Stockton-based tailor Norman Ainsley has spoken of his sadness when lockdown happened, stopping 20 years of customer service dead in its tracks one spring day in the middle of the wedding season – a normally lucrative and exciting time at his business.
Norman, who runs Review Menswear on Silver Street, opened his heart as part of an innovative marketing campaign to support Stockton High Street. Humans of the High Street (#HOTHS) features ten short films which document the thoughts and feelings of the town’s business owners during the Covid pandemic.
Created by Stockton Business Improvement District (BID), #HOTHS continues to gain momentum as it highlights the importance of supporting local high streets and cherishing our independents.
Norman is thrilled that his shop is now open once again, particularly as he has no online presence, believing in a sensory shopping experience and the human touch.
“Customers want experiences,” he says.
“Yes, they buy brands, need commodities and use services, but our success at Review in the digital era is partly due to the fact people like to buy from people.
“In tailoring, offering exceptional personalised customer service is paramount. High streets are challenged, so if you want your customers to remember your brand, product or service you have to go beyond visual marketing with nice displays and really appeal to their other senses.
“My customers enjoy the touch, feel and experience you only get in a shop and I was thrilled to open the doors again.”
Stockton BID manager Jason Maxwell says: “It’s been a really tough year and Covid-19 has been felt across every aspect of our lives, liberties and livelihoods.
“It’s crucial in these most adverse of times that Stockton BID rise to the challenge and we look creatively and emotively at innovative ways that can help us to keep a consistent message of support for our levy members.”
“The Future is Local is our brand strategy created in collaboration with (marketing agency) One of a Kind. OOK are incredibly well read on matters of sustainability and are a purpose-led business partnering with leading experts whose collective minds and knowledge we access.”
You can see #HOTHS nationwide across multiple digital platforms including YouTube and on social media.
Search Stockton BID_ The Future is Local on Instagram and Youtube