3rd October | Simon Mowbray back

How can the on-trade use insights to weather the storm?

The phrase ‘cost of living’ is engrained in all our minds, and it’s clear that consumers are already looking at ways to navigate the storm. So, as advisor to a portfolio of brands that are some of the biggest players across the UK’s pubs, bars, restaurants and nightclubs, we joined forces with our research partners at Censuswide to find out exactly how the current spending squeeze may be about to affect consumers’ purchasing behaviour out of home.

What we found offered a few surprises…

… And some clear food for thought, particularly for brands and venues looking for consumers to keep on spending with them through good times and bad. At their best, consumers are certainly being realistic – and at worst pessimistic – about the impact that the current economic situation is going to have on the cost of a night out, with almost one in three predicting they will have to increase their spend by 10%. A further one in four are planning to either keep their budget for nights out at the same level as it is or increase it slightly to keep pace with rising costs, but almost half – 47% – say they are planning to reduce their spending… and many significantly.

Crunching the numbers

We found that the overall effect of this could be a -6.9% reduction in on-trade spending overall.
And whilst younger adults – those aged up to 24 – may be looking to buck the trend by increasing their own spend on a night out by an average of +6.2%, it is unlikely to be enough to offset the anticipated reduction in spending by their older counterparts. It also seems these spending changes will be felt differently across the UK, with the biggest spending drops potentially set to come in the South West, followed by the East Midlands and then Yorkshire & The Humber. Consumers in Greater London, Northern Ireland and the North East, meanwhile, are feeling a little more resilient… but, even so, all are still going to level out as net spending reducers.

So what can be done to keep the nation spending?

Well, for starters, operators should be honest about the effect that rising prices are having on their businesses. Our study found that one in five people think venue owners should be open and honest about rising costs to soften the blow and improve consumers’ understanding of the challenges they are facing. Secondly, think about how you can keep on luring customers in. Our study found that more than 40% of consumers still rely on word of mouth recommendations from friends and family as inspiration for visiting a venue themselves, and similarly one in three said recommendations from said family and friends via social media are helpful. So start thinking about the tools you have at your disposal to draw in a wide range of customers – SEO, consumer review portals such as Trust Pilot and TripAdvisor, money saving vouchers and media reviews all have a role to play, as does venue generated content on social media. In addition, think about what role special offers, incentives and loyalty bonuses have to play within your marketing mix – all important motivators, according to our findings – whilst enhanced service and choice will remain important for one in eight customers, irrespective of the economic climate. And if you want to know more, then please get in touch.

18th November | Trends and Insights Team
R&T Trends & Insights: What’s new with consumers?

Are you ready to dive into the latest consumer behaviour trends? With the world around us continuing to evolve at pace, it’s more important than ever to keep up with what consumers are thinking, feeling and doing right now – and take a step back to consider the effect this… Read more

18th November | Trends and Insights Team
R&T Trends & Insights: What’s new in PR…

Get set to read up on the latest (and tastiest) goings on in the fast-evolving world of PR and social media. November has been a juicy month, so we recommend you grab yourself a snack and a cuppa (or suitable drink of choice depending on the time you’re reading this,… Read more

5th October | Scarlette Matthews
What’s in a friend?

  How many hours does it really take to make a friend?   Read more

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16th July | Simon Mowbray back

When it’s right to shout ‘YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS’

When British number one tennis player Johanna Konta – ranked
the 15th best player in the world following this year’s Wimbledon
tournament – suffered an agonising defeat in her Wimbledon Quarter-Final
against the now world number 32 Barbora Strycova last week, few batted an
eyelid about the reasons behind her loss.

She hadn’t particularly ‘bottled it’, as the saying goes to
explain why elite sport stars don’t always achieve the greatness that their
talent suggests should be theirs for the taking. She hadn’t timidly played
pit-a-pat returns in the vain hope that her opponent would blast their own
shots into the net. And she hadn’t lost her cool with a self-defeating fit of
pique that had led to yet another career-defining implosion so typical of many
fine talents that never fulfil their potential (see Nick Kyrgios if you want a
good current example).

Instead, Miss Konta had at worst succumbed to the severe
pressure of the occasion to start missing her range – with her trademark
power-drive ground strokes beginning to land just beyond the baseline.

As a mediocrely talented club player myself, I can only
begin to understand the pressure she was under. But, as an ex-journalist and
seasoned media coach, I can understand why Konta lost her cool with one of the
press corps in the post-match round of interviews.

Asked whether she “needs to have a look at herself” following her defeat to Strycova, a genuinely shocked Konta, who had conducted herself with her usual dignity up to that point, responded: “I don’t think you need to pick on me in a harsh way… Please don’t patronise me. You are [patronising me] in the way you asked your question. You’re being quite disrespectful and patronising me. I’m a professional competitor who did her best today and that’s all there is to that.”

She added: “I went out there and did my best and it wasn’t
good enough. Every decision I made, every thought process, every opportunity I
gave myself, I have no regrets. I did the best I could.

“Obviously, I’d have liked to play two more matches, but I
can take a lot away from this. I really feel that, even including today, I can
take a lot away from these 10 days, the players I’ve beaten and also lost to
today. Overall there’s a lot I can be proud of.”

There is no record of who the anonymous reporter is, and
neither is there likely to be.

By contrast, Konta’s reputation as a tough cookie and top
media performer is strengthened, as well as setting down a new marker for her
fellow professionals on how to deal with lazily worded insults from reporters
who really have no idea what it takes to play elite sport in front of thousands
of spectators and millions of viewers worldwide.

The parallel for anyone who ever goes in front of a camera
or microphone is clear – don’t just accept what the journalist is saying to
you. Feel free to challenge.

OK, Miss Konta might have lost her cool a little – and we
wouldn’t advocate that in a BBC Panorama-style interview or crisis – but she
stood up for herself in difficult circumstances, whilst giving a lengthy,
heart-felt and honest answer to a ridiculous question.

And for that she deserves respect.



18th November | Trends and Insights Team
R&T Trends & Insights: What’s new with consumers?

Are you ready to dive into the latest consumer behaviour trends? With the world around us continuing to evolve at pace, it’s more important than ever to keep up with what consumers are thinking, feeling and doing right now – and take a step back to consider the effect this… Read more

18th November | Trends and Insights Team
R&T Trends & Insights: What’s new in PR…

Get set to read up on the latest (and tastiest) goings on in the fast-evolving world of PR and social media. November has been a juicy month, so we recommend you grab yourself a snack and a cuppa (or suitable drink of choice depending on the time you’re reading this,… Read more

5th October | Scarlette Matthews
What’s in a friend?

  How many hours does it really take to make a friend?   Read more

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7th May | Simon Mowbray back

Richmond & Towers Celebrates Successful Launch of MediaSmart

Richmond & Towers is celebrating the successful launch of its new MediaSmart division – a distinctive personalised approach to advanced media training, helping spokespeople consider and prepare for all types of communication and engagement – after receiving a clean sweep of top-rate feedback from its first clients.

Launched by three experienced [R&T] media trainers who
are also hands-on strategic communication consultants, MediaSmart offers
clients the opportunity to choose from a range of coaching modules that match
their most urgent requirements, which are then further tailored to individual
needs and circumstances.

The result is a bespoke service that can cover anything from
unravelling candidates’ most relevant media landscape landscapes and developing
key messages, to issues and crisis management, thought leadership, internal
communications and how to communicate effectively in the social and digital
world.

MediaSmart consultant Simon Mowbray explains: “We launched
MediaSmart in the knowledge that unfocused generic media training is often a
waste of time and money for spokespeople in companies and organisations, whereas
bespoke media coaching related to the targeted delivery of compelling key
messages is a smart investment.

“We are therefore delighted to report that the first
candidates to pass through MediaSmart clearly agree that we are successfully
bringing this philosophy to life.”

Asked to mark their course out of a maximum five marks
against three criteria – Usefulness, Relevance, and Coaches – all 15 candidates
to have passed through MediaSmart courses since the start of 2019 awarded top
marks across the board, with summary comments including “excellent”, “builds
confidence” and “fantastically educational”.

“The theory, exercises and feedback offered by MediaSmart are great, whilst learning how to focus on key messages, even when under pressure, in a credible and relevant way has already proved invaluable in preparing me for the interviews I have since completed both broadcast and leading business to business media,” explains David Jiscoot, Marketing Director at Alpro UK & Ireland, who has been among the first candidates to be put through their paces.

Kevin O’Gorman, Head of Maturation at Irish Distillers –
maker of the world-leading Irish whiskey Jameson – adds: “The practice interviews
were really useful. We should repeat this every 1-2 years to keep refreshed.”

As well as Mowbray, MediaSmart is headed by coaches Robert
Metcalfe and Ian Jesnick. All have experience of delivering best in class
strategic consumer and business to business communication consultancy to start-ups,
SMEs, blue chips, multinationals and organisations operating in today’s fast
changing media landscape. The management team also includes MediaSmart business
development director Anouska Leon.

Companies, organisations and their existing and potential
spokespeople can get more information about MediaSmart, and initiate receipt of
a personalised quotation for media coaching at https://mediasmart.training/

18th November | Trends and Insights Team
R&T Trends & Insights: What’s new with consumers?

Are you ready to dive into the latest consumer behaviour trends? With the world around us continuing to evolve at pace, it’s more important than ever to keep up with what consumers are thinking, feeling and doing right now – and take a step back to consider the effect this… Read more

18th November | Trends and Insights Team
R&T Trends & Insights: What’s new in PR…

Get set to read up on the latest (and tastiest) goings on in the fast-evolving world of PR and social media. November has been a juicy month, so we recommend you grab yourself a snack and a cuppa (or suitable drink of choice depending on the time you’re reading this,… Read more

5th October | Scarlette Matthews
What’s in a friend?

  How many hours does it really take to make a friend?   Read more

Load more
See our latest work
Visit our portfolio
Read our latest news
Visit all latest news