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In a world of endless technology are we losing the personal touch?



We are living in a world where technology is progressing faster than ever before. More texts, instant messages and emails are being sent, as more and more people adopt this as the typical way to communicate with friends, family, colleagues or even complete strangers.

But as we spend more time staring at a computer screen, whether that is at a desk or in the palm of our hands, are we losing that personal connection?

As a communication agency we are constantly looking for the latest technology, channels and forums that we can use to share brand messages, but within all of this we can never forget the power of personal contact.

A huge part of what we do is educating journalists on our client’s brand and their products or services and we know that no matter how many calls we make, or emails we send, face-to-face is the best way of doing this.

Whether that is setting up a Skinny Lager sampling bar at Unilad's Manchester office or taking one of our latest client’s, Esteem, down to London to meet health journalists across national and women’s glossy titles, getting the product into the hands (and mouths) of these influential journalists is invaluable.

Journalists, like everyone else, are bombarded with hundreds, if not thousands of messages every day and as PRs we need to make that cut through and despite the ever evolving world we live in, nothing beats face-to-face.

Face-to-face communication gives you a captive audience, without the modern day distractions and allows people to react and respond, not just to verbal language, but to body language and environment – all of which is crucial for building relationships successfully.

So, what are you waiting for? Step away from the keyboard, put down the iPhone and join us for a coffee!

If you’d like to chat more to the team at Refresh PR we can meet up face-to-face, or if you’d like the team to build these personal relationships on behalf of your brand let us know.

Tagged with: , Creative Agency, Home Interest, PR Agency Manchester, technology

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Is smart technology taking over your world, without you even realising?



Here at Refresh PR we specialise in communications within the food and drink, construction and lifestyle industries. Over time we’ve seen the internet gradually make its presence in every one of these sectors, from smart thermostats to hairbrushes. We’re sure that soon enough we’ll be able to control most things remotely, at just a touch of a button (or should I say a 3D facial recognition scanner).

 

Smart technology is no longer marketed solely at the young, successful and tech savvy among us. Take the recent launch of L’Oreal’s smart hairbrush; created with sensors to assess hair quality, fully equipped with a microphone that records the sound of breaking hair and an app that recommends products, it is clear that even the beauty industry, which sees customers range in age from 12 to 90, has taken a step up in the world of smart technology.

 

Our client Arbonne was one of the first to embrace cutting edge technology, with the launch of the Intelligence Genius Ultra Device, an ultrasound device that makes products work not only faster but smarter. It works by utilising a combination of gentle ultrasound waves and a warmed applicator to smooth products onto the skin for maximum results. Find out more here.

 

Beauty brands are increasingly investing in innovation, and it seems that soon the average hair brush just won’t cut it. Will using your fingertips to apply cosmetics go out of the window completely?

 

On the subject of windows, one of the leading sectors in smart innovation is home interest. Reports claim that using affordable smart home technology is already playing a significant role in reducing energy costs, due to it allowing companies and households to use energy more efficiently, reducing the need to build more power stations.

 

Not only does smart technology affect what’s in the home, but also the wider house building industry. Manufacturing and construction jobs both feature in the top five sectors that may be vulnerable to automation according to recent data released by jobs search engine Adzuna. So do the positives, increased production and a reduction in costs, outweigh these potential negative implications?

 

Revolutionary internet-based software has also made its way into the food and drink industry. Recently, a coffee shop in London used 3D printing to match people together by having the face of the person they admire lasered onto the froth of a coffee. This is personalization a step too far for me, but not everyone will feel the same.

 

Finally, cutting edge technology is not only changing how we use products, but also how we purchase them. Amazon is used to leading the way, however its new automated retail prototype has caused quite the controversy. It has already made shockwaves with pioneering the use of drones to deliver packages instead of humans, and has now revealed plans to launch a two-storey, automated grocery store; manned by just three humans, it is mostly run by robots.

 

I think that smart technology is great and I would invest in anti-ageing tools in the future, however 3D printing of food and drink seems a little too futuristic for me!

 

Are you embracing smart technology or do you appreciate the human touch? Let us know in the comments below.

 

 

 

Tagged with: Food & Drink, Health & Beauty, Home Interest, Lifestyle, technology

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Refresh PR supports client OTONE at the Gadget Show Live 2013



This week Refresh PR travelled to Birmingham’s NEC with long-standing client,OTONE Audio, to support the speaker systems company at the Gadget Show Live 2013.

Plans have been in place for months and activity has been ramped up during the past few weeks as Team Refresh has worked hard to arrange offline coverage and organise a full day of press appointments on stand. To complement the offline activity, a carefully crafted social media campaign has been running in the build-up to the show, complete with competitions and a video (to be release shortly…watch this space!).

Yesterday two team members helped OTONE Audio meet and greet the media including tech journalists and bloggers from national newspapers and magazines on the press day. OTONE was showcasing its two major product launches – the Soundship and Soundship Micro, and the Soundbar – both of which the journalists seemed very taken with.

The day was highly successful for OTONE and the team was thrilled to receive tweets and praise from the press. Technology blogger Twin Geeks tweeted: “I was loving the new @otoneaudio Soundship - can't wait to try it out and you can expect a review soon!”

Other press delegates to visit the stand were representatives of What HiFi, Tech Strike, Gadget Helpline, The Full Setup, The Digital Lifestyle,. BBC Radio Lancashire, Connected Digital World, MixMag, Channel 4’s S4C and Performance Magazine UK – quite a line up.

Instant feedback about the products from social media is fantastic but the success of the press day at The Gadget Show Live – which saw us interacting with visitors and running competitions as well as blasting out Gangnam Style– will be shown over the next few weeks as the team returns and rolls its sleeves up to deliver on the media opportunities.

Meanwhile, if you’re at the show this week, why not head to stand D80 to see the OTONE products and meet the team for yourself.

Tagged with: , gadgets, Lifestyle, Otone, PR, Public Relations North West, Social Media, technology, The Gadget Show