Wednesday 27th January 2020

Tell us a bit about yourself and your business.

My name is Tom Webster and I am the founder and Director of Ice Cream Social, a boutique social media agency based in St Johns in Woking. We are a full service social media agency, meaning we do everything from training, to creating content, to moderation, to advertising. We focus on smaller businesses – taking the expertise from working with the big guys and applying it to them. I’ve worked in social for 12 years across a variety of big companies and agencies. Social Media has taken me around the world, to the BAFTAs, to The Hub on This Morning and now to my own company.

How has the pandemic changed your business?

The pandemic started my business! I was made redundant, as the pandemic hit the company I was working at quite hard. I thought that this was an ideal opportunity to strike out and start my own company – if not now, then when? So ICS is really a Pandemic Baby – we only know the Covid world! Because of Lockdown, more and more businesses are focusing on digital, and social media in particular. So I feel we are placed to adapt well to the landscape. It’s also put a lot more people in a position like mine and has created the environment to become an entrepreneur. I’m very keen to help new businesses as they are setting up. My clients are all currently businesses who are less than a year old. I’m really invested in their success as it mirrors my own.

What were the new challenges you faced?

Even though I am a digital guy, I love meeting people in person. There is nothing better than getting to know someone over a coffee or a pint! Covid has changed that. I’m getting used to Zoom and Google Meet rather than a nice coffee shop. It’s also a little more difficult to network – The Woking Chamber Of Commerce has been great in facilitating networking, but you can’t beat real life interactions.

How did you adapt to these new challenges?

I made sure my office was quiet, and I got a good chair, webcam and microphone!

What does the future hold for both you and your business in Woking?

We’ve only been going for a little while, so growth hopefully! I’m really keen to meet new businesses in Woking, not only because we might be able to help them sell more products or get more people through the door, but because it’s just good to support each other. As for me, I’m really keen to get down to the new Cinema regularly to catch up on the new releases and get out and about to the restaurants I’ve not tried yet.