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Young Lancaster entrepreneur takes marketing business to the next level after completing degree studies

A 22-year-old entrepreneur from Lancaster is forging ahead with his business career fresh from graduating from university.

Jonathan Gale graduated with a degree in Management and Marketing from Edgehill University this summer, and is now focused full-time on his business SoMar Marketing, which offers a range of services including social media page management and content creation.

The enterprising student launched the business in 2019, and from small beginnings with a single client he is now ready to make it his full-time occupation after completing his studies.

Jonathan said: “The inspiration to start SoMar Marketing came from a guest lecture at university. We had a lecture from a media company owner who told us that having a job isn’t security and that it’s better to start your own thing.

“Two months later, after a bit of brainstorming, I launched the business.”

The 22-year-old is the first member of his family to run his own business. Mum Katrina is headteacher at a local primary school while dad Alan works for Lancashire Police.

Jonathan studied for his A-levels at Kendal College, where he was identified as having dyslexia and academic staff helped him to develop learning techniques that paved the way for him go to university.

He said: “Up until the first year of sixth form I’d always excelled at education. After Kendal College recognised my dyslexia things fell back into place for me, and one of the reasons I chose to go to Edgehill University is that they have really good learning support.”

Running a business alongside his studies proved challenging, but Jonathan found it a useful learning experience.

He said: “The first year was hard. It was just a year of learning to run a business. I knew how to do the work, but not how to deal with people.

“Completing my degree remotely has also been challenging because I haven’t been able to access support in the same way, but that has driven me a lot harder to run my business and make sure I succeed.”

University tutor Dr Giles P McClelland said: “I had the opportunity to work closely with Jonathan as his dissertation supervisor and recognised some traits in him that will be transferred into a career in commerce. He has energy, drive, is personable and creative but mainly, what impressed me most about Jonathan is his ability to engage in evidence-based decision making. I am really pleased Jonathan is going to pursue his entrepreneurial instincts.”

SoMar Marketing now supports a wide range of business-to-business and business-to-consumer clients and Jonathan also specialises in producing multimedia content for nightclubs and techno labels.

As part of the next phase of SoMar Marketing, Jonathan is releasing a series of free resources on YouTube offering tips and advice on the world of social media marketing.

He said: “Not every business can afford to outsource their marketing, so I’m happy to help to share my knowledge and help other companies to manage their own social media presence.

“Although it’s a part of everyday life, it’s easy to forget how daunting social media can be and how hard it can be to devote the time to it while running a business.”

Jonathan credits much of his success to membership of the BNI Lancaster Brunch networking group which he joined in late 2020.

He said: “Being a member of the networking group has given me access to huge amount of support and helped me to reach new clients.”

And although he could have chosen to base his business anywhere in the country, Jonathan was keen to operate from Lancaster.

He said: “There’s so much going on in Lancaster and such a fantastic vibrant business community. I feel like you could launch any business here and make a success of it.”

To follow SoMar Marketing’s video advice series, search ‘SoMar Marketing’ on YouTube.