Clients: ArborBridge, an online test prep company; Student Loan Hero, a platform for managing multiple student loans; Citelighter a writing platform that reduces the burden of Common Core on teachers; and VizSafe, a platform for engaged citizens to help their neighbors and communities.
Background: Team Ditto began working with these technology companies in mid- to late-2014, with the goal of reaching end-users and communicating how these services will enhance their lives. Each client was a relatively new company and sought Team Ditto’s counsel to increase awareness and gain new customers or users.
Challenge: The primary challenge with each of these clients has been differentiating them from their competitors in crowded markets. Another challenge has been conveying to media why their spokespeople are uniquely qualified to comment on issues – including student loans, test prep and Common Core – that have a variety of different stakeholders.
Strategy: To achieve success with ArborBridge, Student Loan Hero, Citelighter and VizSafe, Team Ditto did the following:
For ArborBridge, Team Ditto offered expert insights around issues that affect their potential clients – parents of college-interested high school students – such as navigating the costs associated with SAT and ACT test prep. In response to new data around the number of international students taking the SAT and applying to U.S. colleges increasing exponentially, Team Ditto leveraged ArborBridge’s vast experience in tutoring high school students in countries such as in China and Saudi Arabia – experiences uniquely afforded to online test prep companies.
For Student Loan Hero, Team Ditto tapped into current news hooks, most notably the end of the six-month grace period to repay federal student loans. Not only did the team’s media outreach result in immediate requests for interviews, it also began establishing Student Loan Hero’s founder and CEO as an expert media can go to when looking for resources on all things student loans.
For Citelighter, Team Ditto targeted the outlets read by potential clients – teachers and other educators – including local media and education trades. The team worked with current Citelighter clients to provide success stories to media.
For VizSafe, Team Ditto pitched a story around using the app in Southern California to report instances of wasting water during the drought. The story received both national and local media attention.
Results: Just weeks after beginning their engagements with Team Ditto, each client received substantial media coverage in top-tier outlets. ArborBridge spokespeople have been quoted in the New York Times and U.S. News & World Report. Student Loan Hero has been featured in the Associated Press, New York Times, Nightly Business Report and Today.com. Citelighter has gained local coverage in the Baltimore Times, Baltimore Business Journal and CBS Baltimore, as well as in education trades such as T.H.E. Journal and national outlets like Fox Business Online. VizSafe received national attention from NBC News, CNBC and Bloomberg, as well as coverage in local outlets (Los Angeles Times) and tech blogs (TechRepublic).