LPP http://www.lpp.com Healthcare, Technology, Communications. Tue, 29 May 2018 15:03:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.6 The World of IoT in Two Days http://www.lpp.com/iot-world-two-days/ Tue, 29 May 2018 15:03:43 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6980 Though we’ve been in working in connectivity for more than 25 years, never has this corner of the tech sector been more exciting or game-changing than it is now. The build

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The World of IoT - It Takes a Village

Though we’ve been in working in connectivity for more than 25 years, never has this corner of the tech sector been more exciting or game-changing than it is now. The build out of 5G networks to support the 55 billion connected devices expected to hit the IoT market by 2025 is just one mindboggling element to consider. The second is that it will take a village – an elaborate ecosystem – to make it all possible and to move us toward more outcomes and business value.

IoT Takes a Village

We talked to more than 25 companies at IoT World in Santa Clara this week and heard several interesting presentations. The resounding theme was “you can’t go it alone.” Attendees and exhibitors all expressed the importance of a strong partner network to bring real value to customers. And, they all want to learn from each other as some industries are further ahead than others. As evidence of this, see the comments from Claire Curry of Bloomberg and Elvira Wallis of SAP Labs from this short video from the event organizers.

Several additional points stood out:

Pilot purgatory is a problem. Christian Olivier, president at Sigfox USA, offered good advice to get out of pilot purgatory, which 70 percent of companies are facing. We related his advice to grocery shopping while hungry – we all know the risk is buying and spending way more than you need. IoT is similar in that you can’t solve for everything at once and succeed. He suggests pinpointing a specific problem to fix – tracking assets when shipped, preventing how weather can impact a crop, avoiding the need to send a technician to fix a billboard. Then, quantify the value of that solution, define a critical set of tactics to address, embed the IoT solution into the business process and set expectations.

Products will become dumber. During a panel on IIoT hosted by James Brehm & Associates, one panelist from Abbott Labs offered a particularly thought-provoking opinion: products will become dumber. This sounds like an oxymoron in an era dominated by the word “smart” – smart lighting, smart appliances, smart cars, smart manufacturing, smart cities. But, his point was 80 percent of products will be software and 20 percent will be physical attributes. Because of this shift, he said the conversations we have will change. Applying this concept to buying a car, rather than talking about the engine and horsepower, the conversation will focus on applications the car has like its self-riding capabilities. We never thought of the future this way, but it makes sense that products will be mere shells, reliant on software and apps to bring them to life.

The IoT Impact

The most promising takeaway of all was how hopeful this market is. Abe Kleinfeld, CEO of GridGain Systems, said it best in this video when he noted this isn’t science fiction. The reality we are living where IoT is digitizing the real world and enabling decisions in real-time is incredible. And, from our standpoint, while it is understandable there are some risks to think through before we see continued progress, one thing is clear: the network and interplay of companies needed to make IoT possible is coming together nicely and the future is brighter than ever.

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Creating Demand – When Will Clinicians Yearn for AI? http://www.lpp.com/creating-clinician-ai-demand/ Wed, 23 May 2018 10:00:09 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6969 Undoubtedly, AI is the buzzword of 2018, but it’s also a business reality. Gartner predicts the AI market will reach $3.9 trillion by 2022; and there isn’t an industry that’s not

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Creating Demand - When Will Clinicians Yearn for AI?

Undoubtedly, AI is the buzzword of 2018, but it’s also a business reality. Gartner predicts the AI market will reach $3.9 trillion by 2022; and there isn’t an industry that’s not effected by the potential power of this technology. Given all the inefficiencies in healthcare, this may be the area with the most to gain from AI.

AI exists, but do clinicians care?

This theme was reinforced by every speaker and panel at last month’s World Medical Innovation Forum hosted by Partners HealthCare. While the potential benefits of AI in healthcare are innumerable, there are many barriers prohibiting it from being incorporated into a clinician’s day-to-day work. Repeatedly, speakers at this event discussed the same old needs: obtaining and organizing clean data and a commitment to an IT infrastructure which supports AI across the network. However, what really resonated during this event was the idea that a giant change management effort is needed for healthcare to truly embrace AI – do clinicians even want another technology, especially after dreadful EHR implementations? For the full potential of AI to be realized, you ultimately need clinicians who are willing to break their day-to-day work patterns and learn a new way of diagnosing and treating patients.

Current AI adoption

A late 2017 study found that most hospitals and imaging centers will be using AI technology by 2020. However, this same study found that more hospitals are adopting AI over imaging centers right now. This may be in part because of EHR use and the explosion of new data. The volume and velocity of available data is a double-edged sword – it holds the power to provide better insights and transform care, but no human could ever effectively analyze and mine that amount of information.

Can we really teach an old dog new tricks?

After listening to speakers at the Forum – from both the clinician and vendor perspectives – the answer is yes, we can teach clinicians new habits. Whether clinicians have been in the field for 30 years or three years, they are drowning in an overwhelming patient load and administrative responsibilities they never anticipated. One study suggests doctors spend about half of their time on administrative work and only 27 percent of their time with patients. While the true sea change will occur as medical schools and training hospitals embrace new technologies, like AI, as part of their curriculum, the change management required for broader AI adoption will hinge on small successes.

The successes created by smart AI companies in specific areas, like Robin in medical transcribing and Arterys in medical imaging, will gain momentum. Once clinicians see that a minor change in their work habits can create more time to see patients or more personal time, they will be willing to accept additional changes to their daily schedules. Although it may still take five years for this momentum to capture the attention of all providers and clinicians, it will be the combination of a newly trained medical workforce and the small gains of successful, self-executing AI solutions which finally put healthcare on the right track. So, let’s continue with these small wins and start creating real change!

 

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Why Metadata is Integral to Your Social Media Program http://www.lpp.com/metadata-integral-social-media-program/ Wed, 28 Feb 2018 08:00:32 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6870 Metadata, or “data about data,” has evolved over time to become a powerful tool for organizations focused on search engine optimization (SEO) and social content performance. From a credibility standpoint, metadata

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Metadata for Social Media

Metadata, or “data about data,” has evolved over time to become a powerful tool for organizations focused on search engine optimization (SEO) and social content performance.

From a credibility standpoint, metadata that backs up organizational expertise is a valuable asset for both your SEO and social media programs. In today’s digital landscape, reputable information is even more critical to organizational success than before, as users are primed to distrust information on social – especially after Facebook announced its commitment to rid News Feeds of fake news. Having the right back-end data will help provide better structure so your post copy can more accurately display your website images and description. Considering today’s shortened attention spans, more visually appealing content is going to get engagement.

Rough translation: Pics get clicks.

Getting Started with Metadata for Social

Before you put time and budget into drafting creative and compelling social media post content, make sure you’ve outfitted your site with the right meta tags that includes your key messages and a strong images. Think of it this way: However you set up your “behind the scenes” content on your website, that’s what social media channels are going to pull in to display. At a minimum, make sure you set yourself up for success by including all the right titles, descriptions and photos in your website meta tags.

If you’re not sure how your website appears on social media, preview it on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn:

Twitter – Twitter offers a card validator to test your links. Copy/paste your website’s URL into the text box and click “preview card.” From there, you’ll see how it will appear on Twitter (including: photo, title and description).

Twitter Card - Metadata Example

Facebook or LinkedIn – Log-in to Facebook or LinkedIn and copy/paste your website’s URL into the status update box. The link preview may take a moment to load, but once it does you can delete the URL text omitting the untidy-looking raw link and let your beautifully-done metadata do the work displaying your website content.

Metadata Examples - Facebook and LinkedIn

Social is the Cart, Metadata is the Horse

After you’ve spent some time cleaning up your meta tags and getting your data in order, you should then focus on gaining control to edit this data on social platforms like Facebook.

Because Facebook works on the Open Graph (OG) Protocol, users have the freedom to adjust their URL’s appearance, regardless of what is pulled in based on data (the same goes for platforms like LinkedIn and Google+). However, as part of their crackdown on fake news, Facebook in particular now asks that companies verify their website domain for exclusive permissions to edit owned metadata details within the platform.

To be clear, however, this simply gives you the option to shift messaging as-needed. It should not be thought of as a replacement for efforts toward cleaning up your website’s metadata – even temporarily. Using data to optimize search engine results and create trustworthy content helps in building brand credibility which is key for influencing perceptions about your brand.

Remember: Metadata is still just one piece of the social puzzle. Don’t rely on it for complete program success. Your content (much like your product) must live up to its packaging.

Ready to see how social media programs can support your marketing and PR goals? Connect with us here.

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Top Tech Trends at CES – Exploring the B2B Story http://www.lpp.com/top-tech-trends-ces-exploring-b2b-story/ Tue, 30 Jan 2018 08:00:56 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6888 CES celebrates some of the best new, up-and-coming and futuristic tech in the consumer electronics industry. While we could spend days – or weeks, or months – discussing all the actual

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CES 2018 Tech Trends - AI, robotics, smart cities

CES celebrates some of the best new, up-and-coming and futuristic tech in the consumer electronics industry. While we could spend days – or weeks, or months – discussing all the actual innovations from the show, we want to hone in on some of the core trends we observed. For us, these trends are part of a bigger story than just what consumers see – and we expect the actual tech behind the tech to be the best story.

Tech Trends at CES 2018

Artificial Intelligence – AI has received a lot of press in the past year and the discussions at CES were no different. While most of the conversations on AI have been about personal assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Home, there are more opportunities in other industries outside the home. For example, AI has tremendous capabilities in the autonomous driving space. In particular, AI makes sensory perception (detecting objects in a vehicle’s path) and data processing possible and useful.

Robotics – Robotics had a starring role at this year’s show. Many articles coming out of the show have rounded up lists of robots who interact with their human owners by taking pictures, answering questions, playing music or monitoring the home. Essentially, the robots in the spotlight are humanoid chassis with Alexa-like AI behind them, clearly demonstrating how AI and robotics are interrelated and are seemingly expected to grow in tandem.

Smart Cities – Smart cities are an interesting example of how society and technology intersect. From self-driving pizza delivery cars (no, we’re not talking about an episode of Black Mirror – it’s real!) to energy and environment usage, smart cities are fascinating because of all the layers of tech that make them possible. Both AI and robotics will be a big part of moving smart cities forward, but it will all depend on the right buy-in from the market, organizations, and city and regional leaders.

The Tech Behind the Tech

Although we saw these tech trends at a consumer show, there are far more applications for industrial industries and other B2B settings. Let’s look at the same trends in a different way:

Artificial Intelligence – Artificial intelligence is important for efficient data processing and is closely tied to edge computing. AI and edge are critical for keeping the industrial internet of things (IIoT) up and running. Many industrial control systems that are responsible for managing IIoT “things” like pumps, motors, values, conveyors, etc. These pieces of technology are often decades old and aren’t designed for open networking. Complementing old systems with edge computing and AI technologies will allow old infrastructure to keep up while keeping costs down.

Robotics – Robotics is an explosive industry, but it’s dependent on many others. While the connection to AI is apparent, especially from CES this year, robotics is majorly dependent on the chips that run them. As the robotics industry grows, we can anticipate it to generate significant demands for semiconductor chips. From sensing devices that collect information to data processing and motor control devices that process the collected information to networking devices that allow a robot’s internal network to connect to all its other components, semiconductor devices are what make robots work. The more robotics grows, the more semiconductor manufacturers are going to be center stage –even if they are embedded in the background.

Smart Cities – While the concept of smart cities frequently focuses on the surface-level tech that people will interact with (self-driving cars, connected homes, energy improvements), it’s really the tech behind the tech that is the real star here. The technology required to make smart cities “smart” is dependent on artificial intelligence, data processing, edge computing and robotics – and the chips and sensors that make them function. As cities become more connected, there are going to be more opportunities for companies that manufacture the “guts” to stand-out and develop partnerships with all parts of the connected devices chain.

What’s Next for Tech

As consumer electronics continue to grow, we anticipate the need for the tech behind the tech to grow as well. While consumer tech more often claims the headlines, it’s time for semiconductor manufacturers, edge computing and infrastructure solutions providers and AI programming companies to get more visible.

Ready to earn your tech company the visibility it deserves? Connect with us here.

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2018 Predictions: Healthcare, Technology and Communications Trends http://www.lpp.com/2018-predictions-health-tech-communications/ Wed, 20 Dec 2017 20:02:18 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6478   2017 was quite a year for public relations. From fake news to influencer crackdowns, to breaches and major healthcare policy changes, it was a challenging year for PR. But as

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2018 Predictions. Healthcare Technology Communications

2017 was quite a year for public relations. From fake news to influencer crackdowns, to breaches and major healthcare policy changes, it was a challenging year for PR. But as we move forward into the new year, there are some interesting trends on the horizon. At LPP, we discuss our predictions for 2018 – and cover off on healthcare, technology and the communications industry itself.

Here are our 2018 predictions.

Healthcare Industry Predictions

On Who the Winners will be in Healthcare

Melissa Zipin a PR and advertising expert at LPP

Melissa Zipin

Over the last several years, consumer tech companies decided their shiny new toy would be healthcare. There was tons of money to be made and a huge national – and global – problem to solve. While they were well-poised from both visibility and technology perspectives, they quickly realized the amount of time and money involved in closing deals with any health system. So, they tried their hands at consumer health. And, while many companies have been somewhat successful, they’ve recognized that in order to make an impact on healthcare overall, whatever solution is developed must have buy-in from not just the consumer, but from across the entire healthcare chain – patients, clinicians, health systems and pharma. Moreover, they found that every consumer is incented individually – making any one-size-fits-all approach they may have developed, very ineffective. I think over the next several years, we’ll continue to see mergers and acquisitions from the “big boys” – like the one we recently saw with CVS and Aetna. Winning companies will be the ones who recognize that it takes the entire healthcare chain to work together if you want to really make a change.

On the Future of Medical Wearables

Jaclyn Petros strategic planner for tech pr at LPP

Jaclyn Petros

Consumer wearables and their potential within healthcare have been a hot topic for several years now. As consumer adoption of these devices increases and clinical applications of wearable technology continue to evolve, we can expect to see expansion of medical-grade wearables. While watches and bands are the most popular forms of consumer wearables, they may not be the answer for the accuracy required by healthcare. In September, the FDA announced it would be working with several companies to create guidelines for digital health platforms. This is indicative of the industry emphasis to make better, more accurate software programs, which includes analyzing data from wearables. In 2018, we will see considerable improvements to the accuracy of information coming from wearables and the software supporting these devices, which will allow for broader adoption in the healthcare industry.

 

Technology Industry Predictions

On the Future of Edge vs. Cloud Computing

Anastasia Efstratios healthcare organizations expertAnastasia Efstratios

One of the most interesting changes facing businesses today is the emergence of edge computing. What’s wild is just as IT settled on cloud approaches for most applications, along comes the edge to turn networking, data center models, analytics and connectivity upside down. Where do you stand? Will the edge “eat” the cloud as Gartner’s Thomas Bittman stated previously? Or, will IT pros find a way for edge and cloud to co-exist peacefully? I think the edge is here to stay as it makes sense to put networking and processing power closer to the action. But, I’m excited to watch what businesses do, see how major cloud players address the edge, and track new, cool companies looking to make a name for themselves in the edge in 2018.

On the Intersection of Fintech and Blockchain

Scott Love, Senior Vice President, LPPScott Love

“Fintech” is now just part of today’s finance world. If a business, bank or institution thinks otherwise, they are already behind. Technology enables consumers and businesses to interact with their funds today. Fintech is not going to shake up banking in 2018 – that shakeup has already happened. Instead, we can expect that this reality will become more widely accepted. And, as we talk about financial trends, it’s hard not for blockchain to come up as Bitcoin continues to dominate the headlines. Currently, blockchain and Bitcoin are almost synonymous. But blockchain’s appeal is that it is a decentralized, public digital ledger. As we move through 2018, we’ll start to see how this technology can improve society. Dubai announced the government will be based on blockchain by 2020 – and it’s this kind of real-world example that may move blockchain to the technology forefront. 2018 may be the year blockchain unmarries itself from Bitcoin and becomes more real.

 

Communications Industry Predictions

On Crisis and Issues Management

Christine Simeone a Marketing Communications veteran at LPPChristine Simeone

Crisis communications has always been thought of as a separate part of a PR program. For the most part, crisis comms has had a reactive approach. More recently, companies have gotten better about being more proactive – creating plans ahead of time to prepare for the worst. Now, we’re seeing the line between traditional PR programs and separate crisis communications plans blur. Going into 2018, I expect to see the line continue to blur and soften – crisis communications will become an ongoing part of any PR program. Essentially, we’ll see a reframing from crisis communications to issues management whereby companies are more proactive in how they plan for any situation that may affect them.

 

We look forward to seeing what 2018 holds for healthcare and technology and communication’s role in addressing the challenges, successes and changes.

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Twitter Increasing Character Count: Yay or Nay? http://www.lpp.com/twitter-increasing-character-count/ Thu, 05 Oct 2017 08:30:28 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6440 Last week, Twitter announced it was beta testing 280-character Tweets, doubling the previous character limit. The company cited research that the 140-character limit was a major cause of frustration for people

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Twitter Increasing Characters - LPP

Last week, Twitter announced it was beta testing 280-character Tweets, doubling the previous character limit. The company cited research that the 140-character limit was a major cause of frustration for people tweeting in English. Since its launch in 2006, Twitter has proposed character count increases more than once – with the first proposal to up the limit to 10,000. After much backlash, they compromised and increased Direct Messages to 10,000 characters, but left Tweets at 140 characters. Now, select users are testing out what they can say with double the space – and the debates have been raging.

Here at LPP, we see both sides of the argument.

Yes to More Twitter Characters

PRO, Megan Doherty: I’m for the increased character count, depending on how it’s used.

Despite how frustrating it is when you can’t fit your ideas into the allotted 140-characters, the change has met more opposition than I would have anticipated. And while I’ve come to terms with the new character limit, I do wish they first removed links from character counts.

That said, the character limit change makes sense from a global perspective. For example, companies tweeting in some languages – like English, Spanish, Portuguese or French – struggle to stay within the character limit, as compared to other languages like Japanese, Korean and Chinese.

For those in heavily regulated industries — particularly, pharma and medical device companies — where the FDA requires risk disclosure in promotional materials, the current character limit made it nearly impossible to include both key messaging and risks in a single Tweet. Moving to 280-characters will give these companies room to adhere to FDA guidance, making Twitter a more accessible social platform.

Aside from additional room for ongoing content, more characters will facilitate better conversations when conducting Twitter chats, live-Tweeting webinars and responding to customer inquiries via @mention. The increased characters will allow users to more easily share their thoughts and ideas in one or two Tweets, as opposed to a string of four or five. In turn, user engagement will become more meaningful with content that includes all necessary context for their perspective, insight or question.

Here’s a question to ask yourself: Do I need to use all 280 characters? Simply having extra characters doesn’t mean every Tweet must hit the new limit. Your strategy will depend on your goals: better engagement, website conversions, increased product sales or disclosing product risks.

No, Twitter Doesn’t Need More Characters

CON, Amanda Fountain: Twitter doesn’t need to give users more space to share their thoughts.

Twitter works because of its brevity and alignment with how people text. The original 140-character limit was only partially an arbitrary number choice – it aligned with SMS texts that allotted 160-characters with the extra 20 characters to include a username (@mention). It was an imperfect system, but something people “got” and differentiated Twitter from other social platforms at the time.

Technology like text messages and Twitter have prompted discussions on how communication has changed over the past decade. We’re a short-hand society now – comfortable with writing in abbreviations and made up acronyms. Abbreviations have permeated our language so much we even use them when speaking – abbrevs are totes cool, obvs (translation: abbreviations are totally cool, obviously).

The beauty of Twitter is that it forces people to be concise and brief when sharing their thoughts. A platform that is frequently called out for its inability to curb harassment, Twitter is setting itself up for more issues. More characters means more space for vitriol. This move will make Twitter harder to police and is not what the company needs to save itself right now anyway. The expanded character count takes Twitter away from its roots — news, jokes and pure absurdity – and still isn’t giving users new features they can’t get on other platforms.

From a brand and company perspective, report after report after report indicate shorter Tweets get better engagement. “Short” means something in the 100-character range – a number much lower than the regular 140 and significantly less than 280. Long posts are detrimental to brands, so why would they want to have more space to get ignored?

But I think nothing argues against more characters than below. Good writing is accomplished with fewer words. Take the editing pen to your Tweet before embracing the extra characters.

 

Are More Characters Right for You?

Here’s what LPP advises: Know what your goals are and adapt from there. Social is rarely a one-strategy-fits all approach. Things are constantly evolving and changing and one company may have vastly different audiences and goals than another.

 

Ready to talk about your social media strategy? Let us know.

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Internet Trends 2017: Mid-Year Update http://www.lpp.com/internet-trends-2017-mid-year-update/ Tue, 22 Aug 2017 08:00:18 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6389 Mary Meeker released her annual Internet Trends report, which serves as a de facto “State Of The Union” for the tech world. The 352-slide report touches on virtually every corner of

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internet trends 2017

Mary Meeker released her annual Internet Trends report, which serves as a de facto “State Of The Union” for the tech world. The 352-slide report touches on virtually every corner of the tech world, but there were a number of findings that jumped out, both because of their general intrigue and because of the opportunity they offer for effective PR and communications. Here are three highlights:

  • Digital advertising is becoming increasingly measurable and actionable
  • Cloud adoption is up – as is the need for cloud security
  • Healthcare data continues to increase in volume

Digital Advertising Is Becoming Increasingly Measurable and Actionable

Despite the consistent increase in ad blocking usage, companies are devoting more resources to digital ads than ever before. In the U.S. alone, digital ad spend topped $73 billion in 2016. This increase is mostly driven by mobile ad spend – in fact, desktop ad spend actually decreased in 2016. Advertisers have known that mobile usage has been growing; however, it wasn’t until the latter half of 2016 that technology could accurately gauge ROI from mobile ad spend. Additional insight on who is (or isn’t) engaging with ads allows advertisers to optimize accordingly for more efficient spend.

The good news is the additional data from mobile advertising will give companies more insight into their audiences. This will allow communicators to develop better strategies to reach audiences beyond mobile ad displays. To stand out against competitors, a company will need to create fully integrated campaigns that include both digital advertising and great story telling through public relations.

Head in the Cloud, Feet on the Ground

Cloud has been the buzzword for what feels like so long it feels as though its degree of popularity has been firmly established. It may be surprising to learn adoption of public and private clouds is still on the rise. Since 2014, cloud adoption has risen 37 percent and the total spend is approaching the amount spent on traditional data centers.

Considering its proliferation in the news, cloud adoption has been slower than expected. There are several concerns that prevent companies from adopting the cloud.  However, it may be surprising to learn that concerns over data security has dropped by seven percent and cloud-related matters by 17 percent. The majority of enterprises now state their most pressing cloud concerns are vendor lock in (15 percent increase) and compliance/governance (six percent increase).

However, given recent massive global cyberattacks like Wannacry or Petya, security should still be a concern. For cloud-based companies, it is critical to have the right messaging for customers to understand what security measures are in place. The right communication strategy can demonstrate to customers – both existing and potential – their data will be protected, secure and the right measures are in place to mitigate risks.

 Heath Care Must Tread Cautiously With More Data

The amount of usable healthcare data available is increasing exponentially. Over the past year alone, healthcare data has grown by 48 percent. This trend has been primarily driven by wearable technology. In 2016, 102 million wearables were shipped.  It’s not just the public’s increased desire for gamified fitness devices, though. Because these types of wearables track heart rate, exercise duration and blood pressure, an increasing amount of crowdsourced data are being leveraged for medical and pharmaceutical studies.

More data means potentially more insight into healthcare, but it also means increased responsibility. It’s up to healthcare organizations to communicate how they collect and use data responsibly, and the best way to do that is through a strategic communications plan. A single campaign isn’t going to be enough to convince people that the data isn’t being abused, especially when stories surface seemingly every week about leaked or misused data. Healthcare organizations need to have a partner to help craft and update their messaging to put the public at ease.

The good news is that people are more willing to share sensitive data with organizations they view as “trusted.” Sixty percent of people polled said they’re willing to share their health data with Google, 56 percent with Microsoft and 50 percent with Apple. One reason these companies are so trusted is because they are consistently in the media and communicating with their customers and the public. People feel like they know these companies because constant communication breeds familiarity. Good PR can go a long way in people’s minds.

These are just the tip of the Internet Trends iceberg. You can check out the full report here.

 

Ready for a PR program of your own? Connect with us here.

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Black Hat 2017 Tips: Hack Your Next Trade Show http://www.lpp.com/black-hat-2017-trade-show-tips/ Tue, 15 Aug 2017 08:00:17 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6377 Trade shows can sometimes seem like a necessary evil for a company. From creating marketing materials to securing speaking opportunities for your executives to planning your schedule at the show, we

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Black Hat Trade Show

Trade shows can sometimes seem like a necessary evil for a company. From creating marketing materials to securing speaking opportunities for your executives to planning your schedule at the show, we know the laundry list of to-dos required for a successful presence at any industry conference is longer than you’d care to admit.

KISS at Black Hat

Last month, Black Hat (and co-located conferences BSides and DEFCON) took Las Vegas by storm and put the spotlight on both budding and establishing security companies. We met celeb lookalikes (see photographic evidence of our business development manager Lindsay LeCain with KISS impersonators), tasted whiskey at client Arbor Networks’ booth, and even turned off our WiFi capabilities to fend off potential hackers. But most importantly, we ditched our heels for flats and powered through the show floor to talk shop with the industry’s leading security companies.

 

Lessons From the Show Floor

Here are a few lessons from our team’s experience at Black Hat that will help your company manage its next show presence with ease:

 

  1. Do your homework. If your company is attending a show, do your research into recent trends and hot topics in the industry. At a security show, for example, what cyberattacks have dominated recent headlines? What were the implications of those attacks on the industry? Be prepared to talk with the experts and audiences at the show.
  2. Determine your goals ahead of time. Before you even step foot on the show floor, think about what you’re looking to get out of the conference. If you’re strictly there to learn, take advantage of trainings and speaking sessions at the show. If your goal is to talk to other vendors for their perspective on the industry, take a look at the exhibitor list ahead of time to determine who you want to talk to.
  3. Network…and do it well. When you’re talking to other industry experts at events and conferences, one question is bound to come up: “What does your company do?” Be prepared to tell your company’s story that explains exactly what you’re doing differently than the other 1,000 vendors in the room. The more you can tie your company story with recent trends, the better you’ll provide context for potential customers. Of all the insightful conversations we had at Black Hat, the ones that stood out kept us engaged with their unique point of view. Make sure people walk away with a little something to remember you – like business cards and other marketing collateral (tip: company swag doesn’t hurt either).
  4. Create content. If you’re like us, you know the importance of great content and you use every trade show as an opportunity to show off your company’s collateral. At Black Hat, for example, our team created a customized infographic to accompany us at the show which highlighted our experience in the industry. Don’t discount the value of a strong piece of content.
  5. Maximize social media presence: Is there an event hashtag? Are your executives speaking at a panel that could be live-Tweeted or streamed? The more social activity you participate in, the more your company becomes a key player in industry conversations online. But, don’t negate the value of face-to-face interaction. Use social media to complement a great booth presence that will leave attendees talking – and posting.
  6. Follow up. Following up post-show is not just about checking in with contacts you traded cards with – it needs to include finding ways to keep your company visible. Focus on developing a unique point of view for your company, train spokespeople and get ready for media outreach. Finding a public relations and communications strategy partner can help make sure your company’s story goes far beyond a tradeshow.

 

Still feeling stressed about your company’s next industry trade show presence? Don’t worry – we’ve got your back! Connect with us here.

 

 

 

 

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Anatomy of a Successful Communications Program http://www.lpp.com/anatomy-successful-communications-program/ Mon, 14 Aug 2017 21:54:45 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6384   Automation may be the future of security, but it’s not for public relations. A successful communications program needs to be evaluated on an individual basis for each company. Here’s the

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Communications and PR plans

 

Automation may be the future of security, but it’s not for public relations. A successful communications program needs to be evaluated on an individual basis for each company.

Here’s the anatomy of a successful communications program:

  • Keep an Eye on the Future. Provide predictions on how threats will evolve and what the next frontier will be in cyber defense.
  • Analyze the Market. Share insights on the threat landscape and the attackers, highlighting emerging trends and concerns.
  • Do the Hard Work. Use elbow grease to discover new threats, or the source of and MO of existing threats.
  • Be Passionate. Have bold and contrarian opinions that get to the heart of industry issues to establish yourself as a valuable source.
  • Keep a Pulse on the Industry. Comment on the latest trends from ransomware to machine learning to IoT and mobile malware in order to infiltrate media.
  • Leverage Experts. Put forth thought leaders who have a credible reputation and pedigree in the security field.
  • Be Nimble. Turn on a dime to make spokespeople available when significant security news is breaking.

Ready to analyze your communications strategy? Connect with us here.

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Award Season: Bringing Home the Bells http://www.lpp.com/award-season-bringing-home-bells/ Wed, 07 Jun 2017 13:48:53 +0000 http://www.lpp.com/?p=6322 There are few things more satisfying than being publicly awarded in front of your PR and communication peers. We’ll skip the list of other things we like and just focus on

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There are few things more satisfying than being publicly awarded in front of your PR and communication peers. We’ll skip the list of other things we like and just focus on the awards bestowed upon us last week though (Tweet at us if you’re curious now).

The 49th Annual Bell Ringer Awards, sponsored by the Publicity Club of New England, honors excellence in communications work in every field and industry, across all forms of media. Known as “the Bells,” the awards recognize professionals who leverage creative strategies, tactics and tools to achieve meaningful results for their clients, companies, organizations, and institutions.

The Setting

The Bell Ringer Awards Gala was held at the Revere Hotel’s Liberty Hall this year. Professionals from more than 55 agencies, companies and non-profits from across New England gathered with colleagues at the Gala. The evening kicked off with a cocktail hour and was followed by a family-style dinner. When the lights dimmed, host Josh Brogadir, sports reporter/anchor at WCVB Channel 5, began announcing the winners.

And the Winner Is…

LPP was a finalist in two categories for our work with Philips. The competition was fierce this year with many peers submitting impressive work – especially in the healthcare campaigns.

In the Healthcare Publicity Campaign category, the team’s media coverage and results from HIMSS 2016 won a Bronze. The award recognized the team’s media relations work which helped to strengthen Philips’ position as a leader in connected health while reinforcing its leadership in health IT by driving home key messages.

The team nabbed another Bronze award in the Healthcare Product Launch category for its work securing coverage during RSNA 2016. The campaign was awarded for its achievement in breaking through noise during the show while driving home key messages on connected radiology.  

Quality Client Time

Members of the Philips team joined LPP at the ceremony to celebrate the award-winning work. Strong partnerships like the one LPP/OVC has with Philips are the best way to achieve award-winning results. This year, two Bronze awards illustrate the client-partner relationship we put at the center of our work. Next year, we predict even more fantastic and award-winning work.

 

Photos courtesy of Publicity Club of New England. 

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