Would you like Richard Branson as your mentor?

shopify_entrepreneur_island

That’s not all, you could also have Marie Forleo and The Four Hour Work Week’s Tim Ferris as your mentors, too!

To have a chance at being mentored by these big names in the business world – plus 5 nights on Richard Branson’s Necker Island – just enter Shopify’s Build A Business Competition.

Here’s how it works…

You’ll need to launch an online store with Shopify. Next, it’s time to get selling. After the eight-month competition, Shopify will calculate your sales. Sell the most during the competition, and receive the grand prize.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain mentorship and ask for insight from these renowned mentors. When else will you get the chance to chat with Richard Branson about your startup on his private island?

For more info and to enter, click here.

(Want to check out Shopify? You can sign up for a free 14 day trial on the competition page too.)

Back to school for kids and mums…

nicola_sempleToday’s guest post is from Nicola Semple. Over to you, Nicola!

Supergirl is about to start school.

On the one hand I am massively excited at the prospect of having a bit more free time to devote to my business and to the things that I want to do.

On the other hand it breaks my heart to think that my teeny weeny precious person is going off into the jungle of full time school and having to fend for herself.

But, quite frankly that’s the way it is and there is nothing I can do to change the situation.

As much as I love having my children around I know that I am not cut out to home-school (patience has never been my strongest virtue!). As we approach the end of a seven week break while we have both had a fantastic time I think we both agree it is time for a bit of space.

In an effort to take my mind off the fact that Supergirl is going off to the big bad jungle I have decided to launch The Business Success Bootcamp. The Business Success Bootcamp is aimed at business mums just like you.

Are you incredibly busy, trying to keep all the balls in the air and trying to do it all by yourself?

Are you so busy making your amazing products or providing your top quality service to clients that you often neglect making time to work on your business rather than in your business?

In that case, your time is now! If you have school age children then you will have a bit more time available to devote to your business.

Even if you don’t have school age children there is something about the ‘back to school’ feeling of September that makes us all want to sharpen our pencils, pull up our knee high socks and get cracking!

To help you on your way, you can access some amazing FREE training at The Business Success Bootcamp. I have lined up some fantastic industry experts who can help guide you through the minefield of sales and marketing, copyrwriting, social media, time management, the legalities of business and also provide you with lots of tips on how to make the most of your time and importantly take some time out for you.

The Business Success Bootcamp is only available during the month of September so make sure that you don’t miss out. You can download just one or all of the training materials provided and you can access the majority of them anytime, anywhere.

Pop over and take a look and start the journey to being more profitable and productive.

Nicola Semple is the Founder of Social Media Mamas and Life After Maternity Leave.  Voted Work for Mums Marvellous Mumpreneur 2013 she is passionate about helping mums be the best they can be in work and in life.   She has recently set up The Business Success Bootcamp to provide free business training to mumpreneurs.

Boost your business with Twitter: Live workshop (with me!)

I’m going to be presenting a Twitter for business workshop at the January Likeminded Network meeting.

It’s on 29th Jan, 7.30pm at The Creative Exchange in St Neots, Cambs. Entry is just a fiver and you can sign up here.

Here’s more about the event from Chrissy Brown, chair of the Likeminded Network:

Helen is one of our die hard Likeminded Ladies and is going to share her wealth of experience of social media, in particular Twitter.

New to Twitter – this meeting is for you. A seasoned tweeter – then come and share your valuable experience and help out your Likeminded friends! You are never too old to learn new tricks.

Helen has given a summary below of what her talk will cover:

Twitter can be an effective tool for promoting your business but it’s not without its challenges, such as working out how to use it as a beginner then making sure it doesn’t suck up too much of your time later on.

Everyone is in a different place with Twitter, some of us are complete beginners and others have been using it for years. In this session we aim to offer something useful to everyone, no matter how long they have been using it.

This session will include:

* A presentation on how to use Twitter to promote your business. This will include how to decide if Twitter is right for connecting with your market, how it could fit into your wider marketing strategy and the tools you can use to make the best use of your time.
* A chance for network members to share their Twitter success stories and pass on what has worked well for them. (And if the talk gets too technical for beginners, Helen will step in and explain!)
* After the main session there will be a hands-on mini-session at the end for people who are new to Twitter, including how to set up an account, how to send and reply to tweets, retweeting, hashtags and searching. If you would like to bring your own device to practice on (iPad with internet access, Smartphone, laptop etc) then you’re very welcome to do so. Experienced tweeps will be able to network in another room during this mini-session.

It would be great to see you there! And if you don’t live in the Cambs/Beds area but have a friend that does, please do tell them about this event.

To sign up, click here.

Merry Christmas!

I’m taking a break from blogging over Christmas, so I’ll catch you in the New Year.

In the meantime, here’s me saying Happy Christmas and a HUGE thank you to you. (Yes, YOU!)

I’m a complete social media addict so I’m sure you’ll still be able to catch me on Facebook and twitter (and Google+, Pinterest, Audioboo….. 🙂 ) in the next couple of weeks!

Merry Christmas and see you in 2013!

Celebrating achievements!

Sage have asked me and their other Business Experts to tell them about the achievements we are most proud of this year.

We’re all taking photos of ourselves with a card proudly displaying our achievement, then Sage will be sharing them around Twitter using the hashtag #SageBusinessHighlights. You can read more in this post from Sage.

Here’s mine:

My proudest achievement was launching my Work At Home Mum Fast Start e-Course in September. It was a four week course to get aspiring mums past any barrier that was in their way and get started in business. You can hear me talk about it here.

But the best thing about it is that I can shout about the achievements of some of the course members, too:

Hazera Forth is a talented photographer and graphic designer in her spare time. She is now is turning this into a business. Hazera’s first range of art greetings cards is going to be on sale this Christmas. (Each will be signed by the Hazera herself) Here’s an example of one of her Christmas cards:

She says “I would never have taken the risk to put myself through the first steps of what I’ve now started doing. Helen’s WAHM Fast Start keeps it real and I feel in control of what I am doing. She said “do small things” and that’s what I did.”

If you’d like to buy some of her cards, please leave a comment below and she’ll get back to you.

Jen Stanbrook already had an interior design blog Love Chic Living and had been a baby signing teacher for five years when she joined WAHM Fast Start. She was ready to move on, though and during the e-course made the decision to sell her baby signing business. Her business is now on up for sale and she’s working hard on growing Love Chic Living.

Ashlene Canning says “Helen and the WAHM Facebook group have really inspired me to move on with our wedding photography to a professional level. I always believed we had the photographic talent, but it was the business side of things that I was unsure about. WAHM fast start gave me a business confidence that has equipped me with a belief that it is only difficult if you perceive it to be!”

Here is just one of the photos taken by Ashlene and her husband’s new photography business (you can see more at N Canning Photography):

 

Colette Dunn is  in the research phase of her business and says “my story is only just beginning”.  Colette’s business will support smaller businesses growth by reducing their need to complete the more mundane office work and she says she’s found WAHM fast start motivating and encouraging. Watch this space for more about Colette’s new business next year!

Sage have also told me that they will pick their favourite expert and feature them on the Sage blog. I would (subtle hint 🙂 ) love it to be me so that I can get my fab course members as much exposure as I can as they start their new businesses!

Don’t miss a thing here at Business Plus Baby! Let me keep you up to date with new posts…click here to get my newsletterI’ll also send you a copy of  my e-book Running a business around a family: 9 steps to success.