The New Normal

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every single one of us as we’ve quickly had to adjust to our new normal.

For the Pink Media team, we all began working remotely from mid-March (before the lockdown was officially announced by the Prime Minister) and we had to instantly adjust our working styles and find our best practises ahead of a prolonged period of working from home.

As an agency, we have always worked collaboratively across all of our clients and within the office, with individual members of the team working on various elements of our PR & marketing campaigns, hosting a weekly Monday morning ‘mega meeting’ alongside daily catch ups.

Fortunately, technology has allowed us to continue to do those things almost seamlessly from home through apps such as WhatsApp, Zoom, Skype and FaceTime. Each morning since working away from the office, we’ve checked in with each other via video call to discuss daily deadlines, client information and any other business – not only does doing so allow us to create a virtual office environment (and bring with it some ‘normality’), it also keeps us socially connected in a world where social distancing is in place.

From a client perspective, we’ve been working closely with a number of businesses across a range of sectors and have learned that no matter what the individual niche or industry, every employer and employee has had their day-to-day lives turned around in some way or another, and we’ve adapted our service offering to change and evolve with them.

For example, Delifonseca – our longest standing client – was forced to close their restaurant following government guidelines and were left wondering what their business could do to survive. The next day, we were on site (pre lockdown) to work on the production of a social media video campaign to promote their change to business – the food hall and deli was to begin to offer no-contact delivery and collections to suit the changing lifestyles of their customers. The videos went live that very evening and resulted in immediate social media engagement, reaching over 15,000 people locally, and Delifonseca saw a spike in orders that’s kept the business continually thriving in these unprecedented times.

We’ve also had plenty of enquiries from business owners who aren’t sure about best practises when it comes to marketing. Some have closed their business for the foreseeable, some are working at a reduced capacity and some remotely from their homes. Although our answers for each are different, the overarching advice we have continued to give our clients is to keep lines of communications as open as possible.

Now, more than ever, your potential customers are looking to communicate in the only way they can – digitally – which is why this is a great time to optimise your social media and digital marketing presence rather than to step back from it.

What’s more, by changing or adapting your services, you’re opening up the potential for a whole new demographic of customers who could remain advocates of your brand long after the pandemic is over.

This week, we’ll be blogging all about how to market your business when your customers are on lockdown, plus our top tips for working from home.

Stay tuned – and stay safe!

A warm welcome for our newest recruit, Becca

Today, our newest recruit Becca is taking over the Pink Media blog to introduce herself in her own words and share some insights about her first month at Pink Media HQ…

Sharing is caring, so what better way to introduce myself than through a blog about my first month with the Pink Media team alongside a brief summary of my background? My name’s Becca and I’m the newest recruit here, taking on the role of Content Creator, which will mean supporting the Pink Media team across social media, PR and marketing activities.

I’m a journalism graduate who has come to Pink Media following five and a half years as part of Skiddle’s content team – covering some of the UK’s leading music events and helping aid the sale of tickets through exciting written, video and social content.

Throughout my time at Skiddle, I took a keen interest in developing the brand itself – from creating the business’ mission statement to working on strategies for content and social media which would help establish a clear brand voice. The opportunity to work with multiple clients to develop their brand is one of the main reasons working for Pink Media appealed to me as my next step.

So, now all that’s out of the way, let me recap on my first month at Pink Media. It was an eventful one to say the least, primarily packing in creating a plethora of social media content, meeting a handful of lovely clients and attending not just one, but two awards ceremonies.

The first of which was the Merseyside Independent Business Awards, an annual event designed to celebrate independent businesses, their owners and those who support them, and the Pink Media team was out in force at the Titanic Hotel with fingers crossed for a win, and to our delight, our Direcror Nicola was deservedly named as the winner of the coveted Business Person of the Year title.

The second ceremony was hosted by The Women’s Organisation at Oh Me Oh My, where Pink Media scooped up the PR & Marketing Agency of the Year. It was inspiring to be surrounded by so many influential, enterprising women from the area, and you can read more about the two wins here.

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The month also consisted of a number introductions and client meetings. We had a great catch up with Hosted By National Museums Liverpool talking all things PR, and I’ve been on site with clients Carringtons Catering to take some photographs and videos for their social media account.

Finally, tackling some Halloween themed content rounded up an unforgettable first week at an (award winning!) business.

 

About Becca:

Content Creator Becca Frankland is our newest recruit, assisting with social media, PR and marketing activities within Pink Media, with a focus on creating interesting and forward-thinking content and opportunities through written, press and social media mediums.

With a successful background in journalism and social media, working for over five years for the UK’s leading what’s on guide Skiddle, Becca is familiar with how to create content which makes a business standout and encourages customers to engage.

With a passion for brand development, she is aware of how to convey key messages and executes it with an eye for detail. By regularly monitoring clients’ social media accounts and creating on-brand materials, Becca is able to support and improve platforms in line with strategic and growth targets.

 

An award-winning October

Over the past 12 months, Pink Media has worked with more than 60 businesses across the breadth of the country, ranging from local independent firms to corporate giants. It’s fair to say this year has been one of our most exciting years to date, and the month of October has especially been one for the books.

We kicked off the month by heading to the Merseyside Independent Business awards, where not only were our clients shortlisted in seven categories, but our director Nicola Pink picked up the award for Business Person of the Year.

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Nicola beat tough competition within a category that judges said attracted submissions of an exceptional standard, and was commended for her refreshing approach to business that sees her and the Pink Media team continue to form personable yet professional relationships with their clients whilst ever-expanding and creating new jobs in the sector.

“It was a real privilege to share the room with some of the region’s best advocates for independent businesses”, Nicola said. “Together, we’re helping to shape the North West’s reputation as a business hub. In the eight years that I’ve been a business owner, I’ve seen first-hand how companies in Liverpool and the surrounding areas have adapted and developed and as a result of our combined efforts, we are now a force to be reckoned with.”

The evening was also especially exciting for our clients Delifonseca, who picked up the awards for Restaurant of the Year and Retailer of the Year.

A few weeks later, we were invited along to The Women’s Organisation’s Celebrating Enterprising Women award ceremony at Oh My Oh My. The event was designed as a platform to showcase the best and brightest from their network; pioneering women who are great entrepreneurial role models within our region.

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Here, Pink Media was named PR & Marketing Agency of the Year further adding to our growing trophy cabinet. We were delighted to be recognised amongst some of the region’s most entrepreneurial, talented and hard working women and it was particularly rewarding to have received the accolade from The Women’s Orqanisation, who’ve given us so much support since our business was established back in 2011.

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We’d like to say a huge congratulations to all the winners at the ceremonies we’ve headed to this month, and a massive thank you to the Merseyside Independent Business Awards and The Women’s Organisation for having us. We’d also like to say a big thank you to our friends, clients and fellow local businesses for their lovely messages of support on the back of our duo of wins.

 

 

 

 

Instagram for business: Part Four

Welcome back for another instalment of our Instagram for Business masterclass series!

This week, we’re looking at how you can use the increasingly popular ‘Stories’ feature to boost the visibility of your profile, better engage with your customers and show off your personality whilst beating Instagram’s sometimes tricky algorithm…

For those feeling out of the loop, Instagram’s algorithm is the way the app sifts through all of the content available and selects what will appear on a user’s feed, which means that on average, users often only see 30% of the posts from the accounts they follow. 

But what can you do to make sure your posts are visible? It’s simple – Instagram’s new Stories feature!

Ever since being added to Instagram back in 2016, statistics have shown that not only are users staying on the app longer and visiting it more frequently throughout the day, but that more than 300 million people are using Stories daily. Stories appear on the top of the Instagram feed and regularly reappear as users scroll down with an “in case you missed it” headline, which is why they should definitely become a part of your regular Instagram activity.

One use of Stories is sharing pictures/videos that you might not want to put on your Instagram grid, because they don’t fit in with your chosen theme, etc. For example, you can re-share pictures that customers have shared of your business to your story which shows you appreciate your customers, without messing up your pretty grid that you’ve worked so hard on.

Stories are also excellent for going behind the scenes of the business and showing a more personal side of both the company and staff and can also be used for important announcements and reminders of events if you don’t want to keep posting about them on your regular feed.

There’s more to Stories than just posting a picture or a video…

Polls

Polls are a sticker which can be added to a story that ask the viewer a simple question. It’s an excellent tool that can be used for market research purposes as the results are instantaneous. For example, you can post a pictures of potential colour schemes for a new range of products and ask your followers which ones they prefer.

Ask Me Anything

‘Ask Me Anything’ allows your followers to, well… ask you anything! It’s great for allowing your followers to ask you questions about your products or services or about the business in general. Answers to the questions can then be shared on to your Stories so that the rest of your followers can see them too.

If you have anew product being launched, you can encourage your followers to ask you questions about it, like how it works, when it’ll be released, how much it will cost, etc. Not only are you directly engaging with your customers, you’re also advertising your new product at the same time – it’s a win-win!

Swipe Up

Once you have over 10,000 followers, Instagram adds a swipe up feature to your Stories which allows you to add external links. A good use of this, for example, is when you’re sharing a new product on your Stories, you can add a direct link to it on your website. 

Story Highlights

Unlike regular posts, stories only remain on your profile for 24 hours and once that time is up, they’re gone – unless you save them as Story Highlights. We first discussed Story Highlights in a previous blog post when we explained how to set up a compelling Business profile. You can have an unlimited number of story highlights on your profile, and each time you add to one, it will appear first in the Story Highlights.

To add Stories to your highlights, you just need to select the ‘Add to highlights’ option after clicking ‘share’. If you ever want to delete an image from your highlights, you click onto the one in question, select ‘edit highlight’ and untick the images you no longer want to appear.

Story insights

Instagram has a number of built in analytical features for Stories that allow you to see what’s getting the best engagement from your followers. You can see how many people viewed, how many swiped off before viewing all of your Story, how many visited your profile and any answers to poll questions, to name a few. By analysing the statistics, you can see any areas that need improvement and try to get better engagement for your next Stories campaign.

Next week, we’ll be looking at how to plan your Instagram campaign to achieve maximum success, and discussing how to choose campaign targets, time management and determining the role Instagram will have within your overall marketing campaign. If you have any questions about Instagram for business or want to know more about the services Pink Media can offer to assist you with social media, get in touch with us on 0151 909 2231. See you next week!

Black Friday

Christmas shopping season is officially upon us! With festive gifts in mind or just a treat or two for yourself, we take a look at some of today’s best Black Friday offers from our clients across the region…

Suites Hotel & Spa

Those looking for the perfect gift are in for a treat this Black Friday thanks to the award-winning Suites Hotel and Spa.

The four-star Knowsley venue is making gift-giving that much more exciting with a free gift up for grabs exclusively for the Black Friday weekend. With a spend of £80 or more on vouchers for its ‘Five Bubble’ spa, you’ll receive an indulgent treat from luxury skincare brand Decleor, which you can keep for yourself or give to a friend if you’re feeling generous!

Vouchers make the perfect gift for anyone in need of a well-earned pamper session and can be redeemed against a range of treatments or spa packages including Tranquillity Scalp Massage, Aroma Body Wrap and Discovery Facial to name a few.

This special offer is available throughout the Black Friday weekend in store only at the Spa at Suites Hotel (November 23 – 25).

For more information, visit www.suiteshotelgroup.com or call 0151 549 5400

 

Delifonseca 

Find the perfect gift for your favourite foodie this Black Friday with the help of Delifonseca.  

As part of its exciting Kickstarter campaign, Delifonseca are offering a spectacular range of money-can’t-buy rewards as a thank you for getting behind the worthy cause, which will see the Dockside eatery expand its premises in the new year. 

Stuck for ideas when it comes to gift ideas? Amongst the many rewards on offer are some excellent offerings that can’t be bought on the high-street.   

The range of gifts covers everything from experiences to bespoke artwork and includes the likes of breakfast for two, luxury hampers, soup for a year, chocolate masterclasses, cheese club subscriptions and even a trip to the champagne region of Bollinger for one very lucky recipient! 

Prices start from £15, with all funds going towards the Kickstarter goal.  

For more information visit https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/214922065/the-missing-ingredient-0/?ref=kicktraq  

 

Leasowe Castle  

If you’ve always dreamed of spending the night in a historical castle, now’s your chance!  

Leasowe Castle on the Wirral Peninsular is offering 50 rooms for £50 for a January stay when booked on Black Friday exclusively.  

Guests can beat those January blues and sleep like royalty in their own castle bedroom before waking up to stunning views of the coastal Peninsular.  

With only 50 rooms available to book, those looking to get a bargain will have to be quick to bag a mini-getaway. 

Leasowe Castle’s offer is for a room only, based on two people sharing – available for bookings made on Black Friday (November 23).  

For more information, visit leasowecastle.com 

 

Trattoria 51 

For one weekend only, Trattoria 51 is adding some special items to its menu in celebration of Black Friday. 

A Black Squid Ink Pasta dish and a delightful ‘Black Fri-yay’ Cocktail will be on offer to help refuel you after a busy weekend of bargain hunting.  

Accompanying the Black Squid Ink Pasta will be *ingredients*, whilst the The ‘Black Fri-yay’ cocktail will feature *ingredients* 

The Black Squid Ink Pasta dish and the ‘Black Fri-yay’ Cocktail will be served at both the Southport and Liverpool restaurants throughout Black Friday weekend, costing XX and XX respectively.  

For more information, visit www.trattoria51.com 

 

The Dental Café 

The Dental Cafe will be giving the gift of pearly white teeth this Black Friday weekend.  

The South Liverpool dentistry boutique will be offering a free treatment with every Boutique Whitening course booked between November 23 to 25, ideal for those looking for a whiter, brighter smile ahead of the party season.  

Clients can get their teeth around a free Grande treatment before starting their whitening journey. The treatment promises to lift stains leaving teeth perfectly clean – the perfect canvas for the base shade of the teeth to be lightened with Boutique Whitening.  

Grande uses advanced technology to clean teeth and gums with a powerful yet controlled jet of water, compressed air and fine power particles available in a range of flavours including Orange, Berry, Tutti Frutti, Mint, Cherry, Blackcurrant and Neutral. 

Normally £60, Grande will be offered as a complimentary treatment for a limited time only so whether you’re looking for a Christmas gift for a loved one or a treat for yourself it offers the perfect solution for a sparkling smile.  

As part of the Black Friday offer, customers can enjoy Boutique Whitening plus a Grande treatment for just £199 – a saving of £60. 

For more information visit www.thedentalcafe.co.uk  

 

Star Salon  

Whether you’re after Christmas presents or just fancy treating yourself to something extra-special, Star Salon is giving the gift of star-worthy hair this Black Friday.  

The Aigburth hair salon is offering a range of must-have hair care gift sets to leave you or a loved one feeling prepped and pampered for the party season. 

When you buy one full priced luxury hair care gift set from Star Salon, you can purchase a second with 25% off only for Black Friday weekend (November 23 – 25). Gift sets include Shampoo and Conditioner sets as well as Styling and Treatment products and include brands like Matrix.  

Gift sets start from £16 with a limited number of each available. 

For more information, visit www.star-salon.co.uk/ 

 

Opal Rooms Beauty Spa 

Exclusively on Black Friday, the Opal Rooms Beauty Spa on Smithdown Road is giving you the chance to properly treat a loved one or even just yourself with an additional 20% on the value of every gift voucher purchased.   

For example, when you buy a £50 gift voucher for a loved one, you’ll receive an additional £10. Gift vouchers can be used towards spa treatments, beauty packages or just to get your nails done.  

In addition, the Beauty Spa are also offering 10% off the highly popular celebrity skincare brand Environ. With products ranging from face washes, to serums, to sun protection, Environ is designed to address your skin’s specific needs, for example, aging or problematic skin.  

For more information, visit www.opalroomsbeautyspa.com