We had the good fortune of connecting with Shakeema Bouyer and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Shakeema, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
The thing is, I never thought I would really be a business owner – a serious business owner that is. I majored in Media Communications with the aspirations of being a journalist. That changed when I did an internship with a Marketing & PR firm my senior year in college. It allowed me to see how I could still be affiliated with the media industry from the behind the scenes. Fast Forward about 10 years later and I my Pastor asked me to write a press release – not knowing at all that I had formal training and knew what I was doing. For about 2-3 years, I acted as the unofficial publicist for him and our church. In 2012 that is when I realized I could do this “PR thing” on my own. I started developing a list of media contacts, had built relationships within my local community and had improved my writing skills. So … yeah.. I could make this happen. So in September 2012, I launched my Public Relations agency – The Queens English PR. I later rebranded in April 2017 to Mattie Clay Branding & Public Relations.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Mattie Clay Branding & Public Relations is an integrated communications agency.

Over the years, I have developed skills that allow me to offer not only branding and public relations, but I can also create marketing strategies, social media content planning and community/cause-related collaborations. We will be celebrating 10 years in September and this journey has not been an easy one. There have been many times where I have stepped back, wanted to quit or changed the model of how I operate. During those times I would outline things that I wanted to accomplish or re-work a plan that I needed to improve so that I can continue the business. It was important to me that I marked each milestone, each year in business, each change so that I could see how far I had come and that kept me motivated to not throw in the towel. 10 years in … am I where I want to be or where I think I should be no? But I am much closer than where I was and I am thankful for each turn that my career has taken. It was also helpful for me to keep the right people around me. Those that could encourage me as well as criticize me. Those that could challenge me and celebrate me. Those that could tell me when I am wrong and what I can do to make it right. It is important in my business to not have people that agree with everything you do and say because alot of that is wrong – just being honest.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to Shoutout my grandparents, my angels – Mattie Jane & Eddie Clay Guess for whom my agency is named. They both passed away shortly after I rebranded my agency but they never really got to see how much I have grown. I think they would proud of me. My grandfather, a retired postal worker and pastor, loved to write so I think I got that from him. My grandmother was an educator so my love to share information came from her. In their own gentle, and sometimes what I would call rough ways, they always encouraged me and wanted me to see my potential far beyond where I saw myself.

Website: www.mattieclaybpr.com

Instagram: instagram.com/mattieclaybpr

Linkedin: linkedin.com/in/mattieclaybpr

Twitter: twitter.com/mattieclaybpr

Facebook: facebook.com/mattieclaybpr

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBjkxWJA1OPlK5WRDtFWVZg

Other: www.redheadcmg.com Business Over Brunch Podcast – Available on Anchor, Spotify & YouTube

Image Credits
Profile photo: Pretty Kuntry Productions

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