Crab Insight
Vol 2 Issue 5
February 2015


In This Issue

Legal Update
What we are being asked about
Top Tip
Reputation Matters
Reputation Advocates
Reputation Academy
Forthcoming Events
In closing

Dates for your diary:

Special Event - Data Protection
13th March 2015
Hayling Island


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Image courtesy of phanlop88/

Hello and welcome to the February edition of Crab Insight

With Valentines day fast approaching love is in the air, but not it seems for big business.

The Forum for Private Business found that 75% of people responding to a survey thought that big firms put profits before ethical standards. Tax avoidance, treatment of suppliers and late payments were all areas of concern. 

Target, Home Depot and eBay have all had data stolen from them in recent months, causing huge reputational damage. 

Worrying about computer security, compliance, diligence and ethics can come a long way down the to-do list for all of us. Hence the launch of the Crimson Quality Manual next month. Paying attention to these things really can mean the difference between keeping afloat or going bust!

If you handle personal information and are unsure about the data protection rules be sure to book onto our popular Data Protection Workshop on 13th March.

We do hope you enjoy this edition of Crab Insight.

Legal Update

The Company, Limited Liability Partnership and Business (Names and Trading Disclosures) Regulations 2015
These regulations came into force on 31st January 2015 and replace a five other sets of regulations. They are unlikely to have a discernible effect on your business unless you don't know the disclosure requirements that apply to you.

Data Protection
The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has updated its 'Guide to Data Protection'. It is now  on one page of the ICO's website and contains an index that links to the different sections of the guidance, as well as a link to a full PDF version.

Passing Off
The Court of Appeal upheld a High Court decision that Topshop's sale of t-shirts bearing a photograph of Rihanna, without her approval, amounted to passing off.

Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts
The Competition and Mergers Authority (CMA) has issued draft guidance on unfair terms in consumer contracts. It proposes to issue this when the Consumer Rights Bill becomes law (Autumn 2015). The guidance sets out the CMA's detailed views on how the unfair terms provisions in the Bill will operate.

Groceries Supply Code of Practice
Tesco is to face another investigation, this time into its relations with suppliers, amid concerns it breached the Groceries Supply Code of Practice. The Groceries Code Adjudicator, Serious Fraud Office and the Financial Reporting Council are all now investigating Tesco.

Ethical Trading
The Public Accounts Committee plans to investigate HSBC alleged tax avoidance advice. HSBC acknowledged "that the compliance culture and standards of due diligence in HSBC's Swiss private bank, as well as the industry in general, were significantly lower than they are today".

What we are being asked about

Do I really have to give a seven days cooling off period?

If you sell most goods, services or digital downloads to consumers without face to face contact or away from your usual place of business, you have to give a fourteen day cooling off period. If you don't tell people about the cooling off period it can extend to a year!!


Who is responsible for the data if I outsource, say bookkeeping?

If we are talking about personal data as defined by the Data Protection Act, then you (as the data controller) are responsible for ensuring that it is not processed unlawfully or in an unauthorised way and that it is not accidentally lost, destroyed or damaged. Therefore when outsourcing you need to carry out diligence and find out what measures your outsourcing partner has in place to ensure data security and integrity. In respect of other data, it goes back to the agreement you have in place, look for confidentiality and data security clauses.  

Top Tip

The Pensions Regulator is going to be writing to small and micro businesses to tell them about automatic enrolment. The letter will tell employers when their staging date is and ask them to provide a contact to receive helpful communications as it approaches. 

If you need any help remember All you Have To Do Is Ask

Reputation Matters

The importance of using PR in your marketing mix by Reputation Advocate Lorna Jackson, Advance and Get Noticed

When you are first starting out on your business journey there are so many things to think about. The marketing tool box to help promote your business is vast with the old tried and tested methods as well as new digital marketing, which everyone wants to master.

Many people overlook Public Relations and the importance of it being included in your marketing strategy? Many people are under the impression that Public Relations is only used to protect your reputation when things go wrong.

However, Public Relations can be the strategic link to your marketing/promotion that brings it all together, giving the focus to your promotional activity – providing synergy. It’s often ignored as people are unsure how to do it, or think it’s too expensive; for little return.

To grow your business organically, you would rely on your past customers providing referrals and testimonials to build a good reputation helping you become a respected business.

Using PR you can enhance that method and tell a much wider audience about your success stories, achievements, and latest innovative product developments and so on. You can be targeted selecting specific audiences who read; browse and frequent specialist internet sites or media publications.

We have market segmentation at our fingertips, breaking down to the finest details of how people like to be communicated to; and what influences them to buy.

You can use PR in many different ways:

Press releases are written to catch the attention of journalists, which can then result in stories being published to reach a much wider audience.

  • Raising the profile of your business using a story that is topical informative or of human interest.

For example:

A mobility shop selling products and furniture specifically for those with mobility issues – goes that extra mile to personally deliver a rise-recliner chair to Newcastle after the customer purchased the chair from their company showroom whilst on holiday down south. This story resulted in a short article in the local newspaper showing the company as a caring and personal organisation that wants to fulfill the customer’s order demonstrating the use of the equipment to ensure customer satisfaction.

  • Other press release opportunities could be;

Product launch events – there must be a story or it would appear to be an advert. Advertorials – are usually paid for; advert with editorial

Awards – publicising your successes within your industry through trade press or local/national press.

Offering a comment/quote/ as leaders in a specific product or service; to become known as specialists in your industry/professional service.

Celebrating an anniversary – 1st year in business, achievements so far etc;

Sometimes business owners do not see press opportunities as they are working too close to the business and feel they are just doing their job. A PR professional can see the potential stories that can then be told to raise the profile of the business.

Other examples of PR are Articles/Case Studies; these can be prepared in advance and be used as part of your marketing materials when speaking to clients or tendering for contracts. They don’t have to be written articles. More and more companies are using video to demonstrate their products/services, testimonials and training.

All of these examples promote your business and can be used within your marketing mix to demonstrate your company values and ethics, which in turn builds your company’s reputation promoting the benefits of using your company.

Press releases, articles, video, can all be used on social media platforms and internet websites too bringing all your marketing together sending the same message and keeping your corporate continuity.

You can use and re-use PR materials again and again adjusting/tweaking to suit your target audience, making it cost effective and time efficient.

Open your mind to the power of PR.

Reputation Advocates

We are delighted to introduce our Reputation Advocates if you need expert help for your business.

Reputation Advocates, have been audited by Crimson Crab. They have also signed a contractual undertaking to comply with our Code of Conduct and meet the standards in our Ethical Trading Policy. This means that we know they have a great approach to business which reflects the core principles that Crimson Crab stands for. In addition we are confident that they put their clients at the heart of everything they do to provide the best possible service, and will rectify things quickly if they do go wrong. 

If you think that your business would benefit from becoming a Reputation Advocate please get in touch.

Reputation Academy

Crimson Crab's mission is to provide friendly and confidential support to businesses and help develop sensible strategies, tactics and processes to minimise and manage the risks to reputation, time and profitability from trading law.

To find out more please click here.

Forthcoming Events

Special Event - Data Protection doesn't have to be a nightmare! 
All you ever wanted to know about protecting your clients data and were afraid to ask:
  • What is the Data Protection Act?
  • Why protect client's data?
  • What are the obligations and responsibilities for data protection?
  • Are you a data controller or a data processor?
  • The 8 principles of Data Protection
  • What happens if you outsource to a third party?
Date: Friday 13th March 2015
Time: 1 pm - 4 pm
Venue: Northney Farm Tea Rooms Hayling Island.
Cost: £42 per person, 1 free place for Reputation Academy, (including Platinum Reputation Advocates members) with a small charge of £12 towards venue and refreshments.

To book a place on the above events please follow this link or call Wendy on 02392 637190. 

In closing

If there are any issues raised in this issue that you would like to talk to us about in more detail, please don't hesitate to get in touch. 

As always we would love to receive your feedback:
  • What would you like to see more of or less of?
  • Are there any reputational risks that you would like to see covered? 
  • Would you like a Special Event on any particular issue?
You can complete an on-line form, drop us an email or give us a call directly on 023 9263 7190
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Until next month

Don't worry, be Crabby savvy!!

and take care of your reputation.

Wendy and Rob

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