1. Tell us a bit about your public relations experience so far.
I started at Lola Red as an unpaid intern right out of college and am going on my seventh year at the agency. At the time I joined the agency, Lola Red had just won its first national AOR with Smashburger and I recognized there was work to be done so I raised my hand for every available opportunity. I enjoyed the hard work and fast pace that is still part of the hustle at Lola Red.
Early on I was given my own client to manage, Sweets Bakeshop, and loved the media relations hustle (even though doing PR for cupcakes is pretty easy).
Over the years, I’ve found a love of strategy, planning and creative concepting, but I still stay close to the media relations work on a few accounts.
2. What role has PRSA had in your career success?
PRSA is responsible for so many of my successes. In college PRSSA gave me an insight into the PR world that I wasn’t getting in the classroom as well as connections to the local PRSA community. I attended my first Classics as a student, which is where I was first exposed to Lola Red.
While on my job search out of college, the first thing I did was join a PRSA committee. That kept me close to that world during the job search period and has introduced me to a fantastic network of other local professionals at various stages and positions in their careers. These other PRSA members have acted as mentors, support systems and friends.
PRSA programming and events have also been a source of continuing education for myself and my team. It can be easy to get stuck in the minutia of the day-to-day, and attending a PRSA event or meeting with a PRSSA student can reignite the passion for PR.
3. If you could pick one highlight from working on the award-winning BB-8 by Sphero product launch, what would it be?
The product launched on a Friday and certain Disney stores across the country were holding midnight madness events to unveil all the products.
I was with one of the Sphero founders, Adam Wilson, at the San Francisco event. This was the same day all the press coverage went live so BB-8 was the must-have toy that everyone was clamoring to get at the event.
Not only did I get to share in the excitement of the BB-8 reception with one of Sphero’s founders (and a big Star Wars fan), but I also got to see him have a total rock star moment. He spent all night signing BB-8 boxes and taking pictures with fans – something he probably never imagined he’d be doing.
It was the most perfect way to end two weeks of insanely hard work aligning all the details for launch.
4. What is your desired career path?
I feel so lucky to have landed at Lola Red and I see myself here in the future. Alexis has always said I treated this business like my own (which I do) so I’ve never felt the desire to build something else because she’s allowed me to take ownership in different parts of the business. We also have amazing clients and a fun team. I can honestly say that I enjoy going to work everyday and there’s not one day in seven years that I’ve been bored.
I would like to continue to grow and learn from the PR community as well as continue to mentor others.
5. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
While I don’t feel the need to start my own business, I did just attend an entrepreneurship conference and it did inspire me to start something.
-- Brant Skogrand, APR, MBC / Skogrand PR Solutions, LLC