How the entrepreneur went from LadBible to advising CEOs of multi-billion pound companies
Tim Hyde is not your typical 26-year-old from Greater Manchester.
After starting his career at LadBible at the age of 18 as the company’s 11th employee, he later worked at Social Chain and collaborated with Eurosport, Ford, Asos, Puma and Spotify.
That was before he went on his own and founded his own social media marketing agency, TWH Media.
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As a keynote speaker and brand consultant, Mr. Hyde has spoken to ASICS, Apple Music and Unicef, and helped organize conferences at universities, WeWork, Glug Events and delivered a speech for Sky.
After its remarkable rise, BusinessLive’s how i did it series caught up with the entrepreneur to uncover the secrets of his success and what the future holds.
What does your business do and how did it start?
“I run a social media marketing agency specializing in performance marketing.
“I founded the company four and a half years ago after working in several prestigious social media companies (LadBible and Social Chain), which gave me the confidence to take the plunge and start a business by myself.
“Since integrating TWH Media I have spent over £100m advertising on Facebook for clients which has generated over £500m in revenue for companies such as Missguided, Adidas, Amazon, Dreamworks, Huel, Revolut and many DTC e-commerce companies.
“I also had the chance to speak and consult all over the world in places like New York, Singapore, Amsterdam, Berlin, Dubai and many more. The opportunity to interact with different people and companies is something something that I find really gratifying.”
What was your “Eureka moment” when you realized you had a good deal?
“I’m not sure I had a Eureka moment, but I had some surreal opportunities and experiences along the way.
“Starting a new business is always risky and I certainly don’t consider myself a big risk taker, but starting my own business was the next logical step and I was in an extremely lucky position where I already had clients that offered substantial mandates to deal with them independently.
“When I did the math, I realized that by going solo, I was going to double my income, while potentially working fewer hours.
“By the time I was 21, I was making more than my parents’ combined income, so it was more of an ‘Oh wow’ moment and maybe it was the ‘Eureka’ moment where I realized that I was doing what I love and doing it well.
“Other than that, I’ve been lucky enough to win awards and the recognition from your peers definitely gives you confidence that you’re doing the right things.
“Finally, I’ve had to pinch myself a number of times when CEOs of multi-billion pound companies have asked for advice or flown me in to speak to their teams.
“It’s a huge honor that such great companies trust what I say.”
With the beauty of hindsight, what would you say to your younger self when you were just starting out?
“Trust the process and trust yourself. Control what you can control. Trust usually comes with proof of work and when you’re just starting out, running a business you have no prior experience at can sometimes feel overwhelming. when there is so much to learn then quickly.
“I’ve always been pretty good at listening to people, but I’ve learned that listening to the right people is actually a skill.
“If there’s an area where I don’t have expertise, I’m always happy to ask for help and take recommendations from someone I trust.
“In business, it’s impossible to know everything, but you can set yourself up for success by working hard, being kind to people, and being responsible, but the reality is that success isn’t guaranteed.”
What does the future hold?
“I hope it’s the same. I’m very aware of how lucky I am and I love my job and everything that comes with it.
“I am determined to continue working with global brands, traveling and building a reputable business.
“I always set aside time to recharge at the end of each year and I also use this time to analyze the year as a whole and then set goals for the year ahead.
“I am quite a curious person and I like to learn and apply myself to new challenges.
“The rapid growth and opportunities offered by Web 3.0, NFTs and blockchain are going to be the next frontier.
“So I try to learn as much as I can and get involved where I can in these kinds of projects because they are the future.”
If you weren’t running your current business, what would you be?
“I would probably work at a marketing agency or an online publisher. Social media tends to get a lot of negative press, and in some cases rightly so.
“However, I’ve also seen how many lives it has changed for the better. The power of communication and the ability to get a message out to millions of people is always surreal, so doing it for another company is probably what I would be.”
What is your business model?
“I have plenty of role models, mentors, and people I look up to. Reading, watching, and conversing with other entrepreneurs, business leaders, and even professional athletes can provide incredible insight.
“I strongly believe that you can take inspiration from how other people approach situations, deal with difficulties and how people deal with success.
“But the implementation of their advice/strategies should be applied in a way that is unique and authentic to you.
“Trying to copy someone else will never yield the results you are looking for.
“I was extremely lucky with the timing and getting into a fast growing industry that was in its infancy like social media.
“The other way I’ve been lucky is having close friends and a former boss in Steven Bartlett who not only gave me a huge opportunity, but gave everyone insight. behind the curtain of what was possible.
“There have been so many life lessons and opportunities for personal growth through my work at Social Chain that have helped me immensely over the past five years since I left; a growth mindset, appetite for self-improvement, work ethic and the power of social media are all things I have seen firsthand lead to extraordinary results.”
What company or individual are you passionate about right now?
“There are so many amazing businesses emerging from the UK and some of them from the North West – it’s an amazing business hub and one of the reasons I’ve chosen to continue to base myself in the regions where I grew up.
“I also have a lot of entrepreneurial friends and seeing them continue to be successful is amazing and inspiring.
“One company I had the pleasure of working with briefly was Ecologi. Their growth and the mission they are trying to accomplish is monumental. having a lack of support when people start their own businesses.
“As a community, showing support (even if it’s just liking something) can go a long way and it’s something I’d love to help promote.”
What business idea would you like to have?
“From a business model perspective, any SAAS company with great MRR where founders can be self-sufficient would be really cool.
“I guess anything in the healthcare tech or blockchain space is fascinating. I’m definitely not smart enough to have created something innovative in those spaces, but the people who have it really are going to change the world.”