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Dr. Marie Gabrielle Laguna

Managing Director

Hello! I am Marie Gabrielle, born Marie Gabrielle Arisme (Filipinized surname for Arismendi and Arismendiarrieta) Laguna. Let me tell you my story.

I am a Filipino, born in the late 70s and raised in the Philippines, with Spanish, Malay and Chinese ethnicity. I was born in a small town called Manapla in Negros Occidental, Philippines to a Spanish-Filipino family. My Spanish paternal ancestors are from a province in Spain that is on the Pyrenees mountains and were farmers, shepherds and mariners. They married Chinese and indigenous Filipina women from Iloilo, a province in the Visayas islands in the Philippines. On the other hand, my maternal great grandfather is a Basque who settled in the Philippines and married a Spanish-Filipina. My maternal ancestors were primarily shipbuilders and fishermen. Thus, I grew up in a mixed culture that is both European and Asian and this played a big role in my future interests in global entrepreneurship and marketing.

I did not grow up with a normal childhood. At age 7, I was already exposed to agriculture work. My grandma, who is Spanish-Filipino and a shepherd when she was younger, exposed me to entrepreneurship and farm life. At a young age, I lifted heavy sacks of coconuts or copra and laid them out in the sun to dry in the morning and pick them up in sacks in the late afternoon. This taught me the values of DILIGENCE and HARD WORK at a young age. Our family sold and exported copra, sugar and other locally-made products internationally, and this was my first experience with EXPORT and GLOBAL BUSINESS.

The earnings that I earned from selling leftover fruit on the side of the streets and the numerous things I created and peddled I kept and saved for future educational use. Despite working in the farm, I still managed to go to a pensionnat school for my preparatory years until I graduated from a Bachelor in Medical Laboratory Science degree and subsequently, medical school. I highly value the importance of EDUCATION and SKILL as one’s passport to global markets.

When I graduated from high school in 1996, the Asian financial crisis went full-blast. My family went into financial problems, and my college dream was about to disappear. So I had to look for scholarships to support my college education. I read a book about discovering one’s talents and using them to full potential to earn money. I discovered that I was quite good in writing and in cartooning/ visual arts. I applied for a scholarship as a student journalist in my university and in my second year of college, I recieved a 50% tuition fee discount from the Augustinian fathers/ priests.

In my third year of college, I became Editor-in-Chief of the university publications, and I received a 100% scholarship for two years. In my stint as a student editor, I won gold twice for editorial writing and feature writing in the Regional College Press Conferences and I won a bronze medal in a national essay writing contest. In my free time, I wrote novels in my native language (Hiligaynon) for Yuhum Magazine, a vernacular magazine published by La Defensa Press which acted as a haven for Filipino literature and became the first outlet of known revolutionary journalists such as Ramon Muzones, Santiago Mulato, Magdalena Jalandoni, and Jose Yap, among others. The amount I earned from the magazine became my college allowance.

While working as an intern/trainee in Medical Technology, I happened to see a scenario at the emergency room in the hospital where I worked which made me want to become a physician. I figured out I can save more lives and help other people by choosing that career rather than being a radical young journalist. So I enrolled in medical school with minimal funds from my mom, who was working in the United States at that time. In 2001, the search engine was much younger then, and content writing was scorned by journalists because they said it was “stupid, repetitive writing” that only worked for commercial interests and bypassed the true essence of journalism. I needed the funds for my medical education, so I looked for online jobs as a content writer on the internet. This search brought me to a US ecommerce company with contacts in Malaysia and Singapore who trained me on SEO content writing. At that time, to land high on the search engines, we had to do a lot of what is now known as illegal black-hat SEO.

After my work with them, a Russian/Ukranian company took interest in me and hired me as a medical writer and researcher for their company. It was with them that I learned more about the search engine, how it works and about programming. I worked with them until I was able to finish medical school and build my freelance profile in Elance and Odesk (now Upwork) and create an agency which now consisted of more than 50 people.

Since 2016, Eternus Global has expanded its services to include web development, web design, and virtual assistance. I came from the usual pen-and-typewriter kind of journalism in the 90s and I know how expensive and time-consuming it is. To grow more in terms of audience reach and goals, we have to use the most modern technology. Nowadays, our daily life consists of communicating to family, friends and co-workers using social media apps and other online platforms. Only a few people can appreciate how cheap and effective digital marketing is in reaching one’s business goals. We should not view technology as evil; rather, we must embrace it and use it to grow our business and our personal lives.

I am here sharing my story to you as a person who has lived through the 80s, 90s and 2000s and I have seen digital technology evolve all through these decades. I have taken part in global trading since I was a kid in my own small ways and I have seen the economy transform from agricultural and natural products export to digital services outsourcing. There are many others who are better than me in terms of global business advisory but in my middle age, I belong to both the old world and the new world. If you need any advice on global digital marketing, I am one of the few persons you can come to. You can freely contact me using the contact form below and I will respond within 24 hours if I am not busy.