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New Year special from CertainShops – new professionals on board!

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If you only want to pay professionals who other people rave about, then you’re in the right place. CertainShops – professionals online. The certain way of doing business.

We’ve got new professionals to tantalize your taste buds with their expertize, advice on how to get the best out of exhibiting at events, and a video of the adventures of SOS to the sound of the Nutcracker Suite.

Also, it’s your last chance to win some `healthy chocolate’ and to get free tickets to share with a friend in need to the SOS event this Spring.  Click Here to take survey


“Mummy, come out now, I know you’re in there” bellowed my young daughter under the door. “You can’t hide under the stairs for ever.  Come out now and cook Xmas dinner or I will disconnect your wireless connection!”   She had already confiscated my IPhone so I gave up trying to catch up on emails and brought my laptop and myself out of the shoe cupboard and admitted defeat.”Don’t worry Mummy” my sons’ comforted me.  Our Xmas present to you means you can relax and let proper skilled professionals do the work for you.  We’ve been onto CertainShops and your new website is all taken care of.”  Sure enough, my computer literate angels had commissioned a Feng Shui expert to improve the navigation on my latest website, a graphic designer to come up with a great new look, and an SEO expert to help drive traffic to the site.Sadly, the pocket money of all three children combined did not quite cover the costs.  But hey, it’s the thought that counts.


“What’s the latest news?”

SOS meets The Nutcracker…..

We have new word of mouth recommended professionals who have come aboard CertainShops, and they include an

award winning information graphic designer, Richard Wolfstrome;

a life and business coach, Carol Hughes;


a sustainable events manager, Sam Wilson;



feng shui for business and for life, Rosa D’Morgan;

an SEO marketeer Martin Long, who gained one client over 18,000 downloads of their online software,




and PR and marketing professional Sylvia Howe.

All our professionals are personally word of mouth recommended before joining the CertainShops’ website.


The Starting Over Show now has new resource partners!
Wikivorce and Families Need Fathers have joined us as resource partners on SOS.
 We had a good time at our SOS exhibitors meet up in October.
See our video here:
Thank you to all of you who have contributed to our last survey.  See the summary of results here:
Those who contributed to the survey will be emailed the code for free tickets during the next few weeks.
Congratulations to the winner of a portrait photography session with Scott Collier,  Naraya Urban-Winterfeldt.  Thank you to all those who entered the competition.

If you need some smart but unstuffy photos to boost your professional image, or you want some spontaneous and eternal memories of your family recorded, Scott will make that happen. AND you can have the digital negatives too, which is not something every photographer gives up lightly, especially not for free.

“Any interesting articles/blogs?”

How Web Professionals Should Be Proactive In a Recession

Jeremiah Owyang Sr Analyst at Forrester Research: Social Computing

Posted: 06 Dec 2008 06:30 AM CST

Things are going to get worse before they get betterIt’s official, we’re in a recession, says economists. Four quarters since Q4 2007 indicate this economic change and Bloomberg reports that “The U.S. economy may be headed for its deepest and longest recession since World War II”.

It gets worse, Associated Press reports that Employers cut 533K jobs in Nov., most in 34 years”. My job is to listen to the marketplace, and I didn’t hear anyone talking about this until Sept 2008, it’s as if US, and the world were taken by surprise.

Perhaps the scariest thing for most, is that no matter how hard you work, you could get layed off. Your division, your budget, or your role could get eliminated.

I’m not all doom and gloom, here’s how you can be proactive:

Learn How to Adjust at Your Day JobI survived 10 rounds of layoffs and was the final 12.5% of Exodus before I went to work at World Savings, what did I do learn? The trick is to stay flexible and demonstrate you can adapt, increase revenues, or use your skills in a scalable and effecient way. You’ll also need to properly internal market your abilities within your corporation or with your clients to demonstrate why you and your services give greater return out the end. Fortunately, the web can be such a tool –if you know how to do it right.

Understand How Social Media is a Risk and OpportunitySocial media has an opportunity in a recession, these tools are cheap, some marketing campaigns range from 10-50k on the low end, far less expensive than any traditional marketing. Of course, with comes great risk: doing it wrong can result in a punking, not doing anything at all could leave you exposed, and most brands overlook the amount of labor required to develop these programs. As a result, I’m working on an upcoming report, and we’re surveying social media marketers to find out if they’re going to increase –or decrease –their social media resources during a downturn. In fact, we’re re jigging some of my research agenda to meet the needs of the market and client –so stay tuned.

Use Online Networking Tools to ConnectIf you’re a web professional, or are involved with social media in your career, I want you to network with others in my Web Strategy Facebook Group (there are over 9000 folks there), or within the Community Manager Facebook Group (over 2000 folks). You should also be updating your LinkedIn Profile (doing so triggers updates to others) and connect and reconnect with folks you need to synch up with.

Attend Real World EventsThe need to connect in person (yes, real life) is the core essence of what makes us social animals, and as a result, I’ve organized a free networking event called a Tweetup in Silicon Valley this coming Thursday, and 81 intent to come, and 62 others are interested. I found this list of things to do before you get layed off very helpful. If you’re in the area, come out to the event, bring your clients, meet clients, network with others, now is the time to link in with others, build your network before you need them.

Always Be Looking For OpportunitiesYou must always have your ear to the rail, listening and meeting folks that could potentially help you. I’ve made friends with some of the top recruiters in the web industry, and I’ve been helping them when the economy was good –think ahead. If you recently were layed off, or are looking to move up, Forrester is hiring a social media analyst (email your resume to jowyang at forrester dot com), and you can peruse the Web Strategy Job Board.


For the girls – why not visit National Association of Female Professionals at:
For more general blogs and articles on business related topics
check out Suzy Says


Sam Wilson of Eco Events gives some hot tips for those of you who will be exhibiting at shows and events during 2009.

Tips about exhibiting 

As you know, exhibitions provide a truly exceptional promotional platform: they’re a unique, 3D experience which, unlike advertising, direct mail, PR or any other type of promotional media, allows your potential customers to feel, smell, taste and try on…The fact that the exhibition experience appeals to all the senses makes it an intensely memorable medium – and offers you the chance to bring your product or service to life in a way that no other medium can do. Below are a few tips that we hope will help you to capitalise on this opportunity:

3.1 Stand design 

The layout and design of your stand should reflect what you want to achieve and differentiate you from every other exhibitor. Colour, light and layout are key in helping your stand tell the story about your product or service. Think carefully about your target audience and how you can clearly show the benefits of what you offer to them (don’t just describe what you do).

Think carefully about how people approach and leave the stand so that your display has maximum impact and access is easy and inviting. It is important to keep product layout clear and simple – visitors need to know at a glance what your stand is about – and they will make a decision about whether to invest time and money at your stand within the first few seconds. Suggested strategies: repetition of the same item can be highly effective and eye-catching; lighting can be used to define specific focal points; simple, clear, professional graphics can highlight your key messages very succinctly. Whatever your objectives for being at the show, your stand should be designed to be inviting, interesting and professional and to reflect the uniqueness of your product/company or service with impact.

Be sustainable: you don’t always need to buy expensive materials or items for your stand – and with the infrequent use of many stand items, to buy new materials is often a costly and inefficient use of time and money. With a little time and careful planning we have often been able to borrow items or be creative with what we already have. Charity shops, car boot sales, local papers and Freecycle are a great place to search for items for your stand. Start early, save money, and support the local community! Where branded materials/graphics are a necessity – make sure you leave out specific show details (e.g. name and dates) so you can re-use them again at the next event.

3.2 Promotional literature 

Events are all about making the intangible tangible – even the smallest tangible item will help to sustain people’s idea of how good your service and product is. Are you planning to give visitors any information about your company or service? If so, will all visitors get the same thing? You may want to consider having different types of information available, so that expensive literature only reaches the hands of the most seriously interested visitor, with the simply curious taking away a business card. Think about using recycled/FSC paper and vegetable based inks, add these symbols onto your literature and develop your brand as considerate and forward-thinking.

Again – make sure that any literature does not contain specific show info so you can use any left-over materials at another time / the following year.

3.3 Activity on the stand 

As your stand should be geared to reflecting your show objectives, make sure you think hard about how it will be used. If you are exhibiting clothes, for example, have you designed in enough private space for visitors to try on samples? If you are presenting a holiday destination, does your stand ‘paint a picture’ of that destination? Graphics, flavours, colours and even refreshments can all be used to make a real impact on all the senses and capture the unique appeal of a destination in a way that a conversation and brochure simply can’t. If you offering a therapy sample, how easy and tempting is it for visitors to walk on to the stand to participate. If you want to collect as many ‘leads’ as possible, have you offered an incentive and how easy is it for visitors to leave their details?  

3.4 People, people, people 

Exhibitions are all about people and the success of your participation is often down to the quality of the contact that you (and others working on your stand) have with the visitor. So do make sure that everyone’s properly briefed and they look friendly and approachable at all times (not forgetting that you’re on view all the time). 

Stating the obvious (but it is surprising how this can be forgotten during a busy exhibition – make sure there are no half-eaten sandwiches and dirty cups in sight and ensure that you have cover for the stand when you need to leave it – even if you are only nipping to the loo!

EcoEvents: Creating positive communications. There will always be 3 things on your guest list – profit, people, planet. We design and build your exhibition stand with these in mind from conception to build to de-rig. Contact: (0845 521 0120)


In the Frame
For any CertainShops newsletter readers who commission me to take their photos, be it corporate or domestic, I can offer them a FREE large size, panoramic canvas print of one of the photographs of their choice.
Contact me, Scott Collier, at:

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Apply online here…..
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© CertainShops Ltd 2006 All Rights Reserved

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The information and opinions in contributions to this newsletter and printed on the CertainShops web site in no way reflects the opinions of CertainShops Ltd.

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Richard Wolfstrome – graphic design

marketing - meet our professionals, meet our professionals No Comments »

Richard Wolfströme MISTD

Contact via CertainShops profile…..

I’m an award-winning information graphic designer with over 21 years experience. My work ranges from identity and brand, design-for-print, web, digital media and video.

What you get is expertise in communicating your information, integrated ‘joined-up-thinking’ solutions and attention to detail.

BA (Hons) Information Design – Ravensbourne College of Design & Comunication (1987)

Member of the International Society of Typographic Designers

Member of The Typographic Circle

Steering committee member for the South Coast Design Forum (Brighton)

How can I help you? These are the services I offer:

Graphic Design for
Corporate Identity
Report & Accounts
Posters, leaflets and marketing collateral

Digital Media Design and production for
Touch-screen Kiosks

Richard Wolfströme MISTD

Contact via CertainShops profile…..

Carol Hughes – business and life coach

meet our professionals, wellbeing& self development - meet our professional No Comments »

I am a Life and Business Coach.  I work with women in business, professional women, people working from home.  Solo start ups & personal coaching.  Everyone has something in their life that they would like to change.  I can provide you with much needed support, motivation & ideas to make it happen.

I am a working mother with two sons, one who has left sixth form college and another at secondary school.

I am a property investor and as a coach I am always interested in personal development, spirituality and connecting with like minded people.

I would like to think of myself as friendly, professional, open-minded, having integrity. Some one who treats their clients as I would like to be treated – with honesty and respect.  I strongly believe that you must have empathy and rapport when coaching.  I am coached myself to continue my own development.

I am trained by the Coaching Academy and have a distinction in their Personal Coaching Diploma.

I have a degree and 30 years experience in the workplace, having worked in retail management at Selfridges, the careers advice service at the University of Sussex, and in a West Sussex project managing volunteers and people with learning disabilities.

I work in the Sussex area.  I can work face to face or over the phone.  Where ever possible I like to meet you in the workplace or at home so I have an understanding of you and your working environment, and your issues and challenges in your life.

Brighton & Hove FSB AGM at the Pavilion

Suzy's Diary No Comments »

A story best told with pictures and music…..  (If you can see the video box on this page, click on the arrow and enjoy!)

Our speaker was the High Sheriff of East Sussex, Hugh T Burnett OBE DI who told us about how has provided practical support for new manufacturing businesses based in Newhaven.

Patrick Trowell was voted in as National Councillor, and Peter Archer retained his role as Regional Chairman. We toasted ‘happy birthday’ to Regional Secretary Vi O’Brien, ate excellent food and got a tour of the Pavilion palace. A good day had by all!