In recent years, public and regulatory scrutiny have elevated supply chain technology to a public discussion.
Disruptions and slow recoveries, stemming from geopolitical conflicts, natural weather events, and general supply chain inefficiencies, have forced businesses to adopt game-changing technologies to optimize activities that make supply chains function and generate revenue.
The Need: Assess Industry Technology Adoption & Workforce Challenges
Supply chain integration company Cleo was reinvigorated in the 2010s to pursue the goal of linking core business systems at supply chain companies through ecosystem integration. Ecosystem integration is both a strategy and a technology category that aims to digitally connect systems between individual parties in a supply chain network: partners, customers and suppliers. Through these integrations, businesses can seamlessly and effortlessly share real-time information and updates with all concerned parties – thus enabling more agile management and faster decision-making to optimize supply chain operations and ensure products reach their destination on time in full.
However, Cleo faced a threefold (pun somewhat intended) challenge. Although public and industry awareness of supply chain technologies is at an all-time high, the company had no way of assessing the actual state of adoption of such technologies and solutions. An accurate assessment of technology adoption is critical to Cleo’s market strategy, as the company needs to understand their core customer base’s IT landscape and, therefore, the need for integration between systems that have already been, or soon will be, adopted. In addition, Cleo wanted to understand how companies were attempting to solve a persistent workforce shortage, which had plagued the industry for decades but came to a head during the pandemic. Cleo also wanted to continue the momentum of a great year of media coverage throughout the holiday season and into the new year of 2023, but the company had no planned news announcements until February.
The Work: Uncovering Industry Trends Through Strategic Job Listings Research
To address the state of industry technology adoption and workforce challenges, as well as to generate a steady flow of coverage through the typically slow-for-news holiday season, 10Fold proposed an internally developed research report. The ultimate goals of the report were to assess the state of technology adoption, understand how supply chain companies are addressing workforce shortages with hiring strategies and the deployment of automation-enabling solutions, and secure coverage from publications that reach Cleo’s target audience of manufacturers, logistics companies and wholesale retailers.
Read the Full Case Study: Manufacturing Supply Chain Coverage & Turning New Audiences to Prospects
Starting in September 2022, the 10Fold team began conducting research by collecting information from publicly available job listings from supply chain organizations. Through the job listing research, including manually reviewing and labeling listings for collation and analysis, 10Fold was able to infer the state of technology adoption, based on listed responsibilities for each job, as well as how companies are strategizing to overcome workforce shortages with automation-enabling technology.
Despite the success of the research and the intriguing findings that were generated, Cleo and 10Fold faced yet another challenge: a condensed timeline to finalize and announce findings to media. With the rate of change within the supply chain industry, job markets and technology innovation, 10Fold knew that our findings would only be useful for a specific window of time. If the announcement was held until the new year, the findings could be wholly irrelevant by then. So, under pressure to quickly release accurate and insightful findings to media, 10Fold developed a full report of the research as well as a press release to announce the findings and generate media coverage, which was published in December 2022. To generate coverage of the report, 10Fold developed targeted pitches to various trade, technology and HR publications to secure coverage in as many media categories as possible.
The Results: Positioning the Client as An Expert in Supply Chain Technology & Workforce Strategies
The research report and associated PR campaign yielded results that exceeded expectations of both the Cleo team and 10Fold – given the timing of the announcement and the specificity of the research, our biggest concern was that our key media targets would miss the news due to the end of year madness, or simply be checked out for the holidays. In the end, the extensive research and consolidated timing of announcement material development enabled 10Fold to secure coverage from top trade publications, including Freightwaves, Supply Chain Management Review, Supply Chain Quarterly, DC Velocity, and more.
In total, the campaign secured 14 total pieces of coverage across North America (12) and the U.K. (2), which netted 3,112,999 unique visitors per month (UVM). The insightful and unique nature of the research findings also drove readers to Cleo’s website, resulting in 15 hours of direct report view time across 68 accounts on Cleo.com – a 3x higher average view time per user than the company’s content typically receives.
The success of the research report and PR campaign demonstrates the opportunities for top tier trade and industry coverage when operations are strategically aligned and positioned for success through careful planning and quick action. 10Fold’s past experiences leading and announcing research reports across a variety of industries and technologies helped Cleo generate a grand finale of year-end coverage and establish itself as the industry’s leader in workforce enablement and technology adoption strategies.