Thriving Outside the PR Box: Reflecting on dotCOMM Award-winning Campaigns
PR is not what it used to be. Its scope is constantly expanding, which means it needs an increasingly diverse skillset. Our roles and expertise have branched in every direction, from SEO to social media, diversity and inclusion messaging, website creation and design, and so much more. We relish the variety and creative challenges that are now part of our work.
Let’s look at some examples that go beyond conventional PR and have achieved recognition in the form of Platinum and Gold dotCOMM awards from the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals (AMCP).
SEO Strategy Puts a Corporate Blog Firmly Back on the Radar
2021 Platinum Award for SEO Campaign
Electronic design automation (EDA) leader Synopsys is a big name in semiconductor chip design, but its main corporate blog, From Silicon to Software, had fallen by the wayside in terms of traffic. We were confident that we could revitalize it, knowing that great content alone isn’t always enough to reach the desired audience.
As well as building a more consistent content stream, we took a deep dive into the blog’s organic search performance and found numerous issues: core web formatting problems, deficient on-page SEO and low organic search visibility – only ranking in the top-100 results for 30 branded or irrelevant search teams. We remodeled the blog, using images and headers with built-in SEO to do what they’re meant to do – draw in readers. As we helped the Synopsys team ramp up content, we saw the opportunity to use SEO as a topic in itself. Our research yielded an array of content ideas. The revamped blog saw outstanding growth in organic search results and readership.
From Silicon to Software now ranks in the top-100 results for 141 organic keywords according to SEO tool Ahrefs, including several dozen unbranded terms. Organic search surged and has accounted for 18.5% (2,639) of all unique visitors to the blog, and 27.2% of all page views in the last year. Traffic to the blog exploded from 803 unique visitors and 1,414 pageviews in the year before, to 14,285 unique visitors and 27,643 page views the following year. An average month drew more unique visitors and pageviews than the previous year – increases of 1,678% and 1,854%, respectively.
Free Weights for Fitness: An Influencer Campaign that Reached Millions
2021 Platinum Award for Social Media Marketing – Use of Industry Influencer
Influencer marketing is a powerful tool for businesses. Potential customers rarely want to see ads, especially on social media, but they pay attention to posts from influential people they have chosen to follow. We applied this simple logic to promote Bowflex, a brand under the home fitness company Nautilus.
Stuck at home under the pandemic, people had more time for two things – social media and exercise. Conditions were difficult, but it was also the perfect time to work with fitness influencers to help people stay in peak physical and mental health.
Rather than focus on selling products, we conveyed Nautilus’ commitment to supporting people on their own fitness journeys. With limited inventory and no budget for paid partnerships, we vetted fitness influencers carefully and selected 23. We then offered each of them Bowflex equipment – one unit to keep and one to offer as a giveaway.
We worked with our influencers to create 106 Instagram posts. Their impact was incredible, directly generating 45,348 giveaway entries and reaching almost 40 million Instagram users. The campaign was so successful that the Bowflex brand is an ongoing participant in the online conversation around staying active and healthy during the pandemic.
Macro Idea for a Microsite: Making TSMC the Employer of Choice for Engineering Grads
2021 Gold Award for Website Copy
2021 Gold Award for Online Ad Campaign
2021 Gold Award for Social Campaign
2021 Gold Award for Microsite
Even though a lot of PR work has changed, the bulk of it still follows a broad but central plan: shape a communications strategy that leads to more people buying more products. But what if the largest semiconductor chip company in the world asks you to attract employees instead?
The Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) opened a plant in Phoenix, Ariz., and needed to hire 300 up-and-coming engineers to work there. Despite TSMC’s size, many would-be recruits had never heard of it. We saw this as an opportunity to do a lot more than fill 300 openings. It was a chance to demonstrate TSMC’s commitment to America, highlight its team spirit and draw out its personality. We set out to put TSMC on the map as a brand that many more talented U.S. college graduates will want to be part of.
We started by talking to real engineers and found out what made them tick. We found common themes that were important to them, such as career development programs and environmental impact. We launched the TSMC Careers site catered to young engineers, emphasizing innovation, ongoing training programs and sustainability (as well as open opportunities and benefits).
Having built the site, we needed to lead people to it. We optimized the content for search engines and created an advertising plan to reach the right people with the right job opportunities. This involved creating detailed profiles of the target audience and using Google Ads to make it easy for would-be applicants to discover the site.