Communications agency Liz Lean PR has won strategic PR and marketing briefs in the construction, sporting and leisure sectors, demonstrating the firm’s continuing growth within multiple sectors.
Rund Partnership is a specialist construction consultancy with offices in London, Eastleigh and Birmingham, working across a wide variety of sectors including arts, education, healthcare, leisure and residential. Liz Lean PR will be working on a full-service communications strategy for Rund Partnership, including PR and marketing, internal communications and social media strategy, calling on the team’s skills in the property and construction sector to help springboard the client to even greater success.
Founded in 2011, Dorset Polo Club provides sociable and competitive polo for all abilities, with two full size grounds and a brand-new arena, priding itself on its relaxed and welcoming setting. The brief includes marketing, PR and sponsorship sales for the popular Dorset Polo Festival, a one-day event offering attendees from across Dorset and beyond the opportunity to watch exhilarating polo matches and take part in a variety of enjoyable family-friendly activities.
Daish’s Holidays is a family owned and operated holiday company with nine hotels in England and Wales in some of the UKs most popular tourist destinations. Having supported the business through a crisis last year, Liz Lean PR will be continuing to bolster Daish’s marketing department by providing full PR services to boost sales in key geographic areas including Kent, Yorkshire and the Midlands.
Commenting on the agency’s recent successes, Liz Willingham, Managing Director of Liz Lean PR, said: “We’ve started 2020 on a real high with three exciting new business wins. As a non-sector specific agency, demonstrated by the latest additions to our client portfolio, the variety of clients we work with is vast and the work we deliver is always bespoke to the individual client needs. However, it is the purpose, ethos and commitment behind each brand that we share as a collective.
“It is an exciting time for the agency as teams get started on their new challenges and we’re looking forward to showcasing the breadth of our expertise and skill to this dynamic and mixed group of new client wins.”
Dorset-based communications and PR agency Liz Lean PR is now in its 22nd year of operation and since its formation has worked with clients in a variety of industry sectors on a national and regional scale, successfully supporting more than 180 firms with public relations, public affairs, strategic planning, marketing, crisis management, social media, corporate social responsibility projects and event management.
Now in my last year of college, I was excited to have the opportunity to do a week’s work experience with Liz Lean PR.
I came in wanting to expand my knowledge of my future career options, gain insight on what PR is and how a PR agency works.
Throughout my week at Liz Lean PR I was set tasks that were all completely different. I have developed so many skills and understood the important factors influencing day-to-day working life in PR.
Everyone at Liz Lean PR made me feel a part of the team and I was very lucky with the tasks that I was given, as these allowed me to get involved and hands on with real work. During my week’s work experience, I scheduled social media posts for clients, researched and got in contact with hotels for an event, sat in team meetings, planned a floor plan for an event, handled RSVP’s and managed a guest list – these are not even half of the tasks that I was lucky enough to undertake. It makes me very happy to know that the work that I have done is helping the team and that it will be used within the company.
The office was a great environment to work in too, with laughter, teamwork and loads of cups of teas every day! Each member of the team was kind enough to sit and have a one-to-one with me, so that I could understand their job roles in more detail. They also took the time to give me some really helpful advice on my next steps. The Liz Lean PR team was extremely welcoming and kind from the minute I stepped in the door.
I cannot express how thankful I am for my week with the company, they have really helped me with improving my confidence, my understanding of the working world and also the different career paths that I can take. I am really happy that this opportunity was available for me as now, I can see myself working in a PR agency.
Thank you to every member of the team, you have made my experience at Liz Lean PR one that I will never forget.
By Gaby Manning-Sinclair
Dorset-based PR agency Liz Lean PR has expanded its senior team, making three new senior appointments and formally expanding its planning and stakeholder engagement offers.
The agency has worked with clients on planning and stakeholder engagement throughout its 20-year history but is now bolstering these clients with a series of new hires.
Through their experience as journalists, editors, and political advisors, the three new hires will significantly diversify and enhance the agency’s offering and will set Liz Lean PR apart from other south coast PR agencies.
Ian Murray, former Editor of the Southampton Daily Echo, has been working with LLPR on select projects for several months and has now been appointed as a Senior Advisor with a focus on media in Dorset, Hampshire and nationwide. Ian left the Southern Daily Echo, based in Southampton, in 2017 after 19 years at the paper, during which time he was also Editor-in-Chief for a variety of Hampshire-based Newsquest titles. He is currently the Executive Director of the Society of Editors and is Vice Chair of the UK’s Defence and Security Media Advisor Committee as well as being a board member of the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors.
Andy Martin, former Editor and News Editor of The Bournemouth Echo, has been appointed as a Senior Advisor on media and stakeholder engagement, working outside Dorset and Hampshire. After 31 years at the Echo, Andy stepped down in June, and will be working on current clients and new opportunities with Liz Lean PR. Andy is also involved in training journalists for Newsquest and the National Council for the Training of Journalists, is a lecturer at Bournemouth University, and a councillor on Highcliffe and Walkford Neighbourhood Council.
Emma Coakley has joined the agency in the newly created post of Head of Engagement. She builds on her time working with Liz Lean PR on several planning and development projects and has been appointed to expand the agency’s work in this area and on wider political stakeholder engagement. Bringing with her over 5 years of agency experience in London, she has also spent time as a Special Advisor to the Chief Secretary to the Treasury and has worked on several local political and General Election campaigns. She will be working with clients to devise and execute effective strategies for both planning projects and community and reputation management.
All three will be providing advice and support to existing clients whilst also working to expand the agency across Dorset, Hampshire, and nationally.
Commenting on these hires, MD and founder Liz Willingham, said:
“With the media landscape ever changing, and as PR reshapes and evolves into new areas within our clients’ businesses, Andy, Ian and Emma bring an enviable amount of experience to the agency, allowing us to harness the change and push forward with our plans to grow.
“I am delighted that we have secured such strong talent around and am excited to see the significant value they are going to add to our client’s businesses across the country.”
Please email [email protected] if you would like to discuss how Liz Lean PR could assist your business, or to arrange a meeting with Andy, Ian or Emma.
At the beginning of September, I had the opportunity to do a week’s work experience at Liz Lean PR before I started year 11 at school. I came in not knowing much at all about PR but I wanted to throw myself into a completely different workplace that I knew wouldn’t necessarily be easy, or something that I had experience with.
During my time here I now understand how many different services that Liz Lean PR offers and manages daily for its clients. This includes communicating with clients directly on the phone, working on social media pages and blog posts, or writing professional emails to certain people.
I found that during my time at Liz Lean PR, I’ve become more productive and realised that being able to follow tasks explained to me is one of my strong suits. I also immediately noticed that the team are all extremely helpful and created such a friendly and welcoming environment for me that meant that I had no difficulty asking Shona, or any of the other employees, a question about my tasks.
While doing work experience at Liz Lean PR, I believe that I’ve gained new skills that I wouldn’t be able to learn anywhere else, that will help me in the future.
I’d like to thank everyone at Liz Lean PR for being so accommodating and helpful towards me, and for giving me the opportunity to really contribute to the company by treating me just like one of them.
As a non-sector specific PR agency and with the meteoric rise of influencer relations, a large part of what we do now involves working with bloggers and online influencers. At Liz Lean PR, we work with parenting bloggers, lifestyle, outdoors, active retired… you name it, we’ve done it. This means we’ve seen the good, the brilliant and, unfortunately, the bad, when it comes to influencer pitches.
We’ve built up a little list of insider tips that we hope will help influencers when drafting pitches and give examples of simple steps bloggers can take to ensure they are giving their pitches and requests the best shot at being successful.
- Check your spelling
We want only the cream of the crop for the brands we represent, so we’ll always favour the influencers and bloggers who deliver quality work. First impressions really do count so it’s well worth proofreading pitch emails.
We are looking for people to represent and embody the brand, and that, first and foremost, means naming the brand correctly. We often received several requests on behalf of Paultons Park – Home of Peppa Pig World from influencers that have named the famous pig ‘Pepper’ or confused the park to be called ‘Paulsons’.
- Always include a link to your social media accounts and blog
It’s a no brainer but we are often asking influencers who have emailed in to send us a link to their social and blogs. If you don’t include a link to your social media and blog, we have no way to review your request. Even if you have been referred through another channel, always include these. Clickable links are always preferred for speed and ease too, especially given that most brands and agencies will be receiving a lot of requests.
- Tailor your email for the brand you want to work with
A copy and paste email in any context will never bring great success and it is no different in this situation. Explaining you’ll showcase the ‘product’ on your blog when you’re hoping to collaborate on a day out or an overnight stay isn’t going to work in your favour. Another reason to proof-read your emails. Do your research to make your pitch as specific to the brand as possible.
- We will always choose true, relevant and demonstrated engagement
Bought followers and likes have always been a big ‘no-no’ for PRs and brands, putting influencers straight into their bad books. The same is absolutely still true and in recent months we have seen more and more influencers engaging in ‘follow loops’ to boost their following.
From our perspective, engaging with an influencer who has built their following through loops isn’t particularly valuable as the influence they have is only on other similar bloggers, within the same ‘circle’. We do decline requests if there is evidence to show that influencers have used ‘follow loops’.
Authentic and real engagement is paramount and where the value wholly lies from brands engaging with influencers. As much as we often have guidelines in terms of the following size, this will only matter if it is true and real. Alongside other stats and insights, most brands will look to see how engaged the audience is by reviewing the comments on posts, is the audience truly engaged?
- Give us extra information where you can
The best requests will explain who their audience is and why they feel they are the perfect fit for our client. Including screenshots of your Instagram audience data or a media pack is always helpful and adds weight to your case. Explain how you see the partnership working and where the value lies for each party.
- It’s so cliché but be unique and organic
The influencer market is so saturated these days, especially within the parenting space, so setting yourself apart from the rest is important. High-quality images are a must and having your own style helps too. Venture into a niche and do things a little differently. Almost anyone could be an influencer, so what makes your offering so valuable?
- Be professional and be suitably friendly
As much as it’s nice to have a friendly and approachable tone on email, a partnership and working with brands is very much in a professional capacity so colloquialisms, pet names, and kisses at the end of emails often feel a little out of place from a PRs perspective. Being polite goes without saying though.
- Don’t be disheartened if we decline your request
Just as journalists don’t always place our releases in their publications, PRs and brands can’t accept every request and there will always be a reason for declining you. It may not be down to your size of following, it could be that your content doesn’t quite align with the brand or that influencer relations aren’t within the current strategy. At Liz Lean PR, we always try and give this feedback where possible and encourage influencers to join our GDPR compliant database so that we can contact you for other, more relevant opportunities in the future.
- Once the agreement has been fulfilled, send us links to your social posts and blogs
It’s always helpful when dialogue continues until all deliverables have been finalised and posted. Sending links of the social and blog coverage to your contact and thanking them for the opportunity always ends the collaboration on a positive note. We will thank journalists when they publish our press releases, and so, this almost feels like an industry standard.