Background

Bear Inns is the company that owns some of Cheshire’s most esteemed pubs, The Swan at Tarporley and The Lion at Malpas. The Lion is a recently renovated establishment, which was relaunched in September 2020 following extensive work. The Swan can be found on Tarporley high street and is a 16th century historic inn with boutique B&B rooms. The Source were tasked with retaining and growing the reputation of both pubs.

Objectives

  • The Source were appointed to support Bear Inns with PR and marketing ahead of the launch of The Lion at Malpas, and during the first national lockdown, to help the pubs occupy a good share of the market following the lifting of restrictions in July 2020.
  • With a wealth of experience in hospitality PR, we were able to devise an airtight plan that included a successful launch of The Lion, a redesign of both websites, growing social media channels and aiming for local press coverage.

Key Activity

  • Producing a relevant and consistent social media strategy that included regular posts alongside ad-hoc content.
  • Supporting the launch of The Lion with itinerary planning, invites and suggestions for the evening in line with Covid-19 guidelines.
  • Assisting as the business pivoted its strategy multiple times due to Covid-19 guidelines such as pushing outside dining, takeaway service and so on – relaying this content across social, on the website and in the media.
  • Seeking out relevant feature opportunities in the press.
  • Issuing business news at appropriate times, such as information on The Lion at Malpas relaunch to local titles.
  • Utilising a paid social strategy where appropriate on platforms such as Facebook.
  • Devising a blog strategy that included a mix of SEO content and pub updates.

The Results

  • The Lion and The Swan occupy #1 and #3 spots on Google for “pubs in Malpas” and “pubs in Tarporley” retrospectively. SEO-infused blogs are also returning positive non-branded, relevant rankings. For example, for the term “dog walking routes Malpas” The Lion is currently ranking #1.
  • A successful launch of The Lion at Malpas in September 2020 and fully booked out days in the diary thereafter.
  • Uplift in room bookings in both pubs after activity on social media and offers being pushed out via boosted Facebook posts.
  • An increase of 30% following on The Lion at Malpas’ Facebook page between June 2020 and February 2021, and an impressive 100% increase in daily impressions on The Swan’s Facebook page.
  • Both Instagram accounts have now surpassed the target of 1000 followers – despite The Lion’s account being relatively brand new at our time of appointment.
  • Coverage achieved across relevant local regional papers and glossies for both pubs, including titles such as Cheshire Live, the Chester Standard, Whitchurch Herald and Cheshire Life.
  • Successful Instagram collaborations with local relevant accounts such as @eatoutnorthwest.

“In less than a year The Source has already become an integral part of the Bear team. Helping to relaunch the refurbished Swan at Tarporley and launch the brand-new Lion in Malpas, the Source team delivered great service. We look forward to working with them in the future.”

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