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Business Gateway provides dram good support for Aberdeenshire distillery tour company


By Kirsty Brown

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A distillery tour provider now offers bespoke experiences for whisky enthusiasts by employing skills developed through DigitalBoost, Business Gateway’s national digital skills programme.

Aberdeenshire-based Still Tours Scotland provides premium whisky adventures and tailored tours that allow customers to create their very own itinerary, based around their chosen destinations, to visit the best distilleries Scotland has to offer.

Named as ‘Best Bespoke Whisky Distillery Tours’ at the 2021 UK Enterprise Awards, Still Tours’ offering spans Speyside, Islay and The Highlands.

Still Tours business development manager, Lucinda Craig, approached Business Gateway Aberdeen City And Shire for start-up support with a business plan that would take Still Tours from concept to cash.

She accessed expert advice on marketing and 1:1 business adviser support, as well as the full suite of DigitalBoost services on offer, including webinars and a full Digital Health Check.

With a planned launch date of March 2020 postponed due to the ongoing effects of the pandemic, Business Gateway helped the Still Tours Scotland team get creative during lockdown, helping them host virtual whisky and gin tastings in partnership with co-owners the Ellon Whisky Shop.

Still Tours Scotland.
Still Tours Scotland.

Skills developed through DigitalBoost helped the team to create a new Still Tours Scotland website, which has had 150,000 hits and over 10,000 sign ups since launching in 2020.

Still Tours also used its newfound skills to enhance the brand’s presence on social media, which now has a collective following of over 8,000 across all its platforms.

Following the success of the virtual events, the business is now able to offer in-person, bespoke tours that are fully compliant with Covid-19 regulations.

Still Tours Scotland is now registered on Business Gateway Aberdeen Shire And City’s Early-Stage Growth Service, where Lucinda benefits from monthly financial forecasting sessions.

This support will bolster Still Tours’ long-term goal of securing a permanent hub for its bespoke tours, as well as investing in larger tour busses.

She said: “After a long career in the oil and gas industry, launching my own business during a global pandemic was daunting.

"The advisers at Business Gateway gave me the confidence to pursue a dream I had for a long time.

"I can’t thank the team enough for their ongoing advice and support, which has been invaluable for starting and growing my business.

“Following support from Business Gateway and DigitalBoost, we’ve been able to develop our website and grow Still Tours’ social media presence, giving us a solid platform to showcase our services.

"I am so excited that Still Tours can now offer bespoke tours for our customers and show off the best distilleries that Scotland has to offer.”

Business adviser at Business Gateway Maryann Bove said: “Lucinda’s enthusiasm for Still Tours shone through from the very beginning, and her hard work has really paid off.

"Whatever the occasion, Still Tours is sure to offer a fun day out for all.

“We will continue to support Lucinda as part of Business Gateway’s growth services programme, and I look forward to seeing what Still Tours does next.”

To find out more about Business Gateway Aberdeenshire And City and its services, you can visit: www.bgateway.com/aberdeenshire.


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