By Jon Davis
Finance Monthly is scheduled to publish its 2015 annual M&A Awards this week, recognizing the best of class for financiers, deal makers, asset management and professional consultants.
Financial Newswires emailed the winners, asking them for advice in their selective categories. Here is the first in a series of Q&As with the USA winners for the 2015 Finance Monthly M&A Awards.
Winner of the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA” – Macias PR
Mark Macias is the owner and founder of Macias PR– a financial public relations firm based in New York. He’s a former Executive Producer with NBC, Senior Producer with CBS in New York and author of the business book, Beat the Press: Your Guide to Managing the Media. His PR firm has run media campaigns for hedge funds, private equity groups, financial service providers and lending organizations. Their list of media placements for financial clients in 2015 included: Bloomberg News, CNBC, The Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox Business News, Hedge Fund Alert, Private Equity International Magazine, New York Times and others.
Here’s an excerpt from an interview shortly after Finance Monthly announced Macias PR as the 2015 “PR Consultant Firm of the Year – USA.”
FinancialNewswires: It’s easy to measure the value of M&A deals, but how do you measure a successful media campaign?
Mark Macias: Many entrepreneurs wrongly believe that PR is nebulous or it can’t be measured in a quantitative manner. It can be measured – and Finance Monthly just did that with a 10-point measurement system that put a value on expertise, media deliverables and innovation. It’s no different for fund managers trying to identify the value of a PR campaign. You can measure the quality of media placements and the number of readers it reaches. A story in the Wall Street Journal or CEO Magazine reaches a select group of business executives, which can be objectively measured. A news story can increase credibility, generate leads and convince prospective clients to go with your firm, which is another ROI measurement. PR also helps with SEO, which you can measure through analytics. Search engines use content to decide which websites should be on their first page and the more news sites that are discussing your business or service, the more weight these search engines will place with your website, giving you a higher ranking. All of these measurements when put together can help you identify whether a media campaign is successful.
FinancialNewswires: What do you charge for PR?
Mark Macias: I hear that question a lot. Macias PR works under a retainer fee where clients pay a monthly fee. We don’t charge by the hour. Clients always know what their retainer fee is before any campaign starts. Our fee structure is based on the complexity and reach of the media campaign.
FinancialNewswires: Macias PR is a fairly young PR firm (founded in 2009) when compared to your competitors. Why do you think Macias PR was selected as the best public relations firm in the USA?
Mark Macias: I was caught off-guard when Finance Monthly emailed me and said their editorial team was researching our PR firm for their annual list of best PR firms. I know my experience in the media gives our firm an edge when it comes to securing news stories. I’m also always talking to their reporters and others about stories. I think their editorial appreciates how we pitch and find ideas. We are more creative with our approach and more innovative with our execution. We don’t waste reporters time over the phone. That’s actually part of the 10-point system Finance Monthly used to identify, assess and select the best PR firm. But if you ask me – why Macias PR over others? I will say we are more creative, we understand the media from the inside, we leverage our media contacts and our team continues to out-work and out-think the competition.
FinancialNewswires: What’s up next for Macias PR in 2016?
Mark Macias: We’re not in a rush to become the biggest PR firm in the world. We just want to be the best and to continue to grow our relationships with our clients. I also want to continue to learn. We are fortunate to work with clients from different sectors: technology, nonprofits and health care, so we are always learning. I also think that diverse group of clients gives us balance and perspective because it allows us to view the world and business from a broader lense. I’m sure in 2016 we will turn to politics again and run a few media campaigns. It keeps our mind fresh.