The Interview: Kelly Marks, Co-founder of Pure PR - Indoors Beauty

The Interview: Kelly Marks, Co-founder of Pure PR

The Interview: Kelly Marks, Co-founder of Pure PR

Kelly Marks is the Co-founder of Pure PR, first launched in 1999 with Cara Ward. Fast ahead to 2023, the corporate now boasts a portfolio of international purchasers throughout the magnificence and well-being house.

Marks boasts over 25 years of expertise working with the world’s greatest magnificence manufacturers and essentially the most influential contacts within the enterprise. Her purchasers embrace E.l.f Cosmetics, Moroccanoil, Ilia, Malin+Goetz, Keys Soulcare and Hello Sunday.

When Marks established her PR company, many magnificence manufacturers saved public relations and advertising in-house. PR has since developed and has at present turn out to be a a lot bigger entity – at present, PR groups are uncovering multi-faceted methods to have interaction the buyer, from influencer advertising, to pop-ups, to tv and radio product placement.

TheIndustry.vogue talks to Kelly Marks about how the job of a PR company has developed over the previous twenty years, her work with present purchasers, and what makes magnificence PR so worthwhile.

How did you begin in PR?

I got here out of college with an Art History diploma and spent a pair of weeks working on the Royal Academy.. and I’ve by no means been so bored in my life. Although I liked what goes on on the Royal Academy, I simply knew I could not be an element personally as a result of it was simply too sluggish.

I prefer to work quick, so I feel PR actually fits me. I began off working after college in 1996 at what was then Halpern Associates. I stayed there for 3 to 4 years and by the point I left, I had labored my means up from Intern to heading my very own magnificence division.

Cara (my enterprise accomplice) and I left our jobs and arrange our workplace for Pure with two computer systems and a dial-up modem – a time once you paid for the web!

Once we arrange, we gained our first consumer on the second day, which was an organization referred to as Curtain Exchange. The subsequent day we signed a giant L’Oreal-supported hair salon chain referred to as Seanhanna. We have been up and working and by no means seemed again!

What form of work do you concentrate on at Pure PR?

We concentrate on ‘magnificence and wellbeing’ and ‘interiors and design’, which is a singular and really particular mixture of manufacturers. I head up all of the wonder and well-being, after which Cara heads up all of the interiors and design.

We’ve obtained a crew of about 18-20 individuals and we’re based mostly in central London. Over the years we have labored with my favorite manufacturers within the business (or possibly that’s unfair to say as I’m biased). We presently work with manufacturers like E.l.f Cosmetics, Moroccanoil, Key Soulcare and we simply began working with Hello Sunday.

We’ve most likely labored with over 100 manufacturers. We do prefer to work with what we name ‘best-in-class’ manufacturers, which suggests manufacturers that we really feel have gotten a beneficial place within the business, whether or not they’re excessive avenue, mid-range or high-end.

You’ve been within the business for over twenty years, what are some of the shifts you’ve skilled first-hand?

It was simply print media again within the day – that is all anybody needed and that is what we knew labored. PR is so completely different now. I feel manufacturers need a lot extra from PR than they ever did earlier than.

We nonetheless do the type of conventional PR, which continues to be so vital with print and business press resembling broadcast and TV. The influencer facet of issues is big! For heaps of our purchasers, it is the bigger piece now.

We used to simply take into consideration what the consumer model needed…however we now suppose of it fully the opposite means round – the buyer is now primary. In order for shoppers to see why they want a product, PRs have to function it, write about it, do movies on it, and extra.

It’s additionally about giving manufacturers an outline of opponents and seeing what different persons are doing. We additionally take care of a pair of our manufacturers’ social media. We do E.l.f’s and Moroccanoil’s social media, for instance, which has been good. We completely need to do extra of that, particularly for magnificence manufacturers. We really feel that social media is a vital hyperlink that pulls all the things collectively.

When we began with E.l.f, for instance, I feel that they had about 3,000 followers, now they’re at 330,000. Through our work with them, E.l.f Cosmetics UK has been the fastest-growing model in phrases of social media attain. With Moroccanoil, we have elevated their followership and engagement massively. Being capable of carry the model along with the buyer is what I feel makes PR so thrilling now.

How do you see PR evolving sooner or later?

We’re all the time in search of new alternatives. We’re consistently trying to do one thing completely different. For me, it is about getting manufacturers into the mainstream tradition.

I can not be any extra particular however there is a large TV present on Netflix with a brand new season set to return out quickly, which we’ve secured product placement for some of our manufacturers in. That’s not by paying for something, that is by our personal connections. So working with props departments, make-up artists, hairdressers, and the individuals behind the scenes. It is vital work however it takes endurance, it doesn’t occur in a single day. It’s a multi-layered strategy, however when it really works, it is wonderful.

Can you inform us extra about your latest E.l.f activation?

We needed to do one thing new and thrilling for E.lf. and we had the chance to accomplice with a younger British musician referred to as Caity Baser. She was already utilizing our merchandise and we had already despatched samples to her, in order that got here organically, which we love. She resonated with the model and was completely happy to speak about it. So instantly that felt like an incredible match. We’re working with Catie to produce her followers with E.l.f make-up at her upcoming reveals.

Specifically, what we do at E.l.f is to offer vegan and cruelty-free merchandise for each eye, lip and face. Essentially, high quality merchandise at nice worth for everybody is the messaging. So this partnership wasn’t nearly supporting Caity, but additionally her fan base. It’s positively one thing that the Pure crew is happy about as a result of and it’s an instance of how PR has modified through the years.

We need magnificence manufacturers, of course we do – that is our bread and butter. Beauty PR excels when it takes a product and places it into tradition, resembling getting E.l.f into concert events. You know, I might by no means be scared to strategy anybody, any model, something to search out a chance for our consumer. I feel I realized that actually a very long time in the past once I was a junior.

I used to be in some nightclub someplace and a really well-known mannequin walked in. We have been each within the lavatory and she or he was enjoying along with her hair within the mirror. At the time, I had a consumer’s lip gloss in my pocket and I mentioned to the mannequin, “oh, do you need to attempt my lip gloss, it is very nice”. By the Monday morning I’ve obtained protection on this explicit product on this explicit mannequin. You’ve simply obtained to take each alternative.

Do you get strict briefs from manufacturers or are you free to push the boundaries of PR?

So we have labored with our purchasers for a couple of years now and so they’ve all the time been very beneficiant of their belief in us. I feel that that is what makes a relationship actually work. It’s the smaller manufacturers which might be most strict and are much less prepared to take a danger. They typically need one thing carried out the identical as everybody else, and that does not actually work for us.

Do you might have the rest within the pipeline you could inform us about?

So we have got lots of good enjoyable stuff developing. Actually, Moroccanoil is a sponsor of the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest in Liverpool! I can not say any greater than that!

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