Macias PR Named Top PR Firm of the Year

By Mark Macias

We aren’t even in the 4th quarter yet, but 2016 has already been a great year for Macias PR.

Finance Monthly just selected Macias PR as the 2016 “Financial PR Firm of the Year – USA.” We are the only public relations firm in the USA honored with this award, and recognized for the second year in a row.

So how did we get it?

I like to say that this isn’t some made up PR award given by other publicists. This award was given by the people who matter most in the world of PR – journalists, researchers and clients. Without clients, we don’t have a business; without journalists, we don’t have media placements; without researchers, in-depth reporting doesn’t exist. All of these people were part of the selection process in naming Macias PR the firm of the year.

How Finance Monthly Identified the PR Firm of the Year

Researchers with Finance Monthly applied a 10-point criterion in selecting the best firms in legal, accounting, public relations, consulting and asset management across Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America and the Middle East. Other big names honored with the award in other sectors include: KPMG for Taxation Firm of the Year, UBS Wealth Management for Investment Firm of the Year, Deloitte for Business Outsourcing Firm of the Year and China Bank for Banking and Finance Firm of the Year.

And then you have Macias PR – the scrappy PR firm that lives with the motto we must out-think and out-work the competition. We might be smaller than the larger firms, but we are more hungry – especially around 12:30pm EST when we go to lunch as a team.

Public relations is competitive, especially in New York. Every year, agencies are forced to merge or shrink in size as the competition gets tougher. But Finance Monthly described it best how public relations is changing. In their profile story on Macias PR, which you can read here, they wrote:

The world of financial public relations is changing rapidly as new regulation and technology disrupt the finance industry.

The outdated PR business model of writing a press release and distributing it on the newswires no longer ensures media coverage like it did a decade ago. In most cases, a press release today doesn’t even land your business in the news section of Google.

Despite this industry change, most PR firms continue to stick with the outdated approach of writing and distributing press releases. They rarely bring creativity and innovation that is desperately needed in finance, but there is one public relations firm in New York that is completely revolutionizing the world of financial PR.

And that public relations firm is Macias PR.

While these awards hopefully bring an extra sense of confidence with our firm’s ability, what ultimately matters most is what I said at the end of this Finance Monthly article, “I have no desire to become the biggest PR firm in the world or USA. I just want to be the best.”

 

Top PR Firm of the Year – USA

By Mark Macias

New York City is an artist’s muse and for creative publicists, it’s equally inspiring. Our team put this video together to showcase our home – the place where we work around the clock to make sure your business gets the attention it deserves.

Here’s a glimpse at why Macias PR was named the 2015 and 2016 Firm of the Year by Finance Monthly.

Macias PR – Gives Publicity and Branding Advice on TV

Mark Macias of Macias PR was recently on Channel 3 in Phoenix, giving publicity and branding advice to personalities and business owners. The segment focused around two mobile apps that were created by Macias PR – Blush No More and The Publicity App.

Blush No More is a communications app that helps people in awkward social situations while The Publicity App helps businesses with a preliminary PR map. Watch the video as our founder explains what inspired the mobile apps.

Is All Publicity Good Publicity?

By Mark Macias

All publicity is not good publicity – contrary to the popular myth. In fact, sometimes even good publicity is wasted when it’s published on the wrong avenue.

I recently had a conversation with a NYC hotel marketing director who was trying to attract business travelers to her downtown hotel. She told me about her recent media campaign that targeted “mommy bloggers.”

When I asked why she was targeting stay-at-home mothers when her targeted clients were business travelers, she repeated that popular PR saying – “all publicity is good publicity.”

It’s important that every media campaign target its audience or you risk wasting valuable money on publicity that doesn’t bring a return. Yes – that publicity with mommy bloggers helped the hotel with exposure it didn’t have, but it would have been more effective if they would have devoted those same resources to business or travel writers.

If you’re a tech startup, dig deep to identify your targeted audience. What news outlets are your customers or clients reading? If it’s a tech B2B, it’s even more important to target the publications and trade magazines to ensure your campaign is successfully helping with your new business outreach.

So the next time you get publicity for your business, take it a step further – ask yourself: did this reach my targeted audience? If it didn’t, you might as well have posted a big billboard on an alley that no one sees.

Macias PR was named the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” by Finance Monthly. The firm was founded by Mark Macias – a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. Macias is a weekly contributor with CNBC.com and author of the communications book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media, which has been featured in the NY Times, Fox Business, NY Post and others. Macias PR has run media campaigns for tech startups, financial groups, service providers, nonprofits and politicians.

Public Relations ROI – How to Measure an Effective PR Campaign

By Mark Macias

There are several traditional ways to measure the Public Relations ROI:

  • 1) number of media placements
  • 2) demographics and reader base for those media outlets
  • 3) increased credibility, which helps close sales;
  • 4) actual sales, which can be measured through links published in the news story 5) and SEO – since search engines now use news stories and blogger comments to measure the value of a website.

I hear the “how do you measure the ROI of PR” so frequently that our team put together a short white paper that goes more in-depth on it, which you can download here.

But there is another ROI of PR that is frequently overlooked. It’s more difficult to quantify but according to researchers out of Motista – a consumer intelligence analytics firm – it’s actually more persuasive and leads to higher revenue for brands.

PR Influences Emotional Motivators

Motista researchers discovered 10 actions or urges – called “emotional motivators” that drive consumers to make a purchase. They included: a desire to stand out from the crowd (or fit in), feel secure, succeed in life, freedom and others.

You might not realize it, but “emotional motivators” are also a subconscious factor in most news stories you read and if played correctly, they can add another ROI to your media campaign.

For example, if you are a financial advisor, you need to continually find new investors. If a prominent news story articulates how your firm outperformed the markets – and grew the assets of your clients, you are achieving an “emotional motivator.” Your news story told investors  they can achieve freedom, success and feel secure by going with your firm.

If you’re a tech startup in need of credibility, a story in Techcrunch can lend credibility to potential investors who might need an “emotional motivator” to buy into your product or service. Likewise, if you’re an online retail startup, like Jet.com, taking on a behemoth Amazon, your media campaign might leverage the “emotional motivator” that connects with consumers who want to be different. How so? By pushing news stories that support how the Jet.com online retail experience and model is different and better than Amazon.

ROI of PR – Big Data Analysis

This ROI might sound nebulous to the analytics driven CMO, but Motista actually used big data in identifying how “emotional motivators” lead to higher revenue. It cited a credit card company that used “emotional motivators” to connect with Millennials for a new credit card launch. New card sales grew by 40 percent and usage increased by 70 percent with those consumers.

Are you feeling an emotional connection to Motista?

As the owner of the top-rated PR firm, Macias PR, I want to pick up the phone and hear more about how their data can grow my business. According to their researchers, that action would classify me as a “fully connected” consumer because it inspired me to inspire others. That’s another component of PR; it pushes your brand into the conversation.

As a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York, I suspect that story I read on Motista was placed by a publicist. If so, Motista got a high ROI from that PR campaign. It not only raised the awareness of the brand to me – but it also raised the awareness of their brand to you. That’s the direct power of PR.

The VLOG below gives a little more insight on how to value an effective PR campaign.

Macias PR was named the 2015 and 2016 top PR Firm of the Year – USA by Finance Monthly. The founder – Mark Macias – is a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. He is also a PR contributor with CNBC, providing media analysis, insight and crisis advice on timely business topics.

 

Top Financial PR Firm of 2015 – Macias PR Selected

Finance Monthly Top PR Firm USA 2015By Mark Macias

During my time with NBC and CBS, I was nominated for five Emmys in five different categories. It felt good to be honored by my journalism peers, but today Macias PR received an international recognition that feels even better than those five Emmy nominations.

The international publication, Finance Monthly, announced today that Macias PR is the 2015 top “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA.” The M&A Awards contained several big named firms, including Deloitte, KPMG and PwC, but Macias PR was the only Public Relations firm selected from the USA.

Every industry and era inspires a business or technology that tries to disrupt the status quo. In a critical thinking profession, like public relations and journalism, I suspect it may take a few decades before robots learn how to gather news and pitch publicists.

But I’d like to believe Macias PR is slowly disrupting the public relations industry, and challenging the PR giants on innovation, cost, strategy, expertise and deliverables. Now, Finance Monthly has validated that belief by selecting Macias PR as the “PR Consultant Firm of the Year.”

The Finance Monthly editorial team of researchers applied a 10-point criterion to select and identify the top PR firm in the USA that included measurements of:

  • Strategic Thinking and Planning
  • Expertise and Innovation
  • Innovation in Client Care
  • Peer Recognition and Personal Achievement
  • Deliverables in the Previous 12 Months Compared to Industry Peers
  • Involvement in Significant Transactions
  • Size (value) of Involvement within Transactions & Deals

Our team always knew that we delivered more media placements at a faster pace than any big-named PR firm, including many of the largest tech and financial PR firms. If we are fortunate enough to earn your business, I believe you will see why our team has discovered passion and conviction, combined with hard work and critical thinking will always outperform the industry leaders in any profession.

Macias PR was named the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” by Finance Monthly. The firm was founded by Mark Macias – a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. Macias is a weekly contributor with CNBC.com and author of the communications book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media, which has been featured in the NY Times, Fox Business, NY Post and others. Macias PR has run media campaigns for tech startups, financial groups, service providers, nonprofits and politicians.

PR for Client Acquisition

What is the ROI of PR
What is the ROI of PR
By Mark Macias

 

What’s the secret sauce to PR? It’s one of the most popular questions I hear from tech startups and business owners who want to understand the process or formula for media placements.

 

That’s like asking a defense attorney, how do you get your clients out of jail, but for simplicity sake, every PR campaign must be unique and tailored to the client for it to succeed with media placements. There is no such thing as one size fits all when it comes to getting a story placed with the Wall Street Journal, USA Today or CNBC.

 

Earlier this week, I spoke with the CMO of a private equity firm who asked me about the process of PR. After I explained how PR works, I turned the question back to her and asked about her firm’s “process” for finding new clients. She said it involved emails, press releases and conferences.

 

Let me compare those three processes – email, press releases and conferences – to PR, as a form of client acquisition.

 

Emails – An email marketing blast is only as good as its list, but what is your personal response to spam? Do you view it in a favorable light? My PR firm has sent out invites to hedge fund/private equity forums, using email services like Chimp Mail. We weren’t selling our services – only inviting people to a free forum that discussed emerging trends in alternative assets. Less than 3 percent of the respondants even opened their email from Chimp Mail. This approach didn’t even give us a chance to introduce the forum because spam filters kept the message out. When I asked that CMO about their ROI from email, she admitted, it didn’t perform too well. This marketing approach will become even less influential as cyber hackers attempt to penetrate more emails via spam.

 

Press Releases – The term Press releases are thrown around randomly in the world of business. For clarity, a press release is not a method for getting a story on the news – contrary to what most people believe. A press release is posted on a PR newswire and no journalist, reporter or producer will go to the PR newswires to look for a story idea. However, a press release can help you with SEO when it is written correctly with key SEO terms. Ask yourself, what is the purpose of my press release before you send it out. A press release can be especially effective for tech startups that need to establish an online presence or put a milestone on the record, but if you’re hoping it will lead to a story in the Wall Street Journal, it’s a waste of money.

 

Conferences/Networking – We all need to network and conferences provide intimate opportunities to meet potential business partners in a less threatening environment. I’m actually speaking on a panel this week at a hedge fund conference in Las Vegas. If 100 people hear me speak and I meet another 100 new people, I will consider it a succeess. But it’s hard to introduce your services on a larger scale at conferences. Even if you bring a large team to the conference, most of us can’t associate a face with a business card after 15. And with some conferences now costing upwards of $8k, that is money that could be invested in a multi-month PR campaign that better spreads your message.

 

PR – I’m partial because I own a PR firm, but I’ve seen how a story in the news can lead to new clients. Mobile apps are one of the best ways to quantify the value of a PR campaign. Earlier this summer, Macias PR launched a communications app, Blush No More, to help position our top-rated firm in the news. One story in the Daily Mail UK led to more than 900 downloads. That Daily Mail story led to interest by Channel 11 in NYC, which ran a TV story on our mobile app. Another 800 new app downloads followed that Channel 11 story. But you don’t need to be in the B2C space to take advantage of PR. Media campaigns can target trade publications, giving your business an opportunity to find new business. Next month, our B2B client will be in Wall Street Lawyer -a prominent B2B Reuters publication. That story will introduce this company to new potential clients that can use their services.

 

Online advertising is another new business approach and for tech startups it can be their first thought for publicity, but a recent Google report showed that roughly 50 percent of all online ad views are seen by robots. You know what that means? Advertisers are getting cheated from their ad buys because companies are paying for a certain number of page views and only half of those are legitimate. Keep in mind, the source of that report is Google – an online advertiser.

 

So the next time  your CMO wants to measure the ROI of the different marketing approaches, think about why we actively solicit news articles and actively avoid viewing ads.

 

Macias PR was named the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” by Finance Monthly. The firm was founded by Mark Macias – a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. Macias is a weekly contributor with CNBC.com and author of the communications book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media, which has been featured in the NY Times, Fox Business, NY Post and others. Macias PR has run media campaigns for tech startups, financial groups, service providers, nonprofits and politicians.

 

Is PR the next Disruption to Finance?

By Mark Macias

Technology has sent the giants falling like dominoes.

Blockbuster Video, Tower Records and others – destroyed after they failed to adapt to technology.

Asset management has remained primarily immune to any major disruptions from technology but that could change soon.

In September 2015, Macias PR hosted a hedge fund and private equity forum where we brought together industry leaders to discuss some of the emerging trends and threats they are seeing in alternative assets. One of the panelists detailed how cyber security is a potential tech disruption to fund managers and predicted it will hit the small and medium sized funds hardest.

But there is another potential disruption that could hit the alternative asset industry. It’s a legislative disruption, called the JOBS Act, which drastically changes the way fund managers find new investors.

I meet hedge fund managers all the time who say they don’t need publicity. But when I ask them: would you want your fund to appear in a Wall Street Journal story? All of them say yes.

One-on-one introductions with investors won’t go away, but now that the JOBS Act allows funds to market themselves to investors via the media, suddenly smart fund managers can reach thousands and even millions of targeted investors with only one news story.

Keep in mind, I’m not talking about advertisements. I’m talking about news stories that appear inside the influential financial publications, like the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal and Institutional Investor Magazine.

Here’s an infographic that takes a closer look at why PR is positioned to disrupt the financial industry.

infographic on benefits of financial pr

 

How to create a media narrative

SxgvBL9zdbQkBrFv13anliGDAsGk5cdpMs7OHcPi_0NX_2VmUzghPlbKHrHlqnLqT8YT=w300-1By Mark Macias

I like to give PR tips on our Facebook page. Earlier this month, a tech startup entrepreneur inspired a post after she said she spent 30 minutes on the phone with a New York Times reporter, but her business was never mentioned in the final story. She never identified a media narrative. It led to this post:

PR Tip of the Day: A great narrative is important when dealing with reporters, but your pitch must always include enough intrigue that the media can’t do the story without you as the expert.

On a macro level, this is similar to what we are seeing right now with VP Joe Biden’s potential entry into the race. Will he run or won’t he run? The suspense is putting Biden in the center of the narrative, which if he decides to run, will give him an advantage with his media campaign.

How can intrigue work to your favor with the media?

Click here to read the media analysis I gave to CNBC and how VP Joe Biden is using it to his advantage.

Macias PR was named the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” by Finance Monthly. The firm was founded by Mark Macias – a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. Macias is a weekly contributor with CNBC.com and author of the communications book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media, which has been featured in the NY Times, Fox Business, NY Post and others. Macias PR has run media campaigns for tech startups, financial groups, service providers, nonprofits and politicians.

Selling PR like a Magician

By Mark Macias

Sometimes you just get lucky.

As a business owner, I am extremely lucky to work closely with the CEO of one of the country’s oldest lending organization. Every time we speak, I learn how to become a better business owner, entrepreneur, publicist and person.

Earlier this week, this CEO led an inspiring speaking series where he explained how he uses “magic” to sell in his boardroom. Not the kind of magic that deceives people, but the kind of magic that allows people to believe in you and your product.

We may not realize it, but if we want to grow our businesses, we must inspire others to believe in our products or services. Tech startups, young entrepreneurs and even experienced business owners must continually prove to potential customers or clients why our expertise will take their business to a higher level. We must also convince journalists to believe in our tech startup or business if we are going to succeed with media placements.

As a former Executive Producer with NBC in New York, I needed to believe in a story before I approved it. Now, as the owner of a PR firm, I need to get other journalists to believe in our clients if we are going to succeed in our media campaigns. And after listening to this inspiring speech, I am going to sprinkle a little “magic” as we try to sell our stories to reporters.

So what is this magic that this CEO shared with his audience made up of business owners, entrepreneurs and sales people? Click here to read that story I wrote for Digital Journal and to watch a video excerpt from his speech.

Macias PR was named the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” by Finance Monthly. The firm was founded by Mark Macias – a former Executive Producer with NBC and Senior Producer with CBS in New York. Macias is a weekly contributor with CNBC.com and author of the communications book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media, which has been featured in the NY Times, Fox Business, NY Post and others. Macias PR has run media campaigns for tech startups, financial groups, service providers, nonprofits and politicians.