I’ve been doing marketing and PR since I ran for high school class president on a platform of “keep on the vending machines during the day.” I found that I really liked doing this kind of work, and supporting causes I believe in. When I moved to Salt Lake in 2006, I didn’t know anyone. I started volunteering and found that it was a great way to get involved, make friends and start getting to work. I started working at a local advertising agency started by powerhouse Cindy Kindred. I gained all kinds of experience in what words to use when describing things and so forth, and got to get my hands real dirty with a wide range of work. I found myself gravitating into the role of “executor” because I’d get things done. Sometime told me “90% of people don’t do what they say they’re going to do.” I always knew that the 10% is where I wanted to be. I respond to emails in a Karl Rovian style – immediately, dispatching the old and embracing whatever forms of new solutions are available to solve the problems of clients. I always want to get on to the next actionable item. This sort of work ethic got me a volunteer position as marketing director for the newly-formed Utah Free Media. The same methods got the station a number of high-value advertising sponsorships and well-placed articles. I felt that I’d found my niche, and as I began to see and experience more on my own, away from the agency, my vision became clearer: there’s no reason why I can’t do this work.
I started working on Commiskey Communication in 2008 and picked up a number of truly superb clients. My involvement in the ice hockey community of Salt Lake City introduced me to the Tracy Aviary, where I was able to provide valuable groundwork for their re-branding efforts.I found, perhaps contrary to the advice of many, that 2008-2009 was the perfect time to start a small business – at least my kind of business – and I picked up a number of contract clients. The 2009 Tour of Utah was a major milestone for me, as it put my work into contact with the brass at Larry H. Miller. Being told that the president of Larry H. Miller Group of Companies held a meeting to discover how my methods were so successful was one of the greatest compliments I’ve been given.
At different points along this three-year path, I’ve bumped into Patrick Thronson, perhaps the best spoken man of my age I’ve met. We both realized we were doing the same thing: fighting the good fight on our own for our clients, who we passionately believed in. We shared politics, work ethic and a sense that we were independent. Though our writing styles vary considerably, we saw that our skill sets were wonderfully complementary of one another. I had a thing going in the small business and entertainment world and he was working on legal and professional issues. We started assembling lists of non-profit organizations in town we felt we could help. By providing the same service as a large, brick-and-mortar agency, we could deliver value to organizations in need with much greater efficiency. After all, if we were to work at agencies, we’d have some overlords keeping the profits and we’d be doing all the work anyway.Everyone knows this model who is familiar with agencies: it’s fairly uniform throughout the industry.
Crystal Young-Otterstrom was an obvious partner for me. I love this woman (and her husband too). They are some of the most positive, creative people I know. Crystal’s work has my highest respect too. And it was much of the same story as with Thronson: we were experts in our niches. Her interests and passions were in common with mine, but she had her own world.
Foursight, I believe, is the shape of things to come. This is the way that good, solid creative and public relations work is going to be conducted. Campaigns are conceived and executed by a cogent team. We interface directly with clients, and are focused on results rather than pretension. We also live our work. We’re engaged in the endeavors of advertising, marketing and public relations, but moreover, this seems to the work of our live, in a larger sense. We’re all engaged in community work, in volunteerism and service, and our efforts and energies are directed toward causes, organizations, people, ideas, activities…. that better our community and our world.
I’m really excited for this phase of my life, and am looking forward to meeting and doing solid work with and for people I respect and admire.