1o8 Agency Opens its Doors, Offers New Way of Doing Business in the Digital Marketing Space

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Realizing Untapped Sales Potential with Digital Marketing That Focuses Exclusively on the Online Marketplace, Including Amazon, Instagram and Facebook

1o8, which focuses exclusively on e-commerce, is among the first to combine expert online retail marketing with paid digital and traditional media. These combined efficiencies effectively support search engine optimization and drive brand acceleration, revenue growth, and measurable online engagement. Typically, companies would need to hire multiple firms to accomplish all these tasks. 1o8’s laser-like focus on online sales results in exponential growth for clients in the food, pets, and consumer packaged goods space.

1o8 Agency opens its doors

CEO Aalap Shah is a serial entrepreneur who previously co-founded SoMe Connect before selling his ownership interest in the company and exiting in November 2018. “With each company I’ve started—1o8 is my fourth—I’ve always wanted to tweak the conventional wisdom of traditional business practices, and with 1o8, things have come full circle,” he says. “Our clients’ goals are our own. It’s that simple. We do things a little bit differently at 1o8 to accomplish everything they need. We have the varied tools and the specialized talent to achieve those goals for them. Every time.”

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Shah had a unique way of guaranteeing the success of 1o8. He wanted to get “in the trenches” with his clients and experience the challenges of growing an online business that relies on Amazon, Facebook, and Instagram to drive sales and growth. In late 2015, he bought a company that sold sport fishing gear—despite being a vegetarian and never having gone fishing a day in his life. He used online social and retail platforms to raise the profile of the company and grow a strong customer base. Three years later, Shah sold that company for five times what he paid for it.

With its name, 1o8 Agency pays homage to a number with deep significance in the Hindu faith. The mala prayer bracelet used in Buddhist and Hindu meditation practices, similar to a Catholic rosary, has 108 beads. Like those faiths, 1o8 is dedicated to sustaining a culture in which creative and caring people can thrive, communicate, and interact. 1o8 is excited to welcome a new level of inclusion for both its employees and the clients at the center of everything they do.

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Shah is recognized as a leader in Chicago’s minority-owned digital marketing world and has been recognized by multiple entities for his entrepreneurial and charitable endeavors. In 2017, the Carson Scholarship Foundation named him a Trailblazer Entrepreneur. In 2013, Crain’s Chicago Business recognized him as one of Chicago’s Young Emerging Philanthropists. He was recognized by the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) as the 2013 National Volunteer of the Year and has served on the boards at IL Mathematics & Science and Gateway Green.

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