New Research Reveals World’s Largest Shipping Companies Failing to Navigate Web in a Crisis

Ahead of London International Shipping Week (11-15 September), research has found the world’s largest shipping companies are “falling short” when it comes to their approach to digital communication, leaving their brand and reputation vulnerable in the event of a crisis.

According to analysis of data available from some of the world’s biggest shipping organisations by European award-winning Issues and Reputation Management agency Acceleris, many are facing choppy waters across a number of categories when it comes to online communication and are failing to maximise on the potential of digital media to both build their brand and safeguard their reputation in the event of a major incident.

Acceleris’ Insights division, which uses digital analytics to inform communications strategies, analysed the available website analytics from the top ten shipping companies across the globe, looking at parameters including: search engine optimisation (SEO), site performance, user experience, social and security amongst others. Rating each of the parameters from A-F, the findings have revealed that whilst shipping companies are investing millions to bolster their websites against incidents of cyber crime, many are falling short when it comes to harnessing digital and social media to effectively engage with key stakeholders and their markets.

With an average grading of D, the area companies require the most improvement is on their social media channels, closely followed by the user experience on websites. Analysing the range of channels the companies are utilising and the engagement they received from audiences, the findings reveal large discrepancies in the sector.

Whilst some companies such as Maersk lead the industry when it comes to social, holding regular Facebook live events, with nearly 2.5 million page likes, the majority of the biggest firms analysed had little or no social media presence whatsoever. This is despite the fact that according to this year’s Global Digital Report[1], more than half of the world’s population – 3.77 billion – now use the internet, with over a third of the population (2.80 billion) now using social media.

According to recent research, the reputational value of UK listed companies alone is worth £1.7 trillion[2].

Acceleris Managing Director, Louise Vaughan said: “With shipping companies investing millions in bolstering their cyber security, our findings highlight the importance of including consumers and stakeholders in this journey as the sector increases its digitalisation.

“In the norm, shipping doesn’t attract widespread public or media interest but in the event of a major incident user generated content will appear within minutes on Twitter and YouTube. Employees, seafarers and onlookers have the ability to capture footage on the spot. When this happens it’s imperative that digital communications across owned and social media should be responsive. Research has shown that a fifteen minute delay in a crisis response extends the online conversation by over an hour.”

“From our work in the maritime sector, we’ve found that these audiences engage better if companies are inclusive with their marketing activity. Consumers should be driving and dictating engagement with brands, and digital marketing is ideal for this. Whether it’s through their mobiles on apps, through blogs or on social media, there’s a strong opportunity for even the largest companies to give audiences what they want. With 94% of internet users having at least one social account, it’s not difficult to overestimate the potential the maritime sector has”

Acceleris currently holds major national and international awards – ‘Large Agency of the Year’ in the UK Public Sector Communications awards and the ‘Issues and Reputation Management’ trophy in the European Communications Excellence Awards, the third time it has scooped this prestigious award in the last four years.

The company’s digital Insights division, launched at the start of the year, uses analytical tools, search engine optimisation (SEO) and social media metrics to inform content marketing strategies that help its clients stand out and connect directly with their customers.

To find out more about Acceleris’ credentials in the maritime sector, please visit:



For further information please contact Jake Setterfield or Ellie St George-Yorke on 0845 4567 251


Research: Data analysed on 23rd August 2017 used a combination of desk research and – the website review and audit tool.




LISW2017 event: Sustainable Partnerships in Shipping

The ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) and IMEC (International Maritime Employers’ Council) invite members of the press and other interested parties to a special presentation on 12 September as part of London International Shipping Week 2017.


The event, Sustainable Partnerships in Shipping, will cover the challenges, breakthroughs and lessons learnt by both organisations during 14 years of working together. It will be held on Tuesday September 12th from 12:00 to 14:30 at ITF House, 49-60 Borough Road, London SE1 1DR. It will include a Q&A session, and refreshments will be served.


Find out more and join us on September 12th using the Click here link at



For more details please contact

ITF. Sam Dawson. Email:

IMEC. Adam Lewis. Email:


About IMEC and the ITF

IMEC is the only international employers’ organisation dedicated to maritime industrial relations. Established over fifty years ago, it operates from offices in London, UK, and Manila in the Philippines and represents over 220 shipping companies located all over the world. You can find out more at

The ITF is a global federation representing over 16.5 million workers worldwide in 654 transport workers’ unions in 148 countries worldwide. You can find out more at


The International Group

As part of the Shipowners’ Club Navigating Mutual P&I campaign:

Pole Star at London International Shipping Week: Technology for Tomorrow’s Maritime World

Pole Star are pleased to announce their Gold Sponsorship of London International Shipping Week, which couldn’t be held at a more pivotal time for the 20-year-old maritime technology company as it prepares to announce exciting new developments and partnerships.

Hosting multiple events – both open and private – Julian Longson, Managing Director of Pole Star, is with his team looking forward to sharing these developments under London International Shipping Week’s theme for 2017: Tomorrow’s Maritime World.

Julian says, “The themes of London International Shipping Week resonate with Pole Star. Every day we strive to bring our digital vision for our industry to life, and this event is the perfect opportunity to showcase just how we’re doing that.”

Tomorrow’s Prosperity At Pole Star, we believe prosperity means getting the best out of everyone, for the benefit of all stakeholders. When our customers are running efficiently they are more profitable, and when shipping prospers global trade prospers – to this end we’re passionate about guiding our customers through digital change and ensuring that we all have a bright future.

Tomorrow’s Industry Professionals When you ask our staff and our clients what makes Pole Star special, they always tell us it’s the people. We are a young company and our people are our lifeblood; and they work tirelessly to make Pole Star and its clients the best they can be. We know what we do every day matters, and we strive to make it count.

Tomorrow’s Business Solutions & Tomorrow’s Environment Environmental protection legislation has accelerated our development of voyage and vessel efficiency solutions for our customers. Reduced bunker consumption leads to greater efficiency and profitability, and the reduction of CO2 emissions improves the condition of our environment. We all enjoy the long-term benefits when we consider the future and invest in it, in every way possible.

Tomorrow’s Partnerships Pole Star has built strategic partnerships with some of the world’s leading technology and data providers, and we are excited to announce new partnerships at our events this year. Don’t miss the Pole Star Technology Roadshow, where we will announce new partnerships and some of the truly transformative projects on which we will be collaborating.

Be sure to visit the London International Shipping Week website for more event details, and you can register for Pole Star events by emailing




About Pole Star

Pole Star is a privately owned UK technology company that has been providing vessel monitoring, regulatory compliance & risk management services to the shipping industry since 1998. From our headquarters in London, and via a network of offices located at key international hubs, we have earned a reputation as one of the leading providers of remote fleet monitoring, risk management, ship security, Long Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) and fisheries monitoring services. Find out more at

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