A GRADUATE from Tynedale has helped one of the region's bakers get ahead online.

Struggling to find a suitable role in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, Prudhoe-based journalism graduate Gemma Hirst landed a three-month internship with Print Cakes, supporting the business with her digital marketing skills.

The internship was organised through Creative Fuse North East, a project unlocking the potential of the creative, digital and tech sectors to drive innovation and growth of the region’s economy.

Gemma, who studied at The University of Sunderland, said: “I felt as though my job search was not going to plan, so it was great to know that after university there was still support out there for me as a graduate.”

Print Cakes is a Sunderland-based, family bakery, delivering treats to brands across the country. Their focus is on quality ingredients and a finish which reflects the brands they work with.

During the ongoing pandemic, Gemma had to adapt to restrictions and take on the responsibility of representing and creating digital content for the brand on their business social media accounts from her Northumberland home. She communicated regularly with Print Cakes director Helena Harford and Creative Fuse to make sure the content that she was creating was on brand and she was also able to create and edit content for the Print Cakes product pages and blogs from the website.

The festive period was an especially busy time for the business and Gemma was able to use social media to promote their product. Using Instagram, she turned their grid into an advent calendar and each day would showcase a festive product that customers could buy.

Gemma added: “I really didn’t think that a social media advent calendar could work, as I didn’t know how I was going to do it, but I still managed to achieve and complete my idea.”

“Gemma has been an amazing addition to our business through the Creative Fuse programme", said Helena Harford. "She brought fresh ideas to our social media accounts, as well as around our product offering and general marketing.

"Gemma was enthusiastic, hard-working and proactive, which meant we knew our social media channels were in safe hands. She has grown our following, increased engagement and ensured that we are posting regular updates. This was especially important to us over the Christmas period when we were very busy with orders and would have otherwise struggled to maintain a presence."

Valentine’s Day was the next big calendar event Print Cakes had to take on. Creating mood boards and competitor research, Gemma was able to work with the company on promoting their new range using digital platforms to create and schedule content, improve the look and the type of content that the business had not done before.

Although Gemma finishes her internship this month, she will continue to work with Print Cakes.