Interview with Natasha Hatherall-Shawe, CEO and Founder of TishTash Communications.
Tell us about TishTash. What is the mission of TishTash? How do you help entrepreneurs and business leaders?
TishTash Communications was incorporated in 2012 and is now a full service marketing and communications agency working with clients on all aspects of PR, Digital and marketing communications. TishTash is known for specialising in the beauty, health and wellness sector, but also works with great entrepreneurs and leaders in differing industries too – mainly those that are family and female focused. This helps raise the profile of their business or brand, their products and services amongst regional and global media outlets, and with their consumers via events and activations. Our agency’s mission is to build positive relationships with all stakeholders and increase their visibility and also their bottom line!
What made you set-up TishTash?
I had been working in marketing and communications in the UK and then UAE for many years with some of the biggest brands such as L’Oreal and Diageo, and in some of the biggest global agencies including Havas and McCanns. After two years working in the UAE, I decided I wanted to do it my way with a real focus on standards and global brand best practice and I started freelancing in late 2011 before establishing my agency TishTash in early 2012. I followed my heart and personal passion with a focus was servicing brands and businesses in the beauty, health and wellness space.
What made you decide to hire an all-female team?
Originally, due to the nature of the clients that TishTash works with, we attracted and retained female team members due to their obvious enthusiasm and passion for the beauty sector. 10 years later, we are proudly an all female team of 30+ members, and this has become a conscious and deliberate decision. We want to champion and nurture women both as leaders and team members and provide a truly flexible environment for all but especially working mothers to enable women to have both a career and family life. We also cannot ignore the natural interest for our clients’ businesses and brands and we find when team members work on clients they have true interest and passion for the results show in the work. Ultimately this works really well for our industry niche, and whilst we have had male employees before at TishTash, we are now committed to growing a ‘fearlessly female’ brilliant team.
You have worked with a number of leading companies; can you share a case study of a successful client project?
Combining our work with Costa Coffee and our other brands, we were really proud of the ‘pivot’ we made during pandemic restrictions which we received a lot of award nominations and recognition for after a successful ‘multi-brand’ event. We launched #TishTashThru – The ‘TishTash Drive Thru’ – Here we were able to showcase Costa and their new menu in Dubai, and alongside, we gave media, influencers and consumers. a way to stay safe (in their cars) and still experience the brands and businesses we worked with. It was a lot of fun for the team to work on too.
What are your top THREE PR tips for social media?
1 – Focus on quality content, not vanity metrics and make sure your images, videos and graphics are ‘on brand’ and consistent.
2 – Never, ever ‘buy’ followers.
3 – Focus on the details of your brand and business. Consumers or potential clients are watching, and they love to see the real people and the behind the scenes more than just sales messages.
What are the biggest PR trends in 2022?
In 2022 we will see a focus on the faces behind the business and brands continue, so solid thought leadership and authenticity is vital. Consumers want to see authenticity behind the companies they buy from or work with, so solid values and mission is a must to stand by and showcase. Customer centric PR is more important than ever – they are your advocates and want to champion your services and trust your brand. PR should focus on this.
Congratulations on your 10-year anniversary! In the MENA region, we see many start-ups disappear within the first 5 years, what are your top tips for continued business growth and hitting the 10-year mark?
Hard work, consistency, and great relationships with clients is what drives results for us – yes, we still have a number of clients we started with 10 years ago on our client roster! Secondly, at TishTash we credit our people as the true key to our success. If you focus on your people, the rest will follow. We nurture, love and train our team, and our HR policies enable them to have more of a work/life balance and “true” flexibility which is vital in such a stressful industry as ours.
What has been your biggest success in the first 10 years?
It is difficult to pinpoint any one thing, but as we now hit 10 years, I am able to look back on the last decade with pride and reinforce our commitment to consistency, relationship building, solidly results driven work and the team culture itself as to our biggest driver in reaching this significant milestone of 10 years in business. Winning “Best Medium Agency” at the PRCA Awards 2021 was definitely a defining moment for us and it was great our work was recognised in the countdown to our anniversary.
What are your goals as a company for the next 10 years?
We are in a period of rapid growth at TishTash and this year alone we will see the opening of new offices in KSA and the UK – we will then spend time going forward consolidating this expansion and our company culture to enable us to double down on the great work we produce for clients, growing and nurturing our teams and building new and sustainable relationships with stakeholders across all territories.
How can our readers find out more about you?