I have been very lucky to work with some incredible clients / projects over the last twelve months.
Here are just a few of them:
FOOD & DRINK:
Abergavenny Food Festival
Now in its 21st year, Wales’ most famous festival has attracted top food heavyweights such as: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Jamie Oliver, Monica Galetti, Jane Baxter, Jose Pizarro and Valentine Warner, to name but a few. By engaging with influential chefs, commentators and journalists both nationally and internationally, it has grown to become one the highest profile food events in Britain.
This year I have joined the small, freelance communications festival team to help deliver PR support across Wales, and secure pre-event coverage with press, bloggers and influencers.
Dusty Knuckle started life in late 2014 as a pop-up pizza business owned and run by husband and wife team Phill and Deb Lewis. They started by trading at local markets and festivals until June 2016, when they eventually moved into a permanent home at The Printhaus in Canton.
In early 2018, I helped them launch a new eco-friendly initiative; they became the first pizza restaurant in Wales to start selling sustainable, reusable take-away pizza boxes. The story was picked up by Wales Online, Cardiff Life Magazine and BusinessGreen.com, and ‘Dusty Knuckle’ was trending on Twitter in Cardiff thanks to tweets and shares from the city’s influential food bloggers and influencers.
Word reached the Italian press, and national interest there has resulted in Dusty Knuckle becoming the sole importers and distributors of the reusable boxes to the UK restaurant trade.
I now work on a retainer basis with the Dusty Knuckle team, and recently helped them plan and manage a campaign to raise £43,000 (via a 30-day Kickstarter campaign), to help them open a new, city centre restaurant in a former warden’s bungalow in Sophie Gardens. Watch this space… www.dustyknuckle.co.uk.
The DEPOT is a 24,000 square foot, formerly derelict warehouse that has now become the natural home of Cardiff’s most celebrated and creative pop-up events. I have worked on and off with the DEPOT team for more than four years, and their events now feature regularly in the local press as well as in national food and culture publications including Olive Magazine, Sainsbury’s Magazine, and The Guardian.
The DEPOT’s 27-year-old founder founder, Nick Saunders, has been shortlisted for a number of awards and accolades along the way, and won Young Businessperson of the Year at the Cardiff Business Awards in 2016 & 2018, before becoming part of the esteemed judging panel in 2019. depotcardiff.com.
I now work with The DEPOT on a retained basis, providing PR consultancy and support throughout the year – both for the original venue on Dumballs Road, and for the multiple live entertainment events put on by the DEPOT team around the city, every year.
BITE festival: The art & craft of food
BITE is Cardiff’s most exciting new summer food festival; an event that aims to encourage discussions around ‘real food’ and the people who make it. Founded by Phill Lewis (Dusty Knuckle) with help from Simon Thomas (formerly Street Food Circus) the inaugural event took place in the gardens of Insole Court mansion in Llandaff on Saturday 14thJuly 2018, and featured 25 top chefs each cooking a single, £3 dish.
Footfall on the day was generated entirely via a two-month PR and social media campaign (there was no OOH or media advertising budget), with coverage ahead of the event appearing in The Western Mail, South Wales Echo, Wales Online, Cardiff Life Magazine, and Visit Wales.
During the month of July, tweets from the @bitecardiff account generated 186,000 impressions and on the day, we recorded 1,244 mentions from festival-goers, featured chefs and the media.
The second Bite Cardiff event returned to Insole Court on 27th July 2019, with five more chefs added to the line-up, taking the total up to 30. The return announcement was covered by The Metro, Visit Wales, and Cardiff Life Magazine (amongst others), and on social media, the reception was rapturous; within just one week more than 6,000 people had clicked ‘attending’ or ‘interested’ on Facebook (a 200% increase on last year’s response). By the week of the event, more than 14,500 people had expressed an interest in attending.
On the day, upwards of 15,000 people visited Insole Court; plans for Bite Cardiff 2020 are already under way.
Heaney’s Cardiff – Restaurant Launch
In early April 2017, Great British Menu chef Tommy Heaney announced that he was to open his own very restaurant right here in Cardiff. Over a four-month period, I managed a short, locally-targeted PR campaign which helped push Tommy’s fundraising Kickstarter over the line (reaching the £40,000 target) and launch his temporary pop-up restaurant on the site of the former Fat Pig Deli in Pontcanna.
Cardiff Heaneys officially opened to the public on the 10th October. A drip-feed of content to the Welsh media in the weeks leading up to the grand opening resulted in a double page spread in both the Western Mail and the The Echo on Saturday 6th October, a ‘first look’ at the new restaurant in Wales Online on the 7th October. Following a VIP launch event and media preview meal, the first (resoundingly positive) reviews started appearing in blogs and local news sites on the 11th and 12th October.
Olive Magazine visited on the second day of Heaney’s being open to the public; their review likened the menu to “a glossary of en-vogue ingredients, though every namedrop on the lengthy bill (kohlrabi, kelp, sea vegetables et al) earns its place on a plate which is well balanced and impeccably presented.” www.heaneyscardiff.co.uk
Oscars of Cowbridge – Relaunch
After more than ten years of success on Cowbridge High Street, Oscars was starting to look a bit tired. Welsh design agency Wonder did a cracking job of bringing it bang up to date with a striking new look, and an eight week media relations and blogger campaign introduced the revamped venue to a new, younger audience.
Rave reviews from Cardiff’s food-blogger girl-gang, combined with targeted local media coverage in Wales Online, Buzz Magazine, Cardiff Life Magazine and Cardiff Now Magazine – all helped to give this local’s favourite a new lease of life. oscarsofcowbridge.com.
Bengo Media is an audio production agency based in Grangetown, who specialise in creating branded podcast content. They have worked with clients ranging from independent small business owners, to elite athletes, the Welsh Government and national healthcare brands.
I work with Bengo Media on a retained basis, helping to manage their social media presence, generate case study and blog content for their website, and assist with new business via outreach to public relations and content marketing agencies in the South West and beyond. www.bengomedia.com.
Siml is a social media consultancy owned by ex-Head of Social Media at BBC Wales, Owen Williams. Siml helps publishers to maximise their creative content, reaching the right audiences to engage key demographics; simply, making social simple.
I work with Siml alongside other freelance content creators on a project-by-project basis, assisting in strategy development, and general project and community management. Twitter.com/simlsocial.