Cotton Court Business Centre

Customers

Cotton Court Annual Christmas Party 2013

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On behalf of all the businesses at Cotton Court we’d like to invite you to our annual Christmas party at Glovers Bar on Friday 6th December. We’ll lay on a complimentary bar and buffet alongside live music from 6pm – late. The event is free of charge; all we ask is that you bring a gift we can donate to our chosen charity Derian House, a Lancashire based children’s hospice. We look forward to seeing you there!

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Practical Business Growth Event for Preston Businesses

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Headed up as No Fluff – No Theory—No B******* Event for Preston Business Owners. Just proper practical advice THAT YOU CAN IMPLEMENT IMMEDIATELY to make your business grow the next day.

So whats it about?

The 9 things super successful business owners know and do that most business owners don’t know or don’t do.

  • There are a lot of people working very hard out there – they are driven and passionate about growing their business but they are not achieving the levels of success they had hoped for.
  • At this session we will look at what the high flyers are doing to make their businesses grow massively – even in hard times – and pull out the tools, tricks and techniques that EVERY business owner could use, straight away to make a proper impact to their bottom line…that most business owners don’t know exist or worse still ignore.

What will you leave with?

  • Tools, tips, tricks, secrets and techniques that will help your business grow.
  • An understanding of WHAT tools are out there and HOW you can use them.
  • A whole stack of practical ideas that you can implement into your business THE NEXT DAY
  • A proper, dynamic, fast-paced session with no fluff, no theory and no B…….
  • A sense of motivation from a session that you’ll enjoy…I promise

Presented by duo Chris Richards & Steve Allen

The event is 10am – 12pm here at Cotton Court Business Centre

#Hashtag in our life & business

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Hashtags have become a prominent part of the online life and as of late, and more social media sites have allowed for the categorising program known as Hashtags. Hashtags are used to allow users to tag posts, pictures, or even video with a hash symbol (#) followed by a word or phrase, such as #Preston. Doing this allows the program to categorise anything posted with that hashtag

Firstly use hashtags sparingly, DON’T over use them! When people see too many hashtags their eyes glaze over. It looks like spam! Using four or five hashtags, in one tweet often appears as though they are just covering their bases, using every possible option or certain phrases the same way they use keywords on websites, just to make sure they don’t leave anything out.

Luckily without going into too much detail Jimmy Fallon & Justin Timberlake have created a funny sketch of what a Twitter conversation sounds like in real life! #thatshowwedo #lololololololololol. Taken from Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Show

 

Good News we’ve highlighted three different ways businesses can use hashtags to their advantage.

#Promotion

A recent survey done found that 51% of people said that they would be more willing to share company hashtags if they were awarded discounts or chances at prizes if they were to do so. This allows a level playing field when it comes to simple effective promotion for small businesses. Not only can you give discounts, and therefore bring in more customers, but this allows you and your business to track promotions activity online.

#Conversation

Hashtags open up the social media world to you and  your company. A website or a URL post only brings you to the company’s website while a Hashtag allows people to use it in everyday conversations they have on their social media profiles.

This also allows you to track the conversation and get a better idea of what is being said and how you can utilise that information. Want to know more? Read our blog about Hashtag (#) for business networking.

#Targeting

Target certain areas or people based on hashtags. For example, if you want to market to people with new homes you can use the hashtag #newhome to target those who are using that specific hashtag. Using this method is also beneficial  it allows you to pick out the individuals who are most likely to be using their social media channels and therefore more likely to give you and your company positive posting which you can then track using hashtags.

A growth conversation with…Luke Massie

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Taken from Boost Business Lancashire a featured article about one of our Business residents Luke Massie, who has now become a ambassador for Boost Business Lancashire .

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Photo taken in Cotton Studios | Lancashire’s Premier Studio Hire Complex

Our latest growth conversation is with Luke Massie. Luke has been named among the country’s top 100 young entrepreneurs having built up and sold his first business by the age of 18. Luke currently runs four businesses, employing 14 full-time and six part-time staff. He is also the founder of The 1to500 Club, an online student marketing business that has successfully piloted in Preston. Luke is currently looking to roll out the platform, now rebranded as Studenthood, to university cities across the UK.

What is the biggest challenge you faced when growing your business and how did you overcome this?

Finding the individuals to be part of my core team. I overcame this by being patient and waiting for the right calibre of people. I don’t just employee people based on their CV or past achievements. I try to get to know people as individuals before getting them involved in any of my ventures. I’ve managed to find people that I believe can express my vision and are a part of achieving my goals.

What qualities must a growing business owner possess to be successful?

Resilience. You will fail, and the likelihood is you’re going to miss targets you’ve set yourself and feel you’ve not succeeded what you set out to do, but if every time you fail it makes you stronger then that’s what sets you apart as a successful business owner. Many people will doubt you along the way so the business owner has to demonstrate high levels of self belief to achieve success.

What top tip would you give to a business owner embarking on a growth plan?

Dream big and don’t be afraid of failing. Plan little and often because many markets are so dynamic that sometimes long-term planning is in effective. Three-week, three-month and six month planning is absolutely necessary. Consumer needs are changing all the time and you have to be able to adapt, so listen to market research and customer feedback.

Which entrepreneur do you admire and why?

Steve Jobs. He was a true visionary who knew what the consumer wanted even before they did.

Why is Lancashire a great place to grow a business?

With more support coming from the public sector, investors are really starting to notice the talent the county has to offer. There are many SMEs based in Lancashire winning major contracts ahead of other areas of the UK. It demonstrates that as long as you have a good product, service and business, it doesn’t matter where you’re based in the UK, you have a chance to be successful.

Why are you supporting Boost Business Lancashire?

Boost is designed to support business owners, which is something I am passionate about. I want to support other young entrepreneurs that are just embarking on their journey. I have used many of the services the scheme has to offer, for example the Growth Accelerator programme delivered by Winning Pitch, the Access to Finance service and help from specialist mentors. I would recommend any business starting and growing in Lancashire to find out what support is available.

The Winckley Square Business Hangout

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The ever popular Winckley Square Business Hangout is back again thanks to Preston City Centre’s Business Improvement District (BID). Inviting businesses from across Lancashire to network in the gorgeous splendor of Preston’s Winckley Square.

Sponsored by Santander the under-cover networking event will be serving a light supper, together with a glass of something fizzy!

The ever popular Winckley Square washing line will be in full force….. If you’re great at architecture or web-design, think you’re the best legal eagle in the area, or manufacture some mean products, simply write it down and hang it up for all to see.

Similarly, if you’re looking to secure services or purchase products locally and want a good deal, pin that up too.

DETAILS:

DATE: Wednesday 18th September
TIME: 4pm – 6pm
LOCATION: Winckley Square, Preston

TO BOOK:

bid@lancschamber.co.uk with your company and the name of your representatives (max of two per company) For more information please call 01772 653 000

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Get voting again…. it’s been an exciting month in the Breathe office

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Guest blog by one of our clients:  Samera from Breathe Therapies

I am so delighted to announce that our very own hardworking Shelley Perry is an Eva Award finalist!! A well recognised event that stands for Enterprise Vision Award set up to celebrate entrepreneurial growth of women in the North West.

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It is touching to see the category for which she is placed under of ‘Inspirational Woman of the year’ as it is a title she truly deserves.

Now, the votes are open and I am eager to spread the joy.

Please tell everyone you know to get the word out by following the links below to place your vote with a few quick and easy clicks:

http://www.evavoting.co.uk/vote.php?this_category=Inspirational

But the awards don’t stop there for us at Breathe Eating Disorder Service as we have also been lucky enough to be nominated for Holistic Business of the year award 2013, by the Holistic Directory who want to celebrate wonderful holistic businesses in the UK and the people that run them, so have launched an Award this year.

It’s absolutely fabulous to receive an acknowledgment and appreciation of the work we deliver within the community and to take this opportunity to thank the hard efforts and commitment shown daily by our clinical director Shelley Perry who is full of compassion and an inspiration to be around!!

You can place your vote by following the link below:

https://www.theholisticdirectory.co.uk/about/holistic-business-of-the-year-award-2013

But Hurry, because the deadline closes on the 1st September and the winner will be announced on the 17th September, wish us luck and stay posted to find out the results!!

Your vote counts: Every vote is important to us and we thank you very much for all your support and votes in advance!!  We greatly appreciate it.

So please help us by voting for both of the awards listed and stay posted to find out what happens!!

CV – Get it right 1st time!

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Guest Blog Article by one of our clients,

Anand Lanka of  The Recruitment Provider

 It doesn’t matter whether you are an executive with years of corporate experience or a graduate with very little work history, this is your first opportunity to introduce yourself and knock on the door of any potential employer.

So where do candidates go wrong?

  • First rule is tailor the CV to the job, I know some of you will be saying that this is time consuming, but if you can highlight the requirements of the job and match your skills/ experience on your CV then you have a greater chance of being taken seriously. Remember your potential employer or recruiter is not a mind reader, they don’t know you. The employment market is very competitive and you need to tackle each job application with military precision.
  •   Personal profiles. These need to be quantified, candidates often put on their CV’s that they are “confident”, “bubbly” “excellent communicator”? If you are going to make personal statements of this nature you need to provide evidence else your CV will not get filtered to the interview pile.
  •   CV format. Make sure this is done properly. What does this mean? If you have a list of competencies/skills etc. don’t put them in one paragraph, use bullet points to make your CV concise and easy to read without putting war and peace on. Make sure everything lines up and your text is justified. Use the same font throughout.

 

  •    Gaps in employment. We see this all the time. With this, most people have genuine reasons for gaps in employment, you may have had children or spent time travelling which is understandable, so please put down the reasons. If you don’t explain the gaps then the recruiter is left thinking why? So get your dates right and make sure they coincide with each other.
  • Last thing Proof read your CV.Spelling errors and incorrect grammar will ring alarm bells to any potential employer. Most of all make sure that your contact details are up to date and correct, if you don’t no one will be contacting you for an interview!

Remember “you only get one chance to make a first impression”.

 

                        recruitment provider

 

Why not try Foursquare for your Business

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When we think of social media and business, the first few things to come to mind are Facebook and Twitter. Yet, there is one mobile app that tends to get overlooked by businesses: Foursquare. True, it doesn’t have the same numbers that the likes of Facebook and Twitter can boast, but what it does have is a dedicated audience which has made over three billion check-ins.

Regardless of whether you’re a retailer or not, any business can use Foursquare and getting yourself set up is easy. The only thing it needs is you to get involved.

Why Foursquare?

While it has a web presence, Foursquare has been growing quite steadily over the last few years, and offers some unique opportunities for businesses and brands. With over 25 million users globally and 31% of mobile users active on social networks using Foursquare, it has an engaged community and a passionate user base.

Foursquare’s main strength comes from its users, the power of personal recommendation and sharing on different social media sites. By seeing where their friends are going and the places they regularly frequent, they would be more likely to visit if the recommendation is positive. Foursquare doesn’t get the same attention as Facebook or Twitter, but this presents you with a better opportunity to develop customer loyalty through deals. While Facebook has released its new ‘nearby’ function for its app, Foursquare is still the king of check-in and location.

Why not the next time your at Cotton Court Business Centre check in on Foursquare. We are running a series of special promotions for first time visitors and check in’s through to mayorship.

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Above you’ll find our offer for Permanent Desk Space for a limited time of £25 per week. For more information please visit Cotton Court Business Centre.

To download the Foursquare App or through the iTunes Store

3ManFactory Shortlisted for BIBAs New Business of the Year

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What a start to the year for 3ManFactory! After being shortlisted as Creative Business of the Year in the  Red Rose Awards and New Business of the Year in the E3 Business Awards, 3ManFactory have now been shortlisted for New Business of the Year in the BIBAs 2013.

The BIBAs are touted as being Lancashire’s leading and biggest awards ceremony, recognising and honouring the breadth of business achievement in Lancashire in all its variety. To be shortlisted for another award makes us a very proud bunch indeed: we’ve worked hard to and strived to be one of Lancashire’s go-to organisations for businesses that want to take their digital strategies to the next level.

We wish them the best of luck! We will see them at the premier awards ceremony.

For more information about The BIBAs 2013.