I launched my business in 2013 - probably more by luck than by design, in the first instance. Having had a 5½ year break from my marketing career to raise my family, the time was right for me to return to work; but in what form?
Simply going back to becoming someone else’s full time employee did not appeal, as with young children and a (supportive) husband with a busy, demanding job I needed the flexibility to work around the needs of my family.
I had been informally helping a friend with the marketing of her business and one day I just decided to brand this venture, launch a website and see what happened with setting up a business. So here are some things I’ve learned along the way, that are perhaps worth sharing if you are about to venture along the same path:
1. Seek out and create your own opportunities – you never know, a comment made in passing might just turn into your next big opportunity leading to success
2. Be friendly, honest and consistent – reputations take months and years to build yet can crumble in minutes, so treat others as you would like to be treated
3. Stick to your own area of expertise and become really terrific at it. People often confuse what I do - marketing - with PR, with website development, with sales or with design. Each one of these is a specialism in itself and whilst none of them are my area of expertise I have a very good network of people who do work in these disciplines and who I am happy to recommend
4. Which brings me to my next suggestion– network. Make new professional friends beyond your own specialism, both to extend your reach and influence and because being friendly is a nice act of human kindness, you never know when you might need one
5. Surround yourself with a trusted support network – setting up a business can be daunting and lonely, but if you have friends and associates to help and advise it make it so much more fun!
And here I am, nearly two years on, with my biggest client yet - the unique, iconic and this year record-breaking Royal Highland Show – where I lead and delivered on the show’s marketing; everything from developing the marketing strategy, to leading a multi-disciplinary team of agencies, to co-producing the show’s first foray into live streaming…and everything in between. So go on, take the plunge!