March 24th, 2016
First Quarter Success
There are real advantages to being quirky, different and an agency that thinks outside the box. Just look at what an amazing first quarter to the year we’ve had – a with a whopping 11 new clients already and three more potentially in the offing. We’d shout about this to media left, right and centre if we had the time, but we don’t. Tomorrow, the office will be open as normal and our sports guru will be covering the Blackpool match, so no rest for the wicked. Thank goodness the new specs arrived quickly, or little would be getting done!
If this isn’t exciting enough, we’re going to be involved in some incredible campaigns that could grow like Topsy, thanks to funding. We’ve been drumming up a steering group for one of these today – issuing letters of invitation, to interested parties, to a meeting in Northumberland in mid-April. No sooner had these been funded than I was asked to meet with another funder, on the afternoon of this steering group gathering.
We’re also about to put the PR foot down on behalf of potentially the most relevant community-focused campaign in the country. I really shouldn’t have lunch with the person behind it, because it just set me alight with ideas and inspiration, all of which was greatly admired and praised, making me go even further off the ‘why don’t we’ scale. I’ve been promised dinner next, so heaven knows what that will inspire.
I’ve also been getting under the skin of another client – two amazing restaurateurs and also incredibly big-hearted and community minded Italians who are completely passionate about what they do and the principles behind their enterprise. I can’t wait to head there to partake of dinner and see what others think, as I may be a tad biased. After a long meeting last week and lots of research into their past coverage, I feel as though I know them like best friends.
Yesterday was very interesting too. I met the new sales expert appointed by another Italian brand client, to discuss his strategy for taking the products into another market altogether. That kind of thing is always exciting for us on the PR front, as it opens up new target audiences and opportunities. Having our idea taken on board is also pretty satisfying.
This week has also been about that debatable PR tactic of the media follow-up. As it happens, this has been very successful, resulting in some media press trip requests and promises of inclusion in editorial features on the Lake District, next time they come around.
Organising a photo shoot on Monday, for an entire office, also made me feel very much like an employee and very at home indeed – I even picked out the area where I could situate my desk! I do love working for this insurance client and managing their entire public relations strategy – something they never had before I came along. We’ve also had some great PR coverage for them this week, which I can trot back with next Tuesday. That meeting should see us taking a PR campaign for one of their niche markets a lot further forward and this will be really exciting, as it will involve a chef who I used to work with and who is mentioned, colourfully, in ‘Rogue Elephants’! I miss out chats about Madchester and bands like The Verve, not to mention his attempts at speaking Italian!
There will be a first meeting with another client next week, with this one being a charity that needs help with its fundraising and recognises that PR can help with this. If we manage to get to stage 2 of the campaign, it will be a truly jumbo affair!
Added to all of this, we have been contacted by two of the causes to which we provide free PR support as part of our corporate social responsibility programme. We are delighted to say that we will be carrying out the PR behind this year’s All England Open Stone Skimming Championships again, as well as the 2016 Cumbria Women of the Year awards.
Our new business prospects are just as exciting as our existing PR clients, which is why I shall be very pleased to meet up with an old colleague and see if we can perhaps work together on some of this. There’s a use to the Easter holidays after all!
On that note, the holiday brochures will be out over Easter and Bologna is also beckoning, once a little medical appointment is out of the way. Life’s too short not to spend time with those who love you, or waste it, for that matter. Added to that, with 11 new clients to handle, there’s been little r&r of late, so packing the suitcase could be just the pick-me-up required.
And now … let’s see how far the latest attempts to sort out the email issues we’ve suffered since an Apple upgrade have got. One suspects, not very far … unlike Catapult PR in Q1, 2016!