BEYOUROWN Meets Natasha Taylor And Sophie Fox
With over 20 years’ experience in both corporate environments and hypnotherapy Natasha Taylor Dip Hyp and Sophie Fox BSc Dip PH, Hyp have combined their skills to deliver House Of Wellbeing. Natasha garnered lots of on the ground knowledge and experience of mental health issues having worked in the Creative, Media, PR and Production industries for over 28 years. In addition, she is a trained NLP and Sleep practitioner and passionate about helping people overcome anxieties and sleep better at night.
Sophie also worked in the Media industry at TV and gaming companies and has extended her hypnotherapy skills into Hypnobirthing, offering courses to expectant couples. Sophie is also a trained CBT practitioner and uses her skillsets to incorporate relevant techniques into our audios.
Their digital platform and app host over 140 audios to help people change, manage and control any limiting belief, phobia, fear or thought that they no longer want or need such as; Fear of Flying, Healthy Eating, Anxiety, Stress, Confidence, Insomnia, Depression, Motivation, Positive Thinking, Exercising More, Worrying Less etc.
Each audio uses a range of evidence-based techniques such as hypnosis, cognitive behavioural therapy, neuro linguistic programming and meditation to help you change the way you think and feel.
All their audios are really powerful and effective because they use guided meditation and powerful therapeutic tools including cognitive behavioural therapy, neuro linguistic therapy, visualization and of course hypnotherapy. Over 90% of people who listen to their audios say they feel an immediate positive impact.
Thank you for interviewing with us today, can you introduce yourself to us?
Hi, I’m Natasha the Founder of House of Wellbeing, hypnotherapist, Sleep & NLP Practitioner not forgetting a mother of three daughters and wife to be! I’m really passionate about teaching people that they have the power within themselves to reprogramme their minds so that they can change the way they think and feel.
Hi, I’m Sophie, I am the other Founder of House of Wellbeing along with Natasha. I am a Psychology graduate, CBT hypnotherapist, Hypnobirthing teacher and mother to identical twin boys. I love learning about the mind and just how powerful it is. I’m also fascinated by the power of hypnosis to overcome and deal with issues created by or controlled by our subconscious mind. I believe that there is no other form of therapy that brings about such powerful changes in the lives of individuals.
Can you take us through your journey to where you are now?
Sophie and I trained to be hypnotherapists back in 2005 at Kings College, London and fast became best friends. We always wanted to have our own business and spent many years coming up with hundreds of ideas – but nothing stood out. It took 14 years to make this dream a reality. After we became Hypnotherapist practitioners we had an office in Harley Street where we used to see clients, we both had full time jobs, so we would see clients and do hypnotherapy before and after work. Then 10 years ago we both had two sets of twins (two boys and two girls), so life got a little hectic – then we finally came up with an idea to take hypnotherapy virtually and launched House of Wellbeing in 2019 and it’s been growing ever since.
Sophie: We are beyond thrilled to finally be working in a field that we’re both passionate about. We receive so much feedback from people who use our app and listen to our hypnotherapy audios and this inspires us to keep going, to create more audios and to spread the word even more.
Since starting, have you made any changes to your business model?
Natasha: We started thinking we could naively jump straight to a B2C model and sell our audios directly on our website and everyone would find out about us. Then we quickly realised without any funding or money to spend on advertising, that B2B was a much more profitable route for us. So, we started to licence our audios out to companies so their employees could listen to our audios, as well as licencing our audios out to other wellbeing partners, to help them quickly booster their wellbeing offering. We also now write bespoke audio content for companies, so they have exclusive content tailored around their own business themes and topics. This has really helped us to stretch out to other markets such as Canada, USA & Australia. We still focus on B2C, we launched our app last November, but it’s a much slower journey.
Sophie: Like Natasha said, we first focussed on B2C selling our audios to individuals but this was slow and very hard work! We realised that we were having to educate people as to what hypnotherapy was and how safe it was before even beginning to explain all the different audios we have on offer and how we can help. It seems that meditation is now widely accepted but Hypnotherapy still has a bit of an alternative stigma attached to it. We are slowly seeing people opening their minds to hypnotherapy and the word is getting out there which is amazing. People now see how you’re always safe and in control – nothing like we see in the films or on a stage hypnotists show! B2B has been fantastic for us and we love how we can help so many people digitally.
Have you ever had a mentor? If so how has this benefitted you either personally or professionally?
Natasha: I have been fortunate enough to be surrounded by many mentors throughout my life. I worked at a big global media agency called PHD Media and have a close relationship with the three founders David Pattison, Jonathan Durden & Nick Horswell – all of which I still reach out to, to this day to ask advice on different business deals. I am lucky enough to be surrounded by extremely strong and powerful friends in my life, trailblazing in their careers, but who are grounded, caring and loyal. Friends that are also mothers that remind me being a mum of 3 and being your own boss is possible. My parents are probably the happiest and most positive people I know and it’s their positivity and thirst for life that reminds me daily I have a lot to be grateful for and to always try and look on the bright side of life.
Sophie: As cheesy as it sounds, my main mentor is my husband Matthew Fox. Our life turned upside down for quite a while as we had our twins very prematurely at 26 weeks and it was soon after that Matt set up his own business Snaptrip. We weren’t sure what sort of a future our boys would have and just had to take each day at a time trying not to think too far ahead whilst on very little sleep and whilst stress levels were out of the window! He works incredibly hard and cares so much for his team, he doesn’t sweat the small stuff and taught me that you may have a great idea but it’s the execution that counts. Before Natasha and I set up House of Wellbeing, I worked for my other mentor Jude Ower. Jude is one of the most inspiring women I know and has raised thousands for charity through digital actions. She taught me that resilience is key, to always get joy from what you do and to keep a sense of humour all the way through the ups and downs.
What outlets do use for marketing?
Natasha: We are just dipping our toes in this. We have started doing SEO, ASO and we are about to embark on Google Ads as well as Facebook and Instagram advertising. We don’t have the budgets to put a ton of money behind advertising – so another area we focus on is Partnerships. We’ve just launched a Sex & Sleep event with Selfridges, which ran throughout July this year. We wrote ten audios – to help customers overcome a variety of different issues around Sex & Sleep. They then created a House of Wellbeing corner shop on their ground floor for customers to come in and listen to our audios. They marketed the event across all their social platforms and mentioned us, so this really helped us with our awareness.
Sophie: Like Natasha says, we are just starting to put together our marketing plan. Natasha is the queen of new business and has got us some incredible partnerships which has been fantastic for us. We’re now really excited to see what happens when we join the world of digital marketing.
What is the best piece of business advice you have received to date?
Natasha: Don’t chase the money, chase your purpose. It’s so true in the sense that when I feel we’re doing something just for the money, it never feels fulfilling. But when we do deals for the right reasons, the money usually follows. It’s so easy to get caught up on doing things, because it might bring in lots of money in the short-term, but long-term it’s more damaging for the business. We had a big wellbeing partner offer to buy a lot of audios – but they wanted them in perpetuity. It was a massive, global partner – which would have given us lots of awareness, but we were unprepared to give all our audios away forever. That’s not how we work, we’re not prepared to give away our whole business forever for a price that we normally charge other partners for 1 year. So we said no.
Sophie: I think ensuring execution is right has been key for us. We have a meeting every Monday and Tash and I flesh out our plans for the week. We often come up with new ideas and although they seem great at the time, we take our time to think and digest before acting on them. We also realise that just because we think it’s a great idea doesn’t mean anyone else will! We do our research before implementing a new strategy or idea and I think this has really helped to keep us focussed and on the same page.
How do you create an evenly balanced work and personal life?
Natasha: This is probably the hardest thing for me. I work from home, so on the plus side I can take my children to school and pick them up – but on the flip side, they don’t understand that when I’m at home I’m working. They just see mum, not the Founder of a business and therefore mum is on demand 24/7, so I’m expected to entertain them and do all the usual mum jobs – yet sometimes that’s impossible if I need to write scripts, do Zoom calls or new business leads. If it’s the summer holidays, both Sophie and I try and take two full weeks off work, also we try and take half-term weeks off. If it’s school days, I work flat out until 3pm and then I try and focus on them. I don’t work weekends; I make sure that by 5pm I am logged off – unless I have an international call. You must be focussed and motivated when running your own business, but we understand more than most the importance of looking after your mental health, so we regularly take breaks and don’t put too much pressure on ourselves.
Sophie: Balance is so important to us. My boys have been the focus of my life since the moment they were born and I can’t stop now. They have developed in to such incredible little men but they have a little way to go so I need to be there for them if they need any extra help. Tash and I had an opportunity to go down the funding route to scale House of Wellbeing but we declined as we just don’t want to put that pressure on ourselves or our families.
Name a seminal point in your career so far?
Natasha: Well, the pandemic really had a big impact on our business. We were a digital offering trying to cut through and get the attention of HR Directors, who weren’t really interested in our services or taking wellbeing that seriously, then cut to the lockdown when everyone was crying out for a digital service that could help people manage their mental health issues. So we very quickly became very relevant and a fast solution to helping employees manage their mental health from the comfort of their own homes.
Sophie: Like Natasha says, covid propelled us in to the spotlight. The fact that people can listen to our hypnotherapy audios from the comfort of their own homes whenever and wherever they like was exactly what was needed especially during the lockdowns. It was a strange time for us as we could directly see just how damaging lockdowns were for people’s mental health whilst seeing how impactful our audios were. It was a real bitter sweet moment for us.
What gives you ultimate career satisfaction?
Natasha: As we are a digital platform, we don’t always get to see the immediate effects of someone listening to our audios – like we would if we were giving a face-to-face session. So, when a person or company reaches out to us and tells us how our audios have helped them sleep better, overcome chronic anxiety, get over a relationship breakup or help someone deal better with grief – I absolutely love this. This is the reason we do what we do. To help people have happy, healthy, minds. To help people realise that they don’t have to live in a world of feeling out of sorts, or unhappy or fear – that there are tools out there, and hypnotherapy is one of them, that can help people take back control and live the life they want to live.
Sophie: I don’t think we would still be so passionate about House of Wellbeing or hypnotherapy if we didn’t find it so rewarding. The feedback we get is just incredible – we have helped people to sleep soundly for the first time in years, we’ve helped people overcome fear of flying so they can now visit family, we’ve helped people get their confidence back, stop nail biting, feel body confident and so many other issues. Helping people is what it’s all about and to hear testimonials from them genuinely leaves us smiling from ear to ear.
Are there any leading entrepreneurs or SME leaders that you admire and if so, why?
Natasha: We always admire and respect anyone in the wellbeing space, so CALM, Breethe, Headspace – all excelling and leading the way. Whether it’s partners that focus on fitness, meditation, nutrition, breathing, yoga – we salute them all!
Sophie: Working in wellbeing is a dream to so many people which is also why it’s such an over saturated market! We feel so lucky to have had the opportunities we’ve had so far. We work really hard to help others and this often means going the extra mile but it’s worth it. During Covid we created free audios for people suffering from loneliness and anxiety. We also offered free audios for children as the impact on them was so huge. This was all whilst trying to home school and stay calm ourselves wo it was quite a challenge! Knowing that we were helping others made us feel like we were helping in some way and it have us a sense of purpose at a really terrifying time. Anyone working in wellbeing loves the rewards it beings but also knows the hard times that follow too.
How do you define your own success?
Natasha: For me, it’s less about financial success and more about word of mouth, people telling their friends that they listened to this audio, and it really helped them. You can listen to one of our audios once and feel better and never have to log in again, for others they log in every day and listen to an audio, so it’s hard for us to track effectiveness based on usage of the app, because everyone is different – but I think seeing more people download the app as word of mouth grows, will be a nice measure of success for me.
Sophie: This is a tricky one. We have won several awards and come so far in such a short amount of time but as long as our business is growing and life is balanced then we are succeeding.
Finally, What can we expect from you this year?
Natasha: Awareness. This is the start of our B2C journey, the start of us shouting more about who we are, what we do, how we can help. There are many people that have never heard of us – so this year, we want it to be about people knowing we are a resource, an effective tool that people can tap into to help overcome negative thoughts, bad habits, limiting beliefs or fears and phobias.
Sophie: Exactly – We would love to grow our B2C side of the business and that means getting ourselves out there. What’s right for one company isn’t necessarily right for ours so once we’ve streamlined our marketing plan then we hope to be seen as one of the places to go to help promote have happy, healthy lives. We hope that even more people will be open to hypnotherapy and see it as an easy way to overcome any issues or to simply help boost happiness, motivation, healthy living and great mental health.