In our latest blog we look at how local businesses use events to support their goals
It became apparent this year as we celebrate 10 Years of Altrincham HQ how important events have been to our growth and previous to running Altrincham HQ I ran an events business for 10 years
We’re not alone in realising the importance of events and in this blog we talk to The Garden about fostering personal development, Gran T’s who use events to grow evening trade for a coffee shop, Popsicle Productions establishing themselves as experts, The HR Department who have employed someone to solely manage events, Myerson who’s events are based around the concept of clients come first, The Web Studio whose networking events launched a new business and the Window Company who use events to raise money for charity
I hope these stories inspire you to start running your own events
“Here at The Garden we’ve been running successful events consistently over the past 4 and a half years and have absolutely loved the magic that happens during those evenings of intense exploration and growth.
We started our events because we wanted to connect with like-minded people and give people a space to deepen their knowledge and enhance their day to day lives. As Tony Robbins says “Progress equals happiness” and we believe The Garden has something special which partners perfectly with events that foster personal development.
Our events have changed our business beyond recognition. What started out as a just a health food café bringing people together over a love for nutrition has developed into a holistic well being hub.
The stories our customers tell me about the connections they have made meeting people at our events never fails to blow my mind.
Our events have made our community and our community is at the core of who we are.” Kate Mosely, The Garden
“Being a coffee house in the daytime we have always had the drive to do more with the venue in the evening. In the two years of business we have tried our hands at many different types of evening events from Hypnobirthing to Wreath making workshops.
But one of our longest, positive and most beneficial evening events has to be our monthly Knit & Natter event. Not only has it grown over time in to a large group that attend once a month, it brought more revenue in to the coffee house not only on the night but as returning guests through the days while giving these lovely people and event they love to attend. It’s proved a winner on both parts that is continuing to grow in the community” Chris Taylor, Gran T’s
“I ran “How to make video for low-to-no budget” at California Coffee & Wine in Altrincham a few months ago. I got a great turn out! I was expecting about 5 people, and got 20+!
I decided to run the event because I’ve got so much out of events in the past, I felt I needed to give back. As well as that I wanted to give back to my clients by providing value-led actionable content that they could share and use straight away. And on top of that I thought the event might go some way to help establishing myself as an expert and a thought leader in my field, which in the local area I think I’ve gone leaps and bounds to establishing that.
With tonnes of great feedback afterwards and attendees telling me how much they enjoyed it and got so much value from it, I’ve absolutely decided to run another one. They’ll be more news on this in the coming months..
The aftermath of that event alone has been extraordinary, still to this day I receive emails and calls from people who’ve been recommended to work with me by attendees.” Jack Noon, Popsicle
“In the age of Social Media Face 2 Face is massively important and it’s been part of my business plan since we started
I’ve always attended networking events, marketed networking events and delivered group workshops since we started
But in 2019 it is 10 years of Altrincham HQ and we wanted to do something different and celebrate with 10 different events
Those events have built brands such as The Big Altrincham Social, Alex & His Sisters, Balti HQ that are now part of our annual calendar
For us events allow us to meet some of our 30,000+ followers on Social Media and that’s important – the handshakes, the conversations, actually being able to see a face behind a social media handle
Each of our events have attracted audiences where I’ve never met 50-70% of attendees previously and the ROI of that is huge. By bringing people together and building a community it’s delivered the added bonus of a positive financial return” Alex McCann, Altrincham HQ
THE HR DEPARTMENT
“The HR Dept (Trafford & Warrington) provides outsourced HR support and advice to SMEs and schools. As we grew, our clients began to ask for training for their managers e.g. how to manage disciplinary and grievance issues. At the time, we moved to Denzell House in Bowdon with use of the fabulous in-house facilities and began to develop the delivery of our training and events.
Events have now become a key part of the business, offering a wide range of Management & HR Training, continually updated with real life scenarios and running events on topical subjects such as Employment Status and IR35.
Every couple of months I also run a free half day ‘HR & Employment Law Essentials’ event, open to all local businesses, now attended by over a couple of hundred people and our events continue to expand, having won a tender to provide fully funded training to eligible businesses looking to grow.
On occasion we work in collaboration with other businesses on jointly themed events and with local experts to deliver on our programmes, such as Sonya O’Sullivan, with her expertise on Communication Skills.
We have just appointed somebody new into our team, whose focus is on managing and co-ordinating events, as we continue to recognise the value of events and expand this area of the business, in conjunction with our core HR service.” Jill Bottomley, The HR Dept
THE WEB STUDIO
“The Web Studio set up 10 years ago this year and it currently thriving. But what do I put the success down to?
I’m sure it’s a combination of many factors but networking has been a constant throughout.
Back in 2012 I set up Bowdon Business Group (BBG) at Bowdon Cricket Hockey & Squash Club (whilst I was Chairman of the club). The group ran for nearly 4 years and hit a spot other networking events failed to.
It was at 4pm in the afternoon, there was a bar, and it was initially completely free to attend. Combined with some great presentations, we certainly had the recipe for success. BBG gave me a boost in terms of my local business profile and was certainly good for The Web Studio.
BBG only ended because I had launched SUBS Business Events in Altrincham (SUBS Altrincham) and between them, I was duplicating a great deal of effort. As a result, I chose to end BBG and focused my attention on SUBS.
Five years later and SUBS Altrincham has gone from strength to strength. We’ve a great many local businesses avoid some unnecessary pitfalls, offered practical advice, and build a team of local experts all within our local community.
This year all of our events have sold out and we’ve needed extra chairs!
The effort I’ve put into running SUBS Altrincham and before that BBG, has helped the community, helped individual businesses and helped me. Definitely a win, win, win in my books.
Due to the success of SUBS we have even begun franchising the SUBS Group concept and have just signed our first franchisee who will be setting up SUBS Wilmslow.
So, putting a little effort in creating and running events can deliver great results. But my advice would be to do it because you want to, rather than expecting something back in return.” David Bellin, The Web Studio
“Myerson adopts a truly collegiate ethos and culture, with a focus on 1) becoming a trusted advisor to its clients, and 2) providing a pleasant working environment and work-life balance for all its people.
Whether it’s a small informal lunch for 4, a breakfast briefing for 40 or a summer BBQ for 200, events help the firm to achieve both of these aims.
It’s the people within the firm who drive the success of the business. Events provide clients with a fantastic opportunity to meet their legal advisors, and one another, in a more relaxed and enjoyable setting.
Carl Newton, Managing Partner, commented “Whilst Myerson embraces technology and digital marketing, direct face to face networking, building relationships and getting to know our clients will always come first.”
THE WINDOW COMPANY
“We decided 5 Years ago that we would start nominating a local charity each year to concentrate our fundraising efforts on & help to raise as much cash & exposure for the one charity.
We as a company all play a part in the fundraising activities like running marathons, climbing mountains & washing cars to make but a few, we also put on a gig/bbq night which raises around 2k each year for the charity.
We put on a few bands, get the BBQ on & raffle some amazing prizes. Again we try to keep it local & it be a win win for everyone, what I mean by that is when events like this are organised it’s best to THINK LOCAL.
So, the bands that play are always Trafford based, we have local restaurants helping/donating food for the bbq, local high street & online businesses donating prizes, local people & businesses attending the event & we always hold the event in Trafford.
That means, venues getting money over the bar, restaurants showcasing their food/PR, showcasing local talent, businesses products being shared & positive pr for them & last but not least…the local charity get some cash, exposure to another 100-500 people & everyone has a good night!
No brainier hey, why don’t we do it every weekend!!?” Wayne Shaw, The Window Company
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Alex McCann is owner of Altrincham HQ – a social media management and training company based in Altrincham, Cheshire that has worked with 100s of local business developing their social media strategy. Alex has 400+ LinkedIn testimonials and is ranked number 1 for Social Media Marketing in the UK via independent customer reviews on Freeindex.