by Staff Reporter on 23/10/12 at 8:00 am
In her budget speech during the National Assembly on the 18th of May 2012, the Deputy Minister, Elizabeth Thabethe, pointed out that the success of the economy is dependent upon the increased participation of entrepreneurial businesses in the mainstream economy.
“SMMEs are principal driving forces of economic growth and development.As the ANC-led government we are resolute in increasing the uptake of SMMEs, as their dynamism and the ability to innovate will assist us in creating much-needed jobs. SMMEs are critical in generating employment, and they also help diversify economic activity, thus making a significant contribution to exports and trade,” said Deputy Minister Thabethe. She continued to point out that many SMMEs are not connected to the mainstream economy and that this remains a challenge for government. Efforts to create interconnectedness will result in the creation of value-chains across sectors. It is necessary to connect small businesses and big corporations.
The DTI has put action to the minister’s words by approving a grant for The Cybercharge Corporation, to assist them in marketing their services and informing entrepreneurs of the Cybercharge service available to them. This grant will not only assist Cybercharge as an SMME, but it will offer a product to entrepreneurs that will assist in exactly what the Minister identified, “to provide entrepreneurs with connectivity and plug them into the mainstream economy”.
Cybercharge, with its strategic intent of linking humanity for the purpose of fostering greater cohesion throughout supply chains, provides the entrepreneurial market with a tool that will assist entrepreneurs to be online, have a professional image and have a mass communication tool. For a nominal fee entrepreneurs can now communicate in the same manner as corporates, with personalised mobile accessible e-mail, a website, fax to e-mail, e-mail to fax and a two-way sms system.
No longer do entrepreneurs have to use an @gmail or @yahoo e-mail address, portraying the image of being a fly-by-night business without any substance behind them. Professionals, consultants and one-man businesses can now have the e-mail address to show professionalism and brand content.
“Your e-mail address is the window to your company,” says Isaac Lakhi from Cybercharge. “What people see when they open your e-mail will determine whether they consider you a substantial business or a ‘wannabe’. It is important to show substance and to have a personalised e-mail address is the starting point”. The name of a company is the beginning of a complete branding exercise. Even if it is a professional person working in his or her own capacity, it provides a better image if John Smith has his e-mail as firstname.lastname@example.org rather than email@example.com. In this market, it is difficult to build up a strong reputation and run a successful business. Entrepreneurs need all the help they can get and portraying the right image will help.
“The money from the grant will be used to inform more entrepreneurs that this service is available,” says Lakhi. “We have chosen a Currin’t Events/Trinitas Consulting partnership to implement a marketing and communications strategy for us. We believe that once entrepreneurs are aware of the service, it will contribute towards the success rates of entrepreneurship in South Africa. If you can communicate professionally, you can do business”.
Ideate is one of South Africa's biggest business blogs, with a team of authors all of whom have had entrepreneurial experience. Ideate is read by entrepreneurs thinking BIG. Follow us on Twitter here. View more articles by Staff Reporter.
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