The Marketing Optimist is a full-service marketing agency based in Leeds and an outsourced marketing function for many of its small business clients. Its services include marketing strategy, search engine optimisation (SEO), social media marketing and website design.
Founded by Richard Michie, the agency prides itself on its agile and 'no-nonsense' approach to business and has built a name for itself in the region by delivering ROI through strategic outreach and marketplace analysis. However, as the businesses grew organically, Richard needed to hire additional staff to service an expanding client base whilst investing in his own marketing to maintain this level of growth.
To fund these plans, Richard decided he needed a business loan and approached his existing bank. However, the terms and rates offered weren’t suitable for the agency and Richard wanted to explore different types of funding available, including online lenders. Richard approached a broker for advice, who recommended Esme.
Esme offers unsecured business loans to businesses from £10,000 (or £25,500 for sole traders) to £250,000 over a one to five year repayment period, with no set-up fees or early repayment charges. Applying for a loan with Esme was easy, and Richard completed an online application in less than five minutes. Once approved, Richard received the funds into his bank account the next working day.
As many small business owners know, balancing the books can be time-consuming and stressful. Supported by this loan, Richard can spend less time worrying about cash flow and more time running the business. And, by recruiting more staff to service clients, the whole team has an improved work-life balance.
Since securing the loan, the agency has invested in its marketing and PR; attending key tradeshows and hosting events including a Social Media Masterclass for prospective clients. By supporting these activities, the loan has been instrumental in funding the firm’s growth ambitions for the next five years, which includes expansion within Leeds and the surrounding areas.
And, having been approved for a loan with Esme, the agency now has a credit rating. This has positive implications for the business overall and means it will be more easily approved for another loan in the future, as well as other financial services and products.