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Designing a competition to secure college engagement


One of the largest manufacturers of building products in the UK, Forterra, was keen to promote its iconic London Brick to the brick workers of the future. The classic brand, which has been in production for over 140 years, has been getting behind the Government’s careers strategy to help plug skills gaps by supporting young people as they step onto the construction industry ladder.

Birdbox PR devised the London Brick Construction Hub Scheme which enabled further education colleges from across the UK to apply for, and benefit from, a donation of 7,500 London Bricks worth £5,000, new kit and tools for their construction workshops, and branded merchandise for students.

Colleges offering construction courses from within six Association of Colleges regions were invited to apply by outlining how students would benefit from partnering with London Brick and what they would build using the donation of bricks.

More than 30 colleges applied to become London Brick Construction Hubs and six lucky winners were selected by judges Stephen Harrison, Chief Executive of London Brick’s parent company, Forterra, and Craig Phillips, builder, DIY expert, business owner and Forterra brand ambassador.

Forterra were delighted with the impact of the scheme which helped them to raise the profile of London Brick amongst up and coming bricklayers, as well as generating some positive case study content to help demonstrate their corporate social responsibility, and high-profile media coverage.


Creating engaging content for a video marketing brand


Video continues to represent the fastest-growing communications medium of the 21st century. It is expected that 82% of internet traffic will be video-based by 2021. Already, 87% of marketers claim to be using video marketing. The moving image is set to continue to dominate communications, online, on social media and even in print.

A Wellingborough based design and print management specialist has combined the power of personalisation with the impact of video as part of its new vue tv product range. Vue tv incorporates a thin, high definition video screen into a printed brochure or business card or bespoke item and can be individually personalised. Launched at Marketing Week Live at Olympia London and showcased at the B2B Marketing Expo at Excel London, the video screens have a pin-sharp resolution, a full viewing angle and stereo sound. Video starts to play automatically as soon as the item is opened and the 1GB memory can incorporate multiple videos.

The team at vue tv were keen to showcase its offer online and engaged Birdbox PR to produce the copy for its website as well as an extensive range of material to support its inbound content marketing. With a well-designed web platform up and running and a ready pipeline of blogs and articles, enquiries are strong and business at vue tv is enjoying a higher profile online and generating positive business leads.


Producing original content for a new design agency website


With over 20 years’ experience in print management, PDS has a long pedigree of service. Founded in 1998 by Nick Shelton, PDS started by producing simple business stationery, and now offers a wide range of design, print and fulfilment services. Its team of over 50 employees is rapidly expanding at its Park Farm premises in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire and now benefits from its own in-house design agency.

To reflect the development and expansion of its portfolio of services, Print Data Solutions was keen to review its web presence incorporating a showcase of projects as well as a range of materials to help provide an insight into its services and how they could benefit its clients.

Working closely with the Director of Client Services and the agency team, Birdbox PR produced the copy for the new website as well as additional collateral including a company brochure, blog articles, top tips and a range of ‘how to’ guides. Since the launch of the new website, PDS have seen a significant increase in traffic and its rapid expansion looks set to continue.

Olivia Ray, Client Services Director at Print Data Solutions

“We have had the pleasure of working with Susan for over a year in a consultancy role for our marketing communications. Susan is a real "people person" and the whole team value her experience as a marketing professional along with her ability to adapt to different people and projects. Her approach is to simplify processes and make well thought out and balanced suggestions to gain a full understanding of what you want to achieve, this results in work being completed on brief, on time and within budget. Susan is highly professional, organised and trustworthy and has become an invaluable extension of our team. We look forward to continuing our relationship with her which goes from strength to strength.”


Helping organisations to gain recognition through industry awards


Pearson National Teaching Awards - North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College

North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College (NWSLC) is a large further education college that offers a wide range of full-time, part-time, higher education and apprenticeships over multiple campuses based in Nuneaton, Hinckley and Wigston. The College also works with over 600 businesses across a range of sectors.

Birdbox PR was engaged to raise the profile of the College and has successfully achieved this by devising winning submissions for high profile industry awards. Birdbox PR was responsible for drafting a nomination for the Pearson National Teaching Awards on behalf of the College’s Hospitality and Catering team. It was delighted to be selected from thousands of nominations as one of just 68 Silver Award winners across the country and showcased with national TV coverage when the ceremony was televised on BBC2 as ‘Britain’s Classroom Heroes’.

The Pearson National Teaching Awards, now in its 21st year, is an annual celebration of exceptional teachers, founded in 1998 by Lord Puttnam to recognise the life-changing impact an inspirational teacher can have on the lives of young people, many of whom go on to train as teachers themselves thanks to the significant impact their teachers have made on them.


East Midlands Chamber Awards - Business Woman of the Year

Following an entry drafted by Birdbox PR on behalf of North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College’s Principal and Chief Executive, Marion Plant, OBE FCGI, was named Business Woman of the Year for her commitment to skills and further education as part of the East Midlands Chamber’s annual quest to find the most successful and inspirational business women in the region. Finalists were selected from dozens of nominations for the Enterprising Women awards. Winners were announced by TV presenter Emma Jesson at a gala dinner in Leicester to mark a week of celebrations culminating in International Women’s Day.

Marketing and Recruitment Manager for NWSLC, Anita Ladva-Cheung said:

“I have been fortunate enough to work with Susan for the past 18 months. She has been a real asset to the College, and, to us, she is a part of the marketing team. Her calm, controlled approach to PR is refreshing in a world of PR noise and chaos. She is able to deliver content for all our markets be that B2C or B2B, because she has invested in our business and got to know us inside out. As a trusted part of my team, she is always reliable and goes that extra mile to make sure that the team and I can focus on our priorities with her support across all elements of PR. She is a PR professional who really gets the power of social media vs traditional media outlets and uses both to generate the right message for the right audience. Added to that, Susan is a really good copywriter - she always finds the right way to say things. I would highly recommend her, as long as she still has time for us!


MIRA Technology Institute

Birdbox PR was responsible for drafting the submission that helped the MIRA Technology Institute (MTI) to win a prestigious award as part of a scheme designed to reward organisations for their expertise in innovation. The MTI triumphed over two other finalists in the education and training category of the inaugural Leicestershire Live Innovation Awards at the King Power stadium in Leicester.

The MTI is an innovative collaboration between education and industry designed to address skills shortages in the new disruptive technologies surrounding connected and autonomous vehicles and electric cars. The centre was developed by North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College, along with HORIBA MIRA, Coventry University, Loughborough University and the University of Leicester. Built with £9.5m investment from the Government’s Local Growth Fund via the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP), the MTI is a specialist facility on the MIRA Technology Park near Hinckley and Nuneaton.

The Leicestershire Live Innovation Awards were launched to celebrate the very best technology, services, digital advances, and creative thinking in the region. The awards event welcomed over 200 people and featured a business expo and guest speakers who shared their expertise in innovation.

MTI Director of Operations, Lisa Bingley said:

“We have been working with Susan for over a year in the promotion of the MIRA Technology Institute. Susan is a joy to work with, she is enthusiastic and supportive. She is professional and her expertise shines through. The MTI is growing daily and without a doubt, Susan is helping us along the way. I would recommend Susan wholeheartedly.”

Citizens Advice Northampton PR

Martin Lord, CEO, Central & East Northamptonshire Citizens Advice

“Susan supported the work of Central and East Northamptonshire Citizens Advice as a trustee. Her contribution went far beyond that normally expected of a trustee, providing invaluable advice and assistance on a range of issues not exclusively related to marketing and communications. She was particularly supportive in helping the bureau through the process of merger with its internal and external communications, ensuring distinct brand positioning, and by helping us ‘raise our game’ in respect of events management, something which now counts as a major asset to our organisation.”

Northampton Collge PR

James Whybrow, Assistant Principal, Northampton College

“Susan is able to assimilate ideas and facts quickly and translate them into actionable tasks so that projects can be delivered successfully. Her written skills are second to none and have the potential to improve the quality of communications at all levels. I always enjoyed working with Susan and believe that her work would be an asset to any organisation.”


Tom Hings, Head of Brand and Advertising, Royal Mail

“I loved working with Susan. Whilst at Royal Mail she played a key part in the development of the new brand strategy resulting in the successful brand turnaround. Her grasp of the written word is second to none. She is meticulous and a stickler for detail. She is an excellent manager of people and knows how to motivate a team to get them working at their best.”