Going back to Google

We check a pub’s progress following our popular Google Garage events

Lana Andrews very nearly didn’t make it to our London Google Garage event at the BT Tower a year ago.

The assistant manager at family freehouse The Queens Head in Downe, Kent, was drafted in when business at the pub prevented her landlord father Nigel from attending.

She explains: “Dad was supposed to go but couldn’t. I wasn’t feeling great that today and I thought about not going but I am so glad that I did.

I learned so much that I took back to the pub and we are still using the information now.

Lana Andrews at the Google Garage event at the BT Tower in London

We launched our partnership with Google last year as a way of helping on-trade owners and operators navigate the often tricky waters of online and social media.In a series of events across the UK, experts from Google were on hand to provide tips to licensees, managers and their teams on all matters digital.

The sessions covered areas such as building websites, getting started on social media, finding your digital voice, search engine optimisation, and how to climb up the rankings on Google.

We also had guest appearances from stars such as Brian O’Driscoll and Robbie Savage, who shared some of their own social media experiences.

Attendees were also able to have one-on-one sessions with members of the Google Garage teams to get advice tailored to their own businesses.

One of the first things we learned was how to download assets from the BT Sport Business website. I did it there and then during the session and then went back to the pub to show my dad how.

“We do this all the time now to promote football and rugby matches on Facebook,” says Lana. Shortly afterwards, the pub also invested in improving its website – www.queensheaddowne.com.

Lana says: “We realised that our website did not look very good on mobile phone so we worked to change the design, so it fits and looks better.”

Making the website more responsive has quickly paid dividends.“We are now actually getting a lot more people booking meals through the website, which is a great help to us,” she adds.

They also update sport fixtures regularly on Facebook and the website so customers know what’s coming up. But the tips Lana took were not just about driving sport custom, they are relevant to all aspects of online presence.

“We do show sport in here but we are not a sports bar as such. We are more of a village pub and restaurant but we learned things we could use throughout the business and are still doing so.

“I’m really glad that I went to it and I would 100% go to another one and next time I’ll take my dad with me too.”

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