Go to blog home page

By

September 9th, 2013

Technology PR travels: Around the technology world in 80 days – Day #13: Greece

Technology PR travels: Around the technology world in 80 days – Day #13: Greece

Plenty of cheap flights were ready and willing to hop us over to Athens, Greece – the birthplace of democracy as well as pretty much any scientific discipline you’d care to discuss (and we could definitely spend some time doing just that over a cracking moussaka and a bottle or two of Xinomavro…)

Image courtesy of: http://upload.wikimedia.org

Image courtesy of: http://upload.wikimedia.org

A history lesson in Greek innovation really would take some time, but for starters we could certainly attribute the development of gears, screws, mills, metal casting, automatic doors, plumbing, steam power, alarm clocks, and even the Antikythera analogue computer.

The technological prowess of the Ancient Greeks is well known and appreciated – but sadly so is the current economic and industrial malaise of modern Greece. Latest reports from the European Central Bank claim that Greece may need a third bailout – bringing the total level of support to €250 billion since the country’s financial meltdown.

But green shoots of technology now seem to be forcing themselves through all that financial rubble – a necessary but inspiring trend that journalist Alexander Besant attributes to “desperation and 60% youth unemployment”. It’s a small but encouraging movement that could once again transform Greece from a low-tech economy largely reliant on tourism and agriculture, to a renewed hub of creativity and innovation. In the meantime, why not read TechCrunch’s take on the potential rebirth, follow the Microsoft Innovation Center Greece, or check out promising start-ups, such as Bugsense and Pinnatta?

Next time, a voyage to Turkey!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in London, Technology, Technology PR, Technology PR Blog | Comments Off

 

By

July 3rd, 2013

Hazel Butters

Technology PR travels: Around the technology world in 80 days – Day #7: Rome, Italy

Technology PR travels: Around the technology world in 80 days – Day #7: Rome, Italy

Photo courtesy of: www.turismoroma.it

Photo courtesy of: www.turismoroma.it

It’s a bit of a dogleg down the boot of Italy from Geneva, but a very cultural one, so we catch an overnight plane to Rome for a hundred euro or so, and wake up smelling the strong Italian coffee.

I speak from experience when I say it’s hard not to be consumed with history in a city like Rome – the Romans and the Renaissance are literally around you, and then modern-day Rome around that.  Wherever you are you end up with one eye on the past as you walk  by the Coloseum, Pantheon, Trevi Fountain and Forum Romanum just to get an ‘espresso e cornetti’.  Meanwhile techies here stand on the shoulders of Galileo, da Vinci, Volta, Luria, Fermi, Meucci and the amazing Guglielmo  Marconi [sidenote: I highly recommend ‘Signor Marconi’s Magic Box’, it is the most brilliant book].

But what about the present and future?  Well, the Olivetti brand is one great example of the Italian presence in the market. Founded as a typewriter business in 1907, Olivetti built PCs and Unix boxes in the 1980s and early 90s before a crowded market forced an end to computer production. But in 2003, Olivetti became the office systems subsidiary of Telecom Italia, and today it specializes in interactive touchscreens, public terminals and a new line of tablet computers with their own app store – all as sharply designed as you would hope and expect.

But what other Italian players are tackling the tech market? There’s some great innovation – for example Beta Renewables is an interesting venture producing cellulosic ethanol for biofuel production. Digicom manufactures and OEMs devices for the gaming and home networking segments. Reply is a consultancy and systems integrator specializing in networking and digital media. And Assobiotec represents more than 120 biotech-related companies and science & technology parks operating in Italy. We think the Italian tech industry is interesting, so we will be back to visit again soon – perhaps to attend the country’s next Technology Forum, which is sure to focus on innovation and growth in the sector.

It’s ciao time, before the rosso and pasta take their toll – next destination, Croatia!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in London, Technology, Technology PR, Technology PR Blog | Comments Off

 

By

May 31st, 2013

PromptLondon

Remembering London’s colourful past

Remembering London’s colourful past

LondonLondoner Claude Friese-Greene was the inventor of an additive colour film process called Biocolour, or the Fries-Green Colour Process. In 1927 he filmed one of the first coloured motion pictures ever made, documenting London life when the city wasn’t just capital of England, but remained the centre an enduring British Empire accounting for more than a fifth of the world’s population.

This remarkable film captures a snapshot of hatted Londoners enjoying the sights, sounds and smells of the city between the wars. Interstitial captions point out that more than ‘4000 motor busses’ now patrol London’s streets, and that “more than one American has offered to buy our Tower and erect it on Palm Beach as a bungalow!”

By exposing alternate frames of black and white film through a different-coloured filter, then staining the resulting prints either red or green, Friese-Greene was able to project an illusion of genuine colour. The British Film Institute (BFI) has now used the very latest computer techniques to clean up the nostalgic film and reduce flickering so it can be enjoyed by a modern audience.

The results, which we first viewed courtesy of PetaPixel, are fascinating for anyone like us here at Prompt London who work in the city daily, and still walk the same streets, only with very different views. Still, some things haven’t changed – Petticoat Lane market is still impossibly busy, Hyde Park and St. James look just as inviting on a sunny afternoon, and we’re still winning Cricket test matches!

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Posted in Communications consultancy opinion, London, Prompt locations, Technology, Technology PR, Technology PR Blog, UK press | Comments Off

 

By

April 5th, 2013

PromptBoston

Enhancing thought leadership, website traffic and more: Why your company must blog

Enhancing thought leadership, website traffic and more: Why your company must blog

In every market, the need to stay ahead of competitors and establish yourself as a thought leader is essential to business success. Sure, you may have a great-looking website, with fancy flashing images and professional headshots of nearly every employee – but is that really going to make a prospect stay on your page or an industry analyst contact you for insight? To put it simple, that’s not enough.

The solution lies in creating, and regularly maintaining, a company blog. Blogging can be a great testing ground to show the personality of your company and that of your spokespeople, while simultaneously giving internal team members an outlet to voice any (appropriate) opinions.At Prompt, we believe blogging is essential to the visibility and growth of a company.

Not only does blogging showcase your expertise and leadership, but it also creates a fresh social media channel – to accompany your booming LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook pages – where you can communicate key corporate messages to customers, prospects and the broader community.

Need more reasons to start drafting your first post? Additional benefits to blogging include:

- Increasing SEO:  Blogging optimizes website SEO by driving traffic to the main website with qualitative clicks into core content.

- Creating an everlasting archive: By establishing a searchable archived blog, published content will be available long after employee contributors move on, giving you a long-term library of knowledge. As a company, look to reuse and reference such content in whitepapers, sales material, bylined articles and much more.

- Boosting direct marketing:  Have a webinar or sales promotion fast approaching? In addition to sharing it on social media and sending an invite via email, why not blog about it? It’s a great way to market self-promotional initiatives, in more than just a 140-character tweet.

One company that has experienced the positive results firsthand is former client, Sogeti UK. Learn how this software testing provider boosted thought leadership, content creation and website traffic (with over 4,300 blog visits in one month) by downloading Prompt’s free case study here.

If you’re interested in jumpstarting your own company blog, please click here to learn about Prompt’s latest offering, classroom-based WordPress training. At our WordPress workshop, you’ll learn the ins and outs of maintaining a website, which includes thorough training in web servers, DNS directs, dashboards, plugins and more. We hope to see you at our London classroom soon!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in London, Social Media, Training, Website development, WordPress | Comments Off

 

By

March 28th, 2013

PromptLondon

By the numbers: 72.4 million reasons why you should be on WordPress (and attend our London WordPress training)

By the numbers: 72.4 million reasons why you should be on WordPress (and attend our London WordPress training)

So if you haven’t noticed, we’ve launched WordPress Training – starting off in our London offices next month.  You can read more details about it here.

For most of us, WordPress is synonymous with easy-to-use, customizable blogs, websites and content, utilized by companies and individuals from all over the world. But the Open Source project, which was launched 10 years ago, didn’t always start out that way — WordPress admits it started with “fewer users than you can count on your fingers and toes.”

Today, the content management system offers plugins, widgets and themes, customizable to your heart’s content, and is used by millions for projects as small as class assignments to full-blown websites, like ours [link]. Haven’t tried WordPress for yourself? Here are some interesting facts that are sure to get your creative coding juices flowing:

72.4 – millions of websites around the world using WordPress

48 – percentage of the top 100 ranked blogs using WordPress as CMS

2003 – the year WordPress was started

500,000 – average new daily posts on WordPress

53.8 – WordPress’s market share of the content management system industry

73 – languages WordPress has been translated and localized into

19,017 – number of available WordPress plugins

 

Sources: Yoast.com,wpmu.org

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Posted in London, Prompt locations, Training, WordPress | Comments Off

 

By

March 27th, 2013

PromptLondon

Calling all software testing professionals: TESTA nominations now open

Calling all software testing professionals: TESTA nominations now open

The European Software Testing Awards, commonly referred to as TESTA, has officially opened its doors for nomination entries. The awards ceremony, set for Wednesday, November 20th in Grosvenor Square, London, is the premiere place to meet some of the most innovative individuals and teams in the software testing industry today. Naturally, as a high tech public relations firm with a nearby office in Covent Garden, we are already counting down the days until the big event.

Software testing awardsOrganised by the leading industry journal Test Magazine, TESTA is open to any individual or business within the software testing community, regardless of vertical sector or business size. Categories include (but are not limited to) Best in Agile, Mobile and Testing Automation Projects, along with Best Use of Tools and Young Tester of the Year. Finalists will be judged beside the best of the best, so snagging one of these coveted awards is a true honor.

When it comes to TESTA, the phrase “everybody’s a winner” is no longer an elementary sports mantra – it holds true. With countless opportunities given to those in attendance, including valuable networking and the acquisition of knowledge from Europe’s most highly regarded software testing professionals, the event is the perfect place for industry and personal growth.

To learn more about submissions, sponsorship and the judging process, please visit TESTA’s official website here and be sure to keep us up-to-date on your nomination.

For more on Prompt’s past experience with high tech clients, read up on case studies from KANA Software, Orchestria, Tatara Systems and more on our site, or email one of our consultants today.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Events, Innovation, London, Technology | Comments Off

 

By

March 26th, 2013

PromptLondon

Grab your opportunity to learn WordPress this Spring!

Grab your opportunity to learn WordPress this Spring!

We’re very excited to tell you all about our brand new hands-on training workshops designed to help you to get to grips with WordPress over one weekend, and transform your online strategy.

Part of our Prompt-Ed technical training series of classroom-based practical workshops, Prompt’s  WordPress training course – ‘Successfully Wrestle with WordPress Over a Weekend’ is the perfect guide for any individuals or businesses wishing to learn the skills necessary to design, deploy and manage their own WordPress pages.

WordPress is currently the most popular blogging platform in use on the web, and has been used to create around 65 million websites and blogs. More and more people now understand the importance of learning and optimising such a powerful and pervasive content management system for their own business benefit.

Responding directly to this demand, Prompt is thrilled to deliver comprehensive, practical workshops that address all of the features and challenges of WordPress without confusion or complexity. Using our traditional classroom-based approach, we provide a high-level of hands-on support and encouragement that is so often lacking in frustrating and ineffective online self-tutorials.

Sign up for one of our new weekend courses, and by Monday morning you’ll be the trained WordPress expert that your business has been looking for.

Our friendly course instructor is a proven PHP and content management expert with many years of experience of installing, designing, and managing WordPress websites. Each course covers advanced functions such as customisation, SEO optimisation, and popular WordPress plugins such as JetPack, ContactForm7, UserPhoto, Yoast SEO and various anti-spam tools.

The first series of two-day courses will take place over weekends in April at Prompt’s Covent Garden offices. Our first available course will run from 10am to 4pm on the following weekends:  6/7April, 13/14 April and 20/21 April.

Each two-day course costs £300 per person including VAT, and can be booked here. Places can be paid for by PayPal, by cheque or via Prompt‘s US shop.

Prompt uses WordPress every day. So do many of our successful clients. And now so can you.

For a complete breakdown of the course itinerary across each day of the course, together with full registration details, please visit http://www.prompt-communications.com/wordpress-training/

For further information, please send all inquiries to wordpress@prompt-communications.com

We look forward to seeing you at our London HQ very soon!

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in London, Prompt locations, WordPress | Comments Off

 

Prompt’s content marketing Monday tip #8: Be like the Green Cross Man (stop, look and listen)

Prompt’s content marketing Monday tip #8: Be like the Green Cross Man (stop, look and listen)

Anyone who grew up in Britain in the 1970s and onward will remember the Green Cross Code — a safety programme to help children learn about traffic and how to cross the road. It was led by a green-costumed David Prowse, a British actor and former bodybuilder who also played Darth Vader in Star Wars. The crux of the Green Cross Code mantra was and remains, ‘Stop, Look and Listen’.

Green Cross CodeSharing content is very similar. You need a steady pace, a thoughtful attitude and a strategic mindset.

So when it comes to content marketing, you should:

Stop: Consider what you want to achieve, plan it out, review your communication objectives

Look: What has been created already? What content do you have that you could re-use, add to, or even throw out and start again?

Listen: Pay attention to what your target audiences are saying, listen to them and what they want to learn about or know. What’s frustrating them?  What’s exciting them?

To continue with the road analogy, great content marketing isn’t a one-way street where you publish your thoughts and ideas and hope that somebody somewhere reads it.  It’s about listening  —  reading, hearing and processing what your audience is talking about and reaching out with something thoughtful. With all the traffic: tweets, blogs, forums, events, podcasts and videos at your disposal, there’s no excuse for not having stopped, looked and listened.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Communications consultancy opinion, Content Marketing, Copywriting, London | Comments Off

 

By

March 21st, 2013

Hazel Butters

The UK Budget (a man called George joins Twitter)

The UK Budget (a man called George joins Twitter)

You may have missed it (if you live on another continent or happen to live in Britain without access to a TV/radio/the internet) but yesterday was the UK budget, when the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announces the annual taxation, spending and budgetary plans to the British public. If you don’t know George, you may remember him as the man who was booed at the Paralympics in response to the UK Government’s heavy cuts to disability benefits.

Wednesday was also, quite bravely, George’s first day on Twitter (check him out @George_Osborne), which resulted in a huge number of, er, let’s say less-than-flattering and rather strongly worded tweets directed at the Chancellor. He’s not been discouraged though, and has now stated on a British TV interview this morning that he wants to get more followers than his Labour counterpart Ed Balls (@EdBallsMP).  As things stand, George Osbourne has 34,717 followers at this moment (after a momentous four tweets) while Ed Balls has 78,006 followers (after 3,000+ tweets).

Of course, followers don’t mean that people like you, agree with you, or even want to listen to you.  Twitter is a very powerful way to communicate; while followers are an indication of some level of influence, it’s also important to consider reactions — in the form of retweets, replies and mentions.  To get a clearer outlook on how an individual is regarded, you need to analyze sentiment and go beyond keywords by interpreting irony, sarcasm and humour (there was a lot of each of these in reaction to George and his handful of tweets).

One of my favourite tweets was from comedian David Schneider (who gained a lot more retweets than George):

David Schneider Twitter

From a press perspective, the London regional paper, the Evening Standard, kind of stole the headlines. Even before George had stood up to make his speech, the newspaper had gone to press with a front page that detailed the key points of the budget. Poor George had to make the speech with Ed Balls standing opposite him in the Houses of Parliament, waving a copy of the newspaper.

Daily Mail

Though the most disturbing front page goes to the Daily Mail, which, in a supportive gesture to reflect how the budget mirrored Margaret Thatcher’s core conservative values, mocked up this montage on its Thursday-edition front page, using inspiration from Thatcher’s famous ‘This Lady’s not for turning’ speech.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Hazel Butters: Opinion, London, Social Media, Twitter, UK press | Comments Off

 

By

March 4th, 2013

Prompt Communications wins Ipswitch File Transfer international PR account

Prompt Communications wins Ipswitch File Transfer international PR account

 - Specialist comms agency to drive international PR programme for leading secure managed file transfer & B2Bi solutions provider -

 Prompt Communications, a PR and communications agency specialising in innovative markets including sustainability, technology and healthcare with offices in Boston, San Francisco and London, has been selected by Ipswitch File Transfer to lead its international media outreach programme.

With offices across the globe, Ipswitch File Transfer offers secure managed file transfer solutions that are enterprise-class, user friendly and easily implemented.  The company’s solutions address needs from person-to-person transfer through to enterprise-wide B2B integration, giving corporate users and businesses security and safety of information.

The company’s provides file transfer solutions to support the range of organizations’ requirements including basic file transfer capabilities (WS_FTP), end-to-end Managed File Transfer (MOVEit ), and a B2Bi MFT platform to support sophisticated workflows, integration with systems and applications and data translation. 

Ipswitch File TransferSophie Pellissier, director, International Marketing for Ipswitch File Transfer said: “We are a leading player in the secure file transfer and secure collaboration market, with over two decades of experience in providing B2Bi solutions.  We’re looking forward to working with a team that understands our business and our customers’ needs. Prompt will promote our media relations campaign and advise on how to maximise our editorial opportunities in order to further build our brand reputation and thought leadership across the international markets. We look forward to seeing our international programme of thought leadership evolve and expand.”

Prompt Communications CEO Hazel Butters said: “We’re excited to be working alongside Ipswitch File Transfer to support the company’s continued growth across the globe.  There’s a growing demand for secure, professional, business-orientated file transfer platforms as businesses operate across multiple sites and time zones, so we are looking forward to spreading Ipswitch File Transfer’s core messaging to an international audience. No modern organisation can risk the exposure of critical files falling into the wrong hands, and we are delighted to be working with a company that places such emphasis on the safety and security of business data.”

Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Boston, London, News, PR Practices, Prompt locations, Prompt news, Technology, UK press | Comments Off

 

By

January 22nd, 2013

PromptBoston

A huge slice of Raspberry Pi

A huge slice of Raspberry Pi

It’s hard-press to find an aspect of the technology world that the consultants at Prompt don’t enjoy – from interactive shark tracking websites to mind-controlled helicopters – we are intrigued by it all. And the most recent tech gadget to grab our attention is more than just something to play with in your spare time, it aims to teach kids and adults around the globe more about computer programming.

Raspberry Pi

Learn more about the Raspberry Pi at www.raspberrypi.org

And the Raspberry Pi, a credit-card-sized Linux computer created by the University of Cambridge’s Computer Laboratory and launched in early 2012, has seemingly gained more attention than just that of Prompt’s. The inexpensive motherboard with basic word-processing and Internet application capabilities has already sold over one million units.

The non-profit behind the computer, the Raspberry Pi Foundation, has made its goals very clear – restore and drive interest in computer programming, particularly in youth, and encourage governing bodies to support programming curriculum in schools, starting with the UK.

Inspired by this mission and the little-but-mighty computer, Prompt has started its own Raspberry Pi project called, ‘A Slice of Pi’, where we will use the computer to enhance our computer programming skills (and have a little fun along the way). To learn more about our project, watch our YouTube video and follow our YouTube channel for the most recent happenings of the project, documented all on video.

Happy programming!

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Boston, Innovation, London, Prompt locations, Technology | 1 Comment »

 

By

January 9th, 2013

Table-sized tablets and mind-controlled helicopters: A look into CES 2013

Table-sized tablets and mind-controlled helicopters: A look into CES 2013

As tech-talking PR specialists, and self-proclaimed ‘geeks’, this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES), hosted in Vegas, has captured our attention throughout most of the week.

CES 2013 eventWhile the tech extravaganza doesn’t wrap up until Friday, many around the globe are already abuzz about what 2013 will have to offer in the way of smarter, more innovative technology. The annual gathering aimed at developers, manufacturers and suppliers of consumer technology hardware is the marketplace for new gadgets and gizmos, with vendors vying for business sales and press attention. Speaking of attention, here are some futuristic products that caught ours at this year’s show:

Televisions: On day one, we saw Haier preview its latest smart TV that uses eye movement to control the panel – we’re sure this provides great excitement for long-standing and occasional couch potatoes alike.  But perhaps the TV that truly wowed CES-goers the most was Samsung’s 110-inch UHD TV, which is rumored to be made available to the public in late 2013.

Tablets: Meanwhile, at a different display, Plastic Logic unveiled its revolutionary PaperTab tablet, marketed as the thinnest and lightest tablet to date. The product remains true to its name – it’s as thin as a sheet a paper, and features a 10.7-inch screen. In contrast, Lenovo attempted to take computing from the desk to a coffee table (literally), with its IdeaCentre Horizon. The device comes with a 27-inch screen that can be used as both a table surface and a massive tablet.

Gaming: NeuroSky, a California-based tech company, really impressed us at CES, partnering with Focus Pocus to create a $200 video game to help children with ADHD. According to the Los Angeles Times, the game improves concentration by focusing on impulse control, attention span and memory, having the player complete a series of wizardry tasks, like creating potions and racing with broomsticks. Reports are then sent to the child’s caretakers – a great indication of the scientific impact technology can have. As if that weren’t amazing enough, NeuroSky then joined Puzzlebox to showcase a mind-controlled helicopter, appropriately dubbed as Orbit. Put that on our future Christmas wish lists!

Accessories: SealShield debuted the Sea Lion, the world’s first fully-functional, antibacterial and waterproof phone case for the iPhone5. The phone case was one of many in a series of new designs, but this one stood out for its abilities to clean and stop the growth of microbial bacteria, mold, mildew and fungi on an iPhone’s surface.

Although we can’t be there in person, we’re excitedly trawling news updates and social media posts – awaiting reports from what’s left of CES 2013. From what we’ve seen so far, the tradeshow provides us with a glimpse into a future filled with smart technology, which is bound to impact our daily lives in the years to come.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Boston, Events, Innovation, London, Prompt locations, Technology | Comments Off