Dangerous Marketing wants your opinion!

PPG division Dangerous Marketing is seeking the opinion of business owners as part of the launch of their new Interim Marketing Manager service (latest blog article).  Feedback from local businesses have highlighted a concern in how they can stimulate business growth having pared all their resources back during the recession – they know exactly what needs to be done but cannot exploit an open market whilst their competitors are in the same predicament.

Dangerous Marketing is therefore asking for the opinions of business owners on the value of using an external marketing resource to grow their business.  The survey is brief and only take a couple of minutes to complete (only 6 questions in total, 4 of which only require a simple tick to answer). All answers are anonymous so respondents are encouraged to be completely frank and honest in their opinion.

Click here to take the survey

Thank you in advance for taking the time to help with this research – your opinion is very much appreciated!

If you want more information on the new Dangerous Marketing Interim Marketing Manager service, you can make contact via  Twitter or the Enquiry Page on our website.

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Upstarts Club for New Entrepreneurs

The next Upstarts Club™ for new and would-be entrepreneurs is booked to take place on Thursday May 6th 2010, between 6.00 and 9.00 pm, at the University College of St Mark & St John (Marjon) in Plymouth.

The Upstarts Club™ is an off-shoot of the Entrepreneurs Bootcamp™, where any would-be or new entrepreneurs get the chance to chat informally about developing new businesses with experienced entrepreneurs who have “been there and done that”!

Thanks to our hosts Marjon, the Upstarts Club™ is free of charge to attend but you will need to book for catering purposes (there will be a light buffet available and the event takes place in the Student Union Presidents Bar, so drink available to buy at college prices. Book your place by contacting either Sue Windley (PPG’s Marketing Director and Founder of the Upstarts Club™) or Nicky Primavesi (President of Marjon’s Student Union).  You can also join in a virtual Upstarts Club™ group on FaceBook and LinkedIn.

March is #BeMyGuest Month

Here’s a clever way to promote yourself and/or your business to a new audience.

March 2010 is BeMyGuest month. Thought up by Adam Vincenzini and Emily Cagle, it encourages social media bloggers and tweeters to share ideas on each others’ postings. As they state on their website: “It’s what social media and sharing is all about.”  The campaign has a simple approach: during March, you can get to feature as a guest on at least one other person’s blog and invite at least one person to post on your own blog.  You start by using Twitter to tweet out your own blog details with the hashtag #BeMyGuest – including what your preferences are (eg topics, editing style etc).

At PPG, we are delighted to be hosting blogs written by other people on our Dangerous Marketing Blog. These are people from the on-line world who all have marketing in common – and we hope their different approaches will help and inspire ideas for new marketing approaches. Look for our #BeMyGuest Avatar (to the right) to indicate our guest blogs.

To make your search easier, we will be updating the links to each of our guest blogs here:

Our guest writers have also kindly reciprocated with by allowing Dangerous Marketing to write blogs on their sites – you can take a look at the different posts here:

The #BeMyGuest idea is a simple way to promote your business brand to a new audience. Give it a try for yourself in March!

New pot of funding for SMALL Businesses in Devon & Cornwall available in March 2010.

As an approved supplier for Business Link in Devon & Cornwall, we are always looking out for funding to help our clients – and here is the latest pot to be made available.  It is the TRAIN TO GAIN (TTG) Leadership & Management Advisory Service (LMAS) funding that is aimed at BUSINESS OWNERS & DIRECTORS, which has been around for a while but usually only available to organisations with 10-249 employees.   But in March 2010, a limited pot of funds will be made available to SMALL BUSINESSES with 1 – 9 employees.  As it is limited, it is available on a first-come, first served basis.

The funding available is UP TO £1000 and consists of 2 parts:

  • £500 grant that covers the cost of delivery of a training programme/event ie the business can claim up to £500 back
  • £500 matched funding, where an equal amount of funding is matched against what the business pays for the training.

Therefore if the business claims the full amount, it means you can access £1,500 worth of training for the cost of £500.  You have a wide choice for the type of training or development that is eligible for the funding, including accredited management qualifications, day courses, coaching & mentoring support etc.  For example, you may want to know more about using Social Media or learn about what different aspects of Marketing would be right for your business.  What is NOT covered is any mandatory/statutory training (such as Health and Safety), any technical training that you need to do your job (eg if you run a web development company, you could not claim for update training) or assessment costs for accreditation such as ISO or IiP.

Of course there will be some paperwork to do, but at PPG we usually are able to do this on your behalf – and the TTG support team will help you with the rest! Other considerations you will need to be aware of:

  • The TTG funding ONLY covers the actual cost of delivery – it does not cover VAT or additional expenses such as subsidence and travel – these are payable by the business.
  • To claim both/either the grant &/or the matched funding, you will have had to pay for the training before making your funding claim as you will need proof of payment, so you will need to pay out money first.  However the funding claim process is pretty straightforward and TTG will try to get the funding back to you as soon as possible (typically a couple of weeks).
  • You need to claim the funding claim within 90 days of the start date of any training and development as any claims after the 90 days cannot be guaranteed to be refunded.

Most importantly, this funding is only available during March 2010 with a limited number of applications available, so it will be provided on a first come, first served basis.  Contact Us at PPG if you want to know more specific information regarding your own business and how we can help you access this pot of gold!

How Legal is Your Sales & Marketing?

Breakfast Seminar (8.00 – 10.00 am)

Wednesday 24 February 2010

Hall for Cornwall, Truro, TR1 2LL

HOW LEGAL IS YOUR SALES & MARKETING?

Many businesses in Cornwall put a great deal of effort into generating sales and building up their business.  But how many stop and think about those sales and marketing activities? Do you know what you can and cannot say? Do you know what you say actually works? Do you know what you say is legal? This breakfast seminar, hosted by leading corporate/commercial solicitors Murrell Ashworth LLP, will provide an insight into the latest regulations and legislation, plus tips and tools to keep your sales and marketing activities legal and measurable.

The seminar will focus mainly on practical approaches to staying on the right side of the law, for example areas that directly impact how businesses can/cannot promote themselves such as the 2008 Unfair Commercial Practices Directive or the Privacy & Electronic Communications Regulations. We have three leading specialists in their field:

  • Mark Stuart, Head of Research, The Chartered Institute of Marketing will present a user-friendly overview of what legislation and regulations impact commercial enterprises, including case study examples to highlight where businesses go wrong and how they can get it right. The Chartered Institute of Marketing is the world’s largest organisation for professional marketers, making it the first port of call for marketing information, knowledge and insight.
  • Katie Ashworth, Partner, Murrell Ashworth LLP will review the key areas of law that impact how businesses communicate with potential and existing customers, including how to avoid getting into the minefield that is mis-representation.  Business law for business people – Murrell Ashworth LLP is a specialist law firm comprising a team of high calibre corporate/commercial solicitors who possess the rare combination of city expertise and local market knowledge.  They bring a fresh approach to the West Country’s legal services community, providing tailored practical legal advice from a commercial perspective in language business people understand.
  • Sue Windley, Marketing Director, Pragmatic Performance Group will provide practical guidance on how businesses can measure different aspects of their sales and marketing activities to ensure that they not only stay legal, but can also guarantee effective outcomes for their marketing investment.  Pragmatic Performance Group are business acceleration specialists, providing practical advice, guidance and resource to enable Cornish SMEs achieve sustainable and profitable business growth.
  • SEMINAR TIME & LOCATION: 8.00am – 10.00am The event will start with a buffet breakfast and networking before the seminar gets underway at 8.30am.  There will be time for individual questions and additional networking at the end. Venue is the Hall for Cornwall, Back Quay, Truro, Cornwall, TR1 2LL (click here for Map & Directions)
  • BOOKING: Please confirm how many places you wish to book (and if you have any special dietary requirements) by e-mailing Caroline Marshall-Hamilton caroline@murrellashworth.co.uk.  Closing date for bookings is 16th February 2009
  • COST & PAYMENT DETAILS: £10.00, which includes donation to local charity BF Adventure (charity no: 3546772) which supports disadvantaged children.  Please send payment by cheque, made payable to “Murrell Ashworth LLP” to the firm at 14 High Cross, Truro, TR1 2AJ or contact Caroline for account details for e-payment details.

To find out more about the business lawyers for business people, visit the Murrell Ashworth website.

First Dangerous Marketing Blog On-Line

Our new blog from Dangerous Marketing has published its first article – The Wonder of Social Media – bringing Outer Space into your home!

Take a look and let us know what you think!

PPG Embraces Twitterdom!

PPG Marketing Director Sue Windley is dipping her business toes into the world of Twitter and you can follow how she gets on under her Tweet nom de plume of DangerousMkting!

You’ll find all about Sue’s views on business life in our universe – all in 140 characters.  We hope you’ll find her comments of interest and of use – if you have a Twitter account, visit DangerousMkting and start following to say Hello!