After leaving a marketing job at a major adhesives company Kay Porter found herself at a crossroads.
She could either get to work on finding a new job or take the plunge and set up her own business.
But with years of experience behind her, determined Kay, a single mother, decided to launch her own company from her spare room at home.
Now Smart Marketing Works, based in Stone, boasts a team of ten and has built up a strong reputation as the reliable, ‘go to’ marketing company for the country’s leading tiling and adhesive firms.
Its services include branding, marketing, literature, PR and social media as well as website builds and photography.
Kay said: ?Because of my background working with adhesives and tiles I had built up many connections, but when the recession hit, the building and construction industry took a massive blow and it was time to look for a new challenge.
?I gave myself six months to either try and get myself another job or give it a go and start my own company. So I decided to take a leap of faith.”
Within just four weeks Kay had secured her first clients and after 18 months, moved into her first premises ? an impressive achievement for an entirely self-financed business.
Eventually, further growth triggered a move to the firm’s current premises, in Stafford Road, which Smart Marketing occupies along with The Tile Association ? the UK’s national association for wall and floor tiling ? which Kay and the team also run from the new office.
Soon, the company was being asked for services aside from marketing which led to Kay’s next idea ? the launch of an admin division.
Kay added: ?Because the companies we were working with knew we had the knowledge to be able to manage other things, we were being asked to help with admin and business support.
?We have found that this entirely complements the marketing side of the business, which continues to grow and remains our core activity. The fact that we have invested heavily in infrastructure and software enables us to diversify in this way.”
Smart Admin Works will be launched in the new year for businesses and organisations looking for anything from ‘receptionist’ services, business and office support, proof-reading and copywriting.
Kay added: ?We have an expert knowledge of the industry and that’s why we are different from other marketing companies, but Smart Admin Works is available for businesses in other fields.
?Our growth has come from our strong reputation and I can only see that continuing. As a resident of Stone, one opportunity for growth which we are going to target in the coming year is local business, both for our marketing and admin services.”
Now Smart Marketing Works has entered The Sentinel Business Awards in the Small Business of the Year category, sponsored by Beswicks Legal.
Another area in which Kay has invested heavily in has been in the training of younger members of staff.
As a result of this, the company today is able to draw significant strength from its very balanced team.
(Article originally posted on Stoke Sentinel)