As a brand new local survey of business confidence shows a massive 49% of companies have more confidence this year than 2013, the awards entry deadline has been moved back a week from tomorrow (Thursday) to May 15.
FSB Bedfordshire branch chairman Ian Cording said: “Over the last few months the upswing has been really noticeable. Businesses I speak to across the county have been working their socks off.
“It’s great news for them but we know some people have delayed filling in their forms, so we’re putting the deadline back a week to allow them to finish off. It also gives others the chance to get in there for the great opportunity it offers them to market their business.”
The survey, carried out last month, showed 49% of businesses have more confidence than in 2013, 44% have about the same level of confidence and only 7% have less.
Marketing spending normally rises during periods of increased confidence and the survey reflects that, with 31% of firms planning to spend more this year. The majority, 56%, will be doing about the same amount of advertising, PR and other kinds of marketing. Only 13% are planning to do less than last year.
And of the kinds of marketing likely to benefit, it’s possibly good news for leaflet printers, newspapers and magazines, with a whopping 48% planning to use print this year. Using Facebook attracts 45%, Twitter 31%, 29%other forms of social media.
Business networking will be used by 54% of respondents and public relations by 20%.
Ian said: “Entering awards is the perfect complement to those other forms of marketing. The pictures can be placed on Facebook and Twitter, your print adverts carry more gravitas, you have good news for a press release and your website and it gives an added element to your business pitching.
“So our message to all small businesses in Bedfordshire is don’t put it off any longer. Filling in that entry form could be the most effective form of marketing you’ve done this year.”
In terms of the rules, a small business is defined as one which extends from sole traders to up to 250 employees at the time of entering.
Find out more and enter by visiting www.fsb.org.uk/bedsawards