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Publicity and Media: Building Personal Brands For Business

An interview with Tracy Lamourie, Founder of Lamourie Media Inc.

Publicist Tracy Lamourie

Welcome to the show, Tracy. It's a pleasure to have you here. So I know that you are a well-known person, you have so many awards and accolades, so many people want to be in touch with you based on the fact that you're a publicist. And also, you've done so many good things for humanity as well. What, keeps you motivated with all these achievements you've gotten over the years?

Yeah, well, I guess it's, you know, in this last year, it's been well, what can I kind of the challenge? What can I do? In the middle of an international pandemic? When there's no travel? It's like, okay, how can I still strategically keep going?

I've worked with new people all over, fascinating and interesting people across the board, whether they're creatives or whether they're entrepreneurs, doing really important and innovative things. so it actually is really fun and keeps being fun. So I'm lucky that I'm in something that doesn't get boring, every day is different.

You are lucky that you're into something that you're passionate about and enjoy so enthusiastically.

And that's the key though, is to like find that thing they speak about a lot. It took me a long time to find that, I never thought about becoming a publicist, I didn't go to school for this. I was literally a young activist just in sales and marketing, entry-level sales and marketing.

As an activist in the early days of the internet, so we treat what's going on in the world. And I'm young enough to fix and make a difference to have been, Jay Parkinson and myself got involved with the case of a man factually innocent man who was on death row in America, in Pennsylvania, where I don't know if you know much, about the American justice system.

And we were involved with that case, as activists were unpaid, literally for 19 years of the 25 years he was on, he was ultimately released in 2017. Really, he's an amazing, beautiful person, an R&B artist. And right, and so that's where it came from is you know, that bringing that message, that's how I learned how to, and then a few years later, I thought, oh, gee, I could translate that, what I learned how to do with media and to do that for companies, or for creatives, or artists, or whatever.

But it came from that. So everybody has a passion for something like a justice issue, or it could be a hobby, it could be something that they do not do in their 9 to 5. Everyone thinks we have to hate our nine to five but wait for four years, I did the stupid stuff that I didn't care about. Hi, this is Tracy calling from something I really don't care about.

So once I finally thought about it was like, and I didn't go to school for it, I think the lesson there is like number one, I got this high, you know, VIP, place from helping somebody at a time when no one thought that I would ever get anything from it, helping someone that nobody was listening to.

I mean, they were wrong and now the world is benefiting from Jimmy Dennis's music and his activist work and all that stuff that never would have happened if it wasn't for that. But anyway, it's a business story too because essentially, find your passion. Believe in yourself, realize you can make a difference, and have a voice in the world.

Whether it's to do something like that, whether it's to build you know, your personal brand, become a thought leader, start a little business that will feed you and your family and your neighbors, or whatever it is that you do. start there with confidence and then with being willing to speak to the world about what you're doing. And then what I do is figuring out how to get into those spaces.

I mean, to stick to your guns for close to 20 years on that case, that takes a lot of courage.

I credit him though because he wouldn't give up. Someone said, how did you do that for 20 years? And then I started thinking that's true how do you keep anybody together on even any kind of project for that long. And I really credit Jimmy himself with that, because while he was on death row he was pretty much acting as a project manager, you know, to keep us all enthusiastic, keep us all together all the time. And when I look back on it, it's pretty amazing.

Publicity or the media is into everything these days. I don't think that I can think of any industry that doesn't want to go into publicity and media and profit from it. And I'm just wondering as in if somebody wants to go into being a publicist on into media, your tips or advice to such people will be?

I put a little section on that in my book, called Get Repped: Build your Brand With Effective Public and Media Relations. Right, and I'm just mentioning it, because most of it is about entrepreneurs, about how do you build your brand? How do you get into the media? And while I was doing that, I was thinking about my trajectory and how I came into it.

I'm sure they can teach you a lot in that five years in school. But really, it's a certain skill set more, in terms of like, you have to be good at communications as being good at dealing with people being quick thinking and strategic, being able to switch from this to that So if you're that kind of a person, this is a great job for you.

If you were in like say marketing, or sales, this is totally different from marketing and sales, but it's somewhat like a big switch from marketing to PR. However, the end goals are similar. Try your skills on that have a friend, they let me see what I can do for you. I'm going to accept your promises to live and then start. Even now, you know, one of my best days is Google. I don't know everything I've been doing this 10 years.

Sure, I got a whole bunch of contacts and connections. I was thinking because I want a bunch of awards, how can I get my clients in on some big awards. So then I started Googling, you know, industry, entrepreneur, global, award, you know, like all these different things, and all of a sudden, these amazing awards that any of us as entrepreneurs qualify for, because you've never heard about somebody winning them and L'Oreal flying to Paris, and you know, what you have to get in the mix.

You know, so research, you know, don't be afraid to get yourself out there. And just, you know, my language is like, I find podcasts I find in publications, hey, my client, whoever does whatever would be an amazing source. Here's more about them. Here are the three things they can talk about, and just start reaching out and you will build up those successes the way I did. And again.

I saw a lot of things about women you're trying to be an advocate for gender equality and all that so that as well as something that was caught my attention that man, this woman is into a lot of things. How do you keep up?

Even today, I was joking, a chat on Facebook status literally a few minutes ago. And I was like, saying something like a potential client calls me at 1 pm, guest on a podcast in Nigeria at 6:30 pm, calling a client in Australia at 7:30 pm. But most of the power women stuff comes up, because of my success in business, which has led to me being asked to speak on a bunch of panels, like women in business.

But specifically, that Niche made me realize there's a whole lot of, like I said, once you start searching and googling, there's a whole bunch of opportunities for women in business around the world. This next century is Africa rising, not North America and the Middle East even and you know, that in terms of all the look at North American cities, now, people don't realize here. All the modern stuff is happening there. You need to be reaching out to people in Africa, places such as Ghana, Nigeria.

Like I'm just in Canada, but I have as much of a presence in Los Angeles, as I do in Canada. And I've only been there twice for like two days. So you can use media to have an international presence. You can be quoted as an authority, so think about yourself as a global thought leader, respond to those things. And that's how you do it.

How are businesses in Canada right now considering the lockdown?

Even it's been a year in Ontario has been a nightmare in terms of, I mean, I guess global businesses are up in arms on the street. But you know, like all restaurants are lost a lot of business, a lot of businesses are closed. And I've been really lucky that I have a global audience so I can work anywhere in the English-speaking world, I have clients in Ghana and Australia. And so for me, I was able to pivot and, you know, there are still people who need promoting.

In terms of travel, my goodness, though, I haven't been on a plane in 14 months.

I guess we're the lucky ones, though. But we're well, and we haven't lost any family members. I hope we can come on the other side. And people are like, you know, I hope we can hug each other again. Smile, see each other's bottom half of the faces again. In New York, they had a whole bunch of people like in a party scene getting ready to take off their face mask at a bottom of the face reveal party and that was great.

Sheila Mack an NBC host, told me that she got to the point when she was an author, and now she's an NBC host, right? And she said she pretty much did it by telling herself for one year, I'm going to say yes to every opportunity that comes my way and she did. I've never felt in the life that I've been held back because I'm a woman I might have in some situation, you know, but I don't think and I think that's me personally, it's not that people aren't held back. Other people are. But I think, why haven't I been? Well, because I don't accept that.

No, no, no, no, that's good. You're, you're making you're making sense. I mean, you just have to follow through with your intentions and keep at it. And definitely, success will come around the corner. As long as you don't give me a little 20 years, the guy was in prison, and he didn't give up and a lot of people have given up I mean, truly, because it's

easy to give up. I always like and my thing, you know, he always said never, never give up.

Vital words were tossed by people everywhere. Because a lot of people if things are not whether you're going really well, like Now like I said to myself, we didn't get this far to only get this far, we need to keep going. But even more important, if you don't feel like you're in a good place. If you feel like it's really hard and you don't feel like a winner right now you just have to realize that you are actually a winner.

If you got to this point today, you beat all the things that were trying to get you down in life. People will try to get you down in circumstances that get you down. You want to keep on going you didn't get this far to only get this far. Yeah.

So finally, tell us about your book Getting Repped.

It is about why entrepreneurs need to think about this, and how, you know, the difference between editorial and advertorial and why it is essential, especially in 2021, to wrap your head around this, because if you're not taking the opportunities to elevate yourself above the competition, you know, to try to use media to elevate yourself global competition to attract new clients to impress your old clients to open yourself up to new opportunities, like stages and award shows, then you really are absolutely falling behind because somebody else in your industry is doing that.

It's really been an interesting chat. And thank you for coming on board the show. And I know for sure the audience will love this show. And want to say I appreciate you coming to the show. And I hope you will come again soon or later.

Absolutely. I'd be more than honored to come on your show again and I am honored to be a guest. I hope that I get the chance to see beautiful Africa at some point in real life. That's my goal.


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