Champion of the Week
Meet our Champion of the Week: James Taylor, Founder of Roaring Mouse PR
Except for the very start and about 10 years studying away and then working in London, Chesterfield has been my home all my life. I live in Walton, about 100 yards from where I grew up, with my partner Jackie and our three children. I’m almost 40.
Roaring Mouse is PR and content marketing agency, founded in 2012, specialising in delivering integrated campaigns that drive brand awareness, web traffic and sales.
The business is officially located at Monkey Park Works in Brampton. In reality, we operate pretty much everywhere. We have a team of six consultants supporting startups, scale-ups and multinationals from as far afield as San Francisco, Berlin, Aberdeen and Southampton.
The campaigns we deliver are engaging audiences all over the world.
1. What’s your best memory of the town?
My best memories of Chesterfield are all sporting. I remember watching Adam Gilchrist smashing Derbyshire around Queen’s Park and seeing Brian Lara bat there too. My favourite memory is Chesterfield’s FA Cup campaign in 1997. There was a real buzz around the town that I enjoyed, even as a supporter of Sheffield Wednesday.
2. What development do you think will make the biggest difference to the town?
I’m looking forward to seeing Walton Mill completed. Those derelict buildings have been an eyesore for as long as I can remember and could be put to much better use. The development I think will make the biggest difference is Peak Resort. That should be a huge boost to the tourist economy, create hundreds of new jobs and become a fantastic showcase for what is possible here.
3. How would you describe Chesterfield to someone who has never visited?
In the past I’ve described Chesterfield, somewhat tongue in cheek, as being both the centre of the world and the gateway to the North. These days I tell people it is a beautiful market town, close to the Peak District and conveniently located just two hours north of London.
4. What are the positives of running a business here?
The main benefit I get running a business here is the lifestyle that goes with it. Chesterfield is a down to earth, relaxed place to live with stunning scenery on your doorstep and enough going on to keep you entertained. You need that kind of environment when you rely on ideas for a living.
On a more practical level, it is close enough to London, Manchester and Leeds to be considered ‘local’ and the UK time zone means we can serve customers in Europe and America during normal office hours. There are several international airports within a couple of hours drive and, as we gets bigger, we’ll need more of the kind of data analytics and media skills being developed by Chesterfield College and the universities in Sheffield.
5. Who or what do you turn to in Chesterfield for business advice?
We’ve always used local suppliers where possible. Crush Design did our website, Shorts have done our accounting since before Roaring Mouse started trading and we’ve also had legal advice from Elliot Mather. DCJ Group got us a good deal on our insurance too last year.
6. Why did you choose to base your business in Chesterfield?
The business is in Chesterfield because it’s where I live! We started in Sheffield, and although we did some work locally, we found that we attracted most of our customers from much further afield. The majority of our consultants work remotely too, so I decided to work somewhere I can walk to.
7. Who do you admire in the community?
I admire what Custom Solar is doing. We’ve done lots of work for energy and cleantech businesses and you’d have to go a long way to find a renewables company as impressive as what Matt Brailsford has built.
CK Group is another fantastic success story for Chesterfield. Ashley Kirk and his colleagues have built an excellent staffing and outsourcing business and earned an enviable position amongst the scientific and technology community.
8. What are the aspirations for your business?
I want Roaring Mouse to be recognised as one of the best PR and content marketing agencies on the planet for fast-growth businesses. We’ve got fantastic creative and analytical people doing remarkable work and helping customers build their businesses. We now want to create opportunities here in Chesterfield and bring on board entrepreneurially minded people and partners who want to help build something amazing.
9. What advice would you give to someone establishing a business here?
You can serve the world from Chesterfield. Dream big, work hard and stay grounded. Don’t be scared of failure, forgive your own mistakes and hire the best PR and content marketing agency you can afford!