The Soap Co. is a newly launched luxury soap brand and social enterprise supporting people who are blind or otherwise disabled or disadvantaged. When they needed help with their social media, The Soap Co., was matched with Digital Mum, Ruth Thomson. We recently caught up with their co-founder Camilla Marcus-Dew.
“It’s impossible to do everything yourself as a small business
You really want to but it quickly gets very difficult to manage the different elements. The first six months of The Soap Co., for me, were about launching a product and creating a brand. When we started to think about social media there was no real website or physical product. Social media was about bringing to life the core vision of a luxury product that was also ethical and environmentally friendly. We knew social media needed dedication and focus and wasn’t something I could just do as an add-on to my day job. Step forward the Digital Mums Partner Programme.
Our Digital Mum is one of the most passionate people I’ve ever met
Ruth was a great fit; her career has focused on fundraising and marketing for nonprofit organisations. Her most recent role was Head of Philanthropic Partnerships at Cass Business School and City University London so she is incredibly experienced.
No one knew what The Soap Co. was really going to be when we started – it grew a personality of its own, and Ruth helped interpret that. She found great curated content and was patient with tweaks to customer voice and to ensuring on-brand messaging. Beyond that Ruth was adept at social listening and engaging with our followers.
A trainee is not there to work in a bubble
You have to be prepared to put lots of effort in. That balance is important, and any business working with a Digital Mum will have to put thought into the direction of any campaign. Strategy needs to be considered weekly as tweaking happens often. This is a learning journey from both sides. The Digital Mum is there to help and guide you but ultimately the organisation makes the final decisions. Personally I have learned an incredible amount about social media from Ruth.
An engaged audience has had a huge impact
We were recently up for the Independent’s Social Enterprise Reader’s Choice Award and there was so much support for The Soap Co. on Twitter. We didn't win but as a two month-old brand it was great to have hundreds of people behind us. We even have the model Lily Cole as a supporter. She shares our tweets and we love the partnership with her store Impossible. With the right person driving it, it’s incredible how social media can put you in front of people. We also have a cabinet minister as a follower and fingers crossed we will be stocked in The Houses of Parliament soon.
The Partner Programme was the best £300 we spent during launch
Since graduating in November Ruth now works freelance with The Soap Co. across our social media. We’ll be moving into LinkedIn and other channels soon. I’m an advocate for Digital Mums wherever I go. People love the concept of getting mums who want to work back into the workplace. Plus social media is an area people often feel overwhelmed by and need expert guidance. Working with a Digital Mum can allow a business to approach social media in a very different way and the campaign they manage might open up some interesting new doors.
"I feel so lucky to have learned social media marketing in real time by launching such a brilliant new social enterprise brand. There was no time to learn anything in theory, it was all immediate and with real risk as well. It was intense but we got such fantastic support, engagement and feedback from our community. I couldn't believe some of the results we achieved in two months; hundreds of followers and thousands of daily impressions.
I am currently running The Soap Co. Christmas campaign, #FeelGoodXmas. Digital Mums has given me the confidence to know we will make this a success. I'm loving social media marketing, so much so I am planning to launch my own business in January 2016. Social Social will specialise in helping social enterprises, charities and ethical businesses with social media marketing. I couldn't have done it without Digital Mums."