A Doddington-based video production company has put itself in the limelight and honed its digital skills with the help of a training programme.
Alysoun Sharpe founded Shadowcat Films in 2008, producing videos for a wide range of clients to promote their products and services, as well as feature-length documentaries, the latest of which has been distributed in more than 50 countries worldwide.
Alysoun first found out about the fully-funded digital training on offer from iNorthumberland Business Support at a Weeklybiz networking event in Berwick.
Being a strong believer in the importance of digital technology for ensuring the success of her business, Alysoun immediately registered for an introductory workshop.
Having attended the workshop, Alysoun quickly saw the potential benefits of undertaking the training and signed up to the iNorthumberland Business Support e-learning portal.
The nine online courses include digital marketing, customer relationship management and cyber security, while participating SMEs (small and medium enterprises) can also attend face-to-face masterclasses to further their training and learn from experts in the field.
Qualifying businesses that complete the nine courses can also apply for a year’s free superfast broadband – worth up to £400 – or may be able to claim back costs if they are already using the service.
Alysoun said: “Although the idea of a year’s free superfast broadband was one incentive for me to engage with the training on offer from iNorthumberland Business Support, I have found real value from the skills I have developed.
“In particular, the courses on cloud technologies and SEO (search engine optimisation) have been really useful.
“I am an avid Facebook user when it comes to promoting Shadowcat Films, but I still learned a lot from the course about how to optimise the use of social media, including alternative platforms such as Twitter and LinkedIn.
“Throughout the course I was directed to countless free online software and resources that have really helped with the running and promotion of Shadowcat Films.
“I would definitely recommend the training to other small businesses in Northumberland.
“I feel very strongly that being able to adapt to the ever-changing and increasingly digital market is key to business success, particularly when you are operating in a more remote county like Northumberland.
Coun Dave Ledger, deputy leader of Northumberland County Council and chairman of Arch, The Northumberland Development Company, said: “It’s great to see small businesses from across Northumberland getting on board with the free digital support and superfast broadband available and we’re pleased that Alysoun and others like her are already benefitting from the training on offer.”