OS_rescueME_range_web

From targeted PR with start-up to expanded contract for two global players

After helping to propel Ocean Signal to market leadership, Saltwater support now encompasses its US parent company ACR Electronics.

New company Ocean Signal approached Saltwater Stone just 18 months after it was established. With huge ambitions for growth in both the commercial shipping and leisure marine sectors, the communications and safety at sea specialist had invested in researching and developing a range of innovative new products. Saltwater was involved from the ground up, developing branding and messaging to help ensure the quality of Ocean Signal’s products was recognised by the industry and media. A key breakthrough for the new business was achieved when Saltwater managed a successful product launch at METSTRADE in Amsterdam, with Ocean Signal quickly building on the success with the expansion of its distribution network worldwide. After four successful years and with a growing portfolio of products, Ocean Signal joined worldwide safety leader ACR Electronics, becoming part of a family of renowned brands providing life-saving equipment to the marine, outdoor and aviation industries. Today, Saltwater works on a coordinated PR plan for both companies as they continue to provide the benchmark in the safety and survival sector with new products and initiatives.

ACR-Electronics-406
ACR-Electronics-406-Hikinggirl
Ocean Signal - OSL-406Day

Background

An engineering-led company with a wealth of management skills and marine industry experience, as well as impressive facilities at its UK base, Ocean Signal was starting with a small portfolio of ground-breaking products and plans to launch further innovative devices. Operating in a very competitive sector which was dominated by a well-established company, unknown Ocean Signal needed to develop and raise its profile into an international brand. Budgets were small and no advertising was possible within the plan, but the enthusiasm and confidence of the Ocean Signal and Saltwater directors made the challenge of building a new brand from the beginning an exciting prospect for the Saltwater team. The opportunity was a pure exercise in PR which required Saltwater to make maximum use of its broad range of contacts to secure coverage.

Our work has included:

  • PR & media relations
  • Press kits & news releases
  • Product launch assistance
  • Editorial content
  • Branding & key message development

A hugely well-attended press reception at the high-profile METS Amsterdam exhibition proved to be the breakthrough, placing Ocean Signal firmly among the main players in the industry. This initial launch was followed by Miami and London exhibitions with Saltwater organising press events and creating strong interest and media coverage. The PR was expanded to European countries as distributors were brought on board, developing and building the brand into a known name in the industry. Moving into the commercial shipping market, Saltwater organised further new product launches and press calls at SMM Hamburg and Norshipping in Oslo as brand recognition, and sales, continued to increase.

With regular news releases, attendance at selected trade shows and conferences, competitions in key publications and technical editorial in leading titles, the Ocean Signal brand continued to grow rapidly. In just two years, powerful and consistent PR, helped to take Ocean Signal from an unknown start-up to a globally recognised company as it continued to extend its innovative product range and expand its distribution network. Saltwater contacts have helped secure and publicise several high-profile sponsorship opportunities, with Ocean Signal providing products for Transatlantic racing yachts, and other high-profile athletes and events.

In 2015, the brand was acquired by US electronics giant ACR Electronics, who expanded Saltwater’s contract to handle both ACR and Ocean Signal in the global commercial and leisure markets. While retaining the established separate entities of each company, Saltwater focuses on targeted press releases and editorial within different regions to suit each product launch and campaign. With a 60-year history in developing safety and survival technology, ACR Electronics relies on Saltwater to distribute its latest new products and updates to the global media, while also highlighting unique industry initiatives such as SurvivorClub and 406Day, and organising press events. After around 10 years of working with Ocean Signal, the PR focus continues to build the reputation and awareness of the brand around the world, as the company expands and enhances its UK-based production facilities. However, Saltwater also capitalises on the strengthened capabilities of the companies due to the combined portfolio and engineering expertise. By managing the PR for jointly run stands at the key exhibitions, Saltwater can highlight both brands and raise their profile with media, positioning the two companies as leading lights in the sector.