Influencer Insights: CJ Johnson

CJ Johnson is an award-winning photographer and content creator, a GQ Insider and Google Next-Gen Policy Leader, and a well-known “brand guru.” We wanted to learn more about his process and asked for his perspective on the state of influencer marketing.

KG: How do you as a social influencer create partnerships, and what is your criteria before aligning yourself to an opportunity?

Typically, I say yes to partnerships or sponsored opportunities with brands if it’s an industry I’m knowledgeable about and interested in already. That’s important. Then, I want to be sure the ROI makes sense and is beneficial to me and my time. More and more, I’m starting to explore social causes, too. Creating these partnerships varies – some come organically my way, others I reach out to. If my goals are aligned with those of the brand or cause, then it’s off to the races.

KG: Recently there have been headlines about consumers feeling “influencer fatigue,” as they voice feelings about inauthentic content. How should you and other social media influencers respond to this sentiment?

CJ: Influencers who are frustrated or misunderstood by this discussion are feeling a bit judged. There is always room for improvement – everyone can agree on that. The “fatigue” mentioned is stemming from every influencer trying to compete with one another, and the inauthenticity is felt because of a lack of imagination as people copy each other. To help the state of influencer marketing, people need to be more educated about this industry and there also needs to be a culture that fosters more creativity.

Additionally, a more standard pay structure would help influencers understand their market value and how to better negotiate their pay. Right now, influencers – and the brands they collaborate with – are in the dark with what the market asks for. It’s a bit all over the place. Someone with 100k followers on Instagram can demand $1,500 per post while someone else can ask for $500, and both parties don’t even know the real value of either ask.

KG: You say there needs to be more education on the industry. In what ways do you see that playing out?

CJ: For content creators and influencers, there needs to be a clear understanding of professional etiquette, the deliverables they’ll create for companies they collaborate with, and their overall value as a business. On the other side of this, companies need to understand what really incentivizes these content creators and influencers. It’s not just about free stuff or monetary value. Content creators and influencers honestly care about their messaging and the impact they’ll make on their community. With every collaboration there is a lot more risk involved than you’d think.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. There’s so much more to learn on both sides of the aisle. We’ll see more workshops, webinars and events that will center around these topics in the future, for sure.

KG: Do you think the influencer space is becoming too cluttered?  Is there still room for individuals to make their mark and curate authentic community online?

CJ: For every article that talks about the pitfalls of influencer marketing, I see another that talks about how fast it’s growing into a lucrative sector. Two things stick out to me. First, the critiques often come from someone who is attempting to be an influencer, someone who is frustrated with not being recognized, even possibly experiencing a bit of “FOMO” (fear of missing out). The second thing is a difference in audience perception due to the influencer strategy – one sees content from influencers as annoying advertisements, and the other has no idea they’re looking at an ad in the first place. In any case, I think transparency and authenticity is key to growth and success in influencer marketing.

Even if it’s cluttered, it’s a growing industry. Influencer marketing used to be a thing only a few people were doing online, and now there’s an upcoming generation whose sole goal it is to grow up and be an online influencer. I don’t necessarily think it’s a bubble waiting to burst – I think of influencer marketing as evolving just as the acting or entrepreneur industries have done.

KG: What is your advice to companies considering influencer marketing as a part of their strategy?

CJ: First, consider why you need it in the first place, and then what your goals will be. Too many times, I see companies that “heard from a friend” or are following a competitor that is growing quickly because of influencer marketing, so they want in too. But that can lead to unrealistic expectations or experimenting without quite understanding the value of an influencer. So, please recognize the “why” before you begin. Secondly, you need to understand there are several strategies with influencer marketing now, including:

  • Getting as many influencers on board as possible
  • Recruiting a smaller number of influencers to act as brand ambassadors
  • A combination of the above for a specific limited campaign
  • One-off influencer-promoted posts
  • Repurposed influencer content and posts

When you know which plan fits your goals, set aside the time to do authentic research. Yes, there are automated tools and databases, but it might be smart to also have a team-member (here’s looking at you, interns) do some research on influencers that fit your criteria. After researching, make sure your collaborative efforts bring as much value and long-term relationships as possible. Again, influencer marketing is incredibly impactful and a lot more cost-effective than people give it credit for.

We enjoy following CJ online and think you might too. Learn more about what he’s up to by visiting his Twitter or Instagram.

Intern Series: Career Fairs

This blog post has been provided by our intern, Meghan Farrell.

It’s that time of the year again, a day that can fill students with dread – the career fair. Getting dressed up in our slacks and uncomfortable shoes, printing out (hopefully enough) resumes for everyone we speak to and waiting in line nervously, wondering how to stand out from the other hundred plus students in attendance, are just a few things we worry about. But career fairs shouldn’t be something you avoid. These events can be the perfect opportunity to meet your future employer and get meaningful networking experience. And with UT’s Moody College of Communications Career Fair on September 26, we thought it would be the perfect time to roll out some advice on how to tackle these opportunities.

Do Some Research

It’s okay if you don’t recognize every company attending the career fair. However, doing some research ahead of time on the businesses in attendance is imperative, even ones that might not necessarily be on your radar. This is one of the only opportunities where all of these businesses will be in the same place, so make the most of it and explore your options fully. While you don’t need to know every detail about each company, it makes a big difference when you are familiar with what they do. Visit their website or blog and get an idea of the type of work they do. You can ask them about a certain client or case study, or an open position they have listed; this will show that you didn’t come unprepared. It demonstrates that you are interested in what they do and have taken the time to learn about them beforehand. As you wait in those long lines to speak to someone, bring along notes to review so when it’s your turn to shine, you have lots of ammo for the conversation. On top of that, some colleges provide information on every company that will be in attendance on their app, so see if your school offers it and use it to your advantage!

Dress the Part

“Dress for the job you want, not the job you have” may sound cliché or lame, but it can make or break a company’s first impression of you. The representatives at each booth came dressed for the part, so you should too. While formal business attire has become less common for employees today, it still plays a part in making a lasting impression on prospective employers. They want to see that you made the effort to get ready for the event, take your career seriously, and that if hired, you would be able to dress professionally. UT also requires that you arrive in professional dress, so don’t make the mistake of preparing for the career fair only to be asked to leave because you showed up in jeans.

Exchange Information

It can be awkward deciding the right time to give someone your resume or business card, but recruiters want them! Even if it turns out you don’t qualify for the position, ask them to hold onto your resume in case something opens up. That company may be looking for someone for a position in the future and remember you and think, “Wow, this person I met at the UT career fair would be perfect for this role, let me go find their resume and contact them.” You worked hard on those materials so hand them out! Even ask for their card; they probably have a stack of about 200 in their office so I’m sure they would love to get rid of one.

Follow Up

A very important step that many students forget is to follow up after the career fair. If you had a particularly memorable or exciting conversation with someone, go ahead and shoot them an email explaining how great it was to meet them. This will lead to the beginning of a professional relationship with that person, and even if you don’t end up working together, it’s always beneficial to have another contact in your field. Even if you felt like the conversation didn’t go so well or was a bit awkward, contact them anyways. It never hurts to let them know you appreciated speaking with them, because at the end of the day they took the time out of their schedule to be at the career fair, too.

Take A Deep Breath

Career fairs can be very nerve-racking, but at the end of the day they are an amazing opportunity to learn about the companies in your area. They give you valuable pitching experience, something that is very beneficial in our field, and provide insight into the real working world. If you want to get hired, you are going to need to learn to vouch for yourself, so get out there and tell these employers why you would be valuable to their company. You have a lot to offer as a young professional, so take a deep breath and take that bull that is the career fair by the horns.

Greater Austin Business Awards – Here We Come!

This blog post has been provided by our intern, Meghan Farrell.

We are thrilled to announce that Ketner Group Communications has been selected as a finalist for the Company Culture category of the Greater Austin Business Awards!

The competition is designed to honor excellence in business and recognize companies and organizations in the Austin region for achievements, community contributions and milestones. The Greater Austin Business Awards is one of the largest award and networking events in Central Texas, bringing together about 1,000 business leaders, entrepreneurs, organizations, government officials and regional chambers.

The culture at Ketner Group Communications is one of the many things that makes us unique, so we are proud of being named as a finalist in the Company Culture category. This award is presented to an organization that fosters a creative, collaborative company culture that is sustainable and retains employees – and that describes us perfectly.

Work-Life Balance

Ketner Group believes that having a healthy work-life balance is incredibly important. We offer flexible schedules and provide the opportunity to work from home, or virtually anywhere (even Ireland and Bali!), as our staff needs. Employees are encouraged to take time off when necessary, including much-needed vacations. It’s important to us that our employees are working at a comfortable pace while still producing incredible PR work for our clients. We love to include fun events during the week such as Taco Tuesdays, Wake Up Wednesday coffee runs, company lunches to celebrate big and small victories, and, of course, to celebrate any and all type of food/drink “days” (i.e. National Pizza Day) to keep our team motivated and morale high. Our motto is “work hard, play hard and be nice to people,” which we believe is the reason why our employees love working here, and our clients love working with us!

This healthy work/life balance encourages our employees to stick with Ketner Group for the long haul. On average, employees have stayed at the agency 4 to 5 years, which is way above average for PR agencies, and we’re working hard to make Ketner Group an ideal place for employees to spend the bulk of their career. Our SVP and partner Catherine Seeds will be celebrating her 17-year anniversary at the agency in November.

Professional Development

We believe professional growth is very important. Each employee is highly encouraged to contribute to outside professional organizations and community programs. To that end, each employee has a yearly budget for professional development. This allows them to travel/attend PR industry events, take classes to learn a specific skill set or anything else that will help them grow and develop as a PR professional.

Team Work Makes the Dream Work

At Ketner Group every opinion is not only listened to, but encouraged, no matter the rank or seniority of the person. Not just for client work, but for new business, company culture, process improvement, investment areas – literally anything. We encourage bold thinking and risk-taking. We think it’s important for all of our employees to know that they are heard and are an important part of why Ketner Group is the way it is. We believe in our team 100% so if a team member has an idea, we’ll always listen — and more often than not, we’ll act on it.

We are very excited and honored to be named a finalist for the Greater Austin Business Awards. Winners will be announced on Aug. 30 at the JW Marriot Austin!

Influencer Insights: Caroline Farley

Caroline Farley is the Chief Growth Officer of Shoptalk and Grocery Shop. 

KG: Why did Shoptalk decide to create a separate conference solely dedicated to the grocery space?

Caroline: The grocery and CPG industry is facing a major shift into e-commerce as this space is the last retail sector to take the leap into online; today just 2-3% of grocery sales in the U.S. come from e-commerce, a small fraction compared to other retail categories. It was a natural next step for the team that built Shoptalk to launch an event creating a new framework and dialogue with a community of rapid innovation and disruption.

KG: What are the most interesting trends you are seeing in the grocery space this year? 

Caroline: The obvious trend is the impact innovative technologies have on the industry in terms of digitization and the new consumer landscape: new technologies are enabling more interactive, engaging in-store experiences, as well as making store operations more efficient. Groceryshop is designed to meet the needs of the sector as it undergoes widespread disruption. Over the next few years, new omnichannel offerings will emerge, which will include new ways to order as well as more convenient delivery and pickup options. The result will be an increase in orders via digital platforms, as well as significant changes in physical stores as they become a key part of order fulfillment. At the same time, new technologies like artificial intelligence and blockchain will start to transform the supply chain.

KG: Now in its fourth year, what can we expect to see and hear at Shoptalk?

Caroline: Shoptalk 2019 will have a core focus on empowering retail with education. Our framework outlines how the retail industry has evolved from a Legacy Normal(2015 and earlier) through a period of Disruptive Change(2016-2017) and into a phase we refer to as the New Normal(2018 and beyond).

The New Normal is characterized by optimism about transformation and a renewed confidence in the future of retail. In this phase, disruptive innovation is no longer simply reactive or something that a minority of people advocate. Instead, it is embraced by the mainstream and is a top priority throughout the ranks of retailers and brands, increasingly touching all parts of the organization.

Culturally, this New Normal has ushered in an era where innovation, not inertia or protection of the status quo, is reflected in companies’ daily operations. It is an extended period during which innovation is no longer an “if” or “why” but “who, what, when and how.” Retailers are now in a state of constant improvement as they look to ensure that everything from the supply chain to the online and in-store experience is optimized.

Shoptalk’s 2019 agenda is organized to reflect the key themes that represent this new era of retail and how brands and retailers are positioning themselves for the future. To ensure that we continue to lead the industry conversation, we’ve retired a number of topics and added others–about half of the session topics are new.

As well, attendees can expect to see unique activations in the Exhibit Hall and more intimate retailer to retailer networking with peer dinners. We’ll also feature Shoptalk’s Shop Hop, allowing retailers and brands an opportunity to network with each other in a casual setting and reflect on the three days of extraordinary education. Just as we have the past three years, we will continue to introduce the element of surprise onsite to create the most exciting, hyped and educational conference model in the retail space.

#RetailRoundup

This blog post has been provided by our intern, Meghan Farrell.

As we see every day, retail is constantly changing. Just when we think we’ve seen it all, a retailer, or solution provider, rolls out something new that disrupts the industry. Keeping up with new technology, trends and innovations is equally as hard as competing with it. So, Ketner Group has made that a little easier by compiling top retail news from the past few weeks.

“Meet Jetblack, Walmart’s click-free shopping service for upper-income New Yorkers” via Retail Dive

Walmart is stepping up its game…and its target consumer. Walmart is introducing a new click-free shopping experience called Jetblack (an ode to Walmart’s 2016 Jet.com acquisition, perhaps?). For $50 a month, customers can text this service and personal shoppers will deliver products to their homes as soon as the same day. Shoppers can also text Jetblack questions or even ask for recommendations. The service will offer products from Jet.com, Walmart, and other third-party retail partners such as Pottery Barn and Gap. Jetblack uses artificial intelligence and professional buyers across several product categories to fulfill customer requests.

The customer Walmart is trying to attract through this new service may be the most interesting part of this news. With a service that will cost $600 a year, upper-income consumers are clearly being sought after, a demographic that is not typically associated with the Walmart brand. As this service grows, it will be very interesting to see if Walmart will successfully attract this new customer base and compete with considerably cheaper subscription services like Amazon Prime.

“Sears to Shutter 72 More Stores” via Total Retail

With a loss of $424 million in its first quarter report and revenue falling more than 30%, things aren’t looking good for Sears. While many retail stores, including The Children’s Place and Gap, have had issues this year staying alive, Sears continues to outnumber its retail competitors with store closures. Sears identified 100 non-profitable Sears and Kmart locations and announced Thursday that it will be closing 72 of these stores in the near future. And many industry experts predict the retailer will be filing for bankruptcy very soon.

Sears is working hard to cut costs by closing unprofitable stores, but unfortunately, previous closures have only seen a continual decline of sales for the stores that are left. In efforts to save the company, the retailer is also working with an independent committee to sell some of its assets. These will include the Kenmore Brand to ESL Investments, Sears CEO Eddie Lampert’s hedge fund.

In order to maintain profitability, many brick-and-mortar stores have been forced to close numerous stores. Whether it’s going out of business entirely or shutting down unprofitable locations, this trend does not seem to be dying down any time soon.

“Will Best Buy’s Total Tech Support Service Boost Brand Loyalty?” via Retail TouchPoints

Best Buy has taken many steps toward improving the customer experience and support, and thus far has reaped the rewards. Last week, the retailer rolled out a new Geek Squad subscription service called Total Tech Support. This service is available for an annual cost of $199.99 which includes unlimited Geek Squad support whether it’s on the phone, in-store, on its website 24/7, or through the Best Buy Home App. This service will cover all of the subscriber’s appliances and electronics. Furthermore, it will also include discounts on device installation, hardware repairs, TV mounting, computer setup, purchase of AppleCare service or Geek Squad Protection, and more.

The nationwide expansion of the program comes after Best Buy saw successful results from a recent pilot. During this time, the Geek Squad helped 230,000 users set up, troubleshoot or fix devices in more than 400,000 instances. Best Buy tested different pricing models but shoppers preferred to pay annually rather than monthly, though Best Buy may offer more subscription options in the future.

Competitively, this was a very smart and well-timed move for Best Buy, especially with rumors of Amazon looking to directly compete with Best Buy’s Geek Squad. As consumers rely more and more on the devices in their homes, such as Smart TVs, the need for support has increased dramatically and Best Buy is in a great position to help.

“Amazon begins nationwide expansion of Whole Foods discounts for Prime members” via TechCrunch

In May, Amazon announced it would be offering a 10% discount on sales and featured products at Whole Foods for Amazon Prime members in Florida and by the end of the month expanded the offering across 12 more states. Amazon says this discount covers hundreds of products per store, plus the weekly deep discounts on featured products throughout the store. Discounts are also available for shoppers who use the Whole Foods delivery service.

The new program helps categorize Whole Foods as a more affordable grocery shopping destination, and further it from the “Whole Paycheck” image. In addition, it gives shoppers another reason to become a subscriber of Amazon Prime, and a reason for Amazon Prime subscribers to shop at Whole Foods – a win-win for Amazon. Observers can’t help but wonder if Amazon will make deals with other retailers and expand these types of offers to other stores in the future.

As we can all attest at Ketner Group, retail is a very exciting industry and one that never stops moving. In the past month alone, we’ve seen the in-store experience improving drastically, brick-and-mortar stores going online and AI doing unimaginable things. Stay tuned to see what happens next!

INTRODUCING OUR NEW INTERN: MEGHAN FARRELL

This blog post has been provided by our intern, Meghan Farrell.

Hey everyone! My name is Meghan Farrell, and I am a senior public relations major minoring in business at the University of Texas at Austin. I was born in Calgary, Alberta but moved to Houston, Texas about 14 years ago – what a change! I quickly grew to love the U.S., and appreciate that you can’t shovel humidity.

Moving to Austin for school has been an incredible journey, with the city feeling almost separate from the rest of the state. I have experienced so many new things, like kayaking below South Congress Bridge while the world’s largest urban bat colony flies above, and don’t even get me started on the food here – trust me, I won’t stop talking.

My love for public relations began my sophomore year of college when I realized it was all about stories. I love telling a good story to my friends, family, or whoever will lend their ear. It’s progressed to the point where friends will ask me to tell stories for them, even when I wasn’t there. Finding out there was a major where I could do what I already loved was the most relieving feeling, and once I began taking PR classes I felt at home.

Before beginning my internship at Ketner Group, I worked as a student assistant to the Public Affairs Director at UT’s Harry Ransom Center. Some of my daily tasks included drafting media advisories, creating media contact lists, and analyzing their social media statistics. I also learned a great deal about pitching to the media. I truly cherished my time spent there, and I encourage everyone to go check out their vast collections.

When I’m not writing papers, I like to spend my free time hanging by the water, watching Chopped, snuggling my cat Billy, or finding the next great restaurant in Austin. I also love returning to Houston to visit my family especially because of our newest addition to the Farrell clan, my 2-year-old niece Mila.

I am incredibly excited to be spending my summer with Ketner Group and look forward to the stories that lie ahead!

PRSA Chair Offers Guidance to Facebook

In light of this week’s events surrounding Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, we wanted to repost the following guidance from PRSA 2018 National Chair Anthony D’Angelo, APR, Fellow PRSA. Please find the email that was distributed from PRSA earlier this week, below.

The current headlines about Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, including lax data policies and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s initial silence on the ethical and legislative controversy, prompted PRSA 2018 National Chair Anthony D’Angelo, APR, Fellow PRSA, to address how values and principles from PRSA’s Code of Ethics could help Facebook to get ahead, and stay ahead, of ongoing crisis developments.

What’s worse than Facebook’s data breach?

Facebook executives have learned, too slowly, that a trust breach is profoundly more damaging than a data breach. The elegantly simple remedies for the former are spelled out in the Public Relations Society of America’s (PRSA) Code of Ethics. Warning: Implementing them can require extraordinary courage, a thick skin and hard, sustained work. Not implementing them will lead to further erosion of trust and market capitalization, and a commensurate increase in government hearings and industry regulation.

Mark Zuckerberg, after a glacial delay, responded yesterday to the public outcry for information via “Anderson Cooper 360” and various other statements. An apology is an important start, but it’s reactive. To get ahead of this crisis, here are applicable values and principles from the PRSA Code of Ethics that Facebook should attend to:

Honesty and fairness, which are required for trust to be enabled among stakeholders, and to maintain the integrity of relationships with the public, the media and government officials. This is essential for informed decision-making in a democratic society. In short, come clean and play fair. If there is unpleasant news about what has happened, Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, share it completely and quickly for Facebook’s benefit as well as the public’s. You do not want it to come from other sources, as has been happening since 2015 with this matter.

Free flow of information, which trusted organizations consistently advance. Don’t deflect, obfuscate or dissemble. Don’t have attorneys take over communications, which inherently sends a suspicious message.

Act promptly to correct erroneous communications. Crises can have huge magnitude as one-time events, or they can have protracted, steady-drip effects. Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal has both. Yesterday, Zuckerberg finally answered the urgent question, “Where are you on this?” Henceforth, he and other Facebook leaders must spell out what they’re doing to fix every aspect of every relevant problem and report steadily on progress.

Disclosure of information, to build trust with the public by revealing all information needed for responsible decision-making. After reports this past weekend by The New York Times and the Observer of London, the deputy general counsel at Facebook said, “Everyone involved gave their consent.” Can informed consent happen when millions of Facebook users are seemingly expected, for their own protection, to turn off app settings that they aren’t aware exist?

Reveal the sponsors for causes and interests represented. The information consumer has a right to know whether a message is sponsored and who is sponsoring it.

Safeguarding confidences, to provide appropriate protection of confidential and private information. It is not unethical to keep proprietary information confidential; any company must do so to protect intellectual property and strategies to compete in a robust business environment. However, that information cannot be safeguarded if it harms the interests of the nation or society.

Conflicts of interest must be avoided or ended to ensure one’s professional or personal interests are not in conflict with society’s interests. This requires transparency, and transparency requires speed and consistency to enable trust.

If you can’t figure out what the product is in a given digital or social media app, then you are the product — your data, your attention, your connection to other users. Thousands of users didn’t realize that when they downloaded an app as seemingly innocuous as a personality quiz, it scraped information from not only their Facebook profiles, but from their friends’ profiles as well. Fifty million people were affected, and they don’t care if the cause was Facebook’s policies, its oversight of developers or the actions of a rogue developer. Facebook doesn’t get to assign blame, its customers do. So Facebook is obligated to deliver the facts and let customers decide for themselves if the problem is fixed.

This is a tough situation, and it’s easy for anyone to play Monday morning quarterback. Facebook’s leaders are highly intelligent, and I’ll bet that they’ve been given good PR counsel — but heretofore Facebook’s actions do not reflect best practices.

Therefore, I’d like to offer free, albeit unsolicited advice. Engage public relations professionals, whether on your staff or external, that know PRSA’s Code of Ethics chapter and verse. It will help you and the publics you serve. In fact, I’m willing to assemble a team of PRSA member experts who would be willing to counsel you without fee because the stakes in this far-reaching crisis are astoundingly high.

Anthony D’Angelo, APR, Fellow PRSA
2018 National Chair, PRSA

Client Spotlight: Luke Starbuck, VP of Marketing, Linc Global

Luke Starbuck, VP of Marketing, Linc Global

A Ketner Q&A

Luke built his first ecommerce website in 1997 and has more recently focused on bringing software that improves customer experience and drives revenue to ecommerce retailers for the past 5 years. He has led product, development and customer service teams and brings his experience in print advertising and media to digital and offline marketing and growth. At Linc, his primary goal is to connect retailers with the knowledge and tools that drive stronger customer relationships and transform one time purchasers into lifetime shoppers.

KG: What are the best things about being an employee at Linc? 

Luke: Having the opportunity to be at the forefront of technology in the retail space is a unique opportunity. There are few companies who really understand retail, and who are pushing the limits of what technology can make possible. Being part of Linc gives us all a chance to not only know the future, but also define it.

KG: Why did Linc decide to engage with a PR firm? 

Luke: Linc decided PR was an important part of entering the market because our philosophy, mission and software operates under a new paradigm. We’re not just doing something better, we’re doing things differently. So education and awareness is key to our success in bringing this to the market.

KG: Why did you select Ketner Group?

Luke: The folks at Ketner Group were responsive from the get-go, and demonstrated clear understanding of the market we’re targeting. Both very important to us. Furthermore, they showed that they are focused on results, very detail-oriented and are as relentless as we are. They were a great fit for us.

KG: Ketner Group and Linc have been working together for almost a year. What’s been the most successful results of your engagement with Ketner Group?

Luke: We’ve been very pleased to be able to join the conversation in top tier retail media, with commentary and feature articles in the target publications we were having difficulty reaching previously. The biggest success for us has been constant and continuous coverage in our target publications, with some particular great results with a report we released, and also a press release about a new customer, both of which drove significant interest.

KG: What peer advice would you give to a fellow Tech Vendor looking to develop a PR strategy? 

Luke: Really consider the value before you get started. If you are targeting mastheads just for the optics, its likely you won’t see ROI. Think carefully about where your target customers are, and what you hope to get out of a PR investment. Then focus on and define goals and measurements that reflect the return you hope to get. Finally, communicate with your agency or PR lead so that they are on the same page, and then work hard every week, together.