On Friday 1st May 2020, Smith Goodfellow celebrated its 40th birthday. The company, like the world at large, has changed significantly in those 4 decades but its heart and purpose are very much the same: a community centred family business dedicated to providing exceptional, specialist PR and marketing to the construction, manufacturing and industrial sectors.
Managing Director, Cathy Barlow, takes a loopback at Smith Goodfellow's journey and where the business is today.
"We are living in extraordinary times. Just a couple of months ago the SG team had an away day in which we planned how we were going to celebrate this day – May 1st 2020 – 40 years in business, and still going strong! The kind of things we had planned included parties and award ceremonies, community and team activities. The reality has proved to be very different, but no less creative, and we hope you enjoy the different things you will see coming alive over the next 12 months.
40 years ago, David Goodfellow, Jill and Brian Smith created this business. They built it from nothing but their expertise in PR and Marketing and their knowledge of the construction industry, their contacts with editors and journalists, and a passion for quality and detail. It was a very different world back then, a world of typewriters and faxes, physical photographs and only the royal mail, no e-mail! Business was done face to face over long lunches, or over the telephone. It took time to do everything, no quick edits and amends, so when things went to print, they had to be right first time.
40 years on many things have changed. The world has speeded up, and we still have to get things right first time, because if we don’t, the wrong thing can race around the world before we know it! It’s amazing, what technology allows us to do. Right now, in the midst of a global pandemic, we exist in a virtual world, where video conferencing and remote working is the norm. We are living apart, but have never been more connected, and this whole situation is making us rethink everything we once considered normal.
It is a time when many people have slowed down, taking the enforced time out to reflect on priorities, to plan for the future, to prepare for when we can once again say ‘business as usual’. It is also a time when our craft, the art of PR, really has a chance to shine. Communicating with elegance and clarity, with creativity and maybe just a bit of pizazz to cut through the noise and the worry. Helping businesses to survive and thrive during the lockdown, ready to go full speed ahead when we come out of the other side.
Smith Goodfellow is a name that has been around for 40 years, because it has adapted with the changing times, just as we are all having to adapt now to a ‘new normal’. It has got here through grit and determination, through flexibility and trust, as well as those early values of quality and expertise. It has got here because of the brilliant clients we have been privileged to work with, and the fantastic media we have built relationships with. Most of all, because of the people at the heart of the business.
We are incredibly proud to be part of a team of people who are so talented, who work so hard, and who support each other as well as those around them. Who every day check in to make sure we’re all ok, to have a grumble, swap ideas or to raise a smile. We are more than a team; we are a community. If there’s one thing this pandemic has taught us all, it’s that nothing is more important than people.
You can be sure that the world will look different post COVID-19, and you can be equally sure that we will be here to help you make the most of that brave new world, whatever shape it takes. So, thank you to all the many people who have helped us reach this milestone, we couldn’t have done it without you.
Here’s to the next 40 years!"
You can keep up with all of Smith Goodfellow's celebrations, events, charity work and campaigns over the next year on their website: https://sgpr.co.uk/40-years-of-expertise/
You can also find them on social media:
Twitter - @SmithGoodPR
Instagram - @SmithGoodfellow
Facebook - @SmithGoodfellowPR
LinkedIn - @SmithGoodfellow