Result: broadcast, national, trade and political coverage online and offline. Tamar positioned as Internet experts on 2 x five minute interviews on Sky news and research used as part of BBC’s election campaign coverage.

Client quote: Tanya Goodin, CEO Tamar: “Liberate Media is the most proactive PR team I’ve ever worked with, responsive and (most importantly) accessible & full of great ideas. It’s been a pleasure working with them.”

Overview

Tamar is a search and social conversion agency, combining extensive expertise in natural search engine optimisation with conversion-focused design to generate more online sales for its clients. The agency has five complementary divisions: search, analytics, conversion design, technology and social media.

Tamar has 15 years of digital marketing experience, and specialises in working with major financial services, travel and retail brands, such as RBS, LloydsTSB, The AA and B&Q. Tamar employs more than 60 staff across three continents.

Tamar engaged Liberate Media in mid-November 2009 to revitalise its PR campaign and reposition the brand as a rapidly-growing international agency with a leading vision in Natural Search and social media.

Liberate Media’s ongoing campaign work includes leading the brand-building Tamar Political Search Index project, which is the subject of this case study.

The Campaign

With the UK General Election looming in mid-2010, it was agreed that there was an excellent opportunity to examine in detail how the major political parties were engaging with their voters online. The Tamar Political Search Index (PSI) was conceived as a newsworthy and topical method of positioning the agency as an innovator in Natural Search, with the knowledge and expertise to challenge current practices in the sector.

Liberate Media’s strategic role was to guide the research, analyse the data and draw out the newsworthy elements that would ensure widest coverage of the PSI. The key would be to unlock the strongest news hooks from the mass of information compiled by the research phase that would be compelling for a wide range of media titles, from broadcast, national and trade to political specialists both online and offline.

The goal was to attract maximum ongoing attention and coverage of the PSI series, clearly positioning Tamar as an authority in Search, offering strategic advice and vision not only for the political environment but for all those engaged in Search Marketing. 

How it happened

Liberate Media worked closely with Tamar’s research directors in the agency’s London and Cape Town offices to identify the scope of the research work, collaborating on detailed planning, reviewing and amending the focus of data needed, and confirming the potential outcomes with Tamar.

For the first PSI, the reputation management of leading political figures was tracked over a two-month period to determine how successful the party leaders were at positioning themselves positively online. Google rankings, as well as volume of search, were monitored on leadership names.

The next PSI focus showed that the leaders in Conservative and Labour parties were failing to fully protect their online reputations, with potentially damaging oversights in management of the “personal brands” of Gordon Brown and David Cameron as well as other high-profile party figures.

The third PSI analysed in detail how the three major parties set up their online campaigns and how well, or badly, they connected with voters around the main policy issues, by mapping what people were searching for online with the successful connections through the search engine return pages.

Implementation

Liberate Media guided the publication schedule of the findings to ensure that Tamar received maximum exposure through the PSIs. It identified the key media contacts from its network of influential journalists in broadcast and national newspapers who would be receptive to the PSI news. Liberate Media called each of them individually to discuss the research, the news elements most likely to be attractive for exclusives, interview needs and timings of broadcast/publication.

With broadcast and national coverage assured, Liberate Media then moved to the specialist sectors to widen the coverage, again through direct calls and detailed email follow-ups. Finally, the PSI news was distributed through online newswires and Pressitt, Liberate Media’s social media news release platform.

Results

The online publication of the PSIs in early January 2010 and early March followed Liberate Media’s successful engagement with a wide range of media outlets and led to significant uplift in awareness of the Tamar brand and a rise in the number of visitors to the agency website (www.tamar.com).

This uplift was boosted by Liberate Media’s relationship with Sky News, which led to two primetime slots on the evening news programme, both exclusive five-minute interviews with Neilson Hall, Tamar’s Associate Director: Search, in which he outlined the key issues and offered an expert Search view of the political parties’ engagement strategies.

Tamar was described as “the internet experts” and “search experts” in the course of the interview with website address and the Tamar website itself used as a backdrop.

The interviews went out live on the Sky News channel as well as online on the Sky news site, with further pick-up on YouTube and with links on key blogs.

Liberate Media’s persistent engagement with BBC programme planning teams around Tamar’s expertise in political search analysis has also ensured that the agency’s research will form part of the BBC’s election campaign coverage.

All of this was delivered in the first four months of Liberate Media’s campaign with Tamar, and was so successful that Liberate Media’s research focus has been expanded to further strengthen Tamar’s reputation as the `go-to’ source of relevant, timely and market-leading advice and views on search.

Campaign first-stage highlights

Coverage, including:

–                   Sky News: Two exclusive Tamar interviews

–                   Independent

–                   Marketing Magazine

–                   Campaign Magazine

–                   Reputation Online Magazine

–                   Liverpool Daily Post

–                   Brand Republic

–                   Econsultancy

–                   Tech News

–                   NetImperative

–                   Mark Pack political blog

–                   LibDem Voice political blog

–                   Total Politics political blog

–                   SiloBreaker blog

–                   E-campaigning political blog

–                   My Newsdesk

–                   BBC: election campaign inputs

View all the PSI coverage online via Web Slides.