The PR Challenge
ISP and wide area networking specialist,CI-Net, wanted to use PR to drive awareness and support its sales process. It had enjoyed a limited media presence before appointing CloudNine PR, so the initial challenge was getting the company on the media agenda quickly to maximise the PR budget. A strong launch campaign that captured journalists’ attention and familiarised them with the CI-Net name would create a platform for ongoing PR.
We agreed to create a launch campaign to support CI-Net’s attendance at the Wireless Event at London Olympia. As well as providing an opportunity to target the wide list of target journalists attending the show, PR could drive awareness among exhibition visitors.
We worked with CI-Net to develop a hard-hitting news story around a cutting edge wireless implementation that supported a project to provide free broadband to council tenants in a Midlands community.
By not focusing purely on the technology, but highlighting the media hot topic of the ‘digital divide’ and underlining the benefits of bringing Internet access to the underpriviliged, we created a story to capture the interest of mainstream national media, as well as trade and technical publications.
Using an embargo allowed us to target high profile media with specifically tailored pitches. And the story was also pitched in advance to the Press Association and Reuters news agencies to drive further mainstream media interest.
The campaign resulted in nearly 40 pieces of media coverage in one week. The Radio 4 ‘Today’ programme and Radio Five Live ‘Breakfast’ show covered the story on the morning of the Wireless Event. And The Times, The Times technology blog and The Birmingham Post ran the story. Interest came in from The Telegraph as well as BBC TV News which wanted to run a piece on the 6.00 pm national news.
Most of the key IT publications covered the story including Computer Weekly, IT Week, Silicon.com, Computing.co.uk, ZDNet, V3.co.uk, IT Pro, Networking+ and Computerworld UK. Public sector coverage included Government Technology, Local Government Technology in Use, Town Hall and PublicTechnology.Net.
The strong launch story meant it was easier to generate introductory meetings with journalists at the Wireless event. And the high profile coverage did not go unnoticed. At least four incoming public sector enquiries were generated as a result and key journalists are now much more aware of CI-Net – making it easier to generate ongoing opportunities. Journalists who’d heard the story on Radio 4 even stopped by at the exhibition stand to congratulate CI-Net on the excellent coverage.
“This was an extremely effective first PR campaign for CI-Net which helped to generate an instant awareness spike for the company,” said Graham McLean, CI-Net’s MD. “It was obviously great to receive incoming leads off the back of our PR activity and we’ve had ongoing media requests for interviews and further information indicating that journalists are showing a continuing interest. There was a feel-good factor generated throughout the company created by the broadcast and national media coverage.
“CloudNine PR has been very ‘hands on’ and easy to work with. They are proactive in generating media opportunities and offer sound advice on how we can best support the media who want to cover our stories.”