Spirit of adventure inspires firm to follow growth trail

Lancashire-based adventure activity specialist Yamba UK is ready for expansion after taking part in Boost Business Lancashire’s Growth Mentoring programme.

The business, based at Lostock Hall, near Preston, is taking practical steps to raise its profile among potential customers and generate more business.

The firm’s three-strong core team and experienced freelance staff provide adventure activities for a range of clients including colleges, schools, groups, charities, and some families.

Their range of activities include abseiling, canoeing, rock climbing, ghyll scrambling, sea kayaking, mountaineering, orienteering, archery, bush craft, zip lines, problem solving, raft building, and high ropes.

The business was performing strongly in delivering high quality activities and wanted to develop a more effective marketing strategy that would accelerate growth.

Boost Business Lancashire is the £7.2m Lancashire Business Growth Hub, offering free and part-funded business support to ambitious and growing businesses. Owner Diane Hill found about Boost after picking up information at a business expo event.

Following an initial consultation, she was allocated Paul Bury, a mentor at Community & Business Partners, which delivers the programme for Boost.

Diane said: “The mentoring support has been extremely helpful – it has helped us to look afresh at our business opportunities and provided practical advice on how we can market our business more effectively. Our mentor was approachable and provided very useful information and support. The whole service has been extremely efficient and worthwhile.”

Paul added: “I helped Diane to look at new approaches to her marketing strategy, improve her outward presentation and also provided some contacts and ideas for a refreshing approach. We looked at the business from a customer’s perspective and this enabled Diane to consider different ways in which she could promote their services.

Paul also helped Diane’s team to take on board new communication methods and tools such as Mail Chimp.

“This has motivated them to work harder at promoting their business and become more focused on the outcome of their marketing activities,” he added.

Community & Business Partners will ensure Diane is sent up-to-date information about networking and events such as the HR Employers Forum on December 2nd 2015. These events represent opportunities to network with other businesses that could use Yamba UK’s services.

Jane Houghton-Fenning, business development director at Community & Business Partners, added: “Diane embraced the idea of looking at the business from a different perspective and has followed through on the actions from the discussions with her mentor. This has lead to an improved performance and will accelerate the growth potential now and in the longer-term.

Jane added: “An objective opinion and the acquisition of knowledge from a business mentor is invaluable as it enables a greater understanding of the barriers to growth and the actions required to address them.” Boost is delivered by Lancashire County Council and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, and supported by money from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Boost has supported more than 2,800 businesses and created more than 900 jobs since it launched in July 2013.