Guidebook expand into EMEA

Guidebook first approached Mexia in November 2014. As a fast-growing mobile apps company headquartered in Palo Alto, USA, Guidebook was looking to expand into EMEA and required PR support to assist with growth in the region.

Following a competitive tender, Mexia was appointed in January 2015. Guidebook had achieved a small amount of coverage in the event industry trade press to date, but work was required to develop clear and unique messaging with the goal of highlighting the key differentiators to Guidebook’s target audience.  The following objectives were identified:

  • Raise awareness of Guidebook amongst event professionals at all levels
  • To position Guidebook as a thought leader in event apps, in particular to educate event professionals
  • To build interest in Guidebook’s products and services through increased media profile

The Result

Work undertaken/actions:

The first step in the process was to immediately develop a close relationship with the Guidebook team in order to understand the uniqueness of the proposition. This involved speaking and meeting with the team regularly, to help Mexia gain insight into the company culture and ultimately become an extension of the business. From here, Mexia explored the key messages that Guidebook wanted to portray to their target audience. The messaging had previously focused on the environmental benefits of using an event app as an alternative to a printed guide. While this is certainly an important issue and one that should not be lost, Mexia advised that this was not necessarily unique Guidebook. Following an initial ‘kick-off’ meeting, the following messages were decided upon:

  • Simple yet elegant
  • Fully scalable to meet all budgets
  • Intuitive and easy to use

Mexia created a pitch pack for the event industry trade publications, designed to introduce key journalists to Guidebook and highlight the key issues and topics that they can offer comments on. This was an important phase in the development of the project as it was the first time many of the journalists had been made aware of Guidebook. Mexia utilised extremely strong relationships to ensure the message was reaching the right journalists.

Understanding the importance of a strong news pipeline, Mexia worked with Guidebook to extract data and trends from the business that could be used to create relevant news stories. Mexia also pitched opinion pieces to key publications and began flagging articles that could be appropriate for a comment from Guidebook.

Mexia also utilised industry knowledge and connections to create two speaking opportunities for Guidebook. The first opportunity was a webinar focusing on event apps, featuring key competitors. Guidebook sat on the panel for the session, with over 170 event professionals joining. The second opportunity took place at International Confex, a leading industry trade show. Mexia introduced Guidebook to the event organisers for their ‘Tech Tables’ sessions.

In the first six months:

  • Five press releases were written and issued
  • Five comment opportunities were flagged and responses written
  • One in-depth opinion piece was secured and written for a leading trade publication
  • comments were written for two relevant magazine features
  • Two speaking opportunities were created, with an audience of key events industry professionals.

The above resulted in:

  • 29 pieces of coverage
  • Combined print circulation of 76,000
  • Online coverage views circa 59,000.

Since the initial push to the EMEA market, Guidebook EMEA continues to grow, both in terms of client base and staff numbers. Mexia continues to work with Guidebook on a retained basis, assisting in their continued expansion.

About the Client

Guidebook provides an innovative and transparent platform for building mobile guides that connect people, events and locations. The online system allows elegant and feature-rich mobile apps or ‘guides’ to be produced quickly for events of any size, with the user retaining control of real-time updates and changes via an intuitive content management system.

Founded in 2011, Guidebook has headquarters in the Silicon Valley USA and an EMEA office in London. The privately owned organisation has expanded to a team of more than 100 employees, including an award-winning customer success team and a development team that consistently maintains a five-star Apple Store rating.

To date, Guidebook has powered over 30,000 guides globally including fully-branded guides for Mercedes-Benz, MasterCard, Google and Amazon.