Thank you for chatting with me today. Can you tell our readers who Cathy Hood is?
Yes, it’s an honor to connect with you! I’m best known for my specialties in the public relations, strategic communications, and community engagement realm. I currently run and operate a PR and communications agency called Pristine Initiative, LLC in Hollywood, CA. As a small, Black woman-owned agency, we represent a diverse roster of talents, brands, small businesses, and corporate entities across various industries.
For those looking for press coverage around their projects or releases or need assistance with building their company’s branding and messaging, I’m the go-to professional who orchestrate ideas and brings it tofruition.
What was your key driving force behind Pristine Initiative, LLC?
It became important for me to build a space to ensure diverse, authentic voices and stories are shared across mainstream media. I’ve worked as a PR and communications professional for more than 12+ years as of now and have experienced first-hand the selective stories media tends to share amongst their audience the most.
As I navigated my way through various sectors such as construction, entertainment, and community, I saw a need for these industries to connect with not only their targeted audience but with the culture in which their audience live and work. I also wanted to work with influential leaders on not just the clout of their popularity but on their true passion in an industry they may not be as popular in. These different scenarios have made Pi the agency it is today. It’s crazy to witness how Pi has grown since its conception in 2019!
How do you build a successful client base?
I let my agency’s work speak for itself. Most of my clients have been through referrals or people who have seen our great works via our social media channels. We work with a lot of incredible industry partners who bring opportunities our way.
The number one thing any business should keep in mind is building relationships and motivating people and other businesses to cheer for you. When people are cheering for you, they tell everyone about their experience in working with you. This is how we have been able to get booked on so many projects. It has been the people we did meaningful work with who has opened doors for us in unimaginable ways.
My team and I at Pi really take the time to connect with people, hear their stories and passions, support and engage with what they have going on, and explore ways to collaborate. We also deliver results for every client we work with.
How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful?
Great question! For the past three years, we have solely based our marketing strategy on word-of-mouthefforts. I have found this to be best tactic in building the agency, especially during the startup stage. I also attend a lot of events and have been blessed with getting in exclusive rooms to work with top industryleaders and brands.
Our true efforts stem from the results we’ve generated from clients and those who trust us to deliver the quality results they are seeking. Many tend to spend value in advertisement, for us we spend time in building relationships for long-term success.
Do you believe there is some sort of pattern or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur?
Absolutely! I’m a huge believer in consistency. If you are consistent with your skillsets and work on your passion every day, you will eventually become the thought leader you are meant to be. The key to success is through consistency, routine, and confidence. Know what you want to do, why you want to do it, and how you plan to get there.
What is your favorite aspect of being a businesswoman?
Despite the challenges and growing pains, I LOVE the freedom of being a businesswoman! I love being able to set my own standards and work on projects I am most passionate about. I LOVE seeking opportunities, thinking outside the box, and making the meaningful, life-changing connections for the clients I represent. I also LOVE walking away from opportunities that don’t align and locking in deals that are win-win solutions.
For so long I chased the corporate ladder to find that it wasn’t for me. I always knew I was too innovative for the traditional setting and decided to pave my own way. It has been the best decision I have ever made in my life!
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
My most satisfying moment is seeing our client stories positively shared across local and/or mainstreammedia. When your client comes to you as someone unknown to being featured on Forbes or Good Morning America and so forth is so enduring to witness! It’s a wow moment for me when I’m like “Yes, I had a role in that.” When your client listens to you and when your PR strategy works, it’s everything to us PR professionals who work so hard behind the scenes to make that viral moment happen.
Thank you for all the work you do in and for our community. How important is pubic safety to you?
Besides running a PR agency, I have become an active voice on the issues surrounding public safety, especially within the Hollywood, CA community. As a resident of the Hollywood Community for nearly threeyears and an Angelino for more than a decade, I haveseen how the absence of officers on the street has greatly impacted our feeling of security.
Hollywood is the entertainment capital of the world! It’s THE place everyone wants to be seen at. People should walk down Hollywood Blvd with pride. Instead, it has become a hub for high crime, assaults, and robberies. We also have an encampment issue. To answer your question, public safety has become very important to me because it’s impacting those around me, those I love, my living, and overall lively hood. We all must serve as active voices and push for more public safety measures to take place in our neighborhoods.
What advise do you have for our youth that maybe struggling with staying in the right path?
“The saddest thing in life is a waste of talent.” It’s important to know that each of us have superpowers. It is up to you to tap into your inner you to discover what your true superpower is. You don’t want to be that wasted talent. Wasted talent only means lost or a disconnect to your superpower.
As I mentioned earlier in this discussion, know what you want, why you want to do it, and how you plan to get there. You can’t go wrong with this in mind.
What do you want your legacy to be?
I want my legacy to be about the lives I’ve impacted through my community and PR efforts. I want to be known as someone who contributed positively to the world and the environment. To have played an integral role in motivating Black and minority individuals to take action on solutions to better their families and communities. At this point, it’s beyond me. It’s about the work, the people, and the movement.
How can our readers connect with you?
You can find me on all social media platforms at @CathyJHood and @PristineInitiative. You can also learn more about my agency at www.pristineinitiative.com. Your support and follow are everything!