How 4Networking helped Ed in ‘The Den’
Ed midway though his pitch

Without the 4Networking Facebook community, I wouldn’t have applied to be part of the latest series of the BBC primetime business show Dragons’ Den.

You may be aware that my pitch was featured in last Sunday’s episode (Feb 11).

You may also be aware that multimillionaire Dragon Jenny Campbell invested in my business DrivenMedia – based out of Derby but operating nationwide.

The reason behind my taking the plunge to go on such a national and public platform, was the encouragement I received through this powerful online community.  Networking is a good habit for any business, especially when you’re a young entrepreneur looking to get your name out there.

You can make so many good connections, you can learn from others, you can even be mentored. It’s all about the relationships you build. In business, relationships are not just important, they are critical.

Kyle Raffo and Julie Scott were 4N members who first introduced me to 4Networking. It was after I visited the meeting in Tamworth they suggested I join the Facebook community. Being young in my business journey, I felt unable to commit financially at that time to becoming a passport member.

I assumed the community was for members only, yet that wasn’t the case. I was floored by how much good, strong engagement there was within the community and I would strongly advise anyone reading this to join the community with a view to becoming a paid-up member.

There are so many interesting posts, view and comments. If I get stuck or have a question it’s where I’ll go first. 4 Networking allows you to network virtually across the UK and for an entrepreneur this exposure is invaluable. Just to let you know – I am now a passport member. If you’d like me to 4sight, please email my team on [email protected]

It was one of these ‘interesting’ posts back in January 2017 that lead to me applying. The discussion was around what type of businesses do well on the show. I’ve watched Dragons’ Den since it’s started and for me, it would be a dream comes true if I actually got to appear on air.

I had previously applied and not heard anything back, so was unsure whether to commit time to applying again.  It was Steven Daniels’ comments and supportive messages that gave me the confidence to at least try again. I never expected to be selected to go forward let alone get my time to pitch in front of the Dragons.

However I realised appearing on the show could be a double-edged sword –  it could go really well and get a good reaction or my business could get torn to pieces in front of a UK wide audience. It’s a huge potential risk. My fate in the den and the verdict on my business is ultimately down to what a small group of individuals think and the reation of millions of viewers at home.

Yet many entrepreneurs, large or small, are risk-takers and I decided it was worth the risk thanks to the support I received from 4Networking. That support continued behind the scenes in the run-up to filming. (Not that they knew what I was doing!)

Also I’ve had months where I’ve not been able to talk about the experience and now is the time to say a huge thank you to 4N. You gave me the courage to take a risk, take a chance and enjoy the ride. With Jenny’s help and support, this is just the beginning.

Keep an eye out for me at a netwokring event near you!