Featured Startup Pitch – PR for People: Using technology to bring PR to the masses

By Editor May 20, 2011

PR for People logo 

Company: PR for People
Website: www.prforpeople.com
Headquarters: Seattle, WA
Year Founded: 2007
Founder: Patricia Vaccarino
Investors: Self-funded
Employees: 1, plus 8 independent contractors
Quick company description in 140 characters or less:
"PR for People gives people the PR tools they need to build brand equity in their names and reputations in real life and online."

PR for People CEOBy Patricia Vaccarino, Founder and CEO

Long before I started PR for People I worked in PR across industries and sectors. I found that I loved the writing, messaging, and the strategic positioning aspects of PR, but more than anything, I especially loved working with individuals. My favorite job was in the late 1990s—I was the VP of Communications for a startup electronic publisher, PublishingOnline. Many authors had a challenge promoting their books because they didn’t have the time, money or expertise. I knew there was a need to promote individuals (professionals, authors and experts) as much as there is a need to promote companies, products and organizations. So this is how the idea came about for PR for People.

PR for People was founded in 2007 and has evolved over time to give people the PR tools they need to build brand equity in their names and reputations in real life and online.

PR for People offers mass-market PR tools that are standardized, low-cost, and efficient and can scale to serve many people. One tool is a Press Kit. People need press kits to manage their reputations online. For $25 a month, people can build and manage their own press kits online. The traditional press kit used by PR people is a standard presentation folder that contains, bios backgrounders, news releases, case studies, testimonials and press clippings. The PR for People press kit is a press kit in one-page and a complete professional dossier and includes everything you want the world to know about you. Press kits are used to get you featured in the press, but they also aid your business development and sales efforts. Here are some examples of links to our PR for People client press kits:Comedian Wali Collins                                   http://www.prforpeople.com/ynevano
Children’s Author Jenevieve Fisher                http://www.prforpeople.com/jfisher
Jonathan Gassman  CPA, CFP, CAP                 http://www.prforpeople.com/jgassman
Chef Mary Beth Johnson                                 http://www.prforpeople.com/mljohnson
Artist Milan Heger                                          http://www.prforpeople.com/mheger
Numismatics Expert Jim Kingsland                 http://www.prforpeople.com/jimk 

We also offer a Media Switchboard Service to help our clients get connected to the media. For a monthly fee of $25, we get people covered in all forms of media so they can get the word out about who they are and what they do. Each day we monitor multiple newsfeed services and analyze media queries to assess their relevance to our clients. When we see a request that can be answered by you, we route it to you by e-mail or phone. You choose whether to respond to the reporter’s query.

PR for People doesn’t have a direct competitor that gives people a complete set of proprietary tools that they can use to build their professional brands. The current PR for People website is capable of scaling to add many users. However, as new and sophisticated services are added, it will be necessary to build a new back end development platform which will include more advanced features and user interfaces. The Press Kit is the foundation for any future build outs. New services and capabilities will be an expansion of the “press kit concept” and hold every form of content and perform every type of service that is essential for an individual to manage his brand online. For example, future expansion and development of the website will allow PR for People to adopt a speaker switchboard service that includes a complex scheduling and notification system. Another example is future website development will give PR for People the functionality to be an ePublisher, content aggregator, and ultimately a content reseller. Right now I am the founder and managing partner of PR for People. I see a real need to expand and to scale so I can offer more people access to low-cost PR tools that would allow them to build and manage their professional reputations. So far, I have relied on outsourcing to independent contractors and in the past I have only retained one full-time employee. I have been bootstrapping the operation, and taking revenue and reinvesting it back into the business. For four years we have had slow, sustained growth, but now I am ready to take the business to another level and scale to a larger operation.

PR for People is looking for a technology partner to support the build out for the next website that will include the events management and publishing capabilities. We are also looking for an office manager who has HR and accounting expertise who can support a build out for hiring personnel and expanding operations.PR for People is already a recognizable brand, a proven business model, and is already bringing in revenue. About 25 percent of its current client base have been on board since 2007. The launch of its new website took place on December 28, 2010. Projected sales objectives for 2011 are 100 paid subscribers who are only paying for the press kit, and not for other PR services, at the average rate of $25 per month.  More realistic projections must take into account that the majority of clients actually sign up for services totaling $50 per month. At the date of this writing, PR for People has 65 paying members. The business is on track to meet its goal of 100 users by year-end.

Thereafter, minimum sales objectives are as follows: Year 1 (Jan—Dec 2012) 500 paid memberships at $25 per mo. – $12,500 per mo.

We are practitioners of the same PR tools that we sell to our clients. So we know the consistent implementation of press relations, business networking and professional presentations, and social media sustained over a period of time gets results! Also we do have a great name for Search engine optimization—there is inherent “search” value in the name PR for People. Google PR People, and although there are thousands of PR People, PR for People ranks number one in organic search results. I am passionate about growing PR for People. There isn’t anything in the world that I would rather do than to build this business. I especially love working with a wide range of talent and so many different forms of intelligence. It is really exciting to be talking to a client who is a fashion designer then in the next minute I am talking to a client who is a medical doctor or an entertainer. PR for People clients are business people, creative professionals, performing artists, academics, authors and athletes. I am passionate about helping people to promote themselves no matter what field they are working in. It is amazing to have a proven business model that has the ability to take market share. Everyone, no matter what business you are in, needs to promote themselves in a way that is sm
art and strategic. I know by helping my clients to achieve success, we are truly making the world a better place, but more importantly everyone is making money: our clients, our investors, our vendors and our team.

PR for People – www.prforpeople.com