Using press releases to announce tough decisions

Graphic credit:

Times are tough for a lot of industries, especially restaurants. So what do you do when the time comes to consider cutting your losses or changing your direction? Josh Silverman, owner/chef at Nimbus Restaurant, took the high-road of total transparency and issued a press release posted a letter on Facebook. He even did it a month ahead of time.

For many business owners, going public with less than upbeat news is right up there with volunteering for an IRS audit, scary stuff. But Silverman or his hired public relations professional (I would love to know who) did this very well. The press release letter addressed everyone concerned quite graciously and in detail:

  • Those hearing rumors
  • Patrons (“guests and friends”)
  • Suppliers and food producers (acknowledging they aren’t the easiest customer yet their suppliers still, “happily complied with our crazy requests”)
  • People of Bellingham who “care about where their food comes from” (again crediting the quality food producers)
  • Staff (“my extended family”)
  • Regulars

These were followed with details about when the restaurant will go on hiatus and when they may or may not come back and what possibilities exist for the future.

But what made me most proud as a marketer was a mention near the end where he drums up excitement for the upcoming menu which they will work from until the hiatus. It is a call-to-action. Brilliant!


Read the full story here –> Bellingham restaurant to close for at least two months | Whatcom County Business Blog – Dave Gallagher, Bellingham Herald.


My own transparency
I don’t know Silverman from Adam. I’ve eaten at Nimbus maybe two or three times since it opened in 2003. Honestly, I’ve avoided the place since I was stood up by the original owner (not Silverman) more than once after scheduling meetings to discuss advertising and there’s enough Irish in me that I never got past that grudge. So Silverman really earned my favorable attention — in spades.