Students given a lesson in entrepreneurship as marketing professional helps graduates set up their own business
A Staffordshire marketing expert is training the next generation of small business owners as a unique collaboration with Nottingham Business School (NBS), part of Nottingham Trent University (NTU) offers a rare opportunity for students to buck the declining trend in self-employment.
NBS has launched the first of its Marketing Mavericks courses with Victoria Prince of Touchpoints Marketing, who was recently recognised as the UK and Ireland’s best marketing adviser.
The first of its kind at the University, the course helps to teach students practical knowledge around setting up their own business after graduating. Part of a series of student enrichment opportunities the 14-week course is designed to inspire more young entrepreneurs to set up their own marketing businesses.
Victoria Prince, who has over 20 years of experience in the industry and runs Touchpoints Marketing, based in Uttoxeter, will lead the sessions which are based on her own Marketing Mavericks course designed to give young people practical skills to use their expertise to start entrepreneurial enterprises.
It comes as statistics show a steep decline in the number of people in the UK choosing self-employment. In 2022, just 13% of the total workforce, or 4.2million, were self-employed compared to 15% or 5million in 2019.
Figures from ONS also show that the average age of those running their own business remains around 45, a trend Victoria would like to change to encourage more graduates to see starting their own business as a viable option.
Victoria, who is an entrepreneur herself taking her vegan snack kit idea from Kickstarter to selling online at iconic British store Selfridges in under a year, said: “Entrepreneurship is a skill and if we are to grow our economy it is important that we inspire more young graduates to understand that there are a wealth of opportunities for them post University and that they don’t simply have to take a traditional graduate role.
“Marketing Mavericks provides practical training and advice in running a business. It offers students the opportunity to grow in confidence by receiving further training to use the skills they have learnt at university to create employment opportunities for themselves.
“I appreciate self-employment isn’t for everyone, but I am passionate about giving students the opportunities and skills to look at all employment avenues available after their studies.”
The first course starts on Monday 6th February and will include a series of online sessions for students studying at Nottingham Trent University to follow. Finishing on Monday 15th May it will include everything graduates need to set up their own business.
Tom Spencer at NBS said the Marketing Mavericks course was part of several additional training and personal development courses available to students at the university to prepare them for the world of work.
He said: “At Nottingham Business School we believe it is important to offer students a wealth of opportunities to allow them to grow and succeed in whichever way they want to. It is a very challenging economic climate at the moment, so it is important our students are fully prepared for the next stage in their journey. Courses like the Marketing Mavericks give students the chance to learn practical, hands on advice about running a business and are part of our ongoing enrichment program for graduates.”
Twenty five placements are available for students this year with it hoped the course will become a regular opportunity for students going forward.
Touchpoints Marketing is a specialist marketing agency based in Uttoxeter which provides engaging strategy support and creative monthly marketing activities.
Victoria created the UK’s first energy ball recipe kit. Developing the idea alongside her own marketing business, before going on to sell the growing vegan brand, she also has a decade of experience in corporate marketing teams having worked in a variety of multinational firms.
She was recently awarded the best marketing adviser in the Enterprise Nation Awards 2022 being singled out for her specialist marketing support to help businesses realise their ambitious growth plans. More information is available at www.touchpointsmarketing.co.uk