Ten Rising Stars: Liz Cahill

Senior account supervisor, Hill & Knowlton

Senior account supervisor, Hill & Knowlton

In a world where clients and PR agency debate measurement standards, Hill & Knowlton is pleased to provide a singular fact: since Liz Cahill, 29, began working with Motorola, the company's market share lead over competitor Nokia in the US has increased from 4% percent to nearly 16%.

Motorola is not shy to say where a major part of that success has come from, sending Cahill's superiors e-mails with effusive praise, such as, "Whenever the cloning machine is ready, we'll take 10 Liz Cahills for the Moto team!"

While Cahill previously had worked with other tech start-ups in the past, Motorola was her first mobile phone client. But she immediately took to the business.

"Her rise to lead the Motorola business within the last two to three years is because she has an amazing strong commitment to her clients, team, and agency," says Bonnie Goodman, LA GM and EVP. "She doesn't let anything take her off that focal point."

Goodman says that Motorola is aware of the effect that H&K and the company's PR initiatives have had in its success.

"We have an amazing partnership with Motorola, and I give Liz a lot of credit for that," Goodman says. "The client and she are one in some ways."

Motorola has provided her with numerous professional challenges. Cahill says she was given the "amazing opportunity" last year to coordinate the campaign to introduce Motorola's RAZR phone, a slim, $500 phone.

The company says her team and her work exceeded "all goals" and garnered billions of impressions through earned media in the The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, San Jose Mercury News, Newsweek, Time, US News & World Report, Maxim, Harper's Bazaar, Wired, US Weekly, Vanity Fair, Good Morning America, CNN and CNBC.

One of her tasks was to ensure strategic coverage of the phone in the media prior to the launch.

"We wanted to keep the buzz going, but not cannibalize it," with too much media exposure, Cahill says. "It was kind of a multi-step process in getting people to get write about it, then providing a stock photo, then providing journalists with a full-fledged review of the product."

At her recommendation, the company staged a Motorola-only event in July 2004 called MotoRising before the trade show season, attracting 100 journalists who saw eight new Motorola products where the media and other people got to see and touch the RAZR for the first time, which drove the hype up even more.

"You see the products that have been covered in the past 6 months have been very RAZR-like," Cahill says. "But you can take the high-road, knowing that the RAZR is the [original] high-end product out there."

Goodman lauds Cahill's commitment to mentoring others in the profession. "You can hear it in her voice and demeanor and see it in the way she approaches the coordination," Goodman says. "She's also a good mentor at such a young age because she's committed to success with clients and knows how to translate that down to the team."

  • In this web-exclusive feature, PRWeek.com presents ten profiles of young communications professionals under thirty in a variety of industries, focuses, and roles.

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