‘Blue Monday’ may have now been declared a myth, but a full room of attendees at the latest Winter Business Session held by Total Guide to, Business West and Wrag Barn acted as proof that, science aside, we all still need a positive lift on a Monday in January!
The beautiful surroundings of Wrag Barn provided the perfect anecdote for an ordinarily miserable start to a working week. With panoramic views of the countryside from all aspects of its conference room facilities, and a light and airy space for those looking to escape the greyness of their office environment.
Liz Ledger, Total Guide to Director, kicked off the session with a unique insight into the top three things Total Guide to learnt in 2018; the importance of focussing on SEO; Google Analytics; and quality content. She also alerted us to the importance of digital marketing with her report that, globally, we spent £19 billion on it in the last year. A considerable cost, but an even bigger one if not spent well.
Verity Manners from Wrag Barn talked about the initial development of Wrag Barn and its continued progression through implementation of technology. The Golf Club strives to dispel the stuffy image of golf and improve communication through social media and the introduction last year of an app, which the members can use to book tee times and enter competitions.
To aid the processing of our new-found knowledge; ice cream, popcorn and candy floss were provided by Rays Ice cream, Sweets Galore and Desserts Parlour.
A poetic interlude was delivered, by Hayley Williams-Yarde, The Soul Shack, with a moving reading from her new book of poetry Trapped In a Bottle based on her family’s real-life experiences with alcoholism, dementia and mental health.
And both the chair of the Swindon Social Enterprise network and Jessie May Children’s Hospice charity called on attendees to give back either individually or through spreading awareness of their organisations work to associates and friends. A request echoed by both the event and its attendees. With a full room of businesses, this is proof that local industry wants to connect, work and improve both our town and its prospects collectively.
Business sessions and network events not only help towards achieving that goal, but add the essential element of fun, to the cause. “These quarterly events are the beating heart of the Swindon SME business world and part of what makes Swindon standout with a very connected business community working to support each other” said Paul Holmes, Business Solutions, Project Management, Manufacturing, Innovation and local communities.
As we look at new events, partnerships and features for 2019 including; Total Guide to Social Media and Video training sessions and the introduction of the RAF Air Tattoo Business Club, it would seem together we have the skills, motivation and purpose to drive forward. All we need to do now is keep the momentum going into the rest of 2019. And thanks to our organisers, speakers and fellow attendees, we now have the tools to do it.