Inspirational Woman: Hayley Criddle & Donna-Marie Allsop | Founders of Mouth2Mouth TV

Mouth2Mouth are a relatively new voice over agency based in W1. Voice Over Agencies supply all the voices you hear on commercials, virals, games, promos even those corporate training DVD’s you sit through at work along with documentaries and cartoons – ANYTHING that needs a voice!!

 

Hayley Criddle and Donna-Marie Allsop have been friends since Primary School and got together in 2008 after years of claiming to be able to “do things better.”  They decided to put their money where their mouths were and so Mouth2Mouth was born.

What made you decide to set up your company?

I had been working within the voiceover field for years and it felt like a natural progression – Donna had worked in production and rather than sit and moan about our jobs every time we met we decided to get involved and do something for ourselves. It’s a really fun industry and two days are never the same. We wanted to enjoy working and focus all our energy on something we could control the direction of. So basically it’s a control thing!

What have been your biggest challenges so far in the company?

Marketing – without a shadow of a doubt. Starting from scratch –if you get it wrong to start off with it can take forever to undo – deciding what to send out and making sure we project the right image has been incredibly important to us – keeping a balance. We wanted our company to be a reflection of us – not a stuffy organisation!

If there was one thing that you could say was a great success, what would it be?

Our branding and our product. The feedback on our website, logos etc has been phenomenal and then once the website has done its job and created  bookings we’ve had fantastic feedback on all our people – which we’re VERY happy about as without them we’re nothing! It means we chose well!

How do you see the market performing in the next 12-18 months?

Well, we all know things have slowed down but in our industry there is so much scope. We’re new and so we can be competitive on pricing without compromising on the quality – setting up when times are hard means that we have kept outgoings to a minimum which allows us to have that competitive edge, there are a lot of commercials/ virals / games/ etc that all need good quality professional voices, which we have and those people that are able to continue advertising, which most business models actively encourage during lean times, means happy days for all of us!

If you could go back to when you started Mouth2Mouth TV would you change anything?

We’d have made the most of sleep! We’re both really good friends with 4am these days!!

When and if you get the time, what do you like to do in obtain a life balance?

Honestly? We like going out and having a good time! Nothing beats going out with your mates and having a laugh – We’ve both got season tickets at Spurs – so if things aren’t stressful enough starting up a business in a recession we’ve had to endure the worst start to a season since time began! Great!

Can you share any tips for any members wishing to start out on their own?

When you calculate your start up  expenditure DOUBLE IT!

You have been best friends with your business partner since you were in primary school, how do you manage to stay so close and work together?

Because no –one else would put up with us and that is a fact that we are VERY aware of!! The real secret is to laugh at everything and trust each other. Even when we’re up against it we’re able to laugh and see the lighter side. You’ve GOT to have a good time when you start up a business otherwise there really isn’t much point to it.

If you could change one thing in the way you setup your company what would it be?

In true Hayley and Donna arrogant style – NOTHING! It’s been a challenge setting up when other businesses are folding but we truly believe that when we fly through our first year in this climate nothing can stop us!

Have you always been in this industry?

We’ve both flirted elsewhere – but we’re media dahlink MWAH!

What draws you both to this industry?

It’s fun and can be challenging – you get to work with a really diverse range of characters. You never know what you’re going to get asked for and it’s a great feeling if you can help someone with the impossible, whether that be on the voice brief or if it’s a budget issue – it’s just good to be in control and be able to make things work and make sure both our clients and our artists walk away happy. It’s good to be able to make things work for all involved.

To take a look at their website and to find out more about Voice Overs and what they do, please click here to access their website

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