By Jenny Clarke, Associate

We recently detailed our comprehensive high street reopening campaign during our 18-month engagement with the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead in our case study. In this three-part blog series, we explore how this programme addressed public health, economic rejuvenation, and community building using our three-pronged approach.

In the spring of 2020, DigiKind was engaged to work with the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead to help to boost footfall on their high streets. With Covid-19 and the first national lockdown found the borough challenged not only with needing to keep high streets at the heart of the community, but to do so in the face of stay at home orders and a growing lack of public confidence in face-to-face shopping and tourism.

Seeking to counter these issues, DigiKind implemented a three-pronged strategy, using creative communications, digital community building, and tailored support for local businesses. The three elements combined perfectly with great success, resulting in an engaged and motivated local community and a huge rise in footfall on reopening – including a 315% uplift in Windsor (May, 2021) and newly opened shops across the borough. 

One particular aspect of our approach – community building – was pivotal to our strategy, and underlies nearly all of the activities which led to the Royal Borough’s transformation.

Community building

The strategy was to empower residents, businesses, and town partners to create a digital ecosystem, which would instil a sense of community and confidence in visiting local high streets and public attractions.

DigiKind launched new social media channels, branded hashtags and a website hub – My Royal Borough – which we then populated with relevant content such as weekly blogs, interviews with successful local businesses, and our own campaign messaging. It was a huge success; the local community flooded in to like, share, and create their own content, all in support of their local businesses.

Using these platforms DigiKind engaged local stakeholders to build a word of mouth economy, and empowered local businesses to embrace digital channels and reimagine what was possible in a time of Covid. To remind locals what a wealth of services are on their doorstep DigiKind also created an online directory of local businesses, widely used by shoppers. The Indies A to Z campaign was a particular success, with over 4.1K views alone on the campaign microsite

Illuminated Instameet, @windsoretonphotoart


To complement our online activities we ran placemaking events; hosting the area’s first ever socially distanced Instameet where local Instagrammers were challenged to share the best photos of the borough’s hidden gems which were then voted for by the community. It was the first event of its kind for the Igers community, and it was unique in that we collaborated with the local council, business partners, the tourism community and the local community to deliver an online and offline event to engage a wide audience and encourage local shopping. Based on this success we organised an Illuminated Instameet at night in partnership with Visit Windsor, the Igers community, and Windsor Great Park, in December 2021.

The Indies A to Z campaign was a particular success, with over 4.1K views alone on the campaign microsite


Our strategy was a success. We created a thriving, community-led digital ecosystem, bringing all the benefits we had predicted, and more; increased business outcomes and pride, awareness and safety in the borough. We had a 91-95% positive sentiment score on our branded hashtag #MyRoyalBorough, our organic engagement and impressions rose steadily month on month by 10%, and the community created over 5,000 user generated content posts on Twitter and Instagram. This self-sustaining digital ecosystem will now continue to benefit the communities around the Royal Borough: connecting businesses, their customers, non-profits, and leaders in the community, bringing them together around one cause: to champion their high street.

People Say…

“The project Kathy has produced creating ‘My Royal Borough’ is outstanding and has brought the borough together. With sharing photos, promoting local business and supporting individuals it has a real community spirit. This is spread across social media networks and it’s great to feel the love that Kathy has created through ‘My Royal Borough’.

I personally appreciate the support she has shown me by sharing some of my photography with you all. It’s put me back in touch with the town where my family and I grew up and I can now follow local businesses and retailers all from this great social platform.”

Karen Bagnell, @KazzPix Photographer and local resident

Next week, we will share the third instalment of our 3-part series, where we will discuss how supporting local business was vital to our strategy of helping to transform the borough and build community.