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Rebrand puts the 'is' back into 'fibrosis'
Wednesday, 27 March 2013 11:26

CF_Trust.jpgCystic fibrosis is: painful, life-threatening, genetic, incurable. The Cystic Fibrosis Trust rebrand simply is. The organisation’s new identity highlights the ‘is’ in ‘fibrosis’ as a means of raising awareness about the disease.

For many charities, raising awareness of their organisation is the primary objective of a rebrand. For the CF Trust, that was only part of the strategy. The other part had to address the general lack of knowledge about CF itself. The Trust sought not only to increase its intake of donations, but to change the way in which it communicates its purpose.

Red carpet night for corporate video at IVCA Awards
Monday, 25 March 2013 16:52

ivcaawards.jpgThe IVCA went back to the future in its 25th annual IVCA Awards, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on 22 March. With awards in 23 categories, plus a grand prix, and performances by X-Factor-famed musical guests, the evening reached cinematic proportions.

A slew of awards were handed out to The Edge Picture Company, yet the organisation did not secure its typical gold domination as it has in the past. Other winners included a number of Olympics-themed videos, multiple wins for Straker Films, Pretzel Films and for Armoury’s work for the Royal Museums Greenwich. A gold award was even presented to members of the British Army in the communication effectiveness category.

Business in the Big Apple
Friday, 22 March 2013 15:05

breakthrough.jpgMany companies sponsor environmental organisations, some sponsor charities and some sponsor football teams. Santander’s Corporate Banking division developed a programme, called Santander Breakthrough, to stimulate British economic growth by supporting with small and medium size businesses.

As part of the Breakthrough programme, the banking giant will send nine fast-growing small businesses from the UK on a trade mission to New York this weekend. They will engage with the US marketplace and the challenges and benefits associated with exporting.

Corporate video goes mobile
Friday, 22 March 2013 14:35

Qumu_Mobile.jpgOver 240 million hours of video are watched each month in the UK. Mobile video consumption is up 33.7% in Asia-Pacific since 2011. Ad impressions from mobile video spiked by 84% in the fourth quarter of 2012.

If internet-based video was revolutionary in 2006, mobile video is here and now.

In the social landscape, Twitter has been pushing six-second snaps on Vine while Vimeo swears by GIFs as the future of mobile video. From a business standpoint, however, Qumu, a business video platform provider, has announced its expansion into Frankfurt, the UK, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific to meet increased demand for corporate video in those regions.

Transform Awards 2013 celebrates best in rebranding
Tuesday, 19 March 2013 23:32

Last night’s Transform Awards honoured the best in European rebranding, repositioning and brand transformation. The celebratory dinner, held at The Brewery in London, was hosted by the Festival of the Spoken Nerd’s Steve Mould.

Transform, now in its fourth year, saw a record number of entries from in-house teams, design agencies and non-profit organisations in different sectors across Europe. The 56-company strong shortlist led to 18 individual companies taking home a gold award across 27 categories.

A global future for ARM
Tuesday, 19 March 2013 11:22

arm.jpgARM Holdings CEO Warren East announced today that he will be stepping down after 12 years at the helm. He will be replaced on 1 July by ARM president, Simon Segars, a 22-year veteran of the semiconductor developer.

The Cambridge-based tech firm has made its name in creating designs and owning the intellectual property rights for semiconductors and microprocessors. However, through its partnerships with over 1000 worldwide technology firms, it has also become a thought leader in the business world, marketing and communications director Ellie Springett tells Communicate.

Apprentice programme to focus on social media skills
Monday, 18 March 2013 17:08

social_media_for_businesses.jpgApprenticeships in communications have been sweeping the nation over the past few years. Nearly all, however, have focused on providing young people with skills for careers in PR, design, digital and internal comms.

Last week, during National Apprenticeship Week, Tangerine PR announced its spearheading of a programme to address the skills shortage in social media. The first social-only apprenticeship programme will provide young people with the necessary skills for professional creative and marketing work in social media.

Awards celebrate comms from Britain to the Balkans
Monday, 18 March 2013 16:08

propr.jpegLast weekend in Zagreb, Croatia, the best and brightest in European public relations gathered at the 2013 PRO.PR Conference. The three-day conference featured Balkan and British business leaders, communications directors and academics who discussed everything from international PR to reputation management to the communications challenges of different industries.

As part of the conference, the PRO.PR Awards recognise excellence in individual, public and private PR projects. Three were distributed to leading British PR professionals for their work in European public relations.

New life from rebrand
Monday, 18 March 2013 14:31

attachments.jpegInternational maternity retailer, Mamas & Papas has borne a new visual identity that may finally quash rival Mothercare’s attempts at regeneration.

The rebrand, carried out in-house, repositions the retailer ‘at the heart of parenting.’ The visual identity has been given a friendlier, more lower-case treatment than its previous incarnation. It will soon be followed by a rebrand to the company’s physical properties.

What's in a name?
Monday, 18 March 2013 11:16

dominos.jpgWith international pizza companies offering rewards programmes, discounts and gimmicks left and right, breaking away from the pack is becoming more difficult. Domino’s Pizza, a US-based chain, revamped its branding last September but rolled out the new look to its UK outposts only this week.

The branding features a modernisation of the stylised domino, but boldly, does not include the company’s name. This was a conscious move to bring the brand in line with the likes of Nike or Cadbury, brands whose reputations precede them; brands which have surpassed the need for identifying marks beyond a simple swoosh or colour or characteristic object.

Seeking a sustainable model
Friday, 15 March 2013 14:51

radley.pngIn 2012, there was a credibility gap between rhetoric and action, or rather, inaction, in corporate sustainability reporting. This year, however businesses are achieving more in their sustainability reporting, according to Radley Yeldar’s fourth-annual ‘How does it stack up?’ report, by explaining how it relates to corporate strategy.

Sustainability reporting has become an important objective for stakeholders, particularly in large, FTSE-listed companies. However, sustainability reporting, while having made improvements, has yet to fully integrate sustainability with communications and stakeholder relations.

Blazing trails in digital
Friday, 15 March 2013 12:16

guthkelch2.jpgFor a communicator who has spent most of her career blazing trails in digital for organisations large and small, working for Ketchum’s digital arm is a natural transition.

Abby Guthkelch has spent the past two years revolutionising the way Royal Mail does digital. The massive, at times sluggish, public institution met the digital age reluctantly. Guthkelch brought it into the 21st century by overhauling the website, changing the intranet to meet the demands of a non-office bound workforce and tackling huge projects like the Olympics and Movember.

What's in store for Leveson, PR and the media
Thursday, 14 March 2013 17:01

leveson2.jpegThe stakes are high in determining the outcome of the Leveson Inquiry. “If we get it wrong we will actually end up damaging the fundamentals of free speech and free press,” Lord Black of Brentwood, executive director of the Telegraph Media Group, said at today’s PRCA Future of Communications after Leveson conference.

A particularly timely event, as David Cameron has just called off cross-party talks on the implementation of a statutory regulatory body.

A prescription for PR
Wednesday, 13 March 2013 11:53

url_1.jpegThe furor recent over NHS’ PR budget comes just months after the Government increased its spending on communications, particularly for the NHS. In September of last year, the Cabinet Office highlighted health-related communications and PR programmes as a priority for the following year.

This morning, the BBC reported on Freedom of Information requests uncovering 82 in-house press officers and £3 million spent on agencies. A number of critics have called money spent on PR consultants and branding agencies a wasteful use of funds.

IoIC Awards open for entry
Tuesday, 12 March 2013 11:54

awardsimage_2013.pngBest practice in internal communications is exhibited in campaigns and channels that make people take notice. Creativity, strategy and effective evaluation are key to doing so. The Institute of Internal Communications (IoIC) will be honouring the best in internal communications at its 2013 Awards, which are now open for entry.

Awards categories range from traditional categories like print and writing to design to innovation and digital media. The Awards celebrate those individuals and teams that consistently demonstrate best practice in internal comms.

Teaching with tablets
Tuesday, 12 March 2013 11:06

tablets_in_school.jpgAt this week’s SXSWedu conference, News Corp. unveiled a learning-based tablet computer that will be made available to schoolchildren in the US. The Amplify tablet will feature Android-based learning apps. The programme will rely on the Education Department’s ‘Race to the Top’ Programme that is designed to cover the costs of new technology in public schools.

Not to be outdone, Carphone Warehouse in the UK has had a similar plan to disseminate tablet technology to schools across the country. Education secretary Michael Gove okayed the the mobile retailer’s plan to implement the project by the end of 2013.

Toy rebrand is more than child's play
Monday, 11 March 2013 13:08

fisherprice.jpgThe rebrand of a company responsible and renowned for its impact on childhood development has allowed it to exemplify that remit via visual testimony.

Fisher-Price’s 83 year history has propelled it to the forefront of the children’s toy market. The company however, has found that young children, toddlers and even babies are increasingly using such grown-up toys as iPhones and iPads. In developing new interactive toys to suit this trend, Fisher-Price has introduced a new set of brand guidelines to highlight its tradition of excellence.

Corporate social media strategy made easier?
Friday, 08 March 2013 11:38

zuckerberg2.jpgThey say news is dead. They say newspapers are remnants of a bygone era and the revolution Gutenberg began some 600 years ago is no longer relevant.

Mark Zuckerberg has something to say about that. A Facebook revamp has become a somewhat expected story out of Palo Alto. But yesterday’s “personalized newspaper” moment addresses the one thing that has kept newspapers alive throughout the centuries – advertising.

Companies desperate to reach a youth audience through Facebook have been met certain with challenges.

IMF's changing global economic communications strategies
Friday, 08 March 2013 10:26

IMF.jpgSocial media has changed the way the world interacts, it has changed communications, changed booking airplane tickets and buying coffee, among other things. It has also changed the way international organisations respond to shifting patterns of influence.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is no different. The IMF has 60 stakeholders and 188 member states and operates in the world’s most volatile economic situations. Last night, at the CIPR’s annual Maggie Nally lecture, deputy MD of the Fund, Nemat Shafik, spoke on the IMF’s changing communications strategies in a landscape of democratisation, globalisation and hyperconnectivity.

Transparency in transport
Wednesday, 06 March 2013 15:53

bus.jpegTransparency is widely acknowledged to be key in corporate communications. Maintaining openness about spending and funding can build brand trust and loyalty as the public becomes aware of the business’ practices. It also assuages stakeholders concerns about use of funds and budgets.

Capital Metro, the transit authority in Austin, Texas, has long had a dedicated webpage for fiscal reporting – its budget and spending is clearly accessible to passengers and stakeholders alike. It has also embraced transparency as core to its buiness practice. But Capital Metro has taken transparency one step further.

The transit authority has introduced 35-foot graphics featuring x-ray images on six buses in its fleet. Designed to communicate the agency's transparency, the supergraphics exemplify Capital Metro's business outlook in an accessible manner.

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