Free Lunch – business support

Free Lunch signposts free sources of information         and support for entrepreneurs starting                           and growing their businesses                                   * UPDATED EVERY TWO WEEKS * 

As regards the name, you may well know the saying “there’s no such thing as a free lunch”. This originates from the past practice of saloons in the USA offering free (salty and dry) snacks on the principle that customers will then buy drinks and make the cost-effective.

In reality there’s a wealth of free quality advice and support out there for entrepreneurs – with no strings attached – so why increase your costs when getting your business off the ground?

To get free start-up tips like these in your inbox every fortnight, simply e-mail leeinroyston@aol.com with ‘Subscribe Free Lunch‘ in the subject box. You can unsubscribe at any time. Your e-mail will be shared with no one other than you.

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How Instagram can help you grow your business

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Business and babies

One new mum’s experience of starting a business https://www.cocorosesapparel.com/blogs/news/how-to-survive-juggling-business-motherhood

Balancing childcare and running a business https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/running-a-small-business-childcare/

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13 trade secrets – what they don’t tell you about starting a business

You can start a business without money or time  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/10/02/trade-secrets-you-can-start-a-business-without-money-or-time

Most sales people give up too soon  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2018/05/08/trade-secrets-most-sales-people-give-up-too-soon

You don’t need a website https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/12/07/trade-secrets-you-dont-need-a-website

It’s as important to repel people as attract them  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/12/06/trade-secrets-its-as-important-to-repel-people-as-attract-them

Your best ideas will come when you’re not trying  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/12/05/trade-secrets-your-best-ideas-will-come-when-youre-not-trying ;

Marketing is cheap and easy https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/12/04/trade-secrets-marketing-is-cheap-and-easy

Social media isn’t free publicity  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/11/29/trade-secrets-social-media-isnt-free-publicity

No competition means no market https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/11/16/trade-secrets-no-competition-means-no-market

Innovation in overrated  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/11/13/trade-secrets-innovation-is-overrated

Selling at rock bottom prices can be good business https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/11/10/selling-at-rock-bottom-prices-can-be-good-business

You can impose whatever terms and conditions you like  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/11/09/trade-secrets-you-can-impose-whatever-payment-terms-you-like

Paid advertising is a waste of money  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/10/04/trade-secrets-paid-advertising-is-a-waste-of-money

A start-up business plan is always wrong https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/10/03/trade-secrets-a-start-up-business-plan-is-always-wrong

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Working well

Building a positive mindset and mental strength – app www.makeyourmindup.co.uk

Run your business the mindful way https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/jul/10/calm-under-pressure-run-your-business-the-mindful-way?

How to say ‘no’ to a client https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/06/how-to-say-no-to-a-client

How StartUp entrepreneurs can/do de-stress  http://elitebusinessmagazine.co.uk/people/item/the-top-ten-unusual-ways-entrepreneurs-relieved-stress-in-their-startups

 Listen to these podcasts when the world outside gets too loud https://www.shortlist.com/entertainment/listen-to-these-podcasts-when-the-outside-world-gets-too-loud/378369

Therapy for start-ups https://sifted.eu/articles/jorg-rheinboldt-founders-suffer-from-reality-distortion

Expert by experience https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2018/12/17/with-business-in-mind

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The value of values

Businesses behaving ethically http://orbuk.org.uk/blog/2017/06/every-little-bit-helps

Purpose driven marketing https://blog.bufferapp.com/purpose-driven-marketing

Social proof explained https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/07/social-proof-what-is-it-cultivate-it

How to find the passion to make your business idea happen https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/how-to-find-the-passion-to-make-your-small-business-idea-happen

How to stand out as a woman in business http://www.sloanmagazine.com/stand-out-woman-business (relevant for men as well!)

How to write a business manifesto: a great way of communicating your business valueshttp://www.valuablecontent.co.uk/blog/how-to-write-a-business-manifesto

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On side hustles

Discussing…

Commentary on the research into the side hustle economy  https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/working-59-is-a-way-to-make-a-living-uks-side-hustle-economy-generates-72bn/

Are side hustles good or bad for business?  https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/are-side-hustles-good-or-bad-for-business

Side hustle start-up time – who pays? https://www.ciphr.com/news/two-thirds-work-on-side-hustle-on-employers-time

Starting…

How to set up a side-hustle I https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/how-to-run-a-sidehustle-startup-while-youre-working-fulltime

How to set up a side-hustle II  https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/how-to-start-a-side-hustle

Growing…

How to turn your side hustle into a full time gig https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/315497  

4 tips to take your side hustle to the next level https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/317726

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Communication matters

A simple tool to make sure your presentations are interesting http://www.andybounds.com/84/section.aspx/82/three_icons_to_help_ensure_youre_interesting

How to speak so others will listen https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIho2S0ZahI

Starting your own podcast https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/04/how-to-start-your-own-podcast-for-your-small-business/

Top tips for media interviews https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/sales-and-marketing/promote-your-business/q-a-media-interviews

One of many great free tips on effective communication from Andy Bounds http://www.andybounds.com/84/section.aspx/82/the_best_way_to_prepare__talk_to_yourself

Four simple ways to improve your presentations https://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/sales/sales-presentations/flip-four-simple-ways-to-improve-your-presentations

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Seven lessons from a 10 year entrepreneurial journey https://businessesgrow.com/2018/09/10/entrepreneurial-journey

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Marketing magic…

Marketing, advertising and branding compared  https://www.inc.com/peter-gasca/a-simple-analogy-to-explain-difference-between-marketing-advertising-branding.html 

Lean and agile marketing https://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/blog/18/11/seven-reasons-to-consider-leanagile-marketing

Can you grow a business without spending money on marketing? https://watertightmarketing.com/2018/08/no-marketing-budget

Make a splash with zero budget marketing https://muffinmarketing.com/zero-budget-marketing

Inbound marketing strategy for start-ups https://www.evergreenfeed.com/blog/inbound-marketing-strategy-startups

How to write great online content https://www.semrush.com/blog/guide-create-relevant-content-ranks-converts

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Latest wise words for business success

What business schools don’t teach you about entrepreneurship https://bizztor.com/in/things-business-schools-wont-teach-entrepreneurship

The Apprentice – how not to succeed in business  https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/comment/apprentice-bbc-lord-alan-sugar-tv-how-not-succeed-in-business-a8548521.html

Are you really ready to launch your business?  http://smallbizclub.com/startup/making-your-business-official/really-ready-launch-business

On sustaining friendships as your business grows  https://www.forbes.com/sites/serenitygibbons/2018/07/06/entrepreneurs-keep-your-business-close-and-your-friends-closer/#258a6d1e2adf

How to self-promote without feeling arrogant and pushy  https://www.doyouspeakfreedom.com/self-promote

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Listening to your customers 

9 Questions you need to ask before starting market research https://www.noisylittlemonkey.com/blog/9-questions-you-need-to-ask-yourself-when-conducting-market-research

 10 ways to get more survey responses https://mantisresearch.com/get-survey-respondents ,

 Online surveys: You can get free help with design, distribution and analysis from these three providers: SurveyMonkey   www.surveymonkey.co.uk and Google Forms www.google.com/forms/about and SmartSurvey https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk

Princes Trust guidance on market research https://www.princes-trust.org.uk/help-for-young-people/tools-resources/business-tools/marketing

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The benefits of quitting

The fringe benefits of quitting things https://vimeo.com/91852710?utm_source=ForTheInterestedNewsletter  

Knowing when to quit https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/05/smarter-living/knowing-when-to-quit.html

 
 

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When things don’t go as planned

Building a positive mindset and mental strength www.makeyourmindup.co.uk

Why mistakes build trust http://thegetrealproject.com/2009/11/why-mistakes-build-trust-2

9 signs you’re successful (even if it doesn’t feel like it!) https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/nine-signs-youre-successfuleven-doesnt-feel-like-dr-travis-bradberry

Reality check – lessons from a failed freelancer https://www.christina-pashialis.com/blog/freelance-learnings

How to handle failure  http://fortheinterested.com/how-to-handle-failure

When should you quit? https://medium.com/swlh/when-should-you-quit-114c499c6dac

100 great business ideas you can start today https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2016/12/100-great-business-ideas-you-can-start-on-today

12 inspirational business quotes https://www.bigbrandsystem.com/inspiring-business-quotes  ___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Just do it!

How to overcome self-doubt https://www.enchantingmarketing.com/overcome-self-doubt

On procrastination – it’s all in the mind https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-45295392

How to find the passion to make your business work? https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/how-to-find-the-passion-to-make-your-small-business-idea-happen

Productivity problems? This is a great source for getting help http://academy.thinkproductive.com

Choosing without deciding http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2017/12/choosing-with-out-deciding.html

Best productivity hacks of 2017 https://thinkproductive.co.uk/best-productivity-hacks-of-2017

Coping with the solitude of self-employment https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/may/10/home-alone-dealing-with-the-solitude-of-self-employment

If you’re having trouble getting started with your business plan – take a look at this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoAOzMTLP5s

If you’re avoiding doing some jobs you know need to be done, try this https://www.themuse.com/advice/take-it-from-someone-who-hates-productivity-hacksthe-pomodoro-technique-actually-works

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Two ways to start a business https://seths.blog/2018/10/lumpers-and-splitters

8 huge mistakes start-up entrepreneurs make without knowing it  https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/317580

10 myths about entrepreneurs https://www.turbinehq.com/blog/myths-about-entrepreneurs

How to survive the first year as a business owner https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/08/how-to-survive-the-first-year-as-a-business-owner

Being a digital nomad https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/10/guide-to-becoming-digital-nomad-2018

How to overcome fear https://www.ted.com/playlists/468/how_to_overcome_your_fears

The power of doing nothing  https://www.jotform.com/blog/the-power-of-doing-nothing-at-all

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Creating a good (first) impression

Showcasing your products https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/four-ways-to-better-showcase-your-products

Why business cards won’t die https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/oct/16/theyll-be-around-as-long-as-people-shake-hands-why-business-cards-wont-die

How to stand out in a sea of sameness https://www.thecraftofcopywriting.com/how-to-stand-out-in-a-sea-of-sameness

How to write an opening sentence https://www.enchantingmarketing.com/how-to-write-an-opening-sentence

Choosing a business name https://startups.co.uk/choosing-a-business-name

Pitching tips for start-ups https://businessadvice.co.uk/finance/get-funded/improve-pitching-tips-investors-startups

The art of conversation – do’s and don’ts www.thriveglobal.com/stories/10991-this-is-how-to-be-a-better-communicator-online-and-off-according-to-a-conversation-expert

How to say more by writing less http://www.valuablecontent.co.uk/blog/how-to-write-less-and-say-more-on-your-website

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Learn to love finance

How to bootstrap your new business https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/03/tips-on-how-to-bootstrap-your-new-business

How to cost and price your products and services www.thedesigntrust.co.uk/calculate-how-much-your-product-will-cost

Finance basics for small businesses https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2016/dec/06/beginners-guide-business-money-maths-gross-profit-margins

Pricing strategies for small businesses https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2017/03/small-businesses-pricing-strategies

How to manage your cash flow https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/03/how-to-manage-your-business-cash-flow

The cost and price of a T-shirt https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/white-t-shirt-cost_us_5b801dc9e4b0729515127306

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The power of planning

A ‘first 100 days’ checklist for business start-ups  https://startups.co.uk/first-100-days-the-start-up-checklist-every-new-business-needs

10 tips for setting up your home office https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/blog/18/09/top-tips-for-setting-up-a-home-office

Tasks every small business owner should automate today https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/04/tasks-any-small-business-owner-should-automate-today

Content promotion strategy https://www.orbitmedia.com/blog/content-promotion-strategy

Getting through the tough times while running a business alone https://www.fastcompany.com/90226447/how-i-got-through-the-tough-times-of-running-a-business

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Give your business a digital MOT

How to respond to people on social media https://acedigitalcomms.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/copy-of-answering-people-general-1.pdf

6 website mistakes http://www.valuablecontent.co.uk/blog/want-more-client-inquiries-fix-these-6-pesky-website-mistakes

How to choose a domain name https://moz.com/blog/how-to-choose-a-domain-name-whiteboard-friday

How to register a domain name https://uk.pcmag.com/web-site-hosting-services/86838/feature/how-to-register-a-domain-name-for-your-website

7 ways to use video in your marketing mix https://www.wenta.co.uk/articles-insights/articles/video-marketing-for-small-businesses-7-ways-to-include-video-in-your-marketing-mix

Ten online marketing ideas anyone can do https://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/blog/16/11/ten-online-marketing-ideas-anyone-can-do

How to do a Facebook live presentation http://www.jengale.co.uk/how-to-do-a-facebook-live

Website content checklist https://gillandrews.com/website-content-checklist-small-business

Beginner’s Guide to digital marketing https://www.evergreenfeed.com/blog/beginners-guide-to-digital-marketing

29 ways to get found in social media http://watertightmarketing.com/2017/03/16/29-ways-to-make-sure-your-business-gets-found-in-social-media

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5 tips for growing your business https://www.moneydonut.co.uk/hub/doing-business-abroad/scaling-up-from-start-up-to-three-million-customers

Twitter hours – making entrepreneurship less lonely http://www.designthatfits.co.uk/news/106/25/UK-Twitter-Hours—The-hashtags-you-need-to-know

Looking after your customers https://ontraport.com/blog/marketing-automation/nurture-relationships-through-the-customer-lifecycle

What makes a great online shop? https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/posts/how-to-make-the-most-of-your-business-s-ecommerce

How to choose a merchant services provider (for online payments etc) http://www.startupdonut.co.uk/blog/17/05/how-to-find-best-merchant-service-for-your-start-up

6 easy finance tips for small businesses https://www.businessload.com/run-grow-business/6-easy-finance-tips-small-business

How to use social media to boost your sales – 31 tips https://rebekahradice.com/how-to-use-social-media-to-boost-sales

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Don’t waste resources …

Lots of ways to save the planet https://www.asustainablelife.co.uk

Don’t waste your time…

How to start a business in 30 days www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2016/aug/19/how-to-start-a-business-in-30-days

Productivity tips for entrepreneurs https://www.inc.com/shane-barker/9-of-best-productivity-hacks-from-dave-kerpen-other-successful-entrepreneurs.html

Make your meetings focussed and productive https://ideas.ted.com/9-common-sense-rules-for-getting-the-most-out-of-meetings

5 minute branding exercise https://espirian.co.uk/5-minute-branding

Don’t waste your money…

How to bootstrap your new business https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/03/tips-on-how-to-bootstrap-your-new-business

Creative ways to cut the cost of premises www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/aug/25/pop-up-deliveroo-firms-bricks-mortar-business-rates

Money advice – top tips http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/2F7W86QZ3t0Q5DH1Zyfqv2D/experts-top-tips

Money-saving expert https://www.moneysavingexpert.com  And don’t forget Freecycle and Freegle!

Don’t waste your energy

How to take a holiday without neglecting your business  https://businessadvice.co.uk/tax-and-admin/efficiency/how-to-take-a-holiday-without-feeling-like-youre-neglecting-your-business

Lots of articles on work-life balance https://www.theguardian.com/money/work-life-balance

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Wise words on getting media coverage for your business

PR tips www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2016/mar/07/pr-tips-tricks-grow-business-profile-experts

PR tips for business start-ups https://businessadvice.co.uk/business-development/sales-marketing/ten-startup-pr-tips-to-get-your-business-noticed-in-2018  

 PR for micro-businesses https://businessadvice.co.uk/business-development/sales-marketing/pr-coverage-for-micro-businesses

Pitching your small business to the press https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/top-tips-for-pitching-your-small-business-to-the-press

Business journalists to follow on Twitter 2018  https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/top-small-business-journalists-to-follow-on-twitter-2018-edition

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Develop your eye for design (hard to describe this – take a look) https://www.route1print.co.uk/freelancers-marketing-playbook

A couple of TV programmes on earning income from enterprise https://www.channel4.com/programmes/how-to-get-rich-quick

The art of persuasion in 1 minute https://vimeo.com/226897918/f3c310d4ab a neat film clip from an expert in public speaking

How to make your branding look better https://www.thebrand-stylist.com/blog/the-how-to-style-your-brand-planning-workbook

Enjoy this ‘explainer video’ if you haven’t done so already https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUG9qYTJMsI

21 podcasts on work-life balance https://blog.todoist.com/2015/03/04/21-podcasts-to-listen-to-productivity-work-life-balance-pursuit-of-happiness

And if you want to start doing your own podcast…

Everything you need to know about starting a podcast in 2018 https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/everything-you-need-to-know-before-starting-a-podcast

How to start your own small business podcast https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/04/how-to-start-your-own-podcast-for-your-small-business

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Why it’s good to have a side hustle https://blog.invoiceberry.com/2018/04/reasons-why-its-good-to-have-a-side-hustle [Earning isn’t about ‘all or nothing’]

The psychologist’s guide to networking https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/jan/23/psychologists-guide-networking-events-advice

A guide to intellectual property protection https://businessadvice.co.uk/insurance/liability-and-indemnity/guide-protecting-new-ideas-intellectual-property-spending-fees/

A neat little guide on registering as a sole trader https://www.wenta.co.uk/articles-insights/resources/a-guide-to-registering-your-business-as-a-sole-trader/

Growing your home business https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/blog/18/03/growing-your-home-business-how-to-get-it-right

Building blocks for sustaining your business https://www.inspire2enterprise.org/the-5-building-blocks-of-social-enterprise-sustainability [the article refers to social enterprise but the advice is applicable to all businesses]

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With a nod towards the World Cup – some ideas to kick around

Three lions – 3 lessons? https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/keep-your-eyes-on-the-ball-three-things-small-businesses-can-learn-from-world-cup-2018

Talking tactics Axa business start-up guide https://www.axa.co.uk/insurance/business/business-guardian-angel/complete-guide-to-starting-a-business

 Getting kit Looking for furniture for your office and other business equipment? Try www.ilovefreegle.org/groups andwww.freecycle.org/browse/UK for free items

Keeping fit Entrepreneurs are healthier and happier http://theconversation.com/how-entrepreneurs-have-the-most-stressful-yet-most-satisfying-jobs-95018#Echobox=1529687167

 Team talk What are the most important words in your business? http://www.valuablecontent.co.uk/blog/what-are-the-most-important-words-in-your-business

 Minding your language A jargon-buster for entrepreneurs https://www.theguardian.com/barclays-lets-go-forward/2017/aug/14/how-to-be-an-entrepreneur-the-jargon-buster-youll-need-to-succeed

Working as a team  How to show appreciation to your co-workers http://jkglei.com/appreciation (also relevant in a shared workspace)

 Coaching  How to learn from successful entrepreneurs http://growmap.com/business-learn-successful-entrepreneurs

 Go for goal! Hiding from the mission http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2018/01/hiding-from-the-mission.html a valuable blog post – one of a daily series on business from thinker Seth Godin

Getting ahead of the opposition How to make your start-up stand out https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/blog/18/03/how-to-make-your-start-up-stand-out

Losing… How to handle failure  http://fortheinterested.com/how-to-handle-failure/

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What does it take to start a successful business?

The four elements of entrepreneurship http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2018/01/the-three-elements-of-entrepreneurship.html

Is self-employment for you? https://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2018/02/20/how-to-decide-whether-you-should-be-your-own-boss-or-work-for-someone-else/#4f5c742e78b8

Four things you need to know about self-employment https://smallbiztrends.com/2018/04/real-story-of-self-employment.html 

The problem with modern day entrepreneurs https://theascent.pub/the-problems-with-the-modern-day-entrepreneurship-culture-31282f3be6cd

How to run a side business alongside a fulltime job https://smallbiztrends.com/2018/05/balancing-side-hustles.html

5 hobbies to make you a smarter entrepreneur https://smallbiztrends.com/2018/05/hobbies-that-make-you-smarter.html?tr=s-ep

Learning to switch off https://realbusiness.co.uk/hr-and-management/2018/05/08/being-driven-is-blessing-but-entrepreneurs-should-learn-to-switch-off

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8 steps to a healthy business

How to manage and reduce your stress https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/publications/how-manage-and-reduce-stress

 Smart ways to improve your work-life balance  https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/start-up-business-ideas/is-running-a-business-really-for-you/smart-ways-to-improve-your-work-life-balance

Wellbeing at work https://www.theguardian.com/careers/2017/oct/11/six-steps-to-improving-mental-wellbeing-work

How to work all the time and avoid burnout https://blog.aha.io/the-founders-paradox-how-to-always-work-and-avoid-burnout

How to have a phone detox https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/jan/13/how-to-quit-your-tech-phone-digital-detox

Wellbeing and small business http://www.fsb.org.uk/docs/default-source/fsb-org-uk/well-being-and-small-business—how-you-can-help.pdf

Ten apps for stressed out entrepreneurs https://smallbiztrends.com/2018/03/best-meditation-apps-small-business.html

Your health – a help guide https://www.helpguide.org

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What is GDPR?

A checklist from Federation of Small Businesses https://www.fsb.org.uk/standing-up-for-you/our-campaigns/fsbedataready/gdpr-preperation-checklist

How to ensure GDPR doesn’t damage your customer base?   https://www.hertsgrowthhub.com/post?post_id=341

GDPR Guide http://www.mailmen.co.uk/sites/default/files/GDPR_Guide.pdf

50-minute online learning module on GDPR https://www.cobwebinfo.com/gdpr-in-practice

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13 tips to grow your small business https://www.wenta.co.uk/articles-insights/articles/13-tips-to-grow-your-small-business

Trade secrets – what they don’t tell you about starting a business https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/category/trade-secrets

Learning to love networking https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2018/feb/28/work-room-psychologists-career-tips-reluctant-networker

Time-saving tips for small businesses https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/posts/top-time-saving-tips-for-small-businesses

Entrepreneurs must invest in themselves https://www.virgin.com/entrepreneur/entrepreneurs-must-invest-themselves-not-just-their-business

Interesting article on the importance of ‘purpose’ in your business https://corporate-rebels.com/purpose-in-business

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‘Selling to the right people’ special

Great ideas for using social media for market research http://www.socialfish.org/2018/01/5-ideas-for-your-2018-social-media-editorial-calendar

Princes Trust guidance on market research https://www.princes-trust.org.uk/help-for-young-people/tools-resources/business-tools/marketing

Online mystery shopping For an example of how you can do market research on the NextDoor social platform, e-mail chris.lee@princes-trust.org.uk

Are you marketing your products and services to the right people? https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/you-marketing-your-services-right-people-annette-welsford

How to build your buyer persona [ideal/typical customer] https://www.evergreenfeed.com/blog/how-to-define-buyer-persona-for-your-content-strategy

Building your list (for e-mail marketing) http://commonsensemarketing.com.au/building-your-list 

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“I find the ‘Free Lunch’ e-mails really helpful. They’re packed full of useful information such as business tips, social media help, and networking events that I otherwise wouldn’t know about.” Lisa ___________________________________________________________________________________________________

9 signs you’re successful (even if it doesn’t feel like it!) https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/nine-signs-youre-successfuleven-doesnt-feel-like-dr-travis-bradberry

How independent coffee shops can compete with the high street chains https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2015/may/14/how-to-start-coffee-shop-business

Product photography tips https://www.diyphotography.net/7-functional-tips-better-product-photography

How to conquer networking nerves http://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/exhibitions-and-events/networking/how-i-conquered-my-networking-nerves

NatWest Legal Nutshells Guides 2-pagers on: Data Protection; Confidentiality Agreements; Commercial Contracts; Intellectual Property; Business Trading Entities; Competition Law. Not available direct from NatWest, so e-mail chris.lee@princes-trust.org.uk for a copy

Winning the sale without dropping the price https://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/sales/sales-techniques-and-negotiations/winning-the-sale-without-dropping-the-price

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“The ‘Free Lunch’ mailings help me keep my focus on the goals that I have set out for myself.” Tina ___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Branding & Design special

What makes a great logo? https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/jul/20/from-nikes-swoosh-to-amazons-smile-power-of-logos-design-branding

The key ingredients of a strong brand http://bit.ly/2BcA8rs or https://www.enterprisenation.com/blog/posts/the-key-ingredients-of-a-strong-brand-report-download?mc_cid=cfd00a9904&mc_eid=c48592cb57

Where to find free images for your website and social media pages http://snip.ly/e1tb8 and https://www.evergreenfeed.com/blog/websites-find-images-blog-social-media

Freelance designer’s marketing playbook https://www.route1print.co.uk/freelancers-marketing-playbook

Thinking about a business card? https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/oct/16/theyll-be-around-as-long-as-people-shake-hands-why-business-cards-wont-die  plus https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/03/22/small-card-big-message

Copyright, design and patents – COBRA Reports available from chris.lee@princes-trust.org.uk

Not free, but recommended by a Prince’s Trust entrepreneur…

How to style your brand www.hive.co.uk/Product/Fiona-Humberstone/How-to-Style-Your-Brand–Everything-You-Need-to-Know-to-C/20872208 a book to help you understand design, typography and the use of colour to build your business’s personality

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A great series of short guides for business start-ups  http://www.businessadviceservice.com/all-business-guides/startups/ (includes premises, tax, business plans, legal structures, managing cash flow)

Digital toolbox: apps and other technology for keeping your business running smoothly. Including this advice on customer relationship management (CRM) www.pioneerspost.com/business-school/20170802/digital-toobox-sales-how-keep-track-of-your-customers

What does it take to succeed? http://www.lifehack.org/652055/why-hard-work-is-better-than-talent The hard work vs talent debate

7 investments to make in yourself https://medium.com/the-mission/you-dont-deserve-what-you-want-until-you-make-these-7-investments-in-yourself-841c716a0dcf

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Getting your words right…

Choosing a business name

http://blog.invoiceberry.com/2017/01/26-expert-choosing-perfect-business-name

also www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/aug/22/longer-is-better-and-dont-invent-words-picking-the-right-name-for-your-business

and http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/the-best-and-worst-business-names_n_917489

Testimonials for websites and other publicity materials https://www.orbitmedia.com/blog/how-to-write-testimonials-examples

How to explain things clearly and with authority https://www.trainingzone.co.uk/content/how-to-create-content-that-doesnt-sound-like-gobbledegook?

Mind your language https://www.articulatemarketing.com/blog/spot-sucky-writing

How to write headlines that grab attention https://silxdigital.com/look-over-here

Good and bad ways to close an e-mail http://justwrite.info/how-to-close-an-email and other written communications http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09plwxh

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Enterprise essentials – 21 tips for starting a business  https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2018/01/15/enterprise-essentials-21-tips-from-startup-2018

A photographer’s guide to making the most of your business https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2016/nov/21/photographers-guide-raising-your-business-profile

Your business premises options http://www.startupdonut.co.uk/business-premises/your-premises-options-home-office-rent-or-buy

What goes in a marketing plan? https://ffb.co.uk/blog/81-business-blog/580-have-you-got-your-2018-marketing-plan-in-place

One of many great free tips on effective communication from Andy Bounds http://www.andybounds.com/84/section.aspx/82/the_best_way_to_prepare__talk_to_yourself

Coping with the solitude of self-employment https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/may/10/home-alone-dealing-with-the-solitude-of-self-employment

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Overcoming procrastination and increasing your productivity…

Sometimes getting your business started is knowing how to get started! Here’s some advice to help you avoid overload www.jengale.co.uk/one-simple-tool-for-changemakers-to-help-beat-overwhelm

Breaking down procrastination habits https://thinkproductive.co.uk/breaking-down-procrastination-habits

Choosing without deciding http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2017/12/choosing-with-out-deciding.html

Inside the mind of a procrastinator https://www.ted.com/talks/tim_urban_inside_the_mind_of_a_master_procrastinator (a funny TED Talk that rings true for many!)

Productivity Apps assessed https://thinkproductive.co.uk/category/productivity-apps-in-test

Best productivity hacks of 2017 https://thinkproductive.co.uk/best-productivity-hacks-of-2017

Kelly Hoppen’s productivity tips https://www.theguardian.com/business-to-business/2017/dec/04/dragons-den-star-kelly-hoppens-top-seven-productivity-tips

Seven apps to make you more productive https://www.theguardian.com/business-made-simple-with-vodafone/2017/nov/03/seven-apps-that-will-make-you-more-productive

How to regain your motivation http://www.jengale.co.uk/episode-21

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Selling for Start-ups special

The experts’ guide to selling ideas https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/nov/22/pitch-perfect-the-experts-guide-to-selling-an-idea

The art of persuasion in 1 minute https://vimeo.com/226897918/f3c310d4ab

Sales and selling – training and techniques http://businessballs.com/salestraining.htm

Selling the benefits of your product or service https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/sales-and-marketing/sales-techniques/q-a-selling-the-benefits-and-dealing-with-objections

How to write a winning sales proposal www.valuablecontent.co.uk/blog/how-to-write-persuasive-sales-winning-proposals much the same principles apply whether it’s a written or verbal pitch.

Selling overseas – a guide http://www.startupdonut.co.uk/hub/export-essentials/selling-to-customers-overseas-free-guide

E-commerce sites – one of the best known online selling platforms for your small business store is probably https://www.shopify.co.uk buthttps://woocommerce.com has also been recommended

Selling in a digitally transformed world https://www.jillkonrath.com/sales-blog/interview-with-donal-daly

How independents are competing with the chains https://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/why-independent-bookstores-haved-thrived-in-spite-of-amazon-com

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Website content checklist for small businesses https://gillandrews.com/website-content-checklist-small-business/

New free Business to Business information service https://www.theguardian.com/info/2017/oct/03/the-guardian-b2b-sign-up-for-the-regular-business-to-business-email

21 podcasts on work-life balance https://blog.todoist.com/2015/03/04/21-podcasts-to-listen-to-productivity-work-life-balance-pursuit-of-happiness

Business Model Canvas  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoAOzMTLP5sfavoured by some as a simplified (it can fit on one sheet of paper) ‘starter’ on the business planning menu.

10 e-mail marketing mistakes to avoid http://blog.invoiceberry.com/2017/07/stop-making-10-email-marketing-mistakes-drastically-improve-traffic good general advice as well

How to improve your presentation skills www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/sep/12/want-to-win-over-an-audience-how-to-improve-your-presentation-skills

Thinking about a business card? https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/oct/16/theyll-be-around-as-long-as-people-shake-hands-why-business-cards-wont-die  plus https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/2017/03/22/small-card-big-message

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How to be charismatic: https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/mar/03/charisma-train-yourself-magnetic-entrepreneurs-win-customers

The British Library IP and Business Centre www.bl.uk/business-and-ip-centre is a great source of useful articles and advice. IP stands for Intellectual Property but there’s much more than just advice about protecting your ideas. Also some useful free Industry Guides here https://bitly.im/0RgNR

Ten online marketing ideas anyone can do http://www.marketingdonut.co.uk/blog/16/11/ten-online-marketing-ideas-anyone-can-do

Online surveys: You can get free help with design, distribution and analysis from SurveyMonkey www.surveymonkey.co.uk and Google Forms www.google.com/forms/about (both free, but Google give you more questions and analysis)

E-commerce sites – one of the best known online selling platforms for your small business store is probably https://www.shopify.co.uk but https://woocommerce.com has also been recommended

Join 25 million other people in enjoying this very funny promotional video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUG9qYTJMsI A good ‘explainer video’ on your website is worth thinking about…

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Published to mark World Mental Health Day 2017 http://www.wfmh.global/wmh-day/wmhd-theme-2017

Eight low-cost apps to help make your life a little easier https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/06/8-apps-to-hack-your-life-sex-sleep-stuart-heritage

Run your business the mindful way https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/jul/10/calm-under-pressure-run-your-business-the-mindful-way?CMP=share_btn_tw

A guide to mental health services https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/your-guide-to-support/guide-to-camhs

Apps: https://www.mindcharity.co.uk/advice-information/how-to-look-after-your-mental-health/apps-for-wellbeing-and-mental-health

Use of healthcare apps for employers and employees http://www.personneltoday.com/hr/healthcare-apps-revolutionising-employee-wellbeing _______________________________________________________________________

Let’s get this out of the way first…Why there’s no shame in second time entrepreneurship https://www.businesszone.co.uk/deep-dive/future/why-theres-no-shame-in-second-time-entrepreneurship

If you’re wanting to research the market for your industry sector you can sign up for a free trial to Cobweb Information https://www.cobwebinfo.com/about and/or Princes Trust can do a free search for PT-supported businesses.

There is a half-way between your home and your office. How to benefit from a co-working space http://newworker.co/mag/how-to-utilize-your-coworking-space-for-worklife-balance

And having premises doesn’t have to be ‘all or nothing’ … Creative ways to cut the cost of premises www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/aug/25/pop-up-deliveroo-firms-bricks-mortar-business-rates?CMP=share_btn_tw  And when the time is right…

Advice on when a pop-up or mobile start-up might put down roots www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/kia-fleet-partner-zone/2017/mar/15/mobile-business-when-should-you-commit-to-bricks-and-mortar

Notes from an online marketing masterclass run by www.wearegrow.com E-mail chris.lee@princes-trust.org.uk for a copy.

 

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Following on from the ‘market stalls’ piece below …. Why craft-based businesses should attend fairshttps://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2017/may/02/run-craft-business-fair-craft-month-price-market It applies to other businesses as well

Does working with spreadsheets fill you with dread? Try these 14 simple tips, tricks and shortcuts for using Excelhttps://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/how-to-use-excel-tips

We bang on about pitching your business – but you should never stop polishing. Try these 5 tips for pitching http://inspire2enterprise.org/pitch-social-enterprises-big-idea-not-lose-room-coffee-shop and www.inpire2enterprise.org are a great source of business information (for social enterprises but equally relevant for small enterprises)

A guide to Google and Facebook ads for small businesses http://blog.invoiceberry.com/2017/02/easy-guide-facebook-ads-google-adwords-small-businesses

Following the piece below on taking credit card payments, try this Useful guide to chip and pin machines http://startups.co.uk/how-much-is-a-chip-and-pin-machine

How to fail at crowdfunding https://techcrunch.com/2017/01/20/how-to-fail-at-kickstarter-even-if-you-get-funded

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Free online tutorials from Google https://learndigital.withgoogle.com/digitalgarage

Some marketing tips – with an emphasis on digital https://wearegrow.com/15-marketing-ideas-that-will-boost-your-business-growth

Four reasons to set up a Facebook page for your business (if you don’t have one already) www.myoutsourcedmarketingteam.com/4-myths-about-facebook-pages-for-small-business

The art of persuasion in 1 minute https://vimeo.com/226897918/f3c310d4ab a neat film clip from an expert in public speaking

6 pricing strategies to increase sales https://wearegrow.com/pricing-strategies

See the Guardian’s Small Business ‘How to guides’ www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/series/how-to

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Market stalls are good for market research and test-trading in a low-cost pop-up context. There are lots of market and fairs that could provide suitable opportunities. One way to find them is by using this search facility www.stallfinder.com/search/event Search by ‘county’ then ‘food’ ‘crafts’ ‘vintage’ etc

 Top tips for pitching your business www.the-sse.org/resources/idea/communicating-your-idea/?utm_sq=fhnj4s5aht   Written for social businesses but useful for all

How to live within your means (personal survival budgets and all that)   www.wikihow.com/Live-Within-Your-Means

Productivity problems? Do you have trouble with getting things done and time management? If so, this is a great source for getting helphttp://academy.thinkproductive.com

A bit about crowdfunding: You launch a campaign to raise small amount of money from a large number of people. Find out how it workswww.crowdfunder.co.uk/how-it-works Note: there are lots of crowdfunding platforms – Crowdfunder is just one of them. For a great podcast on the basics of crowdfunding go to www.jengale.co.uk/016-using-crowdfunding-ethical-social-business/?utm_sq=fhz4mczhjv

A guide to maternity leave for self-employed workers www.theguardian.com/careers/2017/aug/07/advice-maternity-leave-freelancer-self-employed

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Marketing Donut: A useful website www.marketingdonut.co.uk with marketing resources and tools for businesses, including a section on online marketing

Free lunch: a series of blogs on themes inspired by Princes Trust entrepreneurs starting their own businesses https://enterpriseessentials.wordpress.com/category/free-lunch-start-up-tips

Freegle/Freecycle: You don’t need to pay hard cash for much of your office equipment. Go online, find your local Freegle or Freecycle Group (they’re both pretty much the same and you can join more than one group), sign up for free, and away you go   www.ilovefreegle.org/groups    www.freecycle.org/browse/UK

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29 ways to get found on social media http://watertightmarketing.com/2017/03/16/29-ways-to-make-sure-your-business-gets-found-in-social-media

FutureLearn  www.futurelearn.com/courses/starting-a-business-1 – first of 6 x 2 week courses (3 hours per week) around starting a business.

Making videos? Tips on things to avoidwww.charitycomms.org.uk/articles/the-five-villains-of-charity-video-production-and-how-to-defeat-them?utm_source=eNews%2015%20Mar%202017&utm_campaign=Villains%20charity%20video%20Tom%20Tapper&utm_medium=EmailTalking about charity videos but good advice for everyone.

Finance basics for small businesses https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2016/dec/06/beginners-guide-business-money-maths-gross-profit-margins

Pricing your products: We know that pricing is not a science so useful advice is welcome. Here is some http://firstround.com/review/our-6-must-reads-on-pricing-a-product and http://firstround.com/review/the-price-is-right-essential-tips-for-nailing-your-pricing-strategy Written for an American readership but still relevant.

Great tips on home-based business start-up www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2013/may/27/home-based-food-business-starting-up ?  

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A ‘first 100 days’ checklist for business start-ups http://startups.co.uk/first-100-days-the-start-up-checklist-every-new-business-needs OK, some of you may be past your ‘first 100 days’ but it’s never too late to learn.

Businessballs is a wonderfully comprehensive online source of information on many aspects of the business world. Check it out at www.businessballs.com/index.htm (use the index on the left hand side of the screen).

You can get stressed out doing things you love. So even if your business is going well, you need to make sure you keep that work/life balance – attend to the things that really matter. And if the stress gets out of hand you might like to check out some of these free apps to re-balance www.mindcharity.co.uk/advice-information/how-to-look-after-your-mental-health/apps-for-wellbeing-and-mental-health

For useful information sheets on different aspects of starting/running a business take a look here www.thedesigntrust.co.uk/free-resource There are useful answers to questions about costing and pricing products.

Taking card payments: There are various providers offering services with a range of charges. Two that claim to be designed for easy access are iZettle www.izettle.com/gb and a new kid on the block, Squarehttps://squareup.com/gb

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Watch this space for new items every 2 weeks

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