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Thefuturestory, crystal ball not required
Wednesday, 01 May 2013 11:47

futurestoryStorytelling is an art perfected, often through drama. Thus yesterday, at London’s iconic Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA), theblueballroom held its inaugural event for communications professionals, thefuturestory. The programme was designed to help companies prepare for what the future holds.

The event included 100 members of internal and external comms teams, digital experts, journalists and the social media enlightened. The conference was headlined by Wired’s associate editor, Olivia Solon, who gave the keynote address. Following that, the group broke up into three workshop sessions to discuss the future of corporate communications.

Corporate & Financial Awards shortlist announced
Thursday, 25 April 2013 14:51

The benchmark event for City communications, the Corporate & Financial Awards, has announced its shortlist.

C_F_awards.jpgCompanies have long been aware of the importance of communicating with the City and those who influence the City. However, only recently has the need to address these audiences with a single voice become a necessity. But, with creativity, technology and best practice swiftly progressing, it is difficult for organisations to know where excellence lies. The Corporate & Financial Awards benchmark and celebrate excellence in all aspects of City communication – to the buyside, the analysts, business & financial journalists, and the wider stakeholder communities that influence them.

Glasgow crowdsources slogan in rebrand
Thursday, 25 April 2013 14:38

glasgow_1.jpgThe Smithsonian Institution claims to have been crowdsourcing since 1849. That’s around 157 years before the term “crowdsourcing” was actually coined and a few more before brands began using it as a means for engaging their Twitter followers.

Glasgow, on the other hand, has been around, in some form, for about 12 centuries. That’s a mere 1060 years or so before it will host the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

The stroke of serendipity that brings these two historic, yet utterly modern things together is an effort by the Glasgow City Council to rebrand the city ahead of the Games next year. The city’s current slogan, “Scotland with style” is to be replaced as part of the rebranding and the City Marketing Bureau has asked Glaswegians to contribute their own ideas about the slogan.

Corporate reporting, now available on Instagram
Thursday, 25 April 2013 13:51

calgaryzoo.pngAside from posting photos of countless plates of fish and chips or your name on the side of a Starbucks cup, Instagramming photos of zoo animals is all the rage. Social media is awash with cute baby otters and long-necked giraffes. Today, the London Zoo is even celebrating World Penguin Day by tweeting hourly photos from their Penguin Beach.

The Calgary Zoo has taken a step toward the integration of social media and investor relations by releasing what is purportedly the world’s first annual report via Instagram. The report features 55 images with corresponding captions describing a Zoo initiative or relevant information.

Reputation in Oil, Gas & Mining conference
Thursday, 25 April 2013 11:41

Rep_oil3.jpgReputation in the extractives industry requires a company to manage its communications effectively, while maintaining a state of constant preparedness for a potential crisis. The industry’s high risk factor makes reputation management of the utmost importance to an organisation’s corporate communications team and to its perception by the public.

Communicate magazine’s third-annual Reputation in Oil, Gas and Mining conference features a half-day of discussions and presentations by industry leaders and communications professionals in the extractives industry.

Building branding into social entertainment
Thursday, 25 April 2013 11:16

iamplayr.pngThe secret to gamification has now been long debated. Brands have sought to prove its worth and point to a tangible ROI in justifying their forays into adding a gaming element to either internal or external communications.

Recent developments point to strategies that help brands directly benefit from their gamification elements. Ovum, a global analyst firm, says gamification works best when incentives are tied to a status-based value system and allows for user feedback. IAB research suggests that gamification can be employed as an R&D tool as well in its ability to track consumer behaviour.

Supreme Court rules in favour of PRCA, Meltwater
Wednesday, 17 April 2013 12:26


Today marked the end of a long road for the Newspaper Licensing Agency and Meltwater and the PRCA’s court battle over newspaper licensing in the UK.

You watch a film on LoveFilm or Netflix or iTunes. You pay for the service. Imagine, if iTunes was not, in turn, paying the copyright owner for the right to air that content. News, while free on many newspapers websites is licensed to the end user on the basis that it will either not be used for commercial purposes or that a fee will be imposed for those who do use it in that context.

Benchmarking transparency in FTSE 100 corporate reporting
Monday, 15 April 2013 12:16

manufacturing.jpgWith 6.3 million employees worldwide, FTSE 100 companies face a multitude of obstacles in corporate reporting. Transparency, both internally and externally, has made huge inroads in the past, however, according to the Business in the Community (BITC) Workwell survey, there is still a ways to go for some.

Overall, FTSE 100 companies scored a 21% in the benchmarking survey for transparency in reporting. The low score was, according to BITC, expected because of the challenges these sprawling and global companies face.

Social media guidance is necessary for young people
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 13:50

parisbrown.jpgJobs in this economy are hard to come by, especially for young people and graduates. This makes the Paris Brown debacle all the more relevant in that, despite whatever controversy continues to rage, one more young person has failed or been failed by the recruiting process.

Surveys have found anywhere between a third and 70% of recruiters are judging applicants based on social media. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have the proven power to sway an employer in favour or to the detriment of the candidate.

Family matters in military charity rebrand
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 11:32

SSAFA_Cover1_1.jpgDeveloping a new identity for Britain’s oldest military charity involved an examination of how the organisation functions and how it is perceived by its stakeholders.

Figtree | Prophet has unveiled a new visual identity for SSAFA (formerly Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association), the 128-year-old charity that supports Britain’s armed forces and their families, in a bid to increase awareness and redefine the organisation’s positioning. Research into the perceptions of staff, volunteers and the countless veterans and servicemen and women SSAFA works with on a daily basis helped Figtree to clarify the organistaion’s most-valued quality – family.

The art of business
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 10:04

dragonrouge.jpgBusiness is many things – challenging, rewarding, innovative, intelligent, plodding – but it is also beautiful. A new book by design agency Dragon Rouge affirms just that.

‘Business is Beautiful’ examines case studies four companies in five areas. The selected businesses range from energy startups in Africa to established players like Rabobank and 3M to Condé Nast and London’s own Zetter.

Branding for the Heck of it
Tuesday, 09 April 2013 14:39

heck.jpegSausages form quite a large part of traditional British cuisine. Cynical humour and a preference for four letter words form quite a large part of traditional British vocabulary.

Elmwood has combined the two for a Heck of a visual identity.

In a food industry plagued by kinks in the meat supply chain and communications woes, the Debbie and Andrew Keeble range of Heck sausages promise farmer’s market quality and farm-to-plate freshness.

The sun will come out
Tuesday, 09 April 2013 13:57

accuweather.jpgThe weather now has a sunny new outlook on branding. AccuWeather, favoured worldwide weather forecaster, has introduced a new logo and brand identity to better integrate its properties in a digital world.

The sunny new wordmark, complete with 12-pointed sun and bright orange type represents warmth, friendliness and trust, according to the weather company. The branding replaces a rounded rectanglar shape logo in an appropriately stormy blue.

Hard hat area
Tuesday, 09 April 2013 11:40

bsc.pngThe British Safety Council is nearly 40 years old and has spent nearly a decade as a government-regulated body. It has a history of overseeing health and safety in the workplace, offering qualifications and awarding best practice in workplace health and safety.

More recently, however, it revamped its visual identity to better communicate its essential health and safety work. The rebrand, carried out by Gilmar Wendt, includes both a logo and a series of illustration-based applications.

CIPR Excellence Awards shortlist unveiled
Friday, 05 April 2013 11:21

scarletabbottOne hundred and sixty of the UK’s best consultancies, in-house communications teams and individual communicators will be waiting on the edges of their seats at June’s CIPR Excellence Awards.

The shortlist for the 29th annual awards has extracted the most distinguished of the more than 700 entries received. Over 900 guests are expected at the London Hilton on Park Lane on 3 June to see which of the 160 shortlisted entries will take home one of only 28 gold awards.

Corporate reporting goes social
Friday, 05 April 2013 10:48

corpreporting.jpegThe U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced this week that social media is now a legally acceptable medium for companies to use when communicating with their investors.

The report stipulates that, so long as investors are kept in the loop as to which platform will be used, a company has the right to disseminate information via social media. The decision follows a 2008 ruling that allows investor information to be disseminated on corporate websites.

Digital Impact Awards open for entries
Wednesday, 03 April 2013 10:19

Digital-Impact-Awards05_1.jpgThe wait is over for digital agencies, digital communications teams and internal communicators. The 2013 Digital Impact Awards are now open for entry.


The Awards, now in its fourth year, celebrate the best in digital stakeholder engagement. Categories range from social media to internal communications to annual reports and encourage entries from agencies, companies and staff alike. 

Financial Conduct Authority - a new dawn for city regulation?
Written by Andrew Thomas   
Monday, 01 April 2013 09:25

fca.jpgOn 19 December 2012 the Financial Services Act 2012 received royal assent and comes into force today, 1 April 2013. With it sees the launch of a new regulator. Communicate magazine spoke to those tasked with reputation management, investor relations and financial PR on what they would like to see from the newly formed Financial Conduct Authority.

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.

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