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Keep Left recruits Fairfax SEO & Digital Manager

· Campaigns · , ,

Melbourne-based PR and content marketing agency, Keep Left, today announces the bolstering of its content marketing capability with the recent hire of Annemarie Hunter.

Hunter has been appointed as Keep Left’s SEO, Content & Analytics Specialist and brings with her a mix of digital and content marketing expertise, transitioning from her role as Manager of SEO & Digital Channel Insights at Fairfax.

In her role at Fairfax, Hunter was responsible for delivering customer-focused SEO strategies across Fairfax Media’s News and Business verticals to ensure strong visibility online.

At Keep Left, Hunter will spearhead the agency’s data-driven philosophy and work with the teams to embed this across both the PR and content marketing divisions.

Founder and Executive Director, Caroline Catterall, said: “Annemarie’s appointment is another big step forward in our data-driven proposition.

“Search behaviour and social trends give us valuable insights into how our content and pitches should be angled, and is adding a lot of value across our PR and content marketing clients.

“Simple things like being able to include keyword research in our media pitches has helped take our PR programs to the next level.  On the content marketing side, being able to conduct in-depth keyword strategies, technical audits and content analysis is proving highly beneficial.

“Annemarie’s experience working at Fairfax was the perfect entrée to her joining Keep Left.”

In July last year, Keep Left launched its integrated PR, content marketing and production offering to reflect the value that brand storytelling informed by data can have for an organisation wanting to connect with the hearts and minds of its audience.

“Our mission is to future-proof and elevate our client’s communications. Having digital experts on our team to complement our existing skill-set plays a big part in this,” Catterall added.

This appointment follows a recent round of internal promotions, with Keep Left appointing Tim Lele to Head of Corporate Communications, Maggie Stergiopoulos to Account Director, Molly Bruce to Account Manager, and Jessica Pullar and Brooke Stephenson to Account Executive.

Keep Left’s clients include global FMCG brand FIJI Water, Kathmandu, real estate agency hockingstuart, Guide Dogs Victoria, sparkling wine producer Chandon and NEFF Australia.

Find out more about our work with consumer brands and corporate clients across Australia, or get in contact to see how we could work with your brand.

September & October - Month in Review

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Here’s a little something we whipped up recently…

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Keep Left wins Domaine Chandon

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Melbourne PR and content marketing agency, Keep Left, has won a competitive communications pitch for Domaine Chandon.

The Yarra Valley winery – which was founded by French Champagne house Moët & Chandon – is undergoing a major refurbishment of its hospitality centre and celebrating 30 years on Australian soil.

Domaine Chandon has appointed Keep Left to leverage these milestones and reinforce messaging around the winery’s history and prominence as a sparkling wine pioneer in Australia. The strategy will have a strong consumer focus, heroing the individuals that have supported and helped to grow the Domain Chandon name along the way.

As part of the communications strategy, Keep Left’s remit includes media relations, event management, developing a range of content and an online consumer competition for the newly refurbished hospitality centre and 30th anniversary celebrations.

Estate Director at Domaine Chandon, Shaine de Venny, said: “The story of Domaine Chandon highlights a remarkable pioneering journey and provides great opportunities to hero the many hands that have contributed to our success. Looking back on thirty years of commitment to excellence, we are privileged to celebrate an outstanding history and heritage.”

Keep Left CEO, Gillian Yeap, said: “Through a range of communication initiatives, we want to capture the confluence of meaningful moments in Chandon’s history and award-winning products, demonstrating the planning, patience and perseverance it takes to deliver perfection like Chandon has.”

Keep Left’s consumer brands PR team currently works with global FMCG brand FIJI Water, adventure and lifestyle brand Kathmandu, and industry body Dairy Australia.

Find out more about our work with consumer brands and corporate clients across Australia, or get in contact to see how we could work with your brand.

UEM Sunrise launch Mayfair

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Keep Left’s property and event teams were engaged to organise a VIP event to officially launch the display suite of Mayfair, the latest Melbourne development by Malaysian developer, UEM Sunrise.

Keep Left UEM Sunrise launch mayfair

The launch event brought the ultra-luxurious development designed by Zaha Hadid Architects and local architect Elenberg Fraser to life by appealing to all the senses and making the most of the design and spectacular location.

Beginning the night on the rooftop with 360 degree views of Melbourne, the VIP guests enjoyed champagne and music as they watched the sun set over the bay.

UEM_SUNRISE_Keep_Left

Guests were welcomed into the Mayfair display suite by MasterChef Judge and TV personality Matt Preston. The 2017 Masterchef winner Diana Chan designed the four-course menu for the sit-down dinner, taking inspiration from her MasterChef winning dishes. Diana also treated guests to a cooking demonstration of the main course ahead of it being served.

UEM_SUNRISE_Keep_Left

Surrounded by the sounds of the string quartet, flowing champagne and the highest quality food, the UEM Sunrise team and guests raised a glass to the incredible development.

UEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_Left UEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_LeftUEM_SUNRISE_Keep_Left

 

Building brand trust with explainer videos

· Tricks of the trade · , ,

Education and entertainment join forces

There comes a time in every business when you need to educate your customers about something that’s important to you. It could be a new product or service, a project you’re involved in, a position you’re taking a stance on, or even your organisation in general. Presenting this information in an easily digestible yet engaging way is where most businesses start to struggle.

Finding a concise way to communicate your value (and your values) is a powerful business asset, which is the main reason that most companies spend months, or even years, refining their elevator pitch. So how can you effectively communicate this information to potential customers?

The first thing to understand is customers are time-poor – they’re looking for succinct information about who you are, what you do and why they should be shopping with you. While your first instinct might be to kit out your website with a series of lengthy paragraphs detailing the intricacies of your offering, the reality is you need to communicate fast to keep potential customers on your page with a good mix of written and visual content.

Successfully educating your consumers means capturing their attention and helping them to understand your proposition, while keeping them engaged so they don’t click away. This is where explainer videos come in.

An explainer video uses storytelling to convey your message clearly and concisely, with the use of stimulating animation to hold their attention. Their short format and animated imagery can help to illustrate core messages effectively, with a greater level of information retention compared to text alone.

Take the video we made for the Australian Driverless Vehicles Initiative (ADVI). To unpack the mystifying topic of driverless cars and how Australia can position itself as a key player in the field, we created a visual story of ADVI and its reason for being: the progression of autonomous vehicle technology at an international level and the developments needed on Australian soil to help us stay at the forefront of this global movement. All this in under two minutes.

After watching the video, viewers are aware of the pace of progression in the field, the benefits of the technology and the eventual goals of ADVI, ultimately inspiring them to place their trust in the organisation.

Simply put, if consumers don’t understand your offering, they’ll find it difficult to develop trust in your brand. Excelling by nailing your messaging and demonstrating best practise communication tactics like explainer videos will establish your place as an industry leader, strengthening your reputation and ideally building brand equity.

Whether you’re a veteran of the trade or just finding your legs, effective storytelling is essential to communicate your value proposition to consumers. A great explainer video will make the perfect pitch, every time.

5 things every NFP needs to think about...

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This article by Caroline Catterall originally appeared on Pro Bono Australia.

According to JBWere’s Cause Report (2016), there are more than 56,894 NFP organisations in Australia. That’s one NFP for every 422 individuals with around 10 new charities being established every business day.  Each is vying for attention and in most cases, the disposable income of businesses and consumers.  So how do you cut through in a cluttered market? Here are five reasons NFP’s need to think about content marketing.

1. PR may not be your silver bullet

A lot of NFPs turn to PR as their first port-of-call for raising awareness and ‘getting their story out there,’ and for good reason.  PR is comparatively inexpensive when compared to other forms of marketing, and can be an incredibly effective way of building empathy and an emotional connection with your audience.  The truth is when PR works, it works well.  The impact a well-positioned, on-message piece of editorial can deliver is second to none.  But what happens when you run out of news, want to deliver a more commercial message, or want complete control over the timing and delivery of your message?

2. You’ve hit the point of diminishing returns

Some NFPs will reach a point in their communications lifecycle where they hit the point of diminishing returns with PR. The first headline published about the brand was powerful and exciting, it brought the NFP to the surface of consumers’ awareness and created substantial value for the organisation. As you continue to flex the PR muscle however, the results can start to become less substantial. This can happen for a number of reasons. While it’s sometimes possible to ‘refresh’ a PR program and come up with new angles the media is more interested in, an NFP’s objectives might not always line up with the media’s agenda and this can throw your message off-track.  That’s why we advocate a combined earned and owned strategy, that combines PR with brand publishing and content marketing, to allow NFP clients to be more in control of their communications.

NFPs need content marketing - source https://personalexcellence.co/blog/law-of-diminishing-returns/

3. Keep two-hands on the wheel

A well-balanced ratio to keep in mind is 40/60.  For an emerging NFP that needs to sustain its profile but must also think and act commercially, we recommend 40% of the total budget be dedicated to earned media, and the remaining 60% to content creation and marketing.  Owned content can be used, reused, dressed up, broken into bite size pieces and circulated year-round. Through our work with Red Nose (formerly SIDS & Kids), we developed a suite of owned content assets that turned into an award-winning campaign. The content was pushed out via a public relations campaign, hosted on their website, used in eDMs, leveraged extensively across their social channels and broadcast for a number of months as a community service announcement.

4. It is a ‘must-have’ in your budget

Content is no longer a nice addition if you happen to have extra budget, it’s a highly consumed information source. Russell Sparkman of FusionSpark Media says that “non-profits have to make budgeting for content a priority when creating their budgets; the reality of the world we live in today is that content for advancing non-profit goals is as essential as oxygen is to breathing. It can’t be an afterthought or a task relegated to the when-we-can-afford-it shelf.”  According to Forbes, global Internet traffic from videos will make up 80% of all Internet traffic by 2019 and four times as many consumers would prefer to watch a video about a product or offering than read about it.

5. Be your own biggest advocate

But of course, there’s no point serving up your own content if it’s not going to hit the intended audience or get a reach that justifies the cost of producing it.  That’s why brands need to become their own publishers and start to look at their digital assets – namely their core website and any microsites – as vehicles to drive traffic, and social media platforms as the way to rally and recruit an audience, alongside SEO and search marketing.  Your social channels have the potential to reach prospective donors and advocate in the same way a media headline does.  Even better, combine the two with SEO and you might just find that silver bullet you were looking for.

Find out more about our work with not-for-profits across Australia, including St John AmbulanceRed Nose and Wesley Mission Victoria, or get in contact to see how we could work with your brand.

Transforming the State Library of Victoria

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Content and PR for Architectus’ world class design.

It’s not often the opportunity arises to reimagine a part of national history. Our architecture client Architectus, in partnership with Denmark’s Schmidt Hammer Lassen, endeavoured to bring Melbourne the world’s best library design, merging the history of a heritage building with the needs of the next generation of Victorians.

Architectus design State Library Architecture PR

Co-designed with input from school children and through extensive consultation with diverse groups of Victorians, the $88.1 million development will strip back the layers of one of Melbourne’s most loved landmarks to reveal its original beauty. The redevelopment will transform the Library and return 40 per cent more space to public use, opening spaces that have been closed to the public for many years including Queen’s Hall and the Russell Street entrance, while adding new spaces such as the Children’s Quarter.

Architectus State Library victoria - Architecture PR

Collaborating closely with the State Library media team and project partners ahead of the hotly anticipated design unveiling, Keep Left ensured Architectus earned the media and key audience cut-through with a combined media relations and content development strategy to maximise earned and owned channels. Our content production team took a tour of the Library with Ruth Wilson, Director at Architectus, where she shared the inspiration behind the design and discussed the future of the Library. The resulting video formed an engaging insight into the project for Architectus website and social channel visitors, as well as for online media to embed into their stories.

Our property PR team invited key media contacts from both architecture trade media and major daily property and education reporters to attend a busy morning media call held at the library to unveil the renders. With two government ministers and multiple partners all vying for media attention, Architectus was able to gain strong share of voice across broadcast, print and online media by offering insightful interviews that relayed well-practiced key messaging, as well as the Keep Left team providing media kits which included quotes that established Architectus’ voice as an authority on the Library’s design.

Architectus State Library victoria - Architecture PR

Architectus’ role in the redesign received broad national coverage across outlets such as Channel 7 News, Channel 9 News, ABC, throughout the Fairfax network, the Herald Sun and industry media outlets like Architecture & Design and Architecture AU.

With media coverage reaching an approximate audience of 21,120,643, Architectus’ message was communicated through 23 unique stories nationally achieving an average Keep Left Impact Score of 81.93 out of 100.

Find out more about our work with corporate and property clients across Australia, or get in contact to see how we could work with your brand.

Is all publicity good publicity?

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Brand management in a crisis.

If your brand has ever had a difficult run-in with the media, it’s hard to take an organisation seriously when they claim “there is no such thing as bad publicity”. Particularly when dealt with the wrong way, an organisation can receive terrible publicity that can have a detrimental impact on the brand and business.

The good, the bad and the ugly.

In the age of social media, bad news travels fast. A brand’s first response will always be the one people remember, and if this comes from a place of frazzled urgency, you can find yourself in strife. United Airlines received more bad publicity than it could have bargained for this year, but it was the initial justification for its actions that truly disgruntled the public.

On April 9th 2017, a passenger was forcibly dragged from an overbooked United Airlines flight after refusing to forfeit his seat for a staff member, losing his front teeth and becoming bloodied in the scuffle. This letter to United staff was released on the day of the incident:

“This situation was unfortunately compounded when one of the passengers we politely asked to deplane refused and it became necessary to contact Chicago Aviation Security Officers to help,” United CEO Oscar Munoz wrote. “Our employees followed established procedures for dealing with situations like this. While I deeply regret this situation arose, I also emphatically stand behind all of you, and I want to commend you for continuing to go above and beyond to ensure we fly right.”

It only took a day for the second letter to be released which refuted the actions taken and provided the deepest apologies to the passenger that was forcibly removed from the plane. Unfortunately, this was too little too late – the damage had been done.

bad publicity for united airlines makes headlines

A diamond in the rough.

It’s important to remember that it is possible to come back from condemnation. In late 2015, Airbnb came under fire with bad publicity when research revealing customers with “distinctively African-American names are 16% less likely to be accepted relative to identical guests with distinctively White names.” That data was only compounded by reports on social media from travellers who experienced that discrimination first-hand, as well as a lawsuit over such actions.

Acting as the true hero the brand seeks to portray, its CEO released this letter which took a profound stance on the issue:

Bias and discrimination have no place on Airbnb, and we have zero tolerance for them. Unfortunately, we have been slow to address these problems, and for this I am sorry. I take responsibility for any pain or frustration this has caused members of our community. We will not only make this right; we will work to set an example that other companies can follow.

And indeed it has. This branded indiscretion has resulted in Airbnb taking a stand against not only racial discrimination, but becoming a vocal advocate for marriage equality also.

Airbnb turning bad publicity into advocacy

Sorry shouldn’t be the hardest word.

To be clear, brands will always be vulnerable to bad publicity, but mastering your rise from the ashes could be what saves your name (and your neck). As Airbnb so humbly showed, admitting to your mistakes and apologising is a good start if there are no legal implications.

So, what can you do to prevent hordes of villagers chasing you with pitchforks?

Test potential scenarios and put your plan in writing. Pick your spokespeople, your channels and your approach, and review your plan regularly to ensure it’s up to date. This may seem menial, but when your team is in shock about the meteor coming their way, you’ll be glad to have something that was prepared on a calmer, sunnier day. Acknowledge the situation, apologise to the effected parties, state your values and outline your plan of attack moving forward.

Bad publicity doesn’t have to have the last word. Who knows, you may just come out better for it in the end.

Find out more about our work with consumer brands and corporate clients across Australia, or get in contact to see how we could work with your brand.

Stevie Award winners

· Awards · ,

Keep Left wins gold at international Stevie Awards

PR and content marketing agency, Keep Left, has been recognised for its work with ME (formerly ME Bank) and Red Nose, taking home a Gold Stevie and Bronze Stevie at the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards in Tokyo on Friday night.

keep left wins gold and bronze stevie award

Keep Left was awarded gold in the category ‘Innovation in the Use of Events’ with ME’s Super Smashaday campaign. Following commentary from economist Bernard Salt in the Weekend Australian that Australian millennials are overspending on smashed avocado brunches instead of saving for a home, ME was perfectly placed to capitalise on the ensuing debate with an existing home loan advertising campaign already in the market “have your smashed avocado and eat it too”.

Hijacking super Saturday auctions across Victoria with smashed avocado canapes for new home buyers, the Gold Stevie honoured campaign was concepted and executed in just four days by Keep Left’s property and finance PR team.

The efforts of the agency’s social change team in launching the new Red Nose brand (formerly SIDS & Kids), and its mission of reducing the current reality of nine sudden and unexpected infant deaths each day to zero earned the team a bronze within ‘Innovation in Community Relations or Public Service Communications’.

Working closely with the team at Red Nose, the team executed an integrated campaign, comprised of a national media launch that kicked off with a parliamentary briefing at Canberra’s Parliament House, supported by social media campaign with custom GIFs and graphics, and powerful video content bringing the organisation’s new mission to life, utilised across all platforms.

Keep Left’s CEO Gillian Yeap said: “It’s a real honour to take home two Stevie Awards this year to acknowledge two campaigns we’re incredibly proud of. We’re lucky to work with amazing clients like Red Nose and ME that allow us to be so creative and to execute clever and memorable campaigns. We’d like to thank them for coming on the journey with us.”

Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 10,000 entries each year from organisations in more than 60 nations. Honouring organisations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognise outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide. A full list of winners can be viewed here.

The truth behind the barcode

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Baptist World Aid’s Ethical Fashion Report.

For the fourth year, Baptist World Aid released its industry-leading research report, revealing the fashion brands succeeding and failing at mitigating the risk of worker exploitation in their global supply chains. With 106 apparel companies (or 330 brands) receiving a grade from A to F, this year’s Ethical Fashion Report was bigger than ever. While highly anticipated among industry players as a benchmarking tool, and among consumers as an ethical shopping guide, there was uncertainty surrounding potential media fatigue.

Baptist world aid's ethical fashion report - cotton picking behind the barcode

Keep Left’s community engagement PR team took to the challenge. While the launch date has always coincided with the anniversary of the 2013 Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh, the team decided this year’s report needed to transcend the conversation beyond the accident. Ultimately, the report’s reputation provided an opportunity to demonstrate the impact of putting pressure on fashion brands to be transparent, while at the same time increasing consumer awareness that an issue exists.

Baptist world aid's ethical fashion report - behind the barcode

Armed with fresh angles, a strong visual package and 3rd party spokespeople at the ready, the team seeded story angles to key outlets and secured prominent media interest well prior to the report release day. A vital part of this process was Baptist World Aid spokesperson, Gershon Nimbalker, who has extensive media experience and was able to participate in interviews ahead of the report release.

Cue launch day. Having coordinated print and online coverage already, and broadcast interviews from 6am, Gershon used the day’s spotlight to highlight some of the most prominent findings from the 2017 report and explain what consumers can do to vote with their wallets. Coverage was achieved across print, radio, television and online media outlets including:

Baptist world aid ethical fashion report

The explosive launch day and subsequent coverage saw over 50 million people reached with news of the Ethical Fashion report. Of the 247 pieces of coverage, four in every five included an interview or quotes from Gershon and 73% directed its audience to the Baptist World Aid “Behind the Barcode” website. In seven days following launch, more than 42,000 people went online to see the report and after four weeks the website traffic was still 35% higher than average.

Find out more about our work with not-for-profits across Australia, including St John Ambulance, Red Nose and Wesley Mission Victoria, or get in contact to see how we could work with your brand.