Little Red Rooster and blogger partnerships: How we’re navigating the landscape in 2018

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Being PR professionals we are acutely aware of the ever-evolving media and blogger landscape and are catching our breath at the constant state of flux.

 

As such, the traditional methods of PR, marketing and advertising have dramatically shifted and brands are increasingly contemplating a ‘digital first’ strategy.

 

The Guardian recently reported global digital advertising spend is set to increase by 10% in 2018 to a not insignificant $224.7 billion dollars.

 

A large chunk of this online strategy involves working with “influencers” (yes, the gesturing quote marks are intentional) or in plain english good old fashioned thought leaders..

 

 

 

The latter is nothing new and brands have been working with thought leaders for years as part of successful marketing strategies and campaigns.

 

However, the influencer market is growing rapidly and fast becoming saturated with a bewildering choice of personalities, inflated fees and unreliable results.

 

We’re all too familiar with grinning B-listers pushing teeth whitening products with #ad sneakily tagged into the comments amongst a plethora of other hashtags.

 

So it’s no surprise consumers and brands struggle to separate whether an influencer has a genuine love for what they’re promoting… or they’re just being paid to.

 

New guidelines introduced in the US by The Federal Trade Commission now mean paid partnerships must be properly displayed – and not buried away in an ocean of hashtags, such as #ad or #sponsored.

 

Instagram itself has been working to better distinguish between candid, authentic images and branded content to help its users determine the difference.

 

In a recent blog post, Instagram stated: “A healthy community should be open and consistent about paid partnerships”. At Little Red Rooster, we think this is incredibly important.

 

We believe in authenticity, integrity and honesty – this has always been our ethos in terms of our relationships with traditional media and we consider these values equally as important, if not more so, when working with influencers.

 

 

Influencers now have access to a new tool that notes whether content has been paid for by a brand.

 

So, what exactly does this mean? To us, it means building genuine, long-lasting relationships with influencers in the same way we do with journalists.

 

Rather than negotiating a fee for ‘X’ amount of blog posts and ‘Z’ amount of mentions, we would much rather reach out to influencers with brands that best suit their aesthetic.

 

Securing organic social media coverage – either through a meeting, gifting products or a brand visit – is our favourite way to build viable and trustworthy relationships… just like we do with traditional media.

 

In an ideal world this sounds relatively straightforward and we’re lucky to have such an incredible brand portfolio to entice them. However, this approach is all about playing the long game rather than banking quick wins.

 

Many companies choose to pay influencers to achieve rapid results or to open up the brand to a new marketing medium and on the surface, this may seem more lucrative.

 

But before readying the chequebook, consider how the long-term results of our organic social method can outweigh a paid-for partnership – and we can prove it.

 

Our recent #H4Unfiltered campaign delivered meaningful results and returns to the client B&O Play. This was an unadulterated, organic campaign launching the Danish audio brand’s latest wireless headphones.

 

Using a carefully targeted list of influencers we provided each one with their own product and asked them to create some unique content to coincide with the launch.

 

The campaign generated 12,000 Instagram likes and reached 500,000 followers. The price of love? Nothing but the product and a nudge to show off their creativity.

 

This is where things get a tad tricky. We would love to approach gifting to influencers the same way we would journalists, but the two are very different.

 

Whilst journalists are paid to write for publications, authentic influencers rely on social media for a living and these platforms of personal endorsement reflect who they really are.

 

Therefore we wouldn’t ask bloggers to pay for the products we want them to promote, especially if they’re fans of a rival brand.

 

Instead, we prefer to provide an education on the brand and a product to try out – especially because we have 100% belief in our client’s products.

 

We see gifting as a great way of building relationships and their love for a product. This helps us curate a ‘little black book’ of influencers across each brand we work with.

 

 

Little Red Rooster’s approach taps into the socially conscious attitude of Generation X.

 

They’ve grown up in front of a smartphone screen and a forced collaboration can put them off. In fact, 17% of 18 – 24 year olds admit to discovering brands via influencers and bloggers.

 

There’s an upside to the new Instagram rules for brands too as the new tagging process allows advertisers to access useful engagement data for those posts.

 

It’s always been notoriously hard to gauge the success of working with influencers – we’ve all heard horror stories of brands paying huge sums only to find their posts are barely translating into sales.

 

The new laws not only benefit consumers, but advertisers automatically receive access to the same data as the influencer, authenticating the reach and engagement of every post.

 

There’s no doubt traditional print and online media are competing against the rise of influencers and it is clear Instagram is a powerful promotional tool brands ignore at their peril.

 

Although there are undoubted benefits to certain paid partnerships, we still strongly believe in keeping relationships as organic and real as possible. Little Red Rooster is about choosing the right partners for the right reasons and at the right time.

 

If you’re struggling to negotiate the digital landscape get in touch. We have plenty of ways to demonstrate how our work with bloggers and influencers is the way to go.

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You want a pizza me? (Our punning skills are a little crusty, sorry)

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We all know February is the month of love. It hosts the day that is celebrated by the masses, from couples, singletons, the old childhood sweethearts and anyone that loves…National Pizza day! Now, the creator of this heavenly day has unfortunately never been identified, but we thank you.

 

 

So, essentially the premise of this day is just to simply nestle in on your favourite pizza, be it the classic Neapolitan, the Chicago deep-dish or the curve ball that is the Hawaiian (thoughts?). To celebrate, we want to take you on a worldwide trip, exploring some of the different pizzas from around the world.

 

 

Neapolitan

Starting off with the mother of all pizzas, the Neapolitan. Naples, Italy is the birthplace of the pizza pie. In the 1600s it was a form of street food sold to the poor Neapolitans who spent much of their time outside their one-room homes. To honour the Queen consort of Italy, Margherita of Savoy, the Neapolitan pizzamaker Raffaele Esposito, created the “Pizza Margherita”, garnished with tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil, to represent the national colours of Italy as on the Italian flag – divine.

 

 

 

 

Lahmacun

There is some speculation over whether the Lahmacun originated in Turkey or Armenia, but at the end of the day it is a delicious spin on a pizza-esque snack. To make this all you need is a classic Turkish flat bread, minced beef or lamb and an oven! The loose translation of this dish is “meat and dough”, and that’s exactly what it is.

 

New York Style

Next stop, New York, where you can take a delicious bite of a thin and crispy hand-tossed pizza. In 1905 in the city’s Little Italy, the first pizzeria opened called Lombardi’s, today it is deemed the godfather of all American pizzerias. If you’re looking to recreate that elusive crispy base at home, the Smeg’s PRTX ceramic pizza stone works wonders. All you do is place your raw dough on the stone with your desired toppings, then “whack it in” the oven Jamie Oliver style. Approximately 5 minutes later you’ll have Mary Berry saying, “there’s no soggy bottoms here”.

£50.00 – http://www.smeguk.com/product/prtx/

 

 

 

Calzone

We’re back in Naples again but in the 1800s, and this time pizza has taken a different route. The original purpose of a calzone was to serve as a “walk around pizza” and the word translates to “pant leg” or “trouser”. It is achieved by taking a full-sized pizza, folding it and baking, a very portable grab and go meal indeed.

 

Chicago Deep-dish

This pizza was inspired by the Neapolitan, but with the toppings added in reverse. Firstly, the cheese is added, then the meat, and to top it off a chunky tomato sauce. Its defining characteristic is the crust, baked in a pan so it can reach up to 3 inches high along the edges. If you’re making your own and want to avoid lobbing your pizza on the roof like Walter White, might we recommend the HBF02 hand blender from our brilliant Italian client Smeg. The appliance makes for a stress-free mission completed in seconds. As well as creating a perfect tomato base, this kitchen staple is ideal for soups, smoothies, dips, purees and desserts, too.

 

£119.95 – http://www.smeguk.com/product/hbf02rduk/

 

 

 

So, whether you’re dining out with friends, putting our DIY tips into practice or unashamedly ordering a cheeky Domino’s, we say a very Happy National Pizza Day to you!

If you are heading out we recommend you visit this website to find where your nearest pizza dive is offering deals for the special day:  https://nationalpizzaday.co.uk/

 

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London, Florence, Milan, Paris and now the world: menswear collections of AW 18/19

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Over the past few weeks, Little Red Rooster has intently observed the coverage and buzz coming out of fashion presentations across the major European cities. From the Kent & Curwen show in London to John Galliano’s inaugural menswear collection for Maison Margiela in Paris; we have rounded up the hottest trends in preparation for the end of 2018.

 

First up, The Big Smoke where Christopher Raeburn presented looks that eccentrically combined animal-emblazoned wool scarves with multi-coloured cagoules, large backpacks and pop-art themed gloves.

 

The models at Danish designer Astrid Anderson’s London presentation strutted down the runway dressed as cowboys, donning full western-style hats, whilst others rocked opulent silk jacquard dressing-gown coats that reminded us of something Rocky Balboa would wear during his entrance to the boxing ring. But the most notably was Anderson’s check patterned overcoats and tracksuits layered with a cotton hoodie and beige trainers; a statement athleisure look for AW 18/19.

 

 

On the street, striking and thought-provoking style was also on show. Our highlight must be model and menswear fashion connoisseur Richard Biedul who sported a vintage Edward Sexton two-piece suit with a wide peak lapel and brown and caramel houndstooth pleated trousers.

 

 

From London, the fashion flock travelled to Florence for the menswear mecca that is Pitti Uomo. The event is arguably the most important in the men’s fashion calendar, attracting tens of thousands of editors, journalists, street photographers and retailers. This fashion fair is where today’s taste-makers pick what you’ll be wearing (or aspiring to wear) next season. The exhibitors included our highly respected client Pantherella, which has been making luxury English socks in its Leicester-based factory for the past 80 years.

 

Whilst many may have been peacocking outside, the main hall housed a range of powerhouse fashion brands including Corneliani, Birkenstock and Brunello Cucinelli with hiking boots being an up-and-coming trend for next winter. We were besotted with the very special restaurant set up by Gucci in collaboration with Michelin-starred chef Massimo Bottura. The Florentine brand created a truly gastronomic experience with a menu that included iconic Italian dishes with conceptual twists; situated in part of the brand’s new Gucci Garden museum.

 

 

Third on our whirlwind trip of AW 18/19 menswear collections was Milan. Prada showcased a range of clothing defined by its hardy and utilitarian nature; the models were layered in nylon with utility belts and multiple cross body bags. All the pieces looked ready for a gruelling day of work outdoors. Think, The Matrix meets Mission Impossible meets The Bill!

 

 

The French capital was the last and chicest stop on our menswear tour. Paris is home to some of the world’s most enduring fashion houses, from Louis Vuitton to Dior Homme and Maison Margiela. The City of Lights reinforced that you really need a pair of cowboy boots in your life; whether chisel-toed or pointed, heels or stacked this footwear was everywhere. The likes of Dunhill, Paul Smith and Wooyoungmi showcased a western selection of boots on the runway. Oversized shearling also made an impact, with Hermes and Alexander McQueen displaying the best in a natural hue.

 

 

It doesn’t stop there; menswear presentations are still due to take place in The Big Apple early February. Raf Simons, Tom Ford, BOSS and Perry Ellis will be just some of the fashion brands showcasing their newest AW 18/19 collections in New York.

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Designer of the Year: Cecilie Manz

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While Maison & Objet is so often thought of as the hotspot for a wide variety of up-and-coming brands, it’s also a time to celebrate more established names. This year, the prestigious accolade of Designer of the Year was awarded to Danish design guru Cecilie Manz: the brains behind the beauty of our very own Bang & Olufsen.

 

 

“All briefs start with white paper”, states Manz, “and three very important words – functionality, simplicity, and quality”. It is these three properties which are evident throughout the entire back catalogue of Manz’s work – from furniture design for Fritz Hansen to bespoke, experiential products and a number of exciting collaborations.

 

“Materiality and texture are also important”, she continues, “and colour”. But colour, according to Manz, is often an afterthought by many brands. Not for her. It forms an integral part of the design, tweaking and adapting as needed throughout the entire process. Perhaps, then, this is why B&O’s wide selection of colourways are often lauded as the most stylish within the incredibly crowded audio market.

 

 

Manz’s studio remains a small team; she supervises three fellow designers and at times, an intern, from her Copenhagen base. The studio, according to Manz, is “filled with stuff” – not just any old “stuff” as you and I would call it, but objects from everyday life from which Manz finds her inspiration.

 

Manz’s portfolio is divided in two; the first covers a wide range of experiential projects from her days as a young, unknown designer. It was in 2015 she was selected to partner up with Rud Rasmussen Snedkerier for Wallpaper*’s Handmade Project of the Year, which catapulted Manz to the spotlight. While she still continues to manage her own projects, the vast majority of her work now comes from brand collaborations, which form the second half of her repertoire.

 

You may even notice a subtle link between her various projects. Take, for example, Manz’s previous work for Fritz Hansen, which featured subtle leather detailing within the upholstery of sofas and armchairs. It was around this time Manz received her first commission from B&OPLAY, and created the Beolit 12; which also features distinct leather profiling. These connections are subtle, but a clear indicator of Manz’s understated elegance.

So, how did Manz end up working for Bang & Olufsen? Originally trained in furniture design, Manz began moving into lighting, ceramics and bathroom products as her career progressed. She states that she particularly loves crafting kitchen utensils, as “these are something you use in everyday life”. While technology may not be the most obvious next step, it is Manz’s desire to craft products that users will love and, most importantly, use on a daily basis, which led her to B&O.

 

One of her most instantly recognisable designs for the brand is the portable A1 speaker, which “started out like an orange”, in Manz’s own words. An incredible amount of time, dedication and detail went into creating the final product, and it is this attention to detail which Manz claims sets her apart from other designers.

 

“Being appointed Designer of the Year…I was of course very honoured”, concludes Manz,  “and the show [Maison & Objet] is a nice opportunity to show how far I have come”. One can only assume, thanks to her distinctive Danish influence, exquisite craftsmanship and unique approach to design, that there is still plenty more to come.

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When in Paris: Maison & Objet, Jan 2018

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Avid readers of the LRR blog will know by now that one of our calendar highlights has to be Maison & Objet. One of – if not the most – famous and inspiring design show in the world, Maison brings the interiors elite under one Parisian roof to debut the latest and greatest in the world of design. This year, it was our Lewis’s turn to take on the show with Maison veterans, Vic & Izzy.

 

 

Most notably, we noticed a real sense of playfulness to this year’s show; while Millennial Pink was still going strong, we also saw a number of brands introducing fun elements to displays. One of our personal highlights was Ginger & Jagger’s retro-style fringed furniture, alongside brand new funky 70s-esque floral patterns from Italian giants Missoni Home. One of our highlights, however, had to be the quirky inflatables of Aussie brand Sunny Life, which added a refreshing dose of character to this year’s exhibition. Summer vibes all round!

 

 

Sophisticated colour palettes were also rife, with Ligne Roset paving the way. On its stand visitors would find themselves poring over a seductive mix of rich, ruby red sofas and velvet teal armchairs; gold, mustard, plum and emerald green were also spotted throughout the halls. In addition, there appeared an emphasis on artisan craftsmanship; from the hand-wound wooden clocks, valet stands and furniture at Nomon to the familiarity of Portugese brand Wewood.

 

 

Finally, we always like to make a pitstop via the ‘Best of British’ row in hall 7. Here we spotted a gorgeous selection of earthy fabrics and wallpapers from Eleanor Pritchard; the colourful and distinctly British rug designs of female power duo Wallace Sewell; and the enameled pendant lampshades of East London-based brand CoolIcon Lighting.

 

After a long day pounding the halls, it was time for the gang to bid their farewells and head off back to London, our social media feeds filled with inspiring images and several new brands we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled for. See you in September, Paris!

 

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Creating the fourth dimension seamlessly and easily with Bang & Olufsen

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What’s the first thing we think of when visualising how we’d like a space to look? Typically, we think of colour, soft furnishings, art and lighting. But what about sound? Sound is essential to enhancing the way we live and relax in our homes. To demonstrate this, world renowned Danish audio and multimedia connoisseur, Bang & Olufsen collaborated with leading interiors portal Houzz, at its Houzz of 2018 pop-up installation in a five-story Soho townhouse.

 

Interior design firm Run For The Hills was given free reign to select a range of Bang & Olufsen products and install them anywhere in the house; and the results were truly inspiring. Wandering around the space on the first day, press didn’t notice the black Beolit 17 speaker in the bathroom at first: “They don’t look like tech products. I had to look twice to realise what it was!” noted one visitor.

 

 

Throughout, the home showcased a variety of products chosen from the stunning Bang & Olufsen range, including the BeoVision Eclipse television, the BeoSound 2 and the BeoSound Shape – the standout product by a country mile, which is more akin to an art installation than a speaker. And it’s not a case of style over substance; these products offer the highest sound and vision quality. You only have to look or listen to recognise this.

 

With a unique opportunity to highlight the heritage of its products’ design, Bang & Olufsen hosted a talk at the Houzz of 2018, addressing a variety of journalists and influencers, where the concept of sound as part of the fourth dimension in the home was suggested by interior design extraordinaire, Claudia Baillie.

 

 

Jeremy White, WIRED product editor took us on a journey of how sound and vision has evolved over recent years, with Bang & Olufsen at the forefront of this design revolution. Joining them was Lisbet Jantzen, head of customer experience at Bang & Olufsen, and Jakob Kristofferson, concept and design manager, who were on hand to explain how the Danish company designs products conceptually with unique touches to make sure the range fits into a stylish interior.

 

But this isn’t anything new. Bang & Olufsen has always been conscious about creating beautiful, quality products. It has worked with many designers like Maison & Objet’s designer of the year, Cecilie Manz on a range of products, including the Beolit 17, the Beoplay A1 and the Beoplay M5, and its Beoplay A9 and the BeoSound Shape were designed by Øivind Alexander Slaatto. In addition to this, Bang & Olufsen has collaborated with Kvadrat textiles to create covers for a range of speakers, including the aforementioned Beoplay A9 and BeoSound Shape.

 

There is now no longer a need to hide ugly televisions and sounds systems. In fact, with Bang & Olufsen, there never has and never will be.

 

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LITTLE RED ROOSTER HEADS TO BERLIN FASHION WEEK WITH SILHOUETTE EYEWEAR

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Every year, Silhouette, the world leader in luxury rimless eyewear, unveils a unique limited edition range of sunglasses crafted in collaboration with a like-minded, up and coming designer. Having previously worked with the likes of Wes Gordon and Arthur Arbesser, we were super excited to learn its partner for 2018 would be the exquisite design duo, Perret Schaad.

 

 

The collection was to be unveiled during Berlin Fashion Week – which is best known for promoting young, cutting-edge creative designers – and a couple of our roosters were lucky enough to attend fashion’s most understated yet one of the coolest events in the annual fashion calendar.

 

To celebrate the forthcoming collaboration, we hand-picked three contacts to attend the trip in the German capital. We were joined by Shelly Vella, fashion director of new lifestyle title Perfect Bound and curator of her beautifully shot fashion portfolio, The Stylish Stuff; Charlie Moore, woman&home’s resident fashion and shopping expert and blogger and influencer Little Miss Winney – who happened to be sporting her fabulous pink-tinted Inspire by Silhouette frames on the trip!

 

 

After an early morning flight from London Heathrow, we were greeted by a crisp whip of Berlin’s winter air and whisked off to the delightfully contemporary ARCOTEL John F hotel where we were presented with a goody bag containing our very own pair of sunglasses from the epic new collection – a wonderful surprise from the Silhouette team!

 

After a quick freshen up it was time to head to our first stop of the afternoon, Silhouette’s pop-up shop at the iconic Hotel de Rome – a stunning piece of neoclassical architecture in the heart of Berlin’s cultural district – for our first exclusive peak at the brand’s SUN18 collection. The new collection includes everything from beautiful iridescent rainbow coloured aviator-style frames, to retro shapes, dusky pastel shades and the exquisitely sculpted architectural design of the Perret Schaad collection.

 

 

After a quick Kaffee stop to keep us going, we headed to Perret Schaad’s official BFW Presentation. Once again, a suitably decadent building had been chosen to hold the show: The Kronprinzenpalais. The presentation was set out as a wonderfully choreographed all-female version of ‘The Last Supper’. Perret Schaad’s collection is full of beautifully flowing designs, in this season’s most sough-after pastels and bold tones perfectly capturing Berlin’s current flavour for stylish outerwear – chunky knits and layers – with a number of models sporting the new Silhouette designs, expertly showing how best to wear them for SS18.

 

Photo credits:@littlemisswinney

 

Following the presentation, we headed out for a whirlwind tour of Berlin’s must-see sights which included post-WW2 landmarks; East Side Gallery and Checkpoint Charlie.

 

After getting our glad rags on for dinner, we took a short stroll down the street to the renowned, Michelin starred Borchardt, a quintessentially European restaurant with a classic but comfortable feel to it. Nestled in a cosy corner downstairs, we were joined by members of Silhouette’s marketing and design team, where we enjoyed an array of tastily prepared food from huge burrata dishes, beautifully prepared steaks and a fragrant-smelling truffle pasta – Wunderbar! The next morning, it was time to wave off our guests, fabulous hosts and catch a mid-morning flight home – a short but suitably stylish and superb trip!

 

For more information on the Perret Schaad collaboration or Silhouette eyewear, please contact Emma Younger or Nicole Marsden on silhouette@littleredrooster.co.uk.

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Hey Google, how is your Vegas hangover?

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Hey Google. Two words that the technophiles of this year’s CES got very, very used to seeing and hearing over the few days of the world’s biggest technology show. At any given moment, you could look up from the glare of your smartphone or tip-tapping of your laptop keys and be confronted with the search engine’s voice assistant offering. Even watching the monorail come gliding into the MGM Grand station was an opportunity for a swift hit of Google Assistant advertising, with the few hundred-tonne train shrink wrapped in Hey Google branding.

 

 

Taking its role as event headliner in its stride, Google decided to shun the main show floor in favour of a three-story installation in the Las Vegas Convention Centre Car park. Decked out with a slew of gadgets and interactive demonstrations, the stand mimicked more a small house rather than your traditional show booth. One of the main attractions of Google’s wildly impressive and delightfully over the top outdoor stand was the “Google Assistant Journey”, showing how all of the products can seamlessly work together. Unfortunately, we didn’t get a peek inside due to the two-hour queue, but word on the street is that it was incredible, an opinion undoubtedly helped by the 15ft swirly slide at the end of the experience.

 

 

After virtually no major involvement at the show in previous years, Google’s CES 2018 presence was nothing short of the Shoreditch Man-bun takeover circa 2015. Wherever you looked, you saw it. More than just an opportunity for Google to show of its feathers, it reflects a shift in the show that was once steered clear of by the tech giants. With Google’s no-holds-barred takeover and Amazon’s competing Alexa, the overarching theme in the rise of virtual assistants was without a doubt the star of this year’s show. Ultimately, Google and Amazon’s head-to-head, fisty-cuffs-at-dawn style competition at CES reinforces the idea that Voice Assistants will continue to dominate, and brands need to get on board with these speak easy offerings if they haven’t already.

 

 

Beyond, the glitz and glamour of Vegas and the thousands of tech journalists who shuffle up and down the convention centres, what does all this mean for you and me, the average consumers? The idea of the ‘Connected Home’ is becoming more realistic than ever. Swiftly we are heading towards a time where one can speak to its fridge and order some more semi-skimmed, whilst at the same time discussing tonight’s pre-drinks playlist with the voice assistant built into your audio system. Will this lead to a simpler life for us humanoids, or is this all sounding a little too rise of the robots? Only time will tell. Although, I’m sure the voice in whatever gadget you are reading this on will have something to say about it.

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The Perfect Pitch – an evening with Cosmopolitan’s Editor-in-chief Farrah Storr

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Cosmopolitan has long been a bible for the “modern, career-woman”, a magazine that wanted to let its readers know they could have it all, and wasn’t afraid to go where other publications wouldn’t. Under Farrah Storr’s editorship, Cosmopolitan continues to hold its place on newsstands by delivering unique content in fresh and exciting ways.

 

So, how do you pitch to a magazine that is always one step ahead? On Monday our Rooster’s headed to The Guardian and Observer building for an evening with the Editor-in-Chief herself to discuss the five pillars of writing and turning that into the perfect pitch.

 

Tone

“Women connect through gossip. But gossip should never read like gossip.”

Women’s magazines have long been keen on keeping a conversational tone that engages and connects with its readers. People are buying a voice when they read your work so you need to make sure your voice compels them to go on a journey with you. Your pitch should show that you understand that.

 

Twist

“Everyone tells the same story. It’s how cleverly you spin it that makes it truly memorable.”

If you can pitch an idea with a question, you’re halfway there – especially if you can’t answer that question straight away. Every successful piece of writing has a moment of change. It is important to not have an agenda when pitching a story, keeping an open mind allows new perspectives to emerge.

 

Trend

“Nothing excites a commissioning editor more than a social trend.”

The saying goes if 3 or more people are doing it, it’s a social trend. Spotting new social trends, or a fresh take on ongoing trends is a great way to start your pitch. While 3 is probably slightly low you can use your intuition to pick up new trends from those around you. Reading newspapers and social media will also help you can use to track the rise of a new FAD.

 

Take-away

“Quality women’s magazine journalism should enhance your life.”

If a story has something a reader can take away with them it will keep them coming back for more. What facts and data will give your story some hard service? The kind of story that offers some specific advice to upgrade your routine will stick with readers. Speak to the experts who can offer you the facts and put some extra weight behind your pitch.

 

Trust

“Journalists should seek the truth, present the truth and stand by the truth.”

Whether you are pitching the story or writing it, trust is a key element in any feature. In the era of “fake news” quality journalists must work harder than ever to fact-check everything and build a relationship of trust with their audience. Your industry relationships will always be your strongest asset and how you pitch an idea can help or hurt that. Build your relationships by pitching with integrity.

 

If you enjoyed this blog why not read about when we met Marie Claire Editor-in-Chief Trish Halpin.

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The Value of PR Internships

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In recent years there has been much discussion in the press regarding the exploitation of interns – particularly in the PR industry. With the job market growing increasingly competitive by the day, the PRCA even launched a campaign with PR Week lobbying to end the practice of unpaid PR internships.

 

Amongst all this negativity, however, here at Little Red Rooster we’ve long championed the value of our PR internship programme, ensuring every single student or graduate who walks through the door to the Coop is treated fairly, gains meaningful experience and, more importantly, enjoys their time with us. In fact, as part of our boot camp every intern will leave with either a solid job offer or a reference to take with them on their career journey (for example, thanks to their experience at LRR former interns have found full-time work at major fashion houses such as Mulberry and Roland Mouret). In fact, almost 50% of our current team started out as interns – four of which have been here over two years, while our Izzy has grown with the company and been with us for almost five!

 

Unlike most London agencies, our interns don’t find themselves cowering in the stock cupboard or consigned to the kitchen making endless cups of tea (even though we do drink plenty of it). Our placements are hands-on. Because, after all, we’re an agency that works incredibly hard – but does so as one team.

 

 

So, while you may find yourself packing the odd sample to send to a Vogue stylist from time to time, you’ll also be drafting blogs and basic press releases, preparing press clippings and client emails, and even helping out at major events such as our infamous Summer Showcase. There’s no denying we’re an incredibly fast-paced and dynamic agency, but we believe there’s no better way to learn. We provide our interns with a comprehensive overview of not just our clients and the way we work but the industry as a whole – and what to expect as they progress throughout their career.

 

With this in mind, we’re incredibly proud of our track record and the fact so many of our former interns are still with us and are now vital members of the team, leading major accounts such as Smeg and Ted Baker. It always helps junior team members feel encouraged about a company that treats its employees fairly, and also knowing that even senior staff have been in your position.

 

Applying for your first role in PR can be frustrating, but if you want to get ahead in PR, at first you have to get in. So be prepared to work hard. Be enthusiastic. Be clear about your agenda and explicit in your ambition. Build a thick skin. And do whatever you can to assist your team and your colleagues – notice one of your peers constantly staying late? Offer to help, rather than shooting off out of the door bang on 5pm. It goes a long way, and we can assure you it doesn’t go unnoticed.

 

Many agencies purposefully don’t pay their interns, instead rather seeing them as free labour – and there’s some argument to be had that everyone has to start somewhere. But don’t resign yourself to spending two years unpaid. Look for agencies that offer fair pay – it’s likely to give you a good indication of that it’s actually like to work there and how the staff are treated (you can find the PRCA’s full list of UK agencies which pay their interns here).

 

If you’d like to find out more about a PR internship at LRR, why not have a read of our Emma’s first-hand experience back in 2016 or get in touch and apply for a placement here.

 

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ULTRA VIOLET: The Pantone Rule of Cool for 2018

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Pantone, the market expert in colour and trend predictions, has chosen Ultra Violet as the colour of the year in 2018. The shade (Pantone 18-3838) graced many of the Spring Summer 18 showcases in Paris, Milan, New York and London back in September, and has only continued to grow in popularity since then.

 

The colour trend has graced a number of catwalks, from Gucci to Givenchy, with a variety of different interpretations across the bevvy of beautiful designs. On the far left, Marni created a stunning silk printed dress with a high neck and stand-out accessories. Meanwhile, Balenciaga used the violet shade to make urban outerwear look more-chic than ever!

 

 

 

 

So, what do we know about Ultra Violet? Well, Pantone has said the blue-based purple colour is “a dramatically provocative and thoughtful shade that communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future.”

 

Futuristic thinking has always been associated with Violet’s colour family, purple. Throughout early history, purple was famously the hardest shade to create using dyes, so was only associated with the most fashion forward and luxurious products and people. Colour is an essential element in the equation of futuristic fashion. Laurie Pressman, VP of the Pantone Colour Institute, said: “As individuals around the world become more fascinated with colour and realise its ability to convey deep messages and meanings, designers and brands should feel empowered to use colour to inspire and influence.”

 

Here at Little Red Rooster, we like to stay abreast of the latest the trends. We actually predicted lilac and purple to be key colours for 2018, in our blog post about the Colour Hive event in September. Whether it be stunning sounds or interesting interiors, we have got something to make sure you are bang on with the Ultra Violet movement this year!

 

 

Here’s our guide to the perfect purple presents, starting off with the beautiful Beoplay H4 headphones in a purple hue. These headphones have up to 19hrs battery life, and they can also play wirelessly via Bluetooth, creating the perfect mix of high quality sound and true comfort.

 

(£249.00 at https://www.beoplay.com/)

 

Next, a stunning homeware piece from Ted Baker London. This stunning violet throw is crafted from pure alpaca wool. The modern and minimal accessory has tasselled edges to bring a touch of texture to your boudoir. In such an on-trend shade as well, how could you not want to add this beauty to your home?

 

(£129.00 at http://www.tedbaker.com/uk)

 

If you want to make a big statement with violet, Bradshaw have got it sorted. Steel’s exclusive collaboration with Le Creuset means that it’s Ascot, Genesi and Oxford appliances are all now available in a unique and stunning purple Le Creuset shade, perfect for adding a contemporary update to your kitchen.

 

(Genesi 120 range cooker, Prices from £5970 Excl. VAT, www.bradshawluxury.co.uk)

 

The fourth gift is the delightful HORO Folio Case for Apple iPhone 8 Plus / 7 Plus from Proporta. This beautiful case comes in a delicious deep damson shade and is made from the best quality of leather. It’s a stylish accessory for your phone whilst also providing excellent protection to the body of the device and the screen.

 

(£88.00 at https://www.proporta.co.uk/)

 

If you are looking for a violet accessory which will produce equal parts sound and style, the Beoplay A1 is perfect for you. Commended for its extreme levels of sound for a speaker of its size, the A1 has a battery life of up to 24 hours and built in microphone too.

 

(£229.00 https://www.beoplay.com/)

 

The bright purple socks in the “Danvers” style would make a perfect gift to yourself or a loved one. Incredibly durable and made from the highest quality Fil d’Ecosse, these men’s dress socks are hand-finished creating a premium men’s sock, available in a range of colours.

 

(£12.00 https://www.pantherella.com/)

 

The final element of our perfect purple picks is a stunning bespoke radiator from Bisque, available in a bold violet shade. This beautiful product will keep your home feeling cosy whilst also looking simply fabulous.

 

(Prices on request https://www.bisque.co.uk/)

 

We think it’s pretty clear that ultra violet is ultra cool, and here to stay. So why not go for one, two, or all of our beautiful purple picks to make sure you stand out and stay on trend?

 

 

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Launching a popular high street brand into the interiors vertical: At Home with Ted

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Last year we introduced you to ‘At Home with Ted’ – a major press event we hosted in conjunction with Ted Baker to unveil its brand new range of homewares and accessories (head to our previous post here if you missed it!)

 

But what happened next, we hear you ask?

 

Well, we’re proud to say the months post-event were as smooth and successful as the day itself. We were tasked with launching this global, multi-million-pound fashion brand into the interiors sector, and secured a whopping 53 pieces of coverage within just a few short months in the process.

 

Head to our most recent case study to find out more.

 

At home with Ted Baker

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8 products to help you smash your New Year’s resolutions in style

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You’ve made it through the first working week of January, well done you. And since overindulge December now feels like a distant memory, I’m sure the strain of that Dry January vow is starting to take its toll.

 

I’m afraid we can’t bring back December, but we can sure make January a bit easier for you with our pick of the best products to ease your return to the daily grind, and help you smash those New Year’s resolutions. From fitness aids to savvy saving ideas, we’ve got the low down on the tools you need for resolution success. Because #NewYearNewYou right? Groan!

 

Get fit

Come January we all want to work off the Christmas pounds but on this dark January day I bet the thought of a treadmill is making you shudder with dread. If you’re looking for the right tool to kickstart your fitness motivation a MYZONE MZ-3 belt could be just what you need. MYZONE is a wearable fitness tracker that shows and rewards effort when you exercise. It analyses your personal handicap based on your maximum heart rate and creates bespoke targets just for you. Unlike many other trackers, MYZONE doesn’t discriminate between exercise styles meaning you can score MEPs for virtually any activity from ice-skating to weight-lifting, jogging to horse-riding- all of which are logged on your personal profile. What are you waiting for?!

 

 

Drink more water, it doesn’t sound that hard does it? But I must admit that, like most, I am guilty of not drinking enough. The thought is certainly there, and my car is full of half-drunk bottles of mineral water, but after recently discovering the dangers of drinking from plastic water bottles and not forgetting the sheer scale of damage that plastic waste has on our environment, I have decided that enough is enough. Whilst there are tons of reusable water bottles on the market, my favourite has to be Stay Sixty. The double-walled stainless-steel helps keep your water, juice or protein shakes fresher for longer and the removable base allows for fuss-free cleaning. The bottles themselves are beautifully crafted and the pantone inspired colourways are also highly on-trend.

 

 

Add some retro-chic to your 2018 New Year’s resolution health kick and turn those greens into goodness with the Smeg hand blender. This new member of the Smeg SDA family can blend and chop its way through even the toughest fruits and vegetables for lump-free soups, dips and purees. Get some inspiration here.

 

Get saving

The first step to saving those precious pennies is to protect your most prized possession; that shiny new smartphone. Protective casing in the past has often looked bland and boring, but things have changed. You can now get your hands on a phone case that not only looks great but also offers the ultimate protection. Treat yourself to a super stylish protective phone case from Proporta, Snakehive or Greenwich and say adios to expensive screen replacements.

Stuck in an expensive streaming subscription of 1000’s of channels when you only watch a few? Why not switch it up to subscription-free Freeview Play? Freeview Play offers live and on demand TV all in one place and you can also access programmes from BBC iPlayer, the ITV Hub, All 4, Demand 5 and UKTV Play as well as over 85 digital channels and HD channels. And as ever with Freeview, there’s no monthly fee.

 

 

 

Say goodbye to that expensive home security system! You can now turn any old mobile phone you have lying around into a sophisticated monitoring camera with the Manything App. Whether you want to keep an eye out for intruders, check on deliveries or just keep your pets company, Manything allows for all and will send you a notification when unknown activity is detected.

 

 

 

Treat yo’self

Of course, there’s no better way to beat those January blues than some self-indulgence. Why not reward your first successful month of resolutions with that gift that Santa forgot? We won’t judge!

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The MYZONE Challenge

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As you may or may not know at Little Red Rooster we love a party or two, (really?). Since we like to indulge ourselves, we thought we should balance the scales pre-party season and get our sports gear on, get our head in the game and get fit for our very first MYZONE Challenge.

 

Naturally there was no better way to do this than using our very own MYZONE’s! Throw in the Little Red Rooster penchant for a bit of competitiveness and of course a challenge was set, the teams split and so it began. We had from 1st September until 8th November to get as many MYZONE MEP’s as humanly possible, and that is exactly what we did. The winners would then choose a charity to give £1000.

 

When we were first split into Team Keef and Team Mick (Vic vs Henry!) this instilled the competitive spirit into many of us Roosters…although it may have not been there before, it certainly was now. The idea of beating your colleagues must be some sort of incentive right?

 

 

We saw plenty of blood, sweat, tears, vomit (Lewis), cheeky tricks and countless actions of bribery, not to mention the targeting and taking down of team members. But Team Keef had a secret weapon. Lewis Hopkins. Although it was a slow start for our Lewis and no-one targeting him as he was ‘not a threat’ to the other team, he charged to the top in the last few weeks and overtook some key runners on the leader board. We personally enjoyed the name of each workout, including but not limited to: ‘Send for help’, ‘Not okay hun’ and ‘Death by circuits’. A special well done to Lewis!

 

 

It may have taken some time and last minute gym sessions to get everyone involved but it was an absolute success for both teams. Time to announce the winners…

 

Team Keef!

 

 

Team Keef chose SeeSaw as it’s charity, which will be receiving £1,250. Based in Headington, Oxford, SeeSaw is a local bereavement charity which provides first-hand and face-to-face support to children and families dealing with loss or grief. SeeSaw provides quick, same day responses and ongoing bereavement support up until the age of 18. Since it was established in Oxfordshire over 15 years ago, the charity has supported over 4300 children, young people and families. With many close links to the charity, and it also being Smeg’s charity of the year it seemed the perfect fit and a very well deserved receiver for our funds.

 

 

If you are looking to jump-start your January fitness, why not try your hand at your own MYZONE Challenge using MYZONE’s handy ‘challenges’ section… you never know, you might just enjoy it as much as we did!

 

Read more about MYZONE here!

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Meet the roosters: Henry Griffiths, founder

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Second to take the reigns of our ‘meet the roosters’ blog series is the incomparable Mr Henry Griffiths. He took a few minutes out of his busy schedule to talk all things PR, work wardrobe and advice for those looking to flourish in the industry.

 

Hi Henry, so how did you get into PR?

 

The long way round! At university, I started writing for the student magazine and somehow ended up as its editor. During that time, we won a couple of Guardian Media awards. Together they somehow made a career in journalism both appealing and plausible! I landed a job as an editorial assistant and moved to London. It didn’t take me long to notice that the PR people I bumped into appeared to be having a ball and were being paid a hell of a lot more than me. That tweaked my interest.

 

What excites you most about the industry today?

 

The new opportunities, the pace of change and all the disruption. I love it! How people consume media has obviously changed dramatically and continues to do so at an incredible rate. I love how the playing field has been levelled, how it is now all bottom up, not top down, how everything feels far more democratic and exciting. I now meet a huge sweep of incredibly talented people working on a wide range of truly ground-breaking and inventive projects, rather than just another pale, male and stale journo too pompous to speak to a mere PR.

 

What is your most memorable career moment?

 

That depends on who you ask! In terms of work, getting my first full page in a national newspaper will always stick in the mind. I’ve also had a lot of fun along the way. I’ve been fortunate enough to go on some truly incredible press trips, eat some stunning food and meet some real legends.

 

Describe your happy place?

 

Despite all the fun I have at work, it is most definitely with my wife and kids, most likely all snuggled up in front of a fire watching something on TV together, while stuffing our faces with diabetes-inducing snacks. Or at the gym when I can shut the world away!

 

Describe your work wardrobe?

 

Er, blue. White shirts. Although a velvet black suit has been making recent appearances.

 

What makes Little Red Rooster different from other PR agencies?

 

We approach everything with passion and a whole lot of personality. Just as importantly, our team has an expert understanding of all its clients. The key thing though is our focus on relationships. Even in this digital age and with all our social work, the relationships that we own are the critical part of our business. One other thing I’d flag are our clients. We have worked incredibly hard to curate an impeccable portfolio of brands that people really want to feature.

 

Do you have any advice for someone wanting to work in PR?

 

A bit of personality and genuine enthusiasm for what you’re doing will get you a hell of a long way. Be a bit cheeky, have some serious chutzpah, but always care about what you do.

 

What’s the best piece of advice you have been given?

 

Don’t burn bridges. You will invariably bump into people again, especially it seems those you don’t ever want to see again. From what I have fathomed, play nicely and the world tends to play nicely back.

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The Little Red Rooster Guide to NYE in London

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With 2017 coming to a close, it’s about time we all started planning our farewell to the year, welcoming 2018 with a bang on New Years Eve. As celebrations kick off all over the capital, from Shoreditch to Shepherd’s Bush, we have put together a list of Roosters’ top NYE London parties. Whether your more of a fizz and fireworks or trainers and two step kind of person, we hope something in this guide might just take your fancy!

 

The South London Soul Train

 

Taking over one of south London’s hottest venues, the aptly named South London Soul Train is bringing in the new year with a funk-tastic bang at Peckham’s Bussey Building. Spread across a whopping four floors and five rooms, the SLST presents a line-up of 13 hard hitting, heavyweight dancefloor roasting, soul toasting DJs. Don’t hang about however, with tickets already on final release, this is set to be a sell-out.

 

 

 

E1 London

 

New Wapping late night haunt E1 relaunches in true style this New Year’s Eve. The club, once studio, is throwing a mammoth 27-hour party with the likes of Âme, Mano Le Tough and Avalon Emerson leading the charge on the decks. With a brand new Funktion- One sound system in place, this immense party will leave your ears ringing and heart pounding. Running from 9pm on NYE till 12am on the 2nd, let’s just say you could certainly make your moneys worth on the £35 ticket if you were up to the challenge.

 

New Years Eve at the Shard

 

Feeling fancy and like the idea of toasting in the new year with a glass of bubbles and arguably London’s best view? Well, perched at the top of London’s tallest building you can welcome in 2018 with copious cocktails and tremendous views of the infamous London NYE fireworks display as the clock strikes midnight. With a price tag of nearly £200 it’s certainly not the cheapest option, but if you’re somehow feeling flush this festive season why not splash out on this champagne fuelled shindig and truly celebrate in style! Think a normal night out for the Made In Chelsea cast, a special treat for us riff raff.

 

 

 

The Festival of Light NYE London

 

In the mood for fireworks but can’t face standing outside in the Baltic British winter to watch the display? Clapham Grand might just have the solution. Imagine swinging sixties level psychedelia, with a club night where the lights and visuals are on headline duties. Indoor fireworks, laser shows and UV displays create an optical performance that will delight the senses. Not neglecting your ears however, the soundtrack to the night comes in the form of body shaking, knee wobbling, heart throbbing Techno, House and Garage.

 

There we have it, a few top picks from us Roosters for this years NYE London celebrations. Hopefully something might take your fancy or perhaps, you are more inclined to a night in at one of your mates with a crate of lager or bottle of red… we also highly recommend this.

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The Ultimate Stocking Fillers

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Perhaps you’ve been awake for hours waiting in anticipation, or a certain someone has come bounding through your bedroom door. Either way, you’re awake and the big day is finally here… CHRISTMAS DAY!

 

What is your first thought? Where are my slippers? How long until Christmas dinner? How much did I drink last night? (too much!) I don’t know about you but I have no shame in admitting that my first thought is, “where is my stocking?” And no, not the type to slide your feet inside, but your hand, in order to reveal gorgeous gifts.

 

The perfect stocking provides a thrilling journey, as you blindly reach inside and pull out a delightful surprise. Journey with me to see what wondrous presents and ultimate stocking fillers this year’s stocking could hold.

 

The first thing you grasp is the shimmering cellophane of the Montezuma’s Milking Maid smooth milk chocolate truffles, something to gratefully chomp on whilst watching the Queen’s speech.

Price: £6.99

 

Diving back in, your hands hit a remarkable shape and you are intrigued… it’s the Stay Sixty bottle. This beautifully crafted stainless-steel water bottle comes in three Pantone colours and is sure to add style to any outfit whilst keeping you hydrated.

 

Price: £29.95

 

Next up in this year’s stocking is the Marloe Derwent watch, its hand-wound mechanical movements make this beautifully crafted time piece the beating heart of any outfit. How could you say no to such a classic great British design?

 

From £263.20

 

Reaching into your stocking with your newly accessorised arm, you pull out the Loewe Klang M1 – brand new, beautifully sculpted Bluetooth speaker. You can have your own little bit of luxury for just £169 and walk around the house blaring out those festive tunes!

 

Price: £169

 

When you are starting to think that surely it can’t get much better than this, you pull out the Arthur Arbesser for Silhouette (9909) sunglasses – huzzah! With four stylish colour combinations, these sunglasses are the perfect all-year-round accessory.

 

Price £250

 

Next, you grasp something, unexpectedly soft… it’s a pair of Pantherella monogrammed socks. How lavish! These fine gauge luxury socks come in a range of colours so you can keep it festive or cool and classic for comfort all year round.

 

 

Price: Men’s from £20, Women’s from £19

 

Squeezed into the depths of the stocking are the “sweet-sounding and comfortable” B&O play H4 headphones. Available in six colours, these wireless, over-ear headphones with a focus on pure essentials are perfect for when your loved ones get sick of your Christmas classics (as if that would ever happen, right?!)

 

Price: £249

 

Your hand hits a box, not ring sized but something even better… Achieve your health and fitness goals for 2018 with the MYZONE MZ-3 Physical Activity Belt. With six mince pie fuelled days left of 2017, the MYZONE belt will be sure to whip you into shape in the New Year.

 

Price: £129.99

 

Doing one final swoop to the bottom of your stocking, your fingers brush against one final gift. It is the Ted Baker Ballpoint Pen, an elegant writing device that is perfect for those much deserved thank you letters this year.

 

Price: £48

 

And there we have it; this year’s Christmas stocking journey has come to the end. And not a piece of coal in sight! Merry Christmas!

 

Check our Vic & Henry’s Ultimate Christmas Wish List for further gifting inspiration.

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Meet the Roosters: Victoria Ruffy, founder

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Little Red Rooster founder, Victoria Ruffy

Little Red Rooster founder, Victoria Ruffy

 

As we draw closer to the end of a stellar year for Little Red Rooster, we caught up with founder and partner Victoria Ruffy, to reflect on her career highlights, history and advice for anyone wanting to work in the world of PR.

 

Hello Vic, let’s start with how you got into PR…

 

Weirdly, Henry and I both studied art history and both ended up in PR! I wanted to be an A&R girl or an art gallery curator but soon realised both paid me diddly squat. After selling ad space for Debretts magazine I started to apply for PR roles at agencies but was gutted to see the only way in was via unpaid internships. I lived in a flat in Wimbledon Village, so needed to pay the bills.

 

That lead me to take on a succession of short term jobs. One at record company West One Music and another at music magazine Sonik, until I finally got a junior PR role at Lewis PR. It was probably one of the worst years of my life but set me up to be the ball-busting girl I am today so, in a strange way, I’m glad it happened.

 

Next I took on my most loved PR role (apart from Little Red Rooster of course) at Cohn and Wolfe and was there for 4/5 very happy years. The company had an amazing culture and I worked with some incredibly talented people. Lots of love for that place and in particular the MD at the time Jonathan Shore.

 

What excites you most about your job?

 

As anyone who knows me will attest, I spend my life permanently excited – irritatingly so! Excited about the job I love; working in an industry that has never put up any barriers for me. And, when it did I just tore them down and I still have a job – bonus!

 

I work with people I love – whether that’s at the coop, with our super smart clients or with the plethora of media who I’ve built epic relationships with – some that have lasted decades. I am proud to say I’ve done this without compromising myself. Probably the reason I could probably never work for anyone else.

 

The PR industry is changing all the time and that keeps me forever on my toes – the learning is infinite. What gets me up in the morning are the ace brands we work with. Our client roster is something I could only have dreamed of at the start of my career.

 

What is your most memorable career moment?

 

The recent Smeg Regent Street store launch. It was an utterly incredible event with all the old guard press and loads of new faces. The Roosterettes were on fire and there are now so many of them! Henry and I did have a little “How the fuck have we done this?” moment.

 

 

Smeg CEO Vittorio Bertazzoni (left) at the Smeg London store launch, St James's

Smeg CEO Vittorio Bertazzoni (left) at the Smeg London store launch, St James’s

 

Describe your happy place?

What you mean not at work? Kidding.

 

Either 3am spinning around a dance floor listening to the Stone Roses or more frequently these days, drag hunting on my horse Delta. I am horse mad and a bit of an adrenaline junkie so it’s the perfect match.

 

 

Describe your work wardrobe?

 

Er, eclectic? I hope we are asking Henry this question too! Band t-shirts, A-line skirts, ankle boots, a leather jacket or my most wonderful Valentino leopard print coat.

 

I have a bit of an issue with getting ‘dressed up’ and an outright aversion to ‘Ascot / wedding’ attire. I feel style is an important reflection of who you are and if that’s not aligned you won’t feel comfortable and it will affect your performance.

 

So, that means my dress for a pitch or an event might be a bit close to the line of what’s deemed acceptable. Hopefully with a big smile on my face and showing I can work my ass off, it no longer becomes an issue.

 

 

Austrian eye-wear brand Silhouette at Little Red Rooster's 2017 Summer Showcase

Austrian eye-wear brand Silhouette at Little Red Rooster’s 2017 Summer Showcase

 

What makes Little Red Rooster different from other PR agencies?

 

The directors (Henry and I) still actually do PR. We are also super old school in that we highly value real relationships. We’d rather discuss an idea over lunch than send a press release to  5000 and hope we get a result.

 

LRR is tailored, we are personal and we love what we do. The two words that come up when describing us in pitches, or from clients and staff is energy and passion. If your agency can’t have and be both of these, then frankly, what’s the point?

 

 

LRR Senior PR Consultant Isabelle King (right)

LRR Senior PR Consultant Isabelle King (right)

 

Do you have any advice for someone wanting to work in PR?

 

Write the CV and covering letter of your life and send it to only the agencies you really want to work for. Spell out exactly why. And when you get there say “yes!” to everything and make as much tea as is humanly possible.

 

Be smart, be curious, read, research and curate your mind. Nothing is cooler than knowing your shit and making said shit happen.

 

What’s the best piece of advice I’ve ever been given?

 

Probably the school PE teacher who said I’d never amount to anything and would end up working in Tesco. Whenever I’ve been told “no”,  I love nothing more than proving everyone wrong.

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The rise of micro influencers: what are they and how are they beneficial for brands?

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Broadly speaking we can split influencers into three categories: celebrities, macro-influencers, and micro-influencers.

 

Celebrity endorsement has been around since time immemorial and we are well used to seeing celebrities promoting brands across all media platforms.

 

As discussed previously, while celebrity endorsement may work well for a few large brands it doesn’t scale well to the mass market. Two major issues of working with celebrities are that, firstly, they usually charge vast sums of money, making this activity cost prohibitive for most brands.

 

Another problem is that there is often no genuine connection between the celebrity and the product they’re endorsing. Why should a consumer trust a celebrity’s word if they have little or no connection to the brand or product they are promoting?

 

 

 

This is where influencers come into their own and provide real benefits for brands.

 

Macro influencers are specialists within their chosen sectors. Here at Little Red Rooster we define a macro influencer as someone that has between 100,000 to a million+ followers across their social media or blogging platforms and a dedicated focus on a particular subject.

 

Most well-known bloggers can be considered macro influencers. It is exactly this notoriety which is the issue with this group. Many now have agents and are operating much like celebrities do, charging large sums of money to promote brands.

 

So how do brands forge authentic, beneficial and affordable relationships with influencers? Here at Little Red Rooster we believe the answer lies amongst the underground, yet ever growing network of micro influencers.

 

 

 

First up, what is a micro influencer? Little Red Rooster defines them as people who have between 1,000 and 100,000 followers across their social or blogging channels, with expertise or a passionate interest in a specific niche subject.

 

So why do we believe that working with micro influencers can be beneficial for brands?

 

There is no doubt that researching and building a relationship with the right micro influencer is extremely time consuming, however the benefits are well worth the effort for the following reasons:

 

  1. Increased engagement and authenticity

Micro influencers do not have the reach that celebrities or macro influencers have but the audience they do have is extremely engaged and genuine. The reason for this is that micro influencers are small enough to be able to form personal relationships with their loyal followers, regularly commenting and replying to posts and conversations.

 

Micro-influencers are also authentic. Each operates in a very select niche, focussing on a specific topic, whether that be fashion, interiors, technology, design or health and fitness, for example. As such they are experts in their chosen field and their opinions are taken seriously and are trusted by their audience.

 

 

 

Micro influencers most often reflect the thoughts, desires, likes and dislikes of their followers and it is this which makes them so relatable and is what makes them popular in the first place.

 

For micro influencers authenticity is their currency, providing another benefit for clients as they are unlikely to sign up to take payment from brands which don’t fit with their ethos and for which they feel no genuine brand love. If they post lots of #sponsored posts or #ads that do not sit well with their raison d’etre, they will quickly lose their authenticity and along with it their authority and following. So, in the world of micro influencers it really does pay to be authentic.

 

The best activity occurs when a micro-influencer genuinely likes a product and is perfectly happy to write about it in return for the item being gifted, rather than being paid. This is the holy grail of influencer activity which truly benefits both brand and influencer alike and it is this which Little Red Rooster continually strives to achieve for its clients.

 

  1. More cost effective

 Brands can work with micro influencers for substantially less than the cost of working with macro-influencers or celebrities. The reason for this is that the majority of micro-influencers are (relatively!) ordinary people, who blog or participate on social media alongside holding down regular jobs.

 

 

 

In many cases, brands can work with micro influencers purely for the cost of a free product sample. Alternatively, micro influencers may ask for a nominal fee to promote a brand, however this is in the hundreds of £s rather than the thousands!

 

Because of the comparatively low cost of micro-influencers, brands then have the option to work with a number of different advocates, helping to spread brand awareness out to a larger selection of followers.

 

  1. A more targeted approach

 Micro-influencers are recognised by their following for their knowledge and expertise on a particular niche topic. From home audio, fitness technology, interiors and fashion accessories, the list of topics covered by micro influencers is almost endless, so all brands should be able to find suitable micro-influencers who can help to promote their brand, whatever it is they are selling.

 

 

 

As micro influencers closely reflect their following, brands can easily select a range of influencers that appeal to the correct consumer demographic they are going after, whether that be identified by gender, age, interests, social status, or disposable income.

 

Finally, micro influencers operate across a number of platforms; blogs, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest and as such brands can select influencers which operate on those channels which offer the best return for their specific products.

 

  1. Friends with (SEO) benefits

 Micro-bloggers create links back to websites which help brands increase their SEO.

 

If a brand receives a link from a blog which operates in the same niche as the brand itself, then Google will recognise it as being a genuine link and will increase a brand’s Google ranking as a result.

 

Unfortunately, links from social media have less weighting, however if the link receives lots of click throughs, eventually Google will accept its validity and will bump up a brand’s SEO ranking accordingly.

 

  1. Increased likelihood of sales

Due to the level of trust and authority micro influencers have amongst their following, if a member of their audiences sees a product review or recommendation that appeals to them, they are likely to click through to the brand’s website or stockist as a committed lead.

 

As such, brands know that click throughs and leads received because of their micro-influencer campaigns are further along the purchasing chain than leads collected from many other sources.

 

 

@taislany wearing @silhouetteeyewear

Interested in harnessing the power of micro influencers to promote your brand? The LRR Collective is our very own little black book of micro influencers which has been extensively researched and selected to work across the full spectrum of fashion, interiors, design, technology and lifestyle sectors.

 

This carefully curated collection of influencers is an extensive, ever evolving database which Little Red Rooster utilises to cherry pick the correct contacts required for each of our client campaigns and initiatives.

 

If you would like to find out more, why not get in touch with Vic or Henry here.

 

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The SS18 trend report: what’s hot and what’s not?

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Last season colourful, bright hues such as sunshine yellow and electric pink reigned supreme, denim made a comeback and political, power dressing was the main topic of conversation. SS18 sees a shift to lighter pastel shades, but suits and blazers are still set to remain a wardrobe essential.

 

Four cities, four weeks, countless shows and plenty of catwalk drama. Following on from one of the fashion industry’s busiest periods of the year, we have collated the top trends displayed in New York, London, Milan and Paris.

 

SS18 Womenswear – Colours

 

 

It seems SS18 wasn’t ready to give up last season’s most talked about colour palette and a cohort of designers are in agreement! From Christopher Kane, Emporio Armani and Gucci’s pastel suiting to the vibrant flush of Molly Goddard’s flowing silks, the catwalks made it clear this apparently ever-popular shade can be worn from day to night, whatever the occasion.

 

 

Whilst pink is remaining the colour of the season – for both men’s and womenswear – SS18 is moving away from the bold primaries and favouring pastel tones. The runways were populated with subtler hues, such as the parma-violet explosion seen at Victoria Beckham’s presentation. Tibi and Tom Ford proved pastels don’t have to be girly, with careful colour matching and looser styles bringing a fresh perceptive to a subdued palette.

 

SS18 Womenswear – Prints and Shape

 

 

In the words of Miranda Priestly “Florals, for spring? How ground-breaking!”

 

However, it seems flower power is fighting back and will be a wardrobe staple next spring. The likes of Loewe, Erdem, Hellesey and Ulla were all spotted embracing florals over fashion month for a suitably feminine, delicate style that is ideal as the months get warmer. Florals were also given an edgier look on the catwalks, as shown by Brock and Ulla Johnson, by pairing daring transparent materials and adding combat boots to offset the prettier colours.

 

 

In a stark contrast to AW17, SS18 has suited up and booted athleisure off the runways. However, the trend remains somewhat present, with Tibi’s show giving formal suiting a comfier, contemporary refresh. One thing remains certain; you should own an oversized blazer in your favourite neutral tone come spring.

 

 

If you’re one to save the sparkles for the festive season, then that’s all going to change next Spring. In both London and New York, sequins have reigned supreme, in all forms, from blazers, accessories, dresses and trousers. Halpern, Ashish, JW Anderson and Tom Ford were all aboard the sequin train as they playfully mixed bold, primary colours with a diverse range of styles.

 

From shredded hems at Loewe, to heavy silk fringing and military-inspired feather plumes at Nina Ricci, trimmings are set to steal the spotlight in SS18. Subtle touches they are not – fringing and feathers are very much intended as the star of the show, as evidenced by Marco de Vincenzo’s magnificently tiered dresses. This is a trend for the sartorially bold.

 

 

The pencil skirt reigned strong on SS18 catwalks, with Balenciga, Hermes, and Off-White forming entire collections around the garment. It’s evidently clear that 1950’s inspirations are hard at work here but with a feisty update, mixing an assortment of patterns and colours for a moodier style. It seems socks look set to be a key accessory again this season but this time paired with heels instead of sandals.

 

SS18 Womenswear – Shorts

 

 

From bike shorts to Bermuda shorts, all the shorts made a play for the limelight at this year’s fashion weeks. The most appealing options include trusty short trousers, high-waisted and worn with metallic blouses at Isabel Marant; hot-pant styles with a distinctly futuristic edge at Paco Rabanne, and a bermuda iteration, cut lean and looking chic when paired with slick double-breasted blazers at Off-White. This is the shot in the leg your summer wardrobe needs now.

 

SS18 Menswear

 

 

Next summer, the ties won’t just be around your neck, they’ll be around your waist. Whilst there were field jackets and blousons aplenty at the SS18 shows in London, one of the most interesting riffs on outwear came in the form of belted mid-length and longline jackets. Mostly using light cottons, waist ties were on show in a variety of wearable colours including beige and navy – as well as a few purples!

 

 

…and here it is again! The warm blush rose that seems to be everywhere is set to continue its omnipresence in SS18. However, we will see it expand into other shades, with bursts of eye-popping hot pink appearing at Comme des Garcons presentation. Despite its youthful, playful tone even designers such as Fendi, Valentino and Oliver Spencer sported the colour.

 

 

A major trend at both London and Milan Fashion Week was layering. In Milan, Fendi blended corporate wear with sportswear, layering nineties-inspired jackets over shirts and finished off looks with a jacket. Although most people might associate spring / summer as a time for shorts, new fashion collections presented in London reflected upon diversity within the city, including ever-changing climates.

 

 

Over the past few seasons check seems to be having a continuous moment in menswear and it’s clearer than ever after shows from Moncler and MSGM it’s becoming a certified staple. The styles varied hugely, from checked pieces with a youthful twist to heavier, outdoor pieces to sophisticated, well-cut jackets.

 

 

Another notable menswear trend for SS18, is the oversized blazer, particularly at the men’s fashion presentations in Paris. The likes of Comme des Garcons, Kenzo and Balenciaga took the trend one step further and bravely contrasted the large formal wear with shorts – perfect for spring evenings!

 

 

Introducing next year’s hottest styling trick: the shirt tuck. Catwalks over the recent years has seen guys wearing shirts and tees as dresses in homage to hip-hop’s finest, but SS18 is saying good riddance to longline and hello to a new, nerdier way to wear tops.  No doubt inspired by the 90’s dad aesthetic, it has been championed by the so-awkward-it’s-cool brigade comprising labels such as Gosha Rubchinskiy, Prada and GmbH.

 

SS18 brought us a hugely varied composition of styles, colours and quirks, it will be interesting to see whether pink will remain the reigning colour of 2018 or if another shade can successful steal its crown. In the meantime, we look forward to seeing how runway trends translate onto the high street over the next few months, and in what way bloggers and influencers take inspiration from these new SS18 styles.

 

 

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