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Industry musings, opinions and thoughts along with helpful and constructive information about marketing trends.

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manor marketing curve

We're ready

 Manor Marketing is geared up to work from home #WFH. Everyone has mobiles, laptops and another screen to use. Everything is online and shared. #RemoteResponse and #BuisnessContinuity is our total #focus for our #clients and our local #community too.

And we are moving into new offices this weekend. It's actually right next door to our current office, but a self-contained building. Almost like a little house. No-one apart from us, will be going in or out. And it's being deep cleaned before we go in.
It's on three levels - downstairs is big and with our six desks, we can be more than 1m+ apart easily. Level two is a bathroom and an office which is the green screen room, as well as a general breakout area.Level three is a kitchen and another large room which is where a massive smart TV is being installed, together with #online meeting facilities.

Why am I excited about the new office? Or even going ahead with it? And why am i #investing right now?

Because we have to protect now and the future. And when we are all asked to stay at home for a long period of time, we're all going to go a bit stir crazy. With or without kids! Our new office will be a safe haven when we all need a break. It's stocked well with cleaning materials, snacks and drinks, and there will be rules about cleaning. And as long as everyone is healthy, kids can be safe upstairs watching Netflix or Youtube, playing a game, getting creative, or revising etc. - whilst we're downstairs ,doing videos on having online meetings. Or frankly just having a bit of a catch up! And no, I'm not saying everyone has to work form the office, but giving people options is the smart thing to do.

This situation isn't ideal, but taking care of your #team, #business and the local community is not only a duty of care, it's the right thing to do. Physically and Mentally.

NAB Show 2020 Cancelled

NAB CEO Gordon Smith has today released the following statement about NAB 2020:

Dear NAB Show community,

As you know, we have been carefully monitoring coronavirus developments both domestically and globally over the past few weeks.

In the interest of addressing the health and safety concerns of our stakeholders and in consultation with partners throughout the media and entertainment industry, we have decided not to move forward with NAB Show in April. We are currently considering a number of potential alternatives to create the best possible experience for our community.

This was not an easy decision. Fortunately, we did not have to make this decision alone, and are grateful to our NAB Show community for engaging with us as we grappled with the rapidly-evolving situation. This Show is as much yours as it is ours, and it is important to us that we move forward together.

For nearly 100 years, NAB Show has provided superior value and the best possible experience for exhibitors and attendees. We knew that if we could not deliver on those expectations, we would not move forward. More importantly, keeping the community safe and healthy is NAB’s highest priority; therefore, we are deferring to the developing consensus from public health authorities on the challenges posed by coronavirus.

We are still weighing the best potential path forward, and we ask you for your patience as we do so. We are committed to exploring all possible alternatives so that we can provide a productive setting where the industry can engage with the latest technology, hear from industry thought leaders and make the game-changing connections that drive our industry forward.

I want to stress that despite our disappointment at how this year’s Show has been impacted by global public health concerns, we are more excited than ever about the future of NAB Show and our relationship with you.

We are grateful for each and every member of our Show community. It is your passion for the industry that makes NAB Show a success year after year, and it is that same passion that will drive us into the future as we look ahead to new possibilities later this year and beyond.

Sincerely,

Gordon H. Smith

President and CEO

CABSAT 2020 Postponed

The Organisers of CABSAT 2020 have announced the show's postponement in the following statement.

"In light of the evolving global developments around the COVID-19 virus, Dubai World Trade Centre has been closely monitoring the situation, particularly as it pertains to our key stakeholders and participating delegations from around the world across all our upcoming shows.

"Whilst the UAE remains completely safe for travel, and has deployed the strictest medical and hygiene protocols, we fully recognise that for some specific shows, we have a high majority of key participants significant to the event’s programme that are unable to travel due to restrictions in their home countries. As such, we have been working closely to assure that our clients’ needs are most effectively addressed, and the delivery of strong international participation considered, in these extraordinary times.

"Bearing this context, CABSAT, the Middle East & Africa’s leading event for content creation, production & broadcast and satellite & distribution is being postponed from 31 March – 2 April to 26 – 28 October 2020.

"Our decision comes after much deliberation in consultation with the event’s main participants and industry stakeholders, who have strongly endorsed our prioritisation of the collective interests of both the global exhibitors and the key buyers from the region. With the event now rescheduled to 26-28 October 2020, CABSAT shall facilitate greater participation across our global communities, enabling more inclusive access for all.

We look forward to welcoming you to CABSAT 2020 this October."

ConnecTechAsia 2020 Postponed to 29 September - 1 October At Singapore Expo & Max Atria

ConnecTech Asia Press Release: Singapore, 06 March 2020 – In light of global concerns due to the on-going Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, Informa Markets, organiser of ConnecTechAsia, is postponing the 2020 edition to 29 September – 1 October 2020 at the Singapore EXPO & MAX Atria. The event was originally scheduled for 9 – 11 June 2020 at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.

Informa Markets will continue to run ConnecTechAsia in partnership with Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA). Mr Ivan Ferrari, Event Director, Tech, Media & Entertainment Events, Informa Markets, said, “Our ability to deliver an event that maximises our attendee’s investment in time and resources is our biggest priority, and after considering all aspects, we have taken the decision to postpone this year’s edition. I would like to thank our partners, exhibitors, registered visitors and all stakeholders for their strong support during this period. We are taking immediate steps to provide all parties with the assistance they require.”

Mr Howie Lau, Chief Industry Development Officer at IMDA, and co-chair of the ConnecTechAsia Advisory Committee noted the decision to postpone the event to the later part of the year. He added, “Singapore is delighted to host ConnecTechAsia in September. In partnership with Informa Markets, we aim to create a comprehensive trade show, where Singapore’s vibrant infocomm industry and innovation ecosystem will benefit from the array of activities.”

“We understand Informa Markets’ decision to reschedule ConnecTechAsia, and are committed to working closely with them and our valued partners towards a successful show. We remain confident in Singapore’s strong reputation as a preferred destination for MICE events. The event is a key highlight in Singapore’s event calendar, and we look forward to welcoming all attendees and exhibitors at a later date,” said Mr Andrew Phua, Director of Exhibitions and Conferences, Singapore Tourism Board.

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About Informa Markets

ConnecTechAsia is organised by Informa Markets, a division of Informa plc. Informa Markets creates platforms for industries and specialist markets to trade, innovate and grow. Our portfolio is comprised of more than 550 international B2B events and brands in markets including Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals, Infrastructure, Construction & Real Estate, Fashion & Apparel, Hospitality, Food & Beverage, and Health & Nutrition, among others. We provide customers and partners around the globe with opportunities to engage, experience and do business through face-to-face exhibitions, specialist digital content and actionable data solutions. As the world’s leading exhibitions organiser, we bring a diverse range of specialist markets to life, unlocking opportunities and helping them to thrive 365 days of the year. For more information, please visit www.informamarkets.com.

Where is my Crystal Ball?

I’ve been asked a lot over the last couple of days to polish my crystal ball and see into the future. Not too far ahead though – mainly the next couple of months……

Coronavirus.

It’s literally taken over all conversations - globally. Which in turn has led me to communicate directly with many organisations and associated personnel to determine how best we can all work closely together and achieve the best results.

Nothing can replace one-on-one interaction with people – be they our partners, dealers, customers, consultants, media – you get the idea. It’s how business works. People buy from people. That simple. Email, phone, even video calls won’t and can’t replace talking to someone directly – right in front of you – and changing your behaviour, tone or even complete topic to communicate with the individual.

But now we’re faced with meetings/trips being cancelled, events being debated and our current behaviour, and infrastructure, questioned.

Manor Marketing is carrying on with all its NAB plans. And CABSAT, MPTS and ConnecTechAsia too. We have flights, hotels, meetings, events and more planned. And we continue to work with our numerous clients on show preparations. But we’re also sensible and therefore, in parallel, we’re working on Plan b.

  • Plan a – Attending NAB
  • Plan b – Organising Virtual NAB

We are working hard (with our clients) to produce their NAB videos, what they are going to be showcasing at the show and customer user stories out to the media, analysists and consultants, as well as their partners and customers via newsletters, HTMLs and webinars. And information is being sent physically, as well as dynamically. More than ever, contact and information is vital and we’re going out of our way to ensure this happens – and then some. And it’s being really well received!

This is all quite standard in many respects, and we’re focused on providing the information in multiple ways so that everyone receives everything in a way they can digest and use. And because it’s important to manage expectations, it’s being done in a positive and enthusiastic manner.

But everyone has to have a Plan b, and we’re no exception. It’s called Virtual NAB.

We have a green screen studio in our office and although have done (and had planned to do more) webinars and videos on NAB already, we will be broadening the scope to enable one-on-one demos and discussions with the media, partners and customers. We also have the facility to do this remotely, via Zoom, and with a green screen, so regardless of your location, you can still get your message/demonstration out there. We are working on a schedule of presentations and demonstrations that people can join in, or watch later. Everything that would happen at a show, just not face-to-face.

FAQs will become dynamic, rather than just a list. Whiteboard explanations and working through individual solutions will be interactive.

This is also the time to reinforce support and services – to give confidence to all that it’s business as usual. You’re not panicking, and neither should your customers or partners.

There may be a short period of virtual shows, conferences and possibly meetings/demonstrations, but it won’t last. And we won’t let any virus stand in our way either!

#CuriouserAndCuriouser #NABShow #CABSAT #BroadcastAsia #ConnecTechAsia

Does PR Really Benefit Sales?

Although sales and marketing (including PR) are regularly put together, they rarely understand or appreciate each other. Traditionally, one is trying to make it and one is trying to spend it.

So, in today’s world of cutting costs and making every £, $ and € count, any outbound communication needs to support sales and sales needs to respect what marketing is trying to do for it.

Let’s take the basics of PR. Getting and taking a good idea and making it set the company apart from all the rest. This idea could be on the back of a product, technology, vision or installation. But it’s not enough to just do the basics anymore and by that I mean generate a press release or article for purely one objective/goal. Getting it published – dynamic and/or print – is still important and a valuable part of the mix. And strong relationships with editors and freelancers will make that happen in the most timely and effective way. But you also need to be able to take that story and visualise its reach in many different ways outside of the traditional.

A good story can be repurposed to suit many different audiences and requirements:

  1. Direct marketing collateral/HTMLs
  2. Website content
  3. Social media interaction
  4. White paper
  5. Case study
  6. Opinion piece
  7. Award entry
  8. Conference paper synopsis
  9. The list goes on

I’m going to be doing a series of short articles exploring the relationship between sales and marketing and how it can be made more effective.

Manor Marketing provides the ultimate sales-driven marketing communications strategy. What we do can be measured and have a direct impact on sales. Which means your revenue. Your bottom line. And therefore, your company’s future.

Getting my geek on with VR

I have been in this industry for more than 16 years and have done everything from working for one of the largest exhibition organisers in the industry to marketing and now, PR. I often joke that I’ll one day be an engineer and then I can say that I have tried it all. I won’t of course, I’m not in the least bit technical and don’t pretend to be, but that doesn’t mean to say that I’m not excited by the technology that I encounter in this industry.

Virtual reality is something that really excites me and is a very hot topic right now. My inner geek screams to be let out whenever I see it!

I was at my local sports club at the weekend and a guy came in with his new VR headset. I sat there quietly observing everyone having a go and seeing the delight on their faces at being transported to another world, all whilst thinking to myself, “This is nothing new folks. I saw it at IBC last year.”

I had the pleasure of getting to try on a VR headset on the Elemental stand at IBC 2015 and from the moment I placed it on my head I was suddenly in what can only be described as a large warehouse, in which musicians started appearing around me from all directions. The singer, a ghostly appearance of a woman, started walking towards me and just before she finished she lifted a large rope from the ground in front of her and started pulling it towards her. I swear I started moving towards her, like she was pulling me, and it was the most bizarre sensation. I knew I was stationary, and yet there I was, inexorably advancing towards her.

More recently my client Presteigne Broadcast Hire was involved in Good Morning America’s “GMA on Safari”. GMA took its audience on a live, immersive 360-degree virtual reality tour of the “Great Migration” in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in Tanzania. Presteigne provided technology, project management, and system design for deployment of its mobile IP Mesh system. Five DJI drone-mounted camera systems and a stationary IM360 virtual reality camera were used to capture the wildlife in their natural habitat. Presteigne deployed a wide area NETNode IP mesh system from Domo Broadcast between the crater and the base camp. The result was nothing short of breathtaking.

Unlike 3D, which came and sadly went away again, VR is here and I truly believe it’s going to stay and we will all have it in our homes. Can you imagine watching the likes of Grand Designs and actually being able to walk around the homes along with Kevin McCloud? I can, and it will happen. Of that I am certain.

I have always felt immensely privileged to work in this industry, because we get to see new technology emerging before anyone else. We get to walk the red carpet and see the technology premiere, except we do it in comfy shoes (or at least you do if you have done as many tradeshows as I have!) and not in posh designer frocks and killer heels.

I look forward to seeing how far this immersive technology will go, and how my six year old daughter will view content in years to come. Probably by VR, on her way to work in her driverless, fuel-free car.

So to all the technologists out there, I salute you. Long may your brilliant brains continue to amaze me.

Photo credit: DJI / Ferdinand Wolf

Booth Etiquette - A guide for your employees at shows & events [Infographic]

Exhibiting at a trade show takes time, effort and costs a lot of money. It’s probably one of the biggest marketing investments your company will make.

If you have a great stand ready to attract visitors then make sure your staff don’t let you down.

IBC 2016 is just around the corner, it’s never too early to run through a ‘booth etiquette’ lesson with the staff who will be your company ambassadors.

They way your staff present themselves (visually and verbally) to visitors has a huge influence on your trade show success.

Here’s our Infographic (part one)

booth etiquette

Inflexible is Inexcusable

Manor Marketing, a full-service PR, marketing and sales strategy agency, is celebrating 15 years in business, specialising in outbound communications for clients, some with in-house marketing teams, and some without. Flexibility has never been more important in broadcast, and marketing consultancy is no exception, so we tailor our approach and level of service to fit what’s actually required, and sometimes have to be brutally honest about what we see as necessary versus the in-house perception. That flexibility and insight has led us to assisting companies, our specialty being SMEs, through everything from new product launches to MBO and VC journeys. Although we built our reputation by working with broadcast manufacturers, facilities companies, and professional associations, we’ve recently diversified into education, health, and even beauty. As I said, flexibility.

But no matter who we consult for, everything we do has a commercial focus. We’re not just about getting print and online articles published. We tailor content to be pushed through multiple platforms, which obviously includes social media, home pages, sales collateral, etc. Our technical knowledge ensures that we can communicate messages from the very basic to the very complicated, depending on the intended audience. However, behind it all, the end goal is to ensure our clients are highly visible to decision makers and therefore, potential revenue generators.

Of course, if you can’t measure success, how do you know you’ve succeeded? Measuring and monitoring communications is a passion for us, and we’ve invested in the latest software to validate the value of every campaign. We also invest in specialist personnel – for instance a digital communications manager – to ensure that all the latest technologies and techniques are applied for the good of our clients.

Now, despite all the technology and technique at our disposal, there’s still no substitute for face-to-face meetings to determine what’s really important and how to promote it. Ideas emerge from face-to-face meetings that can never come out over email, phone, or video call. Modern technology offers fabulous tools, but there’s nothing like a good old chin-wag.

15 years in business teaches you that, sometimes the hard way. But the value of lessons learned surely make life easier.

It also makes life a lot more flexible.

Special Project – Volvo Ocean Race 2014/15

In August 2014 Manor Marketing was awarded the contract to manage Cobham TCS involvement with Volvo Ocean Race, the world’s longest and most extreme offshore sporting event. Not only was Cobham TCS providing financial backing in exchange for branding, access, and marketing opportunities, its technologies would become key components of the racing boats themselves and the multiplatform broadcast compounds established in Race Village stopovers around the world, all linked to the Volvo Race Headquarters in Alicante, Spain.

Manor Marketing was made responsible and became the main contact for maximising exposure of Cobham’s deep involvement in the race over the balance of 2014 and up to (and beyond) the race completion in June 2015.

Pre-race activities included regular alerts to notify the media of Cobham’s involvement with extensive marketing initiatives. This involved everything from site visits with journalists and Cobham partners/management (including New Year 2015 in Abu Dhabi) to extensive social media engagement, website generation and promotion, video shoots, blogs, coordinating the branding, purchase and dissemination of marketing collateral, plus supportive documents and details were part of the comprehensive plan.

Coupled with the hands-on social media and practical marketing initiatives, as many as 20 or more Cobham/Volvo-related press releases, feature articles, Q&A’s, videos, blogs and case studies were generated resulting in consistent, sustained global coverage for Cobham and its technology over 10 months. The result for Cobham was an exceptionally heightened level of interest in the company and the highly successful technology deployed throughout the race.

As JP Delport, Broadcast Sales Manager explained, “We came to rely on Jennie and her team for every aspect of promoting the race and our technology. They became Volvo’s main contact and seamlessly facilitated our involvement. They surpassed our expectations and that is down to not only their professionalism and industry contacts/knowledge, but also their determination, persistence, support and enthusiasm.

“We have strengthened existing relationships and built new ones, and that could not have been done without Manor Marketing.”

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