PennWell Publishing wanted mainstream media coverage for its publication, Oil & Gas Journal – a bible of the petroleum industry, which was celebrating its 100th anniversary. Ward determined the best approach to appeal to a more general audience was to tell the history of the oil business through the pages of Oil & Gas Journal. The agency developed comprehensive media materials, including a press kit that covered the oil and gas industry’s history; background information on the journal’s owners, publishers and editorial staff; and events held in the anniversary year by PennWell celebrating the 100th anniversary. Ward contacted media in Houston, Tulsa and other major cities influenced by the petroleum business and at the same time began a campaign to gain national recognition via “pitches” to various publications and the Today Show on NBC.
Ward decided the Today Show’s meteorologist Willard Scott might be interested in the 100th anniversary as part of his celebration of 100-year birthdays for individuals. The Today Show,alone, in ad equivalency was worth an estimated $40,000.
The 100-year Anniversary was featured on Tulsa’s CBS-TV affiliate, the Fox TV affiliate in Houston and on national television via the Today Show. The morning show’s meteorologist Willard Scott, who was famous for celebrating 100-year birthdays, donned a yellow hardhat emblazoned with the Oil & Gas Journal logo. The Oil & Gas Journal also received excellent recognition in two feature articles in the Tulsa World. Numerous other publications covered the 100-year anniversary including the Houston Chronicle. Ward garnered almost ten times PennWell Publishing’s $15,000 investment with more than $140,000
advertising equivalency through the PR efforts.