Embrace empathy – it’s good for you and your people

April 4, 2014 by  
Filed under Blog

Whether we work in an agency or inhouse, regardless of the discipline, most of us are, or will end up, leading, coaching or managing people.

But what type of person are we when we’re leading?

My very first PR agency boss, a kind-hearted Lancashire man back in England, gave me a bit of his wisdom that has stuck with me. He said: “Employees will often forget what you say. They will often forget what you do. But they will never forget how you made them feel.”

He was so bloody right …..

Click here to read more.

Fitness First launched its new brand

March 28, 2014 by  
Filed under Case studies, Featured, Fitness First, Healthcare

Challenge:  In 2012, not-for-profit organisation febfast engaged Ogilvy PR to raise awareness and drive participation in the 2013 febfast campaign which encourages people to give up alcohol for a month and raise money to support young Australians affected by drug and alcohol issues.

Given the extreme media fatigue around thematic months such as Facebook Free February, not to mention other dry months such as Dry July and Ocsober, we faced a number of challenges in promoting the cause. Furthermore, investigation by febfast suggested that although many people actually participated in febfast, they did so unofficially and without registering.  In addition to media fatigue and converting unofficial participants, previous campaigns indicated that there was only a very small window of opportunity to drive a large amount of registrations. With Australia Day marking the end of the silly season, a majority of Australians would not consider signing up until after the festivities, leaving only 5 days to drive registrations before February.

Furthermore, on the day of our official launch, the floods in Queensland had reached a crisis point and only a few days later, Julia Gillard announced to the nation the election date, both of which dominated media coverage nationally.

Strategy:  Our strategy ensured continuous and consistent coverage throughout the month of January leading up to the official national launch of febfast on the 28th, allowing us to capitalise on the nation’s collective Australia Day long weekend hangover and to leverage the small window of opportunity we had to drive a high number of registrations.

We surveyed over 1000 Australians on their attitudes towards drinking and their favourite and strangest hangover cures. As part of a two-pronged approach we released statistics regarding generational attitudes to drinking and Australia Day prior to the long weekend and then officially launched on the 28th releasing Australia’s favourite and strangest hangover cures.

Results:  The campaign continues until the end of February, with participants still able to register and also the launch of ‘half-arsed febfast’ a 14 day version of the 28 day challenge.

To date, a total of 278 pieces of coverage have appeared locally and nationally through radio, print, TV and online.

And the Trumpet goes to…

March 27, 2014 by  
Filed under Featured, News

Ogilvy PR has announced the second round of our Trumpet Winners for 2014.

The Trumpets is our formal employee recognition program which is designed to acknowledge and reward our team members for the great work that we do.  Ogilvy PR Australia’s culture is built on our three core Values – Partnership, Learn & Grow and One Step ahead, and the program recognises values-based behaviours – from great client work to the way we work with each other.

Congratulations to:

Tegan Knight – Account Director, Pulse Communications

Sally Strautins – Account Director, Ogilvy PR Health

Megan McCarthy – Account Executive, Ogilvy PR Health

Getty Images: Embed Launch

Challenge:  Getty Images is among the world’s leading creators and distributors of award-winning still imagery, video, music and multimedia products.  The challenge to Howorth was to generate mass awareness and positive coverage across ANZ business, technology, marketing, creative and photography media for the global launch of Embed – a tool that, for the first time ever, allows people to easily embed and share content from Getty Images’ huge library of editorial, creative and archival imagery, free of charge, for personal sites, blogs and social media posts.

In addition to securing media coverage, the brief also required Howorth to position Getty Images’ role in educating social media users on copyright and licensing infringements.

Strategy:  A two-pronged media strategy was developed to engage traditional media and key influencers and bloggers on the significance of Getty Images’ new business model; the practical applications of the tool; and, the importance of sharing licensed digital content. In executing the traditional media element, Howorth developed targeted pitches offering pre-brief interviews with Getty Images’ spokesperson, Craig Peters to titles across the business, consumer tech, social media and IT spaces – Australian Associated Press (AAP), CNET Australia, Technology Spectator and New Zealand Herald. Howorth also engaged an Australian Getty Images contributor to provide ‘grass roots’ comment on how the Embed tool affects professional photographers.

The second element of the media strategy is to be executed in the months that follow the launch of the Embed tool and will cultivate momentum among key influencers and bloggers by offering practical activations of Embed so users begin to understand the relevance and ease of using licensed digital content in a ‘right-click and share’ era.

Results:  The pre-briefing interviews paired with the distribution of a media release generated 24 pieces of media coverage in the ANZ region, with a potential global audience reach of 159,187,660.  Each article was positive in sentiment appearing in key business, technology, creative, marketing and photography titles including: The Australian, BRW, CNET Australia, CNET global, Gizmodo Technology Spectator, Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, SBS, Stuff.co.nz, New Zealand Herald, Desktop Australia and Good Gear Guide. The news was also shared across social media sites such as Twitter, reaching millions of users across the globe.


Ogilvy PR Australia lures media powerhouse to join senior management team

March 11, 2014 by  
Filed under News

Sydney, March 11, 2014: Emma Connors, one of the country’s most respected journalists, has joined Ogilvy Public Relations as Senior Media Strategist for Ogilvy PR Health and Corporate.

Ms Connors joins Ogilvy Public Relations after 17 years with the Australian Financial Review.  During her time at the AFR, she wrote across many sections of the country’s only national business daily and sister publications BOSS and AFR Magazine. Among other awards, she’s received the Eureka prize for science and technology journalism. Ms Connors steered the AFR’s health coverage for five years before becoming Opinion Editor in 2012 and part of the senior editorial team that led the AFR in print and online.

Prior to joining the AFR, Ms Connors worked as a magazine journalist and editor in London and Sydney.

Ogilvy Public Relations CEO Kieran Moore said the appointment would bring fresh insights to Ogilvy Public Relations clients and consulting team.

“There’s no doubt about it – Emma is pure quality. She knows how media interacts with government and business and that’s going to be fantastic for our clients,” said Ms Moore.

Ms Connors said she was looking forward to the new chapter in her career. “The media landscape is evolving rapidly and I can bring an insider’s view to Ogilvy’s client base. Having edited the AFR’s opinion pages I have a good fix on what the hot buttons are for government, not-for-profit, and business organisations.

“Ogilvy’s Health and Corporate teams do some fascinating work with leading brands; this is a great chance to work with some great people,” Ms Connors said.

Ogilvy Public Relations Australia is a joint venture between WPP and STW Group, Australia’s leading marketing and communications service group.


For further information please contact Rebecca Tilly, STW PR on 0410 501 043

About Ogilvy PR Australia:

Ogilvy PR Australia is the country’s largest PR and public affairs agency with offices in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.  It is 51% owned by WPP and 49% owned by STW.  For more information, visit our Web site at www.ogilvypr.com.au or follow us on Twitter at @ogilvypraus.

CommsCon Awards shortlist revealed

March 11, 2014 by  
Filed under News

The shortlists have been announced for this year’s CommsCon Awards for PR and communications professionals.

Ogilvy Public Relations has been shortlisted for four awards which include Ogilvy PR Health, Howorth and Pulse.

Congratulations to all of the teams and join me in wishing them the best of luck at the awards dinner on Thursday 20th March.


Emerging PR professional of the year:

*   Laura Douglas – Launch Group

*   Mark Yeow – Text100

*   Tracy Yong – Edelman

*   Emma Pearson – Ogilvy PR Health

*   Ishtar Schneider – Palin Communications


Launch campaign of the year:

*   Museum of Brisbane relaunch – Agency North

*   Bonds: Boobs – Mango Communications

*   Xbox One launch – PPR

*   Samsung: Light Up The Sails – Edelman with Razorfish

*   Viagogo Australian launch – n2n Communications with viagogo internal team

*   Fitness First relaunch – Ogilvy PR Health with Fitness First internal team

*   Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth games launch – Javelin Australia


Best use of research / insights:

*   Kronos: Hidden workforce – Howorth

*   IBM: The era of smart – Text 100


Event/ activation of the year:

*   Bookworld – Ikon Communications and Subnine

*   Carnival Cruise Lines: Being Silly for a Cause – Pulse Communications

*   Petbarn: Pet dating – PPR

*   Gumtree Garden – Edelman

*   King Kong Activation at Eureka Skydeck – Progressive PR and Publicity


You can view the full list of awards here:


Susan Redden Makatoa returns to Ogilvy PR Australia

January 16, 2014 by  
Filed under News

Sydney: January 16, 2014: Ogilvy PR Australia today announced Susan Redden Makatoa has been appointed to the role of Group Managing Director, Corporate.  Ms Redden Makatoa is one of Australia’s leading communications practitioners whose specialities include communication strategy and implementation, media relations, issues and crisis communication, media training and facilitation.

Most recently a partner at SenateSHJ, Ms Redden Makatoa has extensive experience working at the highest level with major business and corporate communications clients. Having previously worked at a senior level with several Ogilvy PR brands, she has advised and run campaigns on behalf of some of the world’s largest brands. She has also held senior corporate affairs roles at the Australian Securities and Investments Commission and the NSW Chamber of Commerce.

In her new role, she will have oversight of a number of the companies and product offerings within the Ogilvy group, including leading public affairs company Parker & Partners, employee engagement and change communication consultancy, Ogilvy Impact, and sustainability communications practice Ogilvy Earth.

Kieran Moore, Ogilvy PR’s CEO, welcomed Ms Redden Makatoa’s appointment.

“Susan is an award-winning practitioner who will bring an enormous amount of knowledge, insight and energy to this role. We are really excited to have her on board to further boost our strong brands,” Ms Moore said.

“We see Susan’s role as drawing together our existing strong abilities in areas such as thought leadership, issues and crisis, corporate reputation and media training and housing them under one umbrella so we can offer them as a single, compelling option to the market.

“We wanted someone who would be able to draw on the obvious synergies that exist between the various Ogilvy brands and Susan’s lateral thinking and passion for clear, compelling communications made her the obvious choice.”

Ms Redden Makatoa said she was “stoked” to be returning to Ogilvy.  “It’s an exciting time to be joining, as the team is already doing some amazing work.  We’re operating in a rapidly changing environment, and great results will take fresh thinking and specialist skills” she explained.

“Luckily the Ogilvy team has that in spades, so I’ll be looking to tap into the team’s passion and smarts to kick even more goals for clients,” Makatoa concluded.

Ms Redden Makatoa will start at Ogilvy PR in February 2014.

Ogilvy PR Australia is a joint venture between WPP and STW, Australasia’s leading marketing content and communications group.


About Ogilvy PR Australia:

Ogilvy PR Australia is the country’s largest PR and public affairs agency with offices in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.  It is 51% owned by WPP and 49% owned by STW. For more information,visit our Web site at www.ogilvypr.com.au or follow us on Twitter at @ogilvypraus.

For more information contact:

Sandra Renowden, STW PR Ph: + 61 403 823 218

Howorth Celebrates its 20th anniversary with a fresh new look

December 16, 2013 by  
Filed under News

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Howorth has a fresh new look to reflect its vision to be famous “for campaigns that make people feel, imagine or act”,

“A strong differentiator for Howorth has been the importance we place on storytelling,” said Graham White, Managing Director. “Human history is built on stories, written, spoken, drawn on walls, broadcast and today – uploaded. The brands that succeed in this new world are the brands that can tell their story in an interesting and engaging way. Everything we do is based on good storytelling, regardless of the industry or market you operate in, or the channel or platform through which you tell them.

“The combination of our 20th anniversary, the shifting communications landscape, and our vision to show why and how great ideas and clever thinking pays off, it was time for the brand to have a fresh look. It was time to evolve.”

The key change is the introduction of a logo to sit alongside the Howorth brand name. This logo symbolises Howorth’s belief that great campaigns will provoke some kind of visceral reaction – physical as much as rational.  They have the ability to lift and shift your thinking. They can make you feel, imagine or act. The three circles represent those three reactions. Howorth calls this Thinking That Moves.  Thinking that can move you, your business, your brand, opinions, reputations, people, perceptions or even agendas. This belief underpins everything we do.

Graham adds: “We’re very proud of our new look. It’s clean, modern, maintains our Ogilvy heritage, and embodies our evolving position.”

Are you an ‘accidental investor’ in climate change?

December 12, 2013 by  
Filed under News

Yesterday morning Ogilvy PR Australia hosted The Climate Institute’s (TCI) “Climate Smart Super” panel discussion for the launch of their latest report. Media and guests arrived sharply at 9:30am to listen to an esteem panel including;

  • John Conner, CEO, The Climate Institute
  • Dr John Hewson, Chair, Asset Owners Disclosure Project & former leader of the Liberal Party of Australia
  • Blair Palese, CEO, 350.org Australia
  • Bill Hartnett,  Head of Sustainability, Local Government Super

The new report launched yesterday looks at smart long-term investment. TCI challenges Australians to rethink our superannuation choice and ask where and how our funds are being invested, by highlighting both the financial and environmental risks involved in current superannuation investment.

Currently, 55% of superannuation funds are invested in carbon exhaustive assets. In stark contrast a mere 2% were recorded to be a low-carbon initiative investment. Bill Hartnett raised the point, that investing in carbon-intensive projects only offers limited short-term returns, and superannuation funds should be focusing on long term returns on investment. He attributed this prevalent investment behaviour to the dominant existing investor mindset that ‘Today is yesterday’s long term’. This has to change.

With over $1.6 trillion of funds to invest annually, there is an opportunity to divest funds from a fossil fuel based economy to low-carbon alternatives, which in turn will be more rewarding financially and environmentally.

Dr Hewson spoke about the role boards and directors play in organising portfolios which were fundamentally risky, and our role and responsibility as investors to question our fund managers’ investment decisions. Blair Palese acknowledged that Australia is better represented in the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP) rankings than most, and even more encouraging, Australians are now actively shifting their funds to safer investments. However, the majority of our fund managers’ investment decisions are still influenced by short term thinking.

The TCI report does not seek to play the role of financial adviser, but rather, as stated by John Conner, to encourage “active and engaged citizens, who make climate responsible decisions”, to vocalise their beliefs. To find out more about how to be climate smart in your superannuation investments you can read the full report here


Telling it straight: Brand building

December 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Blog

Building brands is an inside job

Let’s talk about how companies can move their corporate brand further, using the untapped power of their own people.

As we know, brands are built on conversation – one customer experience at a time. They can also be destroyed that way. A company’s own employees can help power and protect brands, amplifying the investment made in marketing and advertising, for a fraction of the cost.

After all, most employees want their organisation to succeed and are willing to help. All we need to do is ask, and involve them.

All employees are potential ambassadors, not only those in customer-facing roles. When the customer value proposition and the employee value proposition meet together in authentic, positive and empowering synergy, the sky’s the limit. Employees will willingly share their experience of the brand they work for.

However those employees that come in direct contact with a customer have an additional point of leverage – they represent the time in a brand’s lifecycle when what the brand promises meets or exceeds what the customer expects.

Think about the brands we manage – can we say with confidence that we know how this interaction pans out?

To be clear, we are not talking about customer service – everyone provides that to a greater or lesser degree. What is important is how the brand promise is delivered, how it is experienced and perceived by the customer. Winning brands don’t just deliver superb customer service – that’s a given – they also deliver a superb brand experience.

After all, the customer builds an expectation based on what is promised via marketing and advertising. The moment of truth is when the customer experiences the promise.

For example, when Ford promises its brand will ‘go further’, the customer probably wants to see a salesperson who is innovative and forward thinking, who anticipates their needs and pre-empts their wants. They offer above-market after sales service. They go further.

Talking of cars, let’s ‘Think Holden’. While Mike Devereux tells the Productivity Commission no decision has been made on its future, employees of the car manufacturer can do nothing but think about what their futures hold.

Employees will only deliver if they feel connected to the journey. So, how do you create the intellectual and emotional connection, so your people walk and talk your brand?

    Your people will tell you what tone of voice and behaviours fit the brand; not the other way around
    If you have a new positioning or activation campaign, share it first internally so your people can complete the experience for a customer
    Don’t be afraid, let your most connected staff share their branded content with their personal social networks; they’ll be your greatest advocates and have their radars switched on to spot troubles early, helping you manage crises or issues. All brands will have them. The best brands manage them.

So it’s time we recognised and acted on what the research is telling us: building brands begins with employees.

Lorie Helliwell – MD Ogilvy Impact

Next Page »