Saturday, 22 July 2017

Social Media - The Power of!

Well forgive me if I never write agin how gorgeous the weather has been! Because ever since the last blog where I talked about glorious sunshine etc, etc , etc it seems we've not had a day where it hasn't poured down with rain! Oh and Thunder...... and lightening... and gale force winds! So my humblest of apologies to you all! 

I have been smitten by a chest infection yet again for the last couple of weeks so everything I've done has been done from the comfort of my sofa, and actually social media wise I've been kept busy! However, I did venture out one lunchtime to treat myself and more about that later!                                                                                                
Me!!! In full Blog writing mode! 

Social media consists of so much for us as a business nowadays - we have a huge Facebook site with well over 3,000 likes, a Twitter account with almost 3,000 followers and an Instagram account I'm building up slowly but surely standing currently at 520 followers. None of that has happened overnight and every day my routine is this; 

Firstly! Cup of tea in bed (bought by SOH) check Social Media Accounts. Always check Trip Advisor (currently No 1) to see if any new reviews in - a lot of my days mood will depend on the fact we've had good or not so good ones! I always answer all of them regardless. 

Next, I check all media accounts for comments, actions to be taken, e mails to be answered, any bookings that come through the accounts.  For the pub team we also now communicate through a private Facebook group; Rotas are sent, discussions had about previous services, any queries or ideas etc.  Sometimes just a bit of well placed banter or a private whinge!  It doesn't stop us meeting as a team but it's a useful tool and it's nice and informal! 

All of this and more can be done on my iPhone (shameless plug I know - but they might send me a free upgrade when it happens!). So it's often nice to check in and say Hi, pass on compliments etc to the team. 

But to write blogs or articles for magazines I always fire up my MacAir (Yes, another shameless plug!). I can sit for hours tapping away on this thing and thoroughly enjoy it, but I would say updating all of the social media accounts takes me about 2 hours a day - more like 3 if I write a blog like tonight. But you cannot underestimate the power of SM - and any business that doesn't use it to it's fullest potential is missing a trick! 

For example - the photo of our rudder advertising our Taste of the West award 2017 attracted over 600 views on FB, over 1800 'impressions' on Twitter and 60 likes on Instagram! Do you have any idea what sort of cost that would be to advertise formally!!?? 

So, just because you don't always see me in the pub, I am not sitting around painting my nails! 

Today I've been kept busy as we featured in the fabulous Devon Life as one of top 16 Dog Pubs in Devon to visit and one of my fab team; Sam Inch recently thought about water in the garden for our doggies and came up with this absolutely fantastic and innovative idea!!! Don't you just love it???

Anyway, I've been a poorly bunny again as I said, but I did go out (on my own!) the other (only) sunny day for a spot of lunch. 

Now, I think we're VERY  lucky to have some really nice eateries in Salcombe - I have a couple of personal favourites - but it's always nice to try something new, and there's currently a bit of a buzz about The Wardroom. At the back of Crew Clothing (Oh Lord how I love that shop!! Especially stocking up on SOH shirts and tops when they have their sales) 

The young man causing a bit of a stir is Jamie Lee Burnard and he's been a MasterChef quarter finalist as well as also Young Chef of the Year for the whole of the SW. 

We've been talking on FB (social media again) so I took him up on his offer to try his food (all of which I paid for - apart from the pud which was his get well gift to me!) I had a super seat by the waters edge and the food was as good as I've tasted in some top London restaurants! 

I truly think he is someone to watch and I personally wish him all the love and luck in the world in developing his menu and the business. 

It's so great when you see new talent emerging and I'm sure we will hear big things about Jamie in the future. It's also excellent news for all of our visitors as it gives yet another option for them.  

Talking of new talent, we are delighted to have another apprentice starting with us in September. This is Nick - Nick had been with us a KP (Kitchen Porter) for a few months now and a nicer man you couldn't hope to meet. KP's generally get the shittiest jobs - the humping, lifting, shifting, cleaning, fetching and carrying jobs! 

But Nick has really shone in all that and he asked to be considered for a Chefs Apprenticeship! He'll get paid a decent wage and learn a trade and we are very, very pleased that he wants to do this - so well done Nick, we're happy to give you this opportunity.  

Our Chefs are currently working on the new Autumn menus (they will start mid September) and the NYE menu (for which we literally have a dozen spaces left!) is going to blow your socks off you lucky people who have booked with us. 

Just a quick mention about 2 local happenings before I close down for the night; The Berry! This is still rumbling on!!! Ominously so! There is a Facebook page if you want to keep up with events;

There's also been an impassioned plea from Ben Sherring who runs a small family run business at South Sands called Sea Kayak Salcombe - might just be worth a read and a comment if you feel so inclined;

I think that will do for tonight, seem to have been on here for ages - let me just remind you dear readers, that all comments, musings and meanderings on here are MY OWN thoughts and comments. Everything I write is in the interest of Salcombe, our town, our traders and our visitors! 

I hope you enjoy reading this blog tonight and continue to support me in my witterings for a few years to come, 

Much love

Liz x

Sunday, 16 July 2017

It must be summer!

The sun is shining, the birds are out and customers have got nice happy smiley faces (mostly!). Summer team are coming into position - minus the lovely young Tom who has managed to break his arm on his skateboard!!! 

The flowers on the front of the pub hanging baskets and at the back of the pub are looking amazing and we are as usual getting lots and lots of great feedback on them. 

We have 2 little Chicks from the hens who are growing nicely but we don't know yet what sex they are - please don't let them be cockerels is all I can say!! 

The Gin menu is changing slightly with a few coming off and some new ones going on, a couple of nice new Fevertree additions too. The summer menu is finalised and live and the salads seem to be going very well especially the continental meats one - very yummy. 

We sell an awful lot of meat on our menu as well as beautiful fish and getting exceptional local meat can be a challenge, so as well as continuing to use Holesome Park, the local farmer we've used for the last couple of years we are also now working with Alex at Salcombe Meat Company and I have to say that the Roast Pork again today (Gloucester Old Spot) from him was absolutely mouthwateringly delicious! 

Salcombe has seemed very, very busy this last week or 2 - great weather for tourists but perhaps not such good weather for the Merlin Rocket annual event.  Some shops here have changed hands and we're really missing not having any local bank in town now Lloyds have finally gone! Only one cashpoint on Whitestrand means the town regularly doesn't have any cash although the Fortescue Inn has a cash dispenser as does Spar up the hill.  We give cash back, but have decided not to install a cash dispenser - for many, many reasons - but still not a great situation and I think it will definitely impact on the cash business's in town in the summer.  

The shoe shop has now disappeared and in its place is one of 2 by the same family; Love From...... and I absolutely love these 2 shops!!! 

Love from Luella is just past the old Lloyds. At last real clothes for real women (for that you can read not all stick thin!) in Salcombe, not full of sequins and kids glitter, not simply a chain, but beautiful linen tops (similar to what I saw in the South of France last month) and classic good quality clothing, and they must be popular as I counted at least 6 women in short succession with their Love From bags only this lunchtime. 

Well done and welcome to Salcombe Love From.... I've promised SOH not too give you all our money! 

Further up, JONs Menswear is now Salcombe Clothing Company selling primarily GANT clothing (I think) at a range of ages from small children upwards to grown ups - and very lovely it is too! Great quality and not hugely expensive either, in my opinion!  I also saw some locally made clothing. It all looks rather lovely, very classy and again different to the usual Salcombe offering, I can't wait to to take my Grandsons in there when they come down later in the summer.  This little cutie is Freddie styling a Breton number......... aaaawwww! 

Some new benches installed (at long last!!) on the Whitestrand front took longer to do than painting part of the Forth Bridge must have taken and the rumblings of the future of The Berry at the top of the hill still seem to be going on! The message of the day coming from SHDC seems to be 'sweat the assets' at all costs - but if they try to take The Berry away there are many of us have said we will have to be forcibly removed! But, I think everyone is hopeful that won't happen and there are some great locals really (and quite rightly) kicking up an almighty fuss!! 

So there you have it - I think that about covers whats current at the Vic and in Salcombe for now, I hope you're all managing to get yourselves into the sun at some stage and I know we have lots of lovely regular guests visiting shortly - safe travels and see you all soon, 

Much love as always and until the next blog

Liz - Licensee x x x x