This practical workshop will introduce you to the theory and practice of social marketing – how to use marketing techniques to achieve specific behavioural goals designed to lead to social good.
Whether you are trying to promote healthy lifestyles, encourage people back into work or to start a business, get back into education, or engage in a campaign, an understanding of social marketing can help you to:
- find new people who want to work on your agenda
- support them on their journey to make real change happen
- get the right people at the right events at the right time
What Will You Learn?
You will learn how to:
- Develop marketing collateral (leaflets, posters and websites) that might just work
- Use the media effectively – PR and role models that work
- Build ‘Word of Mouth’ strategies and referral networks
- Work with ‘gatekeepers’ to ‘gain entry‘
- Manage introductions in the community
The day will involve some theory and explore a number of examples of good and not so good social marketing campaigns. Participants will have the opportunity to apply what they learn to a real campaign of their own.
What is social marketing and how can I use it?
What behaviours are we trying to promote?
Using Segmentation to Increase Impact
Eating an Elephant – bite sized chunks….
Social Marketing Tools – with a focus on emerging social media (twitter, facebook, wikis etc)
The Role of Traditional Marketing and PR
Developing a Social Marketing Campaign (making a start)
Marketing through Relationships and Networks
Find out more and book your space – http://socialmarketingworks.eventbrite.com
I spent a great 90 minutes with Brian Handley, General Manager of Harvey Nichols in Leeds, and Lee Hicken from online marketing outfit Hebemedia to find out a little more about their work in supporting enterprise across Yorkshire and to explore the possibility of helping to develop their role in supporting emerging artists and crafts people.
Now I am no ‘fashion and retail’ guru and struggle to understand why anyone would want to pay £3000 or more for an Italian Leather handbag, but apparently they do, and Harvey Nichols helps to serve that want. (Not everything in Harvey Nichols has such a price tag. Apparently a coffee in their restaurant costs the same as in Starbucks, some items in the Food Hall match Morrison for price and some of their makeup too matches the High St retailers on price.)
But why are those expensive handbags Italian? Why not British? Or Yorkshire?
- Are we lacking the skills and talent required to craft leather to this standard?
- Are we poor at the marketing and brand building work required to compliment fine craft skills to command this top end of the market? We are simply unable to break the consumers taste for ‘Italian Leather’. Perhaps the Italian High Streets are full of top quality British Leather handbags – I suspect not….
- Does the Italian craft leather industry receive support from its own Government that allows it to perform at this level?
- Perhaps the Harvey Nichols buyers have not found the great British products that are out there, preferring instead to go with established Italian brands that they know will sell?
I suspect that it is some combination of the first three that leads to the failure of British manufacturers to compete at the top end of the luxury leather handbag market. A conversation with Brian convinces me that they do all they can to source locally wherever possible without compromising on quality.
And I suspect that the absence of high quality business support to help with the development of craft and marketing skills is a large part of the problem. I can’t recall seeing a single UK regional economic strategy that emphasises the importance of the craft sector. They tend to focus on ‘high-tech, bio-tech, creative and digital’ but hardly mention the support of traditional craft skills which tend to live of the crumbs from the ‘high growth’ table.
Which is perhaps why Harvey Nichols in Leeds have been able to do so much work with 11 textile mills across Yorkshire, helping to raise their profile. Absolutely nothing wrong with their product. They provide felts and baize for Steinway pianos and the worlds best snooker tables. They provide the fabric for Barack Obama’s curtains in the Oval Office of the White House, and the world’s most expensive suit. Each of the mills was characterised with an obsessive passion for the quality of the product which had allowed them to move up market and hang on as most textile manufacturing headed east. But their marketing and branding was weak, and when they came together at Harvey Nichols to see how an association with the store might raise awareness of their product, Brian said it was the first time that all of them had shared a room to explore the way forward. They had learned a little about how to compete with each other – but very little about how to collaborate. (Perhaps there is a clue here to the prominence of Italian artisan on British High Streets?).
Why does Harvey Nichols get involved in this kind of work?
Well I don’t think it is pure altruism. It is self interest properly understood – a thriving local economic ecosystem is essential for the maintenance and development of the customer base. A good story is essential for brand building and getting people through the doors. This is good business combined with a genuine passion for, and commitment to, high quality manufacturing in the region.
This kind of ‘business to business’ business support was once widespread. In some parts of the world it still is. But in the UK business support has turned into a government funded industry not primarily focussed on responding to local indigenous businesses but on focussing support on strategic priorities (high tech/biotech/creative and digital).
Perhaps in these straitened times we could afford to let this government backed Business Support industry to just fade away and encourage more employers like Harvey Nichols to play a full part in supporting local enterprise. The engagement of businesses in this sort of civic society, using their expertise to develop a viable and sustainable entrepreneurial ecosystem will surely create much more value for society than so many corporate social responsibility projects that end up with Lawyers painting community centres….
…and if you are looking to spend £300 rather than £3000 pounds on a Leather Handbag that is ‘Made in England’ you might try Liz Cox.
Don’t let anyone tell you who you really are….
Enterprise for All was a one day conference organised on behalf of emda by Unleashing Enterprise with a mixture of key note presentations and workshop sessions.
A few things really struck me about it. From the key note speakers and a tour of the exhibition hall it was clear just how much of a grip business and economic development interests have on the enterprise agenda. Enterprise really IS all about business. Business start ups, business growth and business education.
Except of course enterprise has relevance in many, perhaps all, spheres of life. It relates to parenting, cello playing, footballing and planning. To mathematics, politics and dance. An enterprising approach helps with business, yes, but it helps with so much more as well. Because an enterprising person is someone who has a theory about the direction ‘in which progress lies’, and has the confidence, strategies and skills that they need to pursue it. By conflating enterprise with business we do it a disservice. We alienate many who should be our natural allies, and we repel some who we should attract.
Business is a great vehicle for teaching enterprise – but so too is sport, art, history and drama. In Bolivia, enterprise education has been conducted largely through the power of classical music.
I was deeply surprised when another speaker said that ‘Business is Easy’. This has not been my experience. Business is hard. And small business is really hard. There have been times when it has been so difficult that I have though it must be me doing it wrong. And I talk with some of my closest confidantes about my fears and they tell me ‘No – it’s not you, it IS hard’. One mistake and your reputation is shot. It can take over your life and ruin your relationships with friends and family. It can leave you depressed and in debt. It can also be the most wonderful platform for personal development and a fulfilled life. It really is a double-edged sword!
I have never met an entrepreneur, until yesterday, who has told me that business is easy. This is the ‘Enterprise Fairytale’. I would agree that it is relatively easy to theorise about business. To develop ideas, to refine them and to think about business plans. To get advice from business experts and to act on it, or not. All this is quite easy. On paper, it certainly isn’t differential calculus. But in practice it is something else. It is easy to imagine yourself juggling, or being an astronaut or a pop star. Actually doing it is another thing. It is NEVER easy! Good enterprise education needs to help learners to recognise the ‘double edged’ nature of the sword and recognise that a career in business will not be a glorious extension of a 2 day facilitated workshop held in the comfort of the college hall. It just won’t be. Good enterprise education nurtures the resilience, character, determination and commitment that is required to succeed in business or any other challenge that life throws our way. It teaches the importance of craft and skill, of persistence and commitment. And knowing when might be the right time to give up.
And the strange thing is that in my experience, the more honest we are about the challenges of entrepreneurship, the emotional, analytical, physical and financial challenges involved the more likely we are to get good, enduring entrepreneurs. The more we help people to recognise how hard it is to leave the comfort zones and try something different the more likely they are risk it.
I was very struck when another keynote speaker told us about a primary school class that wanted to sell him a presentation. An 8-year-old offered to sell him the copyright! Now I am all for educating young people about the importance of intellectual property, but at 8? Is this really what enterprise education should be for such young children? A Primary Business Curriculum?
Now this is a contested area. No-one holds the truth on this. In enterprise education we have little consensus on curriculum, assessment or methodology. But I know that if my 8-year-old had come home from school telling me that they had been learning about copyright I would be seriously questioning the schools priorities for primary education. I have witnessed primary classes being taught the difference between tangible and intangible brands. And I was once approached in a Leeds hotel by a girl of 6 or 7 wearing a badge that said ‘Sales Executive’. She knew exactly what margin she would make if she could sell me the beetroot plant that she was brandishing. Are we really introducing appropriate content at the right time into the classroom? Do we deserve the respect of our colleagues as educators when we teach this in the primary school? I am not so sure.
Throughout the day I was approached by a number of people who made very similar comments. ‘Mike, I agree with you wholeheartedly, but we only get paid for outcomes related to business. I know it isn’t right, but if that is what the funders are paying for that is what we have to provide. It is what the system demands’. I love the irony of this. ‘We teach enterprise by following instructions’. But I think it points to a wider challenge for the policy makers and the funders. Does this ‘head on’ approach to entrepreneurship really work?
The title of the conference was also telling – Unleashing Enterprise. Much of the socialisation of young people is all about putting the leash on them. We value compliance, academic achievement, team playing and conforming. Those that dare to see things differently, to do things differently, to paddle their own canoe, tend to be bought back into line, or expelled. And it is not only enterprise that we struggle to unleash. Creativity, leadership, innovation, potential…all of these have been subject to the leash fetish.
I have not done much on the enterprise conference circuit. I have worked in community centres, village halls and at kitchen tables helping individuals and communities to develop their own approach to a more enterprising future. It was a new experience for me. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone – and as always happened I learned a lot!