Do-Good PR and Branding: Interview with Sacha Cohen
The Femme & Fortune team recently had the pleasure to interview an expert PR professional and founder of Grassfed Media, Sacha Cohen. As the President of the PR and branding agency which is based in DC, Sacha represents many companies, restaurants, and non-profits that all encompass one very important aspect- a socially responsible business that keeps the people and planet in mind. Keep reading below to find out more about how Sacha got started, her advice for staying in the fast lane in the PR industry, and what makes her the successful Fab Femme that she is.
Femme & Fortune: Tell us about yourself and Grassfed Media!
Sacha: I’m an entrepreneur at heart; I started an online arts and culture magazine when I was in my early 30's and launched DC’s first eco lifestyle blog, GoingGreenDC.net in 2008. I founded Grassfed Media (www.grassfedmediadc.com) to harness my passion for helping the people and companies that make life better. After a long career in publishing and communications, including being at the forefront of online publishing and social media, I knew that running my own shop was the next logical step.
Femme & Fortune: What types of clients do you work with? Do you have a certain process for picking and choosing what clients you work with?
Sacha: We work with a variety of clients from restaurants to eco-friendly beauty companies to non-profits. The common thread — and what makes them a good fit for Grassfed Media — is that they all do well by doing good. That includes being kind to people, the planet, and animals. At the end of the day, I want to love what my clients do and to be proud to represent them. I do have a particularly soft spot for food companies and restaurants, especially those that focus on local, sustainable ingredients and wellness.
Femme & Fortune: Talk to us about building your team and collaborating with outside vendors. Any success stories that'll inspire our readers about the benefits of working with others?
Sacha: Since my company doesn’t have an in-house design team, we often collaborate with outside graphic designers. I’ve partnered with a couple excellent small firms on web design projects, social media campaigns, and creating gorgeous marketing materials for clients. My philosophy is: Partner with the best to deliver exceptional results for your clients.
Femme & Fortune: What are your secrets for managing multiple clients in such a fast-paced industry?
Sacha: Organization! Since I started the business, I’ve built very detailed processes for managing projects and clients. I happen to already be a fairly organized person, so this wasn’t a huge stretch but as the business grows, I’ve begun to use a several valuable online tools (including Freshbooks) to help manage administrative tasks such as billing and tracking. Oh, and Google docs. What did we do before the Cloud?
Femme & Fortune: For other women trying to break into the PR industry in DC, what are your tips on standing out?
Sacha: For me, the most important assets are creativity, reliability, and the ability to write really, really well. Plus, the person has to be kind and trustworthy. Those are non-negotiable in my book.
Femme & Fortune: For a small business looking to gain press and media coverage, what are some easy-to-attain strategies to help push their name out more?
Sacha: Honestly, nothing is “easy” but to get press coverage, you have to understand what the media is hungry for. And what’s going to just annoy them. That means doing your research, reading the publications you hope to be included in, understanding the style of a writer and their beat, and then feeding them with timely, newsworthy stories. Depending on your business, social media can also be tremendously important. For example, if you are in the food and beverage industry, or hospitality or beauty—Instagram is where the action is. Learn best practices, build your following, engage, offer something of value. And for the love of Mike, learn how to take good photos!
Femme & Fortune: Do you have any regrets since starting your business?
Sacha: Not a one! I love it.
Femme & Fortune: Where do you see your career in the next five years?
Sacha: I’d like to have satellite offices in LA and NYC. And maybe Philly as well. Get in touch!
Thanks so much to Sacha Cohen for sharing her knowledge and tips here at Femme & Fortune. For more information on Grassfed Media, visit her site here. Keeping our fingers crossed to seeing a Grassfed Media satellite office near us soon!