New PR auditing services at CTT Consulting

UAE- based PR & communications agency, CTT Consulting PR & Media Communications has partnered with Circle Hospitality Consulting. This new business alignment will mean that CTT Consulting will now be offering PR auditing services across a wide range of business categories. This new service will assist companies who wish to reassess the effectiveness of their internal PR departments, are looking for a fresh approach to PR or for companies who are interested in establishing a PR department.

“We are delighted to be working alongside the experienced Circle Hospitality Consulting team to promote new short-term consultancy services to hotels, restaurants and other businesses in the UAE,” says Caroline Tapken, Managing Director, CTT Consulting. “Specialising in hospitality from concept, pre-opening and operation to sales, marketing and efficient revenue generation, our combined expertise extends to restaurant launches, sporting events, exhibitions, FMCGs and technical/telecommunications.  Public relations is relevant across all business, particularly in a challenging business environment, and a fresh perspective from a different industry can be extremely productive.”


Team TMN caught up with Nitin Reen, CEO and Co-Founder of Vaniday Middle East, to find out more about the newly launched online booking platform….

Tell us a bit about Vaniday?
The cornerstone of the Vaniday philosophy is that looking and feeling your best should be accessible to every person, at any given moment, wherever they are in the world. With Vaniday, customers are able to discover new services and professionals, book appointments and get inspired. Salons can showcase their work, connect with new and existing clients, and grow their business.

Where did the concept for Vaniday originate?
Although, it is one of the largest and most profitable industries in the world, the beauty & wellness sector is one of the few industries that has not yet fully transitioned from offline to online. It is so simple nowadays to book a plane ticket, or book a car service to your door online. We identified a gap in the market and thus, Vaniday was born.

What makes Vaniday unique as a service?
First of all, we have an unprecedented number of high-end, well-established venues on the site that feature exclusive offers to our users. We are available online via the website, as well as both an Android and an IPhone app, and our customer service team are highly-trained and ensure that booking and paying for services is both easy and convenient for salons and clients alike. Also, unlike salons and spas, which have strict opening hours, Vaniday is available 24/7, 365 days of the year.

How have you marketed Vaniday since its launch?

We have used a combination of offline and online marketing channels.  On the offline side, we have tried initiatives ranging from flyering and hosting events, to radio campaigns and billboards on Sheikh Zayed Road. On the online side, we have had a good amount of success through SEM and Facebook focusing on both the web and app fronts. It’s important to note that we don’t view any initiative in isolation and we try to tie everything in together – so if we have an offline initiative such as radio mentions or a competition, then we link it in to Facebook advertising to have a complimentary and symmetrical marketing offering.

How do you feel social media has helped your company grow?

Social media is important for any business, but of even greater importance for a company that exists in the digital world (such as ours) – and greater still for a company centered around the beauty industry. Social media is very useful to us in order to drive customer engagement – It helps us get to know our customers/supporters and allows them to get to know us. Through SoM, we can get an idea of who our customers are, what they appreciate and what they want.

Who is Vaniday’s target audience?
Anyone with a busy lifestyle who loves indulging in hair, beauty and spa treatments. More than a third of our users are males and most of our users are professionals who want to be able to book salon and spa visits quickly and conveniently, without worrying about where to go or what appointment is available.

Why did you decide to launch Vaniday in the UAE?
Given the hectic lifestyle in the UAE, we felt that many people needed a service that could save them time when they wanted to book a salon or spa visit. The Middle East in general, and the UAE specifically, is one of the fastest growing beauty markets in the world. This, along with the fact that the UAE has one of the highest smartphone penetrations in the world and a growing propensity to transact online, made the foray into the UAE market a very simple one.

How can businesses/PR companies get involved with Vaniday?
There are many ways in which external agencies can get involved. As a young but rapidly expanding company, we are open to fresh ideas and progressive thinking and we are always on the lookout for exciting collaborations! All people need to do is get in touch.

For any salon or spa that would like to be listed on Vaniday, its management can get in touch and we can negotiate how they can become salon partners.

Did you face any challenges in establishing the website in the UAE?
The main challenge at the beginning was hiring a great team. Our goal was to be lean which demanded the highest standards of efficiency and we were quite lucky in finding amazing talent. Every member of our team is a rockstar in his/her focus area. We wanted to bring people in who are truly passionate about our company and have strived to cultivate an environment where people feel that this is their company and they take pride in all of its achievements. We were fortunate to achieve this objective and today, everybody in our team lives and loves Vaniday.

What does the future hold for Vaniday?
We are currently experiencing very rapid growth. We have been active for less than a year and are already in numerous countries all around the globe. We are constantly working on expanding our existing markets as well as new ones. In regards to the Middle East, this trend also holds true. This is a region whose market behaviour is very conducive to our business model and we are planning to capitalize on this to the benefit of our current and potential customers. wins Gold for Best New Product, GN Publishing’s new technology website, has been named the Gold winner of Best New Product at the 1st WAN-IFRA Middle East Digital Media Awards held last night in Dubai. WAN-IFRA, The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, is a global network of 3,000 news publishing companies and represents over 18,000 publications in 120 countries. The Digital Media Awards, which first launched in Asia 2010, now take place in five regions, are judged by a group of global industry peers. Gold winners of the award are automatically entered into the World Digital Media Awards to take place in Vienna in October 2016.

“We’re really excited that has been recognised by WAN-IFRA as the best new digital product in the Middle East,” says James Hewes, Publishing Director, GN Publishing. “It’s been a thrilling few months for the brand, from the re-launch of the print product last August to the launch of in December. The award is the strongest possible endorsement for and a fitting tribute to our enthusiastic team for all their hard work.”

Gareth Kurt Warren, Online Editor,, adds “We are really honoured to win the gold award for best new product so soon after our launch. We put a lot of passion into the site and believe our love of all things tech comes across on screen to our audience.”

Core Savills welcomes PR & Communications Manager

Real estate company Core, the UAE associate of Savills, has welcomed Gavin Gibbon to the role of PR & Communications Manager. Previously the PR Editor at OSN where he compiled the monthly staff newsletter, assisted with the production of press releases and helped to organise PR events, Gavin brings over 17 years of experience with him to his new role. As PR & Communications Manager, he will be working to ensure that Core is the go-to source for media organisations in Dubai, the GCC and further afield, when it comes to expert comment on the local real estate industry.

“It’s great to be joining a company of the stature of the UAE associate of Savills,” says Gavin. “I come with 17 years of journalism experience so I have a strong grasp of what reporters are looking for and hopefully that will be reflected in my dealings with members of the media.”


Performance welcomes new Communications Director

Performance Communications Middle East has welcomed digital expert Peter Ganney to the role of Communications Director. With over 10 years of experience, Peter has developed and executed campaigns for globally recognised brands and since arriving in the GCC in 2012, he has worked with clients such as Uber, Aston Martin and the Qatar Olympic Committee. In the newly created role of Communications Director, Peter will manage the operational side of Performance Communications Middle East agency, with an emphasis on assisting clients to communicate their messages across digital and social media channels.

“With such an illustrious roster of clients, joining Performance Communications is an exciting opportunity,” says Peter. “My experience in delivering digital and PR communications strategies for a diverse range of brands and sporting events across the region will be a valuable contribution at a time when Performance is going from strength to strength. I’m looking forward to working with such a talented team and helping the business to reach new heights.”


Bareface welcomes new Marketing Executive

Bareface has welcomed Hannah Taylor to the role of Marketing Executive. Previously Communications Manager for where she handled all aspects of PR, marketing and social media for the brand, Hannah brings over four years of experience in media to her new role. As Marketing Executive, she will now be responsible for all online and offline marketing, social media campaigns, PR and internal communications for Bareface.

“I am thrilled to be working with such a prestigious and recognised brand in this region,” says Hannah.