Interview with a PR Professional

April 8, 2009 whitneychilds

For my interview with a PR professional I chose to talk with Lisa Gandy Holton, an Executive Vice President for a company called Media Brokers International, which is an established leader in the media placement business and consistently provides the most value for every advertising dollar. Lisa moved to Atlanta at the young age of 25 and within the first year had broken every record previously set by an employee and within two years was promoted to Executive VP.  Her insight and knowledge about the world of marketing and PR amazes me. She is an excellent role model and just goes to show if you set your goals high and work to achieve them anything is possible.

Q: What is a typical week like?

A: Weeks vary in my business…..because I’m responsible for planning,negotiating, placing media and getting the most exposure I can for hundreds of clients, no week is ever the same. For the most part during the week, I handle any request from my clients and make sure that the media/PR work I’ve place is running according to schedule. I provide run reports if need be and if any changes need to be made I make them. My weeks and job is dictated on a day to day basis by my clients.

Q:Tell me about a project you worked on that you are especially proud of.

A. My very first client at this job was a company called They where a small start up company trying to target individual investors to subscribe to their service. They did not have a very large advertising budget, however I told them I would work with whatever they had…..They had $15,000 to spend and wanted to do magazines. The magazine industry is not cheap. I was able to negotiated a very aggressive rate with Kiplingers magazine for them. They jumped on it and had amazing success. He asked what else I could do, so I told them I’d create an entire marketing plan for them. I did, and in less than six months their business grew 365%!!! I still have this client now, and their budget has gone from $15,000 to 3 to 5 million pr year in spending for advertising. Now, I’ll answer this question with a PR related answer, I was interning at an Advertising agency and a guy came in and wanted help promoting his “new idea”. His new idea was building caskets that had college logos on them. The owners of the company did not take him very seriously but agreed to do the project. The project needed a press release, so they allowed me to do. Nervous about the responsibility, I wrote a press release. They told me it was going to be “sent out on the wire”….not knowing what that meant I said ok. The next morning when I got to work I had over 100 phone calls from TV Networks, Newspapers, Radio Shows etc. wanting to speak with our client…..I quickly learned what the wire meant. The company is now a thriving company called Collegiate Memorials and they build beautiful caskets and urns for all the SEC teams and have expanded to the military!!

Q: How important is writing in your career?

A:.Since I have to write marketing plans for my clients, writing is very important to my career.

Q: What three tips would you offer someone just starting out in PR?

A:.PROOF, Be creative, and don’t be afraid to do something for free!

Q: What do you do to keep current in the PR industry?

A.Research and always staying on top of whats current.

Q. Did your education prepare you for working in PR? How?

A. Yes, I use my writing skills I learned everyday.

Q. What has surprised you most about working in PR?

A.How a well written press release can really help promote a product!! It amazes me what type of attention.

After interviewing Lisa I feel having a PR job would be an amazing experience and since I am a marketing major, PR can relate closely to some sides of marketing such as promoting and advertising your product or client whether it be radio, television, Internet, PR would definitely be something I would be interested in having a career in.

To find out additioal information about Media Brokers International you can visit

No. 3,121 Media Brokers International   Alpharetta, GA

Year 2008
Industry Media
Founded 1992
Growth 111.3%
2004 Revenue $23.4 million
2007 Revenue $49.4 million
Employees 54
What it does:
A media planning and buying firm that develops media strategies for advertisers and ad agencies.
Why it’s growing:
After starting as a boutique agency handling magazine advertising, CEO Ben Johnston has focused on acquiring expert agents to expand the company’s market share to newspapers, TV, radio, and Internet advertising to fulfill clients’ needs.
What’s noteworthy:
A new software application created by Media Brokers allows users to buy, manage, and track media for an entire campaign. MediaFiche will be available free in Fall 2008. Johnston plans to sell the operation in 3-5 years. Half of the sale price will go to Media Brokers employees.

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Entry Filed under: assignment

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. mackenziestratton  |  April 20, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    Whitney! I love how I’ve read in everyone’s blog posts that weeks vary. I think the thing I am looking forward to the most in PR is how it’s not the same every week, something that will make the job much more enjoyable.

  • 2. Comment on Whitney Child&&hellip  |  April 20, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    […] on Whitney Child’s Blog | Apr 20th 2009 Comment on Whitney Child’s Blog Post “PR Professional Interview,” April 20, 2009. […]

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