Jack and Bill shows results, power of fashion to elevate a corporate brand

An established PR agency will often forget that it needs to maintain an image as fresh as that which it harnesses for a client, but...

An established PR agency will often forget that it needs to maintain an image as fresh as that which it harnesses for a client, but such is not the case at Porter Novelli (PN). Pairing its corporate brand with fashion, digital, a pop-up concept, and youth certainly created buzz.

PN opened Jack and Bill, a pop-up fashion agency providing temporary pro-bono PR services to fashion, model, jewelry, and stylist clients, this past summer (July-September). The initiative had been designed to garner attention for the agency from clients, employees, and media, explained Lisa Rosenberg, partner and managing director at PN.

The agency gained credibility in the style/culture arena and capitalized on showcasing its digital offerings and social media-savvy youth, she said.

“I’ve worked in the business a long time. It’s difficult for a PR agency to get the kind of coverage we did from Stuart Elliott’s [New York Times] column.”

It couldn’t have hurt that the agency chose Penn Badgley’s mom as a jewelry client, drawing the likes of Penn himself and girlfriend Blake Lively to the auditions, and a vested media interest that followed.

The agency hosted a Style Trends panel with the Jack and Bill clients for international fashion journalists and a Fashion Week party co-sponsored by PN clients HP and Absolut.

“There was lots of payoff in terms of reinforcement to existing clients about the value of partnering with PN,” said Rosenberg.

The team had documented the experience via live-blogging, Twitter posts, and video/photo updates on social media platforms, including the Jack and Bill Web site and YouTube.

Results include 6,000+ blog views, 200+ Facebook friends, and 6150+ YouTube views, among others.

Rosenberg explained that the initiative also enabled the agency to showcase the success of a project run by “enthusiastic and empowered” youth. “The world is absolutely changing,” she said. “Particularly with everything digital... it opens the eyes of those who may have been reluctant to think that the ideas can be ground up versus top down.”

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