SERMO, the leading global lifestyle and luxury communications network, will host its fifth annual conference and celebrate its fifth anniversary this year. Founded by Talk PR in 2009, the network held its first conference in London in 2011 with eight partners. Now with 13 partners in 18 cities across 15 countries, SERMO has over 400 staff and £26m fee income. Business leaders from all 13 partners will attend the forthcoming conference being held in Berlin in June 2015, the theme for which is creativity and nurturing talent. Previous conferences have been held in London, New York, Hong Kong and Mumbai.
Built on relationships, not ownership, SERMO offers clients in the luxury and lifestyle sectors a bespoke alternative to the major corporate networks. SERMO partner agencies combine the creativity, flexibility and connections of local, independent specialists with the client service and global, strategic perspective of the major players. That perspective comes from the generous, collaborative way all the partners share ideas, intelligence and resources across the network, all year round. To celebrate and demonstrate this unique global collaboration, SERMO will launch three initiatives this year: the SERMO Blogger Index, the SERMO Globes and the SERMO Academy.
The SERMO Blogger Index
A report that will bring together the network’s local intelligence on the bloggers each agency considers to be its most important and productive partners. Published as a country by country and global index, it will go beyond data alone to identify and celebrate the people shaping the global blogging industry in the luxury and lifestyle space. It will also include, for the first time, SERMO’s top 20 bloggers worldwide. To be published annually, the index will be a valuable barometer of online influence for both local and global clients.
The SERMO Globes
Does the world need another awards scheme? Frustrated by the lack of acknowledgement that work for luxury and premium lifestyle brands receives from mainstream awards, SERMO will celebrate the kind of creativity, attention to detail and stylish sensibility its members bring to their clients’ campaigns. The SERMO Globes will be awarded at the Berlin conference following a pan-network vote on work submitted by each agency.
The SERMO Academy
To reinforce the networks’ knowledge sharing ethos and commitment to nurturing future talent, the SERMO Academy will launch at the Berlin conference. It will comprise an Academy Day at the conference, a unique global communications training programme and a job swap scheme.
Tanya Hughes, president of SERMO Communications, said “I’m so proud of the way SERMO has grown and developed. All of the partners, whilst being leaders in their own markets, invest time in getting to know each other and respect and value each other’s perspectives. Being a member of SERMO is about being part of something big. And this is going to be the network’s biggest and best year yet.
Our shared commitment to inspiring creativity and nurturing talent will continue to help each other to develop our offers and improve client service and business practices. And our confidence in referring business to each other will see ever increasing client sharing across the network this year.”
Catherine Thomas, former head of marketing at Land Securities, commented “SERMO was tailor made for our luxury residential launch. It provided senior strategic counsel and campaign coordination and measurement from a hub in London, plus effective local media campaign implementation in both Hong Kong and Singapore. All with the luxury lifestyle sensibility that big, corporate networks just can’t deliver.”