GALLERY – Women Empowered, London

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“How one could harness the power of the internet and social media and posed the question that in a world on seven billion people can one person really have their voice heard?

That was the question raised at Women Empowered’s latest event.

Reena Ranger welcomed the guests and explained the rationale of the evening’s event by saying “When we first pictured this event it was through the somewhat naive and narrow lens of how social media has transformed people’s ability to start ventures from home or anywhere and how it can be used to differentiate and market those ventures to a wider audience at a relatively low cost and with relative ease. Enterprises can now tap into markets and geographical locations they may have never heard of and reach more people than they could ever have imagined all with the touch of a button
But recent events in India, Pakistan, Syria and Sudan have really shown us what people power and social media can do. It can bring worldwide attention to causes and events that have been taking place for decades but just have been unspoken  and or unseen by the world because there was no way to get the message out to so many, so quickly. But social media has now changed that – our eyes and ears can now be opened in real-time”

The speakers for the evening were Rupa Ganatra who is the co-founder of Men’s e-commerce site Yes-Sir.com and brandussocial.com, which organises Social Media and Digital conferences for the fashion and beauty industry, Farzana Baduel is the founder and managing director, Curzon PR, a London-based strategic public relations and digital communications agency and Sunny Hundal, author, journalist, blogger and academic. He is best known as the former editor for the UK’s most popular centre-left blog ‘Liberal Conspiracy’.

Rupa Ganatra talked about the use of social media in the recent electoral campaign of Narendra Modi in India and how he was engaging and having a conversation with millions of people every day through its use. She emphasised how one must engage with their clients and customers; always using relevant interesting content and ensuring 80% of your post was content and 20% a sales pitch. From banker to internet entrepreneur she spoke about how she ensured that content was fun, applicable and interesting  on her sites and that people should take advantage of analytical tools available to them and how many are inbuilt into many sites free for consumption.

Farzana Baduel provided a full and insightful talk into social media and the benefits to the business. She said that often for certain businesses social media may not generate leads or revenue, but it is a medium for communication with your clients. There are other avenues to generate credible sales leads such as Search Engine optimisation and one should not be put off or afraid of utilising them. She went on to say that in her opinion twitter is like having a baby. You cannot have it and leave it, it is a long term relationship with a huge learning curve.  She herself had gone full circle from disliking and not understanding the platform to loving it! Farzana specialises in social media for her company as well as for her clients in an interesting, applicable and with a tailored view and each campaign must be seen with fresh eyes and looked at in an imaginative way to maximise effect.    

Sunny Hundal talked about social media and his journey. How told the audience how he started as a blogger after feeing constrained by mainstream media. He shared tips on blogging learnt from his own experiences and mentioned that blogs should be short and interesting. He also spoke about ensuring content on social media should be applicable and relevant and went on to advise on what should be avoided when posting on sites. He went on to speak about how the internet and social media can be extremely useful in making a name for yourself or promoting your cause.

Special thanks was given to Sriram Sivasankaran for the pictures taken at the event and stall holders Raishma Islam of Raishma Ready to Wear, Preema Verma of Reesa Rocks, Parita of Uniflora and Sukhi Bhogal a Nikken Wellness Consultant.

Mona Remtulla, co-founder of Women Empowered, closed the evenings proceedings by adding, “We hope that today will inspire you to harness your own inner media centre and through the journeys, advice and wisdom of Rupa, Farzana and Sunny, navigate your own way through the world wide web to make your own mark and have a voice that can be heard whether it is for a cause or your business” she went on to add that Women Empowered itself had seen the power of social media in highlighting causes and how one person really can have a voice that can be heard.  She referred to a campaign to engage more ethnic minority donors started online which had captured the imagination of the Women Empowered team to take action and organise a drive to register more donors from their guests  at their last event.

At each event Women Empowered tie up with an enabling partner to facilitate the change from an idea to bringing it to fruition and at this event again saw them partnering with EquityStake. Equity Stake is an investment company for the entrepreneur in the making. It has one simple aim – to help those with a great business idea but maybe no real entrepreneurial experience or background to grow a business.  Hardeep Rai from EquityStake was keen to build on significant success from the last event.

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