Nicola Gammon, founder and CEO of Shoot, the award-winning website for gardeners, shares some favourite sites.

Nicola Gammon is founder and CEO of Shoot, winner of Garden Media Guild’s Website of the Year 2012, Which? Best Buy Garden Design Software and a Smart100 Award.

Shoot is a unique website for amateur and professional gardeners to design, manage, care for and share their gardens online. Over 80,000 members access Shoot’s database of 17,000 plants, advice forums, and personalised plant care calendars, and they can design or map their gardens online. Shoot Marketplace, provides an exciting new online retail platform for over 90 small independent British nurseries and manufacturers.


Pinterest - A brilliant visual tool that you can use to find inspirational ideas for all your projects and interests. Shoot has close to 30,000 followers on our Pinboards, onto which we pin photos of beautiful gardens and plants. We also have a very popular guest pinboard with 250 contributors.

Twitter - Great for connecting with new gardeners, designers and plant nurseries in a very immediate and direct way. Many new members first found us on Twitter and we also found specialist shops on Twitter, such as, Common Farm Flowers, who will be selling their bouquets on Shoot Marketplace this Mother’s Day. We now have close to 20,000 followers.

LinkedIn - For connecting with our business members and partners LinkedIn is great. We use it to build and engage with our professional network. We have specialist groups for garden designers, a special group for our Pro Members to learn about our client plant list service and Vectorworks Landmark integration and another group for plant nurseries who sell in our Marketplace.

Survey Monkey - We pride ourselves on having a close relationship with our members, listening to what they want to see on our site and making it happen. For example, if they can’t find a plant on our database they can request that we add it, and once it’s been added, we email them to let them know. Survey Monkey is another brilliant tool to help us understand our customers’ needs even better as we can run online customer surveys in minutes.

Crowdcube - I am a big fan of crowd-funding models. On Shoot recently we ran our own crowd-funding initiative to raise funds from our members for a list of site improvements by selling Lifetime Memberships to a limited group of 75 members. We are now sold out. Crowdcube will be a first choice for equity funding in the future.

Seth Godin - Seth’s daily blog has a cult-like following. He has a really insightful perspective on how to build and grow businesses. I was honoured to be selected by Seth Godin from 1,000 female entrepreneur applicants to attend his FEMBA in 2010.

My favourite app...Instagram - I just love getting photo updates from friends and family around the world through Instagram. It’s also another great visual tool to share photos of gardens and plants!

12 March 2014