Focus: investing in PR and counting the ROI
In the world of mergers and acquisitions, FOCUS Investment Banking has an enviable reputation of punching above its weight, as a trusted partner for mid-market companies seeking to sell, buy, or raise capital. But back when the company first met with Arketi Group, things were different – FOCUS urgently needed to expand its visibility and change the target audience’s perception of its brand.
The nationally active firm wanted to spread its message to entrepreneurs, corporate owners and investors across the US. It also needed to increase the flow of quality leads – specifically from businesses with transactions or revenues in the $5 million to $300 million range. After interviewing several agencies, FOCUS selected Arketi to tackle the job.
HOW WE DID IT
Arketi used research and media relations to develop a comprehensive PR program that identified campaign objectives and a target media audience, and created a tactical timeline to achieve these objectives.
RESEARCH In order to craft a compelling message that would resonate with the market, we started by polling company bankers to identify market trends. We then took these ideas and teamed up with FOCUS’ in-house research department to secure statistics and third-party data to use in media relations.
MEDIA RELATIONS Using the identified trends and data the Arketi PR team wrote white papers, op-eds, bylined articles, media pitches and press releases. We ensured a steady flow of press releases into each of FOCUS’ different markets nationwide. This built awareness and name recognition for the company, which led to the next step of the campaign.
THOUGHT LEADERSHIP Once FOCUS was known in key markets, the thought leadership phase of the campaign could commence, using a combination of white papers, guest columns, podcasts and media meet-and-greet sessions.
To proactively address key issues on the outlook of the industry – such as the importance of the emerging global economy – Arketi developed The Middle-Market M&AForecast white paper, along with a companion guest column.
THE RESULTS WE ACHIEVED
The campaign paid off. Arketi positioned FOCUS bankers as the “new, untapped experts” in local business journal and trade publications, including The Deal, InvestmentNews, Washington Business Journal, Atlanta Business Journal and Growing Wealth magazine. Within the first six months, the campaign netted three times as much coverage has planned, ultimately reaching more than 2 million impressions from 58 positive stories.
On the lead generation front, FOCUS attributed more than half of all incoming sales leads to the PR outreach. This integrated campaign significantly surpassed its objectives in both brand awareness and lead generation – and more importantly, enhanced FOCUS’ bottom line.
“As an aggressively growing company, we needed a proven PR partner to build and execute a communication strategy designed to help expand our business. Arketi’s proven, smart and strategic PR impressed us from the start – and the results did not disappoint.”
Doug Rodgers, CEO, Focus