Another day, another opportunity to visit the North West Business Show to see what was on offer for companies in the North West and to seek out chances to do business with people in related fields.
|North West Business Show|
I ran into my friend Mumba of Dynamic Heights, a client and personal friend, while I was trying to catch the eye of an IT service provider. We went to the Linked In lecture to hear a lady earnestly try to persuade us to get paid Linked In accounts. We could barely hear her over the hubbub in the crowded auditorium. It was so busy that there wasn't enough seating room for the people who had gathered to hear what she had to say. Dragon's Den luminary Richard Farleigh was there to give a keynote speech, but I don't have a product like Reggae Reggae sauce that needs a cash injection for development and I doubt he would give me the dosh to purchase the Adobe Creative Suite for a share of my business, so I gave it a miss. There were Business Angels there too, and probably with a similar ethos.
As well as people in related areas, I met some very interesting people from companies that serve high-end clients but were willing to accept emails from me with a view to possibly consider doing business either as affiliates or my offering them a design-related service.
I spoke to the wonderfully friendly Hannah Cooper of Towngate PLC, a commercial and industrial property developer. Storage services and parking spaces are also available. She passed me her card and invited me to email her with my proposal, so hopefully something will come of that.
Dr. Shahed Khan of Healthwork is a lovely chap. When I joked about the possibility of getting an Indian head massage, he offered to do it on the spot! They actually had a chair there for offering this service to passers-by. They offer occupational health and safety services to call centres and companies where stress comes with the territory.
Paul Clark is most enthusiastic about Blue Camroo, particularly when it comes to their project management (better than Box.net) and email marketing services. Tied in to the social networks, the idea is to provide an all-in-one solution to attracting, working with and retaining clients. This might be an opportunity for me to offer more advanced services to clients. Watch this space.
Next I spoke to Damian McCoy of Cost and Expense Solutions. They help businesses to save hundreds of thousands of pounds in expenditure, in areas such as telecoms, utilities, fuel, printing and stationery. Typically, they aim for high-end clients, but they do help smaller businesses too.
aap3.com are a are a Global IT and Business Solutions provider for all business entities, operating across four verticals; Consultancy, ICT Services, Software Solutions and Recruitment.
International ISO specialists, IMSM aim to help companies conform to recognised standards of management, customer service, staff motivation and data management.
An interpretation and training company, Communication ID work with British Sign Language, translating, interpreting and working for social integration and cohesion of deaf people.
Computerised Business Systems Ltd.
A company that provides a comprehensive IT service, Computerised Business Systems Ltd offers not only the computer hardware and software service and support, but network design, internet services and even staff training. They provide experienced, professional consultants and engineers on call without incurring the costs associated with employing trained I.T. staff.
SICL Cloud provides enterprise-class IT solutions for any size organisation. Services are provided on-subscription and without major capital investment, tailored to individual requirements and fully supported from the DataCentre to the desktop. Fast, flexible and resilient on-demand IT.
An email marketing company, Etelligent plan, create, send and track personalised customer messages and webpages allowing businesses to reap all the benefits of email and sms marketing. Clients are typically high end and include Stena Line, BBC and the Royal Shakespeare Company.
CTL Digital Solutions
A photocopier and printer supplier, CTL are approved dealers for Olivetti and Canon.
A major business-to-business publisher, Excel produce high-quality glossy news magazines presenting news and views on trends in an assortment of industry sectors such as construction and healthcare.
You know those till receipts or bus tickets with the vouchers on? Access Point make those, among other things. I use them all the time. They are a marketing and brand awareness company offering third party marketing and promotion.
Digital Exchange Products
Digital Exchange Products offer a range of telecommunication equipment and services from leading manufacturers including Avaya, Nortel and Siemens. From Digital and VoIP telephone voice systems such as IP Office, BCM and HiPath to system maintenance services and asset management.
A social media consultancy and training company, Reach Further help companies to market and manage their web presence via the social media such as Twitter, Linked In and Facebook.
An IT services company, 1010 offers a comprehesnsive service that includes every aspect of a company's online needs from telephony to hardware, software, IT systems maintenance & support and web services.
I can already offer SEO services via a partnership with another company, but really, the more the merrier. Justin Blackhurst built SEO Next from the ground up, and they now employ over 100 people. It only took six years!
PR2Go is the UK's largest press release service. For a small consideration, they write a newsworthy story about your business then look for relevant distribution channels, which sometimes includes the broadcast media to send it to. From trade magazines to internet buzz sites, the story of your business is circulated with the intent of getting people talking about your business.
Beever and Struthers
A chartered accountancy and business advisory company, Beever and Struthers offer advice and support to companies and one-man-bands like me on all areas of tax and financial management.
The brainchild of business mentor Nigel Botterill, Entrepreneurs Circle is a service offering support, advice and encouragement to business people to help them grow their businesses. One to one support is available.
Mitel is a leading global provider of enterprise and small business communications solutions and services. They provide advanced voice, video and data communications platforms, desktop phones and Internet appliances, intuitive applications for customer relationship management and mobility, messaging and multimedia collaboration.