Hugh Williams, the longtime head of the Denver office of global public relations firm Weber Shandwick, has taken the position of CMO at injury prevention and recovery technology company Addaday. Williams built Weber Shandwick’s endurance sports practice and led the strategy, development and execution of award-winning integrated sports marketing campaigns. He will be based in Boulder.
Williams will be joined by Kristin Goett, who was named Addaday’s Communications Director. She brings five years of in-house communications experience across brands including DISH Network and the University of Denver. She also has been a columnist for Triathlete Magazine.
Weber Shandwick has added Jessica Weidensall as a director in the firm’s Denver office. Weidensall has nearly a decade of sports media and public relations experience, and she joins Weber Shandwick from World Triathlon Corporation (aka IRONMAN) where she oversaw public relations and media efforts for the IRONMAN family of brands.
When I was a vice president at Weber Shandwick, I spent a lot of my time – 60 percent, if you believed my job description – having conversations with prospective clients, and I was always looking for a hook that would let me have a different kind of conversation with them than my competitors could have.
So I was curious about the agency’s announcement last week of its new “content fusion” approach to integrated storytelling that promises to identify “what stories can be told in which formats and where to drive those stories.”
After watching the video and reading the white paper, it is clear that “content fusion” is both brilliant and disappointing. It is brilliant because it give Weber Shandwick another proprietary hook to have unique conversations with a prospective client, and disappointing because it boils down to simply acknowledging that some stories are better told using video and graphics. Hardly innovative stuff, but you have to give Weber Shandwick credit for the fancy packaging.
Weber Shandwick continues to grow in Denver, adding the University of Colorado’s Health and Wellness Center and Louisville-based GHX as clients. The international public relations firm’s Denver office is led by SVP Laura Taylor and VP Hugh Williams.
Weber Shandwick has released a new report that examines the roles CEOs play in social media, and the news is mixed:
Our analysis revealed results that were good and not-so-good. Robust signs exist that CEOs are actively taking charge of their corporate reputations and demonstrating leadership through communications. For the most part, they are extensively quoted in the business press, frequently deliver keynote speeches at conferences, and participate in business school forums. But when it comes to digital engagement and social media, CEOs are generally “unsocial.” As more CEOs take on the mantle of “chief narrator,” however, we expect that this will change and change fast.
John Onoda tells the Council of PR Firms that it is as antiquated as GM in a hybrid world. Weber Shandwick CEO Harris Diamond respectfully disagrees.
2007 turned out to be a decent year for the mega-agencies. IPG, the parent company of MWW and Weber Shandwick, reported a 6 percent increase in revenue in 2007, while WPP posted a 14 percent increase. Hopefully your agency saw similar increases in 2007, because 2008 could be an ugly year for us all if the economy doesn’t show some signs of life.
Corporate America apparently has not learned what politicians have known for decades — that you can answer any tough question by ignoring it completely and instead answering the question you wish you had been asked. With that bit of knowledge, you would think the fabled “no comment” would gradually disappear entirely. But instead, it actually has increased.
Leslie Gaines-Ross of Weber Shandwick researched the number of times the phrase “the company declined to comment” appeared in media during the past 11 years. Surprisingly, it has doubled since 2000. Clearly, many companies do not understand that “no comment” is usually associated with presumptive guilt.