AGENT Q&A with Suzanna Hall Founder of If Consulting & MarketingLast Updated: January 1, 2019
‘There is no talent here, just obsession’. I live by this, I am obsessed with what I do. I put in the hours, the work, the practice and thankfully it’s brought me to where I am today.
After gaining experience with some of Northern Ireland’s fastest growing companies Kukoon and Amelio Utilities, Suzanna Hall founded If Consulting and Marketing, an agency created to provide industry leading services with a no jargon approach that clients can relate to.
11 Questions for If Consulting & Marketing Founder, Suzanna Hall
Suzanna Hall freed up some time in her schedule to talk to AGENT about what first got her into business, her inspirations, inspirations, and how she manages to maintain a work-life balance.
1.Briefly tell us about your business and your business goals.
My company is If Consulting & Marketing, a marketing consultancy specialising in the B2B sector.
I had gained experience working with some of Northern Ireland’s fastest growing companies including Kukoon and 2015 EY Entrepreneur of the Year finalist Amelio Utiltiies. I saw a niche for an agency specialising in the B2B sector that clients could relate to and most importantly get a return from. In my opinion, if there is no return on investment there is no point.
I work with clients from exciting new start-ups to multinationals across a broad range of sectors including engineering, construction, law and accountancy.
I’ve been able to grow my business over the past few years through the ethos ‘make every client a referral and every referral a client’. Any size of company can come to us and know they will get both a personal service and a return on investment. My motto is ‘we build relationship and we build award winning campaigns’.
For the future, I’m hoping to increase my business in the South of Ireland as well as in the UK and grow my team. I want If Consulting & Marketing to be the first name of anyone’s lips if you hear the words ‘B2B marketing’ in the UK and Ireland.
2. What age were you when you realised you wanted to run your own business?
I was 25. However, looking back I think it was always on the cards. I’ve always been the one to take charge and drive things forward.
3. Who are your business icons and inspirations?
Conor McGregor—‘There is no talent here, just obsession’. I live by this. I am obsessed with what I do. I put in the hours, the work, the practice and thankfully, it’s brought me to where I am today.
Also, Karen Brady is just phenomenal—an inspiration to women worldwide. I do a lot of work in very male-dominated industries such as the construction and engineering sectors, and I’m truly inspired by what Karen has achieved in football to gain such respect.
4. What has been your biggest challenge in business, and how did you surmount it?
Gaining respect as a marketer coming from a non-marketing background. My degree is not in marketing and in the early days people were sceptical. I dealt with this head on, I had worked as a Sales & Marketing Manager for a hugely successful civil engineering firm before setting up my own company and had front line experience in the B2B sector, which to my clients is much more important than a marketing degree. I deliver results and that speaks for itself.
5. What gives you the most satisfaction in business?
Seeing my clients get return on investment. For me there is nothing more important than ROI. I talk numbers to clients; I’m not interested in anything else.
6. Work-Life balance: is it possible? How do you achieve it?
That’s an interesting question. I think when you love what you do, work-life all moulds together. I am so passionate about my job – I eat, sleep and breathe marketing. My clients become my friends and I am in regular contact with many of them. I work very long hours but I love it and wouldn’t change it for the world.
7. What is the first thing you do every day?
Check LinkedIn, to see what my connections are up to, then check BBC news.
8. What screen saver picture is currently on your phone?
A picture of me and my partner on a holiday to South East Asia.
9. What is the most important app on your mobile phone, and why?
LinkedIn. I specialise in the B2B sector, so LinkedIn is the main social media channel for almost all of my clients. I manage multiple LinkedIn accounts and do LinkedIn training sessions on a weekly basis. I firmly believe that on LinkedIn you don’t spend time – you invest it.
10. What is the last thing you Googled?
‘What is stevedoring?’ I’m working with a new client in a very niche market, and getting to grips with their industry. It’s very exciting.
11. What item do you never leave the house without, and why?
My iPhone. I have my life on it. I’m always checking on my clients’ marketing campaigns and checking the news to see if there is anything happening in the world that could impact my clients.
12. What advice would you give to your younger self starting out in business?
Don’t be so hard on yourself and take time to enjoy the achievements.