US DOE Secretary Ernest Moniz touring a biofuels plant

Challenge

Advanced and cellulosic biofuels are important parts of the diversified, balanced portfolio of energy options that America needs. Instead of petroleum, these innovative fuels are produced from renewable sources like plants, algae, waste and animal fats. The most promising technologies hold the potential to reduce America’s reliance on oil, decrease carbon dioxide emissions and diversify the country’s fuel supply.

However, as with many cutting-edge energy solutions, the industry must address and overcome misperceptions about its commercial viability. For help with this challenge, the Advanced Biofuels Association (ABFA) turned to Stratacomm.

Our Approach

ABFA urged Stratacomm to help make the association’s communications with media and stakeholders more proactive. Our team got to work with an approach that emphasized:

  • Highlighting the progress of individual member companies as milestones in the overall maturation and development of the industry
  • Telling this story through the complete spectrum of earned, shared, owned and (in a few appropriate cases) paid media channels
  • Using resources wisely – as befits a lean, scrappy organization – to target a narrow group of policy leaders, decision makers and influencers who matter most to the advanced biofuels industry

Results

  • Increased quantity and quality of media coverage – Targeted press efforts yielded high-quality media hits from major publications such as the Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, Bloomberg, Reuters and Politico, as well as important trade publications like E&E News, OPIS, Platts, Energy Guardian and Biofuels Digest.
  • Refreshed website and amplified traffic – Thanks to a digital face-lift, the association’s website achieved top search engine ranking for industry keywords, helping increase organic traffic by more than 20 percent. It now retains visitors for twice as long, with 25 percent more people navigating to subsections of the site—including the member listing, the press page and the newly established blog.
  • Greater voice and engagement on social media – Stratacomm expanded ABFA’s following on Twitter to include government officials and influential reporters at major publications. Our team manages @BetterFuels and the association’s presence on LinkedIn to provide insightful commentary, react to policy developments, amplify member accomplishments and respond to breaking news.
  • Engaging video profiles of member success – Stratacomm produced a series of videos profiling ABFA and its member companies that have been seen more than 11,000 times on YouTube.
  • A greater voice in the policy debate – All communications activities ultimately support ABFA’s advocacy agenda and help reinforce the association’s position as a leader in the contentious debate over the federal renewable fuels standard.

“As an emerging industry, advanced and cellulosic biofuels are used to being scrappy underdogs. But since engaging Stratacomm, ABFA feels even more confident in the role of David, standing toe-to-toe with Goliath. Their team takes the time to learn the intricacies of this industry and the policy that surrounds it. Stratacomm has been instrumental in fostering relationships with key reporters, and they are always ready to pounce on opportunities. They then amplify these opportunities through social media – providing a force multiplier that maximizes our efforts whether they’re showcasing achievements by member companies, touting industry milestones or pushing our policy priorities into the headlines.”

Michael McAdams President, Advanced Biofuels Association