Ever since Germany engaged in a strategic partnership with the United Arab Emirates in April 2004, the two countries have steadily intensified their business ties and currently hundreds of German companies already established their offices in the UAE.
The privileged economic relations between the Emirates and Germany motivated the construction and the opening in 2008 of the German Business Park, a structure built in the Dubai Silicon Oasis and envisaged to become a business cluster for companies interested in the UAE and Gulf markets. The German Business Park provides comprehensive support and dedicated office space to small and medium-sized German companies seeking to establish effective bases of operation in Dubai.
bridge:media was therefore in charge of organizing the PR campaign for a project of remarkable symbolic value but restricted dimensions, especially if compared to other bigger scale projects flourishing in the real estate sector of Dubai at that time. The main challenge stood in ensuring the visibility of the campaign on media despite the competition of other ambitious construction plans contemporarily growing in the city.
Secondly, providing the ground breaking ceremony of the German Business Park with a visual content able to capture the attention of media represented another major part of the challenge. A launching event for a real estate project of relatively small scale proportions needed to be associated with images and content of considerable impact for resulting appealing both to media and public. Yet, such an event required a particularly creative approach for achieving a visual content able to match the sector and the subject of the campaign.
bridge:media's communications strategy for the German Business Park developed mainly through three points: the shaping of the messaging contents, the organization of a ground-breaking ceremony for the launch of the project and finally, the creation and distribution plan for the publications directed to media.
Firstly, the key messaging was delivered through two main elements: on the one hand, the significance of the project was elevated from event exclusively related to the real estate sector of Dubai to important step in the bilateral relations between Germany and the UAE. On the other hand, the exceptionality of the project was further emphasized to present the German Business Park as a unique example of national cluster for business, realized in the UAE.
Secondly, the organization of the ground-breaking ceremony at the Dubai Silicon Oasis contributed to better deliver the designed messaging and address the national and international media. H.E the U.A.E. Federal Minister H.E. Sheikha Lubna Bint Khalid Al Qassimi and H.E the General German Consul Johann-Adolf Cohausz were invited as main guests of the event along with other important German and Emirati exponents from the business and institutional community of Dubai. Their participation added official and institutional consistency to the ceremony and put the accent on the importance that the event had for the German-Emirati bilateral relations.
Moreover, the presence of such high-level authorities was employed to shape the visual content of the event. The two institutional exponents and the management of the Dubai Silicon Oasis and German Business Park were pictured whit shovels while laying the foundations of the site. This image conferred to the event an unconventional visual content expected to have a remarkable impact on media and target public.
bridge:media was in charge of all the aspects related to the ground-breaking ceremony: from the logistical and organizational arrangements, to invitations for guests and media, from coordinating interviews and liaisons with journalists to writing the speeches of dignitaries and other representatives. Moreover, direct marketing operations with potential interested participants and the preparation of invitation lists were other important contributions to the PR plan for the ceremony. The comprehensive database of bridge:media was employed in this task to achieve a systematic outreach of the German business and institutional community in the Gulf.
Finally, features and press releases in German, English and Arabic have been conceptualised and distributed both to European and Arab media for a thoroughly inclusive communications strategy. Indeed, the target audience spanned across a broad geographical area and included not only the business community of the GCC but also potential investors and interested clients based in Germany.
The campaign proved extensively successful both in obtaining an outstanding media coverage and a remarkable guests and journalists' participation to the ground-breaking ceremony.
Firstly, publications and arranged interviews were published on the most important general news and special interest media in the UAE, the rest of the Gulf and Germany. The campaign obtained a noteworthy coverage both in relation to the event and the rest of the communications plan. The information, disseminated in an even and comprehensive way with publications in three different languages, reached a target audience that was distributed across a broad geographical scope.
Elevating the significance of the project to an institutional level and presenting the construction of the German Business Park as part of the bilateral relations between Germany and the UAE, significantly drove the attention of major media on the subject of the campaign. Emphasizing the exceptionality of a project meant to become the first national cluster for business ever realized in the UAE, managed to successfully handle the competition with more spectacular real estate endeavours flourishing in Dubai at the time.
Moreover, the organized event witnessed remarkable interest and participation from journalists and the German business community in the region. On the one hand, bridge:media's extensive database including information on German business and institutions present in the GCC countries, ensured a thorough outreach of the event. On the other hand, the visual content shaped by bridge:media for the ceremony had a great impact on media. These latter broadly reported on the high-level representatives participating to the event and opted for publishing images of the dignitaries using the shovels at the site foundations.
Finally, as a result of the overall PR strategy, the ground-breaking ceremony was held at the presence of important TV channels. The most important German news channel, NTV and BBC International transmitted special reports on the event, thus further contributing to expand the outreach of the campaign on an international level.