It was shortly after the National Franchise Exhibition when organisers sent a circa e-mail to ask for helpers on the Lloyds TSB Sponsored Franchise Stand at the Business Start-Ups Show at Earl’s Court. Feet still throbbing and blistered from the NFE I volunteered to represent Agency Express.
Agency Express is one of the speakers that form the team behind the Lloyds TSB Sponsored Franchise Seminars. These are free educational seminars that are held around the country giving educational advice and knowledge to those who are interested in the prospect of franchising or those that just want to know about what franchising entails and how the concept works as a business model.
The alarm went off at 4am on Thursday 17th November to a wet, dark and miserable start to the day. Hauling myself out of bed and onto the 6am train from Norwich to London Liverpool Street alongside the Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex commuting community I arrived in London at about 8am. I managed to get across London without complication and turned up outside the Earl’s Court Building.
It was my first ever time at Earl’s Court in any sort of role and to be honest first impressions in the above photo (pic 1) was a grey wet day and a grey industrial building. What I had not anticipated was what was waiting inside, it could not have been further away from my first impression and the greyness of outside. Inside the hall as we entered to set up the stand was bright, colourful and productive. (pic 2)
Organisers The Prsym Group had released pre-booked visitor figures to be in the regions of 29,000 and it was highly apparent that these figures were correct. It was absolutely packed from the moment the doors opened at 10am.
We were kept thoroughly busy on our stand answering queries about the franchising model and booking people into the seminars. I was astounded by how many came to see us directly and the amount of interest surrounding franchising. At the end of the first day we had secured nearly 100 lead enquiries.
Throughout the day organisers had ensured that there was something to suit everyone, seminars were run through the course of the day held by Nick Strong, James Caan, Channel 4’s Secret Millionaire Caroline Marsh and even Google+ to name just a few. Workshops were also on offer throughout the course of the exhibition including the franchise workshop which was on the stand opposite us.
The hall was filled with exciting stands all offering an abundance of advice, information and often free sweets and even candy floss! There were fantastic facilities café’s and a bar, cloakrooms for outdoor wear and cases absolutely every angle was brilliantly covered.
I cannot put into a stereotypical box the people that came to see us, there was such an enormous range of interests, personal, business and otherwise and the age range was vast. There were a lot of young people seeking to invest in business or to start-up their own this was invigorating, inspiring and a privilege to be part of their journey ahead.
Two army officers came to visit us at the stand with their own business venture they are starting once they leave their current positions within the MOD.
The day was full of lovely moments and I met the most amazing people exhibitors and visitors alike.
I would highly recommend the exhibition experience for any small business or person wanting to invest in a new start-up venture.
- and much, much more.
If you’d like to share your exhibition/seminar experiences simply email Samii.
And many thanks to Emma George at Agency Express for writing this piece for us at LandlordReferencing.co.uk .