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Gara Rock

Smart public relations isn’t just for launching a new hotel with aplomb – it’s about maintaining momentum long after the doors have opened…

The Brief

The PC Agency were appointed to launch the new revitalised Gara Rock brand, positioning it as one of the UK’s leading boutique hotels and one of South Devon’s finest restaurants. Generating and maintaining high volumes of top-tier coverage in national, consumer, regional and online outlets was the primary focus.

Our Approach

Identifying the target audience of affluent urban families and couples, and tactics to engage and impress this hard to reach audience, was pivotal to our six-month launch plan strategy. We worked with our client to define key brand values and the property’s USPs and then devised a brand storytelling campaign showcasing specific product offerings that could ensure it stood out from competitors.

The Strategy: To build awareness amongst consumers and get on the media radar, we ran a teaser campaign via social media and connected with key target media to share preview details prior to opening. Effectively managing media when then faced with opening delays was a key marker of the success of our expert press office operation. Our targeted individual media invites to review the hotel and restaurant secured highly influential editorial coverage published immediately after opening, including two national exclusives (August 2018).

We went on to regularly secure coverage in roundup sections and sustained editorial momentum by securing top UK editors to visit throughout Q4 2018. We invited leading journalists who reviewed the property to share detailed feedback with us, which provided valuable insights for further product development.

Business Results

The PC Agency secured 23 top UK Editor reviews for Gara Rock in the first three months. Eight top Editor stays in August (the first month of opening) resulted in 14 large editorial features in print and online, including The Times and The Telegraph, followed by an additional nine top Editor stays in September and six top UK Editor reviews in October.

Winning accolades include Gara Rock recognised as the UK’s Best Seaside Hotel in the highly sought-after annual Sunday Times 100 Great British Hotels supplement. Gara Rock informed us that it has secured consistently high volumes of enquiries and subsequent bookings, hitting its highest numbers following full-page features in Stylist magazine, Metro, The Sunday and Saturday Times and The Saturday Telegraph.

Impact: Total pieces of coverage: 64 | Reach: 394,204,767 | Enquiries: up 300%