An interview with Julie Holmes, co-founder of Hey Mic!

HeyMic! Founders

Tell us a little bit about your company. What is your business in your own words? How long has it been running?

I’m Julie Holmes, the creator and co-founder of a company called JUST Innovate Ltd which manufactures and sells a neat little gadget called Hey Mic!. Hey Mic! is a Bluetooth wireless microphone explicitly designed to connect with smartphones to capture great audio with your videos.

Our business has two founders: Steve Clarke and me. We’re both professional speakers who decided to work together early last year, and we’ve been running since June 2017. We launched Hey Mic! within 90 days!

Was there a lightbulb moment?

It happened when I was working at a trade show, where I was speaking to a group of about 200 people. I wanted to capture some audio of the essential messages I had put together for this presentation and the questions asked by the audience so that I could share them back with other people in my business, namely sales and marketing.

I’d done recordings on my phone before, but they were never good enough to be used as it was often hard to hear in big, busy rooms. I knew at that moment I needed to create something that would make it easy for me to capture and reuse the audio, so that’s where the idea of Hey Mic! was born.

Were there any big pain points when you were starting up the business?

One of the most significant challenges we had was purely finding time to get things off the ground.

Both Steve and I are busy, full-time speakers and business leaders, so carving out and creating another company was incredibly hard. So, as you can imagine, we were both working evenings and weekends as we tried to get Hey Mic! off the ground and it often felt like there weren’t enough hours in the day – we got tired! But we believed in our product, so knew we had to make it happen.

What has the high point been so far?

We donated a couple of Hey Mic!s to the Professional Speakers’ Association in the UK to help raise funds for their Foundation, which collects money from its members via auctions for other speakers when they fall on hard times, or just need a helping hand.

I was amazed to see how excited everyone was to bid on our product! It was so rewarding to see how much money we were generating for the cause, but it also reinforced that people in our marketplace; our friends and colleagues, saw how valuable Hey Mic! could be for them.

Have there been any low points and how did you overcome them?

Continue reading An interview with Julie Holmes, co-founder of Hey Mic!

Give your business a workout

Give your business a workout!

We all know the promises we make at the start of the year to get in shape, feel fitter and be stronger, but do you think about your business in the same way? Forget signing up to the gym, give your business a workout instead and get a head-start to 2018. Ready, set, go!

Continue reading Give your business a workout

An interview with Anna Ward from CakeDrop

Anna from CakeDrop

It’s often said that you should love what you do. Well, it’s safe to say that Anna Ward loves what she does – after all she gets to work with cake every day, and who doesn’t love cake?! Anna launched CakeDrop – a cake delivery service for offices –  in July 2017 (still fresh!) and she certainly knows what it takes to get started. Here Anna talks to us about her inspiration for the delicious idea and how life has changed since launching. Enjoy…

Continue reading An interview with Anna Ward from CakeDrop

Are your team taking enough time off? It’s more important than you think!

Did you know that 73% of UK employees don’t use up all of their annual leave? That means that only a quarter of us are actually making the most of our time off allowance. It’s no wonder that more people than ever are reporting feelings of burnout, listlessness and tension at work.

Even if you let your team roll-over their days, here are five reasons why you should be encouraging them not to stick around at their desks for too long: Continue reading Are your team taking enough time off? It’s more important than you think!

Are Napoleon’s comments about the English still relevant in today’s business climate?

According to sources, Napoleon once said “L’Angleterre est une nation de boutiquiers” – “England is a nation of shopkeepers”.

Whilst the number of shops on the average UK high street has certainly diminished greatly, we may well still be a nation of entrepreneurs. Continue reading Are Napoleon’s comments about the English still relevant in today’s business climate?

Shares in your new company

If you’re thinking of setting up your own limited company, one concept you’ll need to get to grips with is the whole area of shares.

Emily Coltman FCA, chief accountant to award-winning online accounting software provider FreeAgent, gives an overview of the rules around shares in a private limited company. Continue reading Shares in your new company

Does your marketing need a spring clean?

Like a house, a business can accrue junk over time. Especially when it comes to marketing. In this post we look at the importance of focusing on what’s working, clearing out the junk and keeping your marketing fresh. Continue reading Does your marketing need a spring clean?

Protecting your property: An introduction to trademarking

Incorporating a limited company is one of the most effective ways of securing your business name. It means that nobody else can register a company using that witty name you’ve been sitting on for years before you’ve had a chance to get things off the ground. But it’s a common misconception that registering a name with Companies House brings with it all worldly rights to the name. Continue reading Protecting your property: An introduction to trademarking

‘Your Business Adventure’ – a MadeSimple infographic

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Formed a company but not sure what to do next? No problem adventurers. We’ve designed this infographic to help you navigate through the early stages of running and growing your very own business. You’ll find tips-a-plenty and some guidance on dodging potential hazards. It’s a jungle out there… but we’re here to help. Continue reading ‘Your Business Adventure’ – a MadeSimple infographic

Social media horror stories that’ll give you nightmares

Social media horror stories that'll give you nightmares

Halloween is here! And whilst you may view Halloween as being all about trick or treating, witches, pumpkins and so on, here at MadeSimple we have a different take. We think Halloween is the perfect time to look at some of the nightmarish social media mistakes made by large companies, who really should have known better. Read on at your own peril! Continue reading Social media horror stories that’ll give you nightmares