Global Newsmaker: Catherine Eyres

Software Top 100 and NASDAQ-listed software company ACI Worldwide this month reported strong revenue growth for Q2, 2010.

Catherine Eyres
Catherine Eyres

Catherine Eyres, PR manager, ACI Worldwide talked to PRWeek about raising awareness of the electronic payments software provider and how the changing digital landscape is creating opportunities for the company, rather than challenges.

What PR strategies have been used to build awareness and raise the profile of ACI Worldwide?

Thought leadership, and the content we generate we use on a global basis to support our marketing efforts. Because of the nature of what we do, we do not have the luxury of openly talking about customers or announcing frequent product updates like an Apple or a Microsoft, we rely more on leading the debate and the industry through an effective thought leadership programme. A good example of this was the ACI guide to "stopping card fraud in its tracks" which encompassed research and thought leadership, as well as guidance on how to mitigate card fraud. The content was used for media relations by all our PR agencies around the world for bylined articles or as the basis for press interviews, and was even translated into Chinese and used by our China office, thereby creating thought leadership on the topic on a global scale.

What challenges does digital media present you in terms of your campaigns?

Digital media presents an opportunity rather than a challenge. It provides us with an open platform to communicate frequently and rapidly with the media, the industry and experts in the industry. The challenge is how to measure the impact, and assess the value of digital media, as evaluation in this area is less scientific.

As a B2B company, how do you integrate social media within your PR strategy?

Social media is absolutely integral part of our PR strategy, so the answer is that we do not integrate it - its simply already part of our every day-to-day PR activity. Every activity we do whether it’s a press release or a thought leadership article, wherever possible we blog about it, tweet about it, and it continuously forms part of our digital press office  All our press materials, content and press activity always have social media firmly embedded.

How would you like the media to report on ACI?
A lot of the issues our technology deals with, such as financial crime, cards and retail banking payments or SEPA, have both a macro-economic and international element. Media need to understand the scale of what we do as ACI’s tools are at the heart of payments. More than 75 billion times each year, ACI’s solutions process consumer payments, and on an average day, ACI software manages more than US$9 trillion in wholesale payments. Likewise, the issues aforementioned are cross border, and with the rapid onset of globalisation the payments industry is becoming increasingly international, the impact of which the media need to understand even if they are writing for in-country publications.

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