Back in July last year, we were thrilled to have been handpicked as one of a very small number of small businesses to win the twitter award - run by Dragons Den's Theo Paphitis.
As part of the competition we were invited to a yearly award ceremony to listen to guest speakers talk about the challenges (and rewards) faced by small business owners. It ran on the 23rd February 2018 in Birmingham, and we were very excited to meet fellow small business owners, soak up the atmosphere and learn some useful tips from the experts!
This year's highlights for me were a thoroughly engaging and insightful talk on branding given by Stephen Cheliotis from TCBA. Later on in the day, there was another excellent Q&A session with John Roberts, founder of AO.com. He spoke about how his business started from a £1 bet, and has grown to a £1.2 billion company. I was given the chance to put a question to John and Theo - and was given some great advice on website SEO and marketing. And of course we heard from Theo himself - giving us lots of encouragement and cheering us on.
In between talks and guest speakers we could mingle and network with other small businesses, which was lovely and heartening to hear everyone's stories.
To finish the day off, we were awarded our certificates and had photos taken with Theo (who was thoroughly lovely and very friendly!) It was a fantastic experience and I'm so very grateful to Theo and his hard working team, and their sponsors, for putting on the event for us.
** Fancy giving the competition a go yourself? Follow @shop_sbs on Twitter for details**