i-build - Apr 2022
Woman & Home - Jul 2022
Cheshire Life - Jul 2022
Founder - UK
Can you tell us a bit about you, your role and Sir Bennett Gordon?
Sir Gordon Bennett has been in the making for almost 4 years. I have had a varied career from record producer to Executive Creative Director of Grey where I creatively ran parts of the P&G iEMEA business and European Weber Grills business. Previous to that I cut my teeth as a copywriter and creative at Saatchi & Saatchi and Ogilvy. After 20 years of running other people's businesses and building their brands I thought I should try and use what I have learnt to create my own. Deciding what though took quite some time; 4 years in the making. I had many ideas, some were just not feasible, others complete folly and a few made it to me writing business plans for them. The winner, after some internalising about what I wanted to really do, was Sir Gordon Bennett. It is an online store the purveys Great British products. Sir Gordon Bennett is all about extolling the virtues of well made products that last longer and that are made in Britain. It isn't some xenophobic or jingoistic platform that still thinks that Britain rules the waves but more of an appreciation of the things we make in this country. The beauty of buying British is that although we are not trying to be overtly 'eco' or 'green' the products we sell are intrinsically just that. Products that don't have to transported long distances are obviously better for the environment, products that are better made and therefore last longer are also not such a burden on the planet too and the economy and jobs are at the heart of the business too. We are trying to be as ethically sound as we can too with what we can be. All of our packaging is FSC approved, our boxes are 80% from renewable sources and 20% recycled, our tissue paper is made from industrial waste, our void packaging (which is a real blight on the e-commerce model) is Blue Faced Leicester Sheep's wool and even our gift cards biodegrade after 39 months.
We have only been actually trading since November '18, so my role in the business is pretty much everything. I work with my Brother-in-Law who does most of the backend, financial and operations, whilst I get on with brand, brand selection, marketing, PR, and vision. So I suppose he is COO, CFO and CTO and I am CEO and CCO. But being my own dog's body is more accurate.
What did you think of the free trial you had on Press Loft?
When I found Press Loft I thought it was a God send. And then being offered the 3 month trial was the cherry on the cake. One of the hardest things to do as a new business is get yourself known and trusted and your products in front of an audience that may be in market for what you are selling.
Which PR Activities do you do with Press Loft?
Time is always an issue with starting a new business, especially when you have to wear so many hats. So I try and do as much as possible but I am probably not using it to its full potential right now. We always respond to journalist requests for Hi-res images if we feel our products fit the ask. We have sent out a few press releases but I need to be better at that, that is for sure. Just having the journalists at your disposal through Press Loft doesn't mean they will open you release. We have tried a couple of collaborations with influencers but again need to be better at that too.
How is Press Loft helping your company?
Press Loft gives us some of the exposure we need to get our products in front of those that could be in market to purchase and in front of journalists, which would have taken us years to discover. Before, I am not sure how we would have done that, especially just single products in magazines. It also gives us a database of journalists that have already shown an interest in Sir Gordon Bennett so when the time is right we can talk to them about other articles (we will at least be on their radar).
What were you doing before you used Press Loft?
Not a great deal to be honest. Replying to journorequests when there was something we could honestly have an opinion on and reaching out to journalists that we have discovered through good old trawling articles, magazines and websites.
Who would you recommend Press Loft to?
I would recommend Press Loft to any brand big or small. Especially if you have a range of products that you want the world to see. PR is often cost prohibitive for brands just starting out, even those PR companies that are aimed at Start Ups. We were quoted £3000 per month from a Start Up PR company, on a 6 month retainer, which for a new self-funded business is just not possible.
Do you have a favourite piece of Press Coverage via Press Loft?
I have two pieces I think. One from Homes and Interiors Scotland where one of our Richmond No8 Kettles was classed as an object of desire (which it is). And The Cheshire Magazine where they didn't just show a picture of one of our products but gave a lovely review of who we are and what we sell. It really does make a difference to the business for people to see recommendations from the press. They say a new brand has to be seen or registered by someone 7 times before they will buy from you, which is a lot.
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