Forever Edinburgh: ‘Shop Here This Year’ spreads the love to locals with digital skills workshops for Edinburgh businesses

A campaign encouraging locals to ‘Shop Here This Year’ is continuing to spread support to local businesses in the Capital with a new series of free digital marketing workshops, hosted by Edinburgh-based influencers.

Wednesday, 2nd June 2021, 4:55 am

Let us know what you think and join the conversation at the bottom of this article.

Delivered by Edinburgh City Council under Forever Edinburgh, Shop Here This Year has adapted the campaign in the wake of the global pandemic to ensure continued support for businesses across the city who have been impacted severely by the pandemic.

The campaign continues to shine a spotlight on 11 neighbourhoods and town centres across the city – Stockbridge, Gorgie and Dalry, Portobello, Southside, Leith, Morningside and Bruntsfield, Tollcross, Corstorphine, Queensferry, Royal Mile, and Grassmarket – and the businesses that bring them to life, showcasing the independent retailers, eateries, and personal shopping experiences that make them great places to visit for locals and visitors to Edinburgh alike.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Delivered by the City of Edinburgh Council under Forever Edinburgh, Shop Here This Year has adapted the campaign in the wake of the global pandemic to ensure continued support for businesses across the city who have been impacted by the pandemic.
Delivered by the City of Edinburgh Council under Forever Edinburgh, Shop Here This Year has adapted the campaign in the wake of the global pandemic to ensure continued support for businesses across the city who have been impacted by the pandemic.

The new series of virtual workshops has been created to support businesses in making the most of their digital marketing platforms in continuing to promote their businesses to existing and new customers.

Taking place on Zoom throughout the coming months, these workshops will each target a different sector of Edinburgh’s diverse and vibrant retail scene - lifestyle, fashion and interiors, food, drink and attractions, and heritage and tours.

The digital workshops will focus on developing key skills that will empower each business to grow and maximise their digital presence, following, and engagement.

Each workshop will be tailored to specific sectors and will cover essential digital marketing skills, showing how to increase brand awareness, take impactful imagery, build a following and share engaging copy.

The campaign continues to shine a spotlight on 11 neighbourhoods and town centres across the Capital and the businesses that bring them to life, showcasing the independent retailers, eateries, and personal shopping experiences that make them great places to visit.

Any business from across Edinburgh’s varied retail sectors are encouraged to sign up to one, or all three workshops, in accordance with relevance and their own availability.

To kick things off Gemma Armit of Everything Edinburgh and Two Scots Abroad will host the first influencer workshop aimed at businesses with links to ‘attractions, heritage and tours’, on Tuesday June 15 from 5.30pm.

Then on Tuesday June 29, again from 5.30pm, Emma Bathgate of Vegan Edinburgh will host her own workshop focused on food and drink retailers.

Finally, at 5.30pm on Tuesday July 6, Lauren Dall of The Luxe List will host the third and final workshop focused on lifestyle, fashion and interiors.

The new series has been created to support businesses in making the most of their digital marketing platforms in continuing to promote their businesses to existing and new customers.

Workshops are free to attend and open to all Edinburgh businesses.

A new local business champion network, created by the council’s business growth and inclusion team, has been instrumental in shaping the campaign.

The network includes a range of businesses from all 11 neighbourhoods and include: Cove, Action Porty, Fabhatrix, Reddoor Gallery, Walker Slater, Leith Police Box, Cranachan and Crowdie, Scottish Textiles, Ragamuffin, 181 Deli, Bakery Andante, Specsavers, Herbie of Edinburgh, Seakist and Leith, Stockbridge and Grassmarket Outdoor Markets.

Shopping locally has a number of benefits, not just as a response to the Covid-19 pandemic, but in general. It has strong environmental credentials; it supports the places where we live in our city and it maintains the diverse and exciting mix of independent businesses which give each town centre its unique character.

A representative from the Business Champion Network, said: “We are delighted to be involved in the Shop Here This Year campaign, which allows local businesses like ours to engage with Edinburgh’s citizens in a way that has never been more important.

“The past 12 months have been hard on everyone and while we are excited at the prospect of things slowly opening up, we need to explore avenues that are open to us in the meantime.

“Not only will these workshops give Edinburgh businesses an opportunity to develop vital skills needed to help promote our businesses via social media and connect to shoppers, they will also enable us to engage with other businesses in our area, building a the sense of community and hopefully providing us with a network of support that will continue long into the future.”

Councillor Kate Campbell, housing, homelessness and fair work convener at the council, said: “Edinburgh’s local business community is incredibly important to everyone living in and around the city. Our town centres are diverse and vibrant, all offering something different from the very best in local food and drink, delicious coffees to elegant cocktails. We have so many shops offering locally made products, crafts, art, fashion, books and pretty much anything else you can imagine.

“By bringing these businesses together with digital marketing professionals who have had a front row seat to the struggles that retail and hospitality businesses are going through, we can create a community of support on the road to recovery.

“This campaign is run by Forever Edinburgh, the city’s visitor marketing brand, and works alongside its newest promotional activity of the Capital – The Story Never Ends.

It is hoped that these new skills will also help businesses build and tell their audiences more about their stories – be it their origins, about their products and suppliers or their customers experiences – and get involved by using the hashtag #ForeverEdinburgh. It’s another great opportunity to help both residents and visitors rediscover all the amazing unique experiences our Capital has to offer.”

The campaign continues to engage with the local communities across the city and encourages people to share their Edinburgh shopping moments using #ShopHereThisYear and #ForeverEdinburgh on social media.

Of course, while restrictions remain in place, those taking part are encouraged to do so in a Covid compliant way.

To sign up, businesses can register via Eventbrite at the following links:

Attractions, Heritage & Tours with Gemma Armit of Everything Edinburgh

Food & Drink with Emma Bathgate of Vegan Edinburgh

Fashion, Lifestyle & Interiors with Lauren Dall of The Luxe List

The Evening News is supporting Forever Edinburgh, a joint campaign between the City of Edinburgh Council, Edinburgh Tourism Action Group (ETAG) and VisitScotland. This encourages people to rediscover the city, its stories and places while supporting local businesses, promoting attractions, shops, bars and restaurants as lockdown eases.