Weeks of planning and preparation went into the event. In particular, my co-host Fiona Humberstone and I spent a lot of time revising the workshop format to make it more interactive and to include group activities. All the time we spent was so worthwhile when we read the fabulous feedback on the delegates’ comments forms, which they filled out at the end of the day. Also, in the days following the workshop, it was lovely to receive such wonderful emails and messages. It’s now a week later and I’m still on a high!
Thank you SO much to everyone for making it such a very special day! Travelling from not only the length and breadth of the UK, but also Europe, it was wonderful to meet you all. And we’re thrilled that by taking time out of your business to work on your business at our workshop, that you now feel in a position to take your social media to the next level. We can’t wait to see how your accounts develop and watch as your businesses grow.
This is the first of three blog posts about the event and I’ll be covering the workshop content. Each time we run a workshop, we tweak the format with new ideas and also take on board feedback from previous workshops. Plus, we make sure that the content reflects any changes to the social media platforms.
So, for this workshop, two weeks before it took place, we emailed a Planning Workbook to our delegates, which Fiona had created, to help them get their focus in order and get the most out of their day with us. And many delegates commented on how useful they found it.
At the actual workshop, after introductions, we started with the Focus session, where we asked the delegates to articulate their floristry style.
Now…previously in this part of the workshop, we asked everyone to create a mood board of images which represented their style. We’ve found though that sometimes some of the delegates have found this task to not be as easy as it first appears.
So, this time, we decided instead to ask everyone to make a small posy, which represented their floristry style. Using gorgeous flowers from Zest Flowers at New Covent Garden Flower Market, they created beautiful floral designs.
Then, by discussing their designs with the florists on their table, we tasked them with choosing a minimum of three words which they would use to describe their floristry style.
The aim was that once they’d pinned down their words, that every time in the future that they use social media, that they check their words and make sure that they’re on track and are portraying a cohesive look. For example, did they want to be known for creating informal, relaxed, just-picked-from-the-garden designs or opulent, spectacular, over-the-top creations?
Fiona and I also went around the room, giving advice and we’re so pleased that this new exercise proved to be very popular…and that so many light bulbs went off!
Here are some of the finished designs and what we loved is how different they all were…
Having articulated their floristry style, it was then time for Maddie Hatton‘s amazingly delicious elevenses. (Look out for Part 3 for photos of the food and styling.)
After the break, we looked at the biggest social media platform, Facebook, with examples of best practice and ideas for posts. We then asked our delegates to draw spider diagrams/mind maps, in their Workshop Workbooks (which we’d revised for the workshop), and to write down ideas of topics that they could post on their Facebook business pages.
Twitter was next up on the agenda and then after lunch, Pinterest.
For this workshop, Instagram was looked at in much more detail, together with photography, editing and styling tips, as we appreciate how this particular social media platform has grown in popularity, in particular with florists, since we ran our first workshop in July 2014.
The last subject we covered was blogging. And throughout the day, after each section, we asked the delegates to note down their own personal action plans, which they could implement as soon as they left. And new to this workshop, we asked them to jot down reminders of what they planned to do in the future on a specially designed postcard, which we’re going to send to them in a few weeks time…as a little reminder.
With their personal action plans written, it was then time for cocktails and as an idea, we suggested that they may like to think big and discuss their 5 Year Plan with the other delegates.
As everyone departed, they took with them their goody bag containing lots of wonderful goodies (which you’ll see in Part 3). Thank you so much to Justine Ellis for screen printing the Flowerona logo on the bags! Don’t they look lovely…
Fiona and I are so pleased with how the workshop went! Here are just some of the delegates’ comments:
- Inspirational. Creative. Thought-provoking. Fun. Hannah Martin, Hannah Martin Flowers
- Fantastic, inspirational, created clarity for me on the way forward. Cathie Traynor, Snapdragon Edinburgh Flowers & Candles
- Wonderful. So much valuable info packed into one day. I arrived not having much idea of how I could best use social media for our new brand and now I do. Justine Speller, Atlas Flowers
Look out for Part 3, where I’ll be sharing more of Katie Spicer’s stunning photographs of the styling and food!
P.S. If you’ve not already seen it, here’s a link to my video about the workshop.
(Images : Katie Spicer | The Floral Alchemist)