simple, you will get to your goal faster in the long run.


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