Under the Spotlight this month: Maria Tate
In last month's newsletter we got to know Jenna Hood who plays on my track 'They're Coming For The Kids'. If you missed it, you can catch up on that and all the other Spotlight guests via my blog. This month we're settling down to have a chat with the delightful Maria Tate of Aspire by Maria. Maria has really helped me navigate Instagram in a way that feels comfortable and useful so I can really share my message with people who want to get involved. Social media is so important to any musician who's trying to share their music with the world and to be able to do it authentically makes it so much more palatable!
Thanks for being my Spotlight guest this month. Let's kick things off - what is Aspire by Maria?
M: I’m so glad you asked! Thank you for having me. Aspire by Maria is for small business owners who want to do social media, content + brand building in a way that feels authentic to them using their unique Human Design. Not just following the countless “early trend” reels they see on IG and just doing a bunch of those and hoping for the best. I’ve worked in social, PR and brand for 10 years and the only thing that’s remained the same is the need for a strong brand message and values. Without those you don’t have anything!
What exactly is Human Design and how does this fit in to social media marketing?
M: Human Design is a combination of astrology, astronomy, I-Ching, the chakra system and quantum physics. It’s basically a blueprint of who you are, how you function best, make decisions and who you can become when following your intuitive voice. It works perfectly with social and brand because it allows you to configure everything into a brand strategy that other people can relate to - and trust. Which is essential for conversion and sales in business. We’re all emotional beings and want to relate to something or someone outside of ourselves, so this lets you do it in a straight forward way without having to spend months or years figuring it out yourself. It’s the only social strategy that is 100% unique to you. No two are ever the same.
I have to say, massive congratulations on the birth of your son! I am in awe of you; mother of two and running a business! How do you do it AND stay sane?
M: That is so sweet, but honestly, I’m human too and have deffo cried a good number of times I just make sure to carry over a lot of my little sane-staying rituals that I had before a newborn such as my meditations etc, but just adapt. So instead of doing them at night before bed, I do them whilst breastfeeding my son and my 4 year old is having her breakfast. Or whilst I’m having a shower. My human design profile is a 6/2, the 2 being a hermit and needing space for my intuitive voice to be heard, so I have to make that a priority for myself as much as I possibly can. It’s no longer a luxury concept for me to do this, it’s a priority every day.
What kind of music are you into?
M: Ooooh good question - I am an emo pop, rock, R&B lover haha. I have such a mixed taste. I went to loads of gigs when I was a teenager in Glasgow though; so Paramore, Lost Prophets, Bloc Party and the likes. Going into HMV and buying random albums from bands I hadn’t heard of was my thing. I just booked tickets to see Blink 182’s reunion tour next year actually, so I’m BUZZING for that.
You certainly know your way around an Instagram reel – any advice for those who want to do them but are too nervous in front of the camera?
M: Thank you, I have so much fun with them! I honestly hated being in front of a camera, and the sound of my own voice made me want to vomit before the age of reels. So trust me when I say I totally get this feeling of being nervous. What I found is that the shyness comes from a limiting belief you have of yourself and unfortunately, comments that have been made to you when you were younger. You just have to realise that you are worth far more than you think, and the only way you’ll be able to build a new belief system and confidence is to just do the thing anyway. No one is thinking of your insecurities because only you are staring at them. It’s like when you look at a word for too long and it no longer looks right. It’s just in your head. The good thing about a fear is that it can be overcome by pushing past it; then the more you do it, the more of a habit it becomes and you’re no longer scared of it.
What is the worst advice you’ve been given?
M: That I had to join reality honestly, it makes me laugh. My whole life I’ve been told that I’m in my own little world and that I need to join everyone else. That’s the worst advice ever because we all create our own reality. And because I’ve followed my own path, I’ve now created a business where I can do things on my own terms. And it still to this day shocks people that I consistently have everything I want, when I want it. Apparently all ‘too easy’, too. If you can think it, you can create it. So start creating your own reality. I was never ok with the idea that I had to work hard at something that felt mediocre for my whole life.
Who inspired you to start your own business?
M: Honestly, myself. I knew I wanted more for myself. After my first baby was born I had to leave her and go back to work after 6 months and I cried every day for a month. Then 1.5 years later Covid hit and we were all at home. I honestly say I manifested it, because I wanted to be home with her SO badly. As tough as that year was for obvious reasons, it was the catalyst for Aspire to be born. I started a new job as a Head of Social for 6 months and quit as soon as my following (and client list) exploded over the summer and I’ve never looked back.
Finally, I have a bit of a random question, but it’s become a thing so…as a Scot people assume I like the Bagpipes but, in all honesty, I think they are awful. I know you’re a fellow Scot so I have to ask Bagpipes - yay or nay?
M: ok so it’s not something I’ll just pop on in the background whilst I’m working, but when I come back to Glasgow and hear them on Buchanan Street… ahh it just feels like home!
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