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3 Jun 2019

Katie’s a social media whizz-kid

Written by Katie Hughes
Katie Hughes, volunteer at Hermiston Quay
Katie Hughes, volunteer at Hermiston Quay
In celebration of Volunteers’ Week 2019, we’re highlighting the work of our volunteers. Katie Hughes is a student currently studying History at the University of St Andrews. Here she tells us about her experience volunteering with us.

As this is my last summer before heading into my final year of studies, I want to spend my time both productively and rewardingly. It’s relatively easy to be productive during the long summer holidays, but the latter is much harder! I had to think: What could I do that would productively further my skill set, whilst being worthwhile and rewarding? Volunteering with the Trust seemed to be the answer. I applied to volunteer for the Customer and Cause team – based in the Trust’s Head Office in Hermiston Quay, Edinburgh – for three weeks, which means exposure to marketing experience whilst simultaneously striving to protect the beautiful nation that I grew up in.

Hermiston Quay is a great place to work. Everybody is so friendly and goes out of their way to offer me any help and support.

“The office has great views of Edinburgh over towards the Firth of Forth, and this scenery serves as a constant reminder of what the work I’m doing is for: playing my small part in keeping Scotland’s treasures loved and protected.”
Katie Hughes
Volunteer, Hermiston Quay

I’ve been assigned to the Communications team to help look after the Trust’s social media channels (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). My work predominantly consists of ensuring the Trust has a consistent online presence that represents the brand’s values whilst promoting brand awareness and encouraging visits to properties, and also drawing attention to our fundraising campaigns.

A highlight of this work would be the competitions that I instigated with help from the team. My first week of volunteering coincided with Museum Week. This is an annual event where international institutions use social media to share stories on their places or artefacts related to a different daily theme. One of the themes this year was ‘photograph’. This theme seemed a great prompt for a competition where people could upload photos of our properties with the hashtag #FortheLoveofScotland. We then shared the best photographs to further promote these properties and increase engagement with our online audience.

In preparation for #WorldOutlanderDay on Saturday 1 June, we held another competition – this time it was an Outlander DVD giveaway. Seven Trust places have been used as Outlander filming locations including Falkland Palace, Newhailes and Preston Mill. In order to be in with a chance of winning, we asked people to tell us which of the Trust’s Outlander locations were their favourite and why. The post got 135 comments and 51 shares. It was great to experience such a high engagement and those commenting expressed very positive things about both our properties and the TV series.

As my time volunteering with the Trust comes to an end, I can definitely say that I met my original goal. I feel my time spent here has been productive and I’ve certainly found it very rewarding. I’ve met some great people and find the genuine affection those I’ve volunteered with have for the Trust’s places, inspiring. It’s clear to see they do what they do for the love of Scotland.

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