This year, we’re running a monthly feature on one wonderful member. They’ll share what they’ve been getting up to, where their passions lie, and why they decided to join Echo in the first place to trade their skills and services for time, not £s and pence.
This month we shine the spotlight on BuzzRamp…
BuzzRamp is an intriguing name! How did you come up with it?
The name originates from PR & marketing. When you’re famous you’re sometimes said to have created a “buzz”, and a common term for increasing something is “ramping up”. I combined the two to create ‘BuzzRamp’, which can be translated as “increasing your buzz”
What does BuzzRamp do?
BuzzRamp is an online platform that allows small businesses and start-ups to do their Marketing & PR in a more efficient way.
It works with your schedule in mind. You tell the system how much time you have to do Marketing and /or PR each week and what you’d like to focus on e.g. social media or blogging.
It then gives you tasks that match your preferences, making the most of your time. It also has tools that make the most important tasks easier. For example, BuzzRamp has a blog writing tool that analyses your blog posts and gives you tips on how to improve them.
In addition to the software, there are hundreds of simple tutorials that we have created in video and written form on how to complete different marketing tasks. There are tutorials on everything from how to improve your Instagram page and gain more followers, to how to pitch a journalist so that you’re more likely to get press coverage, to how to get more public speaking engagements.
If you run out of time, you can outsource tasks at a reasonable rate to highly skilled professionals with a few clicks. These are all experts in their field (be it social media, PR or writing ) that we’ve assessed and approved, so you know you’ll be getting a great service.
Finally, BuzzRamp will tell you how you are progressing through the week and inspire/nudge you to take action. We found that people often start this type of work with good intentions, but fail to stick to it. So this part of the platform makes it far more likely that you’ll keep taking action and ultimately reap the rewards.
Why did you start BuzzRamp?
I worked for the BBC news channel for 4 years. Quite often the guests who would come in to talk about business issues were entrepreneurs who had taken a small bit of initiative in terms of contacting a news outlet when a relevant news story broke and bagged themselves some amazing publicity as a result. One estate agent came in at least once a week to discuss house prices having sent in a single press release five years before. As a result, he had a string of private clients queuing up to work with him.
That convinced me that more entrepreneurs should do the same, and with a bit of help and the odd nudge, they could get similar results.
So I initially was going to create a pure PR product. But having talked to lots of small businesses, it became obvious that there was an appetite for help with social media and other forms of marketing too, alongside PR. So that’s why the platform helps with Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blogging, Public Speaking and YouTube too.
What attracted you to join Echo?
We love the concept. They provide so much value for start-ups, small businesses and anyone looking to learn a new skill. I’ve met some wonderful people through attending or leading Echo sessions.
What kinds of things have you used Echo for?
I’ve led sessions on how to do your own PR for general Echo members and as part of the Echo++ business accelerator. In addition, I’ve given 1-on-1 sessions on marketing advice to people who are just getting started with various projects. These have had the added bonus of gauging the kind of things people are wanting to know about, and the level of information that people expect. So it’s been good market research.
I’ve been getting involved in the Trowbridge Silver Surfers programme which helps over 60s in Hackney Wick to get training and support in learning how to use computers and smartphones for the first time.
This earned me enough Echoes to run a UX test for the first iteration of our platform, which helped us to improve the design.
I also used my Echoes to get 1-on-1 advice on business funding from member Peter Bailey, which helped me to make more informed choices on how to fund the business, and to get some professional headshots done with member Geoff Gibson which is essential for creating a good impression online.
What’s been your favourite Echo experience so far? You can have more than one.
Uli Schulz’s seminars on social media were always brilliant – interactive and gave the opportunity to ask loads of questions.
Her sessions helped me confirm that I was putting best practice into the system.
What advice would you give to someone just joining Echo?
Persevere. like any platform, there are going to be some people who are more active and responsive than others. So if you don’t get a response from someone first time have another go. There are lots of people offering amazing help on the platform, so it’s well worth persevering.
Have you had any lightbulb moments since starting the business?
I’ve had some moments that feel like that, and I get excited about new ideas. But what I’m learning is the reality of entrepreneurship is a cycle of small improvements and testing. James Dyson made over 5,000 prototypes of his vacuum cleaner before he cracked it and it’s that persistence that is the key – rather than one massive light bulb.
What are you offering and/or requesting on the marketplace?
I’m offering an hour of marketing or PR advice and I expect I will be recruiting more Echo members to run a second UX session on BuzzRamp soon.
What’s your favourite East London hidden gem that people might not know about? It can be for work, for pleasure or one for each
Burgess and Hall Wines in Forest Gate is an amazing place if you’re bored of Jacob’s Creek or just curious to know more about wine.
It’s run by two really enthusiastic and friendly wine experts who will happily give you a load of different stuff to taste in return for you buying a glass.
What’s coming up for you / are you focusing your energy on 2018?
We are currently focused on improving the content on our platform and adding a lot more video. We’re also looking forward to collaborating with our early customers on making the platform as good as it can be.
So, if you’re a small business or a startup looking to improve their marketing & PR we’d encourage you to try our no-strings free-trial of BuzzRamp at https://www.buzzramp.com/