Ben Matthews

Visit: Montfort

 

Describe your business

Working along with my wife, we run a digital agency, Montfort, which runs digital, social and contenting marketing campaigns for some of the biggest and brands in the world. We offer senior strategic counsel and honest independent advice to the biggest brands around the world.

Together we work with the likes of the UN Refugee Agency, The Guardian and Harper Collins, bringing in a wide range of trusted freelancers (AKA Mates of Montfort) to work alongside us.

What is your greatest business achievement?

I was recently appointed as the youngest member to the panel of Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA), which represents the interests of PRCA members operating as independent consultants. I’ll be working alongside people ten years my senior, a daunting but rewarding prospect.

For Montfort, I’d have to say one of most recent campaigns, for the Twitter hashtag #WalkTogether. A wide group of organisations, co-ordinated by British Future, were looking to engage the people of London and across the UK on social media in a public commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the 7/7 bombings. Montfort were asked to manage key social media channels on 6 and 7 July, engaging with supporters of the #WalkTogether campaign, encouraging people to take more photos, retweets, favourites and likes. The results were outstanding. For a small team, we were able to have #WalkTogether trend worldwide for the day.

What made you want to work for yourself?

I felt like I was stuck in a rut and wasn’t stretching myself enough as an employee. I initially hadn’t considered freelancing until I met with a former colleague who had taken the jump years previously, and told me how much more joy it brings to his work life balance.

Taking the leap into freelancing after having a steady job was probably one of the most nerve-wracking things I’ve ever done. But I survived (and thrived!) and haven’t looked back since.

 Why is self-employment so important?

The freedom and opportunity to create new projects is particularly exciting, especially as it hasn’t been readily available in my industry until now. It’s made it an exciting time to be a freelancer.