By James Montague, Account Executive at Eskenzi PR

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I started my new role as an Account Executive with Eskenzi PR just over six weeks ago. In that short time, my self-assuredness and understanding of the PR industry and cybersecurity landscape have improved infinitely, and while I could write a duly endless list of things that I have learned and skills that I have developed, for the sake of succinctness (and a catchy title), I thought I’d distil my experience through these six key points.

1.Organisation is key

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I’ve always considered myself to be logistically proficient. However, in an unfamiliar professional environment that requires you to meet deadlines and juggle tasks from a variety of clients, being organised and learning how to prioritise effectively can take some getting used to. I have learned that the best way to manage my time effectively, and complete each task to a high standard, is by using and managing desktop Sticky Notes. Establishing a general daily routine has also helped me to optimise and organise my time. A mundane and menial aspect of professional life to some, but vitally important to an Account Executive starting out in PR!

2. Be inquisitive- ask questions and ask for help!

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Following the interview process, which involved speaking to Yvonne, Neil and several other members of staff, it became clear that I would be joining a company with inquisitiveness, learning and innovation at its core. To learn about the industry, and quickly assimilate into my role and into the company, I recognised the need to be unabashedly inquisitorial myself. Asking questions and learning about a topic like cybersecurity, which is in constant state of flux and growth, is essential.

3. There’s always something to learn about cybersecurity

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This is one of the things that makes working in the field of cybersecurity so interesting. As a burgeoning industry that is having an increasingly effectual and real impact on our world, I’m glad to be in a position that requires me to understand, appreciate and learn about it on a daily basis. Concepts like artificial intelligence and fintech, that were once ostensibly dystopian, abstract and surreal to me, have become concrete, intelligible (most of the time…) and genuinely intriguing.

4. Monitoring the media

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In the cybersec PR game, it’s all about monitoring and reacting to breaking stories such as data breaches and supply-chain attacks quickly and astutely so that clients’ opinions, and advice for affected parties, can be disseminated via the right platforms. To be really “on the ball,” monitoring Twitter and checking emails before and after work is a good habit to get into. It also gives me a good incentive to use my commute productively.

5. Time flies when you’re having fun

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I was concerned that working in an office environment would lead me to incessant clock- watching and bouts of restlessness from sitting in a chair all day. After six weeks however- the halfway point of my probationary period- I have discovered the opposite to be true. With such a varied and consistent workload, I find that I’m always busy and stimulated, particularly when learning new things. This always reinforces the need to manage time and prioritise effectively. Dare I say it- I wish the working week would slow down a bit…

6. The Eskenzi Culture

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As I’ve already alluded to, innovation, evolution and development are built into Eskenzi’s genetic makeup. This pushes the company, our clients, myself and my colleagues to constantly improve and stay ahead of the game. This is epitomised by our most recent venture, Eskenzi Digital, which aims to refresh and modernise online cyber-security content. Tantamount to this is the company’s collaborative culture, which encourages each employee to share creative and strategic ideas and be proactive and conscientious in generating coverage for their clients. As a company with a relatively small number of employees, each of our contributions is vital and measurable. These factors make for a demanding and fulfilling working environment in which development and learning are essential.

I’ve also learned how to write digestible blog content, so I won’t waffle on any longer! Here’s to the next six weeks, which hopefully won’t fly past so quickly…

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Let’s face it cyber-security content online isn’t the most imaginative or creative – we’re all sick to death of the stock images of the hoodies and binary pictures – it’s tired, it’s boring and time to shake things up a bit.

So, at Eskenzi Digital we’ve employed Kej Kamani, fresh from Sony Music and before that at the BBC on Radio One producing some crazy stuff for almost a decade.  He’s bringing all that experience to the cyber-security industry to provide some creative content to help companies appear exciting, compelling and most importantly engaging.

To really win in social media it’s got to be on message, sharp, clever, different and varied – at Eskenzi Digital we’re doing this through our KingMaker programme which will make your people stand out amongst the community.

Together we will create true experts in their field that customers, press and stakeholders turn to for pioneering insight, perspective and opinion!

This programme will …

  1. Develop a coherent online presence across all social platforms.
  2. Create shareable, unique and engaging content that projects your company persona.
  3. Build company profiles and personalities through blogs, videos and podcasts.
  4. Grow your online followers and customer engagement.
  5. Make you “THE” company that attracts the best talent out there.
  6. Generate clear monthly reporting showing you the value of the Kingmaker program.

 

Triumph in the Security Kingdom with our Kingmaker Programme!

If you want more information please contact yvonne@eskenzipr.com or call +44 207 1832 832

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Jenny Radcliffe – the human lie detector and great friend quoted us in her podcast last week as the company that throws the best parties!!

It’s true we love to hold a party, so when we were asked to host the European Cyber-Security Blogger’s Awards during Infosecurity this year we jumped at the opportunity.  It turned into a crazy, fun-filled, drink fest as people rolled out of the first day of Infosecurity straight into the pub where we were hosting the awards.

There were over 10 awards given to everyone from Troy Hunt, Javvad Malik, Smashing Security, Gossi the Dog and others!  We got the legendary Jack Daniel and Brian Honan who organised most of the awards on stage and basically had a laugh – or should I say a piss up in a brewery!  I’m not sure why we agreed to do the Awards as we also had on that day a press lunch for all our clients and arranged almost 115 press interviews – what were we thinking!  However, it all turned out okay in the end, like I said we love to hold a good party – so if you’d like to get involved next year in the Bloggers awards either nominating the blog you love or get involved as a sponsor we’d love to hear from you.

Eskenzi PR has opened registration for the IT Security Analyst & CISO Forum which is available to just 10 vendors on a first come first served basis. The Forum which has been going for over a decade enables you to brief 10 of the world’s top analysts who all fly into London to meet growing, innovative cyber-security companies.  They always write about them and blog about who they see so it’s a unique and brilliant way to literally do a year’s worth of analyst relations in one day!

On day two you then get to attend a unique CISO debate and roundtable with around 15 of the UK’s top CISOs.  Eskenzi PR is very privileged that we have a great relationship with these guys who love to attend this event and often wear their heart on their sleeves as they know it’s Chatham House rules.  It means you get to put questions directly to these CISOs about the space you’re in and network with some pretty hard hitters.

Later in the day the CISO sit on a panel to talk on a wealth of interesting topics and we invite the end user community to join this session.  At this event you get to have a small booth so that you can collect leads from the delegates who are often decision makers looking to hear from the CISO community and find out what’s current and new.

The Forum will take place next May at No. 4 Hamilton Place with guests staying in the Park Lane Intercontinental Hotel – one of the best in London. It is the only event of its kind to bring together vendors, analysts, CISOs and end-users!

If you would like to know more about the IT security analyst & CISO forum please contact Elizabeth@eskenzipr.com

On 1st October we’re going to get the cyber-security community together to host a flashmob picnic fest in the park, in Trinity Square Gardens, by the Tower of London to make people aware of Security Serious Week and European Cyber-Security Awareness month.  The idea would be to get the security industry, CISOs, academics, lawyers and law enforcement to offer their one liner golden tips on what they believe you should do to be “security serious”! Our sponsor Canon will then blow it up onto a canvas alongside your logo, with the intention of creating a massive human collage for a photocall with the press.  It would take less than an hour and everyone would be rewarded with a little picnic bag – just like you used to enjoy as a kid.  It would not only be a great awareness event but a fun networking event.  If you’re keen to submit your one liner (no  more than 10 words) on what you think people should do to be more secure then submit it to beth@securityserious.com by 1st September.  This is a totally free opportunity to get the industry together, no strings, no catches!

We will then have your tip blown up alongside your logo waiting for you in the park at 12.30 on 1st October at Trinity Square Gardens, right beside Tower Hill Tube Station.

Please spread the word via #SecSeriousFestSecurity Serious Photo Call Official Photo (med jpeg)

The first in a series of ‘How To Win With …’ blogs, this week we’re talking Whitepapers.

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By Dulcie McLerie, Account Director at Eskenzi PR

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Primarily developed as collateral for the sales team, these intense documents will have involved collaboration over many months between a number of teams to research, write, edit and design the finished paper.

Unsurprisingly then, our clients want to make the most of the investment. When asked “What can you do with a whitepaper?” Our answer is quite a lot!

Here’s just a few things we consider when developing a strategy to promote these incredibly useful reports.

Quality over quantity

As you’d expect, the greatest factor to consider is the quality of the paper. While at Eskenzi we’re all strong story tellers, and adept at making something out of nothing, the truth is there is only so much you can do with a ‘sow’s ear’ no matter how great a tailor you may be.

When thinking of what the paper could include, our recommendation is that it should be crammed with various facts, figures and references, all substantiated with evidence that walks the reader through each stage – from the preparatory stage, the event itself and then the remediation. It should conclude with step by step recommendations and, as this is a sales document, the ‘hard sell.’

Thinking about subject matter, in our experience the most successful whitepapers are those used to communicate detailed research findings of new attack vectors, malware or zero-day exploits. That doesn’t mean that a whitepaper about a well-publicised threat or security incident isn’t useful, in fact quite the contrary. Examining the intricacies of what happened with explanations of how the attackers were able to manipulate systems and/or avoid detection, detailing how that played out, whilst offering lessons learned so others can avoid the same fate, makes a compelling story. It demonstrates the author as having a clear understanding of the cyber incident, which in turn means we can leverage the content for a number of thought leadership opportunities.

Once the paper is complete, it’s then over to us to maximise its potential.

Find the News

This might seem obvious but all too often it isn’t. I’ve seen numerous pitches, written for media, announcing the existence of a whitepaper. Epic fail!

When was the last time you saw a news headline in a credible publication that read ‘Fabulous whitepaper has been written!’ I’d wager never. Would you be sold on attending a webinar about Company X’s Latest Whitepaper! I don’t think I’d sign up. That’s because the paper’s existence in itself is not news.

Instead focus should be on the findings in the report as that is the real story – what did the research team actually find i.e. what’s the light bulb moment? Once you’ve identified that, then rest of the strategy should fall into place.

Of course, while most papers will have one theme, that doesn’t necessarily mean there’s just one story. Quite often we’re able to identify two, three or even four angles that can be developed. 

Content out of Content

The first thing we will look to do is arrange interviews with journalists – perhaps under embargo or may even be as an exclusive offer.

To do this we always consider two elements – which journalists are actually going to be interested, but also those outlets whose focus is our client’s target audience. Often these two criteria will marry up nicely – Happy Days! However, there will be occasions where this won’t immediately be clear – for example, if we plan to run a vertical campaign.

Having drawn up your target list, and I’m stating the obvious for most of you – but there will be one or two for who this is their lightbulb moment, when pitching make sure you quickly demonstrate to each journalist exactly why this ‘news’ is relevant to their readers – I’ll never forget, many years ago, cringing as one of my colleagues pitched the financial results of a well-known football club to the Daily Sport! The conversation ended when it was advised that she went away and actually take a look at that day’s edition and, if she could see an angle, call them back. I can’t emphasise enough the importance of knowing the publication’s audience and tailor your approach accordingly – we’ll cover this topic in more detail further along in our series of ‘How To Win With …’ blogs. Before moving on, I’d also add that it’s prudent to avoid industry acronyms, buzzwords, and absolutely no sales pitches.

Dependant on the information contained, we would also look to:

  • Develop a press release/media alert to be shared once the embargo lifts or the exclusive interview has published. If the report includes infographics and, let’s face it, the publication could be relatively tedious without pretty pictures, these can be offered to media to support resultant features.
  • Use the research team’s findings to pitch and create by-lined article placements.
  • Promote the paper’s findings via a speaking session at a relevant exhibition. While we often draw from existing whitepapers when developing synopsis in response to a call for papers, sometimes the reverse is also true where a whitepaper may be developed as the result of a speaking engagement – we’re not fussed what is the driver.
  • Rework the whitepaper contents to produce a series of blog posts and then publish these on your own blog but also publish these via LinkedIn and other relevant social sites/groups.

Joining the Dots

The way the world consumes news has changed and, as PR professionals, we are also adapting. That means that written content isn’t the only collateral that we would look to produce from a whitepaper. The paper’s findings should be used to create a number of digital assets too. For example:

  • Record a series of podcasts and/or vlogs detailing the research team’s findings. These can be published through the organisations own channel, perhaps developed with a media partner, or even uploaded to a commercial site – such as Spotify, YouTube, etc.
  • Organise a webinar where the research team will present their results with all attendees receiving a copy of the whitepaper. Make sure to record this session so it can be offered either as a download or can be viewed from the organisation’s YouTube channel or other streaming service.

Maximising the Noise

The final element of all this activity is to maximise the noise achieved, and ultimately convert all the activity to leads.

You can amplify the reach, and connect this back to the whitepaper, utilising social channels. There are numerous variations (and we’ll cover that later in this blog series) but to give you a few ideas:

  • Favourite, retweet and share via LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. any and all mentions of the paper’s content.
  • If a journalist has included the paper’s content in a status update then this too should be shared/retweeted with the original post liked/favourited
  • Create a hashtag to use in all social outreach

We would recommend developing a micro-site, or at the very least a landing page, on the company’s website where the whitepaper will be hosted and traffic driven. My preference would be that, at least until all PR activity has been exhausted, that this site is undiscoverable as some activity can be hampered if the material is perceived to be already published/available in the public domain.

If analytics is important, and let’s face it in today’s environment where measurement and ROI is everything, develop and share links that enable easier identification/correlation between the various PR activities and its resultant traffic.

Once all of this activity has been exhausted, it’s time to send the whitepaper to all your customers and prospects – either as part of a newsletter or direct shares from the sales team. At this point we’d also advise making the landing site discoverable and adding links from the main page of the company’s website.

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Stay tuned for our next ‘How To Win With ….’ blog coming soon.

The Queens Award is an incredible accolade, celebrating the outstanding achievement by UK businesses across a number of categories, from innovation to sustainable development. Eskenzi has been recognised for its contribution to the UK’s economy, and we are one of just 152 companies that have received the honour this year for overseas trade and International growth.

Having worked within the cybersecurity space since the very beginning, we are proud to be part of a sector that has grown from something very niche, where only those ‘in the know’ really understood its importance, to an industry which continues to dominate mainstream news headlines, and is discussed at everything from dinner parties, student union gatherings, board meetings and government debates across the globe.

We work tirelessly to do our bit in highlighting the challenges of cybersecurity, and bringing them to the attention of the masses; from DDoS attacks, phishing and Ransomware, all the way through to Nation State Hacking, GDPR and the Skills Gap, you can be sure that Eskenzi are there, finger on the pulse and ensuring our clients are in the right place at the right time to be positioned as the thought leaders they are. We couldn’t have done it without our fabulous clients, both past and present- so we extend a big thank you to all of you.

Our services span across the globe from the US, to France, Germany and Benelux- and of course, our headquarters in High Barnet, London. We are a tight knit, PR family, and we really do pride ourselves on delivering only the best. Each achievement we reach for our clients spur us on to aim for bigger and better the next time, and so as you can imagine, The Queens Award really does have us all pretty electrified here at Eskenzi HQ (and beyond!).  We have lots of exciting things in the pipeline, from a trip to the Palace and the presentation of the award at our offices – which we will of course, keep you all posted on.

For now, however, thank you all for joining us in whatever capacity you have on the incredible journey that Eskenzi PR has been on (so far). We’re almost certain our next chapter is going to bigger, better and even more wonderful than we can even begin to imagine.

Part 1 – James Montague

At 9am on Tuesday the 17th July, the second day of trading, exhibitions and seemingly implausible aeronautical acrobatics commenced at the Farnborough International Airshow – the acclaimed biennial event for the global aerospace industry.

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For us at Eskenzi PR, the day started – and ended – with haste and excitement (and a little logistical confusion). After navigating the vast network of airliners, pavilions and helipads that were sprawled across Farnborough’s impressive airfield, we arrived at the Airbus Cybersecurity chalet. Within an hour the journalists, from a variety of tech publications, had joined us, armed with their cameras and notepads ready to probe and learn about Zephyr – Airbus’ stratospheric UAV – and its most recent ground-breaking feats and developments.

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At 10am we were driven a short distance to the Kelleher building to admire it in the form of a replica model. With a 25- metre wingspan and an impossibly insubstantial weight of 75kg, it is a truly remarkable piece of aeronautical engineering. The only problem was that these diameters were as difficult to photograph on a bog-standard iPhone camera as they are remarkable… It did however, prove to be a great backdrop for several interviews that took place between journalists and Airbus colleagues.

The mornings fun continued when we were given the chance to explore a number of Airbus’ new aircraft through virtual and augmented reality demonstrations. These immersive experiences gave us a better insight into how the different planes will look, function and fly in an informative and up-to-date fashion that was typical of the Airbus brand.

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After immersing ourselves in some quintessentially tasty French cuisine back at Airbus HQ, we were able to watch some real planes in action. However, not before each journalist was able to quiz Ian Goslin – Managing Director and Head of UK Cyber at Airbus – on the company’s strategic approach to cybersecurity, current threats to the aviation industry and his perspective on the contemporary cybersecurity landscape. Crowded around a few small tables, each journalist asked for, and then absorbed, his expert insights and infectious passion for his employer and the wider cybersecurity industry.

When the last interview was over we were all invited onto the chalet terrace where we watched one of Farnborough’s renowned live air shows. Watching an array of colossal planes, ranging from passenger aircraft to military fighter jets, performing the most agile aero-acrobatics proved to be a suitably breath-taking end to a productive, enlightening yet hectic day of interviews and virtual exhibitions.

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Part 2 – Rohit Chavda

I remember attending Farnborough Airshow, the UK’s longest running dedicated aviation show, in 2006 when Airbus first demonstrated the double-decker a380. An impressive piece of engineering that has advanced commercial air travel. Funny then that 12 years on, I would be attending the show once again as a PR and Marketing representative for Airbus Cybersecurity. James has already explained the day’s events and I must say a huge thank you to Airbus for its hospitality. Airbus put on a great show for us and journalists from BBC Click, ZDNet, Tech Republic, Computer Weekly, IDG Connect, SC Magazine and The Register, who all came away from the day with interesting content for their respective publications.

Representing Airbus Cybersecurity was Ian Goslin, Managing Director and Head of UK Cyber, who sat down with the journalists to give them insight into what Airbus Cybersecurity was about, the threats posed to the aviation industry and his thoughts on cyber overall.

Ian started with a brief introduction to the company and his military background before delving into the juicier content that really perked the journalist’s ears. Pages upon pages were being eaten up as journalists tried to scribble every morsel of information down in their notebooks. Issues and insights ranged from current critical national infrastructures, to the evolution and maturity of the cyber industry today, to how Airbus’ platform continuously operates to offer protection against the unrelenting threat of attack.

Ian then spoke about the general threats found in the aviation industry which, he states, are growing and that threat actors are increasing their powers to intently do something negative. This has resulted in Airbus Cybersecurity having to defend clients on a constant and continuous basis.

He also claimed that there is a distinct divide between airports and their security with some operating at a good standard and those that are not. Unsurprising to hear, following recent research that found airports are generally ill-equipped to deal with major cyber attacks. Scary right?

However, Ian gave us all reason to feel optimistic over the situation and claimed that the formation of the National Cyber Security Centre was a great step forward in giving organisations the help they needed in remediating both the known and unknown cyber threats, especially in the UK.

Other than feeling glad the day went well for both client and journalists, we left Farnborough with a sense of reassurance that organisations like Airbus CyberSecurity are in the background defending critical systems that we might otherwise take for granted as being secure.

We’re super excited to announce that the third annual Security Serious Unsung Heroes Awards are now open for nominations.  Eskenzi PR created the awards as a chance for the people, not products, on the front lines of cyber security – whether it’s teaching others, working with law enforcement or battling cyber threats in organisations – to come together and receive the recognition they deserve.

Nominations are open until the 3rd of August and The Unsung Heroes Awards will take place on Tuesday, 2nd October 2018, during Security Serious Week – a week during October’s European Cyber Security Awareness Month dedicated to events put on by cyber-security experts to encourage others in business to take cyber security more seriously.

The categories are:

Fraud Fighter

Captain Compliance

Godfather of Security

Cyber Writer

Security Avengers (team)

Best Security Awareness Campaign

Security Leader/Mentor

Apprentice/Rising Star

Best Educator

Data Guardian

SecDevOps Trailblazer

CISO Supremo – including Retail, CNI, Finance, Manufacturing, Media & Entertainment, Charity and Telecoms sectors

Cyber Security Sales Leader

We know you all must have at least one person you could nominate that makes the industry great – so please send all nominees to beth@securityserious.com and let her know the category as well as up to 500 words of why the person is a deserving winner.

Happy nominating!

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It’s certainly been a busy couple of weeks at Eskenzi HQ, but all our hard work has definitely not been in vain as the team has achieved some of the best results of the year so far.

Last week, in just two days, our client Synopsys Inc had extensive commentary in five UK national newspapers – The Daily Mail, the Daily Star, The Sun, the Daily Express and The Times.

On Monday, Eskenzi began working with an exciting new client – Cybereason. Already they have obtained coverage in The Sun and the Daily Express with some insightful thoughts on #cryptocurrency. Not too shabby for three days work!

In addition, one of Eskenzi’s most interesting clients, Biolink.Tech, commented on yesterday’s news that third-party app developers can read private Gmail messages; scary stuff, right? Biolink CEO and founder, Evgeny Chereshnev, never one to mince words, spoke his mind on the issue and as a result of pitching his thoughts, the team obtained a stonking 305 pieces of coverage!! The Independent and The Mirror picked them up first, followed by a piece in the Daily Mail, which was syndicated 302 times. To top off a very impressive day, Evgeny was also quoted in The Sun and the Daily Express on whether #Bitcoin is doomed to die.

All in a day’s work here at Eskenzi (well, two weeks, but you get the idea!)