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Understanding PR for a bridal boutique

Emily Dawson started working in the bridal industry last June as a PR consultant for Bromley Brides. Since then, the boutique has secured one of the industry’s biggest celebrities as their ambassador and seen amazing growth. 

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Tell us about yourself

My background in PR started in Fashion, working for Tommy Hilfiger’s in-house PR team. I quickly progressed up the ladder in Consumer PR, before finding my niche in Entertainment PR.

I worked agency side for Universal Pictures and Disney and then in-house at the Global TV Network Discovery Inc. looking after the publicity of a portfolio of channels and talent for over five years. This helped to establish my relationships with the Say Yes to the Dress hosts Randy Fenoli and David Emanuel.

I am extremely results-driven, and the proof is in the pudding! As an experienced creative communications professional, I have led and managed PR campaigns for some of the biggest brands in TV and Film, including Disney, Universal Pictures, Warner Brothers, Discovery Inc, Sky and NOW TV, ensuring my skills are multi-faceted.

When I was offered the opportunity to work for Bromley Brides, I knew I would bring my knowledge and expertise of the entertainment sector and transfer my skillset accordingly.

It’s been an exciting six months learning all about bridal, and I now relish every opportunity to thrive and help the business to quickly adapt and evolve in this current time.

How have you taken your knowledge of the world of TV/Film and entertainment and applied it to the bridal industry?

Working with talent was the biggest attribute, as it helped me form relationships in addition to implementing strategies for talent as Brand Ambassadors, which can elevate the brand to meet business objectives.

Working in the TV & Film Industry is fast-paced, and as a result you develop a robust set of skills and a complete 360 holistic view to building a brand. You must understand what the audience wants to see and provide them with personal access.

As I have transitioned into the bridal industry, I am learning new things all the time and I welcome all new relationships. Imparting my knowledge of the celebrity world has helped to cut through the noise and make stuff happen more instantaneously. Evolving the narrative for the brand is key!

What is a PR strategy and why is it important for bridal boutiques to have one?

PR is integral to the success of any business - particularly in the fashion and retail sector, and it’s vital for meeting key business objectives.

PR is about image, reputation and the public perception of the brand, delivered through the medium of storytelling and editorial media coverage, which builds trust, secures customers and therefore sales. A good strategy will help you to achieve all three!

PR does not just include editorial coverage, it also covers social media, SEO, celebrity endorsement and marketing as part of the 360 integrated mix. Each element has its unique role to play! Like many spokes to the wheel, a celebrity endorsement for example can help to elevate the brand and social media will grow your brand and maintain momentum through an evolving strategy.

Whilst bridal is a mainly a traditional bricks & mortar industry, our current climate has showed us that we all need to adapt and evolve – this is why Bromley Brides has launched virtual appointments with David Emanuel and a Loaner Dress Service, where dresses are delivered to the brides’ front doors.

I do believe the market will return with a boom later this year so it’s all about being proactive and innovative until then.

You have been working with Bromley Brides, helping them increase their presence through editorial press coverage. Can you tell us more about that?

I have been a Consultant for Bromley Brides since June 2020, where I formulated the launch of The Wonder Room with our Ambassador David Emanuel and the media partnership with Hello magazine.

I knew David Emanuel would be of interest to the royally favoured publication and editorially they would want an exclusive scoop on his relationship with Princess Diana. In particular, it was the upcoming 40th wedding anniversary of Princess Diana and Prince Charles and The Crown was about to release series 4, depicting their wedding on Netflix, which provided a great hook.

Growing Bromley Brides’ online presence was a major objective in addition to creating awareness for the boutique and their growing designer dress collection. Strategically, it was key to create dynamic fashion-led content, whilst planning ahead for the promotion of key business launches and offering engagement opportunities for the brides. Within three months, we achieved double digit follower growth and the business insights continues to help shape our narrative.

Where does a boutique start when it comes to PR and how can they get in contact with you if they would like to chat through how you can help?

It all starts with the building of the brand, creating value and identifying the unique selling points. After establishing these aspects of your business, comes the storytelling to create talkability and reputation in the media.

As a results-driven person I strive to achieve the best possible results for the business through using an integrated 360 approach. I provide straight-talking strategic counsel and creative direction whilst maintaining talent relationships and achieving long-term business objectives. Through this combination, I am passionate about putting small businesses on the map.

Now a freelance consultant, I am completely open to helping other bridal businesses, whether this is through the power of PR & Celebrity for an exciting new launch or providing a helping hand in marketing or digital as part of the 360 integration – it all starts with taking that leap of faith.

If you would like to find out how EKD Consultancy can help your store, get in touch emily@ekdconsultancycomms.co.uk.

Emily be sharing her insider secrets on the power of celebrity later this year.

 

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