With Trade Shows Cancelled, Now Is the Time to Ramp Up Content

Another week and another show is cancelled, with IBC2020 one of the latest to be removed from this year’s calendar as a result of the current coronavirus pandemic. In the absence of these highly attended industry events, we’re seeing many companies take their roadshows virtual. Now is the perfect time to ramp up your content and maximize your online activity.

It’s sad to see these major industry events take a tumble. Exhibiting companies look forward to these shows to meet with existing and prospective customers on a personal level. They also use trade shows as a platform to gain traction and get their key messages across to the relevant media, analysts, and influencers that they target. After the 2020 NAB Show was scrapped, we saw how companies responded to not being able to physically meet face to face with customers and industry peers interested in their latest news and developments. They took their roadshows online and were able to mitigate these “missed opportunities,” in part, by virtually connecting and conveying their news and messaging via webinars, one-to-one video chats, and online product demos. 

Moving forward, with some hindsight and more experience, companies are now in a better position to cope with shows such as IBC being abandoned. The initial blueprint is there to make online events even more successful. But what can you do beyond web-based initiatives to maximize your efforts?

The team at 202 Communications has been busy helping our clients during this global lockdown to produce additional content to complement their online events. 

With no shows to attend, and online events now becoming an increasingly important part of the marketing value chain, it’s time to think about ramping up the production of your surrounding content and materials. White papers, case studies, e-books, blogs and social media posts are not only engaging and powerful lead-generation tools. They also provide a way of binding and stitching together the overall messaging about your organization, your brand, and your products and solutions. Creating more of this type of collateral to align specifically with your virtual events will enable you to drive home your messages beyond web-based activity alone, and they’ll help you to follow up and continue the conversations your online efforts have initiated.

Drop us a line and we can help you get started on ramping up your online content.

Moe Lokat, Senior Account Manager
202 Communications

Achieve Local and Global Goals With 202

New clients often come to us with big plans (that’s great!) and a need for some help in setting out the strategy and tactics to make them happen. They believe in us, but they don’t always know that we’ve got the resources to help them tackle even their most ambitious goals.

Sometimes they assume that we can only help with marketing focused around European events and customers. (Not true!) Or they simply don’t think about the possibility that our team extends around the world, with seasoned professionals working on both sides of the Atlantic. (It does!)

Whether it’s optimizing a client’s presence at the annual trade show just a short flight or train ride away, or raising the profile of the company in markets across the U.S. and Canada, we’re ready to make it happen.

We’ve logged more years than we care to count at key trade shows across both the U.S. and Europe. (We can also make good recommendations for lodging, dining, and drinks!) We know editors across the trade press and other key influencers (hence the dining and drinks) in markets worldwide, and we understand their publications and the opportunities they can afford.

I put together a short video about just this type of scenario. Check it out if you’re also facing the challenge of effective marketing at home and abroad.

202 Communications – COVID-19

202 Communications is, like everyone, closely monitoring recent developments related to COVID-19. We would like to extend our thoughts and warmest wishes to all our friends, clients, partners and their families during these challenging times.

All 202 team members are working from home offices. In fact, for most of us this is our normal work setup anyway. So we will continue to provide services for our clients uninterrupted.

However, we recognise the challenges we are all currently facing and the major adjustments many of our clients and partners are having to make. These unprecedented events present challenges to the global business environment, and it’s currently too early to tell what the implications will be for our industry.

With this in mind, we want to offer our support and understanding, and help wherever we can. We have many years of experience working from home we’d be happy to share with you; we also have a range of online tools, such as webinar platforms that you’d be very welcome to use to stay in touch with your clients and customers. 

Our team members would love to hear from you — whether it’s to discuss what we’re hearing about the industry from colleagues around the globe, to plan a new product messaging strategy, or just to check in and compare notes on the challenges of working from home with kids, partners, and pets. We look forward to hearing from you and to better times ahead. We’re here to help in any way we can.

Neil Howman, Managing Director
202 Communications

neil howman

Extend your footprint with 202

For your business to succeed, it must grow. Even if your company has built a solid reputation and strong customer base in one geographic region, it still has the potential to expand in others. You might also have opportunities in new verticals, whether emerging or just new for your business.

I’ve put together a number of YouTube videos that talk about the various tools you can leverage to boost awareness of your brand, interest in your product, and overall engagement with customers and prospects.

Having the right people in the right places is another critical element in enhancing your company’s presence in new or still-unfamiliar markets. And that’s where 202 Communications can help.

We’re an unusual agency in that we have people on the ground both in Europe and in the Americas. We have built relationships with trade press on both sides of the Atlantic, and we understand the vagaries of different customers (and types of customers) across different regions.

You don’t have to start fresh with an additional agency just to expand beyond your current footprint. You can work with the 202 team across borders and time zones to get your message heard, optimize your presence at key trade shows, and much more.

Check out this new video to hear more about how we can help!

Echoing Marginalized Voices in PR

Our world is changing every minute of every day. At times the change is silent, but sometimes the rumble of that change raises its tone a bit higher to say, “Hey, take notice!” With recent social movements like Time’s Up, Me Too, and Black Lives Matter; open conversations about LGBTQ issues and sex positivism; and the political context of immigrants, DACA, and the DREAM Act, more news around diversity is now taking up space in news columns, and marginalized voices are making their stories heard.

What does this mean for PR, especially in a technology B2B space?

It means it’s a call for a new era. An era in which tech panel discussions are not dominated by white men in black suits, an era in which women engineers lean in to hear and learn from successful women innovators, an era in which a Latin TV engineer finds his voice to share stories from the field and provides valuable insights on regional deployment and cultural nuances.

These voices and stories need to be heard. As a marketing communications professional, don’t let these voices pass by you: Echo them. Play the marginalized card unapologetically to break barriers.

  • Have a talented young woman engineer in your company? Approach her with offers for media-training coaching. You’ll be amazed how many editors will want to hear her thoughts on where she thinks the industry is headed. Thought leadership doesn’t have to be validated only by the senior execs!
  • Reach out to the conference organizers at the next trade show where you are exhibiting and propose an inclusive panel that takes into consideration the marginalized voices from a deployment. Offer your company’s minority leader as the moderator.
  • Shine the light on your company’s woman leaders. Nominate the most deserving candidate for the next industry leadership award.
  • Do you offer a great diversity and inclusion program at the workplace? Play it right for a “Best Place to Work” award given by your local business press.
  • Go beyond the why of inclusion; show how. At 58 million and growing, Latinos are now the largest minority group in the U.S. Engage and partner with your local Hispanic Business Forum at its next event. Be seen in this community as a “race-positive” company. 

We are living in a time of social revolution. Embrace it! Spark a conversation, ignite interest, and build momentum to make the marginalized voices heard. 

Netra Ghosh, General Manager, Client Services
202 Communications

How to Write a Good Tech Trends Blog

Starting this month, we’re going to begin offering marcom tips from the team at 202 Communications. You can find these strategy-driven blogs on the 202 website and introduction to our Multiscreen Buzz newsletter. This month’s entry is authored by Angela Snell, our senior writer.

With 2019 winding down, your marketing team is likely shifting their attention toward devising a plan for the next year. The start of the year is when many companies in our industry begin announcing new technology solutions and demonstrating them at trade shows. But don’t let that slow period signify the conclusion of your marcom activities. 

Right now — when you have a little extra time — is the perfect opportunity to write up thought leadership articles like blogs and editorial articles. These works can be especially relevant to readers that are looking for information on trends as well as expert insights into the future outlook of the industry heading into the next year. 

So how do you write the perfect tech trends blog? Here are three tips for capturing your customers’ eyeballs:

  1. Back it up. If you want to come across as an expert about a technology trend, you need to back up what you’re saying. Let’s say you want to talk about the popularity of live OTT channels. Include a stat from a major research firm, or briefly describe a case study of one of your customers that is successfully delivering live video streaming. 
  2. Hook your reader early. The median time that consumers spend reading an article is 37 seconds, according to NewsCred. That means you need to keep your reader engaged, but there are plenty of ways to do that: First and foremost, write a strong headline and first paragraph. Also, make bold predictions. Don’t be afraid to go against the grain and offer a unique perspective that hasn’t been said before. In addition, keep the writing style of your blog short and precise. You don’t want to lose the focus of your reader.
  3. Pick a topic that will generate excitement. Through your blog post, you want to show that your company is innovative and a thought leader. But you’ll lose the reader’s interest quickly if the blog post just comes across as “as look at me!” 

For example, let’s say you’ve identified artificial intelligence as a technology that is getting a lot of buzz in the industry lately. You can craft a blog post about this topic that will attract more readers if it is generalized and not overtly specific to your company’s products. A great headline is: Five Reasons Why AI is Shaping the Future of the TV Industry vs. Why Our Company’s AI Product is the Best.

DemandMetric found that on average, companies with blogs produce 67% more leads per month than those without. So if you’re not posting regular blogs on your company website, you’re missing out on a valuable piece of the sales cycle. 

Ready to start engaging your customers with insightful, relevant, and attention-grabbing blog posts? 202 Communications can help you craft tech-focused blog posts, as well as place editorial articles in the most popular industry publications. Contact us today for more info at neil@202comms.com.

Angela Snell, Senior Writer
202 Communications

Meet the 202 Communications Team

With preparations for IBC2019 well underway, I thought this would be the ideal time to introduce you to the 202 Communications team. 

We have several decades of combined experience working with a wide range of clients — large and small — around the world.

Netra Gosh
General Manager,
Client Services
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

I was the first employee at 202 Communications, and I take immense pride in it! I was working at our sister agency, Wall Street Communications, when the partners offered me a position at this new little startup they had floated. I haven’t looked back since.

What are the most enjoyable aspects of your job?

I love the fact that we get to play the David vs. Goliath game every day on behalf of our clients. We cater mostly to SMEs, and PR plays a massive role in their fight to shine the brightest. But, at the same time, they don’t have the budgets that larger enterprises enjoy, so we have to put in our creativity, grit, passion, experience, contacts, and pretty much everything we have to fight the good fight every day. I haven’t had one single boring day in the past several years. And I’m thankful for that!

Please identify two or three of the key needs your clients have at the moment.

As our lives become increasingly digital, PR is evolving into so many diverse concepts: digital relationships, influencer marketing, SEO visibility. Our clients are often scared to navigate social media because they don’t even know where to start. We can help with that.

Moe Lokat
Senior Account Manager

London, UK

I’m a former journalist with more than 14 years of PR and communications experience in the tech world, with around eight of those years spent specifically in the media and broadcast space. Having worked in pure PR as well as integrated agencies, with clients ranging from startups to global blue chip companies, I have a good understanding of how the marketing and communications mix works, across a broad range of entities.

As a Senior Account Manager at 202, key aspects of my job include working closely with clients to ensure they are maximizing their communications opportunities and their PR and communication plans, as well as effectively executing strategies and tactics. I’m also here in a consulting capacity, offering advice and counseling to clients and integrating seamlessly into their marketing teams.

What are the most enjoyable aspects of your job?

One of the most satisfying aspects of my role at 202 is the strong team ethic that exists across the company. I love having the chance to work with smart individuals that you can draw on for ideas, inspiration, and simply getting the job done to the best of our abilities for our clients.

Please identify two or three of the key needs your clients have at the moment.

My clients want to increase share of voice and highlight major successes to keep pace with, and ultimately overtake, key competitors in terms of industry presence and recognition. They want to plan for and create positive perceptions externally as major internal changes take shape. And they’re looking to capitalize on recent successes and buzz generated, using strategies such as thought leadership, awards, speaking opportunities, and media relations that will take them to new levels of heightened awareness in the media and broadcast world.

Angela Snell
Senior Writer
Overland Park, Kansas, USA

I have a journalism degree from Drake University and worked as an editor at Broadcast Engineering magazine for many years, where I honed my technical knowledge of the broadcast, cable, satellite, and mobile industries.

What are the most enjoyable aspects of your job?

I love being a writer at 202 Communications, because every day I am learning about new technologies that are pushing the boundaries of innovation. I enjoy helping our clients get increased exposure. When I see the final product — a published magazine article, press release, or white paper — there’s a sense of appreciation for all of the various components and hard work that went into making that a polished piece.

What types of content are clients currently needing the most help with?  

Beyond traditional marketing materials like press releases, our clients need help with thought leadership articles and white papers that really show they’re an expert in the market. There also seems to be an increased demand for blog posts, which are a casual and more conversational way for our clients to communicate their expertise and report on industry trends.

Jenna Elegante

Marketing Operations
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

As manager of marketing operations, I work to ensure a high standard of quality for all clients at 202 Communications. From managing the email distribution process to upkeep of the team’s extensive contact database, I continuously strive to assure excellence for all of our clients and their teams. I also pride myself as the go-to for any of those “weird” little things I can help with that may make my coworkers’ lives easier. I’m working at increasing my knowledge of HTML and other coding languages to proactively expand our reach in the industry. 

Amy Gaylord
Accounting Specialist

Sherwood, Oregon, USA

After dedicating nearly two decades to training horses, the imminent arrival of my second child motivated me to make a career change. As fate would have it, Dundee Hills Group — and 202 Communications — had just opened a satellite office down the road, and my business skills were a match for the advertised bookkeeper position.

As accounting specialist, I manage the agency’s bookkeeping and finances. Additionally, I provide support to marketing operations and have been expanding my digital production skills to assist with social media graphics and website updates.

Cindy Ryan
Marketing Operations Assistant

Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

I’m a highly adaptable, analytical problem-solver with many years of experience in management of small businesses for expert owners, and in print journalism.

My realm at 202 Communications is press release distribution, from the coordination of proofs and HTML builds to distributions scheduled via the company database, along with posts to online briefing rooms.

With a Bachelor of Arts degree in mass communication and journalism, I am also the owner of a B2B editing and proofreading business.

If you think the 202 Communications team can help you with your content creation, content marketing, or media relations ahead of IBC, or any other major industry tradeshow or event, then please get in touch at neil@202comms.com.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Neil Howman, Managing Director
202 Communications

neil howman

How to Build Up Your Thought Leadership Status

It was great to see so many of you at the recent NAB Show. I hope the show was successful for you. Beyond following up on all of the leads you generated during NAB, I’m sure many of you are in prep mode for ANGACOM and ConnecTechAsia. Over the coming weeks, as you gear up for these shows, please check out our tradeshow checklist, tips for organizing a press conference, and how to participate in tradeshow speaking opportunities.

The post-NAB period is the perfect time to build on your achievements at the show and validate your company as an industry thought leader. One way you can do this is by creating really engaging content and ensuring it reaches as many industry players and influencers as possible.

If you’ve recently produced a white paper, case study, video presentation, or e-book, here are a few ideas on how to get maximum exposure for that content.

Repurpose your content

There are numerous ways to extend the shelf life of a piece of content. You invest a lot of time and energy in creating it, so get it to work harder for you. Here are a few ideas on how you can do that:

  • Use a recent video interview or presentation to form the basis of a case study.
  • Take segments from a white paper and promote them separately via a social media or email campaign.
  • After a productive meeting with an editor at NAB, follow up with them to propose an article based on your recent case study or white paper.

Promote your content via your website, email, and social media campaigns

Take your content and first promote it to your own database and prospect list. But don’t stop there. The next key step is to partner with a relevant industry publication and send an e-blast to its list, inviting people to download the piece of content. Use an automated system to capture their contact details into your CRM.

Deepen the engagement with your prospects

After prospects download your content, follow up with a further email, ensuring it includes a call to action. You can offer an additional piece of relevant content, or a product demo. 

This will help you to identify which prospects are interested in finding out more.

Arrange a call or meeting

If your prospects continue to download the content you offer them, suggest fixing a date for a demo, call, or meeting. 

Good luck!

If you have already produced white papers, case studies, e-books, or other content and are wondering how to extend their reach, we can help. Or if you are interested in producing content but simply don’t have the time, we can help with that too!

Just drop me a line at neil@202comms.comI look forward to hearing from you. 

Neil Howman, Managing Director
202 Communications

neil howman

It’s Go Time – Are You Ready for NAB?

With less than six weeks to go until the 2019 NAB Show in Las Vegas, we’re working with our clients to generate pre-show buzz to maximize their investment and help them stand out from the competition. 

We’ve been busy writing and distributing show previews, finalising show messaging and news announcements, researching thought-leadership opportunities, and arranging meetings with press and analysts. 

Video interviews and demos are always abundant at trade shows, and this year our clients will be participating in a quite a few with the trade press at NAB. Increasingly, we’re also seeing a trend for companies to create their own video content at these events. 

If you have lined up video interviews at NAB, here are a few questions to consider:

  • What should I talk about? It’s best to concentrate on what’s new — are you showing a new product, for example? The final cut of the video will only be about two to three minutes, so you need to plan for what to say.
  • What is the main objective? Think about what you want the viewer to do after watching the interview. Should they contact you for more information? Request a demo?
  • What are the three key points I most want to communicate? Break your video interview down to a few important messages. In the technology market, it’s especially important to answer how your product helps solve a customer’s challenges. Don’t overload the audience. Be concise, clear, and engaging.
  • What’s the right tone? Avoid making your presentation an obvious sales pitch. People will switch off very quickly!

A little practice makes perfect. Here area few tips on how you can best prepare for the interview itself:

  • Try to find out in advance whether there will be an interviewer asking the questions or if you will be directly addressing the camera. Practice both scenarios.
  • Rehearse introducing yourself — give your name, job title, and company name. Then deliver a 10-second company overview. Be prepared to give your web address at the end of the interview.
  • Practice your three key messages — you want to be able to deliver them confidently and clearly. 
  • Record yourself on your phone. Ask colleagues for feedback.
  • Visualize how you want your interview to look. Add a file of highlighted product and/or your company logo for the background of the video to a USB drive.
  • Finally, leave a few seconds at the end of the interview. This will allow the editor to easily add your company logo and web address at the end of the clip.

Good luck!

For additional tips on how to prepare for video interviews, please drop me a line at neil@202comms.com.

You can also download a free copy of our Ultimate Tradeshow Checklist here https://fl200.infusionsoft.com/app/page/202-ebook-ultimate-trade-show-checklist

Neil Howman, Managing Director
202 Communications

neil howman

DVB Selects 202 Communications to Manage Media Relations and Content Marketing

DVB, an industry consortium that develops open interoperable technical specifications for the delivery of digital media and broadcast services, today announced it has selected 202 Communications as its exclusive media relations and content marketing agency.

“DVB recently celebrated its 25th anniversary at IBC2018, and is now focusing on the challenges facing the digital media and broadcast industries in the future, including creating its DVB-I specification to support OTT content delivery, and how it can contribute to the upcoming 5G rollout,” said Eva Markvoort, head of the DVB Project Office. “Having 202 Communications in charge of media relations and marketing activities will help us gain momentum and maximize visibility as we push to simplify the delivery of high-quality content to every screen. One of the agency’s initial roles will be coordinating media partnerships for DVB World 2019 in Dublin, an annual event that always draws hundreds of key industry stakeholders.”

“DVB leads the digital broadcasting environment with thousands of broadcast services around the world using DVB specifications and more than a billion DVB receivers shipped globally,” said Neil Howman, managing director at 202 Communications. “We look forward to strengthening DVB’s relationships with the media and boosting overall global visibility of its activities.”

DVB specifications cover all aspects of digital television, from transmission through interfacing; conditional access; and interactivity for digital video, audio, and data. The group’s annual conference, DVB World 2019, will take place March 11-13 in Dublin’s iconic Croke Park, with presentations on hot topics such as 5G, OTT, DVB-I, and HbbTV.

More information on DVB World 2019 can be found at www.dvbworld.org.

More information on DVB can be found at www.dvb.org.