Needle-moving and joy-inducing results have always been a hallmark of the agency’s approach to its programming and getting recognized by our industry is icing on the cake!
With a submission entitled “A Kids Book About…Racism? Tackling Tough Topics for A New Generation,” the agency detailed how a lightning rod topic that was mixed with the likes of Oprah’s Favorite Things, Good Morning America, Kristin Bell and LeVar Burton not only gave parents a new tool to talk to children about hard topics, but how the elements of storytelling and design played a central role.
The agency’s work on this deeply important topic was recognized in Education Campaign of the Year, Platinum “Best-In-Show” Award and Best in Product Launch, Consumer.
About GreenRoom Agency
Located in the heart of downtown Miami with expansive views of Biscayne Bay, GreenRoom is an award-winning, full-service public relations, digital and creative agency. Serving clients around the world, we seek innovative consumer products that have compelling stories and pride ourselves on delivering needle-moving results. For more information, please visit www.grnrm.com.
Interested in learning more about how GreenRoom can help your company meet and exceed your business goals?
Contact us so we can talk shop. Contact info: Email: info@GRNRM.com; phone: (305) 347-1787.
We’re only just a few weeks into 2020, but it’s already shaping up to be a banner year for earned media! It’s never been more useful in so many facets of marketing, and we’re seeing the added boon of increasingly positive ripple effects for sales.
Can you confidently say your brand is fully maximizing earned media? Many are still stuck in the early 2000s, so we’ve compiled a quick checklist that’s proven quite useful for our brands.
• Merchandising earned media within your owned properties: Does your website have an updated press room that’s more than just flat logos? Try a more fully designed page with a pull quote and a link back to the full piece so visitors can learn what the media is saying!
• Putting a link on your social channels is the bare minimum! Are you tagging the writer and outlet in the post for further amplification? Try using the piece in an ad that’s targeted to your core demographic. The content is public, and you can get creative with how you use it!
• Does your sales team understand the content from earned media? Too often, we’ve seen the coverage generated on behalf of brand travel to the marketing and communications team, and wither in a presentation or in an inbox. Arming them with the knowledge of a stellar review only helps them to communicate with retailers, other dealers or prospective customers.
• All about Amazon: Do you understand the affiliate relationships many outlets now have with Amazon? In many cases, choosing outlets based on this can result in your earned media being pulled into the product pages and giving additional validity to your listing!
• Have you talked to your PR team about the impacts of earned media? Depending on the level of insight you’re able to provide to your team, it’s critical they understand what is moving the needle and what isn’t. We’ve been surprised at times from analyzing the performance of earned media and the ensuing effects on sales and referral traffic.
As the media landscape consistently shifts and buying habits are ever-evolving, it’s critical to stay on top of all of the ways earned media can lift your brand’s visibility, but also your sales figures!
If you want more information about how GreenRoom can help you leverage your Earned Media and grow your business in 2020 click HERE!
Whether you’re a new product innovator, industry disruptor offering a revitalized spin on a classic or a legacy consumer product with more than a century of success, nearly all brands have a compelling story to tell. From what’s often a matter of unearthing the gems or strategic positioning, PR teams are trained to work with brands to find their story, uncover the innovation and elevate the product, service or ethos to the forefront. Part of this discovery phase and deep dive into the brand lends itself to creating deeper and much more meaningful story arcs for the media. It also arms PR teams with the content and creativity needed for high-profile industry accolades and award submissions. A pivotal element of all robust PR programs and company profiles, relevant industry awards should remain consistently top-of-mind for brands and the teams representing them
Awards are far more than figures collecting dust on an office shelf or plaques lining the walls on the way to the breakroom. Not only do industry awards assist in garnering a significant amount of visibility for your brand and industry-relevant exposure, it also works to attract new customers, appeal to new retail partners, attract investors and give you an edge over competitors. Mapping out industry-specific awards relevant to your product category or service is an ongoing initiative for PR teams, encompassing a significant amount of planning and organization throughout the calendar year.
With the hustle and bustle of seasonal gift guide planning, major retail events, including Black Friday, Cyber Week and the holiday rush of product fulfillment and year-end planning, some of the most important awards can be overlooked. This is especially important for our consumer innovations and CE/tech partners leading into the holiday season. Not only is holiday one of the most important sales periods for consumer goods, it’s also when brands are preparing for the much-anticipated, annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. What’s essentially the Super Bowl, World Cup and Olympics wrapped up in one tradeshow marks one of the most important activations for tech brands of the year. While brands are wrapped up in finalizing booth designs, booking travel and mapping out essential retail meetings and tradeshow networking events, PR teams are gearing up for award season and all things CES to ensure our brands are ahead of the curve for making a major splash at the show. Planning for this should happen far in advance of the fall season, including working towards early bird submissions which can often mean discounted rates and more. This is not a principle that only applies to all things CES as most awards typically have a brief window for submissions that come at a heavily discounted rate prior to the formal deadline.
In addition to the important CES awards (also listed below), here’s a few more industry-related opportunities for brands and their PR teams to consider throughout the year:
• Fast Company, Innovation by Design Awards
• Red Dot Design Awards
• CES Innovation Awards
• TIME Best Innovations
• TWICE Picks Awards
• Last Gadget Standing (CES award)
• Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award
Has your team applied?
The value in any PR agency comes from its ability to synthesize messaging that is in alignment with a client’s goals and effectively tell that story to the media. While it may sound like a relatively simple concept, there are a myriad of variables that influence an earned media program, some which make that dynamic easier and some that make it more challenging. One thing remains constant: the relationship you have with a journalist who will tell your stories.
In an era where every person walking with a smartphone in his/her pocket is a photojournalist, a viral story can come from nearly anywhere. More and more, we’re seeing venerable outlets such as CNN running video from an iPhone or Android, and the same for the current queen of daytime talk, Ellen DeGeneres. While most brands seek viral status, it’s generally incredibly difficult to do, and often brands “go viral” for all the wrong reasons.
As such, it’s critical to any brand that a team of people who engage in consistent and tactful media relations steward its programs. Journalists move incredibly fast and are outnumbered by PR folk 6 to 1 in data released in 2018, so an irresponsible PR professional is easy to blacklist. Relationships have never been more important in this industry and to keep pace with their workloads, journalists must work with people who will not waste their time and have an acute understanding of what they truly need to push their stories forward. After all, they’re under the gun to get eyeballs in our current fractured media landscape. While we place a lot of value on face-to-face interactions with our media friends, we’ve found that a much more valuable set of pillars keeps our relationships strong no matter where they call home.
Customer Service: How fast are your response times? Media report to us that they’re often amazed at PR professionals who may seem desperate to get their clients placed but rarely respond to a journalist’s query. We maintain strict response times and make ourselves reachable by the means in which they communicate. For most it’s email, but others prefer email, text and even Instagram DM!
Flatten the process: They don’t have time to read a long-form press release, making it critical that we craft compelling storylines that are tailored for their beat and publication audience.
Subject matter experts: Being invested in your client’s success means learning as much about the product or service and relevant competitors as possible and possessing the ability to quickly answer preliminary questions a journalist may have. By showing them you’re worth speaking to builds the trust needed to foster a lasting professional relationship.
By employing these three things, you’re showing the journalist that you’re not only going to make their lives easier by getting them what they need, the stories that yield form working with you are going to be better because of it. While it’s tempting to want to make your pitch in person over a coffee, there are five other people waiting to do the same. Will you stand out with the same cup from Starbucks or be the first to complete a fact check?
Our favorite part of working with our clients is the opportunity to tell their story in meaningful and creative ways. From in-studio designs to filming on-set, our Creative team works hard to bring brands to life with groundbreaking visuals; but did you know these services can also elevate your event?
We had the opportunity to make this a reality for our client American Licorice,makers of the popular candy brands, Sour Punch Straws and Red Vines Twists, during one of the “sweetest” events of the season, Dessert Goals. Here are some ways you can leverage creative services during an event or tradeshow and beyond:
Highlight Influencer Partnerships
One thing you can always count on is an influencer wanting to be seen and photographed which makes having a professional team ready to snap the best photo a must for any event.In addition to the colorful confectionary paradise that surrounded us, we had the privilege of working with local influencers as we captured their experience with our branded candy installation.
According to a recent study, 82% of consumers are more likely to follow the recommendation of an influencer they follow. Influencer marketing has proven to be the new word of mouth and authentic content is at the core of their success. During your next event, make sure to seek out influencers and work with your Creative team to take photos and videos of them interacting with your booth, company representatives, and even other influencers! The higher the quality, the more likely your influencer partners will share this content on their feeds and tag your brand social pages. This exposure can help grow your social communities, expand brand reach, and create a new group of brand ambassadors.
Enhance Social Media Content Strategy
A great Creative team has an eye for all things design including the best ways to capture digital content that will resonate with your brand’s social media communities. That’s why you should be tapping into their expertise in real-time to take your social content to new, creative heights while highlighting the best of what your event has to offer.
In addition to snapping Instagram-worthy photos and staging interactive boomerangs, Creative Services can also manage some of the more technical aspects of social including Facebook Live. Going live using a smartphone has several unpredictable variables but a professional creative team can help you navigate the set-up while introducing the right equipment to produce a high-quality HD stream. This real-time feature is favored highly within Facebook’s algorithm, generating three times the engagement of typical video content and demonstrating the power to expand brand awareness into new audiences.
Additionally, working with a Creative team can ensure grainy photos and shaking videos are a thing of the past. When it comes to social, content will always be king. Communities on social media expect to be wowed and this attention to detail can be your ticket into generating high post engagements while representing your brand well across digital channels. Because let’s face it, if your event isn’t on social did it even happen?
Develop Assets for Marketing Collateral
When it comes to sourcing product shots, group photos of company leadership, event attendees interacting with your brand, and more, a smartphone camera just won’t do. From lighting to lenses, experienced photographers know what it takes to snap the best shot. In addition to always being on the hunt to find the right angle, professional photographers have a keen eye for filling spaces, staging scenes, and directing people to create a more dynamic image. Marketing materials including print and digital ads, brochures, website content, and even media kits can feature high-resolution event photography to help bring the brand mission and personality to the forefront.These assets can even serve to generate excitement for the next event by highlighting the best and most eye-catching moments in future promotional materials.
While most of these efforts will result in a variety of public-facing assets, these visuals can also enhance documents that are shared internally with company leadership and employees. These materials can be used to highlight and reinforce the results driven from current brand marketing efforts while garnering leadership and financial support for futureinnovative campaign strategies.
With summer in full swing, many in-house teams are laser-focused on seasonal trade shows, industry events and warm-weather marketing opportunities. This makes perfect sense, but raises an important question; why are their agencies focused on a different season?
At this time of year, as temperatures rise and heating systems become a distant memory, we in the agency world are talking about an equally distant concept — Holiday. That may seem premature on first blush, but agencies often serve as an essential complement to in-house marketing efforts.
This means that brands working with agency support have a two-fold advantage: an in-house team managing day-to-day execution of contemporary tasks while their agency partners develop future opportunities in tandem with the moment. This two-pronged approach is just one of the many reasons working with an agency can be so beneficial.
When it comes to Holiday, there’s a distinctly different lifecycle to media coverage opportunities. Here at GreenRoom, we’ve been talking with editors and journalists about Holiday Gift Guides and annual award submissions as far back as our Spring Media Tour — and we’re seeing traction despite being months away from the colder weather. We’ve helped a number of new clients adjust strategy on the fly and add items to their calendar — secure in the knowledge that they now have the right resources to address them.
Our team-based approach to media outreach drives impactful coverage year around, not just during Holiday. We’re constantly cross-pitching, which means your brand is given more opportunities to gain media attention via roundups, briefings, and trend pieces.
This happens on the digital front as well. Marketing teams are often overflowing with work, so they’re unable to start tackling holiday campaigns until much later in the year, when options for partnering on large-scale initiatives are more limited. An agency partner keeps the ball rolling, and by the time fall comes around, Holiday campaigns are already in full development.
As on the media side of the house, our digital seasonal strategy isn’t limited to just holiday. Our team has spent the summer dressing models in sweaters and tailgate football gear, prepping for creative content that will publish in fall and winter.
Working with a number of clients facing the same challenges puts an agency in the ideal position to inform timing, budget, and strategy on both the media and digital marketing fronts. While we’ll constantly analyze the performance of your brand’s initiatives towards established goals, we’ll also compare this progress to the results we’re seeing from other clients. Because of this, you gain a greater depth analysis. If something needs to be changed, we can borrow learnings from other clients, and implement a strategy that we already know to be successful.
This is especially important on the digital front, where platform algorithms constantly change. If you’re working with just one brand, it may take months to analyze a trend that an agency will quickly see appearing across multiple clients. This means that clients partnered with an agency can better take advantage of platform updates, adjusting strategy to meet the needs of today.
On the PR front, agencies are the first to know when a publication is changing direction or when a new reporter is hired for a beat. This up-to-the-minute information creates efficiencies in media outreach and saves time and effort.
Negotiating pricing is another key area in which agencies pay dividends for their brand partners. Third-party vendors and influencers know that agencies have a broader client reach, so agencies can often negotiate better rates and find deals more regularly than a single in-house team.
Negotiation doesn’t just happen on the outside — sometimes internal marketing teams need additional resources to get senior management on board with a new initiative. This is also the time of year when marketing teams are pointing towards budget discussions that will impact the year to follow. We can help bolster the case for additional dollars that could mean the difference between running in place or speeding ahead. An agency can be that reliable outside voice, often delivering the essential push when a VP needs to ok a budget.
When Is the Right Time to Hire an Agency?
We know that even the most skilled of internal teams can benefit from additional resources for seasonal initiatives, product launches and award nominations, among other milestones taking place in the back half of the year.
More often than not, we find that the best answer to the question “When?” is: right now. (Yesterday: no longer an option!)
Often in our conversations with brands the question arises of when to hire an agency. While each situation is unique, there are a few times when agency support can be especially helpful.
Launching a Brand New Product
As an agency, we’re able to place our clients in a plethora of marquee media outlets. By giving the media a first look at the product, the brand is positioned to have a string of hard-hitting press coverage publish during the launch. This is a great way to generate buzz and place your new product at the forefront of consumer’s attention.
Holiday Season Buzz
The holiday season is a critical time of year for retail companies, as millions of potential customers are in “buying mode.” One of the most sought after media placements are Holiday Gift Guides, some of which are the only source of product information for shoppers! However, the timeline for this may start earlier than you think. We typically start Gift Guide conversations with reporters in June — yes, June! — in order to maximize coverage. Opportunities and placements will grow as we get closer to the holiday season.
Attending a Trade Show
When it comes to trade shows, our biggest priority for our clients is to make a huge splash. Whether it’s a large show like CES or an industry-specific show like Interbike, we strive to fully maximize the days you’ll be attending. In addition to booth support, we’ll secure meetings with top-tier media outlets during the show, giving you an opportunity to present your product front and center to some of the biggest names in media. On the social side, trade shows can be one of the best times to take advantage of live features and trending opportunities. Our team can be on-the-ground to handle photos, video, and live digital engagement.
Just Looking For More Brand Awareness
Maybe you’ve been selling your product for quite some time and feel like you’ve plateaued. You might feel that if you could just reach fresh eyes, your product would take off. That’s where we come in! We provide you with a PR and social “megaphone” that allows you to spread the word to millions of potential customers. With sample units available, we’re able to create engaging social content that aligns perfectly with the brand story we’re telling marquee media outlets. This one-two punch of social and PR will make sure your product is not only being seen, but being seen by the right people.
What comes to mind when you think of a cease-and-desist letter? A few paragraphs filled with legal verbiage, reprimanding and threatening a business or person for participating in some type of illegal activity? Usually, you’d be right. Most cease-and-desist letters follow a similar format and structure. However, Netflix stirred things up with latest recent cease-and-desist letter to an unauthorized bar themed around the company’s original series, Stranger Things.
Netflix made the letter casual and lighthearted–emulating the series and its characters’ overall mood and spirit. Ditching the typical formal greeting, the company started off the casually-written letter by addressing the owners of the bar by nickname, Danny and Doug. What followed was just as informal and playful, with references to the show’s notable use of walkie talkies, the Upside Down an even Dr. Brenner. However, despite the informal tone, the company made it very clear that if the owners didn’t shut the bar down, there would be serious consequences–like the Demogorgon or their mom getting involved (yikes!).
Showcasing Your Company’s Personality in an Unexpected Way
Although entertaining, the letter is much more profound as it showcases the company’s brilliant understanding of marketing. For years, companies have tried to showcase their personality to the public through different marketing materials. For companies with bigger budgets, these materials are usually in the form of commercials, provocative billboards and a strong social media presence. For those with smaller budgets, a grassroots approach is more likely to be utilized. However, would you ever consider a legal document with potentially serious ramifications as a form of marketing? Netflix demonstrated clever marketing which was leveraged as a solid public relations story that achieved their goal without tarnishing their reputation. Netflix enforced it copyrights while portraying itself as a fun and cool company, which is quite a feat.
In another unique example, McDonald’s flipped its iconic golden arches upside down across different outlets, including a branch’s outdoor sign, to celebrate International Women’s Day. The company could have simply sent out a tweet acknowledging the cause, but chose to make a serious statement and flipping one of their restaurant’s outdoor signs. In doing so, the company sent a message and strategically placed itself as a serious advocate of women, which consequently strengthened the company’s image of being socially responsible.
Ultimately, companies like Netflix and McDonald’s prove there are countless–and frequently overlooked–opportunities to spotlight and heighten your brand’s image. Whatever image you wish to present to the public, whether it’s a creative and user-friendly personality like Netflix’s or a socially-conscious and thoughtful personality like McDonald’s, could be conveyed through all aspects of your company. So, the next time your PR department is constructing a press release or your HR department is sending a letter of warning to a fellow employee, conceptualize ways your brand’s personality could shine through and be reinforced.