Hawksmoor’s Winegate

PR Stunt or Genuine Cork-up?

In certain PR circles it has been suggested Hawksmoor’s media domination in the last 24 hours after two lucky customers were accidentally served a £4,500 bottle of red wine, was a full-bodied PR stunt. The mistake came to light in a tweet from the restaurant:

As an agency with several restaurant clients we decided to put the theory to the test.

In the red corner, the half-case for the prosecution:

  • Neither the member of staff nor the customer has been named. Admittedly the staff member would need a lot of bottle to come forward, but the same doesn’t apply to the diners. It conveniently makes it difficult to check the facts.
  • The £260 bottle ordered and the £4,500 bottle don’t look remotely similar, as Hawksmoor Founder Will Beckett said, the similarity doesn’t go beyond the fact that: “They’re both 2001 Bordeaux and there’s a “P” in there somewhere.” The member of staff has been described as manager level so it’s an unlikely mistake for an experienced employee.

The case for the defence:

  • The story was announced with one tweet at 1.15am. That’s hardly a carefully planned, multi-channel strategy calculated to deliver maximum impact.
  • There’s a definite authenticity to the tweet. Despite the forgiveness they say “One-off mistakes happen”. Why the implied warning not to do it again if it didn’t actually happen?

The view from Rule 5 is that it was a genuine cork-up, and someone correctly spotted that it might make an amusing piece of social content. When the tweet started to go viral the PR machine sprang into action to maximise the media opportunity.  There is one aspect of this story though, that we find hard to swallow – who orders wine priced at £4500?

Leep Utilities Hires MediaCityUK Agency

Leep Utilities, a joint venture between the Peel Group and Ancala Partners, has appointed the agency to raise its regional and national profile.

The company owns and operates utility networks at several sites across the country, including MediaCityUK, Liverpool Waters and Canary Wharf.

“Rule 5 impressed us with their understanding of the business and its values. We believe the agency’s knowledge and skills will be a fantastic asset to Leep Utilities as we continue to expand,” stated Louise Manfredi, Leep Utilities’ Managing Director.

The appointment comes as Leep Utilities seeks to obtain an Independent Gas Transporter licence, which would mean it can adopt gas networks and provide a full multi-utility offering.

“Since entering the market in 2017, Leep Utilities has sought to make last mile utilities easier to navigate and the entire process more transparent. We are working with the team to enhance their reputation across the North West and nationally,” added Rule 5 Founding Director, Rob Brown.

Rule 5 Lands Five Awards Nominations

IMG_5803Rule 5 has just picked up a total of five award nominations from the PR industry’s two professional bodies.

Earlier this month, the agency was nominated in the national Chartered Institute of Excellence (CIPR) awards. Over the Easter weekend, the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA) DARE Awards were unveiled and Rule 5 received four nominations, including ‘Outstanding Small Consultancy’.

The agency’s work with online giving platform Wonderful.org has been recognised in both award schemes with a campaign for Legoland Discovery Centre Manchester  nominated by the PRCA.

The CIPR Excellence Awards will be unveiled on 25 June 2019 at The Artillery Garden in London.  The PRCA Dare Awards will be announced three weeks later at the Radisson Blu Edwardian in Manchester.

“It’s a real honour to be nominated for awards by both of the PR industry bodies,” said Rule 5 Managing Partner Rob Brown. He added, “It’s a privilege to work with clever, motivated and creative people, both clients and colleagues, who deliver great work every day. If you want to know how agencies win awards, that’s your answer.”

Rob Brown in PR Power Book

Rule 5 Managing Partner, Rob Brown, has been listed in the 2019 PR Week Power Book. The book of leading PR professionals selected by the PR industry’s bible PR Week, was announced at the Soho House White City last night.

The book is an extensive list of the most influential and respected communications professionals in the UK today. The guide, complete with Q&As from each of the 400 entrants (from an industry estimated to employ 40,000), is available online:

Click here to see the full PRWeek UK Power Book 2019

The book was unveiled at the members club from the Soho House Group on the site of the former BBC HQ in West London.  The list also includes Matthew Freud, Brunswick’s Sir Alan Parker, Executive Director of Government Comms Alex Aiken and legendary showbiz PR guru Mark Borkowski.

Four Nominations For Rule 5 In The PRmoment Awards

2019 PR Moment Awards

Rule 5 has been nominated four times in the 2019 PRmoment Awards.

The news sees the agency shortlisted in four classes, including the coveted Boutique Agency of the Year category.

The agency’s campaign for Legoland Discovery Centre Manchester, Northern Rail Newsjack, made the Best Stunt of the Year shortlist, with the agency’s work with charity giving platform Wonderful nominated in two categories – The Corporate Purpose Award and Not For Profit Campaign of the Year, Agency.

Agency co-founder Julie Wilson said on the news: “This is a fantastic achievement for the agency and represents the breadth of our work.  The PRmoment Awards are one of the industry’s most celebrated events and we’re delighted to be nominated.”

The PRmoment Awards celebrate excellence and recognise and reward outstanding campaigns and exceptional talent in the UK PR and Communications sector.  The results will be announced on March 13th at a black tie awards dinner at the Hilton Hotel, Manchester.

 

EventCity Appoints Rule 5

EventCity’s future vision to be supported by Rule 5

EventCity’s future vision to be supported by Rule 5

EventCity, the largest exhibition, conference and trade show venue in the North, has appointed the agency to support its growth strategy for 2019.

Rule 5 will work with EventCity to promote the venue’s capability as both the largest and most accessible venue of its type, in the North of England. EventCity is a huge blank canvas venue, with 28,000 m2 of versatile space. The venue has doorways big enough to wheel a plane through and free parking next to the venue for both visitors and exhibitors.

Simon Jones, Sales Director of EventCity, commented: “Rule 5’s strong reputation in the communications industry really stood out to us. This year will be a really busy year for us and we are excited to be working with the team at Rule 5 to build on the business profile.”

Rule 5 Founding Director, Rob Brown, added: “As the North’s leading exhibition, event and multipurpose venue, EventCity is already well-recognised so we’ll be working with the team to extend their reputation across the region and nationally.”

Three Golds for Rule 5 at PRide 2018

Rule 5 took home three gold awards at the 2018 CIPR PRide Awards last night (Wednesday 7 November). The tally was the highest of the night.

The agency’s work with the charity giving platform Wonderful won gold in two categories; Best Community Relations Campaign and also in the Not-for-Profit Campaign.

For the second year in succession, the agency took home a gold award for its work with Blackpool Pleasure Beach this time in the Travel, Leisure or Tourism Category.

The CIPR PRide Awards which recognise outstanding public relations were announced at a black tie awards dinner at the Hilton Manchester Deansgate.

Agency Managing Partner, Rob Brown, said: “Insight, thought, creativity and hard work from everyone in the agency goes into these campaigns. We are lucky also to work with great clients on engaging campaigns. The PRide Awards are really important to Rule 5 and it’s a joy to be able to celebrate with the team.”

2018 is the sixth consecutive year that Rule 5 has been recognised in industry awards. The agency has won awards every year since it was founded in November 2012.