Nicole Rodrigues: A Transformational Leader Disrupting Traditional Marketing Stereotypes

Nicole Rodrigues

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The number of people entering into entrepreneurship has increased rapidly, with new start-ups emerging every day. However, only a few make their mark in the industry and achieve success. Recently, NRPR Group celebrated its fifth anniversary, which is a stellar milestone because only 50% of businesses reach this mark. Nicole Rodrigues (Founder and CEO) established the company to change the industry by creating the perfect example of what she knew an agency should be, from a client, media, and employee perspective. She added, “I envisioned an agency that would make everyone, including clients, media, and employees very happy with the work we were doing.”

Nicole has 20 years of experience in the PR industry. She had envisioned NRPR in college when she enrolled in PR courses at the recommendation of a journalism professor. “I always knew I wanted to start an agency, but did not want to do so until I felt ready,” asserted Nicole. She started her PR career with a software enterprise, and over the years she has mastered her skills and is now the owner of a leading full-service public relations and marketing agency.

In a chat with Mirror Review, Nicole shared the obstacles she encountered throughout her journey and how she overcame the same.

Here are the snippets,

Quality over Quantity

What is that one unique quality that differentiates NRPR GROUP from its competitors?

Unlike other agencies, NRPR Group focuses on quality over quantity of coverage and concentrates all our efforts on creating relationships and building friendships to foster that human touch for the benefit of clients and the media. To facilitate relationship building with media professionals, I set in motion a “No Blast” oath for pitching and outreach to media outlets. Since the day NRPR Group launched, every email pitch has been tailored with a personal touch and reviewed by an in-house editor. By taking this extra step, I was able to show the media their time is respected, and we genuinely care about working with them on stories that make sense. We aim for quality of coverage, not merely press release reposts.

Obstacles Led To Good

How did you embrace your failure? Did your failure change you in any way?

I have never failed, though I was faced with obstacles and challenges in life, they all ultimately led to good.  When problems occur, I always remind myself not to make excuses and just to keep going. As a business leader, things do not always go as expected, whether the issue is employee, client, budget, or business climate-related. The failure is not in the errors made or the changes in circumstance but lies in the inability to learn from one’s mistakes or worse yet, dwelling on them, allowing mistakes to make us feel bad about ourselves and our successes. Instead, I take the hit, evaluate if I could have done anything differently, and plan how to do better next time. Then I do it.

Go With the Flow and Stay Balanced Mentally

Being a CEO/Founder, how will you describe your daily routine?

I wake up every morning at 5 a.m. to have some time for myself. I use this time to breathe and to prepare myself for the day mentally. I jump into emails that may have come in from the night before and begin to put together fire-ups for my team with their action items for the day. Of course, sometimes there are unexpected or unplanned calls in the morning that can take me by surprise, but I must go with the flow and stay balanced mentally.

When I head into the office, I need to do everything I can to motivate and help the team to accomplish tasks and increase client visibility while I am there.  Because I’m coaching my team during the day, there’s still a lot for me to do at night, so I stay up late if I need to. I don’t complain, and I keep moving forward. I truly believe that the universe rewards hard work, and the harder you work, the better the results will be.

Good Mood Is Contagious

How do you keep yourself and your team members motivated who are struggling in a day-to-day task?

I always try to keep my energy positive and at a high level. I think good moods are contagious and so are bad moods. So, I continuously motivate and praise my staff, also I include special shoutouts for those who are achieving success. I encourage the staff to keep asking questions and be prepared for hard work. My advice is that nothing truly valuable comes easy. Be prepared to put in the time, to research, and to do homework outside of work. There’s only so much you’re going to learn between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. The work you do outside of that will help you stand out and grow more quickly in your career. Your success is in your own hands.

Learning through personal experiences

Have any of your personal experiences helped you to become a good leader?

My personal experience has set me up for success as a leader. My mother has been my biggest motivator and inspiration throughout my life. She has been a business owner, so I have witnessed her hustle and a go-getter personality, which I try to emulate. My mother always told me that I could do or have anything I wanted as long as I was willing to work for it. My experiences taught me that you always need to develop a plan to reach the goal. This plan includes always learning new skills, always pushing myself, clients and team to live up to high standards, and to maintain the passion for achieving your vision.

Overcoming insecurity and obstacles

According to you, what are your insecurities as a leader?

While overall, I am confident in my abilities, when in my initial days as a leader, I had more insecurity about whether I could succeed with my agency. Being a leader means being responsible for the growth of the company and the growth of your team. You must realize that there are no guarantees that you will make money, and, in the end, your success or failure falls on your shoulders. I have confidence in my skills, knowledge, and ability to build relationships, and with determination, I can overcome insecurity and obstacles as I can continue along the path to success.

Nicole Rodrigues

Extending the Client Visibility

What do you further plan for the company?

In the future, NRPR Group will continue to work with clients to extend their visibility, bring their stories to life, and develop new tools that will keep the agency ahead of the curve in what we can offer. Last year, I wrote a book, and launched a YouTube channel and other media content delivery tools, which proved beneficial. This year, we are also focusing on developing new tools that will help the team to offer increased value to clients. This includes building a YouTube series, helping clients garner book deals, and tracking success with state-of-the-art reporting tools.

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