A Little About Me...

MY STORY

Hi! My name is Maeri (pronounced Mary), and this is the story of how this business began. My hope in sharing this with you, is that it will remind you of the person behind the business, that my story is part of the reason I started my business and will help us forge a REAL connection, no matter how far away you may be. And if, after reading, you feel compelled to share your story, I would absolutely love to hear from you!  … so here it goes:

In May of 2001, I pushed open the double doors from the lobby of the multimedia company I was working for as a Marketing Director, stopped at the steps leading to the parking lot and shouted,

“Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty, I am free at last”.

This was the last day ever that I was going to work in marketing. The final straw was being asked to create and market a website that would sell knickers worn by Page Three models – not modeled by them, but actually WORN by them.  Even now as I type this, my face is contorting into that face you make when you taste something bad.

This wasn’t what I had signed up for when I got my degree in marketing. So after sitting across the table from a group of men who thought the whole pre-worn knicker thing was great, I walked out of the office, took a few days to compose my exit plan, and told them to find someone else to do their marketing because it wasn’t going to be me. I was done with marketing.

WHAT? YOU GAVE YOUR CAREER IN MARKETING UP JUST BECAUSE OF THE KNICKER INCIDENT?

No, it was because the marketing I had been asked to do felt false, inflated and wrong. I didn’t like the products I was being asked to market or the people I was selling to. But it left such a bad taste in my mouth that I decided marketing and I needed to take a break.

And that is exactly what I did. I actively avoided marketing at all costs.

Until, in 2007, when I  set up a small business that I wanted to run from home (if you want to find out more about my business, here is the link). I was on maternity leave after the birth of my third child and made the decision that I wanted to create a better life/work balance but also do something that connected me more with my desire to be creative. With my newborn son on the floor in his baby carrier next to my desk, I went about setting up my business. And I also knew that I had to dust off my marketing alter ego, put on my big girl’s knickers (clean, not used) and become my own marketing department.

And much to my surprise, I fell in love with marketing again. Marketing had completely changed since my door-step exit six years before, in a way that I hadn’t anticipated would be more attuned to my way of connecting people with products.  

It was the kind of marketing that meant that small businesses like mine, that prided themselves in creating a product that was meaningful and purpose-led, could make direct contact with people who wanted their services.

What I understand now, that I didn’t then, is that small businesses can have a BIG presence online. They can do this while still staying true to what makes them unique because the tools to do this are so readily available – whether it is social media, creating a website or just producing a simple but powerful video that tells a story about your business. And that marketing your business involves using the technology available today that wasn’t even on the horizon ten years ago.

This is no small feat, and even though I enjoy this part of my own creative business – not everyone does. I know this because other creative businesses have told me how hard it can be to be a maker and a marketer, one that has to learn the tech side to their business.

Which is why I formed the Creative Business Academy. We focus on helping you with the parts of your business that are the most important to success – tech and marketing- but it is also supported by other creative people who have businesses that they love and are in exactly the same place as you. Which we hope will make you feel less alone if you happen to be in one of those places  – where you feel the pull of wanting to have a business that reflects you and your values while trying to figure out how to make it work without going crazy.in

Our Private Facebook Group is a safe, supportive and nurturing environment to start with – you can join and watch before you are ready to be part of the conversation.

And if you think that you want to put a bit more power behind growing your business, we are adding timely, truly helpful information in our courses section as well as broadcasting Facebook live sessions that help you keep motivated on your journey.

 Know that you’re not alone, and that EVERYTHING can change when you make big leaps in the direction of your heart, and commit yourself to making progress with the help of others.

We hope you’ll let us join you on your journey!

Maeri signature

Founder

Maeri Howard

Founder 

MAERI HOWARD

What They Say...

I’ve written a newsletter on and off for a couple of years, but never been entirely happy with it. Maeri’s highly practical course has helped me think about exactly who my newsletter is for, how often I’m going to send it out, and taken me through the process of compiling and writing it in a very supportive yet ‘just get on and do it’ way. I can’t thank you enough for the very productive, clear workshops and individual feedback in between. Altogether a very enjoyable, productive, sociable course that has given me a great newsletter and a desire to write more.

Rachel Hutchinson,   Patch Memories

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Can we help you?

If you are a small creative business and want insight and experience that allows you connect with the right set of resources and develop a plan to grow your business, we could be just what you are looking for.