Laura Citron: London & Partners CEO

Laura Citron Highlights

Laura Citron Highlights

My Native Admission Statement: I’ve heard an old Jewish saying that says: “It is not your duty to complete the work, but nor are you free to desist from starting it.” I think that’s great, as just because you can’t fix something that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. Promoting a city like London can feel like an infinite task, so this is comforting! I’m very interested in the blurring of professional and personal lives, and what that means for the way people – especially millennials – have a relationship with London. That’s especially important for us, as London & Partners works with tourists, students, talent and entrepreneurs – often the same people having different relationships with the city over their lifetimes. We know that young people are motivated not only by money and career status, but also by making a difference, a sense of purpose, balance and wellbeing. London isn’t just a great place to grow a business or career – it’s also a fantastic place to pursue your passions and meet like-minded people from around the world – whether you are here for a week or ten years.

How do you motivate others?:

Luckily for me, everyone I work with absolutely loves London – so that’s motivating! Many of us, like me, are Londoners born and bred, but many are not. I think that mirrors one of the city’s greatest strengths: being a Londoner is not a birthright – it’s about belonging – anyone can be a Londoner. Other than that, I try to create an environment where everyone can bring their whole selves to work. I have a 1-year old daughter and I try to be honest about the challenges of being a working parent. I hope it makes it OK for everyone to admit they have a life outside the office.

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Shama Hyder: Zen Media CEO & Best Selling Author

Shama Hyder Highlights

Shama Hyder Highlights

My Native Admission Statement: My fourth-grade teacher awarded me the superlative of "Most Curious” in front of the whole school.  At the time, I wasn't sure if it was a compliment or her annoyance at my endless stream of questions. Either way, it hasn't been a trait that eased with time. If anything, my fascination with the world around me has only increased with each passing year. Perhaps, that is what led me to start my own company, Zen Media, at the age of 22, and allowed me to turn it into a globally renowned name in the world of marketing.  Or, perhaps, it is why I chose to write my graduate thesis on a small network called Twitter which only had 2,000 users at the time. That same "curious itch" is what has motivated me to write two best-selling books and to share my constant knowledge and passion with the world in the form of my columns and books and tv shows. My biggest aspiration is to help brands and individuals thrive in the digital age, and my biggest concern is that perhaps we as a society will fall victim to technology rather than truly be empowered by it. 

Career advice to those in your industry?:

Just published a mega-piece on career advice for anyone who wants to go into marketing on my Forbes column: https://www.forbes.com/sites/shamahyder/2019/04/18/so-you-want-a-career-in-marketing/#3e5aac1d19d6

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Michelle Mekky: Mekky Media Founder

Michelle Mekky Highlights

Michelle Mekky Highlights

My Native Admission Statement: I have more than 20 years of experience as a broadcast journalist and PR executive, leading award-winning marketing and PR campaigns for some of the nation’s biggest brands and diverse businesses—from start-ups to global powerhouses. I think that after all these years in the industry, what I’ve learned about myself is that I know how to tell a good story. I can take a company or a person and right away identify what’s newsworthy about them and what will be of interest to the media. That’s a valuable service that I can offer in my business, and it’s an important skill to have for anyone who wants to to excel in the PR world. “Every day is a new day.” I like that I have the opportunity to start over again each morning. Of course there are times that I beat myself up, whether it’s business related or about my self-care, like eating unhealthy food or not sleeping enough. But I try to remember that tomorrow I can put forth my best effort once again. I usually meditate and get myself in the right frame of mind to start over. I’m grateful for every new day.

How did you get into the Industry?

My experience with the industry really it started in high school when my English teacher recommended I try for a position at the school newspaper. I had never tried journalism before and once I got into it I absolutely loved it. I eventually became editor-in-chief and set my sights on studying journalism in college. I ended up going to Northwestern University, because I lived close by, and it had the best journalism school in the country. The school had a television studio, and I had the opportunity to anchor news shows. That experience inspired me to purse a career in broadcast journalism. It was only after working at Fox for 12 years that I started to really think about PR. I had been pitched by so many publicists as a senior producer, and I felt that I had developed a knowledge of what it would take to be good at PR. So I decided to cross to the other side.

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Beck Bamberger: Founder BAM Communications

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Career Snapshot:

As BAM’s founder, Beck splits her time between San Diego, San Francisco and New York in pursuit of talent and hot companies that are seeking PR superheroes for help growing both mindshare and market share. A born and raised San Diegan, Beck graduated from UCLA in two years, going on to become the University of Pittsburgh’s youngest MBA graduate at 21. Beck started BAM Communications while working as a news anchor in San Diego. After winning an Emmy in 2011 for her TV work, she focused entirely on her entrepreneurial interests, growing BAM while starting Bite. Bite became San Diego’s top-rated and largest food tour company in the country. Beck sold Bite in 2016

How did you get into the industry?:

I started in television, had my own show which I hosted on the CW network, and then got exposed to public relations via a PR veteran who was helping me produce one season. I worked in the PR office of that veteran for a few months working on one show, and via sheer osmosis, I learned a lot about public relations. And then I thought, “I could do this. This is storytelling, and I already love that.” That’s how BAM started, and I created the logo 10 years ago in the laundry room of my mom’s house on our old iMac desktop computer.

Emerging industry trends?:

People bemoan that media is shrinking, but that’s incorrect. “Traditional” media such as newspapers that make their money from advertisers are certainly being threatened and shrinking, but media itself is just rapidly evolving, and that is the most significant movement in the industry. This is why a publicist who can evolve with the times will never be out of a job. Just a few years ago, no one would have thought podcasts would be a multi-million dollar ad industry or that a daily email blast with curated news (TheSkimm) would raise nearly $30 million in venture capital. Ultimately, in this ever-evolving media landscape, it is crucial for people to learn how to identify the emerging trends, and how use them to the advantage of you and your clients.

Industry opportunities and challenges?:

Historically, the hardest part of public relations has been measuring its impact. We simply don’t know what the coffers of the consumer mind hold in terms of motivating a purchase or changing a perception. However, a lot of reporting tools have become massively more sophisticated, and this helps publicists at least aggregate and compare data to competitors.

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?:

Storytelling is done in many different mediums, and I love to study various forms beyond public relations. I’ve attended The Sundance Film Festival six years now, and that’s where I get a huge dose of creativity. The filmmakers are often in the audience and available for a Q&A right after a showing, so I get to ask them how and why they came up with the ways in which to tell their films’ stories. Being able to observe and inquire about the different methods and creations of other raconteurs serves as great inspiration, and allows me to bring something unique to my own business.

What's next for the Business in the near future?:

This year, we have an aggressive content campaign that’s being produced by a renowned fashion and lifestyle photographer. The 60+ pieces of original content for our owned platforms will showcase venture capitalists and entrepreneurs in intimate and real ways which currently just isn’t done often in the tech space. Few, if any,agencies ever attempt to be known as a media outlet themselves, and this is exciting to me.

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business? Greatest Accomplishment?:

A lot of our best decisions have come in the form of people, and that’s something to always remember in business: people are what make ANY business happen. Every grand ambition I’ve wanted to happen at BAM has needed superb people. Two years ago, for example, we didn’t have a footprint in New York City, but I knew we had to be there in order to truly break into the 2nd biggest tech market. Now we have more than 10 people and counting in New York City, and that’s because I took a bet on Gabie Kur, our tremendous GM and now partner at BAM. If you surround yourself with people who exude talent, passion, and dedication, you’ll be one step closer to success.

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?):

One of the hardest moments was when I decided we would explicitly focus on one type of client: tech-powered startups that are making an impact on the world. For more than a year, we had to turn down business that just didn’t fit our ideal client profile, and it hurts in the short term to deny revenue to the business. Over time, however, things have become easier because this focus has allowed us to target our ideal client precisely, and we have.

Ideal experience for a customer/client?:

Our favorite client testimonials come in the form of gratitude for what our work did for our clients’ businesses or even lives. When great press gets new investors or customers for our clients, we’re thrilled. Our clients are tech focused startups that are taking often big swings at marketplaces and industries that can be massively changed for the better. If we help our clients make that change faster, then that’s a win for us.

How do you motivate others?:

The first thing to accomplish in motivating others is to know and understand what motivates each person. People are complex and distinct, and you should cater your strategy accordingly, based on each individual. A lot of managers think of motivation like the role of a famous chef: they’ll just serve the same dish to every person who sits at the table and expect consistent response, such as praise. Instead, I ask people what motivates them, what gets them excited, and what they want out of their time here at BAM. Once I know that, then I can build a unique approach, much like an architect who creates a house based on what a client wants.

Career advice to those in your industry?:

No one gets ahead by sitting in the back of the room in silence. If you want to catapult your career, do more than “show up.” Stand up, jump up, and rise up to opportunities, whether offered to you or created by you.

Rebecca Hall: President & CEO, Idea Hall

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Bio:

Rebecca Hall is a thought leader and celebrated entrepreneur in the PR, branding and marketing industry. She graduated from Chapman University, where she has served on the Board of Trustees and as Alumni President and is currently a member of Chapman’s Board of Governors and Chapman 50

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Cathleen Decker: Principal: Decker/Royal Agency

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Bio:

In the business over 30 years, Cathleen Decker helps travel and tourism clients reach goals on time and within budget.  Her efforts have garnered numerous HSMAI awards, including leading teams twice to the coveted Platinum Award.  Active in the industry and in her home community, this mom of three relishes the solo travel trend.

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Vicky Boudreau: General Manager & Founding Partner, BICOM

My NativeAdVice: (Click to watch My Native Trailer)

Bio:

Vicky Boudreau co-founded BICOM 12 years ago with her partner Marie-Noelle Hamelin, the public relations agency now counts more than 40 employees in Montreal and Toronto. Vicky explores the agency's business sectors, the latest emerging trends,

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Alyson Roy: Co-founder, AMP3 PR

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Bio:

Alyson Roy is the co-founder of AMP3 PR, a boutique agency in NYC that is currently ranked in the Top 10 Fashion PR Agencies in the country according to O’Dwyer’s. She was named PR Couture’s “Communicator of The Year” in the 2017 Bespoke Communication Awards, where AMP3 also took home the award for best “Media Event” of the year,  and most recently, AMP3 won “Agency of the Year” at the 2018 BCAs.

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Sabina Covo: CEO, Covo PR

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Bio:

Named as one of the most influential Colombian-Americans in South Florida by The Americas Community Center and Broward County, and awarded as one of the Top 20 professionals younger than 40 in South Florida by Brickell Magazine in 2013, Sabina Covo brings on to projects more than fourteen years of journalism, writing and communications consulting experience,

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MARLO FOGELMAN: founder, marlo marketing

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Bio:

Marlo Fogelman is the founder of marlo marketing, an integrated marketing firm based in Boston.  Marlo began the agency in 2004 with one staff member and four core clients including Starbucks Coffee. Over ten years later, marlo marketing has become a leading integrated communications agency, serving international, national and regional clients ranging from major hotel properties to national snack brands,

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Katia Robillard: Vice President & General Manager, Citoyen Optimum

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Bio:

With over 20 years of experience in the field, 15 of them in a public relations agency setting, Katia Robillard is a communications expert who knows her industry inside and out. This marketing communications specialist is a seasoned strategist known for the sound and accurate advice she provides to her clients on a daily basis.

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Kim Kessler: Founder, KIPR Global

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Bio:

Kim Kessler, founder of KIPR Global, has 18 years of experience handling strategic public relations campaigns for luxury resorts, hotels and spas. Prior to launching KIPR Global, she worked as director of public relations at Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, leading international media campaigns, and building longstanding relationships with journalists, community leaders,

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David Alexander: Managing Director, Calacus Public Relations

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Bio:

David Alexander is Managing Director of Calacus, a specialist public relations consultancy based in London. He started his career as a sports journalist, initially covering non-league football (semi-professional soccer) before working for regional and national newspapers including The Times and The Sunday Telegraph.

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Aaron Perlut: Founding partner, Elasticity

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Bio:

Aaron Perlut is founding partner of St. Louis-based integrated communications firm Elasticity. Formerly a senior Omnicom (FleishmanHillard) counselor as well as a communications executive for two of the nation's largest energy companies, he has spent some 25 years in media, public relations and digital marketing, helping a range of organizations

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Heather Logrippo: Founder, Expose Yourself Public Relations

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Bio:

In the year 2000, Heather Logrippo was lucky enough to land a job working for a tiny internet startup.  That start up grew to be a 500 million dollar company during Heather's seven year tenure.  As a result, Heather was able to take the experience she gleaned in that position to go out on her own.  In 2007 she bought Distinctive Homes Magazine and had the unique pleasure of bringing a stodgy magazine into the digital age.

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David Oates: Founder, Stalwart Communications

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Bio:

David Oates is a 24-year marketing and public relations veteran who holds extensive experience in developing as well as executing successful and measurable programs for a wide range of agency, corporate and government organizations. Prior to founding Stalwart Communications in 2006, David was Marketing Director for Financial Profiles, a 35-year old financial planning software

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Jim Joseph: CEO, Citizen Relations

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Bio:

Jim Joseph is the CEO of Citizen Relations, the group’s global brand communications agency with offices across multiple regions and clients across a spectrum of industries. Entrepreneur of the Year, Agency of the Year, Consumer Launch Campaign of the Year, Most Creative Agency, Best Place to Work, Social Media Icon, Hall of Fame

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