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Intro to Rural Roots


Welcome to Rural Roots PR & Journalism

 

Supporting rural tourism from the roots up through strategic PR

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Intro to Rural Roots


Welcome to Rural Roots PR & Journalism

 

Supporting rural tourism from the roots up through strategic PR

Everything you do or say is public relations...
— Unknown

At the root of every business is a story...

If you're a rural tourism business owner who is passionate about promoting the British countryside and realises the great value of PR, you've come to the right place. No matter what your budget is, we have a communications package that is perfect for your business and if you can't find what you're looking for, get in touch.

Keep scrolling to find out more or use the quick link buttons below for our services...

About us

Rural Roots PR & Journalism is a creative communications agency based in the beautiful county of Rutland and founded with a passion for and specialism in rural tourism and visitor experience.

Founder, Megan, has more than 10 years media experience, both as an NCTJ qualified senior journalist and an CIPR accredited PR practitioner, working across the tourism sector, from castles to campsites and farm to fork.

Her bespoke hands-on campaigns are centred around growing your reputation as an expert in your field, to capture and entice your target audience across multiple platforms and ensure visitor experience is at the heart of everything you do.

Megan has worked in tourism since she was 16, is a keen traveller herself and enjoys writing about the rural tourism industry in the national and local press and through her own media platform, The Rural Travel Guide - whether it's a new campsite launch or how the British vodka industry is driving tourism to the countryside.

She wants visitors to the Great British countryside to be inspired and take great memories, stories and a few souvenirs home with them through engaging PR and creative journalism.

As a regional award-winning and nationally highly commended rural business, our aim is to provide SMEs with the skills they need to tell their stories, compete with changing trends and engage with tech-savvy audiences and can consult with or mentor you to steer you in the right direction when it comes to telling your story. Take a look at our blog for inspiration.

So, if you have a story that needs to be told while working with an agency that's down-to-earth and understands rural audiences, please get in touch or take a look at our scrapbook for examples of our work.

Our clients include:

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Consultancy and mentoring


Consultancy & Mentoring

Consultancy and mentoring


Consultancy & Mentoring

When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.
— Wayne Dyer

One of the things we always advise our clients is, if you have the time to be in control of your own PR (especially social media), then do it. Only you can tell your story in the exact way you want it to be told.

Rural Roots PR consultancy

Sometimes you don't need hands-on support but it's really helpful to get a second opinion, or work with someone who is not involved in your business day-to-day.

We can help in one of two ways:

1) Consultancy -  a one-off consultation of your business' PR strategy, including visitor experience.

If you want to get a PR strategy in place, drive your marketing department forward or just need a helping hand then we can come in and consult with you on a variety of topics that will point you in the right direction.

Our consultancies consist of what we call the "five PRinciples of PR":

  • Traditional
  • Digital
  • Social media
  • Visitor experience
  • Collaborations

Working with a consultant can give you the kick-start or inspiration you're looking for to get things done. And occasionally it's just reassuring to be told you're doing the right thing.

2) Or, if you'd rather we acted in a mentor capacity you can join The Rural PR Academy which will help to steer your PR, introduce you to key players in the media and generate national coverage for your business.

Ideal for small rural tourism business owners, our mentorship group is a fantastic way to support and grow your PR strategy and at the moment is limited to just 20 places.

Led by Megan, you'll benefit from her journalism and marketing experience and pick up tips from other industry experts along the way.

Each month we'll focus on a different aspect of your marketing and PR strategy, looking at ways you can tell your story through traditional and digital PR and social media. Not only that, we'll give you regular opportunities to contribute to national press stories to help to build your businesses' reputation.

Membership includes:

  • A digital starter form, setting the scene for your PR strategy
  • Access to monthly content focused on a specific target area
  • Facebook group membership and networking opportunities with other rural tourism business owners
  • Your own Dropbox folder to build resources and manage your PR
  • Unlimited journalist requests
  • Discounted bespoke PR support (if you need an extra helping hand)

If you'd like to know more about our consultancy or mentorship packages, get in touch.
 


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PR


Bespoke PR campaigns & retainers

PR


Bespoke PR campaigns & retainers

People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories and magic.
— Seth Godin

Most people think PR starts and ends with press coverage but we know the tourism industry works a little differently. At Rural Roots we won't just tell your story; we'll look at how your businesses is impacting the tourism industry and why you provide a unique visitor experience to build your reputation and encourage visitors. 

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Public relations is by far the most effective form of communications as it encourages conversations. If you think about it, are you more likely to visit an attraction because you saw an advert for it, or because a friend told you it was great? We value other people's opinions. And that's what the root of PR is all about - influencing, storytelling and giving people something to talk about.

There are so many ways of building your reputation and getting your name out there-from press engagement to Facebook live posts. And because every story is different, so are our campaigns.

Rural Roots PR's bespoke packages begin with a full consultancy to combine traditional and digital PR with visitor experience. We'll tell your story across multiple platforms and ensure you are reaching your audience at all levels.

As a consultancy, we have developed our own approach to storytelling which has, in turn, projected us onto the national stage as an award-winning expert in our field.

Our journalism experience has given us an insight into the media industry that benefits both journalists and clients; being able to deliver a story that is targeted to a specific journalist is just as important as creating content that appeals to a specified audience. Therefore, we do a lot of research into ensuring we work with the right journalist at the right publication rather than doing a full sweep of all platforms in the hope that one will run your story.

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This approach has successfully gained our clients coverage in the national press, targeted local titles and on consumer platforms including The Daily Telegraph, NFU Countryside Magazine and Rock 'n' Roll Bride.

Alternatively, we can provide an incredibly cost-effective retainer service which covers:

  • Six full PR strategies throughout the year, including targeted press releases and distribution, relevant blogs, social media content, press calls, etc.
  • Daily monitoring and response to journalist requests relevant to your business
  • Press liaison, including review opportunities

We'll go out of our way to source alternative PR opportunities by working closely with journalists and answering requests for information and expertise; opening doors that would otherwise have been shut and building their reputation one step at a time.

For more information or to speak to us about our bespoke packages, please get in touch.

Plus, all our PR clients are automatically included in content on our own media platform, The Rural Travel Guide which specifically targets visitors to the British countryside.


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The Rural PR Academy


The Rural PR Academy

The Rural PR Academy


The Rural PR Academy

Rural PR Academy

New for 2018, the Rural PR Academy is designed with independent tourism and food and drink businesses in mind.

PR is an investment in your business. Whether you employ an agency like us to do it, or invest your own time, if you put together a decent strategy and start communicating on the right platforms, it will soon pay for itself a dozen times over.

But we fully understand that some people like to tell their own story and as a small, rural business ourselves, we know there are not always huge budgets to throw at an all singing and dancing PR campaign.

So, rather than leave small businesses by the way-side, we've put together a step-by-step coaching programme to help you to put together your own PR strategy month-by-month, so that by the end of the year you'll be ready to face 2019 knowing exactly what stories you're telling and to who.

Plus, while we work through the course, we will be feeding through regular opportunities to work with the press and respond to journalists who are looking for information for an article.

Take a look at the schedule to find out what we'll be covering and when.

Below are a few FAQs:

What sort of businesses do you work with?

The academy is designed with independent tourism and food/drink businesses in mind and would suit B&Bs, self-catering cottages, attractions, campsites, glampsites, farms, diversified farms, pubs, restaurants, cafes, food producers and anyone trying to attract business by supporting rural tourism.

How much does it cost?

The Academy is £100 per month to join and includes all content, unlimited journalist requests and the opportunity to respond to them, a joint Dropbox folder, membership of our private Facebook group and discount on bespoke services from Rural Roots PR & Journalism if you need additional help.

How much time will I have to put in?

It's up to you. Each month we'll use our website and our private Facebook group to give you tips and advice on each topic. We'll also set short tasks to help you to build your strategy. The more time you put in, the better your strategy will be.

It's past March, can I still join?

Yes! You can join at any time up until October (at that stage we'll be enrolling for next year) - you'll just have a bit of catching up to do.

Can I opt in and out?

If you decide after a month that the Academy isn't for you, you can opt out but due to the nature of the content we can't offer an opt in and opt out programme at this stage.

If you're still unsure, take a look at our blog which breaks down the Academy in a bit more detail...


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Journalism


Journalism & copywriting

Journalism


Journalism & copywriting

My task, which I’m trying to achieve is, by the power of the written word, to make you hear, to make you feel-it is, before all, to make you see.
— Joseph Conrad

Megan has been writing stories since she could hold a pencil and it's her journalism experience that really sets Rural Roots apart as a communications agency with a difference.

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Megan trained at News Associates in London, the top journalism school in the country, while simultaneously building a career in local journalism and working in a pub (which, coincidentally, is now one of her PR clients), gaining her National Council for the Training of Journalists certificate in 2009 followed by her NQJ (senior qualification) in 2010.

Writing is her passion and she already considers herself as an 'old school' journalist; hand writing notes in scruffy shorthand and never losing her physical connection with the written word.

Her own rural roots and interests in travel, heritage, farming and nature have helped to steer her career as a freelance journalist towards telling inspirational stories from the Great British countryside and she recently identified a gap in the market and launched her own digital magazine, The Rural Travel Guide, focusing on the rural tourism industry.

As a rural writer, hard news is not always easy to find, so she is trained to dig out hidden angles and alternative stories and will happily put her skills to use to create content that will not only tell tales but educate, influence and engage your readers; whether it's a national title or a targeted blog. Her own style is to inject a bit of warmth and personality into each piece but she can also help you to find your own written voice.

From articles and features to copy-writing and blogs, please get in touch to speak to us about our freelance writing services which start from £150.


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Testimonials


Testimonials

Testimonials


Testimonials

I worked with Megan for the first time in 2017 and what a brilliant experience. I started knowing very little about the piece I was writing about and the area, but she worked hard to help me come up with a range of ideas which fitted in with our brand and was enthusiastic about the venture.
It’s refreshing to work with someone in PR who is very knowledgeable about the topics you’re working on together and is also genuinely enthusiastic about collaboration. Had a fantastic experience and wouldn’t hesitate recommending Megan and Rural Roots PR to anyone.
— Amita Joshi, The Daily Telegraph
I’ve worked with Megan, both as a journalist and as a PR. Her knowledge of local media, in particular newspapers, and its requirements for print, digital and social media, means she is well-placed to find the most news-worthy story behind her clients and help turn it into a piece that is ready to run. Her photographic skills have also come in handy.
Megs is particularly passionate about rural affairs, going back to her days writing the farming column in the Rutland Times and it shines through in everything she does.
She’s enthusiastic about collaboration between local newspapers and her clients and as a result, we have made some lasting relationships.
I can’t recommend her highly enough.
— Kerry Coupe, Rutland & Stamford Mercury
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I’ve worked with Megan on a number of different stories from a wide range of local organisations. Megan is always on hand to help and assist, and ensure the story works for us on the radio as much as for her client. With last minute reminders, and targeted press releases, I know that Megan shares the same passion for the local area as we do, we work very well together and I value her journalistic judgement.
— Rob Persani, Rutland Radio
Megan was my absolute rock!! Plus, she has literally the best contacts EVER and I have met loads of really great business contacts. My business would not be what it is now had it not been for her help. Thank you Megan!!!!
— Naomi Morgan, Rutland Cake Company
I’ve worked with Megan for a number of years in both PR and journalism. She has the rare ability to deliver exceptionally well across both disciplines. She is conscientious, client-focused and always willing to help - whatever it takes and whatever the deadline. Megan’s passion for all things rural has always been evident and I’m delighted she has been able to translate this into a successful career.
— Lisa Jolly, Liberty PR
Rural Roots PR is exactly the support our small business needs and provides excellent value for money.
Megan is a talented copywriter and knows how to engage an audience. She also has great connections, and we’ve had some really interesting national PR because of her network!
— Debbie Queen, Sacrewell
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Megan was able to provide support, for Peterborough Astronomical Society, in a number of ways, including…
• advice on an appropriate strategy
• advice on the channels available on the internet and which channels would be able to meet our objectives
• detailed training in the use of our chosen channel
• advice on planning our campaign, so that our page would be attractive, interesting and informative
For a group like ours, progress has been fast and exciting but the great thing is, thanks to Megan’s help, we know what we want to do and have the confidence to do it.
— Phil Adams, Peterborough Astronomical Society
Megan is such a delightful lady to discuss ideas and concepts with. She came up with very practical suggestions for me and my business. I appreciate her attitude, approach and practicality.
— Sue Ricks
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Top local journalist Megan Allen has helped me to establish a networking group for female entrepreneurs in the Leicestershire and Rutland area in record time. No messing, Megan just rolls up her sleeves and gets on with it, she has bundles of energy and enthusiasm for all her clients and she is excellent at making introductions. We have also worked together on a charity festival and Christmas fair locally and will do so again this year as it was such a success. She really is a dream to work with.
— Claire McFadden, WiRE Leicestershire & Rutland