Spotlight on Clare Taylor
At Spotlight, we got the chance to have a chat with Clare Taylor, Strategic Marketing Specialist and Founder of Apricus Marketing Ltd, a marketing management and strategic marketing consultancy company. Who talks to us about taking success into your own hands and starting a business in a global pandemic.
I studied International Management and German at University and am very lucky to have spent the 20 years since, working in some really interesting businesses across a diverse range of sectors within manufacturing and engineering, both in the UK and internationally. I am a self-motivated person so it is quite a natural thing for me to be driven, but it is very important for me to show my children that you work hard for the things you want in life and that it is important to be happy in what you do.
I feel passionate about women in business and support for working mothers in particular. It’s not easy to hold down a career and raise young children at the same time. You often feel stretched and like there are two of you – the mum and the career person. I have been fortunate enough to have worked for employers that have allowed part-time and flexible working in the past but I have always wanted to run my own business and am really feeling the benefits of the flexibility that provides, especially during the times of lockdown and home-schooling.
Becoming Her Own Boss
I started to think about working for myself a few years ago after having my children, but the timing wasn’t right until recently. I established Apricus Marketing Ltd in the summer after being made redundant from a Head of Marketing position within the bed industry so my business is still new.
Apricus is a Latin word meaning ‘sunny, having lots of sunshine, warmed by the sun’. I felt it reflected my personality well and what I wanted to achieve for my clients’ businesses in terms of making their marketing propositions shine.
Success During A Pandemic
I think COVID has made everyone look at things with perspective in mind more recently. It is important to remember that work is work. It is not life or death. Your success is whatever you decide you want it to be and how you decide to measure it. I am very lucky in that I don’t feel I have really experienced any challenges or setbacks that I couldn’t overcome. I believe your destiny and success is in your own hands and it is how you decide to handle those challenges that make you stronger.
I set up my business during Corona so I don’t know how things would be different if it wasn’t for that. In many ways, it has probably enabled me to establish my business and a growing client base more quickly. I can attend multiple networking meetings in one day and meet far more people in that time than I would be able to if everything were still happening face to face. Sometimes projects may take longer to come to fruition as businesses are more cautious with their spending and there are complexities such as supply chain issues that can take priority. Despite these challenges, there are plenty of businesses out there looking to continue and invest in their marketing to help them get out of the downturn more quickly.
The market research and strategic market analysis framework that I am offering is proving to be popular with businesses looking to expand their offering and move into new markets as a result of the pandemic, as is the flexible, outsourced marketing management service which is popular with those businesses who may have no formal marketing structure or resource, or who need someone to guide their team and execute their plan without taking on the overhead associated with employing an in-house marketing manager.
Advice For People Wanting To Start A Business
My advice for people wanting to start a business is to go for it! Have a clear idea of what you want to do, what you would define as success for your business and a clear plan for how to get there. You need to assess every opportunity that comes your way, listen hard and always ask lots of questions.
If you’re managing your own team, remember that you are only as good as the team around you. Never think you are bigger or better than the team and value each member of it for their individual and collective contributions.