by Jack Milner, account executive at Engage PR
Some 600 business representatives and 75 exhibitors descended on the AECC to showcase their services and network with others. Chatting to delegates around the stands, perseverance was very much the theme of conversation.
The oil and gas downturn has of course been well documented in recent months, and has had a brutal impact on thousands of families across our region. But the positive outlook from those in attendance yesterday was refreshing, and their perseverance showed that, even in the toughest times, people are still determined to succeed.
A series of engaging seminars ran throughout the day. Each offered an insight into how businesses can optimise their network and improve their visibility.
Of the seminars, Social media – how to make it work for you, was a highlight. Chaired by Joanna Fraser of AGCC, the session provided the audience with tips for using a resource which is now so prominent in society.
Scott Grant, of Blackadders LLP, highlighted the importance of content marketing; of producing engaging articles or images which capture the imagination of the target audience. Scott used an anecdotal reference to Star Wars in a series of social media posts. He explained that relating something from the news or popular culture to your business can add that extra spark to your message and encourage people to get involved in the discussion.
Images are crucial. That was the message from Adelle Chessor, social media guru at VisitAberdeenshire. Adelle talked through the stages of social media interaction and underlined the importance of images, especially at the ‘discovery’ stage. An image or video, often raw content, is frequently key to making that crucial first connection with people. Once that has happened, links, text, questions or further information should be added at the second stage to keep the viewer involved and interested.
The final panel member, Stacy Edgill, demonstrated the importance of social media as a tool for networking and relationship building. Stacy stressed to the audience that LinkedIn is now vital for maintaining relationships with clients and associates, but also advised that the platform should be used as an add-on to face-to-face networking, not as a replacement.
However, the top tip at the social media seminar — one endorsed by all three panellists – was simple. If an article, post or image doesn’t take off and attract thousands of likes and shares, don’t be discouraged. Not every post is a winner, but consistent and well thought out content will eventually lead to success and a following.
Fitting advice, as the theme of perseverance resonated around the event. One thing is for sure: Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce should certainly keep going with the Ultimate Business Show.