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Interdirect Wins Desmond J Smail

Award winning full-service agency, Interdirect, has been appointed by Desmond J Smail to plan, implement and monitor all elements of a full service marketing strategy for the Aston Martin specialists.

Interdirect began managing Desmond J Smail’s social media platforms, SEO activity, PR strategy and digital development including email marketing and the creation of an e-commerce website following consultations at the client’s head office in Olney, Buckinghamshire.

Desmond J Smail appointed the agency following a series of customer testimonials from Interdirect’s widespread list of local and regional clients.

Interdirect’s team of specialists then created an omni-channel strategy that seeks to achieve Desmond J Smail’s objectives of increased sales in servicing, parts for the business as a whole and brand awareness for their sister companies Aston Service London and Aston Sales Kensington.

The range of activities showcases Interdirect’s full-service capabilities in targeting and engaging with target markets through an integrated approach.

Founded in 1981 by Desmond Smail, the company has grown to be one of the UK’s leading specialists in the servicing, restoration and sale of classic Aston Martin models, with two garages and showrooms in Olney and London. The company’s team of technicians possess more than 450 years of combined experience in working with a range of Aston Martins, and consequently have a strong reputation and long list of celebrity and high profile clients.

Lucy Abbott from Desmond J Smail commented; “Our partnership with Interdirect will take the business to new and necessary territories. Interdirect has already demonstrated an incredibly responsive and attentive service; their team listens and advises in equal measure to ensure we are considered and consulted every step of the way.”

This latest win was follows a series of account wins for Interdirect including AGW Fitness and Making a Business of Tourism in January 2015.

To find out more follow Desmond J Smail on Twitter or like them on Facebook.

ID Recruits Louisa Breakell

Interdirect is pleased to introduce its latest recruit to the online marketing team, expanding one of the agency’s busiest departments.

Louisa Breakell joins ID having previously worked for an international SEO agency, as well as the communications department of the European Commission in Brussels, giving her a strong background in quality content, search engine algorithms and the latest in online mar-comms practices.

We posed some hard-hitting questions to the lovely Louisa help you learn more about her…

Born and bred: Much like my professional life, I was a bit of a jet-setter as a babe! But I’d have to say born and bred in Greenwich, South-East London.

Favourite food: Anything that’s good for you but doesn’t taste like it. The search continues…

Pub-Friday beverage of choice: Gin martini (with some twisty lemon peel please)!

Name one thing on your bucket list: I’m heli-skiing next winter – that’ll be a huge “check”!

First impressions of ID: forward-thinking. My first few months have been fantastic - I’m looking forward to achieving my 2015 goals alongside those of the agency.

The thing I love the most about my job is: No day is the same! I love the mixed pace between regular and ad hoc clients and campaigns. And the team…

When I’m not at ID, you’ll find me: in the gym, fawning over ski holidays, or enjoying a glass of wine with friends and family.

Something you might not know about me: I’m fluent in French, having lived and worked in French speaking countries for four years. I’m also a published child author and have an unhealthy obsession with peanut butter.

Contact Louisa on lousia.breakell@interdirect.co.uk.

YouTube Turns 10 Having Changed the Online World

You don’t have to be a parent to notice that YouTube is most certainly the fastest growing ten year old you’ve ever seen. Born in February 2005, parents Chad Hurley, Steve Chan and Jawed Karim had no idea how important their baby would grow to be.


At just 10 years old, it’s fair to say that none of us are quick enough to keep up with the video hosting site’s appetite, or that of its 1 billion viewers who watch hundreds of millions of hours’ worth of content every day. Today’s market want to watch the things they want, wherever they want, share the things they want to share whenever they want, and interact with each other while doing it. 


With 300 hours of video uploaded every minute, it’s impossible for marketers to ignore the opportunity that YouTube presents to communicate with consumers in a medium they can’t seem to get enough of. Where text, sound and even image marketing falls down against YouTube is the ease with which users can digest information: a picture might paint 1,000 words, but one minute of video is worth 1.8 million words says Dr James McQuivey from Forrester Research.


To a large extent, YouTube has also taken over where TV couldn’t adapt: we now want tailored ads, high res video on any device, and above all – choice. Although tricks such as geo-targeting, time-sensitive advertising and weather-dependeant ads are nothing new to the world of television, all can be “suped up” on online platforms such as YouTube, which allow advertisers to zero hone in on target customers, right down to their personal interests, and offer them a choice of adverts based on their favourite foods, colours, or hobbies.


What’s even better, especially for the business bean counters, is that you’re only paying when viewers truly watch your ad through the promoted link as opposed to static banner ads on Twitter and Facebook which may be seen but never acted on.


Whilst content sharing is no new craze, YouTube has pushed marketers and advertisers to really change the way they display and share information – to get out of the office chair and film content that can’t be regurgitated from elsewhere.


Perhaps the point that hits home, if you ask me, is the impact YouTube has on the identities of its community. Their vloggers aren’t just vloggers, they’re “YouTubers”. YouTube has become a professional identity, so I ask – where are the millions of self-acclaimed and proud “Tweeters” and “Facebookers”?

Interdirect Wins AGW Fitness Social Media

Award-winning PR, marketing and digital agency, Interdirect, has been chosen by AGW Fitness to handle all social media activity for the Towcester-based gym. The appointment, which commenced in January, will cover social media strategy and management as well as marketing consultation.

Interdirect was recommended to the company by existing clients, bearing testament to the team’s demonstrated strengths in social media strategy and implementation. Among AGW’s goals are heightened brand awareness and an increase in membership sales, both of which Interdirect will seek to achieve through using all available channels to AGW’s advantage.

Launched in November 2012 by Adam Wilkinson, AGW Fitness is one of the area’s four gyms, offering monthly memberships, classes, personal training and physiotherapy in a state-of-the-art centre. The business has grown quickly since opening, now employing three full time personal trainers and fast attracting the attention of many local media including Northampton Chronicle & Echo.

Speaking of the partnership, Adam Wilkinson said; “We’re excited about the additional outreach Interdirect’s social strategy will bring AGW Fitness, enabling us to be more connected to our customers and spread the word about the gym’s local and regional offering. We’ve seen huge strides forward in the last month thanks to ID’s innovative strategies and campaigns and look forward to what the future has in store!”

This latest win adds to Interdirect’s expanding list of regional clients who benefit from the agency’s online marketing services.

To find out more follow AGW on Twitter or like the gym on Facebook.

PR Pros Still Number One Resource for News

Last week our PR and online marketing team attended a webinar hosted by Mark Frankel, assistant editor of social news at the BBC, where the all-important question was discussed: “what is the effect in recent years of social media on journalism?”

The discussion was prompted by the findings of recent research by Cision and Canterbury Christ Church University, which asked more than 450 journalists and media professionals their views on social media in relation to their work, andwho better to speak on behalf of this mass audience than the man who runs one of the largest journalistic social media channels in the world?

From Mark’s experience, the tools used by news breakers have changed – no doubt – but their job has not been transferred to social media, an opinion corroborated by the research findings.

For breaking news, the BBC uses predominantly Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to reach its target audiences, however in recent years focus on social media has become, for Mark, more  results driven as opposed to creating the loudest channel possible, much like ID’s approach to social media.

Regardless of whether other news groups are as social savvy as the BBC, journalists certainly spend less time on social media than in previous years, with numbers of professionals using social media for 4-8 hours a day halving in the last two years.

Although social media as a method of sourcing information has increased, PR professionals are still the number one resource for distributing trustworthy, high quality content that is sourced by credible methods. This is certainly in part due to the lack of objectivity and impartiality that tends to feature on social media, and may also be due to fears surrounding privacy/data protection which have been a point of contention in recent years.

 

As with our own best practice principles, Mark commented that the BBC also calculates social media ROI on engagement, not followers and likes alone. Their aim is to compliment the social experience rather than regurgitating information from other sources for users to “graze on”. It’s now about getting into conversations that were not open to the world before – an initiative which has shown huge success in recent months.

The BBC launched an Ebola service on Whatsapp in October 2014, offering breaking alerts, advice and information to the people of West Africa in a closed network. The popularity of the service demonstrates the demand for private, targeted conversations by social media users all over the world.

These spaces, where users are not as intimidated to make their opinions known, present huge opportunities for businesses, accessing a concentration of individuals with the same interests. Some are already catching on, with targeted Q&A sessions as an example.

Journalists’ role in society as key providers of news and information remains significant, and

thus they continue to be central for PR professionals in reaching out and communicating in an

increasingly ‘noisy’ world.

 

The study predicts that niche channels will become more influential with journalists in the coming years, and therefore although average time spent using social media will remain steady, the way these platforms are used will become more efficient and more embedded in the journalist’s day.

 

 

Interdirect Chosen as Communications Partner for Making a Business of Tourism 2015

Making a Business of Tourism, Millbrook Venues, 27 March 2015

Interdirect is proud to announce it has been chosen to be part the organising committee for Making a Business of Tourism.

The expo, created by Destination Milton Keynes, Experience Bedfordshire, the Tourism Partnership and supported by SEMLEP, will take place at Millbrook Venues on 27 March 2015 and is hoped to become a must attend event in the business and tourism calendar.

The free to attend event will provide an ideal opportunity to meet buyers from key local tourist attractions, hotels, restaurants, suppliers and independent businesses, network and hear advice from key industry experts.

Having worked with Destination Milton Keynes for a number of years, Interdirect was chosen as the communications partner for the expo to create a bespoke website using its advanced content management system SiteMachine, devise an email campaign to target exhibitors and visitors, manage social media output and coordinate all PR activity.

Making a Business of Tourism has also teamed up with the Milton Keynes College's new creative studio, The Design House. The student-led facility, which offers graphic design and photography services to local businesses, has designed the logo and brand identity for the event.
Making a Business of Tourism logo, designed by MK College's Design House

Viviane Vayssieres, CEO of Experience Bedfordshire said: “Following the success of a similar exhibition held in 2013, we have identified a huge demand for this type of event in the region. Working with Destination MK and Interdirect will enable us to take the event to the next level and offer exhibitors and visitors from both counties the opportunity to network and share their knowledge, experience and best practice.

To find out more, visit www.biztourism.co.uk, follow @biztourism on Twitter, visit the Facebook event page or join the LinkedIn group.