I think I was destined for a career in public relations from the time I was four years old. I can remember wanting to meet everyone at the grocery store while my mother was shopping for my family’s food. I was so curious about everyone in the store…where they were from, where they lived, how many children they had, and what they did with their time.
My parents instilled in me a strong work ethic. If I wanted something, I had to work for it. Like many girls, I wanted a horse…
By age 15, I had over $500 in my bank account. That was a lot of hours of babysitting at 75 cents an hour! My friend said she was tired of having a horse, so I offered her $500 for her horse and all the accessories. We’d made a deal.
Through riding, I made new friends and came to know more people in my community. Meeting new people has always been my thing.
My mind is a mental database of contacts.
I truly love making connections by introducing people to each other, pitching a reporter on a story they might be interested in, or connecting people because of shared interests.
When I was 17, my dad asked me if I wanted to write an article for the in-house Westinghouse Electric Corporation Magazine about a paper machine he had sold to Boise Cascade Paper Company in Rumford, Maine. I wrote the article and took the photos. When it was published, I decided that a career in public relations was what I wanted to pursue.
Today I have that same bone-deep curiosity about people and the world – and I love to see my stories in print and on screens. That’s why having the PR Maven® Podcast platform to conduct interviews and a public relations agency specializing in travel, tourism and outdoor recreation all suits me so well.
Mixing the best old-school strategies with current tactics…
After college, I worked in public television then moved to Sugarloaf to work in the PR department. I learned the importance of embracing technology for PR and communications, including how to store contact information in databases and educating people about the commercial internet.
I also continued to bring that well–developed work ethic, sense of adventure, and creativity into my early years of PR at Sugarloaf. Under the leadership of ski PR guru, Chip Carey, I learned how to pull off some unforgettable ‘guerilla marketing’ stunts that landed a few NYC writers and press media tours.
In 1991, I started my own PR agency and represented the ski area as my first client. That’s how Marshall Communications was born.
Throughout my career, I’ve been “collecting” contacts in the tourism industry, the media, the business community and professional organizations. I’ve learned to meld the best of old-school PR techniques – like face-to-face media relations – as well as more current tactics, like using Twitter to connect with journalists.
Marketing challenges IGNITE my superpower
My superpower is hearing of a marketing challenge and immediately seeing the path to overcoming it by connecting people, organizations, and solutions, whether it’s technology or human resources.
The database in my head kicks in and the path forward lights up! Working in marketing and PR for almost 40 years, I can now hear a problem and figure out a solution the way a mathematician solves a complex algebraic formula.
That’s why I created The Marshall Plan®, a 65-step process to develop a marketing road map with measurable results and objectives.
What drives me? Connecting people and solving their marketing challenges. My work is in my personality. I’m as enthusiastic about the work I do today as I was on my first day way back in 1982. Nancy Marshall