Business Awards bring success so just do it
This article is by our Priority Partner, Janet of Janet Torley Practical Marketing.
Business Awards are without a doubt a great way to increase your business profile. First of all an insider tip having been on a judging panel a few times: very often Business Awards struggle to get entries because everyone thinks it is too hard or everyone else will be entering and they haven’t a chance. Trust me, just do it! Even getting as far as a finalist is great PR material and always worth shouting about on your website and social media platforms.
But here are some useful tips to help with your entry.
Read the judging criteria
Yes. It’s that obvious. As a judge, you have to judge against the judging criteria, and not much else. The entry may be fantastic, and have cost you thousands in preparation and presentation; but if you haven’t answered the questions that the judges need to be answered, the entry isn’t worth the email it was sent on.
Make it easy for the judges
Set out your key points as bullet points, or clearly defined paragraphs. Include statistics. Try to avoid marketing fluff, and unsubstantiated claims.
Don’t be afraid to sell yourself
Put in anything that is both impressive and relevant to the criteria. It is really important the judges find out just how good you are. They are looking for excellent, not quite good. Demonstrate just what an expert you are and how highly your business is thought of.
While each awards programme has a number of entries, normally the judges at the final stages only review a relatively low number of entries, and often they are previous entries. Putting in a glowing entry in year one, and then an entry that says about how bad you were and how much you’ve improved in year two won’t win you any favours. Again, this is from personal judging experience…
If you can’t do it, seek professional help
Sometimes you need someone else to critically review and improve your entry. It’s not “unethical”, it’s not cheating… very simply, marketing experts are probably far better at marketing your business than you are. If you aren’t blessed with the right skills to create entries, consider using your marketing consultants or specialist copywriters. Judges can tell when entries have been professionally prepared, but it is usually very hard to vote against them when they answer the criteria clearly, succinctly and with statistics for reinforcement.
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Choosing the right vehicle(s) and the right finance options for your business is an important decision and a costly one if got wrong.
What can you and should you be claiming for business expenses
Just what can you and should you be claiming for business expenses. This is one of the most frequent questions that an accountant is asked.
How to access £9 billion public sector spending with SDP
The Supplier Development Programme supports businesses competing for the £9 billion annual spend of the Scottish public sector.
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Find out if your suppliers are still performing as well as you want them to
We found this good article courtesy of bluqube who offer accountancy software and thought you might find it interesting.
5 ways businesses will benefit from a Brexit VAT health check
When the UK leaves the EU, the cross-border VAT environment for businesses will change.
Performing a VAT health check now will highlight practical measures that businesses can take to ease the transition and minimise risk
Business Loans Scotland provides gap funding to businesses that are looking to grow but need external finance to make it happen.
Does your business need funding to grow? Are you struggling to secure finance from the traditional lenders? Business Loans Scotland may be able to help.
Facebook makes it easy to compete in the marketing stakes
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When Referrals go wrong
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Auto enrolment does not cover the self employed or sole trader.
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Information from HMRC on Making Tax Digital for business
Businesses should not have to wait until the end of the tax year or even longer before knowing how much tax they should pay.
From April 2018, businesses, including everyone who is self-employed and those letting out property, will update HMRC at least quarterly
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For companies who have employees that travel to any of those countries, there is a percentage of tax in many expense types that can be reclaimed when business travellers return to their home country.
VAT Explained Part 2 - Fuel and Mileage
There are four ways to reclaim VAT paid on fuel for business trips:
VAT Explained Part 1 - Taxes made clear
VAT was introduced to the UK over 40 years ago on the 1st of April 1973. It was supposed to be straightforward and simple. Yet many years later, some of the rules can still leave you scratching your head – and they’re changing all the time
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When a business starts up often the last thing on the entrepreneurs mind is Intellectual Property.
Keeping your finger on the Digital Pulse might save your business '000's
With Cyber Crime costing SME's over £18 billion, it pays to keep up to date
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Regain control of business costs
Shrewd owners minimise their spending when starting their business. It makes it easier to turn a profit and limits losses should the business fail. In the early days, they continue to control costs in all areas. But, gradually, things can change ....
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When is a hobby actually a business? What you think and what the taxman thinks might be quite different. Read on...
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Keeping an eye on employee expenses can vastly improve the company bottom line
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RTI and Micro Businesses. You can now be fined for late submissions
HMRC has updated its guidance on what happens when employers fail to report their business’s payroll information on time. Here’s what you need to know:
Seven ways the cloud can help you manage your business
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Owing Property personally or through a limited company: what is best?
The majority of investors have tended to own their property portfolio in personal names because it’s beneficial for them to do so when it comes to selling the property.
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What to do if your biggest customer goes bust
What to do if your biggest customer goes bust - For a small company, landing a big-name customer is cause for celebration – but no firm is too big to fail. Here are ten essential steps to help you survive if your main client shuts down.
CIS returns must be submitted online from April 2016, sub- contractor verifications to be done online from April 2017 and there are also changes to those who can be paid gross
2016 Employment Law Updates
A useful snapshot of the latest employment updates. The changes to National Living Wage are undoubtedly having an impact on many small businesses.
No Dodges for Contractors
There aren’t any ‘dodges’ for Contractors with the new Finance Bill legislation.
Setting up your contractor company - Limited, Umbrella or PAYE?
This is the first in our series of articles to help Contractors get started and run an efficient company.
Setting up your contractor company - Limited, Umbrella or PAYE?
Setting up your Company
Travel and Subsistence Legislation Update
The long awaited travel and subsistence legislation has finally been published in full in the Finance Bill 2016.
Bereavement Pay and Leave
It’s always a difficult time when someone passes away and as a good employer, you want to do the ‘right thing’. But there is still the smooth running of your business to consider, especially for smaller companies.
Illegal Workers could cost you £20K each
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(We loved these - especially going to Italy for 5 years!)
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Annual investment allowance (AIA) is a relief that can be claimed on the cost of plant and machinery. Up to 100% of the costs can be claimed to help reduce the potential tax liability for that business
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Tips, Gratuities and Tax
Here’s a very interesting point about tips and how to handle them. The way the tips are treated will depend on who receives them and who distributes them.
Christmas Gifts and Staff
If you decide to give your employees a cash bonus, this will be treated as taxable income and subject to tax and national insurance the same as other earnings.
Tax: a Sign of Success?
Remember you can only build wealth from ‘after tax’ income. A big payment to HMRC is not failure to hide the money; it’s a clear indicator of success....
The Scottish rate of Income Tax will come into effect from 6 April 2016.
On 2 December 2015, HMRC will start to contact customers living in Scotland where records show that this is their main address, to inform them they have been identified as being a Scottish taxpayer.
What you need to know.........
A Guide to Cloud Accounting
Cloud Accounting is clearly the way to go now for small businesses with the growth of good connectivity. Indeed, we would recommend new start businesses look at Cloud Accounting right from the start.
Book-keeping basics..... NOT top secret
Few people start a business so they can do paperwork. Spending time adding up receipts or pushing invoices around a desk is nobody’s idea of fun – unless you’re a book-keeper or accountant.
Auto Enrolment at a glance
If you simply need to familiarise yourself with automatic enrolment here is a brief outline
What is automatic enrolment?
In an effort to encourage more people to save for their retirement, the Government has introduced new rules which require employers, and most employees, to save into a pension scheme.
How to improve your company credit rating
If you are applying for funding from any sources – see our article on Funding Sources – it's vitally important that your credit rating is as good as possible and here are our tips to help.
Sources of Funding
In a recent article we talked about improving cashflow and feedback has been positive. But what if you need a cash injection into your business – for a variety of reasons? Gone are the days when it was a straightforward trip to the Bank Manager. Indeed SMEs are still finding it difficult to get the necessary finance to grow or support their businesses.
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What do you think is the important component of a client relationship? Is it:
- Regular communication?
- Sharing the same values?
- Having a strong personal connection?
We think these are all very important but we believe that the top component is TRUST.....
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All Priory Clients are entered into our brand new annual Prize Draw. A welcome gift for you just at the time of year when you might need it most.
Buy to Let - Profit or Loss?
George Osborne wiped nearly 11pc off the gross returns from buy-to-let properties, leaving many landlords facing the prospect of an annual loss, when he slashed higher-rate relief on mortgages in the Budget.
Crackdown on Contract Workers
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Top Tips for Business Owners on holiday
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Top 20 New Start Tips
Click here to get our Top Twenty Tips for New Start Businesses today
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Are you a Landlord?
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HMRC taking it anyway
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Top Tips for Business Travellers
At Priory Accounting, we look after the accounting needs for many Consultants – indeed it is one of our areas of specialist expertise.
Priory Accounting is growing
We're now in Fife and Edinburgh and welcome our newest associate, George Lewis.
George is based at our new branch office in West Granton, Edinburgh and brings over 26 years of experience as an Accountant. 2015 certainly looks to be an exciting year for Priory Accounting but you can be sure that the one thing we won’t be losing sight of is the fact that almost 100% of our clients are still delighted with our services.
Renovating for Profit
Relief from capital gains tax on selling of the main residence has attracted a lot of HMRC attention in recent years
Late Payment Penalties
As the Self Assessment deadline has now passed; HMRC will begin to start issuing penalty notices to those clients who did not meet the legal requirement to file their returns on time
“I don’t want distracted from my work and knowing Roddy and team are there covering my back allows me to get on with the work”
Some of our favourite clients work in the Creative Industries sector. Their feedback shows that what they value most is reliability when it comes to professional services.
Keep the Receipts
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Don't be Last Minute.Com
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If you are going to be due a payment to HMRC it makes sense to prepare your returns in good time so you can budget and manage your cash flow.
Top Tips when claiming VAT back
If you find all the different VAT rates to consider a maze Roddy is here to guide you through.
Much has already been done to improve the administration of IR35 and there is more to do on many of the areas identified for improvement.
Minimum Wage Shame
HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has recently named 70 offenders who have failed to pay the National Minimum Wage (NMW).
Deregistering for VAT
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Company Car changes
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