Mom Interviews

Naomi Dunford, Founder of Itty Bitty Marketing

Founder of Itty Bitty Marketing

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Naomi Dunford spent 10 years in marketing and corporate communication for Fortune 500 companies, but decided to find a way to work from home when her youngest son, Jack, now 1, was born. The 26-year-old mom of two (son Michael is 8) became a microbusiness marketing consultant, working from her home near Toronto, Canada, blogging at and running her company, Itty Bitty Marketing, which caters to people with very small businesses. Work-at-home-moms, take note!

Why marketing? And why focus specifically on very small businesses?

I absolutely worship marketing. I adore it. It’s a sickness. I am just completely and utterly fascinated by the reasons people buy things, or why they buy one thing over another thing.

I started IttyBiz, the blog, because there was a major gap in the information available online to small business owners. According to generally accepted statistics, to qualify as a “small business” you need to have fewer than 500 employees. I don’t even know 500 people. There was simply no decent advice for people who have, or want to have, an itty bitty business and don’t want to take the whole thing so seriously. There just wasn’t anything out there for people who had no plans to become the next Microsoft.

On an average day, how much time do you spend working on your company?

Maybe 12 hours?

What advice would you give to a mom who wants to start her own business?

Only follow advice from people who have the life you want, not from people who have the life you have. They are not qualified to give you the advice you need. You want to be Dooce? Talk to Dooce, not your sister-in-law.

Also, the advice that comes from loved ones is almost always antithetic to your goals. Because they know and love the old you, they give advice appropriate for the old you. You need advice for the new you.

What advice did someone give you that you chose to ignore?

God, where do I start? Finish high school. Finish college. Don’t start a business without funding. Don’t start a business without a back-up plan. Don’t start a business without a degree in marketing. The list goes on. I probably didn’t follow any advice at all, to be honest. I got my role models from Judith Krantz novels.

What are the best and worst things about your job?The best is that I get to hang out with my family all day. (That and I’m often saddled with the unpleasant responsibility of finding photos of attractive male celebrities with their shirts off.) The worst is deadlines. I was not wired for deadlines. I was wired for drinking margaritas on a beach in Bali.

We all have days when our batteries run low. What do you do for inspiration?

5 comments so far...

  • I have been reading Naomi's blog for a couple of months now. I am in marketing as well and share the same passion for it but she has been incredibly inspirational. She's bright, straight-forward and entertaining while telling you to get off your behind and get your business going. Love her! And this was an outstanding interview, giving those who know and admire her additional insight as well as for those who are just being introduced. Thanks!

    Cheryl -

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by TheWykyd1 on 13th May 2011

  • Just spent some time on your blog. Very funny and entertaining. (And I swore to myself I wouldn't spend all day on webstes today.)

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by on 6th September 2008

  • You sound like a lot of fun sister..I heading to your blog now to check it out

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Brandy @ on 10th April 2008

  • I love Naomi! This is definitely a blog to subscribe to appreciate humor, honesty, and straight-forward advice. :)

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Christine OKelly on 23rd December 2007

  • Ok I LOVE the advice about "Only follow advice from people who have the life you want". I never thought of it that way!

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Rose on 15th December 2007