‘The Source’ of 2017’s Success

The Christmas and New Year break was over before we knew it, and now 2018 is in full swing. To beat the ‘January Blues’, here at The Source we’re keeping positive by reminiscing about the finest moments of last year. 2017 was filled with incredible cultural moments, from that ‘oops’ moment at the Oscars (how will we ever forget the Moonlight and La La Land mix up?!) to the recent royal engagement, but away from all the crazy going-ons of the outside world, nestled in the quaint village of Tattenhall, we had quite the year ourselves. From team expansions, to new clients, awards and of course, a rebrand! In case you missed any of our highlights from the past year, we thought we’d share them with you here.

It’d be rude not to start with our biggest moment of 2017; making the final transition from The Source Partnership to The Source. The new branding of ‘The Source’ was a move that reflected our ambition and client focus so of course we needed an updated look to mirror this. After a new site was designed, Natural Selection Design paid us a visit to create a professional company video, and new headshots were taken. Add in to the mix a freshly-designed logo (a big thank you to Emily, our Graphic Designer!), along with our new(ish) premises, The Source was ready for reveal.

2017 also brought a number of new clients for us. From the Grosvenor, to Combermere Abbey, TextLocal and DV8, we gained a fantastic mix of B2B and B2C clients. We ran a series of PR campaigns, competitions, and launches for each, and we can confidently say that each client has been a pleasure to work with. We can’t wait to work with them all again this year.

With our new branding and increase in clients came new team members. We gained two fantastic team additions in the summer; Jo joined us as a PR Assistant following the completion of her degree in English and German Literature at University of Warwick. With existing PR and experience studying abroad, Jo was warmly welcomed to The Source. In June, Evie also joined us, having graduated from the University of Sheffield with a degree in English Language and Linguistics. Evie has proven to be a fantastic team member and works on key accounts such as; Wright Marshall, Combermere Abbey and Drivers Direct.

The year wouldn’t be complete without awards, and of course our clients took home a number of golds – but would you expect anything less? Meadow Foods scooped gold at the International Cheese Awards, the largest industry awards in Europe, whilst our client Barnes Logistics also came out on top in the Rochdale Business Awards for ‘Business of the Year’ with their impressive turnover of more than £5 million, business expansion and increasing fleet.

One of our longest standing clients, TIMco, also had an incredibly successful awards season scooping not one or even two, but three award wins at the NBG Awards in November at a Gala Dinner in the Exhibition Centre, Liverpool. Fantastic recognition for three very deserving clients!

2017 wouldn’t have been complete without some incredible coverage either, and with pieces from the Telegraph, the Sun and the Guardian, our coverage goals were achieved. Local business and long-standing client The Ice Cream Farm was recognised by the Telegraph as one of the top 20 most visited free attractions in the country, whilst the Guardian wrote a fantastic review on Liverpool bistro Wreckfish and the Sun published the professional comment of Drivers Direct on the HGV driver shortage. Brilliant results for each client!

Away from print media, of course we made a number of TV and radio appearances. We kick-started the year by filming with our client Wright Marshall as they hosted one of the largest model train auctions. Naturally, ITV were keen to air the event, which had over 4,000 model trains and raised over £230,000 for charity. Then fame fell at Europac3D’s feet as they made their TV debut featuring in an episode of ‘Find it, Fix it, Flog it’ to 3D scan one of the show’s presenters, creating a ‘mini me’ for a doll’s house restoration project (take a look at Gemma Longworth’s 3D miniature here, it’s very impressive, even if we do say so ourselves!) Then throw into the loop an appearance on Good Morning for Freedome, a filming collaboration between Kirsty’s and Redrow Homes, features for the Ice Cream Farm on Children in Need, and for Bolesworth on North West Tonight. Add in radio debuts on Newsround, the Jeremy Vine Show, Radio 5 Live, BBC Radio 2 and the Chris Evans Breakfast Show, and you have yourself one very busy year!

You may be wondering how we could possibly fit anything else into the mix, but in October, we organised, not one, but two client launches. Wreckfish, despite only launching in October, quickly became a foodie favourite across Liverpool with its exceptional dishes and stylish interiors. The restaurant became a record-breaker after crowdfunding £200,000 to support the opening of the business. If you haven’t visited yet, make sure you put it on your to-do list, as we can confirm that the food is just amazing! A little closer to home we also launched Søstrene Grene in October, welcoming the Scandi Interiors brand to its new home in the Chester Grosvenor shopping centre. Dubbed as the ‘mini-Ikea’, the event proved to be popular with shoppers – we may have even picked up a few homeware pieces ourselves…

2017 now feels like a distant memory, as we are already busy writing up plans and proposals for the next 12 months. We’re incredibly excited to see what 2018 brings – we’re certain that ‘The Source’ of a fantastic year lies in PR – so watch this space!

Fake News – Can It Be Avoided?

In a world of “he said she said” debates across social media and “click bait” news articles, it’s difficult to know what’s real and what isn’t….

 

Although fake news is not a new concept, it’s now moving up the real news agenda with the help of social media – allowing a story to spread like wildfire within a matter of minutes.  People often say they find out the latest via their trending list on their Twitter page before they’ve even switched on the TV.  We can’t deny that it’s pretty impressive having access to world news at the touch of a button but you can also run into some Chinese whispers along the way.

 

Fake news takes many forms which is why it’s so difficult to monitor.  It ranges from pop-up websites, nation state-sponsored misinformation, social media and parody publications, such as The Daily Mash – well-established before fake news even became an issue.  But following Trump’s move into the Oval Office, the talk of fake news has been widely popular, especially as it’s so regularly used by Trump himself. The word is also set to be added to the next print edition of Collins Dictionary as it’s recently been dubbed as ‘Word of the Year’ – who’d have thought?

 

With the aim of cracking down on fake news sites, internet giants, Google have implemented a “Fact Check” feature for Google News and Google Search, enabling publishers to show a “Fact Check’ tag in their stories.  Google’s criteria separates the type of content pushed out online, distinguishing between fact and fiction, an all-important mission by todays’ standards.  If the criteria aren’t met, Google will simply take the site off Google News and or, it won’t be rewarded with a “Fact Check” tab.

 

If you’re unsure of the legitimacy of a story, the first port of call would be to go to ‘The Source’.  We handle social media on a daily basis and know what to look out for when collating news stories.  Before passing on a story, we make sure to read beyond the headlines and check that ‘The Source’ always backs the claim.

 

Get in touch with our team today to find out how we can assist you in developing your online presence (fake news free)!

 

 

The Winning Streak Continues! 🎉 Success at the Marketing Cheshire Annual Tourism Awards

The Winning Streak Continues! 🎉 Success at the Marketing Cheshire Annual Tourism Awards

If we do say so ourselves, we’re a dab hand at writing a winning award entry here at The Source and making sure our clients get the recognition they deserve for their incredible achievements and accolades. Once again, it’s paid off, with three clients receiving awards and high commendations at the Marketing Cheshire Annual Tourism Awards.

On 23rd November, we attended the ceremony at the historic Chester Racecourse along with over 300 tourism representatives. The awards celebrated a diverse variety of businesses that contribute to Cheshire’s thriving visitor economy, which was worth £3.3 billion and employed over 42,000 people in 2016.

Combermere Abbey won the coveted Boutique Accommodation of the Year award for their newly-restored North Wing, which offers luxury B&B accommodation overlooking the vast estate. The Chester Grosvenor and FREEDOME parks also received high commendations, for the Outstanding Customer Service award and Small Visitor Attraction of the Year award respectively.

 

Along with the recent successes at the Cheshire Business Awards, which saw The Ice Cream Farm scooping the Innovation and Enterprise award and The Chester Grosvenor winning the Employer of the Year award, it’s safe to say that it’s been a fantastic few weeks for our clients! We’re delighted that they’ve been recognised for their achievements are are amongst the most respected businesses in the region.

Now, onto the next award…

 

Client Awards: TIMco Wins Big at NBG Awards

One of our longest standing clients, TIMco have had an incredibly successful awards season so far scooping not one or even two, but three award wins at the NBG Awards 14th November at a Gala Dinner in the Exhibition Centre, Liverpool.

 

TIMco was awarded the titles of ‘Brand of the Year’ and ‘Supplier of the Year’ in the Painting, Decorating, Ironmongery, Hardware, Electricals & Fixings Category for the fifth consecutive year. Sales Director at TIMco, Simon Rance, was also named as runner up in the ‘Account Manager of the Year’ category for his excellent service and support of customers.

 

TIMco has also been nominated as ‘Supplier of the Year’ by Builder’s Merchant News in their Awards for Excellence. Which are due to take place on Friday 24th November.

 

There’s no doubt that awards can seriously boost a business’ reputation amongst customers and competitors, but they can also involve a difficult and arduous process of forms! If you’d like to learn more about how we can help draft and enter award entries on your behalf, send us an email: enquiries@thesourcepartnership.com.

 

Ready, set…bake! The Great British Bake Off’s Howard Middleton comes to Inspired Villages.

With this year’s Great British Bake Off finale drawing in a whopping 6.5 million viewers, it’s safe to say that Britain is still in the midst of a Bake-Off fever! On Tuesday 24th October, fans of the much-loved show were in for a treat when former series 4 contestant, Howard Middleton, demonstrated his best bakes for the festive season ahead at Inspired Villages, Tattenhall.

Inspired residents and locals alike were invited to Eric’s restaurant on-site to watch the Bake-Off star rustle up a delicious array of Christmas delights, including a clementine and almond cake and frangipane mince pies with a ‘cherry berry’ mincemeat. As well as receiving some top baking tips, the audience were left entertained by Howard’s hilarious anecdotes from the nation’s favourite baking TV series, including the infamous ‘custard-gate’ incident.

The Source were approached by Inspired to raise the profile of their Tattenhall scheme and create a comprehensive plan of PR, marketing and event activity to communicate the quality of lifestyle, facilities and accommodation offered at the retirement village, as well as involve the wider community. We devised the Bake-Off event to acquaint locals in the area with Inspired, create positive regional press coverage and raise Inspired’s profile as a state-of-the-art retirement village with an exciting programme of events.

The proof of the pudding was in the full house of guests, extensive regional coverage, as well as a great deal of fun and laughter had by all.

For more information on organising events and getting your business noticed, please get in touch on 01829 720 789 or email info@thesourcepartnership.com.

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Store Dubbed Mini IKEA Arrives in Chester to Record-Breaking Queues

Interiors fans, brace yourselves… Last week we helped Danish brand, Søstrene Grene, open their Chester store in the Grosvenor Shopping Centre. The homewares brand is famed for its huge product range; from quirky kitchen accessories and sumptuous soft furnishings to stylish ceramics at affordable prices.

Approached by Søstrene for our extensive experience in the retail sector, knowledge of the region (and perhaps for our penchant for everything Scandi), we held an exclusive VIP launch event on Thursday, 19th October, followed by an official public opening on Friday, 20th.

Only the second store in the country, there is little or no knowledge of the brand in the UK and so we were tasked with not only increasing brand awareness regionally, but we also introduced national press to the cult-homewares business.

Our launch campaign included working closely with the Danish team to compile social media content, as well as securing press coverage in local and regional press, which resulted in Søstrene Grene featuring in a huge variety of regional publications.   We also worked with a local radio station to increase brand awareness and drive traffic to the VIP and official openings.

Over 100 people attended the VIP launch event, including regional press and bloggers, as well as a wide demographic of guests, who all enjoyed fizz and canapes from local bar and restaurant, The Botanist whilst browsing the store.

For the public launch the following day, there were hundreds of eager shoppers wanting to get in on the action, with queues through Grosvenor Shopping Centre and into the street, which hasn’t been seen in the centre for many years.

For more information on launch events or introducing brands into the UK, please get in touch on 01829 720789 or email info@thesourcepartnership.com.

Three Clients Nominated for Cheshire Business Awards 2017

It’s an exciting day in The Source offices today with not one, not even two, but THREE of our clients being nominated for the prestigious Trinity Mirror Cheshire Business Awards 2017.

We love an award entry at The Source and don’t mind us if we say we’re pretty good at it. Of course, it helps that our amazing clients have plenty to shout about! The Chester Grosvenor hotel, The Ice Cream Farm and Text Local have been nominated for the Employer of the Year award, the Innovation and Enterprise Award and the Business of the Year award (over 50 employees) respectively.

The awards recognise excellence, innovation and achievement across the Cheshire region. With a staggering 48% increase in entries this year, we’d like to congratulate our clients for getting to this stage, as it was a particularly competitive shortlisting process!

The awards ceremony will be held at Chester Cathedral on Friday 6th October. For more information, visit http://www.eventsnorthwest.co.uk/cheshire-business-awards/.

Landing a PR Internship: How to Shine and Make the Most of your Time

If you’re a student or recent graduate, the chances are you’ll have started your job hunt only to be met with a disheartening response to your applications:

“Unfortunately, your current experience does not meet the requirements for this role”.

The reality is, experience is the all-important tick-box on your CV that demonstrates the willingness to progress professionally and bridges the gap between ‘graduate’ and ‘young professional’. It can make the difference between your application being ignored or earmarked for potential.

Sound daunting? Fear not! At The Source, we go out of our way to help those looking for more work experience. Here are our top-tips on how to make the most of your first internship in PR.

 

Ask Questions

Internships are generally between one week and three months long, so it’s vital that you spend that time learning as much as possible. Don’t hesitate to ask your team questions and pick their brains on topics that interest you. There’s no such thing as a stupid question – the whole point of an internship is to expand your knowledge and skill-sets.

Show Initiative

If you studied English or a media-related degree, you’ll be able to put your creativity and flair for writing to fantastic use. PR is an industry that thrives on fresh ideas and thinking outside the box. Got an idea for a blog post, or spot something trending on Twitter? Voice it! Rather than wait for your line manager to provide you with a new task, always ask if there’s anything you can help with to make sure you’re exposing yourself to a varied workload.

Keep a log of everything you’ve achieved

Make sure that you’re keeping a note of your day-to-day tasks and everything that you’re learning. By the end of the internship period, you’ll have a backlog of work and skill-sets to show for yourself that you can add straight to your CV and wow a prospective employer with at interview.

If you’re a student or graduate keen to gain experience in PR and Marketing, why not drop us a line? We’re also recruiting for PR Assistants and PR Account Managers, so send in your CV today!

 

enquiries@thesourcepartnership.com

NEW BUSINESS, NEW EMPLOYEES & NEW LOOK FOR THE SOURCE

One of the region’s leading PR, marketing and digital agencies is celebrating after a flurry of new business wins and the appointment of five new members of staff as the team grows to cope with the demand for its PR, marketing and digital services.

The business growth has also been manifested in a new brand ‘The Source’ (previously The Source Partnership) to reflect the company’s ambition and client focus. The new brand has been extended across all communication streams including its popular social media platforms as well as a new website and company video.

Joining the team are five new account handlers including Scarlett Lawson who joins from Meri Mance PR in London, Chelsie Taylor who joins from Glyndwr University’s communication team while Sara Perrett, Jo Sherwood and Evie Shaw join after graduating and spending a year in the industry. Emily Gibbons from Loud Designs will also be working with the team from their new offices in Tattenhall.

The Source has secured a wave of new business wins as clients look for effective PR and marketing support as well as ways to raise their profile in the social media and digital marketplace. Recent account wins include local businesses such as; Chester’s Grosvenor Hotel, the impressive Bolesworth International Horse Show and the Sticky Walnut Group, where The Source helped secure a record-breaking amount of crowd-funding for their new Liverpool restaurant Wreckfish.

Further afield, The Source has started work on cover suppliers to Wimbledon, Stuart Canvas, Europac 3D, one of the UK’s leading 3D printing and design companies, as well as Freedome, which is believed to be the UK’s safest trampoline park that featured on Good Morning Britain last month.

Louis Hill, Partner at The Source, comments; “These are exciting times at The Source as we grow the team, take on new business and celebrate the successes with our new brand and website. We can see that there is a positive outlook amongst the businesses in the region as they see the benefits in effective marketing and sharing with their customers some of the excellent work that they do.

“The team gets enormous satisfaction in supporting clients in their ambitions and we look forward to continuing to build the business and to help our clients reach their potential through more effective marketing and communications.”

The Source is based in Tattenhall and offers a wide range of services including media relations, social media management and digital communications. The company, established in 2012, works across the UK and supports businesses from all sectors including property, manufacturing, retail as well as food and fashion.

HOW UNITED AIRLINES FLEW INTO A CRISIS

The horrific scenes captured on smart phones and shared across social media platforms gave a pretty candid view of the approach United Airlines take to customer service.

If anyone is looking for an example of a PR crisis then this has to be top of the tree.  It contained all the key ingredients: an awful experience, injured customers, a wide audience of viewers, video footage of the incident and a conflict with the company’s brand and values. All this plus a dreadful response from Oscar Munoz, United’s CEO and recent winner of the title ‘Communicator of the year’ in the US version of PR Week.

So, what could have been done better?  Firstly, the CEO should have quickly offered an unreserved apology for forcibly removing a passenger from his seat and publically dragging him down an overbooked aircraft aisle.

Timeliness and decisiveness are key to communications and Munoz missed his chance when the initial apology was for ‘having to re-accommodate … customers’.  Secondly, he made the mistake of assuming communications to employees won’t find their way into the mainstream media.  In a crisis, it’s best to assume that nothing is off the record and that any recorded or written communication will find its way to the media as they clamour to keep the story alive.

Thirdly, don’t publically criticise your customers however “disruptive and belligerent” they may be.  Let’s also not forget that the customer had bought his seat in good faith and only found himself in that situation because of United Airlines’ policy to overbook their flights.

So, does it really matter and will today’s news be tomorrow’s fish and chip wrappers?  In my view, unfortunately not.  Munoz missed the boat as it was not until 72 hours later that he issued a proper apology, calling the episode “truly horrific.” Future customers may be relieved that he now finally wants us to know that “we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right” and that he will “promise I’ll do better.” (hopefully there won’t be a next time..?).

Three days after the incident and the top trending topic on Twitter in the U.S. was #NewUnitedAirlinesMottos, with users suggesting slogans such as “not enough seating, prepare for a beating”, while memes and jokes are also appearing on other social media sites meaning that the issue will reach wider audiences and stay for some time yet.

Financially, United Continental (UAL) shares, have lost more than UD$250m and are now around 4% lower than they were pre-incident.  The video, which circumnavigates language and cultural boundaries, has also attracted huge audiences in China, one of United’s key emerging markets (attracting more than 100m views, and rising).

Mr Munoz is currently looking to hold onto his position, however perhaps that’s now looking increasingly unlikely, largely due to a poor PR response at the outset of his company’s crisis.