I wrote a post on the 5th of August about Sharon Wright after she appeared on Dragons’ Den (you can see the videos on the post: Sharon Wright from Magnamole on Dragons Den – Ideal Entrepreneur) and had all the dragons falling over each other to invest in her company and was delighted to have Sharon contact me via Twitter and thank me for the kind words and support, which quite honestly, where thoroughly deserved.
We had a chat and again I was delighted that Sharon agreed to do an interview with me about her experiences in business, on the Dragons’ Den and with Social Media.
She will be keeping an eye on this post so if you wish to comment I’m sure Sharon will appreciate it and we can see if we can pull her away from Duncan Bannatyne and James Caan long enough to respond (at least we will try, they can be pretty tough when they want to be!).
Interview with Sharon Wright from MagnMole
Sharon Wright on Business and the Dragons’ Den
1. With your obvious success on Dragons’ Den how have things changed over the last few weeks?
The changes have been dramatic, even extreme! I have been getting 1000’s of emails from all over the world wishing me luck, offering advice, asking for more information about Magnamole and even asking for advice I’m really quite stunned at the response.
From the show I have got direct enquiries as well so its opened new doors and opportunities already, even ADT and Sky have been in touch because their engineers wanted Magnamole and they where previously a very difficult avenue to approach, I just need to stay on top of it all as its a little overwhelming, but in a good way!
On top of all this we have consequently moved to new offices and hired new staff, which is great especially considering the economy at the moment, to cope with the demand and enquiries. In fact I’m heading to America and Canada in the next week for some interesting meetings and appointments there so its all go.
2. When you decided to go with Magnamole you mentioned on the show that you went straight to BT to present your product. Most people will not have aimed so high so early. What convinced you to do it and how did you create the opportunity?
I always aim high. My philosophy is to aim for the top because aiming low is and always will be an uphill struggle that can wear you down in the long term. Most people will be cautious about approaching the larger companies but I believed in MagnaMole so much I needed to see how a larger companies reacted and what feedback they gave, in this case I knew that if BT (British Telecom) saw value in MagnaMole at the very least the endorsement would be positive step forward. In this case it certainly worked out.
It wasn’t easy getting the opportunity to present MagnaMole to BT, that’s for sure. I spent the whole day dedicated to phoning them and making enquiries about who I should be speaking to and making the necessary arrangements and appointments. Tenacity is the key in this situation.
3. What advice would you give other entrepreneurs about introducing their products and ideas?
Just do it! There’s no other way. Plan your aims and make a concise strategy on how to move forward. Do your homework and research well to back up your plans and ideas, try to leave as little as possible to chance. Like I mentioned, aim high to begin with and don’t let excuses or fear stop you.
Be passionate, if you lack passion you lack belief and this will be apparent when you present yourself. If you can sell it to yourself then it can sell to others as well, so its a good idea to take a step back and be subjective, test your product or service and address these issues in advance. Focus on your aims, try not to get sidetracked once you set your strategy as each distraction takes you away from your final goal.
Sharon Wright and Social Media
4. You began using twitter this week, what bought this move about?
It was actually Duncan Bannatynes suggestion to get on twitter. I knew about it but never really understood its significance, I simply didn’t have the time previously. Once I started though I began to see the potential of connecting and following people. I’m still learning at this stage as theirs quite a lot to take in but I believe its worth while so will be spending some time on it in the coming weeks.
5. We encountered a problem with Duncan Bannatynes twitter account just after you started using twitter when his account was suspended because of a phishing website. Did it put you off using twitter or any other social medium?
I believe that Duncan is making enquiries to get his twitter account reinstated at the moment. In regards to putting me off twitter, not really. Of course it made me realise that there are sites out there which are not good and to be more weary of clicking links. Its really difficult for someone like me to know as I’m not really a computer person and I’m sure others have the same concerns but I think the value out ways the risk by a large margin.
6. What other social networks do you use? Facebook? LinkedIn?
I’m on Facebook. I use it for keeping in touch with family and friends really and its been a real help over the last year or two. With working taking such a large amount of time and dedication I use it to keep up to date with all the things I don’t have time to do, especially on the social front, unfortunately!
Im looking into Linkedin now and will be using that on a more professional basis to ensure I stay in touch with my business contacts. I’m beginning to realise now just how important these types of sites are and the benefits they can bring especially in the networking world. Again it will take time to get up to speed on the different aspects but the value is quite clear at this stage.
7. How have you considered social media for your business and if so what methods are you considering using both personally and for your business and what are the barriers that businesses need to overcome?
Before doing Dragons Den I never delved into social media. Now though, its something that I know I need to utilise to in order to maintain my personal credibility.
Because its based on being social I suppose most businesses will look at it somewhat dubiously but I think the point is being misconstrued. There’s more potential here to reach out to people and make contact that was never possible before, or which was possible but incredibly difficult. I can see it becoming a major part of our business as we develop.
When Dragons Den was aired the videos appeared on YouTube along with a few other interviews and they have been getting views from all over the world, anywhere between 5oo views to 6000 or more. Its amazing really, especially when people can comment and leave their opinions which have all been really positive and a real confidence boost.
Well Sharon, thanks for taking the time to give us your views and opinions on business, being an entrepreneur and social media, I’m sure there are plenty of people who will find this very interesting and its been a pleasure talking to you.