Sometimes the best business strategy is to be a market contrarian. Think Warren Buffett buying shares of Goldman Sachs in September 2008, or any pronouncement by Nouriel Roubini over the last five years. For DKC, this has meant investing in our business at a time when other companies are trimming back. I’m confident this will enable us to better service our clients and be a fiercer competitor as the economy turns around.
Earlier this year we launched a digital media unit, now known as DKC Connect, in conjunction with the introduction of a new DKC website and blog. DKC Connect offers clients a menu of digital solutions including social networking strategy, development and execution, as well as web site development and search engine optimization.
DKC Connect doubled in size during the second quarter of 2009 and is now involved in some fascinating projects including the development and execution of elaborate social networking programs for clients such as Hearst’s King Features Syndicate; Facebook and Twitter programs for several major hotels; and the creation of online platforms for internationally renowned explorer Josh Bernstein and a revolutionary, soon-to-be introduced pain management approach. We have also formed a relationship with Fan Appz, a suite of Facebook applications that helps brand owners engage, grow, and monetize their fan base.
In another major investment, we recently announced the creation of DKC Government Affairs, a full-service lobbying and government strategy unit based in Albany and New York City.
DKC Government Affairs is headed by Allison Lee, a long-time fixture in New York State government affairs, who just joined us from the esteemed Albany firm Pat Lynch Associates. During her 25-plus-year career, Allison has represented a spectrum of clients, ranging from major, national companies, such as Delta Air Lines and Cablevision, to high profile, not-for-profit organizations such as Thirteen/WNET.
Allison joins a team of top executives at DKC with more than 100 years of combined city, state and federal government affairs experience. These include: former New York State Democratic Chairman, John Marino; Joseph DePlasco, former communications director for New York City mayoral candidate, Mark Green; Matthew Traub, former chief of staff to Congresswoman Nita Lowey, William Cunningham, former communications director for New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Robert Leonard, former public information officer for the New York City Fire Department and Emergency Medical Service under Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.
While the launches of DKC Connect and DKC Government Affairs position the firm quite nicely for the impending economic recovery, I am most excited about how closely these units fit with our core, results-oriented, creative business. DKC Connect seeks to maximize exposure for our clients by approaching digital strategies with an eye towards news and bounce across both traditional and new media. DKC Government Affairs operates in close association with our news executives delivering the one-two combination of legislative counsel and aggressive media coverage supporting major public affairs and legislative issues.
As I alluded to in our first newsletter – when I referenced the now defunct ABC primetime show “Life on Mars” – new media and new service lines are simply tools. Success or failure stems from how these tools are used. Great, creative ideas, superior access and smart, strategic thinking have always been the hallmark of success for our clients. With these two additional capabilities, we make it easier for clients to take advantage of the rapidly-multiplying opportunities to tell their stories on a national stage.