In a recent article on our website, we highlighted the Twitter campaign of the exceptional @FactoryNOW initiative, which BBI Brandboost strongly supports. This campaign has been using social media to report on the success stories in UK manufacturing and engineering which the mainstream media (MSM) choose to ignore.
So, we have now decided to find out whether there are similar champions for companies in the service sectors, particularly those hit hardest by the Covid-19 pandemic. We were certain they were there because our experience in marketing and communications indicated that they would be.
And we were right!
Long-standing champions of business
While researching for our website article "Stories that should be told" about positive news from the UK manufacturing sector, we came across this Tweet from one of the co-founders of Factory Now:
@Jefferson_MFG - Sep 17
UPDATE: British retailer 𝗡𝗲𝘅𝘁 has secured planning permission for a major new distribution centre in South Elmsall, West Yorkshire. The multi-million-pound investment is expected to create 1,000 jobs
Now this was a terrific piece of news that true to form, the MSM had neglected to cover. Maybe that was because it failed to fit in with their Covid-19 doom and gloom agenda for UK business.
However, the trade and specialist media are different. The UK can be proud of the range and quality of these publications, which is unparalleled elsewhere in the world. They do report on negative stories when they have to, but overwhelmingly they are committed to support the sectors they represent. Our many years of PR involvement with this media segment have given us the greatest respect for the integrity and quality of its journalism.
Therefore, it was to these publications that we turned for further news reflecting positive developments and confidence in retailing and two other business sectors where MSM coverage has tended to be profoundly bleak. Here are brief excerpts from articles we found, with links that can let the reader enjoy them to the full.
News from the Retail Sector
Footwear Today, 9th September (re The London Shoe Show)
All necessary precautions will be in place to protect everyone during the 2 days; and later evening appointments can be scheduled in advance with any exhibitors directly.
There is a fantastic selection of footwear, offering autumn as well as spring stock, high margins, point of difference and individuality.
[We are not sure what happened to the winter styles. Perhaps they were given the boot!]
Housewares Magazine 21st September
BIRA [British Independent Retailers Association] is backing findings from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) that spending on homeware and DIY is boosting retail sales figures.
The ONS released its retail report for August 2020, revealing a fourth consecutive month of growth, with sales up by 0.8% when compared with July.
The report, published today (September 18) said spending on home improvements continued to rise in August as sales volumes within household goods stores increased by 9.9% when compared with February.
Retail Week 6th October
Decathlon's sales have risen in the UK
Sporting goods giant Decathlon has reported a rise in annual sales in the UK and plans to open more stores here this year and next. Decathlon, the biggest sports retailer in the world, generated a gross sales rise of 10% to £277.6m. Online sales rose 18%.
News from the Hospitality Sector
Public Sector Catering 14th October
BonCulina has announced its intention to expand its UK operations in order to increase its market share of the UK foodservice contractor market, which is worth an estimated £10Bn.
The foodservice contractor offers a ‘simply different foodservice’ approach striving towards a ‘zero waste vision’.
Restaurant Industry Magazine 15th October
Award-winning and much celebrated chef Sabbir Karim has reopened his two well-loved restaurants, Namaaste Kitchen in Camden and Salaam Namaste in Fitzrovia... After a prolonged period of closure due to the UK-wide lockdown, both restaurants are now open, serving modern Indian food that celebrates the flavours of the sub-continent.
Big Hospitality Magazine 16th October
Reputation.com’s Data Science Team has analysed the digital trends from reviews and Google My Business lists of over 4,500 pubs and restaurants in the UK to piece together the top 10 data trends that matter for the sector... The overall sentiment we’ve seen has definitely been in support of the UK’s hospitality sector. Whether it’s for larger chains or independent businesses, people want to help out.
News from the Travel Sector
We were particularly delighted by the first item, since it is a local story from the Thames Valley where BBI Brandboost is based.
Travel Trade Gazette 14th October
International hotelier Grace Leo is to take over and develop The Red Lion in Henley-on-Thames in anticipation of a sustained staycation boom. Leo has acquired boutique riverside hotel The Red Lion in conjunction with Singapore-based shipping entrepreneur and hotel investor, Tim Hartnoll, who is also the founder of Bawah Reserve in Indonesia...
“After a prolonged search, Tim and I are delighted to have acquired The Red Lion Hotel. We see enormous potential for the property, especially in a post Covid-19 world in which we envisage that domestic tourism will become increasingly important, and changing working patterns mean that properties such as this have the potential to re-establish themselves as important community hubs,” said Leo.
Business Travel Magazine 14th October
FCM Travel Solutions has announced the launch of its new innovative AI reporting tool. Claiming an industry first, the TMC says AI has “never been used for this level of detailed reporting and analytics”... FCM’s Global Managing Director Marcus Eklund said: “Our new AI technology will enable FCM’s customers to take their data reporting to the next level, giving them easy access to their travel costs, patterns and requirements. This is going to save them time and energy, which are important as businesses start to travel again after their Covid-19 hiatus."
Travel Bulletin 16th October
Sandals and Beaches Resorts is showing industry support for travel agents with a dedicated trade campaign set to enhance product knowledge and secure bookings with a series of rewards.
The ‘We’re Here For You Every Step Of The Way’ campaign, launched on October 15 and running until November 30, 2020, includes training and marketing support, a straightforward online booking system available 24/7, industry benefits, perks and incentives.
It would be an excellent development if the service industries were able to launch sector-wide initiatives similar to the way that @FactoryNow is communicating the successes in UK manufacturing. But for now, as we thought it would, the trade and specialist media are doing an excellent job. If your business has success stories to promote in the manufacturing or services industries media, please contact us.