Believe in the power of community. On some days when you feel big goals are impossible, or when you feel like giving up, you need to lean on your like-minded community. You can even “borrow” motivation, and in turn “return” with your own inspiring stories to pay it forward.
In this special column called the “TLC x Fempreneurs Series”, we will be featuring inspiring Female Entrepreneurs (Fempreneurs) in short. You will be able to have a sneak peek at their mindsets and their daily habits.
Meet Marine Lim
Tell us a little about yourself.
Hi, I am Marine Lim, the founder of Absolute PR.
Absolute PR is an award winning lifestyle PR agency started in 2005. It grew from being a beauty trade focused PR agency to now an integrated lifestyle PR agency working with clients from the aesthetics, beauty, fashion, F&B, arts, education, lifestyle, corporates and non-profit charities and organisations.
What got you started on your business?
Before I started my own PR agency, I was working in marketing, events and PR related fields. It piqued my interests to further develop my strengths in PR when I realised that the market at that time was lacking of good PR professionals who could understand the needs of business owners and brand custodians to develop effective PR strategies that could help to improve the business branding and positioning in a meaningful and impactful way. That got me excited, as I wanted to fill that gap. The missing gap of a powerful connection between brands and their target audiences.
Before you started on your business, what did you do on a full time basis?
Before I started my own PR agency, I worked mainly in the professions of an events planner and executor, a publicist, a marketer, a fund raiser and an accounts servicing in an advertising firm too. It’s interesting to find that eventually all the work experiences conjured up to the making of a well rounded PR consultant.
What were some difficulties you faced in your life and how did you overcome them?
Life is never a bed of roses and is always full of challenges but I believed these challenges are there as life lessons for you to grow stronger and better. As a solopreneur in the beginning, there were many obstacles that I had to overcome. One of the memorable ones was I was constantly asked by potential clients who had since turned clients and now close friends on how I can help them to achieve their PR values. I started my own PR agency in my late 20s, and it probably didn’t help that I looked even younger than my actual age, though now I appreciate that advantage:) Many clients at that point in time had doubts on the experiences that I have and how I could help to manage their PR campaigns. I went around, met and spoke with many people on the different issues they have then with PR agencies. One of the more immediate concerns was that PR agency was seen as a luxury rather than essential service to have for companies. Many also had this perception that PR is an expensive with minimum or no ROI marketing tool as compared to paid ads and promotions that businesses were running to get immediate sales.
Through many rounds of consultation sessions, I decided that in order to get things going was that I needed a portfolio to prove that PR works and it doesn’t have to come at a cost that will cost you an arm or a leg. With a right PR strategy, you will get your projected ROI in terms of PR values and eventually sales leads. I did a number of pro-bono projects on brands that I believe has a story to spin to build my portfolio and gave many free marketing strategies and PR advices to business owners and when these strategies proven to work for them, they naturally came for more and eventually engaged me for professional works to be done. In life, we do need to practice patience and perseverance and I learnt these virtues at a young age with my father whom I lost in my early 20s. He was the one who taught me to be patient, with the things I want and never lost sight and focus of it.
What is your vision / personal motto?
Every situation in life is temporary. So, when life is good, make sure you enjoy and receive it fully and do good with it. When life is not so good, remember that it will not last forever and better days are on the way. Be patient.
Who inspires you?
My father – a very humble, hardworking and honest man.
Do you have any word of advice for other ladies who are starting their business / starting to pursue their dream?
Whenever you feel like quitting, go back to the reason on why you wanted to start. It had to be as compelling.
How do you think you can help ladies to feel confident and empowered?
Surround yourself with people of positive vibes who are at the same or higher energy level than you. Sometimes you need to be in the right environment to unleash that confidence and feel empowered.
What excites you most about your industry?
That the possibilities is endless. There are so many ways of using PR tools to create so many different positive results in the right way. There are no fix formulas or templates, you grow with the brand and move in momentum together. And the best part, you get to be part of the transformation and growing process of these brands.
What have you learnt recently that you hope the other ladies can take back?
That nothing is impossible if you are willing to learn. At my age, I am still learning every day and it never stops to amaze me how we humans can manage so many things and we can be anything we want to be so long we want to learn. Especially during this Covid-19 situation, where many things are a first for many people, I took the circuit breaker period to pick up baking and I surprised myself that by learning through YouTube tutorials videos, I was able to bake stuff that I didn’t even know I could do it without an oven!
What do you do in your free time as self care? How do you unwind?
I enjoy good jazz lounge music with a pot of good tea to relax my mind. I appreciate good massages to unwind my body and rejuvenate with my daily morning walks at the park with my hubby before I start my work day. I practiced self care everyday so that I don’t feel burnt out easily. I make time for ME time regardless how busy and how late it may get in the day. My ME time includes doing little things I like to take my mind off work and that includes caring and playing with my two dogs, knitting, baking and watching Netflix etc.
What is one thing you are grateful for?
I am grateful for my loving and supportive family who is there for me throughout good and bad times.
Let us know more about what you do!
If you want to experience the power of PR and get connected with your target audiences through a series of effective integrated PR strategies, find out more from us on how that can be achieved with your budget.
Connect with Absolute PR!
Are you a Fempreneur too?
Connect with us – we’d love to feature you! Say hi to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to us via our social media.
Read TLC x Fempreneur Series:
- Anna Lim, Limmy’s
- Connie Go, Gosford Leather
- Jane Blanloeil, Puttot
- Grace Ng, Lenicc
- Gisele Woon, MagicPainters
- Ezza Yusof, 2morrow Official (Malaysia)
The rest of the Fempreneur interviews can be found here.