Blog : event

Stripe goes to Holi Festival of Colours

Stripe goes to Holi Festival of Colours

We’ve enjoyed a colourful 2015 so far with one of our fave Friday drinks, Sourz, what with the launch of Sourz Rainbow Ice at the beginning of the year and the Club MTV tour during the summer. But this weekend we hit the ultimate, as Stripe’s very own resident shot-girls took our PR machine to London for the Holi Festival of Colours, which Sourz was sponsoring.

Alex & Rebecca at Holi Festival

Myself and Rebecca – shot-girl-in-the-making and newbie to Stripe – headed over the border to my homeland to give journos from the likes of ZOO and Bar Mag the Sourz’ Holi Festival of Colours experience, complete with many helpings of Sourz Rainbow Ice and bags of coloured powder. We can even go as far as to say, one journalist received a marriage proposal in the Sourz tent – genuinely. She said yes too – congrats Lucia! This defo wasn’t part of our running order.

We had some great fun in the experiential tent, striking heaps of poses in the gif booth – there was just as much powder paint in the tent by the end of the day as there was in the main stage arena. With a Sourz Rainbow Ice bar, there were plenty of shots on offer to keep people refreshed. The tent was an opportunity to give fans and festival-goers a souvenir to take home – some classic snaps of the great time they had with their best mates.

We were also able to showcase a new piece of video content they’ve just released, ‘Sourz presents: World of Colour’, which sees Sourz visit 8 cities across the world in 10 days – a megahunt for colour captured in a one minute film.

The weekend was the perfect way for us to round off our summer of colour. It was great to be able to see how well two brands can fit and it gave us the opportunity to experience the famous coloured powder explosions of the global Holi Festival of Colours, giving our media friends the opportunity too.

Until next time…

Two days of daylight with VELUX

Two days of daylight with VELUX

Three Edinburgh Stripes packed their bags and headed south last week all in the name of daylight. No, we weren’t just fed-up with the dreich Scottish ‘summer’, we were off to attend VELUX’s 6th Daylight Symposium.

Tobacco Dock, East London
The biennial, two-day event brought together over 350 people from across the globe to discuss and debate.

I know what you’re thinking – how could you possibly discuss daylight for two whole days. From health, to architecture, to learning, to sleeping patterns, to nature, the lists goes on. Daylight influences and plays a role in everything we do.

Tobacco Dock Interior
Experts in architecture, design, engineering and building congregated in the Tobacco Dock – one of the most Instagram-able buildings in East London – to hear 35 daylight themed lectures.

Having set up in a seat in the back row, team Stripe unpacked all manner of cameras, Dictaphones, videocameras, notebooks and laptops and set to work. Amongst hosting media our job on the day was to man the social media channels. Four in total – Twitter and Instagram for VELUX UK & Ireland and Twitter and Instagram for The Daylight Project.

Flipping between all four, searching hashtags and scrolling through newsfeeds, we live tweeted during the talks. We had to be on the ball to draft instantaneous creative content. We pulled out nuggets of information and quotes from the speakers, overlaying them over stand-out pictures or did a quick Google search to source pictures of the buildings the speakers were talking about.

Trying to negotiate complex daylighting data into 140 characters was a bit of a challenge, but as the engagements rolled in I loved the buzz.

One of the many highlights for me was at dinner on the first night. We got chatting to a building surveyor from Holland who told us how excited he was that VELUX had retweeted him during one of the talks. There was a bit of a jazz hands moment as we owned up.

Turing Festival 2015: full stack marketing

Turing Festival 2015: full stack marketing

“As a general rule, everyone wants to be liked. Brands are no different because they’re created, represented and employed by people.” That was my Friday night take-away from the Turing Festival 2015, Edinburgh’s international technology festival.

For one weekend in Edinburgh, big hitters from across the technology industry share their inspirations, pet hates and hot tips on a range of topics. Friday was ‘full stack marketing’ day – from SEO to audience analysis and online behaviours. Headliners included Cyrus Shepard from Moz, Oli Gardner from Unbounce and Phil Nottingham from Wistia. The audience went wild when Rand Fishkin presented a ‘Whiteboard Friday’ especially for the festival.

With hundreds of tech-heads in one room, my expectation was impenetrable jargon and hours of discussion about algorithms and the merits of SEO. I was right – there was jargon, algorithm chat and SEO celebration, but dominating it all was the idea that the biggest challenge facing the communications industry is the need to ‘humanise’ brands and their digital presence. Sound familiar? “We humanise brands” has been Cello Signal’s tagline since 2014.

It’s not a new topic. Since computers started infiltrating customer services in the 1960s there’s been theorising that faceless industry puts off consumers. With every brand now competing for their piece of ‘digital space’, it’s never been more important to come across as honest, trustworthy and ‘real’ to customers.

The problem (and opportunity) for the comms industry is that so many businesses are doing it badly. Atrociously. Abominably. Unforgivably boringly. How often do you pointedly ignore Facebook posts from a sponsored brand that does nothing but switch you off?

Mark Johnstone from Distilled summed it up when he questioned “why will anyone care?” As communications consultants, it’s our job to take a step back, stop, play devil’s advocate and assess the psychology behind consumers’ experiences and perceptions of a brand and its messages. Without that research and assessment, there’s nothing to base a strategy on.

The inconvenience is that there isn’t a silver bullet. It takes time, effort and (usually) money to understand your customers; their likes, dislikes, behaviour, mood swings, passions, schedule and tolerance. It’s like they’re real people… because they are real people. To get a real person on your side takes time, effort and (usually) a bit of money.

It’s heart-warming to think that even in the most advanced technological age, we can still say the easiest way to build trust in a brand is by making people feel special and understood.

As a complete aside… thanks to the speakers at Turing Fest for an inspiring event. And to the guys at Codebase and Stipso for organising it.

Scottish rugby fans have a ball with Strathmore

Scottish rugby fans have a ball with Strathmore

It wasn’t just the rugby players that were put through their paces at this year’s RBS 6 Nations.

As part of our sponsorship activity with Strathmore, we encouraged supporters to be more active in their daily routines with the ‘Strathmore Do More Tryathlon’.

At BT Murrayfield – the home of Scottish Rugby – we ran the ‘Do More Zone’ with a passing game and ladder drill for fans to try out, and a Batak Challenge which put their reactions to the test.

The ‘Do More Zone’ was in action during the three home matches against Wales, Italy and Ireland with supporters from all sides taking part.

Our Tryathlon winners were paraded on the pitch at half time and presented with signed Scotland jerseys and tickets to a future match.

Check out the ‘Strathmore Do More’ film here.

Tickling tastebuds with Sourz

Tickling tastebuds with Sourz

It was a taste sensation ‘on ice’ when we helped launched Sourz’ new Rainbow Ice drink at Ice Bar London.

The tangy mix of raspberry, orange and lime has a cooling sensation that leaves taste buds tingling.

We invited a host of special guests and influencers to try it out and mixed in some pretty unique taste combinations.

Who knew Rainbow Ice would complement bitter lemon? And a dash of Sourz Raspberry with Prosecco went down well.

There were a few surprises for those who joined us on the night as they sampled the icy delights wrapped-up in fleece-lined capes and gloves.

Rainbow Ice is available now – go for the taste test and let us know what you think at sourz@stripecommunications.com.

Celebrating the newly expanded Kitchin

Celebrating the newly expanded Kitchin

Edinburgh’s finest were out in force this week to attend the reopening of Michelin-starred restaurant The Kitchin after a much anticipated extension and renovation.

The canapés were truly delicious, the champagne was flowing and the newly revamped restaurant looked stunning.

Breaking down the wall between the recently vacated restaurant next door, the impressive expansion has unveiled an extended dining space, an exclusive private dining room and a cosy whisky snug for enjoying a post-dinner dram.

With a medley of tartan, tweeds and even a wall of silver birch, the decadent interiors take you on a journey through Scotland.

MTV EMAs take over Glasgow with help from Stripe

MTV EMAs take over Glasgow with help from Stripe

Now that the last piece of ticker tape has been swept away from the SSE Hydro floor, the Stripe team has recovered from a crazy few months of planning and preparing for the biggest music event Glasgow has experienced in years.

The MTV EMAs took the city by storm, bringing a host of A-list celebrities, glitzy parties and ground breaking video projections along with them. The buzz was palpable as music fans prepared to be entertained by stars including Nicki Minaj, Ariana Grande, Ozzy Osbourne and Ed Sheeran.

And Stripe was there every step of the way handling all media relations around the awards show itself, state of the art light show featuring Labrinth, six giant MTV logos popping up across the city, a World Stage interview with Slash and an EMA viewing party with Alicia Keys.

Oh and not to forget attending the show to manage the red carpet and make sure everything ran smoothly backstage.

Stripe Communications named best UK agency

Stripe Communications named best UK agency

Scotland-based Stripe Communications was named Outstanding PR Consultancy at the national CIPR Excellence Awards in London yesterday (Tuesday 17 June, 2014), becoming the first Scottish agency in the awards history to scoop the top prize.

Held annually by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), the awards recognise the best in the communications industry, bringing together over 150 leading public relations consultancies, freelancers and in-house teams competing for the 30 individual awards.

The Outstanding Consultancy award recognises the achievements, performance and excellent work of a public relations consultancy over the past three years.

Stripe’s win comes after a successful start to 2014, which has seen continued business expansion and significant new client wins. With offices in Edinburgh and Glasgow, Stripe Communications continues to grow in numbers and reputation.

Juliet Simpson, Managing Director of Stripe Communications, said

“Becoming the first ever Scottish agency to win this award fills us with pride and tops a fantastic year to date for Stripe. I’m incredibly proud to see the team’s hard work recognised by the industry on a national scale. With the eyes of the world on Scotland this summer, there’s never been a more exciting time to be a ‘Stripe’ as we look to build on our reputation as the UK’s best PR agency.” Judges for the awards, commented: “We were hugely impressed by Stripe Communications’ focus on staff, including excellent internal communications; a mentoring scheme and Stripe’s delivery on its objective to be the industry leader for working parents. “Their tenacity with smaller budgets, straight talking no nonsense approach and immersion into clients’ businesses set them apart with the results seen in terms of staff retention, strong track record of business growth, premium client wins and a winning company culture.”