Category Archives: Lincolnshire

Why I love Lincolnshire

why I love Lincolnshire

I love living in Lincolnshire

I have lived in Lincolnshire most of my life, I had 3 years in Liverpool studying Zoology, which I loved and then returned to Lincolnshire.  I know the county well having spent most of my late teens and early twenties as a YFC member travelling around the county to sporting events, discos, meetings, public speaking competitions and balls.  From Brigg and Market Rasen in the North, to Spalding in the South, across to Wainfleet in the East and Caythorpe in the West, if there was an event on, members from Coningsby YFC would be there.

Lincolnshire is a large county and there is something for everyone.  I live on the edge of the Lincolnshire Fens, which are flat and consist of miles of fields of leeks, wheat, oilseed rape, cabbages and potatoes.  To some people the Fens aren’t as beautiful, as the undulating fields and country lanes of the Wolds, but I love the Fens, you can see for miles and you can’t beat a misty autumnal morning sunrise or a late summer sunset.  When I went to Uni many people didn’t know where Lincolnshire was, until I mentioned Skegness and then people knew where I was from.  Lincolnshire has beautiful long sandy beaches on the East coast, including the busy traditional seaside resorts like Cleethorpes, Mablethorpe & Skegness, however I prefer the quieter places like Sutton on Sea and Huttoft.  I also love Gibraltar Point Nature Reserve I spent a week doing some volunteering there when I left Uni, it is a great place to go for a walk and has a new modern cafe and visitor centre.

Cafe at Gibraltar Point

Cafe at Gibraltar Point

View from Cafe at Gibraltar Point

View from Cafe at Gibraltar Point, with stormy skies

I also love Hubbard’s Hills near Louth and Snipe Dales near Spilsby both are great places to go for a walk and I have many happy memories of taking my children for walks there.

Snipedales Lincolnshire

Snipedales, Lincolnshire

The county is full of history too.  In Lincoln there is the Cathedral and Castle, Museum of Lincolnshire life and the Collection, in the south near the beautiful Georgian town of Stamford, there is Burghley, a great Elizabethan house and to the west there is Belton House near Grantham.  Boston, although it tends to be known for negative things now, is a historic town with the beautiful and iconic Boston Stump.  In medieval times it was a busy port second only to London, but it is most well known for its connections with the Puritans in the early 1600’s who tried to leave England to go to America.

Belton House

Belton House

Another one of my favourite places is Woodhall Spa an Edwardian Spa resort, there is the Petwood Hotel,  Jubilee Park with its outdoor swimming pool and the Kinema in the Woods, a unique cinema.  I love going to the Kinema and have been going there to see films since I was a child.

I enjoy working with Lincolnshire businesses because they are so diverse and I get to travel around the beautiful county to work with them.  I work with charities that are working to make Lincolnshire a better place to live and who are supporting families in the county.  Then I work with food and drink producers to help them promote their produce in Lincolnshire and beyond, as well as working with tourism businesses, who are promoting all the fun and interesting things there are to do in the county.  I also work with other business women like myself that are building flexible businesses that fit around their children or other commitments that they have.  So if you are a Lincolnshire business and want to learn how to use Social Media to market and promote your business, please get in touch to discuss how I can work with you.

What do you love about Lincolnshire? Have you ever been to Lincolnshire for a holiday? Please leave a comment below.

Top 5 reasons for using Social Media Marketing to promote your local business

Are you using Social Media Marketing to promote your local business?

  • Do you have an independent shop or business on a high street of a town or village in the UK?
  • Do you want more people to come through the door of your shop or restaurant?
  • Do you have a business that serves local businesses?
  • Do you want an affordable way to market your business?

Lots of bricks and mortar businesses don’t have a good presence on social media and are missing a great way to get people to know about their business and to buy from them.  Whether it is because they think social media is only worth doing if you have a website or maybe they are too busy in their business to get the proper training.

There are many benefits of using social media marketing to promote your business, which I cover in another blog post What is Social Media Marketing? However, here are my top 5 reasons why your local business should be using social media marketing as part of your marketing strategy:

1) Social media helps you get found online

If you haven’t got a website then having good profiles on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter will help people find your business, when they search for businesses similar to yours online.  If you have a website you can use social media sites to direct traffic back to your website.  Also when people search for your business online your social media profiles will appear as well as your website.

2) Use a business Facebook Page as your main online presence

Following on from my first point, if you don’t have a website you can use a Facebook business page to provide information you might have on a website such as contact details, opening times, special events that you are hosting etc.  Although I would always advise people to have their own website as that is where you have control of what you want to achieve online.

3) Tell people what products you stock

A well thought out Facebook page with good quality images of the products you sell or services you provide will communicate to prospective clients what you do.

Recently I was going into local businesses doing a leaflet drop and telling business owners about my business.  In the village that I was doing the leaflet drop there was a small health food shop, that I often walked past thinking I must pop in there one day, when I have time.  When I popped into this health food shop to tell them about my business, I found out that they stocked products I usually bought online, because I hadn’t found any other local Health Food shops that stocked them.  If this shop had a Facebook page and had a logo in the window saying they were on Facebook, I would have followed their page and found this out a lot sooner.

4) Keep loyal customers up to date

Facebook and Twitter are great tools for keeping your business in the mind of loyal customers, as long as your content is high quality and relevant to your customers they will love seeing your updates appear in their timeline.

5) Allow loyal customers to recommend you to their friends

One of the biggest advantages of social media is that happy loyal customers can easily tell their friends and family about your great business and products.

Another bonus to using social media marketing for your business is that it is highly likely that your competitors might not be using social media yet.

However, before you set up a Facebook page and Twitter profile for your business, I would advice you to get some quality training from a social media consultant like myself, as training from an expert will help you get quicker results from your social media marketing.   Also working with a social media consultant to formulate a social media marketing strategy for your business will help you save time, enable you to measure how well your social media is performing and whether it is getting the results you want for your business.

I also help my clients to think how their clients might search for what their business provides and give ideas on what content those clients might find useful and engage with.

Are you a bricks and mortar business that gets good results with social media marketing?  If you are a hotel or B and B you might find my post about using social media to promote your holiday accommodation useful.

Online and in person Networking in Lincolnshire with Lincs Connect

Networking with Lincs Connect

LincsConnect-Twitter

When you are starting out on Twitter it is sometimes difficult to get going with it, especially if you aren’t getting anyone retweeting your tweets or chatting with you.  Finding a local Twitter networking group with other local businesses and people to tweet with is very useful.  Networking hours are good but can sometimes be full of self promoting automated tweets rather than people chatting and retweeting.  Also it maybe difficult to attend if the hour clashes with other commitments, so using a hashtag such as #LincsConnect, which is 24/7 is a great alternative.

Lincs Connect started out on Twitter and the idea is to follow @LincsConnect then use #LincsConnect in your tweets and some people will retweet your tweets.  If you retweet other peoples tweets with #LincsConnect in then you are more likely to get retweets and people are more likely to chat with you.  Below you can see that these tweets have been retweeted.

LincsConnect-TweetsLincs Connect has now expanded and has a monthly networking meeting at the Petwood Hotel, Woodhall Spa, usually on the first Friday of the month from 5.30pm.  However this month it is on the 11th of July at The Petwood 5.30pm onwards.  It is a really friendly group and helps you get to know the people behind the Twitter names and build relationships with those people.  It is also good fun and we have a laugh.

There is a great mix of people that attend and support Lincs Connect from small businesses like myself, to volunteers from various Lincolnshire charities, crafters and bloggers.  Some people have lots of followers on Twitter and some are fairly new to Twitter.  So here is a bit more about some of the great tweeters that attend:

Mandarin-Leisure

Mandarin Leisure

 

@MANDARINLEISURE Martin knows a lot of people and is a great supporter of Lincs Connect regularly attending the meetings and retweeting people’s tweets.

Maple-Tree-Cottage-Southrey

Maple Tree Cottage Southrey

 

 

 

 

The lovely Ann @SouthreyCottage is a keen gardener and tweets about what is going on around Lincoln.

 

Lives-HQ-Lincolnshire

Lives HQ

 

 

@LivesHQ regularly attends the Lincs Connect meetings if he isn’t busy around the county saving lives.

Aggie-Moore-Twitter

 

 

 

@AggieMoore is a very busy lady also tweeting for @WoodhallSpaShow, a keen photographer and baker of yummy cakes, regular #LincsConnect & #clubhectare tweeter

 

The-Manor-House-B&B

 

 

@themanorhousebb Christ is a generous and positive retweeter, great supporter of farming and Lincolnshire #clubhectare #LincsConnect & #LincsHour

 

 

Other lovely people you might meet at a Lincs Connect meeting are:

  • @RuralPics – James a rural farming and agricultural photographer
  • @suddenadultdeat – Teresa a dedicated volunteer and mum raising money and awareness about Sudden Adult Death
  • @WoodhallSpa1 – Country Girl Katie lovely local with her finger on the pulse of what is happening in Woodhall Spa
  • @GaryBosworth – Horse behaviour expert
  • @SamCollins100 – lovely lady who makes fantastic vintage button necklaces
  • @thelocalprinter – Woodhall Printer Michael can help you with your business stationary and much more
  • @pmountainmbe – Pauline a lady who is passionate about helping Lincolnshire carers
  • @GinzandTonic – Gini a poet blogging on WordPress for a year or more?
  • @CVleaflets – Leaflet distributer based in Lincoln covering the whole of the East Midlands
  • @Sunshinecoach – Wendy Tomlinson who can help you live the life you want

There are lots of other lovely people that attend and you don’t have to be on Twitter to come along and network.  So why not join in the conversation at #LincsConnect on Twitter and pop along to The Petwood Hotel, Woodhall Spa on Friday 11th July 5.30pm, for a drink and a chat.  Lincs Connect putting the Social into Social Media.

How to be Famous on Twitter by Deborah Lee at WiRE Lincoln

I have recently started doing more in person networking and on Monday went to my second WiRE Lincoln networking meeting at the Epic Centre at the Lincolnshire Showground.  I made the effort to go even though I had lots on that day, as Deborah Lee  was talking about Twitter, 3 steps to Social Media Fame.

Deborah Lee

Deborah Lee

I have been following @debsylee about as long as I have been on Twitter with my first account @GreenAspiration mainly due to the fact she was based in Lincolnshire and looked to be using Twitter regularly.  She kindly followed me back, which when you are starting out on Twitter means a lot.  At present Deborah has 140,000 Followers and earlier this year was included in the Forbes Top 20 Women Social Media Influencer List 2013 followed by the Forbes Top 50 Social Media Influencers 2013 (men and women).  Deborah started out on Twitter in May 2009 and attributes her success on Twitter to being consistent, authentic, helpful, generous and positive, and focusing on quality engagement. In Deborah’s opinion numbers do matter and believes she would not have been in the Forbes list if she had only 4,000 followers, however you also need quality engagement and to communicate with other Twitter users.  I also believe you have to share quality content, which Deborah does in her Tweets and on her blog.  Some more of Deborah’s tips include:

  • Know why you are on Twitter and in Deborah’s opinion that should be to achieve fame in your field of expertise, so show that you are knowledgeable and good at what you do.
  • Allocate time to Twitter every day and be consistent with when you are on Twitter, same time everyday.
  • Do not expect overnight success
  • Focus on the connections that you make
  • Profiles are everything so put effort into writing yours and have a professional photo taken
  • Never get drawn into online arguments
  • Aim high – don’t limit yourself
  • Be sassy
  • Follow back, unless the account looks like a spammer, you never know who is going to want to work with you or who will retweet you.

Find out more information about Deborah Lee on her blog and website.

debsylee.com – blog  deborahleeofficial.com – online training

There were other fantastic business women at the networking meeting including:

  • Sarah Ray, who is Listers new Fleet Manager
  • Naomi Jane Johnson, who runs Purrfectly Social and is a Wikaniko consultant
  • Mel Downing who is a homeopath and helps dogs with behavioural problems
  • Julie Bailey from Andrew & Co Solicitors, who is head of the Family Team
  • Lorraine Bellis of Bellis Perennis, who trains people how to grow their own veg
  • Sandra Bird of An Shen Acupuncture helping people to feel better
  • Rebecca Smith from Working Links who helps people get into work.
  • Zoe of Epix Media Ltd for business videos especially timelapse
  • Emma McDaid- Smith of My Live Well World who offers flexible working opportunities based around selling Aloe vera and bee hive products
  • Rachel Linstead of Firecracker, a business improvement specialist and nutritional therapist.
  • And me Jackie Elton of Social Media Lincs and Green Aspirations selling environmental and ethical gifts.

I love networking, especially as you can get to know people and their businesses.  Do you prefer to network in person or online?

If you like to network in person and live in Lincolnshire why not come to the next WiRE Lincoln meeting on Monday 19th August 10am – 12pm at the Epic Centre on the Lincolnshire Showground nr Lincoln.

 

 

An Introduction to Using Social Media to Promote your Business

Social Media is a fantastic affordable way to promote your business and interact with your customers, on the Thursday 23rd August from 9.30am till 4.00pm I will be hosting a social media workshop at the Red Lion Quarter, Spalding.

The workshop will explain the basics of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google + and Pinterest.  It will help you to decide which Social Media site is best for you and your business.  Here are some of the topics that will be covered:

  • Facebook – the difference between profiles, pages and groups
  • Twitter – how to build followers, who love what you do and will Retweet your Tweets
  • LinkedIn – How to make your profile stand out
  • Pinterest – How to use Pinterest to drive traffic to your site
  • Google + – The one for the boys.
  • QR codes – How to generate them and how to use them.

Antonia Bates is a jewellery designer and mum who started out on Twitter February 2012

4 months later with some advice from me and a lot of work on Antonia’s part putting into place my recommendations.

Follow Antonia @abb73 on Twitter or have a look at some of her designs AB Designs on Etsy

To help Antonia on her way I retweet some of her inital tweets to my followers (over 1000) and introduced her to some of my contacts on Social Media that I thought would be useful to her.  A big part of her success on Social Media is that she interacts with people and also recommends people that she thinks might be of interest to her followers.

Here are a few of the things that I do to help my clients:

  • I follow them on all the Social Media sites that they are on
  • I retweet some of their tweets (I have over a 1000 followers on Twitter)
  • I mention them in #ff on Twitter
  • I share their post on Facebook
  • I pin images of their products on to my Pinterest boards
  • if I know people that would be useful to my clients I introduce them

So if you would like to see how I use Social Media to promote my business and the businesses of my clients then book on to this workshop.  It is the only time I will do a workshop like this at this price.

As an added bonus, all attendees will get £5 off any of my future workshops.

The workshop is limited to 20 places and as an introductory offer for those people that have never worked with me before it is amazing value at only £20 (not including lunch). To book a place please contact me via the Contact page.  I look forward to meeting you in the future and doing work with you.

If you would like to find out a little more about my Social Media experience then have a look at the About Me Section.

 

Benefits of Networking at Local Events

Do you concentrate most of your networking online?  Too busy to go to local networking events?  Find the time and make the effort to go to a local networking events near you.  Recently I have found some great networking groups in Lincolnshire, I like getting out and meeting people as being a sole trader sat behind a computer all day, face to face social interaction is limited.

Benefits of attending your local networking group:

  • You meet people face to face and can get a feel for whether you can work with that person
  • People will get to know, like and trust you quicker meeting you in person, than when you are on line
  • You can find local business people that may be useful to you and your business
  • It gets you out of the office chatting with people that are in a similar situation to you
  • You might even get some direct business from it
  • People you meet might recommend you to their friends or business contacts
  • Listening to interesting speakers on their specialty
  • Contacts you make and relationships you build may be useful in the future

Since starting networking in Lincolnshire I have gained new clients, found people who are able to print my leaflets and found a T’ai Chi expert.

Read my post about some of my favourite networking groups in Lincolnshire

What are your experiences of networking in person? Leave me a comment below.

Easter Social Media Offer

As my way of saying Happy Easter to 10 lovely people I am offering a never to be repeated special Easter Social Media Offer.

1hr of Social Media advice from me for just £10

That is way better than half price as I usually charge £25 per hour when working 1 to 1 with someone.  So for £10 you get me for an hour discussing whatever you want about social media via a landline number or Skype.  So if you are great on Facebook but want to learn more about Twitter then that is what we can talk about.  However, if you are doing brilliantly on Facebook and Twitter but want to know about Google + or Pinterest then we can talk about that instead.

So how can you be one of the lovely 10 people that work with me for just £10?

Firstly sign up for my newsletter using the box at the top of this page, then send me an email at info.green.aspirations@gmail.com with your twitter id, facebook page link, what you would like to talk about and some times that would be good for the call. Then I will email you with details of how to pay and when I will call you, if you are one of the lucky 10 people.

To be eligible for this offer you need to either follow me on twitter @GreenAspirations or have liked my Business Mums Lincs page on facebook.

So sign up for my newsletter now to get an hours Social Media advice for just £10. I can’t wait to get to know you and work with you to make your social media shine!

Offer ends 9pm on Easter Monday.

HAPPY EASTER

One of last years chicks

 

 

Social Media training and networking event – Boston

Are you getting the most from Social Media?

We are constantly told that Social Media is a great way to market our business but what if you don’t know your facebook from your twitter? Or your hashtag from a share?
The secret to successful social media is quality interaction, interaction is a 2 way street, so how do you get people to interact with you?
Do you have a blog and want more people to read it?
Social media is a great way to promote blogs, websites and products, however you need to get the right mix of promotion and interaction.
So if you would like to find out how to promote your business using Facebook and Twitter, come along to the Business Mums Lincs Social Media training and networking event on Tuesday the 17th of Jan 10am-12pm at the Black Sluice in Boston, £10 per person.  If you have time to stay on for lunch at the Black Sluice Cafe, I will be available over lunch to chat some more.
Let me explain how to get the best out of social media in the most time efficient way.
So what will you learn at this event.
  • Do your clients use Twitter or Facebook? How to decide which platform to use.
  • The basics of Twitter and Facebook, shares, likes, tweets, retweets, hashtags
  • Why you should have a business Facebook page not a Group.
  • How to get more likes and interaction on a business Facebook page.
  • How to share content via Twitter and Facebook.
  • How to get retweets on Twitter
  • Why too much automation is not a good thing
  • Why you don’t need to play the numbers game
I love Social Media and blogging and have found so many useful business contacts and information through Facebook and Twitter. Since starting at the beginning of this year, my twitter account @GreenAspiration has 534 followers and my tweets regularly get retweeted. My Green Aspiration facebook page has 288 people that like the page and gets regular interaction from the people that like it. So I want to pass on the my skills and knowledge about Social Media to you.
For those people that attend the event I will follow and interact with them on Twitter and Facebook.
So if you would like any more information or to book your place contact me either via the contact form. Or if you would prefer to speak to me, call me on 01205 280256.

Business Mums Lincs First Networking Event

Calling all Mums in Business in Lincolnshire, would you like to attend Networking Events tailored specifically to mums. Networking events that fit in around school hours, well Business Mums Lincs is just what you have been looking for.

On Wednesday 23rd November, 10am till 12pm at the Healthy Hub, Lincoln, Business Mums Lincs is hosting it’s first Networking and Social Media training event. The Healthy Hub is a fantastic venue and has a lovely cafe, where people can continue networking over a yummy wholefood lunch or fairtrade coffee and cake if they like. I will be staying for some lunch, so would it be lovely to have a few mums to chat with.

Are you getting the most from Social Media?
We are constantly told that Social Media is a great way to market our business but what if you don’t know your facebook from your twitter? Or your hashtag from a share?
The secret to successful social media is quality interaction, interaction is a 2 way street, so how do you get people to interact with you?
Do you have a blog and want more people to read it?
Social media is a great way to promote blogs, websites and products, however you need to get the right mix of promotion and interaction.
Let me explain how to get the best out of social media in the most time efficient way.
So what will you learn at this event.
  • Do your clients use Twitter or Facebook? How to decide which platform to use.
  • The basics of Twitter and Facebook, shares, likes, tweets, retweets, hashtags
  • Why you should have a business Facebook page not a Group.
  • How to get more likes and interaction on a business Facebook page.
  • How to share content via Twitter and Facebook.
  • How to get retweets on Twitter
  • Why too much automation is not a good thing
  • Why you don’t need to play the numbers game
I love Social Media and blogging and have found so many useful business contacts and information through Facebook and Twitter. Since starting at the beginning of this year, my twitter account @GreenAspiration has 415 followers and my tweets regularly get retweeted. My Green Aspiration facebook page has 273 people that like the page and gets regular interaction from the people that like it. So I want to pass on my passion for Social Media to as many Mums in Business in Lincolnshire as possible.
So why not come and join me and 18 other lovely Mums in Business on the 23rd of Nov at the Healthy Hub. It is my first Business Mums Lincs event so the introductory price is a bargain at just £10. Online training courses for 2 hours social media training vary from £35-£50. I also guarantee to follow and like all the mums pages and share and retweet some of their content.
To book your place please use the Contact Page above and I will contact you with further details. I look forward to meeting you on the 23rd November.

MOTIVATION that’s what you need!

Motivating yourself when you are a self employed, work from home mum can be a challenge, after all what’s the worse the boss will do? The boss understands that you have all the housework, shopping and kids stuff to do as well as work, so they go easy on you and anyway you have spent the last hour on Twitter and Facebook doing your all important Social Media, haven’t you?

So what motivates me to continue running my online business selling eco-friendly and ethical gifts, writing posts for my blog about my sustainable eco-lifestyle here in Lincolnshire and has me setting up this new blog for Local Networking for Business Mums in Lincolnshire.  Is it wanting to be a successful mumpreneur? Is it wanting to earn money for mine and my childrens future? Well sort of, but my main motivation and driving force is wanting to help people and make a difference. I am not sure when I started wanting to make a difference but for as long as I can remember, I have wanted to make a difference and this has influenced most of my careers.

I like people, I think they are wonderful and I enjoy helping different people, so I am in the process of setting up Business Mums Lincs to help mums with networking opportunities here in Lincolnshire and pass on some of the information I have found useful in the last 2 years of running my business.  Recently I had a long phone conversation with a lovely local Lincolnshire mum, who wanted a stall at the Pamper Evening I was organising for my local pre-school, I ended up giving her lots of advice about Twitter and Facebook. Later that day she posted about the wonderful day she had had and that it was all started off by the conversation she had with me. To have had such an effect on someones day was really lovely and made me very happy. Hopefully I will help more Buiness Mums in Lincolnshire to have positive days like that.

Both Green Aspirations and the Green and Natural Living Blog were set up because I wanted to help people see how easy it is to make a positive difference to the planet by what they choose to buy and show people how being green can be better for them too.

My 2 motivational forces that keep me working as a self employed mum working from home, rather than working for a local council, are of course my 2 gorgeous children and wanting to make a difference for them by being able to be there at school assemblies, pick them up from school and to be there for them if they are sick.

This is an entry into the JoanneDewbury.co.uk blogging competition

Business Mums Lincs organises Local Networking events for Business Mums in Lincolnshire and delivers social media training.