Marketing graduate combining business and healthy living
Pamela Noble, marketing graduate, reveals her tips for success whilst running her own business Island Sesnes.
What is your current role at Island Senses?
I am the founder, holistic healer and massage therapist. I run the all of the business aspects, therefore I am also the media planner, marketing, events and PR manager and accountant.
In brief, can you describe your journey to starting your own business?
From the outset, even before starting university at London Met I had a vision of running my own healthy living business. I was a massage and beauty therapist before I committed to four years at university and I always planned to come back to it. I started Island Senses in 2011 with the goal of making it a large holistic massage therapy service in the business sector. I researched the competition and found my niche: luxury holistic therapies. I signed up for business advice via the job centre and also joined several forums. However, when I began exposing myself, I discovered quickly that others had copied a very good competitors successful website idea and were overwhelming the market. In order to stay on top I developed relationships with my, at the time, current contacts. We discussed working together, advertising each other through our client connections and there continued.
I utilised LinkedIn (for its business nature) to reach out to businesses, particularly large with wellbeing initiatives in place. I admit, it was pretty tough to get a reply! You have to chase but as so not to appear needy! It also helps when you have a linked contact. This has evolved into something even bigger than I had imagined. I now run a healthy living retreat business, Kanoa Retreats, with my partner and a more recent project which is launching very soon. Health expansion and conscious living is my philosophy.
Why were you attracted to the field of marketing?
I understand marketing has a pivotal role in attracting an audience. I was involved in marketing our holistic centre and increasing sales through promotion and link selling therapies with products so it was natural to intensify this learning through a course. So, how does marketing work to draw the people to you? That's what I wanted to discover.
How do you think your course helped prepare you for the world of work?
For my particular journey, I think the course is more than preparation for a job. Since I wasn't interested in the corporate environment, I hold my experience as individual as myself. Most of the coursework brings your attention into practical application of various projects, the trick is to figure out your role in the team working on the project, and this is how we learn to develop our own people skills as well as learn the content of marketing. Every person has a unique experience, as we are all different, so it's really what you put into that you gain from it.
Did you do any work experience while studying for your degree?
I worked during my whole degree! At the beginning of my degree, in Glasgow I was in the field of experiential marketing: aka guerilla marketing. I also took some in-office work for the same companies and a little promotional modelling, but the experiential excited me due to it's connection with the end person: your clients. I feel that the marketing industry overall (out of university) misses this core point over and over. But that's evolved a lot since I completed my degree in 2011.
What’s been your best experience at London Met?
I had a lot of great experiences. Learning and working with challenging peers; examining real business ideas and creating those into a real project; meeting some of the best friends I can wish for (whom are still surrounding me); having exceptional and interested professors who become your friends and want to share your experience wholeheartedly. Dr Alex Muresan rocks!
What advice would you give current students in terms of being successful at finding jobs upon graduation? Maybe a few tips?
Before seeking employment within an organisation, ask yourself: what do you value in your life; what is it that you believe your gift to the world will be? Network consistently with peers, professors and engage in groups that interest you, even start your own within the university and gain like-minded friends. London truly is a perfect networking environment if you fully interact with it.