How parentrepreneurs can make the most of Brexit


How parentrepreneurs can make the most of Brexit

Whether you’re heavily invested in the political storm, the UK is currently experiencing, or you’re staying well away from the debates that continue to dominate the news agenda, the concept of a Brexit Britain can be a tough landscape to navigate.

We recently undertook some research looking at the businesses who have launched and thrived since the Brexit referendum vote and discovered which entrepreneurs had made the most of the unstable environment to create, grow and succeed in their new business venture. This included Mush, and Koru Kids, two businesses which have grown out of the business determination of two parents.

The following are some of the reasons why starting a business now as a parentpreneur may not necessarily be a bad thing.

Decreased competition

People may be less inclined to launch a business venture when the state of the country’s economy is in flux. Those with this mindset are also less likely to succeed. Utilising all of the information available to you, such as audience growth, potential market share, current product or service demand, or any other industry insights, can mean that perhaps you are capitalising on this opportunity to start and grow a business.

There are exceptions to this of course. If your business would be directly and negatively impacted by Brexit it may not be the best idea. For example, if your business relies on EU imports, your business model may be affected in the short term as the country continues to understand its position with the EU. However, most people – including Government – know so little about the consequences of these negotiations, therefore taking a risk now could put you months ahead of your competitors and help to establish your name much earlier on.

Stronger together

When the threat of a political crisis looms, businesses are keen to review their partnerships, scrutinise their supply chain, and open up new relationships. Now could be the ideal time to leverage your status as a parent and business-minded person to forge new business partnerships or lines of supply. Networking can be as simple as reaching out on LinkedIn, attending local business meetups, or even discussing ways your businesses can grow together. There are even specific business associations for parents, such as Mums in Business. People may, however, be more thorough in their checks of new business partners than they used to be.

More stringent checks

With economic instability, comes more stringent checks and deeper analysis of a businesses’ background. This can come in the form of credit checks or even personal background research. Either way, we exist in a time where people are far more careful about who they work with.

Now, whilst people want to forge new business relationships, they also want to invest in the correct ones: it should only be viewed as a negative if you are a business owner undertaking poor financial practices or making poor investment choices.

An increased focus on the research of partners and businesses means that entrepreneurs work with those who are legitimate and share the same growth goals. It’s a positive for economic growth as it creates an environment of trust, ripe for mutual expansion.

British buying power

If the Brexit process has achieved anything, it’s shown the love the public has for buying British and putting money back into the economy. As a fresh British business, you can capitalise on this through your marketing efforts. When designing your website, social media activity or offline promotional materials, highlight ‘Made in Britain’ or ‘Established in UK’ where applicable. This can be a strong unique selling point and in an era where consumers want to champion British business, it could become the reason you are chosen over a competitor.

Parentrepreneurs are now in a unique position where the economic uncertainty that Brexit presents creates an environment ripe for disruption. Parents should not feel discouraged from starting or growing their business in this landscape. We would advise all business owners to focus on developing relationships that will prove productive for both parties. Now is the time to succeed when others are slowing down and getting complacent. Just remember, if you are taking risks, ensure they are calculated.

Carys Hughes is Chief Financial Officer at Creditsafe

10 tips for beginners on using Pinterest


10 tips for beginners on using Pinterest

Pinterest is one of my favourite platforms at the moment. It has a higher user count globally than Instagram, and people are generally going there to shop for something, so it has highly engaged users. The reason for that is it is incredibly powerful for both businesses and consumers.  From a business point of view, if you want to know what your target customer is looking for, get onto Pinterest and look at what consumers are searching for. By doing this, you can promote the things people want to see the most, and in turn inspire more sales.

For example, for my venue business, it is essential to understand some of the decor trends for things like children’s parties and baby showers. By going onto Pinterest, I can see that bright decor, doughnut-themed signs, decorations and bright drip cakes are all big trends for people in this area. So now when I design my Party venue marketing, I can use those trends in my visuals and show people I really understand the party market. Try it and see what you come up with for your own industry niche.

That’s a bit of context to Pinterest now here we go with the 10 tips:

1. Before you get going with Pinterest, you need to make sure your own website is pin friendly. So download the Pinterest button for your own website so people can pin your content easily. This is very simple just google Pinterest button, and you will get instructions to install this toolbar.

2. As a business, the absolute best way to use Pinterest is to link your pins to a blog post. You want to be using bright, stand out images on those blogs that you can link back to your Pins. If you get it right, this will send your website traffic crazy.

3. Pinterest is not like Instagram or Facebook. You do not need lots of followers to drive traffic on Pinterest. I currently have 220 followers for my Space at 61 Venue account, yet my monthly unique views are at 463K at present.

4. Pinterest is a blend of search engine and social, in this sense it’s unique among the tools you use each day. So you need to optimise every Pin with as many keywords and phrases as possible for best results. You can start this job by typing in your most relevant category word for example ‘Handmade’ and see exactly what others are searching on to find that term. Then use it!!

5. Pinterest is about pinning content, yours, and also others. Pinterest rewards those who are generous in their ratios so consider for every Pin of your own content you do (linking carefully back to your well written relevant blogs of course) pin 3 of someone else’s content.

6. You should have around 10 boards filled with interesting, relevant content for your niche to make sure when people visit your profile they find something of interest. Think around your product and create interesting boards that are well named (you should optimise your board names based on customer interest)

7. Your very first board should be filled with only your content. This means when someone opens your profile they will see your products/services first.

8. If a pin does well, which you will know if it is getting repined, use it again somehow. For example, you can re-pin your own pin into another board, which will boost its visibility again on the home page, and drive you even more traffic. This is a great strategy for any content that does well on any platform really. Reuse it and maximise the organic reach with your customers.

9. Pin consistently. I get it; we are all very busy. If you can only pin once a week, do that. But don’t pin 500 items on Monday, and nothing for 6 weeks. Pinterest rewards consistency of pinning. You can use a tool like Tailwind, load it up with content, and it will pin away for you at optimise times based on when your users are online.

10. Have great on brand imagery. Pinterest loves bright and eye-catching. You can use a free tool like Canva to create the right size post for Pinterest.

I often run 90 minute long Pinterest for Business Beginners at my venue Space at 61 in Peckham, Keep an eye on my Facebook Page for upcoming dates.

This article was originally written for the Parents in Business Magazine issue 3.

SHONA CHAMBERS

MARKETING CONSULTANT

Shona Chambers is a Marketing Consultant based in SE London. Having worked in various Media and Financial companies from 2001 to 2011 within a Marketing function starting with the brand then moving to customer insight, Shona now works with small business owners wanting to use marketing to improve their impact. She also owns Space at 61 a venue for hire in Peckham, which is a base for local freelancers and small business owners. Mum of two, Shona has lived in London since 1999 & can’t see herself ever leaving.

https://www.spaceat61.com/

 

The 3M’s of starting a business


3M’s of starting a business we are going to look at the market, money and marketing.

In this video, I discuss the 3M’s of starting a business

How to Prevent Your Business Ruining Your Relationship


How to Prevent Your Business Ruining Your Relationship

Running a business is hard work; there is a lot of responsibility and pressure on you to make things work. There are times when you might even wonder why you are not just working the 9-5 for someone else as your own venture become all consuming. When you then add a relationship into the mix you can really feel like you are being pulled in all directions, so how do you have a happy relationship and prevent your business being the driving force for your whole life?

Keep Your Partner in the Loop

It helps to understand what someone else is going through and if you know that you are going to be hitting a busy patch and will be less accessible, it makes sense to talk about that in advance. They don’t need to know the whole detail as that potentially is just as damaging but making them aware that you are going to be tied up for a while because of a project helps people stay chilled about not seeing you so much as they understand why you are absent.

Set Aside Time for Each Other

Often we fall into the trap of working all day, sorting kids all evening and by the time we have cooked and fed everyone, got the little ones into bed, all we have left is silence as the television takes over the evening. While it is essential to have some ‘goldfish brain’ time where you do not have to focus on anything or think about work, it is also important to make time to talk to each other. Note though that this is not the time you should be talking about work. Whether you eat your meal after the children are in bed that night or turn the tv off and sit with a glass of wine, it is important just to have some time together sharing company and remembering why you are together. If there is time to build in a shared activity at the weekend when grandparents can babysit maybe you can grab a game of tennis, watch a film or take a walk in the countryside. It is important to remember what attracted you to each other in the first place and rekindle the fun from the early days.

Set Boundaries at Work

It is likely that all small business owners have fallen into the trap of working evenings and weekends, not booking holidays and focusing solely on the business. Of course, it is vital to build a level of work that supports you, but if it becomes all-consuming, then life tends to slide. Where possible you need to commit to having set hours where you deal with the business, even the owner of the company needs time off. The beauty of being the boss is, of course, the ability to juggle work and home, attend a school play, go on a playdate with other children and their parents, but these should be changes to the norm, and as a rule, you should have set hours unless something crops up.

How to set effective weekly goals


Setting a goal is incredibly important for not only your business but also your personal life too. But why is this? What makes setting a goal so important and how can you make sure that you set effective goals?

In this video, I discuss How to set effective weekly goals

International Women’s Day 2019


International Women’s Day 2019

Every year in March an event known as International Women’s Day takes place with a theme or focus for women who work in the world of business from solo entrepreneurs to those who work in multinational companies and every lovely lady in between. This year the event takes place on the 8th of March, and the focus is #BalanceforBetter, which is all about building a gender balance in every industry and business area recognising that both men and women have a different but equally valuable skill set to bring to the arena. ‘A balanced world is a better world. How can you help forge a more gender-balanced world? Celebrate women’s achievement. Raise awareness against bias. Take action for equality.’ (IWD 2019).

Each time there are various events linked to International Women’s Day, and if you can take part in any of them, I would encourage you to do so as you will gain loads of insight and experience that will help you in your own professional journey. On the website, you can see where the events are being held and the details you will need to attend. Women are an integral part of any business and should be encouraged to hit their goals and dreams rather than set in competition against male counterparts or worse still other women. Whatever our walk of life should be promoting and supporting each other, as the famous quote says, a flame does not burn brighter by extinguishing others around it.

Women who run small businesses are discovering the unique pleasure that comes from another type of balance in their lives. The balance between home and work that comes from being your own boss, and while this can be a challenging journey it is one that thousands of women embark on, and importantly succeed at through all walks of life and with a massive variety of skills, through many different businesses and industries. Running a business brings a degree of freedom that you do not get from working for other people, the time off to attend appointments and school events, the ability to work in the evening having spent precious hours with the children. It might not be the easiest road but the value women in business bring to industry is something we should not overlook. It is essential that we acknowledge and support these women, whether this is supporting them by sharing their work or creating peer group mentoring support with others in the same boat. Women in business will always hold a significant importance which is why events like International Women’s Day exist.

My own journey has been one of learning, failing and getting back up, and most importantly learning to fly and succeed. This adventure is something that I have been supported in by lots of other women and had the pleasure of offering my support to many more. I would like to thank all of the women who have been involved in my story so far, it has been a pleasure and a privilege working with each and every one of you.

#PIB90 Bye for now but not the end


Bye for now but not the end

In this episode, you will find out what next for Parents in Biz and this podcast!

Links mentioned:

Parents in Biz Website
Parents in Business Magazine
Parents in Biz Events
Parents in Biz YouTube Channel

Thanks for listening!

 

How to overcome the major pains of starting your first business


When you launch your first business, you think it’s the greatest thing in the whole world, and you want it to succeed so much. So, how do you overcome the major pains of starting your first business?

Click here to enrol on Create Launch Grow a start-up course for parents 

Click here to read blog posts covering various start-up topics

Benefits of having systems in your business


By having business systems in place for your business you won’t have that feeling of disorganisation like you are constantly trying to put out fires. We take a look at the importance of business systems for parent entrepreneurs.

Business tools and resources check it our here.

Get Trello here. 

The productivity challenge for parents running a business join here. 

Read blog posts covering various productivity topics here.

From 9-5 to small business owner


One of the most exciting milestones for any new business is getting to the point where you’re ready to quit your 9 to 5 job… and work full-time, on your own business there are some key pieces to the puzzle you need to ensure you have in place first before you make the switch.

In this video I discuss moving from 9-5 employee to parent entrepreneur.

Join the Parents in Biz hub here. 

Sign up to Create Launch Grow a start-up course for parents enrol here. 

Read blog posts covering various start-up topics here.

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