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Tell us your business story to date...
Hello! I'm Lucy Werner, founder of The Wern PR. Having worked both in-house and at PR agencies for over 10 years, I finally took the leap to leave the rat race to work on a new project with serial entrepreneur Dominic Cools-Lartigue. I was instantly overwhelmed by how many amazing ideas backed by inspiring entrepreneurs were looking for PR support to help grow their businesses. Recognising that there was a gap in the market for quality and affordable PR at this business level, I decided to set up a consultancy that specialised in startup, small and independent businesses.
Fast forward to 2017, we are now a team of five and have expanded this even further by offering training and bespoke consultancy packages for businesses and individuals who want to learn how to do PR for themselves - our aim is to help as many businesses grow as we can.
What can we look forward to seeing from you?
Evolving from publicity for businesses, we will shortly be announcing our first talent management deal for an excellent female founder. We are also looking to expand our training tools and lesson guides for startup businesses.
Can you share your 3 bits of advice for fellow entrepreneurs or anyone starting their own business?
1. Make sure you invest in the following categories of your business: IT, accountancy, legal/contracts and insurance. These may seem like a big upfront cost but my goodness, if you fail in any of those areas the costs will be much higher.
2. Take your time to hire - we've never used a recruitment consultancy and the people who have applied speculatively have always proven to be the most dedicated staff.
3. Network and shout about what you are doing, all the best things that we get to do have been a direct result of me and the team just getting out there and chatting to people.
What tools & resources have helped you in your startup journey?
1. Coveragebook.com - an amazing PR resource that actually provides some measurability for what we do as a business to our clients.
2. Slack - a great way to communicate with all our clients and internally too, while keeping email traffic down.
3. The School of Life - having time to develop myself personally has meant that I have a renewed energy and enthusiasm to create and implement great ideas in the business. Sunday Sermons are just one of the ways I enjoy doing this.
Is there anything you can offer to help other startup businesses?
As a starting point, you can download a free 101 PDF guide to PR from our website http://thewern.com/master-class/ and we have written lots of articles and guest content that should give you a steer on some simple tips and tricks you can do for yourself: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/own-a-startup-you-dont-have-to-hire-a-pr-firm_us_57a26548e4b0c863d40010de
We are always interested in collaborations and working with other like-minded individuals on skill swaps.
Is there any help that are you looking for?
Our team is made up of individuals who love PR but also want a work-life balance that you can't often find in busy PR agencies, where team resource can be overstretched and the individuals burnt out. We have the mentality of a startup but the combined experience of over 30 years in public relations and are always looking for like-minded individuals to join our squad.
We love chatting to startup businesses for the Q&A section of our blog, as well as service led companies who can provide specific advice for startups.