Natalie Porter knows you can have your cake and eat it, too.
The artsy Brit is living her entrepreneurial dream as owner of Immaculate Confections, providing bespoke cakes for weddings, birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions. Natalie, 26, founded the delicious company in Hertfordshire after making a splash with her own wedding cake.
“I’ve always had an artistic side and I realised I was quite good at it. Soon friends and family started asking me to make cakes for them. At the time I wasn’t enjoying my job as a trainee accountant and realised that life is too short to waste it doing something you hate, so I decided to start my own business.”
Often over a cup of tea, Natalie consults with clients to come up with a one-of-a-kind cake design that captures the unique flavor of each special event. How do many of those clients find her? The Internet, of course.
Techno icing on the cake
Natalie knew she needed a strong online presence -- including a memorable domain name and website, professional email and social media profiles on key platforms -- to help her business succeed. But, like many small business owners, she was more confident with her creative skills than with her technical knowledge.
“Starting your own business can be a really daunting experience, especially when you’re largely working on your own. I’m a naturally arty person and I’m good at what I do. But when you start your own business you have to become good at so many new things, things that can be quite foreign to you,” Natalie says. “For me, operating your own website is one of them.”
The 24/7 support at GoDaddy gave Natalie the technical insight and backup she needed to secure and set up a .co.uk domain name and web hosting for her website, plus a business-class email address. Here's what she has to say about that:
“You can talk to someone at any time of day and they solve whatever problem you have there and then. That’s incredibly valuable to a business like mine – my website is my shop window and if it’s not working, my business is effectively closed.”
Natalie also promotes her business and interacts with her clients on a Facebook business page, showcases her designs on Pinterest, and engages with her followers on Twitter. Like the flavorful layers in her mouthwatering cakes, her integrated approach to marketing Immaculate Confections online offers her customers and prospects a taste of her brand via the social sites they frequent the most.
Amen to that.