Experience, Trends Determine Management ModelsBy Jan Hogewoning | Fri, 04/24/2020 - 12:52
Q: What unique assets does JeffreyGroup have that make it the ideal partner for communication and PR strategies?
A: We are a consultancy firm specialized in marketing, corporate communications and public affairs. We design our own management models based on our experience and market tendencies. We then provide these models to the clients for their use, accompanying them as they implement their programs. For all our clients, we provide industry experts in communication. We are an independent company and are not obsessed with being the biggest. We want to offer the best service, which means that our senior team spends a lot of time with clients and our team. Our company only targets Latin America through regional offices and partners. Our local presence allows us to adapt our models to the economic and political context of the countries we are in.
Q: What characterizes Mexico in comparison to other countries in your portfolio?
A: In terms of communication, Mexico is mature. Companies are often preoccupied with topics that are similar to those in developed markets. These include reputation management, risk and crisis management, analysis of the political environment, legislation matters, engagement with critical stakeholders and sustainability issues. We see growing interest among clients in how their company can be a better member of the community, a better corporate citizen. This means understanding the problems of the communities where they operate and taking action to solve them. This does not go against their primary goal, which is selling their product or service. It is about gaining participation in conversations to fix issues in the communities they operate.
Q: What are the most in-demand services among your clients?
A: The first is digital communication. Clients want to know how to make the digital transformation. They want to connect to audiences who are younger, more informed and educated and who consume a lot of multimedia content in nontraditional spaces. The second is reputation management. This is about constructing a reputation through better initiatives or programs that are coherent and are connected to the heart of the company. Lastly, companies have a need to understand the political context.
Q: What are nontraditional spaces for multimedia content?
A: One example is social media. Surprising personalities, such as influencers, are on the rise and they are substituting the traditional opinion leaders who normally work in communication media. Before, if people wanted a cultivated or intelligent take on something, they would look for a columnist or analyst. Now, young people want to see other types of people with distinct profiles. Many people who have influence do not necessarily get it from their intellectual background. An example are mommy bloggers who write about issues related to children. Before, you would consult a magazine for parents to learn about these topics; these days people use the web and find the relative bloggers. Our task is to understand and analyze these relationships and provide the client with useful insights into how to deploy their initiatives, product promotions and campaigns. It is not just product promotion that is relevant but also the way opinions influence our behavior.
Q: How do you devise communication campaigns for each of your clients?
A: You can do short campaigns of two to three months. But there are also long-term communication programs. We identify the relevant persons and design a strategy to connect them over the long term with a company. When a client wants to become part of a social cause, different agents are involved, including universities, think tanks, NGOs, bloggers and the company brand. To cement and construct something takes time, especially when talking about a company’s reputation.
Our work is based on two elements: notoriety and notability. Notoriety is how well the client is known. Notability is how much the company is valued based on four components: admiration, empathy, trust and respect. A reputation is not something you can buy; it is an intangible, which is what makes it so important. Each company’s reputation is unique and highly regarded. I have never met a company that wanted to work with a player that had a bad reputation.
Q: What risks to reputation do companies normally perceive?
A: Risks vary depending on the size, sector and activities of a company. However, there are those that can be associated to any business. One is transparency, which has to do with management of information. Corporate governance and corruption are key issues, especially in the current political climate. The government is hellbent on eliminating all corruption practices. Companies have to be agile in identifying and gaining a better understanding of these issues. They also have to work harder on prevention.
Q: Where do you see opportunities in the market?
A: Companies are not weary to invest. That being said, they are preoccupied about certain issues, which gives us the opportunity to help them. We see opportunities in the maturing digital environment, which includes e-commerce, inbound marketing, social media strategy, search engine optimization and search engine marketing. We also see CSR shifting from companies as a whole to their individual brands. Brands now want to be individually associated with particular issues. Most of the products we consume are already related to some social issue on the UN agenda for 2030.
JeffreyGroup is a leading communications agency serving large companies and global brands in Latin America. It supports commercial objectives and helps manage the reputation of clients through marketing, corporate communications and public affairs strategies.