Market Leadership

Three Reasons You Should Get a Strategic Narrative Messaging Assessment

It can be hard to get out of your own head. In business, we are all so close to our company messaging that we sometimes miss the flaws or opportunities for a better narrative. At Catapult, we’ve talked to dozens of CEOs who are unsatisfied with their company narrative but unsure how to go about improving it. When you’re busy running a business or leading teams, you tend to be inwardly focused on your products

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Market Leadership

Marketing Tips for a Strong 2020

A solid plan and fresh ideas are great ways to kick off a new year in business. Marketers have a lot to consider as they enter 2020. What are the marketing goals and are they aligned with the overall business strategy? What is the budget? What worked and what didn’t work in 2019?  Forbes Communication Council shared tips from 15 marketing thought leaders – including Catapult’s chief narrative officer and principal, Guy Murrel – on how to

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Market Leadership

Another DevOps Enterprise Summit in the Books

As DevOps Enterprise Summit 2019 comes to a close, the Catapult team heads home after three days of immersive learning and networking in Las Vegas. If you’re not already familiar with the DevOps Enterprise Summit – it is the premier industry conference for business and technology leaders to learn how to develop and deploy software faster and win in the marketplace. The Catapult team provided PR and social media support for the event for the

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Strategic Narrative

Catapult Celebrates 20 Years: 20 PR Lessons Learned

Twenty years ago today Terri Douglas and I took our own good advice and started our PR firm — Catapult PR. Since 9/9/99, there’s been a lot of hard work, an awesome group of employees past and present, many great clients, and a whole lot to be grateful for. There are also many lessons learned along the way on this wild and crazy ride. This year is especially significant because it marks the big “2-0”

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Catapult PR Shares Elements of Strategic Narrative Marketing for Category Leadership and Stronger Company Messaging

‘Strategic Narrative Marketing’ elevates company positioning and messaging to help B2B organizations become category winners through their industry narrative BOULDER, Colo., June 12, 2019 — Catapult PR-IR (www.catapultpr-ir.com), a high-tech public relations and Strategic Narrative Marketing agency, today released the four elements for building a strategic narrative focused on industry megatrends, insights, vision and category definition. The four elements help companies discover their narrative for the industry so they can tell a story that is

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Market Leadership

The DevOps Industry Narrative Journey

Narrative leads every industry forward. For the software industry, two major movements — driven by narrative — has led to the rise of Agile, and more recently, DevOps, from concept to mainstream practice. From the Agile Manifesto (Feb., 2001) and Marc Andreessen’s famed 2011 WSJ column “Why Software is Eating the World,” to the much used motto “Building Better Software Faster,” narrative stories have helped lead both practitioners and vendors alike to collective benefit. Last

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Thought Leadership

Why Your CEO Will Love Budgeting a Strategic Narrative

It’s that time of year where the B-word is front and center. That’s right, the budget. Budget planning brings up mixed feelings and it can get a little intense. As marketers, it’s not always easy to get the CEO on board with certain budget items. Demonstrating value and ROI can be tricky – and the CEO wants to know that the investment is worth it. Unfortunately, marketing also tends to get a bad rap for

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Top Quotes on PR and Narrative from Catapult

In a previous blog, I shared some tips on what I learned from my first couple of weeks in the PR industry. One thing I learned after joining the Catapult team is that, “Tips from co-workers are the best… if a co-worker gives you any information on how to make your time more productive or to make others in the office happier, take it. Many of my co-workers at Catapult have helped me with this.” Shouldn’t

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Market Leadership

Strategic Narrative and Category Building are Front and Center for CEOs

Messaging and positioning are more than just marketing’s priorities These last few years I’ve seen Catapult go in and help organizations create strategic narrative messaging and execute PR efforts that lead markets and create new categories. In that time, I’ve noticed some patterns in the way that organizations 1) realize they need help with telling their story, 2) reach out to third parties to gain an outside perspective and, 3) involve executive leadership to implement

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Market Leadership

Narrative + PR = Category Winner

It’s harder than ever to stand out — with most companies saying the same thing as competitors. It’s even harder to seize the top spot within your given category. Despite all the digital automation and intelligence available to marketers, effective public relations still provides the most credible path to winning the market positioning battle, especially for startups and B2B tech firms. Don’t get me wrong… Growth hacking is great. As is paid digital marketing that

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Strategic Narrative

Achieve Strategic Company Alignment with a Strategic Narrative

Every business leader wants their company to be strategically aligned. It creates unity among teams and delivers a consistent, clear message of who the company is and what it stands for. Unfortunately, achieving this sort of alignment from the top down and across every facet of the organization is complicated because a lot of companies struggle with their positioning and messaging. What is strategic business alignment? Jonathan Trevor and Barry Varcoe do a great job

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Strategic Narrative

How Communications Pros can get the Whole Company Excited About Category Building

Communications and PR people get the importance of narrative. You don’t need to convince us, it’s the world we live in. Stories shape and redefine our companies, our clients, the industry we are in and the industries we represent.  Our day-to-day work involves digging up those narratives, editing them, analyzing them and acting with the story as the backbone of our activity. Therefore, when the marketing team creates a plan or the PR agency comes

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

Why You Shouldn’t Leave it up to the Industry Analysts to Define and Claim Your Market Category

If you are in the tech space, you are familiar with all the industry research firms who tout their worth and value when it comes to defining who your company is and where you fit within their various market categories. Companies pay a LOT of money to get on analysts’ radar screens and utilize their advice and services. There’s nothing really wrong with this approach. There is definitely certain value you get out of paid

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Market Leadership

Dear CMO, What’s Makes a Tasty Marketing Recipe?

There is no one correct way to make my favorite dish of all time – macaroni and cheese. With a plethora of options — from cheese selection to noodle type, in addition to different cooking methods involving butter, eggs or cream — the beautiful thing about making “mac and cheese” is that no matter what ingredients you use, the combination of pasta and cheese usually tastes good no matter what (though there are still ways

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Catapult PR and CorSource Develop and Launch ‘Staffing Lifecycle Management’ Through the Strategic Narrative Marketing Approach

Today we are excited to announce that we helped CorSource create and launch a new process framework through the Strategic Narrative Marketing approach. Read the news below: Industry framework establishes a unique platform for CorSource to address employee management challenges in tech with concrete steps to improve the Talent Economy. Here’s the news release: BOULDER, Colo., April 17, 2018 – Catapult PR-IR (www.catapultpr-ir.com), a Strategic Narrative communications agency, today announced it helped CorSource develop and launch,

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Market Leadership

Time for CEOs to do Some Spring Cleaning

And Strategic Narrative Marketing is Blooming. . . Ahhh, Springtime. The grass is starting to turn green, the birds are chirping, and tulips and daffodils are popping up through the dirt to greet the sun. You’re probably even thinking about golf, vacations and scheduling a few outings with your friends and family. That’s the familiar narrative we are all accustomed to when we think about Spring. Now, apply that to what your company does each

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umbrella_blog
Strategic Narrative

Introducing the Strategic Narrative Assessment

Today we are excited to announce the launch of our Strategic Narrative Assessment that is now available on Catapult’s new and improved homepage. The assessment looks at a company’s core messaging and offers feedback and a scorecard detailing how it translates to the market, stacks up to competitors and addresses industry mega-trends and leadership. And, it’s completely free of charge! Here’s what our co-founder Terri Douglas shared about the assessment: “Strategic Narrative Marketing helps companies change

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Strategic Narrative

Strategic Narrative Marketing in Forbes

We are excited to see Strategic Narrative Marketing featured in a recent Forbes post about creative ideas for driving an organization’s brand. We believe that every company can benefit from Strategic Narrative Marketing, and that adoption of the approach creates industry leaders and category owners. Read the full article here. Strategic Narrative Marketing challenges companies to look higher than what they do or offer, and focus on the industry.  By following the approach, a company

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Market Leadership

Narrative Spotlight: How Apple Dominated the Resolution Conversation with Retina Display

Catapult has recently been shining the spotlight on companies that understand how to lead the market by creating industry narratives and vision. These are companies that have hit the narrative mark. This means their communications follow the principles of Strategic Narrative Marketing. We started with a post on Patagonia, outdoor adventure retailer, and its move over the last couple of years to take a political stance and align the company around advocacy for public lands.

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Market Leadership

Narrative Spotlight: Mavenlink

The narrative movement is gaining traction among industry leaders. An industry narrative is higher-level than storytelling and that alone forces companies to think differently. By participating in this movement, companies have the opportunity to offer a unique voice and contribute to the overall betterment of the industry. What we’re talking about rises above products and services. It is the essence of who a company is and its vision for the industry. Many companies that have

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Market Leadership

Selfless Marketing is a Thing (Let me Explain …)

Believe it or not, a company’s messaging does not have to be self-centered. Stay with me for a moment and let me explain what I mean. I know, I know the very word “marketing” means promoting and selling. So how can marketing be selfless? Isn’t the purpose of marketing always to increase the bottom line? Shouldn’t a B2B company focus on advertising and promoting its solutions? Sure, those activities matter and good marketing will end

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Uncategorized

Boost Your Content Pipeline with an Industry Narrative in 2018

As we dive into a New Year, many of us face the challenge of realigning our efforts to reach new goals over the next 12 months. If content is your specialty, you’ve probably crafted a new content marketing plan and have built (or are in the process of building) a 2018 content calendar. You might even have a documented strategy for content — but is your content supported by a narrative that delivers a unique

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Strategic Narrative

It’s Budget Time. . . .

And you know what that means. Looking at what you spent last year and seeing what worked, what didn’t (and why) Investigating ways to streamline resources, budget, yet get more impact Seeing where to invest to ‘move the needle’ so your organization/company can get more sales, be acquired, raise more money Let’s be honest. It’s stressful. Boards want justification for the money you (your company) spent and why. Investors want the same, but, they want

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stranger things in PR
Strategic Narrative

“Stranger Things” in Public Relations

Public relations can expose some interesting, challenging and even spooky situations. Oftentimes, PR professionals can feel lost when it comes to delivering (and measuring) results for their clientele. Unless specific goals and key performance indicators are set and understood from the start, trouble can arise. Additionally, the call to quantify public relations’ value for the boardroom can seem never-ending. Many are even starting to eliminate some (or all) of the PR line item from budgets

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Market Leadership

How an Industry Narrative Prevents Your Content from Becoming Spam

Content marketing standards might be at an all-time low. Many business-to-business companies are outsourcing content creation, often to “jack-of-all-trades”-content farms who do not have a deep understanding of the businesses they are writing about. Also, we are seeing automated content and the use of robots or AI for content creation grow in popularity. Heck, even journalism organizations like the Associated Press are using robots to write stories, so why not? But is all of this

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Thought Leadership

Starting My Career in the PR Industry: What I Did That Helped & What I Wish I Would Have Known

Well, I’m straight out of college and have my first job in the public relations industry. Catapult PR gave me a home after graduation, and I couldn’t be more thrilled! Now that first week jitters have come and gone it’s the perfect time to reflect on my thoughts from this past couple of weeks. Arriving at Catapult on my first day wasn’t at all bad. I had met everyone throughout the interview process, so seeing

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Market Leadership

TechDay LA Recap

For a boutique PR firm like Catapult, the tradeshow/conference circuit is a bit off the beaten path. We work with clients all over the country, and we’ve been fortunate enough that the reputation we’ve developed throughout the tech industry often leads to referral-based client relationships. When we decided to attend TechDay LA, we recognized it as a great opportunity to push our boundaries, engage with a whole new sector of the industry, and continue to

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Strategic Narrative

Catapult Wins TWO National Industry Awards for Strategic Narrative Marketing

We are honored to share that we recently received two national awards for our Strategic Narrative Marketing (SNM) messaging framework that helps organizations define and own categories. We are now the proud owners of a Gold Stevie Award for PR Innovation in the 2017 American Business Awards™, and Silver for New Products and Services in Advertising, Marketing and Public Relations in the 2017 Golden Bridge Awards.  “This is a big milestone for Catapult as we work

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Strategic Narrative

The More You Give, the More You Get

I generally find that the saying “the more you give the more you get” holds true when applied in life and business. In life, the rewards of giving are more intangible and somewhat spiritual – feeling good inside, aligned and centered, and riding the wave of a positive force. It’s more of a karma thing. But what about in business? How much should you give and share with the market, even competitors? When I look

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Market Leadership

Takeaways from DevOps Enterprise Summit London 2017

DevOps Enterprise Summit London 2017 (DOES17) is a wrap! We (Catapult PR) were proud to partner with IT Revolution to help make the second year of the London conference come to life. DOES17 took place in the amazing Queen Elizabeth II Centre in the heart of London from June 5-6, 2017. Nearly 700 software delivery practitioners, business leaders and DevOps luminaries from around the world joined us for two jam-packed days of programmatic learning featuring

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Strategic Narrative

Strategic Narrative Marketing 101: What is a ‘Messaging Space?’

We (Catapult PR) talk a lot about our unique approach to positioning and messaging called Strategic Narrative Marketing (SNM). The approach defies traditional company-centric messaging because it challenges a company to look at messaging from a higher-level and focus on the industry. When this is done correctly, the company has an opportunity to be more strategic and develop a narrative that is unique, compelling and actually means something to the industry. When we share tips

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Market Leadership

How a CrowdChat Can Bring Your Industry (and Narrative) Together

In the world of PR and marketing, it’s always crucial to keep a pulse on the latest and greatest tools and technologies. Why? These present new and innovative ways to help bring your client’s or your company’s messages and strategies to market. If you’re a Twitter person, like me, perhaps you’ve stumbled onto an application called CrowdChat – a social chat platform where a crowd creates the content through engaging conversations and a gamified experience.

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Market Leadership

Strategically Targeting Analysts as Key Influencers: AR is a Two-Way Street

Analyst relations (AR) and public relations are usually closely paired within the marketing functions of today’s businesses. At Catapult, we run AR programs for most of our clients, in addition to PR. This makes sense because in some ways, analysts function like journalists—although more technical, specialized and usually with prior firsthand industry experience. Analysts formally report on the movements they see within particular markets. They evaluate and review vendors, provide recommendations and forecast future growth

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Market Leadership

Raise Your Brand Volume with Execution-as-a-Strategy

One of the best ways to beat your competition is to out execute them. This is especially true when it comes to PR and marketing. All too often companies get bogged down when it comes to PR cadence and frequency. Activities are done in fits and starts. Then, long lags in time occur as the company goes “quiet.” Meanwhile, the leaders in the market seem to be communication machines – frequently and consistently posting social

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Market Leadership

Social Media Marketing World: The Future of Social Marketing

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to attend Social Media Marketing World 2017 (SMMW) in sunny San Diego. Coming into the conference as an intermediate member of the social media world, I was excited to learn a lot. And, boy, did I learn! The conference covered just about every corner of social media marketing, including tracks specifically dedicated to blogging, vlogging, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, analytics and more. With more than 100 sessions lead

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Strategic Narrative

Why It’s Important to Use Industry Megatrends as Part of Your Messaging Strategy

Everyone has “that friend.” The one you dread meeting up with because you know that for every story or update you have, they will have one to match it. Everything you say somehow relates to them, and makes you want to (maybe not so) politely exit the conversation. While it’s often easy to tell when you are being like this type of person, it’s much more difficult to recognize this behavior on an organizational level.

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Market Leadership

Drive Content Marketing Success with an Industry Narrative

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]Content marketing costs 62 percent less than outbound marketing, but generates more than three times as many leads (Content Marketing Institute). Marketers recognize the value of leveraging good content and most companies today use some form of content marketing. We see evidence of this on social media, blogs and other online content distribution sources. Unfortunately, the sheer volume of material that companies are constantly pushing out has reached spam-like

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Market Leadership

Strategic Narrative Marketing from Launch to Adoption | Part 12

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]Strategic Narrative Marketing (SNM) is a new approach to company positioning and messaging. If you’ve been tracking along with our blog series, you probably have a decent grasp on what it’s all about (newcomers – start with Part 1). You’ve learned how to truly think and act like a leader in your industry and perhaps you are considering developing and launching a market category or framework for your organization.

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Strategic Narrative

Long-Form Category Building| Part 10

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]The Strategic Narrative Marketing Series continues as we explain the next step in the narrative development process. Previously we discussed developing Power Point slides that will serve as the basis of your narrative. Today we will explore long-form category definition through the development of a white paper or positioning document. If you’re just jumping into this Series now, check out our first blog which explains what Strategic Narrative Marketing

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

Your Strategic Narrative | Part 9

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]If strategic narrative you’ve followed along with our Strategic Narrative Marketing blog series, you’ve learned about this new industry approach that was developed by Catapult PR to help companies lead markets, stand apart from their competitors, and have something meaningful to say in crowded content spaces. Recently we transitioned from the “what” to the “how.” We covered the basics of conducting a discovery session to unwrap a Strategic Narrative

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

Crafting Your Strategic Narrative Statement | Part 8

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]To continue our ongoing series on “Strategic Narrative Development: Elements of Success,” we’ll take a look this week at actually creating a strategic narrative statement. Last week, we discussed the elements most important to conducting a workshop and developing a category: gathering the right people, thinking at an industry level, using the workshop for discovery and not to answer questions, and to hold an extensive discussion that allows the

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Strategic Narrative
Market Leadership

The New Standard for Quality Content

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]My son, a kindergartner, is learning how to read and write. He tends to rush through his assignments so he can move on to more important things, like recess. His teacher, on the other hand, is a big proponent of “quality work.” She encourages him to take his time. My husband and I (also supporters of quality work), make him slow down when we practice with him outside of

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

Five Ways to Get More Value from your PR Firm

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]After you’ve selected a PR firm to help your organization define and share a strategic narrative with the world, you need to make sure you get the most value for every PR dollar spent. The success of a PR initiative is not completely dependent on the agency, however. While a good agency knows how to work around unique quirks or challenges a client brings to the table, there are

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

Strategic Narrative Development: Elements of Success |Part 7

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]In our previous Strategic Narrative Marketing Series post, we discussed the value of conducting a discovery workshop to uncover raw, honest insights into your company’s view and vision for the industry. Without having any experience, these discovery sessions can be difficult to conduct and it’s easy to fall off course. We highly recommend looking into an expert third party to conduct the workshop for you. But, if you are

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

Differentiating Yourself From the Crowd Without Fake News

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]The more we look around the current tech landscape, the more we see examples of just how important a strategic narrative is in differentiating yourself from the crowd. Take, for instance, the latest controversy surrounding Facebook and its “fake news” problem. Facebook has long positioned itself as a data collection company masquerading as a social networking organization. However, with its move into live broadcasting and, apparently, news curation, it’s

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Social Media
Market Leadership

Three Reasons to Adopt a Social Media Strategy

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]At Catapult PR, we offer a wide variety of services to our B2B tech clients. From analyst and media relations to content development, to capturing speaking and award opportunities there isn’t much we can’t do. While programs such as these are pretty painless in terms of getting clients on board, there is one initiative that is often a struggle: social media. Perhaps it’s because of how new social media

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Strategic Narrative
Market Leadership

The DevOps Enterprise Summit San Francisco Was Everything We Hoped For and More!

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]We (Catapult PR) just returned from an action-packed three days at the 2016 DevOps Enterprise Summit San Francisco (DOES16) where 1,300 DevOps luminaries, business leaders and practitioners united to unpack current DevOps trends and predictions, share success stories and collaborate for the betterment of Dev and Ops practices at large, complex organizations. The conference featured a jam-packed schedule including speakers from some of the world’s biggest brands, such as

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Market Leadership

Unwrap Your Company’s Strategic Narrative | Part 6

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]If you’ve been following along with our Strategic Narrative Marketing blog series, you’ve learned how your organization has a unique opportunity to be heard in the face of today’s oversaturated content and digital marketing channels. You’ve learned how a Strategic Narrative can help elevate your organization above the competition with a higher-level, strategic approach to positioning and messaging. You’ve also learned some of the key building blocks of a

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strategic narrative
Market Leadership

The Rules of Engagement: PR Edition

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]rule of en·gage·ment noun “A directive issued by a military authority specifying the circumstances and limitations under which forces will engage in combat with the enemy.” The [PR] rules of engagement (ROE) are standing orders to public relations firms (and individual PR professionals) that define the circumstances, conditions, degree, and manner in which the use of pitching, writing or socializing may be applied. These rules provide authorization for and/or

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Strategic Narrative
Market Leadership

Strategic Narrative Marketing: Core Tenets of an Industry Narrative | Part 5

[vc_row][vc_column][pt_text color=”” css_animation=”” pt_hidden_viewport=”” css_delay=”” el_class=”” css=””]Today we are diving into Part 5 of our Strategic Narrative Marketing Blog series. To guide you through this new, unique approach to company messaging and strategy, we’ve broken down the key pillars of what makes up a marketing-based Strategic Narrative. Our aim is twofold: 1) help those of us in charge of “messaging” create a more industry level industry narrative and, 2) provide a guide that is open

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