The challenge: Over the June Queen’s Birthday long weekend Ancestry.com.au wanted to promote their free open database, of over 250 million British records to encourage Australians to start discovering their story.
Strategy: Rather than embarking on a straight PR release focusing on the open data base, we worked with Ancestry.com.au to research the history of Australia’s ‘Rock Royalty’. Through trawling through the collections, we discovered that a lot of Australia’s rock the talent was in fact shipped in.
Ancestry.com.au discovered a celebrity link between famous Aussie rock legends who migrated to Australia from England in the 50s and 60s.
Records showed the Bee Gees, Red Symonds, Bon Scott from AC\DC and Olivia Newton-John, were all a part of the 10 Pound Poms migration influx.
Perhaps the most well-known names to stick out of the collections include Barry, Maurice and Robin Gibb – commonly known as The Bee Gees. Arguably one of the most successful Australian imported exports, the Manchester-born trio dominated the industry world-wide.
Arriving in Sydney in the summer of 1958 aboard the Fairsea, the brothers weren’t the only future rock legends to step onto Australian soil, with Red Symonds, then to be future lead-guitarist for Skyhooks, also on board the ship.
We approached Channel 7’s, The Morning Show, with an exclusive story on these famous rock legends. We offered viewers of the Morning Show exclusive access to the open database on Ancestry.com.au in order to provide viewers with a unique experience.
Results: The live interview with Ancestry’s Brad Argent lasted over five minutes with the program reaching over 263,000 Australians across 42 Channel 7 TV stations within Australia. Within a 15 minute’s appearing on the show Ancestry.com.au, the website experienced a high volume of unique visitors and registrations that continued throughout the day.
The TV segment which can be viewed here.
Overview: In order to capitalise on a timely news cycle surrounding the Australian premier of The Great Gatsby, Ancestry.com.au set about researching the backgrounds of the lead characters to see if there was any angles to generate a news story.
Strategy: Through examining the research, Howorth uncovered a storyline of life imitating art a for a few key actors in the film. Following this discovery, we set about pitching the story to key entertainment writers and radio shows to drive broad coverage and awareness of Ancestry.com.au, while showcasing the wealth of information available on Ancestry.com.au
Through research we discovered Leonardo DiCaprio, who plays Gatsby, great grandfather, went from a street sweeper in 1900 to a real-estate broker in 1930. Like the character he played in the film, the rise of the Nouveau riche, seems to be in the DiCaprio’s blood!
The Great Gatsby love story is epitomised in Tobey Maguire’s great grandparents tale of love conquering all. It appears Tobey’s Great grandparents, on his father’s side are from opposite ends of the world but, found true love. Bartholomeus Kropfl (Tobey’s great grandfather) is from Austria while Ana (Tobey’s great grandmother) is originally from Puerto Rico.
Director, Baz Luhrmann, it appears has his own tale of a rise from rags to riches. Baz’s 5th great grandfather, Pierce Collits, owned a famous inn in the Vale of Clwydd (near Lithgow) in the early 1800s. He came to arrive in Australia as a convict from Ireland in the early 1800s with his wife and children. For 10 years the Inn was the most famous landmark on the journey from Sydney to the ever-expanding town of Bathurst.
Carey Mulligan’s ancestors originated from England and Wales and were from all walks of life. Occupations in her family tree include ‘iron turner,’ ‘stock trader,’ ‘coal miner,’ and ‘colliary lampman’ (in the coal mines).
Results: Ancestry.com.au received broad consumer coverage, with hero pieces being achieved on News.com.au and Nova 96.9. Nova’s Fitzy and Wippa used the information as part of their interview with Carey Mulligan. Announcing her Great Grandfather was a colliary lampman in their interview. You can watch her reaction to the news here.
Challenge: Australia Unlimited is a national brand developed by Austrade in response to global research that demonstrated Australia’s global reputation was based more on our physical attributes than our intellectual ones.
While Australia has a very strong international reputation, regularly ranking among the top countries in global studies, Australia Unlimited was tasked with promoting Australia’s credentials in business, technology, creative industries and science to overseas markets.
In an effort to draw attention to the depth and breadth of Australian talent around the world, Australia Unlimited was preparing to launch its Global 50 list comprising of expat Australians who are not household names, but who are doing work that deserves to be recognised.
Strategy: With a million Australians offshore at any one time and many more involved in international work, they are a ready-made corps of promotional ambassadors for the nation. Our people are the best evidence we have that Australia today is a creative, clever and globally engaged nation.
As part of this content driven campaign, Social@Ogilvy identified a list of 32 influential Australian expats living in the key markets of US, UK, Europe and Asia, so that Australia Unlimited could target them to build relationships with these key influencers while also sharing their international success stories and portray a contemporary Australia through its people.
In order to drive awareness of Australia Unlimited’s Global 50 list and mobile apps, and maintain conversation in the lead up to and throughout the Australia Day weekend, Social@Ogilvy developed a strategy encompassing content creation, influencer outreach, and conversation management, drawing new stakeholders to the Australia Unlimited brand.
Results: The integrated digital and social campaign was successful in driving traffic to Australia Unlimited’s website, with social media the top driver of referral traffic, and building key relationships with international influencers.
More than 2.174m Twitter accounts reached
80 retweets representing a 515% increase on the previous week and 100+ mentions over the campaign
8% increase in Twitter followers
70% of all traffic to the website referred from social media channels
184% increase in application subscribers
Challenge: Getty Images believes that mobile photography has made huge strides in a short time, so much so that the company provides its photographers with software tools that allow them to create smartphone-style images that are of high enough quality to be used by their commercial clients.
As the official photographic agency for the Australian Open, Getty Images’ team of photographers embraced the smartphone look by applying special effects to their portraits of quirky spectators, umpires, ball boys, media and event staff.
These images became known as the Faces of the Australian Open.
Strategy: To capitalise on the hype building around the grand final match; Howorth developed a two-fold media strategy.
Part one: offer national metropolitan titles the Faces of the Australian Open album to run as an online image gallery.
Part two: provide national lifestyle tech title, CNET with exclusive access to Getty photographer, Cameron Spencer, to develop a feature on the ever-increasing popularity of smartphone photography from a professional perspective.
Results: The result saw a ¾ page article featuring Faces of the Australian Open images published on page six of the Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media also syndicated an online image gallery across 24 metropolitan and regional news sites.
CNET published two stories including an online image gallery and an in-depth article on how professional photographers integrate smartphone technology in their work, featuring comments from Cameron Spencer.
In total, 27 news clips were generated from this campaign reaching a potential audience of 4,419,355 Australians.
Challenge: When Getty Images photographer Adam Pretty won the prestigious Getty Editorial Fellowship, he grabbed his camera and prize money and headed to the Japanese town of Kesennuma – one of the most devastated regions from the Tohoku quake and tsunami in 2011.
Overwhelmed by the scope of tragedy, Adam resolved to give something back to the people by reconstructing wedding portraits of couples whose original wedding photographs were destroyed.
Adam’s Bride Again project is a strong example of the depth and power of the work of Getty Images’ photographers.
Strategy: To coincide with the second anniversary of the Tohoku quake and tsunami, Howorth approached two media outlets – Fairfax Media and ABC – with the opportunity to speak with Adam.
Both interviews would discuss why Adam chose to focus on the Japanese tsunami and uncover stories of survival and love among the families involved in the project.
The story that Howorth and Getty Images wanted to tell was that of the strength, resilience and hope of the Japanese people living in Kesennuma.
Results: Following an interview with The Sun Herald, a half page article featuring a Bride Again wedding portrait was published in the newspaper.
This piece was syndicated to 157 online Fairfax metropolitan and regional news sites including the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and Brisbane Times as well as featuring in Fairfax’s tablet edition.
Adam’s interview with the ABC resulted in an online feature piece, exposing the news to a potential audience of 3,700,000 Australians.
This campaign generated a combined total of 159 clips and reached a potential audience of 18,022,235 Australians.
When a group of 300 companies operating across the Australian economy, including Westpac, GE, and IKEA, wanted to communicate their support for carbon pricing they contacted OgilvyEarth. We had 72 hours to come up with a media strategy that would give profile to the group, Businesses for a Clean Economy. The timing of the public relations campaign – on the eve of historic climate change legislation being introduced – meant there was strong competition for media space, but great opportunities if the right strategy was employed.
Drawing on experts across Ogilvy Public Relations’ network, we created tailored content and took a strategic approach to media engagement, including holding a press conference that was streamed live on ABC News 24 and Sky News. We also set up a media tracking team, including social media experts, who monitored and responded to developments as the day unfolded.
The result was over 210 pieces of overwhelmingly positive press coverage, including:
- Front page coverage of the group’s position (SMH and AFR)
- Coverage on all major national television news programs
- Reference to the group by the Prime Minister
- 70 radio clips
- 115 articles online
- Retweets that reached over 200,000 followers
Best of all, as a result of the coverage, a further 88 companies joined the group (a 29% increase in membership) adding their support for positive action on climate change.
Challenge: Howorth has been working with Canon’s corporate and business imaging communication teams since the end of 2010. In 2011, Canon asked Howorth to develop a campaign that would support one of their core company values – imagination at both the corporate and the business imaging divisional levels.
Our work: It was clear this project would be more than a media relations campaign. The team at Howorth researched the concept of imagination and looked at existing data on imagination and productivity in the workplace. We found a team at UNSW that had proven a link between imagination and learning effectiveness in school children – but the phenomenon of ‘the imagination effect’ had never been proven in a corporate setting.
Canon formed a partnership with the School of Education, UNSW. We designed an experiment for members of Canon’s business imaging sales team to see what effect engaging the imagination had on the effectiveness of a new training module. Participants were split into two groups and completed multiple choice tests on product knowledge before and after an e-learning program. Both groups were given different learning instructions. The imagination group was instructed to use their imagination to learn concepts and procedures about a Canon product and the study group was instructed to use traditional study methods.
The results were extremely interesting – for the first time, the imagination effect was proven in a corporate setting. In fact, the imagination group made significantly more learning gains than the study group with the imagination group’s test results improving by 63% compared with 29% for the study group.
Concurrently, we commissioned a survey of 400 senior decision makers at medium and large organisations across Australia to investigate the state of imagination in business. The survey found that despite the fact those organisations that value and harness imagination were also the highest earning companies, across the board, imagination ranks last on a list of 15 workforce characteristics valued by employers.
Results: The research findings were published by Canon in a report titled Imagination for Business, stating the case for adding imagination to the managerial tool box. Additional content was produced for a microsite, www.imaginationforbusiness.com.au .
The story captured the imagination of business, HR and other vertical media, with more than 30 in-depth media articles published on the topic. The UNSW professors are also planning to present their academic paper at a number of international cognitive load conferences later in 2012.
But perhaps most importantly, the thought leadership exercise resulted in a real change in the way Canon will deliver its training modules as part of ongoing learning and development programs, because Canon now has a low cost way to make training more effective for their workforce – the application of imagination.
CiSRA contributes imaginative technologies, intellectual property and customer insights to Canon – in fact many of the components found in Canon’s leading consumer and business technologies were created in the Australian facility.
In addition, the profile of imaging science in Australia is quite low, despite the groundbreaking work being completed within Australian Universities.
CiSRA enlisted Howorth to help communicate CiSRA’s role in the Australian science and technology landscape, promote the study of imaging science and improve the status of CiSRA as an exporter of science and technology innovation both at home and in the region.
Strategy: A great public relations opportunity arose with the launch of CiSRA’s Extreme Imaging competition. To promote and celebrate Australian innovation, Canon offered a series of prizes to tertiary students and their supervisors for innovative work in the field of imaging science.
The competition was open for students developing a new technique or equipment to produce images as part of their supervised research project – be it in medicine, physics, engineering, information technology or other academic disciplines.
Howorth devised a PR strategy to communicate the opening of the Extreme Imaging awards to potential participants in the education sector, and then publicly profile the winners in order to achieve the goals of raising the profile of both CiSRA and the imaging science sector.
Results: Once the winners were announced, Howorth reached out to CiSRA’s key media such as science and technology targets and university media units as well as local, regional and major metropolitan media. Working with the winning students to harness their personal story, we created lots of excitement around local imaging science innovation.
CiSRA held an awards ceremony at the Sydney Observatory – rewarding the winning students and treating guests (including journalists from New Scientist, Cosmos and Science Illustrated) to viewings of Jupiter and Venus through the Observatory’s telescope – a fun and educational night for all!
The media outreach resulted in 54 pieces of editorial across various publications including Sydney Morning Herald, Cosmos, The Age, Tech World, National Geographic, The University of Sydney website, Canberra Times and local publications such as the Hornsby Advocate.
For more information about CiSRA, see the 2011 award winners or to apply for the 2012 competition when it opens, see http://www.canon.com.au/Extreme-Imaging.
Challenge: Veda enlisted Howorth to develop and execute a two-week media strategy to release the results of its 2011 Credit Management in Australia, a report providing insights into how global and local economic factors are affecting the credit management processes of Australian businesses. Veda conducted the survey amongst 220 credit managers from a cross-section of Australian industry. Veda works closely with a large proportion of Australia’s credit professionals which gives the company a detailed understanding of local credit management issues within a national and global context.
Strategy: The hot topic in Australian media in the week and days leading up to the launch of the report was the announcement by the Reserve Bank of Australia to drop interest rates in December and whether the big banks would pass it on – which was seen as a welcome relief to businesses – especially small and medium sized enterprises – and consumers.
The Howorth team spotted the opportunity to capitalise on the announced rate cuts by linking the credit management report to the topic. We worked closely with Veda’s spokesperson Moses Samaha, Head of Commercial Risk, to craft an interesting story for media on these topics. We also advised Veda to bring in a third party spokesperson, and as a result were able to work with Terry Collins, CEO AICM to strengthen our story even further.
Results: We targeted selected business and financial media for a preview on the report setting up two interviews with Sky Business News and AAP ahead of the official launch. This resulted in 29 pieces of editorial across TV, newswires and online in the week following the release of the Credit Management in Australia 2011 report. Articles reported on the results of the report as well as giving Veda’s view on the state of credit management in Australia.
- An 4 minute interview on Sky Business News with Moses Samaha;
- Moses Samaha and Terry Collins featured in tier one media targets including AAP, Daily Telegraph, The Australian, Herald Sun, The Age, etc.
- As a result from our outreach, Veda received a number of requests for more information from government agencies such as the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation, and from Credit Managers across a wide range of industries in Australia and New Zealand.
The APAC Cup is a Canon technician’s version of the football grand final, but instead of battling it out on the footy field, they’re troubleshooting business imaging equipment. It’s a highly skilled and very competitive series of practical and theoretical tests.
It’s also a way for Canon to provide its technicians with opportunities to build their skills by sharing ‘tricks of the trade’ with colleagues from around the world.
Howorth spotted an opportunity to get involved in the hype that surrounded the Rugby World Cup – from one international sporting event to another.
What started as an internal competition in Australia caught the imagination of the media and became one of Canon’s biggest corporate stories for 2011. In total there were 23 pieces across Australia of coverage around the APAC cup including The Today Show, Herald Sun, News.com, MX, ABC 720 Perth, 2GB Sydney, 4KQ Brisbane and Adelaide Now.
The Daily Telegraph even made this online video to accompany its story about the competition.
“Forget Cadel Evans, forget Sam Stosur and forget that guy who won the Nobel Prize for discovering what the universe was made of – Australia has a new hero.” –The Daily Telegraph
“Got a paper jam? Can’t get your printer working? Mt Gravatt based technician Daniel Leong is the man who knows how to solve your printing woes.” – Southern Star
“O’Brien is a paper jam’s worst enemy.” – The Daily Telegraph
“Newing, a specialist senior engineer with Canon, earned his spot in the four-man Aussie squad to compete at the Canon Asia Pacific Cup.” – MX
Shane McClelland, marketing and communication manager of Canon Australia, said it was great to be able to recognise the technicians for all their hard work and enthusiasm.
“We were very pleased with the coverage we received around the APAC Cup and the media hype was fantastic for the finalists – Paul O’Brien even mentioned that he was stopped on the street once and asked if he was “the Canon technician from the TV?,” said Shane.
The Canon APAC Cup showed that the right story angle can make a niche story go a long way.
Did they bring home the cup? Although the four-man Australian squad wasn’t successful in bringing home the APAC Cup – they did prove that good old Aussie sportsmanship is alive and well – on and off the footy field.