CHARLOTTE NICHOLS Director, Harvey & Hugo
How did you get into PR?
My early jobs in my parents’ shops and a leisure centre put me on the path to PR and marketing. I was fascinated by why customers made their buying choices and what made them decide to come into our shops over others. This was further fuelled during my time at university, where I enjoyed the marketing module of my degree in sports science and management the most. Following university, I got a graduate job in a PR agency in Newcastle and loved it so much I set up my own business a couple of years later.
Who or what inspires you?
My family. I watched my parents work incredibly hard running the retail business my grandfather had set up in the 1970s whilst raising a family. I didn’t get to spend much time with my grandfather as he died when I was three, but his legacy and work ethic have always been my motivation – I’ve wanted to make him proud.
What advice would you give to anyone interested in getting in PR?
Be a great communicator – you really need to be an allrounder in today’s multimedia world. Work on your written skills, your verbal skills and your body language. Get as much work experience as you can, and don’t be afraid to work for free initially to build up your knowledge and experience – it will pay off further down the line. If you can do this alongside studying for a relevant qualification, even better – it will help the theory make more sense. Read and absorb as much news content as you can. There are so many forms of media now – social, radio, TV, print, online etc – that it helps to get a good grasp of all channels.
What has been your most memorable moment to date relating to your business journey?
During lockdown, I found an old diary that I’d written not long after I started Harvey & Hugo and it was lovely to look back and reflect on where the business has come from and how it’s grown over the years. I realised that I’d achieved some of the goals I’d written back then, so it was a rare moment of reflection and an opportunity to feel proud of how far I’ve come.
What are your favourite magazines?
A big part of PR is reading a large variety of magazines for our clients. I’ve read everything from Drain Trader to Funeral Service Times – you wouldn’t believe how many industry specific ones are out there! So when I have some spare time I enjoy reading magazines that are completely different to the ones I read at work. My favourite is Women’s Health, but I’ve also been reading the Investment Times recently to learn more about investing.
What’s the future hold for Charlotte Nichols?
In the immediate future, sleepless nights and baby cuddles – I’m due to have my second child in May! After that, I’m looking to continue to grow Harvey & Hugo while enjoying time as a family of four.