Business support

Digital strategy for entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs across the Highlands and Islands are being given the opportunity to learn how to create the most effective digital strategy for their business from a leading expert in this field.

Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has launched a range of digital strategy workshops, as part of its Entrepreneurial Academy.

The Delivering a Digital Strategy workshops, which are free to attend, kick off in Thurso on 26th September and are followed by workshops in Benbecula, Fort William, Forres, Inverness, Oban, Lerwick and Kirkwall.

At the workshops, business leaders will be guided through digital channels and shown the best techniques and tactics to achieve their goals, from securing more sales to increasing brand awareness and improving customer support.

Delivered by Gary Ennis of award-winning digital training consultancy, NSDesign, he will explain how the modern customer researches and purchases, how Google works and why you may not be getting the results you want. Attendees will also be given an overview of social media platforms and which ones they should prioritise, as well as ideas for great content.

Speaking ahead of the workshops, Gary said: “The digital landscape changes daily, and if you’re not aware of how to be found, how to stand out and how to be trusted, then you face an uphill struggle as consumers turn to these channels to find you…or not, as the case may be.

“At the workshops we’ll look at digital strategies, review the websites of attendees, looking at whether they’re optimised for mobile and reviewing Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), review social media platforms, including paid for advertising, and, new for this year, we’ll be giving advice around cyber security.

“We’ve designed the workshops to be fun and engaging; we’ll be working together and using live demos and YouTube videos to facilitate discussion. We’ll not only be giving an overview of best practice use of digital platforms but will be looking at the strategy behind their usage. Attendees will go away with the knowledge of how to monitor and evaluate their efforts and an action plan for their business.”

Louise MacDonald, senior entrepreneurship manager at HIE, said: “With so many digital channels available to businesses, it can often be difficult to identify the best ones for your target market or to create campaigns that successfully engage your audience. That’s why we’re delighted to have Gary share his knowledge. If you are unsure how to make digital work harder for you then I would encourage you to attend.”

The workshops are available to entrepreneurs or senior staff of companies or social enterprises with growth potential or the ambition to scale.

The digital strategy workshops are part of a suite of free workshops organised by HIE, including Entrepreneurial Sales, Pitching Skills and Brand Development. The first Delivering a Digital Strategy workshop takes place at Caithness Horizons in Thurso on 26th September 2018. Full details of all Entrepreneurial Academy workshops and links to sign up can be found at: www.hie.co.uk/entrepreneurship

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