Endeavor Business Media Acquires Informa’s Industry & Infrastructure Intelligence and Auto Aftermarket Media Brands

Endeavor Business Media has announced a new agreement with Informa, as it acquires the Informa Industry & Infrastructure Intelligence and Auto Aftermarket media brands.

In its latest step to support the brand’s rapid growth and mission to deliver quality content to B2B markets, the Tennessee based company plan to grow the events division and global exhibitions including:

  • Manufacturing & Technology Conference
  • Safety Leadership Conference
  • UAI Week
  • UAI Leadership
  • UAI Day of Analytics
  • EC&M Code Conferences

An Endeavor spokesperson told Exhibition World: "The acquisition of these events increases the Event Portfolio within Endeavor significantly. We are keen to grow this sector of our business, and this seemed like an ideal opportunity to do so in markets that were closely related to our own. We are anxious to get started on working with the strong Event Teams and Event Brands coming over and are keen to see what opportunities a growing Events Division will have for the company.”

The acquisition which is set to double the amount of its staff, comes after a previous acquisition of Clarion completed earlier this year.

The business portfolio will now include 60 events in 16 B2B sectors as well as its ongoing existing range of technical B2B journals including; Oil & Gas Journal, Water Technology, Laser Focus World and Evaluation Engineering.


Our A/B Tester Tool Reveals the Truth About Your Campaign

True marketeers will know that in order to get consistently high engagement rates, evaluation of each campaign deliverable is necessary. Often looking at click-throughs, the number of attendees or sign ups, helps to indicate the success of a digital banner ad, print ad or e-shot. However, to get the best idea of which deliverable performs the best, using a Split Test A/B Calculator can help.

A Split Test A/B calculator takes into consideration the statistical significance. Way back in the 1700s, statistical significance was invented by mathematicians John Arbuthnot and Pierre-Simon Laplace who computed the p-value for the human sex ratio at birth (interesting fact). It has since been used in a number of ways, one of which being A/B testing in marketing.

To use Napier’s Split Test A/B calculator, simply follow the below steps.

  1. Input the number of visitors each landing page has received. If it’s an email marketing campaign, input the number of opens for each email.
  2. On the second row, input the number of leads generated from the landing page or from the email.
  3. Click ‘Calculate results’
  4. The Conversion rates and Confidence level will appear as a percentage
  5. If the difference is significant enough to indicate a statistical significance, the result will come out as ‘You have a winner! Statistically significant difference’
  6. If the difference isn’t significant, the result will come out as ‘Sorry, no winner. You can’t say the difference is significant’

This tool is especially handy if you are running an email marketing or advertising campaign and need to decide which design to take forward into the next round. If there’s no winner, perhaps it would be best to design a completely new email or advert until there’s a clear victor.

Let the battle of the Split Test commence! 


A Day in the Life of an Account Manager

At Armitage Communications, we’re keen to share with you the different roles we have within the team. From Account Directors through to Marketing Specialists, we have a range of people performing a variety of tasks on a daily basis.

In this blog, we’ll share with you Rose’s typical day. Rose started in PR over five years ago as a Junior Account Executive and is now a Junior Account Manager. 

Morning:

When I arrive in the morning, the first thing I do is check my emails for any urgent items which need to be addressed immediately. I then look online for any news relevant to our accounts, especially around robotics and automation technology, logistics and telecommunications.

It’s difficult not to get sidetracked into reading too much of the news - but also really important to get an overview of what is happening in the industries to provide context for our campaigns and articles.

Next I check in with the members of our Robotics, Telecommunications and Logistics teams to make sure we are all aligned on the high priority items of the day. If there are any difficulties across any projects then I have to think carefully about what the next best action is to take. More often than not it takes a small change to resolve a challenge, which in the moment can feel enormous, but usually it’s a small part of the overall picture and once addressed, it’s on to the next project. If I’m really stuck on what to do, then I can ask an Account Director.

Often the next project will involve writing of some kind. It could be a blog, feature article, opinion piece, case study or script. Depending on the content specifications, it could take up to eight hours to research, plan and draft the piece, or as little as half an hour.

Afternoon:

In the afternoon, I could be pitching features to editors, setting up press release distributions or spending some time on a Skype call with a client to run through briefs for content, events or campaign strategy. 

As an Account Manager, it’s my responsibility to ensure that my clients are well represented in the press and that all content aligns with their key messaging. Usually I will scan the media packs for relevant features to pitch for. Common features I’d go for include ‘Digitalisation in food manufacturing’, or ‘How to address the skills shortage,’ through to “Warehouse automation’ and ‘Robotics’ across a range of magazines including Controls, Drives and Automation, Logistics Manager and Food & Drink Network UK. There are lots of nationals which occasionally feature relevant news which we can re-actively pitch against  - recently we got a client a piece of coverage in the Times!

Either myself or the Account Executive will draft a synopsis for the article and email it over to the editor. We usually wait a few days before calling to follow up (unless it's a reactive pitch of course, in which case we have to be super quick before the news is no longer relevant). If the editor is interested in the content, then we’ll find out the deadline, word count and any images they’ll need and make sure we note this to remind ourselves to deliver on time.

The brief for the article will be outlined to one of our writers unless we have time to write it ourselves. Then once drafted, the article is sent to the client for approval before submitting to the editor along with any images they need such as headshots or real-world examples of the product in action. 

During the day I can often have a Skype call diarised, and I make sure to prepare in good time. I read through any attachments or notes in the invite, and write out any questions beforehand that I anticipate I will need to ask to glean the relevant information from the client to execute the project effectively. These 30 minutes to an hour of preparation time are what can make the difference between quality Account Management and last minute, rushed Account Management which can lead to lots of revisions and a frustrated client. 

The fewer the revisions, the better the value.

Towards the end of the day I review the items I have completed and mark them as done on the work in progress (WIP) sheet. I also consider what projects will need to be completed the next morning. Having deadlines set against each project in the WIP helps to inform my priorities and leads to a much higher client satisfaction rate as this kind of attention to detail and organisation means the work is delivered in good time. 

If I had to sum up what the role of Account Manager requires in a few words, I’d say flexibility, problem-solving abilities, creativity and a passion for nurturing positive client relationships. It helps when you enjoy the accounts which you work on, and have an interest in the subject matter, which I definitely do.

Did I mention I love robots?

If this sounds like a role you’d enjoy and you’re interested in potentially joining us, send your C.V. to [email protected]


Datateam merges two titles, forming ‘Factory & Handling Solutions’

This October, Datateam Business Media is celebrating the 70th anniversary of Factory Equipment magazine. With over 700 issues under its belt, the team at Datateam have decided to merge the publication with sister magazine Materials Handling & Logistics.

The new monthly magazine will be titled Factory & Handling Solutions and will bring readers similar content to its former titles including case studies, opinion pieces from leading experts and latest product innovations. Editor, Rachel Tucker aims to refresh the magazine with a new look alongside its editorial calendar and regular e-newsletter.

In the upcoming bumper issue, Factory & Handling Solutions is set to explore features including health and safety, boilers, pumps and valves, supply chain management, warehousing, handling and storage and compressed air.

The issue is set for launch on the 24th October 2019.

We’ll certainly be keeping an eye out for the exciting new issue!


Launch of new manufacturing publication ‘MADE in Ireland’

Earlier this year, it was announced by MA Business that a new publication ‘MADE in Ireland’ will be created to reflect and promote the success story that is Ireland’s engineering sector. On 24th September, the first issue of the magazine was launched, reporting and exploiting the manufacturing and design of Ireland, and in turn offering companies a factual resource that positively reflects their market so they can continue to grow as a manufacturing nation.

With more than 6,000 manufacturing organisations, and 200,000 professionals in Ireland, it was recognised that the Irish needed a resource about the country’s growing manufacturing sector- and that’s exactly what the team at MA Business has achieved.

Commenting on the new launch, Publishing Director Luke Webster said, “This is an exciting step for our growing manufacturing and engineering portfolio. There’s clearly and appetite for high quality, technically led content in Ireland, with a drive to innovate and increase manufacturing exports. MADE in Ireland will promote the great manufacturing and R&D work taking place in Ireland. The content will focus on providing manufacturers with the expertise and support that will enable them to design, develop and manufacture better products.”

The new website www.madein.ie is now live. Readers can subscribe to access content via a monthly e-newsletter and bi-monthly print and digital edition.

 


Easily Develop Personas with our B2B Persona Creator Tool

It’s no secret that the key to a successful campaign, is ensuring that you are targeting the right audience, and with the right messages. Online platforms now play a significant part in interacting with consumers, and it’s important that you identify the most effective channels to communicate with your audience.

A buyer persona is a fictional representation of a company’s specific target customer, it provides detailed information about your ideal customer’s demographics, career background and goals. A persona might include the following: age, job role, skills in terms of using the internet and their understanding of the product, as well as the key challenges they face. It’s also important that your persona document addresses the objective that they are trying to achieve from visiting your website, as this will help you solve the challenges they are facing in their position.

A persona creates a ‘human’ representative for the businesses’ larger target audience and provides the team with a shared understanding of customers in terms of goals and capabilities. In companies with multiple units who each target different customers, having personas is so important to make sure you establish the differences between them and how to best target their needs. How many personas a company needs will depend on how many different segments your customers fit into.

As part of the Napier Group, we understand that it can be time-consuming and difficult to create customer personas on your own. Our B2B Persona Creator Tool allows you to develop personas for a specific campaign, and truly understand the audience you want to target from the beginning.

Gathering information from goals and objectives, to identifying the media channels your customers use, our tool provides an easy to read concise PDF, detailing all the information you need to create a successful targeted campaign.

Why not try it out today? Or get in touch now if you want us to provide some further information on personas and how we can help you.


Five trends in industrial robotics that are helping to transform manufacturing

Today a Meltwater search of ‘robotics’ headlines tallies 24 results across 12 titles including BBC News, Financial Times and HR magazine. We’re dedicated to following the robot trends across all industries - whether it’s AI being used in finance or robot skeletons being used to help paralysed patients walk again. However, as an agency we are particularly focused on the manufacturing industry where many of our clients are helping UK companies to achieve faster and more flexible production.

There are a number of areas where robotic technology is developing at a rapid rate due to a demand for greater flexibility and speed.  It was difficult to come up with only five because there are many different industries within UK manufacturing that have all got the potential to use robots. Nevertheless, we managed to narrow it down. Here are the five that we think are the most exciting to track right now:

Collaborative robots
Initially collaborative robots conjure up visions of smaller robots working alongside people. There are a number of models which have been developed to bring the collaboration to many new areas of production such as electronics, pharmaceutical and automotive as well as small to medium sized manufacturers or workshops. Some of these are able to react to potential collisions and others are ergonomically designed so that if a collision occurs they won’t impact the co-worker. 

Lesser known collaborative robots are the large-scale industrial sized robots which are fitted with sensor technology so that they can stop before a human gets within a certain radius. There are even researchers who are exploring code which make robots interact closely with humans - see Madeline Gannon’s work here.

If larger robots are able to collaborate with us, then we could be lifting cars with a wave of our hands in no time.

Machine tending
Robots are able to be adapted into different configurations according to the needs of a customer. In the machine tending industry, there are many different end tools required and robot manufacturers are creating cells which are especially adaptable for this purpose. 

There is also a growing skills gap. In this industry many companies are introducing robots to perform the manual loading and unloading so that the skilled employees are able to use their expertise to perform other work steps.

Digital maintenance
With the advent of smartphones and 4G, the possibilities for maintenance engineers, factory managers and CEOs to communicate with elements around the factory floor has expanded. When 5G lands, expect more possibilities. But for now, we are able to share with you that remotely monitoring robot performance is a thing. This is achieved using data analysis and as robots are basically told what to do via a form of data (code), it is possible to analyse this data and provide insightful statistics such as how fast the robots are performing and how many parts have been processed.

A lot of us are getting used to analysing data in the form of social media analytics, for example - if there can be this much insight into engagements on smartphones to drive changes in the way we interact with each other, then analysis of robotics performance could mean great changes for the way that manufacturing is performed - and all at the tap of a screen.

Warehouse logistics
As many of us are ordering goods online whether it’s new clothes or a new sofa, warehouses are having to quickly adapt to manage all of the incoming orders. Warehouse automation has become the differentiator for many online brands. Leading names Ocado and Amazon, for example, have invested heavily in robotic technology. Ocado even has its own innovation department within which they are developing their own robots. 

As more of us come to rely on shopping being delivered to our door, greater numbers of warehouses are going to need robots to maintain their position in the market.

Here’s a video of Ocado’s robots in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DKrcpa8Z_E

Food and beverage
As food trends proliferate from veganism and vegetarianism through to the paleo diet and sugar-free, the demand on food and beverage brands to continue to churn out relevant products means flexibility is key.

Robots are adept at providing flexibility. They can pick, pack and place products using vision technology which recognises various shapes and sizes. It all comes down to the programming - which is taking less and less time thanks to innovative programming software. Robots also bring the speed - so if a confectionery brand needs to release a timely limited edition chocolate bar, they can do so without too much hassle.

To understand more about what robots have to offer the food and beverage industry, watch this video from Wired https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKBHnbYo-4s


Hootsuite Summer Social Series Webinar 2: Using search and social advertising together

Following our attendance at the first webinar of the Hootsuite Summer Social Series, we joined the next live webinar to explore the ‘Best practices for using search and social advertising together’. This is the second webinar we’ve attended in the series presented by Hootsuite to learn new strategies on search and social advertising. If you missed our blog on the first Hootsuite webinar click here. The second webinar of the series covered how to use Google and Facebook simultaneously to get best results. So, what did we learn?

Advertising on Facebook is proven to increase your Google results

If you’re an active user on Facebook, you may have noticed some ad’s which are of interest to you. This is because you’ve been targeted by a company using the Facebook audiences feature. This allows companies to reach out to new people who may or may not have realised they needed your product or service based on information Facebook holds about you; whether that be your age, location or interests. Naturally, if you saw a Facebook advertisement you were interested in, you may out of curiosity switch to Google for further research. From Hootsuite’s findings, it is suggested that by advertising on Facebook, your search results on Google will increase on average by 34%.

Keeping consistent across search and social channels

There’s a lot of noise out there in relation to marketing across both search and social. Therefore, to ensure your brand can stand out and for maximum chance of conversion, your messaging must be consistent. As you may know, it takes multiple touchpoints for a prospect to consider purchasing from your brand so you must stick to one consistent message or offer.

It’s not just brand names people are searching for- they’re also looking for offerings and results. Additionally, catchy headlines, phrases, or propositions are those that are more memorable than a just a brand name, so think about what resonates with your audience and what will stick in their minds. Ensure you are consistently optimised for those keywords across search and social so you can easily be found.

Using Facebook to retarget uses from search ads
Retargeting is an ever-growing subject in the world of marketing at the moment. What people are unaware of, is that there is more to retargeting than just purely displaying ads to website visitors. In order to maximise your efforts in retargeting, you can cross over with search and social. Often when clicking on a Google ad, visitors will come away from the page, perhaps do some additional research and explore other alternative options or solutions. However, by retargeting with Facebook, ads appear when the user visits the social media platform at a later date, reminding them about your offer and keeping your company at the top of their minds.

In summary, you shouldn’t be thinking about whether search or social is better for your brand- you should instead think how it is best to use search AND social together. Stay tuned for the final blog on the third webinar of the Hootsuite summer series.


A day in the life of a Marketing Specialist

My name is Taylor, and I’m one of the Marketing Specialists at Armitage Communications, based in one of our locations in Saffron Walden, Essex.

The purpose of this blog is to share some of the details about how I got into the marketing industry, my typical working day, and help you decide if a similar role could be for you.  

I originally joined the company four years ago as an Apprentice when Napier acquired Peter Bush Communications, following my interest in Marketing at A-Level. In 2017 after completing my NVQ, I was offered to take on the role as a Marketing Specialist, and my roles and responsibilities have developed since that very moment and into the merge with Armitage Communications. You can read more about vocational benefits and why you should consider an apprenticeship in one of our latest blogs.

 

From day to day, I have regular calls with colleagues from both Armitage and Napier to discuss ongoing projects and our top priorities for the week. I also join calls with clients and Account Managers to go through our WIP (work in progress) document to highlight outstanding tasks, or new upcoming campaigns. Projects I work on for clients can vary; I could be working on tasks ranging from social media planning and creation, content and blog writing, through to event management.  

One of the key aspects of the role that surprised me when I joined the company was the amount of trust I had from my colleagues, especially coming from an apprenticeship. I have been given opportunities to work freely on development tasks such as SEO, and email marketing via HubSpot, which helped build my confidence. I was also offered, and I accepted various training and career development opportunities such as the CIM Certificate in Professional Marketing at the Cambridge Marketing College.

I would consider my position at Armitage rather fast-paced and flexible. As well as supporting administration and marketing duties, I am never stuck to one project or duty, which why the role is rather enjoyable and comes as great experience for me in the early stages of my marketing career.

If you’re considering a similar marketing role, or are interested in working for us, get in touch today!  


AI bias and a new agriculture: ‘AI: More than human at the Barbican’ review part two

Over the last few days we’ve scanned many headlines which herald the future of artificial intelligence such as CMR Surgical’s £1bn Series C funding, a company based in Cambridge that is set to launch a surgical robot and Softbank’s plans to open a cafe run by humanoid robots in Tokyo. These headlines are unsurprising - fast developments in AI technology mean that what was sci-fi literature fifty years ago is now becoming a reality.

Nowhere is this easier to comprehend than an exhibition dedicated to the technology. In August we made the most of the longer evenings and made our way to the Barbican for ‘AI: More than human.’ Situated within the Barbican Estate of the City of London, the Barbican Centre has a large space fit for hosting thought-provoking events showcasing cinema, theatre, dance and art.

So when we arrived at the venue, our brains were already switched on to learn more about AI and how it’s transforming the world around us. 

Here’s the second part of Account Manager Rose’s review of the exhibition.

Through replicating the human brain, scientists were able to develop the first ‘neural network’ in the form of computer programmes in the early 21st century. Here we were, three quarters of the way through the exhibition, and arriving at the stage where AI began to proliferate into hundreds of applications. What enabled AI to be realised? Partly it was the power of modern computing but it was also work conducted by Alex Krizhevsky, who developed AlexNet (software which successfully labelled 15+ million high-resolution images) that got the ball moving.

The link between this development and other outcomes of AI’s influence were demonstrated by an art piece called ‘Myriad (Tulips).’ By Anna Ridler, the art piece on display was just a fraction of the 10,000 pictures of tulips which she photographed and categorised to highlight the human aspect that sits behind machine learning.

If humans influence AI so much, then can we trust those humans to form a fair representation of the world we live in? Can we rely on humans to use the technology for the betterment of the world? Echoing back to part one, many of us are frightened because at its core AI can be seen to represent a side of humanity that we haven’t quite grasped yet.

The data universe

The human influence on AI was explored in great detail in the third part of the exhibition ‘Data Worlds.’ Bringing to the surface AI’s underbelly, this section opened with a cartoon depicting AI in China, where AI not only monitors cities but also keeps track of its population. Later a human intelligent smart home experiment conducted by Lauren McCarthy was explored, where the relationship between smart devices and the private lives of those who use them was shown. Gender Shades by Joy Buolamwini, examined the misrepresentation of race and gender in datasets. All of this conspired to leave me thinking ‘Is AI a bad move for us?’.

It’s reassuring to know that there are some really inspiring people out there conducting research projects that raise these questions. If no questions are asked, and we go full steam ahead, we may end up with a world that we don’t really want. In the concluding paragraph of an article published in The Economist last week, a clause which rung true for me was ‘If problems can be foreseen they can be more easily prevented.’

But as well as being understandably cautious, we should look at the positives that are coming from AI. The final section of the exhibition ‘Endless evolution’ examined AI’s potential to improve our bodies, eliminate disease and even address famine.

The doctor will see you now

Mental health charity Mind has thrown some perspective on the UK’s worry that more and more of us are struggling with our mental health. Apparently the number of people struggling hasn’t changed but it’s the way that we’re coping with it that has gone in a more serious direction.

In order to properly treat mental health we either need a lot more counsellors, psychiatrists and medication or an alternative provided by technology. One section of ‘AI: More than human’ touched on the human need for connection in a progressively digital world with chat bots programmed to be as human as possible communicating with attendees. Experts are already suggesting that AI could help counsel patients and online counseling services such as the Big White Wall and Ieso are already in place in some UK regions.

Furthermore, AI can help doctors to determine diseases early on to prevent life-threatening outcomes. Just this week, Director of Google Health, Michael Macdonnel talked about an early stage AI-powered system which interprets Optical Coherence Tomography retinal images and identifies the signs of sight-threatening disease.

Other companies are experimenting with 3D printing body parts such as Axial3D’s work towards building 3D models of the anatomy using 2D images. The company has already started work on an algorithm which could potentially mean 3D organs become the norm in a hospital near you.

3D printing organs on-demand could potentially save thousands of people.

What’s eating AI?

‘AI: More than human’ also showed a small plant farm nurtured by AI. Small and innocent enough, it echoed plans that are already underway in UK universities for larger farms to begin using smart sensors. These can collect data to provide a greater understanding of crops from a distance so that providing the right fertiliser or amounts of water can be achieved remotely. More judicious use of pesticides can also prevent harm to the soil.

The world’s population is expected to grow from 7.7 billion to nearly 10 billion by 2050. Pitch this against a finite amount of arable land and we need to start thinking about ways to use technology to sustainably produce food, and fast.

Terramera’s Founder Karn Manhas summed it up in an article in Greenbiz earlier this year. He said, ‘Technology such as artificial intelligence (AI), robotics and big data might not be commonly associated with ‘natural’ or ‘health’ movements but actually, these advanced technologies are allowing us to eat cleaner, more locally and more sustainably than ever before.’

Robots picking fruit are helping to close the skills gap as well as reduce food waste. Drone pollinators and self-driving tractors are being developed to help drive efficiency and AI is used to make sense of farm data so that farmers can increase the health of crops, boost yields and ultimately provide better quality, affordable food.

If AI can help us feed the planet, then it’s definitely worth the research.

AI overwhelm

All of this AI in one go was a lot to absorb. It took an AI installation of screens showing butterflies and paintbox colours called ‘What a Loving and Beautiful World’ to round the exhibition off nicely. We could choose to interact directly with the panels, clicking the Chinese calligraphy to influence the space or sit and contemplate the surroundings, in awe of all of the elements combining to create the artwork.

We left asking ourselves the question, “Should we play a passive role in the developments of technology around us or make it our responsibility?”

If AI is to be shaped by human consciousness, then this question should not be asked by attendees of AI: More than human alone, it should be asked across the world.