Semester: 

Stephanie Phua

Year CS'11:

At 30, Stephanie Phua (CS’11) is the chief executive of Duo Studio, a three-year-old digital marketing agency, which boasts big-name clients like Uniqlo, American Express, Playstation and Disney.

The secret to its success? A healthy work culture, and an open and honest communication channel between employees and clients, said Phua.

During her time at the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information, she did numerous internships that exposed her to digital and online marketing, such as her two-month stint at pioneer digital marketing company clickTRUE in 2010.

Upon graduation, Phua realised that social media marketing was a new concept for many companies — a market gap with untapped potential. Seizing the opportunity, she started creating her own social media projects. One of her notable projects, Dance Lah!, shed light on Singapore’s dance scene by profiling local up-and-coming dancers. 

Her experience in leading social media campaigns proved valuable when she joined advertising agency Dentsu Mobius as a social media executive in 2014. There, she managed campaigns for brands like Singapore Airlines and Oreo. 

But a year later, Phua felt that there was more in the advertising industry that an agency could offer. Hoping to pick up new skills and create a better work environment, she took a leap of faith and founded Duo Studio.

For the past three years, she has helped her clients build a social media presence including Tiong Bahru Plaza, a heartland mall that opened in 1994. Together with her team, they came up with a campaign that drew attention to some of the mall’s most popular tenants. This resulted in an influx of younger shoppers, who usually find newer and bigger malls more appealing. 

“It’s always good to support the so-called underdog,” she said.