Summary

Our campaign used positive case studies of interesting young entrepreneurs to inspire others to follow their lead, securing coverage across Wales and nationally everywhere from BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat to The Sun and Daily Mail. 

Objectives
  • To develop media content to inspire young people in Wales to explore entrepreneurship and be equipped with the confidence to make it happen.
  • Working alongside the network of Big Ideas Wales (BIW) coordinators and Partners around Wales, we were to contribute to targets of:
    • 55,000+ young people made aware of the opportunities offered by, and benefits of, entrepreneurship
    • 30,000+ visits to the Big Ideas Wales website
    • Increase in BIW Twitter followers by 25%
Results

Objective 1:

  • 71 pieces of coverage were achieved between June 2016-2017 in Welsh and UK print, online and broadcast outlets, including the Western Mail, Wales Online, Daily Mail, The Sun, ITV and BBC Radio 1. A number of these features were large full page, or double page spreads.
  • In May 2017 we were approached by BBC Radio 1, who were working on a Newsbeat special focusing on entrepreneurial attitudes in young people. The London based producer working on the show was told by Brian Meechan, BBC Wales Business Editor, that Working Word were the ‘people to speak to regarding youth entrepreneurship in Wales’ – a pivotal moment for us following just 14 months working with Big Ideas Wales. The resulting coverage was the lead story on two Radio 1 Newsbeat programmes on June 1st.

Objective 2:

a) Target of the number of young people engaged in the awareness raising activity was 55,753

b) 86% increase in website visits between the June 2015- 2016 period and June 2016- 2017 period: 30,782 increasing to 40,588 website visits

c) Twitter following increased by 37.94% on the Big Ideas Channel.  Welsh language feed Syniadau Mawr Cymru saw an increase of 58.45% followers

31.86%
increase in website visits
37.94%
increase in Twitter followers
71
pieces of coverage
How we did it?

Our media relations strategy places the young entrepreneurs that Big Ideas Wales support at the heart of our communications focus.

By showcasing the stories of these up-and-coming young entrepreneurs it was our intention to create a culture of confidence, ambition and aspiration among would-be entrepreneurs, in order to inspire them to take the next step to explore their embryonic business ambitions.

Working with the extensive BIW network, and their key stakeholders (principally the Enterprise Champions employed by all FE/HE institutions to inspire entrepreneurial attitudes in young people) we spent time sourcing case studies of young entrepreneurs, carefully assessing their stories to choose ones which would maximise media coverage.

How we did it

From the outset we concentrated on telling the stories of young entrepreneurs with more unique businesses. We knew that stories about more mainstream businesses (e.g. mobile hairdressers etc) would gain very little traction in the media. So we focused our attention on businesses that struck us as particularly innovative, working on the assumption that if we found the business concepts fascinating, then so would the media.

Our research work with the BIW network and FE/HE Enterprise Champions led us to develop an exciting list of candidates for development, including:

  • Dafydd Jones, an app designer inspired by the London Underground to create Doze, which works by waking up sleepy commuters at their designated stops, and even got Stephen Fry tweeting
  • Sarah Callaway has a unique business selling reusable cloth menstrual pads
  • Luke Riddiford has set up Wales’ first ever do-it-yourself repair business for cars and motorbikes.
  • Daniel Huxtable combined his passion for martial arts with his graphic design skills to launch a bespoke fight-wear apparel business
  • David Vaughan is establishing a 10,000 bird quail farm, selling eggs to local butchers and wholesalers.