Aspiring for global PR

February 27, 2024By Destiny GillbeeInsights

As a young PR graduate, fresh out of university in 2002 and living in Johannesburg, I dreamed of working with large, global brands like Coca-Cola, that were recognised around the world and would pave the way for a global career in PR whereby I would gain valuable insights and experience. 

However, the world has changed over the last 20 years, and technology offerings dominate as the most valuable and recognised brands across the globe. Brands such as Google are known by people of all ages and used every day to answer any question and share new insights. Amazon not only carries a smile in its logo but brings a smile to users as they look to shop for everything online, from A to Z, easing the way we access the latest products or stock up on groceries. These companies, with their innovative ways, have changed our lives forever, and now, I struggle to imagine my life without them. 

But they were once unknown to the world and aspired to break out into a new market, to make a difference in the lives of their users and grow into a successful business. These brands that changed our lives forever would have struggled to create brand recognition and grow without PR spreading the news of this innovation, telling stories of what it could do for you, and reminding those who would listen about its existence, its benefits, and the promise it holds. Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, a once unknown technology company now a multinational technology corporation, also acknowledges PR’s value, having once said, “If I was down to my last dollar, I’d spend it on public relations.”  

Technology is changing the world 

Having started my career working at a B2B technology PR agency, I realised that technology was changing the world and that this was where I wanted to be. I no longer only wanted to work with the biggest global brands, I wanted to help newly established technology companies break into the market. I wanted to be instrumental in helping to make the benefit of this technology known to the world. I wanted to tell the stories behind the complex technologies that are now widely recognised and used daily. 

Over the years I have had the privilege of working with global, well-known technology brands as well as lesser-known brands that are setting out to disrupt the market and change the world with their innovative solutions.  

Along the way, I’ve learned so much from experienced PR people who have generously shared their knowledge and guided me along the way to meet and exceed my PR career aspirations. These have included PR entrepreneurs who set up their businesses and shared their knowledge and passion with me, global leading agencies which opened up a new world of PR and taught me international best practices, PR agencies that worked as part of a global network that dominated in the industry, and agencies where I learned about integrated communications and the power it holds for successful storytelling. 

Entrepreneurial spirit  

With this knowledge and experience at hand, in 2015 I took the brave and wonderful decision to set up my own PR agency in my native country of South Africa. It was something I had aspired to do for many years, though at the time I didn’t dare dream of working with global clients. But to my surprise and delight, I did. I worked with companies that aspired to make their mark in South Africa and believed that I could help them achieve their goals. Not only did I do this, but I also achieved some of my greatest PR successes and then I aspired for morea PR career in one of the worlds most sophisticated markets, the UK. 

Joining C8 Consulting 

Fast forward to 2023 when I met Paula and joined C8, and I am now working with some of the most inspiring and disruptive technology companies such as Egress, CultureAI and 11:11 Systems, all leaders in their respective industries. I continue to learn from the inspirational people I work with who aspire to achieve incredible results for our clients and I am thrilled to be working with the team at C8, a PR agency that aspires for more.