I had dinner tonight with the CMO and VP of Marketing of a Fortune 10 company – Literally, one of the largest companies in the world. They, naturally are in business with large PR firms and the nearly 3 hour dinner was the same as I have heard from no less than 10 Fortune 1000 companies in the last 6 months – How come no one in the PR Agency World understands the consumer lifestyle space and how to reach young people ? Why are there no creative ideas ?

We had a long discussion about the space, the changing media landscape, heightening of awareness vis a vis product placement and a ton of other things… and the lack of PR creativity.

A few thoughts I shared over dinner – We are one of the few agencies who do what we do in the lifestyle PR space which is necessary to understand to reach the tremendous convergence of sports, lifestyle & entertainment which brands need to understand to reach a younger consumer for a lot of reasons…

Traditional marketing techniques simply aren’t effective when appealing to 18-34 year old Americans. Simply put, they’ve been bombarded all their lives with fast-paced content and are especially selective in where their attention is paid, for this reason, sms marketing could be of great use when it comes to trying to appeal to the younger audience, on average 90% of texts are read within 3 minutes of being delivered. We uniquely understand that in order to reach this audience, the medium is invariably the message. They are influenced by MySpace, blogs, their peers and celebrities as much or more than they are by traditional media—The kid on MySpace with 10,000 friends has the same captive audience as many top journalists— it’s a reality that many in our industry don’t understand.

They need to see and touch the brand:
In the same way that many of our advertising & marketing clients are taking away business from large agencies who are set in their ways of traditional print & broadcast advertising, we’ve brought the same approach to public relations. I’m so proud of the work we’ve done with Evian over the last two year. Whether it’s putting Serena Williams and James Blake in an Evian bath or putting up a month long pop-up spa on 5th avenue we’ve taken water and brought it right to the consumer and made it parts of their lifestyle. Brands can’t exist in a vacuum—consumers need to understand where they fit into their lives and that’s one of this agency’s greatest strengths.

Time is more important than speed. 5WPR’s experience has taught us the value of formulating one’s message early and getting it out before the competition. Indeed, by planning this far ahead, 5W Public Relations can assemble a comprehensive plan with timeline and execute it on-schedule and on-target. Being quick to market with compelling story angles that are consistent and ongoing is part of the fight…

… and here I am going to stop because as much as I like writing… I know my competitors try to steal our ideas consistently… and I don’t want to give too much away… but

A few more thoughts on the subject:
As we have been saying for years to win with youth consumers one needs to reach the “urban” audiences which includes African American, Hispanic and South Asian. We have represented leading brands in this space for years and today work with more corporations and celebrities than anyone else in the world. Our competitors are afraid of this space and couldn’t dare to understand it. Through these relationships and our network of celebrities, 5WPR is capable of delivering star power to events, product launches and cross marketing programs.

We believe in the value of representing corporations and talent – From entertainment and lifestyle brands to cutting edge start up ventures; as well as leading youth marketing agencies. Additionally, we represent top tier talent. Further, 5WPR is involved in just about every leading lifestyle event in the US year round including the Oscars, Grammy’s, Emmy’s, New York and Los Angeles Fashion Week, US Open, NBA All Star, MTV Music Awards, Sundance Film Festival — among many others. Its necessary.

We are about passion and results – The choice for leading brands who simply need a team to work harder, smarter, and better – all of the time. We deliver concepts that inspire and motivate change; and we work knowing that every minute and every dollar count.

We believe the PR Industry has never had more challenges and never had less creativity – the players are all the same… Clients want to pay for performance and results.As one of my senior staffers is fond of saying: “Celebrities hire us because we are cool enough and for them we are corporate, and corporations hire us because they think we are smart enough and entertainment enough, but still corporate for them.” We speak the language of both of these audiences…. Which very few mainstream PR firms are able to do.

(and as a caveat lifestyle remains as 25% of our business…. We do a lot more than consumer lifestyle work…)

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Ronn Torossian is the Founder & Chairman of 5W Public Relations, one of the largest independently owned PR firms in the United States. Since founding 5WPR in 2003, he has led the company's growth and vision, with the agency earning accolades including being named a Top 50 Global PR Agency by PRovoke Media, a top three NYC PR agency by O'Dwyers, one of Inc. Magazine's Best Workplaces and being awarded multiple American Business Awards, including a Stevie Award for PR Agency of the Year. With over 25 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America's most prolific and well-respected public relations executives. Throughout his career he has advised leading and high-growth businesses, organizations, leaders and boards across corporate, technology and consumer industries. Torossian is known as one of the country's foremost experts on crisis communications. He has lectured on crisis PR at Harvard Business School, appears regularly in the media and has authored two editions of his book, "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results With Game-Changing Public Relations," which is an industry best-seller. Torossian's strategic, resourceful approach has been recognized with numerous awards including being named the Stevie American Business Awards Entrepreneur of the Year, the American Business Awards PR Executive of the Year, twice over, an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year semi-finalist, a Top Crisis Communications Professional by Business Insider, Metropolitan Magazine's Most Influential New Yorker, and a recipient of Crain's New York Most Notable in Marketing & PR. Outside of 5W, Torossian serves as a business advisor to and investor in multiple early stage businesses across the media, B2B and B2C landscape. Torossian is the proud father of two daughters. He is an active member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) and a board member of multiple not for profit organizations.