Tag Archives: shop local

How to market your local market…

Lancashire town pioneers a 21st century approach to promoting the much-loved traditional market

A traditional and award-winning market at the heart of a Lancashire town is embracing new ways to promote itself, while preserving that all-important personal touch.

Accrington Market Kirsty Lauder personal shopperOpened in 1869, Accrington’s Victoria Market Hall is one of the finest buildings in the town centre, home to more than 60 kiosks under its dramatically high ceiling, and with more in outdoor pavilions alongside the Market Hall.

A £2m. revamp of the historic Grade II-listed building was completed in 2010, quickly followed by it winning the coveted Britain’s Best Indoor Market Award in early 2011.

But it is people who make a market – the friendly traders, their stalls stacked high with quality fresh local produce at value-for-money prices, and their loyal customers, shunning the supermarket shelves in favour of a familiar face and caring personal service.

Accrington could boast plenty of both, and yet the younger generation were not prevalent among the bustling market’s regulars. Whether it was down to their busy working lives, the culture of out-of-town superstore shopping, or just not knowing all the market had to offer, there was, literally, a gap in the market.

What it came down to was “marketing the market” to a wider and largely untapped audience, and making its services more accessible to those with 21st century pressures on their time. Enter locally-based marketing specialists Scott Dawson Advertising, bringing a fresh and up-to-the-minute approach to promoting one of Accrington’s oldest attractions.Accrington Market online launch

It joined forces with Hyndburn Borough Council in a bold and innovative bid to combine the traditional market experience with the latest promotional tools. The result has been a pioneering pilot project – and a template that could be rolled out to other markets across the UK.

Now Accrington Market has its own website (www.accringtonmarketonline.co.uk); its own dedicated YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/user/accringtonmarket); its own Facebook page (www.facebook.com/accringtonshops); even its own Twitter feed (twitter.com/AccringtonShops).

As well as promoting the market and its various traders, the website allows customers to shop online, choosing a range of products available from its stalls, and even to benefit from a personal shopper, Kirsty Lauder. Options include a “click and collect” service, with Kirsty compiling customers’ orders ready  for pre-arranged pickup, or even free delivery within a three-mile radius in a liveried Accrington Markets refrigerated van

Kirsty (23), who works from the Market Hall, is often seen buzzing around the stalls filling customers’ orders taken online, by email or phone.

“It’s my job to oversee customers’ orders from start to finish, from the moment they come in until they end up in the customer’s hands,” said Kirsty.

“Whether customers call in to quickly collect their order at a time convenient to them, or arrange to have one of our drivers drop it off at their home or business, I can look after that. And if there’s something special that customers can’t see on the website, chances are I can hunt it out from one of the stalls if they contact me.”

There are even special online discounts for customers using the website, with a range of money-saving eCoupons which can be cashed in at the PayPal checkout.

It’s all a long way from the days when the only marketing a stallholder could rely on was his own voice bellowing “Get yer strawberries… a pound a punnet!”

Accrington Market Kirsty and vanNine months on from its official launch by Jesse McClure, star of the hit Dave TV show Storage Hunters, the online market is growing steadily, with neighbouring local authorities showing a keen interest.

Murray Dawson, MD of Scott Dawson Advertising, has kept a close eye on the pilot project, his team continually refining, improving and refreshing the model. Murray said:  “Hyndburn Council were very bold and forward thinking in adopting this approach and together we got to work developing a digital and practical solution that builds on all of the fantastic traits of our much-loved market, as well as making them available for the first time to an online audience.”

Cllr Clare Cleary, Hyndburn Council’s Cabinet Member for Markets, added: “We have a fabulous market housed in a refurbished market hall offering great local produce and goods from friendly stallholders.

“We knew that shopping habits are changing rapidly with more use of online facilities and were keen to capture this to allow more people to experience the fantastic good and services Accrington Market has to offer. We are glad we’ve taken this new approach and proud that we’ve moved with the times to make the market more accessible using the latest technology, whilst still offering the same friendly service and warm Lancashire welcome for market customers.”



Peter Boast, of Going Dutch.

Local shop is the first business to sign up for town centre promotion

Local florist Going Dutch is the first business that has signed up to help attract more visitors and shoppers to Nelson town centre.

The Chelsea Gold Medal winners, based on Manchester Road, were filmed in their shop last week and their video can now be seen on the dedicated You Tube channel, ‘Nelson Shops and events’.

“We are delighted Going Dutch are fully engaging with this exciting promotion,” commented Lara Oddie, Oddie’s Bakery. “As part of the promotional package they will also be featured in a leaflet that will be distributed to over 25,000 homes and businesses in the Nelson area.”

Nelson Town Team appointed Scott Dawson Advertising to run the promotional scheme to encourage people in to the town centre.  Towards the end of the four month campaign in September there will be a food festival, with stalls offering a choice of English and Continental foods, as well as Asian delicacies.

Peter Boast from Going Dutch, added: “It was great fun being filmed for the promotional video. I was a little nervous at first as I hadn’t done anything like it before, but the cameraman certainly put me at ease. I’m really pleased with the result and would encourage any other Nelson businesses to take up the opportunity to advertise their business in this innovative way.”

All shopkeepers are being asked to take part in the four-month promotional campaign and there will be opportunities for their businesses to feature in the promotional leaflet as well as in their own promotional videos.

Shops outlets or business wishing to be involved in the campaign, please contact Sue Lawson on 01282 426846

Nelson Shops & Events – Your chance to get involved

As you may have heard in the local press, Nelson is engaging in new promotional activities to help bring people into the town centre to – SHOP LOCAL!

We are asking all shopkeepers and businesses in Nelson to get involved.

Nelson Shops Leaflet
We are producing a new leaflet that will be distributed to 25,000 households in the area and YOUR business could be in it.

For a small one-off fee your business will be advertised, which includes video footage, internal and external photographs, a short piece of text, opening times and any social media links.

Interested? Call us now! Contact Sue Lawson on 01282 426846.

Mini Food Festival
Put this in your diaries! We are holding a food festival on 18th and 19th September in the town centre.

Stalls will be available for hire for all Nelson businesses that sell food in any shape of form!

From bakeries to battered fish, if your business sells food and you want to take part, call us now.

If you simply need some more details or to make a general enquiry, contact Sue on: 01282 426846 or email: sue@scottdawson.co.uk