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Full Service Ad Agency Uses Propel to Streamline News Releases

McKim.Sherpa is an award-winning, full service ad agency that serves clients across Canada. Its Director of Communications uses Propel to build targeted media lists for clients in various industries in only a matter of minutes.

McKim.Sherpa is an award-winning full service ad agency that serves clients across Canada. Recognized for outstanding creative and strategy, its expertise includes advertising, branding, digital, web and graphic design, media placement, social media and public relations. With many clients scattered across different industries, Propel is integral to efficiently planning news releases that go to the right, highly-targeted media contacts.

The problem

Before Propel, building targeted media lists for news announcements always happened the old-school way. Director of Communications Tamara Bodi said she had to spend a lot of time building these lists manually, start to finish. This meant doing hours of research and scanning social media to figure out which journalists were covering a certain topic at the time, finding their contact information, and then entering this into her personal database. While this process works, it is naturally time-intensive, especially when working with new clients in specific industries that require starting fresh.

For some clients, the agency compiles media lists from multiple stakeholder groups, and this means a concern for contact duplicates that the team does not always have the time to scan and rule out before sharing an announcement.

The solution

McKim.Sherpa now uses the Propel global media database to find the right contacts for clients' news releases exponentially faster than they could before. This is especially useful in managing accounts with specific announcements like new technology for higher education and agricultural business in Canada. Tamara is able to use Propel's database filters that narrow the bank of over one million journalist contacts to exactly those that pertain to the right sector(s) for a given campaign or announcement.

From here, the Propel email integration feature protects the team from accidentally emailing the same contacts about an announcement back-to-back. Tamara connected the Propel platform to her Outlook account so she receives alerts letting her know if she is about to reach out to a duplicate contact. Finally, she enjoys being able to see exactly which contacts have opened her emails.

The results

Director of Communications Tamara Bodi has already seen Propel make her life easier in more ways than one. Recently, she was able to create a highly targeted media list for an agricultural announcement in Canada in only a few minutes, while this would have taken her 4-5 hours previously. Once it's time to share an announcement, she no longer has to worry about double-pitching the same contacts or scanning a compilation of lists for duplicates.

Tamara looks forward to continuing using the Propel contact database even more for list-building and sharing news releases. She's excited to be able to rely on this new structure for contact updates and centralized media connections.

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