Comprehensive PR approach raises Fish 2.0 profile, participation

Impact PR case study Fish 2.0: photo of boats
photo courtesy Fish 2.0

Fish 2.0, a business competition and network that connected sustainable seafood entrepreneurs with investors and other partners, came to Thinkshift with big aspirations and a tight timeline. It was the biannual event’s second year, and the founders wanted to significantly boost both participation and awareness. They needed a PR strategy and execution, pronto.

“Raising awareness of Fish 2.0 opportunities and educational materials drives our core objective, which is to grow the number of businesses and investors participating in the sustainable seafood sector.

“Without Thinkshift’s work, we would not have been able to reach our goals or surpass them, as we did in 2015 and succeeding years,” says Monica Jain, Fish 2.0 founder and executive director.

“Thinkshift was able to quickly and effectively implement a communications strategy for us, and to adapt that strategy during the course of our project, as needed,” she adds. “After just a few months, we considered Thinkshift to be a key part of our team, rather than just contracted experts. They helped us to problem-solve and drove placement into a broad range of print and audio outlets, which helped us to raise awareness.”


TOP RESULTS

  • 300 percent increase in media coverage in year 1
  • Competition participation more than doubled
  • Generated more than 400 placements

WHAT WE DID

  • Thinkshift devised a strategy that combined outreach to journalists, developing and placing Fish 2.0-bylined articles, and engaging sponsors and partners. We then rolled it out in phases tied to competition milestones.
  • We developed story ideas based on trends revealed by the competition and Fish 2.0 investor updates, and successfully pitched them to trade, sustainability and general-business journalists.
  • We engaged sponsors and partners in promoting Fish 2.0 and provided communications tool kits that made it easy for them.
  • Consulting on social media and other communications tactics throughout the competition kept all efforts aligned.
  • In the following competition cycle, Thinkshift broadened both thought leadership and media outreach to expose more people in more places to the opportunities in sustainable seafood.
  • In the final cycle, we developed new messaging highlighting the value of the Fish 2.0 network, developed media connections supporting a major expansion of Fish 2.0 to Australia, and extended Fish 2.0’s thought leadership to focus on long-term trends such as the rise of “seatech” (a term we coined).

Without Thinkshift’s work, we would not have been able to reach our goals or surpass them, as we did in 2015 and succeeding years.—Monica Jain, founder and executive director, Fish 2.0


HOW IT WORKED

  • In the competition’s second cycle, with Thinkshift onboard, the number of entrants, judges and participating investors more than doubled compared with the inaugural year.
  • 95 articles and radio interviews about or substantively mentioning Fish 2.0 and Fish 2.0 competitors appeared March–December, compared with 24 over that period in 2013 (a 300 percent increase).
  • 95 percent of the competition’s 16 sponsors and partners promoted Fish 2.0 through blog posts, website features, social media, and local media outreach, and Fish 2.0’s social media reach grew 800 percent.
  • Our efforts in the third competition cycle resulted in a 50 percent increase in Fish 2.0 bylined articles published, as well as an 11.5 percent increase in media coverage compared with the second cycle.
  • In the final cycle, ending in 2019, we gained new media in Australia, an emerging global seafood powerhouse; earned placements with trend-oriented thought leadership in major publications such as TechCrunch as well as sustainable business publications including GreenBiz and Sustainable Brands; and illustrated the value of the Fish 2.0 network, an enduring legacy of the program.
  • Over three competition cycles, we generated coverage of Fish 2.0 in more than 440 articles and broadcasts focused on seafood innovation and sustainability.

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