There is a great deal of energy at AHA today – right across the country – from our offices in Gibsons and Vancouver to our long-term contractors in Calgary, Toronto and Halifax. Today, we officially launch our Brand Journalism services.
The fact is – Brand Journalism has been around for several years; McDonald’s CMO Larry Light coined the phrase in the early 2000s. There are many definitions out there. Some we agree with; some have a different approach than we do. Our definition can be found here.
At the heart of what we bring to clients with our new AHA Brand Journalism services is the opportunity for you to tell your story to your stakeholders in a credible, engaging and interesting way, using the right medium for the right audience. That also means getting it out to your audience through the right distribution channel – whether that’s a social media network, your website, YouTube or other avenues. (There is also a crucial measurement component and the expectation that content created through the Brand Journalism approach will support the organization’s business objectives, but that’s for another blog post.)
At AHA, we’ve always had a focus on creating credible, relevant content for clients – whether it was for a news release, a targeted pitch, a video interview, video news release or other communication vehicle. It had to be newsworthy, it had to meet news values and whatever the topic, it had to be a compelling story. Identifying and packaging great stories has always been at the heart of great public relations and what we do here at our agency. But now, we’ve put together a world-class team of print and broadcast journalists and strategic communicators. I will be blogging shortly about the Brand Journalism Team. The skill sets, expertise and experience on this team are exceptional and we’re incredibly excited about each person and the combined talents.
Back to the topic at hand. We all know that the world has changed drastically when it comes to communication. A decade ago, the most strategic way for an organization to get its story told was to generate media attention. While media relations is still an important component of what we do, there are additional opportunities to tell your story – directly to your stakeholders. This is where Brand Journalism comes in. We work with you to define goals and objectives and identify great stories about your organization, your brand and the people – employees, your senior executive, customers or clients – who bring your brand to life. We also help you to develop a clear understanding of your stakeholders – from staff to potential and current clients or customers, to industry influencers and thought leaders, to your board of directors, to media, and to government. This includes reaching out in the way that specific stakeholder groups expect or need to be communicated with – and when. We don’t just create great content and walk away. We help you to reach out to your target audience and engage. We measure your success and challenges every step of the way so that we can refine or evolve the program. We also look at how we can effectively maximize and repurpose the use of the content – making the most of your human resources and budget. It’s all about providing great content, great value and telling a great story.
This is the first blog post outlining the value of Brand Journalism and showcasing the new AHA Brand Journalism services. Over the next few weeks, we’ll blog about how Brand Journalism can augment, support or extend your media relations campaign, how much we respect and admire journalists and bloggers (Brand Journalism isn’t about replacing the media), and about our Brand Journalism Team and what the benefits might be to your organization.
There is a great deal of passion behind our new Brand Journalism services. We strongly believe in the value of these services. We are confident in our ability to deliver exceptional, professionally produced stories in a range of mediums that will engage and interest your stakeholder group(s) – not to mention the positive impact it will have on your overall brand’s reputation.
We’d love to hear what you think about Brand Journalism.