Providing entrepreneurial consultancy advice to family businesses, to help traditional estates and farms develop into resilient and diverse businesses.
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Rural Ambitions provide entrepreneurial consultancy advice to family businesses in the rural community, to help traditional estates and farms develop into resilient and diverse businesses.
Drawing on business acumen and urban place making talent, we strive to create customer facing, innovative places in the rural landscape that anticipate changing trends in order that they remain relevant and engaging.
Understanding the Why
Research has shown us that customers buy from businesses that hold the same beliefs and values that they do. Therefore, having absolute clarity on why you want to diversify your estate business and faithfully following through on this seed inspiration can be a source of competitive advantage. For some owners, diversification will mean the launch of their own business, for others it will be inviting businesses that share these same values onto the estate to work alongside them as tenants or trading partners.
Whichever road is right for you, the process always starts with why, to establish the vision and ethos of the owners of the business. Every collaborator that is invited to bring their business onto the estate must be chosen for their alignment with that why to ensure a golden thread of continuity in how the market perceives the estate or farm’s offering as a whole.
Supported by a dedicated insights team, Rural Ambitions is at the forefront of consumer and macro trends that have such a shaping effect on the market opportunities and threats in the rural environment.
As trends evolve, so does the market’s perception of what is important to them. Only those businesses that truly understand how trends change markets, and can adapt to this, will thrive.
Rural Placemaking is our unique proposition to the market. It is the understanding that we can be editors of the places we own. We can invite the businesses that inspire us and that share our values to become trading partners on our farm or estate. We can curate the image and view of the places we own, in the eyes of the market. Placemaking is the reinterpretation of footpaths and cycle routes, through woods and along river banks to create a natural, energetic footfall from one estate business to the next. It is the appreciation that the resilience and success of the estate or farm is directly linked to the resilience and success of all its tenants and trading partners. In a world where what the market values is changing more rapidly than any of us can remember, placemaking is being alive to the opportunities and threats that this brings, and helping our clients adapt their businesses to thrive in these turbulent times.
Effective rural business planning is about aligning five things:
- Articulating the client’s why – the idea, founded on their ethos and values, delivered either in their own business, or those of the tenants that they have invited onto their estates for their alignment with these values
- Understanding the cry of the local market – the gaps that have not been adequately fulfilled by competitors, as consumer trends change
- The intentional, curation of complementary businesses together to form clusters, creating a vibrant and engaging sense of place that stands out from the offering of competitors
- Bringing all that is unique about the landscape of the farm or estate into the customer’s experience of the place by linking businesses together with nature walks, cycle paths etc
- Creating a financial plan, based on thorough understanding of both the capital and revenue & expenditure elements of the project, and checked against relevant performance ratios.
What many rural businesses lack is the golden thread that laces these five elements together. Getting the first four right can add a sense of theatre to the customer experience, which increases footfall, dwell time, loyalty and secondary spend. All of these make creating a robust and profitable business that much more attainable.
As advisors, we guide both landlords and future partners on best practice for collaboration, enabling great businesses to flourish. We are fortunate to be able to draw on the strength and depth of Strutt & Parker’s planning, development and management teams along with independent specialist diversification consultants that we trust to provide a complete consultancy service.