Halo continues to strengthen its strategic offer with the appointment of Matt Crisp.
Matt is a leading creative and strategic thinker, bringing with him brand and commercial management experience from his 9 years at Diageo. He subsequently was MD of Brave, one of the UK’s leading independent creative agencies, growing global brands such as Fever Tree, Adidas, Panasonic and Green & Black’s.
Matt moved from agency life to take on a number of private and public sector advisory roles in smart cities, technology, media and mobility, with a track record in building high growth companies.
Matt will work alongside Halo’s teams and clients to develop insightful strategies and effective creative solutions to improve business performance and audience experience.
Hannah Williams, Halo’s recently appointed MD, says, “we’re thrilled to bring Matt’s level of expertise into Halo at this pivotal point in our agency’s growth. Matt’s appointment will help ignite our 2024 ambitions and build on the excellence of our strategic capabilities”.
Nick Ellis, Creative Partner and Halo co-founder says, “We’ve known Matt for over 10 years and in that time we’ve created significant work for retailer clients and FMCG brands together. Matt joining the team full-time is a natural move for us, and underlines our commitment to further strengthen and grow our strategy practice”.
Halo is a full-service, independent brand agency, partnering with household names evolving and renewing their propositions, challengers disrupting the status quo and start-ups beginning the journey.
We develop strategies to deliver a competitive edge and physical & digital experiences that connect with audiences on-screen and in-person; making sure brands are recognised, remembered and encouraging action.
With joined-up thinking & inspiring, creative energy, we improve audience experience and ultimately business performance.
The teams across mustard jobs are planning to rustle up as many long-life food, hygiene and sanitary products as possible. Last year’s foodbank donation was impressive, but this year we want to make it even bigger, that’s why we are enlisting the help of our local community.
We’re making this donation as easy as possible for anyone who is interested in taking part. Just pop to the mustard jobs office with your donations, we’ll list the address details at the bottom of this page. Then, we’ll put it in one of our collection box for safe keeping, until we do the big drop off at the foodbank. We’ll get everything delivered to the foodbank by our mustard team, so there is no stress for you or your team.
Whether you’ve got a little or a lot, anything will help.
We have a great relationship with the St Nicholas of Tolentino Foodbank and they’ve let us know what they need the most.
It’s time to step up and support those who find themselves in crisis this winter. If you’d like to donate, please deliver your donations to:
The Tramshed, 25 Lower Park Row,
If you have any questions or queries, feel free to reach out to the team on [email protected] | 0117 929 6060
Moonraker VFX, a Bristol-based Visual Effects Studio, took part in the RTS Futures Festival yesterday, offering valuable insights, advice and information to aspiring individuals seeking a career in the television industry.
The free event took place at M Shed on Bristol’s Harbourside and drew over 400 young attendees, where a range of the city’s media organisations were on hand to give careers advice.
Hosted by the Royal Television Society, the RTS Futures Festival provided a platform for industry professionals to connect with graduates and students, guiding them through the complexities of the modern broadcasting landscape.
Moonraker—known for its groundbreaking work in Natural History programming including the BBC’s recent Earth series—engaged with attendees, sharing knowledge and experiences to inspire the next generation of talent.
Simon Clarke, Creative Director at Moonraker, commented, “Participating in the RTS Futures Festival was a fantastic opportunity for us to connect with the bright minds set to become future leaders of the television industry in the decades to come. Moonraker’s presence at the event underscores the studio’s commitment to fostering talent and contributing to the growth of the sector.”
RTS Futures aims to help graduates and those in the early stages of their career to progress and learn about different areas of television. It has an ongoing calendar of events, learn more: https://rts.org.uk/rts-futures
Europe’s largest live street art festival Upfest calls out for support towards raising £250,000 to bring the much-loved event back to Bristol for spring 2024.
Following a fallow year, the team behind Upfest is launching its annual crowdfunding campaign, rallying support from art lovers, the Bristol community and festival fans alike. The event will need to raise £250,000 to stage the 16th edition in 2024.
Since its debut in 2008, Upfest has remained free and brings over 50,000 visitors to each edition. Attracting visitors from Bristol and beyond, the festival hosts local, national and international street artists of all levels who each apply for a space to paint at the two day festival weekend.
Steve Hayles, Festival Co-Founder explains;
“We have moved Upfest to a bi-annual model and continue to still be volunteer-led with hundreds of people donating time in the lead up and during the event. We are facing increasing costs, just like all large-scale events, and we’ve never needed support from the community more to keep Upfest going. The crowdfunder goes to pay for infrastructure, safety, security and entertainment as well as artist materials, scissor lifts and loads of other elements which it takes to stage a festival of this size. Each year we’re blown away by the love and support we get from the community, and we appreciate every single contribution.”
Anyone who donates to the festival crowdfunder will be able to give to specific areas of the festival operation, such as providing artists with spray paint or contributing to the cost of keeping the festival site clean both during and after the event.
In addition to the crowdfunding, Upfest has joined Patreon; an online platform which allows supporters to regularly give to the festival. This will feature exclusive content and Patreon member benefits at the festival as well as through the year for the festival’s superfans.
Upfest has hosted Bristol street art legends, Inkie, Jody, Lucas Antics, Andy Council, HazardOne and more throughout its 15 years, as well as international artists such as Insane51, Kashnik and L7M. The festival also provides a huge platform for up and coming artists to showcase their talents and will also once again raise money for The National Association for Children of Alcoholics (NACOA) which offers aid and assistance for children growing up in families affected by alcoholism.
To donate towards bringing Upfest 2024 to life please visit: https://www.fundsurfer.com/crowdfund/make-upfest24-happen. To join their Patreon group visit: https://www.patreon.com/Upfest. To keep up to date with all things Upfest, visit the festivals website and follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram
Bristol Academy of Voice Acting (BRAVA) today announces their support of the world premiere of Shakespeare’s Women; a new play by playwright Lorien Haynes – performed at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Shakespeare’s Globe, London, on 7 January, 2024. BRAVA has pledged its financial support.
The piece is set in modern-day London and shines a light on ten of Shakespeare’s female characters who meet in a domestic abuse recovery group. Centuries have passed, yet nothing has changed and while they eat biscuits and talk they reveal their darkest secrets. Funny, hard-hitting and prescient, the play allows the women to survive their men and their narratives and finds out what they would have to say today.
All profits from the event will be donated by the producers to Refuge, the largest domestic abuse organisation in the UK.
Melissa Thom, Founder and CEO of BRAVA, said:
“Lorien is passionate about amplifying women’s voices – particularly those not easily heard or silenced. At BRAVA, we align with this and are keen to support women’s stories that go untold. It’s a privilege to help bring this performance to life. We are proud to support Refuge in this way and to add our voice to raising awareness and funds for this hugely important cause.”
Lorien Haynes, playwright and author of Shakespeare’s Women, said:
“It’s fantastic to team up with BRAVA, who are kindly helping us bring this new piece to its first audience. The themes that come up in the play are shocking, yet common. One in four women experience domestic abuse and one in three sexual violence in their lifetime. Our aim is to raise awareness and funds for Refuge, who work tirelessly 24/7 to support those who experience domestic abuse.”
To support Refuge and purchase tickets to this performance of Shakespeare’s Women on 7 January 2024, click here: https://www.shakespearesglobe.com/whats-on/shakespeares-women/
BRAVA offers personalised training in the art and business of voiceover and is aimed at professionals who are interested in adding voice acting to their skillset.
Notes to editors:
All profits will be donated to Refuge. Refuge is the largest specialist domestic abuse organisation in the UK. On any given day Refuge services support thousands of survivors, helping them overcome the physical, emotional, financial and logistical impacts of abuse and rebuild their lives — free from fear.
Refuge helpline no: 0808 2000 247
Founded by experienced voice actor and communications consultant, Melissa Thom, BRAVA brings together acting and voice experts from the UK & US to deliver best in class training and advice about the industry.
Training is offered as personalised sessions and cover a wide range of topics, including Getting Started in VO, Corporate, Commercial and Narration, Characters, Audiobooks, Performance Techniques, Home Studio, Marketing, Vocal Health, Acting, VO & Shakespeare, Voice, Presence, Impact, Presentation Skills and more.
Find out more at www.brava.uk.com
Bristol Academy of Voice Acting (BRAVA), is thrilled to announce the appointment of Fern Dunn as social media and community manager, who joins from globally renowned British animation studio, Aardman.
Fern is a communications specialist with nearly a decade of experience working across the creative industries in Bristol, including the independent multi-arts venue and cinema, Watershed. With a degree in Graphic Design and an MA in Curating from UWE, Bristol, Fern has a passion for all things communications – from social media to web design, to copywriting and print design.
Fern brings her wealth of communications and social media knowledge to the BRAVA team to continue to help them realise their growth ambitions.
She also runs the Cary Comes Home Festival, a biannual film festival that celebrates the Bristol roots of the iconic Hollywood star, Cary Grant. Fern has hosted events at the Hippodrome, Trinity Centre and St Mary Redcliffe Church – and even Hannover, Germany, bringing the magic of vintage cinema to all.
Fern Dunn said: “The voiceover world is fascinating, full of talented people and amazing stories. I can’t wait to delve in and start creating content to showcase BRAVA and the breadth of work of its Talent.”
Melissa Thom, Founder and CEO of BRAVA said: “It’s brilliant to have Fern on board, she has fantastic creative skills across a multitude of areas. She will drive the strategy and implementation for our social channels, ensuring our community of professional voice actors is targeted with relevant and inspirational content.”
BRAVA offers personalised training in the art and business of voiceover and is aimed at professionals who are interested in adding voice acting to their skillset or for those who wish to work on voice, impact and presence in the workplace and beyond.
Founded by experienced voice actor and communications consultant, Melissa Thom, BRAVA brings together acting and voice experts from the UK & US to deliver best in class training and advice about the industry.
At BRAVA, all learning is done online, meaning students can learn at their own pace, wherever they are. Training is offered as personalised 1-1’s or group sessions and covers a wide range of topics, including Getting Started in VO, Corporate, Commercial and Narration, Characters, Audiobooks, Performance Techniques, Home Studio, Marketing, Vocal Health, VO & Shakespeare, Voice, Presence, Impact, Presentation Skills and more.
Find out more at www.brava.uk.com
JonesMillbank, Bristol-based video production company, has won a competitive pitch to work with I heart Wines on their 2024 TV ad campaign.
The wine with a big heart has chosen the production company that connects brands to people to reach and resonate with their loyal customers and new converts alike.
The campaign will align with a brand refresh that comes 13 years after launch.
“The win is a fantastic opportunity to work with an exciting brand that’s bubbling with personality, sass, confidence and authenticity.”
“When we were invited to pitch we knew we had to go for it. We’re incredibly proud that the pitch was led by our 26-year-old in-house creative and director Abbie Howes. She completely embodied the brief and their audience.”
“Our concepts hit all the right notes and we’re delighted to have been chosen to work directly with Freixenet Copestick”.
Emma Fogerty, Senior Brand Manager at Freixenet Copestick said “we are absolutely thrilled to announce that we have chosen JonesMilbank to be our creative partner in producing our new TV ad. We’re excited to embark on this journey together to bring our ideas to life and see the creative vision take shape.”
JonesMillbank are a full-service video production company.
They work in-house with a talented team of multi-disciplined creatives, telling authentic stories for a range of clients such as Delivery Hero, IDLES, SOHO Coffee Co and University of Bristol.
jonesmillbank.com | 01173706372 | [email protected]
Bristol West MP and shadow culture secretary Thangam Debbonaire has unveiled how a future Labour government would support the creative industries.
“Culture should be for everyone, no matter who you are or where you live”, Debbonaire said during a speech at the Labour Party Conference in Liverpool.
The former professional cellist, who was appointed as Keir Starmer’s shadow culture, media and sport secretary in his Shadow Cabinet reshuffle in September, added:
“Creative businesses can revitalise our communities and our high streets. They boost brand Britain, selling our talent and originality around the world.”
To support the sector and “fire up the engines of the creative economy”, Debbonaire, who has been MP for Bristol West since 2015, announced that if it wins power in the next election, Labour would introduce ‘Spaces to Create’, “the first national cultural infrastructure plan”, to boost creative spaces across the UK.
It will include a map that can be used by local leaders, businesses and philanthropists to “spot cultural spaces at risks and opportunities for investment and development”, while Spaces to Create teams will provide “guidance, training, learning and networking to get creative businesses on a strong footing”.
Debbonaire also discussed skills in the creative industries. She said:
“Successful creative industries are crucial to growing our economy. They will provide the great jobs of the future. But to do them, our children will need the necessary skills.
“So I’m working with [shadow education secretary] Bridget Phillipson on Labour’s creative curriculum to bring the best music, art, sport and drama to every child because every child’s talent matters.”
On diversity, the Bristol politician said “we’re all better off when we draw on everyone’s talents”, so champions of the creative industries need to tackle “tough questions” such as:
“How do we all share in the joy and the jobs? Where are the women? Where are the people of colour? Where are the people from working-class communities?”
An example of an initiative tackling skills and diversity in the creative sector is the Bristol Creative Industries Internship Programme which is providing paid placements at creative businesses for young people from under-represented groups.
Labour’s announcement follows the publication earlier this year of the government’s creative sector vision with plans to add £50bn and one million more jobs by 2030.
What do you think about Labour’s ideas? What are your views on the current government’s support for the creative industries? What do you think the next government, whatever party is in power, should do to support creative businesses?
Email Dan Martin with your opinions, ideas and suggestions.
SEO is more than merely optimising the text on a page for search engines. It is important to design the overall user experience, including the visual components. This experience depends heavily on images, which, when properly optimised, can significantly boost your site’s SEO performance.
Each part of SEO’s multifaceted approach is crucial to the overall success of a website’s exposure. Images among these aspects are frequently disregarded as merely cosmetic features. But nothing could be further from the reality than this notion. When used correctly, images are crucial to SEO.
Humans are naturally visual beings. Studies show that text is processed by the human brain 60,000 times slower than visuals. This implies that the photos you use on your website can leave an immediate impact on visitors, often even before they start reading. Utilising captivating, pertinent photos can hold the attention of your audience, ensuring they stay on your site longer, lowering bounce rates, and letting search engines know that your material is valuable.
Without any pictures, try reading a thorough article about the old Roman buildings. Sounds difficult, huh? Images give context, aid in the visualisation of complicated concepts, and increase the accessibility and digestibility of knowledge. Users may spend more time on your website as a result of their improved comprehension, which will help your SEO.
Although text is necessary, large passages of it can become boring to readers. Images provide a respite, which improves the taste and enjoyment of the information. User experience is important, but search engines also favour websites with rich, varied information for their users.
Engaging visuals are more likely to be shared on social media sites, especially infographics or original graphics. Increased social sharing can result in increased visitors, better brand recognition, and perhaps even more backlinks, all of which are good things for SEO.
Users can access your website through entirely other channels thanks to image searches like those on Google Images. By making photos SEO-friendly, you can attract visitors who may be looking for visual information that is directly relevant to your niche and open up a new channel for organic traffic.
The significance of visuals is amplified by the growing prevalence of mobile browsing. Large amounts of text might be overwhelming on smaller screens. Images help to break this up, making the surfing experience for mobile users more pleasurable and less intimidating. Images are essential to mobile SEO since search engines use mobile friendliness as a ranking factor.
In the digital sphere, images are a captivating form of communication. However, if not optimised properly, their potential can be wasted, resulting in longer loading times and lost SEO prospects. Let’s examine the numerous strategies you may employ to fully leverage the potential of photos for the SEO of your website.
If you want to understand how to learn SEO, images are an important factor to take into account. Selecting the best image for your text is crucial before moving on to technological optimisations.
While stock photos are convenient, original images, whether they’re photographs, illustrations, or graphics, resonate more with audiences. They add a unique touch to your content and can increase trust and credibility.
Make sure the image complements and closely ties to your content. An unnecessary graphic can perplex readers and distract them from the point you’re attempting to make.
Once you have the right images, the next step is to ensure they are technically optimised for web use.
Different image formats are used for various purposes:
File sizes can be decreased without a noticeable loss of quality using programmes like Compressor.io or TinyPNG. Keep in mind that faster loading times result in reduced file sizes, which is essential for both user experience and SEO.
Making sure that photos appear correctly on devices of all sizes is essential in a world that is constantly moving towards mobile. You can instruct browsers to display various pictures dependent on the device’s screen size by using HTML properties like’srcset’.
Alt text and titles aren’t just afterthoughts; they play a significant role in image SEO.
A text description of a picture is known as alt text, or “alternative text.” It should be succinct while still being descriptive enough to convey the meaning and goal of the image. It helps search engines and users who are blind understand the image.
Alt text has two purposes: it improves accessibility and increases SEO. Screen readers will read out the alt text, which captures the spirit of the image, for people who are blind or visually handicapped. Because search engines cannot “see” images the way humans can, the alt text also gives search engines context. The relevancy of your material in search results can be enhanced by an image that is well-described.
Should your alt text contain keywords? While it might be advantageous, it ought to be carried out naturally. Keyword stuffing can lead to poor user experience and may even be penalised by search engines.
The title attribute offers additional information and is often displayed as a tooltip when a user hovers over an image. While not as crucial as alt text for SEO, it can enhance user experience.
In the information-rich digital age, it is crucial to present content in a logical and understandable way. Structured data and detailed outcomes now. These words may sound like high-tech jargon, yet they are crucial to contemporary SEO and user experience.
A defined framework for categorising the content on a webpage is called structured data. Webmasters can give search engines detailed information about the content, its context, and its relationships by employing structured data. In essence, it functions as a “cheat sheet” for search engines regarding what is on a page.
Structured data comes in a variety of formats, but the following are the most used ones:
Search engines attempt to comprehend the context of the material when they crawl a website. This procedure is aided by structured data because it provides clear hints as to a page’s intent. For instance, structured data can tell a search engine whether the word “Avatar” on a page relates to the James Cameron movie, a user’s online profile image, or a philosophical idea.
When search engines are equipped with the additional insights provided by structured data, they can create enhanced search listings, known as ‘rich results’ (previously referred to as ‘rich snippets’).
Image SEO optimisation is a complex procedure that involves more than just resizing. You may improve both the user experience and search engine rankings for your website by comprehending and putting into practise a variety of optimisation tactics.
We are thrilled to announce a significant milestone in our agency’s history, with the appointment of Hannah Williams as Managing Director.
Hannah has been an integral part of our journey here at Halo for almost 10 years and her dedication, expertise, and commitment to our clients and the studio have been nothing short of remarkable.
This promotion is not only a testament to her exceptional leadership and strategic vision, but also a reflection of Halo’s commitment to nurturing talent and helping people shape meaningful careers to grow and succeed as leaders in the creative industries.
As Managing Director, Hannah will be leading Halo into a new era of excellence, shaping brands with strategy, storytelling and design; growing the agency the right way as a certified B Corp.
We hope you’ll join us in celebrating Hannah and this exciting new era of Halo.