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Photo Courtesy Sara Flores
Interview

SARA FLORES

02.07.13

Sara Flores is the Vice President of Bollare Communications, a bi-costal fashion, accessories, beauty and lifestyle PR agency that has worked with digital platforms including Shopbop.com and the Gilt Groupe. In addition to previously holding the role of Fashion Director, Flores spearheaded the opening of Bollare’s East Coast location and oversaw the launch of the firm’s digital consultancy division. Her personal style and industry savvy has landed her features on Refinery 29, PRWeek, Business Insider, and W27. 

Interview

How long has Bollare PR been around?

Bollare Communications will be celebrating our 7th anniversary next month at our new West Hollywood flagship showroom.

When did you join the company?

I joined the team five years ago, originally managing the VIP Relations division out of our West Hollywood office. A little under three years ago I moved to New York City to open our agency on the East Coast, now serving as Vice President.

What challenges have you been confronted most with the growth of the blogosphere?

Bollare initially garnered much notoriety for our ability to launch and manage press strategy for digital platforms (Bollare’s Principal, Alle Fister, was one of the initial team members of Shopbop.com, we have also worked digitally with brands such as Gilt Groupe and One Kings Lane.) While early Bollare team members have a keen eye for crafting strategy for digital press and placements generating attention for a commerce platform, we realize the need to be on the ever-evolving pulse of digital strategy, and have built a team of seven whose full-time efforts are dedicated to blogger relations and social media strategy and emerging platforms. Digital is a huge focus for Bollare, and the ability to be on the cusp of what’s next, and analyzing efforts through back-end metrics truly sets us apart.

How do you define digital consulting?

Bollare’s Digital Consulting division partners with brands to elevate online engagement, via social media strategy and management, as well as developing blogger relationships on behalf of the brand utilizing our industry relationships and creating placements which drive home the overarching brand messaging.

What services does it enable you to provide for your clients?

Our team works to creatively build a brand’s digital presence and persona through curated digital content across social media verticals; for instance, building out a unique voice via Twitter or launching a Tumblr to serve as a visual diary. In line with these social media goals, our clients find it particularly effective to work with bloggers to drive brand awareness and online traffic and revenue. As everything can be analyzed on ‘the back end’, it allows our team to truly work strategically for a brand partner, and refine efforts month by month with key learnings from results.

Is there a PR strategy (events, editorial placement) that has proven most successful for you?

A successful public relations and digital campaign is the layered effect of multiple engines working in tandem. Like a symphony, any one instrument can be elevating, but when layered together, the results can truly shine.

How many months do you think it takes to really build momentum around a brand?

I wish I could give you a boiler answer. Most PR firms work on an initial six months to a year term; however, dependent on specific goals, a realistic timeline should be established.

How do you measure the success of an online press strategy?

There are two parts, which need to seamlessly bounce back and forth. One cannot out-weigh the other:

One, analytics and numbers. Our team is dedicated to reporting. We love sending through and taking deep dives into Excel spreadsheets and our clients enjoy seeing results through increased online traffic, particular sales from a key retailer, and revenue via social media and blogger placements.

And two, and not be undervalued, is the ‘cool factor’ and word of mouth brand awareness the digital press plan helps to cultivate. The voice that percolates through the web, as driven by social media influencers to the voice that our team conducts via the client and the social channels we’re maintaining.

Do you have any tips for brands that cannot afford PR representation to gain exposure in the media?

Spend sincere (and realistic) time identifying who you are, and who your target customer is.  Once you clearly know you and how to articulate you in two to three tight sentences, who will cover you will become apparent. Making sure you know you will help others spread the word about you with the greatest result.

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