Backing Buy North-East Initiative

Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce has launched a new campaign to persuade businesses in north-east Scotland to source more products and services from within the region and in turn support fellow local firms.  The aim is to retain more money in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire and give the local economy a shot in the arm.

buy-north-eastBuy North-East is being run in conjunction with Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire councils, Scottish Enterprise and Aberdeen Journals and encourages local private, public and third sector organisations to procure more items from local suppliers.  The Press & Journal and Evening Express newspapers are highlighting the importance and benefits of sourcing products and services locally with regular editorial articles.AberdeenHundreds of businesses of all sizes and operating in all sectors have signed up to the initiative, including ourselves here at Innes Associates.  As an Aberdeen-based advertising, marketing and PR company we know the importance of using local suppliers.

Explaining why Innes Associates is backing the campaign, managing director Charlie Innes said: “We have always aimed to use local suppliers as much as possible.  Working with suppliers who are on our doorstep allows us to build strong relationships with them.  Nothing beats discussing a project face-to-face and having that personal relationship can help when last minute projects crop up.

Charlie Innes, managing director, Innes Associates

Charlie Innes

“Our network includes freelance designers, photographers, video production companies, gift suppliers and printers, and although each varies in size, they all contribute to ensuring we have a diverse economy here in the north-east.

“This campaign gives us the opportunity as a business to explore how we can support more north-east suppliers to fulfil our own needs and those of our clients.  Businesses should also be encouraging their staff to examine where they spend their money and inspire them to shop locally where and when they can.  If we all make some small changes it will have a positive knock-on effect right down the supply chain.”

For more information on Buy North-East visit www.buynortheast.co.uk.

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Firm Donates Free Food To Local Foodbank

Aberdeen-based marketing and communications consultancy Innes Associates has donated a second batch of free food to local food bank Community Food Initiatives North East (CFINE), proving that giving to charity does not always need to cost money.

Staff at the firm have been accumulating food and toiletries they have received when purchasing a copy of the Evening Express or Press and Journal from Aberdeen Journal’s roadshow events in Aberdeen’s Trinity Centre. The items were being given away free to readers as part of a promotion run by the papers.

Fiona Rae of CFINE (centre) accepts a donation from Charlie Innes (left) and Ian McLaren of Innes AssociatesThe idea of donating the free items to charity was sown in the minds of the Innes Associates team after being struck by a 12-year-old schoolgirl’s generosity last year. The youngster had saved up toys she had won at Codona’s and donated them to the Cash for Kids Mission Christmas gift appeal.

This latest batch of food and toiletries totalled 56 items, with an estimated retail value of over £60. A further £10 of tinned and dried food was also donated to the charity which was purchased from loose change collected in a tin in the firm’s office.

Boosting supplies – £60 of free food thanks to Aberdeen JournalsEarlier in the year, staff handed in 27 free items with a combined value of £35 to CFINE’s premises on Poynernook Road along with 21kg of additional food purchased by the team. These free items had been collected in the same way.

Along with donating items to the food bank, Innes Associates has also handed out some of the food to homeless people and donated Easter Eggs to local children’s egg appeals.

Free food – first batch of food collected for CFINEFoodbanks across Britain have been experiencing unprecedented demand in recent years. CFINE is the lead partner of the Food Banks Partnership Aberdeen, which comprises 37 partner community and voluntary organisations in the city. The Aberdeen foodbanks put out a call earlier this year which local residents got behind. Donations are constantly required, meaning this latest donation was well received.

In 2014, the partnership distributed over 13,000 emergency food parcels across Aberdeen, with CFINE itself handing out over 3,300 of them. This year, CFINE has dispensed, on average, around 750 emergency food parcels every month and as temperature begins to fall it is once again witnessing an increase in demand. The charity estimates that over the course of the year it will hand out nearly £160,000 worth of food and toiletries.

Ian McLaren, Innes Associates’ PR account manager, said: “We were all struck by the generosity shown last year by a 12-year-old girl who donated gifts she won to the Cash for Kids Mission Christmas appeal. It got us thinking about the things we could do that could have a similar impact and this is the result.

“In its simplest form it was about not being greedy. Instead passing on the goodwill shown to us, to those in need. It shows that donating to charity can at times cost nothing.”

Fiona Rae, deputy chief executive, CFINE, said: “This was a great initiative run by the team at Innes Associates. All of the food and toiletries that have been donated to CFINE are a huge benefit. Regardless of the time of year, we experience strong demand for food parcels. Every donation is greatly appreciated, particularly as we approach a time of year when additional pressures are put on our finances.”

Coinz Meanz Beanz For Charity

A humble tin of baked beans has allowed an Aberdeen charity to coin in over £100 thanks to a local firm.

Bean tin sprouts into charity cash

The store cupboard staple sprouted into £120 for Cash for Kids thanks to Aberdeen-based marketing and communications consultancy Innes Associates. Over the past year, staff at the firm have been putting loose change into an old baked bean tin, collecting a total of £16.15 in coppers and silvers. Staff members then individually matched the amount, with the total then being doubled by the firm.

Cash for Kids is currently running its annual Coats for Kids appeal, which aims to provide warm winter clothing to hundreds of underprivileged north-east children, and will use the donation to help meet an anticipated 600 applications. The charity supports disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under the age of 18 living in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. All of the money donated to the charity is spent in the local area.

Beans and coins

Normally the preserve of the bottom of pockets and purses, coppers and silvers are often an irritation to the public, but the team at Innes Associates grew to love the pesky pennies. In total they collected £1.33 in pennies, £1.32 in 2ps, £2.90 in 5ps, £4.20 in 10ps, £5.40 in 20ps and £1 in 50ps, along with a rouge American cent.

Charlie Innes, managing director of Innes Associates, said: “This was a really simple fundraising idea and it was surprising just how much we raised as a result of some loose change. We all often curse the coppers and small silvers that rattle around in our pockets or purses, so this put them to great use for a worthwhile local charity.”

Charlie Innes, managing director, Innes Associates

Charlie Innes

Michelle Ferguson, Cash for Kids’ charity manager, said: “This was a fantastic fundraising concept and goes to show that little things can accumulate into substantial amounts. Loose change is a bugbear of many people and this is an initiative many other firms could also adopt.

Cash for Kids logo“All of the money that is raised for Cash for Kids is used to support young people here in the north-east. Instead of being used to support our Coats for Kids appeal, a donation of this value could help a family to purchase clothes, bedding and other essentials for their children, or fund quarter of the purchase cost of a specialist wheelchair for a disabled child.”

Innes Associates Launches Summer Adventure Campaign

Summer has always been a time for adventures. Whether it was building sandcastles and exploring rock pools at the seaside during your six-week school summer holidays or jetting off from work for two weeks on the sun-kissed beaches of the Mediterranean, discovering something new has always been part of summer.

#InnesAdventures ideas - Scotland

This summer we’re launching something new and have some great prizes up for grabs. Over the next eight weeks we want to come along with you on your summer adventures. We know that you’ll already have your suitcase jam packed, so we’ve something far more manageable for you to take on your travels, an #InnesAdventures card.

What we want you to do is pick up one of our adventure cards and take a selfie with it while you’re on your holidays. Once you’ve taken your selfie upload it to Twitter, Facebook or Instagram using the hashtag #InnesAdventures and add the location of your snap.

Our competition runs from today – Monday, 29 June – until Friday, 21 August and we’ll be awarding a prize for the furthest travelled selfie and the quirkiest selfie. If you’re sunning yourself in the Seychelles, exploring China’s Forbidden City or heading off on a road trip round Scotland, make sure your Innes Adventures card is packed and then get creative (within reason as we don’t want you doing anything dangerous just to get a quirky picture) with your photography.

#InnesAdventures cardsFeel free to pass on your Innes Adventures card to family, friends and colleagues and get them involved too.

Instructions

  • Pick up an Innes Associates adventure card and head off and visit some sights.
  • Once you have arrived at your destination, simply take out your phone and your Innes Associates adventure card, and then take a selfie with us.
  • Hold the adventure card with the white megaphone facing the camera, get your landmark in the background and smile.
  • After you have taken your selfie, upload it to Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, or even all three. Include our hashtag #InnesAdventures, and add the location of your Innes picture.

#InnesAdventures ideas - LondonSelecting the winners

We’ll be awarding prizes in two categories:

  • Quirkiest Innes Selfie
  • Furthest Travelled Innes Selfie*
    *Miles will be calculated from our office at 1 Little Belmont Street, Aberdeen to the location of your snap.

The winners will be able to choose from a selection of prizes – including vouchers for cookery classes at the Nick Nairn Cook School in Aberdeen and a champagne afternoon tea for two people at Meldrum House.

Remember, your #InnesAdventures selfie must be submitted by Friday, 21 August.

If you have any questions, or want to get involved, contact Bronwyn on bronwyn@charlieinnes.com or 01224 925051.

Innes Adventure ideas - Dunnottar Castle and Pennan

Mission Christmas Appeal Takes Off With Bond’s Help

Cash for Kids logoInnes Associates has been supporting Cash for Kids over the past year and yesterday we helped to launch the charity’s annual Christmas present appeal.  Read the full story below or head to www.northsound1.com/mission-christmas or www.northsound1.com/charity/ to find out how you can help.

Mission Christmas Appeal Takes Off With Bond’s Help

Cash for Kids' Mission ChristmasAn annual festive campaign to ensure that underprivileged children living in north-east Scotland receive a present this Christmas has been officially launched by Aberdeen charity Cash for Kids.

The charity’s Mission Christmas appeal encourages members of the public to purchase an extra toy or gift when they are doing their Christmas shopping and donate it unwrapped to the appeal.  Cash for Kids has set up 20 donation points across the north-east in order to make it as easy as possible for people to donate items.

It is estimated that around 10,000 children in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire live in poverty.  Cash for Kids is one of a number of local charities that run an annual Christmas toy appeal in order to provide these children with at least one toy or gift on Christmas day.

Bond Offshore Helicopters is the main sponsor of the appeal.  One of the firm’s pilots and Cash for Kids’ Courage the Cat were on hand to help Santa Claus load the first batch of presents bound for his workshop at the North Pole into one of Bond’s helicopters.  This year’s appeal was kick-started with a donation of 168 quality toys from Aberdeen’s Disney Store.

Last year’s Mission Christmas appeal saw around £160,000 worth of presents generously donated by individuals and businesses in the north-east.  This helped to ensure that 2,966 underprivileged children in the region were guaranteed a Christmas present.  Cash for Kids expects to fulfil a similar number of applications on behalf of children this year.

Mission Christmas appeal lifts off

Bond staff, Santa and Northsound DJs Greigsy and Aylissa launch the appeal

Michelle Herd, charity manager, said: “Christmas is a magical time of the year, but for thousands of children living in poverty in the north-east often it is not, with many not receiving a present.  Cash for Kids’ Mission Christmas appeal aims to ensure that as many children as possible in this situation wake up on Christmas morning to the joy of a new gift.

“Last year we distributed over 10,000 presents to youngsters in the area and we have already received over 1,000 applications on behalf of children.  All gifts and donations are gratefully received, no matter how large or small, and should be unwrapped.

“We are really pleased to have Bond as the main supporter of our appeal this year and their assistance is really appreciated.  The Mission Christmas appeal is a huge logistical task for us and we are indebted to everyone who helps to make it operate successfully.”

North Pole bound

Greigsy, Santa and Aylissa

Luke Farajallah, managing director, Bond Offshore Helicopters, said:  “Cash for Kids is one of the most worthy charities in Aberdeen, and as a locally based business we feel the responsibility to play our part in making Christmas a special time of year for all children.  It is heart-breaking to understand that 10,000 children in the Aberdeenshire area live in poverty, and it is this fact that has inspired us to step up and make a difference.

“We are extremely proud to be the main sponsor of this event, and we would urge local people and businesses to play their part by also making a donation, however small, in the full knowledge that they will be bringing some Christmas magic into the lives of the children who need it most.”

Cash for Kids is Northsound Radio’s listeners’ charity.  It makes grants to individuals, families, children’s groups, organisations and projects throughout the Northsound transmission area.  All money is raised locally and spent locally to benefit local disabled and disadvantaged children and young people under 18.  More information on Cash for Kids can be found at www.northsound1.com/charity, or telephone 01224 337010.

Innes Associates helps to mark some milestones

Innes Associates at 10It seems that 2013 is quite a good year to be celebrating an anniversary in Aberdeen.  This  year Innes Associates celebrates a decade a business and we’re not alone in reaching a significant milestone.

Also celebrating ten years in business are subsea intervention firm Bibby Offshore and Belmont Street eatery Books and Beans.  Others who are blowing out candles on the top of their tenth birthday cakes are the Press & Journal’s monthly Energy supplement and Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce’s Northern Star Business Awards.

This year marks 40 years since the first Offshore Europe exhibition and conference was staged in the city.  Originally held at the University of Aberdeen and called Offshore Scotland, the event has grown into the largest oil and gas production event in the eastern hemisphere.  This year’s event is expected to attract over 1,500 exhibitors and welcome around 50,000 visitors over its four days.

Another Aberdeen business celebrating a major landmark is Roustabout Energy International, one of the leading oil and gas publications in north-east Scotland.  Its first magazine came off the printing press in September 1972 and nearly 41 years later its 500th edition has just been printed.  Thanks to modern technology you don’t have to have a printed copy to be able toread it as its digital version can be read on a desktop, tablet or mobile phone.

Charlie Innes

Charlie Innes, managing director, Innes Associates

It was this combination of advancing technology and significant milestones that led to Innes Associates managing director Charlie Innes putting pen to paper – or fingers to keyboard – to look at how technology and the way we communicate has evolved over the past 40 years.  From telex machines to touchscreens and tablets, and how jobs in the oil industry have changed, are all covered.  To read the full article and have a look at the new look Roustabout Energy International has received to mark the 500th issue visit their website.  You might also spot a dashing young Charlie Innes!

Can running benefit your business performance?

The name McLaren has long been associated with speed and never more so than in the Innes Associates’ office of late…

Our very own PR account manager Ian McLaren recently completed a hat trick of 10K runs held in the north-east and at each of these events – The Glenlivet 10K, Run Balmoral and the City of Aberdeen Baker Hughes 10k – he finished in under 45 minutes. (Well done again!)Ian_McLaren_Race

Like many exercise enthusiasts, Ian enjoys running for a variety of reasons. Along with all the well-documented benefits, there is now a growing belief that working out can help a business’s bottom line as well as the employees’ waistlines!

According to Zest magazine you can increase your mental functions by going running as it boosts blood flow to the brain and helps it receive oxygen and nutrients, making you more productive at work. This theory is echoed by greatruntraining.org, which also states that running is positively beneficial to your grey matter. Their website quotes a recent Swedish study, which found a clear link between high levels of aerobic fitness and better results in an IQ test – making running the ideal workout for a brain boost.

Many businesses today also encourage staff to take on physical challenges in order to raise money for worthwhile causes and, indeed, Ian used his trio of races to gather sponsorship for VSA, one of Aberdeen’s major social care charities.

Increased fitness + increased mental agility + increased support for good causes = a very healthy hobby. Time to grab those trainers?