The newspaper group Kent Messenger has launched a Love Your Local advertising partnership to let locals know that pubs hit by the coronavirus pandemic are open for business.
The county-wide advertising scheme is running in the What’s On supplement which is carried inside all paid-for KM Group newspapers as well as the group’s free paper the Thanet Extra.
As pubs have diversified by opening their doors for deliveries and takeaways, the scheme calls upon pub owners to get in touch with KM Group’s team and tell readers about how they are still serving their local community during the crisis. In return KM Group is offering a free advert inside its What’s On supplement.
The newsgroup, which was acquired by Iliffe Media in 2017 and counts the Kent Messenger and Kentish Express series amongst its portfolio, has promised to cover as many pubs as possible during the scheme. Statistics last year showed that UK pubs were closing at the rate of one every 12 hours.
The scheme will feature stories about business enterprises in local papers and on the group’s website KentOnline, while supporting pubs which are not yet open by publicising reopening plans.
Angela Cole, Senior Features Writer for What’s On told the SoE that the scheme has been very well received, with feedback from pubs saying they definitely value the support.
Involving readers in the scheme, What’s On has requested local pub-goers to send in photos of their pub or how they have been celebrated by raising a glass to the community spirit from afar.
Cole added that readers nominating their local pubs and breweries has meant that the group is able to give them the free adverts the scheme promises, as well as editorial features on some of the enterprising things they’ve been doing.
This is the latest in a drive by regional newspaper groups to offer advertising partnerships to struggling businesses hit by the pandemic, with Reach plc’s #IAmOpen scheme running its second open hour Twitter drive last week for local businesses.