Stein + Partners Brand Activation’s 25th Anniversary Section in BtoB Magazine
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Stein + Partners Brand Activation’s 25th Anniversary Section in BtoB Magazine. A road map for identifying and becoming an activated brand.

Stein + Partners Brand Activation’s 25th Anniversary Section in BtoB Magazine. A road map for identifying and becoming an activated brand.

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Stein + Partners Brand Activation’s 25th Anniversary Section in BtoB Magazine Stein + Partners Brand Activation’s 25th Anniversary Section in BtoB Magazine Document Transcript

  • steinbrand.com Stein + Partners turns 25 with a total focus on… Brand Activation Which brands in BtoB do you con- But for CEOs and CMOs who brand activation all the way up to sider activated – meaning brands make the commitment, there our own brand name. That’s how From Insight that are “firing on all cylinders”? are profound payoffs. “Activated important we believe the concept Perhaps not surprisingly, the brands aren’t just the global is for marketing leaders today.” to Activation brands most frequently cited by poster children – the Apples and “This isn’t an easy business to Stein + Partners takes a Googles of the world. When you brand new approach respondents were Apple, Google, succeed in for 25 years,” Stein IBM and Verizon. “What was sur- drill into specific industries and notes, “especially given the extent P prising,” states Tom Stein, “was sectors, there are actually quite a of change that is ongoing. But we R Newswire was looking how few brands were cited at all. few. They are all category leaders, have always embraced change. In to significantly evolve its After the ‘usual suspects’, respon- disruptive challengers or category a lot of ways, we straddled the brand positioning – and in doing dents were very hard pressed to creators. They all believe in digital divide. The agency started so to establish a platform for come up with any other names what they are doing with passion growing just as digital was rearing Brand Activation.T his month, Stein + Partners Brand Activation (SPBA)celebrates its 25th anniversary. This other than a few consumer brands like JetBlue, Zappos and Amazon.” and purpose. They are willing to take risks and strike hard its head. Our growth since has been fueled by merging the best tenets It turned to an agency that has made Brand Activation its mis- when opportunity presents itself.special section in BtoB Magazine According to Stein, these research sion and its mantra, turning They are relentless, and relent-is intended to chronicle this results weren’t entirely unexpect- it into an actionable approach lessly accountable.”important agency milestone. ed. “When you deconstruct an Stein points out they also are “Activated brands that enables brand and business“We are thrilled to have this ‘activated brand’, there are many facets. A brand with a clear and all extremely successful. “Look believe in what success. That agency is the newly named, 25-year-old BtoB expert,section devoted to SPBA, andparticularly thrilled that clients compelling purpose that is at stock performance and valua- they are doing... Stein + Partners Brand Activation tions. Look at M&A activity andhave acknowledged our contribu- embraced across the enterprise. outcomes. Look at the respect with passion (formerly Stein Rogan + Partners). A brand with key leadershiption to their businesses by par- and functional alignment – earned among analysts and influ- and purpose.” “PR Newswire pioneered theticipating in the section,” states commercial news release distri- C-suite, marketing, sales, IT, encers – and the loyalty earnedTom Stein, a founding partner of bution industry, and has been product, HR, customer care. With among customers.”SPBA and its president and chief the market leader ever since,” a true belief in the wisdom of its of brand stewardship with thecreative officer. states Tom Stein. customers. With innovation that Activating brands for propulsive power of digital in all“As we thought about the section, 25 years…and counting its manifestations. This is what has “But two things had changed, is integral. And with a beliefthough, our thoughts turned from enabled us to be ‘Brand Activators’ and changed dramatically. First, that marketing can be the brand/ “As we grew up as an agency,”the past to the future – and we for clients in so many sectors.” PR Newswire’s core vertical mar- demand catalyst.” comments Moore, “we positioneddecided that instead of looking kets – the public relations and “It takes a lot for a brand to get ourselves early on and clearly as SPBA Account Services VP Sueback we wanted to look ahead,” investor relations industries – it going good, and even more to ‘The Brand Activators.’ As we con- Guerrero adds, “Brand ActivationStein continues. were in the midst of radical get it going great,” adds Marianne templated our 25th anniversary, is what we do – and who we are. evolution. Second, PR NewswireThis look forward began with a Moore, partner and Chief Strategy we wanted to put this positioning It’s what clients want and need. had rapidly evolved its solutionsimple question. Through research Officer at SPBA. “Once you even more front and center – and Given the accelerated pace of sets, and was offering a newfielded across social channels, the get it going great, you have to so we re-branded from Stein Rogan business, of competition, of tech- generation of multimedia andagency asked this question of senior work even harder to keep it + Partners to Stein + Partners nology, of customer proclivities, socially-driven products andmarketing executives: going great.” Brand Activation. We elevated brands have to be extremely (Brand Activation continued on page S20) (Insight continued on page S21) S19
  • (Brand Activation continued from cover) ties of roaming, messaging and and vertical market campaigns to industries and enterprises it touches. 10active. They have to project networking. At the center of the help activate the brand. “Mobile “It’s no surprise to us thattopicality, relevance and energy. mobile communications universe, communications is inherently Syniverse’s business performanceThey have to start and participate the company keeps people con- complex. Syniverse solves the has been so consistently strong,in important conversations. They nected today and forges new complexity,” says Stein. “By doing or that The Carlyle Grouphave to optimize their messages connections for tomorrow. so, Syniverse enables mobility acknowledged that Syniverseand synchronize delivery of those to play a greater and greater role “Syniverse was able to crystalize is indeed an activated brandmessages across media, channels, in business and society, all over its message with concision and when it purchased it this yearmarkets and countries. And theyhave to do it all in real-time.” clarity,” Guerrero states. With the the world. That’s Brand Activation in action.” for approximately $2.6 billion,” tenetS tagline “We make mobile work,” Stein summarizes.Extreme activation the brand was able to communi- As for its own future, Stein states, Syniverse has put this clear purpose cate its essence to all key audi- “In life, 25 years old is the pointOne of the brands that Stein at the heart of its business and its ences – and to absolutely align at which the future is boundless. Activated brands:points to as an activation exem- marketing. It is driving some ofplar is Syniverse, a global leader its solution focus, its internal en- the enormous advances in mobile That’s exactly how we feel. At 25, we you know onein the mobile communications gagement focus, and its customer/ communications – from mobile see boundless opportunity ahead. It when you see one prospect engagement focus.” Gspace. For mobile operators, video to LTE to advanced mobile all starts with Brand Activation.” iven its positioningcable and Internet providers, and Stein has been an agency partner messaging. Along the way, it is and stated purpose asenterprises in over 160 countries, to Syniverse for four years now, not just activating its brand, it is “Brand Activators,” it’s notSyniverse simplifies the complexi- and has worked to develop global activating opportunity for the surprising that SPBA is frequently asked, “How do you spot an ‘activated brand?’” According to tom Stein, the answer is simple and, though not meant to, may come off sounding a bit glib: You know one when you see one. More specifically, Stein states that when you delve into a brand that is “firing on all cylinders,” there are clear commonalities. An aligned senior leadership team with a clear focus and an absolute sense of the brand’s and business’s envisioned future An enterprise-wide under- standing and internalization of this focus – and a shared sense of an exciting future A set of internal and customer-facing values that have passion as an underlying constant A deep desire to know what customers are thinking, to bet- ter understand what they need, and to frame everything the brand stands for in that context The translation of all the above into marketing strategy, product strategy, sales strategy, customer care strategy, human resources strategy, CSR strategy – all of which are in lock-step alignment A brand that projects relevance, topicality and energy – that is not afraid to take risks, but that avoids gratuitous behavior at all costs A brand that believes and manifests that what it is doing is authentic and important A brand that is a starter of and a participant in important conversations A brand that creates value and makes things better for all its stakeholders – and not just by selling them products A brand that is in demand, that inspires people, and that earns respectS20
  • From Insight to Activation(Insight continued from cover) Externally, the company needed Another key Brand Activation “With the PR Newswire team as positioning we needed in order toservices to keep pace with the evolu- to activate its brand so that it tenet is a company’s deep desire a more-than-willing partner, we move forward,” Meranus says.tion and opportunity,” Stein says. would be more readily and to know what customers are were able to deeply probe for credibly associated with the thinking, to better understand needs and aspirations,” com- The point of activationFurther, the company was enter- myriad new solutions it now ments SPBA’s chief “The special ‘Brand Activation’ing the marketing vertical for the offered. Internally, the company strategy officer, sauce we cooked up came rightfirst time. needed to evolve from selling Marianne Moore. from the insights,” MooreBut the company faced hurdles. a basket of products to selling Stein + Partners’ continues. “Specifically, across“For the most part, we were still holistic solutions. team covered the PR Newswire’s PR, IR andknown as news release distributors. entire waterfront, marketing verticals, everyoneWhile distribution was and is still Enter Stein + Partners Brand conducting exten- was seeking deeper, cross-channelat our core, we had developed Activation (SPBA), which became sive research with audience engagement driven byand launched numerous other PR Newswire’s agency of record internal stakehold- content. But they also realizedplatforms and tools that weren’t in early 2010. ers, market influ- that engagement is hard toassociated with our brand,” says “One of the tenets of Brand Activation encers, thought- come by given the splinteringRachel Meranus, VP of marketing is that a company needs to have leaders, customers of audiences across so many digi-and communications at PR tal and social channels.” an aligned senior leadership team PR newswire’s “engage Opportunity Everywhere” brand and prospects fromNewswire, which is a subsidiary with clear focus and an absolute existing and new platform derived from SPBA’s insight-driven process. “The Brand Activation Platformof United Business Media. sense of the brand’s and business’s markets that PR we developed with SPBA, ‘EngageFrom a product standpoint, envisioned future,” states Stein. Newswire wanted to enter. “The Opportunity Everywhere,’ focusesPR Newswire was all dressed up – “PR Newswire absolutely has this what they need, and to frame agency dove in and got to know on how PR Newswire helps orga-but from a Brand Activation focus, which is job one in activating everything the brand stands for our business incredibly fast, nizations leverage their contentstandpoint it had a long way to go. any brand.” in that context. and they helped to articulate the (Insight continued on page S22) Congratulations to Stein + Partners for 25 years of making brands work. We make mobile work. Syniverse.com © 2011 Syniverse Technologies, Inc. All rights reserved. Syniverse and the Syniverse logo are registered trademarks of Syniverse Technologies, Inc. S21
  • (Insight continued from page S21) selling a holistic program to help Perhaps most impressive are What’s more, the campaign has 25assets in any format – text, mul- companies take their content and conversion rates. Overall, the been honored with numeroustimedia, video – to engage with use our distribution network to campaign has yielded an astounding industry accolades, including B2the right influencers, the right send that content out into the click-to-lead conversion rate of and ACE Awards, as well as a PRSAaudiences, the right constituents, digital ecosystem, while using our 43%. Seventy-five percent of leads Big Apple Award for Integratedliterally everywhere. That means tools to measure the impact.” are new to PR Newswire. Of note, Communications in B2B.across the web and social web, as In the view of SPBA’s Moore, the campaign served as entry point According to Moore, “Brandwell as across traditional chan- Brand Activation is about much to a new market for PR Newswire Activation starts with better (the marketing vertical). Results YeARSnels,” Meranus adds. more than a positioning or a cam- insights. Once brands have paign. “It’s a way of thinking received from this market – fromThis Brand Activation platform led them, they’re off to the races.” about a brand, it’s a way of thinking front-end response rates to leadto an integrated internal/external For PR Newswire, the brand about a business and it’s a way volume to prospect quality – havemarketing campaign. The “Engage now has the inside track. that, we believe, the C-suite and also exceeded expectations.Opportunity Everywhere” campaignofficially kicked off in October senior marketing leadership needs to Stein + Partners:2010 at the Public Relations be thinking about their companies.” An agency activatedSociety of America (PRSA) annual At age 25, Stein + Partners hasconference. The campaign rolled The point of return many milestones at which toout across multiple channels, The PR Newswire campaign has look back. the agency straddledincluding online display, search, been a success on multiple levels. the “Internet divide” – andmobile, social, multimedia It has served as a strong inter- has pioneered innovation whilecontent marketing, trade show nal statement of purpose, and porting key competencies acrossmarketing and e-direct. It has galvanized the company around the divide in such areas ascontinued in earnest ever since. a shared vision. Overall, results brand/account planning, brand“Importantly, our sales people have been very strong across all stewardship and integratedand our internal people are now channels utilized. marketing.speaking differently to custom- More specifically, online advertising SPBA also can look back aters and are having different has out-performed industry many of the “disruptivelyconversations,” Meranus says. benchmarks by 2.6X. Other channels innovative” brands it has“They’re not going in and selling have also been strong performers, the PR newswire brand platform has enabled multi-channel campaigns and activated that have gone on content marketing that have driven brand and demand in the marketplace.press release distribution, they’re surpassing benchmarks by 3X. to category dominance – from Blackboard in the education technology space, to Cars.com in the online automotive space, ‘PeO’: the new ‘DnA’ to Symbol technologies, the inventor of bar code technology that SPBA helped re-position as the enterprise Mobility of Brand Activation Company – setting the stage for its acquisition by and ultimate role as part of the Motorola Solutions business. ‘Paid, earned and owned’ strategies activate integrated marketing campaigns Here are some recent SPBA highlights: In 2011, re-branded as Stein + Partners Brand Activation (fromI s a brand a starter of and participant in importantconversations? Does it create media), and the advances in paid media, which are being driven in particular by hyper-targeting. and dramatic acceleration in per- formance when you take owned media – provocative, topically owned media. As cited in a recent white paper, titled, “Paid, Earned & Stein Rogan + Partners) In 2011, launched the Owned (PEO) Media: Orchestratingvalue and make things better relevant content that a brand Brand Activation network, “Paid media – an integrated, Opportunity,” SPBA analyzedfor all its stakeholders? Is it in produces – and leverage that in a global collaborative of multi-channel campaign – is roughly 50 million paid online addemand because it goes farther marketing services providers impressions booked for all clientsto meet needs? across industries. Ad impressions In 2011, launched Pivot, aThe answers to these questions that used owned content as a multifaceted provider of brand/go a long way to defining an catalyst/call-to-action generated marketing research servicesactivated brand. They also are a 35% higher response rate than impressions without specific In 2011, named Agency ofthe driving force behind the steps owned-content CTAs. the Year: BtoB Magazinebrands and agencies are taking tobetter understand and leverage “Paid, earned and owned media In 2010, named Agencywhat Stein + Partners has dubbed each have their own sets of of the Year: the Business‘PEO,’ or ‘Paid, Earned and characteristics that make them Marketing AssociationOwned Media.’ effective in isolation,” Kohnen says. “But the key to effective In 2009, named Agency ofSPBA has codified its approach to the Year: BtoB Magazine synchronization and campaignsynchronizing paid, earned and performance is putting the content 150 major creative honorsowned media. This approach is and information needs of the in the past 4 years alonenow integral to its global go-to- target audience at the center.”market planning process – and its theLadders capitalized on PeO through extensive social media and content marketing integration. In 2008, president/chiefclients’ success. PEO in play creative officer tom Stein“It’s our foundation, our planning SPBA’s synchronized campaigns inducted into the CeBADNA,” says Ted Kohnen, VP of what clients are most used to paid media campaigns, as well for TheLadders, the leading (Creative excellence inintegrated marketing at SPBA. and comfortable with,” Kohnen as in earned media campaign recruitment solution for profes- Business Advertising) Hall“It’s our going-in philosophy for says. “What’s of note, though, is adjuncts (social media and sional talent, help illustrate an of Famecampaign structures that generate that hyper-targeting, down to the PR efforts).” effective PEO strategy in action.optimal results.” In 2008, launched Kilter, the group and individual decision- PEO as response activator In early 2010, SPBA was named first content marketing practiceSpecifically, Kohnen points to con- maker level – is enabling what AOR for TheLadders’ enterprise In fact, the agency’s data shows specializing in business brandsverging trends – the growing us- we call ‘targeted ubiquity’ at division, which is charged with an impressive 35% increase inage of content marketing (owned unprecedented efficiency levels.” marketing to corporate HR and Since 2001, named one of paid media response when themedia), the ubiquity of the social “What we also have found,” he call-to-action or action catalyst recruiting teams, as well as third- America’s top BtoB agenciesweb and social marketing (earned says, “is that there is an additive is brand-generated content, or party recruiters and agencies. every year (PEO continued on page S23)S22
  • (PEO continued from page S22) by 67% – exceeding its own goal interest in “Pass- short code participants who for penetration and share of port” and spike returned to The Ladders’ booth“The agency’s initial research market. booth traffic. for gift cards to cover theirfor TheLadders found that “Leading up to luggage fees home.what the core benefit recruiters Firing on all cylinders the event, we “TheLadders is a strong examplewanted was a solution that could Kohnen stresses that a PEO-struc- teased the event of Brand Activation that has beenhelp them find the ‘best fits, fast,’” tured campaign has a particularly experience and, driven by the interrelationship ofKohnen says. “They wanted the high impact when major conferences during the event, paid, earned and owned media,”most qualified job candidates, and trade shows are a focal point. everybody was says SPBA’s Tom Stein.as quickly as possible, to drive For example, at the 2011 Society talking about itcompetitive advantage.” Kohnen continues, “It’s also a of Human Resource Management in social media,”The agency also uncovered great illustration of how acti- (SHRM) Conference, TheLadders Kohnen says.another key insight: Most hiring vation is triggered by insight, tasked Stein + Partners with A PeO strategy yielded massive activation for theLadders at This PEO effortmanagers have a “picture” in ignited by outstanding and highly achieving 500 sign-ups for its the Society of Human Resource Management tradeshow. fueled “massivetheir minds of what the ideal can- relevant creative across all chan- newly launched “Passport” solution. activation” fordidates are for different jobs. For nels, and accelerated by a PEO SPBA created a fully integrated the TheLadders. approach that is tied to specificexample, a senior sales executive campaign, called “Passport,” that exhibit space at the conference. There were 1,286 Passport success/activation metrics.”is seen as strong and driven, yet was built around a two-level, The agency ran several online, sign-ups at SHRM, 157% abovealso personable. A senior market- 40x50 jet – TheLadders 747 – social and mobile promotions the goal, as well as thousands ofing executive is viewed as more that served as the company’s featuring owned media to drive booth visitors and hundreds ofof a “mastermind,” with the abil-ity to “think big” while also beingbuttoned down and accountable.Position accomplished,brand activatedSPBA used these insights to createone of the most critically acclaimedPEO campaigns, based on the tagline“Position Accomplished.” Congratulations toPaid media – online and print –leveraged several personasthat embodied the ideal $100K+professional talent job managershave in their minds’ eye whenthey start a search, such as “The Tom SteinMachine,” a CFO who crunchesP&Ls with ruthless efficiency, and“The Hammer,” a top sales execu- andtive who knocks down quotas.Earned media, specifically socialmedia, played a significant role Stein + Partners Brand Activationas well, in the form of brandedTwitter and Facebook pagesfor each of the “characters” onin the campaign, as well asRecruitLadders ‘social team’profiles on Facebook, Twitterand LinkedIn. 25 YearsFrom an owned media standpoint,SPBA research revealed the of Innovation, Creativity andemergence of a new KPI in theenterprise recruiting space – Service to the Business-to-Businessquality of hire (QoH). The agency,in turn, developed a series of Advertising Community.white papers and other assets tocreate a body of high-value ownedmedia around quality of hire. Your tireless effort and insistence on excellence“The synchronization of PEOactivity was designed to lift the have netted you 10 Top Agency awardsperformance of each channel –and to lift overall performance,” from BtoB since 2000.Kohnen states.And it did. The results of the cam-paign exceeded all expectations –both hard “demand” metrics and As one of your clients, we know why!brand metrics. SPBA exceeded anaggressive proforma conversiongoal by 12% and delivered qualityleads at a cost per lead 33% belowprojections. In social media, Your friends atwithin six months, SPBA gener-ated over 7,000 qualified connec-tions across LinkedIn, Twitterand Facebook, enabling TheLad-ders to connect and engage withhighly qualified and targetedindividuals and companies. Mostimportant of all, TheLadders wasable to drive enterprise revenue zde_congrats_b2b_x1a_jnr_v3.indd 1 9/29/11 1:59S23 PM
  • Purpose and Passion: the Active Ingredients Software testing provider uTest accelerates from start-up to sprintT he world’s largest market- software testers, to app developers, the conversation with the which are really neat ideas, to the The two-pronged approach by place for software testing and ultimately to consumers and company’s stakeholders. much bigger and more essential Stein – changing the conversationservices, uTest taps into more businesses dependent on the concept of ‘where the best test.’” about uTest’s products and services, “One of the challenges we threwthan 45,000 quality assurance performance of their applications. while simultaneously positioning out [to SPBA] was that we wanted a He adds that feedback on the(QA) professionals in 180 countries. the company as a leader in a new “The brand umbrella that we had tagline that was more emotionally rebranding from both testerIt started in 2008 based on a category, has paid off, Johnston says. and customer and prospectclosely-held belief that software communities has been “immediately While still early, the companytesting in a controlled lab envi- and resoundingly positive, and has seen a marked increase inronment is insufficient in today’s that’s – in my experience in BtoB – website metrics, particularlyapp-driven world. very rare.” stickiness as measured by pageIn doing so, uTest embodied views per visit, as well as theone of the core tenets of Brand Brand activation percentage of repeat visitors, onActivation as espoused by Stein + gone “wild” the rebranded uTest.com. ThePartners, the agency that recently Another aspect of uTest’s re- launch of InTheWildTesting.comundertook a significant re-brand- branding was the most elusive at TechCrunch was also immenselying project for the software tester. of BtoB goals – category creation. successful based on prospectAccording to SPBA, a brand that “We wanted to harness the inherent feedback at the event and growingbelieves – and manifests – that value of crowdsourced testing,” engagement post-event.what it is doing is authentic and Johnston says. “By extending “From a top-line perspective, itimportant is well on its way to companies’ software testing out has set us up to expand outsidebeing an activated brand. ‘in the wild,’ closer to their users, we of functional testing into security, SPBA helped utest bring its purpose into clear focus through brand positioning, design, website development and thought leadership. help them launch better products.” load, localization and usability In September, this aspect of the re- testing – which has a direct, addi- branding went live with the intro- tive impact on the top line. From “A brand that built wasn’t big enough to fit five evocative, as opposed to the very duction of InTheWildTesting.com, a tester perspective, it’s been not believes what it different testing types underneath,” literal, descriptive ‘On-demand which launched at the TechCrunch only great for recruiting, but for is doing is authentic says Matt Johnston, chief marketing testing,’” he says. “We also needed Disrupt conference. loyalty and affinity within our officer of uTest. “We needed a something that applied and existing community,” he says. and important unifying approach.” appealed to both the company’s The website is a hub for thought Johnston admits that he was not is well on its Said another way, uTest needed community of testers, as well as leadership in the software testing space. It features analyst and surprised by the results. way to being an a brand voice which reflected its customers and prospects.” media reports on In-The-Wild- activated brand.” purpose and passion. And so, He adds, “It was interesting to the company engaged Stein + hear testers say, ‘Where the best Partners Brand Activation. test. That’s terrific because I’m a top tester.’ So, it’s very aspirational.In uTest’s case, the company A purposeful pivot Flip that around and have aturned its belief into a radical “When clients come to us, they’ve conversation with a customerapproach to testing – crowd- recognized the need to pivot – to who says, ‘That’s where the bestsourced testing – that has turned develop an evolved or different products and applications arethe market upside down. The idea brand narrative that unlocks tested. That’s me!’ So, I watchof allowing a huge community of opportunity,” says Michael Ruby, two people look at a tagline andprofessional testers to test outside creative director of SPBA. absolutely internalize it to theirthe so-called firewall – while For uTest, it was a matter of own situation.”disruptive to the status quo – communicating the scope In addition to the new tagline,has proven immensely successful and benefits of its enhanced SPBA re-vamped uTest’s brandwith companies that had been offerings – and putting aside design across all touchpoints, andwrestling with the problem of any assumptions about its target re-launched its website to high- IntheWildtesting.com: a hub for thought leadership in the software-testing space.apps performing differently audiences, Ruby says. light the company’s new testingoutside the firewall than inside “You think application develop- services – and to put its purposetheir own QA labs. Testing, along with lessons on “I have worked with Stein three ers, and you think very technical, front and center.In fact, in the three years since even wonk-ish. But we did some how such testing complements times, so I knew what to expect,” “Today, when brands and customerslaunch, uTest’s customer base has crowdsourcing ourselves among and enhances in-house QA to help Johnston says, referring to en- can directly engage in real timegrown to more than 1,000 compa- the target, and found there’s a companies create high-quality gagements with the agency while via online and social channels,nies, including AOL, Google and definite emotional aspect. First, applications. It also showcases he was a marketing executive at purpose is the difference makerGroupon. business success for most com- the benefits of deploying In-The- both Mimeo.com and OnForce. in terms of brand storytelling panies hinges upon getting their Wild-Testing via testimonials and “When Brand Activation is doneEarlier this year, to accelerate its and engagement,” comments apps right – and right out of the success stories. right, it’s the difference maker,”growth and take the brand to the Ruby. “Engagement is as much,next level, uTest unveiled a new gate. Second, the guys who “What’s most important, and he states. if not more, about why and howbusiness strategy. The company conceive, make and test apps what comes through all of this a brand does something as it is With SPBA’s help, uTest hasdecided to move beyond its origi- are wired. They’re determined to work, is that stories are told with about what it does.” graduated from being a start-upnal focus on functional testing make great apps that will make the real passion of the brand,” brand to one that is sprinting to their customers happy,” Ruby states. With uTest, that meant elevatingto a full suite of software testing Ruby said. “It’s not phony; there’s global success...actively. As part of the major rebranding the brand narrative above simplyservices, including load testing, true care and real purpose what it tests, to what it aims to help Johnston says. “My experience islocalization testing, security test- that launched this August, SPBA behind what uTest delivers for its customers and testers achieve. that Stein raises the stakes, anding and usability testing. What changed uTest’s tagline from customers and testers. The voice delivers.”remained constant was the com- “On-demand testing” to “Where Johnston says, “We broadened the is entirely authentic becausepany’s passionate belief that its the best test.” Johnston says story from, ‘Oh, it’s crowdsourced we’re speaking with the voice ofmodel adds value everywhere – to the new tagline helped to change testing, or on-demand testing,’ the customer.”S24
  • market drivers are dramatically gives BtoB marketers integrated Founding members of the Brand changing the content game: access to a broad range of capabil- Activation Network include: CRM and marketing automa- ities to activate success globally. AAC Global/Interverbum, global tion platforms have become With SPBA serving as the point- transcreation leaders ubiquitous. They are voracious of-integration, BAN gives market- B2BMarketing, a leader in content consumers. ers a single point of access to the data-driven marketing The Social Web and the shift to best independent agencies and Bizo, the world’s largest inbound marketing have content service providers encompassing business audience marketing at their roots. most key capability areas: platform A need and hunger has Brand strategy, positioning Kilter, the BtoB content emerged for information to assist and architecture marketing leaderKilter: Content at the in decision-making – and not nec- BAN: Brand Activation Brand design Middleberg Communications, essarily from traditional sourcescore of Brand Activation goes global one of the premier public such as media companies.A Brand and market research A cross the business marketing cross all company sizes and relations firms in B2B The interconnection and landscape, the ascendance verticals, marketers are Pivot, the highly innovative interplay of paid, earned and Integrated, multi-channelof content to its role as a primary faced with increased complexity brand/market research provider owned media are entirely reliant marketingcomponent in the mix is manifest. and attendant service and resource on content. Stein + Partners Brand ActivationAnd with this ascendance, the requirements. These requirements Content marketing/thoughtneed for brands to step up their Add in new content distribution/ may have to do with the range World Media, a leader in global leadershipcapability to deliver an increased engagement technologies and of marketing services required, media planningquality and quantity of content to platforms, as well as sophisticated with the regions in which these Data-driven marketing According to Stein, “The challengefuel their marketing and thought measurement schemas and services are required, or both. companies face is in meetingleadership machines is ascending platforms, and the opportunity Demand generation widespread and global needs – “From large to mid-sized to smalleras well. to differentiate brands, products and how best to do it. They may companies, most BtoB brands Public relations and investor and solutions via content comes prefer a centralized marketingFounded in 2008, SPBA’s Kilter need to integrate a multiplicity of into clear focus. relationswas among the first content mar- marketing capabilities and also to model, a decentralized model,keting practices specializing in With Kilter, brands can quickly have a global footprint – whether or a hybrid. They may prefer Social media and CSRbusiness brands. Through Kilter, add the bandwidth, capabilities, in a couple of key markets or many to work with agency networks,brands gain a greatly enhanced processes and structure to markets across all theaters,” states Search engine marketing with best-of-breed providers,ability to develop content strategy become brand publishers, Tom Stein. or a hybrid.”and create rich, relevant content and to continually stream Mobile marketing “Through the BAN model, we In response, SPBA spearheaded theacross social, online, search, mobile, content to constituents and believe we can step up to meet launch of the Brand Activation Global media planning/buyingviral and traditional channels. receive back streams of insight any need, anywhere in the Network in June 2011. BAN is a and opportunity. world,” Stein continues.While branded content has been collaborative of best-in-category Global transcreation andon the scene for many years, key marketing service providers that fulfillment This year, you won 33 ACE Awards. Frankly, we’re getting kind of tired of congratulating you. The Business Marketing Association New York Chapter extends its heartfelt congratulations to Stein + Partners for 25 years of success, and for its continued support of the BMA-NYC. www.bmanyc.org S25
  • Brand Activation isn’t just what we do. It’s who we are. Over the past 25 years, Stein Rogan + Partners has activated B2B and prosumer businesses to drive both brand and demand. now, we’re ushering in our second quarter-century with a new name that’s reflective of our laser focus on what we do best – Brand Activation. Stein + Partners Brand Activation’s new name comes with an even stronger commitment to activating clients’ brands and businesses globally – to accelerating awareness, driving demand, creating momentum and positioning them to capitalize on opportunity. Gain and leverage deeper insights. Innovate, excite and engage with inspired and inspiring creative. Create and syndicate rich, relevant content. Synchronize and optimize paid, earned and owned media. Activate your brand with SPBA. See Brand Activation in action at steinbrand.com 2011 BtoB Magazine Agency of the Year | 2010 BMA Agency of the Year8