Branding Through Social Media Communities

March 30, 2018
Hosted by Merritt Hamilton Allen and Gary Potterfield

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Episode Description

Part of developing a strong brand involves knowing your audiences and having a reliable outlet for authentic communication. Well-branded organizations put a lot of work into audience outreach through several methods that can include traditional and digital newsletters, email marketing, events, webinars and the list goes on. However most marketers and PR pros will tell you that despite its current issues and challenges today, social media still reigns supreme for developing and building a community of individuals looking for what your organization has to offer. As the organization’s PR director, Shannon explains how the core leadership started the very first workout back in 2010 and their PR efforts relied mostly on WOM and the occasional paid media campaigns. Later they created a social media presence that engaged members with photos, news and other content to grow their following to over 8,000 followers and supporting multiple chapters with social media profiles and strategies.

The Brand Ambassadors

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PR and communication have bad raps as being frivolous ways for businesses to burn overhead dollars. The Brand Ambassadors will show listeners the best way to incorporate PR into their operations, whether a startup or a Fortune 500 firm.

Host Merritt Hamilton Allen is an economist by training and a PR executive by accident. She will give listeners expert advice on focusing their PR energy and money. She will be joined by co-host Gary Potterfield, who is an expert in integrating business goals into compelling creative campaigns.

Every firm has a compelling narrative that sets them apart from the crowd. Everyone, whether an intern or the CEO, can advance their career and their business by blending their own background into their firm’s narrative through strategic storytelling.

Merritt Hamilton Allen and Gary Potterfield

Merritt Hamilton Allen believes that every employee in every business can help promote that business. Merritt has leveraged unique stories and perspectives to persuade and inform those around her. She turned this personal brand into the company Vox Optima in 2005, and has since been awarded over $25 million in PR contracts. Vox Optima’s public relations clients include multi-billion-dollar organizations, start-ups, and everyone in between.

Merritt grew up in Silver City, New Mexico, where she got her first job in radio at age 13. She attended the University of Notre Dame on NROTC and National Merit scholarships. After graduation she served as a Navy public affairs officer for eight years, and led the Navy’s communication strategy for environmental, personnel, medical, and acquisition issues. Merritt is a disabled veteran.

Vox Optima closed its first year with a $1 million task order from the U.S. Navy. Vox Optima currently has 15 employees, offices in Albuquerque and the DC Metro area and its client roster includes NATO, the U.S. Navy, the Department of Defense, the Department of State, BAE Systems, the Census Bureau and several national trade associations

Merritt was honored as a Woman of Influence by NM Business Weekly in 2012. She was named the top-performing media and marketing CEO in New Mexico in 2013 by Albuquerque Business First. Vox Optima has been listed in the top five PR firms by revenue in the state for the last four years.

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