Biccies Diamond Jubilee celebrations

I hope you enjoyed the parade and fly by arranged for Queen Elizabeth the II as much as I did today, I’ve always been a bit of a royalist though I must confess it’s more down to the astonishing history of Great Britain that royalty have contributed to rather than recent royals. That said I think Princes William and Harry have done much to restore the credibility and faith of the people in the royals, the previous generation in my opinion, Edward, Andrew and Charles himself made a right mess of things and could be the cause of some public resentment towards them.

It’s the pomp and ceremony I love, the parades, the choirs, the bands, the fly by, a fantastic display. Three years ago I was fortunate enough to see my brother in law in his passing out parade some four months after he’d joined the Royal Navy, it was a day that made us all very proud as does his continuing service.

It’s a fantastic 2012 for Great Britain, it’s a shame that the Diamond Jubilee falls almost at the same time as the Olympics, I imagine for some one overshadows the other. Either way both occasions are watched by the eyes of world and it’s our chance to show what a great country we are.

Biccies thought it appropriate to mark the Jubilee with a few biscuits of their own, I’d love to know what you think. It occurred to me that the soldiers eyes are not visible beneath their bearskins but it looked odd so I gave one of my soldiers eyes and then today, during the ceremony, you couldn’t see any!!

Biccies Edible Jubilee Gift Biscuits

Attention

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The Purple Dog

To many Twitter users@purpledognet won’t need much of an introduction. I first spotted her around six months ago and have watched in awe as she very quickly accumulated a very healthy number of followers, 19,831 to date!

The Dog actively retweets messages that it thinks may be of use to its followers, each day she chooses a ‘UK business of the day’, to qualify you need to have retweeted about the previous days winner. Hundreds of people enter each day and with exposure to as many as 50,000 tweeters a day who wouldn’t want to win?

This little dog does so much more than that though, for example she offers a Twitter Health check service in which she provides feedback on how to improve your standing on twitter.

Other services include a starter pack, a booster pack and a breakthrough pack.
For those with specific needs a tailored package can be arranged and through telephone consultation and hands on management, for a pre defined time period, the purple dog can really help grow both your awareness of Twitter and your number of followers.
Not only that but they will also advise you how best to maximise the power of Twitter for the benefit of your business.

Evidence of its strategies success is the network of local PDN branches that are springing up, including one in my very own Kent.

If you aren’t following the purple dog, you should be!

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Twitter exposure

Not the kind of exposure you may be thinking of but the kind of exposure small businesses such as Biccies thrive on. Following on from my previous post in which I discussed the value of social media exposure for small businesses I wanted to take the opportunity to focus briefly on several excellent companies that we should all be following on twitter, for this very reason.

Without showing preference by order, I shall begin with @virtualbuscent, a Wiltshire based Virtual Business Centre providing telemarketing, virtual PA, teleconferencing facilities and services. Very active in the twittersphere and indeed, a company that plays a huge part in the @theopaphitis SBS, ‘Small Business Sunday’ competition.

Biccies have been using Twitter for over a year now and these guys were one of the earliest to catch our eye, exposure and the increase in brand recognition it brings is crucial for companies such as Biccies and as I alluded to in my previous blog, the costs associated with marketing are tremendous and intelligent use of social media can mitigate, if not completely eradicate those costs.

With 3,147 twitter followers and the full attention of @theopaphitis 200K+ followers these tweeters provide invaluable and supportive engagement, additionally they are a bloody nice bunch, sending Biccies a lovely #FF each Friday. Thanks @virtualbuscent. If you aren’t following them, you’re missing a trick!!

Next time we will discuss the dog…..it’ll make sense trust me.

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The Importance of partnerships

The advent of the internet and in particular the explosion in growth of social media platforms such as linkedin, twitter, and Facebook to name just a few, has brought with it the opportunity for anybody, anywhere to utilise their talents and, design produce or manufacture products that had previously never made it past their immediate circle of families and friends.

I have a small business, two in fact, and it’s without question in my mind that were it not for these aforementioned platforms then the exposure received by those companies would be tiny by comparison.

Biccies for example won the Icelab Kent e-commerce award, this was something my husband discovered on twitter, he applied online and the rest as they say is history.

I was fortunate enough to have appeared in Essential Magazines Christmas edition last year, and the reason for this was that the journalist had read some tips I’d placed on one of my companies Facebook page. On top of this an article in the Daily Mirror came about because again I’d placed some content online which was well received.

Twitter is excellent for expanding your product coverage, there are tweeters dedicated to promoting small businesses and I’ve added followers by engaging with them, here are a few of the popular twitter ID’s:-

@virtualbuscent – @bizitalk – @purpledognet – @bluebiznet

I’ve listed some of the immediate ones that spring to mind, there are of course many more out there and please do feel free to add them to this post in the comments section.

The use of hashtags is a must, once you start to follow these guys you’ll soon learn to understand what that means, here are a few examples of those:-

#piggyback – #followladder – #followbeach – #virtualfollows – #bizitalk #purplebiz

I should warn you that if you don’t currently use Twitter, it’s seriously addictive, you’ll be amazed at the subjects you suddenly find yourself interested in and distracted by.

The legendary dragon Theo Pathitis runs a competion on Twitter known as #SBS Small Business Sunday, it’s not an accolade I’ve had the good fortune to pick up as yet but I’ll keep trying. It’s a great feeling when a person successful in businesses recognises what you are trying to do and awards you with a merit of their own, I was fortunate enough to have been identified by Jacqueline Gold to be deserving of a #wow accolade, Women on Wednesday in which she selects three businesses for recognition each week.

A social media strategy is very important to businesses these days, no matter how large or small, it is particularly vital though for small businesses, marketing a company is expensive and social media can reduce those costs and compete in terms of exposure. For those that find the whole thing a little daunting, advice is available, there are some very talented people out there offering social media strategy workshops.

The reference in the title to partnerships is a nod to the plethora of opportunity out there for having your products displayed through other websites,Cashcow and etsy , for example are two outstanding examples I would highly recommend a visit to. It is an excellent way to increase the exposure for your products whilst at the same time introducing new business platforms to your existing client base.

That’s me for now but no doubt I’ll have more to say on this subject before too long…

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Mother’s Day, a chance to rest? Oh no…not in my game!

biccies.com is of course an edible ‘gift’ company and it should therefore come as no surprise to me that each time a popular event occurs I am going to be somewhat busier than usual. What I keep being surprised by is just how busy it gets.

Christmas was crazy,

Valentines was very busy

and Mother’s Day, well, that was just insane.

So the next big event, Father’s Day, we are more than ready for and whilst we are some time away yet we are already busily preparing our google campaign, our press campaign and our staff planning. We’ve been caught out on the odd occasion but that won’t be happening this time.

Here’s a preview of what can be ordered from Biccies this Father’s Day, I wouldn’t hang about either as demand is always extremely high.

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Biccies Valentines box

Biccies Valentines box

Biccies most popular valentines gift

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Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me.

March 3rd a few years ago, yep that’s my exact date of birth which makes today my birthday. The fun began last night when my Husband came home with a huge sushi banquet from Wasabi near St Paul’s Cathedral, I absolutely love sushi and those guys make the best in my opinion.

This morning I was awoken by the children and watched happily as they opened every single card and present I got…bless them, imagine if I did that on their birthdays!!!!

We all piled down to Tagg’s Coffee shop in Hoo Village, a lovely little establishment which serves up some cracking lunches, having spent an hour or so there shattering the peace we returned home to…..ZUMBA on the WII, I had it bought for my birthday. I had never done it before but I really enjoyed it, I am already aching all over and I’m sure I’ll be unable to move tomorrow. The kids had a go too and they really enjoyed it.

I’m sure tomorrow will be a lazy day spent recovering from the one glass of wine I’ve had today….what happened to the good old days eh when birthdays were raucous drunken affairs….next year perhaps.

Still Mother’s day is just around the corner…my Husband always complains that I have Valentine’s day, birthday and mother’s day in such close proximity…he’s tight, so tight people think we have mice because of the squeaking in our house but that’s just the noise of my Husband fretting at the thought of spending money. I’m kidding he’s lovely really. Sometimes 🙂 Today he sneaked off and ran himself a hot bath to relax in leaving me downstairs with the children…it was MY day to relax..cheeky sod!!

Whilst we are on the subject of Mother’s Day, have you seen Biccies range? We absolutely love the opportunity to put smiles on the faces of the brilliant, amazing, hard working and fantastic Mum’s that are out there….don’t be shy, leave the Biccies website open on the pc for hubby to find…leave a print out by his car keys…Mum’s deserve amazing gifts such as these and I’m proud to create, pack and post them.

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