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October 14, 2011

Social Media courses prove a huge success after idea emerges at lunch event by BNSW.

Chris Wood of Q Social Media Ltd formed an invaluable business link with Steve Westaway of AME solutions after meeting at an Exeter Business Network event.

Chris set up Q Social Media Ltd  in April 2011 after the success of a business relationship formed with Steve at a Business Network SW lunch event. Q Social Media offers marketing solutions to businesses enabling them to make the most of social media and Internet marketing through workshops, consultations and seminars

18 months ago Chris was trading as CW IT Services, providing IT support and social media services. Chris recalls, “In early 2010, local businesses were helping to push me down the social media road as they would often ask for my assistance on this even though at the time it wasn’t primarily part of the business, some even suggested putting a course together. I’ve seen others fail to promote their own courses so I was a bit wary of this. I approached Steve Westaway from AME Solutions who promotes training courses on MS Office and other software at their Exeter Training Office and asked him whether he would be interested in promoting the course if I wrote the material and ran it on the day itself.”

Steve Westaway works with AME Solutions, based in Exeter, who provide an extensive range of technical IT Support Services, computer network solutions and full range of training courses.

Steve and Chris came to an arrangement and ran the first social media course in June 2010. It proved a great success and together they went on to run it regularly, nearly every month of the year. Within 6 months the courses had really taken off, and by November 2010 they were putting together advanced courses which now run quarterly per year. After this initial success together they went on to produce another course in May 2011, a monthly introduction course to social media running in London.

Demand for social media courses has soared, AME saw a 240 per cent increase over last year no doubt linked to the relationship formed by Chris and Steve at their meeting at the Exeter Business Network lunch. These courses have been held in London and Bristol as well as Exeter and one delegate even flew in from Jordan to participate.

Steve from AME said, “As well as targeting internet and social media courses to businesses for online marketing, we have found certain organisations want to use social media for customer service.

“We are filling our courses as soon as we are marketing them. The main driver is a combination of businesses needing to assimilate the latest IT developments and communications opportunities with the need to upskill their staff rather than employ new people.”

Chris says, “Due to the success of these courses along with my consultancy work it gave me the platform to go full time with social media and drop the computer support stuff earlier this year and I rebranded as Q Social Media Ltd in April.”

Also thanks to AME, Chris has spoken at the International Arts and Crafts Trade show at the NEC in Birmingham in February 2011, where he hosted 7 seminars on internet marketing and social media over 3 days and proved so popular he has been rebooked for next year. Chris has also helped AME Solutions to introduce a new Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) course, which complements the social media course, by giving them contact details for the SEO consultant he works with and these will commence in December 2011.

The Exeter Business Network has provided the platform for this new business venture to flourish; without meeting each other and discussing ideas Q Social Media Ltd would not have taken off in the way it has. Chris says, “It is thanks to the Exeter Business Network that we both met and are having a successful relationship.”

Both Chris and Steve have a lot to show from the opportunities provided through networking, and you can benefit too. With regular lunch events being held in Bristol, Exeter and Taunton come along and see how you and your business can grow.


From → Members News

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