View all Truescope Talks

Truescope Talks: Fay Shapiro

In this edition of Truescope Talks, Co-Founder and CEO John Croll caught up with one of the United States of America’s leading business and communications professionals, Fay Shapiro.

Fay is the founding member and publisher of CommPRO.biz, a B2B digital publisher, professional development and event production firm for corporate communications professionals.

Having spent almost four decades in the industry, Fay has held numerous high-profile roles including editorial director at Bacon’s Information, more commonly known as Cision, and has worked across the publishing industry for renowned companies including Oxbridge Communications, BurrellesLuce, O’Dwyer’s and Bulldog Reporter.

Here, Fay shares her experience around founding CommPRO.biz, the role of content as a force for change, the importance of communicators understanding the greater world, and her role as the New York City Leader of the world’s premier investor network, BitAngels.

1. Fay, we have known each other for more than 20 years when you were working at Burrelles. Please tell me how your career has changed over the years?

I’ve always been interested in journalism, public relations and connecting people so working at Burrelles was the perfect job for me. Since the company was growing and moving online, I had the incredible opportunity of creating a digital media directory and guiding the sales process.

This experience helped me gain the knowledge and tools to create CommPRO.biz some ten years ago. I’m grateful to all the people I’ve met throughout my career that helped me launch my company. Throughout the years we’ve always focused on breaking into new sectors to produce educational, newsworthy, thought-provoking and inspiring content for our audience.

As a business-to-business (B2B) digital publisher we offer professional development and event production for corporate communications professionals across industry sectors including, advertising, investor relations, marketing, public relations, social and digital media and more.

2. You launched CommPro.biz in 2010 and it’s now a global community and media hub for the industry. Can you tell us more about CommPro.biz and what led you to start the organisation?

With a passion for news and communications, we launched our corporate communications and public relations content at PRSA in Washington, DC in 2010 which was a huge milestone. Throughout the years, CommPRO’s offerings expanded to include webinars, investor relations (IR), financial communications, event management, financial technology (FinTech), blockchain and more for our global audience. I particularly enjoy learning and growing from our diverse community of contributors and sponsors on the latest trends in  government, business, law, finance, technology, digital communications, human resources and more.

With the growth of blockchain, I’m proud to be the New York City Leader of BitAngels, the world’s premier investor network for the industry, where founders and entrepreneurs pitch their startups to investors and other C-Suite executives. Since the pandemic, our passionate community has continued to engage, provide content, have virtual discussions and in-depth conversations on a wide range of topics.

3. Your career has spanned almost four decades in business development and education within the media and communications industries. In your own words, you are a “”connector”, driven to deliver results for my colleagues through the sharing of content on topics”. Can you tell us more about the role of the right content in the right hands, in significantly enhancing business results?

Customer experience and satisfaction are critical in our digitally connected world and content is the driving force.

I really love the power of content to be a force for change.  A great content experience (reading an article, participating in a virtual event, etc.) creates space for people to pause and reflect.  This is where transformation happens, really the beginning of a brand evolution.

And having a content strategy that aligns across all departments in an organisation is critical. If you don’t have a clearly articulated and documented content strategy, it’s almost impossible to align your marketing and sales folks with your company’s vision and make the case for bringing on the right people, tools and processes to execute the strategy.

Since content is the engine that drives not only modern marketing and sales but also customer delight, it ends up at the heart of user experience sooner or later. So why aren’t we making it an integral part of the transformation journey early on? I believe there are three main issues:

  • Marketers think of content as an expense rather than a business asset.
  • Content creation is happening in a vacuum, and departments have conflicting goals:
    ○ A report by eConsultancy found that 40 percent of marketers claimed that different departments have different agendas, while only 29 percent say they have a collaborative process. When teams create content in a vacuum, it becomes almost impossible to track content success effectively across an organisation.
  • Marketers are too focused on short-term sales to see the long-term gain from a user-centered content approach.

Great content is key to setting your business apart from your competition. To succeed, you need to consider it early in your transformation process, so you can offer customers the experiences they want.

4. How important is it for communicators to understand the greater world - business, environmental, economic and cultural - in which they are operating in, in order to be successful?

I believe it’s important for communicators to understand the times we’re living in.  Politics, the pandemic and their impact on the global stage are challenging and divisive, to say the least. I can only speak for myself and my colleagues who take a balanced approach and welcome fact-based debates.

The onset of fake news and misinformation came about as a result of communicators not caring about the greater good of society.  We all know that regulating social media is challenging, enabling far too many to become social media platforms will continue to be the primary enabler.  That’s not changing anytime soon.  What’s the solution? Prior to creating or sharing content, it’s important to do in-depth research and analysis to ensure you’re delivering messages that are based on facts.

5. In your role as NYC City Leader for BitAngels, you are responsible for networking events in the blockchain space. How has the events and networking industry changed during the pandemic, are there any changes you believe will, and should, stay?

This is a terrific and timely question.  We’re about to launch an industry-wide survey on the challenges facing all industry sectors, not just blockchain, in regard to events and business networking.  The impact of the Delta Variant is not going away anytime soon.  Healthcare concerns and costs will continue to take a toll in the C-Suite.  We’re going to look at the impact the pandemic is taking on corporate travel tied to events, along with the willingness and comfort level for people to network “live” in a closed environment.  

As far as my role in hosting events for both CommPRO and the New York City BitAngels, we’re planning virtual events, with the ability to pivot to making them “hybrid.” In the meantime, the beat goes on and deals are being done.  When organising panels, I’m always thinking about creating a content space that is a platform for meaningful connections.

Be the first to know

Book in a free demo to find out how you can monitor and access the information that is important to you, across social, online and mainstream media. Receive instant insights via Industry or customised dashboards. Track influencers and their effectiveness and build reports on what matters to your stakeholders.

During your demo our team will -

1
Discuss your requirements and business needs
2
Give a hands-on demonstration of the Truescope platform
3
Show how the Truescope platform helps you meet your goals
Thank you for your inquiry, we will be in touch soon.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.