Leapfrogging the Competition
The security beat moves at lightning speed, with the majority of news driven by high-profile breaches and threat advisories. Outbound communications from security labs represent a big part of the marketing and PR budget for all antivirus vendors. The labs are effective at helping companies increase brand awareness while demonstrating their ability to catch malicious Internet activities. Panda Security competes against antivirus software vendors with a much larger presence in the U.S., including Symantec, Sophos, Kaspersky and Trend Micro, each of whom has dedicated extensive resources to their AV-lab communications. Before partnering with the Bateman Group, Panda’s share of competitive media did not even rank within the top 10. Recognizing the untapped potential in PandaLabs, the company’s innovative security lab, Bateman Group set a lofty goal to move its market share position within the top five.
Recognizing that rapid responses to known breaches weren’t enough, Bateman Group stayed ahead of the market by designing and managing a threat communications calendar informed by our regular dialogue with the most influential media and intimate knowledge of their “hot” issues. Because Panda lacked the same lab communication resources as its larger competitors, Bateman Group focused on successfully executing against a fewer number of higher caliber campaigns that would collectively have a much bigger market impact in the end. For example, Bateman Group managed a series of award-winning campaigns that examined the relationship between the growing rate of cybercrime and the weakening economy during the months leading up to the “official” market collapse in 2009. The following year, as media hype surrounding social networking mounted, Bateman Group launched Panda’s Social Media Risk Index that uncovered the top social media security risk factors for small- and medium-sized businesses across a number of different industries.
Beyond relying on traditional embargo and exclusive strategies, Bateman Group leveraged a variety of new media platforms and content distribution services to maximize coverage. For example, the Bateman team initiated a successful blog syndication program with PandaLabs’ U.S. threat analyst and primary spokesperson and coached him on the best way to converse with fellow bloggers via Twitter to increase his following. This blog and related Twitter and Facebook feeds proved to be excellent channels for disseminating Panda’s research, often presented in a more conversational voice to resonate with peer readers.
Bateman Group’s diligent eye on the latest trends coupled with rapid action related to breaking research and industry news cycles has enabled Panda Security to greatly increase brand awareness in the United States. The following chart, produced by independent online media monitoring company Sysomos, depicts Panda’s share of media voice in comparison to key competitors over the course of 2010:
Since partnering with Bateman Group, Panda has surpassed McAfee, Trend Micro, Kaspersky and Sophos in overall media market share and significantly narrowed the gap on Symantec, a company more than 20 times its size. In addition, PandaLabs has become known as a trusted resource to many top-tier security reporters, including Jordan Robertson of the Associated Press; Ben Worthen of The Wall Street Journal; Elinor Mills at CNET; Brian Acohido at USA Today; and Bob McMillan of IDG News Service.
"Bateman Group's ability to deliver smart, effective ‘off-the-cuff’ PR recommendations impressed us from the very first conference call."