Securing High Profile Business Related Media Coverage for Prominent Water Feature at EXPO 2020 Dubai

The Client 

WET (Water Entertainment Technologies), the world’s leader in water entertainment design and technology, was about to unveil their latest creation, a water feature the size of a football field which was to be one of the crowning glory attractions at Expo Dubai, the World’s Fair in 2021.  

WET’s innovative team of 200 has created over 260 public installations, notably including The Fountains of Bellagio, The Dubai Fountain, The Revson Fountain at Lincoln Center, The Fountains of Wynn Palace in Macau, Aquanura in the Netherlands, and the Olympic Fountains in Salt Lake City and Sochi, Russia. The firm holds more than 50 patents and has pioneered most of what the public experiences today in water features, from pool-less plaza foundations to leaping laminars, from choreographed water performers to fountains of pure fire. 

Project Description 

WET’s newest feature, the EXPO 2020 Dubai Water Feature, “Surreal,” was unveiled on Friday, October 1, 2021 at EXPO 2020 Dubai.  Similar to the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, the event is titled for 2020 despite it being 2021. The feature, situated between Al Wasl Plaza and Jubilee Park, the EXPO 2020 Dubai Water Feature combines the elements of water, earth and fire in a way that both surprise and delight the senses.  

Visitors coming from Al Wasl Plaza enter a verdant 40-metre-wide garden of towering palms and fragrant plants rising above a series of curving paths that encircle the central water feature like ripples in a pond. Large planted walls rise up around the feature, with three openings to a central area that takes visitors below ground level.  

The 153 individual waves range from glistening sheets to bursts of water that literally leap from the walls as they make their dramatic descent to the plaza below. People are invited to walk to the base of the falls to see how the water disappears through the stone. At night the waves reverse themselves – producing a gravity-defying spectacle as they flow up the walls. At the feature’s center is a mysterious circle of fire that produces enormous bursts of flames in spectral hues of red, green and yellow. In keeping with Expo 2020’s theme of sustainability, these huge flames are of pure hydrogen and therefore produce no carbon.  

Each surge of water is released on a musical cue, creating an orchestral masterpiece performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. The original score was written by the award-winning composer Ramin Djawadi, whose work includes the theme music for the HBO series Game of Thrones, which earned him Grammy Award nominations in 2009, 2018 and 2020. 

The Challenge 

The Hoyt Organization had only 3 1/2 weeks to secure WET’s spokesperson, Mark Fuller, Co-Founder and CEO (Chief Excellence Office) high-visibility, national press telling his story as the genius behind WET’s incredible water features. To accomplish this, THO leaned into key national and international press that offered Executive Profile opportunities for Mark, that reached both an affluent consumer as well as the large-scale developer stakeholders. 

THO also designed and implemented a social media strategy that 1) highlighted the emotions visitors would feel when they visited the attraction, thus using words such as  

The Solution 

THO created a domestic and international public relations campaign that focused on the innovation of the new water feature that was premiering at the EXPO 2020 Dubai which opened for global dignitaries on September 30 and to the general public on October 1. Because all materials need to be vetted and approved by the Expo team, which was unable to approve any vendor materials, THO pivoted the program to ensure success with the coverage. This included executing a specifically designed media relations strategy along with an intense social media campaign—that focused on the emotion the water feature evoked from those visiting the site; all of this was supplemented with an influencer campaign to push the visuals into the consumer market.  

Results 

The results were astounding. THO secured 34 media placements which resulted in 8.78M estimated views, 4.42B audience reach and 2.1M YouTube viewership. Tier one media coverage included an on-site video interview between the Associated Press and Mark Fuller. The Associated Press video was published online and syndicated across national media outlets that include USA Today, Yahoo News and MSN News. THO also secured an on-site video interview with Gulf News, a daily English language newspaper published from Dubai, United Arab Emirates.  

In addition, follow up media requests included the scheduling of a documentary with the BBC, and a feature on Mark specifically on the cover of Regard, a lifestyle publication based in the United States.  

Social media posts from our influencer partnerships for Surreal’s launch resulted in a total of 23,679 accounts reached, 25,348 impressions, 5,210 likes, 512 comments, 207 shares and 689 shares.  

Earned Media Coverage Metrics: 

34 Total Placements 

8.78M Estimated Views 

4.42B Audience Reach 

2.1M YouTube Viewership 

Social media posts from our influencer partnerships for Surreal’s launch resulted in a total of: 

23,679 Accounts Reached 

25,348 Impressions 

5,210 Likes 

512 Comments 

207 Shares 

689 Shares 

THO

Expanding into new market for a virtual addiction treatment company

Expanding into new markets during a pandemic created an interesting challenge for a virtual addiction treatment company. Already designed to provide online and in-person care through web and other applications, the strategy for this program centered on positioning key spokespersons as experts in their field.

The initial program accomplished two goals:

  1. All key media spokespersons completed media training sessions.

2. The preliminary six- month outreach efforts, which were focused on media relations, focused on specific regions.

CAMPAIGN INITIATIVES

These media relations efforts targeted specific regions for the states that were identified by the company’s expansion plans. These included New Jersey, Alaska, California, Michigan, Alaska and Washington. The program, which launched in May 2020, was originally designed to distribute one press release a month.

THO adjusted strategies and started to create and pitch media advisories highlighting virtual addiction treatment center co- founders as interview sources. Other clinicians were also brought into the program to discuss the company and how its treatment programs worked.

CAMPAIGN RESULTS

This strategy provided a strong basis for placements in broadcast, digital news platforms, magazines and newspapers that include Yahoo News, NJTV and Alaska Business. All of this has resulted in consistent and ongoing outreach. To date, coverage for the year includes newspapers, magazines, broadcast and key digital news platforms such as:

  • Yahoo News ABC 23
  • NJTV
  • AOL.video
  • The Observer CNBNews
  • News Break
  • Los Angeles News Observer
  • Detroit Free Press Chronicle Press

While the first couple of months were focused on pitching regional coverage, THO shifted the outreach to focus on securing limited interview opportunities with top executives on a national basis. Results show approximately 18 placements with an ad value that exceeds $83 , 000. In addition, the coverage received continues to expand the firm’ s digital footprint, which will support online search activity which drives consumers to the virtual services.

Total media placements for the first six months included:

Total circulation: 142,186,233
2020 ad equivalent costs to date: $534,984
Cost per impression: $1,04,952

Leeza Hoyt

Serving as the voice for a treatment center expanding further into the East Coast region

When a national treatment center brand stepped up their expansion plans, new locations were selected in Virginia, New Jersey, Kentucky, Ohio and several other states. These were only the first of many that were planned during the year.

To raise awareness of these centers, they engaged The Hoyt Organization ( THO) to develop and execute a strategic, comprehensive public relations campaign. This campaign started on the regional level, depending on the location, then i t was eventually expanded to add national placements as the year progressed. In addition, THO managed the media relations outreach for the opening of approximately 10 clinics throughout the year.

In order to position the company as a well- respected, established organization, THO implemented an intense media relations program centered on:

  • Positioning clinicians as thought leaders/ experts in the recovery and substance use disorder space;
  • Positioning facilities and clinicians as accessible to all, offering progressive, evidence- based treatment option;
  • Highlighting the strides in SUD care made by the organization

CAMPAIGN INITIATIVES

In order to reach these goals, THO developed a customized strategic plan tailored to their unique treatment center requirements. The media relations campaign incorporated the following initiatives:

  • Interviews with key clinicians to determine where they can be most effectively inserted into the news cycle to highlight key clinicians and elevate the company as a leader in treatment & recovery;
  • Drafting press materials for each treatment center and clinician;
  • Press outreach ( which included broadcast, print/ digital/ blogs and other outlets) in designated local and national markets;
  • Identifying media opportunities to elevate brand recognition for the company

THO garnered tangible results in each area, broadening the overall brand awareness, significantly elevating the brand through broadcast segments, thought leadership interviews and bylines, and digital media. THO ensured the company was able to see a steady stream of quality placements in top- t ier and local publications throughout the campaign.

To expand the reach of the program, THO drafted several media advisories and news releases, announcing new sites or offering clinicians as an interview source on relevant news topics and trends. This effort encompassed both regional and national outreach. The media advisories and press releases were distributed to key media contacts at top-tier and local outlets. The following is a holistic view of the campaign and THO secured results.

MEDIA RELATIONS EFFORTS

The robust media relations campaign increased the overall awareness. THO targeted key media outlets with the goal of securing placements in publications that would reach not only those in the industry i tself, but potential clients, including their relatives, who were looking for various treatment facilities and options. This effort was successful, resulting in print, online/ digital placements and broadcast ( television/ radio) interviews in key media targets as well as local and national publications including:

  • Associated Press
  • Crain’ s Business Journal Global Banking & Finance Behavioral Healthcare
  • Executive
  • Practical Pain Management National Public Radio ( NPR) SHAPE magazine
  • Reader’ s Digest
  • Population Health
  • Hospital
  • Management Diet of Life Mic. com
  • Healthy
  • Health Affairs
  • Soaring in Sobriety Podcast
  • Health
  • Professionals Radio

This effort also was successful in securing placements on the local level, garnering coverage in/on:

  • The Patriot WTVR- TV
  • WAVY 10 News WFXR Fox
  • ABC 8 News
  • Virginia Living
  • The Record Courier Erie News Now
  • Western Wayne News And more …

These placements provided the support necessary to elevate the Pinnacle brand, while depicting the facilities and the clinicians as leaders in the f ield of treatment and recovery.

CAMPAIGN RESULTS

Total placements: 53 ( not including additional online distribution)
Circulation: 48,322,326
Editorial Value: $ 1,367,268
Ad value equivalent: $ 455,756

Leeza Hoyt

Raising the awareness of a mental health and addiction treatment center in Southern California

When a family of treatment centers wanted to raise the awareness of two of their mental health and addiction treatment centers, they turned  to THO to broaden their  brand.  THO worked closely with management and its partner facilities to generate a broad range of coverage for the brand and its key executives, highlighting its leadership in behavioral healthcare, mental health and addiction awareness  and  treatment.

THO supported the company’s facilities through an integrated PR campaign focused on:

  • Leveraging “ real- t ime” news topics as well as utilizing quarterly media topics to conduct outreach and secure coverage for the brand, i ts partner facilities and key executives in top- t ier health and wellness, behavioral health and local and national business press
  • Supporting local events and partnerships through key news announcements
  • Coordinating byline submissions with their in- house writer for key first responder publications
  • Working closely with the SEO/ digital team to report on real- time coverage and synchronize publicity efforts

THO OUTREACH

The Hoyt Organization’s outreach efforts helped produce over 142 million impressions and the equivalent of 63 pages of editorial content promoting the brand  and  i ts  partner  facilities.  These  have  resulted  in  an editorial value equal to $1 , 604 , 952 .

CAMPAIGN RESULTS

The following metrics offer a brief summary of the editorial coverage THO

secured on behalf of the organization during the six- month campaign. Please note, while advertising and editorial are different media, the ad cost comparison provides a benchmark that shows the associated advertising budget that would have been necessary to achieve comparable coverage in these publications.

While advertising is paid media, editorial is considered “ earned” media, providing third- party credibility. As such, the industry standard values the impact of editorial at three times that of paid advertising.

To  accurately reflect the significance of editorial  coverage, we’ve also included the associated editorial  value.

Results  were  as  follows:

Total impressions: 142,186,233

Ad cost comparison: $534,984

Total placements: 25

Editorial value: $1,604,952

Top key features included:

  • Behavioral Healthcare Executive
  • Bio Plus Health Bustle
  • Dr. G Engaging Minds
  • Emergency Management Forbes Books Radio
  • Healthline
  • Malibu Surfside News
  • Modern Healthcare Orange County
  • Business Journal Our Weekly
  • Readmissions News U. S. News & World Report

These efforts have further helped broaden the awareness of mental health and addiction, plus the appeal of this brand as a leading behavioral health center while the company continues to grow and adjust to changes.                                                                                                                                                                             

Leeza Hoyt

Expanding One of the Nation’s Top Four Residential Brokerage Firms into the West

From “For Sale” signs across NYC’s Upper Eastside to celebrity agents on TV’s famed “Million Dollar Listing,” the Douglas Elliman (DE) name is linked to highly sought-after agents and extremely coveted listings. Synonymous with real estate dominance on the East Coast, the residential brokerage firm wanted to head west and do the same. The firm tapped THO to join the team because of our deep experience in real estate public relations and make this happen.

The Challenge

THO needed to leverage Douglas Elliman’s East Coast reputation to firmly establish, and quickly grow, roots in the West. The goal: expand its reputation and recruit and retain the top agents in both Colorado and California to bring listings and clients to their roster.

The Solution

Attracting and retaining top talent in the industry became the primary focus of the THO-constructed public relations program. The plan was designed to elevate the brand using success stories, agent profiles, and firm-differentiating highlights, making it ‘the place to be’ for successful, results-driven agents.  

THO implemented a multi-pronged approach focusing on People, Property & Platform using the following strategies:   

  • Promote existing, significantly outstanding listings with historical, architectural, or celebrity notoriety;
  • Leverage senior level market expertise to establish DE executives as credible, knowledgeable and seasoned real estate experts;
  • Focus on highlighting the firm’s core value propositions, directly connecting the firm to agents possibly seeking a new home; and
  • Maximize community engagement at high-profile events like Jazz Aspen Snowmass, Evening on the Beach and other Elliman Arts initiatives to accentuate their community involvement.

Results

THO’s initial launch into the market resulted in more than 400 million impressions for Douglas Elliman in nationally prominent outlets such as The Wall St. Journal, The Hollywood Reporter, Forbes, Bloomberg Pursuits, Architectural Digest and more. This program solidified the firm’s reputation as one of the top brokerage firms in both local and national markets.

THO secured profiles and interviews which allowed Douglas Elliman agents to speak to both their actual listings, and their expertise in key neighborhoods. Beyond agent interviews and specific listings, THO promoted numerous notable properties and high-dollar Douglas Elliman transactions, one of which was the sale of a $90 million Holmby Hills estate, the second highest residential sale in LA at the time. THO also garnered significant coverage surrounding Douglas Elliman’s quarterly market reports for the Los Angeles and Aspen regions, guaranteeing the brokerage’s role as a top industry resource.

Takeaways

In well-established markets where numerous brokerages are entrenched in a high-stakes real estate scene, a newcomer could get lost in the shuffle. These few, but important steps can help ensure success:

  1. Develop a brand’s unified voice
  2. Engage and support internal and external company stakeholders
  3. Establish consistent methods for sharing market knowledge and expertise

The Hoyt Organization

How PR can shape the mental health conversation

Despite the fact that mental health disorders are rising in prevalence around the world and will cost the global economy 16 trillion by 2030, mental and behavioral health services are frequently stigmatized. In stark contrast, Millennials ranked mental health issues as their number one concern in this year’s annual health report by Blue Cross Blue Shield. Among the top 10 conditions ranked by adverse health impact affecting Millennials were major depression, substance use disorder, alcohol use disorder, and hyperactivity.

The fact is, millions of Americans struggle with mental health issues. The National Alliance of Mental Health reports that one in five adults in America experiences mental illness in their lifetime. Currently, it is estimated that nearly 10 million Americans are living with a serious mental disorder. The most common mental disorders are anxiety disorders, major depression and bipolar disorder. Unfortunately, mental health disorders do not just impact the adult population; they also affect the health and well-being of children and adolescents. It’s reported that 20% of young people will suffer from a mental disorder that inhibits daily functioning at some point in their lives. These statistics support the real-life fact that mental and behavioral health services are needed across a wide spectrum. There is a vast and growing need for mental health professionals to provide preventative care and early and on-going treatment to people of all ages. Unfortunately, mental health symptoms are still viewed as threatening and uncomfortable. There are attitudes within most societies that view symptoms of psychopathology as threatening and a topic to avoid. These attitudes foster stigma and discrimination toward people with mental health problems. Such reactions are common when people have the courage to admit they have a mental health issue or concern. This can often lead to various forms of exclusion or discrimination within the family circle, social circles and the workplace.

The social stigma associated with mental health problems has numerous causes. People with mental illness have been treated differently, excluded and even brutalized throughout history. Often times the mistreatment stems from misguided views that people with mental health problems may be more prone to violence or are just somehow “different” but none of these beliefs are rooted in facts. The media also plays a role in perpetuating stigmatizing stereotypes of people with mental health issues. Cinematic depictions of schizophrenia are often stereotyped and characterized by misinformation about the disorder, symptoms, causes and treatment, which in turn reinforces biased beliefs and stigmatizing attitudes toward people with mental health disorders. 

All of the above sets the stage for working with a mental health client and navigating the challenges they face day to day. One of the obstacles during the course of the Pinnacle Treatment services campaign was to destigmatize the treatment of substance use disorders and people struggling with addiction while preserving the integrity of the PTC brand and elevating its visibility.

When Pinnacle Treatment Centers held its first call with THO, they had specific goals in mind, with aspirations of expanding their treatment services into several southern states and beyond. The question they had was how do we get there and can PR help?

The THO team delineated how a strategic public relations campaign would help significantly raise brand recognition, position executives and key clinicians as leaders in the field of mental and behavioral health and drive potential patients to the website. In truth, an effective PR campaign does quite a bit more. Through inserting the brand/company into the news cycle with relevant stories, commentaries and solutions, the visibility and credibility of the brand and spokesperson receive a measurable boost. The more targeted the campaign, the better the results.

First and foremost, Pinnacle Treatment Centers wanted to garner media coverage in key markets in the southern United States in order to drive the company’s ultimate goal of a nationwide expansion. One of Pinnacle’s goals was to address the growing need for accessible and affordable Substance Use Disorder (SUD) treatment in rural and traditionally low-income communities and to establish PTC facilities as community resources. Based on that goal, the outreach involved a multi-market strategy.

Step one was to establish optimal spokespeople for each region, to cite an example, at one facility the spokesperson was an experienced psychiatrist who was able to speak to numerous health and mental health issues already trending in the news and digital media. Naturally, topics varied, but THO successfully put Pinnacle spokespeople front and center to address the latest headlines including: the opioid epidemic in the U.S., Purdue pharmaceuticals role in the American opioid crisis, the importance of access to quality care in impoverished and rural communities, the vaping epidemic, the landmark pharma opioid settlement, Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT,) pain management, and much more.

As segments and interviews went live and articles published, they were posted on social media in an effort to maximize Pinnacle’s return on investment in the campaign. Building on the success of the public relations campaign in each market, Pinnacle would then take the next step in their expansion plan, into a new state/region where PR efforts once again would highlight clinicians, treatment modalities and evidence-based care. During the course of the campaign, a few things became paramount when working with a treatment and recovery/mental health client.

  • Language is everything- It is not what you say but how you say it. With a sensitive population in recovery, the proper verbiage is key. So, client messaging in all marketing, social media and press materials needed to align with that.
  • Us vs. I– It was incredibly important to make sure that we were functioning as one unit. The goal being to offer affordable, evidence-based care to those in need of treatment and to position Pinnacle Treatment Center facilities as community resources.
  • Listening– Always listen to clients’ expectations, goals and concerns and open a dialog whenever you think they can benefit from your expertise. Oftentimes, clients do not know what they need…they have an idea of what they want but the reason a PR firm is brought on board is so they can benefit from your expertise in the field of media.
  • Navigation, and by that, I mean understanding how to navigate your client to seeing the bigger picture rather than an immediate goal. If the larger picture is a nationwide expansion, then being able to convey the value of each step, each placement and key markets is paramount.
  • Partnership– Perhaps I’ve already touched on this in Us vs. I, but I cannot emphasize enough, how important it is to be a partner to your client. Once they feel you truly understand their bigger picture and goals you will both soar.

THO

Making Real Estate Economics Matter to Millions of Californians

The University of Southern California Lusk Center for Real Estate comprises many of the world’s foremost real estate economists and educators. Its mission is to advance real estate knowledge, inform business practice, and address timely issues that affect the real estate industry, the urban economy, and public policy. Among the center’s frequent research offerings is the Casden Multifamily Forecast, which measures average rents and apartment vacancies across Southern California.

The Challenge
THO identified that the forecast was simply not reaching the right audience. THO decided to establish the actual forecast itself as a thought leader and information source for not only real estate professionals, but also the larger Southern California population.

The Solution

THO reimagined the Casden Forecast’s media materials to sharpen their focus and apply the data and forecast models to the current affordable housing crisis in Southern California.  During this particular year, THO identified that each of the regions analyzed – Los Angeles County, Orange County, Ventura County, San Diego County and the Inland Empire – could expect triple-digit increases in monthly apartment rents over the following two years. The real story became one of affordability – a true departure from the days when media coverage focused on the data’s impact on developers and practitioners.

THO’s plan focused on meeting the following objectives:

  • Work closely with Casden Multifamily Forecast authors to identify news angles specifically related to affordable housing;
  • Identify and target reporters and editors who provide fair and objective coverage of the affordable housing shortage in Southern California; and
  • Engage in an intensive media relations program to communicate with key targets in the weeks leading up to the Casden Forecast’s release.

Results

THO’s campaign resulted in nearly 50 media placements with national and local print and broadcast media, as well as real estate and other trade publications.

On day one of the forecast’s unveiling, the USC Lusk Center was supported by coverage in the Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union-Tribune, Orange County Register, and dozens of other high-profile print publications; every local television station, including KABC, KCBS, KTLA and KNBC; multiple 24-hour news radio stations and National Public Radio affiliates; and, of course, dozens of real estate trade outlets.

Takeaways

Any important news item requires a thorough and fastidious assessment of which of its elements are most compelling and most impactful.  Creating a strategic plan that ensures the news item hits the marketplace in a way that supports an organization’s goals while making forward progress is paramount.

In this case, THO identified the high value of the Casden Forecast’s impact on renters, and created a larger – and more national-centric – news story on how affordable housing dictates movement within the broader Southern California marketplace.  



The Hoyt Organization

Building Brand Awareness for a National Architecture Firm

A well-known architectural firm wanted to enhance their presence in not only their local markets and industry specialties, but the national arena as well. They turned to THO with its strategic PR expertise to expand their digital footprint while raising the overall brand recognition of the firm.

The Challenge

While the firm was extremely well known in its immediate circles of influence, the goal was to push the firm’s reputation into the next tier. To accomplish this goal, THO developed an intense thought leadership campaign focused on enhancing their national visibility, as well as within their two key regional markets, Kansas City and Dallas. Crucial to the program was raising the visibility of target principals for the firm, and highlighting some of the firm’s key projects.

The Solution

A hand selected group of company leaders were chosen as the initial team. All were media trained and introduced to the overarching program before they were able to participate. A full-scale public relations effort, which centered on an intense media relations campaign, was developed. A thought leadership program was created which highlighted truly insightful and different opinions which were, in turn, presented to each of the firm’s primary markets.

Results

With strategic pitching and a carefully executed media plan, THO successfully secured coverage in some of the biggest regional and national media outlets and highly revered industry trade publications including USA Today, Healthcare Design, Architectural Record, and the Kansas City Business Journal. In the first six months of the campaign, more than 60 media placements were achieved, all of which strengthened their digital footprint and supported social media outreach. The goal of the program, which was to push the firm’s visibility into the next level of influence, was achieved with flying colors.


With the more than 60 placements in major digital outlets totaling an estimated value of more than $700,000, we were able to raise their digital footprint and expand their social media outreach in the most cost-effective way.

Takeaways

As in most cases, for a successful and strategic media relations plan to reach all facets of industry and geographical locations, a well-planned, well thought out timeline and focus is key. Ensuring key company spokespersons receive actual media training on dealing with the press corps is a key element to presenting them as insightful thought leaders.

The Hoyt Organization

Building the buzz for a new LA Eatery

Building buzz for a new eatery is always exciting. In a major metropolitan city like Los Angeles, however, competition is tough. Working with one of our PRGN partners, THO was tasked with building excitement on the newest location for LYFE Kitchen in one of our submarkets. Our goal: creating unique opportunities to get the media, community and social media influencers in the door.

The Challenge

With two locations already in the greater Los Angeles area, this was not the first entrance into this market. THO’s goal was to fill the restaurant and encourage local Yelpers and social media influencers to not only come to the restaurant but actually cover this particular location.

The Solution

Get creative! Launching to the lunch crowd with a “brussel sprouts ribbon” cutting (see photo) served as the initial kick-off to the local community. THO then got even more creative in the design and implementation of media events, along with the necessary due diligence to identify food writers and bloggers willing to re-discover an existing restaurant brand.

Results

Using private tastings and the grand opening, THO attracted writers and reviewers from more than 15 local magazines, community publications and blogs. We then implemented a second strategy targeted at the Yelp community, to build affinity for this location. More than 150 Yelp reviewers were invited to a complimentary tasting and experience evening. The results of this created an immediate buzz, as well as a strong, positive rating on Yelp that supported a successful launch as well as a restaurant filled with first-time LYFE Kitchen guests.

Takeaways

Building a buzz requires a building block process. Make sure you’ve engaged all of your major stakeholders early in the game.

  • Plan a soft grand opening at a time when the core group can gather and celebrate.
  • Remember, “the devil is in the details”: make sure menus are ready, the parking is easy, and directions are simple.
  • Listen to the comments at the first event, then make any adjustments based on the initial feedback for the next one.

The Hoyt Organization

Building Brand Awareness for a Medical Center’s New Service Line

Building Brand Awareness for a Medical Center’s New Service Line

How can a major medical center effectively add a new service line to its roster of services? When Torrance Memorial Medical Center (TMMC), a long-established, well-respected health provider, acquired a home health & hospice agency, integrating it into the existing brand was critical. THO was charged with setting the stage to make sure this merger was seamless and successful.  

The Challenge

The Hoyt Organization (THO) was charged with merging and enveloping the home health company that was acquired into the TMMC brand. The goal was to raise awareness of the new Home Healthcare & Hospice services and develop a plan for merging the brand into the parent company’s group of services.  

The Solution

THO developed a PR program focused on two equally important sides that included:

  • Implementing an intensive media relations program targeting physicians and the consumer to communicate the availability of the new service

 

  • Developing an integrated marketing plan designed to 1) reach local physicians and 2) provide a process for a smooth re-branding and integration into the parent company’s established brand

 

This two-pronged campaign involved a direct mail program designed to reach more than 350 physicians who could then become potential referral sources, coupled with significant general media outreach.

Patients and their unique situations became case histories for the human-interest stories. TMHH&H executives and medical staff personnel by-lined numerous articles in health-related journals, which were used as reprints for the physician referral program.

Results

During the first year alone, more than three million impressions were generated, not including digital and broadcast coverage. The direct mail campaign generated a great deal of buzz for patient referrals and Third party endorsements like, “I’ve heard about your program,” added to the tremendous outpouring of responses. Referral sources increased overall and continue to do so.  

Today, the TMMC Home Health & Hospice program is fully integrated, not only into the Center’s offering of services, but the community itself. With various “give-back” fundraising events involving local patients and families, along with full support and care through difficult times, TMHH&H has solidified itself as an integral part of the community.  

Takeaways

When looking to expand, brand and/or create awareness for a company or new division due to company growth, especially in an industry like the medical field where sensitivity and trust are paramount, involve the surrounding community where possible. Provide a personal touch, whether in the marketing outreach, or the actual facilities itself, and let potential key persons and partners in on the forward-thinking progression and growth of the company. Organic market saturation and awareness will continue to build.  

The Hoyt Organization

Boosting Recruitment by Promoting Company Culture

Today, recruiting and retaining top talent in the architecture, construction and engineering industries is a major challenge given the highly competitive job market. One company, Las Vegas-based Forté Specialty Contractors (Forté), decided to focus on their company culture to position their company as a great place to work. This fundamental value is what allows Forté, a specialty general contractor, to deliver the highest quality projects to some of the biggest names in entertainment and hospitality.

The Challenge

The firm turned to THO to create a program designed to attract talented employees and secure their loyalty to promote unique aspects of company culture and employee benefits, in addition to the work itself. The program used traditional media channels as well as social media tools to not only raise their overall visibility but to reach current and prospective employees.

The Solution
To support Forté’s recruitment and employee retention efforts, THO created a two-pronged external communications program, involving both media relations and social media campaigns.

The media relations program was aimed at securing profile features highlighting the CEO’s unique leadership style and company structure. The social media program consisted of generating content for dissemination across the company’s social media platforms, leveraging the credibility of earned media placements to directly reach the organization’s target audiences and include a call to action.

This two-pronged approach was designed to meet the following objectives:

  • Increase awareness of Forté’s unique company culture and structure
  • Communicate to current and potential employees that Forté values its team members
  • Demonstrate that Forté works on cutting-edge projects and is a leader in the industry, making it an exciting place to work

Results

As the number of media outlets covering the ACE industries is limited, THO crafted pitches highlighting Forté’s many areas of in-house expertise to source additional opportunities in publications of diverse subject matters.

The campaign resulted in several profile features highlighting the CEO, his unique management style, the company itself and its many groundbreaking projects. Earned media placements appeared in key regional and national outlets, including those focused on business and finance, construction, hospitality, design, theme parks and more, positioning the company as a leading expert and effectively widening its reach into the pool of qualified and talented industry professionals.

The social media program resulted in a 42 percent increase in LinkedIn followers and a 35 percent increase in Facebook followers. Additionally, the program resulted in multiple employment inquiries and increased positive social engagement among existing employees.

Takeaways

When leveraging content for dissemination via social media, ensure that the tone and information offered are appropriate to each individual outlet. When seeking to boost recruitment efforts, determine what differentiates a company and its leadership from competitors and highlight that. Finally, to expand the reach of a company to its target audiences, find ways to appeal to a variety of audiences outside the “usual suspects.”

The Hoyt Organization

Putting the Focus on Mental Health and Addiction Recovery Services

Mental health has become an increasingly important focus as more and more of our population struggles with addiction and other mental health issues.  New Vista Behavioral Health (NVBH), a family of addiction and recovery centers, turned to THO to not only raise their visibility but position their clinical staff as well-respected professionals in a very complicated field.

The Challenge

Our program began with careful research.  First, we interviewed NVBH clinical staff to determine who not only would be the best representative for the organization, but who also had compelling stories to share. Critical to our outreach was the confidentiality that was paramount in their practice.

The Solution

We created a strong media relations platform which allowed New Vista Behavioral Health’s voice to be a part of stories that were already discussing the path to addiction and recovery. We employed a variety of tactics to promote the centers’ events like special mental health and addiction days, along with health and wellness lecture series. We also positioned their key clinicians as experts in the industry on various talk shows, before print media, and in various speaking engagements. In addition, we invited key media to experience specific activities, such as a ‘sound bath’, one of the treatments that can be used to help those suffering from mental illness. We then developed and activated a quarterly plan based on the hot topics we knew would be in the news for that specific time period.

Results

In just a three-month period, we secured over 30 million media impressions, with an editorial value of over $900,000 across leading media outlets, positioning New Vista Behavioral Health and its clinicians as leaders in the field. As a result of this coverage, the company saw a spike in their organic search patterns, as well as keyword searches which directly linked to their operations.

Takeaways

By the very nature of what it is, addiction and recovery is very confidential, and must be handled and addressed sensitively. By carefully crafting our outreach and focusing on messaging that these issues impact almost everyone, we were able to position the NVBH recovery and addiction centers as total family health and wellness centers known for their caring and compassion while maintaining strict confidentiality.

The Hoyt Organization

Corporate change: positioning new company leadership

Founder and forty-year President of Nadel Architects (Nadel), Herb Nadel knows the only constant is change and it was time for a big one. Herb was announcing an ownership transition but what was the best way to do that and effectively convey Nadel’s new identity and strategic vision to the public?  

Nadel looked to The Hoyt Organization (THO) for an all-encompassing communications plan: internal messaging, future strategies, excitement about change, and showcasing new leadership.  

The Challenge

The THO program needed to effectively convey the new leadership changes as well as the company’s succession plan, while clarifying its future vision and new corporate identity.

The Solution

To ensure Nadel’s exciting, newly-gained leadership could not only transition smoothly, but effectively communicate internally and externally, THO designed an extensive PR communications plan highlighting key messaging and a targeted action-items timeline.

This plan of communication and action included the following objectives:

  • Target specific audiences, including potential clients, industry influencers and strategic media, to emphasize the ownership transition and its importance;
  • Highlight the firm’s positive growth, while recognizing Herb Nadel’s legacy; and
  • Position the new owners and team leadership as industry experts and next-generation, influential vanguard.

Results

THO’s campaign garnered numerous media placements in national and regional business, real estate, architecture and other trade publications. The editorial coverage received, not only met, but exceeded the campaign goals by highlighting Herb Nadel’s leadership, Nadel’s 40-year history and its key sector growth in retail and multifamily.   

The campaign also launched Nadel’s dedicated thought-leadership program, which was designed to effectively position the firm’s new owners as market and industry experts.

Today, Nadel remains a leading national architecture firm, and its brand continues to be enhanced by the promotion efforts of the company’s current leadership.  

TAKEAWAYS

Ownership transfers and succession plans involve tremendous change. But they don’t have to involve loss of brand effectiveness or awareness. Creating and implementing an internal and external communications strategy will ensure clients, employees, outgoing and incoming leadership, and other stakeholders respond positively.  

Important messaging points include:

  1. Communicate your company’s celebration and affirmation of change
  2. Tell your audience(s) why the change is occurring
  3. Position the change in a clear, honest and positive manner
  4. Communicate how the change will benefit all stakeholders: clients, employees team leaders, and internal and external partners

Remember, communicating change is only part of the task – achieving “buy-in” from all relevant audiences is what drives success.  

The Hoyt Organization

Changing the face of healthcare in a Los Angeles community

South Bay Independent Physicians Medical Group, Inc., (SBIP) a physician owned, preferred provider organization wanted to raise its visibility within the South Bay community and build credibility within the local medical industry.

The Challenge

THO’s challenge was to establish and entrench South Bay Independent Physicians Group within the community as not only a go-to doctor’s group for patients, but a resource of local medical importance.

The Solution

The first step was crucial; THO needed to create awareness surrounding the importance of the organization within its existing membership. THO developed a monthly newsletter detailing the PPO’s success on behalf of its physicians. The newsletter reached and engaged the existing member base continually, keeping SBIP top-of-mind.

To promote SBIP within the community, THO planned a series of annual healthcare symposiums, presenting major line-ups of political and healthcare experts from around the country. The success of the annual symposiums generated other community events which also grew quite successful, like the annual “Pop ‘n Doc” walk, a Muscular Dystrophy fundraiser which was designed to link the community with the local physicians.  

Marketing materials were developed, and a comprehensive media relations campaign completed the program. These components provided SBIP visibility within the medical arena, in addition to the general South Bay community.

Results

Between the success of the yearly healthcare symposium events and the other community events that arose organically due to these interactions, SBIP grew their membership, community credibility and overall visibility. Attendance at the annual healthcare symposiums increased an average of 20 percent each year. The sixth annual symposium had over 200 attendees and included administrators from every local hospital, along with local politicians and community members. Likewise, the first “Pop ‘n Doc” event attracted more than 700 people, accomplishing THO’s goal of providing a forum for physician-community interaction on a personal level while enhancing the cohesiveness of the actual group.

Takeaways

A strategic and comprehensive media relations program which engages not only the client, but its surrounding community is often the best, quickest way to build brand visibility, client credibility and necessity. THO took a three-pronged approach to developing SBIP’s reputation as a viable “go-to” physician group in the Los Angeles community.

The Hoyt Organization

Rebranding an Innovative Tech Start-up that Revolutionized its Industry

Auction.com, the nation’s largest online real estate marketplace and considered the “eBay of real estate since 2007,” decided to change its name to Ten-X in January of 2016.

The Hoyt Organization had worked tirelessly for five years to reach a cherished goal: Ensure that Auction.com achieved at least one clip per day for every day of the year. When the decision was made to rebrand, the client’s primary concern and objective was that Ten-X quickly and effectively permeate the marketplace.

The Challenge

Ensure that Ten-X, like Auction.com, averaged at least one story per day in targeted publications for every day of the year.

The Solution

The primary objective over the course of a year was to manage the brand by ensuring a seamless transition from Auction.com to Ten-X. THO set an internal goal of ensuring that the average clip/day count was maintained and, in most months, accelerated from one brand to the next.

Since every target publication had covered Auction.com over the company’s nearly ten-year history, THO cross-checked an extensive list of every reporter and editor who had written about the company. This list included more than 1,000 contacts.

Upon finalization of the materials which would unveil the new Ten-X brand, embargoed outreach to a top-tier list of approximately 200 reporters and editors began. Once these stories were negotiated, THO initiated outreach to the full list of more than 1,000 writers to ensure both coverage of the re-brand and awareness of the name change to ensure continuity of daily coverage.

THO also served as diligent traffic cops to identify and correct any outdated or incorrect uses of the new brand.

Results

From July 2015-June 2016, despite a significant name change and 100% rebrand, the program maintained the company’s media dominance. As a result, the Ten-X name hit the marketplace without losing even the slightest bit of traction. Over the course of the subsequent one-year period, the campaign placed 621 reporter-authored stories, an average of 1.7 articles per day.

Takeaways

Careful planning and building relationships are the two biggest drivers of success in any media campaign. In this case, the client and reporter alike knew there would be a continuity of service and expertise that transcended any brand. It’s because THO is known for, and provided, trusted customer service to both the client and targeted media outlets.  

The Hoyt Organization

Kicking off one of DTLA’s most Iconic Developments

Launching CIRCA, a new, almost $500 million mixed-use development of luxury rental apartments, restaurants and retail space, was a very exciting moment. However, given the political climate, the cost of housing in Los Angeles, and a myriad of other challenges, it was critical that the first announcement be handled very carefully.  Developers of CIRCA turned to THO to lay the groundwork.

The Challenge

The launch of an iconic project of this scope always starts with the groundbreaking, the first event that would essentially unveil the overall largesse, design and intricacy of the complex. CIRCA, which is anchored by LALive, Staples Center and the Los Angeles Convention Center, is part of an area that is designed to rival the likes of New York City’s Times Square. The 1.6 million SF property houses two 35-story towers made up of 648 luxury rental units, 48,000 SF of retail space, 15,000 SF of digital signage and 1770 parking spaces. THO knew it would quickly become one of the most iconic luxury developments in the area.

The Solution

As the first peek of the project, a simple but elegant groundbreaking was designed to include only those close to the project along with key dignitaries, like the Mayor of Los Angeles and LA City Councilmembers, among others. However, due to the political climate surrounding Los Angeles housing, media training was conducted with the development’s key persons to make sure they were prepared to answer difficult questions regarding housing in Los Angeles.

Results

It was an exciting event attended by more than 100 people and media coverage included ABC7, CBS2, KPCC, KNX, Los Angeles Business Journal, many major trade publications and more. In addition, extensive coverage beyond the local and English-speaking world was achieved with placements in The Korea Times, World Journal (a Chinese publication) and MundoFox 22. As a result, CIRCA was positioned as a major component of the growing downtown community and gained credibility as a sign of revitalization and economic investment in the area.

Takeaways

Anytime a new development enters the market, it is essential to carefully craft how that project should be presented. Additionally, media training is crucial when a project not only touches, but shapes, the political landscape – this ensures the spokesperson will be prepared to answer difficult questions.

The Hoyt Organization

Creating A Powerhouse Brand: Expanding Through Acquisitions

A national commercial real estate firm with regional expertise, Lee & Associates embarked on an ambitious expansion plan. The business strategy focused on targeting local, smaller shops with strong industry leaders already in place, and melding the operation into the much larger platform at Lee.

THE CHALLENGE
The company turned to THO to develop, create and implement a public relations program that had two primary goals: build overall brand awareness on a regional and national basis which would support their recruiting efforts as the company expanded; and provide consistent materials and information for each company as they came on
board, thus each individual launch had an ‘instant start-up’ to make their move to the Lee platform successful.

THO’S SOLUTION
The program involved three steps:

First, THO created a series of templates that would allow give internal marketing champions an instant starting kit which could be used in their local market.

Second, the local and national outreach objectives were defined and developed for each new market.

Finally, the launch, which included opening events, various advertising/marketing components and media outreach on both a national and local level, was held for each market.

The program, which was developed and expanded over an eight-year period, included the development of a full-scale media relations program, an advertising and e-blast program focused on recruiting, the launch of the Lee social media platforms including Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, and the development of select trade show
and marketing materials.

RESULTS
Over the eight-year period, the firm grew from about 20 offices to more than 55 offices throughout the country. In one year alone, they added five offices which resulted in approximately 550 placements and 21 million impressions at a cost of $.008 per impression. The program provided solid exposure that supported their
expansion efforts on a national and regional basis.

The Hoyt Organization

Unveiling a New Housing Model for the Millennial Generation

A new 208-unit multifamily project designed specifically to meet the needs of the Millennial generation was under construction. After conducting in-depth research, the developer embarked on a project branded Elevé, a complex designed specifically to meet the needs of Millennials. But what does that mean? The focus was on creating a development that speaks to how Gen Y lives, not just where.

The complex consisted of micro-units with a focus on amenities such as a 26,000-square-foot sky-deck that housed a full-service dog park, an outdoor movie theatre, a rooftop sports bar with barbeque, two spas, and a number of sustainable features such as electric car charging stations, space for organic gardens, on-site recycling center and parking for 75 bicycles. The developer turned to THO to create a program to unveil this exciting new product.

THE CHALLENGE
At the time of the opening, multifamily development was at an all-time high in Los Angeles. Additionally, Millennials generally prefer living in dense, diverse urban areas over suburban environments. With Elevé located in Glendale, California — a city known for its tranquility ‒ the outreach needed to include key messages regarding the more artistic, vibrant and creative side of Glendale.

THO’S SOLUTION
THO developed a public relations campaign which focused on the impact that Millennials had on the market, as well as the lack of housing for young professionals. It highlighted the complex not only as the place to be for the Millennial generation, but also the surrounding area which included a wide variety of restaurants, nearby shops and a myriad of other amenities within walking distance. In addition, the developer was positioned as the market expert in meeting the needs of the current rental market. The goal was, of course, to get it leased as quickly as possible.

RESULTS
The results were astounding. The open house included a full-scale tour of the project with extensive electronic coverage on several major news stations including KTTV and KABC. The initial launch resulted in feature coverage in the business section of the Los Angeles Times, CurbedLA, Globest.com, The Industry Insider, HousingWire, Bisnow.com, and more, with major pick up in all verticals. In the following six months, over 80 articles were secured in addition to the broadcast coverage.

The project was more than 75% leased within months of the pre-grand opening, and fully leased shortly thereafter.

TAKEAWAYS

  • Highlight a variety of benefits and amenities to appeal to a greater number of potential renters
  • Leverage recent surveys, statistics, market reports, etc. to provide third-party credibility and supporting points to your launch
  • Make sure the visuals are compelling and interesting

The Hoyt Organization

Raising the Visibility of Service Enriched Housing Programs for Affordable Housing Communities

How can developers stabilize lower income housing communities? Where can residents go for information and help? One such organization provides service enriched programs that not only provides answers but is focused on creating a stronger sense of community. The benefits are tremendous. The developer has a stronger asset with less tenant turnover, and the community has a thriving base that supports self-sufficiency and success for their residents. But how can they get the word out?

Rainbow Housing Assistance Corporation (Rainbow), a non-profit organization that provides service enriched housing programs for residents of rental housing communities, enlisted THO to create a program that would support its mission.

THE CHALLENGE
At the time, many in the affordable housing industry did not understand the value of Rainbow and its services, particularly the connection between the organization’s supportive services and increased ROI for owners and investors. This situation is common among professional services firms, as it is often difficult to convey how third-party services directly support a company’s bottom line.

THO’S SOLUTION
THO’s approach centered around highlighting how a service-enriched housing model implemented by a third-party positively impacts ROI for owners, investors and developers of affordable communities nationwide.

Our communications strategy focused on the following:

  • We increased visibility for Rainbow among in national, regional and hyper-local news and business outlets for the affordable housing industry;
  • We positioned Rainbow as a thought leader in affordable housing, giving additional third-party credibility;
    We expanded Rainbow’s capacity for coverage by partnering with leaders in affordable housing finance by co-authoring with other organizations; and
  • We created opportunities for Rainbow-led research which positions the organization as a knowledgeable and essential voice in the industry.

RESULTS
The THO program has exceeded a 250% return on Rainbow’s investment each year. Through media interviews and Q&As, guest bylines and co-bylines, podcasts, an NYC media tour and the development of a positioning paper backed by dedicated research, THO’s PR program launched Rainbow into the national spotlight as a credible source for information, an authority on resident services and, ultimately, a valuable asset for affordable communities nationwide.

Rainbow has contributed to the national conversation surrounding affordable housing in new and valuable ways. The amplified media coverage for the organization has allowed its leadership team to connect with industry influencers nationwide on an expanded platform.

TAKEAWAYS
Professional services organizations will always face the challenge of proving how services offered make a difference for clients. As such, it is critical to implement a thoughtful communications plan that frequently reinforces this message.

Key strategies include:

Leveraging existing business partnerships to strengthen your voice
Combining business travel and conferences with in-person media meetings to solidify relationships with key influencers
Incorporating statistics, possibly via case studies, primary research or third-party data, to support your key messages

The Hoyt Organization

How Can We Help?

Make us your first call if you’re launching a new product or service, re-branding or encounter a need for media relations or crisis communications. We’re here for you:

  • Targeted PR
  • Strategic Communications
  • Social & Digital Media Strategies
  • Crisis Communications
  • Marketing & Design

How can developers stabilize lower income housing communities? Where can residents go for information and help? One such organization provides service enriched programs that not only provides answers but is focused on creating a stronger sense of community. The benefits are tremendous. The developer has a stronger asset with less tenant turnover, and the community has a thriving base that supports self-sufficiency and success for their residents. But how can they get the word out?

Rainbow Housing Assistance Corporation (Rainbow), a non-profit organization that provides service enriched housing programs for residents of rental housing communities, enlisted THO to create a program that would support its mission.

THE CHALLENGE
At the time, many in the affordable housing industry did not understand the value of Rainbow and its services, particularly the connection between the organization’s supportive services and increased ROI for owners and investors. This situation is common among professional services firms, as it is often difficult to convey how third-party services directly support a company’s bottom line.

THO’S SOLUTION
THO’s approach centered around highlighting how a service-enriched housing model implemented by a third-party positively impacts ROI for owners, investors and developers of affordable communities nationwide.

Our communications strategy focused on the following:

  • We increased visibility for Rainbow among in national, regional and hyper-local news and business outlets for the affordable housing industry;
  • We positioned Rainbow as a thought leader in affordable housing, giving additional third-party credibility;
    We expanded Rainbow’s capacity for coverage by partnering with leaders in affordable housing finance by co-authoring with other organizations; and
  • We created opportunities for Rainbow-led research which positions the organization as a knowledgeable and essential voice in the industry.

RESULTS
The THO program has exceeded a 250% return on Rainbow’s investment each year. Through media interviews and Q&As, guest bylines and co-bylines, podcasts, an NYC media tour and the development of a positioning paper backed by dedicated research, THO’s PR program launched Rainbow into the national spotlight as a credible source for information, an authority on resident services and, ultimately, a valuable asset for affordable communities nationwide.

Rainbow has contributed to the national conversation surrounding affordable housing in new and valuable ways. The amplified media coverage for the organization has allowed its leadership team to connect with industry influencers nationwide on an expanded platform.

TAKEAWAYS
Professional services organizations will always face the challenge of proving how services offered make a difference for clients. As such, it is critical to implement a thoughtful communications plan that frequently reinforces this message.

Key strategies include:

Leveraging existing business partnerships to strengthen your voice
Combining business travel and conferences with in-person media meetings to solidify relationships with key influencers
Incorporating statistics, possibly via case studies, primary research or third-party data, to support your key messages