Looking back on 2016
It’s been another brilliant and busy year here at TDG…
Our business is based around what we call “The Care Factor” - Customers, Charity and Community.
This means we always strive to exceed our expectations when helping our customers win more local business, while also contributing to the community and local causes – making sure we are giving something back.
This year, we’ve added even more services to help our customers grow their business all-year-round, including social media campaigns, a new blog offering marketing ideas and tips, and an online business directory, along with our brand new lifestyle magazine, enabling customers to target a high-end audience.
On the charity side, we’ve supported three fantastic local charities and been involved in plenty of community events throughout the year. Here are just some of our highlights…
At the start of the year, we put together a big plan to support three local chosen charities: The Rowans Hospice, the Cat & Rabbit Rescue Centre and The King’s Arms youth centre. We wanted to not only raise funds, but also offer practical support by volunteering, and also raise awareness for each cause through monthly articles in the directories and regular updates on our social media.
We also launched our new Community News pages, featuring local news and updates in each area edition of The Directory – your news from your community.
We rolled our sleeves up to help out at The King’s Arms, moving their office furniture at their Petersfield hub, where they run after-school clubs and young carers groups to support young people from across East Hampshire.
Denise cooked up the first batch of tasty suppers for the children at The King’s Arms Young Carers groups, and we also supported the charity by helping out a local family in need.
We celebrated our 11th birthday! Since the launch of the first Petersfield Directory in 2005, we’ve grown year on year and now publish 9 different area editions, delivered to 91,000 homes across Hampshire and West Sussex.
While plenty has changed during this time, our aim remains the same: To help local companies win more local business. We’re also still as passionate as ever about supporting charities and the community.
In our April edition, we sent out a Readers’ Survey to see what aspects of the directories we could change/improve, and likewise contacted all our customers for their feedback.
A fantastic addition to our portfolio, our brand new complimentary local lifestyle magazine, Beautiful South launched in May, with the first issue delivered direct through the doors of 20,000 ABC1 homes in Petersfield, Winchester, Alresford and the Meon Valley.
Since then, we’ve increased our distribution to 32,000 and added Havant, Rowlands Castle, Hayling Island, Emsworth, Old Portsmouth and Southsea to the areas covered.
To celebrate the launch of our new luxury lifestyle magazine, we hosted two exclusive afternoon tea launch events at Lainston House Hotel near Winchester, providing an opportunity to explain more about the concept of the magazine and plan for the future by setting up a Beautiful South Focus Group.
A busy day of networking for The Directory Group and Beautiful South team at the Portsmouth Business Expo, making new connections and meeting many other local businesses from across Hampshire.
Meanwhile, our very own fitness fanatic Jo tackled the Petersfield Ups and Downs (PUAD) cycle ride in aid of the Rowans Hospice.
We volunteered at the Cat & Rabbit Rescue Centre’s annual open day – a scorching hot summer’s day with hundreds of visitors popping in to show their support for the charity and help find a forever home for the cats, kittens and rabbits.
Following feedback from our Readers’ Survey we sent out in the directories earlier in the year, we made some changes to keep the content in the directories fresh, with a new Have Your Say competition offering the chance for readers to give their feedback on local companies they’ve found in our directories, and Barney finally getting the chance to write his own monthly column… something he’s always been keen to do!
During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the TDG team took part in a whole host of fundraising activities, from a sponsored walk to a coffee and cake sale.
We also dressed up in pink to show our support and raise awareness for this vital cause, and donated £5 from every advertising booking made with us during October, raising a total of £479.
A great effort by the whole team and thankyou to everyone who made a donation.
The TDG and Beautiful South team exhibited at the Southampton Business Expo, the city’s biggest business event of the year - a great place to network and meet many other local businesses.
During November, we also supported another of our chosen charities, the Cat & Rabbit Rescue Centre in Sidlesham, by collecting and delivering donations of food, blankets and bedding from across the community to help keep cats and kittens warm and fed during the cold winter months.
Since TDG was founded 11 years ago, we’ve supported a whole host of community events, but this year’s Petersfield Christmas lights switch-on had to be one of the best. It was a pleasure for us to not only sponsor the event, but also host a stall offering free arts and crafts activities for kids – a fantastic evening of festive fun in The Square.
We also took part in Save The Children’s Christmas Jumper Day.