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The Power of Event Marketing

Monday, June 8th, 2015

iridium_blog_facebook_2It’s difficult to conduct a marketing meeting these days without the discussion turning to integrated, 360-degree programs. Optimizing all products and tools deployed across multiple channels is clearly the delicate, complex balance that we seek, but in our offices lately, we’ve been noticing and discussing the distinctive power of events.

iridium_blog_facebook_1With so much attention turned to digital — almost blindly so, it would appear at times — an annual conference presents us all with the opportunity that the Internet will never afford, no matter how many technological advances are made: The power of meeting face-to-face. It’s perhaps the most important opportunity and outlier among all available touchpoints that can present the ability for customers to truly experience and connect to a brand.

iridium_blog_facebook_3IridiumGroup has designed, produced and installed dozens of exhibits and displays for our clients. We’ve created powerful animation to launch annual meetings for global organizations catering to members, institutional investors, shareholders, and trustees. We have designed branded conference visual identities and event marketing campaigns that are aimed at maximizing attendance and generating user engagement.

iridium_blog_facebook_4Shown here are design options for exhibit created for an International Math Conference held last year in Seoul, Korea, and sponsored by the Simons Foundation.

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Dancing With the Genie (or The Ongoing Plight of the Omnipresent Media Brand)

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

DVI0775032The New York Times recently debuted its re-launched weekly magazine with the February 22 edition of the paper. Besides the usual self-aggrandizing about the new typefaces, columns, departments, and paper stock, the publication presented a compelling statement about its multichannel strategy on page 44 titled, “Beyond the Page.”

If the title sounds like a Harvard Business Review whitepaper, it’s a vision statement that all publishers aspire to — and which is easier said than done. The perfect recipe is content distribution through print, website, daily emails to mobile, podcasts, events — a 360 degree universe of readily available, current information services. Doing it all well and managing costs is an enviable dream for any organization charged with keeping the paying customer — its readers and sponsors — satisfied.

Even as the universe of ad dollars is being stretched across a burgeoning community of niche media properties, publishers like The Times have also had to contend with increased costs to populate content in multiple forms. As the saying goes, best practices means “giving the reader what they want, when they want, however and wherever they want it.” The old joke about putting the genie back into the bottle rings true. In 2015, the challenge is evident: The genie ain’t going back in, so we might as well enjoy the dance. Editors are charged with delivering well-researched, well-written, specific information for what amounts to an audience-of-one, catering to all levels of knowledge and specialization, meeting all reader expectations across many channels — and they need to do this on a publishing cycle that is as close to 24/7 as possible.

As if all of this wasn’t enough, publishers have the age-old challenge of trying to attract new readers to the pipeline, infusing the existing audience with younger members and ensuring that the development path is replenished and healthy for the future.

The Times announced another round of staff layoffs, letting go of about 110 newsroom jobs and closing its popular “Home” section this week. According to Keith Kelly and The New York Post, The Times print ad revenue fell 4.7 percent last year as readers continued to migrate to other digital venues. Sports Illustrated, an industry icon for its prose and breathtaking action photography, recently announced that it was letting go of the six remaining staff photographers, along with another round of cuts to the editorial staff.

Associations, as non-traditional publishers, are in a similar position. With an easy twitch of their Google-bound finger, members now have access to thousands of sources of news, analysis, data, shared insights and networking that professional memberships once exclusively offered. Reeling from the changes caused by technological advances and ubiquitous communication, executive management teams at these professional organizations are looking beyond traditional sponsors and turning to something called “non-dues revenue,” or ancillary revenue streams.

It’s all a necessary adaptation. Revenues will need to fragment into smaller pools just as the reader communities have fractured into their own niches. While events continue to produce successful sales results for associations and other publishers, these companies will need to establish and grow alternative ways to monetize their content. Ad agencies have done the same thing. If there was once a handful of revenue sources, many more streams were cultivated over the last twenty years and today, it’s not uncommon to see a plethora of offerings like research, data and analytics, mobile services, SEO, social, tie-in’s and cross-promotional deals, product placement, event marketing, and more — each profit line being mostly smaller in value for the agency.

One would think that conference and event strategies might be more prominent for associations, since in-person, face-to-face interaction is not the one thing that the Internet can’t offer.

In our office, we get a lot of queries from associations asking for our recommendations or best practices in multichannel publishing. Catering to their customers hasn’t been an easy task. Microsites and magazines are constantly being created to serve smaller, targeted segments of their universe of readers. Perhaps chasing their members’ ability to access niche content in the field of interest, publishers have continued to launch and sustain specialized technical and trade media properties. In this way, professional publishing has followed the path of its consumer counterparts. (Fishing magazine becomes Saltwater Fishing magazine, which becomes Eastern Saltwater Fishing, which becomes Florida Saltwater Sports Fishing, and on and on.)

Association managers need to know that they are in good company. Virtually every content-based organization is learning to manage new, real-time publishing cycles and multichannel strategies. It may not be a pretty dance, but there is abundant opportunity.

If you would like a consultative meeting to review your publishing and content strategy, please contact our office to set up a time to speak.

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For the Right Audience, a Print Redux

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Evercore_IT_Winter2015_low_7We like to say that we’re “media-agnostic,” meaning that we are open to whatever strategy and channel works most effectively. Depending on the audience needs, printed thought leadership may be an important component of a larger, 360-degree, integrated content marketing program. Such is the case with Evercore Wealth Management, which publishes Independent Thinking four times annually.

Our team redesigned the publication in 2014 and through a partnership with the client organization, continues to design and produce each edition. The publication is but one part of a system of content being published by Evercore Wealth Management, with each of the main articles coordinated to appear on the rotating carousel of the firm’s website. The winter edition, featured here, shares insights on Tax-Efficient Wealth Planning, the Investing Outlook for 2015, and Planning to Achieve “The Number” — that milestone which leaves us financially independent.


Elegance With Entry Points: A sophisticated composition can also include a “tiered reader experience,” offering the reader twenty, ten, and one minute engagements

Working with the client team, we’ve collaborated to package a best-practice corporate journal — elegant design fitting for the audience, with a compelling composition of industry insights, thought leadership, arresting photographs, and current data shown as easy, clear information graphics.


For more information, visit If you have an interest in improving the quality of your content marketing or corporate communications, please visit

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Case Study: Burford Capital

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015

burfordcapital_2In 2014, our group led a strategic redesign of the flagship website for Burford Capital, a legal financing firm that helps clients with business risk solutions and funding for corporate litigation. The site was just recently launched, reflecting a culmination of many months of work in research, planning, design, and development by IridiumGroup and the client team.

A phase of stakeholder interviews shared insights into the company’s strategic goals, audiences, communications and channels, brand image, competitive set, and content needs of the site.

A proposed navigation, site structure, and wireframes were developed to meet the usability needs of several key audiences on both the legal and the corporate, client side. Burford Capital’s marketing leaders directed the content and navigation. It was important to deliver the proper messaging and desired user experience to all audiences, whether the purpose was to explain litigation funding, convey its business value, report progress to investors, share whitepapers, or to provide a deeper tier of reading and related links.
The discovery that was done with Burford’s executive management team provided critical insights that guided and informed the design. Burford Capital works predominantly in academic, intellectual property and provide a full suite of solutions, but in some ways is also an investment institution. Early in the process, it was clear that the design should be typographical, or word- and content-driven, with a focus on delivering information in a clear, simple, easily accessible manner.

Also, we wanted to provide a visual expression and platform that would appeal to corporate attorneys, CFO’s, in-house counsel and corporate risk professionals. Our team worked to deliver an approachable, engaging, and inviting experience — but also, one with a quiet, restrained, and elegant presentation of data points and information. It was our goal to project a brand image of global thought-leadership in the emerging world of litigation finance and legal risk solutions. For more information, visit:


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IridiumGroup Inc.

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