Credit Management Association

The Credit Management Association (CMA) asked WHPR to help raise awareness of their services, which included business-to-business trade credit, credit management and business bankruptcy alternatives and reorganizations.

The Challenge:

At the on-set of the economic crisis in 2009, CMA wanted to build its profile so that businesses would better understand the role good credit practices could play in forestalling economic misfortune. They also wanted businesses facing such misfortune to know that CMA offers a unique and compassionate approach to an often painful and wrenching decision.

CMA also wanted its current members to value the association more so that membership would sustain.

WHPR’s Counsel and Strategy:

WHPR’s first approach was to advise CMA that their website needed a complete overhaul. WHPR felt the existing website did little to showcase what sets CMA apart, did little to highlight the range of their services. This is a standard issue with new clients in which WHPR sees how the public relations campaign will play out – but recognizes that a client’s existing website will not support or match that campaign. Working with CMA’s internal staff, WHPR and CMA honed messages and selected more appropriate graphic design.

Once the website was functional, WHPR began crafting messages. WHPR knew CMA had a window of opportunity as bankruptcy filings increased. But WHPR also understood that CMA’s unique approach to business-to-business credit was another unique aspect of the association’s portfolio. So a two-pronged approach was created: one would promote the bankruptcy services, the other the business-to-business trade credit.

To accomplish this, WHPR helped draft and place an opinion page piece, sought opportunistic reaction placement to breaking news, and developed strategies for placement of key CMA personnel in feature profiles. WHPR also sought for ways to have key CMA executives placed in “round-up” stories, stories in which CMA is included along with other news sources in a particular news report.

WHPR also counseled that where possible, CMA members be included in the public relations effort. The reason was two-fold: to have the individual member feel more connected to CMA and its marketing efforts and to have members’ employers recognize that CMA was of vital importance to their business as a resource and as an advocate.

The Result:

The result: Below is a sampling of the coverage WHPR generated for CMA.

1. Los Angeles Business Journal Op Ed

2. KNX Business Hour

3. Merrill Lynch News Services:

4. Dun & Bradstreet feature:
(see page 2), featuring CMA member in round-up story.

5. LABJ Profile of Mike Joncich, Manager, CMA Adjustment Bureau:

6. Sacramento Business Journal Op Ed: