How winning awards can transform your business

We were delighted to have our members R A Brown Heating Services speak at a recent meeting about how awards had transformed their business.

Louise came along to show us their impressive collection of awards and talk about the impact it had made on their business, sharing some valuable tips too.

R A Brown specialise in the design and installation of ground and air source heat pumps, and always knew they weren’t just a run of the mill heating engineer company.

A nomination was made in an industry award – which they won, and it had a huge snowball effect. Awards are now a firm part of their marketing strategy and Louise shared her top tips for winning awards…

You’ve got to be in it to win it

It’s an old saying but it’s true. Every year, c0-director Richard feels their work isn’t good enough to win. Yet time and time again he’s proved wrong. You have to look at your work positively and go for it.

Blow your own trumpet!

Many of us find this difficult, but it’s important, so be proud of what you do. Applying for awards is inextricably linked with business development and keeping your competitive edge.

Passion wins awards

Louise says they now prefer the awards where you get the opportunity to speak to the judges following a written application. They’ve been told many times that their passion for their field shines through. Save something back to add extra information to the presentation – for R A Brown, that’s often an update on the performance of the heating system.

The David and Goliath complex

Don’t be afraid to pit yourself against much bigger companies. Awards are based on the quality of work or impact you’ve made, not on the number of employees. Often bigger companies hire a marketing agency to apply for awards for them, which means the passion is diluted.

Set targets

It might sound crazy, but it takes time to prepare award applications so schedule them into your diary and always think ahead. R A Brown try to win one or two awards each year, and Louise suggests setting your targets according to the time and resources you have available. Every sector has different awards, but don’t overlook general awards such as the EDP Business Awards.

Don’t be downhearted

If you get shortlisted but don’t win, use the awards night as an opportunity to network.


Worth a read: 8 Reasons to enter business awards, even if you don’t win


Pay attention to the questions

Award applications can be a bit like a lengthy job application. It’s important to answer the questions carefully rather than just trying to sell yourself and what you want to say.

Down to the nitty gritty

Firstly, keep an eye on trade/sector magazines who often run awards and local press for local business awards. Read through the categories and criteria carefully to make sure it’s a good fit and that you have a fairly unique offering. Keep asking yourself “what makes me/us different” as you complete the application.

If there’s the chance to supply supporting evidence, a powerpoint works well as you can add images and text as well as stats to demonstrate your business growth. And tie in award applications with your blog or case studies and obtain testimonials regularly – these are invaluable when it comes winning awards, and shows your customers blowing your trumpet too!

If you work completely on your own then use a community like Her Business Brew to get feedback on your draft award applications before submitting. And remember, you deserve a new dress for the awards ceremony and probably more than 1 glass of prosecco.

Plaster successes everywhere!

Customers are impressed by award-winning companies. If you win, put the award logos everywhere – on your website, social media, email signature, pop-up banners, brochures and flyers, in advertorial press, try for free press coverage if you can get it – make that award work hard for you!

 

Save this post on Pinterest for later!

How winning awards can transform your business

Top tips to working from home successfully

Whether you’re self-employed or trying to get out of the office for a while, working from home can have its benefits. There’s no commute, you’re not restricted to only working ‘office hours’ and it allows you to walk the dog before the afternoon slump sets in, or pick up the kids from school.

But, it’s not without its problems too. From friends and family thinking they can drop in for a cuppa any time, to people asking you to do a multitude of tasks such as waiting in for deliveries or even babysitting! There are a few things you can do to make sure working from home works for you.

We asked the ladies in our Facebook group what their top tips were for working from home successfully, and here’s what they said…

Q. What are your top tips for working from home?
Jenna Rich, Marketing Assistant

inspired-youth.co.uk

To have a separate space which is your ‘work space.’ You know when you’re in there that’s when you work

Kate Tritton, Relationship Manager

easternfinancialconsultants.co.uk

Make people aware that even though you may be working from home, you are actually working and not on a day off

Sam James, Life Coach

samjamescoaching.co.uk

Set clear time boundaries for when you’re working and when you’re not, so it doesn’t blur into trying to do everything all the times. Setting alarms can be a great way to reinforce the boundaries, I’ve got a ‘time to switch off’ and ‘time to switch to mummy mode’ set on my phone

Julia Duncan, Photographer

photographyforlittlepeople.com

Behave as if you’re going to an office. When I was in the corporate world and was a home worker, I dressed smart. Now I’m self-employed, my ‘job’ is more casual but I stopped staying in my PJ’s. I’m often on Skype so always look presentable from the waist up! I’ve learnt it’s important to still have a routine

Got a tip of your own?

Share it in the comments below…

Save this post on Pinterest for later!

Top tips to working from home successfully

Her Business Brew hosts its first workshop with success!

Did you know we are now offering workshops to help support women with their businesses? All done in a fun, friendly and relaxed environment.

On Tuesday 6th June 2017, Her Business Brew Founder Serena Fordham and Her Business Brew Coordinator and franchise owner Rebecca Claxton, along with Her Business Brew members, copywriter Kerry Brind, and life coach Sam James, held a day of training for like-minded business women who are in need of extra support and guidance. This was a great success and will continue to be offered in the future.

We missed the memo!…

On arrival refreshments were offered, but we must have missed the memo as our attendees all brought their own specific tea bags. This set the day off relaxed and with light-hearted laughter. We at Her Business Brew are all about being comfortable within the network group.

Kicking off the day..

In the comfort of her new offices on the Scottow Enterprise Park, Rebecca Claxton Founder of Savvy Mums Business and Host of Her Business Brew Cromer, kicked off the day offering her workshop on ‘Getting more done – Your ultimate guide to productivity’

Rebecca spoke about getting to know what time is your best working times, are you an early bird or a night owl? How to start your day right, how to stop procrastinating and many more very helpful insights into how we can be more productive in our day.

Your turn Serena!

Our second speaker was Serena Fordham Founder and CEO of Serena Fordham’s PA Services and Founder of Her Business Brew, and hosts Her Business Brew Norwich. Serena workshop was ‘The importance of face-to-face marketing, and how to pull off a kick-arse event!’

Serena’s workshop was designed to show that holding an event to celebrate or market our business was not so daunting after all! There were some useful techniques and tips offered that gave a practical plan into what is needed to hold an event and to publicise it afterwards.

Refreshed and re-fuelled after lunch…

After stopping to re-fuel, the wonderful Copywriter, Content Marketing Coach & SEO Stylist Kerry Brind from Write to Win Business, took a stand to deliver a fully packed and energetic workshop on ‘How to use your blog to grow your email list’

There was a huge amount of information offered for our workshop attendees, lots of questions being asked and notes being taken. Kerry knows her stuff and gave great insight into how others can follow her lead and with the amazing tips she offered I’m sure our attendees will soon have a growing mail list!

Rounding up the day…

To end the day, we had the lovely Sam James of Sam James Coaching. A down-to-earth life coach with a great insight into where we go wrong with juggling our personal and work lives. Her workshop was ‘Effective strategies, you can use again and again, to get the best mix of things in your life (and all the hats you wear!)’

She had the attendees thinking about their emotional awareness and where they are giving most of their energy during their day. Tips for freeing the mind of work baggage to be present in our personal lives.

Lots of food for thought from this workshop to go home and mull over, a superb way to end the day.

Feedback and what people thought

At the end of the workshop everyone shared what they’d got from the day…

“I learnt some great productivity tips, planned a celebration event that now feels achievable, list of things to action on my blogs!”

“Today has made me look at looking after me better, so I can work better. Also I got lots of ideas for blogging”

“I learned that it’s ok to be off balance for a while, but need to top up the tank!”

“Had fun and learned how to better look after myself”

“How to get more done, method for organising a great event, amazing tips to make the most of our blog, and it’s ok to look after me! Enjoyable day learning!!”

“How to look after myself better, and how to make my new whizzy website and blogs work for me! 🙂 Thank you so much!!!”

Want to get involved next time?

Feeling tempted to join us at the next workshop or at one of our Her Business Brew networking meetings?

This first workshop has proven there is a need for this type of relaxed, informative and supportive training so we will deliver!

There will be another workshop in the Autumn – If you are interested in attending, please get in touch.

You can also join us in our private Facebook group  to see what we and our members are getting up to!

Save this post on Pinterest for later!

Her Business Brew hosts its first workshop with success!