Fifteen years ago, I quit my job at a PR agency to flee a bad boss and seek more quality family time. With my husband Steve’s declarative, “go for it,” I did – and still have the Polaroid that says “I quit” to capture that freeing moment. I started SPM with the idea that it would be a one-woman shop that did great PR work and brought in $500 a month.
Chipotle, Whataburger and Heelys were my first clients and soon Rebecca Wilkins became the first full-time SPM employee who was willing to share a desk with me at my home. Before we knew it, there was a small but hip office space in the West End and a few people calling SPM their work home. A short time later, Cheryl Hall at The Dallas Morning News wrote about our no jerks culture and the novelty of doing well by doing nice.
This supported a theory of mine I had known but hadn’t yet formalized that would serve us well over the next 15 years: it’s easy to do good work when you aren’t required to navigate jerks, your team is happier and everyone is more productive. How nice that a pain point at a former job would be the springboard that would set us apart at SPM.
We now have 20 folks, were just ranked as 5th largest PR agency in Texas by our industry bible, O’Dwyer’s, and launched a sister agency, MediaLine PR, which is running full-steam ahead with Chipotle, Cheddar’s, The Dallas Farmer’s Market, PopStar, Nothing Bundt Cakes and more on the horizon. Becca is now running MediaLine PR after serving as a leader at SPM for 13 years. I couldn’t be more proud of where our “No Jerks” culture has taken us after all these years – here’s the release we recently shared with the trade to announce MediaLine PR.
SPM COMMUNICATIONS ESTABLISHES SISTER AGENCY MEDIALINE PR
New firm to serve up agency’s expertise to food, restaurant and retail clients
(DALLAS) Sept. 30, 2014 – SPM Communications has created MediaLine PR to enable the company to grow and to accept new and competitive clients in its areas of specialty, including restaurant, food and franchise.
MediaLine PR is founded by SPM Communications President Suzanne Miller and longtime SPM executive Rebecca Wilkins, who will serve as president of the new agency. MediaLine PR clients include Chipotle Mexican Grill, Cheddar’s Casual Cafe, Nothing Bundt Cakes and Pop Star Handcrafted Popsicles. The firm also recently announced the Dallas Farmers Market’s revitalization and the opening of The Shed.
“We started MediaLine PR because we wanted to be able to say yes to great brands that would approach us for PR support, but who were competitors of our existing clients,” said SPM founder and President Suzanne Miller. “With MediaLine, both companies can grow, and brands can benefit from our deep experience and expertise. I have great pride and confidence in knowing MediaLine is led by Rebecca, who has done great work and helped SPM thrive over the past 13 years.”
SPM, which celebrated 15 years in business this year, was recently ranked by O’Dwyer’s as Texas’ top food and beverage PR firm, and 21st nationwide. Its restaurant clients include CiCi’s Pizza, Taco Cabana, Pollo Tropical, Bruegger’s Bagels and Salata. The firm also has a specialty in gluten-free, wholesome and better-for-you packaged foods, with Van’s Foods and Stubb’s Legendary Bar-B-Q among current clients, as well as clients in retail, franchise, beauty, entertainment and pet care.
“We were honored to launch MediaLine PR with clients like Chipotle and Cheddar’s Casual Cafe, which have been longtime SPM partners through our many stages of growth,” said Wilkins. “We’re now building on that wealth of experience to bring in new clients of all sizes, and the future certainly looks bright.”
MediaLine PR has hired a team of experienced communicators with brand experience that includes Hilton, Sheraton Hotels, Exxon, USA Football, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Whataburger, Dallas Farmers Market, Heelys, YoCrunch, CiCi’s Pizza, Joe’s Crab Shack, Koko FitClub, The Vintage Pearl and entertainment industry studios including Lionsgate Films, Fox Searchlight, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and Summit Entertainment.
For more information about SPM Communications go to www.spmcommunications.com. More information about MediaLine PR is at www.medialinepr.com.
About SPM Communications
Founded in 1999, Dallas-based SPM Communications promotes and protects brands through media relations, social media and crisis communications. Ranked Texas’ fifth-largest PR firm by O’Dwyer’s, SPM represents national and regional restaurant, food, retail and franchise brands including Michaels Stores, CiCi’s Pizza, Pollo Tropical, Taco Cabana, Bruegger’s Bagels, Newk’s Eatery, Main Event Entertainment, Petmate, Van’s Foods, Stubb’s Legendary Bar-B-Q, Salata and eraclea skin care. In addition to its editorial work for clients, the company has been featured in The Wall Street Journal and other media outlets for its “No Jerks” policy of mutual respect and trust among clients, team members and company leaders. More information is available at www.spmcommunications.com, www.Facebook.com/spmcommunications and Twitter @spmspm.
About MediaLine PR
MediaLine PR is a Dallas-based PR firm established in 2014 by veteran communicator and owner of SPM Communications, Suzanne Miller, and her longtime associate, Rebecca Wilkins. With a depth of expertise from media relations to crisis communications, MediaLine PR supports well-respected brands like Chipotle Mexican Grill, Cheddar’s Casual Cafe and Nothing Bundt Cakes with added specialties in the retail, food and franchise categories. For more information visit www.medialinepr.com.