Today we see the launch of the 100 Day Playbook – The ultimate restaurant marketing and communications guide for pubs, restaurants, and cafes looking to relaunch after lockdown restrictions are lifted. Me:Mo caught up with Mark McCulloch, founder and visionary behind the Playbook, to find out a little more about his brainchild.  

“At the start of March, I watched the hospitality industry stop in an instant. I made a commitment to the sector from the day I joined YO! Sushi as Head of Marketing in 2009, simply because it is the nicest industry that you could hope to work in. I was told by my then boss that we get paid to make people happy and I firmly believe that. It really is a great industry to be a part of and an honourable job to have 

The weekend before lockdown, UK Hospitality was in a tailspin with everyone asking; ‘What can we do to help?’ From here, I decided to give away my 20 years of brand, restaurant marketing, digital, and social experience, for free. I thought about not getting too caught up in looking into the abyss, but looking beyond it – this is a chapter, not the book  

So, while lots of people were in downtime, I decided to turn my downtime into uptime and share a little inspiration – if that’s not too grand or cheesy a thing to say 

The Monday after we were advised to avoid pubs and restaurants, recorded a 13 tips on what you can do tmarket to your customers and trade video. This was one of the most successful posts I had ever put outand I soon realised people were hungry to learn and keen for advice.  

There will be numerous businesses that don’t have the cash reserves of a larger company and I think it is not always fair that the smaller pubs, restaurants and cafés can’t afford the best brains to help them. I wanted to change that.  

My first move was to create a playlist for operators of 27 videos for free to help define brand, develop tone of voice, understand local marketing and increase online visibility 

I have always wanted to write a marketing book but have had a few no’s from publishers which put me off. However, given the current climate it felt appropriate to revisit the idea of creating a stepbystep marketing plan that any hospitality business could use for the foreseeable future, for free. I knew that I could not do it aloneI am a brand guy at heart and a generalist, so I needed industry experts to help me go deep into each discipline.  

The contents of the book and its authors are 

  • Research – Katy Moses and Katie Jenkins – KAM Media 
  • Brand DNA – Mark McCulloch – Supersonic Inc 
  • Brand Tone of Voice – Annica Wainwright – 2 Forks 
  • Marketing Strategy – Mark McCulloch – Supersonic Inc and Gabby Kirby 
  • Media Planning – Adam Shoefield and Katie Hodgkinson-Morgan – Smithfield Agency 
  • Local Marketing – Mark McCulloch – Supersonic Inc and Gabby Kirby 
  • PR – Mark Stretton, Kaye Rawlings and Laura Cunningham Fleet Street Communications 
  • Digital and Social Media – Nat Coombs, Hannah Clark, Rosie Prior – ME:MO Media 
  • Data Collection – Julian Ross – Wireless Social 
  • Feedback / Reviews – Carlo Platia and Julia Platia – Feed it Back  

The playbook is a free resource for all operators to help them with restaurant marketing advice until they are back on their feet. We would love it if, should finances allow, people could find it in their hearts to make a donation to Hospitality Action when they download the document as a thank you. I am telling brands that they will be judged on how they acted during the crisis and I am hoping that myself and the teamcan look back on this and say that we gave it our all! 

am convinced that the 100 day playbook and the video series will help hundreds of operators get even bigger than they were before.”

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