A business story always has a beginning, but generally never has an end if it continues to exist, as it evolves, adapts, listens, learns and researches what its customers & audience need, want and desire. That is exactly the story that defines MTMO.
The Make The Most Of story started over 5 years ago with a small shop in the smallest town in Wales with a Royal Charter (Caerwys), offering selling space to local creatives and businesses to sell their wares into the community. That was the first stepping stone to understanding the true value of community connections and how physical spaces offered more than just selling opportunities. The shop space was also about people connecting with each other – an important health & well-being factor for reducing isolation in rural areas, especially as high streets recede, public transport services are reduced and public services are cut.
Fast forward a few years and there is still a physical shop & Gallery, but it is an independent entity run as a Community Interest Company known as the Carriageworks Denbigh, where one of the founding directors of MTMO, Lynne Wilson, (with independent directors and partners), utilises her skill set to bring people together through arts and crafts workshops and other community driven projects.
The first chapter for digital Make The Most Of (MTMO) saw the work of creatives and makers from the local community going online in 2012. The challenges of e-commerce soon realised itself and actually demotivated sellers when commissions made their products too expensive to sell and ship. We removed commissions and moved towards a fixed fee set-up, but the challenges were too great for many sellers – creating what people wanted to buy, taking good product photography and making volume, became too much for those who preferred to stay local, indulge their hobbies and work with people they could see in the real world. This of course explains why so many craft fayres work for creative people – it is their network.
MTMO moved forward, realising that there was a need to connect businesses to people, and that included service providers too. Searching all over the internet for information is time consuming, with search results often serving up irrelevant unhelpful data.
The way the population engage and interact with each other is changing and the under 40’s always look to the internet to find information about a product, service, place, business, organisation, or community BEFORE they engage. This in itself can be isolating and causes barriers to engagement, reducing interaction with real life situations, changing customer perceptions and expectations. This is hard for business owners, who have historically relied on word of mouth referrals, or traditional forms of marketing and advertising and physical footfall.
Over 73% of people use the internet to source information – BEFORE they act. Getting seen in Google search, with the increased use of smart phones and tablets, has become imperative. Over 90% of people search Google for information in the UK and much of this is done ‘on the go’.
Sourcing relevant and important information has become a necessity for businesses, service providers, organisations, 3rd sector projects and communities. People prioritise and want to access the right information when they need it 24/7 through online search and that means if you can’t be seen online there is no business coming your way, and if you are a 3rd sector organisation, how can you serve the community you exist to serve?
Over the last 12 months MTMO have been working on a completely new digital advertising and marketing platform that also offers community connections too. We have been researching the problems that community organisations are facing, listening to public sector agencies and accessing strategic social plans that are highlighting the shortfalls coming our way in health and social provision over the next decade, which will further impact on businesses in communities.
The next chapter in the MTMO story is all about connecting people, businesses and communities together, enabling them to collaborate.
MTMO has become a Digital Advertising & Marketing Platform designed to connect people with businesses, organisations, 3rd sector community projects & communities.
MTMO is using technology intelligently to support communities and businesses online and offline by offering affordable digital marketing and business solutions that include; SEO analytics & reports; social media posts; blogs; and tailored community packages that include intranet options that keep people connected and updated (suitable for managing client groups, client retention strategies & third sector projects/organisations).
We believe in connecting people with information, giving them choices, a voice and a way to collaborate with each other in easy, time saving and practical ways, because we believe in working together to help and support businesses and communities.
Author Louise Barlow