Savvy Women Winter Issue

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SAVVYwomen WINTER 2020

in business




inspiring STORIES




The personal support, expertise & roadmap to get your health where you want it.

“Before trying this nutritional system I was exhausted, stressed and living with constant brain fog. I believed that my healthy balanced diet was giving me all the nutrition I needed, but I was really struggling with my health and unable to do the exercise I wanted to do. I couldn’t be the mum, wife, daughter or friend I wanted to be” Kathryn

I’m Heather Atkinson and I can help you take control of your health and stay there Call: 07507 493 299 Email: Visit:



welcome to

a collective of women in business winter edition 2020


cover story ANNABEL WARD Fancy Entertainment Cover Photo: Saul Morgan 4 - SAVVY Women ISSUE 6 -

contents inside

HEALTH/WELLBEING 8 Karen Chappell - Stress Management & Chronic Pain Specialist 10 Jo Peirson - Intuitive Health & Wellness Warrier 12 Sophie Wragg - Be Your Best Version

food/drink 14 Ruth Chubb - Three Bears Cookery Club

business/money/FAMILY 16 Sandra Pollock - Award-Winning Business Expert 18 Carol Leeming MBE FRSA - Multi Award-Winning Author 20 Nicola Read - Babbl Social 22 Laura Goodsell - Anchor Online 24 Claire Saxton - Saxton Marketing 26 Caroline Micallef-Wragg - The Starflower Company 28 Vicky Stanton - Business Success Coach 30 Vicky Stanton - Regional Director The Athena Network 32 Maria Hanson - Me & Dee Charity


disclaimer All Rights Reserved. The publisher cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions relating to editorial content or advertising. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. No part of this publication may be reproduced without prior written consent from the publisher. Savvy Women Magazine is owned and published by Savvy Women Ltd.

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“The Show Will Go On”

By Annabel Ward Owner - FANCY ENTERTAINMENT St Patrick’s Day in the year 2020. I sigh at another successful gig under the belt and giggle with one of my best performers, as he sits next to me dressed in green from head to toe, as a very convincing leprechaun. We chat about upcoming exciting plans, who are cast in what roles on which jobs and how this is sure to be Fancy Entertainment’s most successful year to date. Fast forward a week. Theatre curtains close indefinitely, the phone rings continuously to deliver bad news, the arts, entertainment and leisure sectors are brought to their knees and suddenly I am taken over by one thought. Is Fancy finished? I’m stubborn, ask my family. And what is normally considered to be a flaw of mine comes into it’s own as I refuse to let this pandemic be the reason my business fails. I did what every other company director did on the first day of lockdown which was grab a notebook and pen and scribble a hundred ideas of how to re-invent my business whilst sticking to the new rules in place. Like so many others in this industry, we fell through the cracks with no grants and no support so my desperate bullet pointed list was of a considerable length. I’ve always been a leader and certainly not someone to follow trends which resulted in many funny looks in the school playground during my youth. However, this was the first thing I did. I followed a host of businesses and made the most of our online presence by becoming virtual.

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Our first hurdle came pretty quickly. We have never been and never will be a birthday party company as the market is already saturated with perfectly good princess party suppliers and independent children’s entertainers. It seemed a lost cause to muscle into the line of entertainment companies offering doorstep visits and virtual parties, when it isn’t necessarily our domain. And with the likelihood of any other sort of events happening during lockdown becoming bleaker and bleaker, we had to take a different path. Fancy Entertainment has always been different. I soon realised the only way to get through this crisis was with integrity to the Fancy brand and to not blindly follow the herd. Annabel Ward

My main fear was being forgotten. As we couldn’t deliver our services throughout lockdown we needed a way to be remembered and to keep singing and dancing in people’s minds until the world was ready for us again. As a large part of what we do is aimed at family audiences, we wanted to bring our characters into the homes of our followers by offering videos where some of our favourite characters used items that could be found at home to make cute crafts and inviting children to join in. Taking on this role was one of our veteran performers Amelia Pidduck who transformed into Alice in Wonderland and made paper caterpillars, butterflies and more all from the comfort of her kitchen! This was a challenge for Amelia as she is used to performing to a live crowd and interacting face to face with her audience. She adapted her exceptional improvisation techniques from stage to camera and in such a way that almost made the screen feel invisible. This is attacking performing from a new angle for us and is also popular as a new form of entertainment with our clients. It is certainly something we will be continuing to explore postpandemic.

Amelia Pidduck as Alice in Wonderland It’s extremely difficult to look out of your own troubles and see the bigger picture. I chatted to my team and looking beyond my own struggle, every single one of them was in a similar position. Every scrap of work for the foreseeable future - gone in an instant. What was more heart-breaking than seeing some of my beloved team so lost, was knowing that as their boss there was nothing I could do. After some reflection, we all felt the same way. Instead of tirelessly grasping for work that was never going to come, we should take the time to look after ourselves, to get to know one another better and allow our previous relationships to flourish. It’s the most important thing of all, taking time to look after ourselves. And when do we ever have the luxury of time? Mental health is unfortunately so often overlooked, trivialised and seen as a weakness in the work place which is something I will not stand for in an industry where you can be so vulnerable. A business cannot deliver it’s full potential, regardless of any global pandemic, if it’s staff are not cared for. We organised weekly online staff quizzes with the most ridiculous themes imaginable! Laughing until the early hours and making bonds so great that we could share personal feelings and stories. We launched virtual auditions to continue to grow our talent and give everyone the hope of future work. We also put together a music video where our team sang along to the Beatles’ ‘Let it Be’ from their living rooms. This was a simple but moving video highlighting the tough times, hope for the future and our bond as a team.

Fancy Entertainment Lockdown Quiz After so much down time, it was a shock to the system when our first ‘real’ event happened at the end of July. Excited and apprehensive, with the flash of our logo across my chest, we arrived at a the venue of a brand new client with a list of new rules to follow and a truck full of disinfectant! One of our strengths is that all of our entertainment can be altered to suit all budgets and requirements. The majority of our family entertainment can be easily adapted to perform more or less anywhere in any way. It didn’t occur to me straight away this could also apply to our new Covid compliant world. With a few tweaks here and there, our shows became socially distanced (for audience and staff), interactive sections were altered to fit new rules and we relocated our performances to new areas with ease. Rehearsals were also a safe success becoming outdoor, socially distanced and virtual. This gave me hope moving into the more complex Halloween season. I am proud to report that our biggest Halloween ev-er was a complete triumph despite Coronavirus restrictions. I am sitting here during our second national lockdown with a situation echoing the beginning of the year with Christmas gigs disappearing by the minute, but with a mind full of positivity. With a big book of plans for 2021, I am in a hopeful, yet content state. I still have all fingers and toes crossed that we can continue to entertain, provide our unique services and make memories, but the uncertainty isn’t quite as overwhelming as it was in March. With the dire current state of the arts and events industry, I feel immensely proud and lucky we haven’t been crippled yet. Until we are out of this pandemic, I’ll be sitting tight waiting for the roaring twenties to take flight as it should be.

Let it Be Video Take a moment to check out Fancy Entertainment’s Youtube Channel, where you can find videos of our previous work, our lockdown craft videos, best bits of our lockdown quizzes and our ‘Let it Be’ music video.

TEL: 07814 661968 E-MAIL: WEBSITE: FACEBOOK: @fancyentertainmentandevents

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Photo: Ursula Kelly @ Studio Softbox

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Wholistic Pain Freedom Without The Need To Pop Pills

Hi, how’s your year going? It’s crazy times, having to navigate the pandemic and restrictions with all the uncertainty that it brings. Tell me, are you getting out and enjoying walks or has the change in weather triggered aches and pains? If you’re stuck indoors, are you moving enough? Our bodies need to move little and often. If you are stuck in one position your body will adapt. This puts you out of natural alignment and postural compensation starts. This is when your body will try to correct itself. Some muscles will tighten in order to keep you upright and balanced. But this, in turn, can create pain as muscles shouldn’t be constantly tense. Here’s something to think about. Have you considered that we have eye tests, dental check-ups, heart rate monitored and lots of other physical health tests? And that we don’t have a musculoskeletal review, until NOW! Remember, it’s much easier to bring your body back into alignment sooner rather than later. Leaving muscles in a state of constant tension only creates more problems and pain in the future. We don’t always realise how our bodies can change and how quickly they can change, not always for the better. Is something as simple as leaning forward to pick up a pen giving you sharp pains in your back? If it is, don’t ignore the pain. Having a review periodically will highlight any niggling areas that need to change to keep your body in tiptop condition.

When my clients start working with me, I very often say the words “you’ll forget what it’s like to feel pain”. The look on their face is the look of disbelief, they raise their eyebrows and nod their head forward. You know the one? 3 months ago, Ellen, was in hospital and taking morphine. Her back pain was excruciating. She couldn’t stand at the sink for more than a minute. Doing housework, gardening or shopping was not an option. Ellen had that ‘look of disbelief’. As a pain detective, I did a little sleuthing into her posture and lifestyle and started to work my magic. I am thrilled to say that Ellen now has another look. That ‘knowing’ look of someone who has experienced success and is now pain-free and living life without the fear of pain. Ellen told me this week “I am now a believer!” Don’t wait! You too can change. Do something about those niggles today to prevent anything worse happening. Whether it’s for yourself or someone you care about, give a gift of pain-free living. Book a Bodylogiq online consultation here It could the best gift you’ve ever given. Look after yourself Karen Karen Chappell, 07917 410770

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This Is All There Is Energy is all there is. There is nothing else. Everyone and everything is created from energy. In fact, you’re created from the same Universal energy as the birds, trees, oceans and mountains. When you feel the wind blowing through your hair and gently kissing your skin, this too is energy. We’re all connected and at one with the Universe. We’re not separate. When you hurt another you inadvertently hurt yourself. Conversely, when you ‘lift’ another up you also ‘lift’ yourself. Energy Stores When we’re young, we’re easily able to restore our energy. However, as we grow older it’s not as easy for us to replenish these levels. Resulting in a lack of energy, meaning we lose our ability to experience life fully and live to our fullest potential. It can even result in ill health or dis-ease. So how can you tell when your energy is depleted? You may feel more tired than usual, lethargic, slightly run down or mildly dizzy (please ensure

that you consult your doctor if these symptoms persist).

What can you do to top up your energy wells? Getting out in nature for a walk, drinking more water, ensuring you’re getting enough rest, especially sleep – you may need to tweak your bedtime routine to ensure you’re fully relaxing before settling down to sleep. Things like no tech at least an hour before bed, having a soothing drink like Chamomile tea, taking a warm bath or shower, then maybe reading, will all let your body and mind know you’re winding down and that you’ll soon be going to sleep. You could also use one or more of the following practises: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Reiki Yoga Tai Chi Qigong (Chi Kung)

by Jo Peirson

All these practises are aimed at gently keeping your energy levels high and bringing you back into balance. Qigong, Tai Chi and Yoga use a series of movements (some slow, some more dynamic) along with the breath.*

*If unsure if a specific exercise is suitable for you, always consult a medical professional.

Reiki works slightly differently, with the Reiki Practitioner drawing down the Universal energy and using the palms of their hands to channel it to the recipient. The recipient will take this Universal energy and use it as they need it, like healing from the inside out. This can be done in person or remotely, the results are the same. Positive Affirmation Here’s an affirmation for you to use anytime you feel disconnected. Just repeat it silently or out loud as many times as you feel you need. You could even write it down and stick it around your home as a reminder that you are a wonderful child of the Universe:

“I am at one with the Universe”. Living in a balanced state gives us the opportunity to enjoy life and appreciate how we’re connected to everything around us.

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I’m Sophie, the owner of

Be Your Best Version

Whilst I work with people to develop their leadership skills and help businesses engage with their staff and become more productive, fundamentally I help people regain their power. When I talk about power I am not talking about the ‘dictator, he who must be obeyed’ kind of power but the personal power which stems from healthy levels of self-esteem and confidence. The type of power that enables you to speak up, been seen as a valued person and affect the things around you. I know from personal experience how your power can be chipped away over time and how debilitating it can become. I lost my personal power through an abusive relationship and illness.

It is only in the last few months that I came to realise that for the majority of my life I believed deep down, so deep that I couldn’t see it, that love was conditional. I couldn’t risk just being myself, I had to be good enough, to live up to everyone’s exceptions and be perfect to be accepted and loved. This belief eroded my sense of worth and confidence and led to me down a path I now would never accept, but back then I felt it was all I was worth. That is how easy it is to fall into an abusive relationship and stay there, you believe their lies and become trapped there. My brain, at some sub conscious level, knew it wasn’t right but it’s much easier to listen to the caustic, destructive comments and take them as the truth, it was the long term stress from this that led me to developing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a debilitating illness, no matter how much rest you have you are still exhausted, your body feels heavy and painful and your limbs feel more like wet sandbags than limbs. The CFS affected my entire body, including my sight, hearing, speech and brain, making even the simplest of questions feel like a MENSA challenge.

Eight years ago I started to see a therapist to help me accept my CFS, but his help went far beyond that. He helped me to see myself as a valid person, to see the damage I, and others, were inflicting on me and through this he helped me to regain my power. Since then I have had the courage and strength to end the abusive relationship, regain ownership of my house, flourish as a single mum, renovate my home, gain a promotion, move house, walk away from the security of a well-paid job to set up my own business and most importantly enjoy life again. During this time I also found my passion. I have always been a fixer and love helping others. I found myself starting to work with others who have the same traits as me - down-toEarth, heart on sleeve and a strong desire to help. It became clear, unfortunately, that these traits can leave people incredibly vulnerable and they often lose their power whilst trying to please others. I help them to find their power and their true calling so not only do they become more self-aware and resilient but they also find a job role that ignites their passion and makes the most of their desire to help. It is the most rewarding work I could imagine. I get to meet so many fantastic people who I am in complete awe of and I get to work with them, supporting them to grow in confidence, develop skills and transform their lives so they can be their best version. To find out more about Sophie and her business, Be Your Best Version, visit

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Let’s get savvy with our


weekly food shop


Buying jars & ready meals is always going to increase your shopping bill. Sticking to simple ingredients, just because they are simple it doesn’t mean they are in anyway boring and they will be far more nutritious because you will have made it yourself with natural ingredients, no sneaky preservatives or extra sugar! You may be happy to potter about in the kitchen and whip up new meals or you may be horrified at what I have just suggested and think NO WAY this isn’t for me at all! Well before you go just read my tips, I promise you it is not as hard as you think. First thing to do, look at your food bill, do you plan your weekly shop? Do you go armed with a list to the shops? Do you know what you are going to have each night for tea that week? If the answer is no, planning your weeknight teas alone will save you some ££££s! Check out our top tips on how to plan your weekly meals:

• Think ahead, if you are making a lasagne

for example make a larger lasagne and save it for another night that week or freeze it for a meal next week. You don’t have to buy extra mince to bulk it out, just add some lentils to your mince and sauce while cooking it and this will bulk up the mince.

If you have lots of veg left over then make a big pan of soup, this is great for easy lunches or a light tea throughout the week. Plus, you can save any extra portions and freeze them for another week.

Once you have written out your weekly meal plan then write down the ingredients what you need for each of those meals, do you need any extra things like juice, tea, coffee any household items like toilet roll, kitchen roll etc.

• You should have a list for the week &

• Plan out your weekly meals; this is the

ready to hit the supermarket! Though remember to eat before you go as shopping when you are hungry means you just add more food to your trolley…..

Remember to make ingredients from scratch as much as you can it is cost effective and tastes so much better. If you’d like some meal inspiration & some yummy weeknight recipes then head over to The Secret Mums Baking Club Facebook Group for busy parents or our blog where you will find lots of recipe ideas & inspiration for your weekly shopping!

most important part of this, plan, plan plan! If you plan your weeknight meals, lunches; are you eating at home, taking food to the office or do the kids need a packed lunch and don’t forget breakfast! Once you have a rough idea what meals you are having check in the fridge, freezer and cupboard. What do you have leftover? What needs to be used up? Is there a meal you could perhaps swap with something already in the cupboard?

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Awards 2020

If you didn’t watch it, you missed an amazing night of celebration and glamour again this year. Even though we had to change from a face to face event to one online, the usual prestige and sparkle were definitely in place. The Women’s Awards 2020 were hosted by Official Host Rupal Rajani, with her co-host Dave Andrews. In her speech, Founder Sandra Pollock reflected on a year marked by a series of transformational changes that will impact on our lives for years to come. The Covid-19 pandemic and the killing of George Floyd in the US that brought together people from across the globe in support of people with black and brown skin in recognition of the injustices they face. The Women’s Awards came out of a need to recognise the gender imbalance and diversity, and continues to distinguish women across all races, cultures, ethnicities, and any element used to lower the value of women. “It is absolutely possible to promote the recognition and celebration of women or any other group, whilst ensuring the continued value of all other groups, cultures and individuals. The two are not exclusive.” Sandra Pollock.

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Feedback from the online Awards presentation has been tremendous. “The best Awards ceremony I’ve seen so far.” P. F. “It was a fabulous night, so smooth and professional, thank you Sandra for a great night.” C.B-R. “What an incredible evening! So well done - presented with warmth and humour - so, so proud to have been sharing a screen with all those remarkable women, (and bonus my children got to enjoy it too!) thank you so much for doing this!” L. B. “It was like watching the Grammys.” H.A. “Well done to Sandra Pollock MA on The Women’s Awards 2020 fantastic night last night. There were so many fantastic nominees, finalists, and winners.” B. P. We could go on…

Sandra also announced the appointment of the Women’s Awards – East Midlands first ever Patron, Carol Leeming MBE. The night was shared by performances from local artists Mellow Baku, Mia and The Moon, Jersey Budd, the Cosmopolitan Ensemble, and poetry from Carol Leeming MBE who was commissioned in 2018 to write a poem for the EMWA. But the biggest contributors of the night were the hundreds of viewers who joined to watched the event, dressed up, shared photos of themselves, their dinner, glasses of bubbly and celebration activities with their work colleagues, friends and families. All making it a night to be remembered. You can see some of these photos on our website gallery. Huge thanks and appreciation go out to all our amazing sponsors, starting with our Headline Sponsor Creative Direction, who are also responsible for the rebranding of the Awards and bespoke new website. Other sponsors include Smilin Occasions, the Finance Lab, Cosy Direct, Light Up Creative, DLuxe Magazine, Dare to Diva, and many others.

Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2020 (Sponsored by Finance Lab) WINNER: Carla Garey ¦ Finalist: Sam Rathling Outstanding Woman in Professional Services Award 2020 (Sponsored by Arbonne) WINNER: Bhumika Parmar ¦ Finalist: Lindsey Atterbury

Outstanding Senior Female Executive Award 2020 (Sponsored by Sandra Pollock) WINNER: Liz Clarke ¦ Finalist: Anne Ashman

Outstanding Female Leader in a Market Town Award 2020 (Sponsored by Women in Management UK) WINNER: Lucy Stephenson ¦ Finalist: Jenny Cross

Outstanding BAME Female Leader of the Year Award 2020 (Sponsored by Dare to Diva) WINNER: Pamela Campbell-Morris ¦ Finalist: Khudeja Amer-Sharif

Outstanding Woman in Arts, Media & Music Award 2020 (Sponsored by DLuxe Magazine) WINNER: Laura Wilkinson ¦ Finalist: Jane Hearst

Inspirational Male Supporting Female Leaders Award 2020 (Sponsored by Open Mind Training & Development Ltd) WINNER: Simon Cole ¦ Finalist: Tom Bates

East Midlands Inspirational Female Leader 2020 (Sponsored by Creative Direction) WINNER: Albey Law-Smith

The final exciting element of the night was the outside broadcast that took us to the home of the Winner of the Women’s Awards – East Midlands Inspirational Female Leader of the Year 2020. Albey Law-Smith was surprised live at her home, and what fun that was. Here is the list of all the Runner ups and Winners: •

Outstanding Woman in Care Services Award 2020 (Sponsored by Uppingham First) WINNER: Joanne Warren ¦ Finalist: Amy Thornton

Outstanding Woman in Education Award 2020 (Sponsored by Cosy Direct) WINNER: Albey Law-Smith ¦ Finalist: Arran Roby Kaur Stirton

Outstanding Woman in Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) Award 2020 (Sponsored by Corporate Motion) WINNER: Martha Clokie ¦ Finalist: Dr Sarah Casewell

Outstanding Woman of Community Impact Voluntary Award 2020 (Sponsored by Inspiring You CIC)

– Charity &

WINNER: Lorraine Lewis ¦ Finalist: Khudeja Amer-Sharif

Mobile: 07977227872 Email: Web:

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The Women’s Awards – East Midlands Announces New Patron Regional growth makes way for the role of patron for honoured role model. Carol Leeming MBE FRSA The growing impact of the Women’s Awards has been heightened yet again by the announcement of it’s new East Midlands Patron, Carol Leeming MBE FRSA, made during this year’s prestigious and glitzy online awards presentation and celebration on Friday 9th October 2020. In her acceptance speech Carol Leeming noted that the Women’s Awards – East Midlands, formerly the East Midlands Women’s Awards (EMWA) is “…one of the best things that’s ever happened to the East Midlands”. It celebrates the achievement of women across this region for the real positive impact that they make. The organisation itself has been going four years and I speak as a former recipient of one of their awards and I know how career enhancing this can be. How it can really aid a woman’s growth, her sense of herself. How empowering that really is but more importantly, the way it proclaims to the world at large that we have within this Region women who are doing absolutely incredible, fantastic work. And it’s really good to have an organisation that celebrates that, that acknowledges that. And I am thrilled to be the Patron for this organisation. I know that in the four years that it’s been going it has already created an incredible legacy…” Sandra Pollock, Founder of the Women’s Awards said “We are thrilled to have Carol join us in this new role of Patron. She comes with a wealth of experience and ability. Carol has a national and international standing and has been an activist for women’s rights and equality for a long time. We still have a way to go on these issues and the impact of Covid-19 is said to have set progress back for women. We need to continue to give recognition to women’s contributions. Carol will be a great asset.” In addition to the role of patron, the Women’s Awards now also has a board of founding members who will support the continuing vision and plans for the organisations growth and support to women across the wider Midlands region. For information, visit

The Women’s Awards celebrates the regional contribution of women across the East and West Midlands. The purpose of these Awards is to raise awareness, recognise and celebrate the hard work and valuable contribution of women from all cultures, communities, and sectors.

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Social Media Management is not an Admin job by Nicola Read of Babbl Social There we said it. If you want social media done properly on the platforms you use for your business, and you don’t have someone in house who can do it, then outsource it if you can. But be careful who you outsource it to. Social media is not an admin job.

Social media marketing is strategic. We put together a plan. We know who your ideal customers are, we work our content around reaching them. We want to turn them into your followers, then your fans and then your customers. We know who we’re talking to and what we want them to do, then after they purchased from you that first time, we want them to come back again and again, and tell their friends and family about you too.

When you’re paying for social media management you’re paying for us to do all these things and more, consider that when outsourcing. Think about whether you are a good fit, are they used to working with people in your industry? Do they niche? Are you in their niche? What do you want to achieve? Do they believe they can help you achieve it? Are you likely to outsource other marketing work too? Can they help you with that and keep it all under one roof? Admin work is highly skilled in specific areas, admin assistants are usually trained and invest in their ongoing learning and can be extremely effective in saving you time and money. We couldn’t do a lot of what admin assistants do. We’re not trained in the jobs and systems they use. We constantly train and re-train to enhance our skills and knowledge to bring you everything we have mentioned above and be at the top of our game. Social media management is not an admin job, so think about what tasks you are outsourcing and which professional can deliver what you need.

Social Media Managers understand marketing and how it works, we know the benefits of offering great customer service as well as crisis management, we know it’s crucial to use different language to appeal to different audiences, and we know where those audiences hang out online. Social Media Managers know when to use hashtags and when not to, we know when to post so that your post gets seen by the biggest audience possible. We understand the importance of branding and aesthetics, we keep up to date with the relentless changes and what we need to do to get the most out of them, and get your business seen.

FACEBOOK@BabblSocial 01332 899409

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Would you like to feature in thE


DIGITAL publication ?

Savvy Women Interactive Digital Publication Link your videos, images and contact details and drive customers to your website and social media via this interactive publication Don’t miss out on featuring in the next issue Contact us:

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we are still here

and possibly even more determined to succeed

Sitting down to write this, I started thinking back on the last few months, It has possibly been the strangest time any of us have gone through. We’ve all grown, changed, gone sideways, up and down, but we are still here and possibly even more determined to succeed. This past year has taught us a lot about who we are and what we really want from our businesses. I’ve noticed a lot more business owners undertaking courses and trainings, refreshing their skills, updating websites, defining their brand and, looking for new ways to build their business. This is fantastic, it shows we are determined to beat this situation we’ve been thrown into. I’ve done exactly the same, I’m a graphic and web designer, so my business has always been online, but I’ve had ups and downs, clients have left due to their own businesses suffering, I’ve taken on new clients who are re-evaluating their business,

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I’ve had new clients refreshing their graphics, looking for consistency and a new way to be heard on social media. I’ve had to change, adapt, tighten my branding and increase my social presence, I’m happy to say that this has really paid off, as I won Theo Paphitis #SBS on Twitter on the 5th October, to say I was excited was an understatement. This just reinforced that if you really want something no matter how small or big it may be, you can achieve it. So during lockdown I created a Canva for beginners course, and Canva template packs to help make businesses stand out more on social media, it has become extremely noisy and very difficult to be seen or heard. Great looking graphics are a good start. Making sure our business can be seen is vital and social media is a brilliant way to do this, however we can’t just add any old thing, staying consistent and within your brand will make you memorable, will help people see and recognise you and your business. Building trust between you and your customer or client.


My 3 Top Branding Tips Colour - Using colour within your business is a big part of your brand, stick with a couple of core colours, then use different shades of these, don’t use lots of colours. Check out www.canva. com/colors for more combinations and different meanings of colour (banks use blue for security, florists use pink for love, purple for royalty and prestige)

If you would like to find out more about what I do and if I can help you in any way, you are more than welcome to contact me or have a look at my website, I also have a group on Facebook, which has turned into a fantastic supportive community of brilliant small business owners, it’s also where I add in different tutorials, tips and lots of information to help with Canva and Wordpress.

Fonts - Use 3 fonts. Main header font for your business name. Sub-header font for dividing paragraphs and smaller titles. Body font for your main body text. You can add a forth fancy font in if you want for buttons, call to actions and so forth…

Laura Goodsell

Images - Finding images that represent your business or where you want your business to go, really helps you shape your branding, use these images in your social media, just make sure they all follow the same theme, or colours (that you’ve chosen above) to keep consistent and recognisable. Collating all of the above will give you a good idea of what your brand looks and feels like to your ideal customer/client.

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How To Get Savvy With Your Social Media Marketing In 2021

Halloween is over and Christmas preparations are well underway which can mean just one thing . . . 2021 will soon be here! Just like planning for Christmas, now is the time to be planning your social media marketing for next year so you can be visible, engaged and reaping the benefits for your business from the 1st January.

I know that sitting down to plan social media marketing isn’t everyone’s idea of fun but it’s one of the most important tasks you can do at this time of year. It’s by reflecting on your social media and wider marketing this year, seeing what’s gone wrong and what’s worked well, creating ideas for what you want to try next year and getting those foundations in place that you can achieve what you hope for in 2021. So, here are some of my savvy tips that I use everyday when creating social media strategies for clients here at Saxton Marketing Ltd you can use right now to get started with your social media planning. Review your analytics to see what’s worked and what hasn’t before you plan When was the last time you looked at your social media analytics? Yes, I know, data and statistics isn’t everyone’s cup of tea but if you don’t know which social media content has performed well for you and which posts have been a flop, you’re not going to know the kind of content to be planning and creating for 2021. Just a cursory glance can be enough, each social media channel has their own analytics page with some easy to read statistics. They highlight your best performing posts in terms of views and engagement. It’s a good idea to ask yourself “why have these done better than the others?” and see if there’s a running theme. Maybe it’s a story style post, or an offer, or simply sharing a tip your audience have found helpful. It is also a good idea to compare the performance of your social media channels as a whole. Has Facebook had double the engagement than Twitter? Is Pinterest working better for you than Instagram? Is one channel simply getting no attention whatsoever? Knowing which social media platforms are working well for you and focusing on them for 2021 will help you get more from your efforts and understand the kind of content to be creating for them. Scope out your business year ahead Your social media marketing should be a part of your wider business marketing rather than a separate entity. By that I mean ensuring your holiday seasons, special events, industry events, planned sales etc are reflected in your social media content rather than being an afterthought.

Do you have any product launches planned for next year? Will you be taking part in January sales and Black Friday? Is Small Business Saturday an important part of your calendar? Make a note of occasions like this and plan your social media content around it. It’s much easier to gain sales from social media when you’re able to take your time to build awareness and hype over the weeks leading up to the event. Knowing the key events and what your year ahead looks like makes it easier to batch write your posts too. For example, you could create all your sales posts in one go and tweak them as appropriate when you schedule them. Consider if social media marketing is really working for you I love social media marketing because it’s such an effective tool for making your business visible to your target audience. You can engage and interact with prospective customers and industry professionals that is difficult to do through other means along with having a strong presence working for 24/7 while you’re getting on with managing your business. But social media marketing can also be difficult for many small business owners. As I mentioned earlier, social media marketing can be timeconsuming, and you do need to be consistent and present to make the most of it. If it’s taking you days to respond to a comment or enquiry because you haven’t got the time to check your notifications, chances are you’re missing out on leads, sales and other opportunities. When you don’t have the time spare to go social but don’t want to miss out on the benefits this form of marketing can bring to your business, one solution is to outsource to me here at Saxton Marketing Ltd. I offer a full range of support for social media marketing through a range of packages and bespoke services. From creating a detailed social media strategy, creating the content and scheduling on your behalf to assisting with specific tasks like managing pages, training your staff on using social media for customer service or even breaking down your analytics data into easy to understand reports; I can help. Want to make 2021 the best one yet for your social media marketing? Readers of Savvy Women magazine can get a special discount of 20% off one of my social media packages if you book before the end of January 2021 quoting ‘SAVVY 2021’. Find out more at to discover how I can help you use social media marketing to achieve your business goals in 2021.

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Shine Out Loud and Raise your Profile How to grow your business during these difficult times. You are the shining light that people want to see. You are the person behind your business, in front of your business, supporting it, cheering it on and wading through the bad times as well as the good times. It’s been a difficult year for many. A crazy time and one where some people have worked harder than ever before. Where are you headed? What does 2021 look like for you? Are you remaining visible to your audience? Do you even know who your audience is right now? Change can come about in many disguises. We help you to raise your profile so the marketing activities you do are absolutely on purpose and aligned with the clients that not only buy from you, but hear you, see you and resonate with you. They may even be influenced by you. What are you doing to inspire, educate and share? Wisdom and knowledge are key factors in helping keep the wheels of economy going as well as those income producing activities some of you may have heard me talk about often.

During the past few months, we have seen the worst in social distancing and keeping us apart from our loved ones. It’s stopped lots of businesses from trading, yet it provided a new found strength amongst business owners, professionals and those who have risen up out of the ashes to start a business right now. It takes commitment as well as drive, enthusiasm and care to make a success of something in any given recession, pandemic, crisis etc. As someone who has been continuing to work and provide solutions to helping business owners not only move their business forward but to encourage people to grow through our Rev up Your Marketing and Business Programmes. You can access an information pack via this link here. Or Call Caroline at 07970830423 Email

Connection, communication and clarity. These are just 3 things that are absolutely vital to keeping your profile raised during a crisis situation. Honesty, integrity and passion are other core values that are being revealed.

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Are you a control freak?

As I write this article, we are about to go into the 4 weeks second lockdown of 2020 It’s been a challenging time for lots of business owners. Some have lost their business over night, some have lost clients and others have had different priorities to manage. We ‘ve had to contend with home schooling, partners working from home and invading our office space, concerns about the health and wellbeing of loved ones and whether we will be able to buy loo rolls and pasta! I am a self confessed control freak. I like to be in charge! I will always volunteer. I like to help sort stuff out. So one of my big lessons of this year has been to really focus on the stuff I can control and stop worrying about the stuff I can’t. I don’t think anyone would deny the mental challenges this year has brought with it. However, the impact of trying to control situations we can’t just add to the feelings of helplessness and despair that I know many have felt. It also keeps us stuck and not able to move forward. So, I share with you a few of the things that I have done to keep that control and objectively let go of the stuff I can’t and I suppose make the best of the situation we are all in right now. Stop scrolling on Social Media. It’s a great place to be for us in business. Many of our clients hang out there, but it is so easy to get drawn into discussions about the right and wrong way to handle the pandemic. It just fuels our own inability to have any control over what is going on, whatever your views. So my advice, stop scrolling. Limit your time on social media, do what you have to do and snooze, unfriend or block these who are just not being helpful to your state of mind. Accept Zoom fatigue is a thing. Early on in the on line, virtual meeting world, people were sharing that they felt so tired and lethargic. One of the factors was the amount we are all spending on zoom (or similar on line platforms). It’s a fact now that we have to if we want to network, be a part of meetings or even have larger family get togethers. So my tip - know it’s a thing and don’t do too many a day. I restrict myself to a maximum of 2 meetings a day on zoom. I’ve started actively using the phone more to have conversations, without seeing the person. It’s actually quite refreshing.

We’ve been able to experience our businesses as a virtual model and then we’ve been able to decided if it is for us longer term. Lots of businesses are now seeing the power of virtual services and are, of course, able to reach more potential clients across the country and worldwide. Many businesses have diversified. They have spotted a gap in the market and explored if they could fill it, often with lots of success. With new plans in place they now have more control over their business than they maybe did before. Control Our Reactions We can’t control what happens but we can control how we react to them. This is so true, no matter what it is. It’s OK though to be angry, or sad, or frustrated about the situation and it’s Ok to express those emotions but do it to someone you can trust. Social media isn’t always the best place to share that frustration, anger or other feeling. Taking time to appreciate the important stuff For me, these last few months have really highlighted what is important to me, both in my business life and my personal one. Both my partner and I have worked throughout the pandemic. I have learnt to ask for help and been ok with a somewhat emotional rollercoaster, that I along with many others have been on. I am truly grateful for my business and my home life. My relationships have deepened, and I feel very fortunate for all of that. There have been some things that I am no longer prepared to tolerate in my business, and this will stand me in good stead moving forward. I am sure that there are many more things that I have experienced, as have will you, that we could share as great ways to survive or just get through a pandemic as a business owner, but my biggest lesson I learnt was that as much as I love to be in control, sometimes you just can’t be in control of everything. To try leads to nowhere constructive and the best thing is to focus on the stuff that you really have control over. If you need help on getting clarity about your business, what’s keeping you stuck, or how you get focus on the right stuff, then get in touch for a complimentary strategy session.

Still remember your travel time.

I look forward to connecting with you.

Continuing on the on line, virtual meeting theme, It’s so easy to think as we don’t have to travel, we can just hop from meeting to meeting. This is so detrimental though. When we travel, we have time to download the information from the meeting we’ve just been in. We may have the opportunity to write our notes up. We get a chance to break the mental thought process by listening to the radio or an audio book and we start to mentally prepare for our next meeting. We don’t get any of that when we rush from one thing to the next. My advice here is give yourself time to stop. To just think and re group before the next meeting.

Vicky Stanton The Business Success Coach

Look outside the box We know what we do. We know how we do it because its what we’ve always done. These last 7 months have thrown lots of things up in the air for many of use but it has also brought many opportunities if we spotted them and grasped them.

Virtual Networking and You! Over the last 7 months the world of networking has grown. Everywhere you look there are new groups popping up on Facebook, on Zoom in the virtual pub even.

Vicky Stanton

The Business Success Coach

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photo credit: Ursula Kelly @ursulakphoto

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The Athena Network Virtual Networking and You!

Over the last 7 months the world of networking has grown Everywhere you look there are new groups popping up on Facebook, on Zoom in the virtual pub even. Are there some ways that you can make the most of networking from the comfort of your own home? I think so and I’d love to share my tips with you in readiness for the 2021 networking year, which I think will see virtual networking is here to stay and be a great mix with the return to face to face meetings at some point. Treat your networking meeting as any other meeting I am sure you would prepare for any meeting you had with a prospective client and yet some people don’t treat their networking meetings the same. Why not though as the room is full of either their potential clients or someone to refer them onto their potential clients? So preparation is key. Prepare what you are going to say. Write it down, make some notes. There really is nothing worse that someone waffling for a minute (or however long you have) The image that gives to those listening must be ‘I wonder of they do business like that?’ There are some that say that you can’t have notes or your minute written. Why ever not? If I want to convey a point or a specific service in a certain way, why wouldn’t’ I make some notes to keep me on track? Be fully engaged We have so many distractions at home that you wouldn’t have if you were in a room networking. Our computers with email, Facebook, Linked in. The phone sitting on the desk. The dog. The children. The husband, wife or partner. Switch off the techy stuff or close the windows down so you can’t see it or hear the ping. Tell the other folks in the house you are in a meeting. Don’t fiddle with your phone. It really is obvious when you are texting or doing something else. Think about the message you are sending to the other participants. Dress appropriately Even though you are on a zoom meeting and you really only have to dress from the waist upwards, it does make you feel differently if you dress for work in the way you would if you were actually going to a networking meeting. I must admit I’ve not had shoes on, but I have worn a dress, trousers and top and felt different. Jewellery, make up and perfume all add to the experience and the feeling of normality.

Save The Chat and Follow Up How many times have you followed up with someone you met at a virtual networking meeting? I do think it’s more difficult. I know that when I used to come back from networking meeting, I had physical business cards and I had a process to deal with them. I’m not sure I have the same process with the zoom chat. The follow up process is so important, and we need to ensure we do it in the most effective way. So if, as you are reading this, you have the same thought, I urge you to sort your process and not lose the opportunities that do come from the follow up. Stop Rushing Off Think about in face to face world. You wouldn’t book another meeting for the time the previous one ends, would you? So meeting one is from 9am till 10am, you’d book the next one at 10.30am to give yourself time to get there. Use the same principal in the virtual world. There is nothing more off-putting to other participants than the person who can never be bothered to stay till the end as they have somewhere far more important to be. We all need a few minutes to download what happened at the meeting, to get mentally ready for the next meeting and get there. Have One to Ones (even on zoom) Keep building those relationships outside of the meetings. Arrange to have a virtual coffee (or even a face to face coffee when we can again) Business relationships take time to develop. They develop because we build that know, like and trust with each other. We can only build that when we spend time chatting and finding out more. Be timebound about the meeting. Schedule an hour. Half an hour each to start that relationship. You can always meet again. You’ll find synergies with lots of people and right now keeping those connections going is really important, not only for business, but also for our own mental wellbeing. I’d love to know if you have other great virtual networking tips to share. If you’d like to come along and experience a virtual meeting in January then please get in touch. or give me a call on 07818 086939 We look forward to meeting you soon.

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IS IT WORTH THE EFFORT? “Exceptional achievements are within our reach when we stand tall on a foundation of personal integrity, hard work and unwavering determination.” It takes great confidence to nominate yourself for an award. If someone else nominates you, it is a great feeling, you have been recognised and someone feels it is worth it, it takes the ownness off you. You may know nothing of it until the email arrives congratulating you on being nominated, and sometimes they can be anonymous, meaning that you never do know who thought so much of you.

A wise woman told me years ago that this is a well known and sad fact for women, that we hide our light under a bushel, that we don’t go out and shout about our achievements and in the writing of awards, no one knows us better, or what we do, more so than ourselves.

But they can also come as a bit of a surprise, especially for business awards. Someone not involved in your business will draw conclusions about what you do, interpret how or why you do what you do and the facts may not be presented in their best light, or include the full content necessary to realise the best outcome from the judges.

If you are proud of your business and what you have achieved, entering an award is a perfect way to demonstrate that.

Is there a benefit to this? Yes, there is.

The application process can often force you to look at your business from a different perspective. You may identify areas where change may be needed, where improvement could benefit your business. It offers increased credibility, you may well be seen in a different light, someone to sit up and take notice of. A win can give a seal of approval to your activities. Awards celebrate hard work and success and are great PR opportunities. It is fantastic to be recognised so it is important to make sure that people know what your business has achieved. What if you don’t succeed? Well, you try again. And again. I ‘ve had that have not reached shortlisted, shortlisted and not won. But I have also won, and yes, the congratulations and the accolades are wonderful, but nothing beats the feeling it gives you, nothing for that moment pays you back for the continual 7 days weeks of sacrifice, discipline, never ending hard work.

So, is it pretentious to write your own entry? I had thought so. I very much felt that it would be blowing my own trumpet, ‘look at me, aren’t I clever, look what I’ve done’, would people think I was only working because I wanted recognition of it.

So, sit down with a pot of tea, be well prepared, research, have all of your facts, your statements and simply – sell yourself and don’t sell yourself short. Do it for yourself. Maria Hanson MBE

“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed”. Michael Jordan 32 - SAVVY Women ISSUE 6 -

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