By Nathan Rudyk

Mike Darch started work early this morning. The Executive Director of Ottawa Global Marketing has been roving the media studios of Ottawa launching 82000reasons.com, a Web 2.0-enabled PR campaign market2world created to encourage tech Ottawa companies and employees to interactively tell their stories to the world. Air Canada and RIM have put up some great prizes to add emphasis to that encouragement.

82000reasonsad2.gifMike is no stranger to packed schedules – having recently completed trade Ottawa trade missions to China, California and India. Today, his first interview was at the CHUM Network's A-Channel Ottawa studios at 6:50AM. He then shuttled over to Rogers Ottawa's Daytime Show in the West end for 11:15. At 1:30PM he was due in mid-town to tape for CTV Ottawa's studios with Paul Brent from TechNow, then boomeranged back downtown to the CHUM Media Mall for a 2:35 interview with Greg Hebert, the host of Ottawa's evening business radio show Business@Night. The 82000reasons.com story is also on the cover of the February edition of National Capital SCAN, and we've had some good interest from other Ottawa, and national print and online media.

We're gratified with the initial media response to the PR campaign, and we've got online, print and radio advertising to back it up. For too long tech Ottawa has been prone to bummerization - a legacy of the 2001-02 downturn that struck at the heart of our heavily weighted telecom sector of that period. That weight has been lifted. In 2001 almost 50% of Ottawa's tech employees worked at four large telecom companies. In 2008, 80% of them work in about 1450 entrepreneurial companies spread out across many new clusters including clean tech, life sciences, optical networking, software, security and defense, and more. Further up the foodchain, nearly 400 more larger companies – including industry giants like RIM, IBM and Cisco – are providing excellent R&D and head office jobs and career paths for Ottawa tech workers.

With solid response from the Ottawa tech community, we believe with our friends at the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation (OCRI) – the sponsor of 82000reasons.com – that the bummerization period is fully, completely, over.

For our team at market2world, the 82000reasons.com PR campaign is also a symbolic tipping point for our unique approach to tech product launch and public relations. From our outset in 2005, we've maintained that the nature of PR, in Ottawa and far, far beyond, has fundamentally changed as a result of the blogosphere, podcasting and social networks. That's why we started the OCRIRadio.com tech business podcast three years ago with the blessing of OCRI's CEO Jeffrey Dale, my co-host in that venture. And that's why every PR campaign we work on, including this one, includes a heavy dose of outreach to alternative Web 2.0 media channels. (You can read more about that approach in Robert Janelle's article in this month's National Capital SCAN). Enough about us.

82000reasons.com is all about Y-O-U tech Ottawa. Tell your stories to the world! 

(Nathan Rudyk is President and CEO with market2world communications inc., Canada's Web 2.0 tech PR and product launch agency, and the founder and co-host of OCRIRadio.com.)  

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