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Friday, 19 September 2014

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Cumbrian centre sails into future with internet push

A sailing centre that has welcomed big name clients including Coca Cola and Adidas is bidding to attract more business by increasing its online presence.

Sailing centre photo
Glenridding Sailing Centre’s Linnhe Harrison, Steve Sykes, centre, and Dave Swindell

Glenridding Sailing Centre, on the shores of Ullswater, hopes that its unique combination of activities and picturesque scenery will be the perfect material to market itself on social media.

The sailing centre is well-known locally but websites like Twitter and Facebook provide an ideal platform to showcase what it can offer to a national and global audience.

It enlisted the free support of business support service Big Cumbria to help make this happen.

John Nelmes, project manager of Penrith-based Big Cumbria, said: “The sailing centre should get a huge following on social media, particularly on the viral side of things.

“The work we did with them should help to get a lot of customers from outside the area, and get more children and families involved, by giving more exposure to the activities they offer.”

The business, in Glendridding, was also helped with search engine optimisation (SEO), helping it climb the Google search pages.

Mr Nelmes added: “SEO is not difficult, it just requires someone that understands computers a little bit.

“The hardest part is thinking of the keywords and thinking who you want to target.”

Speaking about digital strategy, director of Glenridding Sailing Centre Steve Sykes added: “There are certain things we were unaware of that we would have had to spend money on.

“Getting bona fide free information was a big benefit to us.

“We were all alien to Twitter, there’s just four of us and three are computer illiterate.

“This is a very unique and special place, and we pride ourselves on being inclusive.”

Boat races across Ullswater are part of a series of adrenaline-fuelled teambuilding activities offered by the sailing club.

Activities for children, boat hire, and sailing training are also key elements of the business.

Mr Sykes added that an excellent safety record, expert training and advice, and an excellent location are other elements that it hopes to promote online. It also hopes to utilise YouTube and upload a stunning HD video of the facilities and lake in future.

For more information about Big Cumbria visit www.bigcumbria.co.uk or call 01768 807807.

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