“30 Qs With…” Blog Series with Estefania Jomant

This month we continue our “30 Qs with…” blog series by getting to know Estefania Jomant, Digital Coordinator at StudioB. Every month we invite you to get to know Burson-Marsteller Miami’s talent from a different perspective – these 1:1 interviews will reveal personal anecdotes from their lives in and out of the office.

Estefania graduated from the University of Miami and is a big supporter of the Hurricanes. She enjoys kayaking, running, and the beach in her free time!

Get to know her better by checking out her interview here or watch it below! #30QsWith #BursonPersons

“30 Qs with…” Blog Series with Sofia Candelario

This month we continue our “30 Qs with…” blog series by getting to know Sofia Candelario, a Client Staff Assistant in our Innovation & Technology practice. Every month we invite you to get to know Burson-Marsteller Miami’s talent from a different perspective – these 1:1 interviews will reveal personal anecdotes from their lives in and out of the office.

Sofia, who is originally from Puerto Rico, got her Master’s degree from Syracuse University in upstate New York. She just celebrated her one-year anniversary of working at Burson-Marsteller Miami!

Get to know her better by checking out her interview here or watch it below! #30QsWith #BursonPersons

eMerge Americas Asserts Itself as a Tech Giant

I was born and raised in Miami, Florida, and as a Miami native, it makes me proud that Burson-Marsteller Miami was selected as the strategic communications agency for eMerge Americas, the premier technology conference that connects investors and technology industry leaders with revolutionary startups and cutting-edge ideas. In addition to getting ready the last few months, our team worked 24/7 at the Miami Beach Convention Center to ensure that we secure the deserved visibility for the conference, its sponsors, amazing speakers and entrepreneurs.

And for the first time we were introduced to Cxytera, which made its debut at the show. The multi-billion dollar Cyxtera, now based in Miami, brings together a global data center footprint and a modern, hybrid- and cloud-ready security portfolio. 

Loaded with high-profile speakers and innovative startup companies, eMerge Americas exceeded the expectations by drawing in hundreds of companies and innovators from around the world. Our Burson Miami team developed a comprehensive public relations strategy to help eMerge Americas become the tech event of the Americas.

Four years ago, eMerge held its first conference in Miami to an eager crowd. This year, attendees saw the likes of Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure, Waze co-founder Uri Levine,Armando Christian Perez (Pitbull), Suze Orman, Alex Rodriguez, and many other influential leaders speak on the conference’s main keynote stage. In addition to the Keynote Stage, eMerge hosted the WIT (Women in Technology) and eGov – Government Innovation summits, as well as Techxpert and a “Shark Tank” like Launchpad stage where investors got to hear from the latest entrepreneurs of all ages and backgrounds. More than 13,000 people attended the two-day conference.

During the event, there was a great deal of talk about Miami and how Silicon Valley is no longer the only place to find tech startups. Rony Abovitz, Founder and CEO of Magic Leap, and University of Miami Alum, talked about Miami as an emerging tech hub. When he speaks to people from Latin America, they talk about Miami like we talk about Silicon Valley, so there is definitely something going on here.

Uri Levine, one of the most prolific businessmen of today and an active angel investor in technology-based companies who sold Waze to Google, spoke about what it is like to start a company from the ground up.  He shared that in one day he would be both on top of the world, and crying later at night, like a rollercoaster. As part of his presentation, he also offered some tips for startups who are just getting their feet wet:

  • Understand who your users are and their perception of the product
  • Make mistakes, and make them fast so that you can fix them fast
  • The team that you are building and the mission that you define will define your journey
  • If you fall in love with the solution, you will forget about the problem
  • If you lose focus of the problem, then you are probably not doing the right thing

I would venture to say these tips are not just useful for startups, but for companies and leaders of all levels!

Joining us for all the action on the eMerge Americas floor was Rowan Benecke, Chair of Burson-Marsteller’s Global Technology Practice, who came here to spend time with eMerge leaders, other Burson Miami clients and our Miami Innovation and Technology team.

We continue to win and serve great clients such as eMerge Americas. Whether you’re looking for a new strategic communications partner, a digital PR strategy, an experiential marketing initiative or want to understand how your brand is perceived in the digital arena, Burson-Marsteller Miami can help you.

Speaking of digital, if you are in the Miami area on June 28, don’t forget to RSVP for our Breakfast With Burson series featuring relevant and timely discussion on who owns social in today’s dynamic and blurred marketing and communications climate.

If you would like to learn more, please feel free to contact me via e-mail or LinkedIn. I look forward to sharing how our employees are helping to elevate the City of Miami to new heights. 

Jorge Ortega | Executive Vice-President

The Burson Difference: Know-how and Know-who

Integration is often defined as the inverse of differentiation, but in the case of Burson-Marsteller, it actually sets us apart. As a global strategic communications firm, our main asset is our seamless worldwide network of 77 offices and 85 affiliates, operating in 110 countries across six continents. This breadth grants us access to the top communications experts around the world – not only within our own firm, but across Young & Rubicam and all WPP companies – to ensure we deliver the best results for our clients with the best team suited to do the job. We have both the know-how and know-who in terms of matching talent and respective skill-sets with clients’ needs.

We recently put this to the test when helping a global company address sensitive regulatory and legislative issues on health and wellness. We coordinated a team of public affairs and crisis management experts in multiple countries with the experience to make a difference. By coordinating issues and events around the world, we developed a strategic communications plan to satisfy the client.

In another case, when one of our clients realized how much we can do to help it leverage social media to reach key stakeholders, they asked our StudioB team, led by Ivan Ruiz, to develop a comprehensive strategy that is generating new levels of engagement for the brand through one of its key executives in the Latin American market.

Uniquely positioned in a market considered the Bridge to the Americas, Burson-Marsteller Miami not only serves clients across the Southeast U.S. and Latin America, it is also the headquarters for Burson Latino, our U.S. Hispanic specialty team. We offer a team of multicultural, multilingual professionals who are on in tune with what is happening not only in our own backyard, but across the U.S. and Latin American regions, thanks to close collaboration with our colleagues who provide us with the local intelligence and depth we need to make client campaigns targeted, relevant and effective. This “always-connected” model contributes to what I call the Burson Difference.

Aside from our established presence and long-term commitment to the markets in which we operate, we also rely on a varied talent mix of senior, experienced leadership and young and eager professionals who bring a fresh perspective on how to apply our results-driven business process to achieve client goals.

These are just some of the characteristics that set Burson-Marsteller apart. I am proud of the work we are doing for our local, regional and global clients, knowing that connectivity and reach allow us to assemble the right team at any given time, keeping this business, and my role here, very exciting.  It is a wonderful time to be leading our business from the Miami vantage point and to be the bridge for our clients to the Burson know-who and know-how.

If you would like to learn more, please feel free to contact me via e-mail or LinkedIn. I look forward to sharing how our employees, not only in Miami, but around the world are truly living the Burson Difference.

Jorge Ortega, Executive Vice-President

“30 Qs with…” Blog Series with Jennefer Melendez

This month we continue our “30 Qs with…” blog series by getting to know Jennefer Melendez, a Senior Associate working with Burson Latino. Every month we invite you to get to know Burson-Marsteller Miami’s talent from a different perspective – these 1:1 interviews will reveal personal anecdotes from their lives in and out of the office.

Jennefer, who started with Burson-Marsteller Miami recently, opens up about her love for public relations and what she enjoys most about honing her craft every day. 

Get to know her better by checking out her interview here or watch it below! #30QsWith #BursonPersons

Engagement Pursuit

As time goes by and technology advances at the speed of light, brands face bigger challenges around not only how to communicate with their audiences, but most importantly, how to keep them engaged with what they do. Marketers and communication experts only have a few seconds to capture their target’s attention so they can communicate the right message, to the right people, at the right time.

So how can brands capture their audience within the social media frenzy?

First and foremost, they should know WHO they are talking to and WHAT are they interested in – from hobbies and music, to social media preferences and lifestyle. Once this is identified prepare for some creative thinking, brainstorming, and remember there are no bad ideas – everything could potentially lead to an AHA moment!

Now that you have your idea clear, what’s the story? How can you tell it in one simple piece of content? Identify five elements in your story and write them down. Select the platform and format that better converges the audience’s preferences, the brand, and the untold story. Maybe this piece should be a video or a cinemagraph to increase reach, and since the content is highly relevant, pay-to-play! Investment in social media advertising will directly reflect in your results, and therefore your KPIs. This means you’ll have more eyes seeing your content and engaging with it.

Lastly, and definitely one of the most important parts: measure and optimize. You’ve already invested all this time and effort in creating a masterpiece, so now it is time to measure the results, analyze what went well, and decide if there is room for improvement or even replicating the concept and story in other platforms or formats.

The engagement pursuit is a never-ending marathon for digital marketers. What engages your audience today, might not work tomorrow. Stay connected. Stay digital!

Lucia Zazueta, Digital Strategist | Senior Associate 

Thinking Globally, Acting Locally: Earth Week 2017

Earth Week, April 16-22, was started in the 1970s by grassroots organizers who wanted to encourage learning of environmental issues. Every year, during this time, school children learn about the diversity of ecosystems found around the world, while being taught how their actions can have a lasting impact on Mother Earth.

But after we enter the “real world”, Earth Week tends to go unnoticed and uncelebrated as people get caught up in their client work and fast approaching deadlines. However, as a self-proclaimed environmentalist, I wondered, “Can we make Earth Week relevant again by bringing issues affecting our local South Florida environment to the office’s day-to-day activities?”

That thought inspired me to consider a new approach for this year’s Earth Week and invite Burson-Marsteller Miami to get in touch with their inner school-child by taking an interest in relevant issues found south of Lake Okeechobee. As one of the organizers of the Earth Week activities, my goal was to get people out of the office and outside to interact with our main attraction: the ocean.

The Green Team, as I dubbed the Burson Miami Earth Week organizers, planned an ocean clean-up at a local Miami beach where instead of our normal Friday happy hour we went to Hobie Island Beach Park, located on Virginia Key. With the sun in our faces and sand between our toes, we set out to collect foreign items such as plastic bottles, cigarette butts, bottle caps, and other waste. About 14 people (and two four-legged assistants!) participated in the clean-up, removing close to 15lbs of trash off the beach.

On Monday April 24th, following the beach clean-up, my fellow Green Team member, Nicholas Komisarjevsky, and I prepared a presentation to inform our colleagues about the ever imminent threat of Sea Level Rise in South Florida through a Lunch and Learn. We concluded our presentation by providing each team member with a reusable plastic bottle, acrylic paints, and inspiration to decorate their bottles as they see fit, in an effort to cut down on the office’s plastic water bottle waste.

The key message that I tried to impart to my peers through our Earth Week initiative was the importance of thinking globally, while acting locally. As a global Public Relations and Communications agency, Burson-Marsteller always looks to provide our clients with culturally relevant and locally focused support. We utilize our global network to share ideas, talent, and perspectives while giving our clients a boutique agency feel. We think globally, but act locally.

I think that provides a great parallel to the importance of Earth Week because it reminds us to focus on the small details in order to spur greater change. Deciding to tackle climate change alone can be a daunting task. However, choosing to use ceramic mug for your morning coffee instead of a disposable paper cup is manageable. Perhaps getting the office to stop printing documents is unrealistic, but instead of simply throwing the pages away after their singular use, considering upcycling them into a notebook is doable. Thus encouraging the office to consider how their daily actions have a larger environmental impact.

As the world continues to get smaller through enhanced communication abilities, we must think globally, but we cannot forget to act locally. Together, making more conscious efforts to do our part in lessening our carbon footprint can act as the catalyst to larger changes.

As April comes to an end, I challenge everyone to not forget about the meaning of Earth Week. The realities of global warming, sea level rise, and other environmental issues are pertinent every day, especially in South Florida. While Earth Week encourages us to focus on the importance of the environment, it is critical that we adopt sustainable habits like reducing, reusing, and recycling to lessen our carbon footprint globally. Individual contributions do make an impact. Share below with your commitment to Earth and the environment for the coming year.

#EarthWeek2017

Kelsey Flitter, Public Affairs Practice

Fake News, Really?

The concept of “fake news” has taken the world by storm over the past year and a half. What started out as a hot topic during the 2016 U.S. Presidential election has turned into a full-blown phenomenon, capturing the attention of media, corporate America, and the world. Being in the business of reputation management we cannot take this lightly, and we want to ensure that our clients are prepared to recognize fake news and effectively communicate their initiatives.

Companies are doing everything they can to streamline news that appears on their webpage, in an effort to minimize the risk of false information making its way onto the site. In addition, Google is making changes to its search algorithm to promote “authoritative” content versus “low quality,” securing confidence in users that when they google search for answers, the information they are getting is accurate and sound.

In an attempt to combat this situation, Burson-Marsteller has announced an effort to protect clients against concerns raised by the trending topic of fake news and reinforce the integrity of their own communications activities. The team will consist of former journalists working at the firm as well as independent former media and will conduct the following:

·      Webinars to share best practices on how to combat fake news

·      Online Q&A forum where clients can ask questions

·      Quarterly webchats

·      Information on best practices posted on the firm’s Intranet

We want to ensure that our clients have access to top insights on how to spot fake news, vet information they come across, and preserve the integrity of the content they promote. Burson-Marsteller is always at the forefront of tackling the big issues, and this is no exception.

For more information about this new initiative or if you would like to learn more about what we are doing at Burson-Marsteller, please don’t hesitate to message or email me.

Jorge Ortega

“30 Qs with…” Blog Series with Bruno Giordano

This month we continue our “30 Qs with…” blog series by getting to know Bruno Giordano, a Client Executive working in the Public Affairs Department. Every month we invite you to get to know Burson-Marsteller Miami’s talent from a different perspective – these 1:1 interviews will reveal personal anecdotes from their lives in and out of the office.

Bruno, who enjoys going to the beach in Miami, is mainly based in Honduras where he enjoys the beautiful nature.

Get to know him better by checking out his interview here or watch it below! #30QsWith #BursonPersons

Burson-Marsteller Miami Welcomes Back Alumni

Burson-Marsteller has always valued the people who work, and have worked, at the firm. To show our appreciation, we hosted the first ever Burson-Marsteller Miami Alumni Reunion that brought together former employees from the past 20 years on Thursday, March 30, 2017. Alumni from all over the state of Florida made their way to our outdoor courtyard overlooking the Miami skyline, for a night filled with music, hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, and fun.

Ramiro Prudencio, President and CEO of Burson-Marsteller Latin America as well as Jorge Ortega, Executive Vice President, made welcome remarks, thanking guests for their contributions to our organization and being part of our story, and reminding them that at the core, we are all #BursonPersons united by a common bond shared at different moments in time: excellence. We pride ourselves in delivering outstanding client service when it comes to developing and executing creative and strategic communications campaigns, and this event provided a platform to connect with our alumni, who are either former clients, current clients, or clients we’d love to partner with and deliver this message.

We invite you to check out this highlight reel, produced by our digital content, creative, and video production team – Studio B, recapping the night’s festivities, which also included a raffle, featuring  Miami Marlins bobble heads, ESPN gift bags, and Pitbull/Enrique Iglesias concert tickets among the nearly dozen prizes handed out.

Alumni hit the dance floor and enjoyed reminiscing and catching up with former leaders, colleagues, and friends, while greeting some of our current talent.   We would like to give a special shout out to our sponsors and event partners – BusinessWire, Gilbert’s Bakery, Bacardi, and the Miami Marlins – for helping this event be a success. Through a combination of food, drinks, beautiful weather, and great gifts you all helped make this evening a memorable one. Many thanks!

To all of our alumni who were able to attend, thank you. Hope to see you again next year!

Relive the event with this video here:

 

Breakfast with Burson: Millennials and Mimosas

Burson-Marsteller Miami recently had the opportunity to host Bacardi’s new Global Millennials Manager, Nim De Swardt, who presented to our “Breakfast with Burson” attendees, as well as to our staff. Nim shared her insights on how Millennials play a game-changing role in today’s organizations, and how their influence will only continue to grow in the coming decade.

“A program made for Millennials, by Millennials”

Bacardi – the largest privately-held spirits company in the world- has taken note of changes that are happening in today’s professional landscape, and has decided to approach the evolving business environment by bravely embracing the change. Michael Dolan, CEO of Bacardi Limited, spearheaded the next big step on how Bacardi manages its company by creating an initiative to recruit and engage the best of today’s Millennial talent. He selected Nim to take on the daring role of recruiting these talented Millennials and lead the “Bacardi Rising Stars” program. This program will consist of 20 of Bacardi’s creative, tech-savvy international employees who will leverage their unique viewpoints to foster the brand’s success both internally and externally in the marketplace.

Now, who exactly is this Millennial queen? We know you are curious (we were too).

Nim is a 30-year-old, Australian-born native with a bachelor’s degree in photography, and a minor in wanderlust. Her career with Bacardi began five years ago, where she eventually worked her way up to being a brand manager for the Middle East and Africa region, based in Dubai. In 2015, she was offered the role of Global Millennials Manager, but decided to follow her free Millennial spirit to take a year off from her career and embark on a self-discovery journey, traveling the world. Months later, the position was still vacant, with her name reserved for the game-changing role. Nim quickly transformed from an adventurous backpacker to an intrapreneur ready to take on her next big journey.

“Millennials can be our greatest challenge, and our greatest opportunity”

Since then, Nim has visited start-ups and multi-million dollar companies, such as Google and Twitter, to observe their response to the rapid-growing Millennial business culture. She is currently leading initiatives at Bacardi to increase intra-company collaboration on ideas to better market to Millennials and creating Bacardi company policies that will build on these companies’ successful Millennial business approaches. In Nim’s eyes, Millennials are looking for four things in the companies that employ them: Innovation, flexibility, collaboration and career development opportunities. They are also driven by causes; Millennials wish to have a purpose in the work they do, and want their companies to have strong corporate responsibility programs.

According to our Millennial expert, in nine years, 75 percent of the work field will consist of Millennials. With Nim by their side, there is no doubt that Bacardi will be up for the challenge.

To hear from Nim herself about her work, please take a look at this short interview she recorded with us in our StudioB Live.

Inside Burson-Marsteller: Get to Know Us – Rodrigo Castro

Meet Rodrigo Castro, our Technology & Innovation Practice Manager: A passionate individual whose love for technology and dedication to bringing our clients the best in communications services is the only thing bigger than his beard.

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Rodrigo Castro, Tech & Innovation Manager

Rodrigo always seems to ask for more on his plate, although it could be because of his unbridled enthusiasm for juice cleanses. Although more tech inclined, Rodrigo is Burson-Marsteller’s jack-of-all-trades. As a manager, he supervises LATAM regional accounts, overseeing operations for Burson-Marsteller network offices in Latin America, as well as the US.

Born in Mexico City, Rodrigo is the oldest of two siblings. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications at Tecnológico de Monterrey. During his time there, he ventured into exchange programs  at the University of North Carolina and MGIMO University in Moscow, Russia… where we can only assume his penchant for lumberjack beards began. His love for his home culture drew him back to Mexico, where he began working at Burson-Marsteller. He became a manager, overseeing accounts including Sony Electronics, Intel, SAP and Motorola.

In 2012, Rodrigo decided to test new waters and make a move to Burson Miami.  His professional attitude, willingness to work with many, varied projects at once and natural leadership capacity is shown through his impeccable work with clients such as Intel, VISA, SONY, Sony Latin America, Alcatel Onetouch, Zebra Technologies and Electrolux.

Throughout his career, Rodrigo has lead client projects from communication strategies for product launches, editorial development, crisis programs and more- all with an emphasis on brand and consumer technology communication.  It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Rodrigo consistently takes his passion for tech to the next level; so much so that he has relayed this expertise into an uncanny ability to lose cellphones.

Rodrigo’s fast-paced work life has carried over into his free time- although we’re still amazed how he manages to fit it all in! When he’s not working with his tech geek-squad at Burson Miami, mastering the art of time-sheets, or holding the record for most cellphones lost in a period of six months, he spends his time traveling, leading the EXATEC alumni association as President and training for triathlons. His hardworking and competitive nature can be seen both in his work and on the dance floor- what more could we expect from a Freddy Mercury fan?

Rodrigo and his wide range of interests and talents exemplify how we strive to “Be More” at Burson-Marsteller. We’re lucky to have him, and encourage anyone to reach out to him to tap into his years of technology communications expertise.

Inside Burson-Marsteller: Get to Know Us

Meet Abril Barba, our Brand Comm and Burson Latino Manager, whose Hispanic flair and slight pop culture addiction only enhances the outstanding communications efforts she leads for our clients.

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Abril Barba, Brand Comm and Burson Latino Manager

Born in fast-paced New York and currently residing in Latino-centric Miami, it’s safe to say that rush hour and Fashion Week are second nature to Abril Barba. Fascinated by pop culture and the red carpet, it’s no surprise she graduated Cum Laude from the University of Miami, specializing in Broadcast Journalism with a Bachelor’s of Science in Communications. In addition to her Spanish/Cuban roots and innate love for Miami, she also obtained a second degree in Spanish and worked as a part-time Producer for Noticiero Univision at the Univision Network.

Part of the Burson-Marsteller Miami family since 1997, Abril has successfully worked for top-tier global brands such as IKEA, Coca-Cola, Club Med, Perry Ellis International, Bacardi Limited, Baxter, HCA, Accenture, Barnes & Noble and many more. With a niche for all things luxe, she has also coordinated events for a number of prestigious clients such as the Latin GRAMMY Awards and Cartier. As part of her role within Burson Latino, she has established strong relationships with U.S. Hispanic media outlets nationwide and managed communications campaigns for a vast number of clients throughout her career at B-M including Gatorade, Avon, UnitedHealthcare, Lincoln, and  Similac.

Abril currently spearheads all communication efforts for IKEA’s expansion in the U.S. and continues to specialize in U.S. Hispanic media relations and event management, whole-heartedly embodying the Burson Latino brand. Dedication, determination and overall professionalism are just some of the many attributes that encompass Abril’s work ethic, making her the epitome of a PR professional. Today, 20 years later, she continues to put the pizazz in PR, and is an amazing mentor who leads by example.