Welcome to Soletrading Month 2011

The government is making a lot of noise about small businesses: they will dig the economy out of its financial trench and put the UK on the export map once more.

That's very well, but we think these businesses deserve a bit of recognition for the work they are already doing, and a little help in their future endeavours.

That's why, from today, the Smarta spotlight is on sole traders - the unsung heroes of industry. This month, we will bring you a whole raft of sole-trader-focussed content, from help on marketing on a budget to motivational tips to keep you going when the chips are down.

We also think that the term 'sole trader' is a little dry, so we have put together a comprehensive definition of what we mean by 'sole trader' to show the startling range and diversity of entrepreneurs operating under that label.

Other things to watch out for during SoleTrading Month:

Week one: Marketing

This week, it's all about marketing and PR. Stay tuned to our Twitter stream to find out marketing tips and tricks and exchange ideas on how sole traders can grow customer base, brand and bottom line using the darks arts of marketing.

Week two: Technology

Which apps should no sole trader be without? How can an iPad help you to grow your business? What are the benefits of staying plugged in to your business on the move. This is next week's focus in SoleTrading Month.

Week three: Growth

When you're trying to do everything on your own, it can be a struggle just to maintain the status quo, let alone try to grow a business. But we have some tried and tested tips for sole traders (time poor, resource poor to boot) to help them scale up and branch out.

Week four: Attitude

We mentioned motivation at the start of this blog. Week four will put attitude under the microscope and focus on the ways your can make sure you stay positive and active. We know that you can't be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed all the time: when things go wrong, it's natural to be disappointed. But we will share ways to pick yourself up and carry on.

Live webchat

On October 28, we will bring you a live webchat with Smarta founder Shaa Wasmund, Viking head of e-commerce Stuart Carlisle and sole trader Georgia Campbell, founder of lingerie brand Miss Crofton.

Don't forget to tune in, set a reminder below...

To keep up with all the news and deals for Soletrading Month, follow the #SoleTrading hashtag and Like us on Facebook.



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