Clare Associates Ltd is now based in Pembrokeshire, having relocated from Cornwall and the Tamar Valley in 2021.
I started out as a marketer, working for a major national Internet Service Provider in the 90’s and then presenting internet training courses for small businesses at the University of Liverpool.
I worked on search engine optimisation campaigns from internationals to one man bands. After a while I found I spent so long trying to get developers to implement my promotion ideas that it was quicker to learn to program. 😉
I’ve built a lot of websites – php/MySQL driven mostly – as part of a team, and on my own. I know my way around server logfile analysis, Google Analytics, DNS and email. I provide technical backup to a number of sites where the owners are happy to work on their own ideas, but want someone to call in from time to time.
In many ways, my career path has been unusual. I qualified as a chartered accountant and spent the first few years of my career as an auditor, moving to a Big 4 firm when I finished my exams in 1997 – so far, so ordinary. But somewhere along the line I became a Google Qualified Advertising Professional and a Google Analytics Qualified Individual, I worked in sales then risk management, I ran a Europe-wide quality review programme, worked in recruitment and then training. I advised big businesses on sustainability issues and small businesses on risk and strategy. I helped colleagues to develop their skills and I helped clients to improve their businesses.
Accounting qualifications plus marketing qualifications is an unusual combination, but to me it makes perfect sense. It’s all about having a breadth of skills and experience to advise clients.
While some of my clients have been large multinationals, most of my career has been spent serving middle-market and owner-managed businesses. That’s where the fun happens, where a consultant can really make a difference. Making a difference is what gives that buzz. I like to think I’ve made a difference for my clients. And I’m very proud of the “You’re Hired!” competition – my idea and one that, by improving their employment skills, has made a real difference to the prospects of young people across Plymouth.