Interview with Mark Doyle - Master Florist co-founder
About Mark Doyle
An expert in the IT industry and an entrepreneur with many years of experience. Born in New Zealand, currently residing in Switzerland. Associated with the florist industry for over 19 years. Passionate about crafts and family businesses with traditions. Co-founder of the innovative online platform Master Florist associating over 50,000 florists and florists from around the world. The Master Florist initiative is based on the concept of community and cooperation. The range of Master Florist currently covers over 100 countries around the world. The official Master Florist profile on Instagram is already followed by over 170,000 people.
Master Florist is an international organization associating florists all over the world. Working on such a huge project must take a lot of time. Therefore, thank you for taking the moment to answer a few questions.
You are an entrepreneur, a person with experience in managing and running a business, primarily in the IT industry. So where did the idea for establishing the Master Florist organization come from?
The idea to set up the Master Florist organization was born out of an attempt to create solutions to some of the problems I encountered while working for Fleurop-Interflora, as well as the desire to strengthen local businesses. I really appreciate the skills of local floristry businesses such as florists. I really appreciate their influence and involvement in the development of the local community, both practical and economic. As globalization progresses, the business world is increasingly consolidating and moving online, and running a local, independent business becomes more and more difficult. At Master Florist, we strongly believe that cooperation in a modern way between local florist businesses will strengthen and bring wide benefits to the entire industry.
From the perspective of someone who is committed and successful in the online florist business internationally, what character traits would you consider essential in achieving your business goals?
I think from the very beginning it is worth making sure that what you are doing matters and has a purpose for you and for others. Then you need a little luck and persistence.
Getting to know your story before the interview, the slogan 'Get together, grow together' caught my attention. Can you describe it?
One of the main ideas of Master Florist is that by connecting florists, as well as the entire flower industry, we create opportunities for development for everyone. Education and exchange of experiences between florists is certainly one of the aspects. However, as activities develop and more partners are supported, we also create better economic opportunities.
What is the main purpose and idea of Master Florist? What distinguishes Master Florist from other organizations of this type?
From the very beginning and at the core of our values, we are a sort of flower business movement. Everything we do is aimed at the development of floristry and florists around the world. In a way, we can be compared to floristic relationships. However, as we are independent, we can also deal with commercial activities that are important to the entire florist industry.
The floristic industry is definitely not easy. Are florists willing to join Master Florist?
Yes, we are very grateful for the support we receive from florists and all businesses. They can join us and take advantage of the communities and services we provide. We also help in profiling and increasing the range of florists, which translates into a positive reaction among all florists.
Can anyone associated with floristry become a member of Master Florist? What are the requirements to become part of the largest floristic community?
Florist and flower companies can join us for free. We don't want to be too restrictive - each market has different standards and practices. We believe it's best to be versatile and create an environment that fosters good designs and skills.
Master Florist's reach in social media is impressive when we look at the number of followers. It certainly took a lot of work to reach such a large audience. In retrospect, what would you consider to be the most important factor in the platform's marketing success?
Let's say we've had some happy moments so far. First of all, the great support of our flower community and the persistence in achieving our goals have contributed to our success.
Do you think that in the 21st century, adapting a stationary florist to selling online is a necessity? What do you think are the prospects for an online flower business?
I think recent COVID-19 events have highlighted a trend where many consumers expect to sell online. Currently, for many companies related to the floristic industry, it is only a part of their sales activities. We are convinced that most florists need online sales. We know from our own experience that people or companies that stand out on the market of floristic services, who have a unique offer, or are simply consistently heading in the right direction, ultimately succeed.
Which part of the world do you think has the greatest potential for the floristry industry today, and why?
Eastern Europe and Asia have made great strides in recent years. There is still great potential in most of these markets. However, given the early stage potential, Africa and South America seem as yet under-represented in terms of floristics.
Each of us has own preferences when it comes to floristry. Do you have your favorite style in floristry or the florist whose projects you like the most?
There are so many talented florists and designers in our network that it is difficult for me to clearly identify such a person. After seeing so many amazing designs, I have very different tastes.
Will you tell us what are your immediate plans related to the development of the Master Florist platform? What direction are you going?
Yes. We actively develop our communities, members, and strengthen industry partnerships. We have many great ideas, but it's hard to find all the time for them. We will certainly continue to improve the services we offer to florists on our platform in the future, as a strong florist community will have an overall positive impact on the entire industry.
Master Florist has been in existence since 2015. How do you evaluate the development of the floristic industry in the world over these 5 years and in what direction is it going?
I feel like a lot of positive changes have taken place in recent years. Eastern Europe and Asia have made great strides in terms of skills and design, and I follow many amazing florists and designers from these regions. There are certainly still challenges to running a florist business, but flower business owners are always on the lookout for new ideas and business models. I am also glad that more and more florists bring a lot of value to their work through creativity and design skills. It remains to be seen how the current pandemic will affect the industry over time, however, after some initial problems and complications, it seems the industry is doing better than others.
What do you wish for and a Master Florist in the near future?
I wish we could achieve our goals faster. Certainly, if any of your readers believes in our mission and thinks they can help our community, we would love to cooperate with them!
Is there anything you would like to say to your readers, be your loved ones?
First of all, I would like to thank our florist community and industry partners for their trust and support!
On behalf of myself and all readers, I would like to thank you for your time and the interview. I keep my fingers crossed for further development and I wish you every success.