Building a Brand for Your Business

When you’re building a business you can’t just think about the nuts and bolts of what you’re doing: the logistics of delivering the goods or services that are you specialism are important of course, they’re absolutely vital. But people need to discover your business, and they need some way to make a choice about whether it’s the best one for them. People make their choices based on their emotional reactions just as much as the bare facts: your customers perception of the value of your product is just as important as the factual price point.

What you need to do is learn how to create a brand that the customers you’re targeting will be drawn to: one that’s attractive to their sensibilities, that will call out to them from even a cursory contact like seeing a single poster or catching the end of a broadcast ad.

But what is a brand? Counter-intuitively, there’s more to it than simply branding. Branding is design, it’s how you put a stamp on things that say ‘this is mine’ and it’s a big part of your overall brand. Your brand though is a bigger construct: it’s made up out of every way your customers can interact with your business. That includes explicit advertising, of course, but also the design of your products, the furnishings in your branches or offices (if you operate a bricks and mortar business) and the design of your website.

You need a lot of skills and data to build a brand that will see your business safely thriving in the long term. It makes sense to work with market research agencies and marketing companies to gather your data and turn that into the actions that build a brand: from placing carefully created adverts with precisely the hosts that your customers will browse and be attracted to, to schooling your customer service staff in the image they need to project. Are you a generous company when things go wrong? Are you austerely professional? Are you the sort of company people read about in Mail on Sunday colour supplements or do you appear in their Facebook feed?

All these choices build your brand, with even the smallest decision factoring into what customers feel about you. Ideally you want the maximum number of people to think yours is the business for them, but what helps you build a brand people can understand is specificity. Choose an identity for your company and work out simple things you can do to project that image as widely as possible.

Exploring Scandinavia

When thinking about visiting Scandinavia, there is always that idea of pure and clean air, mountains, rivers and forests. There is naturally all of this in Scandinavia, as well as some other incredible places visit in between too, like cities, amazing nature and a culture that complements it all so well. I love going on tours to Norway, Sweden and Denmark and wanted to write this article to talk a little bit more about what you can do by exploring this great region of the world
Explore the nature of Norway
A tour to Norway is one of my favourite things to do, especially because there is just so much to do. The nature of Norway is one of the things that stuns me and it really has to be seen to be believed. If you have ever just driven in Norway, you will understand exactly what I mean. You experience mountains, fjords, rivers, lakes, the sea and beautiful green forests. The air is clear and the people blue-eyed and blonde, as is quite common in Scandinavia.
There are some incredible destinations in Norway and one of my personal favourites has to be Preikestolen. This huge rock rises to over 600 metres above sea level and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape. Here you can see mountains, fjords and the rocky landscape below. It is incredible to sit on the edge of the rock itself, which is a sheer cliff face. Drop a stone and it seems like it takes an eternity for it to reach the bottom. It truly is an exhilarating experience to stand right on the edge, but it is probably a better idea to lie on your stomach to be safe.
There are quite literally hundreds of other locations that you can visit that are just like this. Another extremely exciting destination is Trolltunga, which literally means troll’s tongue. It is a rock that extends past a high cliff face that you need to hike for 10 hours to get to. It is quite possibly the best view that you are likely to see. Other great places can be found anywhere and sometimes in the places you would least expect, so don’t be afraid to get off the beaten track to find something new and exciting.
Explore the cities of Sweden
Sweden is another great place in Scandinavia to visit and I find the cities absolutely incredible there. In particular, I love Stockholm and Gothenburg, which have a great mix of culture and a beautiful setting that is absolutely unique. Stockholm has to be one of my favourite cities on earth, especially with its many bridges and islands, as well as incredibly old and beautiful buildings. You absolutely need to enjoy a boat ride through all the islands of the city, which is very interesting and full of history. The old city or “Gamla Stan” as it is known, is also an extremely pretty place with very old buildings and cobbled streets. Here you can easily access the main attractions of the city, like the Vasa Museum, Skansen or the Stockholm Palace, where you should definitely watch the changing of the guard. This is an unusual and interesting experience that I would recommend to anyone.
It also has a very healthy dose of nature too, which I love. There really is nothing quite like heading out and exploring the thousands of small islands that lie on the Stockholm archipelago. This is an amazing place to visit in the summertime as many of the people from the city rent or visit their summer houses here.
Visit Copenhagen
Copenhagen is one of the most pretty and liveable cities on the entire planet and it is an absolute pleasure to visit. It is absolutely beautiful with colourful houses, green parks and canals. The Danes also have a great cafe and food culture, with many great restaurants, bars and cafes. Hiring a bike is a must and in my opinion, it is the best city going for bike riding. Bikes are a way of life in Denmark and there are not so many cars in the city centre itself. The bike paths are well planned and everywhere, and the city is small enough that you can reach anywhere on your bike within a few minutes. It is also great to ride along the canals and enjoy the views.
If you are looking for something a bit different, you can visit Freetown Christiania, which is a hippy commune which has claimed itself to be autonomous. Here you can see interesting colourful buildings and live like a hippy for the day.
There is only one negative that I can see about Copenhagen and that is the fact that it rains quite a lot, but don’t worry, the upside is that it is one of the most stylish cities in the world and you are sure to find an incredibly stylish raincoat there that you won’t find anywhere else.

Exciting things to try in 2018

New Year’s resolutions are not easy to stick to for an entire year. The problem lies with the fact that people typically have more than one resolution. And a resolution often comes with a commitment to try and reinvent or overhaul themselves into being a brand new person. This makes the goals difficult to achieve because no matter how great our intentions, the amount of focus and determination we can put on our attributes dwindles as times goes on.

 

That’s why I like to do simple resolutions that are fun, attainable and push my limits of comfort. Each and every year I make a small list of things I could do that would scare me but also thrill me and allow me to see the world in a different perspective.  They are just small things that I can tick off my life list of “I’ve done that”. So I thought I’d share my list with you this year.

Go to an amusement park.

 

I’ve long been scared of amusement park rides and roller coasters. But millions of people head to theme parks like Walt Disney World every month, and they love it! So this is the year to stop being afraid of what so many individuals and families love to do all over the country. There are a lot of parks spread across the world but I have my eye on Universal Orlando Resort.

 

Perform Stand-Up

 

Did you know more people are scared of speaking in front of a crowd then they are of dying? I am part of this category and want to change it. Public speaking is a great skill to have at home, in the workplace and to grow as an individual and leader. Standing up in front of a crowd in a setting that’s meant to be humorous is a great setting for a first timer. The jokes can be rehearsed and the delivery is staged. It’s probably the easiest way to talk in front of a group.

 

Join a class

Learning a new skill, sport or language is great, it’s even better with a group. Taking a new class is something I do every year. The team setting creates the feeling of accountability to keep attending and learning. There is also great social benefits to joining, as some of my closest friends have come from a knitting class I took years ago. It’s the perfect way to grow and expand a social circle.

 

Baltic Cruises Are Top Of The List In 2018

Going on a cruise has always been a favourite way for me to take a break and relax. Usually I enjoy travelling around the world with a backpack over my shoulder, staying in remote places and traveling quite uncomfortably. All of those things make cruises even more special and luxurious.

I recently went on a Baltic cruise holiday for the first time, it certainly will not be my last!The Baltic region is fast becoming a hot spot for cruising, that’s due to its superb culture, stunning architecture and rich history. I enjoyed every minute of my time at this fantastic destination. There’s so much to love about a Baltic cruise it’s difficult to fit into just one article, but here’s what I loved most and why I think you should all try it in 2018.

Top Class Food

Very quietly ‘New Nordic Cuisine’ has been having a big impact on the culinary scene, it has put Scandinavia well and truly on the map as a great destination for food lovers. One of the of the main restaurants responsible for this is Noma. If you stop off in Copenhagen then head straight for this Michelin starred restaurant. It can be tricky to get a table so plan ahead.

Full-On Itineraries

The greatest advantage for going on a Baltic cruise is the fact you get to visit so many cities in such short time. Many of the ports are quite close to one another making it easy to pack in as much as possible on your cruise. You can expect to visit at least four or five cities on your cruise, most include Copenhagen and Helsinki, plus lots more.

Hop Aboard In The UK

For me this is a huge plus because I come back to the UK each year for a couple of months. This means I can visit my family and once I am finished hop onboard a cruise ship bound for the Baltic region. I usually pick a boat up from Dover, but there are options of Portsmouth and Southampton too. If you feel like making the cruise even more memorable then you have the chance to catch the boat from Tower Bridge in London – remember that these are super popular, so make sure you book way in advance so you’re not disappointed.

Time to relax in a spa hotel

When you think of rest and relaxation the first thing that springs to mind is to take a break from the daily grind and stay in a nice spa hotel. The amount of choice available out there is incredible so once you have chosen your destination, maybe one in your own country or an exotic break to one of the wonderful beaches of tropical Thailand, you are then going to have to decide what you want from your well-deserved break. Different spa’s offer different treatments, but if it’s unusual you want, here are a number of suggestions.

First one to make the list is cupping. This is a practice used extensively throughout East and Southeast Asia. Hot cups, sometimes made from bamboo, are placed on and around the torso and left in place for around twenty to thirty minutes. Although a little painful at first the treatment is said to improve blood circulation and aches and pains. The only downside is that it leaves what look like circular bruise on the body which may take as long as three weeks to disappear.

Another unusual therapy is the Moroccan practice of Hammam. Not exclusive to Morocco as it can also be found in Turkey as a Turkish bath, the treatment begins with a twenty minute naked steam bath. Following this you are then led away by, to coin the term loosely, a masseur proceeds to scrub you senseless removing numerous layers of dead skin. You are then quite roughly slapped around and bent into various positions only contortionists usually get into. To top it all off you then have freezing water poured all over you. Not for the faint hearted but good fun.

For those who like getting down and dirty, then a mud bath might be up your street. Basically you enter the bath of warm gooey mud and begin to cover every possible part of the body including the hair. by letting the warm mud dry on your body you are said to be absorbing the nutrient and mineral rich benefits of the mud into your body. Once it’s been on for about thirty minutes a nice warm shower is taken to wash the bad stuff away. You may think that your body is pretty clean afterwards but you can guarantee you will still be finding bit of the mix for at least a month later.

Cornish Treats Waiting To Be Discovered In England

There is no better place to spend the summer in the beautiful county of Cornwall in England. With over 1000 kilometers of coastline and a history engrossed in mysticism and magic, there is no better place to take a family holiday. Whether you are camping, glamping or living it up in a fancy hotel, there is plenty to see and do for every generation. The climate is just right and the surrounding water is always a nice temperature that is fuelled by the warm currents being brought up from the Caribbean Sea. You can even find palm trees! Here are some of the must see sights in this wonderful county.

So, where does the magic and mysticism play a part? Tintagel, close to Padstow, is said to be the home of the legendary King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. Legend has it that Tintagel Castle was Camelot and can be found built on a rocky outcrop completely surrounded by the sea. Also to be found nearby is Merlins cave, the famous mystic who helped and guided Arthur through much of his life. Most people see the King Arthur story as fiction, but don’t say that to the locals.

Dubbed the eighth wonder of the modern world, another must see attraction in Cornwall is the amazing Eden Project. Hewn out of a huge chalk pit over 30 years ago, the site now boasts five biospheres that each portray different climates, flora and insect fauna from across the globe. Whether you want dry and arid or experience how it would feel to trek through a rain forest, Eden will certainly deliver and leave you amazed.

Also, you cannot go to Cornwall without visiting one of the many little typical Cornish fishing villages dotted all around the county. Best of all is a sumptuous Cornish cream tea. Usually taken in the afternoon, this delight is made up of a delicately light scone with delicious clotted cream and a large helping of good old English strawberry jam, all washed down with a good old cup of char. Sit and watch the world go by and watch the fisherman bring in their catch of the day. It really doesn’t get better than that.

These are just a few things to take into consideration when planning your holiday in Cornwall but there is so much more to see and do.

 

Five Sporting Events You Shouldn’t Miss

Written by Harold Finch of Generate Sponsorship

The thrill of the crowd rising to its feet…. the rush of adrenaline that makes you feel so alive…the sweeping cheer that takes over your entire body as you see your team score in the final second of the game… if you’re a sports fan, you know exactly what it feels like to take part in the excitement of a fantastic sporting event. That’s why we’ve put together of five sporting events you absolutely shouldn’t miss in your lifetime!

The Olympic Games

Do we really have to say it? The Olympics are one of the most famous sporting events in the world, and definitely one that needs to top your bucket list to see in your lifetime. Where else do you get to see the best athletes from each nation come together and compete for the gold medal, bringing patriotic pride and incredible talents in their various sports.

FIFA World Cup

The global soccer competition is truly one of the most incredible sporting events that you’re going to see in your lifetime. Other than the Olympics, this is the one that really captures the attention of the whole world! And because it’s focused solely on soccer, you get the true hardcore fans and enthusiasts which makes experience that much more intense!

Wimbledon

This Grand Slam of tennis is actually the oldest tennis tournament in the whole world, and thus the most prestigious! Here you’ll see the tennis champions come together to play on the grass courts at the All England Tennis club, so make sure to dress in your finest for this prestigious event.

Super Bowl

If you get the chance to attend the Super Bowl, consider yourself lucky to score tickets to this coveted American football event. It’s the annual championship of the NFL, or National Football League in America. It’s the greatest sports event and TV event in the USA and draws over 100 million viewers.

Tour de France

While you can’t exactly sit down and watch the Tour de France the same way you would watch a football or tennis match, it still tops the list of sports events to experience in your lifetime! You’ll get to enjoy the beautiful country of France while taking in the incredible athleticism of these cyclists and the exciting atmosphere around the race.

 

Finding Your Motivation, Sports Personalities Who Inspire

Fitness is a key part of our lives; by looking after ourselves both mentally and physically we can have longer, more healthier lives. Although we all know this, finding motivation to keep on top of our fitness and well being can be surprisingly tough, even if you’re a fitness fanatic. This is where sports personalities, big names within the sporting world, come into play – by following the news of someone you admire, you can inspire yourself on a daily basis to take the necessary steps to improve your fitness.

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 7.39.02 PM

One sports personality that is truly an inspiration if ever one is needed is Katina Hosszu, a 25 year old Hungarian swimmer who has set an impressive four world records, a feat that isn’t easily accomplished. What makes Hosszu’s story so remarkable is that she had to overcome a lot of mental anguish to succeed. After the disappointment of not winning a gold at the 2012 London Olympics, the swimmer fell into a state of depression, which nearly ended her career as a competitive swimmer.

 

Through sheer determination and a lot of training, she managed to refine her talent even further to then smash many records. In an interview with the swimmer and her coach, the swimmer revealed that there’s a lot more to maintaining your fitness than simply eating right and working out – it takes dedication and setting goals. From preferred music choices to how she structures her training, the insight Hosszu gives anyone following her progress is immense, and can definitely stir an individual to act.

 

Although inspiration is needed to stay on track, it can sometimes be difficult to do that when away from home, with our living spaces often being our motivational hubs. This is where portable technology actually helps fuel a healthier lifestyle; by connecting to your tablet on the move, you can receive the latest news, tips, and even odds on what Hosszu and other influential personalities are doing. In turn, this then motivates us to push that extra mile. One such means of following the sporting world is via betting sites, like those from Betway Sports, a leader within the industry. Some may question why a betting site, and if so whether there is a betting site that loads well on iPads?

 

As unusual as it may sound, a betting website is a great means to gain sports news because, not only do they offer customers odds, but they also need to keep abreast of sporting changes in order to deliver a good service. And even if such a destination only provided betting odds, those tips could in turn spur you on if they were favourable, for they show the amount of work that has gone into achieving such praise. Furthermore, well known companies tend to develop compatible versions of their websites in order to deliver seamless coverage, which makes keeping up to date wherever you are convenient and easy. Once again highlighting how simple it is to gain fitness inspiration from sometimes unlikely sources.

 

Teeth Whitening in Chicago

Stained and colored teeth are very unattractive and no one wants to be in that position. Dentists have come up with ways of reversing this situation and in fact whitening the teeth. A few years ago this technology hadn’t set in and people with stained teeth had to live with the condition. Thanks to the modern technology which has led to medical advancement which has led to this solution. Today, you can choose from so many different teeth whitening products that are available on the market. Chicago Teeth Whitening experts has made this easy for you. They offer experts advice on both professional as well as home solutions. The number one sure solution is to visit your dentist.

However, many people fear visiting the dentist because of the trauma that develops since childhood. Moreover, quite a significant number of people cannot afford the costs of visiting a dentist. Chicago experts go a step further to offer alternative advice on how people can whiten their teeth. There are some teeth whitening products out there in the market which if used correctly, regularly and consistently can yield great results. The cost of these products is very cheap compared to professional whitening. Most of these products costs less than $30 which most people can afford.

It is however not advisable to use home techniques as there can be some side effects. These chemicals used can react differently to different people and the process might not work very well. A dentist or another health professional will be in apposition to examine you and offer you the best solution which will fit you perfectly. There are some factors such as gun line, cheeks and tongue at play when using home whitening products. Your health is not worth the risk and definitely worth the extra buck.

Chicago Teeth Whitening experts ensure that they offer the best services possible and at the most affordable costs. After whitening your teeth, they also offer corrective treatment which ensures that damages to the teeth exterior and cracks are repaired restoring the teeth to their natural condition. The process ensures that you get your smile back and restore your self-confidence as well.

Essential Travel Tips for Dubai

Dubai is absolutely amazing and possibly my favourite city in the world. After being there on more than one occasion, I’ve found out some great tips that will help you spend quality time in the dazzling city.

 

My first piece of advice is to Fly Emirates  since it is the best airline in the world. The service is second to none and I don’t think I’ve ever faced a single delay. Dubai is all about living in luxury and experiencing the perfect holiday, so you need to make sure your holiday gets off to the best start possible.

 

Dubai is situated on the edge of a desert so it can sometimes be tempting just to stay inside your resort and live it up there for your holiday. But we all know your holiday will be a million times better if you decide to venture out of the hotel and leave the poolside for a day or two.

 

Here are some of my top tips for anyone out there planning on visiting Dubai:

 

  • The best time of the year to visit is between the months of November and April. The reason for this is because the weather is much more pleasant at this time, below 30 degree Celsius. With this great weather, Dubai is livelier than during the scorching summers. During summers, temperatures can rise all the way up to nearly 50 degrees.
  • Ramadan is a great time to visit Dubai because it is just so fascinating and you really get to embrace the culture of Islam. I love experiencing Ramadan. Of course, if you want to indulge yourself in the nightlife and bars then it is definitely not the time for you to visit because certain laws are imposed during Ramadan.
  • If you’re interested in sports and activities, then Dubai has a lot for you to enjoy. The highlight of the sports and activities calendar has to be the Dubai Rugby Sevens when the best teams in the world gather to compete. It also means that the city is full of rugby fans.

 

If you’ve been lucky enough to visit Dubai then it would be a great idea if you share your tips and tricks with the rest of us.