How to nail branding & supercharge business success

“You have to stay true to your heritage; that’s what your brand is about.” – Alice Temperley 

Nailing your branding is crucial for business success. A strong brand will help you stand out in the crowd. If you are an entrepreneur it is important to build a personal brand, in parallel and before your business brand

Branding in the digital age

Building a strong brand in the digital age is vital.  In the last few years the digital communications revolution has completely transformed the balance of control. The consumer’s voice has become louder and much more public. Consumers can publish their experience of a brand and compare it with the experience of others. The ability of a brand to respond to this can have a profound effect on the way they are perceived.

How branding can help your business

Branding can help you stand out from your competitors, add value to your business and engage with your customers.  In fact, it is so important that according to Coca Cola branding is the next essential startup competency.

Stand out from the competition

  • Branding is a way of clearly highlighting what makes your product or service different to, and more desirable than your competitors. Nailing your branding and having a unique selling point (USP) is essential.
  • For entrepreneurs, your personal brand and business brand are often one and the same. Get this right and your business will stand out brightly against your competitors.

Add value

Connect with people

How to create a strong brand

The key ingredients

  • Idea – what is the great idea that lies at the heart of your business?
  • Values – what are your core values? what do you believe in?
  • Vision – what is your vision? where are you going?
  • Personality – what is your brand identity? how do you want to come across?

Brand consistency

  • In branding and brand management a lot of importance is placed on achieving brand consistency, so that the same attributes and characteristics are evident in all areas of the business’ operations.

Brand identity

  • You need to build a strong brand identity and you can use your packaging, stationery, marketing materials and so on to tell your brand’s story.
  • Every element of your business from colours of your logo, texture of your packaging etc is part of your brand story and every element should reflect the truth about your brand back to your audience.

Reputation is key to success

  • Reputation is the cornerstone of a successful brand.
  • Your brand’s tone of voice, personality and visual identity must reflect the products or services you are selling to give you credibility.

Make your brand rock

Keep your brand fresh

Keeping your brand fresh is essential. Using designers to help reassess your designs, language or identity every few years should be an ongoing investment in your business and an essential rather than an added luxury.

All successful companies revisit their communications periodically. Even some of the world’s most famous brands have had a revamp!

Here are my top 5 branding tips:

To summarize, your brand defines your business from the big things like vision and values to your people, customers, suppliers and every interaction anyone is ever going to have with you, no matter how small.

For a more detailed guide, grab your free booklet now Girlboss Guide: How to Nail Branding

Bijou Concierge can help with your branding in terms of content creation, social media, blogging and email marketing support.

For further info please email annie@bijouconcierge.co.uk

Top 7 tips for healthy work-life balance

 

People want time more than they do money’, said Arianna Huffington back in 2013 but there never seems to be enough hours in the day, especially when you are running your own business. Life often takes a back seat!

However, it is important for your wellbeing to achieve a healthy work-life balance  so here are my top 10 tips to help you avoid burnout:

  1. Look after your health  – it is vital to look after yourself mentally and physically.  Your Mental health is as important as your physical health if you want to be successful. You can exercise your way to mental fitness as strength and power have been linked with both improved cognitive function and bigger brains!
  2. Work smarter not harder – working hard doesn’t necessarily mean you are working efficiently. if you want to maximise your time and supercharge your productivity you need to work smarter not harder.
  3. Take holidays – having an annual break will actually increase your productivity as well as recharging your batteries! Follow the example of smart entrepreneurs like Richard Branson who value the importance of taking holidays 
  4. Schedule regular time with family and friends – spending free time with family and friends will help you relax and de-stress.
  5. Learn to say no – it isn’t always easy to say ‘No’ but this will help free up time and keep you on track. As a busy entrepreneur, you can’t say yes to everything. There comes a time when you have to be firm and learn to say no.  
  6. Delegate – smart entrepreneurs recognise that delegation is important for business success.  Delegating tasks enables you to spend more time working on your business and not in it.
  7. Don’t be a perfectionist – perfectionists don’t make the most successful entrepreneurs and according to Steve Jobs perfectionism could be your worst enemy. Strive for excellence instead!

Grab a copy of my Wheel of Life Toolkit and supercharge your work-life balance today!

Virtual PA Handbook

 

Supercharge your productivity with our Virtual PA Handbook!

Are you thinking about becoming a Virtual PA or in the early stages of setting up your business?  Help is at hand!

Grab a free copy of my Little Purple Toolkit – a great little resource for Virtual PAs and Virtual Assistants to help supercharge your productivity!

Although written for Virtual PAs and Virtual Assistants based in the UK, you may find it useful if you are a solopreneur, freelancer or girlboss!

From setting up your business to running and growing your business this little booklet covers the essentials.

If you would like tailored 1:1 suppport I can provide a range of online training (or in person if you live in Tunbridge Wells).  Further details are in the booklet.

 

5 Tips to supercharge business productivity

In order to supercharge your business productivity you need to work smarter not harder. Increased productivity is essential for business growth and ultimate success. Here are our top 5 tips to supercharge your business productivity.

  1. Work-life balance – Albert Einstein once predicted ‘I fear the day technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.’ It seems the prophecy may be coming true! Digital technology has blurred the line between work and down time. In this connected world we are constantly glued to iphones and tablets and even when we are out with friends and loved ones we are more often than not texting and tweeting. This has a detrimental impact on our health and wellbeing. If you let your work encroach on your personal life over a long period you risk burnout.. If we are tired and stressed it can make us feel ill so we are not going to perform at our best. We need time to relax and switch off completely to recharge our batteries and maintain relationships with family and friends. Try and find some balance between your career and your personal life. Take this quick quiz to see how you are currently managing your work-life balance. It seems we are all addicted to our tech. Why not try and turn off your mobile phone for a few hours and see the difference. Studies have shown that one day without notifications changes behaviour for two years! Look after your mental health. Mindfulness will help you get the most out of life by teaching you to live in the moment.  It can also have a positive impact on your mental health and wellbeing by reducing stress levels. Alex Soojung-Kim Pang is a consultant in Silicon Valley and a visiting scholar at Stanford University. He writes about technology and its cultural impact. His latest book, Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, is an empirical argument in favour of more limited working hours and greater understanding of the benefits of active rest as a means of raising creativity and productivity.

 

  1. Get organised It is possible to do more in less time by working smarter not harder. Having a daily action plan in place will help you maximise time and in turn increase productivity. If you fail to plan you plan to fail! Whether you use a good old fashioned pen and paper or a productivity tool to supercharge your work day, it is essential to stay organised. Keeping your work space clear of clutter will also help supercharge productivity as you will be able to find things easily. If you are more organised at work it also frees your mind to focus on the bigger picture rather than sweating the small stuff! If you are a small business owner think about delegating and outsourcing to supercharge your productivity. For example admin tasks are time consuming and your day would be better spent by hiring a Virtual Assistant and focusing on the fee generating work. There are many apps that will also save you time. It helps if you are tech-savvy but if not there are plenty of digital skills training courses that will help get you up to speed. Automation and systemisation are essential for a productive business. Tools like Zapier will save you hours of time. A CRM and working in the cloud (including cloud bookkeeping) plus social media automation tools are also essential.

 

  1. Create a happy work environment If you are a business owner or manager you need to ensure your team are happy. Happy people are more productive. Creating the perfect work environment is crucial to business success. Flexible working can also supercharge productivity There are some great.tools to boost team collaboration and productivity when working remotely.

 

  1. Take frequent breaks breaks are important to help maximise your productivity and creativity. Even having a very brief break from a task can dramatically improve your ability to focus on that task for prolonged periods. Stop thinking you are too busy to take breaks and just do it. You will be happier and more productive!

 

  1. Exercise, sleep and nutrition – are all vital to supercharge your productivity. Exercise  is the secret ingredient of the most productive and successful people. Richard Branson says he stays productive everyday by adding in 4 hours of workouts into his everyday routine. Sleep is also important for working productively. The value of a good night’s sleep cannot be underestimated, with its ability to build up our immunity to illness, lift our moods and enable clearer thinking. According to research, lack of sleep is costing the UK economy billions and increasing the risk of death for large numbers of tired Britons.  Naps at work can also boost your productivity. Finally the importance of eating well cannot be stressed enough.  What you eat affects your productivity. If you eat the right foods and develop healthy eating habits, you can become more focussed, energised and driven. Entrepreneur, author and public speaker Tim Ferriss recently discovered just how crucial our food is when writing his new book, Tools of Titans. Ferriss found that a lot of the world’s biggest achievers credit their eating habits with their success.  Maybe you can eat your way to success after all!

Grab your Work Life Balance Toolkit

For more tips on productivity, work-life balance and more sign up to Bijou Concierge’s newsletter

Top Secret Purple Book – toolkit for girlbosses

 

Top Secret Purple Book – toolkit for girlbosses

Here at Bijou Concierge HQ we could not live without our Top Secret Purple Book which contains everything we need to run our business and support our clients.

We hope you will find our condensed guide useful.  Our mission is to help fuel our clients’ business, events and lifestyle success! Since we opened for business in 2014 we have steadily build up a fantastic client portfolio which includes startups, entrepreneurs, consultants, coaches, executives and private clients.

We have arranged parties, booked luxury skiing trips, set up social media profiles, carried out lots of research, ran numerous digital marketing campaigns, produced countless documents, proposals, PowerPoint decks, Excel spreadsheets & Canva presentations, clocked up hours of cloud bookkeeping for clients, written lots of content for blogs, reports, job descriptions, updated WordPress sites and along the way we have discovered new tech, creative tools and resources to help supercharge our productivity.

Our Top Secret Purple Book is packed with tips, tech, tools, hacks & apps to help maximise your time and efficiency.

Ssssssssshhhhh it’s top secret!!

 

For your free half hour consultation and advice on the best tools maiximse your business success drop us an email.

p.s. did you know taking naps and drinking coffee can supercharge your productivity

Six Steps to business success

By following our Six Step Jigsaw Formula‘ you will find you can get more done in less time. The key is to work smarter not harder.

  1. Systemisation/Automation – in order to save time you need robust systems in place to speed up processes. Tools like Zapier can help you automate many business processes and help your business run like clockwork
  2. Delegation/Outsourcing – by delegating/outsourcing tasks you can spend more time working on and not in the business.
  3. Business Coaching – a business coach will help you focus on the most important issues and become more focused and productive. In recent years, professional coaching has shown a significant return on investment for companies
  4. Knowledge/Skills/Experience – regardless of the nature of your venture, there are certain skills that you will need to master in order to manage your business effectively. Your day-to-day success will depend, in great part, on your ability to quickly grasp and apply these skills.
  5. Employee happiness/work-life balance – research has shown that  happy employees are more productive 
  6. Business optimised for the cloud  – the cloud is becoming more of a necessity than a luxury in order to enhance productivity and gain a competitive advantage.

You also need to eat properly, exercise and get adequate sleep if you want to maximise productivity.

Bijou Concierge has been helping busy people achieve work-life balance since 2014.  We provide bespoke business, lifestyle and events management support to startups, entrepreneurs, SMEs, consultants and executives.

Contact us today for your free half hour consultation to see how we can help supercharge your productivity.

 

 

 

 

What sort of Virtual Assistant should you hire? VA v Virtual PA

What is a Virtual Assistant?

The term Virtual Assistant (VA) is so generic but broadly means a person who provides their services ‘virtually’. Don’t even get me started on AI bots!

Anybody can set themselves up in business as a Virtual Assistant, without any experience or qualifications. This seriously undermines the VA industry and can also have disastrous consequences for your business if you hire someone who fits into this category. Make sure you ask questions and request a copy of the VA’s CV if you have any doubts about their competence to perform the required tasks. You can usually tell by the quality of their website and vague list of ‘cut and paste’ services if you are dealing with an amateur! That said, there are also many excellent General Virtual Assistants out there who have a background in admin, secretarial work, customer services etc. and depending on your requirements may be exactly what you need! However, they will normally be reactive, require specific instructions and just complete the tasks they are given. They will seldom add any real, additional value to your business.

Specialist Virtual Assistants have a particular skillset and work remotely. Their expertise may include copywriting, social media, recruitment, PR, HR, sales & marketing, bookkeeping and WordPress.

What is a Virtual PA?

A Virtual PA is a professional with a PA background who provides PA/business support remotely. They will usually be bright, pro-active, business minded, lateral thinkers and can often provide real added value to a client’s business in terms of joining the dots, seeing the bigger picture and are an all-round invaluable asset. They will usually have first class communication skills (spoken and written), great negotiators, pay meticulous attention to detail, often have project management experience, adept at managing budgets, excellent multi-taskers, tech savvy and may even have specialist skillsets in addition to their general PA expertise. If you are looking for a high calibre professional who can provide you with all round business support, then choose a Virtual PA.

In summary, then:

VA v Virtual PA?

  • If you need basic business/admin support and have a list of simple but time consuming ad-hoc tasks to outsource then choose a General VA.
  • If you require a particular skillset, then you probably need to find a Specialist VA.
  • If you are looking to build an ongoing pro-active business partnership with a highly skilled professional who can help you start, run and grow your business then choose a Virtual PA!

N.B. Please note that Virtual PAs may market themselves as Virtual Assistants and General Virtual Assistants may call themselves Virtual PAs so do make sure you clarify before you hire!

Anne Morgan, Ex City PA and Founder of Bijou Concierge.

Annie is setting up mycloudPA an exciting & innovative platform for the UK Virtual PA community to connect them with clients, provide an online community plus special deals, training and events. In the meantime, please join our LinkedIn Group ‘Remote PA/EA Network – UK Only if you would like to be part of this exciting new venture