Beyond Robin Hood: Exploring Nottingham’s hidden gems

By Amber Macey

In the heart of the East Midlands lies a city with a rich tapestry of history, culture, and modern charm.

Welcome to Nottingham! Where every cobbled street whispers tales of legends past, and every corner holds the promise of a new adventure.

Nottingham’s history dates back centuries – renowned for its lace-making industry and the legendary home of the heroic outlaw Robin Hood, the city wears its heritage proudly.

Perched majestically on its rocky throne, Nottingham Castle stands as a guardian of Nottingham’s past. Originally constructed by William the Conqueror in the 11th century, the castle has witnessed countless chapters of England’s tumultuous history, from medieval conflicts to royal intrigues. But Nottingham’s history isn’t confined to the castle walls alone. Wander through the Lace Market, where the echoes of Nottingham’s industrial past resonate through the beautifully preserved Victorian architecture.

If you were told Nottingham’s home to over 500 caves going all the way back to the dark ages, would you believe it? Dating back to the medieval times and originally quarried for their sandstone; these caves served a range of purposes from homes, workplaces, storage spaces and even air raid shelters during World War II. Guided tours lead visitors through a maze of passages.

Nottingham also provides a haven of contemporary expression for art enthusiasts. The city is home to several galleries showcasing both local talent and internationally acclaimed artists. One such gem is the Nottingham contemporary, a world-class gallery renowned for its thought-provoking exhibitions and innovative programming. Situated in the Lace Market, this architectural marvel not only houses captivating artwork but also serves as a hub for students and professionals to peacefully work.

For those who revel in the great outdoors, Nottingham offers an abundance of green spaces to explore. Lose yourself in the beauty of Wollaton park, where the grandeur of Wollaton Hall never fails to impress, or take a leisurely stroll along the scenic River Trent. Nature enthusiasts will delight in the diverse flora and fauna of Sherwood Forest – cycle, hike or simply bask in the serenity of nature.

But Nottingham isn’t just about its rich history and cultural offerings, it’s also a city brimming with opportunities for growth and prosperity, especially for students. Home to two prestigious universities, the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, the city boasts a thriving academic community. Compared to other major cities in the UK, Nottingham offers relatively affordable living costs, making it easier for students to manage their expenses. From accommodation to dining out and entertainment, the plethora of offers, means students can enjoy a high quality of life without breaking the bank.

So, Nottingham is far from just a city – it’s a living, breathing tapestry of history, culture, and opportunity. Whether you’re strolling through the historic Lace Market district or exploring the winding tunnels of the City of Caves, there’s truly something for everyone. It’s a city where tradition and innovation coexist, where the past informs the present and paves the way for future.

Keeping your eyes peeled and your options open is the best way to explore future career paths – Finley Knowles, JHPR intern

Starting a university degree that you have always wanted to do is great, you feel like you have achieved something really big and you got there all by yourself, but what if you fall out of love with it?  

Exploring multiple options and trying new things is the best way to learn more about yourself and gain fantastic life experiences, whilst helping to further your career. 

I came to university with my heart set on being a broadcast journalist and although this is still an option, as the course progressed, I realised it may not be for me.  

I chose to do a personal relations module on the course and was so glad I did, as I realised I could be creative, still produce written, social, audio and video content, as well as work alongside multiple brands that I had an actual interest in. 

This led to me seeking a work experience placement at Jennie Holland PR for a month and wow, what a month I have had! 

Throughout my time here I have gained invaluable knowledge from the team and have been involved in many aspects of public relations – attending client meetings, filming and crafting content for social media, sitting in on interviews and drafting press releases, alongside getting stuck into research tasks and competitor studies. 

Access to JHPR’s media and editing software allowed me to be really hands on with creative assets, tailoring content and bringing brands to life through social channels, and it was really interesting to see how powerful these tools are for amplifying brand campaigns and messaging. 

Working across multiple sectors, from jewellery to construction, law and a whole spectrum of professional services, really helped to diversify my understanding of how different industries work and the important role that communications plays in ensuring brands are seen and heard in the right places. 

Being immersed in the brands allowed me to put my university skills into practice and apply them to a real-world setting, highlighting what I enjoyed most about my PR module I had enjoyed so much during my course. 

The placement helped me to understand that public relations is a path that I want to pursue and I’m looking to furthering my career in the communications industry.  

When I joined university, I was convinced I would leave a journalist, but my advice to anyone starting out is to explore your options, as you really will learn so much about yourself and the opportunities that are out there. You can end up doing something you really love, and you will also meet some great people along the way! 

The Benefits of Internships to Students and Businesses

Internships and work experience programmes are becoming increasingly popular, serving a multitude of benefits to both students and businesses alike. Overcoming the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the reduction of overall placements offered to students, businesses are now able to offer work placements again, bringing back a host of benefits to the business workforce, as well as the student cohort.

If you’re sat wondering what these advantages are, let’s explore!

Benefits for students:

  1. Competitive Advantage

Gaining work experience as a student is imperative, especially in a post-pandemic world where application rates are so high. Having a CV that sets you apart from peers is super important and something that will increase your chances of being hired and landing your dream job – because who doesn’t want to fast track securing their dream role?

  1. First Hand Experience

Real-life job experience gives you the chance to explore a variety of different areas that you may be interested in, which allows you to weigh up the sectors that you resonate most and least with in your chosen industry. Having a well-rounded view of these various roles will undoubtedly be helpful after graduation, rewarding you with a much clearer understanding of the career path that you want to go down.

  1. Building Your Network

Having a strong network can be helpful when it eventually comes to job searching, as this could even lead to a job offer from a connection that you have met through a work placement. Internships are great ways to build your network, especially by adding colleagues on LinkedIn where you can gain exposure and get your name out there to potential future employers. Having a strong network at the beginning of your professional career is invaluable and it’s great to continue these relationships after your internship ends.

  1. Securing References and Recommendations

After completion of an internship, it’s helpful to get feedback from your employer. This also offers the opportunity for you to ask for a reference or LinkedIn recommendation which are great to show future employers. It’s definitely worth asking!

  1. Build Confidence

Working as an intern sometimes means throwing yourself into the deep end, but this is not always a bad thing! Facing challenges head on and managing to overcome them is a great way to build confidence and self-esteem, with the effects of this not only affecting your work life but also your personal life too. Why not spark some newfound confidence and take the leap to find an internship today?

Benefits for Employers:

  1. Valuable Support and Increased Productivity

Taking on interns in your business can be hugely beneficial, one of which is allowing current employees to gain useful support on existing projects. By allowing interns to assist with ongoing company work, it can enable other colleagues to put their focus into more advanced projects, knowing that some of their other work is taken care of. This benefits both individuals, allowing work to be completed whilst teaching the intern key new skills.

  1. Mentorship Opportunities

Offering mentorship to potential future leaders in the industry can boost company morale and promote a healthy work culture. By knowing that you are helping to develop the careers of aspiring students, current employees may experience a higher rate of job satisfaction, boosting motivation and increasing effective team leadership.

  1. Excellent Publicity

Companies that offer internships and work placement programmes are often commemorated in the industry for allowing the new wave of professionals to gain key experience. Offering these placements can also increase a company’s visibility amongst universities, often broadening the employment pool even more.

  1. Employee Candidate Pool

Taking on interns can introduce companies to prospective employees who are well suited to their business, allowing them to assess the likelihood of the intern being a good team fit, as well as teaching fundamental skills and procedures that the company follows day-to-day. This could result in recruitment and training costs being reduced if employers decide to take on previous interns who have already experienced working with them.

  1. A Fresh Perspective

Often fresh out of university, interns can offer businesses a new perspective on their day-to-day procedures. With the growing presence of companies and businesses on social media, interns may be able to apply their technology skills to bring new creative opportunities that could boost social media marketing and online engagement.

Interested in applying for work experience at JHPR? We’d love to hear from you! Send us an email with a few details about yourself, what you’re studying and why would you like to join us to hello@jenniehollandpr.co.uk

By Eleanor Jarvis

JHPR teams up with charity to promote UK’s first live mental health event of its kind

We are extremely pleased to be working with Birmingham-based charitable organisation Be;Live, in the build up to its greatly anticipated, first-of-its-kind, live mental health event, taking place in Birmingham next weekend (2nd April).

We have a wealth of experience in the not-for-profit sector and have been appointed to provide digital PR services on a pro-bono basis for Be;Live — to build awareness and maximise ticket sales for the upcoming event.

Be;Live was founded by James Crystal who began the organisation after suffering abuse as a teenager which manifested into several years of substance misuse and criminal activity, eventually leading to a prison sentence and a diagnosis of PTSD and depression.

Now aged 28 and five years sober, James’ and the event’s aims are simple: to educate, inspire and empower people around the topic of mental health and ultimately contribute to reducing the UK’s stark mental health statistics.

Be;Live brings together not only professionals and specialists but also those with lived experiences, who have survived serious adversity, to share their stories, support and advice in order to change the way we all see mental health, providing tools for attendees to take the first steps in creating positive mental health.

Taking place at Gas Street Central in Birmingham on Saturday 2nd April 2022, the event – which can be attended in person or virtually – will feature a range of guest speakers, including former Sky Sports presenter, Simon Thomas and ex-premier league footballer, Clarke Carlilse among many others, who will be sharing their own personal stories around mental health.

The JHPR team have been busy providing publicity services to Be;Live by securing print, online and broadcast media coverage for the event, as well as influencer marketing services.

Georgina Mackintosh, our senior PR manager, said: “We are honoured to be working with Be;Live – James is a hugely inspiring and humble individual who, after going through traumatic events and facing mental health struggles of his own, is now striving to help others and let them know that no one has to go through hardship alone.

“As a midlands-based digital PR team, we are proud to be able to offer our expertise to help promote this unique and important event – which is open to everyone and free for students.

“Be;Live is an event unlike anything the UK has seen before and it will make a real impact on people’s lives, both those who want to improve their own mental wellbeing but also those who simply want to have a better understanding of mental health to support friends and family. We look forward to attending this year and for years to come.”

James Crystal, founder and managing director of Be;Live, said: “We’re overwhelmed with the amount of support we’ve had from businesses who are extending the work from our small team here at Be;Live.

“The team at Jennie Holland PR have delivered so much more than we could have hoped including an interview with Global and several PR pieces in press to help drive awareness of our event. It goes without saying, it’s the people behind these supportive brands who have understood how important an event like Be;Live is and we honestly felt Jennie and her team were just as passionate about our cause as we are. We’re eternally grateful for all of their support.”

Ticket sales and brand sponsorship of the event will raise funds for independent mental health charities who provide free mental health services on the front line.

In person event tickets start from less than £23, and virtual event tickets costs just over £10. Further information about the event can be found at www.belive.org.uk.

Calling all social media whizzes – we are hiring!

If you are passionate about and skilled in social media and have a minimum of one years’ industry experience, then we are looking for you!

We are a boutique agency in the heart of Nottingham’s Lace Market in the city centre, with coffee, cake, access to the shops and everything else you could wish for during the working day right on your doorstep.

Our environment is creative, inclusive and supportive of talent and progression, and we work smart and celebrate success (both work and personal). We offer flexible working with a blend of home and office days and additional annual leave days for keeping the mind happy, as well as team outings.

In this role you will be working alongside the wider team on a varied portfolio of great brands, across a number of sectors – and we can guarantee no day with be the same!

If you are looking for an opportunity to use your skills and creativity to wow our clients and make a real difference to their businesses, then this is the role for you.

We offer progression, ongoing training and development, and a fun place to work where you can thrive. There are no big agency politics or the ’sink or swim’ approach. Here you are a key member of our team and will be supported.

Job description:

o Social media strategy and implementation

o Develop optimised social media content, organic and paid and create design assets

o Content scheduling across multiple platforms

o Online community management: build quality followers and create engaged online communities

o Identify timely social media opportunities and action activity in response

o Keep up to date on the ongoing functionality changes of the platforms and embrace

o Auditing and analysis of social media channels to drive reach and results

o Creation of other non-social media content such as blogs

o Client liaison and meetings (with senior team members)

o Social media results reporting

Experience and skills required:

o 1-2 years of experience working in a social media role

o Social media content creation; organic and paid

o Track record of managing social media accounts and delivering campaigns

o Comprehensive understanding and a real passion for social media – the features and opportunities presented by the major platforms

o Digitally minded and driven

o Confident communicator and an excellent writer

o Enthusiastic and organised self-starter with lots of creative ideas

Salary dependent on experience and attitude.

To start your journey with us, please send your CV to hello@jenniehollandpr.com.

Applications close on Monday 29th November 2021.

How the pandemic has changed our shopping habits: The rise of the subscription box

If there’s one business model that has thrived as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, it’s the subscription box. From beauty boxes to craft and recipe boxes there’s truly a subscription box for everyone.

According to Royal Mail’s recent UK Subscription Box Market report, the sector in the UK has grown rapidly and is set to be worth £1.8 billion by 2025.

The report shared statistics around the highest number of subscription boxes per adult in the UK in relation to area, and in third place after London and the North East, were subscription box shoppers in our area, the East Midlands, which averaged 4.6 boxes per person per year![1]

For many people, food subscription boxes specifically became something that they relied on during lockdown when eating out was a distant memory and going to the supermarket was a weekly mission fraught with sanitising stations and queues.

Despite restrictions being lifted, the seed of convenience has already been sewn in minds of the customers that gave recipe or food subscription boxes a go. The idea behind this B2C model is that long-term relationships are forged between buyer and seller built around convenience and quality.

Delivery boxes, specifically recipe boxes, are paving the way when it comes to food and packaging waste in several ways. Firstly, as they are pre-portioned you get the exact amount of ingredients needed for a dish so you don’t need to throw any excess food. Secondly, when ordering online, we tend to only order what we need rather than being tempted by extra items that we don’t really need in supermarkets which leads to waste.

It’s not just big companies like Hello Fresh and Gousto that are offering food subscription boxes, many smaller, independent businesses are delivering this business model and thriving.

We are very pleased to have started working with local business Kerry’s Fresh who have also benefitted from the rise of the subscription box.

Kerry’s Fresh have been operating in Nottingham since 1885 where they began selling livestock from a stall in Nottingham’s Old Market Square. Over the last 136 years, the business has gone from strength to strength and adapted to meet the need of its customers. Kerry’s Fresh adapted their offering in response to the thousands of orders they were receiving during the pandemic, creating an online shop and delivering fresh produce in Nottinghamshire and beyond.

Due to their success during lockdown, Kerry’s Fresh has employed more staff and partnered with DPD so that they can deliver their products nationwide.

Their range of products now includes dairy, meat, fish, bakery items, vegan friendly products and even a selection of craft ales and wine. They expanded their range to during lockdown to include customisable boxes for family favourite meals such as roast dinners and stir fries which have been an enormous success.

What does the future hold for the subscription box? The Royal Mail report suggest that the popularity of the subscription model will remain strong as it promotes high levels of loyalty. Fewer than a quarter (24%) of subscription box shoppers said they intended to cancel their subscriptions any time soon – convenience is king, after all.

[1] https://www.royalmailgroup.com/en/press-centre/press-releases/royal-mail/consumers-drive-growth-in-uk-subscription-box-market-as-popularity-soars/

How work experience can help you on your career path

Graduating is such a minefield and can be a really daunting time. I have experienced this intimidating unknown twice now. I finished my undergraduate degree in the summer of 2020, which was overwhelming for obvious reasons. And while I knew everyone else was in the same position, it was difficult to not compare myself to those (and only those) who seemed to have their whole life sorted.

Now, I am facing my second experience of graduating. I am at the end of my Broadcast Journalism MA at Nottingham Trent University, a course that I applied to after the pandemic panic took a firm hold of me the first time around.

I knew I wanted to go into media and I figured by gaining more skills and experience in the subject, I would be in a better position a year on. And I definitely am. I am so grateful and glad I took the opportunity to pursue a Masters because I have learnt so many transferrable skills. So, what is the next step for me?

This choice can be huge and frightening, which is why I endorse anyone who wants to do work experience.

Gaining valuable professional experience is a fantastic way to learn more about not only your chosen sector but also yourself and how you work best; your preferred ways to work, your favoured tasks, your passions and what excites you. A placement can be the step you need to make sure that the direction you’re going in is right for you. While academic experience is extremely valuable in so many ways, I think it misses the mark on the learning you can do in a professional setting.

For me, my time at JHPR has shown me how creative and exciting the industry can be and how creativity is something I definitely need in my future career.

For example, I love how social media is all about the users’ and customers’ experience, and how impactful this can be for a business. I spent a lot of time creating social media content during my work experience, contributing to clients’ overall business strategies, considering target audiences and tailoring my work according to each platform. It’s highly rewarding to see the process from start to finish – planning content, writing, creating artwork, scheduling and monitoring, and seeing how well our content performs.

Not only was my time at JHPR valuable in terms of learning about the industry, but I learned so much from being a part of the lovely JHPR team. My ideas and questions were always encouraged and welcomed, and I was trusted and supported in trying different tasks for a variety of sectors, from writing press releases and listicles, to writing and scheduling social media posts.

If I can pass any wisdom on to other students and graduates who are currently wading through the uncertainty is that you can only benefit from a placement.

You will learn and develop the skills you already have and it will give you the confidence you need for your next step. Do research into the sector beforehand so you have an idea of what the placement will bring but also to ensure it’s a sector you see yourself going into. And finally, make the most of your work experience, learn as much as you can, ask lots of questions, and enjoy!

Interested in applying for work experience at JHPR? We’d love to hear from you! Send us an email with a few details about yourself, what you’re studying and why would you like to join us to hello@jenniehollandpr.co.uk

By Lucy Hilton

An ode to Nottingham – why we love our city

We are proud to be based in the heart of the bustling city of Nottingham, with so much right on your doorstep.

From quirky bars to charming independent restaurants and historic tourist hot spots such as Nottingham Castle, it’s no wonder the city has seen an increase in the number of people re-locating from the capital over the last few years.

As well as affordable housing, with the average house price in the city now £210,977*, extensive easy transport links and a diverse cultural offering, the city has a lot to offer to its current residents, visitors and those looking to move.

We love the buzz and vibrancy of Nottingham, and that’s why we’re based in the Lace Market, right in the heart of the action.

As things start to reopen – we have compiled a list of the reasons why we love our city, including our favourite watering holes, haunts and beauty spots.

Rich heritage

Nottingham’s rich heritage can be admired all over the city, stemming from the glorious grounds at Wollaton Park, to the historic corners of Nottingham Castle. From the legend of Robin hood, to the surrounding carved caves.

Whether you’re after a picturesque walk around stunning grounds, or seeking something a bit more intriguing, the history of the city covers every aspect.

Bars

Nottingham’s collection of bars is diverse and the city is home to some of quirkiest establishments around, including the likes of Coco Tang, Pepper Rocks and Hockley Arts Club, to name a few.

Wander down the city’s winding cobbled streets, and you can find many hidden gems and independent restaurants – it’s also home to England’s oldest inn, nestled beneath the cliff on which the castle stands, and the views from the outside are incredible.

Nightlife

Whilst it’s evident we are all excited to get back to the dancefloors again, Nottingham is a great port of call for a night out on the tiles. This diverse city is home to an extensive range of clubs and bars, covering all kinds of music genres – from RnB to indie, pop to rock, the choices are endless. Nottingham is also home to the famous ‘Rock City’, renowned for being the UK’s leading live music venue and club.  From club nights to live gigs, we are excited to see it restored back to its former glory, once restrictions are lifted.

Sports

Nottingham is renowned as a sporting hub and is home to Motorpoint arena, Trent Bridge Cricket Club, Nottingham Forest and Notts County Football Club – so whether its football, cricket or ice hockey you want – Notts has you covered.

Shop

If you’d rather spend a day perusing the shops, Notts is home to the likes of John Lewis, Flannels, Paul Smith, Vivienne Westwood, as well as The Victoria Centre arcade which houses a variety of retail brands. Many independent hidden gems can be found down the streets just off Market Square, and the Lace Market. One of our favourites include White Rose – a chain of eight vintage fashion boutiques dotted around the city, selling retro items, all in aid of a good cause.

Cuisine Culture

Nottingham’s buzzing restaurant scene offers everything from Italian to Asian fusion, American and beyond, with the likes of Oscar & Rosie, Mowgli and Sexy Mamma Loves Spaghetti – from street food vendors, to fine dining – the city has you covered in terms of dining for all kinds of occasions.

Riverside Views

Running alongside the River Trent, just a fifteen-minute walk from the city is the picturesque Victoria Embankment, with sweeping views of the river and easy connection to great walks along the canal path and to country parks such as Colwick and Holme Pierrepont.

The riverside area is currently undergoing vast regeneration, with several developments under construction such as The Yacht Club, Trent Bridge Quays and The Waterside Apartments, providing central waterside living options for all, nestled in between West Bridgford and the city.

Transport Links

With a tram line running through the heart of Nottingham, rest assured if you’re running late, a tram will only be a few minutes away, ready to transport you to the other side of the city in no time. Offering an airport, trainline and extensive bus routes, there are plenty of travel options for commuters, and trains run from Nottingham to London regularly, the fastest route being an hour and 32 minutes.

*https://www.thehrdirector.com/business-news/covid19/covid-19-accelerates-migration-from-london-as-1-6m-plan-moves-out-of-the-capital/
*Analysis of the ONS’s “Internal migration: by local authority and region, five-year age group and sex” dataset, published 24th June 2020 and covering the period 2014-2019

Life after lockdown: How can we look after our mental health now and in the future?

After marking one year since the UK first entered lockdown, we wanted to explore one of the hidden consequences of the isolated lives we’ve all been leading over the past 12 months – the effect it has had on our mental health and wellbeing, and what steps we can take to ensure we continue to cope and thrive through challenging times.  

It has been reported that as many as ten million people in the UK now require new or additional mental health support as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Dr Adrian James, predicting that the lasting effects of the pandemic on our mental wellbeing will be felt for years to come.  

As many of us faced uncertainty in 2020 – be it over our health, employment, living and working from home situations, or through concern for family and friends, the pandemic has understandably sparked a wave of national anxiety, as we grow increasingly eager to return to normality.  

But just as we had to adjust to lockdown life, we will also have to readjust once again when restrictions are finally lifted. Though not an officially recognised mental health condition (yet?)Post Pandemic Stress Disorder is a term being used already.  

Lockdown has presented us with some valuable learnings and opportunities tooin terms of revaluating our lives, identifying our priorities, putting things into perspective and setting new goals for ourselves 

So, what can we do to continue to remain strong through the remainder of lockdown, and get ready for returning to normality?  

We’ve shared our top recommendations to help with moving forward, to ensure we’re prepared.

Work-life balance 

As many workers made the transition from the office to home during lockdown, we adapted and developed new daily routines in order to continue our work from the safety of our homesA stressful time for businesses both large and small, as a flexible and fast response was required to keep companies running smoothly despite the upheaval that closing offices caused.  

Working remotely, though challenging, has revealed some of the qualities that are needed to do it effectivelyIt strips away all of the other ‘stuff’ that goes along with being in an office – the commute, what you choose to wear, the vending machine chit-chat, making sure you shout loudest about how busy you are – instead, it just boils down to the work, and the quality of work, that you achieve in a day.  

This change highlights the importance of a work-life balance, which has become a hot topic of discussion over the last few years, long before the pandemic hit.  

Learning how to switch off at the end of the day and not worry about all the things you have to do the next day, is a real skill – and one that is vitally important to your mental health.   

Little things like switching off your phone, or not checking your emails outside of office hours, will allow you to reclaim some valuable me-time that you can spend how you wish.  

Reach out to loved ones 

Lockdown life meant that many families were separated, unable to travel to visit one another and were reliant on telephone and Skype/Zoom calls to connect. 

The isolation we’ve all experienced from friends and family members can be used as motivation to reach out to those we haven’t spoken to in a while – as a lack of social interaction can remind us how important it fundamentally is to us, as humans. We are sociable creatures, so once lockdown ends, we will all be more grateful than ever to meet up with familiar faces once again.  

Since lockdown has helped to put aspects of our lives into perspective, it may also be the perfect time to reconnect with those you’ve lost touch with – school friends or estranged family members for example  or if you know anyone who has a history of mental health issues, reaching out with a simple message to see how they are doing can be a very powerful way of reminding them that they are remembered and heard.  

Make time for yourself 

Similar to creating a healthy work-life balance, making time for yourself will allow you to enjoy that all-important me-time.  

Instead of sitting on the couch scrolling through your phone or watching your favourite streaming platform, decide to spend your time in a slightly different way. Self-care comes in many forms, and really depends on what you enjoy doing, what relaxes you and what fills you with passion.  

If you have a hobby, or have something you’ve always wanted to get into, take steps to make it happen and spend some time on it each week. 

If you’ve always dreamed of painting – paint, if you’ve always wanted to try pottery – take steps towards making that a reality, whether it’s purchasing a beginner’s kit, or booking a class once they’re (hopefully) open later in the year.  

Set your own goals 

It might not be a new year, but the plan to relax lockdown restrictions over the spring and summer months feels like a reset – a chance to start again. With that in mind, setting goals for yourself for what you’d like to achieve professionally and personally will be a great way to stay focused, work hard and look after yourself.  

There is little point in creating too many goals, as you’re bound to set yourself up for disappointment (how many New Year’s resolutions do we really successfully stick to?) – instead, choose two or three things that you’d like to change or work towards.  

It can be small or large – go for a walk at least once this week, spend two hours studying an online coursetry a new recipe once a week, give up meat on Mondays – it’s up to you, but achieving your goals, no matter how small, is a very rewarding experience and helps you practice self-discipline. 

Celebrate your resilience 

The past twelve months may have taught you something new about yourself or your life – you might have realised you don’t enjoy your job; you need a new car or a new home, you want to start a family – whatever it is, using the time we’ve had in lockdown, staying at home and reflecting on what’s taking place in the world, may have helped to put some things into perspective for you. 

Remember – you’ve made it this far, faced uncertainty and anxiety and that shows true strength. What would the current you say to yourself 12 months ago, having lived through lockdown? Celebrate your resilience, and with hindsight and reflection, allow yourself to realise that you’re stronger than you think.

Useful charities, helplines and websites: 

  • Mind – providing advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.  
  • Samaritans  free confidential helpline, 24/7, offering support for anyone wishing to talk about problems or concerns they’re experiencing.  
  • Shout UK – free confidential texting service, 24/7, offering support for anyone in crisis. 
  • CALM – Campaign Against Living Miserably  a leading movement against suicide, offering support and advice.  
  • The Mix – a leading support service for people under the age of 25 experiencing mental health problems.  
  • Rethink Mental Illness – helping people with mental health issues through local groups and services. 

Brand profiling in a pandemic

As a result of the pandemic, brands have had to become more resilient and forward-thinking, tweaking PR and communications strategies to ensure alignment with fast evolving consumer habits.

Whilst also focusing on the here and now, business owners need to be setting their sights on long-term security, and through well executed social media, PR and digital marketing, brands can better respond and communicate with audiences in these unprecedented times.

As we’re coming to the end of 2020 and looking to the new year, it’s more important than ever for brands to set sights on the future and ensure communications are strong. As PR professionals, we have shared key brand profiling considerations to help business owners adapt, survive and thrive.

Flexibility

There is a real emphasis on flexibility in terms of communications strategies, and planned content can change quickly, influenced by recent affairs. Consumers are looking for brands to be in tune with what is going on in the world and press and social content must reflect cultural and social issues.  To simply sell products and services is not enough anymore – consumers purchase with brands that are environmentally and socially conscious, so they feel happier when spending, so brand messaging needs to reflect this.

Shifts in consumer behaviour

With this shift in spending habits, consumers are now more open to exploring new brands, and value, quality and purpose are all key attributes that consumers look for. They are happy to move away from go-to brands, choosing alternative companies if they feel they are offered more. This change in consumer behaviour has opened up the market for brands to adjust reach and target key demographics.

Brand response

It has been found that around one in four social media posts now mention COVID-19, and consumers are really engaging with content geared to health, support and people. Creating more empathetic and impactful content is key to resonating with audiences, so tailor social and press materials to include relevant contextual topics.

Supporting the local community is also proving strong during the pandemic, with many pushing the ‘buy local’ and ‘support small’ initiatives. Brands that have successfully removed the outlook of ‘them vs us’ have done well during the pandemic, with consumers favouring the ‘all in this together’ approach, with real voices being heard.

Keeping consistent whilst acknowledging big shifts is also important for instilling trust in a brand. A strong and resilient company is one that a consumer can rely on at any point and brands that communicate with respect, clarity, honesty and consistency, will find consumers returning time and time again.

 

Contact us today at Jennie Holland PR – as your PR agency, we can adapt and implement new strategies, strengthening your brand and business.