What job do you do?
How did you get into marketing/communications?
I set up my business in July 2015 and I had never dealt with digital marketing or any marketing for that matter. I then started a course at my local University to learn all about marketing and how to run a business and how to use social media the right way. It helped me hugely.
What are you most proud of in your career as a marketing/communications professional?
I have done an interview on BBC radio wales along with Heat, Kiss, Kerrang, Planet Rock and Magic. I met prince Charles who laughed at my ‘don’t touch my hair jumper’ and told me he loves eBay. At the same event I met Luke Evans, who was really nice and tweeted about some of the ambassadors during the morning. My business has also been shortlisted for 5 different business awards, we’ve won 3 of them. I was invited by Buckingham Palace to attend Prince Charles 70th Birthday Celebrations, I was listed as one of the 35 under 35 top business woman in wales 2018, and also I have been mentioned in 63 news papers and magazines articles through my journey.
How has marketing/communications helped the organisations you’ve worked for?
I have developed an online following on my social media accounts, I have my website that gets a lot of attention, I am verified on Facebook, The Tomorrow store that is run by The Prince’s Trust also stock my items on their online platform.
I have collaborated with 4 other businesses that went through the enterprise programme and currently have a fully funded office in Caerphilly thanks to the welsh government. Throughout all of this I have been growing my brand to attract all different types of customers so I can create a bigger collection.
I was a young ambassador for The Princes Trust, so I would attend events and do speeches on how the trust has helped me; I am now a volunteer and business mentor.
Along the way I have met Paul Mercer, he used to play for Portsmouth Football team, which my dad is a huge fan of, I asked him for an autograph which he was okay about until the whole room saw, rushed over and formed a line. He was stuck there for about 30 minutes, not sure if I left as his friend, also Dan Bigger and Kelly Hoppen. Kelly loved my ‘Don’t touch my hair’ sweatshirts and posted it on her Instagram along with Giovanna Fletcher who posted one of my candles on her Instagram story, which in turn sent a lot of people my way.
What challenges have you overcome on your professional journey to where you are today?
I left school at 15 with some GCSE’s but being dyslexic I was told I probably wouldn’t mount too much anyway so why bother?. I got a job and I started at College for 3 years, which I did both full-time. I did hair and beauty for the first year and art and design for the last two. I wanted to become a fashion designer, that was my calling in life. My room was always piled high with art books and designs, I was always making things and I just never knew what to do with them. I did all this while I became a manager at my job.
I continued working for a total of 6 years but I started to lose interest so left the job to change my career. From that moment on I never really stuck to a job, I bounced around every 6 months to a new job.
I eventually became a mobile carer for the elderly, which I did enjoy because I was always on the move and not stuck in the same place. I then lost my granddad and felt I needed to live my life, so I quit my job, packed my things and I moved up here to Cardiff in 2013.
I met one of my friends soon after moving here and we did talk about my business ideas but I didn’t know where or how to go about it, we had completely different businesses so he could only help me so far. So I carried on with my day job, until one day I woke up and really wanted to pursue my dream. I bit the bullet and quit my job, I thought if I wont do it now I wont ever do it, so googled ‘how to start a business’, and one of the first results that popped up was The Princes Trust, so I called in and explained I wanted to start a business and asked if they could help me.
Do you have any words of wisdom for someone starting out in the marketing/communications industry?
Just do it – don’t over think anything and don’t live a ‘what if’ life. I always say to people, just try it, even if you fail you can say you tried and you can never regret it!