how to start your own pr agency by daisy hoppen
Want to get into fashion, but not sure which path to take? From designers and stylists to writers and directors, we asked a few i-D friends and family how they made their fashion dreams a reality.
shrimps fall/winter 16. photography mitchell sams.
What I do and why I do it:
I'm in PR because I love the brands and designers I work with, as well as my team! Looking back, I had no idea what I wanted to do when I was younger. I studied history at university and wanted to be a historical advisor on period dramas! I think you can sometimes fall into a career and that's really not a bad thing. There is no set way to start a career; accidents are often the best, I think!
A few people influenced my decision. Mimma Viglezio has been hugely inspirational and helped me make the leap into the world of a start up agency. My family [has been an inspiration] as well — my father's long career in photography was my initial reason for going freelance, and I still work with him today. Getting to work with family is really important to me — for us [The Hoppens] our lives really center around this mentality.
I knew I was following the right path when other clients and designers started approaching me organically. It made me feel we were doing PR in our own way and others thought it could be beneficial for them.
A day in my life:
There is no set day, but they tend to include an early start and catching up with my team — some days I am in the office a lot more than others. If we are all together, we try and have a Deliveroo or Uber Eats lunch once a week also. I spend my days speaking to clients and press, resolving issues — hopefully creating solutions and always thinking ahead. I often think of myself as a tortoise: traveling around London with my laptop on my back. I think it's important to be mobile; I like to see my clients face-to-face to chat about what is coming up and planning ahead. Evenings are often spent out — meeting with people and generally catching up over red wine. If I am home, they are often spent with my cat, Olive.
I still love seeing the daily editorial coverage for my clients get sent out — I never get tired of seeing coverage. The most rewarding part of this job is getting to build the careers of others, and showing them a way to have a job in the industry that is fulfilling and a nice environment to work in. I feel it's important people should work hard, but also enjoy their job.
The biggest misconception:
We aren't very Ab Fab! More spreadsheets and less Bolly!
The moment that made me:
I don't think there has been one moment, but I am hugely grateful of the support from friends within the industry to recommend me to certain clients and brands. My team has helped us advance — they are the reason why DH-PR has grown. Remember that your clients and your team make you who you are.
To degree or not to degree, that is the question:
University isn't necessary. I studied history. I tend to take on staff who have not studied communications or marketing — I prefer people who have language skills, can write beautifully, and hold a conversation. Gaining work experience is critical to getting ahead in the industry. This shows your work ethic and if you really want to work in this industry. It's fast paced and often relentless, not the vacuous glamorous side that TV loves to show.
To anyone looking to secure a placement:
Make your CV and email stand out with impeccable language and presentation — the amount we are sent with different fonts and typos. Ask friends if they know people you can contact; most of our interns come through recommendations.
Both in and out of the classroom, the biggest lesson I've learned is:
What goes around comes around, and manners cost nothing.
The best piece of advice anyone has ever shared with me:
"Kill with kindness."
What excites me about tomorrow:
London Fashion Week. It's just around the corner and we have a number of shows and presentations. Beyond that, I'm excited about our creative futures as there are no set rules — we can shape our careers.
I'm inspired most by:
My granny, Stephanie Hoppen. She is who I go to for all my advice from finance to legal, new hairdressers to caterers — she knows London like no one else!
Where I'll be in 2020:
Hopefully in a bigger office!
Text Daisy Hoppen