Interview with Alison Bell from Alison Bell PA

Read how Alison Bell from Alison Bell PA undertook a training course in order to offer a new service to her clients.

What’s your career background?

I have had over 25 years of experience as a personal assistant working in a variety of industry sectors including private equity, business coaching and recruitment. In 2011, I set up my own virtual and freelance pa business offering office management and event organisation to a variety of clients both virtually and at their business premises.

Why did you decide to retrain in social media?

I felt it was important to update and add to my marketing skill set. I wanted to be able to correctly manage my own social media channels and perhaps add this as a service offering to my clients.

I wasn’t sure when I started out whether I would want to do this – or whether my clients would want the service, but I needed to know enough about social media to be able to make that decision.

How did you pick the right course?

As you would expect, given my line of work, I researched online. However, Concise Training was recommended to me by several individual people who were not acquainted so I chose Concise Training to do my course. The opportunity to learn from home in my own time was also an important factor in this decision.

What was it like learning a new discipline?

I found the course very interesting and the instructions given meant it was very easy to follow and understand. It was also practical, so I could immediately implement what I was learning. If I needed any help, the support was readily available.

What have you done since you finished the course?

As part of the course, I created my own website which I have continued to maintain. I’ve also written and published regular blog posts and kept up to date with my own business and personal social media.

More business relevant, I am now writing blogs for some of my clients as well as managing their social media. Some clients have also asked me to update their websites. It has been good to be able to add additional services to current clients and this additional service that I am able to offer has increased the number of new clients.

How easy has it been to find work with your new skills?

I learnt all about websites, blogging, social media and more on the course and have been able to add these skills to my business services. It’s true that not all my clients want the social media services, but it is surprising how many like the fact that I can do this for them should they need it. I have certainly paid for the course with increased work and revenue.

Where would you like to be in three years’ time?

I am becoming more confident as time goes on with the social media aspect, and over time, I would like to grow this side as I enjoy doing it and it provides a regular monthly income.

What would you say to someone else thinking of training?

It is worth investing in yourself and your business. Going back to ‘school’ isn’t as daunting as you may think – and if you do a relevant course, it may well pay for itself in increased business services but also gives you the satisfaction of knowing that you are keeping up with the changes in the ways businesses use marketing tools.

What are your top three tips for small businesses?

  1. Create regular blog posts – this helps to drive traffic to your site and helps with Google search.
  2. Keep your website up to date – this makes you look like you are open for business.
  3. Don’t be afraid of social media – it isn’t that difficult, you just need to be sensible.

You can find out more about Alison’s services on her website