MasterCard has relaunched its online newsroom and blog to better cater to its digital audience.
The new newsroom, The Engagement Bureau, and redesigned Cashless Pioneers Blog make up what MasterCard calls a "conversation and publishing ecosystem" that helps consumers engage with the brand, discover sharable content and "become immersed in a discussion around the benefits of digital payments technology."
The Engagement Bureau is what MasterCard calls an "interactive community and information exchange" for journalists, bloggers and industry observers that want a real-time connection with MasterCard's communications department. It features summaries of current news and increased use of imagery and video, the brand says.
According to Jennifer Stalzer, vice president of global digital communications at MasterCard, the brand has also added a new content type it calls "snackable content," or content that is short, simple and easy to digest, and is making its PR staff better "digital ambassadors."
"Today, journalists are online, on Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+, so we want to make sure our digital spokespersons are available and folks can interact whatever way is most comfortable," she says.
In addition, MasterCard's Cashless Pioneers Blog celebrates individuals, businesses, governments and employees who have embraced electronic payments. With the tagline, "Every Transaction Has a Story," MasterCard says the blog will host views and perspectives on industry topics and MasterCard news as well as experiences enabled by cashless technology.
MasterCard is also working with Percolate to curate content. Percolate is a technology company that says it helps brands create content at social scale.
"We're a technology company advancing payments and sparking this discussion," Stalzer says. "Cashless Pioneers was a series we started in our old blog, but we realized many people around the world have embraced this notion of pioneers, so we refocused and are bringing to life their stories."
That includes a video series with so-called cashless pioneers like a baker in the Netherlands who doesn't want his employees to bake bread and touch dirty cash and a 21-year-old traffic vendor in Brazil who sells cell phone accessories and football flags and who feels safer not carrying cash.
"These are the kinds of stories we're highlighting," Stalzer says. "It's not about being completely cashless, but about folks that have embraced technology, innovation and new ways to pay."
The blog includes another video series, Morning Brew, which she says is a storytelling series with former broadcast journalist Nicole Ward, who has covered topics like a farmer's market that has embraced electronic commerce, as well as electronic payments at Grand Central.
The most recent Morning Brew segment, which posted September 18, has about 100 views as of September 24.
Stalzer says the first iteration of MasterCard's newsroom launched two years ago. The brand migrated all previous content from its joint newsroom and blog to the new sites.
"The blog is our opportunity to expand beyond our traditional audience of stakeholder influencers and engage consumers around cashless pioneers," Stalzer says. "Over the next few weeks, we'll expand on the notion of cashless pioneers...we have this idea of how do we connect further with consumers who are embracing [electronic payments] and we will be evolving and expanding."
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March 19, 2014