Public relations campaign for Cornish businesses

When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, the effect on the Cornish economy was profound. It was easy to see why the news agenda focused on the negatives. However, in adversity, many businesses explored new markets, or carved out new opportunities, to ensure they survived.

As a leading provider of business support, the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Growth and Skills Hub wanted to share some of the good news stories of businesses which had shown exceptional resilience, with many successfully adapting their offering in response to the Government’s restrictions.

We were tasked to find and create a series of positive case studies reflecting a spread of locations and industries across the county, pitching them to the media to generate positive news coverage to inspire and encourage the wider business community.

Objectives

The Growth Hub wanted to share positive media stories to show the strength of the Cornish business community.

The aims of the public relations campaign were:

  • Share success stories to address the current negativity and inspire business that may be struggling.
  • Showcase innovative ways businesses are adapting and ‘pivoting’ their business models to recover.
  • Highlight the positive impact of business within communities.
  • Promote the ongoing local and national support available.
  • Promote the services of the Growth and Skills Hub and the support available.
  • Put the business community in Cornwall and IoS firmly at the centre of the recovery effort.

Process

Planning

Together with the team at the Growth and Skills Hub, we researched a shortlist of businesses, identifying those with the strongest news angles for the media. The list included a range of sectors and locations with varying levels of involvement with the Growth Hub – from innovative ways for hospitality businesses to operate in the face of extreme restrictions, to tech-led innovations supporting the healthcare sector.

 

Writing and photography

Working to an extremely tight timescale, press releases for each case study were drafted with input from both the client and the Growth Hub. Where clients had no suitable photography, we sent our in-house photographer to capture relevant and press-worthy images to improve media pick-up.

Meeting

Once identified, businesses were contacted directly – or if a previous Growth Hub client, through their connector – and short interviews were held. The interviews gave us the opportunity to learn about the business and its pandemic response, and to develop a strong story angle.

 

Pitching to media

We created a series of targeted media lists for each press release. The media contacts were carefully researched, with tailored pitches developed in order to maximise the chances of securing coverage.

Video and audio

As well as generating our own organic PR for the project, The Growth Hub wanted to use some of the content we gathered for use in their post-project marketing.

Audio clips from meetings were edited, and in some cases video summaries of the press stories were captured and shared. Permission to share each businesses story separately from the press release was obtained.

Outcomes

Delivered from start to finish over a six week period, the project resulted in eight business case studies pitched to the media, and a wider supporting story based on data from a survey commissioned by the Growth Hub.

The project resulted in a total of 44 pieces of coverage across print, online, and broadcast, with a cumulative reach of more than 5.5 million people.


9

Press releases created


7

Industries connected


44

Pieces of coverage


5.5 million

Total reach

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