Susan Shelby, FSMPS, CPSM, President & CEO of Rhino PR
We all know that projects aren’t won, designed, and constructed by one firm alone. It’s a collaborative effort between the architect, general contractor, sub-contractors, and other specialty designers to bring a project to fruition, and the client plays a key role in how it comes together. The same collaborative mindset should be applied to marketing and public relations for a significant project. Team members want to receive recognition for their role on the project. Reaching out to your project team to coordinate PR efforts yields better results than going it alone.
The key to this process is working together to devise a mutually beneficial media strategy, sharing project information, and giving everyone a say in the final product. Use PR tools like press releases, byline articles, media relations, awards, and events to publicize your project, and include client testimonials and quotes whenever possible. Before you start, however, secure client participation and permission to publicize the project. Your client contact may be your biggest fan, but be sure that their communications and legal departments are aware and agreeable to PR outreach. Share your strategy with them and provide opportunity for approval of materials when necessary. The extra step in involving the client early will make for a smoother and more successful process.
Rhino PR has coordinated many of these project team PR strategies, to great success. When long-time client Margulies Perruzzi Architects completed the new global headquarters for CDM Smith, Rhino PR coordinated a press release, byline article, and award submission with the client and project team. The project involved the design and renovation of CDM Smith’s six-floor, 123,000 SF headquarters at 75 State Street in Boston, which was completed in March 2015 on a challenging seven-month schedule using a prefabricated wall partition system in lieu of stick built construction. The unique story of the project unfolded in a February 2015 Banker & Tradesman feature article that highlighted the close collaboration between Margulies Perruzzi Architects, general contractor Structure Tone, and MEP consultant Bala|TMP (TMP Consulting Engineers), as well as the importance of the wall system design by Strategic Workspaces and the sound masking design and specification by Acentech. The narrative was also used to nominate the CDM Smith project for a CoreNet Global New England 2015 Award of Excellence. An impressive quote from CDM Smith’s president, praising the project team’s efforts and completed global headquarters, was included in both the article and award submission.
Coordinating a team-based approach to PR is a win-win for everyone. It tells a more comprehensive story of the project and provides recognition for the key players. Remember to share the wealth when you promote your next project.