The search is on for the UK's best rural creative or media based business

The search is on for the UK's best rural creative or media based business

Anna and Jemma

We had a chat with the Rural Business Awards Co-Founder & Director, Anna Price to find out more about the awards and the coveted Best Rural Creative or Media based business category.

Where did the idea for the Rural Business Awards come from?

I was working for Jemma as a consultant to develop strategy for her Rural Marketing business – one of the areas we were discussing was how to engage with Rural businesses and encourage them to network. Something which is notoriously difficult for land-based businesses to do due to a lot of seasonality. The idea of an awards programme was born on the back of this conversation. We are both passionate about rural businesses and we loved the idea of celebrating success amongst our peers and the wider business sector.

What are the aims of the Rural Business Awards?

The aim of the Rural Business Awards is to give recognition to businesses operating right across the Rural sector. The CLA define rural businesses as fitting into three broad categories – Land Based businesses, Land Related Businesses and Other Businesses located in rural areas. Our category selection aims to draw together businesses from across these three broad areas to acknowledge the breadth and depth of opportunity presented by the Great British countryside, as well as to celebrate the achievements of our rural businesses, from engineering through to artisan food producers and professional services organisations.

Why have a specific category for Best Rural Creative or Media based Business?

The idea came from some friends of ours who supported us in the first year – they run a rural publication. We came to think about how publications and creative events and businesses bring together rural communities. Creativity is enhanced we believe by operating from a rural location – our entrants last year clearly demonstrated this! From creative businesses to artisans and artists to community magazines – all were passionate about being rural.

Who won it last year?

Gravity Digital based in Derbyshire won the Award last year.

Why did they stand out?

They operate from a base in the Peak District close to Bakewell – the judges said they stood out as a very professional business who had great integrity and were straightforward and produced a great presentation (as we'd expect from a creative agency!) Their team was experienced and they worked with some really nice rurally based businesses and brands.
They also had strong ties to their community by volunteering a proportion of their time to local community projects.

What judging criteria will you use for this year’s award?

An independent panel will view each submission on Tuesday 4th July 2017, the process for judging is unique in that the judging is done using a scoring process and as such the judges will not know the overall results. Judging is not therefore subjective.
The judging panel will refer to these points to ensure that entries are relevant and demonstrate commitment to the rural business sector.

BUSINESS Focus, demonstrate:

  • Contribution to the rural and wider business economy
  • Effective Financial Management
  • Job creation
  • Service and Infrastructure development

And / or PEOPLE Focus, demonstrate:

  • Positive impact on communities or people
  • How your product, service, project or offering makes life easier or better for people living or working in rural locations.

This award aims to celebrate Businesses which have their origin in creativity, skill and individual talent and which have demonstrated commercial success from a rural base, or by developing content that uses or embraces a rural theme. We will look at how these businesses are creating jobs and contributing to the economy as well as how they might bring together communities.

The winning business will be able to demonstrate the following:

  • Clear strategy for business growth and sustainability and demonstration of the achievement of the aims and objectives
  • A clear understanding of the market and customers to whom the business is selling
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Strong business and financial results
  • Innovative approach to delivering creative output that achieves client objectives
  • How being rural shapes the way that the business operates
  • Customer and staff engagement
  • Effective leadership, operation and management
  • Uniqueness in offering – what sets the business apart from the competition
  • An ethical approach to business

How do businesses apply?

All entries should be submitted online and the entry deadline is 30th June 2017.

Click here for information on how to register and to submit your entry.

Where can people follow your updates?

You can follow us on twitter: @RuralRBAs or Facebook: Rural Business Awards
You can receive updates by registering via the form here.

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