Comment: George Clooney visit is another coup

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So now we know how you follow having Bill Clinton as a dinner guest – you invite George Clooney.

The visit of the Oscar-winning actor to the Capital in November is another coup for the enterprising couple behind the Social Bite sandwich shops, Josh Littlejohn and Alice Thompson.

The pair – who employ local homeless people and donate all profits to good causes – also persuaded Richard Branson to come to Edinburgh to support them, so no-one should be surprised that they have pulled it off again.

The Hollywood superstar’s visit will deliver a great boost to their fledgling social enterprise as it will be used to raise money to support their work.

The success of Social Bite has been built on its founders recognising one simple principle, that we can make a difference. Given the opportunity, many of us are only too happy to buy coffee or lunch for someone else in greater need, safe in the knowledge that what we are doing will make their day better.

Their great skill at tapping into social networks to persuade some of the world’s biggest names to support them has helped to spread word about the business tremendously.

In today’s multi-media world, it is possible to attract huge audiences with the smart execution of a simple idea, like inviting people to buy Christmas dinner for a homeless person as Social Bite did last December. The flipside, though, is that with so much else vying for people’s attention it is harder than ever to keep your audience interested these days. Who knows what Josh and Alice will do next year? No doubt they will surprise us all.

But if their cafes are to continue to flourish they will, sooner or later, rely just like any other business on enough customers passing through their doors. So if you value what they are doing and want to support another Edinburgh success story then you can find them on Rose Street and Shandwick Place.