McGrath/Power Public Relations
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Holmes Report
News and insights from the global PR industry

McGrath/Power Public Relations

Holmes Report

McGrath/Power’s diverse team of communications professionals brings a rare variety of experience to a midsize public relations firm. There are former journalists like chief executive Jon Bloom, whose media roots are in the AP and San Jose Mercury News, and media relations director Julie Pitta, who was previously technology correspondent for Forbes, who bring an intimate understanding of the inner workings of major newsrooms. There are veterans of some of Silicon Valley’s biggest and best known companies, including senior vice president Ursula Herrick, who joined after 20 years at Intel. And there are public relations executives with global experience, like Kathryn Walker, who was global PR manager for Borland Software and Internet Security Systems.
 In addition to the people, there’s the process. McGrath/Power’s Communicating for Action approach to messaging helps align external communications with broad business goals, and unlike some of the elaborate methodologies developed by larger firms, can be scaled to address either an enterprise-wide challenge or a single corporate activity, identifying and clarifying the issues that prevent effective communication planning and focusing on actions that make products, programs and campaigns succeed. The agency’s Value Flow process,, meanwhile, helps clients understand how their money is being spent.,, providing weekly or monthly progress reports.
 It’s an approach that has attracted a diverse roster of technology clients including EasyReach, GuardianEdge Technologies, Panasas, Tablus, The Holland, and Vodafone, with new additions in 2006 such as ActivIdentity, iLoop Mobile, mBlox, Splash Data and Velvet Puffin. Perhaps the most interesting assignment of the year was the firm’s work for The Holland, parent company to Burgerville, a chain of 39 quick service restaurants in Oregon and Washington, which sought to differentiate itself on the basis of a series of environmental initiatives around wind power, biodiesel, and composting. The PR effort helped to generate 100 local and national news stories, and Burgerville sales increased by 12 percent since the launch of the campaign. 
 McGrath/Power works with both domestic and international clients. For identity assurance
solutions provider ActivIdentity, for example, the firm works with the U.S. headquarters in conjunction with supporting firms in the U.K. and France. For Velvet Puffin, the U.S. PR team reports to a Singapore-based corporation and manages the company’s agency relationships throughout Asia. And McGrath/Power’s affiliation with the Worldcom Public Relations Group enables the firm to partner with other firms of similar size and capabilities in over 35 different countries.
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