Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Your brand – 4 reasons to make it personal

It was great to be interviewed by Total Guide to Swindon this week.

It’s a great online publication and it asks really relevant questions to get the best possible interview. The experience made me realise that I need to keep banging on about how important it is these days to build a personal brand.

Why? Four main reasons:

People buy from people
Online marketing is critical. It opens doors, tells your story, puts your point of view across. It builds trust, even sells products. But it’s the human touch that cements your business relationships and makes them last.

You’re unique
Your personal brand is your way of showing how and why you’re different to everyone else, or in my case, #aheadofthecurve. Your beliefs anchor you. And they draw people who share your beliefs towards you. But, you need to show – not just tell – what those beliefs are.

Your brand is an ice-breaker
Being recognised and having a good reputation makes networking so much easier. When I started out, I’d approach people gingerly, business card at the ready. Today, more often than not, people say, ‘Hey, I know you – you’re Sara, aren’t you?’  

It leads to surprising opportunities
If you’d told me two years ago, that today, I’d manage three exciting businesses and cycle alongside a former Tour de France winner in Switzerland, I’d have laughed at you. But that’s what’s happened, thanks in no small part to the path my brand has taken me along.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Riding the smooth roads of Grindelwald with Cadel Evans

At Etape Suisse we’re currently putting the finishing touches on the upcoming three-day festival of cycling and fine dining in Grindelwald, and we’re delighted to announce that Cadel Evans, winner of the 2011 Tour de France, will be riding with us.

Le Tour de France 2012 - PreviewsThe event is taking place from 10 – 13 September; our guests will have the opportunity to ride alongside Cadel, picking up tips and tricks from one of the most successful riders of his generation. Cadel is a four time Olympian and the first Australian to win the UCI ProTour (2007) and the UCI Road World Championships (2009).

Everything is in place for this to be the most spectacular event Etape Suisse has ever hosted. Grindelwald, just two hours from Zurich, is surrounded by stunning scenery. With super-smooth road surfaces, this three-day event provides the perfect break for anyone who enjoys cycling. The accommodation and food will be second to none and the networking opportunities at the highest level.

Our guests in Grindelwald will stay at the luxurious Chalet Rotstocki. Following a Champagne reception, they’ll be fitted for a BMC carbon bike or a power assisted Stromer e-bike.


Over the following days, they’ll enjoy guided rides around Grindelwald, a choice of cycling challenges, fine dining experiences and full mechanical support.

Are you an enthusiastic cyclist with a taste for the finer things in life? If so, visit www.etapesuisse.com to keep up-to-date with all our exciting plans. 

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Essential Twitter tips - in 140 characters or less

If I’d told you 10 years ago that businesses could engage effectively with their audience with as little as 140 characters, you’d have called me crazy. But now, through the power of Twitter, successful brands are doing just that. 

Even though it’s such a prominent part of our lives, we’re still not seeing businesses exploit Twitter’s full potential. So, here are my seven top tips to make your company stand out from the rest - and gain valuable information:

·         Make your business a source of industry information. Be a thought leader and offer insightful content to your followers

·         Engage your audience with photos. Give them a behind the scenes look at what’s going on and make them feel part of your business

·         Retweet relevant breaking news. This shows your expert handle on your industry and that you’re bang up to date

·         Keep an eye on the competition. Twitter gives you insight into what’s working for them - and what isn’t

·         Following your rivals also keeps you up to speed with what they’re up to – and how well they’re being received

·         Twitter can help build strong brand recognition and spread awareness. Respond to your followers, look up hashtags for your industry

·         A loyal following is great but what’s the point if they’re not buying? Your feed should showcase your offering without being too salesy

If you want to improve your social media presence, get in touch with us at redheadPR.

Monday, 6 July 2015

Kick-starting the summer at 10 Downing Street

Last week I had a wonderful opportunity to attend the summer garden party hosted by Prime Minister, David Cameron, with my good friend Angela Barker-Dench, Principal of UTC Swindon.

It was fantastic to spend time with Angela on the day of the event, we had the perfect opportunity to talk about the fantastic work she has done at UTC Swindon so far. From hosting the Conservative Party manifesto at the college, to preparing some of Swindon’s brightest for work and university, she is going along way to putting Swindon back on the map.

The venue was a perfect place to celebrate Angela’s achievements, as the garden was beautifully decorated, alongside a selection of gorgeous drinks.

The evening also saw a fantastic speech from Chancellor George Osborne, as well as and lovely words from David Cameron. It was great to see Mr Cameron conducted himself with the same grace and confidence that he saw through the General Election campaign. 

Angela also had the fabulous opportunity to speak one-on-one with George Osborne. They spoke about how UTC Swindon has been performing in its debut academic year and their vision of how the university technical college movement is going to impact the educational system in the UK.

At the party it gave me a fantastic chance to catch up with some key contacts. At high-profile events it is an always great to opportunity to meet with and discuss a variety of topics with likeminded people. 

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Cycling to success in Gstaad

We recently invited a group of journalists and business people to see for themselves our 5 star cycling experience in Gstaad on the picturesque west side of Switzerland.

The trip launched our corporate sportive in Gstaad in June 2016, which will comprise cycling and high level networking. The 2016 trip is in aid of the Laureus Sports for Good Foundation, and aims to raise over £1 million for the charity.

With us was Laureus Sport for Good Foundation ambassador and England cricket legend, Michael Vaughan. At the end of the trip, he said: “This was my first time cycling in Switzerland and it was great to be involved in such an exciting event, surrounded by amazing scenery. I'm delighted to support this event, which has the aim in 2016 of raising £1 million for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, a charity I'm hugely passionate about which uses the power of sport as a tool for social change.”

We spent a whole day exploring Gstaad on two wheels. We made two route choices available, both with scenic feed stations, gourmet lunch, Ride Captains and full mechanical support.

One of our guests, creative partner at Mad Hen, Sid Madge, had this to say after the trip: “A huge thank you for the most amazing trip. I can only send you praise for what was a fantastic three days. It was immense and to share the time with such wonderful people was a joy. Thank you for all your hard work and I look forward to many more events and memories.”

Now as the dust has settled on Gstaad, we’re looking forward to our next event in Davos, offering an exclusive three-day festival of cycling and fine dining in the Swiss Alps from Thursday 10 to Sunday 13 September 2015. On this trip, we’re excited to welcome owner and manager of Wiggle-Honda, Rochelle Gilmour and former Australian racing professional, Cadel Evans, for what promises to be another special weekend.

For more information about Davos, please visit: www.etapesuisse.com/etape-suisse-davos-2015