Here at AMBITIOUS PR, we love keeping up-to-date with the latest B2B PR and marketing campaigns from brands operating in a range of industries. Analysing campaigns inspires us for our own work with our B2B client base.
So, if you need a little inspiration for your 2021 campaign planning, here are four of our favourite B2B PR campaigns that have captured our attention recently …
NBS, the ‘Construction Product Leaders’ Summit’
The problem: NBS is a leading provider of information in the construction industry. NBS needed to raise awareness of Source, a construction product search engine. To do this, their campaign needed to reach an audience of construction product manufacturers and provide them with benefits to using Source and educate them on forthcoming building regulation legislation.
The campaign: NBS worked with an agency to organise and host the Construction Product Leaders’ Summit event. The event brought policymakers, industry experts and decision-makers in construction, architecture and digital transformation together to attend a series of talks followed by networking opportunities, with a big emphasis on how new building safety regulations would reshape the industry. Dame Judy Hackitt, a Government Advisor, delivered a keynote speech on sector regulation, including the Draft Building Safety Bill.
The results: The announcement and promotion of the summit generated coverage from 132 publications with a combined online audience of 37 million people. This included 60 pieces of thought leadership coverage, commentary in the Financial Times and blanket tier one construction media coverage. Additionally, with regard to sales, NBS surpassed pre-COVID targets.
Why we love it: The construction industry is subject to ever-changing regulation, which can be challenging to prepare for. By hosting Dame Judy Hackitt as a keynote speaker for her talk on the Draft Building Safety Bill, the summit supported key decision makers in the industry to plan for the future. By doing so, NBS showcased industry-leading expertise while offering a platform to publicise Source. We love innovative brands that are at the forefront of change in their industry.
Procorre, the ‘Next10 initiative’
The problem: Building on the success of previous campaigns we’d run with Procorre, a management consultancy, we wanted to create a content hub which would allow the company to continue engaging with industry experts in the long-term. The goal of this campaign was to build brand awareness for Procorre within the industry while showcasing diverse cross-industry consultancy expertise.
The campaign: We developed and supported Procorre in launching the ‘Next10’ initiative – a campaign to address issues, trends and opportunities facing independent contractors over the course of the next 10 years. Covering topical issues such as IR35 legislation, future markets, and the wider changing regulatory environment, the Next10 content hub consists of a bank of industry insights, resources and research materials. In addition to garnering press coverage, this campaign offered the opportunity to drive SEO performance with semantically relevant content across a range of industries.
Together, we filmed short video content with Anne O’Donnell (CEO), Matt O’Donnell (Head of Partner Development) and Mark Baggs (Head of Global Expansion) to introduce the future markets, regulatory and trends sections respectively. This also served to raise the online profile of the senior leadership team and offered highly shareable content for social media to raise awareness of the initiative.
The first content launched was the Next10: Spotlight on IR35, where we surveyed contractors and HR professionals to reveal insights on proposed changes to IR35 legislation.
Users were able to sign up, via the Next10 hub, and receive email updates when new content launched.
The results: We achieved over 10 pieces of earned media coverage in the national media, spanning multiple verticals. Thought leadership opportunities with Payroll, Pensions & Reward Magazine, Information Age & South West Business Insider were also secured.
In addition, Procorre received a major nomination as a Business Leader 2019 Awards Finalist.
With regard to online visibility, this campaign drove plentiful traffic to the Procorre site and supportive social content achieved over 260,000 impressions on Twitter and 59,000 impressions on LinkedIn.
Why we love it: Using in-house expertise to generate campaign initiatives presents clients with an ongoing way for them to generate content and press coverage in the long-term. The broad scope of the Next10 initiative means that this campaign will remain relevant for years to come, while awareness of it increases as new content is released.
IBM Global Technology Services, ‘Every second counts’
The problem: IBM Global Technology Services (GTS) unifies business, technology and industry experts to help enterprises to design, build and run their businesses efficiently and profitably. Its clients include major banks, insurers and utilities. However, over the last decade, the brand’s competitive landscape has changed dramatically. Due to the rise of cloud services and growth of online vendors such as Amazon and Google, competition is fierce.
Additionally, IBM’s target audience had changed. Though Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) are still a primary focus, the development of managed services (outsourcing), means that Line-of-business Managers (LOB) can now act with autonomy and manage projects. LOB Managers are now part of IBM’s audience.
IBM required a campaign that would help them stand out from the likes of Amazon and Google and engage with a range of stakeholders.
The campaign: This IBM campaign asked the question ‘Are you really prepared for a cyber-attack?’ with an emphasis on how such an attack was inevitable and only a matter of time for any business. IBM produced an innovative, interactive ‘Every Second Counts’ presentation, with the aim of alerting their target audience into action to protect their businesses. The presentation could be delivered physically or as a webinar.
Working with an agency, IBM produced a dramatisation of a cyber-attack, highlighting how a security breach could affect multiple key stakeholders within a business, with severe negative financial consequences.
The campaign was launched on social media with supportive video content featuring a condensed dramatisation of a cyber-attack scenario.
The results: Within weeks of the initial event, the IBM employee selected to deliver the interactive presentation experienced 5,000 LinkedIn connection requests – a sign of unprecedented interest.
The supportive content, shared on social media, generated over 200,000 impressions and 750,000 engagements.
This campaign opened up new opportunities for IBM as the team received requests to run the presentation at industry events and private meetings with industry influencers. This included an invitation to join a ‘Future of Cyber in London’ roundtable, organised by the Office of the Mayor of London. This is a clear indication of the campaign’s success in raising brand awareness.
Why we love it: We love the interactive concept and the execution of the video shorts is fantastic. The videos instill a feeling of urgency and emotively appeal to a range of key stakeholders.
Additionally, the format of a keynote presentation suits both physical and webinar demonstrations. This offered the opportunity to utilise the campaign material on an international scale.
Qlik’s The Human Impact of Data Literacy Campaign
The problem: Qlik wanted to create an integrated PR campaign to educate businesses about the importance of effective use of data and to quantify the human impact of data literacy on organisations to showcase how they can harness this skill.
In partnership with Accenture, Qlik launched the The Human Impact of Data Literacy campaign. Its purpose was to educate business leaders about the benefits of building a data-driven culture, highlighting that investment in training and upskilling in data literacy is critical and can significantly increase overall productivity and wellbeing.
The campaign was underpinned by an extensive research report, which identified three ways the data literacy gap is impacting organisations’ ability to thrive in the data-driven economy, and how best to overcome these challenges.
The results: Close to 200 pieces of press coverage worldwide. All content was amplified via social with a significant uptick in traffic to the Qlik website via the campaign landing page. A webinar was also hosted and attended by over 4K people, with over 7.6K assets downloaded.
The campaign also included two media partnerships with The Telegraph and The Guardian, with the campaign delivering over 16K page views.
The campaign also engaged with leading data influencers Meghan Biro, Talent Culture and Lillian Pierson, Strategy Gal via a podcast, social and online content. This resulted in over 700 podcast downloads, 17m impressions during a live Twitter chat and 2.5% ER on social posts during this activation.
Why we love it: A truly integrated campaign, it’s an impressive mix of Earned, Paid, Owned and Shared content, which worked together to achieve a great level of engagement.
What makes a good B2B PR campaign?
B2B PR campaigns come in many different shapes and sizes. To maximise the chances of success, your campaign should
- Resonate with your target audience by covering topical issues that affect them in their day-to-day
- Have a natural link to your products or services so you can present your offering as a solution
- Consider employing creative assets and emotive techniques that were once typically reserved for B2C brands. It is now a regular occurrence for a campaign to entertain audiences, or spring them into action by alerting them to a potential problem, to drive engagement
- Make use of proprietary data to offer unique insights and increase the chances of gaining press interest. When producing a report or whitepaper, it’s important to make findings easily digestible, with a breakdown of key points for skim-readers.