[Case Study] Word of Mouth in the Social Media Age: EDEKA

September 22, 2015

Seval Dogan, Marketing Specialist, Business Wire

From word of mouth to electronic word of mouth
Traditionally, word of mouth (henceforth, WOM) was primarily based on face-to-face, interpersonal interaction between a receiver and a communicator.

According to the Cambridge dictionary, WOM is the process of telling people about a particular product or service, usually yay-1463767-digitalbecause it is good and you want to encourage them to try it. This makes WOM one of the most credible and effective forms of advertising, simply because every time a person recommends to his/her peers, friends or colleagues a product or service, he/she puts his/her own credibility and reputation at stake.

Positive WOM, therefore, is one of the most important influences on organizational performance as every happy customer can be turned into one of the most committed brand fans. When activated properly, positive WOM can have a substantial impact on a company’s fortune by generating more brand awareness and by helping to successfully grow the customer database.

However, in today’s digitized world, companies face a new significant challenge. There is a real impact of speed and connectivity on word-of-mouth discussions. Today’s web-based consumer platforms have shaped a new way of sharing personal opinions: the electronic word of mouth (eWOM). Social media revolutionized not only the way individuals interact on a daily basis, but also the way companies create and grow brand awareness and loyalty via WOM. Social networks are a central place for dialogue and exchange, replacing traditional face-to-face discussions. As a result, opinions travel much faster than before, and the public image of a company has become more fragile and sensitive than ever before.

One way of generating positive eWOM is through viral marketing. The remainder of this article deals with a success story of a viral marketing campaign produced for EDEKA, one of the largest supermarket chains in Germany, by the German advertising agency Jung von Matt. While there are several key important elements to the EDEKA case (most of which are discussed below), one of the strongest elements however is that social media has been strategically used to stimulate positive eWOM.

How EDEKA leveraged eWOM for Success:  The Case of EDEKA: ‘Supergeil’ and ‘Kassensymphonie’
EdekaFounded in 1898, EDEKA is one of the largest and most recognizable food retailers in Germany. Aimed at expanding its audience to reach younger buyers by changing the corporate image from a conservative retailer to a more modern one, EDEKA joined forces with Hamburg-based advertising agency Jung von Matt. In 2014 they set up a campaign which deviated greatly from the conventional advertising and marketing standards followed by most German retailers. EDEKA and Jung von Matt produced two successful YouTube-based campaigns  that became worldwide hits, receiving national and international media coverage. EDEKA gained more than 2,000 new YouTube subscribers, over 4,500 additional Facebook Fans, more than 1,700 Twitter mentions and increased engagement on their social media channels (source: Fanpage Karma). The success of their brand campaign even secured the supermarket company its own Edeka 2reality-cooking show (‘Das Erfolgsrezept’) from RTL, a leading national TV channel.

The first spot, labeled with the rather obscene word ‘Supergeil’ (meaning ‘super cool’), launched in 2014 and reached over 14 million YouTube views within a short period of time.

Did it work?
edeka 3The EDEKA campaigns relied on visually rich content and unique storytelling elements to recreate and reposition their brand to appeal to younger demographics. They cleverly turned products and services into relatable stories, and the entertaining nature of the videos engaged users both on an emotional and intellectual level.

Generating Positive eWOM: Key Success factors
Broadly speaking, it is difficult to predict what content will trigger positive eWOM and if it will go viral on social media. Nevertheless, there are certain elements that increase the probability. As Jennifer Aaker, Professor of Marketing at Stanford Graduate School of Business, noted, people remember information when it is weaved into narratives “up to 22 times more than facts alone.”

As the Internet is becoming increasingly image rich, content that includes visuals attract more attention than content without. Videos are especially on the rise as they are highly engaging and allow a multi-sensory experience. Movement, facial expressions and human voices are more believable, more authentic. These factors help to quickly establish a connection to the viewer and generate more awareness.

Word of mouth is one of the most important factors in a modern communication program. Click here to share this information on Twitter:  http://ctt.ec/7JaHV

PR Updates for August 1 – 14

August 14, 2015

By Denise Grayes, Business Wire Atlanta

There have been a huge number of changes this month in the PR industry. Here are just a few of the top stories for your review. Have your own update to include?  Let us know!

PR Industry Updates

Media Frenzy Global announced it has been named agency of record across multiple marketing disciplines by LNL Systems. Article

Umbel has hired Lisa Pearson as chief marketing officer. Article

Salt and Company has named Meghan Flynn as EVP. She is also principal at Meghan Flynn PR. Article

Vacation rental website HomeAway has enlisted Kwittken as competition and regulatory battles within the ‘sharing’ economy heat up. Article

CÜR Media announced the hiring of Marcy Polanco as Vice President of Marketing, Public Relations and Social Media. Article

Viber has selected Allison+Partners for public relations. Article

Calypso Communications today announced that JMD Industries has selected the agency to develop comprehensive marketing campaigns and build public and media support for JMD’s long-term strategic business development goals. Article

Shift Communications has added entertainment destination Foxwoods Resort Casino to its Boston-based consumer lifestyle practice. Article

Warner Communications announced it has been selected as the agency of record for the All Stars Project, Inc. Article

March Communications has closed the second quarter by adding seven new clients to its roster. Article

Dr. Bruce W. Jentleson has joined APCO Worldwide’s International Advisory Council (IAC) as APCO’s office in Raleigh continues to expand. Article

Steele Rose Communications (SRC) this week opened its new headquarters in Chapel Hill, NC. Article

Golin has hired Laura Sutphen to head the firm’s work in social purpose, corporate responsibility, and sustainability. Article

Exposure & Co. opens new office in Milwauke. Article

Resolute Consulting recently received six awards from three different public relations award ceremonies, including four awards from the Publicity Club of Chicago (PCC) Golden Trumpet Awards, the most prestigious awards program in the Midwest. Article

Burson-Marsteller announced Jane Madden has joined the firm as Managing Director, Head of Corporate Responsibility. Article

In the past five months, the client roster at Henson Consulting has significantly expanded to include 13 new locally and nationally prominent brands in the hospitality, corporate, education, technology and not-for-profit sectors. Article

The staff at Chicago-based boutique public relations agency Henson Consulting has expanded to include seven new hires who provide strategy and support for the consumer, hospitality, corporate, creative services and new business teams. Article

Fahlgren Mortine was selected as the public relations agency of record for the North Dakota Department of Commerce, Tourism Division. Article

Hocking College appointed Michael M. Brown as its new executive director of public relations, marketing and community relations. Article

Communication AMMO has added an innovative, proven manager communication training program to its portfolio of services. Article

The Point Group announced the acquisition of Dallas-based Forté. Article

Nuñez PR Group announced it has rebranded as TruePoint Communications. Article

Halliburton Investor Relations honored the firm’s founder and chairman, Alan Halliburton, at a 25-year celebratory dinner last month. Article

Hager Sharp has announced that Jennifer Wayman has accepted their offer to become President and Chief Executive Officer. She will begin September 8, 2015. Article

Home Front Communications welcomes Wyatt Queener as Vice President and Director of its Interactive team. Article

Jason Kravitz has been appointed Director of Strategic Communications and Senior Advisor in the Office of the President at the Johns Hopkins University. Article

Abt Associates has named Selena Ramkeesoon as a Vice President within Abt’s U.S. Health division. Article

APCO Worldwide launched its global emergency response offering, APCO ER, to better serve clients facing significant crisis events that require dedicated and immediate emergency response capabilities. Article

Cassidy & Associates has named Russell Thomasson as EVP. Article

Planned Parenthood has hired crisis communication firm SKDKnickerbocker to help it deal with fallout from a series of undercover sting videos produced by the Center for Medical Progress, Breitbart reports. Article

Rami Sharaf, CEO of WorldBridge International Group and member of the board of governors for AmCham Cambodia, joined APCO Worldwide’s International Advisory Council (IAC). Article

The 38 North Solutions team has announced an expansion our services to include communications and public relations expertise through a collaboration with RENEWPR. Article

Edelman has named Bob Knott global chair of its Business + Social Purpose (B+SP) practice. Article

Warschawski announced the promotion of Allison Beers to Senior Designer. Article

AAR Partners has added a Midwest office location to its New York headquarters and Los Angeles office. The new Kansas City office is launched in partnership with two advertising industry professionals, George Weyrauch and Jay Liebenguth, with 45 years of combined experience. Article

StartingDot Ltd. announced two Colorado companies as Agency of Record leading up to the September 8th launch of the world’s first top level domain for anyone with a passion for snow sports. Scream Agency will be spearheading PR and event relations, while partnering with Native Rank to tackle digital aspects of the campaign. Article

WordenGroup Public Relations has recently added Wildlife Expeditions of Teton Science Schools and WRJ Design to its client roster. Article

Lambert, Edwards & Associates announced the promotions of Tiffany Jones to Senior Director, and Amanda Passage and Renee Ketels to Director. Article

Airfoil has officially announced its headquarters will move to downtown Royal Oak, Mich. in fall 2015. Article

Los Angeles
Retailer Toms has hired BWR Public Relations for editorial, entertainment marketing, special events and social media for both the brand and its founder Blake Mycoskie. Article

Haley Miranda Group has expanded its capabilities to include full public relations and social media services. Ashton Spatz has been appointed director, social media and public relations. Maggie Waters joins as senior manager, public relations and Sarah Ledesma joins as social media manager. Article

PMBC Group has promoted Maura White to director, taking on additional new business development and agency management responsibilities. In addition Lisa Inouye has been promoted from senior account manager to media strategist and Andrew McCrea has been promoted to account coordinator. Article

Two new clients have joined Murphy O’Brien Public Relations‘ Real Estate collection: Laurus Corporation and QUIGG. Article

Giant Spoon announced that is has hired Veronica Brothwell as Senior Strategist. Article

MWW Public Relations announced it has been retained by Digiboo for public relations services. Article

The Lagrant Foundation has appointed Raul Reis to its board of directors. Article

NRPR Group announced its newest client, DeLon, a hip-hop artist, producer and DJ from Los Angeles, with a strong international following. Arti cle

ANTHEMIC Agency announced its partnership with DTS, Inc. Article

4 Two Life is a newly-established multidisciplinary communications agency that hustles and grinds 27/7 for its clients, right down to the last drop. Article

Universal Pictures has named Teri Everett as EVP of global communications, effective August 17. Article

A team of nationally renowned PR specialists, journalists, legal analysts and victim advocates announced that they’ve banded together to create Cavalry Public Relations. Article

Edelman has made Carlos Correcha-Price the GM of its Miami office. Article

La Cita de las Americas named Vine Communications its PR agency of record for all media outreach in North America. Article

JoTo PR has BodyHealth as a new client for its healthcare PR unit. Article

JoTo PR moves to complete remote workforce. Article

C.Suite Communications recently added Lauren Opelt to the account service team as a senior account manager. Article

Oracle has handed its Latin America PR brief to Burson-Marsteller, adding to the global product PR work the agency secured earlier this year. Article

Brandstyle Communications today announced the opening of a Miami office. It will be headed by marketing and PR veteran, Michelle Aristondo Chereque. Article

The Public Relations Society of America Sunshine District honored Curley & Pynn Public Relations and Marketing Communications with one of its 2015 Radiance Awards, recognizing the best public relations programs and tactics in the state. Article

Red Banyan Group announced the appointment of Robbin Lubbehusen, MBA, as its new Vice President of Operations and Marketing. Article

The University of Florida’s College of Journalism and Communications named Robert Norberg as Director of Strategy and Research at student-run The Agency effective immediately. Article

Vine Communications announced the addition of Christine Siervo as the new Senior Account Executive. Article

Balsera Communications has announced that it has promoted Sonia Diaz to Director of Public Relations and Digital Strategies, effective immediately. Article

Llorente & Cuenca has entered the US market with the opening of an office in Miami. Alejandro Romero, managing partner and CEO for Latin America, will lead the Miami office. Article

WorldWise PR Affiliates announced that SGR Comunicaciones of Buenos Aires, Argentina and Sabina Covo Communications of Cartagena, Colombia have joined its global alliance of independent public relations firms. Article

Diamond Public Relations expanded its hotel and resort client roster with the addition of CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa. Article

PadillaCRT has added Anastasia Lopez as vice president of social media in the firm’s New York office and Matt Fairchild as vice president of technology and innovation, leading digital strategy, user experience and development teams from the Minneapolis headquarters. Article

Tunheim has been selected to manage bid submission for Copper Peak Ski Area as it aims to host FIS (International Ski Federation) world competitions.  Article

Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever announced Anthony Hauck as the organization’s director of public relations. Article

Oncologix Tech announced the appointment of Nikole Jessie as the Director of Marketing and Public Relations. Article

New Orleans
Deveney continues to grow its dynamic team, recently hiring Creative Director Rachel Wilson to take the helm of the firm’s creative department. Account Executive Savannah Urban and Senior Account Coordinator Brittany Cruickshank are new additions to the account services team. Article

Newport Beach
Bravo Brio Restaurant Group has appointed Morgan Marketing & Public Relations as agency of record representing its Southern California BRIO Tuscan Grille locations at the Irvine Spectrum Center and Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga. Article

Copernio announced that it is a multiple award recipient in the 2015 Hermes Creative Awards for outstanding public relations work. Article

New York
Paul Newman has left the Publicis-owned MSLGroup 18 months after joining as president of North America. Article

The Confederation of North, Central America & Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) has engaged Global Strategy Group to assist with public affairs and communications regarding the Confederation’s reform efforts. Article

MDC Partners agency Kwittken has launched KFF, a new lifestyle and entertainment “agency-within-an-agency,” specializing in high-impact publicity, consumer and media events, celebrity influencer engagement and brand partnerships. It will be led by director Michelle Aselta. Article

Ortho Clinical Diagnostics has named Kristie Bouryal as chief corporate brand and communications officer. Article

Darrow Associates has hired Tad Gage as a managing director. Article

GCI Health has begun working with InVivo Therapeutics and Neuraltus Pharmaceuticals. Article

Crossmedia announced that it has been named media agency of record for the NBA Phoenix Suns and WNBA Phoenix Mercury. Article

Glass Lantern PR and SGC have announced a strategic partnership tailored for the marketing/development needs of the broadcast industry. This partnership offers a single source business solution for high impact results, designed to propel start-ups and known brands alike to that next level of success. Article

Tiffani Cailor joins Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA) as director of public relations and content development. Article

The American Heart Association (AHA) announced its Founders Affiliate board officers for the 2015-2016 fiscal year beginning July 1st. Gil Bashe, Managing Partner, Health, Finn Partners, has been named Affiliate chair. Article

DraftKings has named United Entertainment Group as its communications agency of record. Article

MWW Public Relations announced it has been retained by Digiboo for public relations services. Article

As Beautiful Planning Marketing & PR (BPMPR) continues to expand their global reach, the public relations firm has been contracted by the legendary French cabaret, The Moulin Rouge, for their highly anticipated debut in the United States this coming fall. Article

DeVries Global has recently been named US public relations agency of record for Los-Angeles based cosmetics brand wet n wild, a division of Markwins Beauty Products. Article

Lou Hammond & Associates has added five new clients for public relations, digital marketing and positioning. Article

Issa PR has added Bloom + Grace to its list of clients. Article

Edelman and United Entertainment Group have expanded their Olympic marketing and communications offering in advance of the upcoming Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Article

Relevance New York announced the relocation of its Midtown headquarters. Article

Stern + Associates and Stern Speakers announced the firms’ rebranding as Stern Strategy Group. Article

Didit has acquired the Manhattan-based, public relations firm, JB Cumberland PR. Article

G&S Business Communications has appointed Kevin Pchola as vice president to accelerate the agency’s expansion in consumer categories, including home and lifestyle, as well as building and construction segments. Article

Among new senior staff hires for MMC, Matthew Anderson has been named the agencies first CMO. Reporting to Anderson is Annie Fileta, Vice President, Marketing, who will partner with him on agency marketing. Article

MDC Partners public relations agencies expect “business as usual” following the departure of holding company chief executive Miles NadalArticle

After the New York Post reported that former Democratic lawmaker Anthony Weiner was hired by MWW, the firm issued a statement “clarifying” that Weiner will serve as a member of its board of advisors. Article

Seton Hall University is launching a College of Communications and the Arts. Professor Deirdre Yates will serve as interim dean of the college, and the search for a new dean will begin this fall. Article

Two prominent New York nonprofit organizations, Children of Promise, NYC and the New York Society for Ethical Culture have retained Momentum Communications Group. Article

Finn Partners has been awarded the North American public relations account for Crystal Cruises. Article

Babbler has tapped Emerging Media as its Agency of Record. Article

MWW Public Relations announced it is “pearing” up with Harry & David to serve as its official public relations agency. Article

A team of entrepreneurs in the marketing field have found an effective way to compete with corporate America for big business. The NYC Marketing Resource Group is a marketing collaborative comprised of fifteen entrepreneurs each specializing in different fields within the marketing arena. Article

The Animal Medical Center (AMC) announced the appointment of Jennifer Petrisko to the position of Executive Director of Marketing Communications. Article

Serendipit Consulting announced it has retained 13 new clients and several student housing projects to its lineup since the start of 2015. Article

San Francisco
The popular workplace tool Slack has brought on Julia Blystone to lead communications. Article

Waggener Edstrom Communications (WE) brought on Miranda Duncan as Senior Vice President to join the rapidly growing Healthcare team. Article

Allison+Partners announced the addition of Henk Campher as executive vice president, Social Impact. Article

Harden Communications Partners announced Cindi Goodsell has joined as a director of the firm. Article

Thompson & Co. Public Relations added experience to its Anchorage, Alaska, office with the addition of Abby Cooper as account executive and Sydney Brusewitz as account coordinator, as well as the promotions of Nikkie Viotto and Emily McLaughlin to junior account executives. Article

R2C Group announced that it has been selected as the TV creative and media agency for Blinds.com. Article

Silicon Valley
Singularity University has enlisted Ogilvy PR‘s startup division amid reports the university is planning to convert from a non-profit into a for-profit corporation by the end of the year. Article

Networking and storage giant Brocade is looking to consolidate its global PR efforts as the company evolves its positioning to include more software services. Article

Chicago & Cleveland
Rhea + Kaiser has added two recent college graduates as full-time staff. Article

Minneapolis & New York
Anastasia Lopez joined PadillaCRT as vice president of social media. Matt Fairchild joined the agency as vice president of technology and innovation, leading PadillaCRT’s digital strategy. Article

Hong Kong
Lewis PR has appointed Scott Pettet senior vice president, Asia Pacific. Article

Hill+Knowlton Strategies has appointed Pamela Teo as regional HR director for Asia Pacific. Article

Zeno Group Asia has appointed Tony Ray Pereira as executive creative director for its Singapore office. Article

SERMO has signed a new agency partner in China. Article

Text100 announced that it is now working with audio and entertainment systems provider Pioneer and creative technology company iQNECT. Article

The Associated Press has hired W Communications to handle the launch of two AP and British Movietone YouTube channels that feature more than one million minutes of digitized film footage. Article

Geoff Beattie has joined APCO Worldwide as executive director. Article

Edelman has named Naheed Mehta as head of its global government communications office. Article

Grayling has been appointed as Mitel‘s agency of record across EMEA, following a competitive pitch earlier this year. Article

Canary Wharf Group has appointed Brands2Life to handle consumer and lifestyle PR. Article

Victor Benady, previously global head of digital at Grayling, has been promoted to the newly created position of global creative director, with a seat on the firm’s global board. Jan Mikulin takes the digital role vacated by Benady and has been promoted to global head of digital marketing, a new role focused on supporting the Grayling network in delivering digital marketing services. Article

Guardian Industries‘ glass group in Europe has selected EMG as its lead media relations and marketing communications agency in the region, including Russia and the CIS. Article

Belmond has appointed Maria Kuhn as corporate director of communications. Article

Four Communications has received a £10 million investment of equity finance from BGF (Business Growth Fund). Article

Cohn & Wolfe has appointed Kate Joynes-Burgess as its new head of digital and integrated marketing for the UK and EMEA. Article

Tina Woods has joined Lansons as a board director to launch Lansons Health, a start-up helping healthcare clients navigate disruption. Article

Stir PR has added French regional wine denomination Pays d’Oc IGP to its client roster. Article

Brad Fishman has partnered with UK franchise industry experts Sally Anne Butters and Lucy Maisey to form Rev PR. Article

Andy Annett has been appointed as Managing Director of TODAY Ogilvy & Mather Myanmar. Article

Tim Sutton is returning to London to expand his international leadership duties at Interpublic Group, adding chairman of Weber Shandwick EMEA to his existing role as chairman of the firm’s Asia-Pacific operations. Article

Etihad Airways has appointed the Cheil Network to handle its global digital and social marketing activities following a competitive pitch process. Article

InterContinental Hotels Group has appointed Cicero Group to provide retained public affairs advice in London and Brussels after a competitive pitch process. Article

DUO Marketing + Communications has signed a partnership with Procre8 in Dubai to become their exclusive service channel for PR clients wanting to expand into Africa. Article

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has hired the MSLGroup as the organization looks to work with Indian governments to ensure access to health services. Article

Mullen Lowe Lintas Group has announced leadership for its newly launched creative agency Mullen Lintas. Article

Volkswagen Passenger Car has appointed Nitisha Agrawal as head of public relations. Article

DEC Communications has been appointed by Mirvac to support its residential portfolio. Article

WPP is partnering with the Indian School of Design & Innovation on the establishment of the ISDI WPP School of Communication. The partnership will help create a three-year undergraduate diploma program in communication based on a work-study model that brings together an academic curriculum and practical application. Article

Zeno Group India has made several new additions to its leadership. Article

Ireland + Hall Communications has expanded its health and wellness roster with two new clients. Article

National Public Relations has bought Equicom from TMX Group. Article

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PR Updates From Around the World – June 1-10

June 10, 2015

By Denise Grayes, Business Wire Nashville

Here are the latest changes and updates in the PR industry.  To learn more about each news item, simply click the hyperlink.  Have your own update to include?  Let us know!

PR Industry Updates

Independent agency Drumroll announced that it has named Andy Davidhazy as Creative Director. Article

French/West/Vaughan has been selected by the Greater Raleigh Convention & Visitors Bureau as its creative services agency of record following an 18-agency competitive review. Article


Public Communications Inc. announced Craig Pugh will join the national integrated communications firm as president. Article

Crisis specialist Hennes Paynter Communications has rebranded as Hennes Communications following the departure of former partner Barbara Paynter, who is launching her own consultancy. Along with the rebranding, the firm has promoted Nora Jacobs to senior vice president at the firm. Article

Furniture retailer American Signature has selected The Richards Group as agency of record. Article

Purple Strategies has appointed Robert Fronk as managing director of reputation strategy. Article

Maroon PR is working with Big League Chew bubblegum, owned by Lincolnshire, Ill.- based, Ford Gum & Machine Co. Article

Highgate at Seven Oaks in Bakersfield, Calif. has selected Buffalo Brand Invigoration Group to direct a public relations program. Article

MediaDC announced the hire of Elizabeth Sheldon as National Account Director. Article

ConnellyWorks has announced the appointment of Margo Dunn as Director of Marketing. Article

Stratacomm LLC announced hiring Karyn G. Le Blanc as a Senior Vice President in its Washington, D.C. office. Article

TradeMark East Africa has selected Agenda as its North American public affairs agency to advance its mission of growing East Africa’s prosperity through trade. Article

Eisbrenner Public Relations has promoted Tricia Marion from assistant account executive to account executive. Article

The 2015 Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, a subsidiary of the Downtown Detroit Partnership, is working up with digital and social specialist OTTO Detroit, Franco Public Relations Group and students from Wayne State University-who will elevate the social media discussion-to bring the race experience to a global audience through social media. Article

Los Angeles
Global nutrition company Herbalife has named Ric Hobby as senior vice president for global government relations; Megan Jordan as senior vice president for global corporate communications; and Randall Popelka as vice president, government and industry affairs. Article

Joanna Massey has been named to the newly created position of vice president, corporate communications and investor relations at Lionsgate. Article

rbb Public Relations has been named agency of record for Sawgrass Mills. Article

Liquor marketer Bacardi is reviewing below-the-line marketing duties, including PR, across its North American brand portfolio, after a similar exercise consolidated creative and media with Omnicom Group agencies earlier this year. Article

The Buzz Agency has added new clients including the US Immigration Fund, Habit Burger, Boca West Country Club, Sunflower Creative Arts, Aviation Week Events and Clive Daniel Interiors. Article

Nicki Gibbs has been promoted to senior vice president, strategy at Beehive PR. Article

Beehive PR has added three new communications strategists to its team. New hires include account director Abigail Greenheck, account director Ericka Webb and account coordinator Maggie Pendleton. Article

Guthrie/Mayes Public Relations has named Rebecca Frazer the 2015 Guthrie/Mayes PR Student of the Year. Frazer, a junior at Asbury University in Wilmore, Ky., was chosen among a strong group of applicants from Kentucky colleges and universities who were nominated for this position. Article

Newport Beach
Global Results Communications (GRC) announced the addition of several new technology companies including mGage, CellTrust and Numerex to its list of clients. Article

ASICS America Corporation today announced it has named United Entertainment Group its new US public relations agency of record. Article

New York
APCO Worldwide and Text100 have launched a joint offering focused on digital healthcare. Article

Kathy Cripps, longtime president of the PR Council, will step down from her position by the end of the year. Article

Ruder Finn announced that John McInerney will assume a new role as Director, Healthcare Digital Strategy. Article

Utilidata has hired Global Strategy Group as its agency of record for communications and public relations. Article

Samsung Electronics has extended its relationship with FleishmanHillard, handing the firm a US corporate PR brief following a review that took place earlier this year. Article

Jesse Comart has been named vice president, global head of communications, at MediaMath. Article

Turner Public Relations had added vice president of tourism Emma de Vadder. Article

R&J Public Relations has added John De Bellis as director of business development. Article

The Halo Group has hired James Best as senior vice president, marketing and business development. Article

Coyne has been selected as agency of record by global outdoor lifestyle brand Timberland to provide public relations strategy, ideation and program activation in North America. Article

Finn Partners has been retained by Cinnabon as agency of record following a competitive review. Article

United Entertainment Group has been selected as the communications agency of record for Speedo USA, a division of PVH Corp. Article

MWW Public Relations announced the addition of U.S. Bank to its client roster. Article

The Halo Group will be launching international beach chic Spanish accessory brand Flossy Shoes into the US marketplace with an integrated social media program. Article

Turner Public Relations has added Waldorf Astoria Park City to its client roster. Article

Beautiful Planning Marketing & PR has added a new client, Dr. Joshua Perlman, co-founder of the NYC Smile Spa in midtown New York. Article

Glass Lantern Public Relations has been named the public relations agency of record for CORAnet Solutions. Article

Wearable maker Polar has brought on Max Borges as it looks to gain US market traction in the popular activity tracker space. Article

Ogilvy PR has hired Robyn Massey to the newly-created role of global chief communications officer. Article

June marks the 14th anniversary of the launching of M&A/consulting firm Gould+Partners. Article

Finn Partners announced it has been retained by Cinnabon as agency of record following a competitive review. Article

Beautiful Planning Marketing & PR has added Z Skin Cosmetics to its client roster. Article

Brian Communications announced four new senior leaders to the team who bring extensive communications and business experience to their roles at the agency. Article

Flackable has been selected as the integrated communications agency of record by Vesticor Advisors. Article

Flackable Promotes Hailey Lanier to Account Executive Article

Swordfish Communications has launched a new service that will help organizations reach out to journalists important to them, and perhaps even generate their own press coverage. Article

Flackable has promoted account coordinator Hailey Lanier to account executive. Article

In business for more than 17 years, Off Madison Ave continues to experience tremendous growth and is poised for another successful year with the addition of eight prominent client accounts and seven new staffers. Article

San Diego
Elevator announced it has acquired Copper Blue Creative effective June 1. Article

San Francisco
OutCast’s Helena Maus has been named North America CEO of sister agency Bite as it continues to recover from a bout of management shakeups and financial turmoil. Article

Wearable maker Fitbit has brought on FleishmanHillard and Burson-Marsteller as the company prepares for its IPO while also facing legal troubles. Article

Glass Lantern Public Relations has been named the public relations agency of record for CORAnet Solutions, Inc. Article

Glassdoor announced Dawn Lyon has been named vice president of corporate affairs. Article

Beauty and grooming retailer Birchbox announced the promotion of Claire Paull to Chief Communications Officer. Article

Waggener Edstrom Communications has appointed Kass Sells as the agency’s president of North America (NA). Article

Silicon Valley
Relypsa has appointed Charlotte Arnold as vice president, corporate communications. Article

PayPal has consolidated international PR duties covering EMEA and Asia-Pacific to Edelman, the Holmes Report can reveal. Article

eBay head of comms Alan Marks is stepping aside for Dan Tarman to take over as chief communications officer as the company prepares to split with PayPal and readies for a new CEO to take the helm. Article

Atlanta & Nashville
Ignite Creative Group announced its new office location in downtown Cumming, Ga. along with the expansion of a second office in Birmingham, Ala. Article

Chicago & LA
Porter Novelli announced two new managing directors in its Southern California and Chicago offices. Linda Martin, partner, will lead the Porter Novelli team in Southern California, while Adam Scholder, senior vice president, takes on leadership of the Chicago team. Article

SKDKnickerbocker has added former congressional reporter Kate Nocera to its Washington public affairs team and political and communications veterans Jaclyn Rothenberg and Maureen Shanahan to its New York office. Article

New York & San Francisco
Global Gateway Advisors and LyonSHARE Communications Group have announced the formation of a strategic alliance to expand each firm’s resources to better support their clients. Article

Seattle & Toronto
Waggener Edstrom Communications and Canadian-based independent Environics Communications have forged a new partnership. Article

Hong Kong
Following a six-month project, British retailer Jack Wills has engaged AKA Asia on a retainer basis for media relations, influencer relations and partnership management.  Article

Following a competitive pitch, Fishburn has been appointed by joint venture partners Lend Lease and LCR. Article

Hill+Knowlton Strategies has hired public affairs specialist Henry Groundes-Peace as an associate director within the financial and professional services team. Article

Chris Lawrence has joined Bite‘s leadership team as creative director. Article

Colgate-Palmolive has selected Cohn & Wolfe for its new Dutch Sanex PR campaign. Article

Greene King has chosen Hudson Sandler to handle its trade media relations programme. Article

Broadgate Mainland has appointed Gareth David as executive director. Article

Pop Brixton has appointed agency W to handle its launch. Article

PROI Worldwide has added KISS Communications of Cambridge as its fourth partner agency in the United Kingdom. Article

Live and on-demand TV service enabler TV2U has appointed Babel PR to drive a multi-market brand awareness and media relations campaign for both its B2B and B2C offerings. Article

Hunter Public Relations is expanding internationally with the opening of its first office outside the United States. Article

H+K Strategies has brought together 15 media players, including LinkedIn, BuzzFeed, Twitter and Brandwatch, to form the first in a series of publishing boards. Article

A new association has been launched to accompany the increasing convergence of marketing and technology in the UK. Article

Group managing director David Wilson is leaving Bell Pottinger after 15 years with the UK PR firm. Article

To increase its presence on the African Continent, PROI Worldwide has added Levanter Africa in Kenya to its partnership. Article

Business Communications Agency has opened a new office in Israel, offering marketing and communications services. Article

Edelman has hired FleishmanHillard’s Esther Busscher to lead its Brussels office. Article

WPP PR firms H+K Strategies and Buchanan have joined forces to launch a corporate and financial comms consultancy that focuses on the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. Article

3BL Media announced the acquisition of Dunstans Publishing Limited. Article

Nestle has appointed APCO Worldwide to help it recover from reputational damage incurred in a recent crisis over the company’s Maggi noodle brand, according to the Economic Times of India. Article

United Spirits Limited has named Abanti Sankaranarayanan as business head for luxury and corporate relations, India. Article

SPAG Asia has added an office in Mumbai to its headquarters in Gurgaon. Article

Sony India has awarded PR duties to Avian Media following a competitive review that featured a number of competing firms. Article

Sharif Rangekar has moved into a chairman role at Integral PR, after serving as CEO for more than a decade. Article

Cohn & Wolfe India CEO Rafi Khan is stepping down from his role, with the firm promoting Megha Sharma to lead its operations in the country. Article

Ogilvy & Mather Japan announced the appointment of Abi Sekimitsu as Content Director of OgilvyOne K.K. Article


Lifestyle Delivery Systems has named Tim Hamilton as corporate communications executive. Article

OneUp Sports announced that it has hired John McCauley as Vice President, Content and Strategy, a new role for the company. Article

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Selfies Are Here To Stay…

March 2, 2015

Guest Contributor: Marie Baker, Vice President,Social Media, Coyne PR

…So says the Coyne State of the Selfie report, which takes a deeper look into the ever-popular selfie (or not so popular depending on whom you’re asking).  The report revealed some seriously unbelievable selfie stats; did you know the first selfie was snapped in 1839 by American pioneer and photographer, Robert Cornelius?  We’re pretty sure if Instagram were around back then this selfie would have made it to the popular page.


Fast-forward to 2015 – there are now more than 93 million selfies taken worldwide each day. Are you guilty of a daily selfie?  It’s okay to admit it. Most people are posting their selfies to show off something new, like hair, makeup or clothing. Other reasons for snapping a selfie included sharing family time moments, visiting new places or just hitting the gym to show off your physique.

State of the Selfie shared some interesting information discovered by Harvard University. During a recent study they discovered that human arms have grown half an inch over that last two years. Eighty percent of participants polled said they took a selfie at least one time a day. Harvard is now predicting human arms will become 4 to 5 inches longer by the close of the century.  Keep stretching for that perfect angle people – we may be changing the human anatomy!state_of_selfie_infographic

Whether you’re a selfie lover or dread the thought of posing for the camera, State of the Selfie generated some major buzz within the industry. PRNewser, PRWeek snd others shared their love for State of the Selfie.

Our recommendation? Embrace the selfie!  Take selfies with your cat, your grandma and that awesome burrito bowl you had for lunch. Have no shame in your selfie game, and check out the State of the Selfie Report (if you haven’t already)! www.coynepr.com/selfie-report#

Business Wire at CMW2014: It’s All About the Visuals

September 4, 2014

by Phil Dennison, Senior Marketing Specialist

It’s after Labor Day, which can only mean one thing. Well, two things: No more wearing white shoes, and it’s time for another Content Marketing World!

Business Wire is proud to be a sponsor and exhibitor for the second year in a row (and we’ve attended all five CMWs so far). We’ll be there at Booth 46 & 47 to show you the latest tools for featuring and distributing your content: The News Capsule and Picture Capsule.

Capsules are self-contained, embeddable packages of content with your press release, photos, videos, links and other supporting media that travel across paid, earned, shared and owned media. They help you to present your content in the most effective way: visually and interactively. And it really is all about visuals and interactivity. Why do we say that? Well, check it:

  • According to the Social Science Research Network, 65% of people are classified as “visual learners.” Audiences absorb visual elements in one-one thousandth of a second, far faster than they do text; and visual learners find pictures, illustrations and other such content key to absorbing new information.
  • 73% of journalists who responded to our recent Media Survey stated that photographs are their most preferred asset to accompany a press release. Why not make sure they get those photos right along with the rest of your content?



  • Every piece of content in a Capsule is interactive and measurable, giving you an opportunity to see what pieces of your content plan are the most successful.

What type of content do you see the most in your Facebook timeline? Do you see walls of text? Or do you see pictures, videos, meme images and other types of visual content? In social media, and particularly on mobile, visuals rule.

Think about your own successful campaigns – press releases, emails, ads, social promotions, etc. What draws the eyes in heat maps? What gets the clicks? Chances are it’s the compelling visual. I don’t know about you, but the email campaigns I subscribe to almost always catch me with a snazzy photo. And our own research shows that press releases with accompanying visuals get far more clicks – anywhere from 5% to 20% more.

So that’s what we’ll be emphasizing at Content Marketing World: How to increase impact and ROI of your news and branded content with interactive visuals, how to produce them, how to share them, and how to measure their success. Make sure you stop by our booth to see what we can do for you and your content. And to sweeten the pot, we’ll be giving away one of these to one lucky person:



A GoPro Hero3 White Edition, for you to create your own compelling visuals for business, in your personal life, on the go or wherever! But you have to stop by our booth to enter to win, so we’ll see you there! Meanwhile, let us help you plan your Cleveland visit with this guide to restaurants, landmarks and other sights to see!

Want to learn more about Capsules? Drop us a line below and we’ll be in touch!



Decoding the Media: National Journalists Divulge Best Way to Build Relationships

November 12, 2013

By Meghann Johnson, Sales Manager, Business Wire Chicago

What does it take to land a signature placement? You know, the media placement that positions your company as an industry-leader with the smartest executive team and best products? According to speakers on PRSA Chicago’s recent panel, a heck of a lot more than it used to.

Business Wire team members recently attended “National Media in Chicago: Who’s Here and What Do They Cover?” featuring journalists from top national media outlets including:

  • Diane Eastabrook, Correspondent, Al Jazeera America (@AJAM)
  • Jason Dean, Chicago Bureau Chief, Wall Street Journal (@JasonRDean)
  • Flynn McRoberts, Chicago Bureau Chief and Editor-at-Large, Bloomberg News (@FlynnMcRoberts)
  • Neil Munshi, Chicago and Midwest Correspondent, Financial Times (@NeilMunshi)

During this discussion the speakers divulged best pitch practices for PR professionals. In each case, each journalist reiterated the exact same advice – all good PR professionals must do their research before reaching out. This, they told us, is the number one way to create strong relationships and build trust in your company.

In this case, research does not mean referencing their latest article, post or tweet. In PR, researching the reporter means understanding both what they write about and who their audience is.  In today’s world, general pitches only slightly on target with the reporter’s beat and readership are unacceptable. It is better to write highly targeted press releases, with a highly specific audience. Not only will this support your internal business goals, you will provide better content to your beat  reporters.

A few other themes were addressed to give insight into their news process:

Newsrooms embrace social media…to an extent.

In April 2013 Bloomberg News introduced corporate and CEO Twitter feeds to their terminals, a huge step for highly-regulated industries that may not have access to social news at work

  • Business Wire Tip: If you delete a tweet archived in the Bloomberg terminal, you must call Bloomberg to have them manually remove it.  These tweets are not automatically deleted.

While social media is expanding, many journalists are still cautious.  Financial Times’ Neil Munshi was quick to point out that when a big story hits he shuts off Twitter so he can focus on uncovering facts vs. reading potentially false reports.

  • Business Wire Tip: For any communications, especially in times of crisis, it is important for companies to be transparent and provide as much information about the situation as possible in order to control the conversation.  Considering issuing a press release or utilizing your corporate blog to ensure the words used to describe your news are your own.

Content other than photos are rarely re-purposed verbatim; however these elements have huge value in showcasing the larger story to the reporter and brand fans.

In the age of videos and infographics, companies should include content elements that tell the brand’s larger story.  Video works well as it provides a face to the story, while images drive deeper emotional connections.

  • Business Wire Tip: Content marketing and distribution is an effective way to gain attention and influence key constituents; however, it’s important to ensure the story is relevant and timely to drive conversations. Check out on our recent post on this topic.

Press releases remain relevant to news gatherers.

The resounding feedback from speakers is “press releases are alive and well.” According to Jason Dean of the Wall Street Journal press releases remain one of the best ways share company news as it provides reporters accurate information, with links to supporting information, making it easier to do their jobs.

  • Business Wire Tip: If you’re looking to spice up the traditional release think about adding bullets highlighting “Just the Facts” and “Key Quotes,” which may catch the viewers’ attention. Consider adding a Click to Tweet in your sub-headline like this PRSA Austin story.  Or take it one step further like this Amazon release entirely comprised of Tweets each crafted with a different audience in mind.

These are just a few of the tips from leading journalists, but we have many more. Keep following the BusinessWired blog or contact us directly to learn more.

The Daily Dog Interviews Marketing SVP Tom Becktold on PR’s Role in the Marketing Process

October 25, 2012

The Daily Dog, as part of their “Exhibitor Insights” video series from this month’s PRSA International Conference, spoke with Tom Becktold, our SVP Marketing, about how PR pros are in a perfect position to drive companies’ greater marketing messages, how social media has given PR a bigger presence in C-suite decision making, and how PR should be guiding marketing and advertising. Check out Tom’s interview with Richard Carufel below:


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