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3 Mistakes I Made When Starting My Business
Episode 3415th October 2018 • Your Dream Business • Teresa Heath-Wareing
00:00:00 00:29:48

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  • Everyone has a story. Everyone has to start somewhere. It’s important to remember that the greats in the world weren’t always that way. It’s all about growth!
  • Sometimes, when disaster or loss happens, we have to shift our focus onto what makes us happy and fulfilled.
  • Loss can also cause us to create our own path. My divorce led me to quit my current job out of dissatisfaction and start my own business which led me to where I am today.
  • Be careful when choosing your business name. Using your own name could cause further consequences later on.
  • It’s important to put thought into your business. You need to understand your goals, your services, your mission, etc. This allows you to be strategic and more fulfilled in your business. You don’t have to say yes to the things you hate to do.
  • Think about your future. What processes or rules will you put in place for when you begin to grow? It’s easier to do this now than change your current processes in the future.
You’ll have people who don’t understand what you’re doing. Your own family might question your decision to start your own business. Find those people who will inspire you such as mentors or those knowledgeable in the industry. Find those individuals who will be excited about what you want to do, instead of those who question your abilities.
  • I never wanted to run my own business – 05:03
  • No money, no help and no job – 11:33
  • Mistake #1: I used my name as my business name – 13:16
  • Mistake #2: I didn’t think about my business – 17:14
  • Find people who inspire you and lift you up – 21:01
  • Mistake #3: I didn’t futureproof – 23:08
Transcript below


Hello and welcome to Episode 34 of the social media marketing Made Simple podcast and I am your host Teresa Heath-Wareing. So tell me how is your day going. I hope it’s good and productive and you’re achieving great things. You might listen to this on a Monday which means you’re at the start the week. Or you could be through the week. But wherever you are I hope things are good for me it’s been a great week. I started off not so great if I’m honest. Monday was a little bit quiet and I didn’t really feel in the mood to do much. Do you ever feel like that and do you think you want to shake yourself and be like C’mon you’ve got stuff to get on with. But sometimes your mind just isn’t in the game. So Monday started off like that for me. However it’s Mayfair’s day and I’m feeling so much happier about it. I’ve done some great things this week. I’ve recorded a great podcast interview yesterday which is going to be out next week with Chris Strub that’s going to be read exciting. Then later on today I’m recording another interview with the amazing Brian Fanzone. So I’m super excited about that. So we’ve got some really good content coming up for you. The other thing that’s super exciting that’s just happened today is I’ve just been sent the first version of the Ted x talk I did. Oh wow. I couldn’t wait to watch it. Now normally when most people see themselves back on camera and this includes me you kind of really critique yourself and you look at yourself and you think oh god was like pulla face or do that or be like this. But actually the Ted x experience was so amazing and so exciting watching it back. All it did for me was made me think What an amazing day that was. I am so excited to get this aits you know as it stands at the moment it might be different when the podcast is life. It’s not ready to be shown to the general public. When you do at. Now I know a little bit about it. There are an awful lot of rules that the licencee and the organizer has to conform to and one of those rules is that obviously everything has to go through tax and Tadd first. So what’s going to happen as far as I’m aware is the videos are going to get approved by the speakers and then they go to Tadd and upload uploaded to Ted and hopefully fingers crossed they get put on the YouTube and the TED Web site.


Now you know it’s not actually a given that your video is going to be put up. If there’s something in it that they deem isn’t true they have rules and like that there are a lot of rules which is completely understandable. But if there is something on there that they’re not overly happy with or whatever then they can actually say your video is not going up. Now as far as they know everything on mine should be absolutely fine. I’m touching a lot of words here as I’m talking to you because I would be devastated if the video didn’t go up but it is awesome. So hopefully when it does go up keeping everything crossed. I can’t wait to share that with you. I’ve been talking to lots of people over the last few weeks in terms of the interviews I’ve been doing and one of the things I’ve been asking them is to tell me their story because I don’t know about you but for me. I love listening to the stories about how people got to be where they are today and do what they’re doing today. I find it fascinating. The other reason they like hearing their stories is because so often we look at the Amy port fields of the world than the Pat flans. And we think oh my gosh that is an amazing achievement. I’m never going to get there. But the truth of it is there was a time in their career in their life that they didn’t even know they were going to get there. So for me I find it really inspirational to hear the journey there come through and the lessons they’ve learned.


Because actually we’re going to learn from those lessons too. So today I thought I would do things a little bit different. And I wanted to share my story. This isn’t a story of look at how amazing my journey has been and what I’ve done. This is a story of how I got started and the mistakes I made because boy did I make some mistakes.


And my thought process around this is if hopefully you listen to some of these things and think I’m not going to do that or it makes you go back and revisit a couple of things then great. And actually although I love talking about social media marketing I do also love talking about building a business running a business and how we can all succeed because some of these messages they will span over any business in any industry. So I am really hoping that you will enjoy my brief podcast interview how I got to get started and what I did wrong. So I guess the first thing I should tell you and admit to is I never actually wanted to run my own business. Never not once I had worked in marketing. For oh about 10 years I think it was I done my degree in marketing and I joke that I was a great employee. I loved working for other people. I always worked really hard. I wanted people to think that I was really good at what I did. And I worked really hard to get that respect. I often work longer hours than I needed to. I was very ambitious. I climbed the career ladder fairly quickly and moved to a lot of different jobs. If it meant that I could then get promotion or get to the next step. So it had quite a varied career in marketing. I had worked for huge companies like Landrover. I worked in their head office and I manage their corporate marketing for them and that I worked for teeny tiny companies who had hardly any budget and I used to do everything so I give them myself a really kind of rounded view of marketing and then one of my last jobs I was in a marketing agency. Now I just want to say quickly before I started this marketing agency I was a director for a care company. I started off in that care company as the marketing person. However again I got promoted through and I ended up becoming a director of a service. Now if you’ve ever worked in a care company and this is a company that has children that are in care and we used to home those children and provide them support now as you can imagine this isn’t a 9 till five five day a week job. This is completely and utterly forlorn. This is children who have a lot of challenges and a lot of things going on their lives and they are being looked after 24/7. So for me I had a young daughter she was in fact I was in that job in the marketing role when I had my daughter. So she was sort of you know 1 or 2 years old by the time I became the director. And I had this young daughter and my entire life was spent on the phone traveling working. And I was missing out on huge chunks of her life. And it kind of came to a head where I’d been working really hard for this company and I was up in Nottingham city in the UK and I was doing some training. And one of the young people we looked after had a daughter and I had to go and spend some time with that young person because the person who is meant to be seeing her was ill the person above that person should have gone next they weren’t around anyway. There was no one to do it. It fell on me. I had to do it. I ended up going to see this lovely young girl with her lovely daughter and her daughter was about the same age as my daughter and I’m sat there at 7 o’clock in the evening having promised my ex husband that I would be home having promised him I’d be home so I could put my daughter to bed. I am sat then playing with some toys with someone else’s daughter and I thought what am I doing at that point. I decided I no longer wanted to travel around the country and be gone for such a long time. Not just physically gone but mentally gone because I was so preoccupied with what was going on with these other young people that I couldn’t spend that time with my daughter so I decided I wanted to get a job locally back where I lived and I wanted to get more back into marketing because I hadn’t done well. I had done a bit of marketing but I hadn’t done solely marketing for a couple of years. I applied for a job at a local agency got this job and that was great. I loved it. I loved the variety.


Working with lots of different businesses on lots of different things and the fact that I got to use so many different strategies and tools and campaigns gave me a really good understanding of marketing in its entirety. I’d been with this company for a few years I really enjoyed it and at this point in my life and I’m going to get quite personal now.


So I apologize because it really isn’t like me although I put myself out there a fair bit I do tend to keep sort of personal stuff private but this is part of the story so it’s important that I share it. My husband left me and I was living at home. I stayed in the house and I paid for the mortgage. I looked after my daughter. I paid for the car and I had this job which afforded me to do this which was brilliant and then kind of out of nowhere.


I had a couple of difficult weeks and I think when you go through something as horrible as a divorce or a partner leaving you suddenly start to really pay attention to I’m only going to do things that make me happy because actually that was a really tough part in my life and therefore I really want to make sure that I make the other areas of my life as easy as possible not just easy but as nice as possible so that a couple of difficult weeks at work. And I decided you know what I don’t think I can work here anymore I’m going to get another job and being slightly rash which isn’t like me. I handed my notice in that I’d given the the company eight weeks notice and in my head very arrogantly I have to say I had actually thought I’ll get another job easy I’m good at what I do I have lots of connections I know lots of people I’m sure another agency locally is going to snap me up. Wow. Seriously how arrogant was I anyway after three weeks of approaching other agencies and getting good feedback but forgetting I was on a fairly good salary and they would have had to pay that salary. I was basically just getting. We’d love to have you but we can’t afford it right now. And I was three weeks into my eight weeks notice and I was thinking what am I going to do. Like seriously this notice is going to come up and I’ve got to leave or I’m going to leave and I can’t afford not to have a job. So at the same time as this was happening a friend approached me and said Would I consider doing social media for their business am I put in a price that was really fair and actually very fair. Now based on what we charge now but I put in a price and they said yes and I thought okay this is interesting.


What if more people want me to do this or more people want me to help them with their marketing. So I had the most craziest thoughts.


I’m going to start my own business. Honestly it literally appeared one night and the next day I started tweeting things in action. But almost simultaneously my boss of the agency at the time kind of started to pick up on the fact that maybe I was thinking this and told me to leave and gave me one week left of my notice. So I effectively ended up leaving in a bit of a shock I have to say because it was literally I went in to do some work. And she was like you can go now. And it’s understandable I don’t blame in the slightest for that. And we’re friends again which is lovely but yet she was absolutely right to do that so she asked me to leave and I had effectively a month and a bet worth a salary. I had no husbands no rich parents no money coming from anywhere else no savings. And I had to earn over a thousand pounds a month in order to keep my mortgage being paid to keep the car running to keep my daughter in nursery to keep us fed and basically to live our life. And I didn’t have any money coming in from anywhere. I didn’t have anybody that I could lean on or go to. I literally just made the most craziest decision of my life and started my business. Now I was very lucky. I had a friend who obviously I had met through the design agency who obviously was a designer. So he came up with my logo. I made the most stupid mistake of choosing my name as my business name and I say this is stupid for two reasons. Firstly my company my agency is called T H W marketing. If you type that into Google Google thinks you’ve spelt that wrong and it defaults it to the marketing. So to try and find my agency Google is really hard. The second reason that this was a bit of a rookie mistake is because the t h w obviously stands for my name. Teresa Heath-Wareing but some of you might not realize that that is part of my ex husband’s name and I am since remarried and have a new surname. But of course I can’t use it for my business so I still have to be known by Teresa Heath-Wareing because if you Google me I appear there and my photos appear and my Web site and everything. So I have to stick with this name which makes for very awkward moments in my life when I broke into a hotel and my husband stood next to me and they go what names it under and I can’t remember whether I booked my business namei.e. my ex husband’s name or a book to undermine new married name. So yeah. Little bit awkward but like I said I started off and really quickly got my business going but because I did it in such a rush I didn’t think about things that I needed to think about so I never had a vision or a goal.


I didn’t think about the services I was offering based on what I loved or what I was really good at. I didn’t think about all of the other stuff that you have to do in running a business. All I thought about was well I’m good at what I do. But of course I didn’t think about it. There was admen and finance and things like hosting websites or managing your own social media. I literally just thought well I can do marketing for other people. I didn’t spend any time thinking about what am I going to charge. How is it going to work. What equipment away need. I literally just dived straight in and set up my business. I started one week later with a Web site. Honestly my friend was amazing. I don’t know what I had done with him. A very basic web site but I had a website site at a social media page and I had my business cards and that was about it. And you know it’s funny because I would never recommend that anybody sets up a business in that short space of time under that kind of pressure knowing that if I wasn’t earning that money literally within about six weeks time that I couldn’t afford my mortgage. However for me I am normally a very considered person. I am now in my business. I’ve been trying to launch a course for oh gosh I would say almost a year I’ve been about this and I am not going very quickly because I’m a very cautious person. There is a part of me that would like to bring back that incredibly rash person that decided to set up a business within a week to help me speed up a little bit. However I wouldn’t necessarily recommend that people do it within a week with the fact of having no buffer in terms of any money. But I think it was that that actually made me earn money and be as successful as I have become because I didn’t have a choice. If I didn’t earn money from day one and get myself out there and put myself in very uncomfortable positions in order of selling myself and selling my service I wouldn’t have had money to actually keep my daughter and I in my home. And that is a very real and scary prospect. So for me although like I said I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it. I think that’s what drove me to build the business I’ve got today. Another mistake that I alluded to before was the fact that I hadn’t given a huge amount of time and consideration to what the goal of the business was what I wanted to offer what services I was going to offer what money I was going to charge for it.


I hadn’t really thought about that at all.

And what that meant in the early days was that I basically just said yes to everything. I literally was not fussy. If you said to me can you do this thing or that thing I would have just gone yep we can do that. I can do. I can do it. And it kind of meant that I was not as strategic and also probably some of the things I was doing I probably wasn’t the best person to do because that wasn’t my forte or my thing. But I suppose all I was thinking about at that point was I just need to survive here I need to earn some money. And if someone wants to pay me to write their blogs or them even though I might not be the best placed person to do it I’m going to find a way in which I can do it. If I was going to do it again or in some of the businesses or some of the changes to my business that has happened since I have spent much longer more than a week thinking about what is there I want to offer what is it that I love to do. Even if you have a business today I want you just to think about that just for a minute think about what is the one thing in your business that you love doing more than anything else. What are the parts of your business that you hate doing. What are the parts of the business that you are terrible at doing and why are you still doing them for me. Like I said the main issue was that I had to earn money. So instead of being brave and thinking okay I can earn money doing these particular things I basically just said yes to anything. And what that meant was it confused my message. It confused what I did for people and it confused me when I was trying to sell my services to people because I was like yeah I do that in a bit. There’s no but the other. It doesn’t make you sign very expert. It makes you sound like you’re trying to do everything for everyone and probably




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