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Unlock high street funding to help your recovery with Westco and CAN

The Reopening High Streets Safely (RHSS) £50 million funds for councils from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) closes March 31st. Has the lockdown disrupted your plans?
Many council high street stimulation plans have been thwarted by tier restrictions and procurement limitations – this could result in much needed support for local businesses being missed out on.
We have joined forces with CAN (Council Advertising Network) to offer a range of tried and tested approaches that apply behaviour change theory and adapt to any COVID restrictions - all procured through trusted local government framework, ESPO.
Together, we are set to help councils protect high street businesses with customised strategies that:
  • Nudge local customers to shift their online shopping habits, in favour of high street, through programmatic online advertising – as recommended by Government Communication Service (GCS) 

  • Deliver FREE seminars to get local independent businesses that may be falling behind, armed with skills to market themselves online 

  • Maximise behavioural science to drive demand for local high street shopping when it becomes safe to do so.


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Guide to digital behaviour channels strategy

View and download our guide to digital behaviour channels strategy funnel using the link below. 

View strategy funnel

Other applications of programmatic advertising

BCP – Shop Local, Shop Safe.

  • 52,285 interactions over two months.
  • 64 different localised messages delivered with geo targeting
  • An additional 24,032 searches triggered for local independent businesses
Get in touch to find out how we can help you make the most of the funding available now and get your high street back on track or register for an upcoming webinar:
Get in touch

If you take full advantage of the funding now, together we can make sure local businesses are in a better place when the high street reopens and throughout 2021.

Previous case studies


Reopening Westminster

Westminster has one of the biggest economies in the country and relies heavily on the retail sector for many of its 600,000 jobs, so when the first lockdown was lifted it was one of the first councils to plan a reopening campaign.

Westco were commissioned to create a communications and brand that encouraged residents to start using their local High Street retailers again safely. We worked with Westminster’s communications, licencing and highways teams on a strategic plan that involved engaging businesses, BIDS, and councillors as well as consumers. We produced a distinctive brand that could be used for marketing materials, as well as business support packs and signage that could be used across the City.

We evolved the strategy to incorporate the hospitality sector when it reopened on July 4th 2020. This involved communicating the new licencing policy to a range of stakeholders as well as the public. It also meant expanding the campaign beyond residents to include visitors and commuters.

The campaign led to more than 5000 webpage views in the first four weeks and our social media content was shared hundreds of times.

We have continued to support the council and businesses through PR, influencer marketing, PR and digital support through the many twists and turns of the pandemic to date.


Shop Local Richmond

Richmond Council came to Westco for an EDRF shop local campaign that could be tailored to support each of the borough’s nineteen high street areas. We created a flexible visual language and brand guidelines that could be applied across email content, videos and social media posts to create messaging for both the hyper-local areas and Richmond as a whole.

The campaign needed to show the individuality of each area and embrace the strong sense of community that had emerged during lockdown. We ‘hero-ed’ the shop and café owners that residents knew so well, and encouraged them to journey out safely.

We also worked with council stakeholders to engage local businesses and get them on board with the campaign. This included encouraging them to share content and use hashtags across their owned channels. We created business packs, window stickers and lamp post banners so they show their support, as well as a series of 19 go-pro videos that provided a walk-through of each individual high street and the shops which had reopened.

The campaign was very successful and saw high levels of engagement across digital channels, 217 businesses sign up to the campaign and there were 75,000 unique visitors to the Shop Local webpage. More importantly, the council recorded a significant increase in visitor numbers across the borough.