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Bluestep Seminars

by Mark Chamberlain

on 24th October 2016

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Each month, one Bluestepper takes on the task of hosting a breakfast seminar on a subject they are particularly passionate about. Not only have a we found this a great team morale and bonding exercise – but getting together an hour before work over croissants and OJ, and brushing up on subjects we might otherwise not come across, is a great learning experience and helps keep the whole team up to date on relevant skills and subjects!
So what has been presented so far and how is it benefitting the team?

Shanice Martin – Social Media for business

Media savvy Shanice kicked off the seminars as a tender newbie back in May this year. She wanted to fill the team in on the latest social media trends, strategies and success rates.
Always have a strategy. It’s all well and good if you’re posting x3 times a day but if you have no strategy or relevance, your audience will tail off.
Consistency is key. Consistency across TOV, imagery and posting times is a must to ensure you keep audiences engaged and active.
Pick the right channels. Twitter is great for exposure…if you have plenty of followers. Know your audience and know their preferred platforms.

Ben Johnson – Negotiation skills

Straight talking Ben chose to educate the team on negotiation skills. With a clever multiple choice quiz, we were soon able to point out the softer team members from the feistier negotiators.
Find a middle ground. If you’re struggling to make a deal, try and meet the customer half way.
Negotiation is a fundamental part of life! We negotiate every day, even if we don’t realise it, so you may as well be good at it.
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. As with most business scenarios, it’s essential you’re adequately prepared. Know your facts and figures before confidently closing a deal.

Rebecca Tyler – Branding

Becca’s passion for all things design shone through in her branding seminar. After taking a course on branding earlier this year, Becca wanted to share some of her insight to the team.Find your brand personality. Where do you sit in the world of brands? Are you the hero? The lover? The optimist? Establish your personality and stick to it!
Consider a rebrand. It’s worked for some of the biggest brands in the world. Keep up to date with the fast paced industry and keep your brand fresh.
More than just a logo. A brand is so much more than a logo. People connect with a brand on a higher level, and remain loyal to a brand that has served them well. Remember this when communicating with your audience.

Ben Skinner – Business Development

Bluestep MD, Ben, built up a business from scratch, so it was only natural he should brief the team on the ins and outs of business development. As you might already know, Ben is a fan of putting people before business and it’s worked pretty well for him!
Know your customer inside out. Where did they go on holiday this year? How many dogs do they have? Where’s their favourite place to eat?
Be fun to be around. Ever get on so well with a client/supplier that meetings just seem to fly by? It’s always nice to do business with someone you get along with.
Keep in touch. Make regular contact with all clients and customers, even if work is quiet. Make them feel special and remember who you are!

Mark Chamberlain – Websites and Digital

Our go-to coder, Mark, was constantly bombarded with techy questions from the rest of the team, so decided to give us all the low down on everything web and digital!
Not all websites are created equal. Custom-coded, wordpress, e-commerce, one page… with so many options on the market, there’s something for every type of business.
Consider WordPress. If you’re not overly tech-savvy, but low on budget, it might be worth considering a WordPress template. WordPress is super user-friendly and with a content management system, you can easily make updates yourself.
Be responsive. Making your site responsive should go without saying these days, especially since 80% of internet users now own a smartphone!

Nicola Risi – Copywriting

With super speedy typing skills & an eye for typos, Nikki has naturally become Bluestep’s creative copywriter come dictionary. During the seminar, she presented the team with some of the world’s greatest copy ads, and some handy hints & tips on how they can polish up their own copywriting skills.
Write drunk, edit sober. Well, not literally…! Do an initial braindump of everything you want to say, then come back later to edit, correct and refine.
Be flexible. Some days you could be selling shoes to twenty-something London commuters, the next you’re selling cars to middle class family men. Never underestimate a copywriter’s power to adapt their personality and language.
Don’t use big words when a smaller one will do! To quote Joey from friends “They’re prepossessing, humid homo-sapiens with full sized aortic pumps”

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