Carly is a New Entrepreneur (www.blynkt.com ) taking part in the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme and is in Berlin cooperating with The Reader ( thereaderberlin.com ), a small business based in Germany.
From Carly’s own words:
At the beginning of the year I founded BLYNKT, which is a multi-platform media organisation. The aim of BLYNKT is to tell stories and to start conversations, connecting people across the globe. To achieve this aim, BLYNKT is on various social media platforms, has a weekly podcast and a quarterly academic and literary journal. In the future I also plan to create events and a publishing arm.
As the media and publishing industries are changing very quickly to keep up with advances in technology I applied to the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme to receive some guidance from a successful entrepreneur in the media/literary/events field.
I was very lucky indeed to be paired with Victoria Gosling. Not only is she a successful writer but she also runs a very successful and growing company called The Reader Berlin. The Reader Berlin has several components to it which crossover with the aims of BLYNKT.
The Reader has many components but the three core parts of the company are as follows:Firstly, The Reader is an author services company offering manuscript assessment, mentoring and editing services. Next, is what The Reader Berlin is most popularly known for – providing high quality, affordable writing workshops both in Berlin and internationally (which range from 1 day to 7 weeks in length). Finally, The Reader Berlin runs regular events such as The Sunday Salon in which high profile writers give talks which is accompanied by live music and a writing competition. These events allow the community who engage with the Reader to come together in a less formal setting. The event is usually released as a podcast shortly after the event to engage clients who don’t reside in Berlin.
These activities are all things that I can learn from and utilise them for my own organisation.
The first month was a steep learning curve, but one I very much enjoyed. I started with Victoria on the 2nd May, the spring is a very busy time for her. The spring/summer Berlin-based daytime and evening courses were about to begin, along with two weekend workshops in Belgium and Sweden and one weekend workshop in Berlin. In addition to this the annual short story competition was launched which required promotion. This is all on top of the regular day to day marketing and client relations work that the Reader does so I really hit the ground running!
Despite this being such a busy time, Victoria has been very generous, taking the time to answer my questions and explain how core parts of the business work. The activities I undertook this month gave me a greater insight into identifying other businesses and groups who have the potential to become allies and understanding how these partnerships can be mutually beneficial.
I have also learned a great deal about the importance of PR in a small business. Not only is running a competition useful in terms of potential new clients but it also offers opportunities to make connections with other publications, facebook and meetup groups, websites and radio stations which furthers the brand as well as increasing the potential for new clients.
I have begun to apply this new knowledge to BLYNKT and it has already led to an increase in followers on social media as well as enquiries from potential contributors. I look forward to the next month!