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We talk PR and Entrepreneurship with Seven Hills co-founder Nick Giles

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by Startacus Admin

Nick Giles is the co-founder of Seven Hills, an acclaimed and award winning campaigning communications company.

Named as the UK’s fastest-growing PR consultancy by PR Week magazine in 2012 and listed as one of the UK’s 100 best new firms by, Seven Hills, co-founded in 2010 by Nick Giles and Michael Hayman, has been credited with redefining UK enterprise through Seven Hills Nick Gilesinitiatives such the StartUp Britain campaign and MADE: The Entrepreneur Festival which takes place in Sheffield this week.

We caught up with Nick just before the start of the Festival to talk PR, find out more about MADE and Seven Hills itself.

Cheers Nick for your time. Your portfolio of clients within the entrepreneurial scene is pretty vast - what makes working in this area exciting to you as a PR company?

Working with entrepreneurial clients is hugely exciting. The people that start businesses are passionate, enthusiastic, creative and dynamic people. They change things, they disrupt things and they usually create something out of nothing. If you work in PR and get to work with people like that, it's hugely varied and exciting place to be.

You run MADE: The Entrepreneur Festival in Sheffield, that is now in its third year. What is MADE all about?

MADE: The Entrepreneur Festival is the country's biggest and most inspiring festival of entrepreneurship, attracting around 3,000 guests and 50 high-profile speakers in venues across the city of Sheffield. Deputy Prime Minister Rt Hon Nick Clegg MP describes it as "a major national festival that the whole of the UK can be proud of".

MADE: The Entrepreneur Festival This week MADE will bring together the country’s most successful business owners, incredible inventors and magnificent makers and provides budding entrepreneurs, media, policymakers and established success stories to be inspired, share insider tips, network, meet investors, mentor and even influence future policy.

This year, the main two events take place at Sheffield City Hall on Thursday 20 September (Made in Britain) and Friday 21 September (Going Global). Beyond the main-stage keynote speeches and panel discussions, there is also a diverse and exciting programme of bespoke fringe events on offer in venues throughout Sheffield’s city centre.

If you're interested in entrepreneurship or run your own business, you need to get to MADE.

We like to think of ourselves as 'self starters' and we note that at MADE you have an award for the Nations 'Change Maker'. What makes someone a change maker - could Startacus be a change maker?

Who knows? We've not met but I think you'd certainly be in with a chance!

At MADE this year, we are shining the spotlight on the country’s most entrepreneurial young individuals and the startups driving an Change Makers enterprise-led recovery. From Dragon Peter Jones to Betfair co-founder Ed Wray, we asked a selection of Britain’s most influential business owners and commentators to nominate an entrepreneurial “rising star”, under the age of 30. The Change Makers is about finding the new faces fronting some of the UK's most exciting, high-potential new companies. We wanted to find a group of young entrepreneurs that are going for it in 2012.

We gave the British public the chance to pick the most outstanding individual. Now voting has closed and all eyes will be on the main stage moment when our winning Change Maker is announced at MADE on 20 September.

The prize: a one-to-one mentoring session with a special VIP guest. And this will be no ordinary business meeting: it will take place in the MADE chopper, provided by this year’s charity partner, the Children's Air Ambulance – 3,000ft above Sheffield.

What's the key to good PR?

That's a tough one to answer and probably warrants a longer response but 'good PR' often boils down to a few key elements – creativity, ideas, energy, transparency, honesty and clarity.

What would be your biggest piece of advice to someone starting a business, but with no budget for professional PR and Communications?

Simple - do it yourself! Use the tools at your disposal – your website, your Twitter account, your Facebook page – to promote what you are doing and publicise your successes. Many of the young entrepreneurs that are featured in our Change Makers competition this year are masters at using social media to communicate and they achieve huge awareness for very little outlay.

Thanks again Nick for your time and we wish you and your team all the best with MADE this year. Good luck to all the change makers too!!

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Published on: 19th September 2012

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