Communicating How to Reopen Safely
Did you know that September is National Preparedness Month? While we often associate severe weather and emergencies like floods, hurricanes and fires with this disaster-planning event, pandemics also fall within its scope. The novel coronavirus pandemic resulted in many facility closures due to local, state and federal government-ordered shutdowns to reduce virus transmission. After months of little to no business, facilities began to consider reopening as restrictions eased. But what procedures would facility managers, building service contractors and other building occupants follow? How would places like restaurants, hotels and offices make visitors and employees feel safe again?
When the public is seeking answers and reassurance on an issue, it gives communication professionals the opportunity to provide clarity through expert content. And that’s just what Mulberry did for Diversey, a leader in cleaning and hygiene solutions. Diversey sought to further position itself as a thought leader around cleaning, disinfecting and reopening.
Learn how a global approach helped Diversey secure impressive results below.
Developing Expert-driven Content
If you want to promote your brand’s expertise on a topic, you first need to identify one or more subject matter experts (SMEs) who are comfortable serving as the face of your organization. Does an employee have a long tenure with the company and relevant certifications or accreditations? Is there someone who is involved in industry groups or organizations, or publishes research on a regular basis? Perhaps you employ someone who has a true understanding of customers’ needs and interacts with them on a daily basis.
Your expert doesn’t need to have a secondary degree, a PhD or even be a published author. Whether they’re a U.S. product manager, a global healthcare expert or the CEO, you can feel confident positioning them as your SME, as long as they have something useful and helpful to say.
To help Diversey communicate the importance of proper cleaning as part of the reopening process, Mulberry worked closely with the company’s global infection prevention application expert, Peter Teska. Through interviews and secondary research, Mulberry gathered information about how facilities were approaching cleaning and disinfecting in the wake of the pandemic.
These learnings allowed our team to craft two blogs for Diversey’s website and six bylined articles for placement in cleaning industry, foodservice and hospitality publications. The articles focused on steps facilities could take to clean more effectively, protect their employees and make their customers feel at ease. Teska was positioned as the author for each piece to maintain consistency throughout the campaign.
Targeted Media Pitching Delivers Results
Once you have your content finalized, getting your message to the right audience is key. Researching media outlets before pitching ensures that the publication reaches your target audience. Trade magazines or websites that cater to specific vertical sectors are an ideal choice, as they are often a trusted source for information among industry professionals. While you want to make sure that the media outlet has respectable circulation numbers, you can’t place all of the weight on the size of the outlet. Confirm it produces quality content and updates its webpage regularly and that it has a BPA statement to prove it has been audited.
Diversey wanted to publish the content in North America and Europe. Mulberry’s U.S. and UK teams adjusted each article to accommodate cultural nuances and the various phases of reopening in different countries. Because the message around reopening was so timely, it was vital that Mulberry secured coverage quickly but also regularly maintained a consistent presence in the media. Media pitching resulted in online and print coverage in late May within weeks of launching the campaign.
The campaign achieved:
- 48 media placements
- 1 million impressions
- Coverage in the U.S., England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Germany, Spain and more
- Placements in May, June, July, August, September, October and November issues
- Coverage in cleaning, foodservice, hospitality and stadium/arena trade publications
Ensuring Campaign Success
A customer or prospect will appreciate content that helps them solve their business challenges, especially during one of the most challenging times in history. An effective communications program has the power to make this a reality.
Whether you’re communicating about facility reopening during the pandemic or another important topic that will position your business as a leader, it’s important to produce high-quality, expert-driven content and make adjustments for different media markets. Placing this content with online and print media sources, as well as promoting media coverage via your social media channels, e-newsletters and website will help you further expand the reach of your messaging.
Looking to build awareness and credibility for your brand? Contact us today to learn how we can help your organization make an impact.
Jess Messenger is an Account Director at Mulberry Marketing Communications, an award-winning full-service B2B communications agency based in Chicago, London and Australia. She enjoys developing PR campaign strategies and writing for B2B audiences across numerous verticals such as retail, foodservice and healthcare.