In working with client CDW and sister ad agency Ogilvy & Mather, Ogilvy PR’s Suzanne O’Leary Lopez knows a thing or two about successful integration of PR and advertising. Here are some tips on how to achieve just that:
1. The best idea should lead the campaign. That’s why all functions, including PR, should have a seat at the planning table. “When everyone is involved, the best idea will emerge,” says O’Leary Lopez. “Without full integration, that often won’t happen.”
2. Collaborate, collaborate. Easier said than done, says O’Leary Lopez. For CDW’s People Who Get IT campaign, Ogilvy & Mather advertising, Ogilvy PR and CDW’s internal and external comms teams were joined at the conference table.
3. Develop a rigorous protocol. Create a master timeline, and make sure you’re tracking toward it. “People can go off on old tangents,” says O’Leary Lopez.
4. Don’t let ads dominate. Regularly demonstrate how PR can fit into marketing mix—enforcing reputation, shaping the business story contextually and creating a viral effect.
5. Demonstrate ROI. PR is one of the most cost-effective ways to lift brand reputation during a campaign, says O’Leary Lopez. “You need to show this via the right measurement tools,” she adds.