Sharon Latour is the CEO and Founder of Marketing Bee. Marketing Bee is a one-stop boutique shop for all your business marketing needs. Located in Melbourne and Sydney, Marketing Bee provides you with access to your very own team of designers, marketers, writers and strategists.
Where did you get the idea for your business?
I’m passionate about helping medium-sized organisations grow using marketing as it’s the lifeblood of any company. My business, Marketing Bee would help these companies by providing them with their own ‘marketing department’ based in the cloud at a fraction of the cost generally associated with setting up a marketing department in-house. My agency does this through a unique, cloud-based technology called Hivernate. This system allows the team to work from anywhere individually but cohesively as a marketing team should in the 21st century.
How did you get your business started?
With $400, a seat in a Melbourne cafe and lots of coffee!. At the time, I didn't have extra cash - after being an international student in Australia for five years (working part-time jobs) and quitting my corporate job to pursue the dream with little to no planning. I had $400 to pay for a website and that’s how I got my business online.
What lessons have you learned so far on your business journey?
I’ve learnt that you don’t need to have a lot of money to start your own business. You need determination, a single-minded focus, vision and be able to work really hard.
How important for you has it been to have a mentor?
I’ve met different people in my life who have been mentors - both officially and unofficially. I think it always helps to have an experienced and a ‘been there, done that’ viewpoint. While I believe in the power of mentors, it also comes down to walking the talk to achieve your business goals and dreams.
What are your top three tips for starting a business?
1. Learn to recognise opportunities and gaps in the market and how you can fill that gap.
2. Hire people who are good at their job and let them get on with it.
3. Start a business before you’re ready. You don’t need a lot of money when it comes to launching a business.
Sharon Latour is a graduate of the RMIT Bachelor of Business (Marketing) 2011, she is willing to answer your questions about starting a new business. Find her in the Members section.
"While I believe in the power of mentors, it also comes down to walking the talk to achieve your business goals and dreams." - Sharon Latour CEO and Founder of Marketing Bee