How a housing association ended up with (Creme) egg all over its face and on the front page of the Metro

How a housing association ended up with (Creme) egg all over its face and on the front page of the Metro

Offering a Creme Egg to great tenants probably seemed like a great idea at a team meeting. Housing association Valleys 2 Coast wanted to say thanks to its residents who’d kept up to date on their rent despite the tough economic times. It all sounds perfectly reasonable – so why did it end up as a knocking story on the front page of the Metro? Journalists like to write stories that take the view of the ‘man on the street’, the consensus and the commonly held belief because that’s how we make sure what we publish or broadcast is relevant to our audience. Seen from the media’s perspective Creme Egg-gate had all the hallmarks of a great ‘out of touch powers-that-be’ story. At a time when many social housing tenants were feeling the impact of the so-called bedroom tax, welfare reforms and the cost of living crisis, being offered confectionery by your landlord seemed a bit inappropriate. By the time a keen journalist and story-hungry news editor had finished with the story it was a splash (newspaper parlance for a front page story). I imagine that the South Wales housing association was at first perplexed, and then angry, over the story. They may have felt that they’d been turned into the big bad wolf when the sentiment behind the gesture was genuine. From the media’s perspective it was absolutely fair game. When we run media awareness or crisis communications training for clients this is one area that we always cover – how would this sound to a journalist? Your chief executive’s five star trip to the Maldives (to attend...
Helping bright British entrepreneurs get PR savvy

Helping bright British entrepreneurs get PR savvy

When you get a group of sparky, newsworthy and enthusiastic delegates on a ‘How to do your own PR’ Masterclass it’s work, but it doesn’t seem like it. That’s what happened at the day-long Masterclass held recently in Chester. In the room were a group of diverse, keen and attentive businesspeople keen to learn how to use PR to raise their profile, generate new customers and blow their own trumpet about the great work they’re doing. It was a productive, fun, invigorating and laughter-filled day. We see the cream of the UK’s entrepreneurial talent in our PR workshops. Businesses that are curious, hungry to grow and with the best stories to tell. This workshop was no different. Our delegates were: Fazane Malik – award-winning fashion designer and fashion business consultant. As well as running her own successful womenswear label (with the brilliantly catchy tagline of ‘forever pieces for 30-45 year old busy women’) she’s also the Fashion Fixer, helping fashion start ups learn the crucial business skills they need. Nicola Emmerson – the PR and marketing brains at BAKO North Western. This company started life 50 years ago when a group of bakers clubbed together, with a shilling each, to buy a pallet of lard. This cooperative has blossomed into a multi-million pound business: the only UK flour wholesaler, supplier of ingredients for the Royal Wedding cake and a key player in the British baking industry. Dominic Griffiths – from Energy Projects Plus. This organisation helps people cut their fuel bills and go green using education, training and old-fashioned advocacy. Over the years they’ve saved thousands of householders a...