A LINE-UP of top speakers have praised Bournemouth’s first Entrepreneur Summit, which drew more than 120 entrepreneurs and business owners.

Dragons’ Den star Piers Linney, The Apprentice finalist Camilla Ainsworth and Lush co-founder Rowena Bird were among those sharing their insights at the event, along with Grenade founders Alan and Juliet Barratt, Social Chain’s Hannah Anderson and Cemal Ezel, Founder of the social enterprise Change Please.

The event, at Bournemouth’s Hilton, was organised by Sunny Bird PR and Alex Chisnall of the podcast Screw It, Just Do It.

Camilla Ainsworth, who founded dairy-free drink brand MYLK PLUS, said: “What a day. It was my absolute honour to share my journey alongside such powerhouse businesspeople.”

Piers Linney said: “It was great to be a part of Bournemouth’s first Entrepreneur Summit and see such an entrepreneurial spirit among the community. I spend a lot of time working with start-ups and SMEs, helping them to navigate the challenges of business so I hope I was able to share some of that advice with the many businesses I met at the Summit.”

Social Chain’s founder Hannah Anderson said: “I was honoured to be invited to the Entrepreneur Summit to tell my story and preach my message of a human-first approach to marketing. In this day and age, social media is the number one way to connect with your audience and if you put your audience first by providing value, as an entrepreneur, you’re going to win.”

Guests also had the opportunity to ask a panel of media experts how to introduce their brand to a wide audience through print and digital media, broadcast and social media.

Media experts included Andy Martin, associate editor of the Daily Echo Bournemouth; Rick Simmons, director of Wessex FM; Joel Lacey, director of Dorset Life; national journalist Stephanie Clarkson; influencer Rhiannon Duffin, and the editor of Entrepreneur and Investor Magazine, Lisa Curtiss.

Sunny Bird said: “As a PR agency we know how important it is for brands to work with the media in order to grow their businesses. It was great to be able to bring both these aspects of business planning and developing together at the Entrepreneur Summit.”

Alex Chisnall said: “It is so rewarding to put on an event that I believe had something for everyone at every stage of business growth. My biggest takeaway was the people. All of the information for starting, growing and scaling a business is already out there, you can listen to a podcast, watch a YouTube video or read a blog. But nothing beats meeting those who have been where you want to get to, are still having the same challenges as you are, asking them your questions and finding out they’re exactly the same as you and I.”

Alex Chisnall’s interviews with Rowena Bird and Cemal Ezel were recorded for the Screw It, Just Do It podcast.