Voltage PR has landed at WENB, and the MD Steve Merrett is popping on the boards to answer the more answerable questions. This still hasn’t stopped myself and Suff being asked via emails and PM’s what they exactly do, and why they simply aren’t called Konami PR. Using Steve’s post on the boards, I try to give a little more insight to the viewers who don’t quite get what Voltage PR is about.
And there’s possibly plenty of you. If you heard the most recent podcast you’ll be aware of what they’ve done for the site, but if you don’t visit the forums then you would have missed Steve’s insightful posts.
From the top then Voltage PR is Konami’s UK PR representative, working with all types of media to get the news and message across to the gaming world. The managing director of the establishment is Steve Merrett, long time friend of the site. Like I mentioned on the podcast, he is the main reason Konami have been supporting WENB. Because of that me and Suff owe him so much, as without him WENB would’ve achieved half as much. For that he deserves all the appreciation he gets from the fans.
Here’s a little profile of Steve, perfectly rounded up in a post he wrote on the boards:
I have been Konami PR for seven or eight years now, with PES 2 and Silent Hill 2 for PS2 the first titles I worked on. Before that, I worked in games mags, launching the likes of PlayStation Plus for EMAP and freelancing for things like the Official PlayStation mags, and a spell on MCV (the trade paper). Konami does not have an internal PR team, so I look after the PR for all their games: MGS, PES, DanceDance, Yu-Gi-Oh!, you name it.
I also write the press releases that go out, so have a very close relationship with the German HQ and people like Jon and the Product Managers of individual titles. I work very closely with the marketing and sales teams at Konami, and oversee the company’s PR for everything from the games mags, to TV and online.
I also contribute to the plans for titles, helping determine where games need specific pushes and working with those that produce them to maximise their coverage. Plans to make us more open have been afoot for ages, but as PES 2010 gears up now seemd as good a time as any to join the boards…
Its perhaps a little more difficult to answer why Voltage PR isn’t then called Konami UK PR. From the details above it’s clear it’s a company Steve started up, and perhaps that had something to do with the separate branding. In my opinion though, I think the separate name gives Steve and his team the opportunity to handle other accounts. On the site it mentions one other client, and if it was Konami PR that account wouldn’t exist, obviously.
So with the company housed in a different office, and a different part of London, would it not be disconnected from Konami HQ? Further to that, does any Konami office outside Japan have any sort of influence on the game? Of course it does!
Allow Steve to explain:
I just want to comment on the post earlier about a perceived inability for the UK to influence Japan. I can assure you this is not so. Jon is the most avid PES fan I know and has worked hard to get himself into a position where he is responsible for it all over Europe.
With Europe being such a vital part of Konami’s global operations, of course the team are going to listen to those in a position to target the game to European tastes. I am aware that we have been seen to not care in the past, but that is not so. Not being able to respond to speculation or criticism doesn’t mean we do not take it on board.
The PES Team have been extremely open to all comments and have wanted to know what is needed to take the series forward. As such, they have called on us, and we in turn have turned to sites like this, fans and ex-fans in the gaming and mainstream press and people who use PES Rankings. But Rome wasn’t built in a day.
We have listened long and hard for PES 2010 and I think Jon and the PES Team should be applauded for their efforts. For me, I have always been a massive PES fan and love working on the game – but this year I am extremely excited to be working with such enthusiastic people on such an exciting game.
Have to say, when I read the words ‘The PES Team’, I instantly think of Murdock, Mr T, Faceman and Hannibal with the A-Team theme tune going off in my head. Seabass as Mr T anyone?
But it’s great to know that not only are our words being heard, the guys who are listening have the power to pass on the input straight to the team. With Voltage PR we have the support from Konami, AND a team of people who are dedicated to interacting with the community to ensure PES 2010’s success. Let’s hope their hard work pays off!
To view Voltage PR’s and Steve’s dedicated thread click here! If you have any more questions or feedback be sure to leave your thoughts on the forums!