CCgroup began its focus on tech PR in 1989, when the PR professionals that had launched Vodafone and overseen BT’s floatation joined our senior management team.
Since then, CCgroup has worked with dozens of technology companies to help them create awareness, drive lead generation, build perceived value and position for exit. These have included major brands and innovative challengers.
In particular, CCgroup has been at the heart of the mobile technology industry for more than 20 years. We’ve worked with the GSM Association for the last 17 years, helping to turn a technical standards body into one of the most successful and influential campaigning trade associations in the world.
We’ve worked with mobile operators, major network equipment providers, OSS/BSS companies, device manufacturers, app developers, mobile advertising outfits, industry consultants and more – effectively every part of the mobile value chain.
As the world has gone mobile, we’ve extended our business as other vertical markets grapple with the potential of mobility.
We’ve worked extensively in fintech. Initially with innovative organisations like Fundamo, using mobile to bank millions of unbanked people in emerging markets and dramatically improving quality of life. One of the proudest moments in CCgroup’s history was when our PR campaign was singled out as a major contributing factor to their $110 million exit to Visa.
In addition, we’ve worked with the very first developed markets mobile payments efforts, card manufacturers, card processing outfits, next generation payments companies, core retail and corporate banking platforms, mobile business apps, PoS manufacturers and much, much more.
Enterprise Technology Expertise
Our mobile and wider telecoms experience has enabled us to develop very successful campaigns for companies targeting the enterprise audience. One of the most memorable was for a company called Visto – nowadays branded as Good Technology. Our award winning campaign pitted Visto against the then mighty BlackBerry in the mobile email wars. Visto won market share against a whole host of competitors and dominated the market with its thought leadership.
Besides that, we’ve worked extensively with organisations in the enterprise telephony, enterprise mobility, hosting, data centre connectivity, productivity, call centre technology and VPN arenas.
In the very early days of CCgroup (then Companycare) we launched the UK’s first windfarm and represented the wind industry’s bible – Windpower Monthly. In 2012, we launched a specialist cleantech division to support companies struggling to communicate their offerings in a very difficult environment. Our research and advisory activities earned us multiple award nominations and invitations to speak at All Energy in Aberdeen, EWEA in Vienna and IRENA in Abu Dhabi. In a short period of time we’ve become one of the leading thinkers in cleantech PR and communications.
From a client perspective we’ve worked in solar PV (domestic and large scale), micro-hydro, innovative financing solutions and off-grid solutions.
And this ignores our experience in fixed telecoms and our heritage in consumer technology. For more on the latter, check out our sister agency Escapade.
Example Technology PR Campaigns
Global Awareness Campaigns
In 2011, CCgroup and Arieso, a mobile network optimisation company, delivered new insight into the behaviour of smartphone users and the impact on operator networks. The ‘hungry handsets’ campaign was hugely successful, producing hundreds of articles, dozens of requests for the related whitepaper and some high quality sales leads.
In 2012 and 2013 the challenge was to repeat the story and take it even further, creating global awareness of Arieso and its proposition.
We decided to develop a variety of media angles from the vast quantities of data we had collected and analysed. Both years we launched with three news hooks, one targeting the mass market, two targeting more industry-focused issues.
In practical terms, it meant that our media materials were longer and more in-depth than is normal, but it ensured editors around the world had access to a diversity of data to devise their own stories. We also ran a co-ordinated embargo, focusing on major wires and publications like TechCrunch that drive major syndication and translation.
The 2012 campaign delivered 650+ items of coverage in the first two weeks. The FT, WSJE and IHT/NYT all covered us. We led almost every tier one telecoms news publication in APAC, EMEA and LatAm. We drove a Twitter OTS of 1.5 million+ within a week. Our spokesperson’s 29th interview in three days was live on Bloomberg, prime time east coast, down the line from London!
In 2013 we went further. We secured a staggering 1,485 media articles. 80+ were original, quality business, national and trade media which used various angles but carried our key messages in more than a dozen languages. We also delivered two pieces of primetime business TV coverage (Bloomberg & NBC). Twitter reach just in the first week was nearly 2 million
In 2012 and 2013 campaigns we drove more than 350 white paper downloads, of which more than 10% were categorised as leads.
See client testimonial here.
Content-led Lead Generation Campaign
Tellabs provides telecoms operators with infrastructure products that boost network performance and capability. As mobile operators face increasing pressure in the wake of unprecedented demand and declining revenues, the need for intelligent networks was becoming a key market driver.
Our brief was to make Tellabs synonymous with ‘smart networks’ and stimulate its lead generation programme. CCgroup had to link network performance and evolution to long term business strategy and short term shareholder concerns.
We argued that mobile operators have become “utility” stocks, offering small returns and failing to attract marquee investors. We needed to prove that operators with ‘smart network’ strategies would deliver higher investor returns. We worked with STL Partners to analyse operator strategies and quantify the anticipated returns of ‘smart network’ investments.
Launching at STL’s Telco 2.0 event, our integrated marketing campaign led with the angle that smart strategies could increase cash returns on invested capital to levels enjoyed by the likes of Google.
Almost every major telecoms publication around the world prominently and positively featured the story, carrying our key messages. The social media campaign created ‘overwhelmingly positive’ amplification and the direct mail campaign was well received.
Within one month, the report was downloaded hundreds of times. Critically, the campaign created 30 operator sales leads and reinforced Tellabs’ position as a leader on the issue of smart networks.
See client testimonial here.
Value Build and Exit Campaign
In 2008 Fundamo was a forerunner in mobile financial services, but unknown to many in the international mobile or banking industries. And even fewer understood its value.
Together, CCgroup and Fundamo had to boost short term sales across mobile and banking industries and maximise Fundamo’s long term value for future exit.
With few obvious examples of mobile money success – plus concerns regarding the profitability of Vodafone’s M-PESA service – prospects and investors remained wary.
We had to prove Fundamo had the technological expertise, the business experience and the vision to succeed. We had to promote the achievements and potential of the entire mobile money community. We had to become spokespeople for the industry.
After developing strong messaging, we launched a series of highly successful programmes: joint media activity with customers; thought leadership campaigns for conferences, awards and influencer tours; and countering misinformed stories on behalf of the industry.
For three years, Fundamo executives spoke at every major relevant conference. We achieved blanket business and trade media coverage, outgunning our competitors around the world. Industry analysts profiled us, addressing misconceptions about industry value based on Fundamo’s implementations.
PR helped develop the immediate sales pipeline and shone a light on Fundamo’s visionary leadership, IP ownership and significant business achievements. In June 2011, Fundamo was acquired by Visa for US$110 million. PR was called out as a major contributor to the valuation.
See client testimonial here.
Meet the Team
The strength of any PR or marketing consultancy is based on the quality of its people. We have built and developed a very strong team with deep sector specialisms and expertise across a range of functions.
Our senior team includes:
Head of Telecoms
Head of FinTech
|Paul has worked in technology PR and integrated communications for ten years and has specialised in telecoms for the last eight at CCgroup. During this time, Paul has got to grips with everything the industry has to offer and brings immense knowledge and insight to his clients.||Daniel leads CCgroup’s FinTech division, creating and delivering market engagement strategies for clients and offering invaluable influencer relationships. Daniel has been with CCgroup for eight years and started focusing on fintech six years ago.|
Head of Business Technology
Head of Consumer Technology
|Will brings more than seven years of B2B PR and marketing experience, predominantly in Business Technology, to CCgroup. Prior to joining us in mid-2013, he was a Board Director at B2B tech PR specialist ITPR and The B2B Marketing Lab. Will was featured in 2012′s “29 under 29″ – PRWeek’s annual search for the best young talent in the industry.||Nicole brings thirteen years of experience with a strong consumer technology focus to CCgroup’s sister agency Escapade. Nicole’s run press offices for many major brands, been behind countless creative campaigns and stunts and has a palpable passion for consumer technology.|
Lead Consultant, CleanTech
|Charlotte established CCgroup’s CleanTech division in June 2012. Charlotte specialises in messaging, communications strategy, lobbying and rich content development. Former PR Manager at Solarcentury, Charlotte has over eight years’ Clean Technology and sustainable business PR experience.||Rich has 15 years of experience in B2B mobile and technology PR, and has worked with some of the world’s largest tech companies and a host of specialist, challenger brands. He thinks the latter are more fun – they tend to listen.|
For more details on our senior team, visit here.
The Future of Tech PR
Tech PR has changed beyond recognition in the last quarter of a century, and the only constant for the future is more change.
Tracking the future of technology PR is a borderline obsession at CCgroup. Here are what we believe are the five key trends for tech PR in 2014. Some of these ideas were used in the In2/Holmes Report’s 2014 tech trends forecast where CCgroup was the only European firm featured:
1. Taking control of influencer marketing
Tech PR is in a fantastic position to either kick-start or co-opt burgeoning influencer marketing efforts. In-depth industry knowledge and the ability to identify and build relationships with non-traditional influencers is critical in effective influencer marketing.
In 2014, if tech PR pros have the confidence, understanding and tools to add to their existing knowledge, expertise and relationships, influencer marketing becomes an area with strong growth potential.
2. Sell, sell, sell
Whether it be pushing product or positioning companies for exit, 2014 looks set to be all about sales for many tech PR pros.
Agencies that can prove, rather than talk about, lead generation campaigns driven by PR are in a strong position. PR pros with a strong track record in positioning tech companies for trade sale will find themselves at an advantage as VC and PE firms look for their exit.
3. Buy, buy, buy
Several tech agencies invested serious time and money in research designed to help them and their clients better understand the dynamics of their markets in 2013. This investment will continue with a very clear goal – the addition of science to the ‘art’ of tech PR and the creation of the ‘account planner’ role within consultancies.
We also expect a strong push into paid media as part of sophisticated influencer and content marketing campaigns. Content sponsorship and media buying will rapidly become ‘must have’ capabilities in tech PR.
4. The start of tech agency polarisation
In 2014, the gap between tech PR agencies that deliver traditional PR services and those that focus on more strategic marketing will start to widen more rapidly. There are pros and cons to both approaches, but with a strategic positioning and ambitious clients, PR can achieve more for businesses.
5. Grab your partner by the hand
Serious, planned strategic alliances with a range of complementary marcomms functions, strategy consultants, service providers and the like will be important. With these partnerships in place, the ability of tech PR practitioners to truly lead, innovate and orchestrate multi-disciplinary marketing campaigns is genuinely exciting.
For more depth on these trends, visit here.
How CCgroup can help your business?
CCgroup can help you use PR to achieve your commercial objectives. Not just media relations for the sake of it, but credible, compelling campaigns that impact your target audiences and gives them real reasons to talk to you:
- We provide internal & external perspectives on your market & business; identifying your points of uniqueness and developing compelling messages
- We help you re-frame your audience’s problems to challenge their thinking; linking to your uniqueness as a solution using intelligent, insightful content
- We help your content and your messages reach and engage your target audience via influencers (media, analysts, consultants etc.) and directly (digitally, at conferences, events etc.)
The objectives of our campaigns are always commercially-driven, and often come down to:
- Drive awareness
- Generate sales leads
- Demonstrate value
- Position for exit
We have five specialist tech PR teams: mobile & telecoms, fintech, business technology, consumer technology and cleantech. We are proven in each industry we serve, have a variety of case studies and testimonials and our clients are happy to talk about their experience of working with us if required.
We get up in the morning to help great companies with innovative technologies and bold ideas win the recognition, respect and rewards they deserve. If you want to work with an ambitious tech PR team that has your commercial interests at heart, get in touch.