126: ‘Be the Rock Star of Your Industry’, with Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest

A conversation with Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest of Brand Groupies.

126: ‘Be the Rock Star of Your Industry’, with Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest

Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest of Brand Groupies join the podcast to talk about their unique SOPR approach which combines social media and PR to fuel brand recognition, storytelling, and personality-driven strategy, their background in fashion, and how looking at AEC through that lens informs their strategy.

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126: ‘Be the Rock Star of Your Industry’, with Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest
Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest of Brand Groupies join the podcast to talk about their unique SOPR approach, which combines social media and PR to fuel brand…

Full Transcript

126: ‘Be the Rock Star of Your Industry’, with Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest

[00:00:00] Welcome to the TRXL podcast. I'm Evan Troxel. In this episode, I welcome Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest. Carey is the founder and CEO, and Lauren is president and partner at Brand Groupies. In this episode, we discuss their unique, SOPR approach. What's that you ask? It's their branded approach that combines social media and PR to fuel brand recognition, storytelling and personality driven strategy in the AEC industry in a media landscape driven by social media, PR, brand recognition, and storytelling. We also talk about Brand Groupies' background in fashion and how looking at AEC through that lens has informed their approach and services.

So while this conversation is a bit of a tangent to the typical conversation here on the podcast, we can't ignore how technology in the [00:01:00] social media sphere is also evolving the profession of architecture. So I hope you enjoy hearing from these two experts in the field. And without further ado, I bring you my conversation with Carey Balogh and Lauren Genest.

Evan Troxel: Carey and Lauren, welcome to the podcast. Great to have you today.

Brand Groupies: Thank you, Evan. Thanks for having us. We're so excited.

Evan Troxel: So we're gonna talk about you today and brand groupies and this is, a bit of a departure maybe from the, the typical content on the show.

But I have been branching out into a little bit of business of architecture. Content on here because there are things beyond technology that weave into how we get work done and how we attract new work even. And I think that's kind of where you guys come in. And so things have changed majorly in my career span in this space.

And you guys have coined a term called, I [00:02:00] dunno, how, how do you say it? What do you say? SOPR, what?

Brand Groupies: SOPR. it. it nailed

Evan Troxel: All right. All right. All right. So SOPR and social and marketing and PR and promotion and you've coined this new term and 'em and Wow. Architects, I think in general kind of suck at this. And so I'll just say that in the beginning, which is, uh, promoting ourselves is typically

I, I think I could say it two different ways. We're not good at promoting ourselves in this. Uh, and, and so technology now plays a big part in this, which is everybody's connected. Uh, and there's algorithm driven feeds out there where content shows up in my timeline, and it's different than your timeline, but through our kind of extended networks, these things kind of, I don't know, take on a life of their own.

And there's, so there's not architects, there aren't engineers who are really leveraging this in any measurable way or meaningful way. [00:03:00] And then there's the other side, which is when firms do post stuff, it's like, check out this award we won. And I don't think that they're really connecting with their audience because they're actually just, I think that's really inside the echo chamber of architecture, AEC, which is like, patting ourselves on the back.

So that others in the field will, you know, see that. And, and so I get there, there's a little bit of value there, but I don't think there's a lot of value there. Uh, and there's a lot of awards to be won out there. They have, there are tons and tons of awards, and so it's like, okay, like, and what is the true value of an architect?

What is the true value of an engineer in the built environment? And how do we tell that story? So I think storytelling is the key thing that we should start off talking about today. But, uh, before we do that Brand Groupies, can you just, I, I've already introduced you in the, in the intro, but I would love to hear your version of it that's not written down.

Uh, and, and just give us [00:04:00] kind of a, a backstory on how Brand Groupies became a thing and then what you do.


Brand Groupies: um, brand Groupies was founded in 2015, and at the time, um, you know, we were doing anything and everything, PR, social media, websites, for a range of different clients. And, um, then it was 2017 when we started working with Mancini Duffy landed in architecture and design firm in, um, know, you in New York City. we started doing, Social media that led to PR that led to personal branding for

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: president that led to a podcast. And once we taste of the AEC industry, we said, this is awesome. We saw a gap. We, uh, we came from the fashion industry, so we saw

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: major opportunity in this [00:05:00] industry. And so we really evolved Brand Groupies.

And today do social media, public relations, personal branding, and podcast management for commercial architecture firms and engineering firms, construction firms, design and real estate. So we're all in,

Evan Troxel: You're in the building industry. And I think that's so interesting from, like allowing you to focus on the AEC landscape. But you're really focused only on that. And what's, what's interesting to me is that you came from fashion.

There's always a, obviously a fashion component to architecture, right. And it's, I'm not just talk, I'm not just talking about what people wear, even though that is, I'm, I'm wearing the architectural uniform today. I'm wearing black. Right? But, but the idea of, of fashion and architecture and aesthetics and, uh, emotions and think mood and things like that, I think are all kind of wrapped up in why we do what we do.

Because these buildings, these landmarks, [00:06:00] these libraries, these homes, like they, they make an indelible mark on people. To be the people that they are in society. And, and so that, it's interesting to kind of hear how all that, mixes together. So let, let's talk about this. PR aspect of, of architecture and the idea of self-promotion, uh, and communicating value of architects.

and I think like, we'll keep trying to tie it back to tech, which I think is kind of a, uh, just we take it for granted that we all have these devices on our desks and in our pockets that can enable us to do this. And yet there's still this chasm of. Information out there about architects like you, you have to go to a website, you have to look at all the projects and, and look at all the, the specifications of the project, but how does it make me feel like even architects aren't very good at communicating that kind of stuff on their website, but from your perspective, give us, give, kind of, give us [00:07:00] an overview of the industry and where it sits, because I, I assume this is where you see opportunity in what you're doing.

Brand Groupies: Yeah. I think we see so much opportunity for brands who you know, make the investment and really see the value

Evan Troxel: Mm,

Brand Groupies: out because so many, um, people within this design community, you know, it's all design.

Evan Troxel: mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: think I that's how we got here from fashion. I think that we really see such an opportunity for those who, um, really I think, sort of become the early adopters in this, in this realm, because this isn't something that traditionally has been budgeted for

Evan Troxel: right.

Brand Groupies: um, in the AEC industry. know, we always say in the fashion industry, you know, Carrie would work at an agency, I'd work at an agency. One of us was gonna get hired, but it wasn't a matter of If you would get hired, it was just, which one were you going to select

Evan Troxel: Mm.

Brand Groupies: PR? And then as the years went on social media, in this industry, that doesn't seem to be the case. And so I think our clients, we tend to gravitate towards clients that [00:08:00] think differently that bit a differently because I think there are already adopting other habits within the industry that probably aren't very traditional or typical.

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: And that's how I think we become partners because, uh, and then once, once they adopt our SOPR approach, really sort of take an in-house approach.

We have, um, a handful of clients. You know, the ultimate goal is to work across several different services with them. And then we really, once we get to know them well, they kind of let us run. They don't have people internally

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: can manage or kind of do our skillset, our same skillset. So they're really kind of investing in this higher level, um, design aesthetic that we can protect their brand.

I do the PR carry does the social, so we always, know, we both came from PR background and so I think making sure that you're taking a quality over our quantity approach, um, has always been sort of very at the forefront of our minds. the in fashion industry. We were always [00:09:00] several seasons ahead, so we were always looking to the future, what's next, what's coming up?

You know, threads just launched the other day. Of course, you know,

Evan Troxel: right.

Brand Groupies: Thursday was scrambling to get everybody on threads and,

Evan Troxel: We have to talk about that,

Brand Groupies: just talk about that. But it's constantly just staying ahead of the ahead

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: I think you nailed it. Telling the stories from a PR perspective and then carry on social is so, so integral to what we do. Yes. And I think we're really people driven when it comes to, um, our PR approach. And really kind of, that came back to our fashion roots of dissecting the stories behind the brands. Mm-hmm. . And then how you make that connection with your audience?

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: that to life

want to work with you?

People work with people, not, not necessarily brands. So that's kind of what you're buying into. Yeah,

Evan Troxel: Right. Yeah. They say a brand is what other people think of you, what other people say about you, not what you say internally about yourself. Right. And so how do you know what people are saying about you if you're not engaged in these? [00:10:00] I mean, there's, there's clients that are already paying you to do a thing that may say, or may not say they, they might openly talk to you about things you're excelling at and things you're deficient at.

They might not be, they might be saying those in a private room. And so it's interesting to me. How social enables anybody to say anything about it is just open forum, right? There's no, and, and, and in some way people feel a little bit of protection there, so they maybe say more than they, they should, or they

like, it's kind of like, well, I used to live in Southern California, right?

And you sit in traffic and you see the road rage happen because it's safe to be in that car, and I'm separate from everybody else. And, and that's kind of what, what's happened. We, we've seen hap play out in many instances on social media, but at the same time you can also get really honest feedback. Like there was this whole thing that kind of opened my eyes, I don't know, maybe five or six years ago, about what, what part of your project is Instagrammable, right?

Like where, where are people taking their photos in front of your project? [00:11:00] Not what you think are the right ways to look at your project as an architect, but what are the, the people who are using those spaces? Where, where are they doing that? And I think that that was just kind of an interesting shift in.

Design mentality is like, oh, like, oh, I guess I should be thinking about that. Or at least watching it play out to kind of understand what people are indirectly saying about your project. 'cause they're taking their picture in front of it. They're not actually maybe even writing words about it. So, so give a, give architects a grade.

Where are we as a, as a, as a, a group in the social media space as far as, uh, are we, are we any good at this at all? Uh, I know we're at the lower end of the scale.

Brand Groupies: I know know, to Lauren's point about, you know, the fashion and the high standards, you know, we look back and, um, you know, every touch point to be on brand. We were, we, we were trained in, you know, 360 degree

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: um, you know, everything was to [00:12:00] evoke, um, you know, emotion. So I think, you know, when we entered into this industry, it was like, oh my gosh, everyone's so, um, about a building evoking emotion and this and that and, you know, even the technology.

But it, it was like, oh my goodness, the PR and social not. Um, in this, you know, aligning. So we were shocked, you know, when I first entered, I said, oh, these are architects, these are designers. They must be ahead of the trends because look at how far along they are, you know, in these buildings that will, you know, last for, for centuries. so it was a shocker. And then we realized, um, that, uh, you know, people did start to catch up. But I think, um, as far as a grade goes, it's, you know, definitely not nay definitely needs to,

Evan Troxel: not at a.

Brand Groupies: funny with the AEC, it's funny, we just had somebody on our podcast a few weeks ago and she was in the C and she said, it's funny, the A usually adopts first and then comes the E the arc.

The engineers [00:13:00] do it, and the construction realm is usually last. So I You're not lasts,

Evan Troxel: In, in technology. I think that could, I guess you could say it that way too, but I also see a lot of construction adoption of technology because time is money. They really understand delivering the real product to the people and handing over the keys and what it takes to get there and all the gotchas that go in there and looking actively for ways to to solve for those issues that come up.

And architects are like always, I think later adopters when it comes to that stuff, not leaders for sure. Uh, I think we can all . Agree to that. , at least, uh, audience who listens to this show, I think painfully know how slow our industry is to adopt, uh, technology. So I don't think it's it's any different here.

Uh, you mentioned threads a minute ago, and so as we record this podcast, it's been out for. I dunno, a few days, right? It's not, not that long. And, and like, incredible, incredible growth. [00:14:00] Obviously totally leveraging the Instagram social graph. And, uh, you automatically basically follow everyone who is already, uh, in your list on Instagram.

And it will, time will tell whether the Instagram audience has any appetite for text versus, I mean, obviously you can attach photos to your thread, but, but it's a very different feel, totally taking advantage of kind of the, the stuff that's going on over at Twitter as well. So people are looking for alternatives.

So kind of, I think what I heard was it launched about a month earlier than they were anticipating, but really based on circumstances that, that Twitter was, was dealing with and like, let's take advantage of this. Can we launch early? Yes, we can launch early, let's do it. And then boom, everybody's on threads in air quotes.

I don't know if everybody's on threads, but. Tell us your experience with that and what, what you're telling your clients about threads and Because social media management is like, really one more thing. Yeah. I, there's always [00:15:00] room for one more thing, right? Ugh.

Brand Groupies: Well I think, you know, when we say, you know, we're ahead of the trends with technology and our clients, we have to stay ahead in every aspect. So of course we jumped on like, know, Thursday night late, we commiserating with all the social media managers who are just up to all hours

Evan Troxel: Right.

Brand Groupies: figuring it out.

Like, oh my gosh, to, to access all your accounts, you have to log in. I mean, sorry, log out, log back in,

Evan Troxel: Yeah.

Brand Groupies: those little intricacies, um, to figure it out. And, um, I think there's a lot of, you know, social listening to happen. I definitely think, it's great to jump in right away, but you also wanna make sure you, um, you know, you have some sort of strategy and make sure that it, you're adding value and, and what you are Posting is, really, um, in line with, with the app, you know, you can't just repurpose

Evan Troxel: Totally

Brand Groupies: other apps. You have to reword things you can repurpose. But of course, every, you know, social [00:16:00] app and platform has their, their own, um, know, style and, and voice. So, so we've been definitely posting, we're definitely what's out there.

A lot. 50% is reading about it, you know, people are already posting strategies you're like, how are you, you know, an expert in, in less than a week?

Evan Troxel: good guess. Yeah.

Brand Groupies: Good guess. I think it's being a little bit, know, vulnerable, seeing what, um, what is out there and what makes sense for your brand, you know, and if it, if doesn't make sense, to measure the ROI on it and, um, really, you know, put together a strategy moving forward.

But for now, it's, it's actually been fun to play around with it and, um, see, see what's working, what's not.

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. . I, I wanted to, you know, there's, there's obviously a lot of desire for features that, to make it kind of feature parody with other social media apps out there. I, you know, multi account, you know, swapping and that doesn't exist. Uh, there's no metrics, [00:17:00] there's no a lot of things, but it's version one.

It's like early days of this. And I, like I just mentioned, I think it, they even released it a bit early just to get it out there and take advantage of the timing. And so therefore, I'm sure maybe even more was planned for the initial release, but it's not here yet.

Brand Groupies: Mm-hmm.

Evan Troxel: I think what's what I've noticed, That's interesting is there is this kind of sense from people that they're just feeling it out and they're trying to get a sense for what you were just talking about, Carrie, which is, what is this place for

social media?

Because they're not all for the same thing. They don't have the same field, they don't have the same people. They, you know, people are coming from a different point of view. I think, especially with this one coming from Instagram, for the most part. We're used to scrolling through pictures and feeds and reels and videos and things like that.

This is a different experience. What are those people gonna come here to do? Obviously there's a big rush and I think it'll taper off because people will, who, who don't care about texts aren't gonna hang around. But, uh, . [00:18:00] I'm just, I'm just watching people feel it out and figure it out together. What should I, people are actively asking the question, what should I post here?

What do you as my audience want to see from me here? and and architects are doing that too. Um, one that I follow recently launched his own firm. I'll give him a shout out. Josh Mings, who started Aggregate studio in Chicago. And he, he's like, what do you wanna see from me here? And on Twitter, he posts about brutalism, he posts about equity, he posts about like, you know, architectural topics.

And, and so I responded. I would love, because he just started a studio. I would love to see process. I would love to see this place be about your design process, the things that you go through on your projects. I don't know why I said that, but I just thought like, you're starting a new studio. This is what I've been doing for the last decade is like show like on ArchiSpeak on our podcast, talking about.

Brand Groupies: Yeah.

Evan Troxel: What it's like to be an architect that's behind the scenes. It's process. It's, it's about the how do [00:19:00] we do what we do and why do we do what we do, not here's what we did kind of a thing. So, I don't know, it is just fun to kind of watch people figure it out and, and there's no single answer either about the kinds of things that are gonna go there, but like you said, Carrie, to what's your brand strategy?

Maybe what fits and, and the difference between strategy and tactics Here you're, people are trying to figure out like, so, so the saying I think is tactics are knowing what to do when, you know, doing what, what you need to do when you know what you need to do. And strategy is doing what you need to do, not knowing

So it's, it's thinking farther out. And so, tactics I think fall into like the social media posting and what you're gonna post and is it on brand and all those things. But the strategy is who do you want to be out there?

Brand Groupies: Yes. And why do they care about what you're posting

Evan Troxel: Why should they care? Yeah.

Brand Groupies: you adding value? You know, and, and our, you know, our advice is always [00:20:00] looking at all of the platforms and seeing what really makes sense. Where, where's your audience? You know, where should you invest the most time

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: has to be, you know, some, uh, return on investment and not dilute the other channels like you really know, have to make sure your top channels with your biggest, uh, audience are, are, are strong guest.

Evan Troxel: Yeah. It can't be everywhere the time and, and it doesn't make sense to pick all social media channels to post stuff in when you have to kind of figure out where your audience is, what they want to know about, so that you can add value, like you said. And so I think a lot of times, like start with a one.

And or two and just stick to that and see what works over time there before you go somewhere else. Because you, you really shouldn't post the same thing on Twitter as you do to Instagram, as you do on LinkedIn. And, and, because then it's just like, why follow somebody? And if you're just gonna see the same stuff, where do you guys see

Brand Groupies: [00:21:00] Yes.

Evan Troxel: the architectural community or the AEC community in social, online?

Brand Groupies: yeah. Uh, I mean, LinkedIn for sure, for, you know, for B two B, and we've definitely, um, worked with other, within other industries, and we've noticed that by far the AEC industry is super strong on LinkedIn great It's awesome because you can really, you know, nail down your, your audience and, especially um, know, the press that, that Lauren gets and, um, then we spread that out on social. And so all of the

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: I mean, mostly everyone, 99% of the people are on there. Whereas Instagram, right? all they're on it.

I'm trying to, you know, trying to find this one. I can't find, know. this one they're not on. And, um, but LinkedIn it's, yeah, for sure. And the

Evan Troxel: Is that is

Brand Groupies: thought leaders are there too, right? Mm-hmm.

Evan Troxel: right?

Brand Groupies: decision makers when you're trying to attract new clients. Yes. New business,

Evan Troxel: Definitely . And it's about work, right? And [00:22:00] like that is a, a, a social network about work and the things that people do at work. And, and whereas like my Instagram is definitely not about work at all. It's like I go play in the mountains, I go play in the forest, I go, I like to do all those kinds of things and that's my place to post those kinds of things.

Brand Groupies: Yeah.

Evan Troxel: Uh, and I think that also makes sense because it kind of ties into its Facebook roots in that way, right? Which is like me and my family and my close friends. And it's not like a public social network that's just like, Twitter was who's, anybody can read your tweets, right? Very different.

Brand Groupies: Yeah.

Evan Troxel: LinkedIn is, is, I agree that it's where people hang out, but the engagement is super low, I think, compared to other social networks, at least from my experience.

And . There's a lot of lurkers out there who might scroll through feeds, but they're not engaging very much. What is your experience with that and, and maybe why, why do you think it's like that?

Brand Groupies: Sure. We always, we do find that [00:23:00] people get definitely more engagement than, um, companies

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: So we, you know, we try to be really, uh, strategic with, um, know, the leadership sharing certain things getting, you know, a lot of eyes reposting and, um, you know, that, that sort of thing.

Evan Troxel: It does seem like, uh, you a, the reposting happening, when you have the eyeballs looking at stuff what's gonna stop somebody from just continuing to scroll. What are those kinds of things that you're putting on there that, that it, somebody will take the time to read, that will take the time to look at.

Uh, I'm just curious from your point of view, how you guys strategize that with your clients, because I, I assume you're successful at that, but I think a lot of people struggle with that. They don't want to just post

Brand Groupies: Mm-hmm.

Evan Troxel: like where Twitter is. It's, it's literally a real time feed of information. I think LinkedIn is a lot more considered and people are [00:24:00] taking time to figure out what they're gonna post ahead of time.

So again, kind of a different strategy there, but how do you get people to stop and look at what you're doing on there? What, what do you guys have as kind of your secret recipes for, that you're gonna share with this audience about like, just, just some general things that, that people could use to get people to pay attention to what they're doing.

Brand Groupies: I think it goes back to our, our SOPR So, um, Lauren can share how she tells the story, um, through PR and then we take those, know. media clips and, um, all sorts of, and podcasts and, and we spread them out of on social. So there's constantly, know, a hook,

Evan Troxel: Mm.

Brand Groupies: Yeah, absolutely.

So we, we found over the years, I think that many know, many companies, if they have social or pr, you know, social sometimes is handled by Sally in accounting and She's

Evan Troxel: Right?

Brand Groupies: hats and she's

Evan Troxel: Yes.

Brand Groupies: social trained as social. And yeah, [00:25:00] lot a of know, the social girl, actually a in meeting

Evan Troxel: Uh,

Brand Groupies: and

guy in construction said, you know, we have a social girl. And I said, well, you'll never call us social girls. We are. That is not what you're what you're buying when you partner with us. You know,

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: have 45 years of experience and we've worked with global brands been trained in this. Um, but what we found is that, know, doing, getting your the in door with one or the other is a great approach. think I starting with with social or pr, if you can't make the jump with one, one with both at the same time, to the in door. But then adding on that second service, whether it be, you know, PR first and then social or social and then PR does help to move the needle because the way that we look at pr, you know, for me, Press has evolved so much over the last 20 plus years since I got into it.

It used to be all about print media and that has evolved in, been involved into digital media for us now, as you know Evan, [00:26:00] 'cause I work with you often, uh, you know, working with podcasts and using them as a an arm of our PR strategy, um, has been really pivotal in our strategies because our clients on who are quite comfortable usually speaking conversing, but sometimes maybe not as comfortable writing, doing a written interview or having

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: questions in that way. if we can hear it from the horse's mouth and then take that messaging and spread it out on social, minutes of their time on a podcast, 45 minutes on a podcast becomes timeless content. And usually that then Carrie can take. for months and sometimes years to come by doing flashback clips of what are the key tenets of this brand, what makes us different?

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: my approach, why are you, why should you partner with us instead of somebody else? then that becomes, know, fodder on social. And we can sometimes podcasts in particular, we'll do like you both video and then audio.

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: lots of different options in terms [00:27:00] of what we do with the content, um, and how Carrie of manipulates that on social and how she rolls it out.

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: we found that this approach of doing both, really provides, um, a great outlet for our clients to amplify their stories, leaders, the people behind their brands.

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: one of our clients in particular, we have a whole campaign about the people. Um, Carrie does a video campaign. Um, she can talk a little more about that. Yeah. But it's really getting more of the company involved every brand is different. Mm-hmm. . So you know what we rotate on social. Yeah. And what we prioritize on a. know, from a PR lens changes based on the company. know, one client, it's all about, know, tech and the company culture, and then the faces behind the brand and how are they moving the needle in this very traditional industry. And that's what we're constantly pulsing out. And it's a momentum game.

It takes, it takes time to shift the needle, especially if you've been quiet or [00:28:00] mm-hmm. quiet for a bit. Or maybe you've always been quiet, you know it, it's kind of like building blocks together and you stack them up and you start to really see the traction. We started with one client almost a year ago. And I think at the time the company was four years old she just hit her five year anniversary and we started with PR and she added social in, her results are off the charts now because we've consistently been building. And then she either people reach out to her directly or they reach out to me and say, Hey, I saw her on this. she be open to doing X, Y, and Z? And you can see how the momentum really starts to build. Mm-hmm. And I think, uh, you know, our strategy is, uh, intentional too. We do a lot of work behind the scenes groupies and, um, we, you know, spend months be coming up with brand pillars for each brand. So, you know, you could also call it buckets of, you know, content.

But, you know, the number one thing is the face of the brand [00:29:00] really identifying, you know, which, uh, leader, which leaders is it, you know, the partner, the C-suite, who will we be promoting? And they each can talk to something different. They each have different angles. So we rotate. You know, that one is, you know, he's, um, you know, is the architect, the other's an entrepreneur, you know, the other one is a mom. Um, so there's all different angles we can approach. And then, um, you know, the next pillar is the product and service services. And we really are always evolving that, you know, if. If our, um, client is leaning more towards healthcare or of a sudden, you know, um, their, the industrial space took off, we're going to make sure that we prioritize, you know, that content to keep it fresh in, their feed.

and then the other one's know, making sure that people know you work beyond The tri-state area, you're national and continuing to do that. And when we say brand pillars, it's not like we just do, um, know, a [00:30:00] quick one-liner, we'll do a video and we give the of, of the employees and we'll, we call it, um, you a have special series that's under a minute and we'll skip them talking points.

Okay. Talk. I want you to drop the word national. You know, we're a national firm. I want you to talk about healthcare because we're pushing that. So we organic, well organically, really, um, work to get that key messaging into all different, you know, forms of, of media. And then my, favorite, favorite pillar is the wow factor, the fourth pillar.

Like what sets them apart? know, do they have a podcast? What are they doing outside of the office? You know, thinking about things that really make people stop and say you know, um, and coming up with cool content. One of our clients, uh, you um, asks what annoys you about architects? And that's a question, this podcast. Timeless, you know, content.

Evan Troxel: right.

Brand Groupies: and, uh, that's from the anti architect. But how cool is that to, you know, to put that have you so many different answers from these industry ICON's, you know, sharing [00:31:00] what annoys them. So kind of, uh, cool in a way to, know, manipulate those, um, those quotes and things like that.

But we constantly rotate it. So it's not project, project, project. It's, you know, people interview, podcast Wow. Factor. So that's kind of, uh, our approach. But there's a lot of work that goes into that behind the scenes. Hmm.

Evan Troxel: so, so.

Brand Groupies: factors are great for the storytelling aspect too. Yes. , you know,

Evan Troxel: Oh, yeah.

Brand Groupies: who has multiple albums on Spotify.

Evan Troxel: Right.

Brand Groupies: CFO who's a bestselling author on Amazon, and she founded a school in, in Nigeria. We have another client that grew up in Alaska she played D1 soccer. So all those types of things when we're humanizing these people

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: make them not just an archite or an engineer when I'm telling their story for pr, I think those are the types of things within the first couple sentences of my, you know, my pitch to somebody really make them more interesting.

Evan Troxel: And real, I think that it's not just the polished version of them that's being put out and

[00:32:00] I

Brand Groupies: fit together.

Evan Troxel: Yeah, it's all wordsmithed and, right. Like that kind of thing. I is, it's interesting now, even with tech, like Chat GPT, where, well, I can kind of notice that it was chat, g p t , because so many people are using it, and it, and it's, it's interesting to just see people rely on things like that when it is so much more comfortable your own story in your own words and not worry about them all being perfect and not wor like you're, you're, you're a real human and you do . You do things that you're really interested in and sharing those, I think is where social media kind of all began, right? It's like there used to be a prompt on Twitter and on Facebook it's like, what are you doing right now?

It was something like that, right? That's not exactly it, but it was like, what are you up to? And, and so just to prompt you, because it was like, no, you, what are you up to right now? And in the moment and, and when you open up the app to, to use it, what are you doing? Uh, [00:33:00] and why I think is, is really interesting.

I want to talk about measurement. So you guys talk about, um, measuring the r o I and things like that, and it, you have to build over time. You have to build momentum, you have to build the brand, you have to build the message, you have to build the story and all these different buckets to that. But . I think a lot of people also maybe get frustrated with a lack of being able to measure the response to that.

Um, because there, there's a huge number of people who won't hit the like button, who won't leave a comment. Right. Okay. Normal. So, but, but to recognize that there are people beyond the ones who are doing those things. But then I think what really matters in the whole measurement thing, because what I'm not interested in talking about is like how many followers do you have, like the vanity metrics side of things.

But I'm interested in what opportunities has, has, have you seen social and PR create for the people that are working with you? Because to me, they're, they have decided, [00:34:00] they've chosen themselves to . Say, I'm gonna go out and do something beyond the normal way of, of addressing audience or, or getting the word out about what we do.

And on some level, they could even be creating a new persona for themselves or a different perspective that nobody else has, uh, to set themselves apart. Because there's this idea that social media, you to have a big audience for it, to be worth doing.

And audiences, like you just said, take time to build. You have to build the stuff. Build, build, build over time. I, I'm just wondering like where . Where you guys see all that and, and just take that and run with what I just spilled out onto the table here. What, what do you, what do you, what's your, what are you thinking about when I say all that stuff?

Brand Groupies: I think there is, it's a lot more than numbers followers. you know, lately you know, we've seen talent acquisition, [00:35:00] be a huge part of, of social media. People talk about

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: going to the, the company's social channels as the first thing to see if they wanna work for that company. So for, you know, maintaining talent, and finding the best talent, we've found that that is, that's huge.

So that's something, worth it as well. The other thing is, you know, it does take time and, you know, Lauren can give of clients, you know, maybe they get on one podcast that leads to a panel that leads to, know, uh, a keynote Then

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: just spirals from there. And it doesn't happen overnight.

It's a momentum game. um, know, the clients are like, you know, I'd love Lauren to share that story because know I there's so many actual examples like not It's about Yes, the numbers, it's about, you know, how they feel businesses, you know, um, growing and, you know, people give them

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: Um, I think, you know, sometimes our clients say, oh, we don't know, you we're asked the same [00:36:00] questions on all the podcasts. to it do again. We're like, yes, you do. You gotta get out there again, because that one niche audience on that podcast, might not have heard your story. They might not have heard the

Evan Troxel: Yeah.

Brand Groupies: that you've already done.

And so if you can connect with a few different people there, or they happen to catch the clip that Carrie puts on social, that's all it takes, right? Is the one business call that leads to a new client. And, um, and know, one example is last summer I had one of our presidents and owners of a company, um, he was part of kind of a newsletter, a a very widely distributed newsletter and interview. that group owned an industry publication, they ended up featuring one of the company's projects on the cover of the October issue. And then in the November issue, they interviewed the three people running the firm to talk about company culture. And then in invited the CFO to be part of a female driven uh symposium that they did in Texas [00:37:00] and September do a much larger annual event for huge people in the industry. And they've tapped that same CFO to come in and be The opening keynote the event. And that was all just from one, newsletter Q&A

Evan Troxel: But you guys are masterminds. You've planned that all out in advance. You saw the whole roadmap,

Brand Groupies: I forgot. They've been on multiple, you know, episodes of their podcast, but it all just led from, yeah, you know, I think that is where you buy into the bigger strategy and people that have the expertise for decades. of kind goes back to the notion of not having, you know, Sally and accounting, doing your social and PR, and I think that's, you know, having the training to say, okay, this could just be this, but what else do you, you know, are there other opportunities?

Are there other people I should meet within your organization? Literally, I asked that question and I was introduced to. The senior writer at the magazine. And then [00:38:00] I was also introduced to the guy that hosts the podcast. And then I was introduced to the president of the company who was putting together all the programming for these major industry events. And, uh, so sometimes, you know, making the investment in, in more of a senior team as opposed to, you know, it's for our team, it's nice, we have the balance of, you know, people that are fresh outta school with that, you know, kind of that perspective. And then for us, knowing of kind navigate the business world on a, on a day-to-day basis and have those, those more senior conversations.

Evan Troxel: I made the joke that you had like foreseen that whole roadmap of all those dots getting connected, but of course you, of course you didn't. Right? Because these opportunities

Brand Groupies: would happen.

Evan Troxel: Yeah, these opportunities present themselves because you are in doing the thing. And I, I can raise my hand and say that that has happened throughout my career as well, because starting a podcast in 2012 was like not a, a thing that everybody did back then.

Right. And, and the opportunities that came from that have [00:39:00] just like the story that you shared have, it's been like that. And I think that it's really interesting to, you know, that this is one of those things where it's like, when should you start social media? And it's like yesterday, right? , like, you can't keep waiting,

Brand Groupies: aren't getting there.

Evan Troxel: you can't wait for the opportunity.

Like for, you can't wait for these things to happen because it's, you're not ready yet or you haven't, there is, there is actually no barrier to entry. And, and I Oh, so, so something you said early on in the conversation, Carrie, you talked about this, this on brand and the qu and Lauren, you mentioned the quality over quantity.

Brand Groupies: Hmm.

Evan Troxel: And then there's the other side. There's the Gary V, uh, you know, who's just, you gotta put out 50 posts a day on every single channel and, and be helpful, helpful, helpful, and just share your story. Share what, and, and obviously that that is, that is Gary Vaynerchuk. That is how Gary Vaynerchuk is wired.

Right. And so [00:40:00] easy for him to tell other people to be like that. Right. But, but at the same time, it's a, it's, it's a different strategy and it can work for somebody too. So I'm just interested from your perspective. You, you guys are building brands on social and PR in a, in a specific way. And you're, the message that you're conveying is, is kind of built around that as well, but there are other ways to do it right?

And they're not necessarily wrong.

Brand Groupies: definitely. I the, the biggest difference is the B-to-C B-to-B Yeah. two B C. Right.

20 years in that B-to-C world,

Evan Troxel: mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: where you needed to sell the, dress and the blazer and the shoes. There was sale was going on in the hustling,

Evan Troxel: yeah,

Brand Groupies: register ringing.

Right. And we love B-to-B I mean, know, you our next chapter was very intentional

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: know, why we we set into B-to-B. 'cause I think it's, it really is more quality over quantity.

Evan Troxel: Yeah.

Brand Groupies: trying to build awareness and build the momentum, It can be done thoughtfully [00:41:00] and strategically.

Yes. And it's,

Evan Troxel: I.

Brand Groupies: it's not a more, is more approach. And uh, and that's what we found, I think, by absolutely. And it's, you know, um, It is, where do you know? It's like, where do you spend your time? You could go all out and spend hour, you could spend 24 7, but you know, it's also knowing who our, um, you know, who our audience is.

And, you know, we really like to say we go above and beyond. For example, like if our client does an event, know, we see a photo with the sponsors and we zoom in and we're like, we tag every single sponsor. know, we make sure that we go that extra mile.

Evan Troxel: Yeah.

Brand Groupies: engage with, you know, journalists and, um, podcast hosts who work in the industry.

We have lists of client, you know, current or our clients, know, and their partners, and we engage with them LinkedIn. So we're really, really intentional to go deep, we would say, and that's how we like to, like to

Evan Troxel: Mm, mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: [00:42:00] to really, um, like, you know, move the guess. I

Evan Troxel: Lauren, you mentioned, uh, what it, what it was Sally's title, social Girl,

Brand Groupies: Sally in a county

Evan Troxel: in Accounting,

Brand Groupies: said, Sally's an uh, know, an older name. You need to have like, you know, Emma or something. Outta school,

Evan Troxel: you know, a more timely name,

Brand Groupies: tons of, you know, there's so many people we go to, you know, meetings and there's so many people I think, within the industry, especially when know, you decades old brands, they're frustrated 'cause, you know, they used to do this and now they do something.

Evan Troxel: It's always changing. always, yeah. Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: nobody knows it and they wanna be known, but

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: know, they don't wanna make the investment. I think, you know, that long-term investment,

Evan Troxel: right?

Brand Groupies: so it's really, think there's, there's, um, such an opportunity in this industry to shift that perception and showcase the value

are seeing through this SOPR Because there's so many others there. We, you know, we walk into meetings and we say, look, we, you, you need us for everything we can give you. But [00:43:00] know, that's gonna be scary to you. So where do

Evan Troxel: Right.

Brand Groupies: Just

Evan Troxel: Right.

Brand Groupies: because, you know, that's how we did it with, you know, Mancini back in the day.

They hired us for one service and then we built, and we've grown with them so much over the last six years. And so while there's, you know, many Bigger companies that we see so much opportunity to help immediately and really make an immediate impact. We're happy to kind of meet them where they are and, and, know, we are, yeah, we are looking for, um, a few more, a few more brands.

And we also, you know, I think because we came from, you know, the industry that we did, we also have a, a very interesting checklist of, you know, we

Evan Troxel: Sure.

Brand Groupies: with kind people. Yes. We want them to really trust us and see the value. And we can kind of tell, now we've done enough

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: know, people, we can tell if they're kind of in or they're, know, skeptical know, I think that's gonna be a shift over time see, in the years to come. Yeah.

Evan Troxel: I bring up Sally because the. Because Carrie, what you were [00:44:00] talking about, going deep and kind of having the diligence to go through and tag all the companies that you see the logos for, and I, I wanna draw a picture here for the audience who might be interested in, in hearing about this social PR approach and, and like what a company like yours does in this regard is like, it's more than a full-time job.

And it's, to me is what this, this is not new for the audience who listens to this show because firms who have, are doing it the way they've always done it and aren't looking for technology, uh, solutions to solve their problems. The pe, the people who listen to the show know that feeling very well, right?

Which is . No, like, I'm not gonna be a typical project manager. I'm going to, I'm gonna leverage technology where I can do the same work as 10 people or more, or I can do that [00:45:00] thing that took two hours in, two seconds with, with, and, and it's, not different than what's going on in social media where it's not just one person in the corner trying to figure out what to post, but the life of a social media manager in that position, if like we should call it one, because like literally that's what firms actually need is that position that's dedicated.

Or they need to hire somebody like you to do it for them because you understand the industry and you have that long history to bring, be able to bring the wisdom to the, to the table. I just want to draw that distinction or that contrast, because it, it's like you said, like the construction company says, oh yeah, Sally and Accounting does that.

And it's like, just an add-on thing that we do every once in a while. And it's not important. Is, is what what really comes across there and it it, that's not this at all. Right. That and, and I think it's so interesting from a brand strategy point of view, uh, to get that message across [00:46:00] for people to hear

Brand Groupies: Absolutely. Yes. And now as you see, it's grow, you know, when reels came about mm-hmm. , it is like, okay, we know, a video producer. We need, you know, we've hired copywriters before and now, you know, everything we do is, um, in-house what we do have our partners, and it's like

Evan Troxel: mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: um, you know, where to invest to keep the quality high.

But it's like every, know, you really have to have that, uh, standard, that high quality as well. And mix and mix it up. know, it, it's, um, it's a whole production. It really is.

Evan Troxel: Mm, mm-hmm. . Yeah. Yeah. It is, it's intense. And I think, like I can barely keep my head above water, and I don't feel like I post enough stuff out there. And, and at the same time, I'm like, I'm sick of posting stuff, right. I'm not gonna, I can't actually post

Brand Groupies: do. You are on it.

Evan Troxel: I try to automate as much of it as I can just to be totally transparent with the audience.

And, and I mean, that's kind of obvious too, right? Like it's, it's a podcast title and a link and I, I do leverage technology [00:47:00] to to do a lot of that for me, but at the same time, like , I want to engage with the people who wanna engage with it. And I want to do that personally, and I want to have conversations with people whether they matter or not.

Like they're, you know what, that's in air quotes. Like whether the conver, it's like, what? I don't care what we talk about. Let's talk, let's just make a connection. And I think that's one of the most interesting things about social media. And I, I know I've told this story before, but uh, I, maybe somebody's hearing it for the first time right now, which is when I started the Arch Speak podcast with my co-hosts back in 2012, we only did it over Twitter.

We created a podcast on Twitter. I had never met them in person until three years after we started.

Brand Groupies: Oh my gosh.

Evan Troxel: And, and so we were, we're in three different, very different locations. Never had the opportunity to get together until we did. And, and just to point out that like that's how this, that's how [00:48:00] the world is nowadays.

Like I have. Listeners around the world. I talk to people on this podcast from around the world. mean, it's, it's incredible. And we're all connected now. It's a very different world to practice, uh, the things that we do in the built environment and to get the word out and to tell our story and to share our value and our values with other people than it, than it ever was before.

And so, just to kind of say, you know, so Sally's interested in that and, and she can do that sometimes, or she can do it on her lunch break, right? She can do it off hours for us. Is I, you're just leaving so much on the table there and, and, and if you decide to leave it on the table, so be it. Right? That's fine.

That's a decision that you can totally make. But I think what you're pointing out is the opportunities that have come from putting things out there in these new ways. It's so funny that we keep talking about 'em as new ways, but can't, it isn't even new anymore. [00:49:00] Right. Um, so. Uh, I don't know. I dunno where that's really going, but I, it, it is interesting to kind of just draw the distinction between, between, uh, the, the, the off the person who's doing it on their spare time versus this being like, I'm sure that when Threads came out, pe like you said, everyone's on like freaking out.

How do we deal with this? How do we deal with another one,

Brand Groupies: I know,

Evan Troxel: 'cause it's a lot of work.

Brand Groupies: Yeah. Yes it is, it is. and I think, you know, what Lauren's found is, uh, getting our guests on podcasts is, really a great, um, avenue for sure,

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: for pr which has evolved, um, you know, through the years. So even, even just that. Service alone. Yeah.

Evan Troxel: And you, you, so you guys with Christian has been on the show, Christian Giordano, and you talked about that. Where, where did that idea come from? Does that come from Brand Groupies?

Brand Groupies: Uh, Christian being a guest. Oh,

Evan Troxel: No.

Brand Groupies: Um,

Evan Troxel: Starting the podcast.

Brand Groupies: his podcast.

Evan Troxel: Yeah.[00:50:00]

Brand Groupies: Um, so I, I started the Brand Groupie's podcast. It was 2018, not, not as early as you. And um, so um, that was something that, you know, We had always felt comfortable with. We felt, you know, we were, we were in it feeling like, oh, 2018 was, early on.

And then, um, we kept saying to him, you know, he was really interested building his personal brand. uh, we kept saying, know, you should do a podcast. should do a podcast. And then, um, He, I guess it was 2021. He, he right, let's do this. And we helped come up with a name and it had to be, know, catchy.

And we just found that, uh, from our own experience with the Brand Grey's podcast, having it just checks off so many boxes. You know, you invest that,

Evan Troxel: Hmm.

Brand Groupies: you know, hour or so of time uh, it, you know, of course you can invite guests on who are, could be potential clients, and they share it. It's a co-pro promotional thing.

You know, in fashion we always did [00:51:00] co-promotion and part and partnerships. We loved, um, know, partnerships because then that would, you know, expose you to new audiences when they, um, know, you co promoted

Evan Troxel: Sure.

Brand Groupies: else. so it just, it made so much sense and we're, we're just so excited that it, you know, it took off.

Evan Troxel: Yeah. I mean, and

Brand Groupies: buzzing about the name and Yes, asking him questions and everybody at the firm, why is it called the Anti-Architect? You

Evan Troxel: Right.

Brand Groupies: architects and,

Evan Troxel: I asked, I I called him out on that clickbait title. The, that was like the first thing we talked about on this, on the, on this show.

Brand Groupies: Totally.

Evan Troxel: And it, and it's, he Yeah, exactly. It's like, obviously it just is a, it starts a conversation, right? and then somebody finds out that he's actually an architect and it's like, what, what do you mean?

Like, and, and there's like this, there's just this conflict, inner conflict that just comes out and it, it just like, Hey, we could talk about this. That's kind of fun. It makes it fun and there's, there's no pressure there. It's just, it's just, it's very cool. So with that podcast [00:52:00] and with other, your podcast and things like that, everybody has a podcast nowadays.

right? But, but I think that, you know, some of the stats that I've heard about podcasts, there's something like four and a half million podcasts that have been started. There's like 800,000 plus that are actually kind of, Continually moving along and very few make it past 10 episodes. And so just to speak to kind of the dedication of social media, podcasting, putting out, I hate to actually even use the word content.

I've probably said it a couple times in this episode, but, but I don't think that's really the, it kind of generic sizes it. Right. And so, so the idea of putting things out there that, and doing it consistently is important. Can you guys talk to that component of it?

Brand Groupies: Yeah, absolutely. So we launched and for him, you know, every, we, we manage several podcasts and every the of cadence of each one is[00:53:00]

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm. Sure.

Brand Groupies: host. It's time,

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: So we launched one podcast for a client every other week. do Christians every three weeks. And then with Christian from a social perspective, we put out a teaser sometimes like the day before, we're launching one tomorrow.

So we put a teaser

Evan Troxel: Right.

Brand Groupies: social. Tomorrow the launch graphic will go up and do two clips, um, all in the next three weeks before we launch the next guest.

Evan Troxel: Mm.

Brand Groupies: And we will take in know, a hiatus every now and then, you

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: the holidays or social. We're going up tomorrow to, to record two more episodes with him.

But it's been really fun to see it evolve. We've had an array of guests on, we've had his clients, some of his partners in the midst of a series right now doing, um, very recognizable architects like Brad Perkins episode launches tomorrow

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: and, you know, just this really some leaders within the industry that have inspired him.

And just a fun way to, [00:54:00] first of all, no one ever says no to being on a podcast, right. When you send out an invite. Almost. No, I don't think anyone's ever said no to us

Evan Troxel: good.

Brand Groupies: way to get to know somebody's story. Yep.

Evan Troxel: Yeah.

Brand Groupies: then I think from a business perspective, it can really, you know, for him and, and you know, we we're doing the same, we just launched an a e c Buzz Makers series talking to people like us who are behind the brands

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: and finding out what are the trends in the industry, what are people seeing, what are they budgeting for?

Mm-hmm. , you know, what's working for them, for . know, anything for personal branding for the C-suite? Are they prioritizing social or pr or both? so that's been really fun for, for us to start to kind of peel back the onion and, and have a, a different kind of conversation with people within the industry that, that do things, um, that are similar to, to what we do.

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: interesting. It's so across the board, like we said in fashion, know, you had your PR agency, it was very, you know, um, standard. And now it's just, you're like, wow, everyone's doing [00:55:00] different things and so working, what's better? And, and really getting behind the scenes is, is been eye-opening.

Evan Troxel: Yeah. So to maybe bring this back full circle, this whole idea of storytelling and you're talking about kind of the characters in the industry, I think that's, that's kind of how I think about it. Uh, especially with, podcasts, like one of the ones that I do Peopleverse, right? It's about telling the, the per the person's story and, and

Opening them up to other people in the building industry because I think something that, that we've identified that's lacking in the building industry, in especially as the march of technology goes on, is further and further disconnection. We search for information. We don't seek out a person to get the low down.

We don't seek out a person to get their wisdom, and this industry is full of people with decades of experience and wisdom. And that's where I think this all ties together. Right. The, the purpose of this is not just to talk [00:56:00] about our projects, but it's to talk about people's experiences. It could be the people in the firm's experience in the industry, it could be the client's experiences with architecture or the built environment.

And both of those are, are really valuable for winning new projects for the people behind the brands and creating opportunities and all of those things. Maybe we'll just finish it up there with like this whole, like the power of . Storytelling and like what that all comes back to why is that I import so important to you guys because you, you're brand groupies.

Like the whole idea of being groupies for the rock stars, following the rock stars around as they do their tours and setting up the merch table and do like doing whatever. Like, I, I think that that is such a, a, a fun tie-in that you've, you've created with your own branding there. what is it about a e c and telling the stories of AEC that really kind of brings all that home [00:57:00] for you.

Brand Groupies: I know, I think it's, you know, we always say, um, be the Mick Jagger of your industry.

early on in Brand Groupies, we would get so excited about what our clients were doing. Like, even more excited than them. We're like, oh my gosh, you, you know, um, you're doing this. I can't believe it. And

Evan Troxel: normal

Brand Groupies: you know, just really passionate and And you, like I said, um, you know, that's where Groupies really came from because we're like, we can do this, we can do that. And,

Evan Troxel: Mm

Brand Groupies: it's so many ideas of how to get their, you know, their, um, you know, message out there. But I think, know, the storytelling is so important. I talked to, you know, some major social media people and they're, they're hiring PR people now to, to

Evan Troxel: mm

Brand Groupies: social, like big social accounts because you need to have that storytelling mindset, you know, that's where we came from that, and we see, know, the, the whole picture.

And that's why, SOPR makes so much sense because now social is, know, they're kind of, um, you know, the boundary is, is [00:58:00] kind of, uh,

Evan Troxel: It's blurred. Yeah. Yeah.

Brand Groupies: um, putting it together and just being a well-oiled machine,

Evan Troxel: Mm-hmm.

Brand Groupies: perception, the story, um, just continues to, um, you know, remain out there and get into people's subconscious, I

Evan Troxel: Well, Lauren, last of news here. You shared some news with me and I, I just wanted to acknowledge it. I mean, congratulations uh, on becoming Yeah. That at Brand Groupies and, and so you two are, are leading an amazing effort there. And I think that it's, it's pretty obvious when, if anybody pays attention to what's going on in AEC with social and PR, that you're doing an absolutely wonderful job.

And to me it's just more about pointing out that that's possible for anybody out there who wants to do it. It you do kind of have to figure out how to add it in. It is it, maybe there are things you can stop doing, right? And so that you can create the space to go in this [00:59:00] direction. But to kind of bring it back to maybe where we started with, with , AEC not being very good at this about telling our story.

And like you just said, Carrie, it's like you had more excitement for what was going on than they do. And I think that's, that's normal. That's the grind. I mean, that is the grind of AEC, is like, I gotta get through this project because I got another project to start so that I can get through that project to start another project.

And, and like taking the step back, getting the bigger perspective and actually telling those cool stories. Like there's so many stories that I've been able to share on the Cus Peak podcast over the years when I was working on projects and the things that clients would say and the experiences that they would have, and just share that with me and then I could share it with everybody.

I think that was, that was really a fun, a fun thing and, and for people, everybody has those experiences, but it's really hard to kind of step back and then . Figure out a way to tell that story because my life is full of all this other stuff. And, and so [01:00:00] you guys take that work off of the hands of a lot of people, you really help hold their hand and help them do that.

But, um, I do hope that our industry gets better at this because it is such a valuable industry. And I, I think the perception out there is different than what we have of it internally of what we think the value is. And we have to ask ourselves if it's worth telling that story. I think the answer is yes, but then, okay, what are you gonna do about it?

And, and that's where people like Brand Groupies where Carrie and Lauren come in. So I, you guys are doing great work. Uh, it's wonderful.

Brand Groupies: you very much, Evan. Thank you for having us honored to be on. was be

Evan Troxel: Yeah.

Brand Groupies: On this side, right?

Evan Troxel: Yeah. So, so you can invite me to be on your podcast and then I can have that, that I'll, I'll sit on the other side. That'd be great.

Brand Groupies: Exactly. Yes, for sure.

Evan Troxel: All right guys. Thank you so much,

Brand Groupies: thank you Evan, so much, Evan. care. bye.