SMEs get in touch with politicians on social media

Friday 31 October 2014

Limited companies and people who are just setting up a business will be able to get in direct contact with politicians thanks to a new campaign from the Federation of Small Business (FSB).

The campaign, titled #ibacksmallbusiness is set to be the centrepiece of FSB's work in the run up to the General Election in 2015.

This hashtag is backed up by dedicated website, which gives prospective candidates and small businesses a space in which they can share content. Among the types of things that could be included are videos, infographics and quotes from small business owners from anywhere in the UK,

Through this campaign, prospective parliamentary candidates will be able to see and hear the challenges that are facing small businesses in the constituencies in which they will be running.

As well as encouraging small businesses to post content, FSB is encouraging candidates to show their support by tweeting or posting #ibacksmallbusiness.

The launch of the campaign comes after more than six months of discussion between members of FSB and shadow and government ministers. Here, they were able to discuss methods for how to make running a small business easier.

This also went alongside the progression of the first ever Small Business Bill, which is currently being discussed in Parliament. The bill aims to deal with such issues as late payment to suppliers, which can restrict cash flow and potentially put a firm out of business.

FSB said that the Small Business Bill represents a key mile stone for small firms as they aim to make a contribution to the UK economy.

Speaking about the #ibacksmallbusiness campaign, national chairman of FSB John Allan said: "#ibacksmallbusiness is a unique opportunity for those wishing to win a seat in the next Parliament to talk directly with small business owners via social media.

"Our business manifesto is the product of months of direct engagement with real small businesses. It plainly outlines what the next Government needs to do to support entrepreneurs seeking to start a new business or grow an existing firm.

"Over the coming months we expect candidates claiming to support small firms to get behind the #ibacksmallbusiness campaign and commit to taking the measures in our business manifesto forward in the next Parliament."

Underpinning the campaign it the FSB's Business Manifesto, which outlines five key areas that it believes need to be addressed when the new government comes in to power during 2015. These areas are; delivering a sustained economic recovery, rebalancing the economy, creating high quality jobs and full employment, making all markets work better and lowering the cost of doing business.

FSB says that confidence is on the rise among small and micro businesses among every sector and across all regions of the UK. It says that a number of its members are hoping to invest more in their businesses, recruit more people and try to get into more markets. What's more, people are starting up businesses and choosing to become self employed at a record rate.

By Victoria McDonnell

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