Creator Profile: Katie Mayne and Annie Barton of Mayne Marketing - Portland, OR
Hi Katie and Annie! Tell us a little bit about yourselves.
Hi! We’re sisters, born and raised in the Pacific Northwest!
Katie: I’m currently living in Boston, MA with my husband. When I’m not working, I enjoy playing tourist in our city and writing.
Annie: I live in the Portland, Oregon area and am a Pacific Northwesterner through and through. I work as social media manager at Mayne Marketing and manage The Portland Studio, which is where we shoot a lot of our photos!
What were your first jobs?
Katie: I worked as a personal assistant to a vocal instructor in high school. I answered a lot of emails, scheduled appointments and handled billing - Looking back, it really prepared me for the logistics side of running a business!
Annie: The summer after high school, I worked at a conference center in Cannon Beach, Oregon as a camp counselor. I absolutely loved living by the ocean!
What led you to begin Mayne Marketing?
Annie: Mayne Marketing was founded by Katie’s husband, Nic, in 2012. The agency specialized in online marketing and business strategy for law firms. Katie majored in Communication and started writing content for Nic in college. She took over the company in 2016 and has directed the rebrand and shifted our focus from law firms to small businesses.
Katie: A lot of my technical writing training came from my early years writing for Mayne Marketing. While I enjoyed writing for a living, I wasn’t passionate about law. I brought Annie on after she graduated from college and we began to reshape the company into what it is today!
What do your services include and what type of clients do you normally work with?
Annie: We specialize in content creation, social media marketing and product photography. We provide clients with holistic online marketing packages at a price point that’s sustainable for small businesses.
Katie: Majority of our clients are small business owners. We love working with creatives and makers that see the value in artistic online marketing.
Did you always anticipate being a sister team? How did that evolve?
Katie: When I took over Mayne Marketing, I did majority of the work myself and hired freelancers as needed. I knew the workload wasn’t sustainable long-term and wanted to bring someone in that shared a similar vision. For me, it’s very important that the work produced by Mayne Marketing is consistent in quality and aesthetic, which can be difficult when you’re offering creative services. My sister and I share a similar style and giftings, so it was a natural fit! She graduated from college around the time I was looking to hire a social media manager and it just made sense!
How do you find clients or brands to work with? Have they all come to you or do you do some of your own outreach?
Annie: As a marketing company, we definitely understand the importance of marketing ourselves! When we first made the transition from working with law firms to working with small businesses, we reached out to brands that we resonated with and started building a new portfolio that reflected our aesthetic. Currently, most of our clients find us on Instagram or are referred to us. (We absolutely love our network of loyal clients!)
It seems as though you work with a lot of smaller brands and makers; why do you think it’s important to shop small and support local?
Katie: I think our passion for small brands and businesses came from living in the Portland, Oregon area. We love the unique perspective creatives bring to the table. There are so many amazing local businesses that are producing a quality product with evident passion. When you shop small, you’re providing tangible support and saying “Yes, I stand with you!”
What makes you passionate about the work that you do?
Annie: I love the creativity involved in marketing. Brainstorming innovative ways to utilize social media to get our client’s products into more hands is exciting and rewarding work.
Katie: There’s something special about doing what you love in support of something you believe in. I’ve had the opportunity to work with so many amazing women that are following their dreams and doing so with excellence. It’s such a pleasure to stand behind them and play a part in their story.
What are some of the setbacks or challenges you faced when starting your business?
Katie: Rebranding Mayne Marketing has been an ongoing challenge. Since we originally specialized in marketing for law firms, we essentially had no portfolio to show new clients. We pitched our services to a lot of brands and received a lot of nos, simply because we had no work to show. We’re so thankful for the business owners that took a chance on us in the early stages and helped us solidify our customer base!
At The Glossary, we believe in women working together and helping one another. Why do you think it is important for women to support each other?
Katie: Support and collaboration can be hard to come by in competitive, creative spaces. We all fall captive to the comparison game from time to time, and it often ends in defeat and hard feelings. As women, it’s important to stand by one another and help transform competition into collaboration - We’re all better when we come together! Since starting Mayne Marketing, we’ve had the privilege of working with so many amazing women that have encouraged our talents and pushed us to be better. When women come together and speak affirmation and truth to one another, great things can happen!
What creative women do you find inspiring?
Annie: I’m always inspired by the creative women we get the chance to work with. There are so many dedicated business owners who love what they do and pursue it with fierce devotion. Kristen (creative director, artist, and leather worker, at Mohinders) is an absolute powerhouse!
Katie: I definitely agree with Annie - We’ve had the opportunity to partner with so many amazing, creative women! Their drive and dedication pushes me to take creative risks and I’m so appreciative. I really admire Leyna, owner of Urb Apothecary. Her products are made by hand, using simple, chemical-free ingredients and they WORK. She was one of the first business owners we partnered with after our rebrand and has shown us nothing but kindness as we’ve learned what it means to service creatives and makers.
What have you learned from owning your business that you think can apply to any creative endeavor?
Katie: Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. I spent a lot of time telling myself I wasn’t good enough to work with certain clients or provide new services. When I finally started reaching out and doing what I loved, it was amazing to see the doors open!
Annie: I second Katie on this one! Learning to step out in confidence has been one of the most challenging and important aspects. Releasing a set of product photos or sharing an idea that veers away from the norm can be nerve-racking, but this is where true growth, personal and business wise, happens!
Would you like to share any of your long term creative aspirations?
We’d love to see our work in print!
How do you manage a work/life balance?
Katie: Work/life balance is difficult, especially as a business owner that works from home. Clients expect you to be on-call 24/7 + weekends and it’s just not sustainable. My husband recently started encouraging me to set work hours and it’s been so good. When I’m done for the day, I put my laptop away and turn off phone notifications. Boundaries are important, especially when you love what you do.
Annie: Yes, boundaries are so important! I’ve found it helps to change up my work location - You’ll often find me at one of my favorite coffee shops! I go in with a list of projects I need to finish and put in several distraction-free work hours. This helps me finish quicker and forces me to have an “end-time.” It’s a lot harder to work until midnight when your “office” closes at 6 pm!
What are some of your favorite places in Portland and Boston?
Katie: When I’m in Boston, you’ll find me working in Loyal Nine (arguably the best latte in the city) and brunching at Juliet on the weekends. I also love wandering through the South End brownstones and Beacon Hill.
Annie: One of my favorite things about Portland is all of the amazing coffee shops! I love trying out new spots and exploring different parts of the city I wouldn’t normally gravitate towards. Being in the PNW, there are so many places to escape near the city. The Columbia River Gorge has so many incredible hiking spots and is only a 30-minute drive out!