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PR Interview with Jayne Alexander, MD of The Dovetail Agency

About the agency

What’s been happening recently at Dovetail?

New client wins include Brasserie Chavot in Mayfair and Kaluma Ski and we have a new recruit – Jessica Sauvary joined the team on 2 January.

What is special about the agency’s approach to PR?

The Dovetail Agency provides integrated media and marketing strategies developed for each client, with a clear focus on business development.

What future plans do you have for the agency?

To further develop different divisions within Dovetail, including corporate sponsorship and events.

About the industry

As an agency dealing with luxury and lifestyle brands, have your clients been affected by the economic downturn? What advice would you give to agencies whose clients are making cutbacks in their PR budget?

Our clients continue to retain us for an average of five years. We mould our activity to suit their budget and are keen to show ROI.

How do you think the PR industry on the whole has coped with the rapid change to digital? What’s next on the horizon?

An integrated solution to hit all relevant audiences.

In your opinion, what are the main challenges facing the PR industry today?

An increasing number of communication channels opening up to everyone limits the necessity of buying into media and other marketing contacts.

About clients

Who are some of Dovetail’s most well-known, or respected clients?

Basecamp Explorer, Brasserie Chavot, Harrods, Sabi Sabi Private Game Reserve, The Lowell Hotel in New York, The World.

Tell us a time you devised a campaign for a client through social media – what was the brief, the approach, and the result?

To publicise a spa festival at the Urban Retreat spa at Harrods for our client Maradiva Villas Resort & Spa – Dovetail worked with respected bloggers and experts in spa and travel to create an international buzz over a three month long period. Extensive use of Twitter throughout (including a countdown to the spa festival, images, tweeting journalists, re-tweeting journalist’s feedback, etc).

What advice would you give to recent business start-ups on their PR strategy?

Build credible case studies as early in the launch campaign as possible and develop brand association.

About journalists

Is there anything the agency is particularly experienced at when helping out journalists with their stories? 

Destination knowledge as well as the individual hotels and resorts. I have over 20 years of experience working in all areas of the travel industry, hotels, airlines, tour operators and luxury travel agencies.

What are your three tips/rules to building and maintaining strong relationships with journalists?

1. Creative feature ideas

2. Prompt response with accurate facts and figures

3. Access to supporting partners for media travel

If you could ask a journalist one question out of the ordinary, what would it be?

What has been the quirkiest story/feature they have ever written?

About you

What media do you seek out first thing in the morning?

BBC Breakfast News.

Name three guests you’d invite to a dinner party and why.

Prince Harry, Stella McCartney and Richard Caring.

Why? To get the opportunity to discuss their incredible success in fashion and restaurants and to meet one of the most eligible bachelors in the world and introduce him to my daughter!

What’s the first rule of good PR?

Developing and implementing a strategic plan of action, which produces actual results and boosts business performance for the client.