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“Why here?” They ask, “Why not?” I reply.

A few weeks ago I put up a LinkedIn post about one of the reasons I choose to live and work in this area. Amongst the positive comments, there was one comment that, being honest, got under my skin, made worse by the fact it was by someone who no longer lives here. Whilst chatting to my other half about the comment, my mind went back a good few years.

Let me set the scene…I’m a teenage girl sitting in her room watching Live and Kicking as I did every Saturday morning. One of my favourite boybands is performing and being interviewed. The band, A1 (who remembers them?!), have just performed and are going to sit on the sofa for the interview. Amongst other questions, they are asked, “Where is the most boring place you’ve been to?” Paul answered with MORECAMBE! Well, this teenage girl who was a huge A1 FAN was furious…how could he call her hometown BORING?!


“Morecambe is NOT boring” I shouted and felt compelled to tell everyone who had just heard him say it. Over the coming days, I began to draft my [handwritten] letter over lunchtimes and after school. I remember listing the things Morecambe had to offer;

    • Frontierland
    • Morecambe Superbowl
    • Cinema
    • Amusement Arcades

and the fact we’d even welcomed royalty earlier that year. The handwritten letter and Eric Morecambe postcard were sent to the PO Box address.

Queen in Morecambe 1999

Queen Elizabeth in Morecambe 1999

To my utter amazement two weeks later I was watching Live and Kicking again and they began to read the letter I had sent in. Paul made a personal apology saying the reason he said was Morecambe was boring was because he had a stomach bug and couldn’t go out much. I also received their signed autographs and a Groovy Chick doll.

Groovy Chick Doll

I’ve never really reflected on this until now. For a long time this area, most notably Morecambe, has been called names such as “boring”, “rundown”, “not what it once was” and more. For someone growing up here, this is hard to hear; it’s like those statements reflect on you. Looking back that’s how I think I felt and I know there are teenagers today that believe there is nothing here for them and they don’t have a lot to offer. Steph McGovern recently shared a tweet after some of her words were taken out of context. This final sentence is absolutely spot on…

“I want the people I grew up with and everyone from a place deemed as poor to know that they should never be held back from achieving the best in life and they should be proud of where they’re from.”

I am proud to live in Morecambe with my husband and two young children. 

I am proud to run my business here and of all the other businesses that do. 

I am proud of each person and community group that work hard to support us all. 

North Lancashire and the people in it have a lot to offer and it’s time to we started telling the world! 

Heysham High

Who said teenagers were a tough crowd?!

After spending some time at Heysham High School working with Y9 – Y11 students taking part in the Digital Advantage programme late last year, I was also asked to come and give a short presentation to a group of Y9 Business Studies students. As part of their coursework, they had to research a local business.

I wanted them to be engaged and interested in what I had to say and for it to be a two-way conversation. From chatting with the Digital Advantage group and the class teacher I had an idea of the things I could mention that they could relate to and/or have an interest in. The video clips and questions weaved throughout the presentation meant that it wasn’t just me at the front of the room talking at them.

Take a look at the presentation I created using Prezi here:

You never know when you say ‘Any Questions?’ at the end if you will get any raised hands but I did – even one from a student who had said beforehand that he would be too shy to ask a question.

It was a pleasure to share the room with these teenagers for 30 minutes. The teacher mentioned that in a separate class discussion a student asked why I would set a business up here…I’ll cover that in another blog post 🙂

Video Clips 

  1. How would you describe marketing? Watch:
  2. KFC Video –
  3. Nike Video –
  4. What is the difference between B2B and B2C? Human to Human –
  5. Kid President –

What is Google Analytics trying to tell you…

Hands up if you’ve got Google Analytics set up on your website? 🙋‍♂️
Keep them up if you know how to log in to your Google Analytics account? 🙋‍♂️
Now…are your hands still up if I ask you if you’d looked in detail at your account in the last 6 months? 🤷‍♀️
🔍 I’ve spent the morning reviewing two different client’s websites who are in completely different industries to see how many people are visiting their websites, where they are coming from and if there are any ways in which we could improve the experience for the user.
Since working with Client 1 to build and optimise their website 12 months ago, keep the website updated and manage their social media, they have had almost 8000 visitors in total with a 25% increase in visitors to the website in the last 6 months (an extra 888 visitors). It also has one of the lowest bounce rates I have seen at 34.58%. 😍
Since supporting Client 2 with their digital marketing for the past 6 months, they are averaging 500 visits to their website each month via Organic Search (Google/Bing) alone. In April last year, they had just 53 (!) visits from Organic Search – an increase of 845.55% 👌
Google Analytics is a fantastic tool which I would recommend you regularly review especially if you are thinking about getting a new website. If you need a hand looking over all the data within it, want to discuss building a website with the user in mind or marketing strategies to help get more visitors [that are likely to buy from you] to your website, please get in touch. 📢

We’re Award Winning!

🎉This evening we won the North Lancashire Expo “Best Social Media Engagement” Award …🏆 THANK YOU to the Lancaster District Chamber of Commerce and everyone involved. Here’s to 2018.


p.s Want to see me eating a locust at the North Lancashire Expo? Click here –

North Lancs Expo

Preparation is Key: #NL_Expo

Last month, Cross Bay Marketing took part in the inaugural North Lancashire Expo. Our heart lies firmly in supporting the local area and the businesses within them so it made sense to exhibit at an event that was promoting the businesses in North Lancashire.

Now I (Anna), LOVE organising events and creating stands and whilst we have been busy working ‘in’ the business, we have not been putting ourselves out there as much as we should.

We saw the Expo as an opportunity to engage with potential clients, partners and employees, and catch up with current clients and partners. To achieve this engagement, I decided we should ask the visitors to our stand to vote for their favourite logo from a choice of two. This meant that there was no need to rush our branding project, which we started in August, but also meant we gained valuable insight from people I’d love to work with in the future.

I’ve spent many years visiting and exhibiting at events and have picked up a few things over the years. Budget savvy by nature it was important to create a stand that was visually appealing but at the same time didn’t cost the earth. Aside from a couple of things that were ordered from Amazon, everything else for the stand was sourced locally.

The stand cost £180 (inc. VAT) and I budgeted another £200 for furnishing and marketing materials, £380. I also planned my time to ensure I could dedicate 2 full working days to the event.

Stand at the Expo: £180
Deck Chair: £29.99
Fishing Net: £17.97
Wooden Crates: £50
Posters and Postcards: £59.28
Seaside Props: £13.10
Bunting: £10
Colouring and Candy Floss: £14

Total: £374.34

Whilst I remained within budget, as this was Cross Bay Marketing’s first event, there were purchases made that can be used again for other events so I expect any additional cost for future events to be for roll-up banners and promotional merchandise.

If you’re thinking about exhibiting an event, it worth considering the answers to these questions;

  1. What do we want to achieve?
  2. Will our target audience be there?
  3. Are there opportunities to develop partnerships with other exhibitors?
  4. Do we have the budget?

As with all events, there should be a clear strategy in place to justify your presence at the event and what you expect to achieve from the event. It’s also important to promote your attendance ahead of the event and ensure you allocate time after the event to follow up any leads. I’d also suggest completing a post-event review with all those that represented your company on the day/s.

It’s vital to consider all costs and I would advise allocating a budget. When you are thinking about a budget, be sure to include the cost of the stand itself, the cost of furnishing the space, promotional items and printed literature, travel costs, and finally your staff costs. Keeping a note of the costs and completing a post-event review will help you make a more informed decision if you’re considering exhibiting for the same or similar event again.

Don’t be afraid to stand out at events and think creatively. I went with the seaside theme as the business is based in Morecambe and asking for someone to vote for their favourite logo helped to open a conversation. Another stand I won’t easily forget was Unbugged (pest control and their game of ‘Bug Roulette’. Take a look at our Twitter page if you want to see the video of me eating a locust!!

Think about what you can do to make a visitor remember you. If you’d like some help identifying event opportunities as well as planning and creating memorable stands then please get in contact. Call me direct on 07973 663674 or drop an email to