By Bekki Bushnell, Head of Business Development
PR is not an island. Bear with me on this analogy, please.
Any technology company’s relationship with their PR agency is destined to fail if they are treated as an external supplier, seen by internal stakeholders as an expense they must grudgingly commit to, and that offers little return other than vanity.
In many cases, this is true.
At Whiteoaks, it is exactly the kind of scenario we seek to avoid.
Businesses nowadays must keep all the bases covered; media relations, social media, bloggers, vloggers, industry influencers. The routes to decision makers and budget holders have never been more complex.
So, if they employ a PR agency to handle media outreach — and keep them at arm’s length — this relationship will end up on a sour note for both parties.
An integrated approach is the way forward — and Whiteoaks’ service offering has evolved over our 25 years in the tech PR game to ensure we deliver tangible results for our clients.
Take Omnico, a leading provider of cloud-based technology powering point of sale and customer engagement solutions, as an example.
A key recommendation when we started working with them was to establish their own intellectual property through a research campaign known as the Retail Gap Barometer. We gathered the data, analysed trends and could easily just have sent out a press release, garnered some strong media hits and given ourselves a big pat on the back. Job done.
Except it wasn’t.
We also used the statistics from the research to feed a range of content across traditional media relations, social media and traditional marketing content such as whitepapers, electronic direct mail (eDMs).
Suddenly, metrics moved beyond simple media coverage (where it is far harder to track those all-important sales leads), to informing and shaping entire marketing strategies.
Omnico is just one of our many examples of this approach, combining media relations, digital, social and marketing channels, all driven by the PR agency — with strong content at its heart.
Other agencies may be stuck on an island, with only a volleyball named Wilson for company (for those unfamiliar with the film Castaway, I’m linking back to my introduction here), but Whiteoaks’ goal is to be very much part of the mainland.