Vivaldi founder and CEO Joseph Henry talks to Thai PR web about the success of Vivaldi Integrated PR, and the future of digital public relations in Thailand
What is the background of Vivaldi PR and how does it differentiate itself?
We specialize in content creation, so we help clients build strategies around effective content for all mediums – digital, social, traditional media and events. We create prepackaged stories, including photography and videos for publications to help boost clients’ digital and social media coverage. Also, an impressive writing portfolio sets us apart; we are known for hiring former journalists. We offer clients comprehensive access and relations with virtually all of Thailand’s leading media nationally via Bangkok and regionally in Phuket, Pattaya/ Chonburi and Chiang Mai. More than that we are experts in identifying and working with influencers and online influencers, whether celebrities, accomplished academics, gurus in business or just simply social media magnets with loyal legions of followers. We connect the dots in ways that many others are still trying to figure out.
What are the current digital media trends in Thailand?
The rapid growth of technology (especially in Thailand) is gradually reducing the limit between what we do online: buying, booking, comparing prices, etc. and what we do in real life. Marketers must adapt to these new behaviors. After the multichannel and cross channel approaches, companies are moving towards “omnichannel” approaches for strategies that place customers at the heart of business. The result is a journey, a successful customer experience, and finally success for the company at the point where the two meet. In terms of us as a PR agency trying to help our clients navigate all this, basically all communication channels are available for consumer interconnection, and so we have a natural advantage as a fully integrated PR agency.
What is the tactic for sending press releases to digital media? How can you reach quality digital media?
When planning for multi-channel distribution of content, we SEO-optimize a second version of the press release for web and online media. Whenever possible we will include photos, video and infographics together with the release. In an integrated campaign that involves bloggers, online influencers and social media channels, we will re-purpose the content to match each channel format.
What do you think of print media? A lot of them have been closing down, so how could you adapt yourself in order to survive or suffer the least effect from industry changes?
We are all saddened to see iconic print media closing. Everyone within Vivaldi are good friends of or have friendly relations with many journalists. One important key asset of print media is in their strength in producing high quality written, photographic, graphic and (lately) video content. All of this content can easily be distributed over digital and social media channels as well.
Vivaldi is now offering strategies that encompasses digital marketing, social media management, key online influencers, event and traditional media PR. We are in an excellent position to grow with the changing market.
What do you think of the Thai economy this year? Any effects on event organizers and PR agencies?
The economy looks like its improving this year! Thais are becoming more affluent, consumer demand is rising, tourism keeps growing and there is the growing digital economy that is very exciting. Vivaldi is well positioned to benefit from an increasingly flowing digital economy and from social media growth too, as our clients are often looking for an agency that can offer traditional PR content, digital marketing and social media as well. An agency that is unable to adapt will find it very tough to compete. As for event organizing, the industry is ultra-competitive, but there will always be demand for unique events and activities. Vivaldi’s events tend to be bespoke and part of an integrated strategy we’ve developed for our clients.
What was the key to Vivaldi achieving a Silver Award from the PR Award 2015?
Since 2014, Vivaldi has won Marketing Magazine SEA Asia Silver Award for best re-launch campaign, the US-based Stevie Bronze Award Best International Campaign 2015, and in 2016, the Sports Industry Awards Asia Gold for Best PR Media/PR Agency in Thailand.
The key to recognition comes from Vivaldi’s strategic approach for each campaign. We focus on delivering our clients’ key messages through world class interactive events, online and offline influencer engagements, traditional media, digital content including photography, videos delivered through social media channels, plus paid content and our own SEO-optimized press releases distributed quickly and via quality channels. All credit is due to our amazing clients and to my Vivaldi colleagues too.
How can you manage the direct channel to the target? What is the PR technique?
A precise knowledge of targets through analysis of data have directly and positively impacted on lead generation and conversion on the digital marketing side of our business. Vivaldi has therefore abandoned mass marketing and personalized its communications. We call it ‘lead nurturing’, a mainly B2B practice gradually extending to B2C by offering targeted, useful and relevant content. The most direct channels we leverage to reach target audiences are delivered via digital marketing, electronic direct email, direct social media engagement and through online influencers like bloggers.
What is your recent client roster, and in which sort of industries do they operate?
We have a reputation for working with grade-A Thai and international clients, including Jaguar Land Rover, TNT, Phuket King’s Cup Regatta, Magnolias Quality Development Corporation, Huawei, Singapore Tourism Board, Prudential Insurance, Cartier, ONYX Hospitality, William Grant & Sons, Vietjet and Saint-Gobain.
What is challenging for Vivaldi in the PR business?
The challenges for Vivaldi PR come from three main areas. First, we must work hard to adapt to changing behaviors brought on by a changing digital world. We have to maintain an insatiable urge to keep learning and developing our knowledge and skills. Secondly, we have to work hard to create a company culture and work environment that allows our people to grow and develop themselves to become their very best. Thirdly, the focus is not to concern ourselves with competition which now comes from many directions. We must focus on constantly satisfying clients’ growing requirements in social and digital marketing and delivering the best possible return on investment for them.
Would you say that the growth of Vivaldi is fast-growing, or is it a gradually growing business?
Vivaldi PR’s emphasis is on growing steadily while ensuring healthy margins are maintained.
Any problems encountered while working? How can you solve that problem?
Please see the answer to the previous few questions.
What is your most successful work area in the past 10 years?
Winning the awards and receiving international recognition for work we are proud of is probably the most exciting part of the last ten years. Retaining long-term clients is without question very satisfying and for any agency a true mark of success. However, the most satisfying part is working with Vivaldi PR’s loyal core of Thai colleagues. Seeing them growing to greater levels of professionalism, receiving Masters Degrees, getting married, starting families and going through all the ups and downs that life brings. We have grown the business together and the company could not have done any of the things it has done without them.
How does Vivaldi take care and satisfy clients so they continue choosing Vivaldi?
See reply to question one. Our successes within our core business area is what generates results, and thusly, loyalty and client retention.
How can Vivaldi put the right man into the right job according to customer needs?
The Vivaldi team is strong because we have members from a variety of backgrounds, people from other public relations agencies, journalism, marketing, business, design etc. We are always able to find an account manager who is a good match for our clients based on experience (and teamwork). When we bring different strengths together our team becomes very strong – and brings our clients great results.
What is the response from the media when you send out a press release?
Vivaldi gets a great response from our press releases. We have quality clients who understand the value and importance of the media, and so the messaging is always going to be relevant and newsworthy.
What is the core of working as a PR person?
A PR Consultant has to be Superman or Superwoman, juggling clients’ demands, requests from media, pushed deadlines and more. They must have a positive attitude, be diplomatic and have the ability to handle pressure. Besides all that, they now need to be part PR executive, journalist, event organizer, digital marketer and social media manager! It’s a challenging job, but it’s also fun and rewarding. We are always interested to hear from new candidates who believe they can flourish in this kind of demanding work environment.