Frequently asked questions … and more to the point, answers to all the questions we’ve ever been asked on RFP’s. If you’re going to send us an RFP, we’re using the answers from this page – so save yourself some time and just get the answers you need here.
B&LPR has been in operation since January of 2009. For four years prior to that, Liz and Mike operated as B&LPR under Mike’s corporate tax ID number (using a d/b/a). Before that, the partners worked at Bawden & Associates, at the time, the Quad Cities’ largest advertising agency. All told, Mike and Liz have worked together for nearly 15 years.
B&LPR works with clients to develop project proposals and marketing PR solutions that will really address the issues that matter most to the client. All proposals developed by B&LPR respect the client’s budget, timeline and strategic objectives.
The client representative meets with their B&LPR contact on a regular basis to review progress against the master marketing PR plan and to address other issues that may come up throughout the year.
Invoices are submitted on a monthly basis and can be easily compared to the proposals approved by the client to make sure projects are billed within budget. Variances to project budgets and timelines are documented in advance and usually have to be approved by the client before they are incurred.
B&LPR does not have any clients that are exclusively focused on social media. Our philosophy about what we do (marketing PR) builds on the synergies derived from combining communications channels like social media with internal communications, events, brand identity and traditional media communications (i.e. advertising and media relations).
Social media is integrated into almost every marketing PR plan B&LPR creates for its accounts. As a result, all employees are expected to understand how to use it and contribute appropriately to each client’s social media effort.
Tactical implementation of social media programs for clients is overseen by Mike Bawden.
B&LPR integrates social (2-way, shareable) media into every marketing PR plan written for a retained account. These plans are driven by a master editorial calendar built jointly with the client.
Distribution of content via social media channels is done two ways:
First, posts are scheduled according to the editorial plan. These posts serve as conversation starters among constituency groups and usually result in responses from consumers/friends/fans.
The way those responses are handled constitute the second part of the social media program. Responses should be timely, relevant and on-strategy.
While B&LPR hasn’t invested in the development of proprietary social media tools, the firm has numerous subscriptions and preferred agency relationships with a variety of service providers. As a result, the social media “tools” available to B&LPR clients includes in its social media efforts include, but aren’t limited to the following:
Without going into exhaustive detail, B&LPR uses a three-phase process for the development, implementation and monitoring/modification of social media programs for clients:
Phase I – After the development of a communications platform and message matrix for the client, B&LPR works with the client to develop a year-long editorial plan to drive both internal and external communications (including social media). Options are reviewed with the client and a “short list” of social media channels are selected for the launch of the program. Benchmarks are identified and the monitoring/reporting process is clarified to make sure the right data is being captured and relayed back to the client.
Phase II – The plan is fully implemented over a two to three-week phase-in process. During this process, adjustments can be made to ensure consistency of messaging and message delivery over the campaign. Measurements are made on a weekly basis and reported back to the client.
Phase III – After one or two quarterly reviews with the client, B&LPR will recommend adjustments to the social media plant to either improve performance on existing channels and with current markets or to expand coverage by adding additional channels. Messages, responsibilities and tactics may be adjusted at this point, as well.
As far as B&LPR is concerned, a successful marketing PR program (and brand value) is all built on the quality of the messages being delivered. In short: Content is King.
Content needs to be strategically sound, timely and engaging. In other words, it needs to be relevant.
From a quality perspective, content needs to be consistently above average in production value – and that bar is being raised on a daily basis. What this means is the pictures need to be in focus, audio needs to be understandable, videos need to get to the point and the “tone and manner” of all creative needs to be true to the attributes and attitude of the brand.