The UK's Small Business Saturday movement is celebrating its fifth birthday in 2017.
If you've not heard about Small Biz Saturday yet (where have you been?) it's a grassroots, non-commercial, non-political campaign,
which highlights small business
success and encourages consumers to support the small, independent businesses in their communities. Although the day itself takes place on the
first Saturday in December each year, the campaign aims to change mindsets
and have a lasting impact on small businesses all year round.
Each year, the campaign chooses 100 small businesses to highlight and promote, one a day, for the 100 days leading up to Small Business Saturday in December. For the last three years, the 100 have not only received exposure on social media channels and in the press, but also joined the Small Business Saturday team at receptions in London.
Last year I encouraged a number of local businesses to apply, and one of them - Jack Dent, of JD Magic - also from my home town of Burton-on-Trent was chosen and visited Downing Street.
I would love to see another Burton-based business in the #SmallBiz100 this year - making it three years in a row our town has been represented, So, along with my colleagues from the Burton Small Business group, I am hosting a tweetup at The Coffee Lounge, in Stretton, on the outskirts of Burton-on-Trent, on Thursday June 1 (the day when applications open for the 2017 #SmallBiz100).
I'd encourage any local small businesses to pop in any time between 9.30am and 11.30am. It's a chance to meet local businesses that you may have seen on Twitter. I'll be there all morning and happy to tell businesses more about the Small Business Saturday campaign and the benefits of being in the #SmallBiz100. There's no charge, just pay for the drinks and any food you buy from this independent coffee shop.
Find out more about the Small Business Saturday campaign at its website - smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com. You can also sign up on the home page for the campaign newsletter and that way you'll hear all about the launch of the search for this year's #SmallBiz100 wherever you are based in the UK.
Sunday, 21 May 2017
Tuesday, 2 May 2017
Some of these are private while others are public sessions. All of them will be focused on empowering companies to get the results that matter to them from social media channels.
Key objectives may include raising their profile; reaching a niche audience; making new connections; showcasing their experience and expertise; establishing thought leadership; generating leads and prospects. In order to achieve these objectives it is important to listen to your target audience, understand their problems and be clear on how you can help them and make their lives easier.
At a face-to-face business networking event, there are two approaches that won't get you very far:
1. Sitting in a corner and talking to no-one.
2. Being the annoying salesman who is in everyone's face with a 'buy from me now' approach.
It's just the same on social media, and yet some businesses still think they can behave on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter in a way they would never consider in the real world.
It's important, as part of any social media strategy, to measure the results you are getting and the impact the content that you create and share on social media is having.
So where can you find out more in May?
Two events I'm speaking at are run by women's business networking groups. On Friday May 5 I'm talking about Facebook for business at the Connect group for West Midlands women in business. This is a one-seat networking group based in Tamworth, so if you would like to visit for this meeting, check the details here.
One week later I'm presenting on the new LinkedIn at Lichfield's WiRE (Women in Rural Enterprise) group. All women are welcome at this event - but please book in advance here.
In addition, I am working privately with a number of businesses in sectors including construction and the legal profession to help them develop greater knowledge and confidence in using social media channels to achieve their specific business goals.
I would also be delighted to chat informally to any businesses at the next MeetUpMarston's event at Marston's Brewery, Burton-on-Trent, on Thursday May 18, between 6pm and 8pm. I am not doing a formal presentation that evening but it's an opportunity to meet new connections from a wide range of sectors. Tickets are on sale, costing £10 each, here.
|MeetUpMarston's photo by David Gough Photography|