PBworks Introduces Agency Edition for Advertising, PR, Marketing, and Design Agencies

November 9, 2010

SAN MATEO, Calif., Nov. 9, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- PBworks, the leading provider of hosted collaboration solutions for business and education, today announced the introduction of its PBworks Agency Edition, a hosted suite of tools that improves collaboration among creative professionals at advertising, PR, marketing, and design agencies. The new product gives agencies a private, full-featured social environment where staff, contractors, and external clients can efficiently work together to produce more complex, creative, innovative, and effective content.

Developing creative work is inherently collaborative because it requires the talents and input of a diverse, often geographically distributed contributors, both within and outside the agency, including designers, directors, copywriters, marketing professionals and technologists. Historically, telephone and email have been the only tools available to support this collaboration. However, these tools lack the ability to immediately integrate the work of numerous people, capture changes and notes in one location, and automatically collect valuable information that can be used for planning future campaigns.

The need for a more comprehensive collaboration tool set has grown in recent years with the proliferation of complex, multi-channel campaigns. Complex campaigns increase both the number of touch points and people that the creative agency needs to coordinate--including partnerships with other agencies. PBworks has been listening to these specific needs and this release reflects many of the requirements of these creative agencies.

PBworks Agency Edition takes the company's core strength in team collaboration, adapting and enhancing to the way agencies work with their clients. Agencies can use PBworks Agency Edition to:

* Create a social environment for internal teams and external clients to collaborate more creatively
* Manage complex client projects by coordinating activities and providing greater transparency to clients and management
* Connect a geographically distributed team with shared online workspaces, integrated chat, and web-based conference calling
* Enable a repeatable creative process by standardizing processes and workflows
* Maintain a searchable knowledgebase of past work and best practices
* Control access and privacy settings on per page/file/video basis and change them as needed during the course of the project

"Agencies are among our most vocal customers and they have provided us with incredibly helpful product feedback," said Jim Groff, PBworks CEO. "Agency Edition gives them the ideal tool for managing the creative process and producing even more creative and innovative results for their clients."

The B to D Group of WPP selected PBworks as the platform of choice for its group of branding and design agencies. This group of agencies, including Landor Associates, The Brand Union and Fitch, uses PBworks as both a social intranet and a client extranet. "Our group has long had a history of leadership on the Internet," said Spencer Mains, Chief Technology Officer of the B to D Group. "At Landor, for example, both our external website and our intranet have won numerous awards, including being recognized as one of the Top 10 Intranets by the Nielsen Norman Group. After a grueling 20-company RFP process, PBworks emerged as the winner because its platform serves our immediate needs for intranets, extranets, and social software."

One key factor in the B to D Group's decision is PBworks rapid innovation. "We were looking for a real partnership, not just a vendor," said Mains. "PBworks has taken our feedback and iterated key product improvements at an incredibly rapid pace. We look forward to a long and fruitful relationship."

Spencer Mains will be speaking about PBworks and its role in the B to D Group's Social CRM strategy at the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Santa Clara. His panel, "The Different Flavors of Social CRM," takes place at 1:15 PM Pacific on Wednesday, November 10.

PBworks Agency Edition continues the company's focus on targeted solutions. "Smart vendors are avoiding the scrum and creating targeted business solutions that solve tangible business problems in a way that more generic offerings for mass enterprise consumption simply can't without significant customization. Smart customers are exploiting the trend to provide rapid and measurable business value," wrote Rob Koplowitz, Vice President and Principal Analyst at Forrester Research, Inc. in his report "Ogilvy's 360 Digital Influence Leverages Social For Competitive Advantage." "PBworks has responded by building specific functionality to further exploit the market opportunity. Agencies looking for social technology to support their business will find out-of-the-box functionality to support creative processes, client extranets, campaign development, and vendor management.

PBworks Agency Edition incorporates the innovative features of previous PBworks products such as the project management, social software, and real-time collaboration of Business Edition and the CRM integration and customer engagement tracking of Customer Relationship Edition, and adds agency-specific features. Unlike other businesses, agencies often require far greater visual collaboration capabilities. PBworks Agency Edition includes the following visual collaboration features:

* Client dashboards: Personalized dashboards that let clients track progress and deliverables across many different projects
* Inline video: Users can upload raw video and audio files; PBworks will automatically transcode them and make them embeddable in PBworks pages
* Workspace organization: Client relationships are complex and can include tens of divisions and hundreds of projects; PBworks provides the flexibility to match the agency's collaboration environment with the client's organization

Agencies that are already PBworks customers will be able to upgrade to the new product for a single flat fee.

Pricing and Availability

PBworks Agency Edition is available immediately at a starting price of $30/user/month. External clients and partners can access the system for free.

About PBworks

PBworks is the world's leading provider of hosted collaboration solutions for businesses and education. Leading companies and organizations like FedEx, Landor Associates, and the FDA choose PBworks to help teams work more effectively across geographic and organizational boundaries, including teams that span employees, customers, partners, and vendors.

Over 85,000 businesses have chosen PBworks to share knowledge, interact with customers, manage, projects, and support other forms of teamwork. We host over a million team workspaces, serve several million users each month, and 96% of users would recommend PBworks to a friend. Investors in PBworks include Mohr Davidow Ventures, Seraph Group, Sippl Investments, and Ron Conway.

PBworks is a trademark of PBwiki, Inc. All other trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.