Thirty seconds may not seem like a long time to promote a business or service but some Whanganui promoters gave a go this week.

The "Shameless Soapbox" held at a UCOL business forum provided opportunity for local operators to make their pitch to a receptive audience.

First up was Whanganui High School's career and business studies coordinator Peter Reid offering a free job-broking service.

Mr Reid said he has young job seekers who are willing and work-ready needing jobs in the region.


Rural sales consultant for PGG Wrightson, Mark Nicholas used a quote from writer Mark Twain to promote his business.

"Buy land," he said "they are not making any more of it."

Travel broker Colin Thompson said he can help travellers plan an itinerary anywhere and his service is ideal for clients who prefer not to visit a busy office.

He advised his audience to support Air Chathams and use their service for travel from Whanganui to Auckland.

Scott Lee of Light And Dark Limited offered employers the opportunity to "Give a pay rise without giving a pay rise."

"Debt is the biggest stress in people's lives and I help to remove that stress."

Mr Lee said when people learn to manage debt effectively, they feel as if they have had a pay increase.

UCOL Whanganui's campus manager Bronwyn Paul was last on the soapbox, introducing the new Tertiary Accord of New Zealand (TANZ) eCampus programmes on offer.

"You can gain a business qualification without having to take a day off work she said."

The online programmes offer flexible options for certificate, diploma and degree programmes and Ms Paul said learners can access on-campus support while studying.

The Shameless Soapbox concept is an "open mic" or "speed dating" style of networking born out of business networking group Connect Aotearoa.