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In partnership with European Regional Development Fund and Northern Powerhouse
A new service launched in Northumberland last Summer by Advance Northumberland with funding received by Northumberland County Council from the North of Tyne Combined Authority to support businesses adversely affected by Covid-19 is proving to be a success.

So far 65 small businesses have signed up to the Northumberland Covid Business Response Programme’s (NCBRP) Digital Advantage, digital marketing campaign element where businesses are provided with a bespoke Digital Marketing Campaign worth £1000 of which £500 goes towards the online advertising spend through Google Ads or Facebook.

The campaigns, delivered by Gateshead-based Digital Allies, have so far seen participating businesses enjoy a combined 3.59 million impressions via GoogleAds and have reached over 1.3 million people on Facebook.

Kielder Observatory Astronomical Society is one of the businesses to benefit from the programme. Heather Woodfine, who takes care of marketing for the society, says: “We briefed Digital Allies to focus on promoting our gift vouchers and we saw an almost 20% increase in sales. The advert enjoyed extensive reach for the budget which was good and shows our content works very well.”

John Dunn, Managing Director of Starscape Ceilings Ltd in Scremerston, Berwick-upon-Tweed, says they also enjoyed great success through the programme. “The overall experience was very positive with plenty of help and support from the experts at Digital Allies. We did see an increase in online sales during the campaign, which would have easily covered the costs.”

NCBRP is a new service for businesses that have been adversely affected by Covid-19. The Project is funded by the North of Tyne Combined Authority and delivered by Advance Northumberland on behalf of Northumberland County Council and the Northumberland Business Hub. It has two elements - Business Advantage which can provide businesses with 12 hours of fully funded business coaching and Digital Advantage which focusses on giving businesses Digital tools to keep them trading including the eCommerce websites that Sarah took advantage of.

Julie Dodds, Head of Economic Growth at Advance Northumberland, says: “Advance Northumberland is here to provide comprehensive support to businesses across the County and there’s never been a more crucial time as during this pandemic for them to tap into our services. We are delighted that we’ve been able to work with the marketing experts at Digital Allies to secure so many online hits, and ultimately sales, for some fantastic small businesses in Northumberland and look forward to supporting more in the coming months.”

Digital Allies also deliver online workshops for support programme Business Northumberland, also delivered by Advance Northumberland, covering topics; Digital Marketing, Social Media, eCommerce, Websites and SEO. Business Northumberland provides support to small and medium enterprises across the North East who are looking to sustain and grow their business online. The fully funded support programme is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and Advance Northumberland, so there is no cost to eligible businesses when accessing the support.

For more information about the Northumberland Covid Business Response Programme, please go to:www.northumberlandbusinessresponse.co.uk/

If you are looking to take part in the fully funded courses led by Digital Allies and delivered through Business Northumberland, please go to: www.businessnorthumberland.co.uk

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