It’s that time of the week again: #GirlBossMonday!
Following on with our globe trotting theme, this week’s #GirlBossMonday is with self made PR gal Lorinda Voges, founder of 4Elements Media in Cape Town, South Africa.
Lorinda had no formal education in PR yet founded her own PR Agency which she has been running for six years. This raises the question of whether we need a degree to be successful in PR, which I will be covering as Wednesday’s blog topic.
I was so excited to interview Lorinda to see what the PR industry is like in Africa and how better than to find out from founder of a national leading PR Agency with clients such as Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Clarins and Banana Republic? Lorinda’s company also manages South African celebrities including Khuli Chana, Jimmy Nevis and Shashi Naidoo.
The reason I conduct these interviews is to inspire you, my readers, and fellow PR students to be successful in your careers and business leaders of the future. I have asked the important questions to gain an insight of how these #GirlBosses made it to where they are today, and how we can emulate their successes.
Here’s to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them.
OC: Hi Lorinda! An easy question to start us off (I hope) – What is your full job title?
LV: I am the founder and Chief Creative Officer of 4Elements Media.
Can you give me a background of your career and education? How did this lead you to be in your PR position today?
I had no formal training in PR, but I have always loved the media industry.
Before 4EM I was the National Brand Manager for Fashion TV in South Africa and that assisted me in making the right connections and learning about brand awareness.
I have had amazing peers in my industry that were willing to teach me about the PR industry and I ensured I kept up with trends by reading as much as possible about Public Relations and Media on the internet, study books and also just through trial and error.
How and why did you start your business?
In 2011 I listed several things I was passionate about in the industry I worked in and narrowed it down to only four, which ultimately led me to starting my own company called 4Elements Media.
I started off as a booking agent / manager for celebrities, which later stemmed into brand awareness for them. From there I did events for some of the top international fashion brands that launched in South Africa and today, 4EM is proudly one of the most successful Boutique Brand Awareness Agencies in South Africa.
What do you find most rewarding about your role in PR?
I get to make people aware of brands that I am really passionate about. I also had the opportunity to work with some of the most talented personalities in South Africa and worked with some of the biggest international brands in beauty, fashion and travel.
What do you wish more people understood about PR?
It is never as glamorous as it seems. Also, most people confuse marketing and advertising with PR. Although all three play a big role in making people aware of brands, they all play a different role in doing so.
If you were to hire someone for a PR role, what skills and qualities would your ideal candidate have?
Someone that understands the world of PR as an ever-evolving industry. I would love to have someone that is both business driven but creatively strong, who can come up with innovative strategies and be forward-thinking.
However, if I could work amongst someone, I would love to learn a few things from Kris Jenner!
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing the PR industry today?
The change from awareness in traditional media to new media like social media and online media. Influencers have taken over the role of advertising and made normal people the biggest tools of brand awareness we have ever seen.
What advice would you give to a student like myself that wants to emulate your success and make it in the PR industry?
If you are creative, like I am, I would advise getting someone as a business partner involved that understands how to run a business, so you can focus on what you are great at.
I have only realised this after six years, but bringing my current business partner on board was the best decision I could have made for my business.
Thank you Lorinda ♥
You can visit 4Elements Media’s website at www.4elementsmedia.com
Follow 4Elements Media on Twitter : @_4ElementsMedia
Follow Lorinda on Twitter : @LorindasWorld
Follow 4Elements Media on Instagram : @4ElementsMedia