What do you typically tell people when they ask you what you do?
I am a PR Consultant! I specialise in start-ups. I love working with small businesses, mumpreneurs and entrepreneurs. I create media coverage for start-ups. This ensures that they achieve brand awareness and recognition. A lot of the time people have heard the word PR but they don’t really know where it fits into Marketing. PR forms part of the Promotional element of the Marketing Mix (Product, Price, Place and Promotion). It is a vital element of the Marketing Strategy of a product, service or brand. PR is more credible than advertising as it is often in the form of editorial in online and print publications.
Describe yourself in 5 words?
Passionate. Ambitious. Strong. Compassionate. Creative.
How did CANDICE PR come about?
I worked in PR at a management level for many years. I worked for large companies such as The Walt Disney Company and other video game publishers and managed relatively big budgets. I always thought that it was so difficult for small businesses to obtain media relations as PR agencies and consultants that I knew charged exorbitant rates and retainers. After I had children, I worked as a PR freelancer for a few smaller companies. We have no immediate family in Australia so I knew that I could never go back to the long hours and travelling that I used to do before coming a mother. I decided to use my experience and love for PR to become a PR Consultant for start-ups and SME’s. I wanted to help them achieve brand awareness and recognition with limited budgets. I also wanted to be able to work for myself so that I can work around my families’ requirements.
What was a defining moment in your business?
After working on a freelance basis for clients in various industries, I decided that I wanted to work as a consultant rather than as a freelancer. This was a defining moment for me as it meant that I had accepted that this is where I want my career to take me from now and into the future….
What do you love most about your business?
I love PR. I loved media coverage. I am thrilled that I am able to help start ups see themselves in the media. Most of all, I loved that I make PR affordable to SME’s with small budgets.
What was a watershed moment in your business journey?
When I was 21, I was working in Marketing at a video game importer. The MD came to me and said. “Candice, we need a PR department. Please can you set one up.” Prior to that moment, I wanted to work solely in Marketing. I studied PR as part of my Honours degree in Business Administration but I specialized in Marketing. I set up the PR department from scratch and the MD was so impressed that he soon made me a PR Manager, which then catapulted my career internationally. A few years later I landed up working as European Associate PR Manager for Disney, which was a dream, come true. I have been blessed to be able to start from scratch in South Africa, London/Europe and in Australia. My love for PR was born all those years ago. It was definitely meant to be.
When are you most productive?
I am most productive when I work at my desk in my office away from all distractions. I believe in being fully present and mindful at the task at hand. Creative ideas come to me at random moments and at different locations.
How do you optimise productivity in your business?
When my business grew and I had quite a few clients in completely varying industries, I invested in some specialist PR software to make my work more productive and efficient.
How do you go about building a loyal referral base/ client base?
Most of my work is word of mouth. I am very honest and if I am not passionate in a business vision, product or service, then I am honest with the potential client.
How is running a successful business different to what you may have thought it would be?
I have never had any set expectations about running my own business. I am flexible and adapt well if I need to do so…
What continue to be some of the greatest challenges you face in your business?
Time. Running a business around my children is a huge challenge. If one of my children is ill or has a commitment where I have to attend, the hours have to be made up at night or on a weekend.
What strategies have helped your business to grow?
Word of mouth has been the best form of growth for my business.
Who or what inspires you in your business and why?
Successful mumpreneurs inspire me My clients inspire me as I learn so much about their industries from them.
What advice would you give to other business owners trying to grow their business?
Look at getting a mentor so that you can brainstorm together and ask for advice from someone who inspires you.
Look into PR and media relations to try and achieve brand awareness with limited budget.
Collaborate with other businesses and offer your expertise for free where you can i.e sponsorship, speaking opportunities or free articles.