JournoLink and James Caan predict top trends for SME’s after Made Festival 2014.

JournoLink co-hosts Twitter chat with James Caan and the Start Up Loan company to predict the top trends for SME’s following the Made Festival 2014.

Journolink today held a well-attended Twitter chat co- hosted by James Caan and his start up Loans organization in a bid to identify what SMEs could look forward to in the 2015. The Prime minister sent a Tweet promoting the chat. Business leaders on what was dubbed the ‘Twitter Express from Kings Cross’ participated with their forecast top trends in response to questions from JournoLink followers, clients and twitter partners.

Peter Ibbotson head of JournoLink said “with business confidence starting to return we wanted to give our SME clients at Journolink a snapshot of what their future looked like so they could prepare for a new phase of growth.”

James Caan, Start Up Loans and Journolink fielded questions ranging from issues round insurance through finance, brand profiling, staff welfare, the digital industries, diversity and flexible working.

Ex Dragon’s Den Leader Caan forecast that with business confidence slowly returning, the big challenge ahead was finding the right sources of finance to support the expected demand for funds. He tweeted “I’m hugely positive about the variety of funding options available for startups; the key now is for them to get support and grow.”

Further on Finance the FSB in their tweet asked for competition among banks to enable SME’s to shop around for finance at the best possible rates. They said: “SMEs need a more competitive banking sector to help them get the finance to grow.”

Caan also highlighted the need for small enterprises to be distinctive, as a competitive strategy against bigger brands with bigger budgets, suggesting On Line PR as a route to this: “Despite the fact they have a smaller budget for Adverting and PR, they can engage with their markets in distinctive ways. ONLINE PR is the response to this trend and one that all SMES may have to consider.”

Digital services got a huge vote from business leaders who predict that new technology will reduce barriers to entry for start-ups, enable flexible working and mobility. Sage UK’s research predicts that “Cloud solutions and mobile devices will enable staff to work from home or elsewhere, meaning business can adapt to new regulations on mobility and flexibility without the loss of performance.”

Other top trends business leaders identified in the chat included:

The need for Mentoring and Peer to peer exchange through co-working;

The need for Startups to engage diversity in their work groups enabling mature experienced staff to mentor and support new entrants to the work place;

The need for SME’s to acknowledge and promote the importance of staff wellbeing, the human resource being the backbone of any enterprise;

The need for adequate insurance in everything from key person cover to contents insurance given the vagaries of the weather in the past few years.

As the Twitter express rumbled on to the Made Festival the awesome potential of digital communications was revealed as followers all over the UK and the business leaders swapped ideas via tweets. The chat ran from 10.30 to 11.30, and a few interruptions in wifi service did not disrupt the proceedings.

“We are pleased with this first ‘tweet on the tracks session’, it ran on rails,” said JournoLink’s MD, Gemma Guise. “Our business is all about instant communication so speed is of the essence. Our clients and SMEs have managed some super learnings from chatting with entrepreneurs like James Caan. It was especially encouraging to be recognized by No. 10”

About JournoLink

JournoLink is an easy-to-use and easy-to-learn PR software that helps small businesses and PR professionals communicate with huge audiences.

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