How do you maximise return on investment from your PR and public relations activity? By investing time at the outset of a PR campaign to ensure your messages will engage your target media and resonate with your audience, as Lucy Wharton, PR Executive at V Formation explains.
PR is a highly valuable and essential tool for any business, and a robust PR strategy sits at the heart of what you say, how and when you say it to your customers, your stakeholders, your people and the media, and plays a key role in maintaining and enhancing the reputation of your business, but PR has had a difficult history of trying to justify its worth.
The measurement of PR has, historically, been a tricky task, but sophisticated PR analytics tools such as Moz Pro and Meltwater now allow for the true impact of PR activities to be qualified, including the reach of coverage, backlinks provided by online media and increases in traffic to your website.
The V Formation PR team understands the importance of demonstrating return on investment in PR, particularly for clients who may need to persuade the decision-makers in their businesses that it is a worthwhile activity, and will benefit the business in the long-term.
By understanding your target media, and drawing on our relationships with media across a wide variety of sectors and geographic regions, we deliver proactive and reactive PR campaigns, by creating stories and news that will generate powerful publicity and profile for your business, online and in print.
V Formation’s PR team recently worked with pharmaceutical contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO), Upperton Pharma Solutions, on the creation and delivery of a mini campaign to announce their success in passing inspection by the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Upperton’s story featured on 10 top-tier, high domain authority online media sites, with 35,000 estimated coverage views, 18 social shares and multiple backlinks to its website.
Of the PR project, Paul Kelsall, Director of Clinical Trials Manufacturing, said:
“V Formation played a pivotal role in enabling us to deliver the strategic message we were looking for and to get access to the media platforms we were looking for. At such a critical time for our business, we wanted to deliver our message not only to the national and international pharmaceutical sector but also to the local audience which provides the basis of our talented team. V Formation provided a professional service, quickly understanding our business needs and assisting us to maximise the opportunities that were available to us.”
Founded in 1999, Upperton has a long track record in overcoming formulation challenges and taking products from early feasibility batches to Phase II and beyond.
Upperton’s core business was in research and development at BioCity, but through negotiations with its clients, it found they wanted an end-to-end service, going from early stage concept right through to the manufacture of clinical product for clinical trials.
After undergoing rigorous procedures to show MHRA that it complied with EU good manufacturing (GMP) and passing regular GMP inspections of its site, Upperton successfully qualified for a manufacturer licence.
A significant achievement for the business and its wider business strategy, securing MHRA approval provides Upperton with the necessary licenses for manufacture, downstream processing into capsules and tablets, as well as release of spray dried formulations of Biotherapeutics and small molecule APIs for clinical trials.
Steps towards releasing the news
V Formation worked with Upperton on a news story, to highlight the importance of the positive endorsement by the MHRA, which will enable a seamless transition from R&D to GMP manufacture within the organisation.
We identified the top media for Upperton, that would deliver maximum engagement with the audiences they needed to reach with the news, locally, nationally and internationally. This spanned East Midlands media, particularly in Nottingham, where Upperton has strong links with the University of Nottingham and has employed many of its graduates, as well as life sciences on and offline media, and specialist titles in the pharmaceutical technology sector.
Locally, the Nottingham Post was keen to learn more about Upperton, so we set-up a one-to-one interview for its Business Editor with Upperton’s Director of Clinical Trials Manufacturing, supported by careful planning and guidance from V. The interview resulted in three separate pieces of coverage – a positive feature in the paper’s Business Monthly supplement, a story on the Nottingham Post’s website – including the lead story on the daily Business e-bulletin – and a news piece in the paper. The equivalent advertising value (EAV) of the print coverage in the Nottingham Post was around £1500.
The results of V Formation’s PR activities provided Upperton with a significant return on investment and ensured that its achievement was showcased in its most important media, in order to attract new business and establish the firm as an expert in the spray drying sector.