Member Profile: Blu Mint Digital
BECC talked to David Bailey from Blu Mint Digital who works with his partner Berit (and two very adorable cats.) David and Berit are seasoned business development professionals and entrepreneurs, having worked with companies in the UK, USA, Finland and Estonia. With their experience in the startup and small business sector, they created Blu Mint Digital to offer digital marketing services for entrepreneurs and businesses who need to get noticed.
What brought you to Estonia – and what’s keeping you here?
I just fancied a change really and I had an Estonian wife, so this was the natural place. The e-society has made it easy to reach people all over the world, so this is the best place to set up a digital business. Now I have my own company and employees working for me. The connections I’ve made out here have kept me here really – and they’re getting stronger every day. Now I’m here, the children are settled, so it suits my personal and professional life.
Why should people come out here?
It’s easy to set up your own business here and the country has this marketing machine going. I work in the start up industry and there is a real start up hub here – companies can ride on the crest of that marketing machine and the conditions really help. If you’re looking to set up a company that transcends borders then you can do that here. There are so many expats coming out here too, so the talent pool is getting bigger and bigger. The more affordable cost of living is also a big plus.
What’s your background?
I’ve always loved marketing and sales. I’ve previously been involved in selling English language programmes and finding investors for mining companies.
How did you come to found your company?
I knew that changing careers in the UK would mean taking a pay cut and retraining to get the experience, maybe even doing an internship before I could have enough experience to apply for the job I wanted. Moving to Estonia, however, meant that I could do all that, so I started working for other companies and then finally became my own boss, which I love. I don’t think I would have been able to do that in the UK.
What were the main challenges starting out?
Many start ups have short timescales. You can’t just test something out for three months – you need to test it over a few days and find out if it’s working quickly. In our case, the actual set up was easy, but finding the talent who can deliver high quality work to tight deadlines is challenging, and so too is finding the first clients. Clients have very specific demands, so we need people who understand how to deliver them and achieve their business objectives. I met Adam Rang of Rang Media House through BECC and now I partner with him quite a lot.
What are the biggest changes you’ve noticed in the industry and where do you see your company developing?
Some people still have old-style websites with loads of copy – and that’s not how it works. People don’t read websites, they scan them. I see a particular expansion in premium content, so mostly videos and web development. I’m looking to expand there and get an in-house web developer so that I can offer those services directly to the client. I think that would be great if we start touching up code to make it more of a holistic package. Digital marketers have to be full-stack marketers these days.
Marketing used to be designed in very separate channels – people would ask: can you just do our social media but if you’ve not got any content, then it’s not worth-while. You need to have the whole package and I see that in the industry now. That’s why they come to us because we can offer all that and we don’t offer additional fees.
Biggest regret & biggest success to date?
Not opening my own business sooner – not having the initial courage to do that but doing that would be my biggest success. Our business now has international clients and that’s what I’m most proud of.