With Manchester being the fastest growing city outside London for economic growth, Excelerate Labs is supporting businesses in Greater Manchester who are looking to reach the next level. Boasting a client base ranging from New York agencies to prestigious UK universities, we spoke to Kelly Gilmour-Grassam, Founder and Director of copy-writing agency Making You Content to find out all about her business growth journey.
|Making You Content team
Graduating from university in 2014 with the desire to pursue copy-writing on a self-employed basis, Kelly had to start thinking about building that career path for herself. “I’d taken on a few freelance clients alongside my studies and realised that I was totally uninspired by graduate jobs. There weren’t many options presented by traditional paths, so I took my freelancing full time while I decided what to do next. I soon realised I was making the same amount from home as I would in a grad job, so dropped the search and put my focus on growing my own business.”
Choosing a name, investing in a logo and getting a website made, Making You Content was officially born. With the North West having no shortage of marketing agencies, we asked what made them stand out from the competition. “We focus purely on the written word. We bridge a gap between freelance copywriters and full-service marketing providers, helping brands identify their voice and grow through effective communication”
Making You Content is approaching it’s 5th birthday, a significant milestone for a business that started from a desktop computer in a bedroom. Now securing an eight-person strong team, you can now find them based in Manchester’s vibrant Northern Quarter with plans to grow further over the next 12 months. The growing business is just another thing to add to Kelly’s list of achievements with her being named as UK’s Young Freelancer of the year in 2015 by IPSE “This was a real launchpad for the business. It really raised my profile and gave me the confidence and credibility to push Making You Content forward”
Kelly spoke about the support they had received through the Excelerate Labs Programme. “I’ve been working with Mike, one of The Women’s Organisations Senior Business Advisers, on my business and growth plans over the past few months. It’s really useful talking through your challenges and opportunities with someone who has seen the same issues in countless other businesses and offer objective advice, support and signposting to point you in the right direction”
Finding the encouragement to build her business and generate new ideas, Kelly grew up in Yorkshire taking inspiration from her Grandad’s true honest graft and the 6 months she spent freelancing in South America, exploring new places and widening her horizons as a writer.
Reflecting on her journey into business, Kelly has learned a thing or two about establishing her brand identity along the way: “When I started hiring, I tried to mould employees in my image, but quickly realised that having a variety of personalities who approach things in different ways is actually great for business. People buy people; if someone doesn’t ‘get’ me, they might really buy into someone else on the team. This has also helped us evolve the business from ‘Kelly copywriter’ to Making You Content as a brand people know and trust.”
So, what would Kelly’s key advice be for someone looking to grow a business? “Making You Content wouldn’t be where it is today without the amazing team I have around me. Investing my time and faith in people joining the business has definitely been key to its success. It’s hard to delegate in the early days – and often easier to just do it yourself – but in the long run you’ll reap the rewards of taking a patient approach to training up others around you.”
And to anyone thinking about setting up business in Manchester? “The North West is an exciting place to be at the moment. Manchester is evolving rapidly and gaining attention on a global scale. I’ve gained lots of inspiration from the business leaders around me. The great thing about this city is everyone makes time for each other. You never have to look far for role models you can relate to.”
Before letting her go, we asked Kelly for any last words of wisdom for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to start their own business “I was very fortunate to start my business right at the beginning of my career, which has allowed me to dedicate all of my focus to making it a success. That’s why I really encourage young people interested in business to give it a go before they look to employment. Worst case scenario, they have a good story to tell in future job interviews”.
You can learn more about our Making You Content’s services and even copywriting itself over on the website and blog www.makingyoucontent.com, Kelly is open to a call or coffee with people interested in marketing and business as a whole. Drop her an email on email@example.com
Keep an eye out for lots more news from Making You Content over the coming months as they celebrate their fifth birthday! You can follow what they are up on LinkedIn and Twitter, or sign up to the newsletter for monthly updates from the team.
If you would like to benefit from the support received under the Excelerate Labs programme then please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.