Third Time Round.
For this week’s workshop we told our Brand Amplifier ladies to bring their A-game for an intensive evening of think-on-your-feet instruction, purpose built to inject high-octane PR, social media and business strategy into their brands. Team JPC content were also on hand this week to help dispel a few unfounded business bogeymen in our third and penultimate workshop.
For the last of our lectures Brand Amplifier focused on the Art of Business survival, building on the previous weeks inspiring Art of Branding and PR Magpie seminars. For this task we recruited in acclaimed business consultant and author of ‘Zero to a Million’, Sylvia Marshall. On the brink of opening her 50th successful company, Sylvia was an obvious choice. A veteran BA judge from our last 2 award ceremonies, Sylvia graciously offered her time as a mentor for our 2014 edition, offering up nuggets of wisdom she’s gleaned in her robust start-up career paired with her own personal gifts as an inspirational public speaker.
Needless to say, she did not disappoint. ‘You don’t have to be special to be an entrepreneur,’ she began. Whilst this statement may have initially bruised a few egos, the majority of the workshop looked relieved.
Budding businesses are often force-fed this idea of a ‘Richard Branson: playboy entrepreneur’ as the definitive prototype of success. This stereotype is both unhelpful and untrue. The Oxford English Dictionary defines an entrepreneur as: ‘a person who sets up a business’. The local businesses on your high street, be they florists or grocers, are all the result of a strong entrepreneur at the helm. Individuals who took an idea and made it happen and their achievements are certainly made no less because they are minus a hot tub and private island when they go home at night. The ability to create and run a successful business is not the feature of super humans, but the result of proactive drive and initiative. One of my most valued takeaways from Sylvia’s session was her reiteration of the fact that, despite the prevalence of the ‘it’s not what you know, but who you know’ model of success, hard work and a passion for what you’re doing can get you where you want to be.
The second half of the workshop delved deeper into the self made businesswomen methodology with an expert led PR workshop. However, unlike the previous workshops, this week the tables were turned and JPC Content Team had to step out from behind the scenes and present the session. Our Brand Amplifier girls were treated with a guide to PR, from the ground up. We began with the essentials, the 5 R’s of PR: research, relate-ability, releasing your ‘inner pitch’, repping your brand and most importantly repetition. The 5 things no brand will get off the ground without. Head of content, Jeannette Whiting continued by dissecting the bare bones of a press release, from its punchy headline down to the relevant details. Before too long it was our turn to present JPC’s social media marketing cheat sheet, giving the silver linings and ugly truths of Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. It was a nerve-wracking experience to be up in front of our entrepreneurs as opposed to being amongst them. Our applicants drilled us with questions, hence stage fright was not an option. Thankfully our BA girls are a welcoming audience and the session was peppered with the usual atmosphere of laughter and engaging Q&A.
We look forward to more of the same next week where we will be joined by the managing director of Alchemy Events, Claire Morton for our final workshop: Group Q&A.
This is your last chance to ask ladies, the countdown to the award ceremony has officially begun T-minus 25 days and counting!